Blind Following a Shaikh? The Truth about Taqlid

Shaikh Abu Aaliyah Surkheel Sharif wrote a wonderful treatise on Taqlid on MuslimMatters and the misconceptions surrounding it. Here’s an outline:

  • The etymology, literal and religious meaning of Taqlid
  • Is taqlid “blind following”and is there a “prescribed” taqlid?
  • The conundrum and Ghazalian metaphor.
  • Where is Taqlid allowed and what does “Ittiba” really mean?
  • Is there Ijma’ on Taqlid, and which type of it?
  • Were Ibn Baz, al-Uthaymin, al-Albani “anti-taqlid”?
  • Give me some proof:
    • Taqlid in hadith authentication.
    • Should we be asking for proofs?
  • What for the layman?
  • Is it allowed for a person to give a ruling while he is unlearned, even of the Arabic language?

The Truth About Taqlid (in PDF)

A few excerpts from this awesome article:

1.1 – Scholars and linguists agree that the term taqlid has its etymology, its origin, in the
Arabic word, qallada; which means: “To place a collar (qiladah) around the neck.” The
reason it is termed as such is that the one making taqlid – the muqallid – resigns his affair
to the one he is performing taqlid of. Thus he is, so to speak, like someone being ‘led by
the collar’.

1.2 – As for its religious meaning, the scholars of usul-al-fiqh: those who specialise in
Islamic legal theory, define taqlid in various ways. One of the most widely accepted definitions
is the one that Imam al-Ghazali articulated. He says that it is: “Accepting the view of someone without a proof.”

The Truth About Taqlid (in PDF)

About Surkheel Sharif

Abu Aaliyah Surkheel Sharif is the founder of The Jawziyyah Institute, a leading Institute for Islamic moderation and contemporary thought in the United Kingdom. Sidi Abu Aaliyah has been in involved in Dawah and Islamic teachings for the last 14 years. He has translated a number of books from the Arabic language into English such as “The Exquisite Pearls”. Abu Aaliyah’s written works and audio lectures can be found all over the net.

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