muslim empire

Suleiman the magnificent, Sultan of the Ottoman empire (1494-1566)

You hear a lot about Abraham Lincoln, Winston Churchill, and Napoleon. Don’t get me wrong these 3 people where awesome. They are all iconic national heroes in their own countries view. But what about Suleiman the magnificent? One of the greatest leaders the middle east ever knew. 

Suleiman of the house Osman was born in 1494. Like any Ottoman prince he was sent to a school to study science, maths and millitary tactics. He befriended a slave called Pargali Ibrahim. Who would later become the sultans most trusted adviser. Suleiman had little ruling experience before he became sultan. He had been appointed governor of Theodosia by his father. However when his father died in 1520. Suleiman was sat on the throne at the age of 26. Suleiman was looked an as more of a domestic king than a foreign powerhouse and an envoy of venice said that “all men would benefit from his rule”. 

Contrary to popular opinion Suleiman embarked on a campaign to conquer hungary and only a year later he captured Belgrade in 1521 and Rhodes in 1522. He was stopped at Vienna in 1529. But soon the Ottoman fleet dominated the red sea and soon the whole Mediterranean, waging war on the coasts of North Africa, Italy and Dalmatia. Suleiman doubled the empires terriotry and launched it into being a serious power player in the game of empires. 

At home Suleiman was a great reformer. He started his modern vision of an empire by appionting the Grand vizier of the Ottoman empire as Pargali Ibrahim (that slave he met in school). Bascially making him head of government and making him the most second most powerful man in the empire. 

Suleiman Ensured new dams, aqueducts and theological schools were built across the empire. Suleiman reformed the judicial system by adding in laws to prevent corruption and limit tax collector which resulted in many tax breaks for the working class. He made sure every prisoner had human rights and this earned him the name law giver. 

Culturally his one of the greatest poets in the islamic world and oversaw the “Golden age of the ottoman empire”. When artists flourished in their new social houses and the sultan kept many artists at court. Suliemans great architectural achievements included restoring the old walls of jerusalem and the dome of the rock which was sacred to all not only muslims but christians and jews aswell. 

As a poet Suleiman was admired. His greatest verse being 

The people think of wealth and power as the greatest fate,

But in this world a spell of health is the best state.
What men call sovereignty is a worldly strife and constant war;
Worship of God is the highest throne, the happiest of all estates

Suleiman died in 1520. It took get 300 years worth of decadent and incapable heirs to destroy what he had created. 

A brief history lesson....

Oh so the only thing Arabs and Muslims bring is terrorism? I guess everyone forgot that….

1. Surgery
Around the year 1,000, the celebrated doctor Al Zahrawi published a 1,500 page illustrated encyclopedia of surgery that was used in Europe as a medical reference for the next 500 years. Among his many inventions, Zahrawi discovered the use of dissolving cat gut to stitch wounds – beforehand a second surgery had to be performed to remove sutures. He also reportedly performed the first caesarean operation and created the first pair of forceps.

2. Coffee
Now the Western world’s drink du jour, coffee was first brewed in Yemen around the 9th century. In its earliest days, coffee helped Sufis stay up during late nights of devotion. Later brought to Cairo by a group of students, the coffee buzz soon caught on around the empire. By the 13th century it reached Turkey, but not until the 16th century did the beans start boiling in Europe, brought to Italy by a Venetian trader.

3. Flying machine
“Abbas ibn Firnas was the first person to make a real attempt to construct a flying machine and fly,” said Hassani. In the 9th century he designed a winged apparatus, roughly resembling a bird costume. In his most famous trial near Cordoba in Spain, Firnas flew upward for a few moments, before falling to the ground and partially breaking his back. His designs would undoubtedly have been an inspiration for famed Italian artist and inventor Leonardo da Vinci’s hundreds of years later, said Hassani.

4. University In 859 a young princess named Fatima al-Firhi founded the first degree-granting university in Fez, Morocco. Her sister Miriam founded an adjacent mosque and together the complex became the al-Qarawiyyin Mosque and University. Still operating almost 1,200 years later, Hassani says he hopes the center will remind people that learning is at the core of the Islamic tradition and that the story of the al-Firhi sisters will inspire young Muslim women around the world today.

