Where Is Sunni Islam Practiced? (Solution found)

Sunnis are the more dominant form of Islam – at least 80 per cent of Muslims worldwide. Some Sunni dominated countries include Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Turkey and Syria (see more on Syria, below). However, Shia Muslims are the majority in some other countries such as Iran, Iraq, and more recently, Lebanon.

Where is Sunni Islam mostly practiced?

Who are the Sunnis? The great majority of the world’s more than 1.5 billion Muslims are Sunnis – estimates suggest the figure is somewhere between 85% and 90%. In the Middle East, Sunnis make up 90% or more of the populations of Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia.

What are the practices of Sunni Islam?

Like most Muslims, the Sunni practice the Five Pillars of Islam, which are the belief that there is no god but God and the Muhammad is the messenger of God, prayer five times a day, charity, fasting during Ramadan, and pilgrimage to Mecca at least once in your lifetime.

Which countries are Shiite and Sunni?

Sunni-Shia Split Today At least 87% of Muslims are Sunnis. 3 They are the majority in Afghanistan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Yemen, Pakistan, Indonesia, Turkey, Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia. Shiites are the majority in Iran, Bahrain, and Iraq.

Where are most Shiite Muslims?

Large numbers of Shia Arab Muslims live in some Arab countries including Lebanon, Yemen, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Oman, the UAE, and Qatar. Shia Muslims are a numerical majority in Iraq and Bahrain.

Is Pakistan Sunni or Shia?

Almost all of the people of Pakistan are Muslims or at least follow Islamic traditions, and Islamic ideals and practices suffuse virtually all parts of Pakistani life. Most Pakistanis belong to the Sunni sect, the major branch of Islam. There are also significant numbers of Shiʿi Muslims.

Is Dubai Shia or Sunni?

Islam is the official religion of the United Arab Emirates. In the United Arab Emirates demographic, there are more Sunni than Shia Muslims. 90% of the Emirati population are Sunni Muslims. The remainder 10% are Shia, who are concentrated in the Emirates of Dubai and Sharjah.

Where are the Shia located?

Shias comprise a majority in Iran, Iraq, Azerbaijan, and Bahrain, and a plurality in Lebanon, while Sunnis make up the majority of more than forty countries from Morocco to Indonesia.

Where do Muslims worship?

The English word ” mosque ” denotes a Muslim house of worship. The word evolved from the Arabic term masjid, which means “place of prostration.” During prayer, Muslims briefly kneel and touch their foreheads to the ground as a sign of submission (literally, Islam) to the will of God.

Is Sunni a religion?

Sunni, Arabic Sunnī, member of one of the two major branches of Islam, the branch that consists of the majority of that religion’s adherents. Sunni Muslims regard their denomination as the mainstream and traditionalist branch of Islam—as distinguished from the minority denomination, the Shiʿah.

Where is Islam located?

Islam is the majority religion in several subregions: East Asia, South Asia, North Africa, the Sahel, and the Middle East. The diverse Asia-Pacific region contains the highest number of Muslims in the world, easily surpassing the combined Middle East and North Africa.

Is Saudi Arabia mostly Sunni?

According to official statistics 90% of Saudi Arabian citizens are Sunni Muslims, 10% are Shia. (More than 30% of the population is made up of foreign workers who are predominantly but not entirely Muslim.) It is unknown how many Ahmadis there are in the country, as Ahmadis are not recognized by Saudi Arabia.

What’s difference between Shia and Sunni?

Those who followed the Prophet’s closest companion (Abu Bakr) became known as Sunni (the followers of the Prophet’s example – Sunnah). Those who followed the Prophet’s cousin and son-in-law (‘Ali) became known as Shi’a (the followers of the Party of ‘Ali – Shi’atu Ali).

