Dynamics of Islam: An Exposition
This book essentially deals with the dynamic character of Islam as found in its background and formative stages. The status of Makkah as an open trading centre and the personal acquaintance of the Prophet Muhammad with his own environs, as well as with the outside of Makkah, played a role in this dynamic character which facilitated the liberal absorption of pre-Islamic ideas.
During its formative stages, Islam liberally borrowed and integrated many religious and non-religious elements from both Arab and non-Arab civilizations.
For the Five Pillars of Islam, beginning with the name Allah, the One God of Islam, all the way up to the Pilgramage, a host of elements were borrowed and integrated into the Islamic system mutatis mutandis, and maximum flexibility allowed for their performance.
For constituting theUmmah, the Prophet took his lead not only from the Qur'an but also from the Judeo-Christian tradition and characterized it with unprecedented dynamism and flexibility
Likewise, in the course of constituting the Shari'ah, Muslim jurists exercised utmost catholicism and dynamism in their use of its sources, other than the Qur'an, in order to make it the guiding charter for the universal ummah for all times and under all circumstances.
The rise of Sufism, not rooted in Islam as an organised platform for spreading Islam, marked the climax of Islamic dynamism and liberalism; this opened the door wide to allow almost unrestricted interaction with non-Muslim cultures which permitted the introduction of alien elements into the Islamic system, and these were utilised by the Sufis very liberally.
Finally, in the sphere of diplomacy ? both in times of peace and war ? theProphet set the example of making the maximum effort for peace, if and when the other side was ready for it. The Qur'an permits the Muslims to fight in the way of Allah only those who fight them, but not to engage in aggression. The Prophet's exemplary quest for peace, instead of war, was followed by the Muslim's throughout their history.
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