By: Asif Bhat
International Islamic University Malaysia
The term worldview has a long and interesting history. As a matter of fact, no one survives without a worldview, whether he/she is aware of it or not. One’s worldview, whether religious, philosophical, scientific, atheistic, or otherwise, is a core contour of his/her life and existence. Notwithstanding the several definitions and connotations that may be attached to its literal and technical meaning, the concept of worldview begs further explanation and clarification, especially from an Islamic perspective. The Islamic Worldview denotes the practice of Allah and His judgement on different creatures of the universe. It is more than a religion. Islam covers all aspects of life for its followers. Ideas and values it embraces always seem logical and obvious to the people of the particular culture. (Muhammad Abdullah)
What is a Worldview?
A worldview is the fundamental cognitive orientation of an individual or society including the entirety of the individual or society's knowledge and point-of-view, including natural philosophy, themes, values, emotions, and ethics. The two concepts “philosophy” and “worldview” are closely related and this relation is explained by Will Durant. Wolters also summarized the relationship between worldview and philosophy and he calls it "worldview crowns philosophy”. If we talk about the philosophy it refers to a worldview in its broadest sense. From the perspective of Islam, a 'worldview' is not merely the mind's view of the physical world and of man's historical, social, political, and cultural involvement in it. The worldview of Islam includes both al-dunya and al-akhirah, in which the dunya-aspect must be related in extreme and inseparable way to the akhirah-aspect and in which the akhirah-aspect has the ultimate and final significance. (Isamic WorldView)
Basically Islamic Worldview is opposite to the secularists and atheists by being theistic and ethical. Opposed to the secular man’s vision of the world which sees only the physical sensible world as one that is true and real and that the Hereafter are fantasies or dreams of primitive man because it cannot be proven by the five senses, a Muslim should see that both this world and the Hereafter are both true and real. In fact, the Muslim mind should see this physical world as a temporary place of rest in preparation for the everlasting Hereafter. This worldview emanates that life and existence came as a result of the will, desire and design of the One and Only Creator. The Islamic worldview is grounded in Allah (God), Mohammad (pbuh) (the ultimate and final prophet of Allah), and the Qur’an (the Word of Allah delivered through Mohammad (pbuh) beginning in about 610 AD). Islam means submission to Allah and a Muslim is one submitted to Allah. The Islamic World-View is a conception of the relation between man and the universe by Islamic perspective. There is no duality in Islamic worldview. Opposed to the secularist’s way of seeing and knowing things, which has the habit of classifying things as opposites that are in conflict with one another (dualism), and then subsequently compromising, by adopting elements from both sides, the worldview of Islam is not formed out of this dialectical process. In fact, Muslims in the past, despite their classification of things, did not treat them as opposites of one another. They have been able to successfully combine the different methods of achieving knowledge of things. The Islamic Worldview is based on the two primary sources: the Qur’an, which Muslims believe to be the direct word of God and the Sunnah, which incorporates the traditions concerning the life example of the Prophet Muhammad (SAW). Other ingredients of the Islamic Worldview are: Divine Revelation is the ultimate source of guidance. However, reason, as...
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