Sunni Countries 2021

Sunni Islam is the largest branch of Islam and is practiced by as many as 90 percent of the world’s 1.5 billion Muslims. It is the religion of peace and prosperity. Sunnites and Sunnis are the terms used to refer to those who adhere to this branch of Islam. Sunnis and Shi’ites, who are adherents of Shia Islam, hold views that are diametrically opposed to one another. Sunnis believe that Muhammad’s first four caliphs are the legitimate heirs to his position, whilst Shi’ites believe that Ali, Muhammad’s son-in-law, and his descendants are the legitimate leaders of the Muslims.

There are a number of nations where Sunni Islam is the majority religion.

Other countries where Sunni Islam is the most widely practiced religion include:

  • Afghanistan, the Cocos Islands, the Comoros, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Libya, the Maldives, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tajikistan, Turkey, and the United States

Sunni Islam is practiced in other countries as well, however it is a minority religion in certain countries, such as Bahrain and Iran.


Home PhilosophyReligion Beliefs in a Higher Power IslamOther possible titles: Ahl al-Sunnah, Sunna, Sunnism, Sunnite are all terms used to refer to the Sunni religion. Sunni Islam and Arabic Members of one of the two major branches of Islam, namely the branch that has the vast majority of the religion’s believers, are referred to as Sunnis. Sunni Muslims consider their denomination to be the dominant and conservative branch of Islam, as opposed to the Shiah, which they consider to be the minority religion.

  1. While the Shiah have always seen Muhammad’s government in Medina as an earthly, temporal dominion, the Sunnis have long regarded Islam’s leadership as being governed not by divine order or inspiration, but rather by the prevailing political circumstances in the Muslim world.
  2. Thus, a majority of Sunni jurists developed the stance that the caliph must come from Muhammad’s tribe, the Quraysh, while also devising a theory of election that was flexible enough to allow loyalty to be offered to the de facto caliph, regardless of his ethnic origins.
  3. Britannica QuizIslam What is your level of knowledge about the Prophet Muhammad?
  4. With this quiz, you may see how well you know about Islam.
  5. It was the institution of consensus (ijm) that the Sunnis developed that allowed them to integrate a wide range of practices and traditions that originated through regular historical development but that had no antecedents in the Qur’an.
  6. The Sunnis also recognize as orthodox four schools of Islamic law: the anaf, the anbal, the Mlik, and the Shfi.

They totaled around 900 million people in the early twenty-first century and formed the vast majority of all Muslims worldwide. Those in charge of editing the Encyclopaedia Britannica Adam Zeidan was the author of the most recent revision and update to this article.

Sunnis and Shia: Islam’s ancient schism

AP is the source of the image. Caption for the image The pilgrimage to Mecca is one of many rites that both religions practice, and it is one of the most important. The schism that exists between Sunnis and Shias is the greatest and most ancient in Islamic history. Historically, members of the two religions have lived side by side for centuries and have a number of core beliefs and practices in common. However, there are significant differences in philosophy, ritual, law, theology, and religious organization.

Many recent conflicts, ranging from Lebanon and Syria to Iraq and Pakistan, have emphasized the sectarian difference, driving families and communities apart.

Who are the Sunnis?

It is estimated that Sunnis constitute between 85 percent and 90 percent of the world’s more than 1.5 billion Muslims. Sunnis constitute 90 percent or more of the populations of Egypt, Jordan, and Saudi Arabia, respectively, in the Middle East. Getty Images is the source of this image. Caption: Egypt is home to a number of Sunni Muslims. The earliest centers of study in Islam Sunnis consider themselves to be the religiously orthodox branch of Islam. The term “Sunni” comes from the Arabic word “Ahl al-Sunnah,” which translates as “People of the Tradition.” Specifically, the term “tradition” refers to actions that are founded on what the Prophet Muhammad said or did or agreed to or condemned.

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Shia are also directed by the wisdom of Muhammad’s descendants, who are represented by Ali, Muhammad’s son-in-law and cousin.

Who are the Shia?

