With more than a billion followers worldwide, Islam is the second largest religion in the world. Muslims believe that Muhammad and other divine prophets handed down the truth of their religion and explained truths that followers still study. Despite being a distinct religion, Islam shares many similarities with other world religions. These similarities are a result of shared origins and the spread of cultures around the world.
Both Judaism and Islam share a belief that Abraham or Ibrahim in Islam is the father of their people. In the Muslim faith, Ibrahim struggled to understand God, and through his studies came to befriend him. Both Jews and Muslims believe that Ibrahim is the progenitor of their people, and according to the Islamic faith, all the prophets of their religion, including Muhammad come from him. Although some of the stories about Ibrahim in the Quran differ from those of the Bible, Muslims, like Jews and Christians, learn the story of God testing Ibrahim's faith by asking him to sacrifice his son only to stop him at the last moment.
Much of Islamic morality is similar to that of other religions. Islam, like most major religions including Buddhism and Hinduism, teaches compassion and charity toward people in need as a virtue. Similar to Judaism, Muslims believe in the moral imperative of humbling themselves before God in order to worship him and receive his blessings. Muslims also believe that Jesus was one of the God's prophets, though not the messiah, and respect his moral teachings such as following a path of peace.
Monotheism and Creation
Like many religions, including Christianity and Judaism, Islam is a monotheistic religion where followers worship one supreme omnipotent God. In Islam, Allah created the Earth and all life on it. Like Christianity and Judaism, the Muslim God is a kind and merciful one who wants humanity to live moral lives and help each other. Islam also shares a similar creation story where God created Adam. However, the Quran does not mention some other details such as the name of Eve.
A number of religious rites and methods of worship are common to Islam and other religions. Muslims pray to God for help and as a sign of religious devotion, just as Jews, Christians and other religious followers do. However, unlike other religions, Muslims believe that individuals should pray five times a day. Muslims can pray anywhere, but like churches in Christianity and synagogues in Judaism, special religious sites called mosques serve as the center of communal worship.
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