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Unformatted text preview: will not be harmed by the opposition of opponents: 8. Whoever separates himself from the community and dies, dies the death of ignorance (jahiliyyah): 9. And finally, the well-known saying of 'Abdullah b. Mas'ud which is as follows: 'Whatever the Muslims deem to be good is good in the eyes of God. [40. Amidi considers this to be a Hadith whose chain of narration goes back to the Prophet (see his Ihkam, I, 214). Ahmad Hasan points out that Muhammad b. Hasan al- Shaybani initially reported this as a Hadith, but later it was attributed to Ibn Mas'ud (see his Doctrine, p. 37).] Having quoted these (and other) ahadith, both al-Ghazali and al-Amidi observe that their main theme and purport has not been opposed by the Companions, the Successors and others throughout the ages, and that everyone has agreed on their broad outline. The ulema have continued to rely on them in their exposition of the general and detailed rules of the Shari'ah. In answer to the point that all these are solitary (ahad) reports which do not amount to a definitive proof, the same authors observe that the main purport of these ahadith nevertheless conveys positive knowledge, and that the infallibility of the ummah is sustained by their collective weight [41. Ghazali, Mustasfa; I, 111; Amidi, Ihkam, I, 220-221.] The point may be illustrated by saying that we know the courage of `Ali, the generosity of Hatim, the erudition of alShafi'i in fiqh, and the esteem in which the Prophet held his Companions, despite the absence of Mutawatir reports on these subjects. Although the foregoing ahadith are all Ahad and could be subjected to doubt if taken individually, their collective import may, nevertheless, not be denied. Ghazali, Mustasfa, I, 112.] As to the question whether 'dalalah' and `khata' ', in these ahadith (especially in the first four) could mean disbelief (kufr) and heresy (bid'ah) with the view that the Prophet might have meant that his Principles of Islamic Jurisprudence ~ Kamali 166 [42. community shall not fall into disbelief, it is observed that khata' is general and could include kufr but that dalalah does not, for dalalah only means an error or erroneous conduct. [43. Ghazali, Mustasfa, I, 112: We find in the Qur'an, for example, in an address to the Prophet Muhammad: And He found then wondering [dallan] and gave thee guidance (al-Duha, 93:7). In another place the Qur'an relates of Moses the following words: `He said: I did it then [i.e. slayed the Egyptian] when I was in error' (al-Shu'ara', 26:20). In both these instances dalal does not imply disbelief. Similarly the Arabic expression dalla fulan `an al-tariq (so-and-so lost his way) confirms the same meaning of dalal.] If dalalah meant disbelief, then the ahadith under discussion would fail to provide an authority for the infallibility of the ummah, but if it meant an error only, then they could provide such authority. Mustasfa, I, 112: We find in the Qur'an, for example, in an address to the Prophet Muhammad: And He found then wondering [dallan] and gave thee guidance (al- Duha, 93:7). In another place the Qur'an re...
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This note was uploaded on 04/13/2013 for the course ISLAM 101 taught by Professor Islam during the Spring '13 term at Harvey Mudd College.
- Spring '13