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1. Cultura International Journal of Philosophy of Culture and Axiology: Volume > 10 > Issue: 1
Abdul Rashid Moten Social Justice, Islamic State and Muslim Countries
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A content analysis of the Qur’an shows that it lays utmost importance on the realization of justice and conversely the eradication of injustice in society. A historicalanalysis found that social justice was prevalent in Mecca under the leadership of Prophet Muhammad and was also practiced during the period of the first fourrightly guided caliphs (Khulafa-e-rashidun). Since then, the successive Muslim majority states have not taken the issue of social justice seriously. These states have failed in taking an active role in uplifting the ethical and moral standards of society. The documentary analysis of the existing 49 states in the Muslim world found majority of these states to have deviated from the real spirit of Islamic social justice falling within the category of “failed states.”
2. Cultura International Journal of Philosophy of Culture and Axiology: Volume > 10 > Issue: 1
Mohd Azizuddin Mohd Sani Politico-Religious Values in Malaysia: Comparing Asian Values and Islam Hadhari
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Malaysia has developed its own distinct value system that is accommodative to the country’s rich tapestry of different ethnicities and religions. It is no coincidence that previous Malaysian premiers have actively promoted such system. Leading the way is Mahathir Mohamad, the country’s fourth Prime Minister, who was a vocal advocate of “Asian values,” followed by his successor, Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, who championed the idea of Islam Hadhari. These two sets of values are not entirely incompatible to each other but rather share some similarities. The concepts of “Asian values” and Islam Hadhari are premised on several fundamental tenets, which include: promoting Islamic values, championing the Malay agenda, protecting cultural values, and challenging Western cultural imperialism. Their origin can be traced from the aggressive attempt by the ruling power – the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) – Barisan Nasional (BN) to strengthen and consolidate the political supremacy of the alliance. Inevitably, both of these value systems have been subjected to many criticisms, predominantly under the pretext of misguided and ill-properly constructed values by the ruling regime to justify its autocratic rule. The very nature of such value systems has often triggered political debates in terms of defining Malaysia as a nation. The espoused agenda of Islamisation and possibly assimilation have stirred profound uneasiness among the country’s significantly large population of non-Muslims. The value system brought by “Asian values” and IslamHadhari can lead to one understanding of Mahathir’s and Abdullah’s leadership and administration in governing Islam and politics in Malaysia.
3. Cultura International Journal of Philosophy of Culture and Axiology: Volume > 10 > Issue: 1
Mohd Faizal Musa Axiology of Pilgrimage: Malaysian Shi’ites Ziyarat in Iran and Iraq
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The religious rites of Shia remain a mystery to Malaysia’s Sunnite majority. One such rite is the ziyarat (visits to sacred sites). This essay highlights the ritualsconducted and performed by Malaysian Shi’ites during their seasonal pilgrimage to Iran and Iraq. Their rituals and behaviors during these pilgrimages to holy shrines in Iran and Iraq were documented from the standpoint of a cultural anthropologist. Rites from two sites, Mashad and Karbala, are presented in this study. Applying Herbert Blumer’s symbolic interactionism as a conceptual framework, and Charles Brooks’s methodology through social interaction and participant-observation, this essay aims to analyze and understand their rites, and the values and significance of these rites. By doing so, the axiological aspects of the rites were observed and clarified, thus enabling non Shi’ite Muslims to perceive greyest area of Shia rites, as performed by Shi’ites from Malaysia in their pilgrimage to Iran and Iraq.
4. Cultura International Journal of Philosophy of Culture and Axiology: Volume > 10 > Issue: 1
Haggag Ali Secularism: from Solidity to Liquidity
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In contemporary Western and Arab cultural critique, secularism as a worldview is believed to have experienced inherent transformations from solid rationalmaterialism (the emphasis on reason, science, progress, emancipation, industrialization, and nation building) to liquid non-rational materialism (the celebrationof the body, sex, global markets and consumption). This paper explores the arguments of both Zygmunt Bauman and Abdelwahab Elmessiri who advocate this thesis in the light of the major manifestations of these transformations.
5. Cultura International Journal of Philosophy of Culture and Axiology: Volume > 10 > Issue: 1
Suwan Kim Framing Arab Islam Axiology Published in Korean Newspapers
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Mutual interest and cooperation between Korea and several Arab countries is increasing. Each country’s perceptions of each other serve as critical factorsin the development of mutual success in business and trade fields. Their perceptions also affect diplomatic and cultural affairs in the public and private sectors. The news media serve as the public faces of these countries’ daily lives. The news media also serve as primary information sources that determine these countries’ national images. This study attempted to discover whether news coverage related to Arabs published by Korean newspapers contributed to the Korean public’s negative perceptions of Arab axiological images. The results revealed that the strongest news coverage published in Korean newspapers related Arabs with “war, terror, and dangerous region.” The majority of the articles published in both newspapers were negative. However, the results revealed that, in general, Korean respondents did not possess negative perceptions of Arabs and Arab culture. Korean respondents were well aware that Arab individuals are kind, affectionate, well-mannered, and easygoing. In fact, the results reinforced the notion that Koreans possessed positive perceptions of Arab individuals’ “devout Islamic religious lifestyles,” as well as Arab individuals’ efforts to “inherit and develop Islamic cultural traditions.”