Shia Muslims account for around 10% of the world’s Muslim population, with a global population estimated to be between 154 and 200 million people. AP is the source of the image. Caption for the image The deaths of Ali, Hassan, and Hussein paved the way for the development of the Shia notion of martyrdom. Shia Muslims constitute the majority of the population in Iran, Iraq, Bahrain, Azerbaijan, and, according to some estimates, Yemen. Shia Muslims are also the majority in Syria. Afghanistan, India, Kuwait, Lebanon, Pakistan, Qatar, Syria, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates are also home to significant Shia populations.

Ali was killed in 661 at the end of a five-year caliphate that had been beset by internal conflict.

While Hassan is supposed to have died from poisoning in 680 at the hands of Muawiyah, the first caliph of the Sunni Umayyad dynasty, Hussein is believed to have been murdered by the Umayyads on the battlefield in 681.

There are three major sects of Shia Islam practiced today: the Zaidis, the Ismailis, and the Ithna Asharis (or Ithna Asharis) (Twelvers or Imamis).

In 878, the 12th Imam, Muhammad al-Mahdi, is reported to have vanished from a cave beneath a mosque, according to legend. It is believed by Ithna Asharis that the so-called “expected imam” did not die, and that he will return to earth at the end of time to restore justice.

What role has sectarianism played in recent crises?

Shia Muslims are disproportionately represented among the weakest elements of society in nations where Sunnis have ruled. They frequently believe that they are the victims of prejudice and injustice. Sunni radicals routinely decry Shia as heretics who should be put to death, and they have a point. AFP is the source of this image. Caption for the image The killing by Saudi Arabia of a famous Shia cleric sparked a diplomatic crisis with Iran, which has since been resolved. A hardline Shia Islamist agenda was initiated by the Iranian revolution of 1979, which was viewed as posing a threat to traditional Sunni countries, notably those in the Persian Gulf.

Many of the battles taking place in the region today have significant sectarian undertones.

While this is happening, Sunni jihadist organizations, especially the Islamic State (IS), have been targeting Shia and their sites of worship in Syria and its neighboring country of Iraq.

The murder sparked a diplomatic crisis with Iran as well as protests across the region.

More on this story

The killing of Shiite cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr by Saudi Arabia has the potential to exacerbate tensions in the Muslim world even further. The top leader of Iran’s Shiite theocracy, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, declared on Sunday that Saudi Arabia, which is run by a Sunni monarchy, will face “divine vengeance” for the slaying of the outspoken cleric, which was part of a mass execution that killed 47 men. It has always been the goal of Sheikh Nimr to see increased political rights for Shiites in Saudi Arabia and the surrounding nations.

  1. Here’s a primer on the fundamental distinctions between Sunni and Shia Islamic beliefs and practices.
  2. Following the Prophet Muhammad’s death in 632, a rift developed, and disagreements erupted about who should lead the fledgling but rapidly expanding faith.
  3. The title was handed on to a loyal assistant, Abu Bakr, however others believed it should have been given to Ali, the prophet’s cousin and son-in-law, rather than Abu Bakr.
  4. Image courtesy of EPA (European Pressphoto Agency).
  5. However, in 680, Hussein and many of his family were slaughtered in the Iraqi city of Karbala.
  6. During the month of Muharram, every year, the followers of Ali are commemorated as Shiites, which is a contraction of the word Shiat Ali, which means “followers of Ali” in Arabic.
  7. Sunni kings launched a series of conquests that resulted in the caliphate being extended throughout North Africa and Europe.

What are the differences between their points of view?

Many features of Islam are agreed upon by the branches, yet there are significant differences within each of the branches itself.

Shiites regard Ali and the leaders who came after him as imams, or spiritual leaders.

Shiites who call themselves Twelvers look forward to his coming as the Mahdi, or Messiah.

Which sect is the largest, and where are the members of each group concentrated?

They may be found all across the Arab world, as well as in nations like as Turkey, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Malaysia, and Indonesia, among other locations.

