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Dialectical EncountersContemporary Turkish Muslim Thought in Dialogue$
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Taraneh Wilkinson

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781474441537

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: January 2020

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474441537.001.0001

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Düzgün’s Case for a Religion of Freedom

Düzgün’s Case for a Religion of Freedom

(p.127) 5 Düzgün’s Case for a Religion of Freedom
Dialectical Encounters

Taraneh R. Wilkinson

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter takes up the work of Ankara theologian and kalam scholar Şaban Ali Düzgün, treating his Muslim understanding of fitra, or primal human nature and how he uses this Islamic concept to redefine what it means to be primitive. From his understanding of primal human nature, the chapterreconstructs his theological anthropology—one defined by both Enlightenment values and classical Islamic understandings of the God-world relation. Through a holistic reconstruction of Düzgün’s theological anthropology, the analysis shows that his dialectical use of both Islamic and “Western” concepts not only allows him to cast authentic Islam as compatible with Western values of individual freedom. Further, Düzgün’s theological anthropology also allows him to actively defend individual agency and worth in the face of double-standards, be they religious or secular, or in the face of Western individualism gone to the extreme.

Keywords:   Şaban Ali Düzgün, Fitra, Primitive, Theological Anthropology, God-World Relation, Individual Freedom, Individual Agency, Western Individualism

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