Sunday, June 13, 2010

Reply to Religious Liberalism - Our Greatest Hope?

A.A. Khalid argues that

1. There is a long-existing Liberal Islam.
2. There is no discourse of Liberal Islam in Pakistan.
3. Pakistani liberals could have connected with this tradition of Liberal Islam. They haven't.
4. The idea of removing religion from Pakistani politics is purely theoretical and unpractical. However, in the pursuit of this idea, Pakistani liberals have ceded the interpretation of Islam to the fundamentalists.
Hence liberals and secularists should stop asking the question if there is too much or too little religion. The question which should be asked is what type of religiosity do we need in order for Pakistan to flourish? What type of religiosity supports democratic governance, human rights, pluralism and tolerance? How can such a religiosity be constructed? The liberals and progressives need to bring to the table a genuine political theology of liberality which can find its legitimacy not only in civic reason but in religious reason in terms of establishing a link with the Quranic text.

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