A new vision of, and approach to, Islam needs to be formulated for the purposes of guiding Muslim communities in the contemporary world. We believe that this is achievable with a clear and fresh interpretation of Islam, its history and traditions, that pays heed to our current contexts, and guided by the principles and values as taught by the Prophet (peace be upon him) and embedded within the rich, multifaceted and complex traditions of Islam. However, it is crucial that we begin with the right step, which is to put forth a positive, powerful and compelling narrative that Muslim communities are successful communities when Muslims act as equal citizens and participate actively in nation building and in strengthening both community and national institutions.
In the hope of sharing this vision to the global stage, which can serve as an exemplary model for Muslim communities in contemporary societies, Muis plans to convene the International Conference on Communities of Success (ICCOS) as a platform for Muslim minority communities around the world to galvanise around a strong narrative of success founded on the notion of “Contributing Citizens, Dynamic Institutions”.
ICCOS seeks to present and discuss positive narratives and characteristics of successful communities as inspired by models of peaceful coexistence and impactful contribution of Muslims to the wider society. These will include examples from Islamic history, as well as contemporary models and achievements, whether in minority or majority contexts. These examples underscore the values of honourable character, knowledge and competence, and citizenry.
ICCOS will also discuss the desired form of socio-religious life, and how Muslim communities can look at Muslim traditions as a guide to lead a thriving and successful life as exemplary citizens. In discussing the importance of developing competent Muslim communities in diverse and contemporary communities, the conference will also address the role of educational reforms and social development efforts that can develop resilient and cohesive communities in plural societies. Similarly, the conference aims to examine meaningful collaborative efforts between government agencies and Muslim communities in building robust and resilient institutions that contribute to the strengthening of social cohesion and active citizenry within plural societies and a globalized world.
As new socio-political and religious conditions evolve and present new questions, it is important that we continue to prepare ahead and anticipate these questions so that the Muslim community remains guided in its religious life.
With the theme “Contributing Citizens, Dynamic Institutions”, ICCOS will focus on:
How contextualised religious guidance and progressive religious leadership, supported by competent and efficient institutions, can empower Muslims to live as dignified and contributing citizens.
In particular, it will discuss the concept of citizenry in contemporary contexts and the role Muslims can, and should, play in plural and secular societies.
The important roles that various institutions, including educational, religious, social, cultural, legal and political institutions can play, to develop Muslim communities of success.
In particular, it will discuss how government agencies and Muslim communities can work together to build robust and resilient institutions that can thrive in a fast-transforming world.
ICCOS seeks to achieve the following:
- Provide a platform for Muslim minority communities from different parts of the world to engage on and enrich positive narratives of successful Muslim communities, characterized by good Character, Competency and Citizenry (3Cs)
- Contribute to the shaping of progressive religious leadership for each community, and towards the development of new and contextualised bodies of knowledge, to guide Muslims in responding effectively to complex socio-religious issues and challenges
- Enhance collaboration among religious scholars and leaders, state officials and community leaders in developing Communities of Success, and share Singapore's model at the global stage