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61 Cards in this Set

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Why is ‘Muhammadanism’ inappropriate as a name for Islam?
Because it was not created by Muhammad, it was created by God. Muhammad was just God’s mouth piece
How does the ‘outsider’ view differ from the ‘insider’ view about the origin of Islam?
Outsider points to socio religious currents that were playing over Arabia in Muhammad’s day and uses them to explain what happened
Muslims’: Islam begins not with Muhammad in sixth century Arabia but with god.
Compare and contrast Islamic and Jewish traditions.
Islamic refer to god as ‘allah’ “the god”
Hebrew word for god is ‘Elohim’
Like the Jews the Arabs consider themselves a Semitic people.
It was the submission of Abraham in his supreme test that appears to have provided Islam with its name.
Results of Abraham's supreme test
Ishmael went to the place where Mecca was to rise. His descendents became Muslims whereas those of Isaac, who remained in Palestine were Hebrews and became Jews
Summarize the main features of the Arab world into which Muhammad was born.
Ignorant
Anarchy
Immorality
Animistic and polytheistic
Superstitious
Peopled sandy wastes with beastly sprites called jinn and Iblis (demonic spirits)
Describe Muhammad’s family background, his own family life, and his call as a prophet.
Born into leading tribe- Mecca, the koreish, in 570 AD
Father died before he was born, mother died at 6, and his grandfather at 8
aopted into his uncle’s home
Took up a caravan business
25- he entered the service of a wealthy widow, Khadija- who was 40: they married and were happy
What was the difference between Muhammad’s understanding of Allah and that of Meccans?
Meccans worshipped Allah not as the only God but an impressive one
Muhammed worshipped only Allah “the God”
Explain Muhammad’s experience on the Night of Power
Around 610:
Voice falls from heaven “you are the appointed one”
Angel, in form of man, said to him “proclaim!”
Who first recognized Muhammad as the Prophet?
his wife Khadija
What was the public reaction to his message and why?
For all but few: Violent and Hostile
Its uncompromising monotheism threatened polytheistic beliefs and the considerable revenue that was coming to Mecca from pilgrimages to its 360 shrines
Its moral teachings demanded an end to the licentiousness that citizens clung to
Its social content challenged an unjust order. In a society riven with class distinctions; his preachings were intensely democratic
He was insisting that in the sight of his Lord all people were equal
What was the two-fold significance of Hijrah?
Turning point in world history
The year from which they date their calendar
When did it take place?
Since Hijrah what name was given to Yathrib?
622
Medinat al-Nabi, city of the prophet, and then by contraction to simply Medina “the city”
What different roles did Muhammad assume in Medina?
Prophet, Politician, Prosecutor
Why did the Medinians show such great respect for him?
He exercised the justice necessary for order, meting out punishment for those who were guilty
He was gentle and merciful even to his enemies
“the gift of influencing men, and he had the nobility only influence for the good”
How did Muhammad succeed in spreading Islam so quickly?
2nd year of hijrah: medinese won victory over a larger Meccan army
Next year: reversal; Muhammad was injured
Two years after: meccans laid siege to Medina in a last desperate effort to force the Muslims to capitulate: failure in this favor turned the tide permanently in Muhammad’s favor
Within three years (8 after his migration) he returned as conqueror
What happened to prevent Islamic expansion further into the Western hemisphere?
His followers were defeated by Charles Martel in the Battle of tours in 733. if not for this the entire Western world might today be Muslim.
What is the literal meaning of the word, Koran?
Why is it known as God’s standing miracle?
 Koran means recitation
 Muhammad considered it the only major miracle God worked through him – God’s standing miracle
How many Surahs are in the Koran?
How are they arranged?
Surahs are chapters. The Koran has 114
Arranged in order of decreasing length
Compare Muslim understanding of Koran with the Christian understanding of incarnation.
If Christ is God incarnate, the Koran in God inlibriate” is inelegant but not inaccurate
How many years did it take Muhammad to receive Koranic revelations?
23 years of revelations from Gabriel
Who are called the ‘people of the book’ and why?
Christians and Jews are included with Muslims as “people of the book” because the context of the koranic revelation is the middle east, religions of other lands are not mentioned, but their existence is implied and in principle validated.
