Class Notes 6.24.2013

Class Notes 6.24.2013

What are those things that set Shafi’i Madhab from the other Madhabs.

The Shafi’i madhab is built on proofs from Quraan, Hadith, and traditions of those that followed the first generation. It is also built on analogy and logical conclusions. The madhab is a balance between  the way of opinion (mostly in Iraq) and way of Hadith (mostly in Hijaz). Imam Shafi’i benefited from both way by studying in both areas. The text covers few others. Imam Shafi’i was the first one to write a book on principles of jurisprudence. Many of the unique aspects listed in the book are not unique to this madhab such as the renewrs of the religion, number of scholars, etc.

Shaykh says there are only two unique aspects. First is being the first one to write in principles of jurisprudence and the middles way mentioned above. There is no reason to list any more than these. No reason to say that Imam Shafi’i is the best. We should not put any madhab above any other. All are equal and are expressions and understanding of the primary sources.

Now we will go to the beginning of the book.

Every time we begin to study, we should know ten things about it known as mabadi’.These are conveyed in famous lines of poetry.

The ten are (complete definitions can be found in the translation of the text):

  1. Definition (had) – Knowledge  of the sacred rulings pertaining to the body which is extracted from the religious proofs

  2. Subject (mawdoo’) – Actions of those morally responsible

  3. Fruit/benefit (thamrah) – Following the commands of Allah and staying away from the prohibited.

  4. Merit (fadhl) – Its preference over all other knoweldges except konwledge of Allah.

  5. Ascription – It is associateiond with religious knowledge.

  6. Who established it – The mujtahid Imams though in reality it is Allah is the real one who put this knowledge down.

  7. Name (ism) – Has many names. Al-fiqh al-asghar (the lesser understanding), knowledge of the permissible and prohibited amongst others.

  8. Basis (istimdaad) – Qura’aan, Hadith, analogy, and consensus

  9. Ruling of learning – Obligatory on an indivula basis to learn what one needs for worship and daily activities. So, if you are in selling, then it is obligaotry to learn how to make a valid sale. Communal obligation is to have someone in every city somone who can give fatwas. Finally, it is recommended to learn greater than that.

  10. Issues – there are many such as purity is a requirement for prayer.

Imama Abu Hanifa is said to have sat with some sahabah.

Classification of Rulings

Broken into five categories.

Obligatory – That which the Law Giver has decisively demanded from us. Those that do these acts are rewarded and punished for non-performance. There are many names for this category. For Hanfais, there is an additional category called wajib which is slightly less than this category.

Rceommended – That which the Law Giver has commanded to perform but not in a decisive way. One is rewarded for doing it however not doing does nto result in punishement.

Impermissible – That which the Law Giver has decisively forbidden. The one who leaves this act is rewarded and the one who commits it is punished. One is only rewarded for leaving it if one is able to commit the act from the beginning.

Reprehensible – That which the Law Giver has asked not to perform it but not in a decisive way. The avoidance of such an act is rewarded but doing it is not punished.

Permissible – Doing and not doing are neither reqarded or punished. However, if a noble intention is attached to a permissible act suach as eating to gain energy to worhsip becomes a rewarded action.

These five were ahkaam ashar’i.

Now, he will discuss the the five Declatory Laws. This is a discussion hat is more pertinent for a book on principles of jurisprudence.

Cause (sabab) – When the causes is present then the effect  must be present and when it is absent the effect is also absent. Example of sabab is sleep breaking the ablution. If sleep is present, then its effect of breaking the  ablution is present. If sleep is not present, the effect is absent and thus ablution is still valid.

Condition (shart) – Condition is required for the validity of an act but it mere presence does not entail validity. Purification is a condition for prayer. However, having purification does not suffice in making sure your prayer is valid.

Prevention (mani) – Its presence prevents validity however its absence does not necessitate validity. Filth prevents prayer. If filth is present, prayer is not correctly preformed. If filth is not present, prayer could or could not be performed.


Istishaan is something present in the Hanafi madhab and Imam Shaafi’i denied it. These are rulings that are not based on proof rather are the preferences of the mujtahid and is only found in the Hanafi madhab.