Islam beliefs and practices

  • Created by: Charlotte
  • Created on: 23-09-20 18:09

Sunni 6 Articles of Faith

Tawhid - Belief in only one God (monotheism).

Risalah - Belief in prophets.

Malaikah - Belief in Angels.

Kutub - Belief in the Holy books (Qur'an, Torah, Gospels, Psalms).

Akhirah - Belief in the Day Of Judgement.

Al Qadr - Belief in predestination.

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Shi'a 5 roots of Usual-ad-Din

Tawhid - Belief in one God (monotheism).

Prophethood - Belief in prophets.

Adalat - Belief that Allah is just.

Imamate - The belief in the 12 leaders after Muhammad.

Resurrection - Belief that souls will rejoin the body for judgement on the Day of Judgement.

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Sunni 5 Pillars

Shahadah - Declaration of faith.

Salah - Prayer (5 times a day).

Sawm - Fasting (Ramadan).

Zakkah - Almsgiving of 2.5% of savings to charity.

Hajj - Pilgrimage (at least once in their lifetime).

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Shi'a 10 Obligatory Acts

Salah - Prayer (5 times a day).

Zakkah - Almsgiving of 2.5% of savings to charity.

Sawm -  Fasting (Ramadan).

Hajj - Pilgrimage (Must at least once in their lifetime).

Khums - Almsgiving of an extra 20% of savings to charities.

Jihad - Struggle to maintain faith and defend Islam (Greater Jihad & Lesser Jihad)*.

Amr-bil-Maruf - Encouraging good behaviour.

Nahi Amil Munkar - Discouraging bad behaviour.

Tawallah - Being loving towards friends of Allah.

Tabarra - Dissacioting from enemies of Allah (Islamophobes).

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7 Qualities of Allah

Immanent - Allah is present and involved with life on Earth and in the rest of the universe.

Transcendent - Allah is beyond and outside life on Earth and the rest of the universe.

Omnipotent - Allah is all-powerful.

Beneficent - Allah is loving and good.

Merciful - Allah is forgiving of our actions.

Fairness - Allah is just and treats evryone equally.

Justice - Allah gives people what they deserve and is fair.


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Jihad (Part 1)

*Greater Jihad - Struggle to be a better Muslim.

   - Actively tring to keep the Islamic faith alive e.g whipering the shahadah in a baby's ear at birth. (Shahadah)

   - Finding time to pray 5 times a day. (Salah)

   - Taking the responsibility of paying at least 2.5% of almsgiving. (Zakkah)

   - Resisting temptation and fasting to improve their relationship with Allah. (Sawm)

   - Prioritising a pilgramage at least once in their lifetime. (Hajj)

This links with the 5 Pillars.

Reference to Jihad is found in the Qur'an 2:218 and Hadith 'This is my path, leading straight, so follow it and do not follow other ways: they will lead you from it - 'this is what He commands you to do, so that you may refrain from wrongdoing'.

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Jihad (Part 2)

 Lesser Jihad - Protecting/fighting to protect Islam incl. Holy War.

Lesser Jihad happens less often and is less important:

   - Must be declared by a religious leader.
   - Can't be used to convert people to Islam.
   - Has to be the result of a threat to their faith and needs to be a last resort.
   - Must not be used to gain territory or wealth.

This is NOT Terrorism - that is not accepted in the eyes of Allah.
Many extremists will claim to be Jihadists to excuse their actions but Muslims don't agree with what they've done.

Ashura is stemmed from Lesser Jihad when Imam Husayn protected Islam, Lesser Jihad links with the Religious festival as it remembers the martyrdom and protection of Islamic faith.
    - Imam Husayn had 70 Shi'a Muslims and they were fighting 3000 Sunni Muslims.

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Key Words

Monotheism - Believe in only one God.

Polytheism - Believe in many Gods.

Jahilliya - Time of ignorance.

Infallible - Can't be wrong/changed.

Qur'an - Recital.

Islam - Obedience to Allah.

Muslim - Obeying Allah.

Sadaqah - Voluntary giving.

Madrassah - Learn Arabic.