What are the two defects in the Judeo-Christian Bible?
Record only portions of the truth for circumstantial reasons
Jewish and Christian bibles were partially corrupted in transmission, a fact that explains the occasional discrepancies that occur between their accounts and parallel ones in the Koran
Compare the outsiders and insiders view of the Koran.
Outsiders view: things look otherwise than “a scripture wherof there is no doubt”
Insiders view: must understand the language in which they believe God spoke
Explain the Koranic contents.
Overwhelming thrust of the Koran is to proclaim the unity, omnipotence, omniscience, and mercy of god
It is a memorandum for the faithful, a reminder for daily doings, and a repository of revealed truth.
Why is the Koran doctrinal than historical?
In what person does God speak in the Koran?
Historical facts are in its case merely reference points that have scarcely any interest in themselves
When the Lord-servant relationship is the essential point to get across all else is but commentary and allusion
How is God viewed in Islam?
God is immaterial and therefore invisible
Muslims fear Allah: they argue it is the only appropriate emotion
What is a clear western misreading of the Koran’s teaching about Allah?
It is not proper for God to have children. To speak of human beings as God’s children casts God in to human a mode. It is anthropomorphic.
what ways do the Islamic creation stories share the Judeo-Christian creation account?
The world of matter is both real and important
Being the handiwork of allah, who is perfect in both goodness and power, the material world must likewise be good
Explain the Islamic understanding of human self.
What is his true nature? What are his problem and the solution?
Among god’s creations is the human self, whose nature is our third doctrinal subject: The first thing that we note about this creation is its sound constitution.
Their fundamental nature is unalterably good
His problem is ghaflah or forgetting: People forget their divine origin and this mistake needs repeatedly to be corrected
What are his two basic obligations to God?
Gratitude for the life that has been received:
Infidel: one who lacks thankfulness
Surrender
More gratitude one feels the more natural it feels to let the bounty that has entered flow through one’s life and on to others
What should be the proper relationship between God and man in Islam?
Islam emerges as a religion that aims at total commitment, commitment in which nothing is withheld from the divine.
Abraham is by far the most important figure in the Koran: passed the ultimate test of willingness to sacrifice his own son if that was required
Explain Islamic doctrine of the Last Judgment. What happens to the human soul in the after life?
Presents life as a brief but immensely precious opportunity, offering a once and for all choice.
Each soul will be held accountable for its actions on earth with its future thereafter dependent upon how well it has observed God’s commands
What is the notion of Paradise and Hell in Islam?
Paradise and Hell are real places
Explain God’s revelation to humanity that proceeded through four great prophets and its contents.
1st god revealed the truth of monotheism, god’s oneness, through Abraham
2nd god revealed the Ten Commandments through Moses
3rd god revealed the Golden Rule – that we are to do unto to others as we would have them unto us – through Jesus
oThese three were authentic messenges – each introduced important features of the god directed life
What Surah is called the heartbeat of the Muslim’s response to God? What is its content?
 The opening Surah which the phrase “walk the straight path” is repeated many times in the Muslims five daily prayers
Explain the first pillar that is known as Islamic creed
Confession of faith aka Shahadah
There is no god but God and Muhammad is His Prophet
oMonotheism
oMuslim’s faith in the authenticity of Muhammad and in the validity of the book he transmitted
Atleast once during his/her lifetime a Muslim must say the Shahadah correctly, slowly, thoughtfully, aloud, with full understanding and with heartfelt conviction
oActually is repeated many times
In every crisis and at every moment when the world threatens to overwhelm them
are the minimum and the customary times a Muslim should pray daily?
5
What event was called Muhammad’s Night Journey to Heaven? What purpose did it serve?
Friday noon prayer is emphasized
In what direction do they face for prayer?
Who leads the worship and who calls them for prayer?
Certain night in the month of Ramadan Muhammad was spirited on a wondrous white steed with wings to Jerusalem and upward from there through the seven heavens to the presence of God who instructed him that Muslims were to pray 50 times each day
Negotiated 6 times until the number came down to 5 times a day
First prayed in the direction of Jerusalem, a koranic revelation later instructed them to pray in the direction of Mecca
Muezzin calls the faithful to prayer and Imam leads the prayers

What time of the day and day of the week do Muslims go to the mosque for congregational prayer?