The Saudi royal family, which adheres to an austere and conservative branch of Sunni Islam known as Wahhabism, has complete authority over Islam’s holiest sanctuaries, which are located in Mecca and Medina, respectively.

Often, Saudi Arabia and Iran, the two most powerful Sunni and Shiite states in the Middle East, find themselves on opposite sides of regional disputes.

Amidst an ongoing civil conflict in Syria, where a Sunni majority has been established, the Alawite Shiite sect of President Bashar al-administration, Assad’s which has long controlled the country, is fighting to maintain its hold on power.

The Islamic State’s achievements in Iraq have been aided by strong resentments between the Shiite-led government and the Sunni-dominated populations in the country.

The Difference between Shiite and Sunni Muslims and Why It Matters

The killing of Shiite cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr by Saudi Arabia has the potential to exacerbate tensions in the Muslim world. According to Iran’s Shiite theocracy, the country’s supreme leader, Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said on Sunday that Saudi Arabia, which is ruled by a Sunni monarchy, would face “divine vengeance” for the killing of the outspoken cleric, which was part of a mass execution of 47 men, which took place on Saturday. It has always been the goal of Sheikh Nimr to see increased political rights for Shiites in Saudi Arabia and the surrounding region.

  • An introduction to the fundamental distinctions between Sunni and Shia Islam may be found here.
  • In 632, following the Prophet Muhammad’s death, a rift formed, and disagreements ensued about who should lead the fledgling but rapidly expanding Islam.
  • Abu Bakr, a valued aide, received the title, while others believed Ali, the prophet’s cousin and son-in-law, should have received it instead.
  • European Pressphoto Agency (ImageCredit.eu) After Ali was slain with a poison-laced sword at a mosque in Kufa, in what is now Iraq, his sons Hasan and subsequently Hussein claimed the title of Ali’s successor.
  • In the minds of those who felt Ali should have been the prophet’s successor, Ali’s martyrdom became a key theme.
  • After years of conquest, Sunni kings succeeded in expanding the caliphate over North Africa and Europe.
  • Is there a difference in their viewpoints?

Even while they agree on many Islamic issues, there are significant differences between the branches themselves.

Shiites revere Ali and the leaders who came after him as imams (leaders of the religion).

Shiites, known as Twelvers, look forward to his coming as the Mahdi, or Messiah, in their lifetimes.

While Sunnis highlight God’s authority in the practical world, especially the public and political realms, Shiites emphasize the importance of death and sacrifice.

In the world’s 1.5 billion Muslims, Sunnis constitute more than 85 percent of the population.

Almost all of Iran, Iraq, and Bahrain’s population is Shia.

It is said that Shiites venerate the shrines of Karbala, Kufa and Najaf, which may be found in Iraq.

Shiite rebels from the north of Yemen, known as the Houthis, ousted a Sunni-dominated government, prompting an invasion by a coalition led by Saudi Arabia and other Arab states.

The Islamic State’s achievements in Iraq have been aided by strong resentments between the Shiite-led government and the Sunni populations that have existed for decades.

Dispute over Muhammad’s Successor

When Muhammad died in AD 632, a huge controversy erupted about who would succeed him as the spiritual head of the new religion that had emerged. Islam was more than just a private religion; it was a social and political force that shaped events. He would have enormous control over society, government, and commerce as Muhammad’s heir. “It all began with Muhammad’s death, the prophet and creator of Islam,” says the author. Some others believed that anyone with the necessary qualifications could take over.

They insisted on the control of Muhammad’s father-in-law and friend Abu Bakr, whom they considered to be his heir.

As a result of their support for Ali ibn Abi Talib, Muhammad’s cousin and son-in-law, this group became known as theshi’atuAli (the “party of Ali”), also known as Shiite Muslims.

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Despite this, the Shiites refused to acknowledge Abu Bakr as legitimate and remained firm in their belief that they were obligated to Muhammad’s descendants, whom they referred to as l al-Bayt, or “the family of the house.” Ali was the father of two boys, Hasan and Husayn, who were both beloved by the Shiite community.

