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Dossier – Iǧtihād et taqlīd dans l’islam sunnite et šīʿite

Iǧtihād as a Religious Obligation

Āyatullāh al-Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī and the Challenge of Renewing Religious Thought (En islam contemporain I)
Youssouf T. Sangaré
p. 99-133

Résumés

Cet article constitue la première étude académique sur les idées d’une figure importante de la pensée religieuse šīʿite de nos jours : al-Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī (né en 1956). Marǧaʿ taqlīd, al-Ḥaydarī, depuis presque une décennie, est l’initiateur d’un projet de rénovation qui ambitionne de dépasser le clivage šīʿite-sunnite par un retour à l’islam du Coran qu’il oppose à l’islam du Ḥadīṯ. Cette étude vise à examiner sa redéfinition de l’iǧtihād et du taǧdīd dans le cadre de ce projet et à montrer comment al-Ḥaydarī refuse de limiter l’iǧtihād au domaine des uṣūl al-fiqh. L’iǧtihād, tel que redéfini par al-Ḥaydarī, est au service de la réflexion et du renouveau théologiques.

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Texte intégral

This article is part of a series of studies, entitled En islam contemporain, which aims to analyze contemporary reinterpretations of Islamic sources by scholars and thinkers. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to Sabrina Mervin and Pierre-Jean Luizard for their advice and critical comments.

“We like innovations to explain themselves and traditions to defend themselves” (Paul Valéry)

  • 1 Lotfy, “Prêches, médias et fortune”, pp. 14–15.
  • 2 See Lotfy, Ẓāhirat al-duʿāt al-ǧudud, pp. 23–30.
  • 3 The “most famous telecoranist in the Muslim world” according to Pierre-Jean Luizard in his article (...)
  • 4 Launched in 2012, with headquarters in Beirut; see <www.almayadeen.net>.
  • 5 With Manṣūr Mandūr (al-Azhar, Egypt) and ʿAlī al-Šuʿaybī (Syria).
  • 6 Debate between Faraḥ Mūsā (Islamic University, Lebanon) and Muḥammad b. Saqqāf al-Kāf (Egypt).
  • 7 With Youssef Seddik (Tunisia) and Lwiis Saliba (Lebanon).
  • 8 Professor in History of Religions at the University Āl al-Bayt (Jordan).

1In the current debates within Islam, whether in relation to takfīr (excommunication), ridda (apostasy), Sunnī-Šīʿī rivalries, politics, or religion, television satellite channels continue to play an important role as a medium for the confrontation of doctrines. However, unlike in the 1990s when the figure of the ‘telecoranist’1 first emerged with Yāsīn Rušdī (d. 2010)2 and al-Šāʿrāwī (d. 1998)3 among others, satellite channels are now competing with social media and television programs that are more open to critical thinking. This is the case of the private channel al-Mayādīn (al-Mayadeen)4 with its flagship program Alif Lām Mīm, hosted by the Algerian journalist Yaḥyā Abū Zakariyyā since June 2012. This program deals with a variety of burning issues: the origin of the Qurʾān, with a discussion of orientalist theories under the title “The Qurʾān, between Arabic and Aramaic” (al-Qurʾān bayn al-ʿarabiyya wa-l-ārāmiyya);5 “The problem of composition in the prophetic biography” (iškālāt al-taʾlīf fī al-sīra al-nabawiyya);6 “The culture of excommunication” (ṯaqāfat al-takfīr); or even the issue of apostasy (al-ridda).7 The Jordanian channel Ruʾyā (Roya) with the program Sāʿat Maḥabba (“Hour of Love”) hosted by ʿĀmir al-Ḥāfī8 deals with more or less similar themes. Thus, the upheavals triggered by modern technologies in the Arab-Muslim world of the 19th and 20th centuries are now accelerating with the multiplication of satellite channels and, above all, the development of social media.

