Pir or Peer is a title for a Sufi master or spiritual guide. They are referred to as a Hazrat or Shaikh, Arabic for Old Man; the title is translated into English as "saint" and could be interpreted as "Elder". In Sufism a Pir's role is to instruct his disciples on the Sufi path; this is done by general lessons and individual guidance. Other words that refer to a Pir include, Murshid and Sarkar. In Alevism, Pir's are considered a direct descendant of Ali; the title Peer Baba is common in Hindi used to give a salutation to Sufi masters or honored persons. After their death people visit their tombs maqbara); the path of Sufism starts when a student takes an oath of allegiance with a teacher called Bai'ath or Bay'ah where he swears allegiance at the hands of his Pir and repents from all his previous sins. After that, the student is called a Murid. From here, his batin journey starts. A Pir has authorizations to be a teacher for one tariqahs. A Tariqah may have more than one Pir at a time. A Pir is accorded that status by his Shaikh by way of Khilafah.
Khilafat is the process. A Pir can have more than one khalifah; the term Pir is used by Nizari Ismailis whose missionaries in the past have used the title Pir. The current Nizari Ismaili Imam Agha Khan is the Pir within the Nizari Ismaili Shia sect. Spiritual direction Satya Pir, a Bangla folk hero Panchpiria, an ethnic group defined by their reverence for five pirs Sufism in Bangladesh, where it is referred to as pirism because of the central role played by pirs Renard, John; the A to Z of Sufism. Scarecrow Press. ISBN 978-0-8108-6343-9
A caliphate is an Islamic state under the leadership of an Islamic steward with the title of caliph, a person considered a religious successor to the Islamic prophet Muhammad and a leader of the entire ummah. The caliphates were polities based in Islam which developed into multi-ethnic trans-national empires. During the medieval period, three major caliphates succeeded each other: the Rashidun Caliphate, the Umayyad Caliphate and the Abbasid Caliphate. In the fourth major caliphate, the Ottoman Caliphate, the rulers of the Ottoman Empire claimed caliphal authority from 1517. During the history of Islam, a few other Muslim states all hereditary monarchies, have claimed to be caliphates. Prior to the rise of Muhammad and the unification of the tribes of Arabia under Islam, Arabs followed a pre-Islamic Arab polytheism, lived as self-governing sedentary and nomadic communities, raided their neighbouring tribes. Following the early Muslim conquests of the Arabian Peninsula, the region became unified and most of the tribes adopted Islam.
The first caliphate, the Rashidun Caliphate, was established after Muhammad's death in 632. The four Rashidun caliphs, who directly succeeded Muhammad as leaders of the Muslim community, were chosen through shura, a process of community consultation that some consider to be an early form of Islamic democracy; the fourth caliph, who, unlike the prior three, was from the same clan as Muhammad, is considered by Shia Muslims to be the first rightful caliph and Imam after Muhammad. Ali reigned during the First Fitna, a civil war between supporters of Ali and supporters of the assassinated previous caliph, from Banu Umayya, as well as rebels in Egypt; the second caliphate, the Umayyad Caliphate, was ruled by Banu Umayya, a Meccan clan descended from Umayya ibn Abd Shams. The caliphate continued the Arab conquests, incorporating the Caucasus, Sindh, the Maghreb and the Iberian Peninsula into the Muslim world; the caliphate had considerable acceptance of the Christians within its territory, necessitated by their large numbers in the region of Syria.
Following the Abbasid Revolution from 746–750, which arose from non-Arab Muslim disenfranchisement, the Abbasid Caliphate was established in 750. The third caliphate, the Abbasid Caliphate was ruled by the Abbasids, a dynasty of Meccan origin which descended from Hashim, a great-grandfather of Muhammad, making them part of Banu Hashim, via Abbas, an uncle of Muhammad, hence the name. Caliph al-Mansur founded its second capital of Baghdad in 762 which became a major scientific and art centre, as did the territory as a whole during a period known as the Islamic Golden Age. From the 10th century, Abbasid rule became confined to an area around Baghdad. From 945 to 1157, the Abbasid Caliphate came under Buyid and Seljuq military control. In 1250, a non-Arab army created by the Abbasids called. In 1258, the Mongol Empire sacked Baghdad, ending the Abbasid Caliphate, in 1261 the Mamluks in Egypt re-established the Abbasid Caliphate in Cairo. Though lacking in political power, the Abbasid dynasty continued to claim authority in religious matters until the Ottoman conquest of Mamluk Egypt in 1517.
