Throughout history, many religions have been formed. One of the religions that were formed was Islam. Islam has been known to be one of the youngest religions formed. It was founded in the year 622 CE by Muhammad. Muhammad was born on 570 CE in Mecca, Saudi Arabia. His father had died before he was born and his mother had also passed away when Muhammad was young. He so then was left under the care of his uncle and he worked as a young boy in caravan trade. He became the business manager for a wealthy widow who later became his wife. According to historians, it’s been said that Islam started in the place where Muhammad was born, raised, lived, and died, which is Mecca.
Every religion has its own beliefs. Five major beliefs in Islam are the belief of one God, angels of God, books of God, prophets or messengers of God, and the Day of Judgment. Islam practices the Five Pillars which includes Testimony of Faith, Prayer, Fasting, Charity, and the Pilgrimage to Mecca. The spreading of Islam happened through trading and military actions. It emerged in the early 600s and it spread across the Arabian Peninsula. In the next 100 years, Islam would be spread across the Middle East, North Africa, Europe, and Asia. The Role of the Women in Islam has been improved compared to earlier Arab culture. Women have been given the right to education, marry someone of their choice, to divorce, work, and own or sell the property. Women in Islam have also played a big role in political life in various Islamic Empires.
Two major branches in Islam are the Sunni Branch and Shi’a Branch. The Sunni Branch is the largest denomination in Islam, they can find in the Middle East. The Sunni followers believe that Muhammad had no specific successor. On the other hand, the Shi’a followers believe that Muhammad picked a specific successor and they do not believe that humans will see God in the Last Judgment. Five important dates in Islam history are 570 CE Birth of Muhammad, 622 CE Muhammad and followers flee to Medina, 680 CE Death of Husayn marks the beginning of Shi’a, 732 CE Muslim Empire reaches its farthest extent, and 1453 CE Mehmet conquered Constantinople. Holy Days in Islam includes the Muharram (Islamic New Years), Mawlid al-Nabi ( Muhammad Birthday, Eid al-Fitr (The Month of Fasting), and Eid al-Adha ( Feast of Sacrifice).
Many may think that Allah is a specific God, but Allah is the universal name for God. Allah is the Arabic name for God. Islam believes in the Afterlife just like many other religions. The difference is the belief of what happens in the afterlife. Muslims believe in the existence of the soul and a physical transformation after death. They have been taught that there is a Day of Judgment where the humans will be divided into their eternal destinations. The eternal destinations are either Paradise or Hell and are determined by the balance between good and bad deeds. The souls remain in their graves until the Day of Judgment.
Islam does not have an official religion symbol, but some have been adapted to Islam. One symbol adapted is the Star and Crescent. This symbol is best known in Islam and historians believe that it was originated from the Ottonian Empire. Another symbol adapted is the Rub el Hizb, it stands for one-fourth. The word Hizb stands for a group or party and is seen in Arabic Calligraphy to mark the end of a chapter. Religions have their own Holy Book(s), in Islam, their Holy Book is the Qur’an. Muslims believe that the book was revealed to Muhammad by God in Arabic. This Holy Book is the Divine Guidance for the Muslims and it has 144 chapters. The Qur’an is written in Old Arabic Dialect.
Islam has impacted the world in many ways. Holy Wars and the Crusades occurred because the Christians wanted to take back the Holy Land from the Muslims. Islam impacts have led different religions to interact with each other and this has caused government issues, wars, and acts of terror. The religion of Islam faces multiple crises which include discrimination, misconceptions, Muslims have been viewed as terrorists and cultural problems between the Muslims and the Non-Muslims. Today Islam is the second largest religion and can be found all over the world. But it is mostly found in the Middle East and South Africa.