FAZLUR RAHMAN AND HIS DOUBLE MOVEMENT1INTRODUCTION        Fazlur Rahman is an intellectual Muslim who had scientific backg...
family were embraced by the Hanafi’s school. Although the life in the midst of a family that adheredto the Sunni sect, Faz...
Islamic Ideology. Meanwhile, personal motivation of Fazlur Rahman received an offer from AyyubKhan is due to his desire to...
work eventually manifested in his work entitled Revival and Reform in Islam: A Study of IslamicFundamentalism (published i...
in the third period is more purely normative. In the first and second period, Fazlur Rahman had notopenly declared themsel...
Immanence of God is by no means action did by natural or man actually carried out by God: God isnot a rival or substitute ...
equal to each other, do not feel better, more super, etc.), honesty, and others.       The meaning of universality that in...
four basic principles (Al-Quran, Sunnah, Ijtihad and Ijma), which expressed in the book IslamicMethodology in History (196...
Quran. An interpretation of the Quran in a systematic and bold should be done".27However, the problem located on the abili...
document to a person, not the treatise on God. The main concern of the Quran is human behavior.Therefore it is more orient...
century under the influence of Western ideas. Development lies in this movement to expand thecontents of ijtihad, and also...
contained in a number of historical data, not historical event itself. If the extent of the historical datapresented chron...
the answer and the response of the Quran appears. Knowing the specific meaning in the light ofbackground back specifically...
meaning of Al- Quran in a systematic and coherent manner."35    b) The distinction between legal provisions and objectives...
Closing         From the description of Fazlur Rahman thought it could be concluded that methodologyoffered Fazlur Rahman ...
Distributors, 1994), First Edition.•   _____________, Membuka Pintu Ijtihad. (terj. Mahyuddin Anas.) (New York:    Library...
Upcoming SlideShare
Loading in …5

Fazlur rahman


Published on

  • Be the first to comment

No Downloads
Total views
On SlideShare
From Embeds
Number of Embeds
Embeds 0
No embeds

No notes for slide

Fazlur rahman

  1. 1. FAZLUR RAHMAN AND HIS DOUBLE MOVEMENT1INTRODUCTION Fazlur Rahman is an intellectual Muslim who had scientific background of Islamicestablishing and the Western tradition of critical thinking. He is the main character of neo-modernism, that his learning of thought in Islam that try to look critically at the tradition of Islamicthought and Western scientific discourse, and yet still appreciative of the legacy of Islamic thoughtitself. Rahman started thinking of the results of his historical research that since the end of the firstcentury Hijriyah, the Muslims had developed a rigid attitude -with a-historical approaches, literalist,and atomistic- in understanding of both major source of Islamic teachings, namely the Quran and theSunnah of the Prophet. According to Rahman, fundamental issues about the interpretation of bothmethods of the sources of Islamic teachings and contextualization for the Muslim communitycontemporary not yet got proportionate attention. To answer crisis and the problems are, Rahmanoffers a systematic method and comprehensive, which he called double movement. Fazlur Rahman (1332 H/1919 M – 1408 M/1988 H), known as one of brilliant modernIslamic intellectuals. His intelligence is reflected in the ideas which he poured in a number of booksand articles, ranging from philosophy, theology, mysticism, law problems until the development ofcontemporary Islam. In connection with the challenges of modern life, seems made Fazlur Rahmanthought hard in finding the recipe that can solve arisen problems, and bring around to review someof the views among Muslims tradition, but it seems even less accommodating difficult whendealing with development of modern life. In this context, Fazlur Rahman came with an offering thought and the formulationmethodology of how the Quran should be understood that the values contained in it is alwayscurrent and relevant to the issues and problems facing the people of Islam.2BIOGRAPHY FAZLUR RAHMANHis family and education Fazlur Rahman was born on September 21, 1919 in Hazara, an area in Indo-Pakistancontinent (now located in Northwest Pakistan). He was born into a deeply religious Muslim family.Religiousness is expressed by Fazlur Rahman himself who said that he was carrying out acts ofworship such as prayer, fasting, and others, without ever leaving once.3 With a background such areligious life, then when he was ten years old been able to memorize the Quran. The schools of the1 Submitted by Muhammad Akmaluddin (094211064) to fulfill the final task of Hermeneutics (Lecturer: Dr. H. Muhsin Jamil,M. Ag), Tafsir Hadits Major, Special Program of Ushuluddin Faculty (FUPK) State Institut for Islamic Studies (IAIN)Walisongo Semarang 1433 H / 2012 M.2 Ebrahim Moosa (ed.), “Introduction”, in Fazlur Rahman, Revival and Reform in Islam (Oxford: Oneworld Publications,2000).3 Taufik Adnan Amal, Islam dan Tantangan Modernitas (Bandung: Mizan, 1994), pg. 79. 1
