86 Facts About Druze


Druze believe that at the end of the cycle of rebirth, which is achieved through successive reincarnations, the soul is united with the Cosmic Mind.

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Druze believe there were seven prophets at different periods in history: Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus, Muhammad, and Muhammad ibn Isma'il ad-Darazi.

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The Druze faith is one of the major religious groups in the Levant, with between 800, 000 and a million adherents.

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The oldest and most densely-populated Druze communities exist in Mount Lebanon and in the south of Syria around Jabal al-Druze.

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Druze community played a critically important role in shaping the history of the Levant, where it continues to play a significant political role.

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Name Druze is derived from the name of Muhammad bin Ismail Nashtakin ad-Darazi who was an early preacher.

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The only early Arab historian who mentions the Druze is the eleventh century Christian scholar Yahya of Antioch, who clearly refers to the heretical group created by ad-Darazi, rather than the followers of Hamza ibn 'Ali.

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Druze assembled a group of scholars that met regularly in the Raydan Mosque, near the Al-Hakim Mosque.

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Druze is believed to have been of Persian origins and his title al-Darazi is Persian in origin, meaning "the tailor".

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Druze arrived in Cairo in 1015, or 1017, after which he joined the newly emerged Druze movement.

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Sharia was opposed and Druze traditions started during the call continue today, such as meeting for reading, prayer and social gathering on a Thursday instead of a Friday at Khalwats instead of mosques.

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The Druze believe he went into Occultation with Hamza ibn Ali and three other prominent preachers, leaving the care of the "Unitarian missionary movement" to a new leader, al-Muqtana Baha'uddin.

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The clashes ranged from Antioch to Alexandria, where tens of thousands of Druze were slaughtered by the Fatimid army, "this mass persecution known by the Druze as the period of the mihna".

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Druze survivors "were found principally in southern Lebanon and Syria".

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In 1038, two years after the death of al-Zahir, the Druze movement was able to resume because the new leadership that replaced him had friendly political ties with at least one prominent Druze leader.

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Ibn Taymiyyah believed that Druze have a high level of infidelity, besides being apostates.

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Druze declared that confiscation of Druze property and even the death sentence would conform to the laws of Islam.

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Druze villages spread and prospered in that region, which under Ma'an leadership so flourished that it acquired the generic term of Jabal Bayt-Ma'an or Jabal al-Druze.

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Under Fakhr-al-Din II, the Druze dominion increased until it included Lebanon-Phoenicia and almost all Syria, extending from the edge of the Antioch plain in the north to Safad in the south, with a part of the Syrian desert dominated by Fakhr-al-Din's castle at Tadmur (Palmyra), the ancient capital of Zenobia.

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Druze went so far in 1608 as to sign a commercial treaty with Duke Ferdinand I of Tuscany containing secret military clauses.

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Druze later took refuge in Jezzine's grotto, closely followed by Kucuk Ahmed Pasha who eventually caught up with him and his family.

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Many Yemenite Druze thereupon migrated to the Hauran region, laying the foundation of Druze power there.

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Also, the Druze formed an alliance with Britain and allowed Protestant missionaries to enter Mount Lebanon, creating tension between them and the Catholic Maronites.

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Druze always played a far more important role in Syrian politics than its comparatively small population would suggest.

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At independence the Druze, made confident by their successes, expected that Damascus would reward them for their many sacrifices on the battlefield.

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One advisor to the Syrian Defense Department warned in 1946 that the Syrian army was "useless", and that the Druze could "take Damascus and capture the present leaders in a breeze".

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Shishakli believed that among his many opponents in Syria, the Druze were the most potentially dangerous, and he was determined to crush them.

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Druze frequently proclaimed: "My enemies are like a serpent: The head is the Jebel al-Druze, the stomach Homs, and the tail Aleppo.

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Druze accused the entire community of treason, at times claiming they were in the employ of the British and Hashimites, at others that they were fighting for Israel against the Arabs.

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Druze even produced a cache of Israeli weapons allegedly discovered in the Jabal.

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Shishakli was assassinated in Brazil on 27 September 1964 by a Druze seeking revenge for Shishakli's bombardment of the Jebel al-Druze.

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Druze forcibly integrated minorities into the national Syrian social structure, his "Syrianization" of Alawite and Druze territories had to be accomplished in part using violence.

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Druze accused Damascus of being behind the 1977 assassination of his father, Kamal Jumblatt, expressing for the first time what many knew he privately suspected.

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The second largest political party supported by Druze is the Lebanese Democratic Party led by Prince Talal Arslan, the son of Lebanese independence hero Emir Majid Arslan.

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The Druze are Arabic-speaking citizens of Israel and serve in the Israel Defense Forces, just as most citizens do in Israel.

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Druze is wise, mighty, and just, not by wisdom, might, and justice, but by his own essence.

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Druze believe that many teachings given by prophets, religious leaders and holy books have esoteric meanings preserved for those of intellect, in which some teachings are symbolic and allegorical in nature, and divide the understanding of holy books and teachings into three layers.

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Druze do not believe that the esoteric meaning abrogates or necessarily abolishes the exoteric one.

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Druze follow seven moral precepts or duties that are considered the core of the faith.

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Druze proclaimed that God had become human and taken the form of man.

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Recognition of prophets in the Druze religion is divided into three sort-of subcategories, the prophet themselves, their disciples (asas), and witnesses to their message (hujjah).

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Druze believe that Hamza ibn Ali was a reincarnation of many prophets, including Jesus, Plato, Aristotle.

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Druze allow divorce, although it is discouraged, and circumcision is not necessary.

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Druze follow Sunni Hanafi law on issues which their own faith has no particular rulings about.