Masjid - Mosque (place of prayer)

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Historical context (Part 1)

Prophet Muhhamad - born 570CE in Saudi Arabia.

  = Everyone lived in their own Bedouin tribes.
  = There was lots of crime and war.
  = There was no one leader or laws.
  = People died a lot earlier because there was no medicine and bad diets.
  = People prayed to multiple Gods (polytheism) and prayed to idols and statues.
  = People don't worship the messenger, Muhammad, only Allah.

Muhammad's father (Abdullah) died before he was born.
Muhammad's mother (Amina) was poor and gave him away to a tribe when he was born.

Quraysh - Ruling tribe, in charge of the Ka'aba.

575CE - When Muhammad was 5 he returned to his mother but she was very ill. His mother died whilst on a journey to visit their family.

575CE - Muhammad then lives with his grandfather until he dies two years later.

577CE - Then Muhammad goes and lives with his uncle (Abu Talib) who was a powerful            figure.

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Historical context (Part 2)

594CE - Muhammad did a job for an older business woman called Khadijah and after he fulfilled his duties, she proposed to him and their marriage lasted 24 years until Khadijah died. Their marriage was monogamous despite polygamy being more common.

610CE - (Night of Power) Muhammad climbed up Mount Hira and into a cave. He fell asleep and woke suddenely shaking. Angel Jibril was holding him, and a voice told him "Ikrah" which means "read". This was his first revelation from Allah. But Muhammad was illiterate.

613CE - Muhammad goes public with his revelation from Allah.

622CE - Quraysh persecute Muhammad's family.

623CE - (The Hijrah) Muhammad emigrates to Medina.

625 - 628CE - Military period

630CE - March on Makkah, Battle of Badr, Battle of Uhud, Battle of the Trenches, Treaty of Hudaibya.

632CE - Muhammad died

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The basic belief in Islam that there is only one God and Muhammad (PBUH) is God's prophet. 

Sincerely reciting this statement in front of a Muslim witnesses is the only requirement for joining the Muslim community.

It is said many times in a Muslim's life, including daily prayers . It is said when a baby is born so that it is the first thing they hear, and a Muslim would try to say it as their last words before they die.

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Shahadah in Shi'a Islam

Some Shi'a Muslims add an extra phrase to the Shahadah - 'I declare that there is no God but [Him] and Muhammad (PBUH) is His messenger. I bear witness that Ali is the beloved of [God] and the rightful trustee of the prophet, and his immediate succesor'

This demonstrates their belief that Ali was the true successor of Muhammad and that only he and his descendents know the true meaning of the revelation given to Muhammad.

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Salah (Part 1)

Sunni Muslims are required to pray at 5 set times of the day which are worked out from the times of the sunrise and sunset, this means the times can change. Muslims use prayer timetables to help them do this based on where they live in the world.

Fajr - Just before sunrise.

Zuhur - Just after midday.

Asr - Afternoon.

Maghrib Just after susnset.

Isha - Night.

Shi'a Muslims may combine the midday and afternoon prayers, and the sunset and night prayers. So in total may do 5 prayers but only pray at 3 set times.

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Salah (Part 2)

Preparation for prayer - Muslims come to pray following the Adhan (call to prayer) which is said from the minaret. Muslims also spirtually clean before they pray which is achieved by abulution (wudu). Muslims follow detailed instructions to do this properly which are outlined in the Qur'an- 'You who believe, when you are about to pray, wash your faces and your hands up to the elbows, wipe your heads, wash your feet up to the ankles and, if required wash your whole body'.  - Qur'an 5:6.

The spirtitual cleaning allows Muslims to focus solely on God in their prayers. 

It is important that Muslims face the holy city of Makkah when praying so that they they are focused physically and menatally on one place associated with Allah. 

Prayers are led by an Imam who is positioned at the front of the congregation but also facing the qiblah (a wall that indicates to the direction of Makkah). Men and women pray at the same time but in seperate spaces.

Prayer is important because God tells Muslims to pray in the Qur'an'Salah is a perscribed duty that has to be performed at the given time by the Qur'an'. - Qur'an 4:103

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The Rak'ahs (Part 1)

The daily prayers are made up of rak'ahs which are sequences of actions and recitations. e.g. morning prayer has 2 rak'ahs while the evening prayer has 4.

