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Islamic And Conventional Worldview

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Theology
Wordcount: 3653 words Published: 10th May 2017

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” Worldview refers to a general conception of the nature of the world , particularly as containing or implying a system of value-principles. Any total philosophical system may be so styled which derives practical consequences from its theoretical component…..”. According to that definition, such a system of value-principles may be inspired by religious tenets or by moral philosophy independent of religion. And also, the distinctive spiritual and material aspect of the society and individual lives in often end to mold their worldview. Therefore, in making a choice, someone is imperative to look at the worldview dynamics from the different social systems rest on. Individual in a society can still have their own principles or variations, but hopefully their average behavior would tend to conform to the norms of what has socially been agreed upon.

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Worldview is considered as evolutionary and architectonic rather than contextual. Social phenomena are dynamic and because of the interaction between the changing realities of life and the social worldview perception, the latter invariably has a temporal dimension. Thus, worldview remains in a process of change and reconstruction over time around some unalterable elements. Therefore, because of worldview is coming from human being, it then starts to think about religious worldview, such as Islamic worldview.

Since factors affecting worldview differ, different worldview exits, leading to different “system” for different people. Secular and materialist worldview attach minimum importance to the material aspect of human well being and tend to ignore the importance of the spiritual aspect. They often argue that maximum material well-being can be best solution if the individuals are given unhindered freedom to pursue their self interest and to maximize their want satisfaction in keeping with their own tastes and preferences. In their extreme form they do not recognize any role for divine guidance in human life and place full trust in the ability of human beings to chalk out the proper with the help of their reason. That understanding of religion actually is not necessarily accepted nor applicable to all societies and civilization. The Christian civilization has experience and history which is inclined to secularize as follows : “…………… this dichotomy between the religious and the remainder of human life is a western product and concern…. This distinction between the sacred and profane, between religion and other aspects of human endeavor is a result of the process of secularization that has been the experiences of Christian/Western civilization especially since the 17th century (Encyclopedia of Religion 12, 1987). Thus, in such worldview, there is little role for values or government intervention in

the efficient and equitable allocation and distribution of resources. When we identify whether social interest is served, the answer is that, government has given to everyone to pursue his/her interest, and they argue that social interest will automatically serve. There is no doubt that under its secular and materialist worldview, the market system led to a long period of prosperity, however, this unprecedented prosperity did not lead to the elimination of poverty or the fulfillment of everyone’s needs in conformity with the Judeo-Christian value system even in the wealthiest countries. Even, Marx which is proponent of socialist ideology, came up with the notion, the methodological struggle for economists was to alienate political economy from ethics. It is with Marx that the methodological problem in political economy became the demarcation of economic science from the ideology. So, the question later on, is there a place for morality in economics? Leading thinkers on methodological issues have adopted definitions of economics that put the subject in a wider perspective, and ultimately raise moral and religious issues. Pareto pointed out that political economy did not have to take morality into account, but an economist who extolled a particular practical measure should consider the moral as well as the economic consequences. Real men included not only homo oeconomicus, but also homo ethicus and homo religious. However, the economists who, in commending in law, consider only the economic effect was, in Pareto’s view, not much of a theories. When science become advance, then not

