i

]Zegde]Zibj]VbbVYlVhVh`ZYl]^X]eZdeaZ
were the best. He replied: “You will find that people are mines
of gold and silver. The best of you in the time of ignorance be-
fore Islam will be the best of you in Islam if they gain understanding of
the religion.”
&
This Hadith implies that Islam requires both belief and
understanding to bring out intrinsic human goodness, even in the best of
people. However great the native goodness of Muslims may be, they can
only realize their potential as individuals and members of communities
through an adequate understanding of their faith. The need for a deeper
understanding of Islam in order to achieve excellence clearly applies to
Muslims in America. They have exceptional potential. They are intelli-
gent, industrious, and uniquely promising, yet, like undiscovered mines
of gold and silver, their promise remains largely untapped due to insuf-
ficient acquaintance with their faith, its resources, and legacy.
'

1le neeu íoi ueeµei unueisranuing oí Islam íoi µeisonal anu
communiry giovrl is nor losr on mosr Ameiican Nuslims, noi uo
A Nawawi Foundation Paper
by Umar Faruq Abd-Allah, Ph.D.
Living Islam with Purpose

'%%,#Vaag^\]ihgZhZgkZY#
EZiZgHVcYZghE]did\gVe]n[gdbi]ZWdd`>ci]ZH]VYZd[i]ZIgZZ#

living islam with purpose

*
'

rley lack rle vill ro gain ir. Wlar seems ro Le miss-
ing is an oµeiarional íiamevoik ro íacilirare rle ac-
quisirion oí ueeµei unueisranuing anu µur ir ro use.
1lis µaµei íocuses on ¨nve oµeiarional µiinciµles¨
rlar µioviue sucl a íiamevoik. 1ley aie:
V igjhi^c\gZVhdc
V gZheZXi^c\Y^hhZci
V higZhh^c\hdX^ZiVadWa^\Vi^dch
V hZii^c\eg^dg^i^Zh
V ZbWgVX^c\bVm^bh
1lese nve oµeiarional µiinciµles aie age-olu
Islamic guiuelines. Lacl oí rle µiinciµles is nimly
Laseu on rle Qui`an anu Sunna anu suµµoireu Ly
rle geneial consensus oí riauirional Islamic sclolai-
sliµ. ILn Rälavayl, a ienovneu sclolai oí Hauirl
(

anu close comµanion oí Imam Almau iLn HanLal,
uesciiLeu legal maxims ÷ rle nírl oµeiarional
µiinciµle oí rlis µaµei ÷ as ¨µosirions aiiiveu ar Ly
ieasoning on rle Lasis oí rle geneial sraremenrs oí
rle Pioµler.¨
)
1lis uesciiµrion aµµlies equally ro
rle íoui orlei oµeiarional µiinciµles uiscusseu, eacl
oí rlem consrirures a univeisal riurl iooreu in rle
coiµus oí rle Qui`an anu Hauirl as a vlole.
Ir is nor an exaggeiarion ro say rlar rle nve
oµeiarional µiinciµles ser íoirl in rlis µaµei em-
Louy rle visuom anu consummare sensiLiliry oí
rle Pioµleric reacling. 1ley engenuei Lalance anu
moueiarion, vlile insrilling µiacrical unueisranu-
ing anu rangiLle guiuelines. By emµlasizing coie
values anu univeisal µiinciµles, rle nve oµeiarional
µiinciµles consrirure a Liiuge Lerveen Islam anu rle
iueals anu values oí orlei culruies anu ieligions.
Nuslims vlo unueisranu rlem can sµeak coleienr-
ly aLour rleii íairl in any serring. 1ley can make
rlemselves ielevanr in uiveise culruial suiiounuings,
esµecially rlose oí rle Wesr, anu lay rle íounua-
rions oí a viLianr inuigenous Nuslim µiesence
vleievei rley may Le.
Ir is necessaiy ro emµlasize rle oLvious:
1lese nve oµeiarional µiinciµles uo nor consrirure
eveiyrling a Nuslim neeus ro knov aLour Islam.
1ley aie nor a suLsrirure íoi rle sruuy oí Islamic
rleology, lav, oi sµiiirualiry. Wlar rley uo µioviue
aie geneial iules íoi giasµing anu visely aµµlying
rle Lioauei riauirion. 1le ienovneu sage ALu
al-Kaiïm al-]ïlï srareu: ¨Oµeiarional knovleuge
(al-ilh al-ahalï) is rle visuom rlar guiues a vise
µeison ro Lenenr íiom lis knovleuge.¨
*
1lese nve
µiinciµles aie examµles oí íunuamenral oµeiarional
knovleuge anu µioviue Nuslims virl a necessaiy
skill ser ro urilize orlei íoims oí knovleuge eí-
íecrively. Lacl oí rle nve oµeiarional µiinciµles is
ciirically imµoiranr, Lur, ií rle ieauei veie ro come
avay íiom rlis µaµei virl only one iuea, ir sloulu
Le rlis: Islam musr make sense, Lur, ro make sense,
ir iequiies inrelligenr íolloveis virl sounu unuei-
sranuing.
Wlile rlis µaµei is viirren virl rle Ameiican
Nuslim communiry in minu, irs nve oµeiarional
µiinciµles aie ielevanr íoi Nuslims eveiyvleie,
esµecially rlose in Canaua, Biirain, anu Wesrein
Luioµe. 1lese µiinciµles Lelong ro a iicl communal
leiirage. 1ley aie aµµlicaLle ro all Nuslims anu aie
nor jusr íoi sclolais. As al-]ïlï inuicares aLove in lis
ieíeience ro rle vise use oí oµeiarional knovleuge,
aµµlicarion oí oµeiarional µiinciµles sucl as rlese
is a riusr anu sloulu Le unueiraken virl inregiiry
anu visuom, vlicl is rle case virl all ryµes oí
knovleuge.
Because oí rleii uriliry in unueisranuing Islam,
rle nve oµeiarional µiinciµles ouglr ro consrirure
an essenrial comµonenr oí Nuslim unueisranu-
ing. ILn Arä`-Alläl, rle ienovneu juiisr anu sage,
srareu: ¨1le Leginnings aie rle maniíesrarions oí
rle enus.¨
+
1le vay rlar rlings Legin ielecrs lov
rley aie likely ro enu. A goou Leginning µiomises a
living islam with purpose

*
(

Liiglr íuruie, a soliu íounuarion suµµoirs a sriong
anu lasring sriucruie. 1lese nve µiinciµles oííei rle
Ameiican Nuslim communiry an excellenr µlace ro
Legin a µiomising íuruie. 1ley sloulu consrirure
one oí rle essenrial elemenrs oí Islamic euucarion ar
all levels. Lven rlougl rleii µiesenrarion may seem
somevlar aLsriacr, rley aie nor uiínculr ro com-
µielenu, anu euucarois can make rlem easily acces-
siLle ro uiííeienr µeoµle in aµµioµiiare vays.
Islam µiesenrs an aiiay oí µorenrially coníus-
ing sers oí nve: nve µillais,
,
nve iirual µiayeis, nve
acr classincarions,
-
nve majoi oLjecrives oí lav, anu
nve coie legal maxims. I lave comµlicareu marreis
Ly selecring nve oµeiarional µiinciµles, Lur only rvo
oí rle orlei sers oí nve iequiie arrenrion in rlis µa-
µei, rley aie rle nve majoi oLjecrives oí Islamic lav
anu irs nve coie maxims.
Ioi easy ieíeience, rle nve majoi oLjecrives oí
rle lav aie rle µieseivarion oí:
&#gZa^\^dc
'#hZa[
(#gZVhdc
)#X]^aYgZc
*#lZVai]
1le coie maxims aie:
&#bViiZghl^aaWZ_jY\ZYWni]Z^g
ejgedhZh#
'#XZgiV^cinl^aacdiWZdkZgijgcZY
WnYdjWi#
(#]VgbbjhiWZgZbdkZY#
)#]VgYh]^ebjhiWZVaaZk^ViZY#
*#Xjhidb]Vhi]ZlZ^\]id[aVl#
1le nve coie maxims make uµ rle giearei µair
anu rle µiimaiy íocus oí rlis µaµei. 1o unueisranu
rleii uriliry, rle ieauei sloulu keeµ in minu rlar
rley aie nor meiely useíul guiuelines, rley emLouy
rle essenrial sµiiir oí rle ieligion. In rle eyes oí
riauirional Nuslim sclolais, rle nve coie maxims
consrirure a concise summarion oí eveiyrling Islam
ieµiesenrs. 1o unueisranu rle nve coie maxims is
ro unueisranu rle essence oí Islam in nve sloir sen-
rences.
1le Pioµler saiu: ¨1le essence oí rle ieligion
oí Islam is giving goou counsel.¨
.
I viire rlis µaµei
virl rle loµe rlar ir vill µioviue goou counsel.
Ir ielecrs my unueisranuing anu inreiµierarion oí
rle Islamic riauirion. I close rlese nve µiinciµles
among many orleis, sucl as lonoiing knovleuge,
aíniming luman uigniry, anu Leing commirreu ro
social jusrice. I selecreu rlese µairiculai nve Lecause
oí rleii µiacricaliry anu immeuiare ielevance ro rle
Ameiican Nuslim communiry, orlei oµeiarional
µiinciµles inregial ro Islam miglr seive jusr as vell
oi even Lerrei. 1lis µaµei arremµrs ro exµloie nev
giounu. Ir oííeis a meaningíul µeisµecrive anu solic-
irs ciearive uiscussion.

Ì
operational principle one
TRUSTING REASON

acl oí rle µiinciµles uiscusseu in rlis µaµei
sranus as inueµenuenr µiooí oí rle µiimacy oí
ieason in Islam. Reason lies ar rle leair oí Islam`s
voiluviev. Gou enuoveu luman Leings virl
uigniry, anu rle caµaciry ro ieason is one oí rle
µiinciµal giounus oí rleii unique uisrincrion among
Leings. 1le iarional oiuei oí rle univeise makes ir
accessiLle ro luman ieason anu riansíoims ir íiom
a voilu oí ianuom µlenomena inro a maivelous
sign oí Gou anu an oLjecr oí sµecularion anu
scienrinc invesrigarion.
1le µiorecrion, µieseivarion, anu culrivarion
oí rle µovei ro ieason counr among rle majoi oL-
living islam with purpose

*
)

jecrives anu giearesr socieral oLligarions oí Islamic
lav. Noial iesµonsiLiliry (tallïf) is rle nisr µieieq-
uisire íoi oLligaroiy Islamic µiacrice anu nevei las
legal valiuiry in rle aLsence oí rle íaculry oí ieason.
Because rley lack rle caµaciry ro ieason anu ro
íully comµielenu munuane iealiries, rle menrally
incaµacirareu, insane, anu cliluien aie nor accounr-
aLle Leíoie Gou, noi aie rley oLligeu ro oLey His
commanus. 1le Qui`an ieµeareuly ieíeis ro rle
excellence oí ieason anu ueems ir a µiinciµal souice
oí guiuance. 1le íolloving veises reacl rlar ieason
leaus ro vellLeing anu ereinal íeliciry, vlile ruining
one`s Lack on ieason leaus ro calamiry anu loss:
In tlis hanner, CcJ hales His signs clear fcr
ycu tlat, jerlajs, ycu hay reascn (Qui`an,
':')').
CcJ is tle cne ulc giies life anJ Jeatl anJ tc
CcJ belcng tle alteraticn cf tle niglt anJ tle
Jay. Dc luhan beings nct reascn: (Qui`an,
'(:-%).
CcJ uill jut a lcatlsche clastisehent ujcn
tlcse ulc Jc nct use tleir reascn (Qui`an
&%:&%%).
Imam al-Glazälï, one oí rle mosr acclaimeu
sclolais in Islamic lisroiy, lelu ieason`s loíry srarus
in Islam ro Le Leyonu uisµure:
Knov rlar rle quesrion oí ieason`s µieeminence
is somerling rlar uoes nor iequiie mucl riouLle
ro claiiíy, esµecially since rle eminence oí knovl-
euge irselí only Lecomes cleai Ly viirue oí iea-
son. Reason is rle souice oí knovleuge, rle µlace
vleie ir nisr maniíesrs irselí, anu rle íounuarion
uµon vlicl ir sranus. Knovleuge lovs íiom iea-
son like íiuir comes íiom a riee, like liglr íiom
rle sun, anu siglr íiom rle eye. Anu lov coulu
somerling like rlis nor lave µieeminence vlen
ir is also rle means ro íeliciry in rlis voilu anu
rle nexr· Hov coulu rleie Le any uouLr aLour
rlis·
&%
In rle Islamic riauirion, ieligion virlour
ieason is a uisasrei, anu lisrening ro rle voice
oí ieason is imµeiarive. 1le noreu sclolai al-
RägliL al-Isíalänï, a conremµoiaiy oí al-Glazälï,
srareu: ¨Þevei Le sarisneu virl a µeison`s Islam
unril you lave resreu lis ieason.¨ Islamic erlics
uesignares ieason as rle nisr necessaiy elemenr oí
moial claiacrei.
&&
In rle aLsence oí ieason, goou
claiacrei is like a seemingly sraLle Luiluing on a
veak íounuarion.
1le aurloiiry oí ieason íoims rle íounua-
rion oí Islamic rleological anu legal rlouglr. Unril
iecenrly, mosr Wesrein acauemics viongly lookeu
uµon rle Nurazilï sclool oí rleology as rle sole
examµle oí Islamic iarionalism. In iealiry, irs iivals,
rle Aslaiï anu Näruiïuï sclools, vlicl make uµ
rle mainsrieam oí Sunnï oirlouoxy, aie no less ia-
rionalisric, anu rleii sµecularions consisrenrly uem-
onsriare oiiginaliry anu inrellecrual ueµrl.
&'
Piag-
maric ieason is cenrial ro rle Islamic legal riauirion.
Lven rle HanLalï sclool oí lav, vlicl is knovn íoi
rexrual lireialism, is liglly µiagmaric anu ceues a
signincanr iole ro ieason in Lorl rleology anu lav.
In íacr, rle sclool vas uiviueu íiom an eaily µeiiou
Lerveen rvo vings, one oí vlicl ielieu moie leav-
ily on ieason rlan rle orlei. ILn 1aymiyya, one
oí rle giearesr HanLalï sclolais, anu lis uisciµle
ILn al-Qayyim Lelongeu ro rle sclool`s iarionalisr
ving. Anorlei sclool oí lav, rle exriemely lireial-
isr Zäliiïs iejecreu rle use oí ieason in rleology
anu lav Lur nevei von a signincanr íolloving, rley
uieu our eaily, in µair, Lecause oí rleii iejecrion oí
ieason.
Conlicr Lerveen ieligion anu science vas
viirually unknovn in Islamic inrellecrual lisroiy.
1le laimony Lerveen rle rvo is eµiromizeu in rle
liíe anu voik oí rle Liillianr ninrl-cenruiy Nuslim
clemisr ]äLii iLn Hayyän, vlo ieµuuiareu alclemy
as a valiu science anu laiu rle emµiiical íounuarions
oí clemisriy. His ieligious uevorion eaineu lim
living islam with purpose

*
*

rle sµiiirual uesignarion oí ¨rle Sun.¨ ILn Hayyän
Legan one oí lis ienovneu voiks on clemisriy,
Tle ßccl cf Seienty (Kitãb al-Sabïn), virl rle
voius: ¨Ceirainly rle menrion oí Gou is moie
noLle, majesric, anu giear rlan vlar íollovs.¨ He
oµeneu rle Look virl a lengrly uiscussion on rle
imµeiarive oí µuiiíying rle soul íiom osrenrarion
anu orlei sµiiirual ueíecrs as a µieiequisire ro rle
µuisuir oí scienrinc leaining.
&(
Islam µiouuceu an aiiay oí ieligious sclolais
vlo also excelleu in rle iarional anu emµiiical
sciences. ILn Ruslu (Aveiioes), rle leaineu Anua-
lusian juuge anu legal sclolai, leír an inluence on
Islamic lav rlar is íelr even rouay. His commenrai-
ies on Aiisrorle aííecreu rle couise oí Luioµean
inrellecrual lisroiy. He comµoseu moie rlan níry
voiks ianging íiom lis µiimaiy nelus oí lav anu
µlilosoµly ro meuicine, µsyclology, zoology, anu
asrionomy. Ir is saiu rlar lis meuical oµinions veie
as eageily avaireu in Nuslim Sµain as lis inreiµie-
rarions oí rle lav.
&)
Likevise, Iakli al-Dïn al-Räzï,
a noreu Qui`anic commenraroi, rleologian, anu
legal rleoiisr, masreieu rle iarional anu emµiiical
sciences oí lis age anu comµileu Tle Ccnsuhha-
ticn cf Ancient anJ McJern IJeas (Mulassal Aflãr
al-MutaqaJJihïn ua al-Muta´allllirïn), in vlicl
le summaiizeu rle µlilosoµlical, rleological, anu
scienrinc rlouglr oí µiominenr ancienr anu larrei-
uay rlinkeis.
&*
Islamic legal rlouglr uiviues rle iulings oí
rle ievealeu lav inro rvo caregoiies accoiuing ro
rleii connecrion virl ieason. 1le nisr caregoiy is
immuraLly nxeu (tauqïfï). Irs iulings aie accessiLle
ro inrellecrual conremµlarion, Lur rley aie nor
conringenr on uisceiniLle iarionales anu conuirional
µuiµoses anu, rleieíoie, cannor Le clangeu.
ImmuraLly nxeu iulings musr Le oLseiveu jusr as
rley veie oiiginally ievealeu anu aie nor oµen
ro legal inreiµierarion. Designarion oí Ramauan
as rle monrl oí íasring is immuraLly nxeu. 1le
seconu caregoiy is iarionale-Laseu (huallal). Irs
iulings lave iarionales (ilal) anu rangiLle µuiµoses
(haqãsiJ), vlicl make rlem accessiLle ro ieason
anu rle suLjecr oí ongoing legal inreiµierarion
(ijtilãJ). Naiiiage anu mosr oí rle lavs ielaring ro
ir aie iarionale-Laseu.
1le immuraLly nxeu iulings oí Islamic lav
µeirain mosrly ro rle uerails oí ieligious iires. Com-
µaieu ro iarionale-Laseu iulings, rley consrirure
an essenrial Lur ielarively small µair oí rle lav.
1le µiimacy anu µieuominance oí iarionale-Laseu
iulings in rle lav give ir lexiLiliry anu ielevance
in clanging rimes anu uiveise µlaces. Because ia-
rionale-Laseu iulings consrirure rle oveivlelming
majoiiry oí Islamic juiisµiuuence, eveiy iuling in
rle lav is µiesumeu ro Le iarionale-Laseu unril rle
conriaiy is µioven. A ielevanr legal maxim srares:
¨1o lave iarionales is rle Lasic µiemise oí rle lav¨
(al-asl al-talïl). Þo µiooí is iequiieu ro lolu rlar
an Islamic iuling las a iarionale, rle íull Luiuen oí
µiooí íalls exclusively on rle sloulueis oí anyone
making rle claim rlar a iuling las no iarionale anu
is immuraLly nxeu.
Ceirain asµecrs oí iirual µiayeis µioviue
an illusriarion oí immuraLly nxeu anu iarionale-
Laseu iulings occuiiing in comLinarion. Islamic
µiayeis aie uiviueu inro rvo ryµes: auuiLle anu
inauuiLle. 1le uesignarion oí vlicl µiayeis aie
silenr anu vlicl aie iecireu alouu is immuraLly
nxeu anu is nor conringenr on a iarionale. Bur rleie
is a iarionale Lelinu rle µiayei leauei`s liíring lis
voice in auuiLle µiayeis: ir is µieíeiaLle rlar rlose
µiaying Lelinu lim Le aLle ro leai rle iecirarion.
In keeµing virl rlis iarionale, ir is legirimare
ro amµliíy rle µiayei leauei`s voice in uiííeienr
vays so rlar giearei numLeis oí voisliµµeis can
living islam with purpose

*
+

leai rle iecirarion. In rle µasr, Nuslims uesigneu
acousrically innovarive aiclirecruial sriucruies íoi
rlis µuiµose, rouay, rley use micioµlones.
1le inriinsic iarionaliry oí rle Pioµleric lav
slovs rlar Gou maue rle lav íoi luman Leings
anu rlar luman Leings veie nct maue íoi rle lav.
Since mosr Islamic legal iulings lave uisceinaLle
iarionales, rley iequiie ongoing sciuriny anu legal
inreiµierarion ro ensuie rlar rleii aµµlicarion
iemains consisrenr virl rleii iarionales.
&+
Lacl
rexr las a conrexr, anu rle ieligious sclolai musr
unueisranu Lorl, rle lav cannor Le aµµlieu
meclanically oi Ly iore. In acknovleugemenr oí
rle iarional insiglr anu visuom iequiieu íoi rle
µioµei aµµlicarion oí rle lav in uiííeienr rimes
anu µlaces, comµerenr legal sclolais aie knovn
as ¨µeoµle oí unueisranuing¨ (fuqalã´). 1le same
skills aie nor iequiieu íoi commirring rle Qui`an
anu Hauirl ro memoiy, rlose vlo masrei rlese airs
aie iesµecríully calleu ¨memoiizeis¨ (luffãz).
Nuslims rake µiiue in rle íacr rlar Islam is a
ieligion oí ieason anu µiouuceu a gloLal civiliza-
rion Laseu on rle laimonious culrivarion oí rle
ieligious, iarional, anu emµiiical sciences. In µiac-
rice, lovevei, many Nuslims rouay seem ro lave
losr rle giír oí sounu inruirion anu rle connuence ro
riusr in ieason. Oíren, rley aie unnecessaiily roin
Lerveen vlar rley insrincrively knov ro Le iiglr
anu Lerveen comµering aurloiiraiian claims maue
in Islam`s name rlar uo nor make sense anu may
even conlicr virl Lasic luman values. As Laiiy
Posron slovs in lis sruuy oí Wesrein conveirs ro
Islam, mosr conveirs cire Islam`s comµariLiliry virl
ieason anu irs consisrence virl common sense as
one oí irs majoi arriacrions.
&,
Yer rley roo musr
guaiu againsr íalling vicrim ro counreiinruirive
reaclings rlar invaliuare rle veiy iarionaliry rlar
inirially arriacreu rlem ro rle íairl.
In rle enu, Islam musr make goou sense. As
al-RägliL al-Isílänï lelu, a Nuslim`s comµerence in
Islam cannor Le riusreu Leíoie resring lis oi lei iea-
son. 1le same aµµlies ro Nuslim communiries anu
rle iueas anu ourlooks rley reacl, any aµµioacl ro
Islam rlar uoes nor culrivare anu iesµecr rle íiee
anu canuiu use oí ieason is inauequare anu cannor
lay rle íounuarions íoi a viaLle íuruie.

