Journal of religious culture = Journal für Religionskultur
Islamic support on the westernization policy in the Ottoman empire : making Mahmud II a reformer Caliph-Sultan by Islamic virtue tradition
- In this article we dealt with the relations between the state and religion / Islam and its interpreters i.e., the ulama, their needs each other. As a case, with an original source, we focused on the time of the Mahmud II (1808-1839) The Ottoman reforms of the nineteenth century is reconciliation between Islam and Western civili-sation. In this process the ulama played key role by commenting Islam accordance with the need of the age or of the Ottoman Empire. The reformers, chiefly the Sultan and his close friends needed the support of the ulama to legitimate their reform programmes In this crucial stage the head of the ulama the Shaykhulislam, used his own religious knowledge and influence, derived from his office by writing a treatise to persuade the masses to accept the reforms. Applying the traditional virtue literature on the Ottoman dynasty he presented in this pamphlet one of the Western-minded Ottoman sultans as an ideal caliph-sultan. This attitude helped to transform the middle-aged Ottoman political structure and society into modern ages in Western line.