Worship in Islam is that pursuit of spiritual health and growth beyond the material existence.

God, knowing how important this is to our spiritual health and also knowing how distracted by the material world we can get (He’s the Creator and All-Knowing after all), has directed us to the five pillars of religion to refocus our lives, our energies, and our love toward Him.

God gives us physical actions to grow spiritually, to find peace, and contentment with God, ourselves, and the rest of God’s creation.

Five times a day, Muslims leave what they are doing to reconnect with God in prayer.

Once a year, for a month, Muslims leave food, drink, and intimacy with spouses during daylight to feed and quench the thirst of the soul, to redirect their focus to connecting with God.

Twice a year, Muslims part with a portion of their wealth to those in need, to remind them that their love of God should be greater than their love of anything else.

At least once in their lifetime, Muslims leave their home and all they know and love to travel to the very first structure dedicated in the worship of God, to remind them that their ultimate attachment should be to their Source, The Everlasting.

But that doesn’t mean seeking God and knowing Him is limited to times of prayer or fasting, etc.

Every action one takes can be an act of worship if it is done in accordance with what pleases God (morality and ethic- we know this standard through the Prophets’ examples and following their path) and with the intention to seek nearness to Him.

All of this is echoed in the testimony of faith- There is no god but God and Muhammad is His messenger. God is our Source, the source of guidance, love, peace, and contentment. And every pursuit should be done in an effort to draw nearer to Him.

The pillars are the baseline so that we never get too far away from our connection with God.

But in Islamic thought education, good manners, humility, and kindness to God’s creation are also essential to the health of the spirit because it is a recognition that everything is from the same singular Source.