Previous Issue - September/October 2006

The Editor’s Desk

Not without an intellectual breakthrough

In historical parlance we know of ups and downs and of turning points. The two, however, may not be confused. While the former denotes a continuity of the status quo, the latter is indicative of a break away with the past. The recent victory of Hizbullah though a positive development should not be seen as a turning point. Nor should we let this event hijack the intellectual discourse in the Muslim world.... view more


Islamism Is A Viable Political System

Kaleem Kawaja

In the last twenty-five years the Muslim world has witnessed a very significant increase in the appeal of Islamism among their people. The overthrow of monarchy and the emergence of the masses-based leadership of the ayatollahs in Iran; the demand for incorporating Sharia as the law of the land; the appeal to incorporate Nizam-e-mustafa in Muslim countries; the vehement opposition to Western military attacks in Iraq and Afghanistan among Muslims all over the world; the global Muslim backing t... view more

From crusade to Islamic fascism

Abdus Sattar Ghazali

As we approach the fifth anniversary of 9/11 terrorist attacks and the "war on terror," American Muslim community is alarmed and dismayed at President George Bush's remarks that that "this nation is at war with Islamic fascists."... view more

Religion, Reason and Violence: Pope Benedict XVI and Islam

Prof. Hans Koechler

In his lecture entitled “Faith, Reason and the University: Memories and Reflections,”[1] Pope Benedict XVI intended to demonstrate the compatibility of the Christian faith with reason (λόγος) as defined in classical Greek philosophy. He did so, regrettably, at the expense of Islam and Prophet Mohammed, reviving anti-Islamic prejudices of the Middle Ages. In the present context of increasing tensions between Islam and the West, caused to a considerable extent by Western... view more


The Philosophical Foundations of Civilizational Dialogue

Dr. Hans Köchler

Preliminary remarks Upon the end of the East-West conflict – when decades-old enemy stereotypes along ideological lines had suddenly vanished – a new paradigm has been emerging from Western think tanks for the categorization of international relations, namely that of the "clash of civilizations." The term was originally coined by Bernard Lewis in an essay analyzing the increasing alienation between the Western and Muslim world (1990).[1] Samuel Huntington's treatise of 1993[2] has taken up th... view more

One Father, Three Dysfunctional Offspring: On the ‘problematic’ aspects of monotheism

Asma Barlas

I have been invited to comment on the “problematic” aspects of monotheism and I should confess at the outset that I intend to pick a quarrel with the very title of this event that very problematically conflates God with Father. Even though the Father/ing of God is more Catholic than it is Jewish or Islamic, I intend to focus on it because it seems to me that Muslims have ended up conflating monotheism with patriarchy (rule by the father) even though we do not view God as Father.... view more

Islam, Madrasas and Cultural 'Arabisation': Insights from India

Yoginder Sikand

Introduction Madrasas, or Islamic seminaries, are much in the news today. Western and Indian non-Muslim media depictions of madrasas are almost invariably negative, alarmist and sensationalist. Madrasas are routinely accused of being 'dens of terror' and as allegedly churning out 'fanatic' and 'fundamentalist' 'jihadist time-bombs'. They are said to be in league with 'anti-national elements' and advocates of 'pan-Islamism', plotting to destroy the unity of India. They are also accused of pr... view more

Decline of Islamic Civilizations - Causes - Time for a New Paradigm

Mirza A. Beg

Introduction - Civilization: Civilizations rise and decay, empires rise and fall. They may at times be coeval, but have different dynamics. Empire building entails hegemony of a people over others, expressed in the person of the ruler, often with manipulated religious trappings. Civilization is the flourishing of excellence of a civic idea, supported by peaceful flowering of the arts and pursuit of knowledge in which many ethnicities and religions may participate.... view more


Reconfiguring Interfaith & Intrafaith Understanding

H.E.Dr. Abdulaziz Altwaijri's Address

... view more

All Along

By All Along

At a congressional hearing this week, James Hansen, the NASA climate scientist who warming, compared the chief executives of ompared the chief executivesompared the chief executives... view more

It Was Oil, All Along

By Bill Moyers and Michael Winship

At a congressional hearing this week, James Hansen, the NASA climate scientist who exactlyAt a congressional hearing this week, James Hansen, the NASA climate scientist who exactly... view more

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