Rak'ahs can change depending on which prayer its used in but they all include:

- Before the prayer sequence begins they say the shahadah, to show their commitment/devotion to Allah and to act as a declaration of faith in only one God (Tawhid).

Whilst standing - Muslims will recite the 1st chapter of the Qur'an, this shows that they are putting everything from the day behinf them and focusing on Allah.
While bowing - Muslims say in Arabic 'Glory be to my lord who is the very greatest' 3 times. By bowing they're showing respect and concentration on the prayer.
Returning to an upright position - They make a recitation praising God. This shows that they are aware of God's presence with them.
Whilst doing p
rostration - They kneel with their forhead, nose, hands, knees and toes touching the prayer mat on the floor and recite 'How perfect is my Lord, the most high'. Prostration is used to show there submission to God and to acknowledge that Allah is higher than them and everyone else.
Muslims then sit while reciting - 'God is the greatest' and after pausing, postrate themselves once more and repeat same as before.

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The Rak'ahs (Part 2)

Once the required number of rak'ahs is completed, in a kneeling position - they turn to face the right and then the left and recite ' Peace be upon you, and the mercy and blessings of god.' This gives a blessing to others next to them and to the angels that sit on their shoulders.

Personal prayer may be added (du'a) to the end of final rak'ah - not always in Arabic and not always following a set form.

Set prayers and more personal prayers may take place at home.

Shi'a Muslims have their hands by their sides whilst standing and touch their heads to a wooden block when kneeling and also position their feet differently.

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Midday prayer on Friday is considered to be special and is called the Jummah Prayer. All male Muslims are expected to attend the mosque and women if they wish to do so, will too. 

After the prayer is complete the Imam will deliver a sermon from the Minbar facing the mihrab (which indicates the direction of the qiblar and the direction of the Ka'aba in Makkah) that reminds Muslims of their obligations and duties to God. 

Some consider Friday to be a day of rest and others do not, so once Jummah is complete, Muslims may or may not return to work, depending on their belief.

Jummah prayers are important as they bring Muslims closer to God due to the sermon the Imam gives.

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Prayer at home

Muslims may and do pray at home, they must perform wudu before they do, but do not need a special room in their house to pray.

Many Muslims will use a prayer mat and position it to face Makkah. Muslim women may pray at home more frequently if they have children to look after.

More informal personal prayer (du'a) may also be performed at home or other places outside the mosque- these perosnal prayers are important to build a relationship with God.

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Sawm - Fasting during Ramadan (Part 1)

Ramadan is the 9th month of the Islamic calendar and the most important as it was the month the Qur'an was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). During this month Muslims will focus on fasting, charity and pleasing God.

During daylight hours, Muslims will go without food and drink for the whole month. The command to fast is written in the Qur'an and has been obligatory since the 7th century.

They only eat before sunrise - Sufur

And after sunset - Iftar

Fasting from food is thought to cleanse the soul and free it from harm, allowing Muslims to focus on God. It requires self-discipline and demonstrates a Muslims submission to God. Fasting also means fasting from bad habits too like smoking or drinking alcohol. 

Some exceptions to those who don't need to fast are: pregnant women, mothers nursing babies, those who are ill and children under 12. Later on they're expected to make up for them.

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Sawm - Fasting during Ramadan (Part 2)

One benefit of experiencing hunger - it reminds Muslims of the poor and in need. This awareness may inspire Muslims to find ways to help the poor by inviting those in need to share their evening meal or by choosing to pay Zakah during Ramadan.

'And whoever of you is present, let him fast the month, and whoever of you is sick or on a journey, a number of other days.' Surah Al-Baqarah 2:185

Negatives - Might be harder to concentrate.
                 - Might struggle to resist temptation if others around aren't fasting.
                 - Dehydration can be dangerous and might make them ill.

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Laylat Al-Qadr

Happens on the 26th or 27th day of Ramadan - the night Muhammad recieved his first revelation (The Night of Power).

Muslims believe that if you pray to Allah on that say then that is when your connection is the strongest. - They believe that praying on this day is equal to praying for 83 years.

