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Islam (/ˈɪslɑːm/; Arabic: الإسلام, romanizedal-’Islām [ɪsˈlaːm] (listen), transl. "Submission [to God]") is an Abrahamic monotheistic religion centred primarily around the Quran, a religious text that is considered by Muslims to be the direct word of God (or Allah) as it was revealed to Muhammad, the main and final Islamic prophet. It is the world's second-largest religion behind Christianity, with more than two billion followers comprising around 25 percent of the global population. Islam teaches that God is merciful, all-powerful, and unique, and has guided humanity through various prophets, revealed scriptures, and natural signs, with the Quran serving as the final, universal revelation and Muhammad serving as the "Seal of the Prophets" (the last prophet of God). The teachings and practices of Muhammad (sunnah) documented in traditional collected accounts (hadith) provide a secondary constitutional model for Muslims to follow after the Quran.

Muslims believe that Islam is the complete and universal version of a primordial faith that was revealed many times through earlier prophets such as Adam, Abraham, Moses, and Jesus, among others; these earlier revelations are attributed to Judaism and Christianity, which are regarded in Islam as spiritual predecessor faiths. They also consider the Quran, when preserved in Classical Arabic, to be the unaltered and final revelation of God to humanity. Like other Abrahamic religions, Islam also teaches a Final Judgement wherein the righteous will be rewarded in paradise (Jannah) and the unrighteous will be punished in hell (Jahannam). Religious concepts and practices include the Five Pillars of Islam, which are considered to be obligatory acts of worship, as well as following Islamic law (sharia), which touches on virtually every aspect of life and society from banking and finance and welfare to women's roles and the environment. The cities of Mecca, Medina, and Jerusalem are home to the three holiest sites in Islam, in descending order: Masjid al-Haram, Al-Masjid an-Nabawi, and Al-Aqsa Mosque.

From a historical point of view, Islam originated in the early 7th century CE in the Arabian Peninsula, near Mecca. Through various caliphates, the religion later spread outside of Arabia shortly after Muhammad's death, and by the 8th century, the Umayyad Caliphate had imposed Islamic rule from the Iberian Peninsula in the west to the Indus Valley in the east. The Islamic Golden Age refers to the period traditionally dated from the 8th century to the 13th century, during the reign of the Abbasid Caliphate, when much of the Muslim world was experiencing a scientific, economic, and cultural flourishing. The expansion of the Muslim world involved various states and caliphates such as the Ottoman Empire, extensive trade, and religious conversion as a result of Islamic missionary activities (dawah). (Full article...)

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Fruit of Islam

Islam in the news

29 June 2022 – 2022 Muhammad remarks controversy
Protests and arson incidents occur in Udaipur, Rajasthan, India, after a Hindu man is murdered and beheaded in his shop by two Islamic extremists for supporting controversial remarks by a politician about the prophet Muhammad. (BBC News)
29 June 2022 – Israeli–Palestinian conflict
A Palestinian Islamic Jihad member is killed during clashes with Israeli soldiers in Jenin, in the occupied West Bank. (Reuters)
25 June 2022 – Islamic terrorism in Europe
2022 Oslo shootings
Two people are killed and 21 others injured during mass shootings at three separate sites in central Oslo, Norway, including a gay nightclub. An Iranian-Norwegian man is arrested and charged with murder, attempted murder, and terrorism. The motive is suspected to be Islamic extremism. (BBC News) (NRK)
21 June 2022 –
Rioters attack an International Day of Yoga celebration in Malé, the Maldives, proclaiming that yoga is against the tenets of Islam. (Reuters)
20 June 2022 – Mali War
Islamist insurgents kill 132 civilians over the weekend in a series of attacks on three villages in the Bankass Cercle of Mali's Mopti Region, including Segue. (AP)

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Site traditionally described as the tomb of Ezra at Al Uzayr near Basra
Uzair is a figure who is mentioned in the Quran, Surah At-Tawba, verse 9:30, which states that he was revered by the Jews as "the son of God". Uzair is most often identified with the biblical Ezra. Modern historians have described the reference as "enigmatic", since such views have not been found in Jewish sources. Islamic scholars have interpreted the Quranic reference in different ways, with some explaining that it alluded to a specific group of Jews. According to Ibn Kathir, Uzair lived between the times of King Solomon and the time of Zachariah, father of John the Baptist. Some Quranic commentators viewed Uzayr as a learned scholar who sought to teach the people the forgotten laws of God. The modern Quranic exegesis of Abul Ala Maududi states,"Uzair (Ezra) lived during the period around 450 B.C. The Jews regarded him with great reverence as the revivalist of their Scriptures which had been lost during their captivity in Babylon after the death of Prophet Solomon. So much so that they had lost all the knowledge of their Law, their traditions and of Hebrew, their national language. Then it was Ezra who re-wrote the Old Testament and revived the Law. That is why they used very exaggerated language in his reverence which misled some of the Jewish sects to make him 'the son of God'. The Qur'an, however, does not assert that all the Jews were unanimous in declaring Ezra as 'the son of God'. What it intends to say is that the perversion in the articles of faith of the Jews concerning Allah had degenerated to such an extent that there were some amongst them who considered Ezra as the son of God".

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Roquia Sakhawat Hussain

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