9: The Teachings of Islam Standards Used 2 Students analyze the geographic, political, economic, religious, and social structures of the civilizations of Islam in the Middle Ages

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MR. DUNN’S WORLD HISTORY CLASS Monday, November 25, 2008


UNIT 2: The Rise of Islam

Chapter 9:

The Teachings of Islam

Standards Used

7.2 Students analyze the geographic, political, economic, religious, and social structures of the civilizations of Islam in the Middle Ages.
7.2.2 Trace the origins of Islam and the life and teachings of Muhammad, including Islamic teachings on the connection with Judaism and Christianity.

7.2.3 Explain the significance of the Qur’an and the Sunnah as the primary sources of Islamic beliefs, practice, and law, and their influence in Muslims’ daily life.

7.2.4 Describe the expansion of Muslim rule through military conquests and treaties, emphasizing the cultural blending within Muslim civilization and the spread and acceptance of Islam and the Arabic language.


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Project Transparency 9: Islamic Beliefs and Practices and have students refer to it as they complete Preview 9 in their Grey w/b, p.55. Allow them to share some of their questions. For example, they might ask,

  1. Why are these men sitting on the sidewalk? (They are preparing to pray; people often stop their daily activities to pray wherever they are.)

  2. Why are all these people walking around in a circle? (This ritual is one way Muslims honor God.)

Then explain that these images illustrate aspects of Islamic beliefs, practices, laws, and daily life that students will learn about in this lesson.
Tell students that stars are used often in Islamic art because the Qur’an discourages the depiction of human or animal figures (worship of human and animal idols was a common practice among polytheists in Muhammad’s time). As a result, Muslim artists developed the use of geometric shapes into an art form. The star is a geometric shape that radiates from a central point, an appropriate symbol for a religion that emphasizes the centrality of one god, toward whom all Muslims turn. Each of the eight sections of this star represents a key belief or practice of Islam.

Testimony of faith (SHAHADAH)

Prayer (SALAT)

Almsgiving (ZAKAT)

Fasting (SIYAM)

Pilgrimage (HAJJ)


The Prophet Muhammad


  • After Muhammad’s death, Islam Spread throughout a major part of the known world from Spain and North Africa to India

  • they shared Arabic and the Muslim Faith belonged to a single Islamic community called the ummah

  • 1/5th of the world is now Muslim

  1. Religious Tolerance

  1. Muslims shared many prophets with other religions

  2. These religions were:

    1. Christianity

    2. Judaism

  3. Common Prophets:

    1. Adam

    2. Abraham

    3. Noah

    4. Moses

    5. Jesus Christ

    6. Muhammad

  4. Common Holy Books

    1. Christianity Bible

    2. Judaism Torah

    3. Islam Qur’an

  5. The Qur’an contains God’s final revelations to the world

SEC 9.3 The Qur’an and the Sunnah

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    • Testimony of Faith (Shahadah) – the word Shahadah means “to bear witness.” “There is no God but Allah, and Muhammad is his messenger.” When a person recites the Shahadah with sincerity and purity of heart and in front of public witness, he/she becomes a Muslim.

    • the Qur’an

      1. The Qur’an describes God’s laws and moral teachings

      2. The straight path”, is another term

      3. The Qur’an contains passages that Muhammad received from Gabriel

      4. Caliph UTHMAN established an official edition in 651 CE

      5. Muhammad called it Allah’s “standing Miracle”

    • The Sunnah

      1. is the example that Muhammad set for Muslims to follow

      2. the stories that comprised these examples are called hadith (tradition)


  1. Testimony of faith (SHAHADAH)

  2. Prayer (SALAT)

  3. Almsgiving (ZAKAT)

  4. Fasting (SIYAM)

  5. Pilgrimage (HAJJ)

In Islam, faith and works are said to go hand in hand; a mere verbal declaration of faith does not make one a Muslim, for belief in Allah makes obedience to Him a duty. Only when practice is consistent with profession will one be a true Muslim. The following five formal acts are the keys for developing and strengthening a Muslim’s faith and obedience.”

