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The origin and early expansion of Islam - Essay Example

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The origin and early expansion of Islam

This beginning of the new religion as well as a civilization continued even after the death of the Prophet Muhammad; the religion spread quite readily across the world, but still Islam showed tolerance and gave space to other religions. One clear example in this regard is of the Jewish community settled in the Medina after an Islamic society was established there. The Jewish people were given the right to keep following their religious customs, and were granted cultural independence which was so lax that it also allowed them to observe Jewish religious laws; the Muslims in return gained the Jew's political loyalty towards the Muslim rulers. Later on in history as well, Jews enjoyed liberty and privileges during the Muslim rule in countries like Egypt, Turkey as well Iran. Another example of a co-existing as well as a conflicting religion (to Islam) is Christianity which enjoyed the same privileges (Esposito, 2002).
The tribes in Arab region worshipped various pagan gods, and there were three major monotheistic religions in that area, Hebrew, Christianity, and a monotheism religion developed by Persians knows as Zoroastrianism. The majority of people in middle-east most specifically Arab were driven by tribal-based traditionalism, their value systems as well as various social, economics, religious and political aspects of their life were all controlled by the division of their society into tribes. Each tribe followed some separate pagan god, and had separate culture and belief-set that fueled their need for being deemed superior. Therefore each tribe competed in becoming the most prestigious and most powerful and for this purpose they invented their own superior gods and sought their favors.
Aside from worshipping pagan gods the Arabs also honoured other heavenly objects as well as various plants and animals. In those times the people were worshipping idols more often therefore it is thought that even the Christians and the Arabs could start worshipping idols. Even Christianity was distorted in this area, and many additions were made in this religion by the priests and manipulated the doctrine to fit to their own requirements, that took away the religion's actual shape.
Due to such deviant religious practices many un-just and wrongful practices had also taken root in this society, the rich were exploiting the poor, and the weak in the community were being driven to the ground by the mighty. The treatment of women and children was also merciless and harsh. Wars amongst the tribes were quite common and caused much destruction and were the major reason of poverty and terrible economic conditions of the region. Few elders in the tribes were given unparalleled importance and their ever order were followed, this lack of equal distribution of power lead to wrong decisions and exploitations of a major segment of society.

Conclusion
The year 622 A.D. marked a monumental milestone in the history of the religion of Islam. This marked the beginning of an era that changed the history as well as the geography of the whole world; the ripples of this event will be felt till the end of time. Soon the time ...Show more

Summary

The place of origin of the second largest religion 'Islam' is Arabia in the Middle East now known as Saudi Arabia, this is the place where Prophet Muhammad (SAW) was born. The religion originated from the home town (Mecca) of the Holy Prophet, and it later took a more concise and defined form in the city of Medina, where Prophet Muhammad (SAW) migrated with his followers in the year A.D…
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The origin and early expansion of Islam essay example
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