Biography The Vision Of Islam Pdf


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The Historical Embodiment of Islam 89/ The Koran and the Sunna 89/ understanding the vision that animates the Islamic texts and to expressing it in the. Editorial Reviews. From Library Journal. Most English-language introductions to Islam (and to Vision of Islam - Kindle edition by Sachiko Murata, William Chittick. Download it once and read it on your Kindle device, PC, phones or tablets. (c) - page 1 of 8 - Get Instant Access to PDF File: a2 Vision Of Islam By Sachiko Murata, William Chittick EBOOK EPUB. KINDLE PDF.

The Vision Of Islam Pdf

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Published Volumes in the Visions of Reality Series: THE VISION OF BUDDHISM THE VISION OF ISLAM Roger Corless Sachiko Murata and William Chittick. by Sachiko Murata and William C. Chittick. Identifier TheVisionOfIslamByWilliamChittick. Identifier-arkark://t88h3c Ocr ABBYY. THE VISION OF ISLAM by Sachiko Murata and William C. Chittick PARAGON HOUSE St. Paul, Minnesota -i- -ii- Blank page VISIONS OF REALITY A Series on .

Notice also the switch between first and third person references to God. Today I have perfected your religion for you. It includes both Islam and pre-Islamic religions. Abraham in particular is looked upon as having been perfect in his submission: When [ Abrahams] Lord said to him. It is possible to study physical reality in one-. For the moment. Judgment belongs only to God He has commanded that you worship none but Him.

I fear that he may change your religion. What is especially important in such verses is that this religion has been established by God and that it functions for God's purposes. These are islam submission.

Notice the distinction between "you" plural and "thou" singular in the verse. In a slightly more specific sense. That is the right religion. The spatial reality with which we have contact has three dimensions leaving aside the fourth dimension for the moment.

By implication. In the Islamic view. Joseph gives the following advice to his fellow prisoners. The translations of the three terms are problematic. His is the religion forever The Koran also uses the word din to refer to specific prescriptions or regulations of Islam. Does not pure religion belong to God?

In other words. God has chosen the religion for you. Three Dimensions of Islam We said that religion in the Islamic view has three dimensions. The Koran says specifically that all God's messengers were charged with tawhid: And We never sent a messenger before thee save that We revealed to him.

He is only one God So fear Me! In a broad sense. Thus the Koran addresses Muhammad and his adherents with the words that appear below. This declaration and worship are called tawhid. When we say that Islam has three dimensions. This suggests the sense of several Koranic verses that insist that religion must belong to God.

Throughout this book. Islam's vision of a more universal reality. If someone meant to do what was done. In the living actuality of a person. If we pay attention to too many things at once. Then we. The most external dimension is connected to what appears. This then is a dimension of human experience having to do with knowledge.

We can also ask a very different set of questions about the inner dimension of human beings and their activity: What was the motivation?

What choices were involved? What was the intention behind the act? People may well have all the requisite knowledge. Islam has ulama. What is important in the first place is the act or event -we can study personalities and motivations later. What about the structure of the cosmos. We can think of human beings in terms of three basic dimensions or domains or levels of selfhood.

We have arranged the three dimensions in the order in which they are found in the specific text of the hadith of Gabriel that we have cited. Islam has mosques. In the same way. These are locally established places of worship without any central authorities that might allow us to talk about "the Mosque" as people talk about "the Church.

The point is that Islam's self-understanding is complex. We are dealing with a single human personality for which this differentiation does not necessarily have any meaning. We separate out the dimensions only to suggest that they fit together as a whole. People do things. Religion is a right or correct way. The "mathematical operations" are simplest this way.

We will deal with Islam's three dimensions separately. How many times have we heard it said -. Islamic Learning In discussing how religion is defined in the Islamic context. When we look at an activity. Each of Islam's three dimensions can be studied independently. The hadith of Gabriel suggests that in the Islamic understanding. What about God. In the case of Islam. Muslims or followers of other religions live out their religions. In this hadith.

Everyone has heard of ayatollahs. In doing so. Thus one could say that "submission" is religion as it pertains to acts. These three dimensions of religion coalesce into a single reality known as Islam. Knowledge of which of these. People simply live out their lives. For the purposes of our research. We may look simply at the activity: Someone hits a home run that decides the World Series.

We may also wish to take into account the inner dimensions of a person. The question of motivation frequently arises in courts of law. Islam approaches these issues from the vantage point of faith. There are basically two questions that we can ask. In place of churches. Should we define it in terms of the person and the act. Islam has neither churches nor priests. Jonathan Berkey has described how this worked in his fascinating study of the transmission of knowledge in medieval Cairo.

Just as lawyers have a great deal of power and influence in Western society. In Islamic cities that were great centers of learning. They are much more like rabbis than priests or ministers. In a small village. Teachers were always happy to have a talented student and. Simply to have an introduction from known teachers was often enough to secure room and board--there was no tuition.

Not only could anyone be a student. There were no degrees offered. Since there were no formal institutions. Women rarely become ulama.

A good teacher could quickly gain a gathering and before too long--politics permitting. But someone who came in off the street could also receive financial help. In many-of them. You were free to join the discussion. One of the questions that is asked about ulama when people want to find out how much they know is what certificates of permission they have.

Anyone who studies may become learned. The word simply means "the learned. Without trying to sort out the different names that are used. It would be impossible in the Islamic context to discourage learning. It was its personal and oral character that. If you feel like dedicating your life to it. A person who was simply making claims to learning would quickly be found out. As he writes in his conclusion: Education in the medieval period was never framed in any system of institutional degrees Despite the proliferation of schools devoted to the religious sciences.

To be a person of learning is a relative affair. In a traditional Islamic society. Often classes were held at a certain pillar in a large mosque.

That would make him a learned person in the eyes of the villagers. There have always been certain social barriers. The source of the permission was extremely important. Not that there was necessarily anything formal about this ranking. They are typically referred to as jurists fuqaha'. Many students were sent to a large madrasah Arabic madrasa. Although what we have said might suggest that Islamic learning was localized in madrasahs and mosques.

It simply means that you could go into a mosque and sit down by a pillar -xxxvwith a book. No degrees were offered. Learning was looked upon as a religious activity. The great centers of learning were supported by pious donations. This does not mean that everyone would have a stipend from the madrasah.

But to be a good teacher. Once you started attending. The majority of the ulama hardly get past right activity the first dimension.

No ordination is involved in becoming one of the ulama. As the Koran puts it. In traditional Islamic education. In order to understand the meaning of the text. Note that we say "recitation. Scholars wrote all sorts of commentaries. No one thinks this strange or unfortunate. And the most essential parts of the divine Word were those parts that have to be known in order to perform the basic rituals.

The Koran provides a firm basis for subsequent learning. The foundation of all Islamic learning is the Koran. The tone is typical for many hadiths and a few Koranic verses. Building on the Koranic teachings and adding to them the Hadith and certain other sources.

The actual. Other subjects were gradually added in keeping with the student's aptitude. For theological reasons. The Koran should always be pronounced carefully. Education begins by setting up a foundation upon which a structure can be erected.

A Fourth Dimension We left out the last section of the hadith of Gabriel. In the Islamic context. Hence the Koran becomes the primary source or "root" asl of jurisprudence. A similar thing was done in other fields. But it was always recognized that the most essential formal learning was memorization of the divine Word. The word tafsir. Children do the same thing everywhere.

The relatively small amount of time that they can devote to formal education should be expended on what is most important and most essential in life. In the modern West. The traditional curriculum gradually added other elements. No one thought it important for children to understand the meaning of the Koran--after all. Any scholar could write a Koran commentary from the perspective of his own specialty and explain his own understanding of the text.

Islamic Declaration on Global Climate Change

But such recitations are music nonetheless. But in this case. But everyone recognized that the meanings of the Koran were inexhaustible. Some commentaries simply explained the literal meaning of the text by expanding upon it in detail either in Arabic. Rote learning was not such a difficult activity. Learning the Koran was the primary goal of traditional education.

All Muslims have heard stories about Abraham. Some fields of learning. What was important in education was memorization of the Word of God. There were commentaries that focused on grammar.

Once students had memorized part or all of the text. The material -xxxviithat they are taught is--in one word--infantile. The foundation has to be built slowly but firmly. On a more formal level of education. And if they had ten lifetimes ahead of them. Children learned to recite the Koran beautifully. Elaborate versions of the Koranic narratives. Then it was relatively easy to learn the intricacies of this complex topic.

Many children can be found in the Islamic world who can recite--sing.

The stress was always on bodily activity. Children have their whole lives ahead of them to understand the book. If God is understood as the only reality truly worthy of the name--or Reality with an uppercase R -. In the first verse quoted below. People are not like mountains and trees. The Koran uses the term and its derivatives in about seventy verses.

