Download Introduction to Islam - Georgia State University

yes no Was this document useful for you?
   Thank you for your participation!

* Your assessment is very important for improving the work of artificial intelligence, which forms the content of this project

Document related concepts

International reactions to Fitna wikipedia, lookup

The Satanic Verses controversy wikipedia, lookup

Islamism wikipedia, lookup

Ijtihad wikipedia, lookup

Satanic Verses wikipedia, lookup

Islam and Sikhism wikipedia, lookup

LGBT in Islam wikipedia, lookup

Reception of Islam in Early Modern Europe wikipedia, lookup

Islamofascism wikipedia, lookup

War against Islam wikipedia, lookup

Islam and Mormonism wikipedia, lookup

Islam and secularism wikipedia, lookup

Islamic democracy wikipedia, lookup

Islam and violence wikipedia, lookup

Dhimmi wikipedia, lookup

Islam in Somalia wikipedia, lookup

Islamic extremism in the 20th-century Egypt wikipedia, lookup

Islam and war wikipedia, lookup

Muslim world wikipedia, lookup

Islam in Afghanistan wikipedia, lookup

Historicity of Muhammad wikipedia, lookup

Criticism of Islamism wikipedia, lookup

Islamic Golden Age wikipedia, lookup

Liberalism and progressivism within Islam wikipedia, lookup

Censorship in Islamic societies wikipedia, lookup

Al-Nahda wikipedia, lookup

Islam in Iran wikipedia, lookup

Fiqh wikipedia, lookup

Islamic socialism wikipedia, lookup

Islamic ethics wikipedia, lookup

Origin of Shia Islam wikipedia, lookup

Political aspects of Islam wikipedia, lookup

Sources of sharia wikipedia, lookup

Islamic culture wikipedia, lookup

Schools of Islamic theology wikipedia, lookup

Islam and other religions wikipedia, lookup

Islam and modernity wikipedia, lookup

Islamic schools and branches wikipedia, lookup

Introduction to Islam
Rise to Reform!
• Near East: first attested usage 1869 and then 1894.
(see map. Generally in relation to the Eastern
• Middle East. First attested usage is in 1897, and
at first extended from Egypt to India: the area
between the Near East and the Far East.
• We now use the term “Middle East” commonly to
speak of the area from Egypt to Iran (West to
East), and Yemen to Turkey (South to North)
• North Africa refers broadly to the region from
Libya to Mauritania
Terms continued
Islam (=Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism)
Muslim (=Christian, Jew, Buddhist)
[also: Moslem] The people are never “Islams” or “Islamics”
Islamic is an adjective. Islamic Art developed sophisticated
calligraphic representations to an unprecedented level.
Qur’an (=Bible) Best pronounced as two syllables, Coor-On.
[also: Koran]
Iran: Best pronounced in English as EE-RON
Iraq: Best pronounced in English as EE-ROCK but EE-RACK
is also fine.
Middle East
Total Population: ca.
290 Million
Muslims: ca. 270
Christians: 10-14
Jews: 5.5 million
Bahais: ca. 300,000
M.E. and Northern Africa
Muslim Distribution
Pie Chart World Religions
Projected growth of Muslim
Geographic Spread
Global Muslim populations
Muslim Distribution in the
Stats on US Muslims
• Muslim American Facts
• Islam came to the Americas with Slavery
• Estimated number of Muslim Americans: probably 6-7
• Mosques in the United States in 2000: 1,209.
• Proportion of mosques founded since 1980: 62
American Muslims
Rise of Islam
Jahiliyya to Islam
Western Arabia mostly Pagan in the early
7th century
Monotheism known
Allah-”Deus Otiosus”
But same as the God of Abrahamic faiths
Arabia is connected to the rest of the world
but is a backwater
Life of the Prophet
• Born ca. 570
• Poor and orphaned
• Noble and known for trustworthiness (called
“al-Amin” or trustworthy)
• Marries Khadijah, older, wealthy widow, at 25
years of age. (ca. 595)
• His only child to outlive him, Fatima, is the
daughter of Khadijah
• Begins to retreat outside of Mecca for
