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Between Heaven and Hell: Islam, Salvation, and the Fate of Others

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Between Heaven and Hell: Islam, Salvation, and the Fate of Others Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

A recent Pew survey of American Muslims found that the majority (56 percent) believed that "many religions" can lead to Paradise; only one-third held that Islam "is the one, true faith leading to eternal life." Ours is a world of ever-increasing interconnectedness. More and more Muslims today work with, befriend, and marry non-Muslims. It is perhaps not surprising, then, that a significant number of American Muslims would choose to believe that God will save their Christian parents, Jewish spouses, Buddhist neighbors, Hindu friends, or even atheist coworkers. The essays in this volume look at the views of Muslim theologians on this matter. Most maintain that while faith in the fundamental doctrines of Islam is theoretically required for salvation, God will excuse non-Muslims who never encountered the divine message conveyed by the Prophet Muhammad. (Whether such "unreached" non-Muslims still exist is the subject of much debate.) Some go a step further, and hold that God may redeem non-Muslims who were never exposed to the message in a manner that could prompt contemplation and encourage conversion. A third group of theologians-not the kind typically found at major Islamic seminaries and universities-argues that God may even save and reward non-Muslims who had a "compelling" encounter with the Islamic message yet chose to remain outside the fold. The diverse advocates of this last approach face a daunting task: demonstrating that their seemingly modern doctrine is compatible with the Islamic ethos. In recent years, considerable attention has been devoted to this debate, and indeed the larger question of non-Muslim salvation. How one regards the Other undoubtedly affects how one interacts with the Other: Should I marry her? Should I call him to the faith? Should I pray for her even though she passed away without ever converting to my religion? Should we establish missions? Should we show our love to Others to encourage rectification, or, given that their path is crooked, should we shun them? Between Heaven and Hell is intended to foster appreciation for the diverse and novel approaches taken by scholars of Islam when addressing the consequential topic of soteriology (the discourse and doctrines of salvation) and the fate of Others.

Synopsis:

In Between Heaven and Hell, eminent and up-and-coming scholars representing a diversity of backgrounds and viewpoints address the question of non-Muslim salvation: according to the Islamic ethos (however understood), what can be said about the status and fate of non-Muslims? Each of the volume's contributors responds to this often asked "salvation question"-a question with profound theological and practical implications-from different angles: while some limit themselves to its historical dimensions, others approach it as theologians and philosophers, while yet others focus on the relationship between this-worldly relations with Others and next-worldly conceptions of salvation. Collectively and individually, the essays in this volume advance our understanding of Islamic thought and Muslim societies and indeed the discourse on religious diversity. This groundbreaking volume does not conclude with neat resolutions; instead, it offers fascinating expositions, debates, and points of departure for further contemplation. Contributors include Mohammad Hassan Khalil, Tariq Ramadan, William C. Chittick, Farid Esack, Mohammad Fadel, David M. Freidenreich, Marcia Hermansen, Jerusha Lamptey, Bruce B. Lawrence, Muhammad Legenhausen, Yasir Qadhi, A. Kevin Reinhart, Sajjad Rizvi, Reza Shah-Kazemi, and Tim Winter.

About the Author

Assistant Professor of Religious Studies, Michigan State University

Table of Contents

Foreword: Salvation: The Known and the Unknown - Tariq Ramadan

Acknowledgments

A Note on Conventions

Contributors

Introduction: Grappling with the Salvation Question - Mohammad Hassan Khalil

Part I: Historical Dimensions

Chapter 1: Failures of Practice or Failures of Faith: Are Non-Muslims Subject to the Sharia? - A. Kevin Reinhart

Chapter 2: No Salvation Outside Islam: Muslim Modernists, Democratic Politics, and Islamic Theological Exclusivism - Mohammad Fadel

Part II: Diversity and Mercy

Chapter 3: The Ambiguity of the Qur'anic Command - William C. Chittick

Chapter 4: Beyond Polemics and Pluralism: The Universal Message of the Qur'an - Reza Shah-Kazemi

Part III: Supersessionism and Mercy

Chapter 5: The Path of Allah or the Paths of Allah? Revisiting Classical and Medieval Sunni Approaches to the Salvation of Others - Yasir Qadhi

Chapter 6: Realism and the Real: Islamic Theology and the Problem of Alternative Expressions of God - Tim Winter

Part IV: Reconceptualizing Pluralism

Chapter 7: Non-reductive Pluralism and Religious Dialogue - Muhammad Legenhausen

Chapter 8: Oneself as the Saved Other? The Ethics and Soteriology of Difference in Two Muslim Thinkers - Sajjad Rizvi

Part V: Otherness and the Qur'an

Chapter 9: The Portrayal of Jews and the Possibilities for Their Salvation in the Qur'an - Farid Esack

Chapter 10: Embracing Relationality and Theological Tensions: Muslima Theology, Religious Diversity, and Fate - Jerusha Lamptey

Part VI: Otherness and Inclusion

Chapter 11: The Food of the Damned - David M. Freidenreich

Chapter 12: Acts of Salvation: Agency, Others, and Prayer beyond the Grave in Islam - Marcia Hermansen

Chapter 13: Citizen Ahmad among the Believers: Salvation Contextualized in Indonesia and Egypt - Bruce B. Lawrence

Glossary of Select Terms

Index

Index of Qur'anic Verses

Product Details

ISBN:
9780199945412
Author:
Khalil, Mohammad Hassan
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Subject:
Religion & Theology | Islam
Subject:
Islam - Theology
Publication Date:
20130131
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Language:
English
Pages:
368
Dimensions:
6.1 x 9.2 x 1 in 1.05 lb

Related Subjects

Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Medical Specialties
History and Social Science » Politics » General
Religion » Islam » Theology

Between Heaven and Hell: Islam, Salvation, and the Fate of Others New Trade Paper
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Product details 368 pages Oxford University Press, USA - English 9780199945412 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , In Between Heaven and Hell, eminent and up-and-coming scholars representing a diversity of backgrounds and viewpoints address the question of non-Muslim salvation: according to the Islamic ethos (however understood), what can be said about the status and fate of non-Muslims? Each of the volume's contributors responds to this often asked "salvation question"-a question with profound theological and practical implications-from different angles: while some limit themselves to its historical dimensions, others approach it as theologians and philosophers, while yet others focus on the relationship between this-worldly relations with Others and next-worldly conceptions of salvation. Collectively and individually, the essays in this volume advance our understanding of Islamic thought and Muslim societies and indeed the discourse on religious diversity. This groundbreaking volume does not conclude with neat resolutions; instead, it offers fascinating expositions, debates, and points of departure for further contemplation. Contributors include Mohammad Hassan Khalil, Tariq Ramadan, William C. Chittick, Farid Esack, Mohammad Fadel, David M. Freidenreich, Marcia Hermansen, Jerusha Lamptey, Bruce B. Lawrence, Muhammad Legenhausen, Yasir Qadhi, A. Kevin Reinhart, Sajjad Rizvi, Reza Shah-Kazemi, and Tim Winter.
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