Reviving Writing

(This article is a follow-up to last week’s “The Lost Art of Writing”) The Print Culture and Dar al Islam A brief gloss on print culture would be instructive in understanding the historical relationship between oral cultures and the written word. The Canadian philosopher Marshall McLuhan’s  (1911 – 1980) The Gutenberg Galaxy (1962)—a study of “print culture” in pre-modern Europe through Gutenberg’s innovations— gives us … Continue reading Reviving Writing

The Lost Art of Writing

Read, O Prophet, in the Name of your Lord Who created— created humans from a clinging clot. Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous, Who taught by the pen— taught humanity what they knew not. Qur’an 96:1-5 [Dr. Mustafa Khattab translation] The qualitative weightiness of the pen (qalam) is measured by the fact that it has been worded in the first verses revealed to … Continue reading The Lost Art of Writing

Technology as a Mode of Secular-Liberal Theology

“Through all his technical inventions and celebrated innovations, man has made himself useless. In recent years technological progress has been explosive: humanity has been successful in obliterating the roles of producer, refiner, transporter, distributor and serviceman. When we manage to also rid ourselves of the role of the consumer, everything will be over. A clanking of robots for some time; then, only deep silence.” Pentti … Continue reading Technology as a Mode of Secular-Liberal Theology

An Introduction to Postmodernism and its Implications

One of the most convoluted paradigms of thought to emerge throughout recorded intellectual history is postmodernism. Postmodernists themselves take pride in Jacques Derrida’s elusive and difficult writing style, presenting it as a protest against elitist standardization of writing [1]. Derrida is considered the founding father of deconstructionist philosophy and one of the main figureheads of postmodernism. A French Jew born and raised in Algeria, his … Continue reading An Introduction to Postmodernism and its Implications

Tasawwuf as Islamic Existentialism: A Meditation

Existence is a strange thing. While it permeates all that is and all that we experience, it eludes our grasp. Existence is the very ground upon which humanity stands and subsists. This ontological realization is known as existentialism. It concerns what it means to exist and its associated consequences, our freedom as beings in the world with intentionality, or even the constraints of our freedom … Continue reading Tasawwuf as Islamic Existentialism: A Meditation

Dawkins’ Illusion: A Refutation of “The God Delusion”

Introduction More than a decade has passed since the release of the infamous The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins. To call it influential would be an understatement, as the book sold more than three million copies in eight years and a number of different authors, including Alvin Plantinga, Michael Ruse, Richard Swinburne, William Lane Craig et al have exhaustively reviewed it. Despite such reviews, the … Continue reading Dawkins’ Illusion: A Refutation of “The God Delusion”

The Islamic Tradition: Philosophy in the Margins

The oft-repeated definition of philosophy is the love of wisdom. However, in Martin Heidegger’s 1955 public lecture, published as, What is Philosophy?, he traces the word, philosophy, to its Greek roots and claims that its Greek form (philosophia) means path. On this path of Greek origins are two parallel paths, which alternatively cross and separate into individual parallel paths. Such crossing and separation is the … Continue reading The Islamic Tradition: Philosophy in the Margins