The Virtual-Online 'Muzlamic' Series
Date(s) - 03/05/2021
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
by Islamic Courses - Islamic Circles
About this Event
IslamicCourses presents: The Virtual/Online ‘Muzlamic’ Series:
1. [ It’s our Time ] – A discussion series exploring a variety of Islamicate topics related to the specific historical, theological, philosophical, scientific or cultural development of the ummah through the ages.
2. [ This is Their Life ] – A program that explores the thoughts, works, and practices of past and contemporary Muslim scholars, academics and leaders from all sectors of society.
3. [ The Garam Masala Discussion Forum ] – In this programme we hope to explore and address contemporary heated debates/events/topics in the ‘ummahtic’, in a way which is rooted in the spirit of faith and ethics with an eye towards practical utility.
All programmes are FREE – REGISTRATION IS COMPULSORY – ALL WELCOME – Please adjust the timings for your timezone. All times are stated as British Time:
— UPCOMING SESSIONs —
1. BOOK REVIEW DISCUSSION: AL-GHAZALI’S PHILOSOPHICAL THEOLOGY
With author Professor Frank Griffel [Yale University, USA]
and hosted by Imran Iqbal [Whitethread Institute, UK]
The Muslim theologian al-Ghazali, who was active at the turn of the 12th century in Iran, Iraq, and Syria, was one of the most influential theologians of Islam. In this book, Frank Griffel will present the most comprehensive examination to date of the life and thought of this important figure. The book is divided into two parts. In the first, Griffel gives an account of what it known about al-Ghazali’s life, offers brief discussions of his major works, and examines the legacy of his thought by tracing the lineage of his students and followers. In the second part, he provides a systematic exploration of al-Ghazali’s theology. He explicates al-Ghazali’s views on epistemology, cosmology, physical theory, creation, ethics, theodicy, and a host of other topics. Throughout, he offers a serious revision to traditional views of al-Ghazali, showing that his most important achievement was the creation of a new rationalist theology in which he transformed the Aristotelian views of thinkers such as Avicenna to accord with motives that were well-established within Muslim theological discourse. The result is the most thorough available examination of a major thinker.
Date and time: Thursday 25th February 2021 @ 4pm UK/London
2. BOOK REVIEW DISCUSSION: THE HUNDRED YEARS’ WAR ON PALESTINE: A HISTORY OF SETTLER COLONIALISM AND RESISTANCE, 1917-2017
With author Professor Rashid Khalidi [Columbia University, USA]
and hosted by Ismail Patel [Founder of Friends of Al-Aqsa]
A landmark history of one hundred years of war waged against the Palestinians from the foremost US historian of the Middle East, told through pivotal events and family history
In 1899, Yusuf Diya al-Khalidi, mayor of Jerusalem, alarmed by the Zionist call to create a Jewish national home in Palestine, wrote a letter aimed at Theodore Herzl: the country had an indigenous people who would not easily accept their own displacement. He warned of the perils ahead, ending his note, “in the name of God, let Palestine be left alone.” Thus Rashid Khalidi, al-Khalidi’s great-great-nephew, begins this sweeping history, the first general account of the conflict told from an explicitly Palestinian perspective.
Drawing on a wealth of untapped archival materials and the reports of generations of family members–mayors, judges, scholars, diplomats, and journalists–The Hundred Years’ War on Palestine upends accepted interpretations of the conflict, which tend, at best, to describe a tragic clash between two peoples with claims to the same territory. Instead, Khalidi traces a hundred years of colonial war on the Palestinians, waged first by the Zionist movement and then Israel, but backed by Britain and the United States, the great powers of the age. He highlights the key episodes in this colonial campaign, from the 1917 Balfour Declaration to the destruction of Palestine in 1948, from Israel’s 1982 invasion of Lebanon to the endless and futile peace process.
Original, authoritative, and important, The Hundred Years’ War on Palestine is not a chronicle of victimization, nor does it whitewash the mistakes of Palestinian leaders or deny the emergence of national movements on both sides. In reevaluating the forces arrayed against the Palestinians, it offers an illuminating new view of a conflict that continues to this day.
Date and time: Friday 26th February 2021 @ 4pm UK/London
3. BOOK REVIEW DISCUSSION: THE EMPEROR WHO NEVER WAS – DARA SHUKOH IN MUGHAL INDIA
With author Dr Supriya Gandhi [Yale University, USA]
The definitive biography of the eldest son of Emperor Shah Jahan, whose death at the hands of his younger brother Aurangzeb changed the course of South Asian history. Dara Shukoh was the eldest son of Shah Jahan, the fifth Mughal emperor, best known for commissioning the Taj Mahal as a mausoleum for his beloved wife Mumtaz Mahal. Although the Mughals did not practice primogeniture, Dara, a Sufi who studied Hindu thought, was the presumed heir to the throne and prepared himself to be India’s next ruler. In this exquisite narrative biography, the most comprehensive ever written, Supriya Gandhi draws on archival sources to tell the story of the four brothers―Dara, Shuja, Murad, and Aurangzeb―who with their older sister Jahanara Begum clashed during a war of succession. Emerging victorious, Aurangzeb executed his brothers, jailed his father, and became the sixth and last great Mughal. After Aurangzeb’s reign, the Mughal Empire began to disintegrate. Endless battles with rival rulers depleted the royal coffers, until by the end of the seventeenth century Europeans would start gaining a foothold along the edges of the subcontinent. Historians have long wondered whether the Mughal Empire would have crumbled when it did, allowing European traders to seize control of India, if Dara Shukoh had ascended the throne. To many in South Asia, Aurangzeb is the scholastic bigot who imposed a strict form of Islam and alienated his non-Muslim subjects. Dara, by contrast, is mythologized as a poet and mystic. Gandhi’s nuanced biography gives us a more complex and revealing portrait of this Mughal prince than we have ever had.
