FROM GOD'S NATURE TO GOD'S LAW: THEOLOGY, LAW AND LEGAL THEORY IN ISLAM
MUSTAFA, ABDUL RAHMAN
OPWIS, FELICITAS MM
This study explores the ways in which theological ideas regarding the nature of God shaped the jurisprudential and legal landscape of Islam in the classical period. Focusing on the traditionalist theological and jurisprudential thought of the Ḥanbalī intellectuals Ibn Taymiyyah (d. 728/1328) and Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah (also known as Ibn al-Qayyim) (d. 751/1350) this study traces the way in which these two scholars developed a critique of the dominant theological-jurisprudential tradition of their day, which was influenced by dialectical theology. Against the dialectical theologians, Ibn Taymiyyah and Ibn al-Qayyim argued that an authentically fideist, consistent and rational theory of Islamic law could only emerge from an acceptance of the reality of God’s voluntary attributes. The study situates these debates on the influence of theology on law and legal theory in Islamic history within an overall account of the influence of theology on modern Anglo-American law and secularism. It concludes by remarking upon the ways in which classical discussions on the relationship between Islamic theology and legal theory have been appropriated and utilized in the modern period to ground disparate theories of Islamic legal reform, ranging from Islamic secularism and liberalism to neo-traditionalism.
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