Author: Taha Jabir Al Alwani
Translator(s)/ Editors(s): Abdul Wahid Hamid/A S al Shaikh-Ali
Publisher: Institute of Objective Studies
ISBN/UPC (if available): 9788190477338
The Ethics of Disagreement may be perceived as an explanation of the etiquette envisioned by Islam for all those engaged in discourse and intellectual dialogue. To a great extent, the book is an exposition of the higher principles and purposes of the Shari’ah which provide Muslims with perspectives far vaster than those afforded by pedantic debate over points of law and procedure, or fine distinctions between conflicting theological argument.
In fact, experience has shown that long immersion in such futile debate often renders the mind incapable of comprehending real situations and making value judgments on changing circumstances.
Since the book was originally intended to address opposing Islamic political parties in one particular part of the Muslim world, the author went to great lengths to give examples from classical Muslim historical experience. In particular, he analyzes instances of judicial disagreement between the early fuqaha’, differences that were not allowed to go beyond the academic or to cause hard feelings among the debaters and dissenters alike. Certainly, the differences between those early scholars never led them to lose sight of the higher purposes of the Shari’ah or their responsibilities.
Although this book may more appropriately be titled The Ethics of Disagreement between the classical Jurists, it nonetheless serves as a useful introduction to the subject of disagreement in genera. It also lays down for contemporary Muslims many commendable examples of forbearance and understanding on the part of some of the greatest personalities and scholars in Muslim history. In this lies the utility of this book. And it is the revival of this spirit that allows contemporary Muslims to look forward to the future with hope.
Preface Introduction to the English Edition Chapter One: The Malaise of Discord Chapter Two: The Spectrum of Disagreement Chapter Three: The Historical Context (1) : The Prophet’s Lifetime Chapter Four: The Historical Context (2) : The First Generation Chapter Five: The Historical Context (3) : The Second Generation Chapter Six: Juristic Perspectives Chapter Seven: Reasons for Differences Chapter Eight: Knowledge and Refinement Chapter Nine: After the Illustrious Age Chapter Ten: The Way Forward Glossary Index of Qur’anic Verses Index of Hadith Texts General Index