  2. 2. family were embraced by the Hanafi’s school. Although the life in the midst of a family that adheredto the Sunni sect, Fazlur Rahman is able to release away from the barriers that limit intellectualdevelopment and belief.4 Fazlur Rahman’s parents were very influential in shaping the character andbeginning of their religious beliefs. Fazlur Rahmans father was the adherents of the Hanafi’s schoolof very strong, but he did not close himself from modern education. In 1933, Fazlur Rahman continued his education at a school modern in Lahore. Apart fromtaking formal education, Fazlur Rahman also got education or the traditional teaching in Islamicstudies from his own father, Maulana Syahab al-Din. Material teaching given by his father was amaterial that he got when studied at Dar al-Ulum Deoband, the northern region of India. When wasfourteen, Fazlur Rahman had started to study philosophy, Arabic language, theology or Kalam,Hadith and Tafsir.5 After completing his secondary education, Fazlur Rahman continued his education by takingthe concentration of studies in Arabic and in 1940 he obtained a Bachelor of Art. Two years later, hesucceeded completing his studies in post graduate and got a Masters degree in Arabic. In 1946,Fazlur Rahman went to England to continue his studies at Oxford University. Under guidance ofProfessor Simon Van den Berg and HAR Gibb, Fazlur Rahman completed his studies and receivedhis Ph.D. in 1949 with dissertation on Ibn Sina. His dissertation was later published by OxfordUniversity Press under the title Avicennas Psychology. During his education in the West, Fazlur Rahman took the time to learn various foreignlanguages such as Latin, Greek, English, German, Turkish, Arabic Urdu languages.6 His masteringhelped to deepen and broaden the horizons of scientific (especially Islamic studies) through variousliterature searches. After completing his studies at Oxford University, Fazlur Rahman indirect went to his homecountry of Pakistan (when it had to break away from India)7 and decided to stay some time there.While living in England, Fazlur Rahman had taught at Durham University. Then moved to teach tothe Institute of Islamic Studies, McGill University, Canada, and served as Associate Professor ofPhilosophy until beginning in 1960. After three years of teaching at McGill University, eventually in early 1960 Fazlur Rahmanreturned to Pakistan at the request of Ayyub Khan (President of Pakistan, 1958 - 1969) to buildPakistan. Ayyub’s request to Fazlur Khan Rahman aimed to formulate Islamic ideology for the stateof Pakistan. Further in 1962, Fazlur Rahman requested by Ayyub Khan to lead the ResearchInstitute Islam (Islamic Research Institute) and became a member of the Advisory Council of4 Fazlur Rahman, Islam (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1979), pg. 41.5 Amal, Islam dan Tantangan Modernitas, pg. 80.6 Ibid., pg. 80-81.7 Pakistan split from India on August 14, 1947, and stands alone as a new country with principles of Islam. The idea of theIslamic State of Pakistan starts from the idea of Sir Sayyid Ahmad Khan, who then strengthened by Muhammad Iqbal andelaborated into practical areas by Muhammad Ali Jinnah.
  3. 3. Islamic Ideology. Meanwhile, personal motivation of Fazlur Rahman received an offer from AyyubKhan is due to his desire to raise vision of the Quran closed by history as is the case the country ofPakistan.8 Positions occupied by Fazlur Rahman finally caused the various reactions. The traditionalscholars rejected if his position, was due to the background pursued his educational background inthe West. Opposition to Fazlur Rahman finally reached its climax when the journal Fikr-o-Nazarlater published his became the first two chapters of his book Islam. In the article, Fazlur Rahmanexpressed thoughts about the controversial nature of revelation and its relationship with Muhammad.According to Fazlur Rahman, the Quran is the word entirely or the word of God Almighty, but inthe usual meaning, the Qur’an is also a word of Muhammad.9 As a result of these statements, FazlurRahman called as munkir-i-Quran (one who does not believe in the Quran). Disagreement in themedia Pakistan on the Fazlur Rahman thought went up to about one years, that finally led to massprotests and total strike in some areas of Pakistan in September 1968. According to almost all FazlurRahman thought the reviewer believes that it is not a rejection to Fazlur Rahman, but addressed toAyyub Khan to oppose. Finally on 5 September 1968 Fazlur Rahmans request to resign from theleadership Islamic Research Institute was granted by Ayyub Khan.10 At the end of 1969 Fazlur Rahaman left Pakistan to meet offer of the University ofCalifornia, Los Angeles, and immediately appointed Professor of Islamic Thought. The courses hetaught including understanding the Quran, Islamic philosophy, sufism, Islamic law, Islamic politicalthought, Islamic modernism, the study of Muslim thinking figures such as al-Ghazali, Shah WaliAllah, Muhammad Iqbal, and others. One of the reasons that make Fazlur Rahman decided to settleand teaching in the West due to the belief that his offered ideas will not be accepted and growing inPakistan. In addition, Fazlur