Debates on the Authority of Hadith in Early Islamic Intellectual History Identifying al-Shāfiʿī’s Opponents in Jimāʿ al-ʿIlm

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Hüseyin Hansu

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Abstract




Al-Shāfiʿī’s works contain reports of numerous debates on the epistemological value of hadith reports, but unfortunately rarely name specific opponents or interlocutors or the groups to which they belong. In Jimāʿ al-ʿilm al-Shāfiʿī summarizes the views of scholars whom he considered opponents of hadith under two broad rubrics: those who reject hadith categorically and those who reject only part of the hadith. There have been speculations regarding their identity but only in 2013 was a concrete advance made, when Ahmed El Shamsy identified one of al-Shāfiʿī’s opponents in debate as Ibn ʿUlayya. This study attempts to identify a group of al-Shāfiʿī’s opponents in Jimāʿ al-ʿilm, drawing on Abū l-Qāsim al-Balkhī’s Kitāb al-Maqālāt and other classical works of Islamic theology.




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