By Bernard G Weiss

Students praised the 1992 variation of the quest for God’s legislations as a groundbreaking highbrow therapy of Islamic jurisprudence. Bernard Weiss’s revised version brings to lifestyles Sayf al-Din al Amidi’s vintage exposition of the methodologies by which Muslim students have built their understandings of the divine legislations. Weiss’s new creation offers an summary of Amidi’s jurisprudence that allows deeper comprehension of the demanding dialectic of the textual content. This variation comprises an in-depth research of the character of language and the ways that it mediates the legislations, whereas shaping it whilst. An up-to-date index has been further.

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Extra resources for The search for God's law: Islamic jurisprudence in the writings of Sayf al-Dīn al-Āmidī

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Instead, Amidi uses terms that designate groups of persons who participated in the dialectic. Prominent among these are the terms fuqaha' and usuliyun, either of which in certain contexts might be translated as "jurisprudents," thus giving the term a much more restricted application than I give to it. Other such terms are mutakallimun ("theologians"), muctazila ("Muctazilis"), hanabila ("Hanbalis"), ashab al-shafic ("Shaficis"), shica ("Shicis"), and the elusive ashabuna ("our associates"), to name but a few examples.

Mujtahids, Muftis and Commoners 681 Chapter Sixteen. Ijtihad and the Mujtahid 683 Definition of ijtihad, 683 Ijtihad and the probabilism of Amidi's jurisprudence, 684 Qualifications of the mujtahid, 687 Whether the Prophet engaged in ijtihad, 690 Whether it is possible that Companions of the Prophet engaged in ijtihad while he was yet living, 693 Controversies concerned with the consequences of the acceptance of disagreement among mujtahids, 694 Whether anyone who disagrees with the cardinal tenets of Islam as a result of intellectual ijtihad is above sin, and whether in the realm of intelligible matters all who engage in intellectual ijtihad are above error, 696 Whether mujtahids in the field of law are above sin, 698 Whether mujtahids who hold conflicting opinions regarding a question of law are all above error, 698 Whether it is possible for a mujtahid to be told, "You decide, for whatever decision you make is a correct decision," 705 Controversy over tacadul (treating conflicting indicators of the law as equal in probative strength), 707 How to deal with contradictory statements attributed to great mujtahids, 708 Whether a judicial decision, once rendered, may subsequently be invalidated, 710 Whether a mjutahid may deliberately refrain from engaging in ijtihad on a case that falls within his competence as a mujtahid and, instead, adhere to the opinion of another mujtahid: the issue of taqlid, 711 Whether a negative judgment must be based on an indicator, 715 Chapter Seventeen.

Although Amidi's writings may lack some of the features that we look for in systematic treatises (due to the dialectical format he adopts, as I explain in the Introduction), the organization of those writings is certainly systematic, and as one proceeds through them one soon senses that a system of thought is unfolding. It has been my primary object in writing this book to present that system of thought, along with the dialectical setting within which it comes to expression, as accurately and as lucidly as possible.

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