Ì
operational principle two
RESPECTING DISSENT

slam only sµeaks virl a monolirlic voice on
íounuarional Lelieís anu µiacrices. In orlei mar-
reis, ir sµeaks virl mulriµle voices anu iecognizes
rle legirimacy oí uissenr anu comµering inreiµiera-
rions. Alrlougl Islamic lisroiy las lau µeiious oí
giearei anu lessei roleiarion, acknovleugemenr oí
uiveigenr oµinions is a cenrial µair oí irs leiirage.
Nuslim sclolais veie riaineu in rle µiorocol oí uis-
senr (aJab al-illtilãf), vlicl enaLleu rlem, íoi rle
mosr µair, ro Lenenr íiom oµµosing µoinrs oí viev
anu live civilly virl rlose vlo lelu rlem.
Resµecr íoi uissenr is a naruial elemenr in
lealrly socieries, ir is essenrial ro luman uigniry
anu inrellecrual ueveloµmenr. Ir nuiruies a culruie
oí roleiance rlar allovs íoi oµenness ro nev vays
oí rlinking anu ro orlei communiries virl uiííeienr
voiluvievs. Hisroiically, Islam`s ieceµriviry ro nov-
el anu oíren conlicring iueas vas an inregial µair oí
irs culruial anu inrellecrual success. 1lis iesµecr íoi
uissenr lay ar rle íounuarion oí rle ieligion`s caµac-
iry ro íosrei an inreinarional uiscouise oí iueas, ir
enaLleu Nuslims ro Lecome leiis ro rle giear inrel-
lecrual legacies oí rle µasr.
living islam with purpose

*
,

1le iiglr oí uissenr anu rle iequiiemenr ro
iesµecr ir aie ancloieu in rle mannei in vlicl
Nuslim sclolaisliµ aµµioacleu sciiµruial inrei-
µierarion. Sclolais agieeu rlar ieligious rexrs lave
uiííeienr uegiees oí conclusiveness anu oíren con-
vey mulriµle meanings. Islamic sclolaisliµ uiviueu
ieligious rexrs inro rvo caregoiies: &) rlose vlicl
aie caregoiically aurloiirarive (qatï) anu ') rlose
vlicl aie µiesumµrively aurloiirarive (zannï).
1o Le caregoiically aurloiirarive, a ieligious
rexr musr µass rvo resrs. 1le nisr µeirains ro
aurlenriciry oí riansmission, rle seconu µeirains
ro rle numLei oí meanings ir conveys. In
Islamic sclolaisliµ, rle enriiery oí rle Qui`an is
caregoiically aurlenric (qatï al-tlubüt). Hauirl, on
rle orlei lanu, lave uiííeienr levels oí veiinaLle
aurlenriciry. 1lus, rle issue oí rexrual aurlenriciry
aµµlies in iealiry only ro Hauirl. 1lose Hauirl
rlar meer rle liglesr sranuaius oí veiincarion (al-
alãJïtl al-salïla) aie caregoiically
aurlenric íiom rle sranuµoinr oí
riansmission, alrlougl rley aie nor
necessaiily caregoiically aurloiirarive
íiom rle sranuµoinr oí meaning.
Hauirl virl lessei uegiees oí
veiinaLiliry (al-alãJïtl al-lasana
ua al-Jaïfa) aie µiesumµrively
aurlenric as iegaius riansmission
(zannï al-tlubüt). 1ley may µioviue
legirimare suµµoiring eviuence Lur
cannor consrirure conclusive µiooí in
isolarion no marrei lov cleai rleii
meanings may aµµeai.
Once rle aurlenriciry oí a rexr
las Leen esraLlisleu, rle nexr ques-
rion iegaiuing meaning musr Le an-
sveieu. In many vays, rlis seconu
quesrion is moie imµoiranr rlan rle
nisr Lecause mosr uissenr among Nuslims ovei ieli-
gious quesrions is Laseu on uiveigenr inreiµierarions
oí aurlenricareu rexrs, ir is sucl rexrs rlar consrirure
rle µiimaiy aiena oí ieligious uissenr among ieli-
gious sclolais.
1exrs rlar aie caregoiically aurloiirarive in
meaning (qatï al-Jalãla) allov íoi only one µos-
siLle inreiµierarion. Bur rexrs rlar allov íoi moie
rlan one ieasonaLle inreiµierarion aie saiu ro Le
µiesumµrively aurloiirarive in meaning (zannï al-
Jalãla). Sucl rexrs cannor logically Le iesriicreu ro
a single meaning, uesµire rle íacr rlar one oí rleii
meanings may aµµeai sriongei rlan rle orleis. An
aµµlicaLle legal maxim srares: ¨1leie can Le no
conclusive µiooí as long as rle µossiLiliry oí a con-
riaiy aigumenr iemains¨ (lã lujja haa al-iltihãl),
virl µiesumµrively aurloiirarive rexrs, rle µos-
siLiliry oí a legirimare conriaiy aigumenr alvays
iemains.
Belieí in Gou`s oneness, rle
Lasr ]uugmenr, anu rle µioliLirion
oí muiuei aie Laseu on caregoiically
aurloiirarive rexrs, rley consrirure
µiimaiy íounuarions oí rle Islamic
ieligion anu aie univeisally Linuing
on Nuslims.
&-
Wlerlei oi nor rle
Gaiuen oí Paiauise comµiises íoui
oi seven leavenly uomains is a ques-
rion Laseu on µiesumµrively aurloii-
rarive rexrs, as aie quesrions aLour
vlerlei Gou senr &'),%%%, ''),%%%,
oi some orlei unuereimineu numLei
oí Pioµlers.
&.
Likevise, rle uiscus-
sion aLour lov Nuslims ouglr ro
lolu rleii lanus vlen sranuing in
µiayei ievolves aiounu rexrs oí µie-
sumµrive aurloiiry.
Belieís anu µiacrices Laseu on
Although the
protocol of
Islamic thought
agrees to disagree
on presumptively
authoritative
matters, it should
be emphasized that
dissenting views
must be held to
high standards
and sound
methodologies.
living islam with purpose

*
-

µiesumµrively aurloiirarive rexrs may Le saiu ro
lave seconuaiy srarus, rley cannor consrirure rle
íounuarional Lelieís anu µiacrices rlar all Nuslims
aie oLligeu ro acceµr. Þeveirleless, rlese seconuaiy
Lelieís anu µiacrices aie oí viral imµoirance in Islam
anu aie nor ro Le iegaiueu as renrarive oi unriue.
Alrlougl rley Lelong ro rle iealm oí íoimal uissenr
anu cannor Le imµoseu on orleis, rley consrirure
valiu Lelieís anu µiacrices íoi rlose sclools anu
rle inuiviuuals vlo acceµr rlem. In essence, eacl
sclool oí Islamic lav consrirures a voiking merl-
ouology íoi ieacling valiu conclusions aLour µie-
sumµrively aurloiirarive quesrions.
'%
1le sclools
agiee on caregoiically aurloiirarive marreis, rleii
uiííeiences concein µiesumµrively aurloiirarive
ones. Alrlougl eacl sclool claims ro Le a ieliaLle
guiue in µiesumµrive marreis, rley acknovleuge
rle iiglrs oí orleis ro uissenr anu uo nor claim con-
clusive aurloiiry íoi rlemselves in rle aLsence oí
caregoiical µiooí.
One oí rle mosr imµoiranr µiinciµles in
rle uennirion oí Islamic oirlouoxy, leiesy, anu
secraiianism ielares ro rlis uisrincrion Lerveen
caregoiically aurloiirarive (µiimaiy) anu
µiesumµrively aurloiirarive (seconuaiy) Lelieís anu
µiacrices. As inuicareu aLove, rle íounuarional
conrenr oí Islam, vlicl all Nuslims aie iequiieu ro
acknovleuge, musr Le iesriicreu ro µiimaiy Lelieís
anu µiacrices Laseu on caregoiically aurloiirarive
µiooí. Wlile ir is valiu íoi µeisons anu sclools
ro auoµr µiesumµrively aurloiirarive elemenrs oí
íairl íoi rlemselves, ir is nor µeimissiLle ro iegaiu
rlem as oLligaroiy íoi rle Nuslim communiry as
a vlole, ro uo so is leierical anu secraiian. Ir is
equally unacceµraLle Ly rle sranuaius oí oirlouoxy
ro insisr rlar Nuslims ienounce rleii uissenring
seconuaiy Lelieís anu µiacrices simµly Lecause orlei
Nuslims may iegaiu rlem ro Le íalse. By uenning
oirlouoxy in rlis mannei, rle uicloromy Lerveen
caregoiically aurloiirarive anu µiesumµrively
aurloiirarive µiooí µioviues a µiorecreu sµace íoi
inria-Nuslim uissenr anu uiscouise. Ir esraLlisles
íieeuom oí uissenr as an inriinsic anu necessaiy
ieligious iiglr anu ielegares Nuslims vlo ueny
rlar iiglr ro rle maiginal srarus oí leierics anu
secraiians.
Alrlougl rle µiorocol oí Islamic rlouglr
agiees ro uisagiee on µiesumµrively aurloiirarive
marreis, ir sloulu Le emµlasizeu rlar uissenring
vievs musr Le lelu ro ligl sranuaius anu sounu
merlouologies. 1ley aie nor voirly oí iesµecr
meiely Lecause rley consrirure uissenr. Resµecring
uissenr uoes nor imµly lonoiing veak anu aiLiriaiy
aigumenrs oi rlose íounueu on ignoiance oí rle
Islamic sciences. Resµecring uissenr means iejecring
aurloiiraiianism, ir uoes nor mean iejecring
aurloiiry. Þon-caregoiical µiooís musr Le as
aurloiirarive as µossiLle. 1ley iequiie ieasonaLle
eviuence, sounu merlouology, anu cogenr
ieasoning.
In vlar íollovs, I vill give a íev illusriarions
oí µiesumµrively aurloiirarive rexrs anu legal
inreiµierarions. Nany µassages in rle Qui`an anu
Sunna aµµeai ar nisr ro convey only one µossiLle
meaning Lur, uµon closei examinarion, ruin our ro
Le oµen ro orlei inreiµierarions. 1oo oíren Nuslims
sµeak our oí ignoiance on marreis oí inreiµierarion
as ií rley alloveu íoi only one µoinr oí viev anu
veie closeu íoievei ro íuirlei uiscussion.
In rle one µiesumµrively aurloiirarive rexr,
rle Pioµler srareu: ¨Wloevei Liings ueau lanu
ro liíe slall ovn ir.¨ Legal sclolais acceµr rle
Hauirl as an aurlenric riansmission anu agiee rlar
irs voiuing is cleai. Srill, rley classiíy rle Hauirl
as µiesumµrively aurloiirarive. Dissenr ovei rle
Hauirl`s imµlicarions is Laseu on consiueiarion
living islam with purpose

*
.

oí irs oiiginal conrexr, nor quesrions oí giammai
anu semanrics. 1le Pioµler íuncrioneu in uiííeienr
µiivare anu µuLlic caµaciries, le vas a univeisal
lavgivei, a goveinoi anu leau oí srare, rle leau
oí a íamily, a µeisonal íiienu, anu so íoirl. Nany
Hauirl cannor Le µioµeily unueisroou virlour
esraLlisling rle conrexr in vlicl rley veie sµoken,
anu rlar is rle case virl rlis Hauirl.
Imam ALu Hanïía iegaiueu rle Hauirl
¨vloevei Liings ueau lanu ro liíe slall ovn ir¨
as an auminisriarive µiovision rlar rle Pioµler
maue as goveinoi oí Neuina. 1lus, rle Hauirl
ielares ro agiaiian conuirions sµecinc ro Neuina
ar a µairiculai rime. ALu Hanïía uiu nor ueny rle
valiuiry oí acquiiing aLanuoneu lanus Ly Liinging
rlem unuei culrivarion, as menrioneu in rle Hauirl,
Lur, given rle Hauirl`s oiiginal auminisriarive
conrexr in lis viev, irs aµµlicarion iequiies
oíncial µeimission ro ensuie rlar ir is suiraLle
íoi aµµlicarion in a viue vaiiery oí conuirions in
uiveise rimes anu µlaces.
Imam Nälik lelu a similai viev, le iequiieu
goveinmenral µeimission íoi íallov lanus lying
virlin rle gieenLelrs (larïh) rlar suiiounueu
riauirional Nuslim rovns anu ciries. Since rlese
aieas veie rle µioµeiry oí rle µeoµle, Nälik
exemµreu any lanu virlin rlem íiom acquisirion
rliougl culrivarion uesµire rle íacr rlar sucl lanus
veie reclnically íallov. Nälik uiu nor iequiie
goveinmenral µeimission, lovevei, íoi lanus lying
Leyonu rle gieenLelrs.
Imam al-Slänï`s merlouology is Laseu on
rle µiemise rlar eveiy Hauirl vill Le rieareu as a
univeisal sraremenr oí lav unless rle conriaiy is
µioven rliougl anorlei exµlicir rexrual ieíeience.
Al-Slänï lelu, rleieíoie, rlar rle Pioµler maue
rle sraremenr in rle Hauirl in lis caµaciry as
a univeisal lavgivei. 1lus, íoi al-Slänï, no
iesriicrions aµµly ro rle acquisirion oí ieviveu
lanus, anu no goveinmenral aµµioval is necessaiy.
'&

1le rliee Imams agieeu on rle valiuiry oí rle
same Hauirl Lur inreiµiereu ir in rliee signincanrly
uiííeienr vays. Lacl oí rleii ieauings las a claim ro
valiuiry, alrlougl some may aiguaLly Le sriongei
rlan orleis.
1le seconu µiesumµrively aurloiirarive Ha-
uirl iecounrs rlar a ceirain Comµanion`s morlei
askeu lim ro íiee a Nuslim slave aírei lei uearl.
1le manumission oí slaves is an acr oí voisliµ anu
aronemenr in rle Pioµleric lav. 1le man close ro
emanciµare a non-AiaL giil on lis morlei`s Lelalí
Lur coulu nor asceirain ií sle vas a Nuslim. He
Liouglr lei ro rle Pioµler ro veiiíy rlar sle Le-
lieveu in Islam. 1le Pioµler askeu lei: ¨Wleie is
Gou·¨ Sle morioneu virl eirlei lei leau oi lei in-
uex nngei rovaiu rle sky. 1le Pioµler rlen askeu
lei: ¨Wlo am I·¨ Sle µoinreu lei inuex nngei
rovaiu lim anu rlen rovaiu rle sky. 1le Pioµler
ueclaieu lei ro Le a Nuslim, anu sle vas ser íiee.
Some Nuslims cire rlis Hauirl as caregoiical
µiooí rlar Gou las a µlysical locarion in leaven.
Nuslim rleological sclools, Lorl Sunnï anu Slïï,
iegaiu sucl as viev as leierical anu veiging on uis-
Lelieí, Lecause ir conriauicrs caregoiical µiooí anu
is Laseu on conjecruie. Wlen rlis Hauirl is conrem-
µlareu in conjuncrion virl µaiallel riansmissions oí
rle same naiiarive, irs µiesumµrively aurloiirarive
naruie anu inconclusiveness as a rleological aigu-
menr Lecome cleai.
Anorlei naiiarion oí rle same Hauirl auus
rlar rle giil vas mure anu coulu nor sµeak ar all,
vlicl exµlains lei gesruies anu rle Pioµler`s
ieauiness ro acceµr rlem as a µiooí oí íairl. Ir
voulu also claiiíy vly rle Comµanion vas unaLle
ro asceirain rlar sle vas a Nuslim. Since rle giil
vas a non-AiaL, sle may nor lave knovn AiaLic
living islam with purpose

*
&%

vell oi ar all, vlicl voulu give an alreinarive
exµlanarion íoi rle naruie oí rle inreiclange
Lerveen rle Pioµler anu lei. Anorlei riansmission
srares rlar rle Pioµler uiu nor ask lei: ¨Wleie
is Gou·¨ Lur ¨Wlo is Gou·¨ Borl voiuings aie
unusual, lovevei, Lecause ir vas rle Pioµler`s
cusrom vlen asking µeoµle ií rley Lelieveu in Islam
ro say: ¨Do you Leai virness rlar rleie is no gou
Lur Gou·¨ Anorlei naiiarion makes no menrion oí
rle giil`s inaLiliry ro sµeak. In ir, rle Pioµler askeu
lei rle cusromaiy quesrion: ¨Do you Leai virness
rlar rleie is no gou Lur Gou·¨ Anu sle ieµlieu:
¨Yes¨ virlour making gesruies rovaiu rle sky.
''

1le accounr oí rle giil is aurlenric Lur con-
jecruial in meaning. 1le meie íacr rlar rle sle may
lave Leen mure oi may nor lave knovn AiaLic
makes leis an exceµrional case, anu exceµrional
cases cannor esraLlisl rleological oi legal noims.
1le Hauirl las norling ro uo virl uesignaring a lo-
carion íoi Gou in leaven, ir is, lovevei, a resrimo-
ny ro rle Pioµler`s oµenness rovaiu
acceµring ueclaiarions oí íairl.
1le nexr rvo examµles roucl
on rle legal srarus oí insriumenral
music anu µiouucing rvo anu rliee-
uimensional images oí living rlings.
Ir is commonµlace ro leai rlar Is-
lam unconuirionally íoiLius Lorl.
Yer rleie aie norevoirly µosirions
µeimirring rlem unuei ceirain conui-
rions, as rle íolloving examµles inui-
care. In any case, vlerlei music anu
images aie juugeu ro Le µioliLireu
oi µeimissiLle in rle lav, eacl iuling
iegaiuing rlem is µieuicareu uµon
ieauings oí µiesumµrively aurloiira-
rive eviuence. Islam`s µosirion rovaiu
Lorl quesrions is nor immuraLly nxeu
like iires oí voisliµ, Lorl issues aie Laseu on iario-
nales anu lave rangiLle µuiµoses, vlicl leave rleii
srarus oµen íoi uiscussion.
1le majoiiry oí legal sclolais íoiLaue music,
geneially rley uiu so on rle giounu rlar music
vas closely associareu virl uiinking, uancing
giils, anu licenriousness, vlicl vas oíren rle
case in Niuule Lasrein anu Sourl Asian culruie.
Bur rleie veie noraLle uissenring vievs on music
vlen µeiíoimeu in orlei conrexrs. 1le íamous
Anualusian juuge ALu Baki iLn al-AiaLï anu rle
noraLle sclolais ILn Hazm anu ALu al-Glanï al-
ÞäLlusï viore legal oµinions in ueíense oí music.
Al-Karränï, a conremµoiaiy Noioccan sclolai, cires
rvenry Nuslim juiisrs vlo viore on vaiious ryµes
oí musical insriumenrs anu rle airs oí auuirion
(sahã).
'(
In many Nuslim lanus, losµirals maue
iegulai use oí musicians, comeuians (hularrijün),
anu reacling loLLies ro cuie rle sick anu rle
clinically insane. As a iule, Nuslim losµirals
veie µious enuovmenrs unuei rle
suµeivision oí Islamic juuges, rleii
allovance oí music, lumoi, anu
loLLy rleiaµy consrirureu legal
valiuarion oí eacl.
')
Similaily, mosr Nuslim
sclolais uµlelu rle µioliLirion oí
µiouucing rvo oi rliee-uimensional
images oí animals anu luman
Leings. 1ley Laseu rleii µosirions on
numeious Hauirl, íiom vlicl rley
ueiiveu iarionales sucl as µievenring
iuolariy, µiecluuing luman Leings
íiom iivaling rle ciearive µovei oí
Gou, anu avoiuing rle sriong rlis-
voiluly íocus rlar sucl images may
insrill. Bur virlour violaring rlese
iarionales, mouein Nuslim juiisrs
Receptivity
to dissent
counteracts
rigidity and
dogmatism;
familiarity with
competing
interpretations
and different
points of view
leads to flexibility
and intellectual
maturity.
living islam with purpose

*
&&

aurloiize rle use oí µloro iuenrincarion caius anu
µeimir rle use oí anaromically coiiecr mouels oí
rle luman Louy ro reacl anaromy, meuicine, anu
ielareu sciences.
1le rliireenrl-cenruiy Lgyµrian sclolai al-
Qaiäíï, one oí rle mosr Liillianr anu liglly iegaiu-
eu juiisrs in Islamic lisroiy, masreieu many reclni-
cal skills anu sclolaily airs. He vas knovn íoi lis
exµeirise in Luiluing asrionomical insriumenrs anu
orlei meclanical uevices, ro vlicl le oíren ar-
racleu rliee-uimensional moLile nguies. Al-Qaiäíï
viires in lis voik Tle íriceless írincijles (Nafã´is
al-Usül), a comµenuious voik on legal rleoiy, rlar
le once uesigneu a canulesrick loluei ro rell rle
louis oí rle niglr. 1le main canule clangeu col-
ois virl eacl µassing loui, rle nxruie conraineu a
nguie slaµeu like a lion vlose eyes also clangeu
coloi. Duiing rle nisr loui oí rle niglr, rle lion`s
eyes voulu Le jer Llack. Ar rle seconu loui, rley
ruineu Liiglr vlire, rle nexr loui rley Lecame in-
rensely ieu, anu rley conrinueu ro rake on uiííeienr
colois unril rle Lieak oí uavn. Ar uavn, rle ngu-
iine oí a lirrle man, rle µiayei callei (hu´aJlJlin),
emeigeu ar rle canuelaLium`s liglesr µoinr virl lis
nngei µlaceu ro lis eai, inuicaring rlar rle rime íoi
µiayei lau come. Al-Qaiäíï iegierreu nevei laving
uiscoveieu lov ro make rle lirrle man acrually call
rle µiayei.
'*
1iauirional Islamic air vas íuncrional, ir
invaiiaLly seiveu µiagmaric µuiµoses. One sees rlis
exemµlineu in calligiaµly, mosque aiclirecruie,
sclools, Liiuges, iugs, µorreiy, anu so íoirl. Al-
Qaiäíï`s canuelaLium, as le inuicares, vas also
airisrically íuncrional, ir vas meanr ro seive as
a clock íoi sraying avake ar niglr unril uavn.
All rle visual elemenrs oí rle lion clock veie
calculareu ro Lieak uµ monorony anu keeµ one
aleir. Alrlougl rleie vas norling íiiglrening
aLour rle nguiine oí a lion virl eyes rlar gloveu
in uiííeienr colois, ir seiveu as a somevlar amusing
uiveision rlar seems ro lave linreu: imagine rlar
a lion like rlis uere sranuing in rle ioom, voulu
you íall asleeµ· 1le lion anu rle µiayei callei in
al-Qaiäíï`s canuelaLium veie nor íiivolous oLjecrs,
rle µuiµose Lelinu rlem vas akin ro rlose Lelinu
mouein µloro iuenrincarion caius anu anaromically
coiiecr mouels oí rle luman Louy.
Resµecring uissenr means iesµecring rle riurl
anu iecognizing rlar ir oíren rakes uiííeienr µarls
anu iesulrs in comµering visions oí iealiry. Because
uissenr is inuisµensaLle in rle quesr íoi knovleuge,
Islamic sclolaisliµ iegaiueu rle comµilarion anu
sruuy oí uissenring oµinions as an essenrial íoim
oí leaining. ILn Umai, vlo vas among rle mosr
leaineu oí rle Pioµler`s Comµanions, vas viuely
knovn íoi rle giear value le µlaceu on lis exrensive
knovleuge oí uissenring oµinions, le oíren saiu rlar
le voulu nor exclange rlar knovleuge íoi rle mosr
valuaLle µossessions on eairl.
Receµriviry ro uissenr counreiacrs iigiuiry anu
uogmarism, íamiliaiiry virl comµering inreiµiera-
rions anu uiííeienr µoinrs oí viev leaus ro lexiLiliry
anu inrellecrual maruiiry. Ioi ieasons sucl as rlese,
Islamic sclolaisliµ lookeu uµon vell-ieasoneu
uissenr as a uivine giír anu a sµecial meicy ro lu-
mankinu. Nuslim juiisrs oíren alluueu ro a veakly
riansmirreu Lur viuely knovn Hauirl: ¨1le uis-
senr oí my communiry is a sµecial meicy.¨
'+
1le
Umayyau caliµl Umai iLn ALu al-Azïz, vlo vas
knovn íoi lis iiglreousness anu µioLiry, com-
menreu on rlis Hauirl: ¨Ir voulu nor µlease me ií
rle Comµanions oí Nulammau lau nor uiííeieu, ií
rley lau nor uiííeieu, rleie voulu Le no ioom íoi
license in rle ieligion.¨ Al-KlarräLï, one oí rle mosr
µiominenr Hauirl sclolais, noreu rlar rle ryµe oí
uissenr ieíeiieu ro in rle Hauirl is uissenr iegaiu-
living islam with purpose

