Renovatio: How Do We Know (Spring 2019)

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The Spring 2019 issue of Renovatio ("How Do We Know?") seeks to explore how a broader view of knowledge could change the way we understand our world today.


Table of Contents

Medina and Athena: Restoring a Lost Legacy

The divorce between Athena and Medina explains much of what went wrong in the Muslim world.


Hamza Yusuf


Why Jews Don’t Proselytize 

In an ancient world teeming with competing tribal deities, the monotheism of the Jews was distinctive. Was it merely an accident of history that they didn’t spread their faith? 


Reuven Firestone  


The Many Sides of Knowledge 

If the knowledge we gather is partial and limited, can we truly understand the feelings and experiences of others? 


Sarah Barnette  


The Soul of Rhetoric in the Age of Amazon 

Our digital lives are so mediated by soulless algorithms that it seems absurd to imagine genuine human relationships governing our online interactions. 


Scott F. Crider 


Must Religious Duty Conflict with Political Order? 

To secure the kind of religious freedoms Muslims desire, we must revisit Muslim commitment to religious pluralism and shared obedience to sovereign powers. 


Roger Scruton 


To See the World for the First Time 

Can religious traditions help us see what is most mysterious in what is most ordinary? 


Sophia Vasalou 


What Islam Gave the Blues 

The blues is neither African nor Islamic—rather, it’s an African American creation shaped by some of the most enduring contributions of West African Muslims to American culture. 


Sylviane A. Diouf 


Can We Live in Harmony with Nature? 

The roots of our environmental crisis are often neglected because, were they to be considered, our worldviews and manners of living would necessarily have to change. 


Seyyed Hossein Nasr  


The Islamic Art of Asking Questions 

Muslims of the past always tolerated permanent disagreement even about versions of religious truth. Can modern Muslims recapture this tradition? 


John Walbridge 


Belief in the Obvious 

As truth seekers, we shield ourselves from sophistry through practiced skepticism. But by wielding the weapon of incredulity, could there be another evil that we unwittingly invite? 


Joshua Lee Harris 


How We Split the World Apart 

We often understand philosophy as secular and rational and faith as transcendent and irrational. But are the two really separate? 


Eva Brann and Hamza Yusuf 


Blessed Opposition 

The principle of non-contradiction—that the same thing cannot both be and not be—is routinely denied in modern thought, but this rejection never confronts its real authority. 


Mark Damien Delp