By Reuven Firestone
Whereas there exists no proof up to now that the indigenous population of Arabia knew of holy conflict ahead of Islam, holy conflict principles and behaviors seem already between Muslims through the first new release. This ebook makes a speciality of why and the way this kind of possible radical improvement happened. Basing his speculation on facts from the Qur'an and early Islamic literary resources, Firestone locates the starting place of Islamic holy struggle and lines its evolution as a reaction to the alterations affecting the hot neighborhood of Muslims in its transition from old Arabian tradition to the non secular civilization of Islam.
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Extra info for Jihad: The Origin of Holy War in Islam
Because of the political importance of Bedouin tribes in the Hijazi highlands of the sixth century—the assumption among the settled populations themselves that they derived from Bedouin ancestors and what appears to have been in many respects their strong cultural influence if not dominance in some areas even of settled life—it is to Bedouin cultural values and concepts that we shall now turn. 43 It is clear that female roles and cultural traits associated with those roles play a critical role in Bedouin life as they do in all human cultures, but the data on these topics in ancient Bedouin cultures is difficult to extract.
Notwithstanding the unique climatic and socioeconomic situation of South Arabia, there was common traffic and communication between it and the remainder of the peninsula, partly as a result of the caravan trade but, also, simply because of their proximity and the great success of South Arabian civilization. 20 South Arabian peoples occasionally migrated northward, and although the two areas were linguistically separate (and remain so to an extent even to this day), they easily communicated and most certainly influenced one another.
Individuals identified themselves in terms of real or supposed association with kinship groups, beginning with the nuclear family and encompassing the larger extended family and clan groupings to the tribe. Nomads, seminomads, settled agriculturists, and urban dwellers all identified themselves according to this system, whether in southern, northern, or central Arabia. The individual felt his primary loyalty to the closest relations and felt less fidelity as the relationship extended out to broader determinants of identification.
Jihad: The Origin of Holy War in Islam by Reuven Firestone