The fourth major caliphate, the Ottoman Caliphate, was established after their conquest of Mamluk Egypt in 1517. The conquest gave the Ottomans control over the holy cities of Mecca and Medina controlled by the Mamluks; the Ottomans came to be viewed as the de facto leaders and representatives of the Muslim world. In the Indian subcontinent, dominant powers such as the Delhi Sultanate's Alauddin Khilji, Mughal Empire's sixth ruler Aurangzeb, Mysore's kings Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan have been heralded as few of the Indian caliphs existed, due to their establishments of Islamic laws throughout South Asia. Following their defeat in World War I, their empire was partitioned by the United Kingdom and French Third Republic, on 3 March 1924, the first President of the Turkish Republic, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, as part of his reforms, constitutionally abolished the institution of the caliphate. A few other states that existed through history have called themselves caliphates, including the Isma'ili Fatimid Caliphate in Northeast Africa, the Umayyad Caliphate of Córdoba in Iberia, the Berber Almohad Caliphate in Morocco and the Fula Sokoto Caliphate in present-day northern Nigeria.
The Sunni branch of Islam stipulates that, as a head of state, a caliph may come to power in one of four ways: either through an election, through nomination, through a selection by a committee, or by force. Followers of Shia Islam, believe a caliph should be an Imam chosen by God from the Ahl al-Bayt. In the early 21st century, following the failure of the Arab Spring and defeat of the self-proclaimed "Islamic State", there has seen "a broad mainstream embrace of a collective Muslim identity" by young Muslims and the appeal of a caliphate as a "idealized future Muslim state" has grown stronger. Before the advent of Islam, Arabian monarchs traditionally used the title malik, or another from the same root; the term caliph, derives from the Arabic word khalīfah, which means "successor", "steward", or "deputy" and has traditionally been considered a shortening of Khalīfat Rasūl Allāh. However, studies of pre-Islamic texts suggest that the original meaning of the phr
A mufti is an Islamic jurist qualified to issue a nonbinding opinion on a point of Islamic law. The act of issuing fatwas is called iftāʾ. Muftis and their fatwas played an important role throughout Islamic history, taking on new roles in the modern era. Tracing its origins to the Quran and early Islamic communities, the practice of ifta crystallized with the emergence of the traditional legal theory and schools of Islamic jurisprudence. In the classical legal system, fatwas issued by muftis in response to private queries served to inform Muslim populations about Islam, advise courts on difficult points of Islamic law, elaborate substantive law. In times, muftis issued public and political fatwas that took a stand on doctrinal controversies, legitimized government policies or articulated grievances of the population. Traditionally, a mufti was seen as a scholar of upright character who possessed a thorough knowledge of the Quran and legal literature. Muftis acted as independent scholars in the classical legal system.
Over the centuries, Sunni muftis were incorporated into state bureaucracies, while Shia jurists in Iran progressively asserted an autonomous authority starting from the early modern era. With the spread of codified state laws and Western-style legal education in the modern Muslim world, muftis no longer play their traditional role of clarifying and elaborating the laws applied in courts. However, muftis have continued to advise the general public on other aspects of sharia questions regarding religious rituals and everyday life; some modern muftis are appointed by the state to issue fatwas, while others serve on advisory religious councils. Still others issue fatwas in response over the internet. Modern public fatwas have addressed and sometimes sparked controversies in the Muslim world and beyond; the legal methodology of modern ifta diverges from pre-modern practice. While the proliferation of contemporary fatwas attests to the importance of Islamic authenticity to many Muslims, little research has been done to determine to what extent the Muslim public continues to acknowledge the religious authority of muftis or heeds their advice.
