Caliphate/Ottoman and Identity: Now for some questions. As it was mentioned earlier via Alex Taylor about a strong link to the Islamic faith and the Caliphate in the early years, I was wondering if the dissolution of the Caliphate, and later the Ottoman Empire, had any dramatic shifts on Muslim identity in the sense of having a large nation/community to be part of not exist anymore on a geo-political level.
During the Caliphate's times, how common was it for Muslims for move/grow up in lands outside the empire? In such cases, would non-Caliphate Muslims be considered part of the nation? Did they view themselves as having a relationship/citizenship to the country in spite of being under another government power?
Nationalism was not a thing that existed during the possibly sayyid (pre-Ottoman) caliphates. You either were a part of the land you worked, a part of your clan/tribe, or nobility. There are a lot of proto-nationalist events during this period (and uniting the Arab tribes is one of these), but the concept of the nation-state as you think of it didn't start until the 18th century, and only really took hold in the 19th and 20th centuries.
During the rise of the Rashidun and Umayyad caliphates, nearly every Muslim would be subject to the Caliph simply because the religion was largely spread by conquest (with some notable exceptions - it was spread by trade across the Sahara), and people converted to become first-class citizens.
After the battle of Tours, struggles with the Zunbils, Byzantines, and India, the Islamic empire began contracting. Some may have settled in the areas they temporarily held during this period and kept their faith, but this would have been a vanishingly small proportion.
The next major event was the rise of the Abbasid and Fatamid (Shia) Caliphates, with the Umayyad Caliphate remaining in control of much of the Iberian peninsula. Presumably, if you were a Muslim during this period, your ultimate overlord would still be one of the caliphs, although this was often little more than the true ruler keeping in contact with the Caliph and maintaining good relations with them.
This didn't always work out well. The Caliph would play powers against each other - e.g. backing the Samanids against the Saffarids. These Persian dynasties worked heavily to proselytize the Turks, however, and this led to the rise of Seljuq and Alp Tigin. The Seljuqs and Ghaznavids carved out huge territories at the expense of everyone around them, and though they nominally nodded to the Abbasid Caliph, this didn't always work out in the Caliph's favor. The Caliph could not defend Baghdad without help, and the Seljuqs took it.
Shortly after the Seljuqs took Baghdad, they conquered Anatolia. This led to the Byzantine Emperor making a plea to the Pope, and this resulted in a minor event you may have heard of called the Crusades. Parts of Anatolia was restored to the Byzantines, but because the Byzantines never bothered actually helping the Crusaders, the Crusaders took everything from Edessa on south and tried to administer them on their own.
Likewise, in Hispania, the Umayyads were slowly losing to the Christian reconquest of Iberia.
This would have been the first time Muslims would have been in territory ruled notably by not-Muslims, or a major Islamic power that didn't think much anything of anyone claiming to be the head of the religion (the Seljuqs). Given the fact that the Crusaders were able to maintain their state until active attempts to reclaim them were made, and given that these active attempts sometimes backfired, I'd be skeptical of any claim that the Muslims of the period would have considered the Caliph to be anyone special. I mean, both the Abbasid and Umayyad caliphs were losing war after war, battle after battle.
The Abassids had a brief moment of recovery.
Then Ghengis Khan came and wrecked things. Muslims believed this was the end of the world until the Il-Khan converted.
After this... the sayyid caliphs were never again a serious power.
As the Byzantine empire collapsed, a Turk going by the name of Osman proclaimed independence from the Seljuks, and some decades later, after the conquest of Edirne, they claimed the title of Caliph. You need to look at their lineage rather funny to make this work, but okay.
I'm not sure how seriously it was taken in 1362, but by the 16th century, every other Islamic power was losing ground to the technological, industrial, and organizational supremacy of the West. Even a century earlier, though, the writing was on the wall - England was able to project ten thousand men wherever they pleased and there was nothing any Muslim navy could do about it, except hide
Or get Dutch help, but that's another story.
So the Ottoman Caliph was accepted as Caliph mostly because he was the only one actually making meaningful gains against Christendom. A few Mamluk victories against Crusader rump states aside.
After the 19th century, the Ottomans were the only
Islamic power which was not in one form or another paying tribute to Christian powers, though they did give many concessions to western powers (outlawing Caucasian slavery, etc.).
In 1914, the Sheikh-al-Islam attempted to proclaim Jihad, calling all Muslims - even in allied countries - to take up arms and fight against the allied powers.
This fell on its face, in part because the Emir of Mecca
wisely called bullshit on this. I'm not sure it would have worked even if he did support the Ottomans - hyper-conservatism in Islam is really quite new.
I mean, consider that in the tenth century scholars inside the Caliphate were deriding Islam as a Christian heresy, and the Caliph was fine with this
. Try doing that now, even in predominantly Christian nations.