There is almost no Muslim fundamentalist movement in the Islamic world that, in spite of the uncertainties of the Spring, does not put forward its dream of establishing its Shari’a state as part of the ultimate caliphate. What is the magic of this utopian state that is so much talked about? We have already explained above the contribution of the caliphate to the authoritarian state in Islam, and we have now to become aware that a caliphate would mean two contradictory trends: on the one hand, this is the ideal Islamic state that any Islamic society, in fact all Islamic society, should strive for; but on the other hand such a regime is only a replacement (Khilafa) of the truly ideal one that existed at the time of the Prophet. The time of the Prophet was unique in human history and will not repeat itself; therefore the ideal will never recur, since the era of the Prophet has revolved and the past has passed. But at the same time, the peak of human ambition cannot possibly surpass the original human endeavor as expressed in and by the caliphate. Thus, it is agreed that the caliphate is the most adequate regime to govern the umma, provide for its needs, and defend it. In the pre-nationalist world, when the caliphate succeeded to Muhammed’s rule, it was designed to become a universal Muslim administration, like the contemporaneous Sassanid and Byzantine Empires, which were regarded as governing all Zoroastrians and all Christians, respectively.