That old cliché: Abridgment and commentary are proof that fiqh stagnated

I’m always a baffled whenever people repeat the claim that abridgment [ikhtisar] and commentary [sharh] are proof that Islamic law stagnated. The reason I am baffled is that my experience reading of Shafii legal material compels me to arrive at the opposite conclusion, namely: that lots and lots of changes are going on. Three quick … Read more…

Comment: “Uzbek Imam Warns Fantasizing About Strangers During Sex Leads To Gay Babies”

Since my last blog post was about the damage of poorly-research and poorly argued fatawas and another blog post touched the topic of fantasizing about sex with someone other than one’s spouse, I figured I should comment on a report from RadioFreeEurope: …fantasizing about someone other than your spouse during sex can lead to a woman giving … Read more…

How poorly-researched, poorly-argued fiqh opinions are so damaging

The issue of crypto assets has been a real eye-opener for me because it gives me insight on how much poorly-researched and poorly-reasoned fatwas1)I have nothing but respect and appreciation for well-researched, well-reasoned legal opinions that totally disagree with me. contribute towards negatives views of Islamic scholarship. When a common Muslim individual reads a scholar’s … Read more…

Shallow responses to even shallower claims that Bitcoin and crypto assets aren’t real

“Bitcoin and crypto assets aren’t real because they’re just information.” If so, what about the majority of your paycheck that never gets converted into paper notes? And what about books present in one’s mind before they are expressed through spoken or written words? “Yeah, but someone can always withdraw those as paper money or print them … Read more…

Transmitting messages orally vs through the blockchain

Here’s an obvious yet still interesting difference between transmitting a message orally versus via blockchain: When a message is transmitted orally, each subsequent repeat does nothing to increase our confidence that the original message has not been corrupted while increasing the likelihood of transmission errors. This is in contrast to transmitting that same message via … Read more…

Summary: Rights and Duties Pertaining to Kept Animals

Summary of a case study in Islamic Law and Ethics by Musa Furber. Animals are at the heart of many of today’s heated ethical and legal debates. This paper presents a survey of Qur’anic verses and prophetic narrations related to kept animals, and a study of one school’s application of this evidence to the topic of kept animals. This ethical and legal study will also throw into relief some of the mechanism of madhhab based jurisprudence and fiqh reasoning. This study serves as a basis for understanding and applying Islamic moral theology to the numerous contemporary issues related to kept animals.