*
&'

ing µiesumµrively aurloiirarive iulings oí lav. 1le
oµµosing oµinions rlar occui on sucl quesrions, al-
KlarräLï exµlaineu, aie a sµecial meicy íiom Gou
anu a unique lonoi (larãha) rlar uisringuisles rle
sclolais vlo nnu ansveis ro rlem.
',
As iegaius
sclolaily eííoir in µiesumµrively aurloiirarive ques-
rions, ir vas lelu in rle Islamic riauirion rlar Gou
voulu ievaiu sclolais íoi rleii uissenring oµinions
even ií rley veie viong. ]uiisrs oíren cireu rle
Hauirl: ¨Ií a juuge (lãlih) inreiµiers rle lav anu
nnus rle coiiecr ansvei, le ieceives rvo ievaius
íiom Gou. Ií le is lonesrly misraken, le ieceives
one.¨
'-
Because mosr legal µosirions in Islam aie
Laseu on conjecruie anu leau ro uissenr, classical
acauemies íoi Islamic lav maue rle air oí ueLare
a iequiieu suLjecr in rleii cuiiicula. In nelus like
Hauirl, iore leaining vas suíncienr, Lur rlis vas
nor rle case in lav. Auvanceu sruuenrs oí juiisµiu-
uence lau ro acquiie comµielensive unueisranuing
oí rle µiooís anu legal aigumenrs rlar unueilay
Islamic lav. Like uocroial canuiuares rouay, a lav
sruuenr arraineu rle uegiee oí an accieuireu juiisr
(faqïl, hujtaliJ, huftï) aírei µieµaiing an inueµen-
uenr rlesis in suµµoir oí an oiiginal legal oµinion,
vlicl lau rlen ro Le ueíenueu successíully Leíoie
qualineu juiisrs. Accoiuing ro Geoige Nakuisi,
rle Islamic legal riauirion oí ueLare, inueµenuenr
ieseaicl, anu ueíenuing a rlesis conriiLureu ro rle
iise oí univeisiries in meuieval Luioµe anu auoµrion
oí rle uisseirarion anu uocroiare as an essenrial µair
oí auvanceu sclolaisliµ.
'.
Some Nuslims rouay coníuse inria-Nuslim
uissenr virl uiscoiu anu iegaiu quesrions anu
uissenring oµinions as a rliear ro uniry. Uniry
giovs our oí geneial agieemenr Laseu on uiscussion
anu íiee cloice. Uniry musr nor Le coníuseu
virl uniíoimiry. 1iauirional Islamic socieries uiu
nor µiomore uniíoimiry, rley µiomoreu uniry
in uiveisiry. Uniíoimiry can only Le imµoseu Ly
inrimiuarion anu social µiessuie, ir cannor exrenu
Leyonu rle iange oí rle íoice rlar imµoses ir.
Imµosing uniíoimiry uoes nor sriengrlen socieries,
ir veakens rlem. Resµecr íoi uissenr, on rle orlei
lanu, µioviues a Lasis íoi riue social colesion.
By µiomoring selí-iesµecr anu luman uigniry, rle
oµeiarional µiinciµle oí iesµecring uissenr íosreis
murual unueisranuing anu cieares rle Lasis uµon
vlicl a lealrly communiry can Le Luilr.
1le value oí iesµecring uissenr lies nor in
rle íacr rlar ir las Lecome µolirically coiiecr Lur
Lecause ir Liings uiííeienr µeisµecrives ro liglr
anu µiomores leaining. A common uicrum oí
Islamic euucarion says: ¨Goou quesrions aie lalí
oí leaining.¨ 1le µiorocol oí uissenr requires rlar
quesrions Le askeu, anu ir aínims rlar quesrioning
is valiu no marrei lov saciosancr a marrei may Le.
1lings aie nor ueemeu saciosancr in Islam virlour
uemonsriaLle µiooí, anu eacl Nuslim las a iiglr
ro ask aLour rlar µiooí. Wlen rle iiglr ro quesrion
is iesµecreu, aigumenrs cease ro Le voirly oí
consiueiarion unless rley aie Laseu on convincing
ieasons anu can sranu uµ ro íiank uiscussion anu
lonesr uiscouise.
Nany Nuslims Lelieve rlar asking µeiµlexing
quesrions aLour Islam is nor alloveu. Ioi some,
ir is slameíul ro ask sucl quesrions oi ro exµiess
uouLrs. 1iauirional Islamic sclolaisliµ uiu nor
iegaiu ir an imµioµiiery ro iaise uiínculr quesrions
aLour rle ieligion oi ask aLour one`s uouLrs, iarlei,
ir vas a sin nct ro ask. One oí rle inrellecrual
iesµonsiLiliries oí rle Nuslim sclolai vas ro
µieµaie cogenr ansveis íoi sucl inquiiies. In oiuei
ro iesµonu eííecrively ro rle ryµes oí quesrions rlar
miglr Le askeu, vlole genies oí sclolaily lireiaruie
veie comµoseu in quesrion/ansvei íoim.
living islam with purpose

*
&(

Ir vas rle sclolais rlemselves vlo askeu
eacl orlei rle mosr uiínculr quesrions. 1ley maue
ciirical inquiiies inro rle aµµaienr conriauicrions in
rle Qui`an anu Sunna, rley iaiseu quesrions aLour
rle giearesr sancriries oí rle íairl anu rle mosr
íunuamenral µieceµrs oí rle lav. 1le Comµanions
occasionally askeu sucl quesrions rlemselves uuiing
rle rime oí rle Pioµler. 1le Comµanion ALu Razïn
askeu lim: ¨Wleie vas oui Loiu Leíoie He cieareu
ciearion·¨ 1le Pioµler ansveieu: ¨He vas in a
srare oí comµlere liuuenness (ahã´), Lenearl vlicl
rleie vas no armosµleie anu aLove vlicl rleie
vas no armosµleie. 1len He cieareu His rlione
ovei rle varei.¨
(%
Social jusrice is one oí rle coie values anu
liglesr iueals oí Islam. 1oleiance anu oµenness ro
quesrioning anu uissenr cieare an amLience vleie
commirmenr ro social jusrice can Le meaningíul. Ir
is a conriauicrion in reims ro sµeak oí social jusrice
in communiries rlar neirlei velcome uissenr noi
allov íoi quesrions.
Denying rle iiglr ro uissenr anu ro ask ques-
rions uiives µeoµle avay, uisemµoveis rle commu-
niry, anu conuemns irs memLeisliµ ro Leing µassive
onlookeis. 1le oµeiarional µiinciµle oí iesµecring
uissenr anu rle imµeiarive ro ueveloµ uynamic com-
muniries necessirare an armosµleie in vlicl uiveise
oµinions can Le exµiesseu anu vleie seiious ques-
rions can ieceive iesµecríul ansveis. 1le iiglr ro
inquiie anu ro uissenr cieares an oiganic sysrem oí
clecks anu Lalances rlar lelµs guaiu againsr excess.
Ulrimarely, rle íieeuom ro quesrion anu ro uis-
agiee Lenenrs rle enriie communiry, ir lolus Lorl
irs memLeis anu irs leaueisliµ accounraLle anu
iequiies rlem ro meer ieasonaLle sranuaius oí sensi-
Liliry anu uiscierion.

Ì
operational principle three
STRESSING SOCIETAL OBLIGATIONS

lrlougl socieral oLligarions aie a íunuamen-
rally legal concein, rle µiinciµles rley emLouy
aie iooreu in rle naruie oí Islamic erlics anu Lelieí.
Socieral oLligarions aie Laseu on iecognizing rle
sancriry oí orleis anu rle imµoirance oí sociery.
Iiom an Islamic sranuµoinr, goou claiacrei anu
Lelieí in Gou slaie a veiy similai conceµrual íiame-
voik.
Goou claiacrei is µieuicareu uµon alriuism:
acknovleuging rle Orlei, Leing magnanimous
rovaiu rle Orlei, anu iesµecring rle Orlei`s
iiglrs. 1le µiimaiy erlical qualiries ÷ riurlíulness,
riusrvoirliness, giariruue, µarience, geneiosiry,
lumiliry, couiage, anu so íoirl ÷ giov our oí rlis
imµlicir iegaiu íoi orlei µeoµle anu aínimarion oí
rleii uigniry, meiirs, anu iiglrs.
In Islam, Lelieí is essenrially rianscenuenr al-
riuism, Gou Leing rle ulrimare Orlei. 1le essence
oí Lelieí in rle Qui`an is giariruue (slulr). In Aia-
Lic, slulr comes íiom a ioor meaning ro iecognize
rle goou oí orleis anu ro iesµonu ro ir oµenly anu
aµµioµiiarely. DisLelieí (lufr), vlicl is rle seman-
ric oµµosire oí slulr, comes íiom anorlei ioor
rlar means ro knov rle goou oí orleis secierly Lur
ro ueny ir oµenly. Somevlar like goou claiacrei,
Lelieí signines acknovleugemenr oí tle Orlei (in
rlis case, Gou), Leing giareíul ro Him, anu sloving
Him rle lonoi anu gloiy He is uue. DisLelieí, on
rle orlei lanu, means ro aµµielenu Gou secierly
Lur ueny Him oµenly anu ieíuse ro rlank Him
oi µay Him lomage. Ioi rlis ieason, rle Qui`an
uesciiLes Saran as a ¨uisLelievei¨ (lãþr) (Qui`an
':()). Accoiuing ro Islamic reacling, Saran lau in-
living islam with purpose

*
&)

rimare knovleuge oí Gou Lur ieLelleu againsr Him
our oí aiiogance. In Islam, rleie can Le no Lelieí oi
uisLelieí virlour essenrial knovleuge, rle uiííeience
Lerveen Lelieí anu uisLelieí is essenrially lov one
iesµonus ro rlar knovleuge.
1le Qui`an links Lelieí virl goou claiacrei
anu rle sense oí moial oLligarion, ir emµlasizes rle
noLle claiacrei anu moial inregiiry oí rle Pioµler
anu lis Comµanions anu inuicares rlar rleii erlical
qualiries consrirureu rle íounuarion oí rleii Lelieí
in Gou anu commirmenr ro goou ueeus anu rle
velíaie oí orleis. 1le Qui`an ieµeareuly connecrs
uisLelieí virl Lau claiacrei, uisiegaiu íoi orleis,
anu callousness rovaiu luman suííeiing, esµecially
as exemµlineu in rle aiiogance anu oµµiession oí
rle Neccan oligaicly.
1le oµeiarional µiinciµle oí socieral
oLligarions is Lackeu Ly rle consensus oí Nuslim
sclolais anu is rieareu ar lengrl in voiks on
Islamic legal rleoiy, ir consrirures one oí rle
íounuarional elemenrs oí rle Islamic
íairl. Sriessing socieral oLligarion is
essenrial íoi Luiluing rle Ameiican
Nuslim communiry. Ir µioviues
a µoveiíul ieligious imµerus íoi
social commirmenr anu communiry
ueveloµmenr. Ir µiomores civic
consciousness anu iequiies Nuslims
ro iuenriíy virl rle Lioauei
communiry, auuiess irs neeus, anu
enlisr rle luman iesouices necessaiy
ro meer rlem.
In Islam, Lasic ieligious uuries
íall inro rvo caregoiies: inuiviuual
oLligarions (farJ al-ayn oi uãjib al-
ayn) anu socieral oLligarions (farJ al-
lifãya oi uãjib al-lifãya). Inuiviuual
oLligarions aie Linuing on eveiy
Nuslim vlo is moially iesµonsiLle (hulallaf).
1ley aie exclusively µeisonal anu cannor Le
µeiíoimeu Ly someone else on anorlei`s Lelalí. 1le
nve uaily µiayeis, íasring rle monrl oí Ramauan,
anu earing vlar is lavíul anu clean aie inuiviuual
oLligarions. Lrlically, Nuslims vlo íail ro µeiíoim
inuiviuual oLligarions aie iniquirous anu iisk uivine
ieriiLurion.
Socieral oLligarions aie manuaroiy íoi rle
entire Nuslim µoµularion raken as a vlole, rley
ieµiesenr rle µoµularion`s giouµ iesµonsiLiliry ro
consrirure an oiganic anu iesµonsiLle communiry. Ir
is a socieral oLligarion, íoi examµle, ro ensuie rlar
µeoµle lave Lasic necessiries like íoou anu lealrl
caie. 1le µiinciµle oí socieral oLligarion sriµulares
rlar suíncienr numLeis (al-lifãya) oí qualineu
men anu vomen Le moially iequiieu ro caiiy our
socieral oLligarions on rle communiry`s Lelalí.
By rleii naruie, socieral oLligarions necessirare
cooµeiarion anu call íoi rle ueveloµmenr oí
communiries rlar aie íuncrional, selí-
avaie, anu vell oiganizeu.
Socieral oLligarions geneially
cannor Le µeiíoimeu virlour giouµ
eííoir Lecause rley aie íai moie ue-
manuing rlan rle inuiviuual caµaciry
oí µeisons voiking alone. Ioi rlar
ieason, eacl socieral oLligarion ie-
quiies a suíncienr numLei oí µeoµle
virl communiry suµµoir ro see rlar
ir is caiiieu our. Ir is rle communi-
ry`s iesµonsiLiliry as a vlole ro en-
lisr sucl numLeis oí qualineu µeoµle
anu assisr rlem in rle rask. Ií rle
Nuslim communiry neglecrs irs soci-
eral oLligarions, eacl Nuslim Leais
rle moial iesµonsiLiliry íoi rleii íail-
uie as a giouµ. íacl memLei oí rle
For the American
Muslim community,
societal
obligations
require the
proactive
development of
needed resources
that address real
issues on the
ground.
living islam with purpose

*
&*

communiry is iniquirous anu µeisonally iisks uivine
ieriiLurion. Once a socieral oLligarion las Leen
auequarely auuiesseu, rle coiiesµonuing giouµ ie-
sµonsiLiliry oí Nuslims íalls íiom rleii sloulueis,
anu rle µorenrial Luiuen oí communal sin is liíreu.
1le oµeiarional µiinciµle oí sriessing socieral
oLligarions slovs rlar Islam is mucl moie rlan a
ieligion oí µeisonal µieries anu rlar ir cannor Le
naiiovly iesriicreu ro rle acriviries oí mosques
oi Islamic cenreis. 1le µeiíoimance oí inuiviuual
oLligarions like µiayei anu íasring nevei iemoves
a Nuslim`s moial uury ro meer socieral ones. 1le
mosr seemingly uµiiglr oí Nuslims aie liaLle íoi
uivine ieriiLurion ií rley ignoie socieral oLligarions
anu conrenr rlemselves virl µeisonal µiery alone.
Ar rle same rime, rleie musr Le no coníusion, µei-
sonal ueuicarion ro rle communiry`s neeus uoes nor
iemove a Nuslim`s inuiviuual oLligarion ro µeiíoim
acrs oí µeisonal µiery.
Inuiviuual oLligarions (µiayei, íasring, anu rle
like) can Le ieauily iuenrineu anu aie µeiíoimeu ar
ser rimes accoiuing ro nxeu íoims. Wlen misseu,
inuiviuual oLligarions can Le maue uµ larei. A Nus-
lim vlo is unaLle ro íasr comµensares Ly íasring ar
anorlei rime oi making aronemenr (laffãra). So-
cieral oLligarions, lovevei, aie moie exacring anu
comµlex. 1ley aie oíren uiínculr ro iuenriíy anu
even laiuei ro íulnll. Socieral oLligarions aie siru-
arional anu iequiie inrimare knovleuge oí rle com-
muniry anu irs immeuiare anu íuruie neeus. Socieral
oLligarions uo nor lave µieuereimineu rimes, µlac-
es, oi µioceuuies. 1le numLei oí µeoµle iequiieu
ro caiiy our a µairiculai socieral oLligarion anu rle
naruie oí qualincarions rlose µeoµle musr lave aie
alvays uereimineu Ly iealiries on rle giounu anu
aie conrinuously liaLle ro clange. Unlike inuiviuual
oLligarions, socieral ones cannor Le maue uµ once
rleii rime las µasseu, rley musr Le µeiíoimeu ar rle
rime anu in rle mannei eacl siruarion iequiies. Ií
a µeison is uying íiom sraivarion, ir is oí no use ro
Liing íoou aírei rlar µeison las uieu. Ií a louse is
Luining, rle eííoir ro exringuisl rle nie cannor Le
uelayeu unril romoiiov.
Nuslim legal rleoiisrs exµlain rle µiimacy
oí socieral oLligarions in Islam Ly viirue oí rleii
inseµaiaLle connecrion ro sociery`s velíaie Lecause
rley secuie sociery`s Lenenrs (hasãlil) anu µiorecr
ir íiom ueriimenrs (hafãsiJ). Ioi rle same ieason,
ceirain socieral inreiesrs rake µieceuence ovei orleis
vlen rle rvo clasl. As a iule, inuiviuual inreiesrs
may nor Le µiomoreu ar rle exµense oí giouµ inrei-
esrs. Bioauei socieral inreiesrs rake µieceuence ovei
naiiovei giouµ inreiesrs. Ioi examµle, sociery`s
long-reim neeu íoi aííoiuaLle uiugs rakes µiece-
uence ovei rle naiiovei µeisonal anu coiµoiare in-
reiesrs rlar aie mer Ly selling rlem ar unieasonaLle
µiices.
Socieral oLligarions allov no Nuslim ro ie-
main a µassive sµecraroi in rle communiry. 1leie
is alvays voik ro Le uone, vlerlei ir µeirains ro
uigenr neeus oi moie geneial iequiiemenrs. 1lose
vlo aie nor aLle oi qualineu ro µeiíoim socieral
oLligarions musr give mareiial anu moial suµµoir
ro rlose vlo aie µeiíoiming rlem. Nuslims vlo
aie qualineu ro íulnll socieral oLligarions musr rake
µair in rlem ro rle exrenr rlar rley aie aLle, Lur as
Leíoie, rle communal iesµonsiLiliry íoi íailing ro
meer socieral oLligarions íalls uµon Lorl rle quali-
neu anu rle unqualineu alike.
Basic socieral oLligarions aie exµanueu uµon
so rlar rley incluue all ielareu communiry iesµon-
siLiliries rliougl rle Islamic µiinciµle: ¨Wlarevei
is necessaiy ro íulnll an oLligarion is an oLligarion
irselí¨ (hã lã yatihh al-uãjib illã bilï fa-luua
uãjib). Ir is one oí rle ulrimare oLligarions oí Islam
ro µiorecr luman liíe (al-nafs), Lur rle µiorecrion oí
living islam with purpose

*
&+

lives cannor Le aclieveu virlour íoou, slelrei, anu
secuiiry. 1le neeu ro µieseive liíe, rleieíoie, gives
iise ro rle socieral oLligarions oí µioviuing íoou,
slelrei, secuiiry, anu similai necessiries. 1lus, soci-
eral oLligarions exrenu íiom Lasic necessiries ro in-
cluue eierytling rlar is essenrial ro rle communiry`s
Lesr inreiesr.
In eailiei Islamic socieries, rle uury ro imµle-
menr mosr socieral oLligarions íell on rle sloulueis
oí rle srare, alrlougl rle moial iesµonsiLiliry íoi
rleii íulnllmenr srill incluueu rle enriie communiry.
1ouay, seculai narional anu srare goveinmenrs
meer many Lasic socieral oLligarions, alrlougl rley
may nor meer rlem equally vell íoi all social anu
economic classes. 1le seivices rley µioviue Lenenr
Nuslims as vell as orleis, rley exemµr Nuslims
íiom rle µairiculai socieral oLligarions rlar aie cov-
eieu Lur nor íiom orlei socieral oLligarions rlar rle
srare íails ro covei.
In µie-colonial Nuslim socieries, µiivare µei-
sons esraLlisleu viue vaiieries oí Lenencial µious
enuovmenrs (auqãf, albãs), oíren virl socieral
oLligarions in minu. 1leii enuovmenrs mer sucl
geneial conceins as caiing íoi viuovs anu oiµlans,
looking aírei rle µlysical anu menral lealrl oí µiis-
oneis, anu even µioviuing íoi rle velíaie oí injuieu
anu uecieµir animals. In rle Wesr rouay, Nuslims
lave rle communal uury ro iuenriíy anu imµle-
menr socieral oLligarions necessaiy íoi communiry
giovrl, civic engagemenr, anu enviionmenral µio-
recrion. Ir musr Le sriesseu rlar socieral oLligarions
aie nct rle sole uomain oí acrivisrs anu volunreeis.
1ouay as in rle µasr, Nuslim communiries cannor
meer rleii socieral oLligarions virlour íaisiglreu
insrirurional ueveloµmenr, incluuing rle esraLlisl-
menr oí ieligious enuovmenrs anu rle emµloymenr
oí vell-riaineu µioíessionals.
Socieral oLligarions aie laigely íoigorren in
µiesenr-uay Nuslim lanus anu aie iaiely unuei-
sroou in ueveloµing Nuslim communiries like ouis.
Þeglecr oí socieral oLligarions, µeilaµs as mucl
as anyrling else, accounrs íoi rle geneially lam-
enraLle srare oí rle Nuslim voilu rouay. Wlen
Nuslims íocus exclusively on inuiviuual oLliga-
rions anu inreiesrs, rley lose siglr oí Islam`s social
mission. 1ley Lecome rle vicrims oí an aromisric,
one-uimensional minuser rlar is viirually incaµaLle
oí ciirical consciousness anu social avaieness. As
sucl, many Nuslims lave lirrle aLiliry ro comµie-
lenu anu lave minimal incenrive ro µairiciµare in
rleii communiry`s µieseivarion anu giovrl, mucl
less rle conceins oí rle voilu Leyonu rlem.
Ioi rle Ameiican Nuslim communiry, soci-
eral oLligarions iequiie rle µioacrive ueveloµmenr
oí neeueu iesouices rlar auuiess ieal issues on rle
giounu, among vlicl aie Lerrei social seivices,
µioíessional maiiiage counseling, nnancial insriru-
rions, anu rle esraLlislmenr oí auvanceu Islamic
seminaiies. Oui socieral oLligarions also iequiie us
ro auuiess uigenr issues rlar lave suiíaceu in rle
Ameiican Nuslim communiry ovei iecenr uecaues.
1le oµeiarional µiinciµle oí socieral oLligarion
naruially iequiies canuoi in iuenriíying µioLlems,
orleivise rley cannor Le solveu. I vill auuiess rliee
issues Lelov rlar uemanu arrenrion anu consrirure
socieral oLligarions oí rle nisr oiuei: caieei cloices,
maiiiage, anu liquoi íianclises.
Career Clcices
All µioíessions anu nelus oí leaining rlar seive rle
communiry`s mareiial anu culruial neeus íall unuei
socieral oLligarions. 1leie can Le no µlace in rle
communiry íoi elirism, any lonesr µioíession is a
goou µioíession. Wlerlei a µeison is uiiving a raxi
oi voiking in a losµiral emeigency ioom, eacl
liveliloou lelµs seive a viral socieral íuncrion. 1oo
living islam with purpose

