Philosophy, Arab world trend
Erich Fromm's advice for troubled times
The writings of German-American philosopher Erich Fromm (1900-1980) are trending in the Arab world. Claudia Mende asked Hamid Lechhab, translator of Fromm's works into Arabic, what might be behind this
Nathan Englander's "kaddish.com"
Guilt and belated mourning rights
In Nathan Englander's novel "kaddish.com", a Jewish man is plagued by feelings of guilt and regret for disregarding the rules of the Kaddish (prayer for the dead) for his deceased father a decade before. A witty yet simultaneously melancholy novel for all readers, not just people of faith. By Volker Kaminski
Atheism in the Arab world
Moroccoʹs atheists find a home on the Internet
The Internet has made it possible for some to declare and even to promote their atheism by criticising Islam and other religions. Ismail Azzam spoke to some young Moroccans who have left their Muslim faith behind
Burkhard Hofmann's "And God created fear"
A psychogram of the Arab soul
In "Und Gott schuf die Angst: Ein Psychogramm der arabischen Seele", psychologist Burkhard Hoffmann draws on his own caseload to present some of the uniquely Arab hang-ups plaguing individuals in the Gulf region, highlighting the urgent need of Islamic societies to recognise the value of psycho-anaylsis. Gunther Orth read the book
Atheism in the Arab World
The dictators' scourge: Of 'heresy' and humanists
Posing as guardians of the faith, many Arabic regimes abuse their religious power in order to compensate for their states′ lack of democratic legitimacy. Hardly surprising, then, that they regard as atheism as an existential danger. Essay by Brian Whitaker
Interview with religious scholar Michael Blume
Turning away from Islam: Muslims beat a silent retreat
Is Germany home to a self-assured Islam and Muslims confident in their faith? It doesn't seem that way, says the religious scholar Michael Blume in interview with Christoph Hasselbach. Instead, Islam is in serious crisis
Atheism in Saudi Arabia
God's own country
Atheism remains one of the most extreme taboos in Saudi Arabia. It is a red line that no one may cross. Regarded on a par with terrorists, atheists in Saudi Arabia suffer imprisonment, marginalisation, slander, ostracisation and even execution. Efforts at normalisation between those who believe and those who don′t remain bleak. By Hakim Khatib
Islam in the Middle East
The curse of religiosity
Some regard the fanatical and raging tide currently sweeping through Arab societies as variations of a "latent Daesh-isation". Indeed, argues Khaled Hroub, despite falling short of the use of violence or arms, in its most extreme form, its ideological principles and convictions share common ground with the heinous beliefs of Islamic State
Atheism in Egypt
Breaking the taboo
Atheists claim to hold no religious beliefs whatsoever: though some find that hard to accept, freedom of speech dictates that everyone should be entitled to express their ideas and thoughts without intimidation. Challenging religious oppression and outdated social mores, many Egyptians risk their lives to uphold and protect freedom and tolerance. By Hakim Khatib
Hamed Abdel-Samads Buch "Mohamed: Eine Abrechnung"
From critique of Islam to post-Salafism
The Egyptian-German Hamed Abdel-Samad is one of Germany′s best-known Muslim media pundits – and at the same time one of the country′s most popular critics of Islam. Following a book on Islamic fascism, he has now brought out his ″reckoning″ with the prophet Mohammed. Yet Abdel-Samad remains wedded to the thought structures of Salafism, says Stefan Weidner in his book review
Turning away from Shia in Iran
''A Tsunami of Atheism''
Iran's moral guardians are concerned: while Islam is increasing in political importance throughout the Arab world, people in the Islamic Republic of Iran are leaving the mosques in droves. As Ali Sadrzadeh found out, young people seem especially susceptible to the attractions of sects or Christianity