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Abrahamic faiths
the religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, which all trace their origins through a common ancestor, the prophet Abraham
caliph
an Islamic title designating a spiritual and secular leader
caliphate
an area under the control of a Muslim ruler called a caliph
hadith
the words and actions of the Islamic prophet Muhammad and his immediate successors that, along with the Quran, form the fundamental basis for Islamic law
hajj
the Islamic pilgrimage to Mecca
hijra
an Arabic term meaning “emigration” that describes a defining moment for early Muslims as they fled Mecca for Medina in 622 CE
imam
the religious leader of Shia Muslims
Islamization
the religious and cultural conversion of those living under Islamic rule
mawali
non-Arab converts to Islam in the early Islamic period who had to be adopted by an Arab tribe as part of the conversion process
Quran
the holy scripture of Islam, which Muslims believe was given to humanity by God through Muhammad
Rashidun
a term meaning “rightly guided” that describes the first four caliphs after Muhammad’s death: Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman, and Ali
Shia
one of the two umbrella sects of Islam, whose members believe leadership of the Muslim community should reside in the family of Muhammad only through his son-in-law Ali
Sunni
the larger of the two umbrella sects of Islam, whose adherents did not require leadership of the community to come specifically from the descendants of Muhammad through Ali
ulama
a class of religious clerics and scholars who act as the primary interpreters of Islamic law
ummah
the community of Muslims
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