Radial wrote:
> I am curious to know more about the divisions/schisms/break away groups
> since inception of Islam and the reasons why these divisions occurred.
> Dates, names and reasons for these divisions would be very helpful even
> if these groups do not exist today.
> What questions should the uninformed public ask about beliefs and
> behaviour in order to differentiate between true Muslims and those who
> call themselves Muslim but are members of break away groups?
> Do scriptures highlight what to do, when break away groups instigate
> divisions?
> Pillocks need not respond to my serious questions.

There are two main branches of Islam, Sunni and Shia, and the doctrinal
differences between the two are minor and have to do with who should
have succeeded Prophet Muhammad. Shiahs believe that the Prophet's own
family, and Ali in particular, should have led Muslims while Sunnis
either believe that the most eligible people were chosen, in the
correct order, or one should let bygones be bygones. Shias also tend to
ascribe superhuman qualities to Ali, while Sunnis reject that as

Among Sunnis there have been various "schools of thought," but once
again, the differences have to with philosophy (including
mysticism/sufiism), legalisms, and methodology, not fundamental
beliefs. Sunnis, for the most part, recognize other schools of thought,
[Hanafi, Shafi'i, Maliki, and Hambli ("Wahabis" are actually Hambli's)]
as equally correct. One can also pick and choose from these schools of
thought, and that is increasingly common. Among Shia, however, there
have been some sects, some of which are so radically different from
mainstream Islam that they might as well be different religions.

There are also groups such as the Nation of Islam, Druze, Bahais, and
the Ahmadiyya Movement, which have been declared non-Muslim by the
majority of Muslims and therefore should not be considered as sects of

See also:

[I cannot vouch for the accuracy of this web site, but it would give
you some idea]