*
&,

oíren, lovevei, oui communiry`s arriruues rovaiu
caieei cloices anu µioíessions lave eveiyrling ro
uo virl money anu social srarus anu lirrle ro uo
virl oui oveiall socieral neeus as a ueveloµing
Nuslim communiry in Ameiica.
Neuicine, engineeiing, anu a numLei oí orlei
vell-µaying nelus aie vell ieµiesenreu, ií nor ovei
ieµiesenreu in rle Ameiican Nuslim communiry.
1ley lave inuisµuraLle value, Lur rle communiry`s
renuency ro socially comµairmenralize uesiiaLle
caieeis virlin rlis limireu iange srulrines oui
íuruie. Social sciences like µsyclology, sociology,
anu anrlioµology aie oíren misrakenly iegaiueu
as less voirly Lecause rley aie nor as luciarive
anu uo nor aííoiu elire srarus in oui communiry.
In iealiry, rle social sciences µlay a ciirical iole in
mouein sociery anu consrirure key µiioiiries íoi
Ameiican Nuslims. 1ley seive rle communiry`s
essenrial inreiesrs in aieas sucl as menral lealrl,
social velíaie, anu culruial ueveloµmenr. Oui
aLiliry ro íuncrion eííecrively as Nuslims in mouein
sociery iequiies a nuanceu unueisranuing oí
moueiniry. Sucl an unueisranuing íalls squaiely
virlin rle comµerence oí rle social sciences. Ir is a
µiimaiy socieral oLligarion íoi Ameiican Nuslims
ro ueveloµ suíncienr cauies oí vell-riaineu social
scienrisrs vlose ieseaicl is nor only oí use ro rle
Nuslim communiry Lur is valuaLle ro rle giearei
sociery ar laige.
Sµecializarions in rle lumaniries like lisroiy,
mouein rlouglr, µlilosoµly, anu lireiaruie aie
viuely consiueieu in oui communiry as maiginal,
Lur rley roo aie necessaiy anu meer essenrial
socieral oLligarions similai ro rlose oí rle social
sciences. 1ley imµair a viuei viev oí rle voilu,
lov irs µasr ielares ro irs µiesenr anu íuruie, anu
rle seminal iueas oí oui rimes. 1ley give uiiecr
access ro eííecrive cioss-culruial unueisranuing anu
inrellecrual ueveloµmenr anu enaLle rle communiry
ro rake inreiµierarive conriol oí irselí anu irs
ieligion in a conremµoiaiy conrexr.
Marriage
Among rle mosr seiious ciises rlar íace laige seg-
menrs oí rle Ameiican Nuslim communiry rouay
aie rle luiules anu unjusrinaLle uiínculries rlar
many Nuslim vomen anu men oí maiiiageaLle
ages coníionr vlen looking íoi suiraLle sµouses.
1le µioLlem is esµecially acure íoi vomen. Ir is
íamiliai ro vomen íiom immigianr íamilies Lur
is no less seveie íoi Aíiican-Ameiican Nuslim
vomen. 1le ciisis is unuouLreuly comµlex. One
oí irs majoi causes is rle limireu µool íiom vlicl
Nuslim sµouses aie selecreu. Orlei ieasons incluue
µioLlems rlar ielare ro economic class, erlniciry,
anu culruial Lackgiounu. In auuirion, Nuslims uo
nor geneially allov uaring, vlicl íoi many µeoµle
in rle Wesr is a µieluue ro maiiiage. Ameiican
Nuslims lave yer ro ueveloµ eííecrive culruial alrei-
narives rlar allov rlem, virlin Islamic noims, ro
negoriare genuei inreiacrion anu íacilirare maiiiage
rliougl µiacrices sucl as couirsliµ. 1le ieal anu
µorenrial laims likely ro iesulr íiom rle maiiiage
ciisis ar rle inuiviuual anu communiry level aie un-
imaginaLle. Iacing rle µioLlem riurlíully, as many
Nuslims alieauy uo, anu nnuing solurions íoi ir is
an uigenr socieral oLligarion.
Iiqucr íranclises
One oí rle mosr seiious social ills aííecring rle
Ameiican Nuslim communiry ar µiesenr is rle
exisrence oí rlousanus oí liquoi sroies ovneu Ly
immigianr Nuslims in rle narion`s innei ciries.
1leii µiesence rliearens ro unueimine rle gains
rlar Aíiican-Ameiican Nuslims maue uuiing rle
rvenrierl cenruiy rliougl social engagemenr in
living islam with purpose

*
&-

rlese communiries. In Clicago anu orlei Ameiican
ciries, rle uLiquirous µiesence oí Nuslim-ovneu
liquoi íianclises las Leen a souice oí rension anu
conlicr.
(&
Ioi Nuslims ro oµeiare sucl sroies oi
ro ignoie rleii µiesence is mucl moie rlan a viola-
rion oí rle Islamic coue. 1le liquoi sroies laim rle
neiglLoiloous anu íamilies vleie rley aie locareu
anu geneially casr all Nuslims in a negarive liglr.
In rle eyes oí µiominenr Nuslim anu non-Nuslim
civic leaueis, rle Nuslim-ovneu liquoi Lusinesses
in rle innei ciries aie a socioeconomic Lliglr. Ir is a
roµ-µiioiiry socieral oLligarion rlar Ameiican Nus-
lims auuiess rlis µioLlem moie eííecrively anu nnu
a juuicious solurion.

Ì
operational principle four
SETTING PRIORITIES
/
le Pioµler Nulammau saiu: ¨1leie vas no
Pioµler Leíoie me Lur rlar ir vas a uury íoi
lim ro guiue lis narion ro vlar le knev vas Lesr
íoi rlem anu vain rlem aLour vlar le knev vas
voisr íoi rlem.¨
('
Asµiiing íoi vlar is Lesr anu
avoiuing vlar is voisr aie rle rvo µiimaiy goals oí
rle Pioµleric lav. 1le eminenr legal sclolai al-Izz
iLn ALu al-Saläm summeu uµ rle enriiery oí Islam
in one µliase: ¨1o secuie Lenenrs anu vaiu oíí uer-
iimenrs¨ (jalb al-hasãlil ua Jar´ al-hafãsiJ).
((

Iocusing on Lenenrs anu ueriimenrs is µair
oí rle univeisal Pioµleric legacy anu, rleieíoie,
consrirures a caregoiical Islamic oLligarion. Unuei-
sranuing rle imµoirance oí serring µiioiiries is a
necessaiy oµeiarional µiinciµle in Islam, Lur, as oL-
vious as rle µiinciµle may seem, many Nuslims aie
oLlivious ro ir in µiacrice.
1o lelµ secuie sociery`s vellLeing, Islamic
lav sers rliee uescenuing levels oí µiioiiry, vlicl
iank Lenenrs anu laims accoiuing ro rleii magni-
ruue: necessities (Jarüriyyãt), neeJs (lãjiyyãt), anu
cchjlehents (talhiliyyãt). Lacl oí rlem vill Le
uiscusseu in íullei uerail Lelov aírei nisr uiscussing
rle nve majoi oLjecrives oí rle lav, uµon vlicl
rley aie Laseu. 1le rliee levels oí µiioiiry uiav uis-
rincrions Lerveen rle vaiious asµecrs oí Pioµleric
lav, rley give liglesr µiioiiry ro vlar is essenrial
ro sociery`s vellLeing anu lovei µiioiiry ro vlar is
nor. By serring µiioiiries, Nuslims aie aLle ro voik
rovaiu rleii Lesr inreiesr in goou rimes anu Lau Ly
allocaring rime anu iesouices ro majoi neeus virl-
our Lecoming µieoccuµieu virl minoi conceins oi
virl íalse µiioiiries.
1le AiaLic voius hasãlil (Lenenrs) anu
hafãsiJ (ueriimenrs) lave a sliglrly uiííeienr em-
µlasis rlan rleii Lnglisl counreiµairs, ¨Lenenrs¨
anu ¨ueriimenrs.¨ In Lnglisl, ¨Lenenrs¨ may nisr
Liing ro minu nonessenrial auvanrages anu con-
veniences. Likevise, rle voiu ¨ueriimenrs¨ oíren
Liings ro minu uisauvanrages anu inconveniences.
1le AiaLic voiu, ¨hasãlil¨ lireially ieíeis ro vlar
Liings aLour vloleness, lealrliness, anu vellLeing.
Ir immeuiarely Liings essenrial anu useíul neeus ro
minu, alrlougl ir incluues nonessenrial auvanrages
anu conveniences as vell. ¨MafãsiJ¨ is rle semanric
µaii oí ¨hasãlil.¨ Like ¨goou¨ anu ¨evil¨ in Lng-
lisl, menrion oí rle one Liings rle orlei ro minu.
Linguisrically, hafãsiJ ieíeis ro vlar causes coi-
iuµrion anu uecay. Ir immeuiarely Liings ro minu
íunuamenral laims anu uamages, incluuing uisau-
vanrages anu inconveniences.
Benenrs anu ueriimenrs aie neirlei uniíoim
noi aLsriacr, rley aie inseµaiaLly rieu ro conciere
ciicumsrances anu iealiries. Likevise, rle imµeia-
rives oí Islamic lav aie nor equal iegaiuing rle im-
living islam with purpose

*
&.

µoirance oí rleii µuiµoses anu iarionales. Wirlour
serring µiioiiries, rle ulrimare µuiµoses oí Islam
Lecome oLscuieu anu uisconnecreu íiom rleii social
µuiµose. Dereimining µiioiiries iequiies making
uiínculr juugmenrs aLour rle magniruues oí uiveise
Lenenrs anu ueriimenrs in uiííeienr conrexrs anu
rle µiioiiry in iank oí coiiesµonuing elemenrs oí
rle lav. In Islamic lav, rle legal uisciµline rlar
sruuies lov ro make sucl evaluarions is calleu rle
Science oí CounreiLalancing (ilh al-huuãzana).
Hisroiically, rle ienovneu juiisrs al-SläriLï anu ILn
1aymiyya veie íoiemosr in rlis nelu.
Islamic lav sers rle rliee µiioiiries accoiuing
ro a lieiaicly oí legal goals. 1le liglesr oí rlem
aie rle nve majoi oLjecrives (al-haqãsiJ al-llahsa
al-lubrã). 1ley aie rle µieseivarion oí: ieligion
(Jïn), selí (nafs), ieason (aql), cliluien (nasl/nas-
ab),
()
anu vealrl (hãl). Some sclolais auu µeisonal
anu íamily lonoi (irJ) as a sixrl oLjecrive, Lur all
agiee on rle main nve. 1lese nve majoi oLjecrives
consrirure rle gianu, all-enveloµing iarionales oí
Islam. 1ley aie rle µivor µoinr aiounu vlicl rle
mosr Linuing inuiviuual anu socieral oLligarions
ievolve. 1le µiimaiy goal oí Islamic juiisµiuuence
is ro secuie rlese oLjecrives nisr oi as eííecrively as
µossiLle Leíoie ruining ro lessei µiioiiries. In Islam-
ic legal rleoiy, rle nve majoi oLjecrives aie ciirical
ro rle velíaie oí all luman socieries, iegaiuless oí
ieligion, Lecause rle eiosion oí even a single one oí
rlem rliearens rle conrinueu exisrence oí rle soci-
ery as a vlole.
VEgZhZgkVi^dcd[i]ZgZa^\^dc enrails ev-
eiyrling rlar is necessaiy íoi sounu Islamic unuei-
sranuing anu µiacrice. Lacl oí rle nve oµeiarional
µiinciµles in rlis µaµei íalls unuei rle imµeiarive
oí µieseiving rle ieligion. 1lis majoi oLjecrive in-
cluues, íoi examµle, rle ciearion oí a viue vaiiery
oí ieseaicl anu viiring µeiraining ro Islam sucl as
excellenr Lnglisl rianslarions, commenraiies, anu
lireiaruie ielevanr ro oui rime anu µlace. In Ameiica
rouay, rle µieseivarion oí rle Islamic ieligion cleai-
ly necessirares rle íounuarion oí oursranuing inuig-
enous Islamic euucarional insrirurions.
VEgZhZgkVi^dcd[i]ZhZa[means ro
µiorecr luman liíe íiom violence, sickness,
sraivarion, anu anyrling else rlar rliearens ir.
Auequare lousing, secuiiry, anu lealrl seivices
aie among rle many µiioiiries associareu virl rlis
oLjecrive.
VEgZhZgkVi^dcd[gZVhdc iequiies
µiorecring rle luman minu íiom sucl laims as
ignoiance, insaniry, anu alcolol anu uiug auuicrion.
On rle µosirive siue, ir enrails rle íull ueveloµmenr
oí rle luman minu, vlicl iequiies exµosuie ro
µosirive srimularion anu goou euucarion.
VEgZhZgkVi^dcd[X]^aYgZc íocuses
on cliluien Lur enrails eveiyrling essenrial ro
rle velíaie oí rle íamily. Ir rakes in maiiiage,
µaienring, caiing íoi rle uisaLleu, anu so íoirl. Ir
necessirares guaiuing againsr social evils like rle
aLuse oí cliluien, sµouses, anu rle elueily.
VEgZhZgkVi^dcd[lZVai] iequiies
rle ciearion oí lavíul vealrl, irs giovrl, anu
µiorecrion. Ir µlaces economic ueveloµmenr ar rle
cenrei oí Islam`s social µiojecr. Ir also necessirares
µiorecring vealrl íiom vasre, uesriucrion, anu loss
rliougl rleír, ioLLeiy, íiauu, emLezzlemenr, anu
orlei ciimes.
Like socieral oLligarions, rle nve majoi oLjec-
rives exrenu ro orlei conceins rliougl rle µievi-
ously menrioneu µiinciµle, ¨vlarevei is necessaiy
ro íulnll an oLligarion is an oLligarion irselí.¨ As il-
lusriareu aLove, µieseivarion oí rle ieligion iequiies
rlar rle ieligion Le µioµeily rauglr, vlicl cannor
Le uone virlour comµerenr ieligious sclolais. Com-
µerenr sclolais cannor Le µiouuceu virlour suµe-
living islam with purpose

*
'%

iioi euucarional íaciliries. 1leieíoie, ir is a majoi
µiioiiry ro cieare exceµrional Islamic euucarional
insrirurions.
As inuicareu aLove, Islamic lav las rliee lev-
els oí µiioiiry: necessities, neeJs, anu cchjlehents.
Necessities, rle liglesr µiioiiry, aie inseµaiaLly
linkeu ro rle nve majoi oLjecrives. 1ley aie uiiecrly
rieu ro rle acquisirion oí inuisµensaLle Lenenrs anu
rle iemoval oí ciirical laims. Necessities aie mar-
reis virlour vlicl inuiviuuals anu socieries cannor
conrinue ro exisr, rle mosr imµoiranr oí rlese Leing
rle nve ulrimare oLjecrives. Ir is a necessiry in colu
climares, íoi examµle, ro lave Lasic slelrei virl
lear anu lor varei. As menrioneu, rle aiena oí
necessities exµanus ro incluue eveiyrling iequiieu
ro meer rle nve majoi oLjecrives. Claiiíying vlar a
communiry`s necessities aie makes ir µossiLle ro ue-
reimine rle mosr uigenr socieral oLligarions.
NeeJs consrirure rle nexr level oí µiioiiries.
1ley µeirain ro rle acquisirion oí lessei Lenenrs anu
rle µievenrion oí lessei ueriimenrs. NeeJs aie close-
ly ielareu ro necessities Lecause rley Lurriess rlem
anu make ir easiei ro meer rlem anu keeµ rlem
inracr. Unlike necessities, neeJs lave seconuaiy im-
µoirance anu aie uisµensaLle, a sociery rlar íails ro
meer irs seconuaiy neeus can suivive, Lur rle qual-
iry oí liíe ir µioviues vill Le less rlan sarisíacroiy. Ir
is a necessity ro lave Lasic slelrei virl lear anu lor
varei in colu climares, ir is a neeJ ro µioviue rle
slelrei virl imµoiranr nonessenrial aµµliances like
uislvasleis.
Cchjlehents aie also ieíeiieu ro
as ¨Leaurincarions¨ (talsïniyyãt) anu
¨oinamenrarions¨ (tazyïniyyãt). 1ley µeirain ro
minoi Lenenrs anu ueriimenrs. Cchjlehents aie
closely ielareu ro neeJs in a mannei similai ro
rle ielarion oí neeJs ro necessities, cchjlehents
make ir easiei ro secuie neeJs. Cchjlehents
aííecr rle qualiry oí liíe Ly auoining ir virl
elegance anu soµlisricarion, rley also involve rle
iemoval oí minoi ueriimenrs like imµolireness.
Cchjlehents aie rle iennemenrs oí a civilizeu
sociery, rley maniíesr µiivare, íamily, anu social
liíe in rleii mosr excellenr íoims. Basic slelrei
is a necessity, imµoiranr nonessenrial aµµliances
sucl as uislvasleis aie a neeJ, arriacrive inreiioi
uecoiarion anu a µleasanr viev consrirure a
cchjlehent.
Because necessities aie aLsolurely essenrial,
rley musr alvays rake roµ µiioiiry, anu rle Lesr
iesouices anu giearesr eííoirs musr Le exµenueu ro
secuie rlem. As ve lave seen, necessities aie rle
mainsray oí sociery, neeJs suµµoir necessities, anu
cchjlehents suµµoir neeJs. 1leieíoie, rle arremµr
ro meer neeJs musr nor Le alloveu ro sranu in rle
vay oí meering necessities, anu cchjlehents musr
nor Le emµlasizeu ro rle exclusion oí neeJs. Serring
µiioiiries in Islamic lav means oiueiing necessities,
neeJs, anu cchjlehents so rlar rle lovei µiioiiries
suµµoir anu uo nor voik againsr rle liglei ones.
In iueal siruarions, necessities, neeJs, anu
cchjlehents exisr siue Ly siue, Lur rle iealiries
oí liíe anu rle naruie oí communiry ueveloµmenr
oíren make ir imµossiLle ro secuie all rliee rogerlei.
In sucl cases, lovei µiioiiries musr Le riaueu oíí
íoi liglei ones. Ir is alvays imµeiarive rlar rle
lieiaicly oí µiioiiries Le oLseiveu, neeJs anu
cchjlehents musr Le saciinceu íoi necessities vlen
ir is imµossiLle ro secuie rlem all simulraneously.
Likevise, cchjlehents musr Le saciinceu íoi neeJs
vlen iealiries on rle giounu uo nor allov íoi
rlem Lorl. Ioi examµle, ir is a necessity ro lave
Islamic seminaiies, a neeJ ro µioviue sclolaisliµs,
anu a cchjlehent ro nnu rle Lesr locarions anu
µioviue aesrlerically µleasing íaciliries. Yer rle Lasic
seminaiy µiojecr comes nisr, ir musr nor Le lelu
living islam with purpose

*
'&

Lack Lecause oí uiínculry in secuiing sclolaisliµs
oi nnuing an arriacrive camµus.
Human acriviries iaiely occui virlour rle
µorenrial íoi Liinging aLour simulraneous Lenenrs
anu laims. Wlen Lenenrs anu laims occui
rogerlei, rle lieiaicly oí µiioiiries in Islamic lav
µioliLirs an acr ií irs µorenrial Lenenrs aie less
rlan oi equal ro irs µorenrial laims. 1le ielevanr
legal maxim srares: ¨Waiuing oíí ueriimenrs rakes
µiioiiry ovei rle acquisirion oí Lenenrs¨ (Jar´
al-hafãsiJ aulã hin jalb al-hasãlil). Diiving
somevleie quickly may Le Lenencial, Lur ir is
íoiLiuuen in Islamic lav ií ir involves sµeeuing anu
iisking a cai acciuenr, rle suµµoseu Lenenrs oí
sµeeuing uo nor ourveigl rle µorenrial laims oí
an acciuenr. Bur vlen µorenrial Lenenrs aie giearei
rlan µossiLle laims, rle acr is µeimissiLle anu, in
some cases, iecommenueu oi oLligaroiy. Wlen an
amLulance sµeeus ro rle losµiral ro save rle liíe oí
someone in ciirical conuirion, ir iuns rle iisk oí an
acciuenr, Lur rle Lenenr oí saving rle
µarienr`s liíe giearly ourveigls rle
ueriimenr oí a µossiLle acciuenr.
Somerimes, rleie is no vay
ro avoiu a giearei laim exceµr Ly
incuiiing a lessei one, anu rleie
may Le no vay ro avoiu a giearei
µioliLirion exceµr Ly uoing a lessei
one. Wlen rlis is rle case, ir Lecomes
allovaLle anu somerimes oLligaroiy
ro cloose rle couise oí acrion rlar
iequiies uoing rle lessei laim oi
rle lessei µioliLirion uesµire rle
íacr rlar neirlei is alloveu. Laring
caiiion is ueriimenral ro rle lealrl
anu sriicrly íoiLiuuen in Islamic lav,
Lur sraivarion is a giearei laim anu
a giearei µioliLirion. 1leieíoie, rle
Qui`an uiiecrs rle sraiving µeison ro ear caiiion oi
similai unclean suLsrances ro sray alive ií rleie is
norling clean anu µeimissiLle ro ear.
1le µlenomenon oí Nuslim coníeiences anu
convenrions in rle Unireu Srares anu Canaua oííeis
an examµle oí vaiious Lenenrs anu ueriimenrs anu
lov rley may Le iankeu Ly µiioiiry. Oiganizing
sucl garleiings consrirures a µiioiiry Lecause rley
seive necessities sucl as lelµing ro µieseive rle
ieligion anu ueveloµ rle communiry. 1ley íulnll
many orlei inuiviuual anu communiry neeJs sucl
as µioviuing access ro sclolais anu nev iueas. 1ley
µioviue íoi numeious cchjlehents sucl as meering
íiienus. Like mosr laige garleiings, lovevei, rle
coníeiences also íall sloir oí exµecrarions in ceirain
iegaius. 1ley may nor Le vell oiganizeu, rley may
íail ro give íaii ieµiesenrarion ro all erlnic giouµs,
anu rleii µiogiams may Le suµeincial anu ieµeri-
rive. As a iule, lovevei, rle Lenenrs oí rle coníei-
ences ourveigl rleii ueriimenrs, anu rley iemain a
communiry µiioiiry anu an imµoi-
ranr socieral oLligarion.
Nisµlaceu µiioiiries aie a
common srumLling Llock in rle
Ameiican Nuslim communiry.
Oíren, rley giov our oí simµle
unavaieness rlar µiioiiries aie
a µair oí rle Islamic ieligion. In
some cases, rley iesulr íiom rle
riansíeial oí olu voilu vays ro rle
Wesr virlour evaluaring rleii uriliry
in a nev conrexr. 1le allegarion
rlar sµeaking íiankly aLour rle
communiry`s µioLlems is slameíul
oi consrirures an arrack uµon Islam
is ueeµly iooreu in olu voilu norions
oí slame anu lonoi. Anorlei
culruial riansíeial is rle emµlasis
Actions and
activities are not
done for their
sake alone; it is
not enough to
“go through the
motions.” Works
must have direction
and be carried out
in a manner that is
likely to achieve
the rationales and
objectives behind
them.
living islam with purpose

*
''

rlar some communiries µlace on riaining cliluien
in rle viiruous acr oí memoiizing rle Qui`an yer
virl lirrle oi no concein íoi reacling rlem AiaLic
anu Lasic commenraiy so rlar rley can Lenenr
íully íiom vlar rley memoiize. Some imams uo
auuiess rle µieviously menrioneu issue oí Nuslim-
ovneu liquoi íianclises in rle innei ciries. Orleis
may iail againsr íalse µiioiiries like rle suµµoseu
evils oí Halloveen anu vomen veaiing nngeinail
µolisl Lur avoiu menrioning rle Nuslim-ovneu
liquoi Lusinesses uesµire rle íacr rlar some oí rleii
Liggesr µioµiierois may Le sirring Leíoie rlem in
rle congiegarion.

