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Unformatted text preview: monym may be due to the usage of different Arab tribes and communities. Some used it for one meaning, others for the other. Otherwise a word may have acquired a metaphorical meaning which became literal in course of time. When Mushtarak occurs in the Qur'an or Sunnah, it denotes one meaning alone, not more than one. For the Lawgiver does not intend more than one meaning for a word at any given time. The Shafi'is and some Mutazilah have taken exception to this view as they maintain that in the absence of any indication in support of one of the two or more meanings of a Mushtarak, both or all may be upheld simultaneously provided that they do not contradict one another. According to a variant view, however, plurality of meanings on a simultaneous basis is permissible in negation or denial (nafy) but not in affirmation and proof (ithbat). If, for example, Ahmad says 'I did not see a 'ayn (ma ra'aytu 'aynan)', 'ayn in this negative statement could comprise all of its various meanings. But if Ahmad says 'I saw a 'ayn', than 'ayn in this statement must be used for only one of its several meanings. Principles of Islamic Jurisprudence ~ Kamali 116 [80. Abu Zahrah, Usul, p. [81. Shawkani, Irshad, p. 21; Isnawi, Nihayah, I, 166; Abu Zahrah, Usul, p. 133.] This view, however, does not extend to commands and prohibitions which do not admit of affirmation or denial as such. The rule in regard to commands and prohibitions of the Shari'ah is that the Lawgiver does not intend to uphold more than one of the different meanings of a homonym at any given time. An [79. example of a homonym which occurs in the context of a Qur'anic command is the word 'yad' (hand) in 'as for the thief, male or female, cut off their hands' (al-Ma'idah, 5:38). 'Hand' in this ayah has not been qualified in any way, hence it can mean 'hand' from the tip of the fingers up to the wrist, or up to the elbow, or even up to the shoulder; it also means left or right hand. But the ulema have agreed on the first and the last of these meanings, that is, the right hand, up to the wrist. [82. Khallaf, 'Ilm, p. 180.] To illustrate the homonym in the context of a prohibitory order in the Qur'an we refer to the word 'nakaha' in sura al-Nisa' (4:22) which reads, 'and marry not women whom your fathers had married (ma nakaha aba'ukum)'. 'Nakaha' is a homonym which means both marriage and sexual intercourse. The Hanafis, the Hanbalis, al-Awza'i and others have upheld the latter, whereas the Shafi'is and the Malikis have upheld the former meaning of nakaha. According to the first view, a woman who has had sexual intercourse with a man is forbidden to his children and grandchildren; a mere contract of marriage, without consummation, would thus not amount to a prohibition in this case. The Shafi'is and Malikis, however, maintain that the text under discussion only refers to the contract of marriage. Accordingly a woman who has entered a contract of marriage with one's father or grandfather is unlawful for one to marry regardless as to whether the marriage had been consummated or not . [83. Bad...
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