Faith, derived from Latin fides and Old French feid, is confidence or trust in a person, thing, or concept. In the context of religion, one can define faith as confidence or trust in a particular system of religious belief. Religious people think of faith as confidence based on a perceived degree of warrant, while others who are more skeptical of religion tend to think of faith as belief without evidence; the English word faith is thought to date from 1200–1250, from the Middle English feith, via Anglo-French fed, Old French feid, feit from Latin fidem, accusative of fidēs, akin to fīdere. James W. Fowler proposes a series of stages of faith-development across the human life-span, his stages relate to the work of Piaget and Kohlberg regarding aspects of psychological development in children and adults. Fowler defines faith as an activity of trusting and relating to the world based on a set of assumptions of how one is related to others and the world. Intuitive-Projective: a stage of confusion and of high impressionability through stories and rituals.
Mythic-Literal: a stage where provided information is accepted in order to conform with social norms. Synthetic-Conventional: in this stage the faith acquired is concreted in the belief system with the forgoing of personification and replacement with authority in individuals or groups that represent one's beliefs. Individuative-Reflective: in this stage the individual critically analyzes adopted and accepted faith with existing systems of faith. Disillusion or strengthening of faith happens in this stage. Based on needs and paradoxes. Conjunctive faith: in this stage people realize the limits of logic and, facing the paradoxes or transcendence of life, accept the "mystery of life" and return to the sacred stories and symbols of the pre-acquired or re-adopted faith system; this stage is called negotiated settling in life. Universalizing faith: this is the "enlightenment" stage where the individual comes out of all the existing systems of faith and lives life with universal principles of compassion and love and in service to others for upliftment, without worries and doubt (middle-late adulthood.
No hard-and-fast rule requires individuals pursuing faith to go through all six stages. There is a high probability for individuals to be content and fixed in a particular stage for a lifetime. Stage 6 is the summit of faith development; this state is considered as "not fully" attainable. In the Bahá'í Faith, faith is meant, conscious knowledge, second, the practice of good deeds the acceptance of the divine authority of the Manifestations of God. In the religion's view and knowledge are both required for spiritual growth. Faith involves more than outward obedience to this authority, but must be based on a deep personal understanding of religious teachings. Faith in Buddhism refers to a serene commitment in the practice of the Buddha's teaching and trust in enlightened or developed beings, such as Buddhas or bodhisattvas. Buddhists recognize multiple objects of faith, but many are devoted to one particular object of faith, such as one particular Buddha. In early Buddhism, faith was focused on the Triple Gem, that is, Gautama Buddha, his teaching, the community of spiritually developed followers, or the monastic community seeking enlightenment.
Although offerings to the monastic community were valued highest, early Buddhism did not morally condemn peaceful offerings to deities. A faithful devotee was called upāsika, for which no formal declaration was required. In early Buddhism, personal verification was valued highest in attaining the truth, sacred scriptures, reason or faith in a teacher were considered less valuable sources of authority; as important as faith was, it was a mere initial step to the path to wisdom and enlightenment, was obsolete or redefined at the final stage of that path. While faith in Buddhism does not imply "blind faith", Buddhist practice requires a degree of trust in the spiritual attainment of Gautama Buddha. Faith in Buddhism centers on the understanding that the Buddha is an Awakened being, on his superior role as teacher, in the truth of his Dharma, in his Sangha. Faith in Buddhism can be summarised as faith in the Three Jewels: the Buddha and Sangha, it is intended to lead to the goal of enlightenment, or bodhi, Nirvana.
Volitionally, faith implies a courageous act of will. It combines the steadfast resolution that one will do a thing with the self-confidence that one can do it. In the stratum of Buddhist history Mahāyāna Buddhism, faith was given a much more important role; the concept of the Buddha Nature was developed, as devotion to Buddhas and bodhisattvas residing in Pure Lands became commonplace. With the arising of the cult of the Lotus Sūtra, faith gained a central role in Buddhist practice, further amplified with the development of devotion to the Amitabha Buddha in Pure Land Buddhism. In the Japanese form of Pure Land Buddhism, under the teachers Hōnen and Shinran, only entrusting faith toward the Amitabha Buddha was believed to be a fruitful form of practice, as the practice of celibacy and other Buddhist disciplines were dismissed as no longer effective in this day and age, or contradicting the virtue of faith. Faith was defined as a state similar to enlightenment, with a sense of self-negation and humil
In monotheistic thought, God is conceived of as the supreme being, creator deity, principal object of faith. The conceptions of God, as described by theologians include the attributes of omniscience, omnipresence, as having an eternal and necessary existence. Depending on one's kind of theism, these attributes are used either in way of analogy, or in a literal sense as distinct properties. God is most held to be incorporeal. Incorporeality and corporeality of God are related to conceptions of transcendence and immanence of God, with positions of synthesis such as the "immanent transcendence". Psychoanalyst Carl Jung equated religious ideas of God with transcendental aspects of consciousness in his interpretation; some religions describe God without reference to gender, while others or their translations use sex-specific terminology. Judaism attributes only a grammatical gender to God, using terms such as "Him" or "Father" for convenience. God has been conceived as either impersonal. In theism, God is the creator and sustainer of the universe, while in deism, God is the creator, but not the sustainer, of the universe.
