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Islamic Law Lecture 3 and 4 The sources of Islamic law
- There are many sources of Islamic law, there is no one source
- There are two main categorizations of sources: Primary sources of the shariah and the secondary sources The primary sources: -
Where everything originates from The Quran The most reliable and authentic The ones that you refer to most Two primary sources you have: The Quran and the Sunnah
- Considered to be the most sacred source of Islamic law, it's a noun and it derives in many ways from the root word Qaraa (this word means reading or reciting something) and it is considered by the muslims to be the final revelation and it is a revelation that was revealed on to the prophet of Islam via the agency of angel Jibraeel, it was revealed over a period of 23 years. There was 114 chapters and over 6000 verses and the chapters are referred to as Surahs and the verses are referred to as Aya's.
- Revelation in 2 periods: Mecca and Medina (important) - the distinction between definitive and speculative - Qat' I and Zanni
- Manifest revelation - Wahi zahil - professor kamali when he talks about aspects of quran talks about manifest revelation, its defined as the communication from god to the prophet in the actual very words of God, the Kalaam - the prophet received this revelation in state of well fullness therefore no part of
-the Quran came from internatl revelation. Manifest =
the word of God Manifest revaltion differs from internal revelation When we refer to internal revelation, it is still inspiration but we are not talking about the words of God, we are talking about the inspiration the ilaam of concepts only, so God inspired the prophet and then the prophet conveyed the concepts into his own words, so words are the words of the prophet Different style as to the Arabic used in the Quran and the Arabic used in Hadith. Internal revelation - not the word of God Internal revelation in Islamic law is referring to the Hadith, the Sunnah There are also differences in revelation when it comes to hadith
- various classifications, hadith Kutsi for example
- even thought the quran and sunnah are considered to be primary sources of the sunnah, no hadith can be ranked as equal footing with the Quran, its not of the same status, so when muslims pray, they pray using the words from the Quran.
- Quran was revealed gradually and many academics have looked at the reasoning behind this, why wasn't it sent out in one instance and why throughout many years** - can say they laid the foundations, preparing the ground
- Professor Kamali says that graduatility in the revaltion of the wuran was to allow the early believers to reflect on it in their memories and it was said that early community believers would learn about the quran gradually, they would understand it, see what it means then move on, so he states it allowed the believes an opportunity to reflect on their memories also he continues and says it was also there because it allows continuous contact over the time with believers. This gradual revelation reinforced the believers and gave them the strength they needed to deal with
- The scholars are in a agreement that the entire text of the quran is Mutawatir (authenticity, its proven by universally accepted testimony) as it was being revealed they would commit it to memory, there were many companions of the prophet who would live with him and learn it as soon as it was revealed.
- Reading the quran = great spiritual reward
- When prophet gave his speeches, it was almost as if the birds could sit on his head - nabil example
- Revelation of quran was in two periods, the larger part of it was revealed in over 12 and a half 13 years in Mecca, the Meccan Quran contained legal rulings on the prohibition of murder ant the Quran in Mecca talked about the prevention of injustice (zulm), it talked about weighty ethical principles, for example giving due measure when trading, fairness and justice when it came to trading in the market place and there was also many references to previous prophets and their experiences, and what happened to previous nations, so within the quran there was reference to previous prophets - yahya, musa, noor, adam, jesus,
- Many verses began with 'O human kind' - typical meccan surahs
- Medina contained the legal rules which formed or developed on the poor principles that were established in Mecca, that is not to say that you didn't have rulings in mecca, but largely the medina revelations were based on legal principles, the medinah period simplified the formation of the nation and the quranic emphasis shifted to principles regulating the political, legal, social and economic life to the new community - O human mankind' , or 'O people of the book' - illustrates its medinah revelation
- Qat'I - verses that are definitive text, considered to be clear and specific, has no other meaning and not opened to different interpretations, there cant be a dispute on it, however
- Zanni - is speculated, this is where you have verses which are opened to interpretation, itjihad - how do
you make sense of something that is not clear? You refer to the hadiths, you look at other sources, muftis who analyze them - traditionally if the kadi does not know anything then they would refer the issue to a mufti As babul nazur - known as looking at the context of revelation Look at what principles and customs were adopted in society at the time Look at the act itself, has the meaning been given else where?