Ì
operational principle five
EMBRACING MAXIMS

acl oí rle íoui µieceuing oµeiarional µiinciµles
consrirures a single ser oí closely ielareu
conceµrs. 1le nexr oµeiarional µiinciµle, vlicl
is rle clieí concein oí rlis µaµei, is somevlar
uiííeienr. Naxims aie concisely srareu µiinciµles oí
Islamic lav anu µiacrical iules oí rlumL. Naxims
numLei in rle lunuieus anu ieµiesenr an enriie
lireiaiy riauirion in Islamic lav. As an oµeiarional
µiinciµle, emLiacing maxims uoes nor mean
leaining rlem all, ir is suíncienr ro knov ielarively
íev. Bur Nuslims sloulu Le avaie rlar rlis
valuaLle iesouice exisrs anu ouglr ro make goou
use oí ir. Naxims µioviue an invaluaLle souice
oí Islamic euincarion anu guiuance, vlicl makes
maxims a key comµonenr in rle communiry`s
ieligious insriucrion.
Naxims aie ielarively easy ro unueisranu
anu lave uiiecr aµµlicarion ro oui lives. 1ley
aie aurloiirarive sraremenrs oí Islamic lav anu
consrirure one oí rle mosr useíul exµiessions oí rle
iueals anu geneial µlilosoµly oí Islam. Seveial oí
rlem lave Leen cireu in rlis µaµei alieauy, sucl as
¨vlarevei is necessaiy ro íulnll an oLligarion is an
oLligarion irselí.¨ Naxims µioviue sranuaius íoi
making juugmenrs, serring µiioiiries, anu ueciuing
on couises oí acrion. Lacl oí rlem las numeious
imµlicarions anu aµµlicarions, vlicl may nor Le
immeuiarely aµµaienr. In vlar íollovs, I µioviue
a sloir inriouucrion ro maxims. Aíreivaius, I
uiscuss rle nve coie maxims, vlicl sum uµ rle
íunuamenral µuiµoses oí Islam.
Some Qui`anic veises anu ceirain Pioµleric
Hauirl aie exµiesseu in a summaiy íoim similai
ro rlar oí maxims, lisroiically, rlese µassages
consrirureu rle µoinr oí ueµairuie íoi maxim
lireiaruie. 1le Qui`an srares: ¨Gou vills ro make
rlings easy íoi you, íoi luman Leings veie cieareu
veak¨ (Qui`an ):'-). 1le meaning oí rle veise
is exµiesseu in rle coie maxim: ¨Haiusliµ musr
Le alleviareu.¨ Anorlei veise commanus: ¨Acceµr
íiom µeoµle vlar comes naruially. Commanu
vlar is goou Ly cusrom. Anu ruin avay íiom rle
ignoianr virlour iesµonuing in kinu¨ (Qui`an,
,:&..). Ir is a rexrual µiooí íoi rle coie maxim
¨cusrom las rle veiglr oí lav.¨ 1le Pioµler saiu:
¨Acrs aie juugeu only Ly inrenrions.¨ Ir is ielecreu
in rle maxim: ¨Narreis vill Le juugeu Ly rleii
µuiµoses.¨ He saiu: ¨Haim vill nor Le uone ro
orleis, noi vill laim Le ieciµiocareu virl laim.¨
Ir is a µiimaiy ieíeience íoi rle coie maxim: ¨Haim
musr Le iemoveu.¨
Nuslim juiisrs lave ielieu on maxims íiom
rle eailiesr cenruiies oí Islam rill rle µiesenr, anu
conremµoiaiy Nuslim sclolais µlace giear emµlasis
on rlem. Legal maxims aie an inregial elemenr
in all sclools oí lav, Sunnï anu Slïï alike. All
living islam with purpose

*
'(

Nuslim sclolais give legal maxims Lioau geneial
enuoisemenr, anu, alrlougl rley uo nor agiee on
eacl one oí rlem, mosr maxims aie suµµoireu
eirlei Ly consensus oi geneial agieemenr. PioLaLly,
no orlei signincanr Louy oí rleological oi legal
µiinciµles in Islam enjoys sucl a ligl uegiee oí
aurloiiry anu consensus as legal maxims.
i]ZÃkZXdgZbVm^bh
1le nve coie maxims (al-qauãiJ al-lulliyya al-
llahs) sranu ar rle veiy cenrei oí rle lunuieus oí
orlei maxims in Islamic lav.
(*
Nany µiominenr
Nuslim juiisrs lolu rlar rlese nve maxims emLouy
rle sµiiir oí Islamic lav in irs enriiery. As inuicareu
in rle inriouucrion, ro giasµ rle íull uriliry oí rle
nve coie maxims, rle ieauei sloulu conrinually Leai
in minu rlar rley consrirure a succincr summarion
oí rle oµeiarive visuom oí Islam. Ir is rle µuiµose
oí rle nve oµeiarional µiinciµles in rlis µaµei ro
lelµ Nuslims iealize rleii µorenrial as inuiviuuals
anu communiries rliougl ueeµei unueisranuing
oí rleii íairl. 1le nve coie maxims consrirure rle
Leuiock oí rlar unueisranuing.
Lacl oí rle nve coie maxims is enuoiseu Ly
rle consensus oí Lorl Sunnï anu Slïï sclolais.
1leieíoie, rley rianscenu all sclools anu secrs anu
consrirure a ieliaLle Lasis íoi Luiluing a µluialisric
anu enliglreneu Nuslim communiry. 1le nve coie
maxims aie:
&. Narreis vill Le juugeu Ly rleii µuiµoses (al-
uhür bi-haqãsiJilã).
'. Ceirainry vill nor Le oveiruineu Ly uouLr
(al-yaqïn la yazül bi-al-slall).
(. Haim musr Le iemoveu (al-Jarar yuzãl).
). Haiusliµ musr Le alleviareu (al-usr yajlib
al-taysïr).
*. Cusrom las rle veiglr oí lav (al-ãJa
hulallaha).
Maxih One: Matters uill be juJgeJ by tleir
jurjcses.
1lis maxim emµlasizes inrenrion anu µuiµose.
Acrions anu acriviries aie nor uone íoi rleii sake
alone, ir is nor enougl ro ¨go rliougl rle morions.¨
Woiks musr lave uiiecrion anu Le caiiieu our in a
mannei rlar is likely ro aclieve rle iarionales anu
oLjecrives Lelinu rlem. As menrioneu aLove, rle
maxim`s voiuing is Laseu on rle Hauirl: ¨Acrs
aie juugeu only Ly inrenrions.¨ 1le voiuing oí rle
maxim is Lioauei. ¨Narreis¨ (al-uhür) incluues
inrenrion-Laseu µeisonal acrions, Lur rle voiu also
rakes in geneial acriviries, insrirurions, µolicies,
anu rle like, vlicl aie nor Laseu on inrenrions,
Lur on µuiµoses. 1le AiaLic voiu íoi ¨µuiµoses¨
(haqãsiJ) aµµlies ro inrenrions as vell as oLjecrives
anu goals sucl as aie µeirinenr ro geneial acriviries,
insrirurions, anu µolicies.
1le maxim emµlasizes rle imµoirance oí
inrenrions in rlose luman acrions rlar iequiie
rlem. Ir immeuiarely calls ro minu acrs oí
voisliµ, Lecause rley aie invaliu virlour coiiecr
inrenrions. Cusromaiy acrions, on rle orlei lanu,
aie valiu virlour inrenrions, Lur goou inrenrions
can riansíoim rlem inro erlical ueeus anu even
uevorional acrs. HaLirual Lelavioi like earing,
uiinking, anu sleeµing is moially neurial Lur may
Lecome erlical oi uevorional ií uone virl rle
aµµioµiiare inrenrions. 1o iesr is moially neurial,
raking iesr virl rle inrenr oí ienev one`s sriengrl
ro eain a liveliloou ro suµµoir a íamily is an
erlical acr. Running a legirimare Lusiness is moially
neurial, ií ir is uone virl rle morive oí lelµing ro
suµµoir a voirly sµiiirual enu, ir Lecomes an acr
oí voisliµ. Bau inrenrions lave rle oµµosire eííecr.
Ioi examµle, ir is µiaisevoirly ro visir Necca anu
Neuina, Lur rle inrenrion ro go rleie in oiuei ro
Leg oi sreal ruins rle ourvaiuly commenuaLle acr
living islam with purpose

*
')

inro a ueµloiaLle one. Some acrions aie amLiguous
anu can only Le juugeu Ly rle morives Lelinu
rlem. 1le Pioµler saiu: ¨Wloevei imirares a
µeoµle Lelongs ro rlem.¨
(+
1le Hauirl uses rle
veiL ¨taslabbala¨ (ro imirare) insreau oí a ielareu
veiL íiom rle same ioor Lur virl a uiííeienr
vovel µarrein, ¨taslãbala¨ (ro iesemLle). 1le
íoimei veiL, ¨ro imirare,¨ sriesses µsyclological
morivarion, esµecially rle neeu ro imirare a giouµ
orlei rlan one`s ovn in oiuei ro Le acceµraLle in
rleii eyes. Ir ielecrs lack oí selí-esreem, íeelings oí
iníeiioiiry, anu a coníuseu sense oí iuenriry.
As sclolais lave oLseiveu, ir is noraLle
rlar rle Hauirl uoes nor use rle larrei íoim oí
rle veiL, ¨ro iesemLle,¨ Lecause ir voulu lave
íunuamenrally clangeu rle meaning. 1le veiL ¨ro
iesemLle¨ voulu lave inuicareu rlar rle meie acr
oí Leing similai ro orleis is uisalloveu, vlicl is rle
misraken inreiµierarion rlar some Nuslims give ro
rle Hauirl. By avoiuing rle larrei veiL, rle Hauirl
slovs rlar rleie is no laim in meiely looking like
orleis, as long as rle acr is nor associareu virl
rle negarive invaiu qualiries inuicareu Ly rle veiL
¨ro imirare.¨ Ií a Nuslim is morivareu ro veai rle
clorling oí anorlei µeoµle anu imirare rleii cusroms
our oí a sense oí iníeiioiiry, ir is ieµielensiLle. Ir
is a uiííeienr marrei alrogerlei vlen one veais rle
same clorling virl selí-esreem anu rle inrenrion oí
Leing a íuncrional memLei oí sociery.
Ioi mosr luman acriviries anu unueirakings,
inrenrions aie nor essenrial Lur iarionales anu
µuiµoses aie. Wlen rle maxim ¨marreis vill Le
juugeu Ly rleii µuiµoses¨ is aµµlieu uiiecrly ro
acrions rlar aie nor inrenrion-Laseu, ir emµlasizes
rle imµoirance oí rle iarionales, ulrimare
oLjecrives, anu even uninrenueu consequences.
Acrions musr Le juugeu Ly rle µuiµoses rley
veie meanr ro aclieve. Any acrion, lovevei vell
inrenueu, íalls sloir oí vlar ir ouglr ro Le ií ir
is caiiieu our incomµerenrly oi íails ro meer irs
oLjecrive íoi some orlei ieason, acrs aie srillLoin
vlen uone as meie íoimaliries.
As ve lave seen, goou inrenrions riansíoim
munuane inuiviuual acrs inro erlical oi uevorional
ones. Likevise, acrions anu acriviries may aµµeai
oí lirrle value Lur rake on immense imµoirance ií
rley aie uiiecreu rovaiu Lenencial enus. Simµle
amusemenrs, like Lovling µairies anu casual ger-
rogerleis ro varcl sµoiring evenrs, miglr lave Leen
consiueieu íiivolous in ceirain riauirional Islamic
serrings. In rle Ameiican Nuslim communiry
rouay, lovevei, rley consrirure µosirive alreinarive
µasrimes. 1le maxim ¨marreis vill Le juugeu Ly
rleii µuiµoses¨ uoes nor signiíy rlar goou enus
jusriíy evil means. Accoiuing ro Islamic lav, rle
means anu rle enus musr bctl Le legirimare. Ir
uoes emµlasize, lovevei, rlar lauuaLle means aie
nor lauuaLle in anu oí rlemselves. 1ley musr Le
consciously uiiecreu rovaiu rleii µuiµoses.
ILn 1aymiyya inuicares rlar rle scoµe oí
rlis maxim incluues rle moial iesµonsiLiliry
rlar µeisons anu giouµs Leai íoi rle uninrenueu
consequences oí µorenrially ueriimenral acrions
vlen rlose consequences aie µieuicraLle anu coulu
lave Leen avoiueu. 1le Comµanion Samuia iLn
]unuuL lau an oLese son, vlo voulu nor íollov lis
auvice ro ear in moueiarion. 1le Pioµler inuicareu
ro Samuia rlar ií lis son uiu nor conriol lis earing
laLirs anu uieu íiom oLesiry, lis uearl voulu Le
ranramounr ro suiciue.
(,
1le Aimisrice oí HuuayLiyya, vlicl rle
Pioµler concluueu virl rle Neccan iuolareis
in rle sixreenrl yeai oí lis µioµlecy, µioviues
a useíul illusriarion oí lov marreis can only Le
íully evaluareu in rle conrexr oí rleii µuiµoses
anu ourcomes. 1le µieceuenr ser Ly rlis accoiu
living islam with purpose

*
'*

conriasrs slaiµly virl rle luman riageuy common
ro many aimeu conlicrs vlen iesisrance anu
inriansigence Lecome enus in rlemselves anu µievail
againsr ieason, µeace, anu rle µieseivarion oí
µuLlic velíaie.
Inirially, rle Aimisrice oí HuuayLiyya
aµµeaieu ro Le a ueíear íoi rle Nuslims anu an
incomµielensiLle serLack íoi rleii cause, Lur irs
ourcome soon ievealeu rle Pioµler`s µuiµose
anu sloveu rle rieary ro Le one oí lis giearesr
aclievemenrs. Ar rle rime oí rle rieary, rle Neccan
iuolareis lau Lecome veak, anu rle Pioµler vas
in an uniivalleu µosirion oí sriengrl, le coulu
lave easily ueíeareu rle Neccans miliraiily.
Insreau, le concluueu a ren-yeai µacr oí µeace
virl rlem. 1le Neccans insisreu, lovevei, uµon
µurring uisiesµecríul language anu uemeaning
concessions in rle rieary. Ioi many oí rle Pioµler`s
Comµanions, lis acceµrance oí rle rieary came
as an immense slock. 1ley rook ir ro Le an
insuííeiaLle insulr ro rle Pioµler anu Islam, íoi
many oí rlem, rle rieary seveiely riieu rleii íairl.
Bur rle Qui`an µioclaimeu rle aimisrice a maniíesr
vicroiy (Qui`an, )-:&). One oí rle Comµanions
aµµioacleu rle Pioµler anu askeu: ¨Nessengei
oí Gou, is ir riuly a vicroiy·¨ He ieµlieu: ¨Yes. By
Gou, in vlose lanu is my soul, ir is a vicroiy.¨
1le Aimisrice oí HuuayLiyya cieareu an
armosµleie oí ieconciliarion anu ieleaseu all clans
íiom eailiei riiLal alliances. 1le AiaLs veie nov
íiee as inuiviuuals ro lisren ro rle Pioµler`s message
anu assess rleii µeisonal srances rovaiu ir virlour
rle uangei oí violaring kinsliµ loyalries. 1le rieary
also gianreu rle Nuslims access ro Necca, vlicl
gave rleii íairl giearei legirimacy in AiaL eyes.
Wirlin monrls, rle consequences oí rle aimisrice
ievealeu rle íaisiglreuness oí rle Pioµler`s
uecision. Ir esraLlisleu a jax islahica in AiaLia anu
Legan Islam`s mereoiic iise. Al-Zuliï, one oí rle
reacleis oí Imam Nälik, viore:
Þo vicroiy in Islam µiioi ro HuuayLiyya vas
anyrling like ir. Beíoie, µeoµle voulu nglr
vlenevei rley mer. Aírei rle aimisrice, vai vas
susµenueu. Peoµle veie no longei aíiaiu oí eacl
orlei. 1ley voulu meer, sµeak, anu aigue ar
giear lengrl. Þo one virl rle µovei ro ieason
vas sµoken ro aLour Islam Lur rlar le emLiaceu
ir. In rlose rvo yeais Leíoie rle Neccans Lioke
rle aimisrice, rle µeoµle vlo enreieu rle íairl
veie equal ro rle numLei oí all rlose vlo lau
emLiaceu ir uuiing rle µieceuing sixreen yeais.
(-
As mucl as any orlei oµeiarional meclanism,
rle maxim ¨marreis vill Le juugeu Ly rleii
µuiµoses¨ consrirures a cleai uiiecrive rlar Nuslims
live Islam virl µuiµose. Ir sers a sranuaiu Ly vlicl
µiesenr acriviries in rle Nuslim communiry musr
Le ieassesseu anu íuruie unueirakings µlanneu anu
caiiieu our.
Maxih Tuc: Certainty uill nct be cierturneJ by
Jcubt.
1lis maxim means rlar knovleuge Laseu on
valiu exµeiience anu sriong eviuence musr nor Le
oveiruineu Ly veakei consiueiarions. Ir emLouies
rle µiinciµle in rle Qui`anic veise: ¨Anu uo nor
íollov rlar oí vlicl you lave no riue knovleuge¨
(Qui`an &,:(+). Ir is also illusriareu in rle Hauirl:
¨Ií any oí you las uouLrs uuiing lis µiayei anu no
longei knovs vlerlei le las µiayeu rliee oi íoui
µiayei unirs (ralaãt), ler lim casr uouLr asiue anu
comµlere rle µiayei Ly auuing ro vlar le is ceirain
rlar le uiu.¨
1le maxim ¨ceirainry is nor oveiruineu Ly
uouLr¨ emLouies rle nisr oµeiarional µiinciµle
srareu in rlis µaµei: riusring ieason. Ir is also in
laimony virl rle seconu oµeiarional µiinciµle
oí iesµecring uissenr Lecause ir iecognizes rle
µiioiiry oí sriongei µiooís ovei veakei ones. 1le
living islam with purpose

*
'+

maxim sers a Lasic iule íoi lov ro use rle minu in
making sounu juugmenrs. 1lis maxim lones rle
µovei oí ieason anu Lieaks rle lolu oí illusions
anu uníounueu sµecularions. Iailuie ro live Ly
rlis maxim uoes a uisseivice ro rle luman minu
anu evenrually laims ir. Ulrimarely, ¨ceirainry is
nor oveiruineu Ly uouLr¨ emLouies rle Islamic
convicrion rlar riurl, as vaiieu as irs µarls aie,
is nor a íuncrion oí aiLiriaiy vill oi suLjecrive
µeiceµrions anu musr Le uisceineu rliougl
oLjecrive ciireiia.
¨Ceirainry is nor oveiruineu Ly uouLr¨ is
moie aLour Lasic µiooí anu rle iesolurion oí con-
licring claims rlan ir is aLour caregoiically aurloii-
rarive ceirainry sucl as vas uiscusseu unuei rle
seconu oµeiarional µiinciµle on iesµecring uissenr.
¨Ceirainry¨ in rlis maxim incluues Lur is nor ie-
sriicreu ro caregoiical µiooí. In rlis maxim, ¨cei-
rainry¨ is Lioauei anu incluues iea-
sonaLle oµinions Laseu on µiesumµ-
rive aurloiiry oi sriong conjecruie. In
irs aµµlicarion, rle maxim ¨ceirainry
is nor oveiruineu Ly uouLr¨ iequiies
rlar ieasonaLle anu vell-esraLlisleu
convicrions Le iesµecreu anu nor uis-
iegaiueu unless rleie is sriongei evi-
uence ro rle conriaiy.
One oí rle maxim`s mosr
imµoiranr aµµlicarions is ¨rle
µiesumµrion oí conrinuiry (istislãb).¨
1le µiesumµrion oí conrinuiry lolus
rlar rlings musr Le µiesumeu ar
µiesenr ro iemain in rleii íoimei
srares unril rle conriaiy is µioven.
Heie again, ¨ceirainry¨ uoes nor
jusr aµµly ro caregoiical knovleuge
Lur rakes in marreis oí µiesumµrive
aurloiiry oi sriong conjecruie. Lven
rlougl a ieasonaLle oµinion may nor Le conclusive,
ir musr Le rieareu as ií ir veie conclusive unril rle
conriaiy is uemonsriarively µioven.
Like many orlei legal sysrems, Islamic lav
uµlolus rle µiinciµle rlar µeoµle aie innocenr
unril µioven guilry. Ioi Nuslims, rle µiesumµrion
oí innocence is a coiollaiy oí ¨ceirainry is nor
oveiruineu Ly uouLr.¨ Noie sµecincally, rle
µiesumµrion oí innocence is a veision oí rle
µiesumµrion oí conrinuiry, vlicl íalls unuei rle
coie maxim. 1le Islamic ievelarion reacles rlar
luman Leings veie cieareu in a srare oí naruial
innocence anu Lasic goouness. 1leii oiiginal
conuirion oí innocence makes guilr rle exceµrion
ro rle iule. 1leieíoie, µeoµle musr Le µiesumeu
ro iemain ar µiesenr in rleii íoimei srare oí
innocence unril rle conriaiy is µioven. Likevise,
rle ieµurarions oí µeoµle musr Le ueíenueu againsr
iumois unless valiu eviuence µioves
rlem riue.
Anorlei common aµµlicarion
oí ¨ceirainry is nor oveiruineu
Ly uouLr¨ is ¨rle µiesumµrion oí
µeimissiLiliry.¨ 1le µiesumµrion
oí µeimissiLiliry lolus rlar rlings
musr Le µiesumeu ro Le µeimissiLle
unless rle conriaiy is µioven. ILn
1aymiyya asseirs rlar none oí rle
eaily aurloiiries oí Islamic lav
is knovn ro lave quesrioneu rle
valiuiry oí rle µiesumµrion oí
µeimissiLiliry.
(.
Anorlei closely
ielareu maxim lolus rlar rlings
musr Le iegaiueu as µeimissiLle
unless µioven laimíul. A similai
maxim, ¨rle µiesumµrion oí
cleanness,¨ srares rlar all rlings vill
Le µiesumeu ro Le iirually clean
A religious
psychology
narrowly molded
by lists of do’s and
don’ts is greatly
handicapped.
Muslims with
such an identity
struggle not
to feel alien or
out of place in
surroundings
where their list of
do’s and don’ts is
not shared.
living islam with purpose

*
',

(tãlir) unless rle conriaiy is µioven.
)%
1lese anu
ielareu maxims aie Laseu on rle Islamic Lelieí rlar
rle voilu vas cieareu íoi luman srevaiusliµ.
1lus, rle voilu anu all rlar ir conrains aie
geneially goou, Lenencial, anu iirually clean. As
a naruial consequence, µeimissiLiliry is rle iule,
anu imµeimissiLiliry, laimíulness, anu iirual
uncleanness aie exceµrions.
1le µiesumµrion oí µeimissiLiliry is ciucial íoi
rle µeisonal giovrl anu communiry ueveloµmenr
oí Nuslims in rle Unireu Srares. Some Nuslims
iegaiu Islam as lirrle moie rlan a lisr oí uo`s anu
uon`rs, anu, geneially, rle uon`rs ournumLei rle
uo`s. Wlen Islamic iuenriry is Lelavioially uenneu
in rlis íaslion, ir íosreis a µsyclology µeimeareu
virl ueLilirarions, inliLirions, anu naiiov cognirive
íiames, µioliLirion is maue Islam`s ueíaulr µosirion,
anu rle ieligion is given rle aµµeaiance oí µeimir-
ring veiy lirrle anu µioliLiring eveiyrling else.
1le µiesumµrion oí µeimissiLiliry emµlasizes
rlar rle ieveise is riue, Islam`s ieal ueíaulr µosirion
is one oí geneial µeimissiLiliry virl an aínimarive
arriruue rovaiu rle voilu. 1le Lasic iule oí
geneial µeimissiLiliry uoes nor mean rlar rle
cleai µioliLirions oí Islamic lav aie uiscaiueu. In
íacr, ir lays sriess on rle íacr rlar µioliLirions in
Islam aie giave marreis anu musr nor ro Le raken
liglrly. Because µioliLirions are giave marreis, rley
uemanu cogenr µiooí Laseu on sounu knovleuge,
nor on leaisay, misgivings, oi inliLirions. ILn
1aymiyya auus in lis uiscussion oí rle µiesumµrion
oí µeimissiLiliry rlar ir is ieµielensiLle íoi a
Nuslim ro Le µieoccuµieu virl rle minuriae
oí vlar may oi may nor Le íoiLiuuen oi ro Le
oLsesseu virl consranrly asking aLour rlem.
)&

