My new book A Manual of Civilized Sexuality: What Science, Feminism and Our Pornographic Culture Cannot Teach Us about the Most Important Things in Love, Romance and Intimacy is now available on Amazon.com. While this book is written for a general Western audience, the contents are extremely relevant to Muslims interested in understanding Islam’s views on sexuality.
In this book I present a framework for a morality of human sexuality that makes no reference to religion (while being fully compatible with it).
The modern world demonizes masculinity among men while promoting it among women; believing that the only truly worthy woman is one who lives up to masculine standards of behavior and achievement. I show that by adopting an evolutionary1 view and combining it with Kant’s simple moral philosophy, we gain the very best that feminism stands for (true equality of the sexes) without either sex having to abandon its natural instincts and its masculine/feminine persona. I therefore present a post-feminist view of gender relations that makes feminism irrelevant for those who live truly moral and civilized lives.
Islam tells us that it is wrong for a man to do something as seemingly innocuous as admiring a woman’s body on the street. The scholars are also agreed that watching pornography is immoral. But where does the “wrongness” in such behaviors come from? I show that this wrongness is related to our basic humanity. Any erotic enjoyment that lacks an interpersonal aspect is morally wrong and damaging to one’s own humanity; it takes away our ability to enjoy the warmth of human relationships. We are not animals and our sexuality is deeply tied to our humanity–requiring very specific rules of behavior that the Abrahamic religions get right.
From the Amazon description:
A Manual of Civilized Sexuality explores the most important issues in the modern couple’s life: from dating and romance to the morality of eroticism and intimacy, to finding spiritual meaning in life. Author Ikram Hawramani unites Kant’s beautiful and simple moral philosophy with an evolutionary understanding of masculinity and femininity, showing how both sexes can lead authentic lives tuned to their own instincts while living in Kant’s “Kingdom of Ends” where love, beauty and freedom reign. Couples who have been happily married for decades and who continue to have infinite love and consideration for each other already live in the Kingdom of Ends. This book shows you the path for getting there.
- For the relationship between Islam and evolution see my essay: Reconciling Islam and Darwinian Evolution: Al-Ghazali’s Matrix and the Divine Template.