Rahman wanted transparency of the atmosphere of the various ideasand healthy debate, which he did not found in Pakistan.11 While in Chicago, Fazlur Rahman devoted his whole life in the world science, especially thestudy of Islam. His life was spent in the library personal in the basement of his home, located inNaperville, about 70 kilometers from University of Chicago. Fazlur Rahman himself described hisactivities like the fish that just rises up to get air. From his consistency and seriousness of thescientific world, finally Fazlur Rahman got the recognition of international scientific institutions.One of recognition was in 1983 when he received the Giorgio Levi Della Vida E of Gustave vonGrunebaum Center for Near Eastern Studies, University of California, Los Angeles. In the mid-80s, the main character of this Islamic neo-modernism got health problems,including diabetes and heart disease. However, the commitment Fazlur Rahman to continue his8 Rahman, Islam, pg. 30-31.9 Ibid., pg. 33.10 Moosa, “Introduction”, pg. 35.11 Amal, Islam dan Tantangan Modernitas, pg. 104. 3
  4. 4. work eventually manifested in his work entitled Revival and Reform in Islam: A Study of IslamicFundamentalism (published in 2000). Although only published after his death, but the process wasdone when he sick He was getting worse with the assistance of his son. Finally, after a whilehospitalized Chicago, on July 26, 1988 professor of Islamic thought in The University of Chicagothat was passed away of 69 years.Career and Work of Intellectual In short, the development of Fazlur Rahman’s thinking could be mapped into the threeperiods: (i) the first period (decade of the 50s); (ii) Pakistan period (decade of the 60s), and (iii) theperiod Chicago (decade of the 70s and so on).12 At least three major works of Fazlur Rahman that composed in the first period: AvicennasPsychology (1952); Avicennas De Anima (1959); and Prophecy in Islam: Philosophy andOrthodoxy (1958). Avicennas Psychology (1952) and Avicennas De Anima (1959) were translationand editing work of Ibn Sina (Avisena). While the latter, Prophecy in Islam: Philosophy andOrthodoxy (1958), investigated the differences in between the Prophets doctrine adopted by thephilosophers and the orthodoxy. To look at the philosophical roots of Islam, Fazlur Rahman tooksamples of the two famous philosophers, Al-Farabi (870-950) and Ibn Sina (980-1037). He reviewedthe views of both philosophers about the Prophets revelation-an on the level intellectual, technicalor psychological process of imaginative revelation, doctrine and the concept of miraclesproselytizing and Sharia. To represent the views of orthodoxy, Fazlur Rahman took Ibn Hazm, al-Ghazali, al-Syahrastani, Ibn Taymiyya and Ibn Khaldun. Of This tracking, Fazlur Rahmanconcluded that there was an agreement orthodox stream in rejecting the pure intellectualist approachof philosophers to the phenomenon of the Prophets. The results of this conclusion led FazlurRahman to the conclusion that there is no fundamental difference between the positions of theMuslim philosopher and ortodoksi.13 In the second period (Pakistan), he wrote a book entitled: Islamic Methodology in History(1965). Fazlur Rahman in this book showed: (i) the historical evolution development of the fourbasic principles (main source) of Islamic thought: the Quran, Sunnah, Ijtihad and Ijma , and (ii) theactual role of these principles in the development of Islamic history itself. The second book writtenby Fazlur Rahman in the second period is Islam, which presented a systematic reconstruction of thedevelopment of Islam for fourteen century. In the period of Chicago, Fazlur Rahman wrote: ThePhilosophy of Mulla Sadra (1975), Major Themes of the Quran (1980), and Islam and Modernity:Transformation of an Intellectual Tradition (1982). The works of Fazlur Rahman in the first periodwas historical studies, and in the second period as well as interpretive historic nature (normative), so12 Ibid., pg. 112.13 Ibid., pg. 11.
  5. 5. in the third period is more purely normative. In the first and second period, Fazlur Rahman had notopenly declared themselves directly involved in current renewal of Islamic thought, then in the thirdperiod he declared himself as a spokesman for neo-modernis.14Fazlur Rahman ThoughtWorldview: God, Man and Nature Fazlur Rahman saw the importance of the worldviews formulation that comprehensive andcomplete as the philosophical foundation for the concept of his methodology.15 His worldviews,particularly related to three issues: God, man and nature, started from al-Qur`an.16 Concept of Godas revealed in the al-Qur`an for Fazlur Rahman was essentially a mere functional, that is Godneeded not because of who He is or how He, but because of what He does.17 Departing from the above basis, we can take the idea of Fazlur Rahman of God which is thencolored his others views. In other words, Fazlur Rahmans view of God may be further implicationsfor how Fazlur Rahman saw all phenomena in nature. In his view, God had created man and theuniverse. God had made nature with set of rules which He described in terms of Qadr. Qadaraccording to him was not like what understood by the