In pantheism, God is the universe itself. In atheism, there is an absence of belief in God. In agnosticism, the existence of God is deemed unknowable. God has been conceived as the source of all moral obligation, the "greatest conceivable existent". Many notable philosophers have developed arguments against the existence of God. Monotheists refer to their gods using names prescribed by their respective religions, with some of these names referring to certain cultural ideas about their god's identity and attributes. In the ancient Egyptian era of Atenism the earliest recorded monotheistic religion, this deity was called Aten, premised on being the one "true" Supreme Being and creator of the universe. In the Hebrew Bible and Judaism, Adonai, YHWH and other names are used as the names of God. Yahweh and Jehovah, possible vocalizations of YHWH, are used in Christianity. In the Christian doctrine of the Trinity, coexisting in three "persons", is called the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit. In Islam, the name Allah is used, while Muslims have a multitude of titular names for God.
In Hinduism, Brahman is considered a monistic concept of God. In Chinese religion, Shangdi is conceived as the progenitor of the universe, intrinsic to it and bringing order to it. Other religions have names for the concept, for instance, Baha in the Bahá'í Faith, Waheguru in Sikhism, Sang Hyang Widhi Wasa in Balinese Hinduism, Ahura Mazda in Zoroastrianism; the many different conceptions of God, competing claims as to God's characteristics and actions, have led to the development of ideas of omnitheism, pandeism, or a perennial philosophy, which postulates that there is one underlying theological truth, of which all religions express a partial understanding, as to which "the devout in the various great world religions are in fact worshipping that one God, but through different, overlapping concepts". The earliest written form of the Germanic word God comes from the 6th-century Christian Codex Argenteus; the English word itself is derived from the Proto-Germanic * ǥuđan. The reconstructed Proto-Indo-European form * ǵhu-tó-m was based on the root * ǵhau-, which meant either "to call" or "to invoke".
The Germanic words for God were neuter—applying to both genders—but during the process of the Christianization of the Germanic peoples from their indigenous Germanic paganism, the words became a masculine syntactic form. In the English language, capitalization is used for names by which a god is known, including'God'; the capitalized form of god is not used for multiple gods or when used to refer to the generic idea of a deity. The English word God and its counterparts in other languages are used for any and all conceptions and, in spite of significant differences between religions, the term remains an English translation common to all; the same holds for Hebrew El, but in Judaism, God is given a proper name, the tetragrammaton YHWH, in origin the name of an Edomite or Midianite deity, Yahweh. In many translations of the Bible, when the word LORD is in all capitals, it signifies that the word represents the tetragrammaton. Allāh is the Arabic term with no plural used by Muslims and Arabic speaking Christians and Jews meaning "The God", while "ʾilāh" is the term used for a deity or a god in general.
