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The genesis of Islam, the life of the Prophet, the holy book of the Quran, the Sunna, the Hadiths, the emergence of Muslim law and exegesis are all examined in Muhammad; as well as Arabs, their language and civilization. This series is broken down into five episodes to highlight the various stages of implementation of the third and final major monotheistic religion, seen by some as perfecting the two others.
The first episode presents a detailed picture of Arabs, the Middle East and 6th century history. Arabs were not just nomads. Significant cities were centered around oasis. Tribes were fiercely independent yet unified by the common Arabic tongue. The caravan routes fostered and controlled global trade.
The Revelation outlines the beginnings of the Prophets preaching of the new world religion, its descent and transmission, and the content of the Quranic message during the Mecca period. Through revelations from the archangel Gabriel, Muhammad became the Messenger of God. As Muhammad grew in power and became a threat he moved to Medina from Mecca for protection.
Medina And The Law
After the Hijra, journey, the first mosque was built. Muhammad begins unifying the city based on faith, not tribes. The Charter of Medina was a form of constitution and allowed for freedom of belief. New verses of the Quran were more legislative and prescriptive. This became a period of jihad against the enemies of Islam.
Mecca, Seat of Power
The prophet began consolidating power over polytheistic Meccans, Quraish and hostile Jewish cities. Arabia was on the road to unification. The five pillars of Islam are established and Sharia laws such as no alcohol or gambling are established.
Allah commanded Muhammad to transmit the Quran, which was revealed over 23 years. Upon Muhammad’s death, the transition of power had to be determined. Power struggles and intellectual schism ensue. The hadith, describing the words and actions of the Prophet, is written. Quranic scholars codify its meaning.