What Is Islamic Civilization  Term Paper

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Islamic Civilization

A civilization in simple terms is the development of human potential in all dimensions including physical, intellectual, spiritual, moral and psychological. In order for the potential to be developed, civilizations have to work to utilize the resources that are available to them, benefits of which should reach the entire society and bring a positive effect on to the whole world. It is a manifestation of beliefs that are present in every aspect of human life. A civilization is a collective effort which is undertaken by a whole society and benefits are not only restricted to a particular group or people or individuals, even if those individuals are not directly a part of the civilization. Civilizations have to maintain duration and continuation. They do not emerge simply to disappear. They can spread to other societies and spread throughout the world.

The Islamic civilization is the manifestation of the Islamic faith i.e. Tawhid in every aspect of a Muslims life. The Islamic civilization is characterized by certain moral values which are accepted and supported by humanity at large and are considered by Muslims and those who believe in God to be divine and must therefore be respected and consequently followed. The Islamic civilization emphasizes on the human dimension and how one should spiritually and intellectually nurture it. When the "Shahadah" was declared, it strived to build the integrity of human beings. (Arberry )

Islam is not in any way a new religion. It is the same truth that God had revealed to all his people through all other prophets before Muhammad. For Muslims, Islam is not only a religion but it is a way of life. It is a code of conduct, it helps distinguish between what it good and bad and what is right and wrong. It is a religion of peace, forgiveness and mercy. Muslims believe in One, Unique God, they believe in the angel created by Him, in the prophets through which He sent his revelations to mankind, in Gods authority over human destiny and in life after death. (Arberry )

According to the book, Muhammad and the Believers, by Fred M. Donner, Islam began as a religious movement and was not a result of economic, social or national circumstances which were accompanied with any pious behaviour. Arabia was closely connected to the Byzantine and Sassanid Empires. These empires provided trade routes, troops and various settlements for Arab tribes. The religious movement expanded from Arabia into the Middle East and several conquests took place. Conquests were believed to take place in order to establish a Kingdom of God on earth where people would prepare for the day of judgement. Muhammad and the Qur'an are the markers of identity for the Islamic civilization. (Donner )

The Islamic civilization is an amalgam of many different cultures ranging from North America to the Sub-Saharan deserts. Its traditional beginning dates back to the time of the Prophet Muhammad (570-632 A.D), who was born in Mecca. His father had died before he was born and his mother died only when he was six years old. The young Muhammad was adopted by his uncle Abu Talib who raised him as his own son. Muhammad married a forty-year-old widow at the age of twenty five and for almost 15 years after that he was in close interaction with a group of Arabs who were known as the Hanefites. These Arabs rejected idol worshipping and were in search of a true religion. They saw the religions of Christianity and Judaism as close to the true religion. They would retreat to caves in Mecca and spend hours in meditation and prayer. (Donner )

When Muhammad was forty he received his first revelation while he was meditating in the cave of Hera. He had thought he was possessed by a demon. He immediately went to his wife, Khadija who consulted her uncle Warqua, a Hanifite, who converted to Christianity. Warqua had assured the two and declared that Muhammad was the Prophet of the Arab people and it was from here that the Islamic Civilization began. Muhammad proclaimed from here on that there was only one God, Allah and that idol worship was to be rejected in Mecca. His wife Khadija and he were the first to convert to Islam and hence become Muslims.

Very few listened to Muhammad and animosity grew against him. He was protected by his uncle Abu…

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