islam and utopians

The concept of an ideal world as envisioned by Islamic utopians has a curious allure for humans. Despite coming from separate schools, Islam utopians such as Avicenna (980-1037), Al-Suhrawardi, Yahya ibn Habash (1152-1191), and Ibn al-‘Arabi (1165-1240) shared common scholarly views on Islam. Avicenna was a scientific scholar, Suhrawardi was a Sufi, and Ibn was a Sufi. They also had selfless experiences and realized the facts about Islam, which is a challenge in today’s world where people do not live in a perfect society. They always believed in an ideal world with a divine power guiding our souls and rewarding positive and noble behavior. The rewards and punishment that the utopian community understands exist in “paradise.” These ideas led them to a common argument that there is nothing desirable in the social order except the perfect life found in Islam. These principles shape the behavior and attitudes of Muslims who seek happiness in true and good pleasure. Other utopians in the middle ages include Ibn Ṭufayl and Ibn al-Nafīs. Ibn Ṭufayl defines Utopia as happiness and wellbeing. The two authors define utopian interest in three thematic areas; education, the city, and transcendence. Education comes first because it does not exist in a real sense. Utopians are self-taught and disregard previous authority. They leave their flock to blindly follow them. The city is a presentation of an actual society ruled by the prophetic law. Avicenna formulated a philosophical theory to conform to the teachings of the Quran. He states that a prophet fulfills the perfection of human imagination and intelligence. No one can challenge a prophet’s law or improve the city. The utopian goal is to represent a rationally organized desire. Utopians organize their actions and form of life wisely to show their understanding of the knowledge of a necessary being. However, this plan is an exaggeration since a perfect society is an illusion in the modern society.

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