majority of the theologians (mutakallimum) asa deterministic provision, bind and restrict the freedom of man 18, but all the provisions that exist innature, especially the physical objects. That Qadar is what gives characteristics and special nature toit. Those characteristics are instruction of God of nature. Therefore everything in nature is Islam,because it is subject and obedient to Gods injunction. Instruction of God then became the mandatefor this nature. Hence, also, al-Qur`an says that the natural glorify to God.19 God created the universe is without no purpose. He wanted to realize His purpose throughHis creation and His mission that good. At this point, Fazlur Rahman believed, at least accepted,called the terminology of philosophy of religion as a teleological argument. This argument holdsthat nature has a purpose. Nature leads to a higher purpose that is good. It is the common assumption that in Islam God is transcendent absolutely, it is proved by afirm emphasis given by Islam on God unity, His majesty, glory, and so on. 20 However, a picture ofthis kind do not arise from al-Qur`an, but from the development of recent Islamic theology course.2114 Fazlur Rahman, Islam and Modernity: Transformation of an Intellectual Tradition (Chicago: The University of ChicagoPress, 1982), pg. 135-145.15 Rahman, Islam, pg. 378.16 Fazlur Rahman, Major Themes of Qur’an (Minneapolis: Bibliotheca Islamica, 1980). See also Fazlur Rahman, Tema PokokAl-Qur’an, terj. Anas Mahyudin (Bandung: Pustaka, 1983).17 Ibid., pg. 91.18 In the discourse of Islamic theology, polemics problem of human destiny is never received an adequate solution. Jabariyyahideology that views human beings on the one hand completely deterministic dealing with the schools Qadariyah that viewshuman beings have the freedom as well as responsible for his actions Kasab theoretical background for the birth of Ashari asthe middle way.19 QS, 57:1; 59:1; 61:1; 13:14; 62:1; 64:1 dan 17:44.20 Amal, Islam dan Tantangan Modernitas, pg. 70.21 Ibid. 5
  6. 6. Immanence of God is by no means action did by natural or man actually carried out by God: God isnot a rival or substitute for human or natural agents in the produce effects, and he also did notinterfere in their work process.22 Natural law is a part of His behavior (sunnah).23 God created human beings with a view also to realize His noble goal, good purpose. Inaddition to the man given the task within the overall framework of the creation, he also claimed tobe always obedient to the Lord. Here God gives power to men of high intelligence with the humanmind to distinguish good and poor. Therefore God gave the highest degree to the human comparedwith other creatures. Among the creatures, man is equipped with moral. Because of that man, in hislife, full of struggle, both struggles to realize the purpose of Gods creation, his relationship withnature, as well as on personal level. So the relationship of God, man and nature in view of Fazlur Rahman can not be separatedfrom one another. Clear relationship is that the people were given the task by God to manage thisuniverse in order of goodness and perfection of the entire plan of God and the whole creation.Relationship with God that humans are parts of Him, in the meaning that God has breathed His spiritinto human themselves.24 However, God remains as the macrocosm (nature) and human is amicrocosm (minor nature). Minor nature is always connected in a spiritual the nature of, at least at aphilosophical level. Therefore, man must imitate God in any manner, embody virtues. This task, likeit or not even rather, should be burdened. Humans carry out the mandate as a caliph in the earth(khalif fi al-ardl). Human relationship with nature is that humans use for the creation of the naturalvirtues, and in order to worship Him. Fazlur Rahman said such things as amr or the Lordscommand to performed by humans. So nature serves as a facility in order to this goal. Thus in Islam,men become "managers" instead of "exploiters". From this conception, clear views on monotheism can not be simply denied. For FazlurRahman, unity is not just talking about the God unity, but also talks about how humans behave andact. Human is a reflection of God or the caliph of God on earth, therefore he must realize Hismission on earth. When he does interact with other people, then the elements of the Lord andtheological values should be described. This view was very influential in understanding of socialethics. Fazlur Rahman here idealizes a society in which there justice, welfare, peace, and thatpeoples behavior based on values high moral, in this case the values of unity as shown al-Qur`an.For him, universal values of the message of al-Qur`an should be a reference and ethical basis of asociety. Therefore, all human beings without being limited by the attributes certain: class, ethnicity,race, language, etc., must uphold the noble values and universal: "justice", "good", "equality", (feel22 Ibid.23 Ibid., pg. 71. In this case, Rahman quoted several verses of al-Qur’an: QS: 18-17; 30:30; 33-62; 35:43-44; 48:2324 Fazlur Rahman, Tema-tema Pokok al-Qur`an, terj. Anas Mahyuddin (Bandung: Pustaka, 1993), pg. 26.
