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Islam and Ninian Smart's Seven Dimensions

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Hailey Quiazon

on 5 March 2014

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Transcript of Islam and Ninian Smart's Seven Dimensions

This dimension refers to the belief system created by the founders of the religion. The doctrines are the aspects and values that people believe in, they essentially bring a focus to the rituals and myths of the particular religion.
An example of this dimension is the religion itself it is a belief system created by Muhammad and various other different prophets. The Qur'an and Hadith books were created to help followers lead good and faithful lives.


This dimension refers to the social interaction in the religion, the organisation and structure of it and the overall religious experience shared by the followers of the religion.
Examples of this dimension in Islam are regular religious gatherings at a local mosque. Or even the pilgrimage that occurs at Mecca. Another example of a social and institutional aspect is the act of Zakat also known as the paying of alms. This is a very social aspect as it's giving back to the community.


This dimension refers to any significant experiences of followers or founders of the religion and their emotional response to it.
Any factor of Islam could relate to this dimension as a Muslim may have an emotional connection to anything such as a prayer, during pilgrimage, praying at a mosque or simply just visiting a sacred place.


This dimension refers to the rituals and practices that provide spiritual guidance to its followers.
In relation to Islam the practical and ritual dimension applies to the various forms of rituals such as the Salat also known as performing ritual prayers 5 times a day.
Another ritual is the Hajj which is pilgrimage in Mecca that Muslim must do at least once in their life.
Sawm or fasting is a good example of a ritual performed during Ramadan.






"Five Pillars of Islam." BBC News. BBC, n.d. Web. 26 Feb. 2014. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/islam/practices/fivepillars.shtml>.

"Islam." BBC News. BBC, n.d. Web. 26 Feb. 2014. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/islam/>.

"Islam." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 3 Apr. 2014. Web. 26 Feb. 2014. <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Islam>.

"Islam at a Glance." BBC News. BBC, n.d. Web. 26 Feb. 2014. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/islam/ataglance/glance.shtml>.

"Islamic Architecture." BBC News. BBC, n.d. Web. 1 Mar. 2014. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/islam/art/architecture.shtml>.


This dimension are simply the codes of behaviour, the ideas and laws that shape the followers and their attitudes and finally the link between beliefs and doing the right actions.
In relation to this dimension Islamic values and examples that are provided by the prophet Muhammad in the Hadith books are good example of legal and ethical aspects of Islam.
The Hadith books implemented the rules in Muslim society. The Fiqh (jurisprudence) is the knowledge of the practical rules of religion.


This particular dimension is in relation to stories or past records that involve a tradition within the specific religion.
A predominant aspect of Islam that would be this dimension is the Qur'an filled with stories about various different prophets to let followers try to lead a life similar to the prophets.


Islamic culture often involves architecture such as the elaborate mosques seen in various different countries. There is more concentration of the interior of the mosque rather than the exterior, there is plenty of decoration.
Islamic etiquette is known as Adab.



This particular dimension refers to all works of the people, the preservation of sacred places and objects and the symbols in the religion.
One main material aspect of Islam is the mosques and the elaborate decoration inside of them. The Islamic symbol itself is a good example of the material dimension being evident in Islam.



The five pillars of Islam are the 5 obligations that Muslims must follow in order to lead good and responsible life's. They provide a framework for Muslims to live by. Muslims believe that if there is no transfer to faith into action it is pointless to have faith in Islam. Doing the five pillars of Islam demonstrates that a Muslim puts their faith first.
1) Shahada (In English "Testimony") - means to sincerely recite the Muslim profession of faith
2) Salat (In English "Prayer") - performing ritual prayers in the proper way, praying 5 times each day.
3) Zakat (In English "Almsgiving") - paying alms acts as a tax to benefit the poor and the needy.
4) Sawm (in English "Fasting") - fasting during the month of Ramadan.
5) Hajj (In English "Pilgrimage") - pilgrimage to Mecca.

Islam is a monotheistic religion meaning it only has a single God. It is an Abrahamic religion.
Their holy book is the Qur'an, God is often known as Allah. In the Qur'an there are teachings of Muhammad (he is believed to be the last prophet of God.
Followers of Islam are called Muslims. "Islam" in its literal translation in English means "submission to the will of God".
The Islamic religion was revealed over 1400 years ago in Mecca, Arabia. Jesus, Moses and Abraham are respected prophets of God.

They believe into a judgement day similar to Christianity. This day of judgment is known as the "Yawin al-Qiyamah" or in English "Day of Resurrection".
Islamic law is formed by traditional Islamic scholars. It is essentially a system of duties.
Muhammad provided example these were recorded in Hadith books. These examples of law are implemented into society.
Fiqh (jurisprudence) plays a major role in Islamic law is is simply knowledge of the practical rules of religion.
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