Tradition and Innovation

Ibn Haldun University is applying a new social sciences education that will educate its students according to the ideals of intellectual independence. This education is given with the approach of Innovation through innovation. Innovativeness, originality and intellectual independence in thought and art of our society, which is dominated by imitation in the name of innovation, can only be attained with the innovation-through-tradition approach away from imitation and alteration.

For the last two centuries, our society has been faced with the dilemma of choosing either “traditionalism or innovation?” Ignoring the dynamic structure of the tradition and rejecting the tradition for innovation have been introduced as an inevitable necessity. However, in civilized societies it is not possible to choose tradition alone or to choose only innovation and completely exclude the other. A society’s total rejection of its tradition means that it will reset its social memory, which is equivalent to the loss of life functions. In a globalizing world, the total rejection of innovation is only overlapping with the life style of primitive tribes.

Religions are not only practices and beliefs, but they also have a civilization dimension; they give a civilization consciousness and aesthetic understanding. Our tradition is the Islamic religion and civilization achievements from era of bliss till today. This tradition is like a living organism, constantly renewing itself. However, these renewing efforts have never turned into alteration of religion. Because this renewal becomes viable through the process of determining what is fixed and what is changeable.

The “innovation through tradition” approach, which reflects the moderation and balance, is to reconcile with our tradition in the form of reconstructing our ancient heritage with current developments.