The word mufti comes from the Arabic root f-t-y, whose meanings include "youth, clarification, explanation." A number of related terms derive from the same root. A mufti's response is called a fatwa; the person who asks a mufti for a fatwa is known as mustafti. The act of issuing fatwas is called iftāʾ; the term futyā refers to issuing fatwas. The origins of muftis and the fatwa can be traced back to the Quran. On a number of occasions, the Quranic text instructs the Islamic prophet Muhammad how to respond to questions from his followers regarding religious and social practices. Several of these verses begin with the phrase "When they ask you concerning... say..." In two cases this is expressed with verbal forms of the root f-t-y, which signify asking for or giving an authoritative answer. In the hadith literature, this three-way relationship between God and believers, is replaced by a two-way consultation, in which Muhammad replies directly to queries from his Companions. According to Islamic doctrine, with Muhammad's death in 632, God ceased to communicate with mankind through revelation and prophets.
At that point, the expanding Muslim community turned to Muhammad's Companions, as the most authoritative voices among them, for religious guidance, some of them are reported to have issued pronouncements on a wide range of subjects. The generation of Companions was in turn replaced in that role by the generation of Successors; the institution of ifta thus developed in Islamic communities under a question-and-answer format for communicating religious knowledge, took on its definitive form with development of the classical theory of Islamic law. By the 8th century CE, muftis became recognized as legal experts who elaborated Islamic law and clarified its application to practical issues arising in the Islamic community; the legal theory of the ifta was formulated in the classical texts of usul al-fiqh, while more practical guidelines for muftis were found in manuals called adab al-mufti or adab al-fatwa. A mufti's fatwa is issued in response to a query. Fatwas can range from a simple yes/no answer to a book-length treatise.
A short fatwa may state a well-known point of law in response to a question from a lay person, while a "major" fatwa may give a judgment on an unprecedented case, detailing the legal reasoning behind the decision. Queries to muftis were supposed to address real and not hypothetical situtations and be formulated in general terms, leaving out names of places and people. Since a mufti was not supposed to inquire into the situation beyond the information included in the query, queries regarding contentious matters were carefully constructed to elicit the desired response. A mufti's understanding of the query depended on their grasp of local customs and colloquial expressions. In theory, if the query was unclear or not sufficiently detailed for a ruling, the mufti was supposed to state these caveats in their response. Muftis consulted another mufti on difficult cases, though this practice was not foreseen by legal theory, which saw futya as a transaction between one qualified jurist and one "unqualified" petitioner.
In theory, a mufti was expected to issue fatwas free of charge. In practice, muftis received support from the public treasury, public endowments or private donations. Taking of bribes was forbidden; until the 11th or 12th century, the vast majority of jurists held other jobs to support themselves. T
Imam is an Islamic leadership position. It is most used as the title of a worship leader of a mosque and Muslim community among Sunni Muslims. In this context, imams may lead Islamic worship services, serve as community leaders, provide religious guidance. In Yemen, the title was given to the king of the country. For Shi'a Muslims, the imam has a more central meaning and role in Islam through the concept of imamah; the Sunni branch of Islam does not have imams in the same sense as the Shi'a, an important distinction overlooked by those outside of the Islamic religion. In everyday terms, the imam for Sunni Muslims is the one who leads Islamic formal prayers in locations besides the mosque, whenever prayers are done in a group of two or more with one person leading and the others following by copying his ritual actions of worship. Friday sermon is most given by an appointed imam. All mosques have an imam to lead the prayers though it may sometimes just be a member from the gathered congregation rather than an appointed salaried person.
The position of women as imams is controversial. The person that should be chosen, according to Hadith, is one who has most knowledge of the Quran and Sunnah and is of good character; the term is used for a recognized religious scholar or authority in Islam for the founding scholars of the four Sunni madhhabs, or schools of jurisprudence. It may refer to the Muslim scholars who created the analytical sciences related to Hadith or it may refer to the heads of Muhammad's family in their generational times; the Position of Imams In Turkey Imams are appointed by the state to work at mosques and they are required to be graduates of an İmam Hatip high school or have a university degree in Theology. This is an official position regulated by the Presidency of Religious Affairs in Turkey and only males are appointed to this position while female officials under the same state organisation work as preachers and Qur'an course tutors, religious services experts; these officials are supposed to belong to the Hanafi school of the Sunni sect.
