Looks at the history of Islam, arguing that its origins began with the "Believers" movement that emphasized strict monotheism and righteous behavior that included both Christians and Jews in its early years.
muhammad and the believers
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Conflict has been an inescapable facet of religion from its very beginnings. This volume offers insight into the mechanisms at play in the centuries from the Jesus-movement’s first attempts to define itself over and against Judaism to the beginnings of Islam. Profiling research by scholars of the Centre for Early Christian Studies at Australian Catholic University, the essays document inter- and intra-religious conflict from a variety of angles. Topics relevant to the early centuries range from religious conflict between different parts of the Christian canon, types of conflict, the origins of conflict, strategies for winning, for conflict resolution, and the emergence of a language of conflict. For the fourth to seventh centuries case studies from Asia Minor, Syria, Constantinople, Gaul, Arabia and Egypt are presented. The volume closes with examinations of the Christian and Jewish response to Islam, and of Islam’s response to Christianity. Given the political and religious tensions in the world today, this volume is well positioned to find relevance and meaning in societies still grappling with the monotheistic religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
In honor of Fred M. Donner's distinguished career as an interpreter of early Islam, this volume collects more than a dozen studies by his students. They range over a wide array of sub-fields in Islamic studies, including Islamic history, historiography, Islamic law, Qur'anic studies and Islamic aracheology.
The monotheist God evolved in the Jewish tradition and was adopted by Christianity, Islam, and Mormonism in turn: unknowable and ineffable. Religious writers have told us for thousands of years that this God is beyond all human comprehension. How can we know if a God is out there? Even if such a God exists, scripture claims that it means death even to look upon him. How, then, can we come to know God? Pagan polytheists had no such problem. Their world was full of Gods. They often appeared in human form and interacted with human beings. They could be unpredictable and had to be handled carefully. Monotheism replaced all that with God that is a complete mystery. He cannot be found. He cannot be seen. He cannot be understood by human minds. If that is what religion has come to, we may as well face the fact that we are alone in the universe. We shall have to learn to live with that. There s nothing out there.
That Muhammad succeeded as a prophet is undeniable; a prominent military historian now suggests that he might not have done so had he not also been a great soldier. Best known as the founder of a major religion, Muhammad was also Islam’s first great general. While there have been numerous accounts of Muhammad the Prophet, this is the first military biography of the man. In Muhammad: Islam’s First Great General, Richard A. Gabriel shows us a warrior never before seen in antiquity—a leader of an all-new religious movement who in a single decade fought eight major battles, led eighteen raids, and planned thirty-eight other military operations. Gabriel’s study portrays Muhammad as a revolutionary who introduced military innovations that transformed armies and warfare throughout the Arab world. Gabriel analyzes the environment in which Muhammad lived and the religion he inspired as they relate to his military achievements. Gabriel explains how Muhammad changed the social composition of Arab armies by replacing traditional ways of fighting with a new command structure. Muhammad’s transformation of Arab warfare enabled his successors to establish the core of the Islamic empire—an accomplishment that, Gabriel argues, would have been militarily impossible without Muhammad’s innovations. Richard A. Gabriel challenges existing scholarship on Muhammad’s place in history and offers a viewpoint not previously attempted.
Rather than focus solely on theological concerns, this well-rounded introduction takes an expansive view of Islamic ideology, culture, and tradition, sourcing a range of historical, sociological, and literary perspectives. Neither overly critical nor apologetic, this book reflects the rich diversity of Muslim identities across the centuries and counters the unflattering, superficial portrayals of Islam that are shaping public discourse today. Aaron W. Hughes uniquely traces the development of Islam in relation to historical, intellectual, and cultural influences, enriching his narrative with the findings, debates, and methodologies of related disciplines, such as archaeology, history, and Near Eastern studies. Hughes's work challenges the dominance of traditional terms and concepts in religious studies, recasting religion as a set of social and cultural facts imagined, manipulated, and contested by various actors and groups over time. Making extensive use of contemporary identity theory, Hughes rethinks the teaching of Islam and religions in general and helps facilitate a more critical approach to Muslim sources. For readers seeking a non-theological, unbiased, and richly human portrait of Islam, as well as a strong grasp of Islamic study's major issues and debates, this textbook is a productive, progressive alternative to more classic surveys.