  7. 7. equal to each other, do not feel better, more super, etc.), honesty, and others. The meaning of universality that interpreted Fazlur Rahman, seem to differ from Muslimtraditionalist groups when saw universal Islam. Muslim traditionalists always refer to what has beendone of the Prophet and his Companions when in Madinah, namely in the form of a set offormalistic rules. What does it mean who has practiced the Prophet and the companions of his timetrying applied to the now with, often, without compromise. Universal here according to FazlurRahman did not mean like that. For him, the universal meaning of Islam should be adjusted toconditions in which the concept and the idea were applied. In the past this does not mean erosion oftranscendent values contained in a holy book. Fazlur Rahman seemed convinced that the meaning ofal-Qur`an can not be collected or realized by the first one. So for Fazlur Rahman, the influence ofmethodological historical spirit of al-Qur`an is that matters. With this dynamic stance monotheism, then obviously people will live optimistically,without excessive. Thus optimistic attitude can generate an attitude of humility and not easilydespair. Hence, one would be in the middle of the road and avoid the two extreme poles because thatthe two extremes is what causes people to fall in "disbelief/kufr". Within this concept ofmonotheism, Fazlur Rahman idealized the creation of relationships between man and God, mansrelationship with another human being, and relationships man in harmony with the naturalsurroundings in order to realize purpose of this creation (al-hikmah). This foundation of monotheismis universality the basic and principles of Islam which then was very influential on the principle ofthought Fazlur Rahman. In addition, many verses of the Qur`an is in tune with the spirit of unity, egalitarianism, andsocial justice. This presupposes that Islam accepted -though explained not detailed- the concept andthe idea of democracy. The idea of democracy has also implied al-Qur`an. As an indicator, forexample, some verses called of shura, commanded fair to anyone, even against enemies or peoplewho really hate us though. Clearly, then, the unity (tawhid) for Fazlur Rahman is not merely ahuman being to understand how God is One, but beyond that also have positive implications andresponsive to the issues social and political as well as to answer a variety of other humanitarianproblems. Therefore justice, democracy, egalitarianism, openness and so forth, should be part of,and below Tauhid. Thus all human actions always are on the rail corridor and that monotheism, sodivine values can be manifested in the life of a Muslim. This is the one mans mission as caliph ofGod on earth.Starting point of thought The starting point of Fazlur Rahman thinking about the need for new methodologies inunderstand the text of the Quran begins with a historical study of the evolution development of the 7
  8. 8. four basic principles (Al-Quran, Sunnah, Ijtihad and Ijma), which expressed in the book IslamicMethodology in History (1965). Fazlur Rahman’s views was motivated by the struggle in efforts toreform (law) Islam in Pakistan, which then delivered it to the more important agenda; theformulation of re-interpretation of the Quran which is the center-point of ijtihad. In these historical studies, Fazlur Rahman found an organic relationship between theProphets sunnah and the ideal activity of ijtihad, ijma. For Fazlur Rahman, the sunnah of earlyMuslims is the result of personal ijtihad, qiyas through the instrument, against the ideal sunnah ofProphet who then became the ijma or the living of sunnah. Here, Fazlur Rahman explicitly drew theline that distinguishes between ideal sunnah of the Prophet saw on the one hand, by the earlyMuslims living Sunnah or ijma of sahabat on the other side. Thus, originally consensus was notstatic, but evolves democratic, creative and future oriented. However, due to the gaining of themovement of writing hadits on a large scale to replace the sunnah-ijtihad-ijma, the process ofijtihad-ijma reversed became ijma-ijtihad. As a result, ijma which was oriented forward andbackward static: lock the meeting of consensus in the past. The culmination of the process ofreification (process of making something, standardization) was the closed door of ijtihad, around thefourth or ten century of Hijrah. From the results of these historical studies, Fazlur Rahman then rejected the doctrine ofclosed doors of ijtihad, or sorting into muthlaq ijtihad, ijtihad fil masail, and ijtihad fil madhhab.Fazlur Rahman critical of this doctrine, he said "ijtihad is not exclusive privilege right to certaingroups within the Muslim community ", he also rejected odd qualifications about the mysteriousmagic as a condition of ijtihad; then he put forward the need to expand the scope of classical ijtihad.The result is a Fazlur Rahman conclusion: ijtihad both theoretically and practically always openedand never closed.25 Meanwhile, to anticipate the growth of the wild, arbitrary, recklessly and irresponsiblyijtihad, Fazlur Rahman filed the interpretation methodology, which was composed later in the periodof Chicago. In this context, the interpretation methodology of Fazlur Rahman commentators calledas "the correct procedure for understanding the Quran "or" the correct method of interpreting TheQuran"26 played a central role in the entire thought building. Interpretation methodology of FazlurRahman is his own heart ijtihad. This is in addition based on the fact that the Quran as principalsource of ijtihad, which is also more important based on his view that all buildings must beinspected under shari’ah light of the Quranic evidence: "The entire content of the shariah should be the target of a fresh inspection in light of evidence of the25 Fazlur Rahman, Membuka Pintu Ijtihad, terj. Anas Masyuddin (Bandung: Pustaka, 1995).26 Fazlur Rahman, Islam and Modernity, pg. 5.
