Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Islamic Reformation rolls on

It's all about the fragmentation and breaking the power of the clerical elite. Too many fatwas, crazy ones included, equals they are over-pressed and the life conditions are stripping their legitimacy and their ability to respond in time, sanely (by their own standards).

But the power moving to individuals leads to more progressive and more extremist voices. Just like the European Christian variety.
clipped from www.nytimes.com

The controversy in Cairo has been more than just embarrassing. It comes at a time when religious and political leaders say that there is a crisis in Islam because too many fatwas are being issued, and that many of them rely on ideology more than learning.

The complaint has been the subject of recent conferences as government-appointed arbiters of Islamic standards say the fatwa free-for-all has led to the promotion of extremism and intolerance.

The conflict in Egypt served as a difficult reminder of a central challenge facing Islamic communities as they debate the true nature of the faith and how to accommodate modernity. The fatwa is the front line in the theological battle between often opposing worldviews. It is where interpretation meets daily life.

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