'Be steadfast in prayer in giving'.

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The 'Festival of the breaking of the fast', can be known as 'the sweet festival' or 'little eid'.

It marks the end of the month of Ramadan where Muslims celebrate not only a whole month of fasting but thanking God for the strength and help he has provided.

It's a time to thank Allah for providing his wisdom through the Qur'an, the first revelation of which was made in the month of Ramadan. Lasts betwwen 1 - 3 days. Cards, presents, new clothes are exchanged or worn.

Many help the poor, and some visit deceased family members, thanking God for forgiveness and the ability to fast.

Some women get henna, whilst men visit the mosque. Many gather in large outdoor areas and say special prayers, and the Imam's sermon would usually be based on forgiveness, the forgetting of disputes, and helping the poor.

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The festival of sacrifice / Greater Eid.

Lasts for 4 days, starts on the 10th day of the 12th month (Dhull-Hijjah) - month of pilgrimage.

Celebrated by all Muslims. And it recalls the obedience of Ibrahim and his willingness to sacrifice his son Ismael.

On pilgrimage, because of Ibrahim's sacrifice of a lamb instead, Muslim's sacrifice an animal too, (qurbani). Most Muslims buy an animal form a slaughterhouse.

In Britain, Muslims take to visit their friends and family and enjoy festive meals. It begins with prayer in the mosque, where the Imam will speak about sacrifice and remind Muslim's of the Festival's important message. Community celebrations are organised and Muslimsmay invite neighbours to their celebratory meals and visit those in hospital, to ensure that no one feels left out.

And the meat sacrifice will get shared: 1/3 to the poor, 1/3 to relatives/friends/neighbours, 1/3 to themselves.

Way to remeber what the festival is: ADHA = ANIMAL

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Hajj - origins (Part 1)

The key pilgrimage in Islam is called Hajj and should be made at least once during a Muslim's lifetime, provided a person is wealthy and healthy enough to do so.

Hajj starts and ends in the holy city of Makkah and takes place during the last month of the Islamic calender from the 8th to the 12th day of Dhul-Hijjah. Approximately 3 million Muslims take the journey each year.

The Qur'an references Hajj 'Pilgrimage to the House is a duty owed to God by people who are able to undertake it'.

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Hajj - origins (Part 2)

The origins of Hajj can be linked back to Prophet Ibrahim who was told by God to take his wife Hajira and son Ishmael to Arabia. He was commanded to leave them on their own with supplies of food and water.

When the supplies ran out, Hajira and her son suffered from dehydration, causing her to run up and down two hills called Safa and Marwah before collapsing. Hajira prayed and when Ishmael struck his foot to the ground, a spring of water gushed up from the ground, they sold this water to buy food supplies.

When Ibrahim returned, God instructed him to build a shrine, this is known as the Ka'aba and Ibrahim was commanded to make it a pure place of worship, calling people to perform Hajj there. Centuries later, the city Makkah was established close by using the Zamzam water from Ishmael's well.

Centuries later, Makkah was home to idol worshippers who stored their idols within the Ka'aba. In 628 CE, Muhammad (PBUH) journeyed from Madinah to Makkah with a large group of Muslims. This is seen as the first pilgrimage. In 630 CE, the Ka'aba was dedicated back to Allah.

These stories are all reflected in Hajj.

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Ashura (Part 1)

The Day of Ashura (Day of Rememberence):  It's a major Shi'a festival that takes place on the 10th day of Muharram (1st month).

Sunni Muslims also observe Ashura but refer it to as the Day of Atonement and use it to remember the day the Israelities were freed from slavery in Egypt.

Others believe that this day also refers to when Nuh left the ark after the flood.

After visiting Madinah, Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) nominated Ashura as a day of fasting from sunset to sunrise and is a voluntry fast for Sunni Muslims. For Shi'a Muslims, it is a day of sorrow as it remebers the events at Karabala.

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Ashura (Part 2)

Shi'a Muslims use the festival to remeber the death of Imam Hussayn, son of Imam Ali and the grandson of the Prophet. It is a day of mourning for the martydom of Hussayn.