For Shiite Muslims, this fight and Husayn’s death are a sad reminder of their past.

Similarities and Differences in Religious Practice

Both sects adhere to Islam’s fundamental principles and practices, which are maintained by both. Those who follow Islam adhere to the Qur’an as a revelation from Allah as well as the Five Pillars of Islam, which include helping the poor, fasting during the month of Ramadan, participating in daily ritual prayers, making the annual pilgrimage to Mecca, Saudi Arabia, and proclaiming that there is no God but Allah and Muhammad is his prophet. Shiite Muslims do the five daily ritual prayers, although they do it in three sessions rather than five as is customary for Sunni Muslims.

  1. Many of these tablets include the names of Husayn and other members of the prophet’s family written on them, as well.
  2. Shiites adhere to a set of 10 required deeds in addition to the fundamental Five Pillars.
  3. They live in mourning, and they dress in black for the most of the year.
  4. On this day, Shiite Muslims around the Middle East and Asia take to the streets, screaming laments over the murder of Husayn, weeping loudly, and beating themselves in solidarity.
  5. Shiite Muslims flock to the Iraqi city of Karbala on pilgrimage, with many selling all they own to pay homage to the site of a historic conflict dating back thousands of years.
  6. These remembrances are not restricted to the Middle East alone, though.
  7. In the eyes of Sunni Muslims, the Shiite fixation with the house of Muhammad represents a false Islam that concentrates an excessive amount of reverence on the prophet’s family.

Shiite Muslims, on the other hand, believe that Sunnis are not genuine Muslims. Due to their strong differences, which have gone unsolved for millennia, the Middle East has been shattered, with permanently unresolved tension.

Shiites and Sunnis on the Modern Map

Saudi Arabia and Iran are the two most powerful countries in the Islamic world, representing the two major branches of Islam. Saudi Arabia, the birthplace of Islam, is considered to be the spiritual core of Sunni Islam. Iran is mostly Shiite, and it has been ruled by a Shiite Supreme Leader since the Islamic Revolution of 1979, when the country gained its independence. The power struggle between these two countries is a continual source of contention in the Middle East. Some Middle Eastern nations contain considerable populations of Islamic sectarian minorities, particularly in Syria and Iraq.

  • Following his death, rumors emerged that some Shiite Muslims who were present at his funeral danced and sang their Shiite chants in celebration of their triumph, proclaiming that they had reclaimed the territory of Iraq.
  • Multiple upheavals in the Middle East throughout the years have made it more difficult to maintain peace in the region.
  • It is critical to understand these dynamics in order to decipher headlines that depict continuous disputes and tensions among Muslim factions.
  • Shiite and Sunni Muslims may be found all throughout the world, and they may even reside in your own neighborhood.

Building Meaningful Relationships with Shiite and Sunni Muslims

Considering this, how should we interact with our Muslim friends and neighbors in this context? First and foremost, it is important to recognize that the majority of Shiite Muslims consider themselves to be a persecuted minority. Even devout Shiites who perform the Hajj to Mecca are subjected to maltreatment in Saudi Arabia, where the bulk of the population is Sunni. This should serve as inspiration for our prayers. Pray that people who believe they are oppressed would come to realize the freedom and peace that comes from placing their faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

  1. All Muslims living in America, whether they are Sunni or Shiite, are considered minorities.
  2. Simple gestures of kindness may have a significant impact on Muslims’ perceptions of Christians and their Savior, and they should be encouraged.
  3. Consider inviting Muslims you know to your home for a dinner in the evening to break their fast with you.
  4. The majority of Muslims approach dialogues with confidence in their views in opposition to the gospel of Jesus Christ.
  5. They have the potential to obtain freedom when we compassionately communicate the truth of Christ with them because the Spirit unlocks their hearts as they hear the message.
  6. We are talking about the reality of a spotless Savior who died on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins so that everyone who puts their faith in him might be forgiven and accepted into the family of God.

