Shi'ite Follower of Shi'a, the second-largest branch of Islam. Shi'ites believe that the true successor of Muhammad was Ali, whose claim to be caliph was not recognized by Sunni Muslims. It rejects the Sunna (the collection of teachings outside the Koran) and relies instead on the pronouncements of a succession of holy men called Imams. The Safavid dynasty in Iran was the first to adopt Shi'a as a state religion. One of the principal causes of the Iranian Revolution was Shah Pahlavi's attempt to reduce clerical influence on government. Ayatollah Khomeini's Shi'ite theocracy stressed the role of Islamic activism in liberation struggles. The largest Shi'ite group is the Twelve-Imam Shi'ites; the other major group is the Ismailis.
Shi·ite / ˈshēˌīt/ (also Shi'ite) • n. an adherent of the Shia branch of Islam.• adj. of or relating to Shia.DERIVATIVES: Shi·ism / ˈshēˌizəm/ (also Shi'ism) n.
More From encyclopedia.com
Islam , Islam The religion that God set forth for Abraham, Moses, Jesus, and muḤammad proclaimed by the latter in Arabia in the 7th century, which enjoys the… Caliphate , CALIPHATE . The office of "successor" to the prophet Muḥammad as the leader of the Muslim community is a uniquely Islamic institution. Hence the angl… Pan-islamism , Pan-Islam Pan-Islam is the ideology that calls for the unity and cooperation of Muslims worldwide on the basis of their shared Islamic identity. Apar… Expansion , The expansion of Islam historically embraces two phenomena. The first is the expansion of Islamic states—that is, states whose ruling elite consisted… Dar Al-islam , The term dar al-islam, which literally means "the house or abode of Islam," came to signify Islamic territory in juridical discussions. For the major… Genealogy , Genealogy plays an important role in Islamic civilizations, often drawing on local pre-Islamic traditions, common to most oral cultures, of preservin…
About this article
All Sources -
Updated Aug 24 2016 About encyclopedia.com content Print Topic
You Might Also Like