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The question of modernity and faith, including Islam, depends on what is meant by the term modernity. If by modernity one means the use of science, reasoning, and invention to improve our lives, all of these are in line with the Islamic philosophy that led to the flowering of scientific exploration and technological innovation at the height of Islamic civilization in the Middle Ages, commonly known as the Golden Age of Islam. The mere fact that Muslims are living and practicing Islam 1400 years after its founding in the modern, post-Enlightenment world in Western societies demonstrates that Islam is naturally compatible with the modern world. In fact, millions of Muslims are involved, often in leading positions, in the fields of science, mathematics, medicine, engineering and other scientific fields.

However, if my modernity one means acceptance of the various values that underpin our modern lifestyles and worldview, the answer is more nuanced and complicated. Islam, like other religions, would not be compatible with a modernity which is opposed to the centrality of God, morality, and religion or which is based upon a worldview which regards material realities as the ultimate truth and goal. Modernity void of morality has brought us the two deadliest wars in history, the Holocaust, and the atomic bomb. Uncontrolled capitalism and globalization have not only stripped the earth of irreplaceable resources and species but have also created huge economic disparities between the masses and the ultra-rich both among and within nations. For these and other reasons, many Muslims, like members of other religious and other groups, are increasingly concerned about the devastating effects that modernity and its accompanying technological advances, when influenced only by factors relating to economic profit and short-term gain, have had upon our environment and the world, which is now facing a threat to our very existence due to climate change.

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