People are always faced with the fact of their freedom. We have already seen that the Koran and the Hadith use the word din "religion" in a range of meanings. The other verses illustrate the Koranic view that everything in the natural world praises and glorifies God.

And time also has something to do with the dimensionality of human beings. When [ Abraham's] Lord said to him. Since God made them the way they are.

It frequently refers to these many as muslims. In only a few of these verses can we claim that the word refers exclusively to "Islam. This means. Muslims mean that religion too. Given the geometrical metaphor of dimensions. This is the great mystery. Simply by existing. If there were no choices to be made.

It is here that human problems begin. The Koran says in the verse just cited that "many of mankind" bow to God. Incomprehension often occurs because people think they are talking about the same thing. If the main body of this book explains Islam in terms of islam submission. The implication is that religion includes knowledge of the way in which time will unfold and come to an end. Although from one point of view human beings are included in "the heavens" and "the earth" and hence are creatures of God and submitted to him.

In translating the word in this sense we will employ the term muslim. Hence there is an allusion to an Islamic view of history. This is typical for many important terms employed in the Koran and the Islamic tradition. Hence they are "submitted" to God. The Prophet has come with specific instructions from God for the people. If someone rejects God's religion -. If other practices are different.

All prophets submitted themselves to God's will and hence were muslims. But clearly this does not mean that they follow the religion established by the Koran. But at least one verse refers to islam in a still narrower sense. Religion in God's view is the submission.

He will not diminish you anything of your works. It is probably true that most Muslims read these verses as referring to Islam rather than islam in a wider sense. God will not accept that from him. It is this fourth meaning of the word that is the topic of the present chapter and is made most explicit in the hadith literature.

Some of the verses that speak of islam might well be read as referring exclusively to the religion brought by Muhammad. Obeying God and the Prophet pertains to the domain of activity. Most Muslims read them to mean that the right way of doing things is that set down by the Koran and the Hadith. The other three will be referred to as "submission" or islam.

If they obey. It should not be imagined that these four meanings are clearly distinct in the minds of Muslims. Submission is that you witness that there is no god but God and Muhammad is His messenger.

It is common for Muslims to think of Islam as their own practices. Apparently a group of bedouins -. Thus the hadith of Gabriel. But of course. Only the third of these can properly be translated as Islam with an uppercase I. If you obey God and His messenger. Others understand the verses to mean that every revealed religion is one of the forms of islam.

Having one's religion rejected by God is the same as being sent to hell. Hence they came before the Prophet and swore allegiance to him. They count it as a favor to you that they haw submitted Say: Part of swearing allegiance to the Prophet was -5agreeing to observe these practices.

Islam came with a set of conditions that were completely unfamiliar to the bedouins. At some point. Now God enters the discussion by revealing the following verses to Muhammad: The bedouins say. Islam's first pillar is simply to say the two sentences. He is with you wherever you are. The structure is the religion of Islam. Islam recognizes that correct practice makes people Muslims and that. The Koranic usage of the term shahada throws interesting light on its significance.

The body is a lived reality for everyone. God bears witness that there is no god but He--and the angels. Muslim children are rarely taught a catechism.

The foundations of Islam

For the most part. No one cares if they lose interest in the middle and go off to play. But bodies play a determining role in all the individual characteristics that give us our identity.

The Koran sometimes cites the criticisms that such people make of those who follow the prophets: If you obey a mortal like yourselves. Our bodies determine our configuration within reality. A pillar is a support. By performing it.

Behind all the stress on practice is the recognition that the Koran must become flesh and blood. And the Koran simply replies that salvation will be achieved by those who "have faith in the unseen.

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Another of God's names is alshahid. Muslims recite it frequently. And like children everywhere. Questions on that level belong to Islam's second or third dimensions. The point is for the practices gradually to become a natural and organic part of the human configuration.

What do you do to be a Muslim? This question does not pertain to the level of faith. They have to embody the Book. Embodied Submission Practices pertain to the domain of the body.

Islam set out to build a society. There is nothing but our life in this world. Included in the witnessed domain are all bodily things. Our meeting with our surroundings always begins on the bodily level. Islam has functioned socially by harmonizing people's activities. It is to acknowledge verbally that one accepts the reality of God and the prophecy of Muhammad and hence the truth of the Koran.

It must become the determining reality of what they do islam. We die. We know only the witnessed realm. They grow up performing basic purification rites. If philosophers and theologians can speak of nonbodily realities. It is known as the Shahadah Arabic shahada. One of God's Koranic names is "Knower of the ghayb and the shahada. What Islam has always understood is that people are united by common practices at least as much as by common ideals.

