Anna M. Gade

in The Oxford Handbook of Religion and Emotion

Published in print December 2007 | ISBN: 9780195170214
Published online September 2009 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Religion and Theology



In the Islamic sciences, the most authoritative sources for Muslim thought and practice are the text of the Qur'an, the normative model of the Prophet Muhammad, and interrelated frameworks of jurisprudence and ethics. These have been applied, studied, and adopted by Muslims since the earliest development of the religious sciences in Islam. Each of these types of sources highlights emotions as a means of access to an ethical ideal. In both the ritual and social-transactional “branches” of Islamic law, the sunnah is the most authoritative guide for normative conduct after the Qur'an. This is the model of the Prophet Muhammad, and it is a legal as well as a pious category. It is known through hadith reports, which relate the expressive behavior of the Prophet in the form of his sayings, actions, and tacit approval or disapproval. Islamic ethics provides emotional comportment with added normative characteristics. This article examines emotion in Islam, focusing on the cultivation and expression of sentiment, aesthetics, and affect and performance in global systems.

Keywords: Islam; Islamic law; sunnah; performance; Prophet Muhammad; ethics; sentiment; aesthetics; affect

Article.  7363 words. 

Subjects: Religion ; Sociology of Religion ; Islam

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