Please response 150-200 words
1. Discuss Islamic ethics in relation to worldview. In your response your must include the following ideas: ethical monotheism, Muhammad, Hajj, Zakat, Hadith, and Sufism.
2. When referring to Indigenous traditions, the term “biocentric” is used to describe a commonly held worldview. In your discussion, and with reference to the Lakota tradition, do you find any of these ideas present in present day conversations about environmentalism and Indigenous rights?
Your response should be somewhere between 200-400 words. *Note* if your answer is only one page, keep writing!
Discuss Islamic ethics in relation to two key issues: jihadand the role of women. In your response make reference to on-going conflicts (e.g., groups like ISIS) and issues surrounding the wearing of headscarfs and the niqab that we have seen in Quebec and in certain European countries. What, in your opinion, does Islam have to do with these issues, and what other factors (e.g., discrimination against Muslims) need to be considered when we address sensitive topics like these?
- Islamic Ethics in Relation to Worldview
When considering the array of cultural, ethical, theological, sociological, political, and philosophical issues compounding the world today, Islam takes center stage, particularly as regards the teachings that flow from its sacred content. The five pillars upon which it is centered make it a typical ethical monotheism in which God is the source of morality in its entirety. From Zakat (the obligation to meet necessary wealth criteria) to Sufism (the mode of religious life where more emphasis is placed on the activities of the inner self as opposed to the performance of external ritual) and Hajj (the mandatory religious duty to visit Mecca at least once in a lifetime if one is financially and physically able), Islam ceases to be a mere religion and becomes a way of life that God revealed to mankind through Muhammad (His prophet). The values and ethical principles (grounded in the five pillars) that Islam emphasizes are rightly thought to be discernible and compatible as well as beneficial in the context of a modern society that is, in most cases, secular and democratic.
In reference to Indigenous traditions, the term ‘biocentric’ is used to describe a commonly held worldview whereby inherent value is extended to all living things. The interrelatedness of various systems on earth and how they work more so in relation to biodiversity is emphasized. In this vein, the need to preserve nature in its entirety is stressed by biocentrism advocates who also insist on the significance of observing animal rights. To examine the Lakota tradition, these people believe that all nature is sacred, although the degree of sacredness is thought to differ from one object, animal, place, or person to another. In the context of their hunting tradition, they believe that observing high moral standards (as would be expressed by doing only that which is good and right) is imperative for success in hunting and in life generally. Whereas these people have never really enjoyed complete spiritual peace and ecological harmony, they nevertheless seek to achieve contextual balance through reciprocity. They are also keen on what causes natural disasters and what they can do to stop such and be able to preserve nature because their lives depend on it. While they are a traditionally hunting community, they are pragmatic in addressing issues of concern such as the possible extinction of some rare animal species. A very important concern for the Lakota people is the welfare of future generations which must be taken care of by preserving nature. Indeed, these people would score well in the sustainability agenda.
In relation to biocentrism, the ideas expressed in the Lakota tradition are noted in present day conversations about environmentalism and Indigenous rights. Besides the need to conserve nature and address issues of extinction (the Lakota are concerned about a certain type of Buffalo to which they have attached great sacred/spiritual value), environmentalists and conservationists in general are keen to ensure sustainability for the sake of future generations. The conversation on indigenous rights is also not new as various advocacy groups and organizations fight for the rights of indigenous people such as the Aboriginals in Canada and Australia. An emergent theme in the context of this advocacy has been the indigenous people’s attachment to nature, for instance, their land. Many consider their land sacred and desire not to be removed from it. Overall, the biocentrism narrative continues to pick momentum, especially in realization of the adverse effects of destroying Mother Nature. Everything in nature, no matter how small, has inherent value that counts significantly to ecological harmony as a whole.
- Islamic Ethics in Relation to Jihad and the Role of Women
When discussing Islamic ethics from the perspective of a Muslim, the objective of realizing a society that approximates as closely as possible the beliefs and imperative presented in the original sources of Islam becomes clear. However, from the perspective of a non-Muslim, one starts to interrogate the Jihadist movement and the extent to which it is congruent with broader societal ethics, particularly in the context of a secular world. For Jihadist, what they fight for is a just cause that also promotes Islam. They adhere to an ideology that non-Muslims consider too extreme to be reasonable. This ideology glorifies violent conflict and denounces anyone who harbors different beliefs (takfir). The use of violence is also widely endorsed, although it has from time to time sparked debate among jihadists themselves.
While there may be no consensus within the jihadist movement as to the role women should play in such violent conflict, women are now being used to carry out attacks by organizations like ISIS, Al-Qaeda, and Al-Shabaab. Even away from combat scenes, jihadist women play an important role, and most are equally dedicated as their male counterparts. They actively engage in the recruitment of new jihadists. They also raise funds as well as produce and disseminate propaganda for the movement. Last yet important they indoctrinate Muslim children with the violent jihadist ideology and these grow up with radical minds and attitudes. Indeed, the role women play in the jihadist movement cannot be underestimated.
From a Muslim perspective, women joining ISIS and other violent jihadist organizations are only doing so to fulfill their religious obligation, precisely the call to jihad. However, from a Western (non-Muslim) point of view, such a move is a kind of emancipation as has emerged based on accounts of women from Iraq and Syria who have been able to access social media. Thus, it seems right to argue that women joining jihad are instrumental for the enforcement of certain misogynistic ideologies. By and large, they are acting as per the demands of a patriarchal system, much the same way as the women who wear headscarfs and the niqab. Participation in jihad and wearing of such is a form of emancipation for many, and not doing so would be considered as a deviation from the tenets of Islam. When addressing these issues, it is important to examine where a line is drawn between the fundamental rights and freedoms of an individual and religious practice or adherence to Islam.