Portal:Islam

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Islam (Arabic: الإسلامal-’islām, pronounced [ʔislæːm] ( ) is the religion articulated by the Qur’an, a book considered by its adherents to be the verbatim word of the single incomparable God (Arabic: الله‎, Allāh), and by the Islamic prophet Muhammad's demonstrations and real-life examples (called the Sunnah, collected through narration of his companions in collections of Hadith). The word Islam, a triliteral of the word salaam, is a homograph, having multiple meanings, including peace and surrender (to God). Adherents are known as Muslims, which is the active participle of the verb of which Islām is the infinitive. Muslims regard their religion as the completed and universal version of a monotheistic faith revealed at many times and places before, including, notably, to the prophets Abraham, Moses and Jesus. Islamic tradition holds that previous messages and revelations have been changed and distorted over time. Religious practices include the Five Pillars of Islam, which are five duties that unite Muslims into a community. Islamic law (Arabic: شريعة Šarīʿah) touches on virtually every aspect of life and society, encompassing everything from dietary laws and banking to warfare, welfare, and Jihad. Almost all Muslims belong to one of two major denominations, the Sunni (87-90%) and Shi'a (10-13%). Islam is the predominant religion in much of Africa, the Middle East and major parts of Asia. Large communities are also found in China, Russia and the Caribbean. Converts and immigrant communities are found in almost every part of the world. With 1.57 billion Muslims (see Islam by country), Islam is the second-largest religion in the world and arguably the fastest growing religion in the world.
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Battle of Khandaq (Battle of the Trench)
The Battle of the Trench also known as Battle of the Confederates, was a fortnight-long siege of Yathrib (now Medina) by Arab and Jewish tribes. The strength of the confederate armies is estimated around 10,000 men with six hundred horses and some camels, while the Medinan numbered 3000. The battle began on March 31, 627. The outnumbered defenders of Medina, mainly Muslims led by Islamic prophet Muhammad, opted to dig and fight from a trench rather than face the tribes in the open. The trench together with Medina's natural fortifications rendered the confederate cavalry (consisting of horses and camels) useless, locking the two sides in a stalemate. Hoping to make several attacks at once, the confederates persuaded the Banu Qurayza to attack the city from the south. However, Muhammad's diplomacy derailed the negotiations, and broke up the confederacy against him. The well-organized defenders, the sinking of confederate morale, and poor weather conditions caused the siege to end in a fiasco. The siege was a "battle of wits", in which Muslims diplomatically overcame their opponents with very few casualties. Efforts to defeat the Muslims failed, and Islam became influential in the region. As a consequence, the Muslims besieged the Qurayza, and upon the latter's unconditional surrender. The defeat also caused the Meccans to lose their trade and much of their prestige.

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Chechen separatist fighter praying during the First Chechen War
Credit: Mikhail Evstafiev

Chechen separatist fighter praying during the First Chechen War

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Cat Stevens lived on Shaftesbury Avenue in London, England
Yusuf Islam (born Steven Demetre Georgiou on 21 July 1948), best known by his former stage name Cat Stevens, is a British musician of Greek Cypriot and Swedish ancestry. He is a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, educator, philanthropist and prominent convert to Islam. As Cat Stevens, he sold over 60 million albums around the world since the late 1960s. His albums Tea for the Tillerman and Teaser and the Firecat were both certified as Triple Platinum by the RIAA in the United States; his album Catch Bull at Four sold half a million copies in the first two weeks of release alone, and was Billboard '​s number-one LP for three consecutive weeks. His songwriting has also earned him two ASCAP songwriting awards in consecutive years, for "The First Cut Is the Deepest," which has been a hit single for four different artists, and has been instrumental for others in establishing their musical careers. Stevens converted to Islam at the height of his fame in December, 1977. The following year, he adopted his Muslim name Yusuf Islam, auctioned all his guitars away for charity in 1979, and left his music career to devote himself to educational and philanthropic causes in the Muslim community. He has been given several awards for his work in promoting peace in the world, including 2003's World Award, the 2004 Man for Peace Award and the 2007 Mediterranean Prize for Peace. In 2006, he returned to pop music, with his first album of new pop songs in 28 years, entitled An Other Cup.

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The name of the 12th Shiite Imam as it appears in calligraphy at the Prophet's mosque, Masjid Nabawai in Madina
Whenever an authority disappears, another one appears; and if a star sets, another one rises.

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