Has the West somehow derived the spirit of Hajj?

This year, once again, people from all over the world convene to discuss and appreciate ideas to unite the humanity and to make our futures sustainable. Here, as we all aim to address something so essential and common to all humanity, nationality, race, color, and political affiliation dissolve, and all humans unite. Welcome to Milan World Expo; “Feeding the planet, energy for life.”

It’s very common among new Quranists to rethink traditional Islamic rites, such as Hajj. Many of us consider Hajj as an international convention, not rituals. It’s also popular among Sunni Muslims to claim that the Hajj signifies the unity of humanity; no matter the nationality and race, everyone dresses the same way and does the same thing. However, the Hajj is also often reduced to nothing but rituals, and once the rituals lose meanings, they fail to serve the purpose of Hajj. Here, I shall demonstrate the purpose of Hajj once again, but I’ll not talk about rituals since in the Quran, things about Hajj are almost all about the spirit of unity and peace, not rituals. Please open your Quran while reading this article and read the verses surrounding the verses I’ve cited, not to take a verse out of context. Please look up the verses I cited on your own, since I often cite many verses at once. Continue reading

Second Wave of Islamic Reform—Part I: About the First Wave

I cried; I haven’t been crying for a really long time. I cried, because I bickered with my parents on Mother’s Day firstly because of the differences between Christianity and Islam, and secondly because I thought my parents would limit my freedom to do what I like when I go back home for summer holiday. The next day, I got my mom’s email about her complex mood. She said I was not grateful. I broke into tears when I read this sentence by the end of her email: “You’re doing religious reform, so why aren’t you changing yourself?! You’re still complaining about your mother’s discipline, while I never complain about others; I always reflect on how I didn’t educate you well.” True, I don’t understand that my parents are busy all the day to help students and children (although this has an evangelical nature) and find opportunities to earn money, so they can give me a better life. They feel so guilty that they’re not able to give me a better life. While they’re busy all the day, saving money by not having meat for dinners and not buying new clothes, I still sleep late so often and I urged my parents to spend more time swimming with me. Meanwhile, I realized that we Quranists are not doing well; we need a second wave of Islamic reform. In Part I, I’m attempting to summarize the current scenario of the first wave of Islamic reform, and then I’m suggesting reasons why we’re not doing well in this first wave, and in Part II, which is in the category “Exegesis and Theory,” I’m proposing the second wave of Islamic reform.

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We care for our environment?

I question. Is what we believe to be environmental friendly indeed environmental friendly? And is being environmental friendly Islamic? I’m also motivating members in Quran De Novo to write more posts on applying the Islamic principles in real life, including real life experiences, as Islam advocates an active lifestyle; charity and fighting for peace and justice are emphasized along with the system of Monotheism in the first five – and one of the most important group of – chapters in the Quran. I think the first five chapters already explained the core of the system of God, and the later chapters are elevating us to higher levels of being, or perhaps the later chapters constitute a training plan for the soul, just like exercises after core concepts in a math book. (Warning: I’m heavily relying on the theory of evolution in this post) 

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