Islam is an Abrahamic, monotheistic faith regarded as revealed through Muhammad as the Prophet of Allah. Scholars typically date the creation of Islam to the 7th century, although it’s believed its roots go back further. Islam was created in Mecca, located in modern-day Saudi Arabia.
Muslims are the followers of the Islamic faith. The Quran is Islam’s religious text, which is believed by Muslims to be the verbatim words of God and the teaching and normative examples of Muhammad. Muslims also follow a legal system known as Sharia Law, which a faith-cased code of conduct instructing Muslims how to live in almost every aspect of their lives.
Muslims follow five basic pillars that are essential to their faith:
- Shahada: to declare one’s faith in God and belief in Muhammad
- Salat: to pray five times per day - at dawn, noon, afternoon, sunset, and evening
- Zakat: to give to those in need
- Saw: to fast during Ramadan
- Hajj: to make a pilgrimage to Mecca at least once during a person’s lifetime if the person is able to
Islam is the world’s second-largest religion with over 1.9 billion followers known as Muslims. Islam is the world’s fastest-growing religion and is forecasted to grow at a faster rate than Christianity by 2050.
The Organization of Islamic Cooperation, or OIC, is an International organization founded in 1969 consisting of 57 member states. 53 of the member countries are Muslim-majority countries, meaning that Islam is the dominant religion of that nation. The Organization’s goal is to protect the interests of Muslims around the world while promoting peace and harmony. The OIC has permanent delegations to the United Nations and the European Union. The Official languages of the OIC are Arabic, English, and French.
In the United States, there are about 3.45 million Muslims, comprising about 1.1% of the population. American Muslims are one of the most racially diverse religious groups in the U.S., split as 25% Black, 24% White, 18% Asian, 18% Arab, 7% mixed race, and 5% Hispanic.
A majority of the Muslim population lives in the Middle East and Northern Africa; however, Islam is spreading relatively quickly all over the world. Other areas that have large percentages of Muslims include Central Asia, South Asia, Southeast Asia, Sub-Saharan Africa, and Asia-Oceania.
There are Muslims in just about every country in the world. According to the Pew Research Center, there are a total of 50 Muslim-majority countries. Below is a table of each country’s total Muslim population, percentage of the country’s total population that is Muslim, and the country’s Muslim population as a percentage of the world’s total Muslim population. The countries that have a Muslim population that is 50% or more of the country’s total population are considered to be Muslim-majority countries.