The Islam faith was a very predominant one in the world’s past history.
When it first started to rise along with the teachings of Mohammed, it was very popular. Their military and cultural achievements were remarkable. When the Arabs first started conquering land, they had affected the language and cultures of those lands.
Mohammed was a very spiritual man, who helped Islam rise and conquer.Mohammed was born in 569 B.C.E.
Mohammed had lost both of his parents by the age of 6, leaving him in the care of his grandmother and uncle. At 12 years old, his uncle took him on a caravan to Syria, where he picked up certain points from the Jewish and Christian religions. He married a wealthy woman at age 25, and they produced a few children together. When Mohammed was 40, he had a period of spiritual strain; he felt that God had chosen him to be a prophet. After answering to God and believing that the Koran was communicated to him, he believed he had a divine calling: to teach the power of Allah, he wanted to warn his people of the Day of Judgment, and let them know of Paradise and the rewards it held.
Shortly after he had passed away, his teachings were written down of this new religion, Islam, which meant “submission to God’s Will”. Mohammed called upon his followers to follow 5 pillars of Islam. In short, they are: 1. “There is no God but Allah; Mohamed is the Messenger of Allah”. 2.
Pray five times daily-dawn, noon, midafternoon, dusk, and after dark. Facing the direction of Mecca, praying on a carpet, shoes removed and heads covered, 3. Moslems must give alms generously, 4. Moslems must fast from daybreak to sunset during the whole month of Ramadan, 5.
Once in their lives Moslems, of they can, must make the pilgrimage to Mecca.The rituals Mohammed created made a strong bond amongst the followers of Islam. They had to obey these five pillars together. Take care of their fellow Moslems who were economically challenged. They also had the Koran, which bound them together as followers, and they had their pilgrimage to Mecca, which they took together with fellow Moslems. The Koran gave guidance for all parts of life for the Moslems-“for manners and hygiene, marriage and divorce, commerce and politics, crime and punishment, peace and war” (Stavrianos, 178-179).
Therefore you could look at Islam as a religious and social code. It could offer commandments for religion and also rules for private and public life.Mohammed converted many people, starting with family and close friends. These first converts got the reputation of having the title of companion of the Prophet’. Mohammed made his hegira to Medina in 622 B.
C.E. and this is the year that the Moslem calendar started. Mohammed had expected the Medina Jews to welcome him with open arms, when in fact, they mocked him and forced Mohammed to go against them. Mohammed then in turn drove them out of their town and split the land up among his people.
After a while, the Arabs accepted this new religion and a theocratic state was organized. From Medina, Mohammed arranged raids on the Mecca caravans, which were accepted and were one of the popular economic activities among Arabs. By 630, the Moslems were powerful enough to confine Mecca, and shortly thereafter Mohammed made the black stone the chief shrine of his religion.When Mohammed died in 632, the Arab tribes paid tribute to him.
Perhaps the biggest tribute was that the Islam faith continued with great force. When Mohammed went to the Arab nations, they were falling apart, but he fixed them and brought them back together by introducing this faith. Within a century, Mohammed’s followers were always victorious. They built a strong empire across Eurasia and stood together as a strong community, as one.During the rise of Islam, Arab nations were very extensive. The conquests of these Moslems taking over non-Arab nations made these nations extensive as well.
The Arab kingdom became the center of the Islamic Empire. After the first phase of expansion, the Arabs lived in strategically placed camp cities. The grand structure changed radically with the shift of the capital from Damascus to Baghdad in 762. This meant that Abbasid was turning towards Persia to look for support. Islam stopped being a “creed of ruling warrior-aristocracy and became a new and distinctive civilization” (Stavrianos, 183).
Caliph Mansur selected Baghdad for the Abbasid capital because he saw a great future for this decision. Mansur’s expectations became a reality because within a century Baghdad’s population increased to about a million people. Past the citadel, a great commercial metropolis arose with crops of wheat, barley, rice, dates and olives. Provinces around the area supplied silver, gold, copper and iron. The empire had precious stones while the Persian Gulf had pearls.
The industry prospered and textiles were the most important types of work, while paper making spread across the Islamic world.The Moslems did not make significant advances in astronomy or geography. They also could not grab a strong hold on translating ancient works. While the Umayyad caliphs did not find non-Arabs trustworthy and believed they would not be helpful.
On the other hand, the Abbasids were being helped by Christians, Jews, and Zoroastrian Persians. These Moslems were more open minded to different types of people, which in turn, they would help then help the non-Arabs.In the 16th century, the Moslem empire was most impressive. During the 17th century, the Suleiman, Akbar, and Abbas empires started to go downhill. By the 18th century, they were very far behind Western Europe, and have stayed behind to today. The weakening of the ruling dynasties is one answer to this downfall.
Selim II took over after Suleiman the Magnificent in 1566, and ruined much of it. He was lazy, fat, self-indulgent, and such an alcoholic that he was known as Selim the Sot. The same declination happened in Persia after Abbas and India after Akbar.
All the European royalty had incapable rulers also, but yet they were strong enough to keep their country from falling apart.The Moslem empires also did not have the great dynamism of Europe. The sweeping changes that Europe had to transform its society, the Moslem world did not. An example of this is the shortness of basic changes in agriculture, industry, financial methods and other aspects to a great changing dynasty. In 500 years, there were very few changes in the Moslem empires.
There was also a blind power complex of the Moslems because they thought they were unstoppable. They had a negative attitude towards those not part of their empire. Egocentricity let down the iron curtain between the Moslems and the west, especially in the field of science.
Scholars of the Moslem world were naive to the achievements in anatomy, medicine and astronomy. Moslem science had festered with little drive for new discoveries in the years to come.A final reason for the explanation of the decline of the Moslem empire were that the three greatest Moslem empires were land empires. These people ruling and taking charge in these empires had their backs to the ocean, so they never felt a need to go to sea. The rulers did not help by being uninterested in trading overseas.
This situation let Europeans to jump past the Moslems and become leaders in the overseas trading industries. The Europeans controlled the world trade and the stimulated the economic, social and political development of this nation. Europe became increasingly wealthy, productive, and dynamic, completely leaving the Moslem empire following in its footsteps for centuries.