A central figure in an Islamic movement is called as an Imam like the Imam Nabhawi in Syria and Ahmad Raza Khan in India and Pakistan is called as the Imam for Sunni Muslims. In the Shi'a context, an imam is not only presented as the man of God par excellence, but as participating in the names and acts that theology reserves for God alone. Imams have a meaning more central to belief. Twelver and Ismaili Shi'a believe that these imams are chosen by God to be perfect examples for the faithful and to lead all humanity in all aspects of life, they believe that all the imams chosen are free from committing any sin, impeccability, called ismah. These leaders must be followed. Here follows a list of the Twelvers imams: Fatimah Fatimah al-Zahraa, daughter of Muhammed, is considered infallible but not an Imam; the Shi'a believe that the 12th Imam Mahdi will one day emerge on Qiyamah. See Imamah and List of Ismaili imams for Ismaili imams. See details under Zaidiyyah, Islamic history of Yemen and Imams of Yemen.
At times, imams have held religious authority. This was the case in Oman among the Ibadi sects. At times, the imams were elected. At other times the position was inherited, as with the Yaruba dynasty from 1624 and 1742. See List of rulers of Oman, the Rustamid dynasty: 776–909, Nabhani dynasty: 1154–1624, the Yaruba dynasty: 1624–1742, the Al Said: 1744–present for further information; the Imamate of Futa Jallon was a Fulani state in West Africa where secular power alternated between two lines of hereditary Imams, or almami. In the Zaidi Shiite sect, imams were secular as well as spiritual leaders who held power in Yemen for more than a thousand years. In 897, a Zaidi ruler, al-Hadi ila'l-Haqq Yahya, founded a line of such imams, a theocratic form of government which survived until the second half of the 20th century. Ruhollah Khomeini is referred to as Imam in Iran. Several Iranian places and institutions are named "Imam Khomeini", including a city, an international airport, a hospital, a university.
Mufti Women as imams Imamah Imam of Friday Prayer Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc. Encyclopædia Iranica. Center for Iranian Studies, Columbia University. ISBN 1-56859-050-4. Martin, Richard C. Encyclopaedia of Islam and the Muslim world. MacMillan. ISBN 0-02-865604-0. Encyclopedia of the Modern Middle East and North Africa. Gale Group. 2004. ISBN 978-0-02-865769-1. Corbin, Henry. History of Islamic Philosophy. Translated by Sherrard, Liadain. London. ISBN 0-7103-0416-1. Momen, Moojan. TAn Introduction to Shi`i Islam: The History and Doctrines of Twelve. Yale University Press. ISBN 0-300-03531-4. Sachedina, Abdulaziz Abdulhussein; the Just Ruler in Shīʻite Islam: The Comprehensive Authority of the Jurist in Imamite Jurisprudence. Oxford University Press US. ISBN 0-19-511915-0. Tabatabae, Sayyid Mohammad Hosayn. Shi'ite Islam. Translated by Nasr, Seyyed Hossein. SUNY press. ISBN 0-87395-272-3. Corbin, Henry. History of Islamic philosophy. London: Kegan Paul International. ISBN 9780710304162. A brief
An ijazah is a license authorizing its holder to transmit a certain text or subject, issued by someone possessing such authority. It is associated with transmission of Islamic religious knowledge; the license implies that the student has acquired this knowledge from the issuer of the ijaza through first-hand oral instruction, although this requirement came to be relaxed over time. An ijaza providing a chain of authorized transmitters going back to the original author accompanied texts of hadith and tafsir, but appeared in mystical and philological works, as well as literary collections. While the ijaza is associated with Sunni Islam, the concept appears in the hadith traditions of Twelver Shia. George Makdisi hypothesized that the ijazah was a direct precursor to academic degrees, a reversal of his earlier view that saw both systems as of "the most fundamental difference", though this has been rejected by Toby Huff as unsubstantiated. In a paper titled Traditionalism in Islam: An Essay in Interpretation, Harvard professor William A.
