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BellaOnline's Islam Editor

Religious Icons

The followers of Christianity have a crucifix and the followers of Judaism have a Star of David which they use as symbols to identify themselves by their religions. Islam appears to have a symbol too - a star and a crescent. I was unaware that Islam had an emblem. So I thought I would investigate where this icon originated from.

The Central Intelligence Agency keeps an updated chart of flags of the world. I found eleven countries, including the new Libyan flag, carrying the crescent and star symbol:

• Algeria
• Angola
• Azerbaijan
• Comoros
• Libya (plain green flag, changed after the reign of Muammar Gaddafi ceased)
• Maldives
• Mauritania
• Pakistan
• Tunisia
• Turkey
• Turkmenistan

The flags of other countries, where the main religion practised is Islam, also display a star of some description without the crescent.

The star and the crescent are said to have originated from the Ottoman Empire (27 July 1299 to 29 October 1923) when they were used as insignia on the Ottoman flag in 1793. Their origins are not Islamic but they have been diffused into the cultures of some countries and passed off as a religious icon. The emblem on the Turkish flag today is a representation of the Ottoman flag of 1844.

Islam does not present the follower with any symbols to adore themselves or their places of worship with. Islam is submission to God alone and does not need anything to symbolise it.

The colour green seems to be significant to many followers of Islam because of the description of the clothes worn by those who dwell in Paradise. Some say green was Mohamed’s favourite colour and yet others say it is the colour of vegetation and life. God does not tell us that green or any other colour represents His religion. Green just happens to be the central colour of the spectrum. Red, orange, yellow, GREEN, blue, indigo, violet but it does not mean it is God’s chosen colour to represent Islam.

The word Allah written in Arabic script is also regarded as a symbolic representation of Islam. The word God in any language is symbolic of any religion, because without God we would have no need for religion.

Religion - a set of beliefs concerning the cause, nature and purpose of the universe. Especially when considered as the creation of an omnipotent being usually involving devotional and ritual observances and often containing a moral code governing the conduct of human affairs.

Chapter 18, verse 31
They have deserved gardens of Eden wherein rivers flow. They will be adorned therein with bracelets of gold, and will wear clothes of green silk and velvet, and will rest on comfortable furnishings. What a wonderful reward, what a wonderful abode.

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