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Martyr

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The Oxford Dictionary of Islam What is This? Covers the religious, political, and social spheres of global Islam in the modern world

    Martyr

    Arabic shahid. One who suffers or loses his or her life in the process of carrying out religious duty. Death during pilgrimage, from a particularly virulent or painful disease, or in childbirth is also considered an act of martyrdom. A martyr is believed to have been rendered free from sin by virtue of the meritorious act. Due to their purity, martyrs are buried in the clothes in which they died and are not washed prior to burial. They are entitled to immediate entry to paradise and enjoy special status there, since their faith has been sufficiently tested. Some Sunni theologians have declared ritual acts of fasting, regular prayer, Quran reading, filial devotion, and rectitude in tax collection types of moral and ethical martydom. Shiism in particular valorizes martyrs, beginning with the martyrdom of Husayn in 680 .

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