The term Muslim world (also known as the Ummah or Islamosphere) has several meanings. In a religious sense, it refers to those who adhere to the teachings of Islam, referred to as Muslims. In a cultural sense, it refers to Islamic civilization, inclusive of non-Muslims living in that civilization. In a modern geopolitical sense, the term usually refers collectively to Muslim-majority countries, states, districts, or towns.
Islam emphasizes unity and defense of fellow Muslims, although many schools and branches (see Shi'a–Sunni relations, for example) exist. In the past both Pan-Islamism and nationalist currents have influenced the status of the Muslim world.
As of 2009, over 1.6 billion or about 23% of the world population are Muslims. Of these, around 62% live in Asia-Pacific, 20% in the Middle East-North Africa, 15% in Sub-Saharan Africa, around 3% in Europe and 0.3% in the Americas.
Famous quotes containing the words muslim and/or world:
“For the salvation of his soul the Muslim digs a well. It would be a fine thing if each of us were to leave behind a school, or a well, or something of the sort, so that life would not pass by and retreat into eternity without a trace.”
—Anton Pavlovich Chekhov (18601904)
“As to the thirty-six Senators who placed themselves on record against the principle of a World Court, I am inclined to think that if they ever get to Heaven they will be doing a great deal of apologizing for a very long timethat is if God is against warand I think He is.”
—Franklin D. Roosevelt (18821945)