This comprehensive set includes thorough examinations of the Qurán in Wherry's essential four volume commentary. There is also an excellent overview of Islam by the well known scholar Edward Sell, The Faith of Islam which examines the history of Islam, the different forms of Islam and religious practice. This set will prove to be an excellent historical resource for anyone interested in western scholarship of Islamic doctrine, and the writings in the Qurán
Deep in the heart of seventh-century Arabia, a new prophet named Muhammad has arisen. As his message of enlightenment sweeps through Arabia and unifies the warring tribes, his young wife Aisha recounts Muhammad's astonishing transformation from prophet to warrior to statesman. But just after the moment of her husband's greatest triumph -- the conquest of the holy city of Mecca -- Muhammad falls ill and dies in Aisha's arms. A young widow, Aisha finds herself at the center of the new Muslim empire and becomes by turns a teacher, political leader, and warrior. Written in beautiful prose and meticulously researched, Mother of the Believer is the story of an extraordinary woman who was destined to help usher Islam into the world.
The author is convinced that the early Byzantine Church deliberately cut out sections from an historic text to conceal the truth about the crucifixion of a man they were promoting as their Messiah. She solves the mystery by reconstructing the deleted sections. King pieces together what happened in Jerusalem during the trial and attempted crucifixion of the real Messiah and shows that the key passages that were tampered with are actually the missing link that connects the Dead Sea Scrolls to the New Testament Gospels. Using those passags and the history of the period, she identifies the figures mentioned in the Dead Sea Scrolls.
In an age of continued Middle East volatility, religious extremists, and terrorist threats, the mere mention of Islam and Muslims too often provokes misunderstanding and even rancor. Often overlooked are the important links between the Qur'an and the Bible. Also ignored are the significant historical overlap between Islamic interpretation of history with those of Christianity and Judaism, including the monotheistic belief in a single God. Islam is too often confusing and even opaque to those unfamiliar with it. The Handy Islam Answer Book, is clearly and eloquently written by John Renard, Ph.D., a scholar of Islam with more than 40 years of research and teaching experience. He provides detailed descriptions of the history, beliefs, symbols, rituals, observations, customs, leaders, and organization of the world’s second largest religion. Renard explains the significance of the Five Pillars, Muhammad, various sects, the Qur'an, Islamic law, and much more. This engaging primer is a resource for reliable information about Islam and Muslims and it brings an understanding of the shared humanity that joins Muslims and non-Muslims far more deeply than cultural or religious differences separate them. Truly a must-have reference for our changing and trying times, this user-friendly guide answers nearly 800 questions and offers fun facts that cover Islamic history, religious practices, and Muslim cultural perspectives, including … • When did Islam begin? • Why is Mecca a holy city for Muslims? • Do Muslims worship Muhammad? • What was the fate of Medieval Christian pilgrims to the Holy Land? • What do Muslims mean by the term "Allah"? • What does the crescent moon and star symbol mean to Muslims? • What is the Muslim “call to prayer”? Is it similar to “church bells”? • Do Muslims believe that God “tests” people? • Does Muhammad play a role in Islamic spirituality in a manner similar to Jesus’ role in Christianity? • Is jihad a legal concept for Muslims? • Is it true that Muhammad both preached and engaged in military campaigns? • Do Muslims, Christians, and Jews worship the “same God”? • Why do Jews, Christians, and Muslims all claim parts of Israel/Palestine as “Holy Land”? • Why do some people, such as the Taliban, not want girls to get an education? • Does Islam require wearing face veils? • Does Islam have theologians like Augustine and Thomas Aquinas and the other great Christian thinkers? • Is there any similarity between Muslim and Christian art? Muslims are diverse, and they have a vast spectrum of views about Islam. The Handy Islam Answer Book aims for understanding, which is the first step to uniting, instead of dividing. This helpful books provides a historic timeline, a glossary of commonly used terms, a genealogy from Adam to Muhammad and beyond, a calendar of major observances, and a bibliography help further exploration of one of the world’s great religions.