The Muslim Philanthropy Initiative (MPI) is a program at Indiana University. We seek to understand more nuanced expressions of what it means to be human in the age of acceleration, discovery and scientific change. Islamic definitions of philanthropy are broader than giving and volunteering and includes intentions and inaction to achieve social good. Muslim philanthropists today are focused on secularizing and professionalizing their work. Connecting faith to science is a gap in Muslim philanthropy today.
This project has five specific goals. (1) We will organize a spirituality, faith, and Islamic values track for Muslim philanthropists (including institutions) from Muslim-majority and minority countries at the biannual World Congress of Muslim Philanthropists (WCMP) in 2022 and panels at the Concordia Forum. (2) We will convene a diverse group of community and academic scholars on Islam who can translate Muslim theological ideas into modern-day conceptions of the more complete Muslim human being. This group will also identify and define concepts that fall at the intersection of Islamic values and Muslim philanthropy. (3) We will conduct survey research on Muslim philanthropists who attend the WCMP and Concordia Forum to understand their perspectives on spirituality, faith, consciousness, and Islamic values and how these ideas connect to their philanthropy. (4) We will establish a formal funders’ and scholars collaborative comprised of Muslim philanthropists explicitly motivated to support the development of Muslim thought and spirituality. (5) The dissemination of this research through scholarly and public channels.