Undeniably, it is this good news that unifies Christians in a call to love, a call to travel, and a call to declare its truth to all Muslims, whether Sunni or Shiite. Madeline Arthington works as a writer for the International Monetary Fund. She currently resides in Central Asia.

Sunnis vs. Shiites: A Brief Explainer

So, in light of this situation, how should we interact with our Muslim friends and relatives? First and first, it is important to recognize that the majority of Shiite Muslims consider themselves to be a persecuted minority. Even very religious Shiites who perform the Hajj to Mecca are subjected to maltreatment by the majority-Sunni population in Saudi Arabia. In our prayers, we should consider the implications of these findings. Pray that people who believe they are oppressed would come to realize the freedom and peace that comes from placing their faith in the Lord Jesus.

  • In America, Muslims are classified as minorities regardless of their religious affiliation (Sunni or Shia).
  • Simple gestures of kindness may have a significant impact on Muslims’ perceptions of Christians and their Savior, and can be quite effective.
  • Think about inviting Muslims that you know to your home for an evening dinner to break their fast.
  • Many Muslims come into discussions with their notions about the gospel firmly in place.
  • They have the potential to obtain freedom when the Spirit unlocks their hearts when we compassionately share the truth of Christ with them.
  • It is the reality of a spotless Savior who died on the cross to pay the penalty for our sins, allowing anyone who place their faith in him to be forgiven and accepted into God’s family.
  • Ms.
  • She resides in the Central Asian country of Turkmenistan.

What was the origin of the Sunni-Shiite split?

Beginning in 632 AD, when the Islamic Prophet Muhammad died and a discussion erupted over who should succeed him, the Islamic world has been split into two camps. Despite the fact that both sides agreed that Allah is the one true God and that Muhammad was his messenger, one group (which eventually became the Shiites) believed Muhammad’s successor should be someone descended from him, whereas the other (which eventually became the Sunnis) believed a pious individual who would follow the Prophet’s customs would be acceptable.

It was a disagreement on political leadership “Robin Wright, a joint fellow at the nonpartisan United States Institute of Peace and the Woodrow Wilson Center, shared her thoughts on the subject.

Police officers chase demonstrators in Jidhafs, Bahrain, who were gathering to demonstrate against the Saudi Arabia’s death of Shiite cleric Sheikh Nimr al-Nimr, who were wearing hijab. Hasan Jamali / Associated Press

What do Sunnis and Shiites have in common?

Sunnis and Shiites are both familiar with the Quran, which contains the Prophet Muhammad’s sayings. Neither of them doubts that Prophet Muhammad was the messenger of Allah. Additionally, they observe Islamic principles, including fasting during Ramadan, pledging to undertake a pilgrimage to Mecca, engaging in ritual prayer (which includes five prayers per day), donating to the destitute, and committing themselves to the Islamic religion. Both of their prayer practices are essentially identical, with a few minor differences: Shiites, for example, will stand with their hands at their sides, but Sunnis will place their hands on their bellies when praying.

What are the differences between Sunnis and Shiites?

The most significant doctrinal divergence between the two is their views on who should have succeeded Prophet Muhammad in his mission. Sunnis, on the other hand, have a less complicated hierarchical hierarchy than Shiites, and their interpretations of Islam’s schools of law differ from those of the other group. Shiites accord human individuals the elevated position that is reserved for prophets in the Quran, and they frequently venerate clerics as saints, whereas Sunnis do not accord this rank.

How many of each sect are there?

Sunnis constitute the vast majority of the world’s more than 1.6 billion Muslims, accounting for upwards of 85 to 90 percent of the total. Shia Muslims account for 10 to 15 percent of the world’s Muslims, with a global population of less than 200 million people, according to some estimates. In contrast to the Sunnis, who dominate the Muslim world from West Africa to Indonesia, the Shiites are centered in the Middle East, with a great majority in Iran, a majority in Iraq, and substantial numbers in Syria, Lebanon, and Yemen, among other countries.

