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Books > History > World > Religious > Islam > 1502389983
  1. The History of the Sunni and Shia Split: Understanding the Divisions within Islam
    The History of the Sunni and Shia Split: Understanding the Divisions within Islam
    The History of the Sunni and Shia Split: Understanding the Divisions within Islam
    Image(s) provided for illustrative purposes and may differ from the actual product
  2. The History of the Sunni and Shia Split: Understanding the Divisions within Islam

    Delivery: 10-20 Working Days
    Customer Ratings (91 reviews)
    Price R278.00

Additional Information

*Includes pictures
*Discusses the political and religious history of both main branches of Islam
*Includes footnotes and a bibliography for further reading

"Our followers are of three kinds, one who follows us but depends on others, one who is like a glass involved in his own reflections, but the best are those who are like gold, the more they suffer the more they shine." - Muhammad al-Baqir

Different branches of the same religion are the exception more than the rule, and they have had a profound impact upon history. The schism between the Orthodox and Catholic Churches influenced relationships between nations across Europe, and religious intolerance based on different Christian faiths led to persecution and outright violence across the continent for centuries. The Protestant Reformation split Christianity further, and the results culminated in the incredibly destructive Thirty Years’ War in the 17th century.

Today, the most important religious split is between the Sunnis and the Shias (Shiites) within Islam. Unlike divisions in other faiths - between Conservative and Orthodox Jews or Catholic and Protestant Christians - the split between the Sunnis and Shia has existed almost as long as the faith itself, and it quickly emerged out of tensions created by the political crisis after the death of the Prophet Muhammad. In a sense, what are now two different forms of Islam essentially started as political factions within the unified body of Muslim believers.

Over the past few centuries, Christians have mostly been able to live alongside their co-religionists, but the split between the Sunnis and Shias is still so pronounced that many adherents of each branch view each other with disdain if not as outright apostates or non-believers. The religious divide is perhaps the most important fault line in the turbulent Middle East today, with Sunni nations like Egypt and Saudi Arabia at odds with Shiite nations like Iran. At lower levels, non-state groups like the Islamic State and Hezbollah are fighting each other in ways that cross state lines in places like Lebanon, Iraq, and Syria. Although it is technically a split in religion, the divide has had substantial global ramifications for decades, and there seems to be no end in sight.

The History of the Sunni and Shia Split traces the origins of the split and the historic effects of the main divide within Islam. Along with pictures of important people, places, and events, you will learn about the history of the Sunnis and Shias like never before, in no time at all.

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Charles River Editors
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
black & white illustrations
black & white illustrations
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform
Most Helpful Customer Reviews

I found that I learned more about the differences in belief between Sunni and Shia Muslims from this short synopsis than anything else I’ve read. The book provides extensive footnotes so that one can determine the source of the various statements in this book. The bibliography list is long and provides one with multiple sources to learn about Shia and/or Sunni Muslims.
This is a short booklet (not a book) that is somewhat informative but leaves off much history for the sake of brevity. The cover is very attractive. It includes some nice maps but the maps were obviously shrunk to fit the pages and the city names are so small that most cannot be read. Finally there are no page numbers, which I found irritating. All in all, I would not recommend this book. It needs to be expanded and it needs to include legible maps.
A good, easy to understand history of the divisions in early Islam that led to the Sunni-Shia schism dating right back to the succession from the Prophet Mohammed. Dr Harasta runs through the foundation of Islam by Mohammed in the 7th century and traces the early divisions after Mohammed's death between who felt the successor, or Caliphate, should be chosen from the original 'Ummah' or Community of follwoers and those who felt a successor should be a descendant of Mohammed himself, namely his daughter Fatima & Ali, by way of their sons (Mohammed's grandsons) Hassan & Hussein. Dr Harasta's history traces the bitterness that developed shortly after the death of Mohammed and the conflict with the descendents (Shia) and the Omayyid Caliphate centred in Damascus which led to the death's of Hasan & Hussein and the Battle of Karbala in Iraq. This history is easy to read and gives an very good background to understanding the events in the Middle Eastern world and Iran today right up to the... Read more
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