Cultural historians are divided as to whether the term "humanism," a product of the Graeco-Roman humanitas ideal, can be applied to the world of medieval Islam. In his chapter entitled "al-Naza al-insaniyya fi'l-fikr al-'arabi" (The Humanist Trend in Arab Thought), 'Abd al-Ral:rman Badawi, reflecting on humanism in Arab thought, states that Greek culture was not unique in creating a humanist ideal. Every high culture, he asserts, produces this phenomenon in its own way. A number of other scholars, such as Louis Gardet, and Mohammed Arkoun have discussed and elaborated on humanism as a feature of Arab-Islamic civilization. In The Rise of Humanism in Classical Islam and the Christian West, George Makdisi has covered all aspects of Islamic learning and rendered the Arabic term adab as humanism.
This article appeared in Universality in Islamic Thought: Rationalism, Science and Religious Belief, Edited by Michael Morony, London: I.B.Tauris, 2014.
This website and Forum have many interesting and thought-provoking posts submitted by various members over a period of many years, and which are difficult to locate. We have gathered this material in one place to provide easy access, and a starting point. Do yourself a favour, read this today.
News & Events
- Breaking new ground with Ziyarat tour
- A tour of 40 cities Ziyarat by reformists Bohras is jointly organized by Central Board of Dawoodi Bohra Community (CBDBC), Bombay, Bohra Youth Association (BYA), Udaipur and Fuli Bai and Zehra Cyclewala Charitable Trust, Surat. The Tour includes Ziyarat at Surat, Ahmadabad, Khambat, Jamnagar, Godhara, Sidhpur, Patan, Jawra, Ahmadnagar, Morbi, Rampura, Ujjain, Burhanpur, Aurangabad and Mumbai. On 23rd May 2014 morning Bhai Tayyebi Zamindar, senior reformist and staunch Gandhiwadi from Ahemdabad and I, Saifuddin Insaf, General Secretary of CBDBC, reached Surat in the morning. more
- Traditional architecture: House form of Bohras in Gujarat
- The history of architecture in India reflects a rich and diversified legacy, not only through the classical examples but also in the display of a rich heritage of vernacular traditions of building. These are spread in several regional environments in the form of a variety of settlement patterns, institutions and dwelling types. more
Bohras and Reform
- No separation please, we are Dawoodi Bohras
- Anyone who has tried to argue the Bohra reformist case is sooner or later met with this response: if you have problems why don't you separate and start your own 'religion'. This response is typical of a mindset that's best captured by the cliché: "If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen." more
- Understanding Dawoodi Bohra faith
- I have no hesitation in admitting that I am not an Islamic scholar. But since I have to defend my faith against un-Islamic practices and innovations introduced by the last two Dais (51st and 52nd), I have tried to understand our Shia-Ismaili-Mustalian-Tayyebi faith through authentic source books and discussion with learned mashaikh. At the age of 68, I want to share my understanding with other knowledgeable readers of this site. more
- Interviews and talks
- Few people understand what the reform movement is about. They think reformists are against the Dai. This is not true. Check out a series of long-ranging interviews and talks to understand why reformists are fighting and what they are fighting for. more
- How can we stop Kothar’s juggernaut?
- I was born in 1939 in a Dawoodi Bohra family. Having been brought up in a traditional Bohra household and later having migrated to North America I ensured that my children were raised in the same tradition. I taught them to read, write and recite Arabic, how to perform wudhu and offer prayers, explained Islam and its sects down to what we are as Dawoodi Bohras. more