Research topic: Islam
Islam, which is the youngest of the world religions, is inextricably linked to the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad. Since its earliest beginnings on the Arabian peninsula early in the 7th century, the religion has spread to large parts of the globe. It has also split into several distinct branches. Today the most significant are Sunni and Shia Islam. Mysticism is also a strong force in Islam. The umbrella term Sufism is used to describe the many groups and brotherhoods that place more emphasis on the inner spiritual aspects of religious practice.
Islam is a monotheistic religion and derives, like Christianity and Judaism, from the ancient Semitic tradition attributed to the Prophet Abraham. Today Islam is the second largest religion in the world after Christianity, with between 1.3 and 1.7 billion adherents, equating to approximately one quarter of the world's population. In Norway, Muslims account for approximately 2 % of the population.