The Limits of Considered Opinion (<i>Raʾy</i>): Analogy and Precedent

Rumee Ahmed

in Narratives of Islamic Legal Theory

Published in print March 2012 | ISBN: 9780199640171
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191738074 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Islamic Legal Studies

The Limits of Considered Opinion (Raʾy): Analogy and Precedent

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This chapter explores the legal status that two medieval Islamic legal theorists, Abū Zayd al-Dabūsī and Muḥammad b. Aḥmad al-Sarakhsī, accorded to human reason in their respective legal theories. This is explored through three topics. Firstly, by determining the Ratio Legis (illa). Secondly, by looking at the Taqlīd of the Mujtahid. Thirdly, by examining the Ta?wīb of the Mujtahid. Each of these topics is examined in detail and the key terms of each are elucidated and analyzed. The chapter focuses on the intricate definitions accorded to these terms, and demonstrates that the slight differences between the two authors disclose major doctrinal differences about the way in which Islamic law ought to be applied. It concludes that these differences, when taken together, reflect larger narratives about the way that God, humans, and the law interact in an ideal world.

Keywords: Ra'y; Islamic; law; legal theory; usul al-fiqh; taqlid; illa; taswib

Chapter.  13416 words. 

Subjects: Jurisprudence and Philosophy of Law

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