Table of Contents: Islamic Studies Level 8

ChapterTopicDescription
1 Divine Names The Qur’ān says the most beautiful names belong to Allāh. These names tell us much more than simply the obvious meanings. To understand the deeper meanings of the names, we can classify them in different categories. This lesson discusses some of the categories and helps us understand the deeper meanings of Allāh’s beautiful names.  
2 Objective of the Qur’ān  The main objective of the Qur’ān is to provide guidance. But there are many other objectives. Each of these objectives is also one of the names for the Qur’ān. This lesson discusses the objectives of the Qur’ān and their relative importance in our lives. 
3 Hadīth: Collection and Classification  Hadīth are not only the sayings of Rasūlullāh (S)—they are much more than that. Students will learn about the structure, types, purpose, and classification of hadīth. They will also learn about the collectors of hadīth. 
4 Madhhab: A Brief Overview  The role of Madhhab is undeniable in Islam. What are Madhhab—are they sects or are they merely a way of approaching religion? This lesson analyzes four major madhāhibs in Islam and discusses their founders and main ideologies. 
5 Hope, Hopefulness, Hopelessness  All believers are required to express hope when everything appears to fall apart. Hope provides strength and direction. On the other hand, a disbeliever feels hopeless when disaster strikes. This lesson discusses the relative importance of hope, hopefulness, and hopelessness. 
6 Trial in Life: Everybody Will Experience It  All believers will experience trials in their lives. Even prophets had to undergo trials. Trials make us better people. Those who do not have strong faith lose hope when they face difficulty. This lesson describes some of these trials, why Allāh puts us through them, and what we can do when we are faced with a trial. 
7 Friends - Friendship: Who is a Good Friend  We need to exercise caution about who we befriend. Good friends can help us become better, and many “good” friends can be harmful. Students will learn what to look for when they make friends and what types of friendships they should avoid. 
8 Friendship with Non-Muslims  We live in a predominantly non-Muslim environment. Many of our friends are non-Muslim. Can we have friendships with non-Muslims? The Qur’ān says we should not have friendships with non-Muslims, except under certain conditions. This lesson discusses the issue of non-Muslim friendships.
9 Dating: How Islam Looks at the Issue  Dating is an acceptable social behavior in the West, but Dating is prohibited in Islam. This lesson discusses dating issues for Muslim youths and provides direction on how to avoid temptation and how to follow the proper guidance.
10 Duties Towards Parents  Duties towards parents are clearly mentioned in the Qur’ān. What are the reasons for these duties? This lesson discusses the issue and shows why duties towards parents are second most important duty after our prime duty to worship Allāh. 
11 Islam for Middle School Students  The middle-school stage represents the formative years of most students. During middle school, students begin to develop distinct identities and face increasing challenges in life. During this period, Muslim students also learn how to deal with their Islamic identity and try to fulfill their religious obligations. This lesson provides some of the necessary guidance during this particular time.   
12 The Battle of Badr  The Battle of Badr was the first large-scale battle fought by the Muslims. The battle did not start all of a sudden—several events sparked its beginning. The purpose of the lesson is to analyze the reasons for the battle, how battle preparations were made, how divine help reached the Muslims, and who were the major beneficiaries of the battle.
13 The Battle of Uhud  The Battle of Uhud was the second major battle fought by the Muslims. Students will learn how the battle began and how Rasūlullāh (S) orchestrated a master plan to win the battle. Despite Allāh’s help, the Muslims did not win the battle. However, early Muslims learned important lessons from this battle. Students will learn how to apply these lessons in their own lives.
14 Banu Qaynuqa: Threat Within Madīnah  Soon after the Battle of Badr, the Jewish tribe Banu Qaynuqa began its enmity against the Muslims. The tribe challenged the Muslims to fight. Muslim efforts to restore peace were foiled. The Muslims had no other choice but to expel the tribe from Madīnah. This lesson explains the developments and puts the story in its proper perspective.
15 Banu Nadīr: Treachery in Madīnah  Soon after the Battle of Uhud, the Jewish tribe Banu Nadīr was expelled from Madīnah. Banu Nadīr broke the peace treaty with the Muslims. What caused the tension between the tribe and the Muslims? Students will learn the historical truth behind one of the cruel conspiracies against the Muslims. 
