Is Toxic Masculinity Islamic?

A standout moment from early Islamic history is that of Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) who upon being challenged by a woman in a public place, famously declared, “The woman is right, and Umar is wrong.” Muslims, when affirming the position of women in Islam, often repeat this event, which took place when Umar was the Khalifa. The pre-colonial Muslim world is littered … Continue reading Is Toxic Masculinity Islamic?

Faithless Fasting: Ramadan in the Modern Political Economy

One of the biggest challenges for corporate America today is diversity: racial, religious, ethnic, sexual, etc. The holy trinity of corporate professions–management consulting, investment banking, and corporate law–make substantial effort to hire “underrepresented” minorities and portray themselves as more “inclusive” to potential clients and the public. Undoubtedly, there are sincere concerns about improving the kinds of people that are hired as a way to grow … Continue reading Faithless Fasting: Ramadan in the Modern Political Economy

The Selfie Epidemic

For centuries, we have measured ourselves against Greco-Roman standards of perfection. While the tendency to live up to powerful cultural expectations predates Ancient Greece, the historical foundations of western individualism is often traced back to this period, where ecological factors helped nurture a proto-entrepreneurial guile amongst citizens, eventually contributing towards a culture of self-sufficiency where people viewed themselves as individuals rather than part of a … Continue reading The Selfie Epidemic

Shaykh Abdal Hakim Murad on Riding the Tiger of Modernity

Shaykh Abdal Hakim Murad, also known as Professor Timothy Winter, is one of the foremost public Muslim intellectuals of this era. Involved in a number of projects, from heading a college in the U.K. to lecturing around the world and authoring works of scholarship and polemics (we reviewed one of his books here), his analysis is worthy of attention. Three years ago, he gave a … Continue reading Shaykh Abdal Hakim Murad on Riding the Tiger of Modernity

Traversing Tradition: Exploring the Foundations

The modern world is rapidly changing, with transformations that affect all facets of life including family, the economy, the environment, war, politics, and religion. Understanding how the world operates allows us to take ownership of who we are, why we think the things we do, and why we do the things we do. Failing to understand modernity is like being the passenger in a car, … Continue reading Traversing Tradition: Exploring the Foundations

Ideology and Globalization

Defining “ideology” is a burdensome feat, as the term is used in a plethora of diverse contexts. Friedrich Engels, a prominent German philosopher, used the term to refer to abstract ideas that were independent of tangible existence. Later, Marxists described it as a malicious veil blinding the masses to the reality of their exploitation. Ultramodern colloquial usage takes a simpler approach by imposing the term … Continue reading Ideology and Globalization

The Aesthetics of Islamic Law

When Islamic law is discussed, particularly in a polemical context, it is usually evaluated from either a moral or a practical angle. Those who espouse its virtues tend to say something along the lines of: God, being our creator, deserves our obedience (aka, a moral argument); and His ordinances are best attuned to human nature (aka, a practical observation). Very rarely are purely aesthetic considerations … Continue reading The Aesthetics of Islamic Law

Islamising Language: Ontology in the Modern Era

I’ve spent the past few months in perplexed introspection. I’ve been reflecting on the fact that cognitive scientists have gathered a tremendous amount of evidence that suggests that the language(s) we speak changes not only how we see the world, but also who we fundamentally are. Language influences our values and shapes how we code our experiences [1,2]. Knowing this, I’ve questioned how much of … Continue reading Islamising Language: Ontology in the Modern Era

The Incoherence of Modern Reformists

The modern era, with the ethical conundrums it bears, understandably causes people to search for answers that speak to their present condition. To this end, countless new movements have appeared laying claim to “true” Islam. Qur’anists, Perennialists, Qadianis, Progressives, and various new political movements are but a subset of this phenomenon. Most of these groups market themselves as either a “revival” or “reformation” of Islam … Continue reading The Incoherence of Modern Reformists

The Death of Community and the Rise of Individualism

A person thrust into a new environment first scans their surroundings for danger. As such, they have a heightened attention to detail, a cautiousness of the phenomena occuring around them, and an awareness of the effects on their person. However, if raised from birth in a particular world, the nature of their environment and its effects would remain unseen, for it has always been there, … Continue reading The Death of Community and the Rise of Individualism