Muslims Dominate TOP 10 Intellectuals list

august 7, 2008

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Muslims Dominate TOP 10 Intellectuals list

According to a survey by Prospect and Foreign Policy Magazines the top  100 intellectuals in the world have been annouced, and interestingly the top 10 are overwhelmingly dominated by Muslims.

1 Fethullah Gülen
Religious leader

  • Turkey

An Islamic scholar with a global network of millions of followers, Gülen is both revered and reviled in his native Turkey. To members of the Gülen movement, he is an inspirational leader who encourages a life guided by moderate Islamic principles. To his detractors, he represents a threat to Turkey’s secular order. He has kept a relatively low profile since settling in the United States in 1999, having fled Turkey after being accused of undermining secularism.

2 Muhammad Yunus

Microfinancier, activist

  • Bangladesh

More than 30 years ago, Yunus loaned several dozen poor entrepreneurs in his native Bangladesh a total of $27. It was the beginning of a lifetime devoted to fighting poverty through microfinance, efforts that earned him a Nobel Peace Prize in 2006. Over the years, his Grameen Bank, now operating in more than 100 countries, has loaned nearly $7 billion in small sums to more than 7 million borrowers-97 percent of them women. Ninety-eight percent of the loans have been repaid.

3 Yusuf al-Qaradawi
Cleric • Egypt/Qatar

The host of the popular Sharia and Life TV program on Al Jazeera, Qaradawi issues w .eekly fatwas on everything from whether Islam forbids all consumption of alcohol (no) to whether fighting U.S. troops in Iraq is a legitimate form of resistance (yes). Considered the spiritual leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, Qaradawi condemned the September 11 attacks, but his pronouncements since, like his justification of suicide attacks, ensure his divisive reputation.

4 Orhan Pamuk
Novelist • Turkey

Part political pundit, part literary celebrity, Pamuk is the foremost chronicler of Turkey’s difficult dance between East and West. His skillfully crafted works lay bare his native country’s thorny relationship with religion, democracy, and modernity, earning him a Nobel Prize in literature in 2006. Three years ago, Pamuk was put on trial for “insulting Turkish identity” after mentioning the Armenian genocide and the plight of Turkey’s Kurds in an interview. The charges were later dropped. Today, Pamuk teaches literature at Columbia University.

5 Aitzaz Ahsan

Lawyer, politician

  • Pakistan

President of Pakistan’s Supreme Court Bar Association, Ahsan has been a vocal opponent of President Pervez Musharraf’s rule. When Musharraf dismissed the head of the Supreme Court in March 2007, it was Ahsan who led the legal challenge to reinstate the chief justice and rallied thousands of lawyers who took to the streets in protest. He was arrested several times during the period of emergency rule last year. Today, he is a senior member of the Pakistan Peoples Party, formerly led by Benazir Bhutto, and one of the country’s most recognizable politicians.

6 Amr Khaled
Muslim televangelist

  • Egypt

A former accountant turned rock-star evangelist, Khaled preaches a folksy interpretation of modern Islam to millions of loyal viewers around the world. With a charismatic oratory and casual style, Khaled blends messages of cultural integration and hard work with lessons on how to live a purpose-driven Islamic life. Although Khaled got his start in Egypt, he recently moved to Britain to counsel young, second-generation European Muslims.

7 Abdolkarim Soroush
Religious theorist • Iran

Soroush, a former university professor in Tehran and specialist in chemistry, Sufi poetry, and history, is widely considered one of the world’s premier Islamic philosophers. Having fallen afoul of the mullahs thanks to his work with Iran’s democratic activists, he has lately decamped to Europe and the United States, where his essays and lectures on religious philosophy and human rights are followed closely by Iran’s reformist movement.

8 Tariq Ramadan
Philosopher, scholar of Islam

  • Switzerland

One of the most well-known and controversial Muslim scholars today, Ramadan embodies the cultural and religious clash he claims to be trying to bridge. His supporters consider him a passionate advocate for Muslim integration in Europe. His critics accuse him of anti-Semitism and having links to terrorists. In 2004, Ramadan was denied a U.S. visa to teach at Notre Dame, after the State Department accused him of donating to Islamic charities linked to Hamas.

9 Mahmood Mamdani

Cultural anthropologist

  • Uganda

Born in Uganda to South Asian parents, Mamdani was expelled from the country by Idi Amin in 1972, eventually settling in the United States. His work explores the role of citizenship, identity, and the creation of historical narratives in postcolonial Africa. More recently, he has focused his attention on political Islam and U.S. foreign policy, arguing that modern Islamist terrorism is a byproduct of the privatization of violence in the final years of the Cold War. He teaches at Columbia University.

