The Jordanian Interfaith Coexistence Research Center always encourages independent research on interfaith topics and other subjects pertaining to cultural coexistence. Below is a selection of currently available works.
Reinterpreting Sharia Law under Western Democracy
Summary of Research Project: The aim of this essay was to explore to what extent Islamic family and divorce laws were compatible with secular legal systems. British and Canadian case studies were used. In the former, aspects of Sharia law were analyzed through both the framework of UK-based Islamic Tribunals and Councils and the secular 1996 UK Arbitration Act. In the latter, the existence of Sharia law in Canada was filtered through cultural perceptions of Islam from Canadian perspectives, in addition to secular legal analysis. This project garnered positive conclusions regarding the application of the studied aspects of Sharia law within secular legal frameworks. Most particularly within the UK, Sharia law has been successfully implemented by Muslim Councils and Tribunals within a secular judicial system.
About the Researcher: Nicolai Due-Gundersen is a recent MA graduate of the Geneva School of Diplomacy University Institute, Switzerland. His research specializes in interfaith and secular relations between the West and the Arab world. His graduate thesis focused on the privatization of post-conflict solutions in Iraq and the contemporary rise of privatized security in the hydrocarbon sector. He also holds a BA in English Literature from Kingston University, London.
Religion and Secularism: An Arab Christian Perspective
Summary of Paper: In this article, the Very Reverend Father Nabil Haddad examines how secular values may be upheld in countries with religions based on theocratic understandings of governance. Using his home of Jordan as a case study, Father Nabil Haddad examines how theocratic governance can balance different faiths through the encouragement of tolerance and moderation. Examining the role of citizens and religious scholars, the paper addresses how religious values across all faiths can contribute to societal transformation that encourages mutual tolerance and respect between diverse religious communities.
This paper was originally published on the blog of the Tony Blair Faith Foundation and is available here.