Date and time: Friday 5th March 2021 @4pm UK/London
4. BOOK REVIEW DISCUSSION: HOW THE WEST STOLE DEMOCRACY FROM THE ARABS: THE SYRIAN ARAB CONGRESS OF 1920 AND THE DESTRUCTION OF ITS LIBERAL-ISLAMIC ALLIANCE
With author Professor Elizabeth F. Thompson [American University Washington, DC, USA]
and hosted by Nasim Ahmed [ Middle East Monitor [MEMO], UK]
When Europe’s Great War engulfed the Ottoman Empire, Arab nationalists rose in revolt against their Turkish rulers and allied with the British on the promise of an independent Arab state. In October 1918, the Arabs’ military leader, Prince Faisal, victoriously entered Damascus and proclaimed a constitutional government in an independent Greater Syria.
Faisal won American support for self-determination at the Paris Peace Conference, but other Entente powers plotted to protect their colonial interests. Under threat of European occupation, the Syrian-Arab Congress declared independence on March 8, 1920 and crowned Faisal king of a “civil representative monarchy.” Sheikh Rashid Rida, the most prominent Islamic thinker of the day, became Congress president and supervised the drafting of a constitution that established the world’s first Arab democracy and guaranteed equal rights for all citizens, including non-Muslims.
But France and Britain refused to recognize the Damascus government and instead imposed a system of mandates on the pretext that Arabs were not yet ready for self-government. In July 1920, the French invaded and crushed the Syrian state. The fragile coalition of secular modernizers and Islamic reformers that had established democracy was destroyed, with profound consequences that reverberate still.
Using previously untapped primary sources, including contemporary newspaper accounts, reports of the Syrian-Arab Congress, and letters and diaries from participants, How the West Stole Democracy from the Arabs is a groundbreaking account of an extraordinary, brief moment of unity and hope—and of its destruction.
Date and time: Saturday 6th March 2021 @5pm UK/London
5. BOOK REVIEW DISCUSSION: MUSLIM COSMOPOLITANISM: SOUTHEAST ASIAN ISLAM IN COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVE
With author Dr Khairudin Aljunied [ The Center for Research on Southeast Asia – www.cenrsea.com ] – Associate Professor of Intellectual and Social History of the Malay World at National University of Singapore (NUS)
Cosmopolitan ideals and pluralist tendencies have been employed creatively and adapted carefully by Muslim individuals, societies and institutions in modern Southeast Asia to produce the necessary contexts for mutual tolerance and shared respect between and within different groups in society. Organised around six key themes that interweave the connected histories of three countries in Southeast Asia – Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia – this book shows the ways in which historical actors have promoted better understanding between Muslims and non-Muslims in the region. Case studies from across these countries of the Malay world take in the rise of the network society in the region in the 1970s up until the early 21st century, providing a panoramic view of Muslim cosmopolitan practices, outlook and visions in the region. Key Features • Organised around 3 key sections: places (covering trade, blogging, sacred spaces); people (covering intellectuals, women); and politics (covering states) • Unique in focusing on Muslim cosmopolitanisms in Southeast Asia • Shows how local, regional and global factors interact to give rise to cosmopolitan forms of thinking • Provides a counterpoint to a perception of Islam as a divisive force in society
Date and time: Sunday 7th March 2021 @12.30pm UK/London
6. BOOK LAUNCH REVIEW DISCUSSION: ISLAMIC THEOLOGY AND THE PROBLEM OF EVIL
With author Dr Safaruk Chowdhury [ The Centre for Islamic Analytic Theology Research – www.islamicanalytictheology.org ] and researcher at Cambridge Muslim College [CMC]
Like their Jewish and Christian co-religionists, Muslims have grappled with how God, who is perfectly good, compassionate, merciful, powerful, and wise permits intense and profuse evil and suffering in the world. At its core, Islamic Theology and the Problem of Evil explores four different problems of evil: human disability, animal suffering, evolutionary natural selection, and Hell.
Each study argues in favor of a particular kind of explanation or justification (theodicy) for the respective evil. Safaruk Chowdhury unpacks the notion of evil and its conceptualization within the mainstream Sunni theological tradition, and the various ways in which theologians and philosophers within that tradition have advanced different types of theodicies. He not only builds on previous works on the topic, but also looks at kinds of theodicies previously unexplored within Islamic theology, such as an evolutionary theodicy.
Distinguished by its application of an analytic-theology approach to the subject and drawing on insights from works of both medieval Muslim theologians and philosophers and contemporary philosophers of religion, this novel and highly systematic study will appeal to students and scholars, not only of theology but of philosophy as well.
Date and time: Saturday 3rd April 2021 @4pm UK/London
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Resources have already been allocated and this is a not-for-profit endevour to raise the levels of religious and cultural literacy to the public and connect academia to wider society it serves to make it making it relevant and transformative.
1. Once you have registered, you will receive an initial confirmation via eventbrite and ON THE DAY of the session, you will be sent a final email with instructions and link.
2. As we have limited allocation of participants, once the link is sent and active, it will be on first come, first basis. We may or not choose to stream the session live on Facebook or YouTube.
3. Program outline will only be provided on the day and there will be plenty of time for Q & A.
4. Participants are requested make their own notes and any recordings by participants are to be kept for private purposes and not to be shared across social media or other online platforms – This is to safeguard the intelectual property of the speakers from any misquotations and misunderstanding during the live sessions. The same applies with the host and organisers.
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