Moderation Movement in Iran; Moving between Liberalism and Religious Intellectualism

Ansar Amini, Amir Hossein Mosaver Rahmani


If we consider the moderation movement as a political method, this method can get help from other thoughts and discourses for reaching its desired goal. Accordingly, it seems that this movement can be defined as a thought derived from two discourses. One of them, as the dominant discourse in the global system, is called liberalism and its tolerance and moderation can be observed from John Rawls’s political thought to recent thinkers like John Walls and social righteousness discourse and the proponents of liberal democracy. The other discourse, religious intellectualism in Iran, has emphasized the need for reforms, tolerance, moderation and avoidance of extremes after 1982s. Nowadays it seems that there is no country which does not benefit from the parameters of liberalism like human rights’ discourse, democracy, tolerance, secularism, supporting the rule of law, etc. in its slogans and policies. On the other hand, religious intellectualism in Iran, as a known movement from previous decades up to now, has made an attempt to reconcile religion with the modern world and its political thought is based on such concepts as democracy, tolerance, human rights, spiritual wisdom, etc. This paper aimed to completely describe the main concepts of liberalism as a political philosophy and then religious intellectualism in Iran and reach a comprehensive view of the political thought in the moderation movement. Accordingly, the main question of the study can be posed as “to what extent can the moderation movement be influenced by other discourses dominant in the global system (liberalism) and the religious intellectualism movement?” Undoubtedly, in this study we do not intend to prove that liberalism and religious intellectualism or moderation are the same and the discussion and arguments made in this paper are in line with the effects that moderation has received from external (liberalism) and internal (religious intellectualism) sources. Descriptive-analytic and descriptive-historical methods were used for this purpose. 

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Copyright (c) 2016 Ansar Amini, Amir Hossein Mosaver Rahmani

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Journal of Sociological Research ISSN 1948-5468


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