10 Shirin Ebadi

Lawyer, human rights activist

  • Iran

Iran’s first female judge under the shah, Ebadi founded a pioneering law practice after she was thrown off the bench by Iran’s clerical rulers. Having initially supported the Islamic Revolution, she cut her teeth defending political dissidents and campaigning for the rights of women and children. A fierce nationalist who sees no incompatibility between Islam and democracy, Ebadi became the first Iranian to win the Nobel Peace Prize in 2003.

Kilde: SunniForum.com


2 kommentarer

  1. I think that this is a momentous moment in Islamic civilization. The world has acknowledged the supremacy of Islamic sciences and Muslim intellect. Looking at the big global picture, this is my take on this civilizational demarcation.

    The recent 2008 survey for the 100 world’s public intellectuals came up for the first time with the top 10 being Muslims-very strange for a group of people who for the ordinary every day people (in contrast to their elites) on a world basis are not noted for their general level of formal education, scientific understanding and rational thinking. As well the comments of the sponsors of the international quest suggested that this result has more to do with Muslim tribal instincts, their hero worshipping of their particular Ulama and their ability to use the western internet rather than any original intellectual genius amongst most (not all- I’ll come back to this latter) of the ten as understood by rationalist. However having said this, there has been a lot of pride amongst Muslim Bogglers ( who unfortunately to a T lack any intellectual ingenuity to explore their religion compared to their respective Ulama hero-a tendency of the Muslim community in general: leader followers/adorites) who continue with the Muslim tendency to have tremendous pride in seeing great things said about Islam in western press in contrast what is said about the same thing in the Islamic press as only this infidel confirmation can confirm their own thoughts.

    This identification of Muslims that are honored by western media as being the worlds intellectual leaders may have some benefits in loosening the hold fascist islamic ideologue Ulamas over the last 100 years have had on the Muslim community collective intellect

    Un like western society the Muslim civilization has a great respect for their intellectual Islamic superiors. This I hypothesis is that because of the lack of general education amongst most Muslims, the near in intelligibility of the Islamic holy book (Koran) and the general desire to follow the commands of Allah in their daily lives, there developed within the Muslim community total adoration and extreme respect for their specific Ulama and Islamic learning/science ( which is distinctive from real science as western rationalist see science) in general to help them understand their holy books (Koran and Sunna) and to live their lives as they believed Allah wanted them to.

    This reliance on the Ulama to guide their total lives did the Moslem community well especially in its golden years but has caused them mayhem and their current problems over the last 250 years. This from my readings mostlikely was due to the non advancement of the Islamic sciences during the later period of the golden age and the resultant stagnation of tradition Ulama training. The resultant frustrations of the Moslem with their lot has lead some of them to loose their faith in their traditional trained Ulama. This in turn has lead some of these to become the Ulama themselves or to follow these nontraditional Ulama.

    These new Ulama, though ignorant of the traditional ways of the official Ulama, tended to be trained in the sciences (technology and engineering) and humanities (liberal arts, philosophy) of the of the west and so were frustrated with the state of the Moslem and the lack of the fruits of these studies to Islamic civilization but had inklings of the grandeur and glory of Islam in their childhood days as young children playing in the house and at the feet of their farther. Deluded by these childhood images of Islam and their frustrations as religious very western educated adults, these men sought simplistic ways to re create the glory days of the ways of the original calphate as seen with the first four companions. Lacking the traditions, training and history of the original Ulama they bastardized the holy books to their own thinking and acting as little gods created mayhem and death for their Muslim brothers (eg in the form of Banna and Qutb etc) and their fellow men in the world. These people tended to ignore the traditional Islamic intellect of nearly 15 centuries of Muslim civilization and go straight to the holy texts to interpretate them in their own puny way and drag other less educated religious Muslims with them
    There has been a number of Muslims who have attempted to use the Islamic sciences to revise or reform Islam. However, as shown below, these have not been to the benefit of the ordinary Muslim and in most cases been condemned by their Moslem brothers and posterity as being un Islamic Some of these Johnny come lately new Ulama and the type of havoc they placed on their Muslim brothers in particular and the world in general includes