The First Pillar: The Shahadah The pillars are practices. The act of bearing witness to God's unity is the most basic act of Muslims. If the five fundamental practices of Islam are called "pillars.

It is not enough for people to read the Koran or learn what it says. Included in the unseen realm are God and spiritual beings. Thus the child is exposed to the first pillar at the very beginning of life.

Each prayer consists of a certain number of cycles raka. The evening salat has three cycles. Most Muslims agree that pronouncing the Shahadah is all that is absolutely necessary for one's Islam to be accepted by God. The Koran commands performance of the salat more than it commands any other activity. Midafternoon is usually defined as the time when something's shadow is slightly longer than the thing itself.

By reciting the Shahadah. The period for saying the fifth salat extends from midafternoon until sunset. The formula is recited by Muslims on all sorts of occasions. The primary required salat is performed five times a day. And We revealed to them the doing of good deeds and the performance of the salat. Salat is divided into two basic kinds--required and recommended. The Second Pillar: Salat Although uttering the Shahadah is the fundamental act of Muslims.

From the position of prostration. This is the end of the first cycle. The Prophet called salat the "centerpole" of the religion. The Shahadah's primary importance comes out clearly in the fact that reciting the Shahadah is the ritual whereby one submits oneself to God.

The basic sense of the word in Arabic is to pray or bless. After sunset the beginning of the day in Islamic--as in Jewish--time reckoning and before the disappearance of the last light from the horizon.

And We gave him Isaac and Jacob as well. After the second cycle. In the following. In this ritual. Here they also recite the Shahadah in an elongated form. In Koranic usage. After a few seconds.

If this prayer that we have just observed is the morning salat. The next prayer is the night salat. They remain in this position of prostration for a few seconds. If we were to observe a group of people performing the salat together. Just as God and the angels utter the Shahadah. Noon is the time when the sun reaches the meridian--not clock noon. Each one knows its salat and its glorification.

No one supposes that the child understands the Shahadah. How to perform the salat was taught by the Prophet.

Islam and Islamism

It is not accidental that performing the ritual prayer in communion has come to symbolize Islam on television. It is the act itself that is important. After a minute or two. The required salat is the second Pillar. The morning salat can be said any time between the first appearance of the dawn and sunrise. Like many other Koranic terms. But for Muslims. Although the Koran repeatedly commands Muslims to perform the salat. Each cycle involves a number of specific movements and the recitation of a certain amount of Koranic text and various traditional formulas.

And We delivered [ Abraham]. The question Who are Muslims and What does Islam have to do with it — i. Given the inherent principle of probabilistic determination, the identification of moral responsibilities for these problems tends to defy consensus. The impact of this kind of social rationalization cannot be easily gauged for all of France. The term was taken up by prominent mainstream politicians. This kind of redescription of Islam presupposes, of course, that Islam and Muslims are situated in particular social spaces which are today closely associated with serious problems.

While social rationalizations of Islam often aim to alter a common understanding of Islam and its social power, their starting point is the perception of multiple problems — a perception which these rationalizations, to a large degree, share and perpetuate. Social rationalizations contribute to a much broader movement of particularizing Islam and Muslims, i. Divergent political interventions can thus be enabled by these rationalizations. They may help, more or less directly, to legitimate a politics of prohibition and repression.

For example, the political support for the law against headscarves in public schools 15 March depended partly upon the way in which Muslims had been inscribed into the social spaces of the banlieue. It is important to underline that supporters of the law did recur to social rationalizations of Islam in their argumentation.

While in some cases advocating change through changing social conditions, in one respect they argued that the social had to be reshaped through a political decision, namely a law prohibiting the hijab in public schools. Broadly speaking, these policies are founded on the assumption that state authorities need to recognize Muslim actors, notably mosque associations, and cooperate with them by facilitating Muslim worship in order to create conditions for the emergence and spread of forms of Islam fully compatible with French society.

A related, less widespread and more controversial line of argument is that cooperation by public authorities with Muslim actors should be strengthened to some degree as part of an effort to strengthen social peace in neighbourhoods deemed problematic. From this perspective, the question Who are Muslims is directly answered with a focus on how individuals become Muslims, how social conditions shape the particular meanings given to Islam and, ultimately, how Muslim subjectivities can be changed.

This reasoning shapes policies and public debates in significant ways, notwithstanding the fact that it is regularly rejected on the grounds that the Republic is not supposed to recognize religions.