6. Cultura International Journal of Philosophy of Culture and Axiology: Volume > 10 > Issue: 1
Maszlee Malik The Role of Religion for an Alternative Sustainable Governance Theory
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In post-modern times, there has been much empirical evidence to indicate that religions and faiths play a pro-active role in the field of civil society but more importantly in the development of societies, which is a major factor in political and economic development of a country, as well as its governance. Accordingly, the contemporary reality of plurality demands a fresh look into the narratives of different civilisations, cultures and ideologies, rather than imposed meta-narratives of modernity. Hence, explorations of religion and faith to develop an alternative notion of “good governance” from “other’s” worldview are also necessary. Much could be learned from cultures, religions and faiths in the realm of governance studies from the phenomenological perspective. This paper is an attempt to explore how religion could play its functional role to create a sustainable governance concept based on values and ethics. It will look into the situation of religion at present, and how it fits into the framework of governance, and the arguments will be supported by examples and evidence of the viability of the relation between religion and governance.
7. Cultura International Journal of Philosophy of Culture and Axiology: Volume > 10 > Issue: 1
Maximiliano E. Korstanje Preemption and Terrorism. When the Future Governs
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The present paper explores not only the psychological effects of 11 September in the political fields, but also connects with the risk of pre-emption in USinternational affairs. What is important to discuss in this work is the role played by the media in portraying news, and a pejorative image of Islam. This ancient religion is presented as being backward and barbaric in many senses. Beyond having an encompassing understanding of the history of Islam, the media dissuades public opinion the preventive war is the only valid resource. The project of Enlightenment has been gone forever. It was replaced by modernity. As civilization West developed a technophile sentiment of superiority that fulfilled the gap given by secularization. It is hypothesized that 9/11 represents the encounter of two civilizations whose cultural values are at odds. This belief is oriented at creating a demonization of Islam. First and foremost, both religions, Islam and Christianity have coexisted in peace over centuries. Secondly, Arabs even supported Judaism in its attempts to achieve independence from Rome. This begs a striking question, to what groups these stereotypes are conducive? While demonization paves the ways to reduce the sentiment of culprit, preemption give a reason to act.
8. Cultura International Journal of Philosophy of Culture and Axiology: Volume > 10 > Issue: 1
Patrick Laude Acceptance as a Door of Mercy: Riḍā in Islamic Spirituality
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There is no religion that does not start from the premise that “something is rotten in the Kingdom of Denmark,” to make use of Hamlet’s suggestive expression:mankind has lost its connection with the principle of its being and disharmony has ensued. This state of affairs, that religion claims to remedy, may be deemed toresult from a sense of radical “otherness” symbolized, in the Abrahamic traditions, by the loss of the blissful unity and proximity of terrestrial paradise. In this paper we propose to show that the Islamic concept of ridā, particularly as it has been conceptualized and practiced in Sufism, is none other than both the means and the end of this re-connection with God and human beings as acceptance of “otherness.” The Quranic idea of Divine ridwān provides both the transcendent model and the infinite counterpart of this human virtue of acceptance.
9. Cultura International Journal of Philosophy of Culture and Axiology: Volume > 10 > Issue: 1
Aimillia Mohd Ramli Decolonizing the Study of English Literature in a Muslim−Malaysian Context: An Argument for a Spiritual−based Comparative Paradigm
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The study of English literature was first introduced to the British colonies and protectorates, including Malaysia, in order to consolidate the cultural superiorityof the English people amongst the colonized natives. Its continuation in the postcolonial period of the twenty-first century, either as a component of the Englishlanguage subject at Malaysian secondary schools or as a degree program at Malaysian universities, has mainly been justified by the liberal-humanistic belief that canonical works in English literature display universal values that should be cultivated in the minds of readers regardless of their nationality or religion. In the past few decades, confusion surrounding the exact nature of these values has resulted in the advent of materialistic philosophies of literary theory. In many Muslim countries, such as Malaysia, these theories have only served to increase reliance on Eurocentric readings of literature, ignoring resistance coming from Muslim readers who have their own Tawhidic spiritual outlook and values. This paper suggests the use of a paradigm that places a concern for spiritual matters at the core of comparative studies of English and Islamic literature, especially at Islamic educational institutions. This can benefit Muslims worldwide in the sense that it will present for them a more comprehensive role than literature alone can play in contributing to their spiritual development as well as generating appreciation for the universality of Islamic teachings.
10. Cultura International Journal of Philosophy of Culture and Axiology: Volume > 10 > Issue: 2
Mario Perniola Knowledge, Power and Politic-Cultural Civilization
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What kind of relationship has modernity established between knowledge and power? What forms does such a relationship take in contemporary society? Theattempt here is to enter into the merits of its new formulations, focusing attention on the degradation to which power and knowledge have been subjected. The essay also indicates a solution that does not consist in a return to the past or escape into the future, but in the possibility of viewing the present as an opportunity for cultural emancipation.