  9. 9. Quran. An interpretation of the Quran in a systematic and bold should be done".27However, the problem located on the ability of Muslims to conceptualized al-Quran correctly.Fazlur Rahman asserts: ".. not just go back to the Quran and Sunnah as which one carried in the past, but an understanding of both which will provide led to us today. Back to the past in a simple, of course back to die. And when we come back to the early Muslim generations, certainly we meet the living understanding of the Quran and sunnah”.28Reorientation Meaning of the QURAN Fazlur Rahmans views about the Qur’an are the basic for the formulation of interpretationmethodology. Therefore, a reorientation of the meaning of the Quran itself is necessary absolutely.According to Fazlur Rahman, Al-Quran is the revealed word of Allah to the Prophet Muhammadand this is a basic belief. Therefore, Fazlur Rahman gave a very strong argument to confirmreliability of the revelation of Al-Quran. Fazlur Rahman in his book review of Islam: “For the Quran itself, and consequently also for the Muslims, the Quran is the word of God. Muhammad also firmly believes that he is the recipient treatise of the Lord, the other completely, so great, that he rejected the basic strength of this belief, some of the fundamental claims of the Judeo- Christian tradition of Abraham and the other Prophets.”29 The idea re-orientation of Fazlur Rahman conception to the Quran in a simple are asfollows: 1). The Quran in its entirety is the word of God, and in the usual meaning, nor are all thewords Muhammad.30 2). Al-Quran is divine response, through the memories and thoughts of theProphet, to the moral-social situation of Arabic in the Prophet era; especially the problems of tradesociety at Makkah that time. 3). Therefore, the spirit or elan vital of the Quran is the moral spirit,which emphasizes monotheism and social justice. Moral law is eternal; it is the law of Allah. Al-Quran is all guiding principle and calls for religious and moral, not a legal document. Therefore, theimmortality content of legal specific for the Quran located on the moral principles underlying it, noton literal terms. 4). Al-Quran is a coherent and cohesive doctrine. Certainty does not lie inunderstanding the meaning of individual verses of Al- Quran, but there is in the Quran as a whole,namely a set of principles and coherent values on which the whole doctrine rests. 5). Al-Quran is27 Fazlur Rahman, Islamic Methodology in History (Delhi: Adam Publisher and Distributors, 1994).28 Ibid., pg. 143.29 Rahman, Islam, pg. 30.30 Ibid., pg. 31. 9
  10. 10. document to a person, not the treatise on God. The main concern of the Quran is human behavior.Therefore it is more oriented to moral action than speculation intellectual. 6). But, in fact, the Quranis like the tip of the float iceberg: the nine-tenth of it submerged beneath the water surface and onlya tenth of them are looking.31 None of the people who had a serious attempt to understand the Qurancan reject the fact that most The Quran requires great knowledge of historical circumstances thatstatements of the Quran provide solutions, comments and response. Fazlur Rahman stressed that the ideal-moral purpose of the Quran which is the elan vital, ithas been buried in geological deposits as a result of reification process so long. This is a price to bepaid (cost) of the expansion Islamic region that too fast, without offset infrastructure level ofunderstanding adequate religious. Therefore, the expected methodology is the methodology, ofcourse, can penetrate the sediment to the deepest layers of history. Thus, to understand that the purpose of interpretation methodology for Fazlur Rahman is torecapture the universal moral message of the Quran that objective, with how to let the Quran speakfor themselves, without any compulsion from outside themselves, to then applied to thecontemporary reality. For example, in a matter of law, for Fazlur Rahman, the purpose ofinterpretation is to capture the logical response behind formal statement of the Quran. For thisFazlur Rahman is often mentioned cases Umar ijtihad is judged as a good precedent (uswah) forgeneralizing principles and common values that are below the surface sunnah and even the text ofthe Quran.32Critics of the Modernist Movement Interpretation methodologies of Fazlur Rahman can not be separated from the reform agenda(modernism) before. For that, it helps to put first the view of the dialectical development of themodernization (modernism) which appears in the Islamic world. Fazlur Rahman divided reform movement into four movements. The first is a revival of pre-modernist who was born in the 18th century and 19th in Arabia, India and Africa. This movementarose from the original Islamic world, not a reaction toward the West. This movement was simply tohave common characteristics: (a) concerns in depth the degeneration of socio-moral Muslims; (b) anappeal to return to the true Islam, to eradicate superstitions and with opening and carrying outijtihad, (c) an appeal to abandon fatalism and (d) an appeal to carry out these reforms through jihadif necessary. According to Fazlur Rahman, the basic of this pre-modern revivalism later developed by thesecond movement, classic modernism, which emerged in the 19th century and beginning of the 20th31 Fazlur Rahman, Interpreting the Qur’an, sebagaimana dikutip dalam; Taufik Adnan Amal, Islam dan TantanganModernitas, pg. 158.32 Rahman, Islamic Methodology, pg. 130.
  11. 11. century under the influence of Western ideas. Development lies in this movement to expand thecontents of ijtihad, and also the issue of movement agenda like the relationship of reason andrevelation, social reform, especially in the fields of education and women status, political reform toset up a representative government and constitutional. Service of classic modernism is an attempt tocreate a harmony relationship between the institutions of the West with Islamic tradition in the eyesof the Quran and sunnah. But their interpretation of the Quran and Sunnah is not supported withadequate methodology. They are adopting more of the issues from the West and wrap it with thelanguage of "Qur’an". Consequently, this movement can not at all be separated from the impressionof Western-centric or even the movement of the charge as Western stooges. The reaction to this classic modernism is the third movement, the neo-revivalism orrevivalism of postmodernism, which holds that Islam is all-encompassing aspects of human life,both individual and group. This view is similar to the basis of thinking of classical modernism. Butbecause it is