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EDER 524 (13)

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McGill University
Religious Studies
EDER 524
David Harpp

Identity  Madina was a theocratic state that maintains the message of God (Qur’an) as its identity (islam)  the direction of prayer was changed from the city of Jerusalem to the Ka’bah (is changed creating the Kabbah as a new identity for muslims, the center of prayer upon which for muslims to pray.  Bearing witness and performing shahadah turns a person into a muslim and to live by the shari’ah that was taught by God.  Kharijis believed that anyone who commited major crimes cannot be regarded as Muslims and should be treated as disbelievers.  Identity of the Sects I. Shia;  Allegiance to Ali and descendants and a right to spiritual and temporal authority after Muhammad (pbuh) and one individual that is to be the rightful and divinely leader of the muslim community.  messianic expectations because the death of Husays was on the tenth of Muharram and the shia people celebrate the Ashura expressing sorrow and merriment as well as blessing and mystery. II. Sunni; imam is regarded leader of prayer at a mosque  Authority  Muhummad (pbuh) is the messenger of God and the Qur’an that is revealed to him is the divine word of God.  The Qur’an is held as a canon; The status of Quran  Muhammad (pbuh) is an unlettered prophet and he can neither read nor write which is proof the words being the pure words of God; not contaminated with human wisdom making the word divine  Muslims believe that the Qur’an is a heavenly book that is preserved by God and is the “mother of the book  qur’an literature shapes the Arabic language literature (literary expression, powerful and elegant words and phrases  recited in a child’s birth, at marriage, at important business deals and to celebrate success or express sorrow at misfortune , recited at special public occasions, radio and television and reciting it is considered virtuous, it also consists of much of Arabic calligraphy art (social roles)  Authority of Interpretive Extenstions  Tafsir; orally transmitted legacy based on pronouncements and opinions of the first generation of Islam  interpretations developed into a science that included grammatical and general linguistic structure, the meaning or purport of its metaphors and parables and historical and hagiographical contexts of its stories.  or theological school, religious trend, political movement made Qur’an its primary support and justification leading to sects and legal schools and mystical and philosophical movements serving as a practical moral and legislative guide for prophet and his nascent community leading it to become a unifying force across diversifying tradition as the primary source of Islamic faith an d morality, law and piety  Authority of the Caliphates  Whoever receives the authority afterwards is through God`s behalf and therefore Abu Bakr was called the successor or representative of the messenger  four caliphs following were Abu Bakrm Umar, Uthman and Ali (ra)  Kharijis argued that anyone that is pious and he can also be a slave should be allowed to become a caliphate.  After Ali, Hassan was appointed Caliphate but he gave Muawiya a powerful position and later Muawiya appointed his son Yazid successor but Hussayn disagreed and thus the battle at Karbala leading people to question the ideal Islamic polity and what was irreligious monarchical rule; questioning the power of authority. This led the Umayyad dynasty to have little support, and most looked towards descendants of prophet through Fatimah and cousin and son in law Ali for guidance (clash of authoritative power)  Family of prophet given authority?  Fragmentation of Caliphate  Abbasid state weakened and centers around Persia, Central Asia, Africa and Spain began to develop their own Islamic works  Sunni continued to regard Abbasid caliphate as legitimate but also claimed they were descendants of prophet  Shia did not accept claim and believed descendants can only be trhough Fatimah and Ali because too many people claimed to be descentants  Persian Buyids ruled and sympathized with Shias and in N. Africa revolution and Ismaili Shia imam proclaimed to be legitimate caliphate. Fatmids ruled Egyps, Syria, Cairo’s capital and authority was on missionary organizations and the Fatmids of Egypt threateded Abbasid cal
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