Ibn Rushd Fund for Freedom of Thought

Diwan Al Falsafa: Modernity

Modernity, as a philosophical movement, emerged as a direct consequence of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries´ scientific revolution in Europe.

Based on the new scientific knowledge, Europeans were able to establish a new complete social system containing morals, law, commerce, and politics. Although some European theorists argue that the concept of modernity generally describes renewing and modernizing the traditional societies and their transition from a primitive to more advanced state with its new values; others argue that modernity is the condition of a rebellion against the existing situation and a radical break with past traditional cultural heritage.

According to this European modern scientific thinking, all other cultures that have not rid themselves of their past traditions and embraced only values of the modern European society are deemed as “not yet” completely modern. Here are some questions that we would like to discuss with you in our Diwan:

  • Is modernity a historical scientific fact which all societies are required to pass through?
  • Or are its philosophical and ideological views attributed only to science?
  • Does modernity necessarily require breaking up with the past and its values?
  • Or can be achieved while preserving cultural heritage?
  • Does modernity´s reliance on applied science and its denial of religious interpretations of the world distance it from the social and cultural reality of some societies?
  • Have Arab societies witnessed "modernity"?
  • Or are they still burdened with their historical heritage that keeps them from adopting modern concepts?

These are some of the ideas and questions which we will discuss at the Diwan al-Falsafa on Wednesday 12th of July, 7pm, again at Kater und Goldfisch in Exerzierstraße 1 in Berlin-Wedding, close to U8 Pankstraße, U9 Nauener Platz or S-Bhf Gesundbrunnen.

The Diwan's language will be Arabic but it is possible to speak in English or German; we will translate to the best of our ability. As always, no scientific nor final results are to be expected from and during this philosophical salon, but an open and unbiased discussion.

Pictures from the event: