23 August 2005

A Humane Future

Thanks to Harry's Place and a recent petition the work of Fareena Alam, the editor of Q-News has come to my attention and her essay on "A humane Muslim future", which makes some interesting points:

"As Fuad Nahdi points out, contemporary political Islam offers a religion to die for; classical Islam offers a religion to live for. Without the latter the great achievements of Muslim civilisation (so celebrated and extolled by Islamists) would not have been possible."

"Wahhabi Islam that takes as its starting-point a literal, static interpretation of the sacred texts. It is a movement that tore down the four mihrabs in Mecca. During the last four decades, funded by petrodollars and mass-produced literature, it has hijacked much of the popular theological debates within Islam, particularly in the west and the Arab world."

"The whole problem with Bin Ladenism and its related perversions is that while they use the language of Islam and appeal to community, they neglect its moral and ethical tenets. Emotion and outrage is no basis for a solution to the current malaise."

"We need to revive those musical and artistic traditions that have begun to vanish. A people without a cultural agenda, that particularises and localises religious expression, present no hope for their young people. "

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