Graham explains the ijazah system as follows: The basic system of "the journey in search of knowledge" that developed early in Hadith scholarship, involved travelling to specific authorities the oldest and most renowned of the day, to hear from their own mouths their hadiths and to obtain their authorization or "permission" to transmit those in their names. This ijazah system of personal rather than institutional certification has served not only for Hadith, but for transmission of texts of any kind, from history, law, or philology to literature, mysticism, or theology; the isnad of a long manuscript as well as that of a short hadith ideally should reflect the oral, face-to-face, teacher-to-student transmission of the text by the teacher's ijazah, which validates the written text. In a formal, written ijazah, the teacher granting the certificate includes an isnad containing his or her scholarly lineage of teachers back to the Prophet through Companions, a venerable shaykh, or the author of a specific book.
According to the Lexikon des Mittelalters and A History of the University in Europe, the origin of the European doctorate lies in high medieval teaching with its roots going back to late antiquity and the early days of Christian teaching of the Bible. This view does not suggest any link between the doctorate. Historians such as George Makdisi and his students Devin J. Stewart, Josef W. Meri, Shawkat Toorawa have instead stated that the ijazah was an early type of academic degree or doctorate issued in early medieval madrasahs, similar to that which appeared in European medieval universities. Medieval Islamic Civilization: An Encyclopedia draws parallels between the Islamic ijazah and European doctorate, though the entry on the "Madrasa" in the Encyclopedia of Islam draws no such parallels. Makdisi, in a 1970 investigation into the differences between the Christian university and the Islamic madrasah, was of the opinion that the Christian doctorate of the medieval university was the one element in the university, the most different from the Islamic ijazah certification.
In 1989, though, he said that the origins of the Christian medieval doctorate date to the ijāzah al-tadrīs wa al-iftā' in the medieval Islamic legal education system. Makdisi proposed that the ijazat attadris was the origin of the European doctorate, went further in suggesting an influence upon the magisterium of the Christian Church. According to the 1989 paper, the ijazat was equivalent to the Doctor of Laws qualification and was developed during the 9th century after the formation of the Madh'hab legal schools. To obtain a doctorate, a student "had to study in a guild school of law four years for the basic undergraduate course" and at least ten years for a post-graduate course; the "doctorate was obtained after an oral examination to determine the originality of the candidate's theses," and to test the student's "ability to defend them against all objections, in disputations set up for the purpose" which were scholarly exercises practiced throughout the student's "career as a graduate student of law."
After students completed their post-graduate education, they were awarded doctorates giving them the status of faqih and mudarris, which were translated into Latin as magister and doctor respectively. Madrasas issued the ijazat attadris in the Islamic religious law of Sharia. Other academic subjects, including the natural sciences and literary studies, were treated "ancillary" to the study of the Sharia; the Islamic law degree in Al-Azhar University, the most prestigious madrasa, was traditionally granted without final examinations, but on the basis of the students' attentive attendance to courses. However, the postgraduate doctorate in law was only obtained after "an oral examination." In a 1999 paper, Makdisi points out that, in much the same way granting the ijazah degree was in the hands of professors, the same was true for the early period of the University of Bologna, where degrees were granted by professors. He points out that, much like the ijazat attadris was confined to law, the first degrees at Bologna were originally confined to law, before extending to other subjects.
Makdisi's thesis has led to further research on the topic by historians such as Stewart, Meri and Toorawa. However, several other scholars have criticized Makdisi's work. Norman Daniel, in a 1984 paper, criticized an earlier work of
In Sunni Islam, the ulama, are the guardians and interpreters of religious knowledge, of Islamic doctrine and law. By longstanding tradition, ulama are educated in religious institutions; the Quran and Sunnah, are the sources of traditional Islamic law. Students did not associate themselves with a specific educational institution, but rather sought to join renowned teachers. By tradition, a scholar who had completed his studies was approved by his teacher. At the teacher's individual discretion, the student was given the permission for teaching and for the issuing of legal opinions; the official approval was known as the ijazat at-tadris wa'l-ifta. Through time, this practice established a chain of teachers and pupils who became teachers in their own time; the traditional place of higher education was the madrasa. The institution came up in Khurasan during the 10th century AD, spread to other parts of the Islamic world from the late 11th century onwards; the most famous early madrasas are the Sunni Niẓāmiyya, founded by the Seljuk vizir Nizam al-Mulk in Iran and Iraq in the 11th century.
