Urban Places Rich in Islam? – The Ethos of an Islamic City in the Modern World

Istanbul’s enigmatic name mirrors its versatile history. While today Istanbul’s name is considered etymologically related to the quotidian expression of its well-established Christian population εις την Πόλιν (is tim polis, to the city), folk-etymological accounts of Turkish people attibutes its  origin to the phrase Islam bol which means “rich in Islam” (Inalcık 2001). But how can a city be “rich in Islam?” To rephrase the question: What does an idealized vision of an Islamic city look like? Continue reading Urban Places Rich in Islam? – The Ethos of an Islamic City in the Modern World

Shaykh Amin Kholwadia on Theology and Ontology in Medical Ethics

I’m going to try and explain the terminologies so it becomes easier for us to explain what we hope to do with bioethics or Islamic bioethics. Theology as the owner: the study of God and what God wants, God’s will, and what God wants us to believe in. That is the Islamic outlook. Ontology is the study of being and existence: the different layers and levels of being, not of God but of creation. God’s existence does not flow into the existence of creation. There is a separation there according to Islamic metaphysics. We have to be clear from the outset that when we are talking ontology and the theory of being in Islam, we are about not God’s being, but about how God has created being in layers. Continue reading Shaykh Amin Kholwadia on Theology and Ontology in Medical Ethics

Daqīq Al-Kalām Revisited in the Age of Modern Science

In the past, our respected ‘ulamā’ have developed ‘ilm al-kalām to rationally explain the various arguments of ʿaqīdah (Islamic creed). This discipline was further classified into jalīl al-kalām and daqīq al-kalām. The former deals with basic questions of Islamic creed and the latter deals with natural philosophy. Daqīq al-kalām can be said to be our scholars’ best achievement in explaining the natural world under the tenets of Islamic worldview. Continue reading Daqīq Al-Kalām Revisited in the Age of Modern Science

Reflections on Dualism in Blade Runner 2049

Is it possible to know what it is like to want to be desired or loved, without a soul? This thought-provoking question is grappled with throughout the film Blade Runner 2049 (Denis Villeneuve, 2017). The protagonist Officer K (Ryan Gosling) is a Nexus-9 replicant who works for the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) and secretly yearns for real humanity, at least within his programmed limits. His love interest (Ana de Armas as Joi) is but a hologram, yet in her final moments, she attempts to utter the words “I love you.” Before she can finish, her virtual presence is wiped from existence, her data permanently destroyed. Continue reading Reflections on Dualism in Blade Runner 2049

Science, History, and Atheism: Q&A with Asadullah Ali

…the Islamic scientific tradition began to decline once we began to borrow from the West in order to compete with the West (ironically, considering they were then rejecting their own past tradition), and it replaced our former tradition of ingenuity, forcing us into a position where now all we can do is borrow. This, combined with numerous external factors and contemporary issues, is why the Muslim world is where it is today, and it won’t see another Golden Age until it stops relying on traditions outside its own. Continue reading Science, History, and Atheism: Q&A with Asadullah Ali