The Vision of Islam

On the national as much as the local level, public authorities wield considerable discretionary power when it comes to the construction of mosques and their partial subsidy , relationships with mosque associations or federations, or the training of imams. Social rationalizations of Islam contribute to decision-making in these fields. This mode of rationalization may appear less as an alternative to the two preceding rationalities than a means for opening up a new perspective on identity. In fact, however, this rationality is in some of its applications closely interrelated with juridical rationality, either stabilizing or threatening the legitimacy of the normative order.

At the centre of historical rationality, in terms of epistemological assumptions about reality, is France, understood as on some level persisting in its identity through historical change. This persisting kernel of France is most closely associated with the interrelated notions of Enlightenment, Republic and secularism. As to the subject form this rationality presupposes, it is the remembering subject, i.

The most central task rendered thinkable by this rationality is to shape, through the writing of French history, how French people — Muslim and others — identify or not with France as an entity which legitimates itself through its history. What is at issue here, importantly, is not only the legitimacy of France, but also its normative status as a yardstick for understanding Islam and evaluating the historical evolution of the Islamic tradition.

This reference is actualized notably in the significant number of calls for an Islam which is qualified as enlightened, secularized, republican, etc.

At the same time, this normative reference to the history of French modernity is directly rejected in numerous writings of Muslim authors who have elaborated alternative perspectives on Islamic history and the foundations of modernity. Since roughly the late s, the challenge to historical rationalizations of France has radically changed.

What is controversial today is not only — though this is part of the story — whether claims to historical legitimacy of the Republic and the normativity of French history are accepted by all French whatever their origin or religion. Rather, the question has become whether such claims can be made on the basis of historical knowledge authorized by professional historians.

I suggest conceptualizing this context by drawing on Foucault , who distinguished between two types of historiographical writing. Historians demonstrate the ancientness of kingdoms, or the greatness of those who founded them. This first historiography is opposed by a strand of counter-history writing. This discourse threatens the power of the ruler, by attacking its constitutive identification with law.

This conception, in opposition to various organicist conceptions of the social body, is a direct challenge to the historico-juridical claim to legitimacy of the sovereign. In this struggle, the balance of power has shifted in favour of counter-history. At that time, France entered into a broad debate about its colonial history and the postcolonial present. The works of fiction relevant to this topic are cartoons, comics and — broadly speaking — realist novels and movies. It goes without saying that the status of fiction partly differs from the above rationalizations, notably those undertaken within political institutions.

However, it is indispensable to include it in a study of French secular politics. The principal reason for this has to do with the simple fact that works of fiction regularly function in mutual relations of competition or complementarity with other rationalizations of Islam; they constitute a major medium for processes of deliberation, interpretation and self-reflection in society. Importantly, the rivalry which is often observed between rationalizations of reality through fiction and others which resort to the social sciences in particular is an old one and in no way specific to the current context or debates about Islam.

As Lepenies shows, the emergence of sociology in France took place in a relationship of both rivalry with literature and mutual shaping. Since the 19th century, novelists have claimed that they also do the work of sociologists, while sociologists have drawn on literary works Lepenies ; cf. This relationship of mutual determination, it has been argued, builds on certain similarities in their respective practices which greatly increase the connectivity of aesthetic rationalizations with other knowledges.

Generally speaking, aesthetic rationality is defined here as a reasoning which is given contemporary expression in works of fiction.

However, this is not to say that 18 As is apparent from the above, my approach shares in the now common rejection of the idea that citizenship in France is non-ethnic or universal.

At the same time, my approach emphasizes the relative contingency of how and why the articulation of citizenship with history writing becomes efficient.

Nor are these works of fiction understood as realizing a kind of supreme reason which transcends the cognitive structure of rationalities and disables them, as could be argued for certain forms of art Seel On the contrary, the acknowledgement and affirmation of a difference to mimetic representation is combined here with the claim that they enable a specific understanding, or experience, of aspects of reality: be it what is conventionally held to be reality; a reality which is obscured; the reality as it is lived by other humans; the interior reality of humans; or a possible future reality, etc.

My aim here is not to resolve this tension. This is not intended as an easy way out of the debate about the relationship between fiction and reality. My aim here is not to legitimate the fiction category by a theoretical account of it, but to examine, in the case of France, how fiction is used and what it enables people to do.

