‛Ā’ishah , younger daughter of the prominent Qurashite Abū Bakr (who became the first caliph) and wife of the Prophet Muhammad (Peace upon him) is central to the ‘enterprise’ that is Islam. Her teachings among the first generation of Muslims and her hadith testimony is crucial for understanding lived Islam, especially as it relates to the intimate and private realms. For this reason, she was also surrounded by controversy. Even her biographical details are highly disputed. Did she marry at nine years old, as explicit hadith evidence has it?......... [click here to download the full article in pdf]
Murtaḍā al-Zabīdī was born in 1145 H /1732 CE in Belgaon, India, in Karnataka near Goa, and died in 1205/1790. As a young man he migrated to Yemen, to the city of Zabīd along the coastal road to al-Hudaydah, but lived most of his life in Cairo. He was a Naqshbandī Sufi who followed the Ḥanafī legal school, and knew Arabic, Turkish and Persian. His most outstanding work is the Arabic dictionary Tāj al-‛Arūs /The Bride’s Crown.......... [click here to download the full article in pdf]
Abu Muhammad Ali ibn Muhammad ibn Saʿid ibn Hazm was born 994 CE (384 AH) in Cordoba (Qurtuba) in Spain and died 1064/456. His son records that he wrote four hundred books, covering 80,000 pages, but very few survived. Ibn Hazm came from a wealthy and influential family. His father served as Minister under Hisham ibn al-Hakam the Ummayad ruler of Andalus. But Hisham’s successor al-Muʿtaḍid who was a repressive ruler took issue with Ibn Hazm on account of his “unorthodox” writings and his opposition to the Maliki doctrine that was then prevalent in Andalus. Ibn Hazm suffered imprisonment and the burning of his books, yet the calibre of his academic legacy increasingly became the focus of scholarly attention down the ages, especially in our own times......... [click here to download the full article in pdf ]
When reading the fragments of Heraclitus, we are reading what a dozen people a long time ago said Heraclitus said a long time ago. We are reaching back two thousand, five hundred years. We are also listening to words that have lived and flourished in very different civilisations, religions, and eras.
Sources for the fragments include Aristotle, Plato, Theophrastus, Polybius, Plutarch, Clement of Alexandria, Plotinus and Albertus Magnus. They all understood Heraclitus in their own ways, sometimes as contrast to and sometimes as confirmation of their own thinking. But what did “logos,” for example, mean to the translators into Arabic? They seem to have understood it as “language,” making it the basis for a new word in their own language, lughat. And what happened to the word six hundred years later when it got to John 1:1?........ Download the full article in pdf attachment (below)
Stories of foundlings speak to us about social status, and the degree of noble or ignoble birth determines our lives. Muslim scholarship over the centuries developed discussions about the social standing of foundlings........ Download the full article in pdf attachment (below)
We are no longer in a Newtonian, mechanical universe, and we no longer think our purpose in life is to serve the factory and industry. But our schools were built for that old paradigm, and their structures and processes still serve the old master. In fact, “Education is the one institution in the last part of the twentieth and first part of the twenty-first centuries that hasn’t changed; almost all others have: business, transportation, communications, financial systems, trade, media, families, global culture. Certainly, our understanding of how people learn, through brain research and theories...... Download the full article in pdf attachment (below)
The life and work of Kunta-Khadzhi Kishiev, a philosopher, who lived in the middle of the 19th century, earned him the right to be called a saint. Why such a recognition?
The ideas of Kunta-Khadzhi were very popular among the poorest representatives of Chechen mountaineers during the first Caucasian war. Good in response to evil, modesty instead of excess, sincerity of thoughts and deeds and appeal to God are the main ideas preached by Kunta-Khadzhi Kishiev. He called on his fellow countrymen to refrain from carrying weapons or killing, which, in fact, was an appeal for not resisting evil with violence ....... Download the full article in pdf attachment (below)