Bidayat al-Mujtahid Wa Nihayat al-Muqtasid
Taleef - Qadi Abu Waleed Muhammed Bin Ahmed Bin Muhammed Bin Ahmed
Bin Rushd al Qurtuby
Hard back 816 pages,
Publishers - Dar Ibn Hazm, Beirut, Lebanon
The well known Book on Khilaf, a
discipline that records and analyses the differences among Muslim Jurists.
Bidayat al-Mujtahid (The Distinguished Jurist’s Primer) occupies a unique
place among the authoritative manuals of Islamic law. It is designed to prepare
the jurist for the task of the mujtahid, the independent jurist, who derives the
law and lays down precedents to be followed by the judge in the administration
of justice. In this manual Ibn Rushd traces most of the issues of Islamic law,
describing not only what the law is, but also elaborating the methodology of
some of the greatest legal minds in Islam to show how such laws were derived.
This text provides a still-relevant basis for the interpretation and formulation
of Islamic law. Combining his legal and philosophical knowledge, Ibn Rushd transcends the boundaries of different schools
and presents a critical analysis of the opinions of the famous Muslim jurists
and their methodologies.
The legal subject areas covered include marriage and divorce; sale and exchange
of goods; wages, crop-sharing and speculative partnership; security for debts
and insolvency; gifts, bequests and inheritance; and offences and judgements.
'My purpose in this
treatise is to lay down in it for myself, by way of remembrance, the issues (Masa'il)
of the Ahkam that are agreed upon and those that are disputed, along
with their evidences, and to indicate those bases of the disputes that resemble
general rules and principles, for the Faqih (jurist) may be presented
with problems on which the Shara' (law)is silent"
The issues are mostly those that are expressly stated in the Manthuq (unstated
text of the Nass), or are closely related to those that are so stated.
They are the issues agreed upon by the Muslim Fuqaha (jurists) since the
generation of the Sahabah (Companions - God be pleased with them) till such time
that Taqlid (following qualified scholarship) was rampant, or those over
which a difference of opinion among them became widely known-
from the Preface by Ibn Rushd '
Ibn Rushd was a Maliki Jurist (Qadi) but
presents the views of other schools ( Hanifi, Shaf'ee, hanbali & Zahiri) with
the usual Respect and objectivity. This book is among the best known example of
the Shari'a science of Ilm al Khilaf (the knowledge of variant ruling)
It is one of the most well knows works of ilm-ul- Khilaf, a discipline that
records and analyses the differences among Muslim Jurists.
Qadi Ibn Rushd, the
Grandson (Known as Averrooes in the West)
Rushd , Arabic (ابن رشد), known as Averroes 510-595 AH (1126 – 1198H),
was an Andalusian-Arab philosopher and physician, a master of
philosophy and Islamic law, mathematics, and medicine. He was born in
Cordoba, Spain, and died in Marrakech, Morocco. His school of
philosophy is known as Averroism.
Also known as Averroes or ‘The Commentator’, Ibn Rushd,
came from a family of jurists and was born in Cordoba in Moorish
Spain. He himself trained in law and medicine and later served as
qadi or judge in Seville and Cordoba. In 1182 he was appointed
physician to the court of caliph Abu Ya`qub Yusuf in Marrakesh and to
his son, Abu Yusuf Ya`qub, in 1195 but was recalled shortly before his
In the field of medicine Averroës produced his Kulliyat fi al tib
(General Medicine) between 1162 and 1169. He is however better known
for his great commentaries on Aristotle but.
Al-Dhahabi in Siyar A`lam al-`Ulama'
(15:452) quotes al-Abbar as saying: 'No one of his scholarly
perfection, his erudition or his high manners was ever raised in
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