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Archive for the ‘Shari’ah’ Category

Free will and choice

October 21st, 2011

Rachid Ghannouchi “God says in the Qur’an that “There is no compulsion in religion”; therefore we believe that neither the state nor any social actor has the right to interfere in society in order to impose a certain lifestyle, belief or idea. These should be matters of free personal choice.”
(http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2011/oct/17/tunisians-islamic-secular-ennahda-election)

The above quote is from an article published in the Guardian by Rachid Ghannouchi, a Tunisian born scholar and activist who has dedicated his life, much of it in exile, to exploring the meaning behind the message and how it can best be understood in our time and context. Below I provide my understanding of the above quote.

All reading of the text must be done with the trajectory of the objective of God’s Will in mind. This Will, although cannot be known absolutely, after all God’s Words -the Quranic terms, are wrapped in many layers of complexity and require unpacking to reach a level of understanding from which we can move forward in understanding the objective of God; are filtered through human language for our comprehension. The Will has to Read more…

General, Politics, Reflections, Religion, Shari'ah

Human interpretation of divine legislation

August 8th, 2011

Shaykh Muhammad al-Ghazali in his book ‘A thematic commentary of the Quran’, while commenting on surah Al-Ma’idah verse 48, which states:

“And to you [Muhammad] We have revealed the Book with the truth. It confirms other books that have come before it and prevails over them. Therefore rule over them according to God’s revelations and do not follow their whims and fancies in deviation from the truth that has come to you. We have ordained for each [community] a system of laws and assigned them paths to follow.”

Explores, while maintain the authority of God -the Creator; the responsibility of the free-thinking, rational human mind and its elevated position in the sight of the One that ‘taught him the signs’; as to how it should approach the legislative commands within the text.

Commenting on this verse, al-Ghazali makes a distinction along the doctrinal and belief matters -which were perfected and concluded with the Read more…

Article, Politics, Reflections, Religion, Shari'ah

Rethinking Islamic Reform – The Conference

April 18th, 2010

Oxford’s famous Sheldonian Theatre will be hosting a conference with two of my favourite scholarly giants, Professor Tariq Ramadan and Sheikh Hamzah Yusuf to discuss one of my favourite topics -Islamic Reform. The conference will discuss the issue of what type of reform is needed and how to achieve this within our present but rapdily changing landscape and context -while still remaining faithful to the fundamentals of the text. The conference will also look at how to provide effective management and guidance to ensure success in its pursuit. It is a fitting venue since the painted ceiling of the Sheldonian depicts how Truth descends upon the intellectual pursuits of Arts and Sciences to expel ignorance.

The conference is to take place on Wednesday 26th May 2010 with doors opening at 5:30pm. Entry to the conference will only be through the purchase of either a standard or exclusive ticket.

For more details, please visit the official Rethinking Islamic Reform website.

Thanks for informing and directing me to the website :)

Reflections, Religion, Shari'ah

Ramadan’s Theory of the Seven ‘Cs’

March 27th, 2010

Tariq Ramadan’s new book entitled ‘What I believe‘ is a must read for those who want to cut through the media hype and controversy surrounding Tariq Ramadan due to his transformational agenda for Europe; and to get to know the man that Time Magazine placed in their list of 100 most important innovators of the 21st century while both British Prospect and American Foreign Policy magazines ranked him eight amongst 100 most contemporary intellectuals in 2008.

Tariq Ramadan is a Swiss born academic who holds a chair as Professor of Contemporary Islamic Studies at Oxford University. Through his Read more…

Article, Politics, Reflections, Religion, Shari'ah , , , ,

Shari’ah – justice, mercy and equality for all

March 11th, 2010

I came across a statement by Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziya, a famous and well known student of Ibn Taymiyyah, from his work I’ilm al-Muwaqqin an Rabb al-Alamin. I think it reflects deeply the definition of Shari’ah and its fundamental importance when trying to understand our two dimensional relationship -between men and God and men and men. It reflects how Islam plays a pivotal role in translating, expounding and clarifying the essential goal of the Law giver and His objectives for His free-willed creation. By exploring the objectives of the Law giver, men is commissioned -through the use of his intellectual and rational capacity, to create a Read more…

Religion, Shari'ah , , ,