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How Islam Began – In Ten Minutes

Length - 8:04
Published - Sep 2013
Keystage(s) - 2, 3 and 4

How Islam began in under ten minutes? Not a problem. The turbulent tale is told against the clock, with all the names, dates and events on a timeline. Animation by Ceiren Bell.

TrueTube films are designed for use in a number of ways. Some ideas of where this film could link to your curriculum are below:



Component 1: The study of religions: beliefs, teachings and practices- Islam - Practices, Duties and Festivals. Tawhid - (the Oneness of God), Qur’an Surah 112 Hajj: the role and significance of the pilgrimage to Makkah including origins, how Hajj is performed, the actions pilgrims perform at sites including the Ka’aba at Makkah, Mina, Arafat, Muzdalifah and their significance.



Area of Study 1- Islam - Section 1: Muslim Beliefs - Islam - The nature of Allah: how the characteristics of Allah are shown in the Qur’an and why they are important: Tawhid (oneness), including Surah 16: 35–36, immanence, transcendence, omnipotence, beneficence, mercy, fairness and justice, Adalat in Shi’a Islam.
Section 3: Living the Muslim Life - Islam Hajj as one of the Five Pillars: the nature, role, origins and significance of Hajj, including Surah 2: 124–130; 22: 25–30; how Hajj is performed and why Hajj is important for Muslims; benefits and challenges from attending Hajj for Muslims."
Componet Group 2–Religion, philosophy and ethics in the modern world from a religious perspective - the existence of God, gods and ultimate reality, and ways in which God, gods or ultimate reality might be understood; through revelation, visions, miracles or enlightenment. Component Group 1–Practices - Islam - Public acts of worship - Salah as direct communication with Allah. The importance of practices - Islam as a way of life, lived in total submission to Allah • The importance of the Five Pillars of Islam to Sunni Muslims • The meaning of the Five Pillars: •• Shahadah: sincerely reciting the Muslim profession of faith •• Salat: performing ritual prayers in the proper way five times each day •• Zakat/Zakah: paying an alms (or charity) tax to benefit the poor and the needy •• Sawm: fasting during the month of Ramadan •• Hajj: pilgrimage to Mecca • The analogy of the house and pillars
2.1 Unit 1 PART A - Part A - Islam - Core beliefs, teachings and practices - Beliefs - The Nature of God  Allah as one God: Tawhid (Qur'an 3:18)  The qualities of Allah in the Qur'an; e.g. immanence, transcendence, omnipotence, beneficence, merciful (Qur'an 46:33), the 99 names of Allah  The meaning of Islam as 'submission' to Allah and how Muslims live a life in submission to the will of Allah, including the importance of Greater Jihad  Shahadah as a statement of faith in Allah, shirk as sin against Allah  Reasons for the prohibition of images of Allah or any human figure
Component 3 (Route A): Study of a World Faith: Option 3: Islam:The Nature of Allah ➢ The teaching about the nature of Allah: the belief in the oneness of Allah (Tawhid): Qur'an 3:18 ➢ Nature of Allah: immanence, transcendence, omnipotence, beneficence, mercy, fairness and justice: Qur'an 46:33 ➢ Adalat in Shi'a Islam Prophet hood (Risalah) ➢ The nature of prophet hood; why are prophets important? Qur'an 2:136 ➢ The importance of Adam as the first prophet ➢ Ibrahim as father of Isaac and Ishma'il and his significance for the Muslim religion ➢ Isa as a prophet for Muslims: Qur'an 2:87 ➢ Muhammad as the seal of the Prophets Angels (Malaikah) ➢ The significance of angels in Islam: Qur’an 2:97-98,Qur’an 2:285 ➢ Diversity in belief between Shi’a and Sunni Muslims regarding angels and free will ➢ The significance of Jibril's revelation of the Qur'an to Muhammad: Qur’an 2:97-98 ➢ The significance of Mika'il placed in charge of plants and rain ➢ The significance of Israfil to announce the Day of Resurrection Akhirah (Afterlife) ➢ Al-Qadr (Predestination):Implications for human freedom ➢ Akhirah: Human responsibility and accountability; Muslim beliefs and teachings about the afterlife ➢ Human Freedom and its relationship to Day of Judgement ➢ Heaven; Muslim beliefs about the nature, stages and purpose of heaven ➢ Hell; Muslim beliefs about the nature and purpose of hell. Festivals and commemorations: practices in Britain and elsewhere ➢ Id-ul-Adha: The festival of sacrifice. How Muslims celebrate IdulAdha in Britain and worldwide ➢ Id-ul-Fitr: The festival of fast-breaking following Ramadan. How Muslims celebrate Id-ul-Fitr in Britain and worldwide ➢ Ashura: The Day of Remembrance (Shi'a). How Shi'a Muslims celebrate Ashura in Britain and worldwide ➢ The Night of Power: the importance of the revelation of the Qur'an and how it is viewed and treated in Islam