In many Muslim countries a public holiday takes place to remember the event. During the day Shi'a Muslims take part in a public expression of grief and mourning. 

Re-enactments and plays may be performed to re-tell the story of Hussayn's death. A small minority will go as far as self-flagellation and beat themselves on the back with chains, pond their head or cut themselves. Some extreme Muslims will even take their sons and beat/cut them as well.

They do this in attempt to connect with Hussayn's suffering and death. Recently, some Shi'a authorites have condemned this practice and stated they are wrong actions for Muslims to take.

In Western countries where extreme public violence like self-flagellation would be stopped, some Muslims will instead choose to hold private sessions at the mosque, where they will beat their chest and head and sing songs, whilst wearing black to grieve Husayn.
And many will donate blood as a way of giving/shedding blood for Husayn as that's a more beneficial and selfless act in some Muslim's opinions.

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Angels (Part 1)

The role of Angels:
- To protect and look after people.
- Act as messengers to Prophets in order to share the word of Allah.
- Guide people.
- Cleanse and make people pure.

Names of angels:
- Jibril - In charge of communicating Allah's words to his prophets.
- Israfil - In charge of blowing the trumpet to mark the Day Of Judgement.
- Mikail - In charge of rainfall and sustenance.
- Munkar and Nakeer - After death, these angels will question souls about their faith and deeds.
- Malak Am-Maut (Angel of death) - In charge of taking possesion of souls after death.
- Malik - Guardian of hell.
- Ridwan - Guardian of heaven.
- Raqib and Atid - The noble recorders, they pay attention and right down your deeds.
             - Raqib - Sits on your right shoulder and writes down the good deeds you do.
             - Atid - Sits on your left shoulder and writes down the bad deeds you do.

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Angels (Part 2)

- Created from light.
- Qur'an [21:26] 'honoured servents'.
- They can't disobey Allah.
- Angels have no physical desires (they dont need to eat or drink).
- 70,000 angels dissapear each day and there are still more, only Allah knows the true amount of angels that there are.

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Akhirah (Part 1)

1) Die + buried.
2) Barzakh.
3) Munkar and Nakir.
4) Wait (rewards/punishments).
5) Afterlife (heaven/hell) - Day Of Judgement.

Life on earth is a test for Allah, to see how you will act.
Muslims like to be buried in one piece so that when they ressurect on DOJ and their cleansed souls need to reconnect with their body, there will be a complete body to rejoin the soul with.

Barzakh - A state of concious existence in the grave.
Barzakh means 'barrier' - you can't change the bad things you have done.
Waiting for the DOJ.

Munkar and Nakeer ask 3 questions, who is your lord? Who is your prophet? What is your religion? - The angels accept monotheistic religions as correct answers, even if theyre not necessarily Islam because they all follow one God which is the same God.
If you answer questions incorrectly then you are beaten everyday (except Friday) by huge angel wings. And you will be shown what hell will look like for you.

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Akhirah (Part 2)

Allah is the only being that knows when the Day Of Judgement is. And it will only happen when Allah's purpose for the world is fulfilled.

What will happen?
The world will crumble and shake apart when Angel Israfil blows his trumpet.
The world will be transformed into a new world.
Anyone dead and buried will be resurrected, souls will go back to the body and as everyone resurrects, they will heal.

10 major signs of the Day Of Judgement approaching:
Aldaffal (anti-christ) will appear.
Ahmadi will appear and he will win fights.
Jesus will come back - descend from heaven.
Jesus will kill Aldaffal.
Everyone will drink the water from the lakes.
Fog or smoke will cover the sky.
Sun will rise from the West.
A day later, a beast will appear and mark the faces.
A breeze will come from the East and all the non-believers will survive but the believers will die.
Earthquakes and fire will go all over the Earth.
        Israfil will blow his trumpet.

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Akhirah (Part 3)

Everyone will recieve a book of life - Handed to the right hand - Paradise.
                                                        - Handed to the left hand - Hellfires.

If the book is in your right hand then you can cross the sirat bridge, if it's in your left hand then you will attempt to cross the bridge and instead the hottest wind you've ever felt will blow you off the bridge and into the hellfires.

If someone doesnt believe in Allah, then they will go to hell.
'Garments of fire will be tailored for those who disbelieve'. Qur'an 22:19

'They will dwell amid scorching wind and scalding water in the shadow of black smoke neither coll nor refreshing'. Qur'an 56:42-44

However, for believers heaven will be perfect, because it's a reward for putting their trust in God.
'On couches of well-woven cloith they will sit facing each other; everlasting youths will go round among them with glasses, flagons, and cups of pure drink that causes no headache or intoxication; there will be any fruit they choose; the meat of any bird they like; and beautiful-eyed maidens like hidden pearls: a reward for what they used to do'. Qur'an 56:15-24

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Al Qadr

Al Qadr is the belief that Allah knows and determines everything that happens in the universe.

Predestination - The belief that everyone has free will. Muslims believe it's a trial for Allah to see what choices you make before eternal life with/without him.
Predetermination - The belief that no one has free will, and no one can intefere with the outcome and all events are determined in advance.

'Only what God has decreed will happen to us. He is our master: let the believers put their trust in God' Qur'an 9:51

Allah has written everything that will happen to us in the Book of Decrees.Everything that happens in the universe is because of Allah, there are no random acts. This links to the Sunni 6 Articles of Faith.

Sunni Muslims believe that Allah has given them free will to make their own choices, however since he is above the normal laws of time, he knows what people will choose to do before they've chosen it, and has made it impossible for them to choose anything other than what he has decided.
They also think that once someone's chosen to act, the act becomes 'theirs' so they can be judged for it.

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Al Qadr - Shi'a beliefs

Shi'a Muslims believe that humans are free to make their own moral choices, and Allah knows what is going to happen but he also doesn't control it.

Shi'a Muslims believe that predetestination (Al Qadr) contradicts the day of Judgement because if God predetermines and decides what we do then how can we be judged on our actions. They believe in order to be judged we need to have been given free will so that we can be able to be held responsible for our choices/decisions and ultimately the inevitable consequences.

Shi'a Muslims do still believe though that Allah has all the power and control to change things in the world if he wishes to do so, but that people's lives are usually determined by themselves and their own choices.

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Aadam (Adam)

Allah made Aadam with the clay collected from Angels on Earth.
Allah kept him for 40 years as his clay figure, before bringing him to life.

Iblis/shaytan = Devil/Jinn - Jealous
Made of smokeless fire.
This all happened in Heaven.
Allah told Angels and Iblis to bow down to Aadam - Angels bowed, Iblis refused to bow.

Allah brings Aadam to life by breathing his spirit to him.
Allah taught Aadam everything.
Eve = Hawwa. - Made from/out of Aadam's side.
Their main job - to name everything e.g plants + animals.
Aadam was made on a Friday.
They had children (Cain and Abel) - Twin boys.
They then had two other twin girls (Azura and Awan).
Allah told them to marry the opposite set of twins.

Cain then killed his brother abel, who became the first person to die and be buried on Earth.
And Cain became the first person to commit a crime.
So Aadam's son, Seth became the next Prophet.

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Nua (Noah)

Nua comes 1000 years after Aadam.
Allah brought Nua to guide the polytheistic idol worshippers.
Idol worshippers became tired of the prophets and they threw stones at him and beat him with sticks.

He preached for 950 years.
Nua = a warnign messenger.

Allah told Nua he would kill all the non-Muslims (non-believers) to 'purify' the Earth.
Non-believers made fun of Nua for building a ship.
Allah said he would flood the Earth.
Animals arrived in pairs (male and female).

Nua's wife and child died.
The whole earth was covered with water.
Sent birds and crows to find land.

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Isa (Jesus)

Maryam = Mary. - Virgin, no husband.
                           - Daughter of prophet Imran.
She was visited by Angel Jibril. - Sent to give a child free from sin.
NO Joseph.
She goes from the town, away, to give  birth to the baby.
Allah cares for Maryam, Angels promise her food and water after she has the baby.

Isa could speak a couple of hours after birth. - Tells Maryam to fast for Allah.

Yusuf = Joseph. - Visits Mary
Went to Jerusalum and debated with priests.

