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« PFBC - Thanks | Main | On Being a Conservative-Liberal Muslim (or why the progressive label is bad) »

Jul 17, 2006

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Andrew Schamess

I especially like his analogy vis a vis the dissemination and democratization of knowledge:

By the time of the Safavid era—halfway through the second millennium--cultural leaders of all types--mathematicians, scientists, painters, musicians, and writers-- were moving constantly from country to country and court to court-- from the Safavid centers in Iran to the Mughal courts of India, and the Uzbek court at Bukhara in what is now Uzbekistan.

Followed a bit later by:

Rather than sending scholars over thousands of miles and scores of years, from library to library and academy to academy, today we can simply click in a matter of seconds onto a wide variety of appropriate websites.

Although, it's interesting to note that this knowledge has now become disembodied. The traveling scholars brought with them their language, their voices, their culture; and imbibed the same from the places they visited. Now, knowledge travels across wires in instants, to be received in purified form, with only the faintest remnant of the knower and his life still attached.

PS, the quote from Hazrat Ali ibn Abi Talib is lovely:

No honour is like knowledge... No belief is like modesty and patience, no attainment is like humility, no power is like forbearance, and no support is more reliable than consultation.

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