How Islam Began – In Ten Minutes

How Islam began in under ten minutes. Not a problem. We've started. Okay, so travel back in time with me to a land far, far away. And long, long ago. Mecca and Arabia, but the year 570. Makkah is important for two reasons. One, the Kaaba is there, an ancient temple built to worship God, and two, Muhammad, peace be upon him, was born in Makkah. Now, problem, I can't show you Muhammad because it wouldn't be right. I'll tell you why in a bit, but in the meantime, here's his name in Arabic. Nice.

Back in the day, Makkah was a lawless place. The only way to be safe was to have backup. Lots of rich big brothers who'd beat up anyone who got in your way. So the place was ruled by the most powerful families who could do pretty much what they wanted. And religion didn't help. By this time, the Kaaba had been filled to overflowing, with 360 idols that did nothing to help anyone. So it was a tough place to grow up if, like Muhammad, you were a poor orphan and believed in just one God you couldn't see, like the Jews and the Christians. He called him Allah, the God, in Arabic there.

Muhammad's dad died before he was even born, and his mom died when he was just six. So he was brought up by his grandfather, Abdul Muttalib. And then when he died too, by his uncle Abu Talib, who had the respect of the city's ruling families, so Muhammad was safe, for the time being. Muhammed started out as a shepherd and then became a businessman, travelling about, buying and selling stuff for rich clients. When he did some work for a rich widow called Khadijah, she was so impressed by his honesty and skill that they ended up getting married, and for a while it looked like Mohammed was going places, well he was, but not how you think.

Every year in the month of Ramadan, different calendar, different names for the months, there was a big party around the Kaaba. When people made sacrifices to the idols, Mohammed hated it, so he'd get out of town and sleep in a cave he'd found on top of a nearby mountain. One night, Mohammed's praying to Allah when, wham, there's the angel Jibril, you might say Gabriel, standing right in front of him. 'Read' says the angel, but Mohammed couldn't read, no schools, you see, Jibreel keeps on at him. Three times he says 'read'. Then he grabs hold of Muhammad and wham! Again, it's like Muhammad's learnt the words off by heart. So he recites the message out loud, read in the name of your Lord, who created man from a drop of blood. Read, for your Lord is most generous. He who taught by the pen taught man what he did not know. It was a message from Allah. God was speaking to him just like he'd spoken to the prophets in the Jewish and Christian holy books, which meant he was a prophet too.

The messages continue for the rest of Muhammad's life. Allah gave him the words to say and the prophet recited them. The words were written down by his friends, and years later they were collected together and became the Muslim holy book, the Qur'an, which means recitation because Muhammad recited it, you see. Anyway, that was much later, so back to the night of power. Muhammad tells his family, then his friends, and eventually everyone about Allah that he's a one and only God, that he wants everyone to be treated fairly, and long story short, it didn't go down well with the ruling families of Makkah, who liked things just the way they were, thank you very much. You see, Islam means obedience to Allah and Muslim means someone who obeys Allah. And the ruling families didn't want anyone obeying anyone else but them. So the people who believed in Muhammad's message, the Muslims, were given a hard time. Some were even tortured and killed. A few of them managed to escape to Abyssinia, Ethiopia, but most were stuck in Makkah.

