Tariq Ramadan, Swiss-born philosopher and Professor of Contemporary Islamic Studies at Oxford University. He holds an MA in Philosophy and French literature and a PhD in Arabic and Islamic Studies from the University of Geneva. In Cairo, Egypt he received one-on-one intensive training in classic Islamic scholarship from Al-Azhar University scholars (ijazat in seven disciplines). Through his writings and lectures Tariq has contributed to the debate on the issues of Muslims in the West and Islamic revival in the Muslim world. In 2004 Time magazine named him one of the world’s top 100 scientists and thinkers.
My Definition Of Success | Success to me means that once I am able to get this inner peace that is so central for me. Success is to get peace, which means inner peace and peace around me. When I was a student, and trying to get my degree and be successful in what I was doing. And now I understand that success is not about what I am doing but what I am being.
My Highlights | I wouldn’t say that I have something to be proud about. That’s, that’s not the way we’ll put it, but I can again come back to moments in my life with, with my wife, my children, my family. It’s when in fact the concept, of being proud but I got a sense of satisfaction, and I’m experiencing love and giving and receiving.
A Key Talent | Perseverance. And to be clear as to what your principles are, to be committed to your goals, and to be perseverant on your way, between your principles, trying to reach your goals. It’s .something that you, any one of us, everybody has to do it with his self, with the people she or he loves. And also with her or his society surrounding society.
Lessons I Have Leant | What I’ve learned from experience, I knew it was my mind that learned these experiences, life is for trying. So what I’m always saying to the people, don’t forget to tell the people you love that you love them. Because life is for trying. So, so anything that you can do now, do it. Anything that you can give, give it. Anybody that you can serve, serve her or him. Because we never know. Nothing lasts forever.
Dealing With Doubt | I’m a believer, so I have an intimate dialogue with God so I’m trying to look to Him I come back to my thoughts so it is a kind of er, meditation, so this is also something which is important. So meditation as to what I want to achieve, but also kind of a critical look at the weaknesses and the failures and the doubts themselves. So I never try to escape my doubts. I want to face them, I want to risk them, reasons and when I understand. So there is always something good in something which seems to be bad.
Resources I Use To Stay Inspired | First is once again, meditation and being on my own, it’s important. Interacting with people, which is important sources of creativity. Find a way also, I’m trying to listen to them, not only to be with them, to listen to what they say and listen to what they don’t say. To be able to see what is extraordinary in the ordinary…ordinary presence of somebody. And then also the creation around. So this is also something which is important to look at the world, to look at nature, to look at the creation as an environment, a space where I get signs and I get meaning for my life as well.
My Dream and Ambitions | Until I leave this world, I want to serve as much as I can. And to serve humanity means always being on the side of the oppressed. Serving humanity means to try to reform our societies for the best and serving means using all the means that we have. Knowledge, humanism, and love and friendship to make this world a better place. You know a better place has nothing to do with number, it has to do with humanity, so I really think that John-Paul II when he said, ‘if one person on earth is no longer suffering, this means that the world is better.’ I think it’s true.
Best Advice I’ve Received | Try your best and take care of yourself.
I am Inspired By | For me the role model that I have is the messenger the Prophet of Islam, because he is the reference in my life. And beyond that I have lots of people, lots of people who inspire me so much. Some previous students that were inspiring and still are and er, people that are known and people who are not known. I’m very inspired by anonymous people. People who are not visible but everything gets to be visible in them.
The Legacy I Would Like to Leave | In matters of thoughts commitments towards my principles and my my human commitment so people could say, ‘he tried his best.’