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The Islam

Enviado por arfe44


1. Introducción

3. Khalila and Dimna
4. Islam in Spain

1. Introducción

Primitive religions have their origins in the search of God by the men. But the Islam, as the Judaism, say that they have been created from heaven. The Islam is a revelation of God to the men.
We know that the historical revelation of God has made to the Israel town. Israel was choose for God. It was a progresive revelation between them, until Christ came to complet the God’s revelation to the men: redeemming them, as God had promesed.
But centuries ago after Christ, in the year of 622, a new religion appeared in the middle east, proclamming to have origin in a new and final revelation. It is the Islam, founded by Mohammad, at whom his followers, the moslems, considerate the last prophet. The word Islam means "absolute submission to the will of God".
Many out of the Islam called them Mohammetans, but the moslems do not use that word. They want to mean that their cult is
not to Mohammad. In fact, their great truths say that there is not other God, but Allah.
Alone in a cave, in the mountain, near of La Meca’s city on the east of Arabia, Mohammad meditated about the deep problems of good and evil, and about the deity named Allah, at whom people of La Meca adorated as a creator, and not only as the unique God. Finally he convinced himself that Allah was the only truth God and that there is not other one, but Him.
Mohammad was subjugated at terribles experienses, visions, that turn him fear and doubtful about his welth. His wife, Khadija, persuaded him that those were prophetical visions and that, in fact, he was a prophet. By the rest of his life, Mohammad worked to change his town of beeing disorganized tribes, always figthing between them, to be an unificated nation dedicated to Allah. He became a political and religious leader of the arabs.
The word Islam, as we said, means "absolute submission to the will of God", but also makes reference to the peace in its derivation. The loyal moslem lives to make the will of God and cohabite in peace with all menkind.
Muslems have been in numerous battles trying to conquest the world and erase the christian civilization. But this war spirit did not born from Mohammad’s teaching. At many times surged from the ambition of the same moslem´s leaders.

2. Believes of Islam

Moslem´s life and his cult are totally governed by the Koran, the revealed book. Islam says that the archangel Gabriel dictated to Mohammad all the content of its 114 chapters.
Is belief of the Islam that Mohammad is the Koran’s author. But students from outside say that the content of Koran has been took from jewish and christians fonts, and that Mohammad had contact with people of both religions. In fact, in his first predication, he was anctious for mold the Islam with the Bible’s patern and make it atractive to the chistians and jewish. It seems that he obtained his knowledge about the chistian teaching with lot of confusions: it is a combination of real facts and popular legends.
In the last period of his predication, failed in his traying for atract convert people from chistianism, he became against them and trayed to cut all the things that tied him to that religion. For example, while jewish prayed facing Jerusalem, Mohammad made of La Meca his saint city, and the moslems have to pray facing La Meca.
The Islam prophets the faith in God, who is one, allpowerful, ethernal, suprem and the one we have to obey. Moslems say they are Abraham’s descendants trough Ismael, son of the slave.
They think that God talked trough Abraham, Moses and the prophets. They considered Jesus as a great prophet, but as God. For Moslems, Mohammad is the last prophet and the biggest.
The Islam prophets the faith in Books of God, the Koran and the Texts writed before It. They belive in The Judgement Day, when men will be rewarded in heaven or punished in hell, depending of their observance of God’s commandments.
Specific PracticePray the Creed: Distinguished for an special emphasis in God’s unify: "There is no other God, but Allah and Mohammad, his prophet". In the Koran is repeated many times that Allah is the only truth God, adoring by jewish and chistians too. Moslems thing that God is trascendent and allpresent, this means that He is the suprem being, all over the creatures, and that He is here with us forever.
Pray five times a day: in the morning, at noon, at middle afternoon (inmediatly after sunfall) and ninety minutes after nightfall. At these times moslems pray facing La Meca.
Pay a quantity of money for charity: This is named the Zakat.
Fast during a month, named Ramadan: the ninth month on the moslem calendar.
Make a peregrination to La Meca, at least, one time in life.
These five principles are obligated, but there are other practices and believings among the diferent divisions of Islam.

