Participation Type

Paper

Presentation #1 Title

From Prescriptive to Reflexive Sermon: The Insertion of Philosophy in the Mosque

Presentation #1 Abstract

The sermon in Islam has usually been classified into two typologies. The homily (wa’z) delivered any time as an exercise in exposition, explanation of a variety of topics in exegesis, jurisprudence or ethics. The second is the Friday sermon delivered from the pulpit during the weekly worship service.

In the modern context and with the rise of new technologies, the Friday sermon in Islam has exhibited radical changes. My paper begins by tracing some of the major shifts of the Islamic sermon in the postcolonial period. Second, and by focusing on the case of the Palestinian Austrian preacher Adnan Ibrahim, I will argue that the ubiquitous alterations in sermon structure pertain to method and form. I will look at Adnan’s digital YouTube series of sermons called “The Hammer of evidence and the Glass of Atheism”, “Al Ghazālī and the Search for Truth” and “the Evolution Theory”.

Through comparison and critical analysis my aim is to show that Adnan’s case demonstrates the most significant paradigm of transformation in sermon composition, texture and form grounded in an ontological and anthropological awareness of its “democratic” space, European diasporic place, and its multi-faith context. Adnan’s sermons attempt to preserve the truth claims of an “exilic” Islam by accommodating philosophical inquiries equally encroaching on Christianity and Judaism. Adnan’s new method and form of Qur’anic exposition lies in interweaving two approaches of exegesis and hermeneutics in order to allow Islamic thought to shape and dynamize faith, and to respond to the digital dissemination of exclusionary sermons.

At-A-Glance Bios- Presenter #1

Dr. Youssef Yacoubi is Assistant Professor of Languages, Literatures and Cultures and Director of the Arabic and Middle Eastern Studies Program at Seton Hall University. He is author of The Play of Reasons: The Sacred and the Profane in Salman Rushie's Fiction (2012).

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From Prescriptive to Reflexive Sermon: The Insertion of Philosophy in the Mosque

Montréal, QC

The sermon in Islam has usually been classified into two typologies. The homily (wa’z) delivered any time as an exercise in exposition, explanation of a variety of topics in exegesis, jurisprudence or ethics. The second is the Friday sermon delivered from the pulpit during the weekly worship service.

In the modern context and with the rise of new technologies, the Friday sermon in Islam has exhibited radical changes. My paper begins by tracing some of the major shifts of the Islamic sermon in the postcolonial period. Second, and by focusing on the case of the Palestinian Austrian preacher Adnan Ibrahim, I will argue that the ubiquitous alterations in sermon structure pertain to method and form. I will look at Adnan’s digital YouTube series of sermons called “The Hammer of evidence and the Glass of Atheism”, “Al Ghazālī and the Search for Truth” and “the Evolution Theory”.

Through comparison and critical analysis my aim is to show that Adnan’s case demonstrates the most significant paradigm of transformation in sermon composition, texture and form grounded in an ontological and anthropological awareness of its “democratic” space, European diasporic place, and its multi-faith context. Adnan’s sermons attempt to preserve the truth claims of an “exilic” Islam by accommodating philosophical inquiries equally encroaching on Christianity and Judaism. Adnan’s new method and form of Qur’anic exposition lies in interweaving two approaches of exegesis and hermeneutics in order to allow Islamic thought to shape and dynamize faith, and to respond to the digital dissemination of exclusionary sermons.