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Ibrahim (Abraham)

He was born into a polytheistic family.

He destroyed all the idols in the temple.
He rebuilt the Ka'aba with his son Ishmael.

Allah tested his faith by telling him to kill/sacrifice his only son Ishmael, and he was willing but Allah stopped him before he could go through with it.

Some of his scrolls are in the Qur'an.

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Musa (Moses)

He was sent by God to the Pharoah of Egypt.
He taught that there was only one God and freed the Israelites from persecution.

He also gave the revelation of the Torah and made Jewish laws.
He is the only prophet who spoke to Allah directly.

Muslims think there was a spiritual parallel of the life of Muhammad.

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Dawud (David)

He was a king and a messenger.

Muslims don't accept the sins of adultery and murder which he commited, because prophets are sinless. 
He was a prophet who was given a book revealed by God (Psalms).
Dawud was known for bravery, wisdom and faith during the battle.

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Prophets (Part 1)

Due to Allah’s nature and greatness, and because humans have sinned, he was unable to communicate with us directly. But because of his compassionate and merciful nature he did not want humans to mess up their lives.

Therefore, he needed to send messages to people, which were given to the Angels and the

Angels communicated these to chosen people. These people are the prophets and the messages have been recorded in holy books.

The prophets are not worshipped, because Allah is the one true God. Instead they are respected.

There are 25 named prophets in the Qur’an, although many believe there may have been as many as 124,000. The prophets were all sent the same message, but the people at the time either forgot it, rejected it or changed it and therefore Allah had to send a new Prophet. 

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Prophets (Part 2)

The prophets performed miracles which proved they were really prophets.

All of the profits received the same message about the one God, which shows that Allah is unchanging, and that Islam is the true religion. Muhammed was the final Prophet. 

Profits are important in Islam because they are good role models and help Muslims to understand how to follow God, they do this by delivering God's word and also by exemplifying how to live a life of obedience to Allah.

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The Imamate in Shi'a Islam (Part 1)

Shi'as wanted Ali (Muhammad's cousin) to be the leader after Muhammad died.
Sunni's wanted Abu Bakr (Muhammad's friend) to be the leader.

1.6 billion muslims in the world.
10% of Muslims are Shi'a.

Prophet Muhammad had gone to Makkah on what has become known as The Farewell Pilgrimage. On returning home from the pilgrimage, Muhammad stopped at Ghadir Khumm, took Ali's hand and prayed to allah 'befriend every friend of Ali and be the enemy of his enemies'. Shortly after returning to Medina, in 632, he died, aged 62.

The followers of Ali believed that the Prophet's words at Ghadir Khumm indicated that Muhammad wanted Ali to be the next leader.

He was born around 600, and is the son of Abu Talib (Muhammad's uncle). Abu Talib cared for the orphaned Muhammad; when he died, Muhammad cared for Ali. He lived with Muhammad from the age of around 6;  tradition says he never worshipped idols and therefore was a Muslim from childhood. Muhammad's uncle (Abu Talib), however, never concerted to Islam. 

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The imamate in Shi'a Islam (Part 2)

Muhammad honoured Ali by giving him his daughter Fatima in marriage.

It was important to Shi'as that he took control because they believed that the Prophet had appointed him by divine instruction and that leadership should follow the family line.

Stories about Ali:

  - He was born inside the Ka'aba, after his mother prayed for help with labour.
  - He was brave in battle, and acted as Muhammad's bodyguard.

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The Imamate in Shi'a Islam (Part 3)

Abu Bakr:
Was a close friend of muhammad.
He was respected for his humility and gentleness.
Muhammad told him to offer a prayer to other people, shows that Muhammad trusted him.
He was the first adult male converse, and stood by Muhammad's teachings the whole time.
Muhammad married Abu Bakr's daughter Aishah, they were son and father-in-laws too.

Caliphs:                                                         Imams:
1) Abu Bakr (632 - 634)                                1) Ali (656 - 661)
2) Umar (634 - 644)                                      2) Hassan (661)
3) Uthman (644 - 656)                                  3) Husayn (d.680)
4) Ali (656 - 661)                                                  I
5) Hassan (661)                                            More Imams
6) Muawiyah (661 - 680)
  Umayyad Caliphs.

