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Classics

The Erosion of Sharia

Al-Juwaynī imagines an Islamic world that no longer has either a caliph or the unitary government of an “imam of usurpation” or a sultan. Independent jurists capable of deriving new rules have died out and within Islamic Law it is mainly the worship-related precepts and family-law rules that remains alive. The alternatives are clear: either try to revive the independent jurists or recognize the autonomy of worldly realities.

[This article is published in Oasis no. 25. To read all the contents buy a copy or subscribe]

Preface
8. As far as the content of the Law and its objectives, sources and derivations are concerned, the various rules and their subdivision into licit and forbidden may be reduced to two parts and are ascribable, as a whole, to two kinds. The first comprises that section of the Law that relates to government and the imams and all those set up in authority within the umma. These assume the leadership, whilst the subjects receive the orders and carry them out. The second kind, on the other hand, comprises that part of the Law for which all Muslims with legal capacity (mukallaf) are autonomously responsible and that falls to anyone who has the power to act and is under legal obligation.

9. With God’s help and aid, by way of introduction I will expound in the first part – in various inter-connected chapters – the qualities requested of the imam, the ruler, the pastor and the judge. […] Then I will begin to examine the case of an era that may find itself without defenders of the religion or rulers of the Muslims. […]

[This article is published in Oasis no. 25. To read all the contents buy a copy or subscribe]

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