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She has reported for the network since 2005.

Iraq’s unique place in the Sunni-Shia divide

As the ongoing and worsening violence in Iraq has become increasingly sectarian, the Sunni Muslim terrorist organization ISIS (the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria) has advanced against the Shia Muslim-led Iraqi government and Shia militias, at least in part. For hundreds of years, sectarian affiliation has played a role in the politics of the Middle East and North Africa. Iran and Iraq are two of just a handful of nations in which the Shia population outnumbers the Sunni population. While it is widely assumed that Iraq has a Shia majority, there is little reliable data on the exact Sunni-Shia breakdown of the population there.

  • According to the few published poll indicators of religious identity in Iraq, almost half of the country is Shia Muslim.
  • Iran, a neighboring country, is home to the world’s biggest Shia population: there are about 100 million people.
  • Iranian support for Iraq’s Shia-dominated government led by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki may be explained by the fact that they share a demographic composition.
  • The Syrian leadership, on the other hand, is dominated by Alawites (an offshoot of Shia Islam).
  • A dispute over the succession of leadership in the Muslim community following the death of the Prophet Muhammad in 632 is the origin of the Sunni-Shia divide, which is nearly 1,400 years old and has existed since then.
  • When it comes to religion in Iraq, for example, both groups express practically universal belief in God and the Prophet Muhammad, with identical numbers (82 percent of Shias and 83 percent of Sunnis) stating that religion is extremely important in their daily lives.
  • In certain nations, a considerable proportion of Muslims do not consider the divide between Sunni and Shia Islam to be fundamental in their lives.
  • In Iraq, on the other hand, only 5% of respondents identified as “simply a Muslim.” There are other theological problems where the differences between the sects are more obvious, such as whether it is appropriate to visit the sites of Muslim saints.
  • In late 2011, 14 percent of Iraqi Sunnis indicated they did not consider Shias to be Muslims, according to a poll conducted by the Pew Research Center.

Other nations, like as the Sunni-dominated Egypt (53 percent), have even larger numbers of Sunnis who believe that Shias are not Muslims. Michael Lipka works as an editorial manager for religion research at the Pew Research Center in Washington, DC.

The differences between Shia and Sunni Muslims

Shia and Sunni Muslims have been at odds since the Prophet Muhammad’s death in the seventh century, and the dispute dates back to that time. Nonetheless, as the frequency of disputes between the two branches of the religion has increased, the disparities between the two branches of the religion have come under more scrutiny. According to a 2009 report by the Pew Research Center, Sunni Muslims constitute the great majority of the world’s 1.6 billion Muslims population. Shia Muslims account for between 10% and 13% of the population, whereas Sunni Muslims account for between 87 percent and 90%.

  1. Sunni Muslims are also found in more countries and regions around the world.
  2. Columbia.edu It was only after Prophet Muhammad’s death that the two factions began to be separated from one another.
  3. The majority of people believed that Prophet Muhammad’s rightful successor should be his father-in-law and close friend, Abu Bakr.
  4. Although the division was first primarily political in nature, as the minority group was a section that supported Ali’s political power, the division eventually morphed into a religious movement.
  5. The twelfth day of the holy month of Muharram is one of the most significant events in the lives of Shia Muslims (the first month in the Islamic lunar calendar).
  6. Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s King Salman bin Abdulaziz.
  7. Reuters Ashoura is the occasion for “collective atonement via sorrow and self-flagellation,” as defined by the Islamic tradition.
  8. Each group believes Muhammad to be God’s prophet and adheres to Islam’s five ceremonial pillars, which include fasting during Ramadan and five daily prayers.
  9. They also have a common religious text in the form of the Quran.
  10. Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei addresses Iranian senior officials at a mosque at his house in the Iranian capital of Tehran, on March 25, 2015.
  11. Despite the fact that many Shia and Sunni Muslims live peacefully together, a Pew Research Center poll conducted in 2012 found that 40 percent of Sunni Muslims from the Middle East and North Africa do not accept Shias as fellow Muslims in their communities.