only are the different parts of a phenomenon separated, but they are subsequently put together in a synthesis. Hence, the economic, ethical, and religious consequences have all to be taken into account. Nobel-laureate Amartya Sen has, therefore, rightly argued that” the distancing of economics from ethics has impoverished welfare economics and also weakened the basis of a good deal of descriptive and predictive economics” and that economics ” can be made more productive by paying greater and more explicit attention to ethical consideration that shaped human behavior and judgment”. Hausman and McPherson also conclude in their survey article ” Economics and Contemporary Moral Philosophy” that ” An economy that is engaged actively and self-critically with the moral aspects of its subject matter cannot help but more interesting and more illuminating and, ultimately, more useful than one that tries not to be” . In contrast with this, religious worldview give attention to both the material as well as the spiritual aspect of human well-being. Islam also support to that statement. In Islam, the dichotomy and separation from other aspects of life are considered as contradictory, incoherent, and meaningless. Since religion of Islam is not “human creation” of, and for “infantile man” but it is a representative of a “way of life” for all times. Islam has come up with the concept of din, which is perfectly being taught ,including the Islamic worldview. As mentioned by Watt (1979, 3-4), the term din refer more to a :”………..whole way of life………covers both the private and public/societal lives of man, it permeates the whole fabric of society, and included theological dogma, forms of worship, political theory, and a detailed code of conduct, including even matters which the European would classify as hygiene or etiquette….”. In addition, an Islamic worldview gives the meaning and purpose in our actions. It also dealing with why and how we exist, and it means that actually what ethical or moral values we should partake in, later on what type of behavior or actions we should consider as right or wrong. This is closely related with the concept of din in Islam. Since din is meant the place which man tested and asked by God to follow the straight path of the din. Therefore, all knowledge, notably economics discipline, is basically corrigible except the knowledge revealed by God. Furthermore, under the Islamic worldview, God has created the universe for the benefit of all creatures; with man made as His vicegerent. He has made the resources of the universe available to man who has the responsibility to make “the best use” of these resources without spreading corruption.


The Islamic worldview also has well spell out objectives known as maqasid al-syariah. These are meant to promote the welfare of the entire mankind, and enjoin on believers the safeguarding of their faith, their human self, their intellectual, their posterity, and their wealth. Furthermore, in dealings with this, Islam has encouraged co-operation to achieve Maslahah (benefit in every day communal life. The other parts of maqasid is establishing justice which is indeed a manifestation of god’s mercy, but may also be seen as a principal objective of the shariah in its own right. Justice as a value or primary objective of the shariah which is everyone in Islam must establish an equilibrium between rights and obligations. The other purposes of maqasid is to educating the individual. In fact, in order to priority, it may even though to be placed before maslahah and adl. Essentially, community oriented values that acquire much of their meaning in the context of social relations, whereas the former seeks to make each individual a trustworthy agent just so as to strive to realize these values which benefit himself and the community. Indeed, the overall purpose of a great number of the stipulation of the shariah, especially in the spheres of Ibadah and akhlaq, is to train the individual to acquire the virtues of taqwa, and thus, to aid the fulfillment of the objective.


Islamic worldview is one of paradigm which are Muslim must be having. Islamic worldview is considered as purpose in our actions, since it gives the answers to questions dealing with why and how we exist. Therefore, Islamic worldview is able to direct on what type of behavior or actions we should consider right or wrong. As worldview also is defined as how one sees the world. Hence, value is attached to knowledge that one receives, because the information is processed by the knowledge-giver first before it passed down to the recipient. This knowledge, together with the value attached to it, is then assimilated into one’s mental framework and worldview. Accordingly, due to the impact of worldviews and the values attached to knowledge that would impact one’s perspective on life. Having viewed the important of knowledge, the Islamic scholars, such as Al Attas and Ismail Al-Faruqi come up with the notion, called to Islamization of Knowledge (IOK). Hence, IOK is a term which describes a variety of attempts and approaches to synthesize the ethics of Islam. Al- Attas adds up that the fundamental crisis of the modern-day ummah to be epistemological in nature-that is having its roots in the very conception of knowledge. This brought about the contents of their education by willing to take

bold measure and introduce curriculum reform in particularly Islamic economics programme. Also, the further challenge in terms of knowledge, is that, the curriculum must has the ability to shed light the different between what is considered as knowledge and not. Al-Attas adds up to identify the “confusion of knowledge” must be eliminated et all since it can exhaust the moral values of Ummah and lead to a ” loss of adab” and subsequently the “rise of false leaders” that would exacerbate the “confusion of knowledge”. Having realized of what important the IOK agenda is, we have to deal with the concept of existing modern knowledge which have been embodied in current system and how to develop IOK. In terms of the modern knowledge, Al-Attas had given his conception, is that, every Muslims have to call for the recognition of the proper authorities of knowledge. This means that since the modern knowledge or the west knowledge is at the forefront of science and technology and hence, Muslims are urged to learn