When it comes to speculative texts in the quran, you look at the quran itself, elsewhere, to seek meaning or by looking at the quran itself in its totality to find the elaboration elsewhere or to find something similar - when it comes to speculative texts in the quran, you have to go to the sunnah Ribbah - (interest) four references in the quran to ribbah but you need more and what exactly is permitted - difference between small and large amounts of interest so this is zanni text Specific provisions in the quran and also general provisions in the quran - emphasis on matter of justice when it comes to the quran There are many quotes on justice and one such quote is - be just in your dealings even if its against your mother, against your brother and against your sister
- this particular quotation is in the supreme court in America Within body of quran - system of justice, to be fair in your dealings - not to do anything which can amount to abuse of justice Quran = mainly concerned with general principles and the context, the meaning and the specifics of it often comes froom the sunnah There s a verse in the quran which states ' o you who believe, obey god and obey the messenger, and if you have any dispute refer it to God and the messenger' Quran is a recitation and also referred to as the kitaab of God
- Quran is also considered to give knowledge (Ilm), beyaan of the truth (declaration), a clear message, a constant reminder, a remedy, a shifaa, a final revelation the tanzeel, the body of the fairest statement - the main thing is that it's a primary source of reference
- Prior to the quran, the arabs didn't have anything like this, every civilization is based on a book or writings, for the greek it was a poet who wrote the ilyat, about the adventours of heroine and hero - many centuries before jesus, so they had Homa
- For the jews, it was the Tora, the Torat
- For the Christians, they had the bible
- So all these people had something to refer to but for the arabs there was no book until the Quran
- There are ancient people around for many centuries yet there is no book, prior to that, there was literally poetry and that was done orally - oral poetry - golden age of arab poetry, the time of the prophet and shortly before you had famous poets (Inrul Qais being one of the famous poets)
- In the ka'ba at the time , you had something unique, you had what its referred to as the mu'allaqat - which means the suspended ones, the hanging poems, 7 poems hanging within the kaba and one such poem was written by Qais - the mu'allaqat were popular and were considered by the arabs as the essence of elegance
- Quran has a oral quality to it as it comes from the word that means rice, it also has a written quality to it as the prophet was told to read (iqraa)
- In many ways the oral tradition is dying out in modern society as there's less orality - nabils opinion
- The quran is a quran before it's a book - the quran is a recitation before it's a book as it was reduced into writing after being recited - it is defined as the kitaab
- to join together
- 570 AD - prophet sent to the dessert to learn the language through this tradition of the arabs
- First 40 years of the life of the prophet, very little happens of significance, up until the age of 40, he is known as the Al ameen (the trustworthy), reports say
he was quiet and did not speak much, he was very instinct in the sentences he would use, he wasn't known to engage in discourse to people, he was known to be kind to poor, he was known to be kind to the orphans, yet he was from a aristocratic of clan called banu hashim , cave of hira experience
- There are two parts to a hadith, the isnad and the Matn
? Isnad: - The isnad is the link of the tradition, the source of the chain of narrators
? Matn: - is the substance of the hadith
- most hadiths took place 150 years after the passing of the prophet
- when the hadith compilers wanted to learn about what the propehet, said, tjey would go to a scholar and the scholar would say 'the prophet said this...
and that was related from my teacher and that was from his teacher who heard it from the prophet himself'
- In many cases you have the same hadith which has multiple links, so theres a chain which starts from the prophet which goes down to generations somewhere in Yemen, Northern Arabia
- Often there's examples of identical hadith
- There are some which don't have extensive chains, the whole idea behind the isnad is to be able to link to the prophet and theres a science behind it.
- Three forms of hadith - Qawl , F'al and Iqrir
- The Qawl - are the utterances of the prophet, what he said, what did he say, what words did he use ' paradise is beneath of the mothers feet' example of the Qawl hadith
- The F'al - the actions, his practices, his deeds, 'pray 5 times a day' - but how do you pray? You look at the actions of the prophet, how he prayed, particular proecudre, comes from the hadith of the F'al, how to fast for example, commandment to fast during the month of Ramadan, how and when do you fast or break fast, all from the actions of the prophet - Qawl would also explain what and what you can not do, how did he conduct transactions
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