Shia's don't count the first 3 Caliphs as they believe Ali should have started as leader.       

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The Imamate in Shi'a Islam (Part 4)

The twelvers:
The belief that there were 12 Imams after the death of Muhammad.
The twelfth Imam, however, has been kept alive by God and is hidden somewhere on Earth.
Shi'a Muslims believe the twelfth Imam will one day make himself known and bring equality to all.
All the Imam's in Muhammad's bloodline. 
He is called Muhammad al-Mahdi.
He will return on the Day Of Judgement with Isa to bring justice and equality.

Why are Imam's important?
- They are divinely appointed.
- They can guide people.
- They are able to interpret the Qur'an.
- They rule justly.
- They are all related.

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Hajj - Guide for Pilgrims (Part 1)

1) Pilgrims begin by circling the Great Mosque of Mecca (the Ka'aba) 7 times in the counter-clockwise direction. - this shows their life revolves around Allah.

2) Sa'yee: Traverse the distance between the hills of Safa and Marwah 7 times (3.5km)

3) Tarwiah: Pray and read the Qur'an at the tent city of Mina. - Seperate for men, women and children.

4) Pray at mount Arafat and listen to sermons near Jabal al-Rammah where Prophet Muhammad preached his last message.

5) Perform Maghrib and Isha prayers at muzalifa. Pick 49 rocks to throw at the devil.

6) Devil stoning at three walls in the city of Mina, start of the Eid al-Adha.

7) Animal sacrifice and trimming of hair.

8) Finally, pilgrims circle the Ka'aba 7 more times.

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Hajj - Guide for Pilgrims (Part 2)

Some die on Hajj, but that is considered a blessing and they will go straight to heaven.
When Muslims go, they believ they are cleansed of their sins.

Ihram - White, stitchless robe and a state of equality.
Smoking, perfume or harming living things is forbidden of the Hajj.

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Wudu - washing ritual.

-They wash in running water so that they're not bathing in dirty water.
-They wash the right hand upto the wrist
-Then the same on the left side.
-They gurgle water 3 times.
-Then put water into their nose - sniffing it.
-Then they wash their feet on the right and left 3 times each.

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Zakah (Part 1)

Zakah is the act of giving charity.

For Muslims who have enough savings, it's obligatory to give 2.5% of their savings every year to help the poor. Many do this at the end of Ramadan, as that's when thy're most spiritual.

Giving Zakah acknowledges that everything a Muslim owns comes from and belongs to God - they should use their wealth to remember God and give to those in need. Allah would also be more impressed with those that did Zakah and reward them in the afterlife.

It frees people from desires and teaches people honesty. It encourages equality in the distribution of wealth, which shows balance in Allah's eyes.

Zakah means to 'purify' - Muslims believe giving it will help to cleanse the soul, removing greed and selfishness. Which will ultimately help them to build a better relationship with God.

In the Qur'an it says - 'They ask you what they should give. Say whatever you give should be for parents, close relatives, orphans, the needy and travellers. God is aware of whatever good you do'. - Qur'an 2:215

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Zakah (Part 2)

Muslims with savings greater than a certain figure are required to give nisab, worked out as 87g of gold, as a minimum.

Who benefits from Zakah?
- Travelers
- Poor people
- Slaves
- Orphans
- Schools
- Hospitals
- Mosques
- Libraries

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An extra 20% donation which Shi'a Muslims if they can afford to do so, will give.
10% - goes to charity.
10%goes back to religious leaders and the faith.

Raqib and Atid will know when someone does this (gives extra money at any time of the year) so will write about this as a good deed.

Shadaqah - Voluntary giving.

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Modern mosque uses

- Salah.
- Burial Prayers.
- Weddings.
                                     - Trainings.
                                     - Exhibitions.
                                     - Notice boards.
                                     - Media managements.
- Religious advice.
- Consultation.
- Training.
                                    - Community hall.
                                    - Recreational area.
                                    - Sports and outdoor events.

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Contains 114 Surahs.
Most chapters of the Qur'an start with 'In the name of Allah, the most merciful and the most kind'.

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