The four caliphs were more political figures than spiritual leaders. By military force the first caliph, Abu Bakr, brought all the tribes in the Arabian peninsula under the rule of Islam. Under the second caliph Omar or Hadrat Umar Farooq — a phenomenal expansion began, which continued for about a hundred years.
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The Muslim armies defeated the armies of the Sassanian Persian and Byzantine empires. Northward they occupied Syria, and Damascus was the capital of the Umayyad Dynasty — Only Europe would remain virtually untouched.
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After the assassination of Othman or Hadrat Uthman, the third caliph, in , increasing tension arose within the Muslim community. It also outlines marriage guidelines and other moral principles for Muslims. If crimes are committed, Sharia law is known for its harsh punishments. Adultery can carry the penalty of death by stoning. However, many Muslims do not support such extreme measures.
While some Muslims use their faith to justify terrorism, the vast majority do not. In fact, Muslims are frequently victims of violence themselves. Recent surveys have found that in countries with high Muslim populations, the majority of Muslims have overwhelmingly negative views of terrorist groups like ISIS. While Muslims aim to clear up misconceptions about their faith, the religion continues to spread rapidly. Experts predict Islam will surpass Christianity as the largest religion by the end of the century.
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Subscribe for fascinating stories connecting the past to the present. Zoroastrianism is an ancient Persian religion that may have originated as early as 4, years ago. Zoroastrianism was the state religion of three Persian dynasties, until the Today, with about million followers, Hinduism is the third-largest religion behind Christianity and Islam.
Wicca is a modern-day, nature-based pagan religion.
Mohammed and His Successors
Though rituals and practices vary among people who identify as Wiccan, most observations include the festival celebrations of solstices and equinoxes, the honoring of a male god and a female goddess, and the incorporation of Followers of Judaism believe in one God who revealed himself through ancient prophets. History is essential to understanding the Jewish faith, which is embedded in tradition, law and culture.
With about million followers, scholars consider Buddhism one of the major world religions. The religion has historically been most prominent in East and Southeast The Inquisition was a powerful office set up within the Catholic Church to root out and punish heresy throughout Europe and the Americas.
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Beginning in the 12th century and continuing for hundreds of years, the Inquisition is infamous for the severity of its tortures and its Mormons are a religious group that embrace concepts of Christianity as well as revelations made by their founder, Joseph Smith. Christianity is the most widely practiced religion in the world, with more than 2 billion followers.
The Christian faith centers on beliefs regarding the birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. While it started with a small group of adherents, many historians regard The Bible is the holy scripture of the Christian religion, purporting to tell the history of the Earth from its earliest creation to the spread of Christianity in the first century A.
Both the Old Testament and the New Testament have undergone changes over the centuries, This was an extremely controversial appointment, as other Muslims argued that Muhammad had designated Ali ibn Abi Talib as his successor. Perhaps with that in mind, Ali neither supported nor actively opposed the election of Abu Bakr, who reigned briefly as caliph and effectively suppressed the various uprisings. Those who became the Sunni believed instead that their leaders should be elected from among those most capable of worldly as well as spiritual leadership.
Both sides occasionally gained control in the fractious early Caliphate, and although Ali eventually became the fourth caliph, his reign was short and ended in assassination.
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