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literaly: ‘teacher of mystic secrets’. A branch of the Isma’ili Shi’ites, who possessed a radical theological philosophy and regarded themselves as bearers of a unique set of religious values within the world of Islam. This Islamic movement, based in Iraq and Yemen at the end of the ninth century, was led by Hamdan Qarmat.

The Muslim scripture, containing the revelations of Muhammad recited by him and preserved in a fixed written form. The Qur`an consists of 114 sections (suras), which are divided into a number of verses (ayat). According to the orthodox view, the speaker in the Qur`an is God and Muhammad is the recipient; Gabriel is the intermediary agent. The complete consonantal text is believed to have been established during the reign of Othman (644-656 CE) and the final vocalized text in the tenth century.

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