There is also a cleavage between the two communities in the Iraq and Syria conflicts, with many Sunni males joining rebel organizations and men from the Shia community fighting for or with government troops, according to the BBC.

Muslim Sects

The Sunni and Shia sects of Islam are the two main branches of the religion. The following are some of the sub-denominations or other orders within these religions: Ahmadiyya (Alawi), Druze (Hanafi), Ismaili (Jafari), Kharijite (Khalifa), Maliki (Shafi), Sufi (Sufi), Wahabi (Zaidi), and others. There are many distinct Islamic denominations, just as there are many different Christian faiths, but these are the two most important ones practiced by the world’s 1,6 billion Muslims.

Sunni Sect

Sunni Muslims are the majority of Islam’s members, accounting for 85-90 percent of the religion’s population. Since the Shi’is were expelled from the main fold in 661, it has maintained a near-constant position of dominance (the Kharijis left in 658). Islam as defined by the revelations given to Muhammad and his life is considered to be Sunni Islam, which is supported by the fact that Shi’i Islam has had a small following and no meaningful, formal structure for a number of decades. In terms of theology, Sunni Islam is neither more or less of a continuation of Islam than any of the other orientations in the religion.

Due to the fact that Sunni Islam was the religious orientation of the rulers, and that Shi’is had not established administrative organizations for a long period of time, it was necessary to establish a law, known as Shari’a – Seriat (for which the hadiths served as a central source), and that the rulers were Sunni Muslims.

  1. It was once believed that the only way to distinguish Sunni Islam from Shi’i Islam was by devotion to theCaliphas, who was considered the head of the Muslim world.
  2. In terms of key concepts, Sunni and Shi’i Islam are essentially the same: the oneness of God, belief in the revelations of Muhammad, and belief in resurrection on the Day of Judgment (Ashura).
  3. Sunni Islam requires the performance of five prayers every day, but Shi’i Islam requires only three.
  4. Islam’s Sunni adherents admire Ali, but they do not see him as the only legitimate continuation of Muhammad’s legacy, nor do they place any emphasis on him bringing forth a divine light from the Prophet.

While Sunnis place a strong emphasis on the Prophet Muhammad’s practice and teachings (known as the “Sunna”), Shi’a believe that their Ayatollahs are physical manifestations of God on Earth. Turkey’s Sunni population accounts for around 85 percent of the country’s total population.

Shi’i Sect

With 85-90 percent of Islam’s adherents belonging to the Sunni sect, Sunnis constitute the majority group in the religion. Since the Shi’is were expelled from the main fold in 661, it has dominated virtually constantly (the Kharijis left in 658). Sunni Islam asserts that it is the continuation of Islam as defined by the revelations given to Muhammad and his life, a position that is supported by the fact that Shi’i Islam has had a very small following and has had no meaningful, formal structure for a number of decades.

Islam was given its name because of its association with the importance of the Sunna (the examples from the hadiths), which was established earlier than in Shi’i Islam as vital to the genuine image of Islam.

It was once thought that the only way to distinguish Sunni Islam from Shi’i Islam was by devotion to theCaliphas, who was considered the head of the Muslim world.

In terms of essential teachings, Sunni and Shi’i Islam are only distinct in that they believe in the oneness of God, the revelations of Muhammad, and the resurrection on the Day of Judgment.

5 prayers are conducted daily in Sunni Islam, however only 3 prayers are offered in Shi’i Islam.

Even while Sunni Islam holds Ali in high regard, it does not see him as the only authentic continuation of Muhammad’s legacy, and it places no emphasis on him being the bearer of a divine light from Muhammad.

Turkey’s Sunni community accounts for around 85 percent of the country’s population.

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