I came across this piece of information on an Islamic website today, and marvelled ;-)
Look how the very dark situation the whole world was in at the time when Islam began, is described by the author. But in a brief sentence, he says: 'no-one seemed to take any notice of this malaise'. This supposed malaise cannot have been too bad then? May I suggest that Islam did not spread in the Mediteranean world because the darkness of those days, but because Islamic armies conquered those areas? It took hundreds of years before the number of Muslims became a majority in those lands. The islamization was a very slow process and the resistance was great. People did NOT flock to Islam in great numbers. Here the text I read on this website:
At the time of the advent of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him), the entire world was steeped in darkness. Belief in multiple gods and worship of idols had shaken the foundation of civilized life. The light of civilization had faded over the then known world from Egypt to India and from Greece to China. Banners of the Roman and Persian empires immersed in the worst forms of tyranny, and terrorism fluttered over the degraded humanity.
Not only did the rulers claim to be the representatives of God but, in some cases, they also claimed to be gods with whom fiefdoms and religious orders were allied. The combined forces of the three had strangled the common people, who were already overburdened with heavy taxes, bribes, and grafts and were forced to labor under duress.
No one seemed to take any notice of this malaise, and no one provided any remedy or escape from this course. The then going overlords sank in moral degradation, and the devastating wars and frequent changes in ruling dynasties further grounded the common people under heavier strain, instead of giving any relief to them.