Archives for the ‘ Islam ’ Category

Islam and Democracy (part 2)

By • Feb 7th, 2011 • Category: Islam, Lectures

There has been an ongoing debate in Western academic circles and popular press about the compatibility of political democracy with Islam: can Islamic nations retain their faith and still embrace modern democratic institutions? Some analysts are skeptical and argue that at the end, Muslims have to choose between their religion and democracy. They claim that until Islam is relegated to the sidelines of Muslim life, their societies cannot enjoy progress, modern civilization and democracy.

Muslim scholars and political activists have vigorously debated this issue for over a century. Generally speaking, two camps have emerged: reformers and conservatives. Conservatives believe that political democracy is not compatible with Islam; they claim that Islam has an authentic form of government commonly known as the Caliphate- a system of government where an observant and pious ruler leads the state and ensures that the orthodox Islamic legal code is enforced. Muslim Reformers, on the other hand, argue that authentic Islam does not have any specific form of government. In every historical era, Muslims are free to choose a form of government that is in line with their religious values and responsive to the demands of the times. For this group, democracy is compatible with Islam- its principles and institutions can best safeguard Islam’s social values and facilitate the modernization of a stagnant Islamic world.

This lecture aims to shed some light on this important debate and examine the challenges facing the Islamic world in its pursuit of democratic transformation.



Islam and Decmocracy (part 1)

By • Feb 7th, 2011 • Category: Islam, Lectures

There has been an ongoing debate in Western academic circles and popular press about the compatibility of political democracy with Islam: can Islamic nations retain their faith and still embrace modern democratic institutions? Some analysts are skeptical and argue that at the end, Muslims have to choose between their religion and democracy. They claim that until Islam is relegated to the sidelines of Muslim life, their societies cannot enjoy progress, modern civilization and democracy.

Muslim scholars and political activists have vigorously debated this issue for over a century. Generally speaking, two camps have emerged: reformers and conservatives. Conservatives believe that political democracy is not compatible with Islam; they claim that Islam has an authentic form of government commonly known as the Caliphate- a system of government where an observant and pious ruler leads the state and ensures that the orthodox Islamic legal code is enforced. Muslim Reformers, on the other hand, argue that authentic Islam does not have any specific form of government. In every historical era, Muslims are free to choose a form of government that is in line with their religious values and responsive to the demands of the times. For this group, democracy is compatible with Islam- its principles and institutions can best safeguard Islam’s social values and facilitate the modernization of a stagnant Islamic world.

This lecture aims to shed some light on this important debate and examine the challenges facing the Islamic world in its pursuit of democratic transformation.



Jihad: Myths and Misconceptions

By • Feb 7th, 2011 • Category: Islam, Lectures

Lecture Title: Jihad: Clarification of Myths and Misconceptions

Abstract: Principles of Sprituality and Islam

Time: August 2007