5. Algebra
The word algebra comes from the title of a Persian mathematician’s famous 9th century treatise “Kitab al-Jabr Wa l-Mugabala” which translates roughly as “The Book of Reasoning and Balancing.” Built on the roots of Greek and Hindu systems, the new algebraic order was a unifying system for rational numbers, irrational numbers and geometrical magnitudes. The same mathematician, Al-Khwarizmi, was also the first to introduce the concept of raising a number to a power.
6. Optics/Magnifying Glass
Not only did the Arab world revolutionize mathematics – it also revolutionized optics. The scholar Alhazen (Abu al-Hasan) from Basra was the first person to describe how the eye works.He carried out experiments with reflective materials and proved that the eye does not sense the environment with “sight rays,” as scientists had believed up until then. He also discovered that curved glass surfaces can be used for magnification.His glass “reading stones” were the first magnifying glasses. It was from these that glasses were later developed. Furthermore, Alhazen wrote important scholarly texts on astronomy and meteorology.“ Many of the most important advances in the study of optics come from the Muslim world,” says Hassani. Around the year 1000 Ibn al-Haitham proved that humans see objects by light reflecting off of them and entering the eye, dismissing Euclid and Ptolemy’s theories that light was emitted from the eye itself. This great Muslim physicist also discovered the camera obscura phenomenon, which explains how the eye sees images upright due to the connection between the optic nerve and the brain.
7. Music
Muslim musicians have had a profound impact on Europe, dating back to Charlemagne tried to compete with the music of Baghdad and Cordoba, according to Hassani. Among many instruments that arrived in Europe through the Middle East are the lute and the rahab, an ancestor of the violin. Modern musical scales are also said to derive from the Arabic alphabet. The guitar, as we know it today, has its origins in the Arabic oud – a lute with a bent neck. During the Middle Ages, it found its way to Muslim Spain, where it was referred to as “qitara” in the Arabic of Andalusia. It is said that a music teacher brought one to the court of the Umayyad ruler Abdel Rahman II in the ninth century. The modern guitar developed as a result of many influences, but the Arabic lute was an important predecessor.
8. Toothbrush
According to Hassani, the Prophet Mohammed popularized the use of the first toothbrush in around 600. Using a twig from the Meswak tree, he cleaned his teeth and freshened his breath. Substances similar to Meswak are used in modern toothpaste.
9. The crank
Many of the basics of modern automatics were first put to use in the Muslim world, including the revolutionary crank-connecting rod system. By converting rotary motion to linear motion, the crank enables the lifting of heavy objects with relative ease. This technology, discovered by Al-Jazari in the 12th century, exploded across the globe, leading to everything from the bicycle to the internal combustion engine.
10. Hospitals
“Hospitals as we know them today, with wards and teaching centers, come from 9th century Egypt,” explained Hassani. The first such medical center was the Ahmad ibn Tulun Hospital, founded in 872 in Cairo. Tulun hospital provided free care for anyone who needed it – a policy based on the Muslim tradition of caring for all who are sick. From Cairo, such hospitals spread around the Muslim world.

11. Marching bands Military marching bands date back to the Ottoman Mehterhane. These were bands which played during the entire battle and only ceased their music-making when the army retreated or the battle was over.During the wars with the Ottoman Empire, the bands are thought to have made a considerable impression on European soldiers – after which they adapted the principle for their own use.

12. Parachute
A thousand years before the Wright brothers a Muslim poet, astronomer, musician and engineer named Abbas ibn Firnas made several attempts to construct a flying machine. In 852 he jumped from the minaret of the Grand Mosque in Cordoba using a loose cloak stiffened with wooden struts. He hoped to glide like a bird. He didn’t. But the cloak slowed his fall, creating what is thought to be the first parachute, and leaving him with only minor injuries. In 875, aged 70, having perfected a machine of silk and eagles’ feathers he tried again, jumping from a mountain. He flew to a significant height and stayed aloft for ten minutes but crashed on landing - concluding, correctly, that it was because he had not given his device a tail so it would stall on landing.Baghdad international airport and a crater on the Moon are named after him. 

13. Shampoo
Washing and bathing are religious requirements for Muslims, which is perhaps why they perfected the recipe for soap which we still use today. The ancient Egyptians had soap of a kind, as did the Romans who used it more as a pomade. But it was the Arabs who combined vegetable oils with sodium hydroxide and aromatics such as thyme oil. One of the Crusaders’ most striking characteristics, to Arab nostrils, was that they did not wash. Shampoo was introduced to England by a Muslim who opened Mahomed’s Indian Vapour Baths on Brighton seafront in 1759 and was appointed Shampooing Surgeon to Kings George IV and William IV.

