06-SunniShiiRift08slides - Our launching pad into the...

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Our launching pad into the humanities of the Middle East (beyond the majority religion we have covered so far: Islam) will be the dynastic periods of early Islam. Dynasties evolved in the Middle East as forces competed for leadership of the Islamic umma. Competition existed because there were at least two different ways to interpret the way a leader of the Muslim world should be determined. * Two Ways to Pick a Ruler Majority (the Sunna-focused) = natural leader picked from among peers, supported by the military and nobles Minority (the partisans of Ali) = genealogical descent from 'Ali and his wife Fatima (Muhammad's daughter) Remember * The Four Rightly Guided Caliphs Abu Bakr 632-634 Umar 634-644 Uthman 644-656 Ali 656-661 Most gain the post by means of SHURA But over time the caliph position becomes separated from the people and a shura cannot be gathered together that brings in the leaders from farther places or in which the persons can reach consensus. Remember how expansive the empire is by the 600s (reaching into Central Asia and gaining ground across North Africa toward Spain) Power is a corrupting thing. Some of the governors appointed under the Four Rightly Guided caliphs to posts on the borders desired to be the caliph themselves. One man who succeeds at this is Muawiya, the governor of Syria, who is related to and was appointed by Caliph Uthman. * Muawiya challenges Ali for the Caliphate They arbitrate rather than see bloodshed Muawiya's arbitrator wins in the discussion Kharijites (The Leavers) kill Ali Muawiya sets up the Umayyad Dynasty This is the first of the great Sunni dynasties
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This note was uploaded on 04/02/2008 for the course TRAD 101 taught by Professor Weiner during the Spring '08 term at Arizona.

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06-SunniShiiRift08slides - Our launching pad into the...

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