from them. However, the Muslim should possess the metaphysical (Islamic) worldview necessary to filter out theories, that are not in line with the aqidah and tasawwuf. He also noted that Muslim, in pursuit the knowledge, does not just stop at the reinterpretation of secular knowledge, but also should also possess the ability to form and establish new theories and solutions that support the Islamic worldview. And finally, the Muslim should be aware the supreme goal for knowledge is that the spiritual and immaterial in nature. Subsequently, to conduct IOK agenda need to further discussions and interpretations. The spirit of how to perform IOK agenda is that, the notion to integrate the two education stream, the heritage and modern knowledge. Later on, in this context, Al-Alwani (1989, p.89) states that the IOK agenda require the combination of “two readings”. Therefore, the IOK agenda requires six discourses, namely articulating the Islamic paradigm of knowledge and developing a Qur’anic Methodology, establishing a methodology which is dealing with the Qur’an and Sunnah, reexamining the Islamic intellectual heritage, dealing with the western intellectual heritage. Beside Al-Alwani, Ragab (1995, 1997, and 1999) was propounded the idea of “creative engagement” which ultimately was proposing a unified integral theoretical framework. He also signifies that the Islamizers should be qualified which are able to understand and mastery the substantive knowledge in the modern sciences , and has to involve in an

understanding of the Islamic Worldview, and capable of propounding a critical evaluation and

modification of modern social sciences from an Islamic viewpoint. Wan Mohd. Nor, 1998, also

attempts to note that IOK can be done by those who have a profound grasp of the nature, spirit, and attributes of Islam as religion, culture, and civilization as well as western culture and civilization. Unless the Islamizers clearly understand the Islamic worldview, they may not know what need to be isolated and what need to be infused, what are acceptable, what are not and what the Islamic alternatives are. Since, according to Al-Attas, IOK is an “epistemological and methodological” concern, dealing with how “Islamically creative minds can evaluate modern knowledge using Islamic benchmarks”. Thus, at the end of the process, Islamizers fervently wish to come up with idea of reconstruction or reformulation of contemporary knowledge and disciplines, either those existing or the creation of new disciplines if necessary.


Islamic worldview is considered and defined as general conception of the nature of the world in Islamic perspective. It contains a system of values principles, which based on dien of Islam. Islamic worldview would give meanings and purpose of all actions done by human beings, particularly Muslims. Muslims will be guided and directed to the area of inline with aqidah, tasawuff, and syariah principles and values. Ethical or moral values is viewed to be a central and basic every endeavor in performing activities, which are categorized as ibadah or muamalah. Subsequently, one attempts to apply and synthesize the ethic of Islam with modern thought is by introducing Islamization of Knowledge (IOK). IOK seems to be essential to be established is shedding out and considered as positive ways to mitigate the problem of corruption of knowledge which is believed has brought up the backwardness of Muslims ummah. In its implementation, IOK agenda is trying to integrate between the heritage of Islam with modern knowledge by undertaking a certain methodology. Certainly, integrating of two types of knowledge need a qualified Islamizer which require to understand the Islamic worldview comprehensively and perfectly.

The future of Conventional Accounting

“The traditional Western double-entry based accounting technology is well-suited to an orthodox, positivist society of any kind. It is not surprising that it is proving inadequate, as people are returning to more integrated world views, whether Islamic or otherwise” (Hayashi, 1989)

Critics on Conventional Accounting

Externalities is not included in financial report (Lee Parker, environmental accounting)

Intangible asset cannot be measured adequately(Lev Baruch)

Human resources and employee reporting interest are not included.

Social Interest is overlooked

Promote the exploitation of capitalist over labor and society.

Promote the concentration of wealth and power o the hand of the rich.

What is Islam?

“Peace” (in this world and hereafter)

“obedience” to Allah as his/her God, comply with the motivation of God’s creation of Man, which is “to serve Allah”, to be “his viceregent on earth”.

A comprehensive worldview, a unity of God, and an integration between world and hereafter.

Islamic principles: truth, justice, fair, goodwill, honesty, benevolent, accountability before the God.