14. Vaccination
The technique of inoculation was not invented by Jenner and Pasteur but was devised in the Muslim world and brought to Europe from Turkey by the wife of the English ambassador to Istanbul in 1724. Children in Turkey were vaccinated with cowpox to fight the deadly smallpox at least 50 years before the West discovered it.

15.  Pay Cheques The modern cheque comes from the Arabic saqq, a written vow to pay for goods when they were delivered, to avoid money having to be transported across dangerous terrain. In the 9th century, a Muslim businessman could cash a cheque in China drawn on his bank in Baghdad. 

16. Earth’s Shape?
By the 9th century, many Muslim scholars took it for granted that the Earth was a sphere. The proof, said astronomer Ibn Hazm, “is that the Sun is always vertical to a particular spot on Earth”. It was 500 years before that realisation dawned on Galileo. The calculations of Muslim astronomers were so accurate that in the 9th century they reckoned the Earth’s circumference to be 40, 253.4km - less than 200km out. The scholar al-Idrisi took a globe depicting the world to the court of King Roger of Sicily in 1139. 

17. Gardens
Medieval Europe had kitchen and herb gardens, but it was the Arabs who developed the idea of the garden as a place of beauty and meditation. The first royal pleasure gardens in Europe were opened in 11th-century Muslim Spain. Flowers which originated in Muslim gardens include the carnation and the tulip. 

18) Refinement
Distillation, the means of separating liquids through differences in their boiling points, was invented around the year 800 by Islam’s foremost scientist, Jabir ibn Hayyan, who transformed alchemy into chemistry, inventing many of the basic processes and apparatus still in use today - liquefaction, crystallisation, distillation, purification, oxidisation, evaporation and filtration. As well as discovering sulphuric and nitric acid, he invented the alembic still, giving the world intense rosewater and other perfumes and alcoholic spirits (although drinking them is haram, or forbidden, in Islam). Ibn Hayyan emphasised systematic experimentation and was the founder of modern chemistry.

So…….. 

We literally SHAPED THE MODERN WORLD kiss my entire ass.  

Photo: Original act of the Warsaw Confederation

Warsaw Confederation (January 28, 1573) was an important development in the history of Poland and Lithuania that extended religious tolerance to nobility, free persons and also for the peasants and others within the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. It is considered as the formal beginning of religious freedom in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, and in fact is the first such document in Europe. While it did not prevent all conflict based on religion, it did make the Commonwealth a much safer and more tolerant place than most of contemporaneous Europe.

Late 16th century Poland stood between the Orthodox Muscovy in the East, the Muslim Ottoman Empire to the South, and Western Europe, torn between Reformation and Counter-Reformation, to the North and West. Its religious tolerance made it a welcome refuge for those escaping religious persecution elsewhere; in the words of Cardinal Stanislaus Hosius, it became “a place of shelter for heretics”. The confederation legalized the previously unwritten customs of religious tolerance.

Don Afonso the Conqueror 

The 1st King of Portugal

Portugal’s first flag was a blue cross on a white background, which was emblematically used on Don Afonso’s shields and garments.

His most famous victory was in 1139 at the battle of Ourique, where he defeated the armies of 5 Muslim Kings, during the Reconquista in Iberia.

По калпака ще ги познаете

В годините на робството калпакът е отличавал българи от турци, господари от рая, и онези, които пожелавали да запазят вярата си, като не го заменят с фес или чалма, обикновено плащали десет пъти по-солен данък от редовите мюсюлмани в Османската империя. Било е въпрос на чест да си „навиеш на масрафа“, като носиш калпак, тъй като шапката се вижда най-напред, тя е един от най-разпознаваемите компоненти на облеклото, и то отдалеч. Така калпакът служел за идентификация на християните по-категорично от всяко дразнещо очите на правоверните разпятие, затулено в пазвата на ризата.

You’ll spot them by the cap

During the years under Turkish oppression, the traditional Bulgarian cap, or ‘kalpak’ would differentiate the Bulgarians who kept their faith from the ones which failed to do so and exchanged the cap for the fez or the turban. Those who kept the cap were more heavily taxed than the ordinary muslims of the Ottoman empire. It was a matter of honor to keep the cap, since it was one of the most recognizable features of the sworn christian.

