A study in the sociology of Islam
The present thesis is an attempt to study some of the social theories of Islam, not as logical ideas existing in a vacuum, but rather as idealogies which are in close interaction with the social conditions in the midst of which they arise. It should be remembered at this point that this thesis is not intended to be a comprehensive research into the entire field of the sociology of Islam. The job is too enormous to be undertaken by a single researcher. This work is restricted to the study of one aspect of it, that is: the dilemma of Islam, or in other words, the conflict between idealism and realism in the history of Islam. The conflict between idealism and realism exists, as we shall see later, in almost every phase of the human society, but it may not be an exaggeration to say that in the history of Islam it manifested itself in a very intensive form. In this thesis the attempt is made to discuss the reason for, and the development of, this peculiar aspect of Islam.