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Emily Lin: Characteristics of Islamic Art

Emily Lin: Characteristics of Islamic Art

Islamic art has some critical differences that distinguish it from Western religious art. It tends to have a much stronger connection to the divine, as it is meant to bridge the gap between the mortal and divine spheres. Because of this, Islamic art tends to be very introspective and contemplative, and places less emphasis on(…)

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Emily Lin: Analysis of Modern and Classical Islamic Poetry

Emily Lin: Analysis of Modern and Classical Islamic Poetry

The poem “There is no God Save Him alone” by Hatef Esfahani explores various aspects of God. The first few lines of the poem explore the concept of God as a light that can only be seen by escaping one’s “darkness”, representing the aimlessness of and lack of purpose man has in life, and making(…)

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Emily Lin: The Relationship Between Spirituality and Form in Mosques and Prayer

Emily Lin: The Relationship Between Spirituality and Form in Mosques and Prayer

In Islam, spirituality, form, and function are very closely intertwined. This can especially be seen in the architectural forms and furnishings of mosques. The overall structure of the mosque consists of three layers: a large dome, a layer shaped like an octagon, and a third layer consisting of the actual walls of the structure. The(…)

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Emily Lin: A Comparison of the Ottoman, Mughal, and Safavid Empires

Emily Lin: A Comparison of the Ottoman, Mughal, and Safavid Empires

The Ottoman, Safavid, and Mughal empires, while similar in many ways, also have a number of differences that distinguish them from each other. They are similar in that they were established by Muslim Turks, that they were all pluralistic at one point, and in that culture, learning, and art flourished in all of them. However,(…)

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Emily Lin: Ethics and Morality in Islam

Emily Lin: Ethics and Morality in Islam

Islam’s moral system mainly judges people by their intentions. This system can be seen as stemming from other moral philosophies such as virtue-, principle-, and utility-based ones, as what kinds of intentions a person has largely depends on one’s character, what they believe their duties should be, and what they think the consequences of their(…)

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Emily Lin: The Islamic Worldview

Emily Lin: The Islamic Worldview

The Islamic worldview, while centering around God, is also an anthropocentric and forgiving one, and is largely based on the idea that God, while punishing those who deserve it, is willing to overlook smaller transgressions by mankind out of love. This perspective penetrates Islamic views on fields as diverse as the afterlife, the nature of(…)

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Emily Lin: The Influences of the Muslim World on the European Renaissance

Emily Lin: The Influences of the Muslim World on the European Renaissance

One point emphasized throughout the Qur’an was the instruction to pursue knowledge, and that it was “’obligatory for every Muslim’ “(Cambridge History of Islam, 741). This, and the desire to better understand the book and God’s word, motivated many Muslims to pursue knowledge. While this knowledge was initially restricted to religion and fields closely related(…)

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Emily Lin: Significant moral issues in surah 19 of the Qur’an

Emily Lin: Significant moral issues in surah 19 of the Qur’an

Chapter 19 of the Qur’an, called “Maryam”, mainly explores the circumstances surrounding Jesus’s birth, and warns the Arab tribes of their fate in hell for worshipping idols. In the process of exploring these issues, the Qur’an also presents several important moral issues. These issues concern the question of whether Jesus was the son of God(…)

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