Forms of Muslim Children’s Spirituality

A Critical Contribution to the Didactics of Islamic Religious Education Studies


The empirical study on the broad spectrum of Muslim children in Germany and their relations to God is fundamental for the scientific understanding of the development and formation of their faith. At the same time the findings of this work are also highly relevant for the further development of an academic and empirically based Islamic religious education both in a secular and in a highly individualized society.

The aim of this book is to provide a framework for the life of young believers in a religiously plural society, in which the individual relationship to God and the reflexivity of one's own religion are a decisive prerequisite for preventing radicalization and moral rigidity. This book favors an anthropological shift and an approach that takes the potential of children with their theology and their search for the meaning of life seriously.

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Fahimah Ulfat, Ph.D. (2016), Friedrich Alexander University of Erlangen-Nürnberg, is Professor of Islamic Religious Education at the Center for Islamic Theology at the Eberhard Karls University of Tübingen. Her research interests include empirical studies on youth and religion, religion and gender, teacher professionalism and interreligious learning.
Series Editor
James D. Kirylo, University of South Carolina, USA

Editorial Board

Drick Boyd, Professor Emeritus, Eastern University, USA
Nathaniel Bryan, Miami University, USA
Antonia Darder, Loyola Marymount University, USA
Zehavit Gross, Bar-Ilan University, Israel
Peter Mayo, University of Malta, Malta
Peter McLaren, Chapman University, USA
Meir Muller, University of South Carolina, USA
List of Figures

1 Introduction
 1 Problem Context
 2 Subject of the Study: The Action-Oriented Relevance of Relations to God
 3 Methodological Approach
 4 Structure of the Study

2 State of Research and Research Question
 1 State of Research in the Field of Children’s Conceptions of God
 2 Description of the Research Objective
 3 Specifying the Research Question

3 Methodological Foundation and Methodological Approach
 1 Methodological Decisions
 2 Survey Method: Narrative Interview
 3 Interpretation Procedure: Documentary Method
 4 Strategy of Generating the Sample

4 Empirical Research Results
 1 Short Portraits of the Interviewed Children in the Sample
 2 Development of Typologies in the Present Study: Comparative Analysis and Theoretical Summarization
 3 Basic Typology: Forms of Self-Relating
 4 Type A: Relating of the Self to God in the Mode of Personalization
 5 Type B: Relating of the Self to God in the Mode of Moralization and Orientation towards Tradition
 6 Type C: Relating of the Self to Immanent Dimensions in the Mode of Distance from God
 7 Summary: Types of Relations to God among Muslim Children

5 Discussion of the Research Results
 1 Discussion of the Research Results in the Educational Context
 2 Discussion of the Results in the Theological Context
 3 Reflection on the Results Regarding the Importance of Religious Education
 4 Summary

6 Conclusion
 1 Introduction
 2 Praxeological Suggestions
 3 Suggestions for Further Research

Appendix: Sample Table
This book will be of interest to students and teachers of religious education, university lecturers and social workers with a focus on religious education.
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