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A Muslim, sometimes spelled Moslem, is a follower of the religion of Islam, a monotheistic Abrahamic religion based on the Quran. Muslims consider the Quran to be the verbatim word of God as revealed to the Islamic prophet Muhammad. They also follow the teachings and practices of Muhammad as recorded in traditional accounts called hadith. "Muslim" is an Arabic word meaning "one who submits (to God)". A female Muslim is sometimes called a "Muslimah".
Most Muslims accept as a Muslim anyone who has publicly pronounced the Shahadah (declaration of faith) which states:
There is no god but God, Muhammad is the messenger of God.
Islamic beliefs commonly held by Muslims include: that God (Arabic: الله Allāh) is eternal, transcendent and absolutely one (monotheism); that God is incomparable, self-sustaining and neither begets nor was begotten; that Islam is the complete and universal version of a primordial faith that has been revealed before through many prophets including Abraham, Moses, Ishmael and Jesus; that these previous messages and revelations have been partially changed or corrupted over time and that the Qur''an is the final unaltered revelation from God (The Final Testament).
The religious practices of Muslims are enumerated in the Five Pillars of Islam, which, in addition to Shahadah, consist of daily prayers (salat), fasting during Ramadan (sawm), almsgiving (zakat), and the pilgrimage to Mecca (hajj) at least once in a lifetime.Contents
The word muslim (Arabic: مسلم, IPA: ; English /ˈmʌzlɨm/, /ˈmʊzlɨm/, /ˈmʊslɨm/ or moslem /ˈmɒzləm/, /ˈmɒsləm/) is the participle of the same verb of which islām is the infinitive, based on the triliteral S-L-M "to be whole, intact". A female adherent is a muslima (Arabic: مسلمة). The plural form in Arabic is muslimūn (مسلمون), and its feminine equivalent is muslimāt (مسلمات). The Arabic form muslimun is the stem IV participle of the triliteral S-L-M. A female Muslim can variously be called in their etymologically Arabic form of Muslimah, also spelled Muslima, Muslimette, Muslimess or simple the standard term of Muslim. General alternative epithets or designations given to Muslims include mosquegoer, masjidgoer, or archaic, dated and obsolete terms such as Muslimite or Muslimist.
The ordinary word in English is "Muslim". It is sometimes transliterated as "Moslem", which is an older spelling. The word Mosalman (Persian: مسلمان, alternatively Mussalman) is a common equivalent for Muslim used in Central Asia. Until at least the mid-1960s, many English-language writers used the term Mohammedans or Mahometans. Although such terms were not necessarily intended to be pejorative, Muslims argue that the terms are offensive because they allegedly imply that Muslims worship Muhammad rather than God.MeaningAfghan Muslims praying inside Gardens of Babur in Kabul, Afghanistan.
In defining Muslim, the Sufi spiritual leader Ibn Arabi said:
A Muslim is a person who has dedicated his worship exclusively to God...Islam means making one''s religion and faith God''s alone.Used to describe earlier prophets in the Qur''an
The Qur''an describes many prophets and messengers as well as their respective followers as Muslim: Adam, Noah, Abraham, Jacob, Moses and Jesus and his apostles are all considered to be Muslims in the Qur''an. The Qur''an states that these men were Muslims because they submitted to God, preached His message and upheld His values, which included praying, charity, fasting and pilgrimage. Thus, in Surah 3:52 of the Qur''an, Jesus’ disciples tell Jesus, "We believe in God; and you be our witness that we are Muslims (wa-shahad be anna muslimūn)." In Muslim belief, before the Qur''an, God had given the Torah to Moses, the Psalms to David and the Gospel to Jesus, who are all considered important Muslim prophets.DemographicsWorld Muslim population by percentage (2010 data from Pew Research Center).Main article: Islam § Demographics See also: List of countries by Muslim population
About 13% of Muslims live in Indonesia, the largest Muslim country, 25% in South Asia, 20% in the Middle East and North Africa, 2% in Central Asia, 4% in the remaining South East Asian countries, and 15% in Sub-saharan Africa. Sizable communities are also found in China and Russia, and parts of the Caribbean. Converts and immigrant communities are found in almost every part of the world.
The majority of Muslims are Sunni, being over 75–90% of all Muslims. The second and third largest sects, Shia and Ahmadiyya, make up 10–20%, and 1% respectively. The most populous Muslim-majority country is Indonesia home to 12.7% of the world''s Muslims followed by Pakistan (11.0%), Bangladesh (9.2%), and Egypt (4.9%). Sizable minorities are also found in India, China, Russia, Ethiopia, Americas, Australia and parts of Europe. With about 1.6 billion followers, almost a quarter of earth''s population, Islam is the second-largest and one of the fastest-growing religions in the world.
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