Despite being banned by Islam, many local forms of Islam developed that were outside of the original laws laid down by Mohammad. For instance, it was very common to have graveyards with gravestones in the Muslim World, especially in Central Asia. Worship of God via intercessionary saints and their temples was also quite common, especially in Northern Mesopotamia and over into Central Asia.
Both of these were associated with Sufism, the innovated Islamic form which has frankly always been the official Islam of the Sunnis of Iraq, including Saddam’s regime. Some of the later rebel groups in the Iraqi resistance were Sufis, even though Sufism is fairly quietist as far as Islam goes. Sufism is also very big in the Kurdish area, in Iran among the Shia as a Shia Sufism sanctioned all the way up to the mullah level, and of course into Afghanistan, which is really Ground Zero for this sort of shirk, innovation, etc. That some of the most fundamentalist Islam of all came out of such a central area of Islamic deviation is odd, or perhaps the fundamentalists were rebelling against all of the shirk and innovation.
It is well known outrage against all sorts of forms of shirk and heretical innovation in the Arab World that has led to the development of political Islam, the Salafists and onto Al Qaeda and ISIS. Make no mistake, the Salafists, Sunni fundamentalists, Salafists, Al Qaeda and ISIS are all products of the Arab World originally. Al Qaeda itself came out of Saudi Arabia and Egypt and then on to Sudan. The spread to Central Asia, where Al Qaeda relocated to Afghanistan, was a later development in context with the Islamic revolt against the Marxist regime there beginning in 1978-79.
These Salafists are back to basics purists similar to what a lot of fundamentalist Protestants nowadays claim to be. It was also similar to the Protestant Revolt, which was actually a back to basics revolt against the Catholic Church, mostly due to corruption due to selling of indulgences, writing the books in Latin, and the Church’s great wealth. Corrupt priests are hardly Christians at all. Writing the books in Latin a language few could read led to the religion being distorted into whatever the priests wanted it to be instead of the Word itself.
Jesus’ message was go forth and bring the good news to the common man, hence the missions of the Mormons and other missionaries, the Bible translation of SIL, etc. A real Christianity would write the books in whatever language the people could read. Writing in a language that the layfolk can’t even read is anti-Christian. And indeed, the most back to basic folks in Christianity nowadays are still the Protestants, analogous to Sunnis who believe that the Koran was divine word and must not be deviated from.
In contrast, the Shia are like the Catholics. The Catholics actually believe that the Christianity must constantly be reinterpreted to go along with the times, sort of like liberal living Constitution types in Constitutional law. This itself is actually quite progressive and it is the lack of a central authority banning back to basics and mandating living Christianity that leads to almost all true literary Biblicalist fundamentalists nowadays being Protestants.
The Vatican learned its lessons early on via Galileo in being anti-science. They have changed quite a bit. For God’s sake, the Vatican even has its own astronomer!
The resistance to the theory of evolution was mostly coming from the Protestants in the years after Darwin. The Catholic Church simply went agnostic on the subject, which I believe is still doctrinal to believers who can choose to believe or not even if the Church itself says that evolution is true.
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