• Begins to hear voices calling out, “Greetings,
oh Messenger of God.”
• First revelation is terrifying
• Revelation will continue for the next 23 years
• At first apocalyptic and ethical-later becomes
more regulatory as nascent state emerges
Other events
622—Hijra to Medina (The crucial change)
630—Peaceful conquest of Mecca
630-632—Arabia mostly submits to Medina
632-Prophet dies without universally
recognized heir.
Sūra 55: Raḥmān, or (Allah) Most
Section 1 (1-25)
1. Alrrahman
1. ((Allah)) Most Gracious!
2. AAallama alqur-an
2. It is He Who has taught the Qur'an.
3. Khalaqa al-insan
3. He has created man:
4. AAallamahu albayan
4. He has taught him speech (and
5. Alshshamsu waalqamaru
5. The sun and the moon follow
courses (exactly) computed;
Form of Qur’an
• Revealed gradually—therefore not single
• Collected in 114 Suras or Chapters
• Organized from longest to shortest Suras
• Each word believed to be divine, but order is
• Qur’an best parallel to Christian “Logos”
• Qur’an is sacred, but is heard and recited also
in the “profane” world
Major Divisions
• Kharijis
• Sunnis
• Shi`is
Early split over leadership and
Their definition of who was a Muslim
Very rigorous
This name will be used in the modern period to
describe Wahhabis and, perhaps more
appropriately, the modern radical movements
that have “seceded” from Muslim society
• Derived from word for Prophetic practice,
“sunna” (Ahl al-Sunna wa’l-Jama`a)
• “Four caliphs” historical reality was correct
• Leadership of community routinized in the
office of the Caliphate
• Sunna comes to be as important as the Qur’an
in determining Islamic law and practice
• Ulama are “successors to the prophets”
• Majority by 10th century at the latest
Originally a split over leadership (the Shi`a of `Ali)
Develops in distinctive ways
Martyrdom, especially of al-Husayn, gives Shi`ism a
penitential and redemptive aspect (NOTE: this does not
make Shi`ism any more “extreme” or liable to a death cult
than other traditions, but it does help explain some Shi`ite
ways of acting.
b. Belief in necessity of the Imam—necessary for existence of
world, and infallible guide
For “Twelvers”, minor occultation between 874-941, followed by
major occultation until the present
Shiite Ulama
Medieval debate among Shiites about the
extent of the role of the Ulama in society.
Winning position: Usulis-Prepared to use
independent legal reasoning (ijtihad) to
deliver legal judgments (fatwas) on any
social or personal issue
Marja` (Model for Emulation)
Marja-lit. the person to whom one (re)turns.
Religiously, in Shiism, the authority to whom one
turns for direction in matters temporal and spiritual
At present, several marjas, including Sistani in Iraq,
Khamanei in Iran, Fadlallah in Lebanon, and others.
Division over extent to which the Marja should be
involved in politics
Anybody recognized as a marja` is very important and
has enormous economic and moral resources
Khomeini (d. 1989)
• Khomeini changed basic doctrine of Shiites
• Argued for Vilayet-e-faqih, or the rule of the
• In practice, this meant that the ideal ruler was
the most qualified marja` of the time:
Khomeini was this person during his life
• Other Marjas (including Sistani) do not accept
this position
Shi`ism and Sunnism
Sunni majority = 80-90% Muslims
Shi`i minority 10-20%
• Sunnis and Shi`is both believe in the same
Qur’an, same Prophets,
• but they believe in different versions of history
after the death of the Prophet Muhammad
• Sunnis believe that leadership of the community was
essentially political after the death of the Prophet.
• Office is more important than individual
• Shi`is believe that members of the Prophet’s family
should have led the community. These are Imams
• Those members had special knowledge that is
miraculously passed on from one Imam to another