The Mustansiriya, established by the Abbasid caliph Al-Mustansir in Baghdad in 1234 AD, was the first to be founded by a caliph, the first known to host teachers of all four major madhhab known at that time. From the time of the Persian Ilkhanate and the Timurid dynasty onwards, madrasas became part of an architectural complex which included a mosque, a Sufi ṭarīqa, other buildings of socio-cultural function, like baths or a hospital. Madrasas were places of learning, they provided boarding and salaries to a limited number of teachers, boarding for a number of students out of the revenue from religious endowments, allocated to a specific institution by the donor. In times, the deeds of endowment were issued in elaborate Islamic calligraphy, as is the case for Ottoman endowment books; the donor could specify the subjects to be taught, the qualification of the teachers, or which madhhab the teaching should follow. However, the donor was free to specify in detail the curriculum, as was shown by Ahmed and Filipovic for the Ottoman imperial madrasas founded by Suleiman the Magnificent.
As Berkey has described in detail for the education in medieval Cairo, unlike medieval Western universities, in general madrasas had no distinct curriculum, did not issue diplomas. The educational activities of the madrasas focused on the law, but included what Zaman called "Sharia sciences" as well as the rational sciences like philosophy, mathematics or medicine; the inclusion of these sciences sometimes reflect the personal interests of their donors, but indicate that scholars studied various different sciences. Early on in Islamic history, a line of thought developed around the idea of mysticism, striving for the perfection of worship. Originating out of Syria and Iraq rather than the Hijaz, the idea of Sufism was related to devotional practices of eastern Christian monasticism, although monastic life in Islam is discouraged by the Quran. During the first Islamic century, Ḥasan al-Baṣrī was one of the first Muslim scholars to describe, according to Albert Hourani "the sense of the distance and nearness of God... in the language of love".
During the 7th century, the ritual of Dhikr evolved as a "way of freeing the soul from the distractions of the world". Important early scholars who further elaborated on mysticism were Harith al-Muhasibi and Junayd al-Baghdadi; the early Muslim conquests brought about Arab Muslim rule over large parts of the Hellenistic world. During the time of the Umayyad Caliphate, at latest, the scholars of the emerging Islamic society had become familiar with the classical philosophical and scientific traditions of the world they had conquered; the collection of classical works and their translation into the Arabian language initiated a period, known today as the Islamic Golden Age. According to Hourani, the works of the classical scholars of antiquity were met with considerable intellectual curiosity by Islamic scholars. Hourani quotes al-Kindi, "the father of Islamic philosophy", as follows: "We should not be ashamed to acknowledge truth from whatever source it comes to us if it is brought to us by former generations and foreign peoples.
For him who seeks the truth there is nothing of higher value than truth itself." The works of Aristotle, in particular his Nicomachean Ethics, had a profound influence on the Islamic scholars of the Golden Age like Al-Farabi, Abu al-Hassan al-Amiri and Ibn Sīnā. In general, the Islamic philosophers saw no contradiction between philosophy and the religion of Islam. However, according to Hourani, al-Farabi wrote that philosophy in its pure form was reserved for an intellectual elite, that ordinary people should rely for guidance on the sharia; the distinction between a scholarly elite and the less educated masses "was to become a commonplace of Islamic thought". As exemplified by the works of al-Razi, during times, philosophy "was carried on as a private activity by medical men, pursued with discretion, met with suspicion"; the founder of Islamic philosophical ethics is Ibn Miskawayh He combined Aristotelian and Islamic ethics, explicitly mentioning the Nicomachean Ethics and its interpretati
Jihad is an Arabic word which means striving or struggling with a praiseworthy aim. In an Islamic context, it can refer to any effort to make personal and social life conform with God's guidance, such as struggle against one's evil inclinations, religious proselytizing, or efforts toward the moral betterment of the ummah, though it is most associated with war. In classical Islamic law, the term refers to armed struggle against unbelievers, while modernist Islamic scholars equate military jihad with defensive warfare. In Sufi and pious circles and moral jihad has been traditionally emphasized under the name of greater jihad; the term has gained additional attention in recent decades through its use by terrorist groups. The word jihad appears in the Quran with and without military connotations in the idiomatic expression "striving in the path of God". Islamic jurists and other ulema of the classical era understood the obligation of jihad predominantly in a military sense, they developed an elaborate set of rules pertaining to jihad, including prohibitions on harming those who are not engaged in combat.