SEC 9.4 The First Pillar: (Shahadah) –


Testimony of Faith (Shahadah) – the word Shahadah means “to bear witness.” “There is no God but Allah, and Muhammad is his messenger.” When a person recites the Shahadah with sincerity and purity of heart and in front of public witness, he/she becomes a Muslim.

SEC 9.5 The Second Pillar: SALAT

PAGE.97 TEXT + P.57 – W/B

Prayer (Salat) – Formal prayer is the most important act of worship; it is mankind’s connection to Allah. Muslim’s are required to say seventeen cycles, or rak’a, of prayer each day. These cycles are usually spread over five separate acts of prayer each day – dawn, noon, mid afternoon, dusk, and two hours after sunset.

The prayer can be an individual act or an act done in a group, which is said to strengthen the bonds of love and brotherhood.

There is a prescribed washing that must take place before prayer, you must have a prayer rug or be in a mosque, and when praying you must face Mecca.
SEC 9.6 the Third Pillar: ZAKAT

PAGE.98 TEXT + P.57 – W/B

  • Almsgiving (Zakat) – The Muslim is commanded to give at least 2.5% of his/her wealth/accumulated assets/income, to be used to support the poor, orphans, widows, those overcome by debt, slaves, and to assist in the spread of Islam. This fosters the quality of sacrifice and rids one of selfishness, greed, and vanity.

SEC 9.7 The Fourth Pillar: SIYAM


Fasting (Ramadan) – “…Ramadan is the month in which was sent down the Qur’an, as a guide to mankind, and clear signs for guidance and judgment between right and wrong. “So every one of you should spent that month fasting …while Allah attends to every facility for you…” (Qur’an 2:183-185). During the month of Ramadan, Muslims are expected to fast during the daylight hours. After sundown the believer is allowed to partake again. The month is filled with increased devotion, piety, and purity of mind, body, and soul.


9.3 The Qur’an and the Sunnah

  1. What is the difference between the Qur’an and the Sunnah?

  • The Qur’an is Islam’s sacred book and is considered to be God’s word.

  • The Sunnah is the example set by Muhammad.

  1. How is the Qur’an related to the Christian Bible and the Jewish Torah? (See Section 9.2 for more information.)

  • Several of the figures in the Torah and the Bible are also found in the Qur’an.

  • The Qur’an states that God “earlier revealed the Torah and the Gospel as a source of guidance.”

  1. How do Muslims show their reverence for the Qur’an?

  • They do not let the book touch the ground or get dirty.

  • Most Muslims memorize all or part of the Qur’an.

  1. How are hadith related to the Sunnah?

  • The Sunnah are Muhammad’s actual words + deeds.

  • Hadith are a written record of the Sunnah.

  1. In the star, make a sketch to illustrate this section

9.4 The First Pillar: Shahadah

    • (Profession of Faith)

  1. What phrase do Muslims repeat as an expression of Shahadah?

  1. According to Muslims, who is Allah?

  • Allah is the one, all-powerful God who created the universe.

  1. How does Allah relate to the God of Christians and Jews?

(See Section 9.2 for more information.)

  • Muslims believe that all three of these religions worship the same God.

  1. What do Muslims believe about angels and judgment?

    • Muslims believe that angels do Allah’s work throughout the universe. They believe that everyone will face God’s judgment; some will go to paradise, others to hell.

  1. In the star, make a sketch to of Shahadah?
    • Illustrate this section.

9.5 The Second Pillar: Salat (Daily Worship)

  1. Where and how often do Muslims pray?

  • Muslims pray five times a day, wherever they are

  1. Toward what city do Muslims pray?

  • Muslims pray toward Makkah.

  1. What are Muslims required to do before they pray?

  • They must perform ritual washings of their hands, face, arms, and feet.

  1. What do beads, rugs, mosques, the qibla, muezzins, and imams have to do with worship?

  • Prayer beads are used in reciting God’s characteristics,

  • rugs are for kneeling on,

  • mosques are where Muslims gather to worship,

  • the qibla is the direction of Makkah,

  • muezzins call others to prayer,

  • And imams are prayer leaders.