Renaissance art depicting a priest blessing Portuguese soldiers before the siege of a Muslim fort.

Ottoman Music Therapy (Article: Nil Sari) 
(Listen : Ottoman Music Therapy for Happiness and Against Fever /// Ottoman Music Therapy Against Depression and Insomnia /// Ottoman Music Therapy Against Confused Thoughts )

Music has been used as a mean of therapy through the centuries to counter all kinds of disorders by various peoples. Physicians and musicians in the Ottoman civilization were aware of the music therapy in continuation of previous Muslim similar practices. There are numerous manuscripts and pamphlets on the influence of sound on man and the effect of music in healing, both in works on medicine and music. Ideas of Al-Farabi, Al-Razi and Ibn Sina on music were followed by several Ottoman physicians.

Turkish communities have also been practicing music therapy since the pre-Islamic era. Kam, the Turkish shaman tried to get into relation with the spirits of the other world by means of his or her davul, the drum and oyun, the ritual ceremony; hence they tried to benefit from their supernatural powers. The kam tried to affect the spirits by utilizing music, either driving evil spirits away, or attracting the help of good spirits so as to achieve treatment. Ideas of Al-Farabi, Al-Razi and Ibn Sina on music were followed by several Ottoman writers such as Gevrekzade (d. 1801), Şuuri (d. 1693), Ali Ufki (1610-1675), Kantemiroǧlu (Prince Dimitrie Cantemir, 1673-1723) and Haşim Bey (19th century). The study of music by these writers as a therapeutic means and comprehensive information given by them on the effects of music on man’s mind and body note the existence of interest and curiosity on the subject during the Ottoman period. Ottoman medical writers such as Abbas Vesim (d. 1759/60) and Gevrekzade offered music to be included in medical education, along with mathematics, astronomy and philosophy, as in order to be a good physician one ought to have been trained in music. 

The belief that God was comprehended through words and sound being perceived as letter, the essence of existence was believed to be “sound”. The number and differences of letters were related with the variety in the creation and existence. Hence, words were believed to be the cover of essence. This relation played an important part in fostering the belief that music therapy might re-establish the upset harmony of the patient, creating a sane balance between body, mind and emotions.

Patients suffering from a certain illness or the emotions of persons with a certain temperament were expected to be influenced by specific modes of music. Certain makams, that is musical modes, were prescribed for therapeutic purposes. Makam is “a concept of melody which determines tonal relations, as well as an overall indication of the melodic patterns.” Modes, as patterns of organized sounds, were believed to express special meanings. Though there are about 80 Turkish modes; usually only 12 were prescribed for therapy, in accordance with the limitation of the related theories of cosmic elements and numerology, as it is in the Islamic and ancient sources. The aims of Ottoman music therapy by playing specific modes prescribed for certain physiognomies and nations can be classified as: treatment of mental diseases; treatment of organic diseases; maintaining/re-establishing the harmony of the person – a healthy balance between body, mind and emotions by pleasing him/her; leading the way to emotions, such as getting people laugh or making them cry etc., preventing vicious feelings and attracting good ones, training the self and thus reaching perfection

.The responses to music were supposed to have both physical and emotional effects. Those who suffered from anxiety, insomnia, indigestion, paralysis, dysuria etc. were all expected to be treated and cured through the effect of suitable music. For example, sciatica was expected to be treated by nevâ, an Ottoman musical mode. Even malicious infections were recommended to be treated by musical modes, which can be traced back to the antique ideas of Democritus. For example, Ottoman writers advised the mode hüseyni against fevers, and the musical modes zengule and irak for the treatment of sersam, that is meningitis. Ottoman physicians and musicians of the 17th and 18th centuries were not informed of modern physiology and psychology, but were aware of the body-mind interaction. The manifestations of the autonomous nervous system have been observed through the ages since ancient times. We find evidences of it both in literature and illustrations, displaying the influences of music on various parts of the body or specific organs, mainly the heart. The physiological responses to musical vibrations could not be measured, but changes in the cardiac and respiratory processes, that is heart beats and breathing were described. Today we know that emotional impact of music may provoke certain involuntary physiological responses, such as changes in blood circulation and breathing. It is also a fact that the heart is an organ whose function is deeply effected by emotions.

