Difference between Shia & Sunni

Introduction

The world is home to various religions, each with their own denominations. Islam, for example, has two main denominations called Sunni and Shia. These denominations have their own beliefs, traditions, and customs that set them apart from each other. Understanding the different denominations is key to understanding the context of the religion itself.

What is Sunni Islam?

Sunni Islam is the largest branch of Islam. It is called Sunni after the Arabic word “Sunnah,” which refers to the actions and sayings of Prophet Muhammad recorded in hadiths. After Muhammad’s death, Sunni Muslims accepted Abu Bakr as his successor and followed him as their leader. Sunni Islam is considered to be the most orthodox form and has over 940 million followers, accounting for about 75% of the world Muslim population. It is popular in countries like Africa, China, Southeast Asia, South Asia, and some of the Arab world. Sunni Islam is based on six articles of faith known as the “Six pillars of Iman.”

1. Belief in one God, Allah
2. Belief in the existence of angels
3. Authority of the books revealed by Allah
4. Following the prophets chosen by Allah
5. Belief in the Day of Judgment
6. Acknowledgement of Allah’s supremacy and belief in predestination

What is Shia Islam?

Shia Islam gets its name from the phrase “ShīʻatuʻAlī,” which means “followers of Ali.” Like other Muslim denominations, Shia Islam is based on the Holy Quran. However, Shia followers believe that only God can choose a representative to safeguard Islam and therefore, the Quran and sharia appoint the leader. After the death of Prophet Muhammad, Shia Muslims believe that Ali ibn AbiTalib, the husband of the Prophet’s daughter Fatimah, was appointed as the successor and leader of the people. Shia Islam is more popular in countries like Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Bahrain, Yemen, Syria, and Lebanon.

What is the difference between Shia and Sunni?

– Sunni Muslims follow Abu Bakr, while Shia Muslims follow Ali.
– Sunni Muslims believe that being from the tribe of the Prophet is enough to become a leader, while Shia Muslims believe that one must belong to the Prophet’s family.
– Sunni Islam is the most traditional and widely followed denomination.
– Shia Muslims believe in temporary marriage, while Sunni Muslims believe in permanent marriage.
– Sunni Muslims believe that the Al Mahdi is yet to come, while Shia Muslims believe that he is already on earth.
– Sunni Islam can be found in countries like Africa, China, Southeast Asia, South Asia, and some parts of the Arab world. Shia Islam is more popular in countries like Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Bahrain, Yemen, Syria, and Lebanon.
– Sunni Muslims believe that Al Mahdi is yet to come, while Shia Muslims believe that Al Mahdi was already on earth and is currently the “hidden imam” interpreting the Quran and will return at the end of time.
– Shia Muslims believe in temporary marriage, while Sunni Muslims believe in permanent marriage.

Highlights

1) Sunni Islam is the largest branch of Islam and is considered to be the most orthodox form of the religion. It has over 940 million followers, comprising about 75% of the world Muslim population. Sunni Islam is spread in countries such as Africa, China, Southeast Asia, South Asia, and some of the Arab world.

2) Shia Islam derives its teachings from the Holy Book of Quran like other Muslim denominations. Shia Muslims believe that only God reserves the right to pick a representative who will safeguard Islam and appoints its leader. Shia Islam is more popular in countries such as Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Bahrain, Yemen, Syria, and Lebanon.

3) There are several differences between Shia and Sunni Islam. Sunni Muslims follow Abu Bakr, while Shia Muslims follow Ali. Sunni Muslims believe that one can become a leader by having their origin within the tribe of the prophet, while Shia Muslims believe that one must belong to the family of the prophet. Additionally, Sunni Muslims believe that the Al Mahdi is yet to come, while Shia Muslims believe he is already on Earth. Sunni Islam is found in countries like Africa, China, Southeast Asia, South Asia, and some of the Arab world, while Shia Islam is more popular in countries like Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, Bahrain, Yemen, Syria, and Lebanon. Lastly, Shia Muslims believe in temporary marriage, while Sunni Muslims believe in more permanent marriages.

Dmitri Ivanov
Dmitri Ivanovhttps://whats-different.com
Dmitri Ivanov, a writer and managing editor, was educated in Canada and holds a BS in Science. Dmitri loves doing research, writing, and teaching various courses.

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