New programme to help Islamic graduates contextualise religion in a plural society

SINGAPORE - A 10-day programme for graduates of Islamic universities to understand the trends of Islamic thought and to contextualise religious doctrine within contemporary plural societies was launched on Monday (July 18).

The research and education arm of the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (Muis), Muis Academy, launched the Islamic Thought in Context at its premises at the Singapore Islamic Hub.

The event was attended by 30 recent graduates and final year undergraduates of various religious universities in the Middle East and South -east Asia.

The programme, which ends on July 29, is the academy's first collaboration with the Inter-Religious Relations in Plural Societies Programme at the S Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University.

Covering seven topics such as shariah in a modern context and diversity and Islam in modern Singapore, the programme will be taught by lecturers from both RSIS and Muis Academy, as well as international scholars such as Abdullah Saeed, Professor of Arab and Islamic Studies at the University of Melbourne, and Ebrahim Moosa, Professor of Islamic Studies at the University of Notre Dame.

"The programme was created to help students consult the Islamic tradition, study the Quran and hadith (sayings of the Prophet Muhammad), and place it within the context of Singapore's plural society," said vice-dean of Muis Academy Ustaz Mohammad Hannan Hassan.

He added: "This contextualisation is not something outside of Islam, it's an established part of our tradition."