About the Book
Islam, for acts of omissions and commissions by Muslims, has become rather most debated religion of the world today. While some think it inspires fanaticism and violence, others maintain it is a religion of peace and deep spiritual appeal. If one goes by Qur'anic teachings as expressed through its verses, not through Sharia'h formulations by the 'ulema, Islam clearly emerges as the latter. Time has come to revive the dynamic and transformative spirit of the Qur'an. It should be remembered that what was just in the past may not necessarily appear to be so in the present. The concept of justice does not change but norms of justice do. Violence can be permitted only in defense and in certain circumstances with strict regulations, so as to reflect the Qur'anic core values. Any violence committed in violation of these core values would become what the Qur'an calls Zulm (oppression), not jihad.
Most of the essays contained in this book were written in this spirit and must be seen as such- as attempt to understand the Qur'an and its values in their true spirit. These essays do not advocate rigidity, but firm faith and there is difference between the two.
About the Author
Asghar Ali Engineer, Director of the Institute of Islamic Studies, Bombay, is an internationally reputed scholar and theologian of Islam, who has written books, research papers and articles on Islamic theology, jurisprudence, history and philosophy and has delivered lectures in many countries.
He has participated in Muslim women's movements for their rights, and is also actively involved in movements for communal harmony and reform.
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