Muhammad also had to cope with the death of his wife, and then just a few weeks later, his uncle too. Feeling very down, he went to the carpet to pray to Allah one night. Then the weirdest thing happened. Jibril turns up, sits him on a winged horse called Al-buraq and flies him all the way from Makkah to Jerusalem. He prays with all the prophets who have ever lived. Then he's taken up to the heavens to chat with some of the prophets, and then into Paradise itself, where Allah tells Muhammad to pray five times a day and to stay strong. He's returned to Jerusalem, and then flies back to the Kaaba in Makkah. We call it the night journey, and Muslims still argue whether it was a real experience or a vision, but whatever. It gave Muhammad a much needed boost, and just as well, because there were more tough times ahead. So there was this other city called Yathrib. The people there heard about Muhammad and his message and invited him and his followers to join them. A few at a time, the Muslims left Makkah and made a dangerous journey across the desert to Yathrib. It's known as the Hijra, which means migration, you know, like birds do.

Muhammad and a few of his friends stayed in Makkah until everyone had got away, and then made plans for their own escape. But, the ruling families wanted to kill Muhammad while they still could, so seven sons, one from each family, was sent in the middle of the night to stab the prophet while he slept. But he was way ahead of them, and when they burst into the house, Muhammad was gone. Trackers were sent out to hunt him down. Muhammad and his best friend Abu Bakr took a roundabout route to try and shake off the pursuit, but the trackers were too good and slowly gained on them, so Muhammad and Abu Bakr hid in a cave and pray that no one found them. The trackers found the cave all right, but they didn't bother going in to search. There was no way Muhammad could be inside they thought. There was a spider's web over the mouth of the cave, and a nesting bird at the entrance. He must have given them the slip, so off they went, leaving Muhammad and Abu Bakr protected by a spider and a bird.

Muhammad made it safely to Yathrib, which was renamed Medinat-ul-Nabi, the city of the prophet, but most people just call it Medinah, but Muhammad's worries weren't over yet. There were three big battles between the Muslims and the Meccans. First, the Battle of Badr, when Muhammad and just 313 men faced 1000 Meccan soldiers. Miraculously, the Muslims won. Then, there was a battle of Uhud, which didn't go so well. Some of Muhammad's men disobeyed his orders, and ran off during the battle to evade the Meccans camp, and so the Muslims were outmanoeuvred. Then, there was the battle of the trench. Medinah was protected on three sides by mountains, so when the Meccan forces advanced in the city, the Muslims just dug a deep trench. The Meccans made camp, but the weather was terrible. Pouring rain put out their fires and howling winds blew down their tents. Eventually they gave up, and went back to Mecca. It was all a bit embarrassing. They were losing the respect of the local tribes who were flocking to join the Muslims. So a peace treaty was signed at Hudaibiya, but it wasn't long before the Meccans broke it. Muhammad decided that enough was enough. By now he had over 10,000 men, so he led them across the desert to Makkah. The ruling families realised they'd made a huge mistake, but it was too late. All they could do was surrender and hope that the Muslim army killed them quickly. But Muhammad said there should be no more fighting. He rode into Makkah and went straight to the Kaaba. He circled it seven times anti-clockwise and smashed all the idols, rededicating the Kaaba to Allah, and that's why I'm not going to show you Muhammad. The Muslims wanted to make it totally clear that they only worship the one unseen God, so they didn't have any pictures of Muhammad in case anyone thought he was an idol and they didn't have any pictures of Allah because he's like nothing on earth, so it would be impossible to draw him anyway. So there you go, how Islam began in under ten minutes. How did I do?

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