Islam’s epistemology of Devine Unity:

“The Islamic world view is thereby, the comprehensive and universalizing, overreaching and complementing design of reality that is premise on the epistemology of divine unity and is evolved into intellection through the process orientation model of unification of knowledge in world system as derived from the primal sources of divine unity”.

Islamic Rules:

Allah (God) gives two guidance for mankind:

al-Quran (revealed world of God ) and

Hadist/Sunnah: Prophet Saying, God’s inspired acts, description of the conduct of the prophet’s companion of which Mohammad was uncritical.

Ijtihad/ijma’: shuratic and consensus process.

Guidance are related to all daily life of mankind including in business, management, and finance.

The phenomena of nature can be also a sign of God’s power and existence.

The purpose of shariah (Islamic law)

To promote the welfare of the people which lies on:

Safeguarding of their faith

Their life

Their intellect

Their posterity and

Their Wealth

Quranic verse on Accounting

i.e. Albaqarah (2) ayah 282:

“Oh you who believe! When you deal with each other, in transaction involving future obligations in a fixed period of time, reduce them in writing. Let a scribe write down faithfully as between parties”.

There is an integration between worship ritual and socio-economy-politico and daily life of mankind.

Allah rules out business and accounting.

Islamic accounting: Hayashi

“is an integrated discipline with social, political and economic domain ruled by Allah or “meta rule”. Islamic accounting should regulate and establish a harmonious integration among the parties of these diverse domain”.

Ancient Accounting Role in Islamic State is Muhasabah, it means:

Calculation of one’s act

Clear the account, make neutral

To take care of, to try to find

To anticipate a reward in the hereafter

To take into account, into consideration

To order Muslim to perform their duties

To avoid fraudulent practices in business and society, to check illegal contract, keep free market and fair price, prevent necessities from being hoarded. (Hayashi, 1989)

Islamic Accounting

1. To report accurate income determination

2. To promote efficiency and leadership

3. To comply with the shariah (Islamic principles)

4. Commitment to justice

5. To report a good things

6. To adapt to positive social change.

Conventional vs Islamic Accounting:

Conventional Accounting:

Based upon modern commercial law-permissive rather than ethical

Limited disclosure (provision of information subject to public interest)

Personal accountability (focus on individuals who control resources)

Economic rationalism



Profit maximization

Survival of fittest


Absolute ownership

(Ec. rationalism: the desire to stand apart from others, to compete, to manipulate and to amass surplus”)

Individuality – oriented

Focus on individuality aspect without consider any social aspects

Accounting Law and Ethics


The normative accounting always influencing descriptive accounting or individuality interest

In operational, they permit everything to reach the highest profit

Measure as highest possible profit

Historical Cost

Firm doses not have separate financial obligation (I.e profit sharing scheme)

Depend on contractual agreement between party

One lunar year for zakat calculation

Quantity based and monetary based (zakat calculation)

Importance for fulfillment of duties and obligation to God, society and individual.

Clear conscience with God in fulfilling all duties.

Consistence to shariah rules

Most favorable to society (justice)

Islamic Accounting

Based upon ethical law originating in the Qur’an (Islamic law, As-Sunnah)

Full disclosure (to satisfy any reasonable demand for information in accordance with the Shari’a)

Public accountability (focus on the community who participate in exploiting resources)

Unity of God



Reasonable profit



Relative ownership

Focus on society aspect

Basically Al Qur’an & As Sunnah (Shariah)

Religious (must responsibility to God at the Judgment Day)

No differentiation between Normative and Descriptive Accounting (They always going simultaneously)

In operational, they do everything in boundaries of Islam (Shariah)

Measure as saleable value

Market (selling) price rather than historical cost

[Entity]Separation between business and owners

[going concern] Business continues forever

[Accounting period] Periodical measurement of performance

[unit of measure] Monetary Value

[Full disclosure principle] Decision making process

[objectivity] Reliability of measurement

[Materiality] Relative importance of information for decision making

[Consistency] Consistency based on GAAP

[Conservatism] Use least favorable impact on owners


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