  1. In the star, make a sketch to illustrate this section.
    • Illustrate this section.

9.6 The Third Pillar: Zakat (Almsgiving)

  1. Why is charitable giving important to Muslims?

  • Muslims believe that wealth is purified by giving some away, that sharing helps control greed, and that giving reminds people of God’s gifts.

  1. How much of their wealth do Muslims give?

  • They give about one fortieth of their surplus wealth and possessions.

  1. What kinds of things does Zakat pay for?

  • Zakat pays for orphanages, hospitals, soup kitchens, and clothing and shelter for the poor. It pays debts for the poor and helps stranded travelers.

  1. Are Muslims the only religious group that emphasizes giving? Explain your answer.

  • No; Jews and Christians, for example, also believe in giving a portion of their wealth to support others.

  1. In the star, make a sketch to illustrate this section.
    • Illustrate this section.

9.7 The Fourth Pillar: Siyam (Fasting)

  1. What is Siyam? When is it performed?

  • Siyam is daily fasting. It is performed from sunrise to sunset during Ramadan, the ninth month of the Islamic lunar calendar.

  1. What rule about food do Muslims observe during Ramadan?

  • Muslims do not eat or drink between sunrise and sunset.

  1. How do Muslims break their fast during Ramadan? How is the end of Ramadan celebrated?

  • Muslims break the daily fast at sunset, with dates and other food and drink.

  • The end of Ramadan is celebrated with prayers, special foods, an exchange of gifts, and giving to the poor.

  1. What does Ramadan encourage?

  • Ramadan encourages generosity, equality, and charity.

  • Muslims are also encouraged to avoid arguments and bad deeds, to give thanks, and to forgive people.

  1. In the star, make a sketch to illustrate this section.
    • Illustrate this section.

9.8 The Fifth Pillar: Hajj (Pilgrimage)

  1. What values does the hajj promote?

  • The hajj promotes fellowship and equality.

  1. How do Muslims dress for the hajj?

  • They wear simple white clothing.

  1. What is the Ka’ba?

  • The Ka’ba is a shrine built by Abraham to honor God.

  1. What other important sites do Muslims visit during the hajj?

  • They travel along a passage between two small hills, as Hagar did when she searched for water.

  • They camp intents at Mina, pray at the plain of Arafat, and some climb Mount Arafat.

  • Before leaving Makkah, they circle the Ka’ba seven more times.

  1. In the star, make a sketch to illustrate this section.
    • Illustrate this section.

9.9 Jihad (Struggle)

  1. How does jihad relate to Muslims and their personal struggles?

  • Jihad gives Muslims a way to respond positively to external and internal challenges.

  1. What is the “lesser jihad”?

  • The “lesser jihad” relates to the external struggle against oppression, the outer battle.

  1. What is the “greater jihad”?

  • The “greater jihad” is the fight against evil within oneself.

  1. What standards did the Qur’an and Muhammad set for Muslims’ conduct during war?

  • The Qur’an and Muhammad say that Muslims should honor agreements made with enemies and that they should not mutilate the dead, harm innocents, or destroy property, orchards, crops, sacred objects, or houses of worship.

9.10 Shari’ah: Islamic Law

  1. What is shari’ah, and how did it develop?

  • Shari’ah is the body of Islamic law based on the Qur’an and the Sunnah.

  • It guides Muslims in their personal behavior.

  • It was developed by caliphs and scholars who used the Qur’an and the Sunnah to solve problems that arose.

  1. What values does shari’ah promote?

  • It promotes obedience to the Qur’an and respect for others.

  1. What are three examples of behaviors that shari’ah regulates?

  • Muslims may not eat pork, drink alcohol, or gamble.

  • They must dress modestly.

  1. How has shari’ah changed over the years?

  • Western codes of law have replaced or supplemented shari’ah in many Muslim countries.

  • Shari’ah continues to develop in response to modern ways of life.

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