The philosopher, the physician and the Sufi, observing that some music modes have joyful and others have saddening influences, they utilized the effects of sounds. It was generally believed that using music’s influence in the right way trained the soul. Ottoman writers on music expected music to be also a means to develop an ideal character. Attaining harmony between intellect and emotions could lead a man to become conscious of himself. We recall that ancient philosophers Plato and Aristotle believed that certain musical modes possessed an ethical value and produced certain effects on the morality of the listener and helped in the development of character.
For the Sufi, purification and enlightenment came through the heart. The heart was described as the most virtuous organ and the symbolic center of man’s existence and the feeling of love felt through the heart was accepted as the key of being aware of the existence of the Creator. This was an educational approach to music. Sufi music was used as a means of training for ideal perfection, which also meant becoming harmonious with oneself. Man, being accepted as the symbol of the universal creation, was described and evaluated as a micro-cosmos. It was believed that all the characteristics of the universe were awarded to man by the Creator. Therefore, the ultimate aim of music was to attain freedom of the self (nefs), so as to reach his/her soul to the divine origin.

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Oh look! A video voter guide, from the awesome Good Muslim, Bad Muslim podcast empire.

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Warrior Culture : Ottoman Empire
Subculture : Janissary

An elite military unit consisting entirely of Christian boys who were taken as slaves around the age of six. They much like Spartan youths were raised up under strict discipline to embody unit cohesion and strength. The young Janissary were prohibited from growing facial hair (the power of the beard was not with them), training in any field other than the military, or marrying(they were expected to be celibate).

They were among one of the first armies of the age to wear distinctive uniforms. And unlike most militaries of the time period they received salaries, and even pensions upon retirement. Making them more progressive in those areas than other militaries of the time. Janissaries were far ahead of their time as well when it came to logistics. Utilizing entire support units to transfer supplies, complete other non-combat tasks, and even transport the wounded to specialized field hospitals (another inovation).

On top of that even as Slaves they retained a large amount of status and power, eventually gaining enough power and influence to attempt a coup (which failed and lead to their eventual disbandment).

24th April 1915: Armenian genocide begins 

Today, During the early hours of the morning the Ottoman law enforcement rounded up 250 Armenian intellectuals and community leaders from all over the empire and murdered them. Those who survived where deported. This marked the beginning of the Armenian genocide. 

The armenian people had lived in the Caucasus region of Eurasia for 3000 years. The first nation in the world to make christianity its official religion. Like states in the region. Armenia was swallowed by the mighty Ottoman empire in 1453. 

The Ottoman rulers and most of the Ottoman empire followed Islam and thus they discriminated against. Christians payed higher taxes and had little legal rights. There were fears that the Armenians were loyal to their religion over the Ottoman empire. 

When the young turks established a modern government in 1908. The Armenians were threatened even more. The young turks were nationalistic and saw the armenians as an enemy. When the Ottoman empire entered ww1 with the Austro Hungarians and the German empire. There were fears the Armenians would fight with the Russians, as Russia was a christian state. When Armenians started organising local volunteer battalions to fight the Axis powers, the Ottoman empire thought them traitors. All Armenians fighting for the Ottoman empire where pulled from the eastern front. 

On the 24th of April 1915. Armenian polticians, lawyers, doctors, teachers and other intellectuals were rounded up and killed. This was known as “Red Sunday” The Government sent out “Butcher battalions” made up of murderers and ex convicts. They hanged, shot, crucified, beheaded, mutilated, and burned Armenians wherever they could be found. Children where ripped from their mothers arms and sent to join muslim families. Woman where raped and turned into slaves. All where converted to Islam. Armenian property was seized and handed over to other families. 

At the start of the Genocide there were 2 million Armenians living in the Ottoman empire, By 1922, 1.5 million of those Armenians were dead.           The Turkish government denies it was a genocide but insisting it was justified as the armenian community posed a threat to the empire. 

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The Map on top is the Ottoman Empire, the Map on the bottom is current ISIS holdings and affiliates… See a comparison? Proof that if not learned from history repeats itself. And proof that as history continues to prove that since its inception the Islamic faith continues in its attempts at world domination…

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The reactions to the Empire State Building celebrating Eid al-Fitr are Islamophobia at its worst 

On July 17, the Empire State Building lit up in bright green for Eid al-Fitr, the Muslim holiday that marks the end of the monthlong fast of Ramadan. But for some people this wasn’t an innocuous call for mutual respect and coexistence between all people. It was an affront to their bigoted worldview — and the problem isn’t just on Twitter.