God may be given a proper name in monotheistic currents of Hinduism which emphasize the personal nature of God, with early references to his name as Krishna-Vasudeva in Bhagavata or Vishnu and Hari. Ahura Mazda is the name for God used in Zoroastrianism. "Mazda", or rather the Avestan stem-form Mazdā-, nominative Mazdå, reflects Proto-Iranian *Mazdāh. It is taken to be the proper name of the spirit, like its Sanskrit cognate medhā, means "intelligence" or "wisdom". Both the Avestan and Sanskrit words reflect Proto-Indo-Iranian *mazdhā-, from Proto-Indo-European mn̩sdʰeh1 meaning "placing one's mind", hence "wise". Waheguru is a term most used in Sikhism to refer to God, it means "Wonderful Teacher" in the Punjabi language. Vāhi means "wonderful" and guru is a term denoting "teacher". Waheguru is described by some as an experience of ecstasy, beyond all descriptions; the most common usage of the word "Waheguru" is in the greeting Sikhs use with each other: Baha, the "greates
Kafir is an Arabic term meaning "infidel", "rejector", "disbeliever", "unbeliever", "nonbeliever". The term refers to a person who rejects or disbelieves in God or the tenets of Islam, denying the dominion and authority of God, is thus translated as "infidel"; the term is used in different ways in the Quran, with the most fundamental sense being "ingratitude". While Islamic scholars agreed that a polytheist is a kafir, they sometimes disagreed on the propriety of applying the term to Muslims who committed a grave sin and to the People of the Book. In modern times, kafir is sometimes used as a derogatory term by members of Islamist movements. Unbelief is called kufr. Kafir is sometimes used interchangeably with mushrik, another type of religious wrongdoer mentioned in the Quran and other Islamic works; the act of declaring another self-professed Muslim a kafir is known as takfir, a practice, condemned but employed in theological and political polemics over the centuries. The person who denies the existence of a creator is called dahriya.
The word kāfir is the active participle of the root K-F-R. As a pre-Islamic term it described farmers burying seeds in the ground. One of its applications in the Quran is the same meaning as farmer. Since farmers cover the seeds with soil while planting, the word kāfir implies a person who hides or covers. Ideologically, it implies a person who covers the truth. Poets personify the darkness of night as kâfir as a survival of pre-Islamic religious or mythological usage; the noun for disbelief, "blasphemy", "impiety" rather than the person who disbelieves, is kufr. The Hebrew words "kipper" and "kofer" share the same root as "kafir" כִּפֵּר, or K-F-R. "Kipper" has many meanings including, to "deny", "atone for", "cover", "purge", "represent", or "transfer". The last two meanings involve "kofer" that mean "ransom". "Kipper" and "kofer" are likely used together in the Jewish faith to indicate God's transfer of guilt from innocent parties using guilty parties as "ransom". Hence Yom Kippur meaning "Day of Atonement."
The practice of declaring another Muslim as a kafir is takfir. Kufr and shirk are used throughout the Quran and sometimes used interchangeably by Muslims. According to Salafist scholars, Kufr is the "denial of the Truth", shirk means devoting "acts of worship to anything beside God" or "the worship of idols and other created beings". So a mushrik may worship other things while "acknowledging God"; the distinction between those who believe in Islam and those who do not is an essential one in the Quran. Kafir, its plural kuffaar, is used directly 134 times in Quran, its verbal noun "kufr" is used 37 times, the verbal cognates of kafir are used about 250 times. By extension of the basic meaning of the root, "to cover", the term is used in the Quran in the senses of ignore/fail to acknowledge and to spurn/be ungrateful; the meaning of "disbelief", which has come to be regarded as primary, retains all of these connotations in the Quranic usage. In the Quranic discourse, the term typifies all things that are offensive to God.
The most fundamental sense of kufr in the Quran is "ingratitude", the willful refusal to acknowledge or appreciate the benefits that God bestows on humankind, including clear signs and revealed scriptures. According to the E. J. Brill's First Encyclopaedia of Islam, 1913–1936, Volume 4, the term first applied in the Quran to unbelieving Meccans, who endeavoured "to refute and revile the Prophet". A waiting attitude towards the kafir was recommended at first for Muslims. Most passages in the Quran referring to unbelievers in general talk about their fate on the day of judgement and destination in hell. According to scholar Marilyn Waldman, as the Quran "progresses", the meaning behind the term kafir does not change but "progresses", i.e. "accumulates meaning over time". As the Islamic Prophet Muhammad's views of his opponents change, his use of kafir "undergoes a development". Kafir moves from being one description of Muhammad's opponents to the primary one. In the Quran, kafir becomes more and more connected with shirk.
