An Islamic Conception of Change

It is always refreshing to witness Muslim scholars debating one of the most important phenomena of the modem Islamic revival: the question of the “use of force.” There is no doubt that this issue is deeply misunderstood and indeed misused by Islamists and non-Islamists alike. Any attempt to shed light on the subject is therefore highly appreciated and welcomed. As Muslims witness the transformation of the international political and economic systems, questions and expectations are raised regarding its possible impact on the Muslim world. In this context, the article which occasioned this response (AbuSulayman, ‘AbdulHamid, “Guiding Light: The Qur’an and the Sunnah on Violence, Armed Struggle, and the Political Process,” AJISS 8, no. 2 [September 1991]:xi-xxxv) and the debate it is likely to generate (including the proposed World and Islamic Studies Enterprise’s symposium on the subject in early 1992) is not only timely, but also highly fitting.

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