reactionary, like distinguishes itself with the West, this movement tended to closethemselves, apologetic and did not authentic. Influence of neo-revivalism background is neo-modernist movement was born, and FazlurRahman himself as spokesman for this movement. For Fazlur Rahman, there are two fundamentalflaws of this classic modernism that led to the reaction of neo-revivalism. First, because it iscontroversial-apologetic toward the West, these movements are not able to perform a systematic andcomprehensive interpretation of the Islam. As a result, their interpretation of the Quran is more tobe ad hoc and partial. Secondly, the issues they raised came from the Western world and so there is an impressionstrong that they being West or agents of westernization. According to Fazlur Rahman, neo-modernism should develop a critical attitude towards both the West and to the classical heritage ofIslamic heritage. In this context he said that most fundamental tasks of neo-modernism aredeveloping a methodology that appropriate and logical to study the Qur’an in order to getinstructions for the front. With this methodology Fazlur Rahman promises that the methodologyoffered to avoid the growth of the wild ijtihad and arbitrary, as has happened before.APPROACHES In reviewing the thought Fazlur Rahman, we need to know the method of approach used inwriting his works. Fazlur Rahman, often mentioning the two term methodical in his books ishistorico critical method and hermeneutic method.33 Historico critical method method (historicalcriticism), is a historical approach in principle aimed at finding objective facts fully and find thevalues are given therein. So, which is emphasized by this method is the disclosure of the values33 Rahman, Islam and Modernity, 11
  12. 12. contained in a number of historical data, not historical event itself. If the extent of the historical datapresented chronologically, such a model is called the historical approach. Critical history as amethod of study of Islamic history, first developed in orientalists studies, such as: David S.Margolouth, Goldzhiher, Henry Lammen, Josep Schact, H.R. Gibb, N.J. Coulson, etc., is to applythe methods of the predecessor orientalis in this critical history method. Hermeneutic method is amethod to understand and interpret ancient texts like the holy book, history, law and also in the fieldof philosophy. This method required to perform the interpretation of the text of scripture, theinterpretation of the historical text of using complicated language, or a dense legal language as wellrequires an effort of interpretation, to be easily understood. According to Fazlur Rahman, the scientific method critical history and the hermeneutic aretwo closely related methods. Method of critical history serves as a methodology of deconstructioneffort, while the hermeneutic method functioned as an attempt the reconstruction. 34 While thenormative study (the application of hermeneutic methods in interpret al-Quran), Fazlur Rahmanused socio-historical method as a tool aids in determining the relevant social context. Therefore,Fazlur Rahman, realized lack of historical perspective in which in turn Muslim scholar cause thelack of historical studies of Islam. According to Fazlur Rahman, the Muslims require a review of thehistory so that they can weigh more values historical development is to be able to do thereconstruction of Islamic disciplines for the future. In this regard, Islam Fazlur Rahman made thecategory a two, namely: Normative Islam and Historical Islam. Critical history as a method usedentirely by Fazlur Rahman in Islam historical review in all its aspects. The development of thismethod by Fazlur Rahman was clearly visible in historical discourse, as in his book IslamicMethodology in History and Islam and Modernity Transformation of an Intellectual Tradition.Critical history by Fazlur Rahman always associated with the phase of the development, progressand decline of community history Islam. For that, writing in his Islamic Methodology in Historythis, Fazlur Rahman using the critical history to review the Sunnah and Hadith and deconstructed it.Interpretation Methodology of Fazlur Rahman (Double Movement Theory) Fazlur Rahman has actually pioneered the formulation of the methodology since he living inPakistan (the 60s decade). However, the formulation of this methodology in a systematic and thenew comprehensive completion when he had settled in Chicago. The methodology This offer, whichhe calls a double movement, a combination of pattern induction and deduction reasoning: first, fromthe special (particular) to the public (general), and second, from the general to the particular. The first of these two movements consist of two steps. First, understand the meaning ormeaning of a statement of the Quran, by examining the situation or the historical problem of where34 Ibid., pg. 8-11.
  13. 13. the answer and the response of the Quran appears. Knowing the specific meaning in the light ofbackground back specifically, according to Fazlur Rahman also supported by a study about themacro situation within the constraints of religion, society, customs and institutions, as well as theoverall life of Arabs at the time of arrival of Islam. The second step of this first movement is to generalize from answers specifically statementsthat have the moral purposes of social-general, which can be abstracted from specific passages inlight of the historical background and logical rations also often expressed by the verse itself. Thingsto observed during this step are the teachings of the Quran as a whole, so that every sense of thewithdrawn, any conclusion of law, and every single goal that is formulated coherent each other. This is in accordance with the Quran itself claims that his teachings are not coherent andcontain internal-contradiction as a whole. This step can also be and should be assisted by thetracking of the views of the early Muslims. According to Fazlur Rahman, until now very little effortmade to understand the Quran as a whole. When the first movement started from the specific things and then pulled into generalprinciples and moral values of long-term, then the second movement reached from generalprinciples to specific views to be formulated and realized in life now. This second movementpresupposes a careful study of the situation Now that the situation could now be assessed andamended in accordance with the moral priorities. If the second moment is taken in a seamlessmotion, then the command of Al- Quran will be alive and effective return. If the first is the duty ofthe historians, then the conduct of the second movement, social