Pub. Date:
Brill Academic Publishers, Inc.
The Expansion of Prophetic Experience: Essays on Historicity, Contingency and Plurality in Religion

The Expansion of Prophetic Experience: Essays on Historicity, Contingency and Plurality in Religion

by Abdulkarim Soroush


Current price is , Original price is $169.0. You
Select a Purchase Option
  • purchase options

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9789004171053
Publisher: Brill Academic Publishers, Inc.
Publication date: 01/26/2009
Pages: 358
Product dimensions: 6.40(w) x 9.70(h) x 1.00(d)

Table of Contents

Preface ix

Introduction xv

Part 1

Chapter 1 The Expansion of Prophetic Experience 3

Experiential Nature of Prophethood 3

Evolutionary Nature of Prophetic Experience 9

Dialogical Nature of Prophetic Experience 13

Chapter 2 The Last Prophet-1 25

On the Meaning of "Finality" 25

The Relation of Finality to the Prophet's Persona 37

Chapter 3 The Last Prophet-2 45

End of Religious Legislation or End of Religious Experience? 45

The Seal of Prophethood, Not the Seal of Interpretation 52

Chapter 4 Essentials and Accidentals in Religion 63

Relationship Between the Essential and the Accidental 63

Distinguishing the Essential from the Accidental 63

Arabic Language and Arabic Culture 70

Conceptual Limitations 76

Scientific Knowledge of the Age 78

Fiqh: Essential or Accidental? 83

Ijtihad: Cultural Translation of the Accidentals 89

Conclusion 90

Chapter 5 Maximalist Religion, Minimalist Religion 93

Maximal View of Religion 93

Fiqh: Minimum "Necessary" or "Sufficient"? 96

Science and Religion 102

Ethical All-inclusiveness? 104

Minimal on Theological Issues 107

What Does the Expandability of Religious Knowledge Tell Us? 109

Minimalist Religion and Everlasting Continuity 111

Minimalist, not Maximalist Guidance 112

On the Perfection of Religion 113

On Ijtihad 114

Excessive Expectations of Religion 115

Chapter 6 Straight Paths-1. An Essay on Religious Pluralism; Positive and Negative 119

Positive Pluralism: Irreducible Plurality 120

Diversity of Understandings of Religious Texts 120

Diversity of Interpretations of Religious Experience 123

John Hick and Noumena/Phenomena Distinction 131

An AlternativeExplanation: Formless within Forms 134

Immersion of Truth within Truth 135

Negative Pluralism: Diversity Explained via Negativa 137

One Destination, Different Paths 137

Exclusivity of God's Guidance? 140

Inextricable Mix of Truth and Falsehood 142

Compatibility of All Truths 146

Pluralism of Values and Causes 147

Religiosity is Caused not Reasoned 149

Pluralistic Society versus Ideological Soceity 152

Chapter 7 Straight Paths-2. A Conversation on Religious Pluralism 155

Critical Rationalism or Relativism 155

Cause versus Reason 158

Faith and Certitude 162

"Truth"and "Truth for" 165

Nominalism and Pluralism 168

Truth and Salvation 171

Plurality of Meaning and Text 175

Part 2

Chapter 8 Types of Religiosity 181

Pragmatic/Instrumental Religiosity 182

Discursive/Reflective Religiosity 186

Experiential Religiosity 190

Chapter 9 The Prophet Present 193

Prelude 193

The Essence of Religiousness 195

Religious Experience: the Quintessence of Religion 202

Rituals 205

Chapter 10 Prophets Unhead 209

The Paradoxical Nature of Prophetic Mission 211

Following the Prophet is More than Following His Commandments 217

Chapter 11 Faith and Hope 225

Religious Faith 225

Religious Experience: Cause or Reason for Faith 228

Forming the Formless 230

Doubts and Criticisms 232

Need for Religious Experience 239

Relation of Legal Precepts to Formless Experience 241

Chapter 12 Spiritual Guardianship and Political Guardianship 245

Ghadir and Some of Its Consequences 245

Sense and Essence of Spiritual Guardianship 247

Wilayat and Imamate in Shi'ism 258

Confusing Spiritual Guardianship and Political Guardianship 264


Appendix 1 The Word of Mohammad. An Interview with Abdulkarim Soroush Michel Hoebink 271

Appendix 2 Ayatollah Sobhani's First Letter 276

An Experience Like Poets' Experiences 279

The Prophet is the Qur'an's Creator and Producer 280

Meanings from God, Words from the Prophet 282

Conditions of the Prophet's Life Produced the Qur'an 282

Appendix 3 Bashar and Bashir, Soroush's First Response to Sobhani 288

Muhammad's Word, Muhammad's Miracle 289

Secondly, the Tale of the Poetry 292

Thirdly, Appealing to Rumi 292

Fourthly, as for "Humanness" Implying Idle Passions and Desires 293

Fifthly, the Possibility of the Qur'an and the Prophet's Knowledge Containing "Flaws" 297

As for Apparent Incongruities between the Qur'an and Human Findings 298

Appendix 4 Ayatollah Sobhani's Second Letter 303

The Nature of Revelation in this Interview? 304

Muhammad, Peace Be Upon Him, Is Human 307

Notion of Speaker and Loudspeaker 308

Prophet, Not Scientist? 309

Anything That Comes into Being is Preceded by Material Potentiality and Time 312

Incosistency between the Surface Appearance of the Qur'an and Human Science 313

Chasing Away Devils with Meteors 316

Appendix 5 The Parrot and the Bee. Soroush's Second Response to Sobhani 319

Faith Weakening! 320

Learning, Not Sinning 322

Revelation as a Natural Phenomenon 324

Dialogical Nature of the Qur'an 326

The Parrot and the Bee 329

The Formless and the Form 330

"The Phenomenon of the Qur'an" 335

Gabriel within the Prophet 337

Some Metaphysical Considerations 338

Conflicts of Science and Scripture 340

Pluralistic Islam versus Monolithic Islam 343

Bibliography 345

Index 349

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews