KAUST- High Tech Mixer

03Mar10

Saudis Open Eyes and Minds with Mixed University – Times Online

A new university opened in Saudi Arabia last year, and it has caused quite a stir.  It is the first and only school in the kingdom to allow a mixed learning environment.  So why doesn’t the mutawwa do anything about it?  Cuz the king himself pretty much built it.  How much did he pay to do so?  $10 billion.

Some of our scholars, hafithahumullah, have spoken up against the mingling/mixing, but to no avail.  One of which is al Sheikh Saad al Shithri.  Based on this information he was fired for issuing a fatwa condeming these practices.

Note that there are other scholars who took a rather extreme approach to this issue.  Take  al Sheikh Abdul-Rahman al-Barrak, hafithahullah, for example.  According to this article in al-Arabiyya he said, “Whoever allows this mixing … allows forbidden things, and whoever allows them is an infidel and this means defection from Islam … Either he retracts or he must be killed … because he disavows and does not observe the Shariah…”  Ouch!

He most certainly got it from a number of his fellow scholars, but we must keep in mind he is about 77 years old and as a scholar he is still entitled to our utmost respect.  May Allah forgive him.

To get a better idea of what KAUST is, check out the video titled “Campus and Community” in their videos section of their website.  It really is a phenomenal technological institution.  They don’t have many students yet, but they’re recruiting the best of the best faculty from all over the world.  And since they recently decided to increase expat salaries, if you have an advanced education in any of these sciences, it certainly is hard to pass up.

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