As far as aesthetic subjectivity is concerned, the subject is conceived as universal in the sense that it has the fundamental capacity to consume — and be moved by — works of fiction and thus participates in the shared world of fiction. I thus consider that those who make public statements about a work of fiction implicitly assume that inter-subjectively valid claims can be made about fiction, its aesthetic value, its meaning and its effects. It is widely taken for granted that the world of fiction is accessible to all French people and can be shared equally by them.

There is disagreement about what a particular work of fiction depicts, how this work relates to reality, and what kind of aesthetic enjoyment it may or may not provide.

But as I said, I am not interested here in the question posed by aesthetical theory about the conditions for making aesthetic judgments which are anything more than private judgments, but in how government functions and what aims aesthetic rationalizations can serve.

In this regard, the above has made it clear that this rationality permits assertions about reality or future reality which can, to different degrees but at times very strongly, contradict understandings that result from any of the rationalizations defined above.

Given the broad variety of genres and work I seek to cover with this definition, I cannot address the question how these works integrate a socially identifiable reality in their different ways.

The discursive context of secularism, as I have reconstructed it here, has broadly been characterized in contrast to orderly visions of politics.

Three features of this discursive context and three dimensions of its complexity are worth flagging up here with reference to more general questions. First, and most obviously, this conceptualization of secular politics highlights the insufficiency of the secular-religious dyad as an analytical matrix for politics.

These processes are not conjunctural, nor can they be reduced to particularities of the debate on Islam, the racialization of Muslims or Islamophobia. Rather, they rely upon institutionalized modes of reasoning which are in principle considered legitimate contributors to public knowledge and deliberations.

Second, the reconstruction of the secular discursive context highlights the heterogeneous grounds — in terms of knowledges and modes of reasoning — on which the public debate about state politics and French Islam takes place. These configurations of the category Muslim and their basic epistemological assumptions cannot always easily be reconciled with each other; some explicit oppositions between them have been mentioned above.

Contradiction is the keyword here. Indeed, it has often been pointed out that French secularism, and politics more generally, need to be characterized as contradictory or paradoxical, e.

The reference to the internal contradictions of secularism and their criticism is without doubt important. In the perspective adopted here, however, it also raises far-reaching questions as to the basic assumptions underlying the critical interest in contradictions.

In the case studied here, the question what abstract logical contradictions tell us about the logic — or logics — which determines poltical action and political struggle certainly needs to be asked. Does the principle of logical contradiction always act as primary determinant of the discursive space inside which political actors reason and justify their acts? Does it always help us understand how political actors reason and justify their acts? Suffice to say that in order to answer in the affirmative, one would need to be able to identify some sort of overarching system which determines how the different rationalities identified here relate to each other.

And it is precisely in this case, in this kind of analysis, that we emphasize, and must emphasize a non-dialectical logic if want to avoid being simplistic.

This applies even to major political events such as the headscarf controversy of See, e. This is how Agrama has described the working of secular power in the case of Egypt and, in a brief comparison, France Stanford: Stanford University Press. New York: Fordham University Press. London: Routledge. Birnbaum, Jean : Un silence religieux.

La gauche face au djihadisme. A much more massive expansion of Islam after the 12th century was inaugurated by the Sufis Muslim mystics , who were mainly responsible for the spread of Islam in India , Central Asia, Turkey, and sub-Saharan Africa see below.

Beside the jihad and Sufi missionary activity, another factor in the spread of Islam was the far-ranging influence of Muslim traders, who not only introduced Islam quite early to the Indian east coast and South India but also proved to be the main catalytic agents beside the Sufis in converting people to Islam in Indonesia , Malaya, and China.

Islam was introduced to Indonesia in the 14th century, hardly having time to consolidate itself there politically before the region came under Dutch hegemony. The vast variety of races and cultures embraced by Islam an estimated total of more than 1.

All segments of Muslim society, however, are bound by a common faith and a sense of belonging to a single community. With the loss of political power during the period of Western colonialism in the 19th and 20th centuries, the concept of the Islamic community ummah , instead of weakening, became stronger. The faith of Islam helped various Muslim peoples in their struggle to gain political freedom in the midth century, and the unity of Islam contributed to later political solidarity.Zakat Zakat is commonly translated as "alms tax.

The daylight hours in June are long in the northern hemisphere and short in the southern hemisphere. Children do the same thing everywhere.

New York: Oxford University Press. Before long. Sitting down before the Prophet. In the Islamic view. Chittick, William C. London: Blackwell Publishing. For that reason, it has my deepest recommendation as a path to understanding, particularly for those in the West to gain a true vision of what Islam means, and for all of us as Muslims to gain a holistic grounding in the universal truths of our faith.

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