10 Haziran 2022

A Symposium on the Intersection of Islamic Studies and Contemporary Psychology: Exploring the Potential Contributions of Classical Scholarly Works in Psychology.

Today, modern psychology literature aims to answer many questions about the nature of human beings. Many similar questions were posed and extensively discussed in the pre-modern period, particularly in philosophical literature. By extension, such questions were also expansively discussed by Islamic theologians, however, the contemporary psychological literature does not contain much of this literature on account of its Eurocentric focus.

With the spread of Islam to various continents and the acceleration of translation activities in the 9th century during the Abbasid period, the medical and philosophical works written by the Ancient Greeks were inherited by Muslims, critically analyzed and later expounded upon. Islamic scholars were able to bridge the philosophical literature they inherited with the core theological sciences providing for a holistic approach that included rational, metaphysical, and empirical aspects of knowledge. These interdisciplinary analyses of human psychology persisted up until the 20th century, and can be found across the fields of Islamic law, discursive theology, Sufism, philosophy and medicine.

This symposium is aimed at unearthing classical Islamic scholarly writings regarding human psychology as potential contributions to the contemporary field of psychology. Such an exploration will enhance the growing interest and literature around the intersection of psychology and spirituality. The Islamic intellectual heritage is a living tradition that contains a rich body of literature dating back 1400 years. Islamic scholars across various historical eras and disciplines have discussed the subject of human psychology. However, this gold mine of scholarly work has not been sufficiently extracted nor explored to inform discourses in modern psychology. This symposium will accept abstract submissions that investigates key subjects or questions that concern modern psychologists by attempting to draw from scholarly traditions to enrich the discourse around various issues. The symposium hopes to bring the two traditions into conversation with one another, hoping to help draw parallels, observe potential divergent perspectives, and find ways to bridge between modern and classical traditions in psychology.

Submission Guidelines

Submissions must relate to the topics in psychology listed below. Submissions must include an attempt to bring both traditions in conversation with one another. A thorough exploration of a particular or group of scholars’ writings regarding a subject must be presented while comparing and contrasting such writings with the modern psychological literature regarding that issue. Submissions must seek to help provide practical contributions by way of new perspectives, potential alternative theories, or potential applications of classical methods in modern psychological settings. It is not sufficient simply to provide a descriptive historical account of a set of ideas or scholarly writings, rather the paper should contain prescriptive recommendations or insights.

For your questions, you can contact us at this e-mail address: arastirmamerkezi@isar.org.tr

Click here to send the abstract

Dates and Deadlines

Abstract submission date (250 words): July 15th

Decisions and Response: July 20th

Full manuscript submission date: October 31st

Symposium: Sunday August 14th 9 am – 6 pm

Abstract Submission

  • All participants must intend on submitting a full manuscript.
  • Manuscripts will be gathered for an edited book publication to be published by a reputable academic publishing house.
  • Abstracts should be approximately 250 words.
  • Abstracts should be sent through this form.

Travel and Venue

  • Travel and accommodations will be covered for accepted abstracts.
  • Venue: ISAR - Üsküdar/İstanbul

We are looking for abstract submissions related to the following subjects within psychology:

  • Cognition, thinking or beliefs
  • Emotions
  • Behavior
  • Motivation
  • Mental health/Clinical psychology/psychiatry
  • Nature of the human psyche
  • Character and virtues
  • Physiology/biology of psychology
  • Spirituality and psychology
  • Resiliency and general well-being
  • Nature vs nurture
  • Self-awareness
  • Personality
  • Interpersonal/relational/community psychology
  • Islamic law and psychology

Accepted Languages for submission:

  • Turkish
  • English
  • Arabic

Format of paper must be as follows:

  1. Introduction addressing the importance of the topic and its place within contemporary and classical literature.
  2. Review and presentation of the classical scholarly work(s) selected.
  3. Literature review discussing the selected topic (ex. emotion) within the modern psychological literature and its relevant theories and key publications (ex. emotion theories).
  4. Convergences and divergences between the research presented and contemporary literature.
  5. Discussion of its potential utility and prescriptions for ways forward.