Muslims () are people who follow or practice Islam
, a monotheistic Abrahamic
religion. The derivation of "Muslim" is from an Arabic word
meaning "submitter (to God)". Muslims consider the Quran
, their holy book
, to be the verbatim word of God
as revealed to the Islamic prophet and messenger Muhammad
. The majority of Muslims also follow their own versions of compilations claimed to be the teachings and practices of Muhammad (''sunnah
'') as recorded in traditional accounts (''hadith
The beliefs of Muslims include: that God ( ar|الله ''Allah
'') is eternal, transcendent and absolutely one (''tawhid
''); 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
, and Jesus
that these previous messages and revelations have been partially changed or corrupted over time (''tahrif
and that the Quran is the final unaltered revelation from God.
As of 2015, 1.8 billion or about 24.1% of the world population are Muslims.
By the percentage of the total population in a region considering themselves Muslim, 91% in the Middle East
81% in Central Asia
, 65% in the Caucasus
40% in Southeast Asia
31% in South Asia
, 30% in Sub-Saharan Africa
25% in Asia
around 6% in Europe
and 1% in the Americas
Most Muslims are of one of two denominations
Sunni Islam: Oxford Bibliographies Online Research Guide
"Sunni Islam is the dominant division of the global Muslim community, and throughout history it has made up a substantial majority (85 to 90 percent) of that community."
About 12% of Muslims live in Indonesia
, the largest Muslim-majority country;
% of Muslims live in South Asia
, the largest population of Muslims in the world; % in the Middle East–North Africa, where it is the dominant religion;
and 15% in Sub-Saharan Africa
Muslims are the overwhelming majority in Central Asia
, the majority in the Caucasus
and widespread in Southeast Asia
is the country with the largest Muslim population outside Muslim-majority countries. Sizeable Muslim communities
are also found in the Americas
, and Europe
Islam is the fastest-growing major religion
in the world.
The religious practices of Muslims are enumerated in the Five Pillars of Islam
: the declaration of faith (''shahadah
''), daily prayers (''salah
''), fasting during the month of Ramadan
''), almsgiving (''zakat
''), and the pilgrimage to Mecca
'') at least once in a lifetime.
To become a Muslim and to convert to Islam, it is essential to utter the ''Shahada
'', one of the Five Pillars of Islam
, a declaration of faith
and trust that professes that there is only one God
)'' and that Muhammad
is God's messenger. It is a set statement normally recited in Arabic: ''ašhadu ʾal-lā ʾilāha ʾillā-llāhu wa ʾašhadu ʾanna muħammadan rasūlu-llāh'' () "I testify that there is no god orthy of worship
except Allah and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah."
In Sunni Islam
, the shahada has two parts: ''la ilaha illa'llah'' (there is no god but Allah
), and ''Muhammadun rasul Allah'' (Muhammad
is the messenger of God),
[Lindsay, p. 140–141]
which are sometimes referred to as the first ''shahada'' and the second ''shahada''.
[Cornell, p. 9]
The first statement of the shahada is also known as the ''tahlīl
In Shia Islam
, the shahada also has a third part, a phrase concerning Ali
, the first Shia Imam
and the fourth Rashid caliph
of Sunni Islam
: (), which translates to "Ali is the ''wali
'' of God".
In Quranist Islam
, the shahada is the testimony that there is no god but Allah
(''la ilaha illa'llah'' ).
The word ''muslim'' ( ar|مسلم, ; , , or ''moslem'' ,
) is the active participle
of the same verb of which ''islām'' is a verbal noun
, based on the triliteral
'' "to be whole, intact". A female adherent is a ''muslima'' ( ar|مسلمة) (also transliterated
as "Muslimah" ). The plural form in Arabic is ''muslimūn'' () or ''muslimīn'' (), and its feminine equivalent is ''muslimāt'' ().
The ordinary word in English is "Muslim". The word ''Mosalman'' ( fa|مسلمان, alternatively ''Mussalman'') is a common equivalent for ''Muslim'' used in Central
and South Asia
. In English it was sometimes spelled Mussulman and has become archaic
in usage. Until at least the mid-1960s, many English-language writers used the term ''Mohammedan
s'' 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. Other obsolete terms include ''Muslimite'' and ''Muslimist''.
The Muslim philosopher Ibn Arabi
The Qur'an describes many prophets and messengers within Judaism and Christianity, and their respective followers, as Muslim: Adam
, 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 him, "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 Tawrat
) to Moses, the Zabur
) to David
and the Injil
) to Jesus, who are all considered important Muslim prophets
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%), Nigeria (5.3%) and Egypt (4.9%).
About 20% of the world's Muslims live in the Middle East and North Africa.
Sizable minorities are also found in India
, the Americas
and parts of Europe
. The country with the highest proportion of self-described Muslims as a proportion of its total population is Morocco.
Over 75–90% of Muslims are Sunni
The second and third largest sects, Shia
, make up 10–20%,
With about 1.8 billion followers (2019), almost a quarter of earth's population
, Islam is the second-largest
and the fastest-growing religion in the world
due primarily to the young age and high fertility rate
with Muslim having a rate of (3.1) compared to the world average of (2.5). According to the same study, religious switching
has no impact on Muslim population, since the number of people who embrace Islam
and those who leave Islam
are roughly equal.
A Pew Center study in 2016 found that Muslims have the highest number of adherents under the age of 15 (34% of the total Muslim population) of any major religion, while only 7% are aged 60+ (the smallest percentage of any major religion). According to the same study, Muslims have the highest fertility rate
s (3.1) of any major religious group.
The study also found that Muslims (tied with Hindus
) have the lowest average levels of education
with an average of 5.6 years of schooling, though both groups have made the largest gains in educational attainment in recent decades among major religions.
About 36% of all Muslims have no formal schooling,
and Muslims have the lowest average levels of higher education
of any major religious group, with only 8% having graduate
Muslim culture or Islamic culture are terms used to describe the cultural practices common to Muslims and historically Islamic people. The early forms of Muslim
culture, from the Rashidun Caliphate
to early Umayyad
period, were predominantly Arab
ine. With the rapid expansion of the Islamic empire
s, Muslim culture has influenced and assimilated much from the Persia
, South Asian
n, and Moro
* Cultural Muslim
* Islamic schools and branches
* Lists of Muslims
* Muslim holidays
* Muslim world
Ritual Prayer: Its Meaning and Manner
– The Islamic Supreme Council of America.
– University of Chicago
''Islamophobia Today'' Newspaper
– An Islamophobia news clearing house
Sammy Aziz Rahmatti, ''Understanding and Countering Islamophobia''
Category:Quranic words and phrases