The Death of Expertise: Examining Anti-Vaccine Sentiments

In the 18th century, the Baghdad-based Armenian merchant Owannis Moradian attempted to convince the people of Baghdad of the necessity of vaccination. His fervour for scientific developments and technology made him eager to spread the culture of vaccination in Baghdad as he was convinced that it would protect them from smallpox. However, he struggled in his initial attempts due to widespread misinformation based on religious convictions that made the people of Baghdad hesitant to accept this novel medical innovation.

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Understanding Muslims’ Responses to the Theory of Evolution

When Galileo challenged the Church, his geocentric argument was dismissed as it contradicted the mandate of the Church, and more importantly, it challenged the Church’s authority. As the Church held authoritative power, any claims of reason and science had to conform to its authority. Opposition to this incident has shaped modern-day dialectics of two extremes regarding religion and science, namely secularisation and fundamentalism[1]. This discord is not alien to the Muslim world as we have seen a vast majority of Muslim intellectuals investing efforts to reconcile Islam with new scientific developments.

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Environment, Sustainability and Islam

The groundbreaking Netflix documentary Seaspiracy shocked viewers by exposing the widespread corruption within the global fishing industry. It mainly focused on the harmful impact of industrial fishing on the ecosystem and how people and communities who rely on fish and fishing as a livelihood are affected1. In addition, the documentary highlighted the interconnectedness between humans and the natural world that requires one to see the world as a tapestry of cause and effect. Unfortunately, our modern, urbanised lifestyle has created a hyper-consumerist, hyper-individualistic society that has greatly contributed to this catastrophe, which is antithetical to the religious epistemic.

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Surrendering of Religion to Technology

Modernity has given us unprecedented connectivity to the extent that we can connect families from opposite ends of the world with just a single touch. Unknowingly, modernity has also transformed this connectivity into something fluid where we are constantly connected with the world without having the ability to focus on a single emotion. We have been conditioned to see the world at a fast pace so that we can be up to date and continuously pressured to negotiate between antinomies.

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