The much-hyped Arab Spring of yesteryears could not produce any meaningful socio-economic and cultural impact in the lives of people except for causing regime change and political turmoil. Its most trumpeted success story happened in Tunisia where the 23-year regime of the then President, Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, was overthrown in 2011 in a chaotic uprising, nicknamed Jasmine Revolution. This year, a mass uprising was attempted against that resolution,’ which President Kais Saied suppressed, even sacking the Prime Minister and suspending the parliament. In other countries i.e. Libya, Egypt, Syria, Bahrain, and Yemen, the so-called revolution only unleashed the replacement of one dictator with another. None of the cited menaces of corruption, inflation, economic meltdown, and lack of political liberties has so far been addressed effectively. But what is unfolding in the Arabian Peninsula, particularly in Saudi Arabia, over the recent years is destined to trigger sweeping changes not only at the local level but across the Muslim world through these proclaimed reforms are not much political. The most sparking reform brought about by Saudi Arabia is to grant some liberties to women. While Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz Al Saud has delegated much of his administrative powers to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (MBS), the latter has not left any stone unturned to reform the conservative nature of Saudi society and statehood. Under MBS, the Saudi government has undertaken a massive programme for reforming Islamic institutions with the objective to effect a systematic restructuring of the role of religion in politics and society. For the economic amelioration of his people, MBS had launched a Citizen Welfare Programme in 2017 on which over $27 billion have so far been spent. The Crown Prince has also started a comprehensive economic and social initiative, Vision 2030, under which, besides other moves, a high-tech Neom city is to be constructed in Tabuk province along the Red Sea coast. Under this reformation agenda, the kingdom has also brought about visible changes in its relations with foreign countries. Saudi Arabia and Iran have had bitter rivalry throughout their history. They are not only involved in a raging Cold War in Syria, Yemen, and other Arab territories but are also pursuing conflicting agendas in most Islamic countries. The foremost among the Saudi reform initiatives is its bid to normalize and improve relations with Tehran. Though the process is slow but both sides have so far held four meetings in Baghdad and one in New York. The melting of ice between the two major regional countries has the potential to bring a degree of harmony among world Muslims as both lead the rival Shiite and Wahabi sects all over the world. French President Emmanuel Macron, who does not command a good reputation in the Muslim countries due to his recent anti-Islamic utterances, was accorded a red carpet welcome when he visited Saudi Arabia earlier this month. In 2019, Russian President Vladimir Putin visited Riyadh not only to sign oil agreements but also specifically discuss with Saudi authorities the regional security situation and the kingdom’s rivalry with Iran. Though Saudi Arabia has not yet recognized Israel four Arab countries under its influence, including the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Sudan, and Morocco, have recognized the Jewish state last year. As Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett visited UAE this past week, a Saudi official said that Riyadh was ready to normalize relations with Israel if the latter accepted and implemented the kingdom’s 2002 Arab Initiative for Pace, which calls for ending the Israeli occupation of Arab land forcibly held in 1967 and establishment of an independent Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital. Apart from these initiatives, the most sparking reform brought about by Saudi Arabia is to grant some liberties to women. The kingdom has abolished the strict dress code for women and lifted the ban on female driving and travelling of women only with a male guardian. Just last week, the kingdom hosted popular Indian film star, Salman Khan, who performed to thousands of his fans in the Saudi capital. The Saudi government also undertook a venture to display the film star’s handprints on some boulevards in Riyadh city. Being home to the two most sacred Islamic shrines, Saudi Arabia is like the nucleus of the Islamic world. Any religious step taken in the kingdom gets disseminated among Muslim communities all over the world. The kingdom has a coherent research-based theological system, which recommends the formulation of religious dogmas and narratives after years of disciplined deliberation. When Saudi Minister for Islamic Affairs Dr Abdul Latif Al-Sheikh announced restrictions on Tableeghi Jamaat Da’wah (Al Ahbab) groups last week, it was harshly responded, besides others, by the Indian cleric, Maulana Salman Hussaini Nadvi. The Maulana accused the Saudi royal family of indulging in luxuries, consuming liquor, and serving the UK, the United States, and Israel. He even reprimanded Saudi Arabia for ‘promoting tourism’, alleging that it would only serve the luxurious Christians and Jews. However, he did not justify as to why Saudi Arabia as a state was not authorized to ban any group on its soil, or what ground Indian national had to criticize a foreign country for making any decision on its soil. While the economic and socio-cultural reforms introduced by the Saudi government may create impact only inside the kingdom, the improvements the kingdom has made in Islamic institutions are certainly poised to set out a process of re-contemplation of Islamic perceptions. The breeze blowing in the Arab deserts has the potential to reshape religious thinking in all Muslim societies. The writer is an independent freelance journalist based in Islamabad covering South Asia/ Central Asia.