Prior to the epoch of Prophets Ibrahim and Isma’il, there existed only Makkah sanctuary (haram) and the location as well as foundations of the Ka’bah (al-Masjid al-Haram), which had been instituted or appointed for humankind as early as when God created the heavens and the earth. The Qur’an reveals: “Indeed, the first House (of worship) established for mankind was that at Makkah -- blessed and a guidance for the worlds.” (Alu ‘Imran, 96) The Prophet (pbuh) also confirmed: “Allah made this town (Makkah) sacred on the day He created the earth and the heavens; so it is sacred by the sacredness conferred on it by Allah until the Day of Resurrection...” (Sahih Muslim, Hadith No. 3139) As a result, the prophets before Ibrahim and Isma’il and their followers -- just like those who came after them -- were to face the place (the site of the Ka’bah, its foundations and the haram) in their prayers. When needed or commanded, a form of the pilgrimage (Hajj) to the place, too, was undertaken.Read more: Appreciating the Ka’bah
Theories and discussions have expounded on the three dimensions of Sustainable Development; - social, economic and environmental. Although, the social dimension tends to address the issues of public health and safety, the quality of life, the impact of development on the local community, etc.; little or no very significant explanation has institutionally been rendered on ethical issues relating to sustainability. However, sustainability and ethical principles are intertwined because sustainability concepts cannot be applied without strong ethical principles. This study is therefore directed at exploring the gap with the objective of determining the possible influence of ethical values to attaining sustainable development. As such, attempt is being made at reviewing the concept of Sustainable Development on the basis of human morality. Thus, a return towards ethicality as the main drive and as background to expounding on the various dimensions of sustainability is proffered.
Keywords: Sustainable Development, Ethical Issue, Human Morality, Dimensions, OverviewRead more: Sustainable development and the ethical issue of human morality; an overview
(Architectural conflicts, or incompatibilities, between yesterday and today are evident virtually everywhere in the Muslim world. Such conflicts signify one of the root causes of the lack of sustainable architecture in the Muslim world. An apartment building with several “traditional” elements and features reflected on the glass façade of a nearby “modern” commercial building in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.)
This paper discusses a conceptual framework for sustainability in Islamic architecture. Some major segments of such framework are elucidated along the theoretical, or philosophical, rather than empirical, lines. Firstly, the need for sustainable architecture is outlined. That is followed by discussing the concepts of man and the natural environment in Islam and how central those concepts are to the Islamic message and Islamic civilization, the latter serving as a physical manifestation and evidence of the former. Then, some main conceptual implications of the two concepts for sustainability in Islamic architecture are explained. The significance of the notion of the universality of the Islamic message for sustainability is also highlighted. The paper concludes that sustainable architecture needs to address not only environmental and economic, but also social, educational and spiritual concerns of people. This is especially applicable to Islamic architecture because of the role of its multi-tiered orb as facilities and, at the same time, a physical locus of the actualization of Islam as a comprehensive way of life. It also represents the identity, as well as a microcosm, of Islamic culture and civilization. The ideas of sustainability and architecture in Islam are inseparable on account of the significance of the Islamic principles of man, nature, life, comprehensive excellence and the universality of the Islamic cause, which constitute a conceptual framework for such a synthesis.
Read more: Sustainability and Islamic Architecture