Our study session of 14 September was an informal interactive discussion, organised in two parts:
Part 1 - Topic: Patriarchy: Selected social and religious perspectives.
We started off by stating the basic facts about the presence of patriarchy in the history and today's world, and about the natural biological differences across the genders; Then we quickly moved towards more controversial / subjective points, i.e.
a- How deep the differences across the genders go, i.e. are the differences only physical, or do they also have a psychological / behavioural dimension?
b- What are main causes behind patriarchy, and its spread across so many civilisations in the history?
These questions met very insightful remarks and arguments from the participants backing up different positions on these matters, very well articulated in the short available time.
After this we touched very briefly on some controversial aspects of marital relationship, as the representative unit of the cross gender relations in a society, from Islamic viewpoint (only nikkah was covered very briefly).
Part 2 - Topic: Iqbal Study group: Future direction and scope.
Led by Hadi, in this part we welcomed the input from our members in terms of which areas they wish to be addressed on our platform, what formats they find most useful, and any other general suggestions and comments. The overall feedback was in favour of a wider participation from the members and different viewpoints, and a balanced curriculum covering the whole range of topics from Iqbal's philosophy (prose and poetry) to (and its application to) the contemporary social and religious issues.