16 The Battle of Khandaq  This battle was not fought face-to-face on a battlefield. Yet the outcome of the battle had a lasting impact on the Muslims and the polytheists all over Arabia. The treachery of Banu Qurayzah nearly destroyed the Muslims, but with Allāh’s help, the crisis was averted. This lesson provides a brief overview of the battle and its outcome. 
17 Banu Qurayzah  Banu Qurayzah nearly destroyed the Muslims when they conspired with the polytheist Quraish to attack the Muslims. Before they could launch the attack, a misunderstanding caused a rift between them, and the polytheists. Muslims were saved from an imminent attack. Soon after the Battle of Khandaq, some members of Banu Qurayzah were punished for their treachery. This lesson exposes the truth. 
18 Sūrah Al-Ahzāb on the Battle of Khandaq  Several ayāt of sūrah Al-Ahzāb discuss some of the critical moments during the Battle of Khandaq. The Muslim defense against 10,000 confederate soldiers was seriously challenged. This lesson will help students learn how to relate Qur’ānic ayāt to the incident and get a clearer picture of the battle. 
19 Hudaibiyah Treaty: A Clear Victory  The Hudaibiyah treaty was largely viewed as a defeat for the Muslims, but the Qur’ān confirmed that it was a clear victory. Soon after signing the treaty, Muslims could see why it was a victory. The treaty helped shape the future of Islam. The purpose of this lesson is to introduce a brief account of the treaty and discuss its lasting impact on the history of Islam.  
20 Mission to Tabūk: A Test of Steadfastness  The expedition to Tabūk exposed the Muslims to a severe test. Many of them failed the test and many others emerged successful. The Muslims did not fight the Byzantines, but the expedition turned out to others be a show of power. When the Muslims later began conquering the outlying areas, the experience of Tabūk helped them. This lesson discusses the expedition and its twists and turns.  
21 Farewell Pilgrimage  The Farewell Pilgrimage is remembered in the history of Islam as a significant event. Rasūlullāh (S) delivered a famous sermon during the pilgrimage. This sermon summarizes the key responsibilities of Muslims. This lesson introduces students to the sermon and provides an overview of the Farewell Pilgrimage. 
22 Performance of Hajj  The performance of Hajj requires a clear understanding of the ritual. Behind the ritual lies important spiritual benefits. Students will learn each step of Hajj, beginning with the first day and ending on the last day. Minor variations are also discussed in the lesson. 
23 Paradise and Hell  The concepts of Paradise and Hell are emphasized throughout the Qur’ān and Hadīth. Students will learn why Paradise and Hell were created and the qualities of these two places. Narrations and graphic images about the two places are interpreted literally and metaphorically. Students will learn how they can avoid going to Hell and how enter Paradise. 
24 Finality of the Prophethood  Muhammad (S) is the final messenger. The Qur’ān and Hadīth confirmed this, yet during the past 200 years, several people have claimed to be prophets. Students will learn that it is not possible for any new prophets to come, and Muhammad (S) is the final messenger in Islam. 
25 Early History of Shī‘ah  Students will be introduced to the origin and the early history of the Shī‘ah. Students will also learn what led to the shift among Muslims and what prompted the early Shī‘ah to disagree with the majority of Muslims at that time.
26 Umayyad Dynasty  The short-lived Ummayad Dynasty shaped the early history of Islam. The dynasty was embroiled in bloody battles during its entire period, but it also helped expand the territories of the Muslim empire. However, their downfall was accelerated by several factors. Students will read an overview of the dynasty beginning with its foundation and ending with its downfall.   
27 Abbasid Dynasty  The long-lasting Abbasid Dynasty shifted the focus from mainland Arabia to Iraq. The success of the dynasty was rooted in its administrative system. The dynasty also caused significant expansion of learning and saw the peak of Islamic advancement. Students will learn how the dynasty was formed and the cause of its downfall. 
28 Permitted and Prohibited Food  Students will get an overview of the food laws as mentioned in the Qur’ān. They will learn what types of animals are permissible to eat. However, the meat of some of the permissible animals cannot be eaten if they are not slaughtered in the prescribed manner. They will also learn whether saying “Bismillah” at the time of eating corrects improper slaughtering of an animal.