Since µiesumµrion oí µeimissiLiliry is rle
uominanr iule, Nuslims aie nor iequiieu ro
µiove rlar rlings aie µeimissiLle, only claims oí
µioliLirion uemanu µiooí. 1ouay, many Nuslims
rake ir liglrly ro ueclaie rlings íoiLiuuen, rle
oµµosire vas riue íoi rle Comµanions anu rle
aurloiirarive voices oí Islamic lav. 1leii inliLirion,
ro rle exrenr rlar rley may Le uesciiLeu as laving
inliLirions, vas ro µionounce rlings íoiLiuuen
unless rley veie nor alieauy cleaily knovn ro Le so.
Wlen rle giear legal sclolais oí rle µasr rook rle
uecision ro classiíy somerling as íoiLiuuen Laseu on
µeisonal inreiµierarion, rley Laseu rleii aigumenrs
on conclusive eviuence, anu even rlen rley maue
rleii uecisions virl maikeu lesirarion.
A ieligious µsyclology naiiovly molueu Ly
lisrs oí uo`s anu uon`rs is giearly lanuicaµµeu.
Nuslims virl sucl an iuenriry sriuggle nor ro íeel
alien oi our oí µlace in suiiounuings vleie rleii lisr
oí uo`s anu uon`rs is nor slaieu. 1ley nor only lave
µioLlems ielaring ro non-Nuslims, iionically, ir is
oíren even moie uiínculr íoi rlem ro inreiacr virl
orlei Nuslims vlo uo nor coníoim ro rleii vay
oí rlinking. In iealiry, lavs, Lelavioial sranuaius,
anu even ieasonaLle lisrs oí uo`s anu uon`rs are
µair rle Islamic erlos, Lur rley musr lave rleii
íounuarion in sounu knovleuge, coie values, anu
univeisal µiinciµles like rlose eµiromizeu in rle
nve oµeiarional µiinciµles. Wlen Islamic iuenriry
is Laseu on coie values anu univeisal µiinciµles
virlin rle µaiamereis oí acceµraLle Lelavioi, ir
is emµoveieu ro íuncrion virl selí-connuence
anyvleie anu virl anyone: ir ceases ro Le
µsyclologically vulneiaLle in uiveisiry anu Lecomes
ieceµrive ro rle Lioauesr cognirive íiames.
Issues sucl as iecognizing rle Consrirurion,
voring, oi acceµring vomen as communiry leaueis,
sµeakeis, anu acrive µairiciµanrs in rle mosque
anu orlei µuLlic venues aie conrioveisial in some
communiries. 1lese marreis aie µioLaLly nor
µioLlemaric íoi mosr Nuslims in Ameiica, Lur rleie
living islam with purpose

*
'-

aie rlose vlo iegaiu rlem as quesrionaLle oi even
íoiLiuuen. 1le µiesumµrion oí µeimissiLiliry makes
ir cleai rlar enuoisemenr oí marreis sucl as rlese
iequiies no µiooí oí µeimissiLiliry. 1le Luiuen oí
µiouucing uennirive sclolaily µiooí alvays íalls
exclusively on rle sloulueis oí rlose vlo quesrion
rleii µeimissiLiliry. LmLiacing rle Ameiican
Consrirurional legacy, emµoveiing vomen, anu
iemoving rle iemnanrs oí µariiaicly,
)'
lovevei,
aie nor acrually quesrions oí µeimissiLiliry, rley aie
socieral oLligarions oí rle liglesr oiuei.
1le quesrion oí genuei anu µariiaicly iaises
Lioauei conceins. Islamic euucarional insrirurions
in rle Unireu Srares anu elsevleie musr cieare
rle meclanisms neeueu íoi µiouucing Nuslim
vomen vlo aie íully qualineu Islamic sclolais.
Genuei ielareu quesrions incluuing rlose menrioneu
aLove sloulu nor Le uelegareu exclusively ro male
aurloiiry, moie signincanrly, nc quesrion sloulu
Le uelegareu ro men alone. Nuslim vomen musr
lave oµµoiruniries equal ro rleii male counreiµairs
in all conceins. 1le uisemµoveimenr oí Nuslim
vomen is a majoi ieason íoi rle ieriogiession oí
many Nuslim socieries. Degiauarion oí rle srarus
oí vomen las rle same ueLiliraring eííecr on
Wesrein Nuslim communiries rlar counrenance ir,
anu ir musr Le coiiecreu. Islam las a iicl legacy
oí accomµlisleu anu acrively engageu vomen.
Giear Nuslim vomen excelleu as µolirical anu
miliraiy leaueis, µoers, sclolais, µlilanrlioµisrs,
sµiiirual guiues, anu in orlei caµaciries. Reneval
oí rleii legacy is essenrial íoi rle íuruie oí Nuslim
communiries eveiyvleie.
)(

An excellenr examµle oí an emµoveieu
anu emµoveiing Nuslim voman is rle eleganr
rvelírl-cenruiy sclolai Iärima Linr Nulammau al-
Samaiqanui
))
oí Syiia. Hei íarlei vas a µieeminenr
Hanaíï juiisr anu rook acrive µair in lis uauglrei`s
euucarion. Iärima Lecame viuely ienovneu íoi lei
ovn knovleuge. Sle masreieu Hanaíï juiisµiuuence
anu rle sciences oí Hauirl, lei legal juugmenrs
(fatuãs) anu riansmissions oí Hauirl veie lelu in
rle liglesr iegaiu. Iärima also excelleu as a reaclei
oí rle vaiious Islamic sciences. Sle insriucreu
men as vell as vomen, anu sruuenrs riaveleu ro
Syiia ro leain íiom lei anu ieceive rleii sclolaily
cieuenrials.
Iärima al-Samaiqanuï vas a µeisonal
counseloi oí Þui al-Dïn Zangï. Þui al-Dïn is
counreu among rle mosr signincanr iuleis in Islamic
lisroiy, le is iememLeieu µiimaiily íoi µieµaiing
rle giounu íoi rle success oí lis vassal Saläl al-
Dïn (Salauin) a íev yeais aírei lis uearl. Iärima
vas ienovneu íoi lei Leaury anu vas viuely
iegaiueu as rle mosr Leauriíul voman oí lei rime.
Kings anu µiinces unsuccessíully souglr lei lanu
in maiiiage. Sle close insreau ro maiiy one oí lei
íarlei`s sruuenrs, al-Käsänï, vlo is iankeu rouay
among rle mosr Liillianr Hanaíï juiisrs. Iärima
close lim Lecause oí a commenraiy le viore
on one oí lei íarlei`s µiinciµal legal voiks. Al-
Käsänï`s commenraiy, Tle Mcst Marielcus cf
ßeneþcial Tlings (ßaJãi al-Sanãi), consrirureu lis
maiiiage giír anu is one oí rle classics oí Islamic
juiisµiuuence. Iev ií any voiks in rle Hanaíï
sclool slov giearei arrenrion ro rle iarionales anu
ulrimare µuiµoses oí rle lav. Alrlougl al-Käsänï
ianks among rle mosr comµerenr oí juiisrs, ir vas
Iärima vlo coiiecreu anu euireu lis legal oµinions.
His esreem íoi lei vas so giear rlar le voulu nor
sign rle legal oµinions le issueu unril Iärima signeu
rlem nisr.
)*
Maxih Tlree: Harh hust be rehcieJ.
1lis maxim is cenrial ro rle oµeiarional µiinciµle
oí serring µiioiiries. As noreu eailiei, rle essence oí
living islam with purpose

*
'.

Islam is ro secuie Lenenrs anu vaiu oíí ueriimenrs.
By only menrioning laim anu nor Lenenr, rle voiu-
ing oí rlis maxim sriesses rle µiioiiry oí iemoving
laim, as inuicareu eailiei, rle imµeiarive ro vaiu
oíí ueriimenrs rakes µiioiiry ovei rle acquisirion oí
Lenenrs vlen rle rvo aie murually incomµariLle.
Consiueiarions oí laim anu Lenenr aie alvays mu-
rually linkeu in Islamic legal ieasoning, rleieíoie,
alrlougl rle voiuing oí rle maxim ¨laim musr
Le iemoveu¨ uoes nor menrion Lenenr sµecincally,
rle conceµr oí Lenenr is srill imµlicirly unueisroou.
Omission oí rle voiu ¨Lenenr¨ nor only emµla-
sizes rle imµoirance oí vaiuing oíí laim, ir imµlies
rlar rle acquisirion oí ieal anu lasring Lenenrs is
nor µossiLle unril laims aie iemoveu nisr.
1le µiinciµle unueilying rlis maxim is ie-
lecreu in Qui`anic veises incluuing: ¨Do nor lolu
youi vives in Lonuage, seeking ro laim rlem, rlar
voulu Le riansgiession¨ (Qui`an ':'(&). Anorlei
veise emµlasizes: ¨Þo voman Leaiing a clilu slall
Le causeu laim Lecause oí lei clilu, noi slall any
íarlei ro vlom a clilu is Loin Le causeu laim Le-
cause oí lis clilu¨ (Qui`an, ':'((). 1le Pioµler
saiu: ¨Haim vill nor Le uone ro orleis, noi vill
laim Le ieciµiocareu Ly laim.¨ Anorlei Hauirl
srares: ¨Haim vill nor Le iemoveu Ly a similai
laim.¨ Anu rle Pioµler rauglr: ¨Iulnll rle riusrs
rlar you lave Leen given, uo nor ueceive a µeison
vlo las ueceiveu you.¨
1lis maxim ¨laim musr Le iemoveu¨ oLliges
Nuslims, in rle name oí rleii ieligion, ro iuenriíy
laims anu iemove rlem. Ir leaves Nuslims no jus-
rincarion íoi ignoiing oi roleiaring laim anu injus-
rice in rleii miusr. By emµlasizing rle necessiry oí
iemoving laim, rle maxim gianrs µiioiiry ro rle
vicrims oí laim, injusrice, anu oµµiession. 1le iiglr
oí vicrims is alvays legirimare, anu rle laim rlar
aílicrs rlem musr Le ieuiesseu.
In rle Pioµleric lav, all rlar is laimíul,
íiom laim`s giearesr ro irs leasr maniíesrarions,
is unacceµraLle anu musr Le iemoveu. Nuslim
legal sclolais uenne laim in Lioau reims, ií rle
lav sloulu eii vlen uereimining vlar consrirures
laim anu vlar uoes nor, ir musr eii on rle siue oí
leniency anu inclusiveness. Anorlei ielevanr maxim
srares: ¨Þeeu vill Le µur on rle level oí necessiries¨
(al-lãja tunzal hanzilat al-Jarürãt). Wlen aµµlieu
ro rle uennirion oí laim, rlis µiinciµle imµlies rlar
lessei laims, rle iemoval oí vlicl reclnically íalls
unuei rle leauing oí neeJs, aie ro Le iegaiueu as
giearei laims, rle iemoval oí vlicl íalls unuei
necessities. 1leieíoie, vlen rleie is uouLr aLour
rle seveiiry oí a µairiculai laim, ir is nor iequiieu
rlar rle vicrim oí rlar laim µiove lov seveie rle
laim acrually is anu vlerlei oi nor ir is acrually a
necessity ro iemove ir oi a neeJ. Ií a sµouse is Leing
aLuseu, íoi examµle, rle sµouse is nor iequiieu ro
esraLlisl rlar rle uegiee oí aLuse is giearei anu nor
lessei. Lven ií rle laim veie acrually oí a lessei
uegiee, ir musr Le rieareu as a giearei laim, anu ir
musr Le iemoveu.
Nany clallenges cuiienrly íacing rle
Ameiican Nuslim communiry consrirure ieal oi
µorenrial laims, rleii iemoval is a uennire socieral
oLligarion. Ir is laimíul ro rle communiry vlen,
íoi examµle, mosques µiomore armosµleies rlar
aie naiiov-minueu anu uninviring. As µieviously
menrioneu, rle uiínculry many Ameiican Nuslims
íace in nnuing suiraLle sµouses is a giear laim, as
aie uysíuncrional maiiiages anu uomesric aLuse. Ir
laims rle communiry vlen solurions aie nor íounu
íoi uisauvanrageu Nuslims vlo lave no access ro
goou euucarion, cannor nnu auequare emµloymenr,
oi vlose communiries lack viaLle economic
iníiasriucruies.
1lis maxim ¨laim musr Le iemoveu¨ las
living islam with purpose

*
(%

oLvious aµµlicarions in rle vake oí rle ariociry
oí ./&&, vlicl Liouglr virl ir nev uangeis anu
ieviveu olu ones. On rle one lanu, rle maxim
íoices Nuslims ro acknovleuge lonesrly rle ieal
anu µiesenr uangei oí exriemism anu ensuie rlar
rleii communiries iemain íiee oí ir. On rle orlei
lanu, rle maxim makes ir imµeiarive íoi Ameiican
Nuslims ro inciease ourieacl µiogiams anu íoige
sriongei alliances virl suµµoirive inuiviuuals
anu giouµs vlo lave concein íoi luman iiglrs.
1le maxim also iequiies µioacrive sreµs rliougl
civic engagemenr, meuia, anu orlei means ro
give Nuslims a luman íace, Liing ro liglr rleii
conriiLurions ro Ameiican sociery, anu ro lelµ aveir
rle µorenrial laims rlar aiise íiom uelumanizarion
anu misiníoimarion.
Maxih ícur: HarJslij hust be alleiiateJ.
1o unueisranu rlis maxim, ir is necessaiy ro knov
rlar rle voiu ¨laiusliµ¨ useu in ir is nor rle same
as ¨uiínculry.¨ Unlike laiusliµ, uiínculry is nor
necessaiily Lau, success in liíe uoes nor come virl-
our uiínculry anu laiu voik. Noial iesµonsiLiliry
(tallïf), vlicl is rle Lasis oí Islamic ieligious oLli-
garion, lireially means in AiaLic ¨imµosirion oí a
leavy Luiuen¨ uue ro rle íacr rlar acrs oí voisliµ
anu orlei ieligious uuries iequiie some uegiee oí
uiínculry.
Haiusliµ, as ieíeiieu ro in rlis maxim, ex-
cluues beneþcial uiínculry like rlar iequiieu íoi
riaining, sruuy, voik, anu voisliµ. Islam µlaces
ligl value on µuiµoseíul exeirion Lur iequiies rle
alleviarion oí ueriimenral uiínculry. 1le µieceu-
ing maxim, ¨laim musr Le iemoveu,¨ emµlasizes
eliminarion, laim musr Le eliminareu, nor neces-
saiily ieµlaceu virl somerling else. 1le íocus oí
rlis maxim is uiííeienr, laiusliµ musr nor jusr Le
eliminareu, ir musr Le ieµlaceu virl somerling Ler-
rei. ¨Haiusliµ musr Le alleviareu¨ oíren iequiies
rle ciearion alreinarives, Lecause alreinarives aie
rle means Ly vlicl alleviarion rakes µlace. In many
cases, ir may nor Le uesiiaLle ro eliminare com-
µlerely a ryµe oí Lelavioi rlar is causing laiusliµ,
ir may Le Lerrei ro mouiíy rlar Lelavioi oi cieare
alreinarives, so rlar ir oi somerling Lerrei rlan ir
may Le uone in a mannei rlar is easiei anu moie
ievaiuing.
1le Qui`an srares: ¨Ir is nor Gou`s vill ro
cause you uisriess, iarlei, ir is Gou`s vill ro make
you µuie¨ (Qui`an *:+). Ir says elsevleie: ¨Gou
vills ro make rlings easy íoi you, íoi luman Leings
veie cieareu veak¨ (Qui`an ):'-). 1le Pioµler
srareu: ¨Nake rlings easy, anu uo nor make rlem
laiu. Give µeoµle voius oí goou nevs, anu uo
nor uiive rlem avay.¨ He also saiu: ¨1le essence
oí rlis ieligion oí Islam is ease, no one goes ro ex-
riemes in rlis ieligion Lur rlar ir vill ger rle Lerrei
oí lim. Seek ro uo vlar is iiglr. 1iy ro ger as close
ro vlar is iiglr as µossiLle, anu give µeoµle goou
nevs.¨ A rliiu Hauirl ielares rlar rle Pioµler saiu:
¨Ií I commanu you ro uo somerling, uo oí ir vlar
you aie caµaLle oí uoing.¨
Ioi some Nuslims, Islam uoes nor seem au-
rlenric ií ir is nor laiu. Occasionally, rley auoµr un-
necessaiily iigoious µosirions rlar µusl rleii µsycles
ro rle Lieaking µoinr. Yer rle Pioµler maue ir cleai
rlar Islam is a ieligion oí ease anu rlar suííeiing íoi
rle sake oí suííeiing is nor lauuaLle anu uoes nor
µlease Gou. 1le Pioµler µieíeiieu cloosing rle easi-
esr vay ro uo rlings, an aurlenric Hauirl ieµoirs
rlar: ¨1le Pioµler vas nevei given rle cloice Le-
rveen rvo goou rlings, one oí vlicl vas easiei rlan
rle orlei, Lur rlar le close rle easiei oí rlem.¨ 1le
Pioµler saiu: ¨Ceirainly, rle Lesr µair oí youi ieli-
gious µiacrice is vlar is easiesr íoi you.¨
1le uiííeience Lerveen iemoving laim
living islam with purpose

*
(&

(rle µievious maxim) anu alleviaring laiusliµ
(rlis maxim) is essenrially a marrei oí uegiee.
As uemonsriareu in rle maxim ¨laim musr Le
iemoveu,¨ Islamic lav uennes laim ro incluue
lessei laims. Wlen rle Lioau uennirion oí laim
is aµµlieu ro lessei laims, rle rvo maxims renu
ro oveilaµ. 1aken rogerlei, rley resriíy ro Islam`s
commirmenr ro ieasonaLle noims rlar aie íiee oí
laim anu nlleu virl Lenenr as mucl as µossiLle.
1le íolloving examµles illusriare lov rle
alleviarion oí laiusliµ anu rle iemoval oí (lessei
anu giearei) laim may oveilaµ. 1le illusriarions
µeirain ro rle allovances Islam makes íoi Nuslims
ro Lieak rle oLligaroiy íasr oí Ramauan. Nuslims
aie nor iequiieu ro íasr vlen riaveling, alrlougl
in some cases íasring uuiing riavel is easy, in sucl
cases, rle lav`s alleviarion oí laiusliµ is exriemely
Lioau anu rakes in even rle mosr minimal íoims oí
uiínculry. Islam iemoveu rle oLligarion oí íasring
íiom µeoµle vlo lack rle caµaciry ro íasr uue ro
innimiry, µiegnancy, anu similai ieasons. In saíei
cases, rle license ro Lieak rle íasr
unuei rlese conuirions consrirures
an alleviarion oí laiusliµ, in moie
seiious ones, ir consrirures rle
iemoval oí (lessei oi giearei) laim,
ueµenuing on rle uegiee oí seveiiry.
In rle íolloving case, allovance ro
Lieak rle íasr vas cleaily an insrance
oí iemoving giearei laim. Wlen
one oí rle Pioµler`s Comµanions
voulu arremµr ro íasr rle monrl oí
Ramauan, le voulu íall unconscious
anu íiorl ar rle mourl, rle Pioµler
exemµreu lim alrogerlei íiom
íasring anu uiiecreu lim ro íeeu one
µooi µeison íoi eacl uay oí rle íasr.
Islamic lav insrirureu
numeious orlei ieligious licenses ro liglren
laiusliµ, rle µiinciµles unueilying eacl oí rlem
uemonsriares rle µliaLiliry oí rle lav anu rle
unueilying µiinciµle rlar laiusliµ íoi irs ovn sake
is unuesiiaLle. In exrieme colu oi rle aLsence oí
varei, Nuslims aie alloveu ro µuiiíy rlemselves
iirually Ly conracr virl clean eairl (tayahhuh).
1iaveleis aie alloveu ro comLine µiayeis, anu
rle Pioµler gave sµecial µeimission ro µeiíoim
rle sunser anu niglr µiayeis rogerlei on iainy
niglrs oi vlen rle srieers aie muuuy íolloving
iains, alrlougl oiuinaiily eacl µiayei musr Le
µeiíoimeu ar seµaiare rimes. 1le Pioµler gave rvo
oí lis Comµanions sµecial µeimission ro veai silk
(alrlougl silk is orleivise íoiLiuuen íoi men) in
oiuei ro alleviare skin iiiirarions. Unuei noimal
ciicumsrances, Nuslim men aie nor µeimirreu ro
veai golu, Lur Islamic lav gave men µeimission ro
nll uenral caviries virl golu ro alleviare rle laiusliµ
oí using orlei mareiials, vlicl, in eailiei rimes, uiu
nor make goou nllings.
Ioi cenruiies, µiayei rimes
veie uereimineu Ly rle movemenrs
oí rle sun anu rle inuicarions in rle
sky oí uusk, niglr, anu uavn. 1o-
uay, uiLan aieas aie lir ar niglr anu
Luiluings oíren Llock our rle sky.
1iauirional merlous oí uereimining
µiayei rimes aie no longei easy, in
some cases, rley lave Lecome im-
µossiLle. 1o alleviare rlis laiusliµ,
mosr Nuslims rouay iely on µiayei
rimeraLles. Wlen lying, ir is viuely
iegaiueu as µeimissiLle ro µiay in
one`s sear Ly making minimal ges-
ruies inuicarive oí µiayei anu virl-
our neeuing ro íace rovaiu Necca.
Given rle lengrl oí uiLan commures
Islam is not
culturally
predatory, and it
teaches Muslims
to look upon all
cultural heritages
with an open mind,
especially those
where they live
and to which they
belong.
living islam with purpose

*
('

in laige ciries, some sclolais allov commureis ro
comLine µiayeis, alrlougl rle uisrances rley uiive
may íall sloir oí rle uennirion oí riavel in Islamic
lav. Iinally, rle maxim ¨laiusliµ musr Le allevi-
areu¨ sers a ciirically imµoiranr sranuaiu íoi nev
oi laµseu Nuslims, only rle mosr Lasic oLligarions
sloulu Le exµecreu oí rlem, anu rle riansirion
sloulu Le giauual anu unuemanuing.
Maxih íiie: Custch las tle ueiglt cf lau.
1lis maxim is rle rleme oí rle Þavavi Iounua-
rion Paµei ¨Islam anu rle Culruial Imµeiarive,¨
vlicl illusriares rle imµoirance oí culruie in Islam
anu rle imµeiarive rlar Nuslims in Ameiica cie-
are rleii ovn uisrincrive inuigenous culruie.
)+
1le
maxim ¨cusrom las rle veiglr oí lav¨ aínims rlar
Islam is nor culruially µieuaroiy, anu ir reacles
Nuslims ro look uµon all culruial leiirages virl an
oµen minu, esµecially rlose vleie rley live anu ro
vlicl rley Lelong.
Once, a giouµ oí Lrlioµian conveirs Legan
ro uance virl uiums anu sµeais in rle Pioµler`s
mosque in celeLiarion oí an annual Islamic íesrival.
1le Comµanion 'Umai arremµreu ro sroµ rlem, Lur
rle Pioµler inreiveneu anu uigeu rlem ro conrinue.
In one Hauirl, le saiu ro rlem: ¨Play youi games,
sons oí Lrlioµia, so rlar rle ]evs anu Cliisrians
knov rlar rleie is lexiLiliry (fusla) in oui ieli-
gion.¨ By rlis anu similai acrs, rle Pioµler ser rle
µieceuenr oí aíniming culruial uiííeiences anu maue
ir cleai rlar, íoi non-AiaLs, enreiing Islam uiu nor
iequiie rlem ro give uµ rleii ovn culruial noims
íoi rlose oí rle AiaLs.
),
1le Qui`an ievealeu rle íolloving veise ro
rle Pioµler on rle eve oí lis migiarion ro Neuina,
vleie lis legislarive acriviry Legan. Ir esraLlisles
seveial µiimaiy legal µiinciµles, acceµrance oí
culruie Leing one oí rlem: ¨Acceµr íiom µeoµle
vlar comes naruially íoi rlem, commanu vlar
is goou Ly cusrom, anu ruin avay íiom rle
ignoianr virlour iesµonuing in kinu¨ (Qui`an,
,:&..). 1le Pioµler`s arriruue rovaiu erlnic
anu culruial iuenriry µioviues an examµle oí rle
aµµlicarion oí rlis veise. He uiu nor uesrioy rle
inuigenous culruies anu suLculruies oí µie-Islamic
AiaLia,
)-
iarlei le liveu in laimony virl rlem,
coiiecring vlar vas unsounu anu ieµealing vlar
vas uegeneiare. Peilaµs, rle Lesr examµle oí rle
Pioµler`s accommouarion oí AiaLian suLculruial
noims vas lis µiacrice oí µioµagaring rle Qui`an
in rle seven µiinciµal uialecrical vaiiarions (alruf)
oí AiaLic. 1liouglour AiaLia, rle AiaL riiLes
unueisroou rle Neccan uialecr oí rle Pioµler`s
riiLe, Quiaysl, vlicl seiveu as rle linguisric
sranuaiu íoi all. 1le Pioµler`s use oí rle seven
uialecrical vaiiarions vas nor a necessiry, ir vas a
iesµecríul gesruie rovaiu rle AiaL riiLes, vlicl
acknovleugeu rle inregiiry oí eacl riiLe`s culruial
iuenriry.
1le Pioµler`s arriruue rovaiu rle culruial
noims oí rle AiaL riiLes anu orlei erlnic giouµs
consrirures a majoi µieceuenr anu a Lasic sranuaiu
in Islamic lav. Because rle Pioµler gave Lioau
enuoisemenr ro uiveise culruial convenrions anu
uiu nor alrei rlem exceµr vlen necessaiy, ALu
Yusuí, rle µiinciµal sruuenr oí Imam ALu Hanïía,
iegaiueu Islam`s oµenness rovaiu orlei culruies as
rle Pioµler`s Sunna. ALu Yusuí`s µosirion conriasrs
slaiµly virl ceirain Nuslims rouay vlo iegaiu rle
Sunna (naiiovly uenneu as ceirain uerails oí uiess
anu µeisonal Lelavioi) as a suLsrirure íoi culruie.
Islamic legal rleoiy iegaius sounu culruial
noims as consriruring an inueµenuenr anu
aurloiirarive souice oí Islamic lav. 1le noreu
Hanaíï juiisr al-Saiaklsï srareu: ¨Wlarevei
is esraLlisleu Ly goou cusrom is equally vell
living islam with purpose

