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Chapter Khuramiyya II

NMC101H1 Chapter Notes - Chapter Khuramiyya II: Khurramites, Mazdak, Al-Mansur

Near & Middle Eastern Civilizations
Course Code
Khuramiyya II

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The readings for this class talk about a number of revolts that took place in the various
newly Arab conquered regions of Western and Eastern Iran. The first interesting rebellion I
found in the reading was that about Sunbadh in Jibal who came to prominence after the death of
Abu Muslim who was killed by the second Abbasid Caliph in 755. Sunbadh was part of Abu
Muslim’s army to Iraq but was left back at Hulwan along with the rest of the army. When he
heard of the death of Abu Muslim, he wanted to return from where he came from but was
detained by the governor at Rayy. He refused then to be associated with the army of Abu
Muslim. Sunbadh was a very interesting character, as it doesn’t seem sure what religion he
belonged to. On one hand, when he was stopped from returning home due to his affiliation with
Abu Muslim he refuted and on the other hand, when he began to revolt he did so in the name of
Abu Muslim. He also seems to have a finger in every pie, as in when he preached his message he
tried to do so with the Rafidis by referencing the Mahdi, the Mazdakites with the mention of
Mazdak, to the Khurramites who came along with him when they heard the mention of the
Mazdak being Shiite and to the Zoroastrians by convincing them that he would destry the Kabah
and make the some the Qibla. Some of the followers of Abu Muslim also came to be known as
Muslimi and were Khurramis as well. This idea of Muslimiyya was very similar to how the
crucifixion of Jesus is to the Christians. But the point that stands out for me is that some of the
Muslimiyya claimed open loyalty to the Abbasid even though the Abbasids killed their “Mahdi”.
Their explanation for that was that a demon took the form of Al Mansur and attempted a murder
on him. Something that came to my mind reading this was that it wasn’t Al-Mansur who killed
Abu Muslim personally, but rather, it was his men.
Another interesting fellow was Babak who seems to be a Muslim by name (Hashim) in
order to get the privileges that the Muslims enjoyed in the society in Azerbaijaan at that time. He
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