The Moral
Respect of this topic, even Mohammad had in sight the problems of the evil in the world of his time, his moral rule does not have lot of requirements. For example, he allow a man has various wives, (himself had nine), and allow, even, divorce of them. Other prescriptions do not allow the liquor or eat pig’s meat.
The Koran says clearly that in the Islam there is no monarch life. Despite of the fact, after a century of Mohammad’s death, there araised a kind of monarchical life named Sufism. There are people who think that it is an influence of the Chistianism and the Buddhism. They develop their own line of theology and mysticism inside the Islam, wich was strongly oposited to the legal institution. In XI century existed a famous philosopher named Al – Ghazzali, who harmonized the diferent currents of Islam.
However, now a day exist diferents currents of this religion. They have the tendence to change and/or reform the Islam doctrins and its practices at lights of the modern world requirements. There is not an authorized voice now that guides all moslems in the world. Today the modern moslem is alone in his trying to straigth ahead whit his faith.

Algazel, Avicena and Averroes
Algazel (1058 – 1111)
His real complete arabic name was Abu Hamid Muhammad ibn Muhammad at – Tusi al Ghazzali, Islamic philosopher and theologist, wich name in latin is Algazel. He was born in Tus, near of Meshed, Persia (now Irán). After acquire an excellent reputation as a learned, was destinated to teach at Nizamiya’s University, in Bagdad, by sultan Seljuk’s vizier Nizam al- Mulk, in 1091. In 1095, after a faith crisis, he renunciated to his position, abandoned his family and turned himself in an hermit. There passed ten years of meditation and living on that way, until he accepted other work for teaching in Nishapur, but he left it few time later and went to Tus.
Algazel related his internal fight and the religious solution that found at the end in his work The Liberation of Error, a text that has been comparated with The Confessions of Saint Agustin. In other work, The Reborn of Religious Cience, presented his unify vision of religion, incorporating elements of three origins, before considerated in contradiction: tradition, intelectualism and mysticism. This book is took as the most importan religious text wrote by a moslem, after the Koran.
After criticised the methods of west philosophy, Algazel begun to refutes the neoplatonic theories of other moslems philosophers, particulary Avicena’s, wich were oposite to some orthodox religious doctrins as the creation, the inmortality of the soul and the Divine Providence. His attack to the philosophical theory and the speculation, enunciated in his text The Destruction of Philosophers, was in great part responsable of the final slope of the rationalist element existent at the Islam.

Avicena (980 – 1037)
Known in moslem world as Ibn Sina, philosopher and medicine doctor from Persia, was born near of Bujara (now a day Uzbekistan). Son of a government functionary, studied medicine and philosophy in the same city. When he was eighteen, was named doctor of the Court of the sovereing Samani of Bujara. He kept that charge until the fall of the Samani’s Empire in 999 and passed the last fourhteen years of his life acting as scientific and doctor counselor of Ispahan´s government.

Considerated by moslems as one of their biggest philosophers, Avicena is an important figure in the field of medice and philosophy. His work, The Canon of the Medicine, was for a lot of time the principal text of Near East and Europe. It is significative as a clasification and systematic sumary of medicine and pharmaceutical knowledge and before its time. The firts translation to latin of this work was made in twelfth century. The hebrew version apeared in 1491 and the arabical text in 1593. It was the second text printed in arab language.
His most known work is Kitab Ash – Shifa (The Cure Book), an abridgment of trades about logical, metaphysics, aristotelical anthropology, nature ciences and other topics. Avicena’s philosophy is a combination of Aristotels’ and neoplatonic philosophy. Just as the majority of medieval philosophers, he denied the inmortality of individual soul, the interest of God for each person and the world’s creation on the time, all of them central topics of the main current of the Islam doctrin.
Avicena turned in to the main target of sunies theologists attacks, as Algazel. Never the less, Avicena’s philosophy was very influential all throuhg the medieval age.