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Formal Druze worship is confined to weekly meeting on Thursday evenings, during which all members of community gather together to discuss local issues before those not initiated into the secrets of the faith are dismissed, and those who are "uqqal" or "enlightened" (those few initiated in the Druze holy books) remain to read and study.

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Druze strictly avoid iconography, but use five colors as a religious symbol: green, red, yellow, blue, and white.

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Holy places of the Druze are archaeological sites important to the community and associated with religious holidays; the most notable example being Nabi Shu'ayb, dedicated to Jethro, who is a central figure of the Druze religion.

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Druze make pilgrimages to this site on the holiday of Ziyarat al-Nabi Shu'ayb.

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One of the most important features of the Druze village having a central role in social life is the —a house of prayer, retreat and religious unity.

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The holy places and shrines of the Druze are scattered in various villages, in places where they are protected and cared for.

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Those Druze are not granted access to the Druze holy literature or allowed to attend the initiated religious meetings of the.

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Traditionally the Druze women have played an important role both socially and religiously inside the community.

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Druze believe in the unity of God, and are often known as the "People of Monotheism" or simply "Monotheists".

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Druze principles focus on honesty, loyalty, filial piety, altruism, patriotic sacrifice, and monotheism.

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Druze reject polygamy, believe in reincarnation, and are not obliged to observe most of the religious rituals.

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The Druze believe that rituals are symbolic and have an individualistic effect on the person, for which reason Druze are free to perform them, or not.

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Life cycle of the average Druze revolves around a very small number of events – birth and circumcision, engagement and marriage, death and burial – and is devoid of special Druze prayers or worship.

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Some Druze do not circumcise their male children, and refuse to observe this "common Muslim practice".

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The use of by Druze is particularly prominent in the mountains and less so in urban areas.

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Druze cuisine is similar to other Levantine cuisines and is rich in grains, meat, potato, cheese, bread, whole grains, fruits, vegetables, fresh fish and tomatoes.

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Druze pita is a Druze-styled pita filled with labneh and topped with olive oil and za'atar, and a very popular bread in Israel.

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Mate is a popular drink consumed by the Druze brought to the Levant by Syrian migrants from Argentina in the 19th century.

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Druze faith is often classified as a branch of Isma'ili; although according to various scholars Druze faith "diverge substantially from Islam, both Sunni and Shia".

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Druze added that as a result of this deviation, the Druze faith "seems as different from Islam as Islam is from Christianity or Christianity is from Judaism".

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The Druze have frequently experienced persecution by different Muslim regimes such as the Shia Fatimid Caliphate, Mamluk, Sunni Ottoman Empire, and Egypt Eyalet.

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The persecution of the Druze included massacres, demolishing Druze prayer houses and holy places, and forced conversion to Islam.

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Since Druze emerged from Islam and share certain beliefs with Islam, its position of whether it is a separate religion or a sect of Islam is sometimes controversial among Muslim scholars.

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Druze are not considered Muslims by those belonging to orthodox Islamic schools of thought.

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The fatwa declares that the Druze are Muslims because they recite the twofold Shahada, and believe in the Qur'an and monotheism and do not oppose Islam in word or deed.

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Muslims regard Muhammad as the final and paromount prophet sent by God, to the Druze, Muhammad is exalted as one of the seven prophets sent by God in different periods of history.

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Scholars argue that Druze recite the Shahada in order to protect their religion and their own safety, and to avoid persecution by Muslims.

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Christianity and Druze are Abrahamic religions that share a historical traditional connection with some major theological differences.

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Contact between Christian communities and the Unitarian Druze led to the presence of mixed villages and towns in Mount Lebanon, Chouf, Jabal al-Druze, the Galilee region, Mount Carmel, and Golan Heights.

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The Maronite Catholic and the Druze founded modern Lebanon in the early Eighteenth Century, through a governing and social system known as the "Maronite-Druze dualism" in the Mount Lebanon Mutasarrifate.

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Druze doctrine teaches that Christianity is to be "esteemed and praised" as the Gospel writers are regarded as "carriers of wisdom".

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Figures in the Old Testament such as Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, and Jethro are considered important prophets of God in the Druze faith, being among the seven prophets who appeared in different periods of history.

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In 1948, many Druze volunteered for the Israeli army and no Druze villages were destroyed or permanently abandoned.

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Since the establishment of the state of Israel, the Druze have demonstrated solidarity with Israel and distanced themselves from Arab and Islamic radicalism.

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The Jewish-Druze partnership was often referred as "a covenant of blood" in recognition of the common military yoke carried by the two peoples for the security of the country.

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Israeli Druze do not consider themselves Muslim, and see their faith as a separate and independent religion.

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Figures in the Hebrew Bible such as Adam, Noah, Abraham, and Moses are considered important prophets of God in the Druze faith, being among the seven prophets who appeared in different periods of history.

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Druze faith extended to many areas in the Middle East, but most of the modern Druze can trace their origin to the Wadi al-Taym in Southern Lebanon, which is named after an Arab tribe Taym Allah which, according to Islamic historian al-Tabari, first came from the Arabian Peninsula into the valley of the Euphrates where they had been Christianized prior to their migration into Lebanon.

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Travelers like Niebuhr, and scholars like Max von Oppenheim, undoubtedly echoing the popular Druze belief regarding their own origin, have classified them as Arabs.

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Archaeological assessments of the Druze region have proposed the possibility of Druze descending from Itureans, who had inhabited Mount Lebanon and Golan Heights in late classic antiquity, but their traces fade in the Middle Ages.

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Lebanese Christians and Druze became a genetic isolate in the predominantly Islamic world.

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Researchers noted that the Druze villages contained a striking range of high frequency and high diversity of the X haplogroup, suggesting that this population provides a glimpse into the past genetic landscape of the Near East at a time when the X haplogroup was more prevalent.

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