- September 15, 2017Book Launch: “Tertutupnya Pemikiran Kaum Muslimin” Translation of: The Closing of Muslim Mind by Robert R Reilly
- September 17, 2017Public Lecture on: “The Islamic Jesus: The Commonalities Between Judaism, Christianity, and Islam”
- October 23, 2017Uraian Buku Rekonstruksi Pemikiran Keagamaan Dalam Islam
- August 28, 2018Celebrating A New Malaysia
- September 7, 2012Understanding Evangelical Christianity in Malaysia
IRF on BFM 89.9
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Public Intellectual Lecture: Is Political Islam a Threat to Democracy?
January 16, 2016
Date: Monday, 25th January 2016
Venue: Auditorium JCI 2, Level 1, Sunway University
Perhaps the term “Political Islam” aka Islamism is a highly contested term these days. The word has been used very widely to infer many different, and sometimes contradictory phenomena in the Muslim world, thus, making the definition deeply blurry and usually colored with a negative connotation.
But generally Political Islam infers to the discourse on the instrumental use of Islam in politics, articulated in the modern concepts or vocabularies. In short, it’s a modern political discourse of Islam. And like any other political discourses, it was translated into practices in a few different forms, as an “ideology”, ‘a movement-organization’ and sometimes a ‘model of government’.
In Malaysia, Political Islam becomes a visible marker in the form and content of Malaysian politics since the 1970s, and there is little reason that this is going to change any time soon. The cry for Shari’a, hudud and “Islamic State” still remain as the necessary rhetoric among politicians and spiritual leaders in this country, presumably intended to gain votes and influences from the masses.
The situation gets more alarming when the powers that be began promoting policies and laws that are threatening the foundation and the values that are inherent within democracy. The call for banning of books, vilification of dissenting thoughts as liberals, and conniving for a single version of Islam are all signs of the encroaching Islamofascism.
All these issues forced us to confront a few important questions. Is Political Islam undemocratic? Is there any way to connect Islam and politics within the spirit of democracy? And if yes, which form would it take? We hope to find an explanation and answers to these relevant issues in the lecture and discussion on this topic.
Jeffrey Cheah Institute on Southeast Asia
In Collaboration with:
G25 and Islamic Renaissance Front