Averroes (1126 – 1198)
His arabical name was Ibn Rushd: arab moslem philosopher, physicist, maliki jurist and ashari theologyst. Was born in Córdoba, Spain. His father, a Córdoba’s judge, teached him moslem jurisprudence. In his natal town even studied theology, west philosophy and mathemathics with Ibn Tufayl, and medicine with the arab doctor Avenzoar. Averroes were designated judge in Sevilla in 1169 and Córdoba in 1171. In 1182 he became the doctor of caliph Abu Yaqub Yusuf, the almohade’s caliph of Morroco and the moslem spain. The Averroes’ idea that reason primes over the religion, took him to the exile in 1195 for order of Abu Yusuf Yaqub al – Mansur, but it gave him back few time before his death.
Averroes said that metaphysical truths can be expressed by two ways: trough philosophy (according to the classic philosopher Aristoteles and the neoplatonics of the latest antiquity) and trough religion (as we can see at the allegorycal and simplified idea of the Revelation Books). Although in fact Averroes did not propose the existence of two kinds of truths – philosophical and religious –, his ideas were interpretated by the chistian thinkers classifying them as Theory of Double Truth. Averroes denied the concept of world’s creation on the time: he said that world do not have beginning. God is the first motor, the propellant strength of every movement that transform the potential into the real. The individual human soul emanates from the universal unify soul. Wide Averroes’ commentaries about Aristoteles’ texts were traduced to the latin and hebrew, and had a great influece as the scholastic and chistian philosophy (in medieval Europe) as the jewish philosophers of medieval age.
Averroes’ main text was Tahafut al – Tahafut, arab language that means Destruction of Destruction, where he refutes an Algazel’s text about philosophy.

3. Khalila and Dimna

Pancha – Tantra is a very old collection of stories. It was translated into many languages
in ancient times and forms the basis for many stories in Middle East and Europe. Khalila wa Dimna is the arabic version (AD 750), translated from persian (AD 550).
Pancha – Tantra includes a good number of stories: many are embedded in others. Each one illustrates a concept of neeti (policy) and it was rewritten several times.
This quote below is from kaakoluukiiyam, the third tantra (tale). At the time of composition of Pancha – Tantra, animal sacrifices were still common, although it had declined significantly due to opposition by Jainism and Buddhism. The text sais that one should do yajna (sacrifice) using aja: This is a seven year old grain and not a specific animal, but most of the times it means a goat. Even though, the text suggest to be interpreted as a+ja = not+grow grain that is too old to grow. The writ cuntinue saying:
Cutting down trees, killing animals, creating mud from flowing blood: If you go to heaven this way, who will go to hell?
In Pancha – Tantra there is a story of an agnihotri brahmin named Mitra – Sharma:
While he was carrying a goat for sacrifice, some clever scoundrels convinced him that it was really a dog, so that he would give it to them. Moral of the story is that people should be aware of possible desception, however the story does suggest contemporary practices.
Animal sacrifice was once common, not only in India but in many parts of the world. The custom has declined greatly, although some still continue to practice it. There have heard about many cases in recent times where Jains were able to convince others to stop animal sacrifice.