In the modern era, the notion of jihad has lost its jurisprudential relevance and instead given rise to an ideological and political discourse. While modernist Islamic scholars have emphasized defensive and non-military aspects of jihad, some Islamists have advanced aggressive interpretations that go beyond the classical theory. Jihad is classified into inner jihad, which involves a struggle against one's own base impulses, external jihad, further subdivided into jihad of the pen/tongue and jihad of the sword. Most Western writers consider external jihad to have primacy over inner jihad in the Islamic tradition, while much of contemporary Muslim opinion favors the opposite view. Gallup analysis of a large survey reveals considerable nuance in the conceptions of jihad held by Muslims around the world. Jihad is sometimes referred to as the sixth pillar of Islam, though this designation is not recognized. In Twelver Shi'a Islam jihad is one of the ten Practices of the Religion. A person engaged in jihad is called a mujahid.
The term jihad is rendered in English as "Holy War", although this translation is controversial. Today, the word jihad is used without religious connotations, like the English crusade. In Modern Standard Arabic, the term jihad is used for a struggle for causes, both religious and secular; the Hans Wehr Dictionary of Modern Written Arabic defines the term as "battle. Nonetheless, it is used in the religious sense and its beginnings are traced back to the Qur'an and the words and actions of Muhammad. In the Qur'an and in Muslim usage, jihad is followed by the expression fi sabil illah, "in the path of God." Muhammad Abdel-Haleem states that it indicates "the way of truth and justice, including all the teachings it gives on the justifications and the conditions for the conduct of war and peace." It is sometimes used without religious connotation, with a meaning similar to the English word "crusade". According to Ahmed al-Dawoody, seventeen derivatives of jihād occur altogether forty-one times in eleven Meccan texts and thirty Medinan ones, with the following five meanings: striving because of religious belief, non-Muslim parents exerting pressure, that is, jihād, to make their children abandon Islam, solemn oaths, physical strength.
The context of the Quran is elucidated by Hadith. Of the 199 references to jihad in the most standard collection of hadith—Bukhari—all assume that jihad means warfare. Among reported saying of the Islamic prophet Muhammad involving jihad are The best Jihad is the word of Justice in front of the oppressive sultan. and The Messenger of Allah was asked about the best jihad. He said: "The best jihad is the one in which your horse is slain and your blood is spilled." Ibn Nuhaas cited a hadith from Musnad Ahmad ibn Hanbal, where Muhammad states that the highest kind of jihad is "The person, killed whilst spilling the last of his blood". According to another hadith, supporting one's parents is an example of jihad, it has been reported that Muhammad considered well-performing hajj to be the best jihad for Muslim women. The practice of periodic raids by Bedouins against enemy tribes and settlements to collect spoils predates the revelations of the Quran. According to some scholars, while Islamic leaders "instilled into the hearts of the warriors the belief" in jihad "holy war" and ghaza, the "fundamental structure" of this bedouin warfare "remained... raiding to collect booty".
According to Jonathan Berkey, the Quran's statements in support of jihad may have been directed against Muhammad's local enemies, the pagans of Mecca or the Jews of Medina, but these same statements could be redirected once new enemies appeared. According to another scholar, it was the shift in focus to the conquest and spoils collecting of non-Bedouin unbelievers and away from traditional inter-bedouin tribal raids, that may have made it possible for Islam not only to expand but to avoid self-destruction. "From an early date Muslim law laid down" jihad in the military sense as "one of the principal obligations" of both "the head of the Muslim state", who declared the jihad, the Muslim community. According to legal historian Sadakat Kadri, Islamic jurists first developed classical doctrine of jihad "towards th