15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
A masterpiece of clear Islamic thinking,
This review is from: To Be a European Muslim (Paperback)
Tariq Ramadan believes in Islam as a living faith. When Muslims face new questions regarding how to live their lives, because technology or the environment changes, he believes that one must go back to the original texts of Islam, the Quran and the Hadith, seeking answers to the new questions.
In this book, he applies that technique to the question of what it means to be a Muslim in Europe today.
The first hundred pages provide a general introduction to Islamic methods of analysing the religious texts to apply them to practical questions. By itself, this would more than justify reading the book as it is the clearest such exposition I have ever seen. It merits reading by all Muslims as well as non-Muslims who want to understand how Muslim scholars think.
The remainder of the book applies these analytical methods to the questions that face Muslims living in modern Europe today. Muslim jurists have traditionally distinguished between dar al-Islam (the lands of Islam) and dar al harb (the lands of war.) Tariq Ramadan rejects this dichotomy on the grounds that it is superseded when Muslims are completely free in the European democracies to practice their religion as they wish. Indeed, Muslims have greater religious freedom in Europe than they do in many "Muslim countries."
The author then proceeds to tackle a range of practical questions covering such diverse areas as service in the armed forces and the role of music, in each case basing his analysis upon the religious sources.