Sura Al-Imran (Tafseer-ul-Maariful Quran), Part-90

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Imam ibn 'Abd al-Barr has, mentioned the attitude of the early scholars and the revered elders in the following words:

عن يحي بن سعيد قال ما برح اهل الفتوي يفتنون فيحل هذا ويحرم هذا فلا يري المحرم ان المحل هلك لتحليله ولا يري المحل ان المحرم هلك لتحريمه

Those who are entitled to give fatwa, have always been issuing fatwas. One of them would rule (concerning injunctions not covered under the texts) that something is lawful while the other will rule it to be unlawful. But, the latter takes the former doomed to perdition, nor does the former think that the later is doomed to perdition. (Jami' Bayan al-'Ilm, p. 80)

An important note of caution
All this discussion about Ijtihad relates to the one carried out under the standard rules governing it. The very first condition is that Ijtihad can be resorted to in questions and issues about which there is no categorical decision available in the Qur'an and the Sunnah. Or, it may be that such decision is not clear and susceptible to more than one interpretation. Or, it is possible that a combination of some verses of the Qur'an and some narrations of the had3h may be apparently contradictory. In situations such as this, only.those who possess the necessary pre-requisites to carry out Ijtihad will be entitled to do so. Ijtihad is no easy matter. It requires the most perfect expertise (in the real and full sense of the term) of all disciplines related to the Qur'an and the Hadith, a comprehensive and perfect knowledge of the Arabic language, and a comprehensive knowledge of the sayings of the blessed Companions and their Successors. Therefore, anyone who dabbles in questions which have been settled by authoritative texts and comes up with opinions contrary to those of leading authorities, then this difference of opinion will not fall under the category of Ijtihd as envisaged by the Shari'ah..

This will also be true about the person who does not fulfil the conditions of Ijtihad. What he says does not affect the question at all. This tendency has unfortunately become fairly visible in Muslim societies. Those who consider themselves educated (in modern sciences) have started to express their personal opinions relating to matters that have been settled in the Qur'an and Sunnah. This is ignorance at its ugliest. These are issues where even Imams and mujtahids would not dare speak. How can the exercise of so called Ijtihad be acceptable from a person who does not even possess the knowledge of Islamic sciences let alone the highest level of learning required for Ijtihad.

Verses 106 - 109
[١٠٦]يَوْمَ تَبْيَضُّ وُجُوهٌ وَتَسْوَدُّ وُجُوهٌ ۚ فَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ اسْوَدَّتْ وُجُوهُهُمْ أَكَفَرْتُم بَعْدَ إِيمَانِكُمْ فَذُوقُوا الْعَذَابَ بِمَا كُنتُمْ تَكْفُرُونَ

[١٠٧]وَأَمَّا الَّذِينَ ابْيَضَّتْ وُجُوهُهُمْ فَفِي رَحْمَةِ اللَّهِ هُمْ فِيهَا خَالِدُونَ

[١٠٨]تِلْكَ آيَاتُ اللَّهِ نَتْلُوهَا عَلَيْكَ بِالْحَقِّ ۗ وَمَا اللَّهُ يُرِيدُ ظُلْمًا لِّلْعَالَمِينَ

[١٠٩]وَلِلَّهِ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الْأَرْضِ ۚ وَإِلَى اللَّهِ تُرْجَعُ الْأُمُورُ

On a day when faces shall turn bright and faces shall turn drak, as for those whose faces turn dark, (they shall be questioned): Did you disbelieve after you had accepted the faith? Now taste the punishment because you have been disbelieving." [106]

And as for those whose faces turn bright, they rest in Allah's mercy. They are there for ever. [107]

These are the verses of Allah We recite to you with all veracity. And Allah wants no injustice for (anyone in) the worlds. [108]

And to Allah belongs what is in the heavens and what is in the earth. And to Allah all matters are returned. [109]

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