instrumentalist absolutely necessary,although the engineering work that is actually working ethically ethicist. Moments of the second movement also serves as a correction to the moment the first, namelyon the results of interpretation. If the results of comprehension fail applied today, then certainlythere has been a failure in understanding the Al- Quran and in understanding the present situation.Therefore, it is unlikely that anything that used to be and truly been realized in a specific order in thepast, in the present context can not be. This double movement can be understood by the three main methodological steps: a) The historical approach to find the meaning of the text of the Qur’an the Prophet; associated with this Fazlur Rahman said: "A historical approach to a serious and honest should be used to find meaning of the Quranic text ... First of all, the Quran must be studied in order historical. Starting with an examination of sections revealed the early will give a fairly accurate perception of the basic impulse Islamic movement, as distinguished from the institutions that built later. And so, one must follow a stretch of the Quran throughout his career and the struggle of the Prophet ... This method will show clearly the overall 13
  14. 14. meaning of Al- Quran in a systematic and coherent manner."35 b) The distinction between legal provisions and objectives of the Qur’an. About the distinction between legal provisions and the moral purpose of the Quran, Fazlur Rahman writes: "Then someone was prepared to distinguish between legal provisions and objectives Al-Quran, where the law is expected to serve him. Here once again one is dealing with the danger of subjectivity, but this can be reduced to a minimum by using the Quran itself. All too often ignored both by non-Muslims and Muslims themselves that the Al-Quran normally give reasons for the specific legal claims.”36 c) Understanding and targeting Al-Quran with full attention to the background sociological. About this third point, Fazlur Rahman writes: "The premise of the Quran must be understood and defined, while paying attention entirely to the sociological background, ie the environment in which the Prophet lived and activity.”37 Fazlur Rahman believed that with the application of the theory of double movement it is intext interpretation, ijtihad be revived. If this can be done, messages of the Koran can be live andbecome effective once again. Double movement, as raised by Fazlur Rahmans strategic in an attempt to link relevance textof the Quran in the present context, particularly for reformulating the law of the Qur’an.Furthermore, Fazlur Rahman ensure multidisciplinary approach in assessing the need for themessages of the Quran, because the message al-Quran are often complex, so prone to be interpretedarbitrarily by specific groups with an interest in a single interpretation of the model. Abdullah Saeedwrites: "The importance of Rahrnans double-movement approach he takes into is that? Account both the conditions of the time of the revelation and those of the modern period in relating the text to the community. In utilizing this double movement theory, it is That expected not only the traditional ulama, WHO should determine what is Islamically acceptable and what is not, will be involved, but that it will also involve other specialists of relevance from fields as Diverse as history, philosophy, law, ethics, Sociology, anthropology and to assist in the process of deriving Islamic law That Is meaningful, relevant and Appropriate."3835 Rahman, Islamic Methodology in History, pg. 6.36 Ibid.37 Ibid.38 Abdullah Saeed, “Fazlur Rahman: A Framework for Interpreting the Ethico-Legal Content of the Qur’an", in Suha Taji-Farouki (ed.), Modern Muslim Intellectual and the Qur’an (London: Oxford University Press and The Institute of Isma’ili
  15. 15. Closing From the description of Fazlur Rahman thought it could be concluded that methodologyoffered Fazlur Rahman is the double movement, with a socio-historical and synthetic-logical.Accompanied by a historical approach sociological approach, specifically photographing socialconditions prevailing at the time of al- Quran was revealed. Double movement is entered into thehistorical roots to find the ideal moral of a verse and bring it to a moral ideal in the present context.This approach is used to interpret legal texts. While synthetic-logical approach is which addresses atheme by evaluating the verses that relate to the themes discussed. This approach is used to interpretthe verses of metaphysical-theological. Clearly, here emphasized the integration of revelation. Withthe real ijtihad of Fazlur Rahman has made a large contribution in the formulating an Islamicthought systematic and comprehensive. Fazlur Rahman was thinking in the study of contemporary Islamic thought has importance,among them: 1. Offers a new methodology in scientific development Islam: hermeneutics of Fazlur Rahman is a hermeneutics that combines traditional roots Islam with modern Western hermeneutics. Called the hermeneutics of the Quran because hermeneutics functioned as a tool to interpret the holy book the Qur’an. 2. Shifting paradigm from the metaphysical to the ethical-theological-anthropological. 3. Uphold social ethics in modern Islam. Paradigm shift from the metaphysical and theological to the ethical-anthropological be updating the ethical goal; objectives to be raise the dignity of man as a noble creature. BIBLIOGRAPHY • Fazlur Rahman, Islam, (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1979), Second edition. (Edisi Indonesia, Islam, Muhammad terj. Ahsin, (New York: Library, 1994), Cet.1. • _____________, Islam and Modernity: Transformation of an Intellectual Tradition. (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1982). • _____________, Major Themes of the Quran, (Minneapolis: Bibliotheca Islamica, 1980), (Edisi Indonesia, Tema Pokok Al-Qur’an, terj. Anas Mahyudin, (New York: Library, 1983). • _____________, Islamic Methodology in History, (Delhi: Adam Publishers andStudies, 2006), pg. 58. 15
  16. 16. Distributors, 1994), First Edition.• _____________, Membuka Pintu Ijtihad. (terj. Mahyuddin Anas.) (New York: Library, 1995)• _____________, Revival and Reform in Islam, (Oxford: Oneworld Publications, 2000)• Suha Taji-Farouki (ed.), Modern Muslim Intellectual and the Quran (London: Oxford University Press and The Institute of Ismaili Studies, 2006)• Taufik Adnan Amal, Islam dan Tantangan Modernitas, (Bandung: Mizan, 1994), Cet.v.• _____________, (Ed.), Metode dan Alternatif Neo-Modernisme Islam Rahman, (New York: Mizan, 1991), Cet.iv.