The Ummah is the body of believers in Islam. It trancends all nationalities and ethnicities and is the concept that makes brothers and sisters of Muslims be they Iowa farmboys or cobblers in downtown Tehran. Similar in concept, but broader in scope than the common definition of the church in Christianity, the Ummah trancends neighborhoods. One does not say that one is a member of "my ummah" and another Muslim is a member of such-and-such ummah, for example. All who believe in God and the Last Day and bear witness that he is the only god and Muhammad (SAW) is his messenger are members of the ummah. The health and well-being of the Ummah is a concern for all who are Muslim.

Hamza Yusuf said that he feels that ummah really means civilization.