The Quest for Islam and Muslim Society

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Since the nineteenth century, the Muslim world has been the subject of discussions that reveal its dire state of affairs. How Muslim intellectuals characterize their own predicament is integral to understanding Muslim articulations for reform, reconstitution, and progress. There are elements that a diverse selection of Muslim intellectuals from various parts of the Muslim world (and beyond) seems to coalesce around, suggestive of a constitution of a shared reform vision. They represent a rigorous intellectual investment in meeting the challenges of modernity, the challenges to Muslim society, and in constituting a trajectory inspiring of change. These elements principally include: the reconciliation of the relationship of Islam to modernity and the “Other”; the reinvigoration of the Islamic civilizational essence and its tawḥidic epistemology; a centralization of Islamic heritage and its values; and a restoration of Islamic epistemology. These elements form the theoretical underpinnings of reform and an Islamic alternative. The anticipation is that there would be revivification and a restoration of Muslim society and civilization, a re-enchantment in modernity, and thus, civilizational reform, renewal, and progress.