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Treatise on the Foundations of Islamic Jurisprudence pdf

Treatise on the Foundations of Islamic Jurisprudence – al-Risālah – كتاب الرسالة للشافعي in English Pdf Download

Shaafi Risaala Treatise On The Foundations Of Islamic Jurisprudence
📘 Book Title: Treatise On The Foundations Of Islamic Jurisprudence
👤 Book Author:Imam al-Shafi'
🖨️ Total Pages387
🏷️ Size of Book:62 Mb
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What is al-Bayan? ((Al-bayan may mean either the substance of a certain Quranic communication or making clear the meaning of ‘that substance. The nearest equivalent for the first is speech or declaration; for the second, making lucid or perspicuous.

Since both meanings are often implied in ShafiT, usage, the combined terminology ” perspicuous declaration ” has been chosen. For the meaning of al-bayiln, see al-Ghazzili, al-Mustasfa, Vol. I, pp. 153-54; al-Baqillani, r;az al-Qur’dn, ed. Al)mad Saqr (Cairo, 1954), pp. 69-70, 31.9:320; and the Translator’s Introduction pp. 33-34, above.))

Shafii said: AI-Bayanis a collective term for a variety of meanings that have common roots but differing ramifications. The least [common denominator] of these linked but diverging meanings is that they are [all] a perspicuous declaration for those to whom they are addressed, and in whose tongue the Qur’an was revealed; they are of almost equal value for these persons, although some declarations were made emphatically clearer than others, though they differed [in clarity] to persons ignorant of the Arab tongue.

 Shafi’i said: The sum-total of what God has declared to His creatures in His Book, by which He invited them to wor­ ship• Him in accordance with His prior decision, includes various categories.

One of these is what He has declared to His creatures by texts [in the Qur’an], such as the aggregate of duties owing to Him: That they shall perform the prayer, pay the zakat (alms tax), perform the pilgrimage, and observe the fast.

And that He has forbidden disgraceful acts •-both visible and hidden-and in the textual [prohibition of] adultery, [the drinking of] wine, eating [the flesh of] dead things and of blood and pork; and He has made clear to them how to perform the duty of [the major] ablution, as well as other matters, stated precisely in the text [of the Quran].

Obligation established by the Book

A second category consists of [those duties] the obligation of which He established in His Book, but the modes of which He made clear by the tongue of His Prophet. The number of prayers [each day] and the [amount of] zakat and their time [of fulfillment] are cases in point, but there are other [similar] duties which He has revealed in His Book.

The third category consists of that which the Apostle of God established by example or exhortation, but in ·regard to which there is no precisely defined rule from God [in the Qur’an]. For God has laid down in His Book the obligation of obedience to His Apostle and recourse to his decision. So he who accepts [a duty] on the authority of the Apostle of God accepts it by the obligation imposed by God.

A fourth category consists of what God commanded His creatures to seek through ijtihad (personal reasoning) & and by it put their obedience to the test exactly as He tried their obedience by other duties which He had ordered them [to fulfill], for the Blessed and Most High said:


The Abrogating and Abrogated [Communications]

Shafi’i said: God indeed created humankind for whatever His established knowledge desired in creating it and for whatever [its destiny] should be.

There is no reversal at all of His judgment, He is swift of reckoning And he revealed to them the Book that explains everything, as a guide, 16 and mercy.1 In it He laid down some duties which he confirmed, and others which He abrogated, as a mercy to His people so as to lighten their burden and to comfort them in addition to the favors which He had begun to bestow upon them.

For the fulfillment [of the duties]. He confirmed He rewarded them with Paradise and with salvation from His punishment. His mercy has included all of them in what He confirmed and what He abrogated. Praise be to Him for His favors.

Shafii said: 1 God has declared ·that He abrogated [communications] of the Book only by means of other communications in it; that the sunna cannot abrogate [a text in] the Book but that it should- only follow what is laid down in the Book, and that the Sunnah is intended to explain the meaning of communications of general [nature] set forth [in the Book). For God said:

When Our signs are recited to them as pieces of evidence, those who do not look forward to meeting us, say: Bring a Scripture other than this or change it. [You O Muhammad] say: It is not for me to change it of my own accord; I only follow what is revealed to me; verily I fear if I go against my Lord, the punishment of a mighty day (Quran Jonah – 15)


He [the interlocutor] asked: -: Will you explain to me the sum-total of God’s orders of prohibition and the Prophet’s orders of prohibition generally, leaving nothing [unexplained]?

Shafi’i replied: [God’s] orders of prohibition fall in two [categories] of meanings:

First, the act prohibited must be unlawful, never to be lawful except by a particular indication Jaid down by God in His Book or [specified] by His Prophet’s tongue. Thus if the Apostle prohibits a certain action it shall be regarded as unlawful, and no particular act is permitted unless it falls [in the category of] a certain meaning [of permission] as I have already explained.

He said: Explain to me this kind of prohibition which you have just stated by an example which indicates the like meaning.


[Shafi’i] replied: All women are forbidden [to men]

except in one of two ways: Either by Nikai). (marriage), or Wati’ (intercourse with a slave-woman) by virtue of possession These are the two ways made lawful by God [in His Book]:· The Apostle laid down in the sunna the modes in which the Nikaki makes previously forbidden women lawful, [such as] the need for a guardian, [the testimony of witnesses and the con. sent of the Thayyib woman.

The Prophet’s stipulation concerning the woman’s consent is a piece of evidence that [prior) consent of the [two] spouses is a prerequisite without distinction between them.

Thus if the marriage [contract] fulfills four conditions-consent of the Thayyib woman and the man, [presence of the] guardian who arranges the marriage for the woman, and the witnesses-it would be lawful, except in certain cases which I shall cite later. But if it lacks any one of the four conditions, it becomes Fasid (invalid), because it

would not be in accordance with the sunna laid down by the Sl44 Apostle for a valid marriage. If a Sadaq (bride-price) were added [as an additional condition] it would be commendable; but the marriage [contract] would not be Fasid without it, for God’s stipulations concerning marriage do not include mahr

(dowry) .8 (This subject has been treated elsewhere) • These conditions are as equally _[applicable] to honorable as to dishonorable women, for each one is equal to the other in all matters that are lawful and unlawful, obligatory or nonobligatory, punishable or unpunishable.

Shafi’i said: 1 The circumstances in which marriage is permissible-in accordance with what I have described-are those in which marriage is prohibited, for if marriage is made in accordance with the prohibited circumstances, it would be regarded as void by the orders laid down by God in His Book and by the Prophet’s tongue. For example:

[Marriage is void] if a man marries his wife’s sister because God prohibited the taking of two sisters as wives; or if a man

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