The modern age has assumed a split between what is religious and what is worldly, and the Revelation has been detached from the Universe and the sciences that study it, the spiritual from the material, the afterlife from this life, the heart from the mind and soul. Islam, however, is based upon the foundation of Unity, which assumes these pairs do not exist, or at least are not two dimensions of one whole. The human mind has been under assault from the storms of denial for the past few centuries, fanned by scientific thought and the study of natural phenomena, isolated from meaning. Hearts are wallowing in the mire of the carnal self, as sinning has become a way of life. These hearts have to be enrolled in the school of the Revealed Word, purified while processed through the filter of worship and servanthood and reshaped by way of constant positive activism.
The Universe and the “perfect human” are a “created Book.” The Book is the “revealed universe and the perfect human.” They represent different expressions of the same meaning with a different corpus. This school does not split the heart from the mind; the reason faculties of the mind and the heart are thus named is due for the need of a description. In fact, the faculties that are concerned with the mind are nothing but the functions and actions of the heart, to the extent that even the carnal self becomes a mount for the heart, until the heart is purified and becomes a perfect self. Modern humans have positioned their hearts on one side and their minds on the other.
Nevertheless, all individuals are essentially addressees of the divine call and they represent God Almighty on Earth, although most are not aware of their value. This ignorance does not legitimize a disregard of their essential quality to be “the best of all creation.” The lead article in this issue, Respect for Humankind, reminds us of the fact that we are all heading toward the same destination and we have to learn to respect the different modes of travel each has chosen.
Professor Sheremet examines the blind alley that science has found itself in, inviting people to a reacceptance of Almighty God as the main agent of every phenomenon we see around us.
Professor Hasgul joins us in this issue with an interesting article on the Virgin Birth and how we can learn from this miracle.
Ahmet Cokol discusses some interesting theories on why civilizations collapse, while Mustafa Armagan presents a sample from the history of eastern-western interaction as a valid model of perspectives of contemporary objectivity in Montaigne and the Ottomans.
Yusuf al-Qaradawi makes a very significant argument for the necessity of positive interaction between the People of the Book, while Professor Yildirim goes back in time to wipe the dust off the invaluable Madina Charter-and we look forward to more comprehensive research on this historical document. Alcohol does not stay “as it looks in the bottle.”
Kathleen St. Onge describes how a simple liquid can be such a danger to the individual and to society, and reminds responsible believers to make it known that they do not drink it, because it is forbidden by their faith. Enjoy reading while thinking!