Towards the end of the Quran, kafir begins to signify the group of people to be fought by the mu'minīn. The status of the People of the Book Jews and Christians, with respect to the Islamic notions of unbelief is not clearcut. Charles Adams writes that the Quran reproaches the People of the Book with kufr for rejecting Muhammad's message when they should have been the first to accept it as possessors of earlier revelations, singles out Christians for disregarding the evidence of God's unity; the Quranic verse 5:73, among other verses, has been traditionally understood in Islam as rejection of the Christian Trinity doctrine, though modern scholarship has suggested alternative interpretations. Other Quranic verses deny the deity of Jesus Christ, son of Mary and reproach the people who treat Jesus as equal with God as disbelievers who will be doomed to eternal punishment in Hell. While the Quran does not recognize the attribute of Jesus as the Son of God or God himself, it respects Jesus as a prophet and messenger of God sent to
Muhammad was the founder of Islam. According to Islamic doctrine, he was a prophet, sent to present and confirm the monotheistic teachings preached by Adam, Moses and other prophets, he is viewed as the final prophet of God in all the main branches of Islam, though some modern denominations diverge from this belief. Muhammad united Arabia into a single Muslim polity, with the Quran as well as his teachings and practices forming the basis of Islamic religious belief. Born 570 CE in the Arabian city of Mecca, Muhammad was orphaned at the age of six, he was raised under the care of his paternal grandfather Abd al-Muttalib, upon his death, by his uncle Abu Talib. In years he would periodically seclude himself in a mountain cave named Hira for several nights of prayer; when he was 40, Muhammad reported being visited by Gabriel in the cave, receiving his first revelation from God. Three years in 610, Muhammad started preaching these revelations publicly, proclaiming that "God is One", that complete "submission" to God is the right way of life, that he was a prophet and messenger of God, similar to the other prophets in Islam.
The followers of Muhammad were few in number, experienced hostility from Meccan polytheists. He sent some of his followers to Abyssinia in 615 to shield them from prosecution, before he and his followers migrated from Mecca to Medina in 622; this event, the Hijra, marks the beginning of the Islamic calendar known as the Hijri Calendar. In Medina, Muhammad united the tribes under the Constitution of Medina. In December 629, after eight years of intermittent fighting with Meccan tribes, Muhammad gathered an army of 10,000 Muslim converts and marched on the city of Mecca; the conquest went uncontested and Muhammad seized the city with little bloodshed. In 632, a few months after returning from the Farewell Pilgrimage, he died. By the time of his death, most of the Arabian Peninsula had converted to Islam; the revelations, which Muhammad reported receiving until his death, form the verses of the Quran, regarded by Muslims as the verbatim "Word of God" and around which the religion is based. Besides the Quran, Muhammad's teachings and practices, found in the Hadith and sira literature, are upheld and used as sources of Islamic law.
The name Muhammad appears four times in the Quran. The Quran addresses Muhammad in the second person by various appellations. Muhammad is sometimes addressed by designations deriving from his state at the time of the address: thus he is referred to as the enwrapped in Quran 73:1 and the shrouded in Quran 74:1. In Sura Al-Ahzab 33:40 God singles out Muhammad as the "Seal of the prophets", or the last of the prophets; the Quran refers to Muhammad as Aḥmad "more praiseworthy". The name Abū al-Qāsim Muḥammad ibn ʿAbd Allāh ibn ʿAbd al-Muṭṭalib ibn Hāshim, begins with the kunya Abū, which corresponds to the English, father of; the Quran is the central religious text of Islam. Muslims believe; the Quran, provides minimal assistance for Muhammad's chronological biography. Important sources regarding Muhammad's life may be found in the historic works by writers of the 2nd and 3rd centuries of the Muslim era; these include traditional Muslim biographies of Muhammad, which provide additional information about Muhammad's life.
The earliest surviving written sira is Ibn Ishaq's Life of God's Messenger written c. 767 CE. Although the work was lost, this sira was used at great length by Ibn Hisham and to a lesser extent by Al-Tabari. However, Ibn Hisham admits in the preface to his biography of Muhammad that he omitted matters from Ibn Ishaq's biography that "would distress certain people". Another early history source is the history of Muhammad's campaigns by al-Waqidi, the work of his secretary Ibn Sa'd al-Baghdadi. Many scholars accept these early biographies as authentic. Recent studies have led scholars to distinguish between traditions touching legal matters and purely historical events. In the legal group, traditions could have been subject to invention while historic events, aside from exceptional cases, may have been only subject to "tendential shaping". Other important sources include the hadith collections, accounts of the verbal and physical teachings and traditions of Muhammad. Hadiths were compiled several generations after his death by followers including Muhammad al-Bukhari, Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj, Muhammad ibn Isa at-Tirmidhi, Abd ar-Rahman al-Nasai, Abu Dawood, Ibn Majah, Malik ibn Anas, al-Daraqutni.
