In the first volume of Star Akbar, noted scholar Dr. Rafat Amari examines the history of Allah, the god of the Quran, in the era before Islam. In particular, he chronicles the evolution of the name and worship of “Allah” according to archaeological data from Arabia. He further examines the influence of various religions such as Zoroastrianism, Mandaeanism, and Gnosticism on the concept of deity and their role in defining Allah’s star-like characteristics and elevation above other deities.
Dr. Amari demonstrates that Mohammed’s claims were no new phenomenon. In fact, many before him had made similar claims concerning the local Arabian deity called “Allah,” and Mohammed borrowed many of their rituals, customs, and traditions.
Finally, Dr. Amari examines Mohammed’s concept of Allah. In particular, despite Islam’s attempts to build bridges between Allah and the God of the Bible, Dr. Amari demonstrates that the origins of Mohammed’s concept of deity lay in ancient Arabic traditions and the beliefs of those who belonged to the pre-Islamic era of Jahiliyyah.
This book is foundational for those who desire to study the roots of Mohammed’s concept of Allah, how the “inspiration” of Mohammed was formed, and the elements that constituted his religion. This volume represents Dr. Amari’s extensive research of original source documents and cites a wealth of scholarly books and articles.
Dawn of Islam: An Introduction to Early Islam presents a critical historical and theological introduction to Islam. Focusing on the early periods of Islam, the author investigates how Islam began, including its religious and historical background, main historical figures, initial beginning, and subsequent expansion. The book also presents a critical analysis of the Quran and the history of its transmission.
While Dawn of Islam is an introductory text on Islam, it provides comprehensive coverage of the main elements of the religion. Written in a concise manner, the book is intended to lay a solid foundation for further study of Islam in the more in-depth works published by the Religion Research Institute.
The book is recommended for those western laymen who want an accurate but easy-to-read and concise historical account of early Islam and for students of Islam and those who desire a deeper understanding of this historical period. Finally, the book provides an introductory academic textual criticism of the Quran.