The life of Islam began around 610 in the town of Mecca in the country of Arabia by a middle-aged man named Muhammad. Through the years Islam has had its trials and errors. However, today Islam holds the faith of around 800 million followers.
Hot and dry deserts, steppes, and wastelands are the homelands of the Arabs, but they were able to overcome these harsh conditions. Arabs were very “proud of their family, language, skill, and way of life” (Chambers et al, 2010, p. 180). The Arabs were in a time of turmoil when Muhammad first appeared. Having political power the Byzantines, Persians, and Abyssinians constantly trying to conquer the Arabs was a political strain; religious turmoil wasn’t any less of an explosion.
Born between the years of 570 and 571 in the city of Mecca, Muhammad combined pagan, Christian, and Jewish ideas for the Arabian religion of Islam. The angel of Gabriel came to Muhammad in 610 telling him to preach the words of Allah, the Islamic god. Only a handful of relatives clung to his teachings at first. “Reflected in his native city, Muhammad accepted an invitation to expound his ideas in Medina” (Chambers et al, 2010, p. 180). This migration in 622 is called the hijra. The hijra marks the beginning of the Islamic calendar. Important to Muhammad’s career, the hijra allowed him to become the governor of Medina, but it also caused for his preachings to be more and more about “public law, administration, and the practical problems of government” (Chambers et al, 2010, p. 181). After being successful with converting people in Medina, Muhammad decided in 624 to march against the Meccans. He was successful, and he took Mecca in 630. The only pagan shrine Muhammad kept in the city was the Kaaba, a temple built by the prophet Abraham.
Within the Islamic religion, the Koran is a collection of prophecies written down in 651 or 652, but the true author is Allah. The Koran praises Allah for his knowledge power, justice, and...
ISLAM 570 C.E. – 1500 C.E.
SUBMISSION TO ALLAH: MUSLIM CIVILIZATION BRIDGES THE WORLD
The thesis of Chapter 11 is clearly stated by Howard Spodek on page 334: “Islam was not only a faith, not only a system of government, not only a social and cultural organization, but a combination of all four.” This, it might be argued, could be said about any of the “world religions” during at least some stage of their development, but is perhaps more true of Islam than the others, owing to the simplicity of its basic teachings, the lack of a true priesthood and the dual religious and political roles assumed by Muslim elites, and the reliance on the Quran – viewed as the literal word of Allah (God) as revealed to the prophet Muhammad – as both the sole source of religious truth and the sole source of law. The chapter begins with a summary of the life of Muhammad and discussion of the early development of Islam, including the origins of the split between its two principal groups, Sunni and Shi’a. It reviews basic tenets of Muhammad’s teachings, the “Five Pillars” of Islam; and the importance of the concept of the umma or community of believers; and shari’a, or Islamic law; and then discusses the ways in which Islam was transmitted throughout Eurasia and Africa and transformed from a regional Arab sect into a world religion and cosmopolitan cultural ecumene. In addition to explaining...
Cultural Discussion |
[A discussion and Identification of the history and location of the second largest religion and culture in the world, Islam and the followers of the faith, Muslims. A look at and description of the positive and negative points of the culture as well as ways in which Islam have affected and contributed to society.] |
Roddric Dodd Paragraph Word Count: 1041
Professor: Jason M. Brocato Total Word Count: 1128
Social Science 101-The Human Behavior Perspective
May 12, 2013
Cultural Discussion Paper
Islam, a culture that I am least knowledgeable on, began in Mecca in western Saudi Arabia during the seventh century. Even though it is believed that this faith began with a small group of followers Islam is now one of the largest religion and culture practiced in the world today. It is said that Islam began with the prophet Muhammad during 570-632 AD when he was visited by an angel and received the message of Islam which believes “Allah is the only god” (Wuthnow 383). Those that submit themselves to this faith and Allah are called Muslims.
Muhammad a business man from Mecca and the founder of Islam was born 570-571 AD (Rieber). He was born into one of the most powerful and influential tribe of the time, Quraish. Muhammad’s father was a successful merchant who died...
...Islam: Field Study Research
Professor Jonathan Pedrone
REL212: World Religions-Summer
September 4, 2011
Islam: Field Study Research
After interviewing a member of the Islamic faith, I came to the realization that there are very many misconceptions about the religion of Islam and that these misconceptions are very hurtful, disrespectful, and inhumane. In this paper, I will first discuss several misconceptions that I had about the Islamic faith. I will then analyze how my prior understanding about the religion was altered through interviewing a member of the Islamic faith. Next, I will discuss my beliefs on misconceptions about other people’s religion being common or not. Lastly, I will recommend steps that can be taken to minimize misconceptions people have about religions that are not their own.
I had many misconceptions about Islam before speaking with a member of the religion. The first was that Islam oppresses women. When I thought about women in Islam, I thought of the image of a woman wearing a veil, and other heavy, dark clothing, where no skin would be visible, even in the hot summer months. I thought about how women were forced to stay home, and were not allowed to drive vehicles. I also believed that the Muslim’s God, Allah, was not the same as the God in Christianity, and was a false god. I...
...IslamIslam is not only considered to be a spiritual connection to God, but it is a way of life; how one remembers God on day to day basis by not only praying five times a day but also by abiding to the rules and regulations that he has bestowed upon adherents for prevention of sin. The quote “If you want to be free of all affliction and suffering, hold fast to god, and turn wholly to him” is accredited to Abū Ḥāmid Muhammad ibn Muhammad al-Ghazālī (c. 1058–1111), a highly significant Islamic Scholar during the “Islamic Golden Era”.