Some Western academics cautiously view the hadith collections as accurate historical sources. Scholars such as Madelung do not reject the narrations which have been compiled in periods, but judge them in the context of history and on the basis of their compatibility with the events and figures. Muslim scholars on the other hand place a greater emph
Islam is an Abrahamic monotheistic religion teaching that there is only one God, that Muhammad is the messenger of God. It is the world's second-largest religion with over 1.8 billion followers or 24% of the world's population, most known as Muslims. Muslims make up a majority of the population in 50 countries. Islam teaches that God is merciful, all-powerful and has guided humankind through prophets, revealed scriptures and natural signs; the primary scriptures of Islam are the Quran, viewed by Muslims as the verbatim word of God, the teachings and normative example of Muhammad. Muslims believe that Islam is the complete and universal version of a primordial faith, revealed many times before through prophets including Adam, Abraham and Jesus. Muslims consider the Quran in its original Arabic to be the final revelation of God. Like other Abrahamic religions, Islam teaches a final judgment with the righteous rewarded paradise and unrighteous punished in hell. Religious concepts and practices include the Five Pillars of Islam, which are obligatory acts of worship, following Islamic law, which touches on every aspect of life and society, from banking and welfare to women and the environment.
The cities of Mecca and Jerusalem are home to the three holiest sites in Islam. Aside from the theological narrative, Islam is believed to have originated in the early 7th century CE in Mecca, by the 8th century the Umayyad Islamic Caliphate extended from Iberia in the west to the Indus River in the east; the Islamic Golden Age refers to the period traditionally dated from the 8th century to the 13th century, during the Abbasid Caliphate, when much of the Muslim world was experiencing a scientific and cultural flourishing. The expansion of the Muslim world involved various caliphates, such as the Ottoman Empire and conversion to Islam by missionary activities. Most Muslims are of one of two denominations. About 13 % of Muslims live in the largest Muslim-majority country. Sizeable Muslim communities are found in the Americas, the Caucasus, Central Asia, Europe, Mainland Southeast Asia, the Philippines, Russia. Islam is the fastest-growing major religion in the world. Islam is a verbal noun originating from the triliteral root S-L-M which forms a large class of words relating to concepts of wholeness, submission and peace.
In a religious context it means "voluntary submission to God". Islām is the verbal noun of Form IV of the root, means "submission" or "surrender". Muslim, the word for an adherent of Islam, is the active participle of the same verb form, means "submitter" or "one who surrenders"; the word sometimes has distinct connotations in its various occurrences in the Quran. In some verses, there is stress on the quality of Islam as an internal spiritual state: "Whomsoever God desires to guide, He opens his heart to Islam." Other verses connect Islam and religion together: "Today, I have perfected your religion for you. Still others describe Islam as an action of returning to God—more than just a verbal affirmation of faith. In the Hadith of Gabriel, islām is presented as one part of a triad that includes imān, ihsān. Islam was called Muhammadanism in Anglophone societies; this term has fallen out of use and is sometimes said to be offensive because it suggests that a human being rather than God is central to Muslims' religion, parallel to Buddha in Buddhism.
Some authors, continue to use the term Muhammadanism as a technical term for the religious system as opposed to the theological concept of Islam that exists within that system. Faith in the Islamic creed is represented as the six articles of faith, notably spelled out in the Hadith of Gabriel. Islam is seen as having the simplest doctrines of the major religions, its most fundamental concept is a rigorous monotheism, called tawḥīd. God is described in chapter 112 of the Quran as: "He is God, the One and Only. Muslims repudiate polytheism and idolatry, called Shirk, reject the Christian doctrine of the Trinity. In Islam, God is beyond all comprehension and thus. God is described and referred to by certain names or attributes, the most common being Al-Rahmān, meaning "The Compassionate" and Al-Rahīm, meaning "The Merciful". Muslims believe that the creation of everything in the universe was brought into being by God's sheer command, "Be, it is" and that the purpose of existence is to worship or to know God.