*
((

esraLlisleu Ly sounu legal µiooí.¨ Al-1usulï, a
µiominenr Nälikï juuge anu legal sclolai, viore:
¨Ir is oLligaroiy ro ler µeoµle íollov rleii cusroms,
usages, anu geneial asµiiarions in liíe. 1o lanu
uovn iulings in oµµosirion ro rlem is gioss
ueviarion anu ryianny.¨
).
1le voiu ¨cusrom¨ (ãJa) as useu in rle
maxim ¨cusrom las rle veiglr oí lav¨ ieíeis ro
acceµraLle culruial noims. ]uiisrs uenne rleii usage
oí rle voiu ¨cusrom¨ as ¨marreis rlar aie nimly
esraLlisleu in µiacrice anu íiequenrly ieµeareu in
µeoµle`s lives anu acceµraLle ro sounu naruies (al-
tibã al-salïha).¨ Reíeience ro ¨sounu naruies¨ is
linkeu ro rle Islamic Lelieí rlar luman Leings aie
cieareu virl sounu naruies, lumans aie inriinsically
goou anu enuoveu virl Lasic inruirive knovleuge
oí Gou, goou anu evil, Lenenr anu laim. In a
noimarive srare, luman Leings auoµr culruial
noims suiraLle íoi rlemselves anu rle µairiculai
ciicumsrances, rimes, anu µlaces in vlicl rley live.
1lus, rle Lasic µuiµose oí culruial convenrions
is ro oLrain Lenenrs anu vaiu oíí laims ro rle
íuirlesr exrenr µossiLle in viuely uiveigenr
conrexrs. Iiom rle µeisµecrive oí Islamic lav,
rle naruie oí inuigenous culruies anu suLculruies
is íunuamenrally linkeu ro rle vellLeing oí rle
social giouµs rlar lave auoµreu rlem. Ioi rlis
ieason, Nuslim juiisrs iegaiu Islam`s enuoisemenr
oí uiveise culruial noims as an insrance oí irs
oveiiiuing commirmenr ro acquiiing Lenenrs anu
µiorecring íiom laims.
Culruial convenrions make uµ a íunuamenral
µair oí iuenriry anu lave a sriong lolu ovei µeoµle
accusromeu ro rlem. Islamic lav acknovleuges
rlis iealiry anu exµiesses ir in rle íoim oí rle
legal maxim: ¨Cusrom is seconu naruie¨ (al-ãJa
tabïa tlãniya). Cusroms aie so ueeµly ingiaineu
in µeoµle rlar ir is uiínculr ro uisringuisl rlem
íiom rleii inriinsic naruies. 1leieíoie, ir is all rle
moie vise, íiom rle sranuµoinr oí rle lav, ro leave
cusroms unclangeu in so íai as µossiLle. Clanging
cusromaiy convenrions unnecessaiily is ueriimenral,
Lecause oí rle sriong connecrion Lerveen cusroms
anu socieral neeus. Wlen unlealrly cusroms musr
Le alreieu oi ieµealeu, rle µiocess iequiies vise
sriaregies anu musr Le given rime. Heie again, rle
Pioµler`s examµle sers rle µieceuenr, le Liouglr
lis Comµanions inro íull comµliance virl Islamic
noims giauually rliougl a µiocess rlar lasreu moie
rlan rvo uecaues.
Some Nuslims clallenge rle valiuiry oí
inuigenous cusroms Ly ciring rle Hauirl menrioneu
eailiei: ¨Wloevei imirares (taslabbala) a
µeoµle Lelongs ro rlem.¨ As noreu, rle Hauirl
conuemns rle seivile imirarion oí orleis, ir uoes
nor conuemn lealrly culruial inreiacrion oi rle
meie acr oí iesemLling (taslãbala) orlei µeoµle.
1le value oí sucl inreiacrion is esµecially cleai
vlen ir is uone íoi lauuaLle ieasons like living
virl orleis laimoniously anu Luiluing Liiuges oí
unueisranuing anu cooµeiarion. Iuirleimoie, ir
is inuisµuraLle in rle liglr oí a Louy oí aurlenric
Hauirl rlar rle Pioµler limselí oíren voie vaiious
ryµes oí non-Nuslim clorling rlar veie given ro
lim as giírs íiom Byzanrium, Yemen, anu orlei
uisranr iegions.
Wlen inriouuceu ro rlis maxim, ¨cusrom
las rle veiglr oí lav,¨ some Ameiican Nuslims
lave anxieries aLour vlicl inuigenous cusroms aie
acceµraLle anu vlicl aie nor. In ceirain cases, rleii
iesµonse ielecrs rle culruie oí inliLirion in vlicl
many oí rlem giev uµ anu rle geneial µiesumµrion
oí µioliLirion common ro rlar culruie. Ir sloulu
also Le noreu rlar rle voiu ¨culruie¨ las raken on
a µejoiarive meaning íoi many Nuslims in Ameiica,
esµecially rlose vlo come íiom immigianr íamilies.
living islam with purpose

*
()

Ioi rlem, rle voiu ¨culruie¨ is oíren associareu
virl rle olu voilu íolkvays oí rleii µaienrs,
ceirain asµecrs oí vlicl rley may ueem ro Le
¨un-Islamic,¨ in conlicr virl Ameiican noims, oi
orleivise unacceµraLle.
¨Cusrom las rle veiglr oí lav¨ cannor
Le invokeu ro ieµeal vlar is cleaily oLligaroiy
oi µioliLireu in rle Pioµleric lav, anu rle lav
caregoiically ieµuuiares ueriimenral anu uegeneiare
cusroms. Bur, as las Leen seen, Islamic lav rakes an
oµen-minueu arriruue rovaiu cusroms in geneial,
anu, vlen juuging culruial noims, ir µieíeis ro
eii on rle siue oí leniency anu nor iigiuiry. 1le
µiesumµrion oí µeimissiLiliry also aµµlies ro
inuigenous cusroms, cusroms roo musr Le µiesumeu
acceµraLle unril µioven orleivise. A ielevanr
maxim srares: ¨PeimissiLiliry is rle Lasic iule in
cusroms¨ (al-asl þ al-ãJãt al-ibãla).
As Leíoie, rle Luiuen oí µiooí rlar
a µairiculai cusromaiy convenrion
is imµeimissiLle íalls exclusively
on rlose vlo ieµuuiare ir, nor on
rlose vlo aínim ir. Þeveirleless,
in Loiueiline cases, rle lav µieíeis
ro eii on rle siue oí lenience. 1le
aµµlicaLle maxim in rlis iegaiu
srares: ¨1le Lasic iule in cusroms
is exemµrion¨ (al-asl fï al-ãJãt al-
afu), meaning rlar rley aie exemµr
íiom Llame.
*%
Accommouarion oí inuigenous
culruies maue ir µossiLle íoi Islam
ro lay inuigenous ioors vleievei ir
sµieau on rle conrinenrs oí Aíiica
anu Luiasia. Nuslims leaineu nev
veiglrs anu measuiemenrs. 1ley au-
oµreu anu eniicleu local languages.
In auuirion ro rle Islamic lunai calen-
uai, Nuslims auoµreu solai anu asrial calenuais ro
uereimine rle seasons anu rle Lesr rimes íoi µlanr-
ing anu laivesr. 1ley uesigneu uisrincrive sryles
oí uiess, rle long one-µiece gaimenr (tlaub) anu
many orlei irems oí clorling rlar some Nuslims
rouay call ¨Sunna¨ aie laigely culruial µiouucrs
anu uiííei signincanrly íiom rle uiess oí rle Pioµler
anu lis Comµanions. Nuslim culruial genius is srill
ielecreu in simµle rlings like rle vays rley ieceive
guesrs anu µieµaie íoou anu in gianuei aclieve-
menrs like rle µiouucrion oí iegional sryles oí air
anu aiclirecruie.
1liouglour rle µie-mouein µeiiou, local
exµiessions oí Islam Loie virness ro inuigenous
culruial cieariviry. Wlen Islam enreieu Inuonesia,
Nuslims íounu rlar rle sranuaiu Islamic call ro
µiayei (aJlãn) uiu nor alvays seive irs µuiµose.
1le luman voice coulu nor caiiy vell
in rle uense Inuonesian iain íoiesrs.
Nuslims auoµreu rle local culruial
convenrion oí communicaring
rliougl ¨ralking¨ uiums. 1ley
µieseiveu rle Sunna oí making rle
µiayei call Lur comµlemenreu ir
Ly using enoimous uiums, vlicl
rley lung loiizonrally oursiue rleii
mosques anu Lear louuly ro call
µeoµle ro µiayei. 1le ueeµ, lollov
sounus oí rle uiums iesonareu
rliougl rle íoiesrs. 1le uium Lears
signineu rlar rle µlace íiom vlicl
rleii sounu came vas emµry anu
neeueu ro Le nlleu, µeoµle sroµµeu
vlar rley veie uoing anu came ro
µiayei.
In many µairs oí Inuonesia,
Nuslims voikeu in iice µauuies anu
came ro rle mosques virl muuuy
Islam is a religion
of humane
rationales
and practical
objectives.
Application of the
religion in practice
must be consistent
with them. Islam
must make sense,
but, to make
sense, it requires
intelligent
followers
with sound
understanding.
living islam with purpose

*
(*

íeer. Insreau oí ieµeareuly ieminuing rle iice íaim-
eis ro clean rleii íeer Leíoie enreiing rle mosques,
inuigenous aiclirecrs consriucreu slallov µools in
íionr oí rle mosque enriances. 1le íaimeis coulu
nor enrei rle mosques virlour valking rliougl
rlem, vlicl cleaneu rleii íeer. Bur rle sranuing
varei in rle µools cieareu rle µorenrial lazaiu oí
Lecoming laLirars íoi mosquiroes anu orlei insecrs.
So rle µools veie also useu ro Lieeu caiµ, rle nsl
are rle insecr laivae, anu rle µeoµle are rle nsl.
In sµeaking aLour ciearing an inuigenous
Nuslim culruie in rle Unireu Srares, ir musr Le
emµlasizeu rlar sucl a culruie voulu nor Le a
single, monolirlic vlole, noi voulu ir necessaiily
ueveloµ along rle lines oí rle uominanr culruie oi
any µairiculai suLculruie. Ameiican culruie, like
luman culruies eveiyvleie, is nor a single uniíoim
enriry. Ir is a comµlex oí many uiveise culruies anu
suLculruies coexisring. 1ley comµlemenr anu com-
µere againsr eacl orlei anu lave rle same ielarion
virl rle uominanr culruie oí rle mainsrieam. Ln-
uoisemenr oí Ameiican culruie means Leing oµen-
minueu rovaiu all rle mulriµle exµiessions oí rle
inuigenous culruial leiirage. As emµlasizeu Leíoie,
rle maxim ¨culruie las rle veiglr oí lav¨ uisal-
lovs ouriiglr iejecrion oí any oí culruial oi suLcul-
ruial legacy, rle maxim allovs Ameiican Nuslims
ro auoµr oi ro auaµr vlar rley like íiom vlar rley
like as long as ir is nor ueriimenral. Oui arriruue
sloulu iemain consisrenr virl Islam`s ueíaulr µosi-
rion rlar cusroms aie µiesumeu ro Le µeimissiLle,
Lenencial, anu goou unril µioven orleivise, in Loi-
ueiline cases, ve lave iecouise ro rle maxim ¨rle
Lasic iule in cusroms is exemµrion.¨
In riauirional Nuslim socieries, ciearive auaµ-
rarion oí inuigenous noims vas consµicuous anu
oíren moie Lenencial rlan meie auoµrion oí rlem.
Likevise, Ameiican Nuslims neeu nor Le conrenr
virl jusr auoµring goou culruial noims, ir is oí-
ren Lerrei ro auaµr rlem imaginarively in oiuei ro
µiouuce iesulrs rlar aie hcre Leauriíul anu hcre
Lenencial rlan vlar exisreu Leíoie. In rlis iegaiu,
norevoirly aclievemenrs lave alieauy Leen maue
in aieas like music, µoeriy, comeuy, jouinalism, nc-
rion, non-ncrion, íaslion, anu inreiioi uesign.
One oí rle mosr signincanr culruial clallenges
Leíoie Ameiican Nuslims is ro uesign riuly inuig-
enous sryles oí Ameiican mosques. 1le Ameiican
mosque sloulu nor lave a single ser íoim. As srareu
aLove, Ameiican culruie is mulriµlex, Ameiican
mosques musr ielecr rlar comµlexiry anu suir rle
localiries anu neiglLoiloous vleie rley aie Luilr.
Seveial Þoirl Ameiican Nuslim communiries lave
maue lauuaLle eííoirs in rlis uiiecrion alieauy.
1liouglour lisroiy, Nuslim mosques lave
Leen rle µiouucrs oí iegional culruies anu suL-
culruies. Islam uoes nor uicrare a ser uesign íoi
mosques, rle only necessaiy aiclirecruial elemenr
in a mosque is rlar ir lave an aiea íoi µiayei. Some
Nuslims iegaiu uomes anu minaiers as essenrial
íearuies oí rle mosque. 1le Pioµler`s mosque uiu
nor lave a uome oi minaiers uuiing lis liíerime.
Domes anu minaiers veie µosr-Pioµleric culruial
innovarions in rle Nuslim voilu. 1le uome vas
a ielarively lare ueveloµmenr in Islamic aiclirec-
ruie, irs uesign vas cieareu ro allov íoi exµansive
µiayei aieas rlar veie nor raken uµ Ly µillais in an
age vlen Luilueis uiu nor lave access ro iion anu
sreel Leams. Ninaiers veie also larei ueveloµmenrs.
1ley veie iueal íoi making rle call ro µiayei in
an age virlour micioµlones, Lur rley also lau a
seconu µiimaiy µuiµose. ]usr as liglrlouses aie
Leacons íoi sliµs, minaiers veie oiiginally Lea-
cons íoi caiavans. Bonnies veie lir on rle roµs oí
rle minaiers aírei rle niglr µiayei ro give uisranr
caiavans a µoinr oí ieíeience. 1le name ¨minaier¨
living islam with purpose

*
(+

ielecrs rleii oiiginal culruial íuncrion, in AiaLic
hinãra (minaier) means ¨µlace oí nie.¨ Nuslims in
Clina, Anualusia, anu Þoirl anu Wesr Aíiica uiu
nor auoµr uomes oi minaiers, in µair, Lecause rley
uiu nor suir rleii enviionmenrs.
A mosque sloulu nr in laimoniously virl irs
suiiounuings. Hisroiically, rle uesign, sriucruie,
anu lanuscaµing oí mosques veie suireu ro local
anu iegional aiclirecruial noims, roµogiaµly, anu
climare. Nosques sloulu nor clasl virl inuigenous
rasres anu sryles, rley sloulu nor aµµeai our oí
µlace oi give rle imµiession oí Leing íoieign rians-
µlanrs. Like all aiclirecruial aclievemenrs, ciearion
oí Ameiican mosque sryles iequiies airisric, reclni-
cal, anu culruial genius. Ar a rime vlen seculai
aiclirecruie is rle uominanr noim, rle Wesrein
mosque musr Le arriacrive anu inviring Ly rouay`s
sranuaius yer ieauily iuenrinaLle as sacieu sµace.

Ì
CONCLUSION

slam is a ieligion oí lumane iarionales anu
µiacrical oLjecrives. Aµµlicarion oí rle ieligion
in µiacrice musr Le consisrenr virl rlem. Islam
musr make sense, Lur, ro make sense, ir iequiies
inrelligenr íolloveis virl sounu unueisranuing. 1le
nve oµeiarional µiinciµles uiscusseu in rlis µaµei ÷
riusring ieason, iesµecring uissenr, sriessing socieral
oLligarions, serring µiioiiries, anu emLiacing
maxims ÷ lelµ imµair sucl an unueisranuing
anu µioviue rle Lasic guiuelines íoi living Islam
virl µuiµose. 1lese nve µiinciµles leave no íuirlei
jusrincarion íoi inacrion, uysíuncrion, anu meie
íoimaliries. 1ley iequiie oui communiry ro ser
µiioiiries, unueisranu rle clallenges Leíoie rlem,
anu voik ar íulnlling rleii µiivare anu socieral
oLligarions as eííecrively as µossiLle.
Islam in Ameiica las ueeµ lisroiical ioors
rlar go Lack ar leasr as íai as rle colonial µeiiou.
Irs µiesenr ueveloµmenr is ielarively iecenr anu las
occuiieu ovei rle couise oí rle rvenrierl cenruiy.
Because rle Ameiican Nuslim communiry is srill
young, ir las nor raken uennire slaµe oi auoµreu
laiu anu íasr µoinrs oí viev. As srareu in rle inrio-
uucrion: ¨1le Leginnings aie rle maniíesrarion oí
rle enus.¨ Goou Leginnings µiomise goou íuruies,
µurring uovn a sounu íounuarion makes ir µossiLle
ro Luilu an enuuiing euince. Bur rle oµµosire is
also riue. Ir is ciirical íoi Ameiican Nuslims, as ve
move íoivaiu, ro lay sriong íounuarions anu make
nev Leginnings. Dereimining rle vay íoivaiu can-
nor Le leír ro orleis anu cannor Le leír ro clance.
Ar µiesenr, uiííeienr giouµs anu uiííeienr
visions oí Islam comµere íoi rle Ameiican Nuslim
communiry`s allegiance. 1le conresr oí iueologies
vill µioLaLly conrinue íoi yeais ro come, Lur
ulrimarely a µairiculai vision oí Islam is likely ro
µieuominare. Once a uisrincrive vision oí Islam
las Leen eííecrively esraLlisleu among Ameiican
Nuslims, a nev claµrei in rleii lisroiy vill Legin.
1lar vision, once esraLlisleu, vill Lecome Islam`s
ueíaulr µosirion in rle Unireu Srares anu uicrare
íoi geneiarions lov rle Nuslim communiry
unueisranus irselí anu rle voilu aiounu ir. Ir vill
auromarically ser irs ovn µiioiiries anu oLjecrives.
Ulrimarely, rle vision oí Islam rlar comes ro µievail
leie vill Le rle µiimaiy uereiminanr oí vlerlei
Islam succeeus in rle Unireu Srares oi íails. Ií rle
vision oí Islam rlar nnally µieuominares in Ameiica
is aurlenric anu vise, ir vill consrirure a voirly
µieceuenr anu an enuuiing mouel íoi íuirlei
ueveloµmenr. Ií ir is uencienr, ir vill iemain a
consranr oLsracle íoi íuruie geneiarions.
living islam with purpose

*
(,

Oui geneiarion oí Ameiican Nuslims vill
likely µlay rle µivoral iole in rle nisr eííecrive
esraLlislmenr oí Islam in rle Unireu Srares. 1lis lor
is unlikely ro íall ro oui cliluien oi gianucliluien.
1ley vill eirlei Le rle Lenenciaiies oí oui success
oi rle vicrims oí oui íailuie. Inuiííeience rovaiu rle
íuruie oí Nuslims in Ameiica is nor jusr an oííense
ro rle communiry, sucl inuiííeience vill leau ro
iiiemeuiaLle lisroiical misrakes. 1le suµieme
socieral oLligarion rlar íalls uµon oui geneiarion
in Luiluing rle Ameiican Nuslim communiry oí
rle íuruie is ro iuenriíy rle µiioiiries anu µiimaiy
socieral oLligarions rlar concein us anu ro acquiie
rle means ro meer rlem. 1le nve oµeiarional
µiinciµles aie among rle giearesr oí oui iesouices
anu consrirure a necessaiy comµonenr oí evenrual
success.
V68@CDLA:9<:B:CIH: I am ueeµly inueLreu
ro all vlo assisreu me virl rlis µaµei, esµecially (in
alµlaLerical oiuei): ILialim ALuslaiií, Aunan Aiain,
Aíían Aiain, Nazen AsLali, Cima Daiianiel, Issam
Daiianiel, Ayar Llnooiy, Zaieena Gieval, Asim Kamal,
Hislam Nalmouu, AíraL Nalik, Pieaclei Noss, Omei
Nozaííai, Þauial Nolajii, 1aiiq Nolajii, Rami
ÞaslasliLi, Asiía Quiaisli, Omai Quiesli, Iaklia
Rasliu, Huma Rasliu, Kaieem Salama, Hina Soula,
Rooli Younus, anu Asia Yousuíuuuin.
ÞO1LS
&. 1iansmirreu in Salïl ßullãrï, Salïl Muslih, anJ
MusnaJ Ibn Hanbal. Þore: All rianslarions oí
AiaLic rexrs in rlis µaµei aie rle aurloi`s. AiaLic
makes exrensive use oí elliµsis anu las uisrincrive
reiminology, vlicl imµly meanings rlar aie nor
srareu in rle oiiginal rexr oi ieauily unueisroou in
rianslarion. Ir is common ro use Liackers ro claiiíy
rlese meanings anu inuicare rlar rley aie nor lirei-
ally exµiesseu in rle oiiginal. Ií Liackers veie useu
in rle rianslarion aLove, ir voulu ieau: ¨You vill
nnu rlar µeoµle aie mines |oí golu anu silvei]. 1le
Lesr oí you |Leíoie Islam] in rle rime oí ignoiance
aie rle Lesr oí you in Islam ií rley lave unuei-
sranuing |oí rle ieligion].¨ I lave avoiueu rle use
oí Liackers rliouglour rlis µaµei ro make ir easiei
ro ieau.
'. In geneial, Ameiican Nuslims aie vell euucareu
anu laiuvoiking. Pei caµira, rley aie one oí rle
mosr euucareu anu µiosµeious Nuslim commu-
niries in rle voilu. A laige µeicenr lave college
uegiees anu rleii µeicenrage is signincanrly giearei
rlan coiiesµonuing nguies íoi rle Ameiican µoµu-
larion ar laige. Ameiican Nuslims lave a ligl iare
oí emµloymenr anu voik in almosr all µioíessions
íiom raxi uiiveis anu coinei gioceiy sroie ovneis
ro µlysicians, engineeis, anu lavyeis. 1le avei-
age Ameiican Nuslim income is ielarively ligl,
making rlem among rle moie aíluenr segmenrs
oí rle Ameiican µoµularion. See Paul Baiierr,
Aherican Islah (Þev Yoik: Iaiiai, Sriaus, anu
Giioux, '%%,), .-&%. Comµaie rle moie con-
seivarive esrimares oí rle Pev Reseaicl Cenrei
suivey: lrrµ://µeoµle-µiess.oig/ieµoirs/uisµlay.
µlµ(·ReµoirID=('..
(. Þore: I use rle voiu ¨Hauirl¨ rliouglour rlis µa-
µei íoi Lorl rle singulai anu µluial íoims.
). Susan Sµecroisky, ¨Sunnal in rle Resµonses oí
Isläq iLn Rälavayl,¨ in Beinaiu G. Weiss, eu.
StuJies in Islahic Iegal Tlecry (Leiuen: Biill,
'%%'), ,%.
living islam with purpose

