Jihad and Sustainability

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The acquisition of moral values required to initiate and implement sustainable development is part of Jihad.Jihad is inherent in Islamic beliefs and practices. It engages the practitioners in all-rounded efforts or struggle for improvement in individual, social, cultural, economic, technological, ecological and environmental aspects of sustainable development. Jihad, according to Islam, is a fundamental tool for achieving socio-cultural sustainability. It is also the basis for sustainable economic development. It is argued that the Jihadic spirit and elements inherent in individual and societal values such as caring, sharing, responsibility, naturalism etc. determine environmental sustainability. The paper depicts that the spirit of Jihad is not only central to individual and social sustainability, but also to ecological sustainability. It is revealed that Islam sees economic growth and environmental sustainability as two conflicting aspects in the concept of sustainable development, for excessive economic growth can be sustained only by overextraction of finite environmental resources beyond nature’s regenerative capacity. Islam, by way of its Jihadic stance and practices of naturalism, can manage to maintain a balance between economic wellbeing and environmental sustainability. This is achievable through acquisition of spirituality for sustainable development. The paper depicts values-led sustainability education as a key means to lead a sustainable lifestyle doing economic activities in accordance with the concept of the Quranic vicegerency of nature or the Biblical stewardship in terms of ‘Thou shall not kill’. The paper concludes that “self-prevention is the first law of nature” and Jihad is, indeed, essential for generating the spirit essential for waging protection against destructive intervention to nature.

Keywords: Islam, Sustainable Development, Values Education
Stream: Cultural Sustainability
Presentation Type: Virtual Presentation in English
Paper: A paper has not yet been submitted.

Dr Amzad Hossain

Honorary Research Fellow, Institute for Sustainability and Technology Policy (ISTP), Murdoch University
Perth, Western Australia, Australia

Amzad Hossain is a honorary research fellow at ISTP. He is also a Honorary Professor at the Institute for Natural Resource Management of the University of Notre Dame Australia, Fremantle, Western Australia. Hossain publishes papers and popular articles reflecting Baul philosophers’ views in regard with sustainable development, sustainability, renewable energy, values and spirituality, and reflective education. As a Visiting Professor, Hossain also teaches and supervises post-graduate students at Rajshahi University in Bangladesh.

Prof. Dora Marinova

Head of School and Associate Professor, Institute for Sustainability and Technology Policy, Murdoch University
Perth, Western Australia, Australia

Dora Marinova is an Associate Professor and Head of the Institute for Sustainability and Technology Policy (ISTP), Murdoch University where she teaches in the areas of economics for sustainability, demography and women and development. She is currently supervising 14 PhD students on topics related to sustainability. Her research interests cover technology policy and development, sustainable business and partnerships. She has published over 60 refereed journal articles and book chapters and has conducted research for Western Australian and Commonwealth Government departments.

Popie Hossain-Rhaman

PhD student, ISTP, Murdoch University

Popie is currently undertaking her PhD studies at ISTP, Murdoch University exploring the issues of values education in achieving sustainable development.

Ref: S08P0084