"Liberal Islam" is an umbrella term covering the thoughts and work of Muslims who share parallel concerns with Western liberalism: ideas such as separation of church and state, democracy, the rights of women and minorities, freedom of thought, and human progress.

A key concept in understanding Liberal Islam is ijtihad (from the root jahada, to struggle, endeavour, strive, take pains; the same root as "jihad"). The term has developed to mean the use of independent judgement on legal or theological questions.

Understanding of the term is coloured by history and theology.

  • Legal and philosophical thought in the different traditions of Islam placed differing limits on "acceptable use of independent judgement";
  • In the context of Islam's response to the impact of the West in the last 150 years, some thinkers have argued the need to go beyond traditional limitations.

Subcategories 4

Related categories 3

Bazm-e-Tolu-e-Islam
A Pakistan-based organization working for the resurgence of Islam, and interpreting the Qur'an as the main source of guidance. Information about their activities, publications, their founder (Allama Ghulam Ahmad Parwez), and contact details.
Ijtihad
A collection of liberal articles by Dr Muqtedar Khan, on Islam and politics, particularly covering issues affecting Muslims in America. Includes details of his publications, and his weblog, musing on global affairs.
Liberal Islam.net
A collection of articles on progressive Islamic theology, by Zeeshan Hasan.
Liberal Movements Within Islam
A Wikipedia article discussing the emergence of modern liberal groups within Islam.
Last update:
September 23, 2016 at 10:54:12 UTC
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