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Monotheistic Religion Elements Matrix--Islam

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Monotheistic Religion Elements Matrix--Islam

September 5, 2007


Top 16 countries that have the highest Islamic population, including Israel, Canada, and the United States.

1. Indonesia: 213,469,356

2. Pakistan: 156,491,617

3. India: 138,188,726

4. Bangladesh: 127,001,272

5. Egypt: 70,530,237

6. Turkey: 68,963,953

7. Iran: 67,337,681

8. Nigeria: 64,385,994

9. China: 39,189,414

10. Ethiopia: 34,700,310

11. Morocco: 32,300,410

12. Algeria: 32,206,534

13. Afghanistan: 29,629,697

14. Saudi Arabia: 26,417,599

15. Sudan: 26,121,865

16. Iraq: 25,292,658

41. United States: 4,140,277

72. Israel: 916,424

81. Canada: 656,100

(Central Intelligence Agency, 2007)

Historical Figures and Events


Unlike other great religious leaders, like the Buddha, Moses, and Yeshua of Nazareth (Jesus Christ), Muhammad was born relatively recently, in the late 6th century CE, about the year 570. Muhammad was born in Mecca in Saudi Arabia in 570. Many unusual events have been recorded about Muhammad's birth and childhood.

His mother talked about Muhammad's birth and said, "When he was born, there was a light that issued out of my pudendum and lit the places of Syria." She also said at the time of his birth, "...fourteen galleries of Kisra's palace cracked and rolled down, the Magians' sacred fire died down and some churches on Lake Sawa sank down and collapsed (Robinson, 2007)."

His foster family had many experiences of amazingly good luck while he was in their care.

As a young child, the angel Jibril visited the boy, ripped his chest open, removed his heart, extracted a blood clot from it, and returned him to normalcy. While still young, he was sent into the desert to be raised by a foster family. This was a common practice at the time. He was orphaned at the age of 6 and brought up by his uncle. As a child, he worked as a shepherd. He was taken on a caravan to Syria by his uncle at the age of 9 (or perhaps 12). Later, as a youth, he was employed as a camel driver on the trade routes between Syria and Arabia. Muhammad later managed caravans on behalf of merchants. He met people of different religious beliefs on his travels, and was able to observe and learn about Judaism, Christianity and the indigenous Pagan religions (Robinson, 2007).

After marriage, he was able to spend more time in meditation. At the age of 40, (610 CE), he was visited in Mecca by the angel Gabriel. He developed the conviction that he had been ordained a Prophet and given the task of converting his countrymen from their pagan, polytheistic beliefs and what he regarded as moral decadence, idolatry, hedonism and materialism. He met considerable opposition to his teachings. In 622 CE he moved north to Medina due to increasing persecution. The trek is known as the hegira. Here he was disappointed by the rejection of his message by the Jews. Through religious discussion, persuasion, military activity, and political negotiation, Muhammad became the most powerful leader in Arabia, and Islam was firmly established throughout the area (Robinson, 2007).

Central Beliefs

Islam considers six fundamental beliefs to be the foundation of their faith:

1. There is a single, indivisible God. (God, the creator, is just, omnipotent and merciful. "Allah" is often used to refer to God; it is the Arabic word for God.)

2. There are the angels.

3. The divine scriptures, which include the Torah, the Psalms, the rest of the Bible, (as they were originally revealed) and the Qur'an (which is composed of God's words, dictated by the Archangel Gabriel to Muhammad).

4. The Messengers of God, including Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, David, Jesus and Muhammad -- the last prophet. Muhammad's message is considered the final, universal message for all of humanity.

5. That there is a Day of Judgment when people will be judged on the basis of their deeds while on earth, and will either attain reward of Heaven or punishment in Hell. They do not believe that Jesus or any other individual can atone for another person's sin. Hell is where unbelievers and sinners spend eternity. Paradise is a place of physical and spiritual pleasure where the sinless go after death

6. The supremacy of God's will.

Other beliefs include:

* God did not have a son.

* Jesus is a prophet, born of the Virgin Mary. They regard the Christian concept of the deity of Jesus to be blasphemous; it is seen as a form of polytheism.

* Jesus was not executed on the cross. He escaped crucifixion and was taken up into Paradise.

* The existence of Satan drives people to sin.

* Muslims who sincerely repent and submit to God return to a state of sinlessness.

* All people are considered children of Adam. Islam officially rejects racism.

* All children are born on Al-Fitra (a pure, natural state of submission to Islam). His parents sometimes make him Christian, Jewish, etc.

* When a child reaches puberty an account of their deeds is opened in Paradise. When the person dies, their eventual destination (Paradise or Hell) depends on the balance of their good deeds (helping others, testifying to the truth of God, leading a virtuous life) and their bad deeds.



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