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Subjects /Art and Culture - UPSC & Other STATE PSC SSC & BANKING GK / Religions in India - Islam and Sufi Movement

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Origing of Islam
02 Feb 2021

  • The word islam means “submission to god”.
  • It originated in the Arabian Peninsula in the 7th century AD.
  • Prophet Muhammad was the last messenger sent by God on earth to reveal the message to his followers. This message was provided to him by an angel.
  • He left him home in Mecca and migrated to Madina. After a coup, he managed to come back to Mecca and this travel from Madina to Mecca became a holy route and was called Hajj.
  • After the death of Muhammad, caliphates were created and the imams used to spread the teachings of the Islam.

Sects of Islam

  • Sunni: They believe that the successor of to Prophet Muhammad should be someone who was close to Prophet and who was his intial follower like Abu Bakr.
  • In India, majority of Muslims are Sunni.
  • Shia: They believe that the successor of Prophet Muhammad should be from his own flesh and blood i.e. his son-in-law Ali.

Basic Philosophy of Islam

  • There is only one Allah.
  • Day of judgement: The day of reckoning when the merits and bad deeds will be judged and one would be sent to the hell or heaven.
  • Juma Namaz: The prayers on Friday thar are suppose to be in the community mosque.
  • Ramzam: Holy month of Muslims when they keep fast from sunrise to sunset. It ends with Eid celebrations.

Literature of Islam

  • Hadith: Saying or teachings of Prophet Muhammad. It is the holy book of Muslims.
  • Sharia: Book of Islamic laws.

SUFISM

  • It was mainly popular in Persia during 12 AD and considered as Islamic mysticism. In Arabic, word sufi means purity.
  • It believes in humanity, tolerance, union with God, discouraged materialism, unity of Hindu and Muslim, rejected dogmas, rejected rituals.
  • There are three stages in the history of sufism:
    • Kanqah (10th AD): It is called the age of Golden Mysticism.
    • Tariqa (11-14th AD): Sufism was institutionalised and traditions and symbols were attached to it.
    • Tarifa (15th AD): When Sufism became a popular movement.

Features of Sufism

Some of the features of Sufism are:

  • It focuses on self-realisation, tolerance, righteousness and universal love for all.
  • The ultimate goal of Sufism is Union with the God.
  • It followed Pir-Murid tradition i.e. Guru-Shishya tradition.
  • Basic terms associated with sufism are:
  • Fana: spiritual merger of the devotee with Allah.
  • Sama: spiritual dance and music to promote their concepts.
  • Zikr-tauba: remembrance of God all the time.
  • Insan-e-kamil: Perfect human with all good virtues.
  • The Sufi saints are Fakirs (poor man).

Did You Know

  • Islam has more than 2 billion followers worldwide.
  • There are about 50 countries where majority of the population is Muslim.
  • It is world's second largest religion after Christianity.