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Jihad, Da'wa and Hijra: Islamic Missionary Movements in Europe

Gugler, Thomas K.

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Abstract

Revised version of a lecture held at the conference "Islamic Fundamentalism and Sufism: Continuities and Confrontations through Modernity and Globalization" at the University of Haifa from July 1-4, 2007. The new Islamic presence in Europe, which is the consequence of massive and voluntary settlement of millions of Muslims in Western societies, owes its visibility partly to the Muslim missionary movements from South, which have proven specific strengths in shaping the Islamic-religious fields in the Diaspora communities in European countries. The new Islamic movements Tablighi Jama'at, Da'wat-e Islami and Sunni Da'wat-e Islami shre the characteristics of new religious movements in the sense that they have been transformed through the confrontation with globalization and modernity. They are believed to be comparable in size and scope to Christian Pentecostalism. These three movements share, in varying degrees, a Sufi background, and preach a peaceful Islam. At the same time terrorists involved in the bombings in Europe since 2004, regularly visited mosques associated with these movements, especially the Tablighi Jama'at. All three missionary movements invite their members to visit their world headquarters or participate in annual meetings in Pakistan or India. The "Islamic project" of the three movements is the "Sunnaization" - that is, the reshaping and reconstruction - of the daily routine and the individual markers of identity based on the examples of the Prophet and the Salaf as portrayed in the Hadith literature. This so-called "apolitical" Sunnaization can be understood as the privatization or individualization of political re-Islamization. Stressing individual transformation it focuses on the private sphere instead of the state, and engages with ahadith rather than the Qur'an. With a new tolerance of ambiguity, Sunnaization combines elements of Sufism and Salafism.

Document type: Article
Date: 2009
Date Deposited: 12 February 2009
Faculties / Institutes: Research Organisations / Academies > Zentrum Moderner Orient
DDC-classification: Other and comparative religions
Controlled Subjects: Europa, Islam, Mission, Tablighi Jamaat
Uncontrolled Keywords: Europa , Islam , Missionsbewegung , Tablighi Jama'at , Da'wat-e Islami , Sunni Da'wat-e Islami, Islam , Missionary Movement , Tablighi Jama'at , Da'wat-e Islami , Sunni Da'Wat-e Islami
Additional Information: Eine überarbeitete Fassung ist erschienen unter dem Titel: \"The New Religiosity of Tablighi Jama\'at and Da\'wat-e Islami and the Transformation of Islam in Europe\" in: Anthropos 105.1 (2010): 121-136

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