He is viewed as a personal god who responds whenever a person in distress calls him. There are no intermediaries, such as clergy, to contact God who states, "I am nearer to him than jugular vein." God consciousness is referred to as Taqwa. Allāh is the term with no plural or gender used by Muslims and Arabic-speaking Christians and Jews to reference God, while ʾilāh is the term used for a deity or a god in general. Other non-Arab Muslims might use different names as much as Allah, for instance "Tanrı" in Turkish, "Khodā" in Persian or "Ḵẖudā" in Urdu. Belief in angels is fundamental
Muslims are people who follow or practice Islam, a monotheistic Abrahamic religion. Muslims consider the Quran, their holy book, to be the verbatim word of God as revealed to the Islamic prophet and messenger Muhammad; the majority of Muslims follow the teachings and practices of Muhammad as recorded in traditional accounts. "Muslim" is an Arabic word meaning "submitter". The largest denomination of Islam are Sunni Muslims who constitute 85-90% of the total Muslim population, followed by the Shia who make up most of the remainder of Muslims; the beliefs of Muslims include: that God is eternal and one. The religious practices of Muslims are enumerated in the Five Pillars of Islam: the declaration of faith, daily prayers, fasting during the month of Ramadan and the pilgrimage to Mecca at least once in a lifetime. To become a Muslim and to convert to Islam, it is essential to utter the Shahada, one of the Five Pillars of Islam, a declaration of faith and trust that professes that there is only one God and that Muhammad is God's messenger.
It is a set statement recited in Arabic: lā ʾilāha ʾillā-llāhu muḥammadun rasūlu-llāh "There is no god but Allah, Muhammad is the messenger of God."In Sunni Islam, the shahada has two parts: la ilaha illa'llah, Muhammadun rasul Allah, which are sometimes referred to as the first shahada and the second shahada. The first statement of the shahada is known as the tahlīl. In Shia Islam, the shahada has a third part, a phrase concerning Ali, the first Shia Imam and the fourth Rashid caliph of Sunni Islam: وعليٌ وليُّ الله, which translates to "Ali is the wali of God; the word muslim is the active participle of the same verb of which islām is a verbal noun, based on the triliteral S-L-M "to be whole, intact". A female adherent is a muslima; the plural form in Arabic is muslimūn or muslimīn, its feminine equivalent is muslimāt. The ordinary word in English is "Muslim", it is sometimes transliterated as "Moslem", an older spelling. The word Mosalman is a common equivalent for Muslim used in South Asia.
Until at least the mid-1960s, many English-language writers used the term Mahometans. Although such terms were not intended to be pejorative, Muslims argue that the terms are offensive because they imply that Muslims worship Muhammad rather than God. Other obsolete terms include Muslimist. Musulmán/Mosalmán is modified from Arabic, it is the origin of the Spanish word musulmán, the German Muselmann, the French word musulman, the Polish words muzułmanin and muzułmański, the Portuguese word muçulmano, the Italian word mussulmano or musulmano, the Romanian word musulman and the Greek word μουσουλμάνος. In English it has become archaic in usage. Apart from Persian, Polish, Portuguese and Greek, the term could be found, with obvious local differences, in Armenian, Pashto, Hindi, Marathi, Turkish, Uzbek, Azeri, Hungarian, Bosnian, Russian, Ukrainian, Romanian and Sanskrit; the Muslim philosopher Ibn Arabi said: A Muslim is a person who has dedicated his worship to God... Islam means making one's religion and faith God's alone.
The Qur'an describes many prophets and messengers within Judaism and Christianity, their respective followers, as Muslim: Adam, Abraham, Jacob and Jesus and his apostles are all considered to be Muslims in the Qur'an. The Qur'an states that these men were Muslims because they submitted to God, preached His message and upheld His values, which included praying, charity and pilgrimage. Thus, in Surah 3:52 of the Qur'an, Jesus' disciples tell him, "We believe in God. In Muslim belief, before the Qur'an, God had given the Tawrat to Moses, the Zabur to David and the Injil to Jesus, who are all considered important Muslim prophets; the most populous Muslim-majority country is Indonesia, home to 12.7% of the world's Muslims, followed by Pakistan and Egypt. About 20 % of the world's Muslims lives in the Middle North Africa. Sizable minorities are found in India, Russia, the Americas and parts of Europe; the country with the highest proportion of self-described Muslims as a proportion of its total population is Morocco.
