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Islam is the second most popular faith in Britain and indeed the world, with over a thousand million adherents and is growing rapidly around the world. Followers of Islam are called Muslims of which there are between 1.5 and 3 million in Britain. Together with Judaism and Christianity, Islam is one of the three "Abrahamic Faiths" or "Religions of the Book". 

There are several different groups of Muslims, but all of them, in every country and community, regard their faith as a bond between them, and as a major part of their identity. This bond is often referred to as the ‘Umma’. The largest Muslim group is the Sunni Muslims - who make up 90% of the world's Muslims. The other main group is the Shi'ite Muslims, who are particularly strong in Iran.

The Islamic scripture is the Holy Qur'an which Muslims believe was revealed by God through the Prophet Mohammed (Muslims usually add pbuh - peace be upon him – as a sign of respect). They believe it is a perfect copy of a text that exists eternally in heaven.

The word Islam means submission to Allah (God) and Muslims believe that there should be no separation of a person’s religious and everyday life. Islam is supposed to be a ‘way of life’.

Muslims have the following main beliefs:

  • Belief in Allah as the one and only God
  • Belief in Angels
  • Belief in the holy books
  • Belief in the Prophets of the Bible—e.g. Adam, Ibrahim (Abraham), Musa (Moses), Dawud (David), Isa (Jesus). Mohammed (pbuh) was the final prophet
  • Belief in the Day of Judgement, when the life of every human being will be assessed to decide whether they go to heaven or hell
  • Belief in Predestination—that Allah has already decided what will happen

Muslims also believe in 5 pillars of Islam which all Muslims must try and follow.

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Five Pillars
Allah (God)