Do Muslims Believe In The Doctrine of Progress

Tom Facchine

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Channel: Tom Facchine

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AI: Summary © The speakers discuss the myths of modernity and the importance of culture in modern times. They explore the idea of theological fruits of technology and theology, and how it is often misunderstood. They also discuss the importance of avoiding cultural influences and not interpreting outside events.
AI: Transcript ©
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One of the myths of modernity, part of the doctrine of progress is that globalization is a new thing. Globalization is not a new thing, okay. In fact, there were types of globalization that existed before the modern era before industrialization. And those forms of globalization were probably a lot more humane and enjoyable than the ones that we're experiencing. Now, there's lots of information online, there's many historians that write books about, you know, there's Abbulu vote and her and the book, I think, before European hegemony, if I'm remembering correctly, and all these years, the Indian Ocean trade, and all these are the Silk Road, all these sorts of networks that

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existed were Cultures and Ideas and faiths, you know, cross pollinated, and kind of we're in conversation with each other, however, on a parodic Matic level, because as Muslims, we don't necessarily believe I don't think that there's merit to the doctrine of progress within Islam. I think that goes against the sense of time that is inherent in the Quran that Allah subhanaw taala tells us, we don't necessarily look to those sorts of cross cultural exchanges, as always a good thing. It's not an inherent good, like, for example, I'll give an example. Today's culture, a lot of modernists, they believe that we live in the best possible time. I mean, we have the philosophy of

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the Greeks, and we have the morals of Christianity. And then we have the Enlightened religion of secularism. And we have the technological fruits of the Industrial Revolution, the scientific revolution, we live in the best possible times, of course, not realizing that we're killing the earth and about seven, maybe herland to nuclear war at the same time. That's another point. But this is kind of their idea that, okay, we take the best from all these sorts of places, and we kind of cobble it together and that produces something great. Well, that does that is true, that does hold water when it comes to things like food, or when it comes to things like medicine and things that

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have to do with the dunya. But we as Muslims reject that sort of frame when it comes to things like religion and thought, not all thought for talking again about medical thought thought that has to do with the dunya technology and things like that, sure, but when it comes to theology, when it comes to who is Allah, okay, we don't believe in this materialism, that these are people generating these ideas, and as they interact with other other people, then they're going to refine their ideas. And this is an old Orientalist trope that Orientalist scholars use to talk about Islam as well. It's really just Christianity, you know, or it's really just Judaism, or it's really just this pre

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Islamic cult that just formed, you know, that's not what we're talking about. We believe that theological truth is something that is given by Allah subhana wa, tada. And then why is that significant? Because then if ideas get added to it, or interpretations get imposed upon it from outside, that's actually a deviation. That's actually something that is a heresy, that's actually something that needs to be corrected. So we have to sort of this bifurcated, you know, trajectories, we have this one trajectory of like everything that has to do with the dunya. And yes, if people interact, and add and change and adopt, and whatever, then this is a good thing. Again, medical

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technology and knowledge and information and food and trade and all these sorts of things. But if we talk about what's the truth from the Divine, what's the truth that was sent to us from the Creator, then we got to keep that as pure and pristine as possible. But we've got to keep it as the original message that it was revealed as and if it's affected, or the interpretation of it is affected by outside forces, then this is actually something that's a travesty. And this is something that's happened to many religions, Christianity, and in addition to Judaism, with Neo Platonism, Greek philosophy, the Neoplatonic sort of strain more prominent than others when it came to interpreting

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Okay, the texts and forming the theology, right, you had an an external, completely foreign sort of paradigm, or way of looking at the world being imposed upon a religious text. And now we have all these sorts of, you know, points of dissonance that we have to square we have to reconcile, and it comes to something that's very, very contrived, like the Trinity and the divinity of Christ and all these sorts of things. So when it comes to Islam, we would reject those outside influences. We say that no, we don't need Greek philosophy to interpret the Quran. We don't need Neo Platonism to tell us, you know, that the soul our individual souls emanated from the collective universal soul know or

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that or that God is ineffable. He both exists and doesn't exist at the same time. This is nonsense. This is not how Allah spoke about himself. This is not what Allah subhanaw taala revealed to us in his text and Alhamdulillah as Muslims, we are the only tradition that has actually kept pristine and kept preserved the texts themselves, right. So we implore people to interpret those texts as they were intended to be interpreted and not viewed, not via any sort of external outside lens.