Bilal ibn Rabah (Arabic: بلال بن رباح) or Bilal al-Habashi (580-640 CE) was an African ofEthiopian heritage companion of Islamic prophet Muhammad, born in Mecca who is considered as the first muezzin chosen by the prophet himself.
He was among the emancipated slaves freed by Abu Bakr (see Muhammad’s views on slavery) and was known for his beautiful voice with which he called people to their prayers. His name can also be known as, “Bilal ibn Riyah” or “ibn Rabah” and he is sometimes known as “Bilal al-Habashi” or “Bilal the one from Habesha (today’s Ethiopia)”. He died sometime between 638 to 642, when he was just over sixty years old.
Bilal Ibn Rabah, was an emancipated slave of key importance in Islam. He is said to have been one of the most trusted and loyal Sahabah (companion) of Muhammad. His respected stature during the birth of Islam is often cited by Muslims as evidence of the importance of pluralismand racial equality in the foundations of the religion.
If there is some disagreement concerning the hard facts of Bilal’s life and death, his importance on a number of levels is incontestable. Muezzin guilds, especially those in Turkey and Africa, have traditionally venerated the original practitioner of their noble profession, andAfrican Muslims as a whole feel a special closeness and kinship to him; he was an Ethiopian, after all, who had been exceptionally close to Muhammad, and is a model of steadfastness and devotion to the faith.
For picking keywords cf: http://blackarabia.blogspot.com/2011/09/bilal-b-ribah-not-first-black-muslim.html
like “arabian racism” but
- How to identify credible (academic etc) streak which are handling this subject (Do they exist?) -
“Intra-Islam” racism - “intra-Muslim” racism (some hits?)
[Source: An African-American Muslim Woman Speaks: Using Autoethnography to Examine, Ajeenah Latifah Sharif, Proquest 2009 (University of Louisiana)]
- Amina Wadud (?)
- Karen Fraser Wyche
- Karen Isaksen Leonard
- Jamillah Karim