Converts and immigrant communities are found in every part of the world. Over 75–90% of Muslims are Sunni; the second and third largest sects and Ahmadiyya, make up 10–20%, 1% respectively. With about 1.8 billion followers a quarter of earth's population, Islam is the second-largest and the fastest-growing religion in the world. Due to the young age and high fertilit
Sharia, Islamic law or Sharia law is a religious law forming part of the Islamic tradition. It is derived from the religious precepts of Islam the Quran and the Hadith. In Arabic, the term sharīʿah refers to God's immutable divine law and is contrasted with fiqh, which refers to its human scholarly interpretations; the manner of its application in modern times has been a subject of dispute between Muslim fundamentalists and modernists. Traditional theory of Islamic jurisprudence recognizes four sources of sharia: the Quran, sunnah and ijma. Different legal schools—of which the most prominent are Hanafi, Shafi'i, Hanbali and Jafari—developed methodologies for deriving sharia rulings from scriptural sources using a process known as ijtihad. Traditional jurisprudence distinguishes two principal branches of law, ʿibādāt and muʿāmalāt, which together comprise a wide range of topics, its rulings are concerned with ethical standards as much as with legal norms, assigning actions to one of five categories: mandatory, neutral and prohibited.
Thus, some areas of sharia overlap with the Western notion of law while others correspond more broadly to living life in accordance with God’s will. Classical jurisprudence was elaborated by private religious scholars through legal opinions issued by qualified jurists, it was applied in sharia courts by ruler-appointed judges, who dealt with civil disputes and community affairs. Sultanic courts, the police and market inspectors administered criminal justice, influenced by sharia but not bound by its rules. Non-Muslim communities had legal autonomy to adjudicate their internal affairs. Ottoman rulers achieved additional control over the legal system by promulgating their own legal code and turning muftis into state employees; the Ottoman civil code of 1869–1876 was the first partial attempt to codify sharia. In the modern era, traditional criminal laws in the Muslim world have been replaced by statutes inspired by European models. Judicial procedures and legal education were brought in line with European practice.
While the constitutions of most Muslim-majority states contain references to sharia, its classical rules were retained only in personal status laws. Legislators who codified these laws sought to modernize them without abandoning their foundations in traditional jurisprudence; the Islamic revival of the late 20th century brought along calls by Islamist movements for full implementation of sharia, including hudud corporal punishments, such as stoning. In some cases, this resulted in traditionalist legal reform, while other countries witnessed juridical reinterpretation of sharia advocated by progressive reformers; some Muslim-minority countries recognize the use of sharia-based family laws for their Muslim populations. The role of sharia has become a contested topic around the world. Introduction of sharia-based laws sparked intercommunal violence in Nigeria and may have contributed to the breakup of Sudan; some jurisdictions in North America have passed bans on use of sharia, framed as restrictions on religious or foreign laws.
There are ongoing debates as to whether sharia is compatible with secular forms of government, human rights, freedom of thought, women's rights, LGBT rights, banking. The word sharīʿah is used by Arabic-speaking peoples of the Middle East to designate a prophetic religion in its totality. For example, sharīʿat Mūsā means law or religion of Moses and sharīʿatu-nā can mean "our religion" in reference to any monotheistic faith. Within Islamic discourse, šarīʿah refers to religious regulations governing the lives of Muslims. For many Muslims, the word means "justice," and they will consider any law that promotes justice and social welfare to conform to sharia. Jan Michiel Otto distinguishes four senses conveyed by the term sharia in religious and political discourse: Divine, abstract sharia: God's plan for mankind and the norms of behavior which should guide the Islamic community. Muslims of different perspectives agree in their respect for the abstract notion of sharia, but they differ in how they understand the practical implications of the term.
Classical sharia: the body of rules and principles elaborated by Islamic jurists during the first centuries of Islam. Historical sharia: the body of rules and interpretations developed throughout Islamic history, ranging from personal beliefs to state legislation and varying across an ideological spectrum. Classical sharia has served as a point of reference for these variants, but they have reflected the influences of their time and place. Contemporary sharia: the full spectrum of rules and interpretations that are developed and practiced at present. A related term al-qānūn al-islāmī, borrowed from European usage in the late 19th century, is used in the Muslim world to refer to a legal system in the context of a modern state; the primary range of meanings of the Arabic word šarīʿah, derived from the root š-r-ʕ, is related to religion and religious law. The lexicographical tradition records two major areas of use where the word šarīʿah can appear without religious connotation. In texts evoking a pastoral or nomadic environment, the word, its derivatives refer to watering animals at a permanent water-hole or to the seashore, with special reference to animals who come there.
Another area of use relates to notions of lengthy. This range of meanings is cognate with the Hebrew saraʿ and is to be the origin of the meaning "way" or "path". Both these areas have been claimed to have given rise to aspects of the religious m