Rise Spread Of Islam

Topics: Islam, Muhammad, Iraq Pages: 9 (850 words) Published: December 23, 2014
The Rise of Islam
AP World History

The Arabs
• Semitic speaking people
of the Middle East
• Nomads who moved
regularly to find water
and food
• Settled in the Arabian
– desert land
– lack of rivers and lakes

The Arabs
• Organized into independent
clans/tribes to help one
another with the harsh
• Each tribe had a sheikh
• Developed the caravan trade
and were major carriers of
trade from the Persian Gulf
to the Mediterranean Sea
• Conflict over water &
pasture land w/warrior

The Arabs
• Early Arabs were
• Allah (Arabic for
“God”) was
worshipped as a
supreme god over
other gods
• Each tribe had a
sacred stone that was
worshipped as a
symbol of Allah

The Arabs
• Mecca grew as a result of the
caravan trade and the worship
of the Black Stone (meteorite)
in a central shrine called the
• Tensions arose between
Bedouins & the wealthier
merchants from Mecca
• Umayyad tribe controlled
Mecca (monotheistic believed in Allah)

The Life of

Early Life
• Born in Mecca in 570 A.D. to a merchant
• Was an orphan, but grew up to become a
caravan manager; contact with Jews &
• Married a rich widow named Khadija;
bothered by class inequalities & rivalries
• Experienced visions and was visited by the
angel Gabriel
• Came to believe that he received the final
revelations of Allah (God)

Early Spread of Islam
• His followers (only 30) were
persecuted so he leaves on the
Hegira (to Medina).
• He gains support in Medina and
among the Bedouin tribes.
• The first Muslim community
(Umma)is formed here.

Conquering of Mecca
• 630 Muhammad conquers Mecca
declares the Ka’bah a holy shrine.
• He removes the tribal idols, but keeps
the Black Stone.
• Muhammad becomes the religious and
political leader .

Why was Islam Attractive?

no intermediaries
End to vendettas & feuds
Single authority

Spread of Islam
• Muhammad dies in 632 A.D.
• Left no clear successor or heir
• The position of Caliph (Muslim
leader) is established
• Abu Bakr (1st Caliph) – close friend/ 1st
to convert outside of family
• Sought to protect and spread Islam
(Persia & Byzantine Empire)
• Weakness of adversaries, unity of
faith, contribute to Arab conquest

The 5 Pillars
of Islam


Profession of Faith
• “There is no God but
Allah, and Mohammed
is His Prophet”

2. Prayer
• Practiced five times a
day, according to a set

3. Almsgiving
• One traditionally
donates a portion of
one’s income.

4. Fasting
• Done during daylight
hours in the month of

5. Pilgrimage

• A pilgrimage to
Mecca is made
once during
one’s lifetime.

Divisions Within Islam
• Rival groups begin competing for the
• The 4th Caliph (Ali) was assassinated
• Ali’s rival begins the Umayyad dynasty
as the new caliph
• Capital is moved from Medina to
• Led to a split in Islam – Sunnis,
supported the Umayyad (political
succession) - and Shiites, supported Ali
& (Muhammad’s bloodline/religious

Sunnis & Shiites
• Sunnis

• Shiites

• Believed the caliph was
primarily a leader and any
devout Muslim could
serve in the office with the
acceptance of the people
• 90% of Muslims today are

• Believed the caliph was
primarily a religious
authority and should be
held only by the
descendants of
• 10% of Muslims today are
Shiites (most are in Iran,
Iraq, & Lebanon)

Umayyad Dynasty (661-750)
• Emphasized Arab ethnicity
over adherence to Islam
• Converts to Islam were
considered inferior
• Respect for Jews and
Christians (allowed freedom
of worship and self rule
within their own
communities). Sometimes
required to pay taxes for
charity and on property
• Ruling families lived
excessively prompting riots
and ultimately their...
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