Between Intolerance and Accomodation, Between Tolerance and Indifference
"Written during the last five to six years of al-Ghazali’s life, (Faisal al-Tafriqah) reflects the concerns and frustrations of a man deeply troubled by the debilitating effects of both theological intolerance and theological laissez-faire. While theological intolerance sapped the community’s ability to accommodate plausible theological differences, theological laissez-faire confused tolerance with indifference and exposed the community to the machinations of those whose conflation of rationalistic deism with Islam only masked their opposition to the religion of Muhammad.” — Sherman Jackson’s On the Bounds of Theological Tolerance In Islam.
"In the last two centuries, our traditional culture has been under increasing pressure from mass culture, a conflict which has reached its greatest intensity in this country. The market for cultural products has steadily broadened until by now practically everybody is a customer. This is something new in history and it has had novel effects. As the masses have become more and more educated, prosperous and politically influential, the cultural question has moved into the foreground. Up to about 1750, art and thought were pretty much the exclusive province of an educated minority. Now that the masses-that is, everybody-are getting into the act and making the scene, the problem of vulgarization has become acute. I see only two logical solutions: (a) an attempt to integrate the masses into high culture; or (b) a contrary attempt to define two cultures, one for the masses and the other for the classes. I am for the latter." - Dwight Macdonald, Against the American Grain.
In some ways, I concur with Macdonald especially in his observation on vulgarity. However, he takes no steps to unpack “our” and “traditional”. When I hear social philosophers making grand sweeping statements like these, I get a bit nervous as historically, “our” has seldom included “me”, if “me” happens to be black or some other non-white category.
اجتهادك فيما ضمن لك و تقصير فيما طلب منك دليل على انطماس البصيرة منك
“Striving for what has been provided [also read ‘not concerning you’] for you while falling short in that which is demanded of you, is proof of the incomprehensibleness of your ability to perceive.” - Ibn ‘Ata Allah.
“This is no science, this is art, where equations fall away to elements like resolving chords, and where always prevails a symmetry either explicit or multiplex, but always of a crystalline serenity.”—Turjan of Miir. The Dying Earth by Jack Vance.