Defining Islam for the Egyptian State: Muftis and Fatwas of by Jakob Skovgaard-Petersen

By Jakob Skovgaard-Petersen

This paintings strains the heritage of the Dar al-Ifta, the Egyptian kingdom Mufti's management, from its inception within the Eighteen Nineties to the current. located among a nation bereaucracy and an rising Muslim public interested by the transmission of Islamic values, a few of the nation Muftis were reinterpreting Islamic legislations to illustrate its relevance within the glossy age. This heritage offers an perception into topics of 20th-century Islamic pondering. 4 case reports exhibit how fatwas can be utilized as resources for felony, social, highbrow and mentality background.

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Extra resources for Defining Islam for the Egyptian State: Muftis and Fatwas of the Dar Al-Ifta (Social, Economic and Political Studies of the Middle East and Asia)

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36 But it would here underestimate ῾Abd al-Jabbār’s systematicity to present him as taking recourse to a rule of thumb in laying down what constitute, after all, the very foundations of his moral system. As for the Zoroastrian milieu, I will be returning to it from a different direction in a moment. In any case, there is no need to go so far afield in search of an explanation. The mystery—and any worries about untidiness—clears up once we recall the theological end points and, in particular, the position of paramount importance that the Mu῾tazilite view of lies occupies in their defense of the principle of justice.

Reinhart and George Makdisi, both of whom go on record with the view that the inquiries into value of the mutakallimūn do not constitute ethics in the proper sense of the word. For Makdisi, the “Rationalists”—those engaging in kalām—fall foul of the description of the science of ethics because “ethics is a science that seeks to know which actions should be done and which avoided. 40 The overall tendency is to abstract from the theological contexts that give ῾Abd al-Jabbār’s positions their meaning and purpose.

And to suggest a kinship of purpose between their ethics and that of Greek or British philosophers misidentifies the type of practice they were each engaged in. More instructively, it will help to track some of the difficulties with which such a conception of Mu῾tazilite practice hamstrings the attempt to give an account of it. A leading example to consider is Hourani’s proposed explanation of the principles utilized by ῾Abd al-Jabbār in selecting which attributes of acts are to be made absolute grounds for their moral value and which are only prima facie grounds.

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