*
(-

*. ALu al-Kaiïm iLn ILiälïm al-]ïlï, Al-Insãn al-
Kãhil fï Marifat al-Auãllir ua al-Auã´il (Caiio:
NarLaar al-HalaLï, &.,%), &'.
+. Almau iLn Nulammau iLn Arä`-Alläl al-
Sakanuaiï, Al-Hilah al-Atã´iyya ua al-Munãjãl
al-Ilãliyya (Damascus: al-NarLaar al-Häslimiyya,
n.u.), +,.
,. 1le nve µillais aie rle resrimony oí íairl, µiayei,
íasring, alms, anu µilgiimage.
-. 1le nve acr classincarions aie: oLligaroiy (uãjib,
farJ), iecommenueu (hanJüb), µeimissiLle
(hubãl), ieµielensiLle (halrül), anu íoiLiuuen
(larãh). 1lese nve acr classincarions ielecr rle
nuances oí Islamic erlics. 1ley can Le uiviueu inro
rvo uisrincr counreiµairs suiiounueu Ly vaiying
slaues oí giay. 1le counreiµairs aie rle íoiLiuuen
anu rle oLligaroiy. 1le iemaining rliee classinca-
rions consrirure vaiying uegiees oí erlical sriengrl
anu veakness. 1le íoiLiuuen is caregoiically
viong, moially iniquirous, anu musr nevei Le uone.
Irs counreiµair, rle oLligaroiy, is caregoiically
goou, moially Linuing, anu musr alvays Le uone.
As íoi rle rliee maiginal caregoiies, ir is allovaLle
ro µeiíoim any oí rlem, alrlougl rleii erlical mei-
irs uiííei giearly. 1le ieµielensiLle ouglr nor Le
uone. Yer ir is neirlei caregoiically viong noi iniq-
uirous, rleieíoie, ir may Le uone virlour incuiiing
iniquiry oi ueseiving Llame. 1le µeimissiLle is neu-
rial, ir lacks erlical uisrincrion anu may oi may nor
Le uone, as one clooses, virlour ueseiving µiaise
oi Llame. 1le iecommenueu is lauuaLle anu goou,
one ouglr ro uo ir anu ueseives µiaise íoi uoing so,
yer íailuie ro µeiíoim vlar is iecommenueu incuis
no iniquiry oi Llame.
.. 1iansmirreu in Salïl ßullãrï, Salïl Muslih, anu
orlei aurloiirarive Hauirl souices.
&%. Nulammau iLn Nulammau al-Glazälï, Ilyã´
Ulüh al-Dïn, ) vols. (Damascus: NakraLar ALu
al-Wakïl al-DuiuLï, nu.), &:,(.
&&. Accoiuing ro Alï iLn Nulammau al-Bassämï,
rle ren elemenrs oí moial claiacrei aie: &) ieason
(aql), ') sounu ieligious µiacrice (Jïn), () knovl-
euge (ilh), )) íoiLeaiance (lilh), *) magnanimiry
(jüJ), +) riurlíulness (siJq), ,) íulnlling moial oL-
ligarions (birr), -) µarience (sabr), .) rlankíulness
(slulr), anu &%) lenience (lïn).
&'. ¨Rarionalism¨ in Islamic rleology ieíeis ro any
merlouology rlar makes ieason a µiinciµal uevice
íoi ieacling rle essence oí ievelaroiy riurl. 1le
Nurazilï, Aslaiï, anu Näruiïuï sclools veie all
iarionalisr in rlis sense anu ielieu uµon ieason ro
inreiµier ievelarion, esµecially vlen rle rvo aµ-
µeaieu ro conlicr. Lacl oí rle sclools uemonsriar-
eu inrellecrual consisrence anu soµlisricarion. In
some iegaius, Nurazilï iarionalism vas less oiigi-
nal anu moie lireial rlan rle orlei rvo sclools. In
rle vell-knovn conrioveisies ovei rle ereiniry oí
uivine sµeecl anu rle Learinc vision, rle Nurazilïs
insisreu on lireial uennirions oí sµeecl anu siglr as
rle naruial µlenomena rlar luman Leings call Ly
rlose names. 1le Aslaiïs anu Näruiïuïs, on rle
orlei lanu, aigueu rlar iesriicrion oí rlese anu
similai voius in ieligious language ro rleii lireial
meanings vlen ralking aLour Gou consrirureu íalse
analogies Lerveen rle urreily uisµaiare voilus
oí rle luman anu rle uivine, rle cieareu anu rle
uncieareu, anu rle seen anu rle unseen, vleie no
knovn analogies aµµly. 1le Aslaiïs anu Näruiïuïs
aigueu rlar ieligious language rook on uiííeienr
meanings in uiííeienr meraµlysical conrexrs. Wlile
rle Nurazilï anu Aslaiï sclools aie liglly uialec-
rical, rle rleology oí rle Näruiïuïs sranus our íoi
irs sysremaric merlouology anu inueµenuence oí
rlouglr. Wesrein acauemics lave oíren aigueu rlar
rle uemise oí rle Nurazilï sclool among Sunnïs
(ir conrinues ro Le rle µiinciµal rleological sclool
oí rle Slïïs) seveiely limireu rle iole oí ieason in
Islamic lav. 1lis norion giovs our oí a coníusion
Lerveen rle rleological iarionalism oí Nurazilï
erlics anu rle íunuamenrally uiííeienr µiagmaric
moue oí ieasoning in Islamic lav, vlicl vas
laigely unaííecreu Ly rle giear rleological ueLares
anu conrinueu unaLareu long aírei rle Nurazilïs.
1le Nurazilïs lau lirrle eííecr on rle ueveloµmenr
oí Islamic µosirive lav. Nosr oí rlem íolloveu rle
living islam with purpose

*
(.

Hanaíï sclool oí lav anu sav no conriauicrion
Lerveen rleii rleological anu legal µosirions. See
Umai I. ALu-Allal, ¨1leological uimensions oí
Islamic lav¨ in Tle CahbriJge Cchjanicn tc Is-
lahic Tleclcgy, eu. 1. ]. Winrei (CamLiiuge: Cam-
Liiuge Univeisiry Piess, íoirlcoming).
&(. ]äLii iLn Hayyän, Kitãb al-Sabïn (Iiankíuir:
Nalau 1äiïkl al-Ulum al-AiaLiyya, &.-+).
&). See Klayi al-Dïn al-Ziiiklï, Al-Alãh: _ãhüs
Tarãjih li-Asllar al-Bijãl ua al-Nisã´ hin al-Arab
ua al-Mustaribïn ua al-Mustaslriqïn, - vols.
(Beiiur: Däi al-Ilm li-al-Naläyïn, &..'), *:(&-.
&*. See al-Ziiiklï, Al-Alãh, +:(&(.
&+. See Umai I. ALu-Allal, ¨Innovarion anu Cieariviry
in Islam,¨ ar lrrµ://vvv.navavi.oig/uovnloaus/
airicle).µuí
&,. 1le mosr íiequenrly cireu ieasons íoi emLiacing
Islam aie: &) simµliciry oí uocriine, ') iarionaliry
(ieasonaLleness), () aLsolure monorleism, )) rlis-
voiluly íocus, *) anu lack oí a µiiesrloou. See
Laiiy Posron, Islahic Daual in tle Vest (Þev
Yoik: Oxíoiu Univeisiry Piess, &..'), &,+-,-.
&-. Þore rle íacr rlar Lelieí in Gou`s oneness, rle
Lasr ]uugmenr, rle µioliLirion oí muiuei, anu
many orlei Lelieís anu iulings aie caregoiically
aurloiirarive uoes nor mean rlar rley aie on a
µai virl eacl orlei in reims oí rleii rleological
imµoirance. Ir means rlar rleie can Le no uouLr
rlar eacl oí rlem is an esraLlisleu µair oí Qui`anic
anu Pioµleric reacling. As sucl, rley musr Le
acknovleugeu as valiu Ly anyone vlo claims ro
Lelieve in rle Qui`an anu rle Pioµler.
&.. 1lese numLeis aie Laseu on conriaiy Hauirl
oí µiesumµrive aurlenriciry. One srares rlar rle
numLei oí Pioµlers rlar Gou senr rliouglour
luman lisroiy vas &'),%%%, anorlei riansmission
sers rle numLei ar ''),%%%. Because rle numLeis
aie conjecruial, Nuslim may acceµr eirlei numLei
oi uisiegaiu rlem Lorl.
'%. See Umai I. ALu-Allal, ¨1le Piinciµal Imams anu
1leii Sclools,¨ &) CDs (Clicago: 1le Þavavi
Iounuarion, '%%)), also see iLiu., ¨Nälik`s Conceµr
oí Amal in rle Liglr oí Nälikï Legal 1leoiy,¨ '
vols. (Univeisiry oí Clicago Pl.D. uisseirarion,
&.,-), &:&'&-',..
'&. SliläL al-Dïn Almau iLn Iuiïs al-Qaiäíï, Al-Illãh
fï Tahyïz al-íatãuã an al-Allãh ua Tasarrufãt
al-_ãJï ua al-Ihãh (Beiiur: Däi al-Baslä`ii al-
Islämiyya, &..*), .., &%.-&&.
''. ALu al-Kaiïm al-Riíäï anu orleis, Slarl ]aularat
al-TaulïJ li-al-Ihãh al-Allãha al-Slayll Ibrãlïh
al-ßãjürï (n.µ.: n.µ., &.,'), &---.'.
'(. See Nulammau ALu al-Hayy al-Karränï, Nizãh
al-Hulüha al-Nabauiyya al-Musahhã bi al-
Tarãtïb al-IJãriyya, ' vols. (Beiiur: Däi al-Aiqam,
n.u.), ':,.--..
'). Ny ieíeience íoi rle use oí comeuians íoi menral
anu meuical rleiaµy is Di. Nolameu Seiag,
µioíessoi oí Islamic lav ar rle Ameiican Univeisiry
oí Caiio. 1le rleiaµeuric use oí music goes Lack
ro rle ancienrs anu is vell arresreu in Islamic
civilizarion. Anualusian Nuslims lelu rlar ceirain
musical keys veie moie eííecrive rlan orleis in
riearing µairiculai menral illnesses. 1le Þavavi
Iounuarion visireu an Islamic meuical museum
in 1uikey oursiue rle ciry oí Luiine in '%%). 1le
museum conraineu an exliLirion on rle rleiaµeuric
use oí loLLies anu music in riauirional Islamic
meuicine.
'*. Al-Ziiiklï, Al-Alãh, &:.)-.*, Almau iLn Iuiïs al-
Qaiäíï, Nafã´is al-Usül fï Slarl al-Malsül, Äuil
ALu al-Navjuu anu Alï al-Nuavvau, eus., .
vols. (Nakka: NakraLar Þazzäi Nusraíä al-Bäz,
&..,), &:))&-)'.
'+. Ir las Lecome cusromaiy íoi ceirain Nuslims ro
iejecr ouriiglr rlis anu similai Hauirl on giounus
oí veakness. A veak Hauirl is nor a íalse Hauirl,
a veak Hauirl is a µiesumaLly aurlenric Hauirl,
rle aurlenriciry oí vlicl cannor Le veiineu. 1lis
ieµoir Lelongs ro rle caregoiy oí µoµulai Hauirl,
Lecause mosr Nuslims lave leaiu oí ir anu oíren
ieíei ro ir. 1le Hauirl is iecoiueu in iesµecraLle
collecrions like rlose oí al-Baylaqï, al-1aLaiänï,
living islam with purpose

*
)%

anu al-Daylamï. A numLei oí ienovneu sclolais,
among rlem al-KlarräLï anu al-Þavavï, ueíenueu
ir. Al-Baylaqï riansmirs a µaiallel riansmission,
vlicl ieaus as íollovs: ¨Wlarevei las Leen given
you oí rle Book oí Gou, no one is excuseu íiom
nor µurring ir inro µiacrice. Ií rleie is norling in rle
Book oí Gou, rlen íollov a vell-esraLlisleu Sunna
íiom me. Ií rleie is no Sunna íiom me, rlen íollov
vlar my Comµanions lave saiu. Ny Comµanions
aie like rle srais in rle sky, vliclevei oí rlem
you íollov, you vill Le iiglrly guiueu: 1le uiííei-
ences oí my Comµanions aie a meicy íoi you.¨
Al-KlarräLï saiu in lis uiscussion oí rlis Hauirl:
¨1leie aie rliee ryµes oí uissenr in rle ieligion.
1le nisr µeirains ro aíniming rle exisrence oí rle
Nakei anu His oneness. 1o ueny ir is uisLelieí.
1le seconu µeirains ro rle naruie oí His arriiLures
anu His vill. 1o ueny rlem is an innovarion. 1le
rliiu µeirains ro iulings íiom vaiious µeisµec-
rives in rle conjecruial (hultahila) ueiivarions
(furü) oí rle lav. Gou las maue rlis a meicy anu
uisrincrive lonoi (larãha) íoi rle sclolais. 1lis
is vlar is meanr Ly rle Hauirl: '1le uiííeiences
oí oµinion oí my narion aie a meicy`.¨ See Ismäïl
iLn Nulammau al-Ajlunï, Kaslf al-Klafã´ ua
Muzïl al-Ilbãs ahhã Isltalara hin al-AlãJïtl alã
Alsinat al-Nãs (Beiiur: Däi al-KuruL al-Ilmiyya,
&.--), +)-++.
',. Al-Ajlunï, Kaslf al-Klafã´, +)-++#
'-. See Alï iLn al-Qassäi, Al-MuqaJJiha fï al-Usül,
(Beiiur: Däi al-GlaiL al-Islämï, &..+), &&)-&*,
ALu al-Walïu al-Bäjï, Illãh al-íusül fï Allãh al-
Usül, ' vols. (Beiiur: Däi al-GlaiL al-Islämï, &..*),
':,&)-&+, anu Umai I. ALu-Allal, ¨Cieariviry anu
Innovarion in Islam¨ ar lrrµ://vvv.navavi.oig/
uovnloaus/airicle).µuí.
'.. Geoige Nakuisi, Tle Bise cf Huhanish in Clas-
sical Islah anJ tle Clristian Vest: uitl Sjecial
Beference tc Sclclasticish, (LuinLuigl: LuinLuigl
Univeisiry Piess, &..%), ''-'., see also iLiu., Tle
Bise cf Cclleges: Instituticns cf Iearning in Islah
anJ tle Vest (LuinLuigl: LuinLuigl Univeisiry
Piess, &.-&), &%--&&, &)--*%.
(%. 1le Hauirl is riansmirreu Ly al-1iimiulï, ILn
Näjal, anu Almau iLn HanLal. Al-1iimiulï classi-
nes irs uegiee oí aurlenriciry as goou. 1le Hauirl`s
naiiaroi uennes ¨oLscuiiry¨ (ahã´), vlicl also
means ¨Llinuness,¨ as soliraiy exisrence virlour
rle exisrence oí any orlei rling. 1le AiaLic voiu
ahã´ also ieíeis ro a ryµe oí leavy clouu coveiing.
Commenrarois say rlar rle Pioµler`s ieíeience ro
rleie Leing no armosµleie aLove oi Lelov rle liu-
uenness vas meanr ro iemove rle µossiLle misµei-
ceµrion rlar Gou lau Leen in a Lank oí clouus.
(&. 1le Innei-Ciry Nuslim Acrion Þervoik (INAÞ)
las iecenrly reameu uµ virl rle Aµµlieu Reseaicl
Cenrei (ARC) ro µuLlisl a communiry-uiiven ie-
seaicl uocumenr on rlis suLjecr. Ioi moie uerails,
µlease see: lrrµ://vvv.imancenrial.oig.
('. Salïl Muslih, Sunan al-Nisã´ï, Sunan Ibn Mãjal,
anu MusnaJ al-Imäm Almau iLn HanLal.
((. Wolílair Heiniicls, ¨_auãiJ as a Genie oí Legal
Lireiaruie,¨ (,'.
(). I µieíei ro rianslare rle AiaLic voiu nasl as ¨clil-
uien,¨ Lecause oí rle µalµaLle naruie oí rle voiu
anu rle cenrialiry oí cliluien in Islam anu in rle
vellLeing oí íamilies anu socieries. ¨Cliluien¨ is a
valiu rianslarion oí rle voiu nasl in irs íunuamen-
ral lexical sense oí al-ualaJ, nasl is oíren ienueieu
as µiogeny, vlicl is anorlei valiu rianslarion oí
rle voiu in rle lexical sense oí al-Jlurriyya. In
AiaLic, rle seconu meaning, ¨µiogeny,¨ essenrially
means ¨geneiarions oí cliluien.¨ As a majoi oLjec-
rive oí Islamic lav, µiorecrion oí cliluien is closely
rieu ro rle insrirurion oí rle íamily. Nuslim sclol-
ais íiequenrly use rle voiu nasab (lineage) in irs
µlace.
(*. Lirrle mareiial on Islamic legal maxims exisrs in
Lnglisl. 1le Lesr availaLle souices aie rle CD
ser oí Slaykl ALuallal Lin Bayyal anu rle rvo
acauemic airicles oí Wolílair Heiniicls, men-
rioneu Lelov. 1le maxims srareu rliouglour rlis
µaµei anu many oí rle oLseivarions ielareu ro
rlem come íiom a vaiiery oí ieíeiences. 1le mosr
imµoiranr aie rle íolloving, vlicl aie also rle
living islam with purpose

*
)&

µiinciµal souices íoi mosr oí rle ielevanr Qui`anic
veises anu Hauirl cireu in conjuncrion virl rle
maxims: ALu-Alläl iLn ALu al-Azïz al-Ajlän,
Al-_auãiJ al-Kubrã fï al-íiql al-Islãhï (Riyaul:
Däi 1ayLa, &..+), YaquL iLn ALu al-WalläL
al-BäHusayn, _ãiJat al-Uhür bi-MaqãsiJilã:
Dirãsa Nazariyya ua Ta´sïliyya (Riyaul: NakraLar
al-Ruslu, &...), Slaykl ALuallal Lin Bayyal,
¨1le Legal Plilosoµly oí Islam,¨ &( CDs (San
]ose: AllamLia Piouucrions, '%%%), Alï Almau
al-Þauavï, Mausüat al-_auãiJ ua al-Dauãbit
al-íiqliyya al-Hãliha li-al-Muãhalãt al-Mãliyya
fï al-íiql al-Islãhï, ( vols. (n. µ.: Däi Älam al-
Naiiía, &...), Wolílair Heiniicls, ¨Sriucruiing
rle Lav: Remaiks on rle íurüq Lireiaruie,¨ in Ian
Riclaiu Þerron, eu., StuJies in Hcncur cf CliffcrJ
íJhunJ ßcsucrtl, vol. &: Hunter cf tle íast: Ara-
bic anJ Sehitic StuJies (Leiuen: Biill, '%%%), µµ.
(('-)), iLiu, ¨_auãiJ as a Genie oí Legal Lireia-
ruie,¨ in Beinaiu G. Weiss, eu. StuJies in Islahic
Iegal Tlecry (Leiuen: Biill, '%%'), µµ. (+*--),
|1aqï al-Dïn Almau iLn 1aymiyya], Al-_auãiJ
al-íiqliyya al-Klahs al-Kubrã ua al-_auãiJ al-
MunJarija Taltalã: ]ah ua Dirãsa hin Majhü
íatãuã Slayll al-Islãh Ibn Tayhiyya, Ismäïl iLn
Hasan iLn Nulammau Alvän, eu. (Riyaul: Däi
iLn al-]avzï, '%%%), anu Almau iLn al-Slaykl
Nulammau al-Zaiqä, eu. Nusraíä al-Zaiqä, Slarl
al-_auãiJ al-íiqliyya (Damascus: Däi al-Qalam,
&..-).
(+. Sunan Abï DãuüJ anu MusnaJ al-Ihãh AlhaJ
ibn Hanbal. Al-1iimiuli riansmirs rle Hauirl virl
a sliglrly uiííeienr voiuing: ¨Wloevei imirares
orlei rlan us is nor oí us.¨
(,. ILn 1aymiyya, Al-_auãiJ al-íiqliyya, &''.
(-. Akiam Diyä` al-Amiï, Al-Sïra al-Nabauiyya al-
Salïla, ' volumes (Neuina: NakraLar al-Ulum va
al-Hikam, &..)), ': )*%-*&.
(.. ILn 1aymiyya, Al-_auãiJ al-íiqliyya, '&,.
)%. See al-Þauavi, Al-_auãiJ ua al-Dauãbit, +%.
)&. ILn 1aymiyya, Al-_auãiJ al-íiqliyya, '%+, '&&-
&-.
)'. I am using ¨µariiaicly¨ in rle sense uenneu Ly
Asma Bailas as: ¨A µolirics oí sexual uiííeienriarion
rlar µiivileges males Ly 'riansíoiming Liological
sex inro µoliricizeu genuei, vlicl µiioiirizes rle
male vlile making rle voman uiííeienr (unequal),
less rlan, oi rle 'Orlei`.¨ See Asma Bailas, ¨ße-
lieiing Vchen" in Islah: UnreaJing íatriarclal
Interjretaticns cf tle _ur´ãn (Ausrin: Univeisiry oí
1exas Piess, '%%'), &'.
)(. See Umai I. ALu-Allal, ¨Iamous Women in Is-
lam,¨ &) CDs (Clicago: Þavavi Iounuarion,
'%%)).
)). 1le íamily name ¨Samaiqanuï¨ means ¨íiom Sa-
maiqanu.¨ Hei íamily vas Syiian Lur oiiginally
laileu íiom Cenrial Asia.
)*. Umai Riuä Kalläla, Alãh al-Nisã´ þ Ãlahay al-
Arab ua al-Islãh, * vols. (Beiiur: Nua`ssasar al-
Risäla, &..&), ):.)-.*, see also Umai I. ALu-Allal,
¨Iamous Women in Islam,¨ &) CDs (Clicago:
Þavavi Iounuarion, '%%)).
)+. See Umai I. ALu-Allal, ¨Islam anu rle Culruial
Imµeiarive,¨ lrrµ://vvv.navavi.oig/uovnloaus/
airicle(.µuí
),. ¨Islam anu rle Culruial Imµeiarive,¨ µ. *.
)-. 1leie vas no monolirlic AiaL culruie in µie-Is-
lamic AiaLia. Like culruies ovei rle voilu, µie-
Islamic AiaLian culruie vas uiveise anu maue uµ
oí numeious suLculruies. 1le culruial noims oí
rle µie-Islamic AiaLs as vell as rleii uialecrs uií-
íeieu noraLly íiom iegion ro iegion anu íiom riiLe
ro riiLe. One oí rle imµoiranr consequences oí rle
Pioµler`s migiarion ro Neuina is rlar ir enmesleu
lim anu lis íolloveis in rle culruial noims oí Ne-
uina, vlicl vaiieu noraLly íiom rlose oí Necca.
).. See ALu-Allal, ¨Islam anu rle Culruial
Imµeiarive.¨
*%. ILn 1aymiyya, Al-_auãiJ al-íiqliyya, ''+-'-.

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