• But instead of being allowed to lead the
community, they were martyred.
• Special status is given to the Prophet’s
grandson, al-Husayn (d. 680 CE), the
paramount martyr, whose death is
commemorated every year
• through several rites, including flagellation and
reenactment of his death.
Shi`ite observances
Flagellation as a way of commemorating fallen martyrs reflects
a rather more “tear-filled” mournful version of Islam among some but not all
Shi`i groups.
Christian Flagellants
All Muslims undertake 5 basic
“pillars” of Islam
Pillars of Islamic Practice
Testify to oneness of God
Prayer (5 times a day versus 3 times)
Fast the month of Ramadan
Give alms (2.5 percent of wealth) cleanses
• Hajj—pilgrimage made once in a lifetime to
Mecca to circumambulate the Ka`ba
• All pious Muslims also believe that Islamic
law (Shari`a), a more expansive concept of
law than we have in the West, is one of the
fundaments of Islamic practice.
• Which laws exactly are part of that is less
important than the principle of trying to work
out a Divine plan for the world through
societal regulation (law).
• Islamic law is based on 4 sources, (the Quran,
accounts of what the Prophet said and did,
human reasoning by analogy, the consensus of
legal scholars.)
• It covers many aspects of life (personal status,
contracts, crime, basic behavior, ritual,
• It includes five categories of action (required,
recommended, neutral, disliked, prohibited.)
• It is not codified in a single code
• It allows for re-interpretation
• But one must use the 4 sources (and ancillary
“sources” or bases for legal reasoning such as “social
welfare” or “need.”)
• Using such tools, reformers have made the law
malleable, especially in the late 19th and 20th centuries
(NOTE: this can be a progressive or regressive
element, contrary to first impressions)
The modern period
1. 18th century reforms
2. Colonialism
3. Islamic reformations
Islamic World ca. 1500
MENA 1939
• Wahhabis arise in pre-European environment.
• Muhammad Ibn Abd al-Wahhab (1703-1792)
• Major critic of what he sees as infringements on God’s Unity
– Sufism, with veneration of saints, is polytheism
– Shiism, with similar veneration of the Imams, was also polytheism to
be attacked.
– Comes from Hanbali school, which has never ceased to have ijtihad,
and he preaches against taqlid
– “Wahhabism” becomes influential in 20th century:
– A. Importance of Arabia
– B. “Petrodollars” since the 1970s
– C. But earlier, it became influential because it was perceived to be
more in keeping with reason, and therefore with modernity (and
was promoted by one major Islamic reformer named M. Rashid
Rida (d. 1935)
Salafism in Egypt
• Jamal al-Din al-Afghani (1897) and Muhammad
Abduh (1905) liberal, modernist, reformers, pushing
for social and legal change and for a revival of
Muslim fortunes
• Also against Taqlid
• Condemn “irrational” and “superstitious” aspects of
• Rida-modernist—yet turns movement back towards
Ibn Taymiyya and Ibn `Abd al-Wahhab
• From this arises the Muslim Brotherhood
• Sayyid Qutb, etc.
Fundamentalists are modern
• Fundamentalism is a modern phenomenon.
• American Evangelical Christianity, Jewish
Haredim (“Ultra-Orthodox”) and Islamic
revivalism are all responses to modernity, and
especially to what Weber famously called the
“Disenchantment of the world”.
Anti-modernists and conscious
“traditionalists” are both responses to
• Even those who claim to reject modernity do not
really do so and couch their claims in terms that are
distinctly modern.
• Thus, e.g., those who wish to implement the Shari`a
do not wish to bring back slavery.
• The Islamic world has gone through a reformation.
Like Europe’s Christian reformation, however, it is
not an overnight process, nor should we expect it to
be entirely peaceful, although for the most part it