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Islam


One who practices Islam is a Muslim.

In Muhammad's time (570?-632), the Arabian Peninsula was inhabited by nomadic Bedouins and city-dwelling Arabs. The religion of the Arabs was polytheistic and idolatrous. Muhammad began his ministry at the age of 40, when, he claimed, the archangel Gabriel appeared to him in a vision. At first Muhammad confided his visions only to his family and close friends. After four years he began to preach openly in his native city of Mecca. Ridiculed by the Meccans, he went in 622 to Medina. It is from this event, the Hegira, that the Islamic calendar is dated. Increasingly, Arab tribes declared their allegiance to Muhammad. At his death in 632, Muhammad was the leader of an Arab state growing rapidly in power.

Bedouin - An Arab of any of the nomadic tribes of the Arabian, Syrian, Nubian, or Sahara deserts.

Medina - "City of the Prophet"
also Medinat-en-Nabi (Arabic for "City of the Prophet") and Medinat Rasul Allah ("City of the Apostle of God"), city in western Saudi Arabia, located in the Al Hijāz (Hejaz) Province. The city houses the remains of the Prophet Muhammad, who fled to Medina from Mecca in 622, an event that marks the beginning of the Islamic calendar.

Muslim (also Moslem) -
A believer in or adherent of Islam. Means "one who surrenders to God".

There is no God but God (Allah), and Muhammed is his prophet.

  


  
Links:
Islam: Empire of Faith (pbs.org)