Abū Ḥāmid Muhammad ibn Muhammad al-Ghazālī is recognised as a significant scholar throughout the Islamic faith, particularly to both Sunni and Sufi members. Firstly, his ability as a Fiqh scholar (Islamic jurisprudence) was great; through his study of Islamic Fiqh sciences, he was able to come up with various approaches, which significantly impacted upon Islam. From his ability as a Fiqh scholar, he was able to form judgements objectively.
Al Ghazali’s impact on the development of Islam can be seen in his accomplished synthesis of the areas of; theology, philosophy, law and mysticism. He has made significant contributions to each of these disciplines yet what is often referred to as his most significant contribution was his ability to bring out the best from all these disciplines and strands of Islam in a way that provided strength and maturity to Islamic thought....
...THE MIDDLE AGES
The rise and expansion of Islam, after the foundation by Mohammed, is an amazing story. Ultimately, the Muslims, as the believers of Islam are called, started a world-wide faith that today makes up the world’s second largest religious group after Christians. The role and status of women within Islam is one of essential contribution to its origins and continuation, but ever-changing roles.
Mohammed could not have foundedIslam alone. Marriage to his employer, the wealthy widow Khadija, allowed him the leisure and financial backing to pursue his new religious journey. Born in Mecca, Mohammed was raised by his grandfather and uncle when his parents died. At the age of twenty-five he married Khadija. Mecca was an important trading center for caravan trade between Medina, the Near East and India. An integral part of this caravan and commercial trade was raiding, and the Arabs were excellent warriors. These characteristics facilitated Islam to spread via the Muslim’s holy war or Jihad within a few decades beyond the Arabian Peninsula, first to the Near East, and then Northern Africa and parts of southern Europe, including Spain. As Islam came in contact with other societies, both monotheistic and polytheistic, there was much cultural integration. Consequentially, there was room for confusion and conflict as to the expectations and responsibilities of women’s lives. As in...
...REL1006S: COURSE ESSAY
Discuss how Islam is a quest to be faithful to the transcendent, both directly and through social engagement
Islam is a religion based on the belief in one God, His messenger and the four other pillars. These five pillars are central to Muslims, followers of Islam and mould their beings and are part of their everyday lives. This essay will look at the abovementioned pillars, what they are and how they form part of the quest to be faithful to the transcendent. Mention will also be made to how Islam ‘plays out’ in everyday life, thus how this quest is and can be done both directly and through social engagement.
Firstly, we need to establish who or what the Transcendent is. I would like to describe the transcendent, according to Islamic beliefs, as being both Allah (Arabic word for God) and the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). Allah, of course is the most important aspect of Islam but it is also relevant that great emphasis is placed on the Prophet. Muslims strive to be more like the Prophet, by following his ‘way of life’, the Sunnah and as a result, pleasing and becoming closer to God. The Five Pillars of Islam, based on work by Mark Sedgwick (2006) are important components of Muslim worship. The first of the five pillars is the “…recognition that there is no god other than God, and that Muhammad is the Prophet of God” (Sedgwick: 2006, 70). This may not seem like an ‘act of...
...Islam is a tradition of love and submission to God that ultimately strives for peace. The ancient religion emerged in the seventh century and was able to appeal to the public through its deeply entrenched attitudes to peace. Islam’s constant endeavour for peace can be presented through its ancient traditions and sacred texts, history and historical events and current practices and contemporary events of the religion.
The sacred texts of Islam are the Quran, which contains the revelations from Allah and the Hadith, which outlines the way of the prophet Muhammad. These sacred texts are fundamental to Islam and it is through these texts that Muslims formulate an understanding of peace. This is reflected through the Quranic statement:
“O ye who believe! Come, all of you, into complete peace and follow not the footsteps of evil. Surely he is your open enemy.” (2:208)
Despite the world of violence and belligerence that Muhammad was born into, his approach to the ethics of war and peace differed from the prevailing tribal culture of the time. Muhammad’s attitude with regards to the concept of peace was one of active non-violent resistance and open defiance of persecution by non-believers. The essence of this is represented in the Quranic verse:
“The recompense of evil is punishment like it, but whoever forgives and amends, he shall have his reward from Allah; surely he does not love the unjust.” (Sural al-Shura 42:40-43 ‘The...
The Sasanid Empire and the Rise of Islam, 200–1200
I. The Sasanid Empire, 224–651
A. Politics and Society
1. The Sasanid kingdom was established in 224 and controlled the areas of Iran and Mesopotamia. The Sasanids confronted Arab pastoralists on their Euphrates border and the Byzantine Empire on the west. Relations with the Byzantines alternated between war and peaceful trading relationships. In times of peace, the Byzantine cities of Syria and the Arab nomads who guided caravans between the Sasanid and Byzantine Empires all flourished on trade. Arabs also benefited from the invention of the camel saddle, which allowed them to take control of the caravan trade.
2. The Iranian hinterland was ruled by a largely autonomous local aristocracy that did not, however, pose a threat to the stability of the Sasanid Empire.
3. The Silk Road brought new products to the Sasanid Empire, including a number of crops from India and China.
B. Religion and Empire
1. The Sasanid Empire made Zoroastrianism its official religion. The Byzantine Empire made Christianity its official religion. Both Zoroastrianism and Christianity were intolerant of other religions. State sponsorship of Zoroastrianism and Christianity set a precedent for the link that developed between the Islamic religion and the Islamic state.
2. The Byzantine and Sasanid Empires were characterized by state involvement in theological struggles....