4. Islam in Spain

The History of Al Andalus
Data: December 1988
Font from Internet
Early in the eighth century, armies from North Africa began probing the Visigothic defenses of Spain and ultimately they initiated the Moorish epoch that would last for centuries. The people who became known to West Europeans as Moors were the Arabs, who had swept across North Africa from their Middle Eastern homeland, and the Berbers, inhabitants of Morocco who had been conquered by the Arabs and converted to Islam.
In 711 Tariq ibn Ziyad, a Berber governor of Tangier, crossed into Spain with an army of 12,000 (landing at a promontory that was later named, in his honor, Jabal Tariq, or Mount Tariq, from which the name, Gibraltar, is derived). They came at the invitation of a Visigothic clan to assist it in rising against King Roderic. Roderic died in battle, and Spain was left without a leader. Tariq returned to Morocco, but the next year (712) Musa ibn Nusair, the Muslim governor in North Africa, lead the best of his Arab troops to Spain with the intention of staying. In three years he had subdued all but the mountainous region in the extreme north and had initiated forays into France, which were stemmed at Poitiers in 732.
Al Andalus, as Islamic Spain was called, was organized under the civil and religious leadership of the caliph of Damascus. Governors in Spain were generally Syrians, whose political frame of reference was deeply influenced by Byzantine practices.
Nevertheless, the largest contingent of Moors in Spain consisted of the North African Berbers, recent converts to Islam, who were hostile to the sophisticated Arab governors and bureaucrats and were given to a religious enthusiasm and fundamentalism that were to set the standard for the Islamic community in Spain. Berber settlers fanned out through the country and made up as much as 20 percent of the population of the occupied territory. The Arabs constituted an aristocracy in the revived cities and on the latifundios that they had inherited from the Romans and the Visigoths.
Most members of the Visigothic nobility converted to Islam, and they retained their privileged position in the new society. The countryside, only nominally Christian, was also successfully Islamized. Nevertheless, an Hispano-Roman Christian community survived in the cities. Moreover, Jews, who constituted more than 5 percent of the population, continued to play an important role in commerce, scholarship, and the professions.
The Arab-dominated Umayyad dynasty at Damascus was overthrown in 756 by the Abbasids, who moved the caliphate to Baghdad. One Umayyad prince fled to Spain and, under the name of Abd al Rahman (r. 756-88), founded a politically independent amirate (the Caliphate of Cordoba), which was then the farthest extremity of the Islamic world. His dynasty flourished for 250 years. Nothing in Europe compared with the wealth, the power, and the sheer brilliance of Al Andalus during this period.
In 929 Abd al Rahman III (r. 912-61), who was half European, as were many of the ruling caste, elevated the amirate to the status of a caliphate. This action cut Spain's last ties with Baghdad and established that thereafter Al Andalus's rulers would enjoy complete religious and political sovereignty.
When Hisham II, grandson of Abd al Rahman, inherited the throne in 976 at age twelve, the royal vizier, Ibn Abi Amir (known as Al Mansur), became regent (981-1002) and established himself as virtual dictator. For the next twenty-six years, the caliph was no more than a figurehead, and Al Mansur was the actual ruler. Al Mansur wanted the caliphate to symbolize the ideal of religious and political unity as insurance against any renewal of civil strife. Notwithstanding his employment of Christian mercenaries, Al Mansur preached jihad, or holy war, against the Christian states on the frontier, undertaking annual summer campaigns against them, which served not only to unite Spanish Muslims in a common cause but also to extend temporary Muslim control in the north.
The caliphate of Cordoba did not long survive Al Mansur's dictatorship. Rival claimants to the throne, local aristocrats, and army commanders who staked out taifas (sing., taifa), or independent regional city-states, tore the caliphate apart. Some taifas, such as Seville (Spanish, Sevilla), Granada, Valencia, and Zaragoza, became strong amirates, but all faced frequent political upheavals, war among themselves, and long-term accommodations to emerging Christian states.
Peaceful relations among Arabs, Berbers, and Spanish converts to Islam were not easily maintained. To hold together such a heterogeneous population, Spanish Islam stressed ethics and legalism. Pressure from the puritanical Berbers also led to crackdowns on Mozarabs (name for Christians in Al Andalus: literally, Arab-like) and Jews.
Mozarabs were considered a separate caste even though there were no real differences between them and the converts to
Islam except for religion and liability to taxation, which fell heavily on the Christian community. They were essentially urban merchants and artisans. Their church was permitted to exist with few restrictions, but it was prohibited from flourishing. The episcopal and monastic structure remained intact, but teaching was curbed and intellectual initiative was lost.
In the ninth century, Mozarabs in Cordoba, led by their bishop, invited martyrdom by publicly denouncing the Prophet Muhammad in public. Nevertheless, violence against the Mozarabs was rare until the eleventh century, when the Christian states became a serious threat to the security of Al Andalus. Many Mozarabs fled to the Christian north.





Efraín Alejandro Gómez Cadena

Medellín Antioquia Colombia
Universidad Pontificia Bolivariana


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