Download A History of Medieval Islam by John Joseph Saunders PDF

By John Joseph Saunders

Will not be the phrases "Medieval Islam" a redundancy? whilst has Islam ever no longer been "Medieval"? for instance, with a view to research the historical past of the "Dark Ages", you'll examine eighth and ninth century Europe, otherwise you may examine any Arab nation this present day that is guided by way of Islamic principles.

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The more responsible citizens were anxious to put an end to these troubles: the most hopeful method, often resorted to in Arabia, was to bring in an arbitrator from outside, who would act as judge and keep the peace. Who better, some of them now asked, than the man in Mecca who was claiming to be a prophet of God? In 620 six men of the Khazraj met Muhammad and professed Islam; the next year five of these returned, bringing with them three of the Aws, and at Akaba, near Mecca, they solemnly pledged themselves to foreswear idolatry.

We are told that the Prophet had a stately and commanding figure, with sad and piercing eyes, that his manner was normally kind and gentle, that he loved children and animals, that his habits were so simple that even in his last days in Medina, when he governed Arabia, he mended his own clothes and cobbled his own sandals. His piety was sincere and unaffected, and his honest belief in the reality of his call can be denied only by those who are prepared to assert that a conscious impostor endured for ten or twelve years ridicule, abuse and privation, gained the confidence and affection of upright and intelligent men, and has since been revered by millions as the principal vehicle of God’s revelation to man.

Mu’adh. This man was, however, their bitter enemy, and he decreed that all the men of the clan should be put to death and the women and children sold into slavery. The bloody sentence was instantly executed, and 600 or 700 unhappy Jews were led out in batches and beheaded. Since their treason seems not to have been definitely proved, no act of the Prophet’s has been more severely condemned by the opponents of Islam or defended with more embarrassment by his apologists. Muhammad was now undisputed master of Medina; his prestige was mounting among the Bedouin tribes, and he boldly resolved to make the pilgrimage to Mecca during the sacred month when hostilities were forbidden.

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