    • Wahhab: Return of a brutal form of the Islamic trilogy -ruler, Ulama and poor ruled -of the Umayyad caliph to the 20th Century areas of Saudi and the Taliban
    • Banna: Development of Islamic politicalisation of the Muslim laity mainly in Egypt
    • Qutb: Development of Islamic Terrorism of the Moslem laity in Arab countries
    • Khomeini: Development of the politicalisation of the Ulama to Islamic Rule in Iran
    • Mawdudi: Failed to do a Banna in India/Pakistan though the current political elite could help to achieve his dream if they do not restore order in the Tribal Areas of Pakistan

    As the world’s Muslims have a real problem with Western rationalism, secularism and modernity, individualism and lack of any state regulated religious facade to the public sphere and morality and totally reject any hint of these elements in any way in assisting them to adapt to the real world of human rights (includes woman rights) and human legislative activity and sovereign states and become part of it so that the rest of mankind can benefit from their involvement. This means that Muslims are more in tune to change if it is within an Islamic frame work.

    Of all the traditional ways by which the Ulama interpretated the holy books. Ijtihad has the most potential to bring out the true meaning of Islam but unfortunately it is the most neglected and unused of the Islamic sciences in modern times and is sometimes thought not to be even available less operational into days times. From the literature this seems to be due to the fact that there are no highly intellectual Ulama amongst the 1.3 billion Muslims of the world (these people are called mujtahid (of the al mutlaq kind)or mujaddid depending on how much they change/renovate Islam and the mujtahid of the century is called a Tajdid and there has not been any of these since al Maraghi al Jurjawi.

    Now the sixty four dollar question is that given that these ten religious Muslims have been given the seal of approval from the world as being the top 10 intellectuals of man kind surely some of them are Mujtahid if not the, Allah be praised, the Tajdid of the 21st Century!!!.

    I have looked at the 10 and read some of their books and come up with the following initial thoughts (which could change with further reading, study and discussion)

    Gulen: Yes especially as he has an organization already- in fact he could be the new eponym of a new Islamic School. I have not read much of his work. Seems to be very quiet. His followers made him number 1 on the intellectual hit parade so has a good following. Be interested to know why people (both Islamists and secularists).don’t like him

    Yunus: No. Seems to be more of an economist of the poor. Though may have corrected the Islamic confusion of equating riba with modern day interest rates. Not thought to have a real understanding of Islamic sciences. May have got to the top spot by the gratitude of the 6 million odd woman he helped to get out of the poverty women suffer in patriarchal Islamic and other religious societies.

    Al Qaradawi No Is a modern official Ulama but of limited intelligence and follows the Islamic line that has caused the modern day Moslem current predicaments. Muslims need a mujtahid not more of the same. Not too sure where he would have got his votes. I suspect the Moslem Brothers and Al Jazeera viewers may have got together and got him a few votes but cannot think of any other group who would vote for him.

    Pamuk No. His vote seems to be the results of the competition between the Gulens and Non Gulen followers in Turkey

    Ahsan. No just a lawyer and a politian. Like all Pakistani political elite may regret leaving the North West provinces un controlled and left in the hands of Islamically ignorant tribal leaders.

    Khaled No. Knows where the money is but does not in any way is he an intellectual. Seems to know what the young Muslim wants. Be interested to compare him with Al Qaradawi.

    Soroush Definitely. Read a few of his books in English and has a web page which I am going through.

    Ramadan Definitely. Read most of his books. Is a soppy person. Women love him. Is intelligent and mostlikely knows more about Islamic sciences that the average Saudi Ulama and is intelligent at the same time. His intellect is inhibited by his Banna links so not as intellectually independent as Soroush.

    Mamdani No seems to be a recent arrival to Moslems problems

    Ebadi No A disillusioned female Islamic lawyer. Got booted out of the legal club by the menstrual fearing men. Mostlikely got the feminist vote.

    Ali No A disillusioned female social worker. like Ebadi got the pointed end of the large male Islamic boot and like her sister in Iran told the pricks to get fucked and got fame because of it. Well deserved fame I might add as these Islamic men tend to kill people who cross them especially up start women who think they are equal to men. Ditto for her vote

    There is one other Moslem that I have read and should be on the list and that is An Naim a follower of Mohamed Taha the real Luther of Islamic reformation in my mind before the Islamist in Sudan killed him. An Naim has gone out in the field to fight the good fight for true Islam.

    So it looks as if we have 3-4 potential Mujtahids who have been recognized as such by the world which is more than what can be claimed by the current Ulama at the Islamic universities in Saudi, Iran, Egypt. India and Pakistan and even by historical accepted Mujtahids. Will they be up to the task to save the Muslim from him/her self and integrate the Islamic civilization into the rest of man kind during the 21st century so that both may benefit?

  2. hahah du lever da vidst i din egen lille verden

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