A BRIEF HISTORY OF ISLAM
Muslim version of their own history
The name Islam, is derived from the Arabic word “salam,” which is often interpreted as meaning “peace” or “submission.” The religion claimed to be the revelation of God (Allah) through the angel Jibril a.k.a. Gabriel to a man named Muhammad (pbuh). Muhammad was born in approximately 570-571 AD. He descends from the line of Abraham and Hagar. He was born to the powerful tribe of the Quraish in Mekkah (Mecca), what we now call Saudi Arabia. His father’s name was Abdullah. His mother’s name was Aminah.
Abdullah was a merchant who made caravan trips. He died on a trading trip soon after his marriage to Aminah, leaving Muhammad fatherless at birth. Aminah, his mother, died when he was only six years old. Muhammad was taken in by his grandfather, only to have him die when Muhammad was eight years old. At this time, his uncle, Abu Talib, one of the leaders of the Quraish tribe took him in and raised him
Having married the wealthy Khadijah, Muhammad became a gentleman of leisure and somewhat of a philosopher. He would retreat from society; take trips into the desert and mountains. He would spend his hours in meditation, greatly concerned about the condition of the civilization he saw around himself. He had a personal mission to find “truth.” One of his frequent places of seclusion was a cave on Mount Nur. It was while in this cave, during the month of the Ramadan, a pagan festival, that he received his first visitation from the angel Gabriel.
At first, Muhammad shared his new revelations with only his family and close friends. During the next three years the message of Muhammad quietly spread among the people of Mekkah, especially among the youth. Then Muhammad is believed to have received instructions from Allah to go public with his message and openly condemn the paganism and idolatry of Mekkah.
Muhammad continued to proclaim his message, and his following slowly grew. At one point, in 621, a group of delegates from Madinah (Medina) responded to his call and made a covenant with Muhammad and declared themselves to be Muslims. Eventually, the Muslims collected Mohammad’s messages and gathered them into a book known as the Quran. The Quran is the holy book of Islam. It has been translated into many languages, but many Muslims believe that the only true version of the Quran is written in Arabic.