Friday noon prayer is emphasized
In what direction do they face for prayer?
Who leads the worship and who calls them for prayer?
First prayed in the direction of Jerusalem, a koranic revelation later instructed them to pray in the direction of Mecca
Muezzin calls the faithful to prayer and Imam leads the prayers
Jews and Christians pay tithe. What percentage is given as religious charity in compliance with the Islamic 3rd pillar?
2½ %
What month is set apart for Islamic fasting and why?
Ramadan – to observe this holy month b/c during it Muhammad received his initial revelation and ten years later made his historic Hijrah (migration) from mecca to medina.
To commemorate these occasions able Muslims fast during Ramadan
Explain the 5th pillar, the pilgrimage to Mecca. Why do the pilgrims wear only two simple sheet-like garments?
Once during his/her lifetime every Muslim who is able is expected to journey to Mecca where God’s climatic revelation was first disclosed
So that distinction of rank and hierarchy are removed and prince and pauper stand before God in their undivided humanity
What are some other major ethical teachings of Islam?
Muslims should not gamble, thieve, lie, eat pork, drink, or be promiscuous
What is the most important book next to the Koran?
Hadith traditionas based on what Muhammad did or most socially explicit of the Semitic religion
Explain Shariah and its primary sources
Sharia laws (based on Koran and Hadith – what the prophet said and did
oEconomics- a society’s health requires that material goods be widely and appropriately distributed
oStatus of women
oRace Relations
oUse of Force
Name the three basic principles of Islamic economics.
Charity, shared inheritance and no interest loans
How did Muhammad improve the status of women in his day?
He did not forbid divorce, but he countenanced it only as a last resort. Asserted repeatedly that nothing displeased god more than the disruption of marital vows, he instituted legal provisions to keep marriages intact
oLegal fee to the women if husband wants divorce
oDivorce proceedings: 3 occasions; arbiters drawn from both families try to reconcile the two parties
oWives no less than husbands are permitted to instigate divorc
How many times can a Muslim man marry?
Up to four times but must treat and love each equally
Why do Muslim women practice the custom of veiling?
 Koran says only to “tell your wives and daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks closely round them. It is better so that they may be recognized and not annoyed” Extremes that have evolved from this ruling are matters of local custom and are not religiously binding.
Why does Islam allow the use of force?
Because the Koran allows force for defense or to right a wrong
What is ‘jihad’
Exertion: though b/c war requires exertion
Definition of holy war in Islam is virtually identical with that of a just war in Christianity
Christianity too considers those who die in such wars to be martyrs and promises them salvation
What are the two levels of jihad?
Greater Jihad – battling the enemy within
Lesser Jihad – battling against aggressors
Why did Islam split?
What are the two major splinter groups?
Which one is considered the mainstream and which one is called the partisans?
Sunnis (traditionalists) 87% of Muslims and the Shi’ites (partisans of Ali, Muhammad’s son in law whom was thrice assed over and who when he was finally appointed leader of the Muslims was assassinated)
Mainstream Sunnis and the Shi’ites who are partisans
Who were the first four righteous rulers (Caliphs) after Muhammad?
Abu Bakr, Omar, Uthman, Ali
What are the three distinguished paths the Sufis take to reach God directly?
Mysticisms of love, of ecstasy, and of intuition
Who was al-Ghazali and how did he define symbolism?
Al –Ghazali: symbolism is “the science of the relation between multiple levels of reality”
Explain the concepts ‘fana’ and ‘dikr’
Existence is in itself separation from God
oDoctrine of fana: extinction of self consciousness
Symbolism though powerful works somewhat abstractly so Sufis supplement it with dhikr (to remember) the practice of remembering Allah through repeating his
Why Sufism is considered controversial by Orthodox Muslims?
Orthodox see Sufism as blasphemy
What has been the attraction of Islam for converts?
A simple faith to practice with minimum religious requirements
Emphasis upon family vales
Social harmony of brotherhood
oIf you are a Muslim and part of the community you are brother or sister with all in that community
Racial equality
Punishment for the wrongdoers
Name the non-Arab countries that have 90% or more of Muslim population?
Indonesia
Bangladesh
Pakistan
India