  • 9 A private university officially recognized by the Iraqi authorities in 2004. According to the stat (...)
  • 10 See its official YouTube channel: <https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC9rl8fUlMM0BxTQKKGP5YzQ>.
  • 11 Like other Islamic universities such as the Islamic University of Medina with its YouTube channel: (...)
  • 12 This is the case with al-Šayḫ Bašīr al-Naǧafī born in 1942 in Jalandhar (British India). He emigra (...)
  • 13 Ḥawza (pl. ḥawzāt) “are religious seminars that were traditionally called madrasa, a term now used (...)
  • 14 It is also possible to access the teachings of other religious scholars such as Ǧaʿfar al-Subḥānī, (...)
  • 15 Like al-Šayḫ Ḥasan al-Ǧawāhirī, the author of several books including Daʿwa ilā al-iṣlāh al-dīnī w (...)

2This situation does not only lead to the evolution and reconfiguration of the audio-visual landscape, but it also affects the field of education, and more particularly, the field of religious education. For example, both the Islamic University in Naǧaf (al-Ǧāmiʿa al-Islāmiyya fī al-Naǧaf)9 and al-Azhar University10 massively disseminate their academic teachings or activities through social media.11 This is also the case with ḥawzas (religious seminaries)12 such as the ḥawza13 in Qum where al-Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī teaches,14 or that in Mašhad.15

  • 16 His teachings are present on a website in three languages (Arabic, Persian, and Urdu), a Facebook (...)
  • 17 In addition to the aforementioned religious figures, let me cite here Āyatullāh Nāṣir Makārim al-Š (...)

3Although this article does not aim to analyze these upheavals, particularly in the field of religious education, the study of the thought of al-Ḥaydarī will nevertheless provide an inside perspective of some of the major themes in the training of scholars within a ḥawza in this era of new communication tools. By popularizing his teaching,16 al-Ḥaydarī like other religious scholars17 brings the most recent doctrinal controversies within Šīʿī religious schools to the public’s attention, be it their relationship to Sunnism, the role of imāms, or the status of women. Nothing remains confined to the closed circle of the ḥawza as in the past. Thus, al-Ḥaydarī offers us a glimpse of a ‘thought in action’, which is far from being a simple reformulation of medieval Islamic knowledge. While the study of al-Ḥaydarī’s sessions devoted to the theme of iǧtihād does not allow us to draw definite conclusions about the evolution of teaching within a ḥawza or the themes taught therein, it could nevertheless pave the way for such studies.

4The purpose of this article is therefore to examine how al-Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī revives and reformulates the notion of iǧtihād as part of his reform project. This study thus seeks to understand how new doctrinal approaches to this central notion in Šīʿism are developed in the intimacy of a ḥawza. Since the ḥawza is the privileged place for the training of muǧtahids and, more generally, marāǧiʿ (religious references that common believers must follow and imitate), al-Ḥaydarī’s teaching paints a portrait of the type of muǧtahid that he wants for Šīʿism and, as we will see, for Sunnism as well. For this purpose, I will proceed in two steps. Firstly, I will outline the general reform project of al-Ḥaydarī and highlight its implications in terms of redefining the Qurʾān and the Sunna (of the Prophet and the Imāms). Secondly, I will examine his theory and ideas on iǧtihād and taǧdīd in greater detail.

Biography of Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī

  • 18 See the biographical data available on the website of Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī: <http://alhaydari.com/ar>. See also al-Karbāsī, (...)
  • 19 “C’est certainement la hawza de Naǧaf qui a le plus marqué l’histoire du chiisme. Fondée en 1056 p (...)
  • 20 Medoff, Ijtihad and Renewal, p. 131. It should be noted that the persecution of religious schools (...)
  • 21 For example, Muqaddima fī ʿilm al-aḫlāq (lit. Introduction to ethics).
  • 22 Such as al-Ṯābit wa-l-mutaġayyir fī al-maʿrifa al-dīniyya (lit. The invariable and the variable in (...)
  • 23 Such as al-ʿAql, al-ʿāqil wa-l-maʿqūl (lit. The intellect, the intelligent and the intelligible).
  • 24 “In order to become a Mujtahid in Shiʿite Islam, an ʿAlim must pass through three stages of learni (...)
  • 25 He appeared especially on the Iranian channel al-Kawṯar. However, in August 2013, al-Kawṯar decide (...)

5Al-Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī was born in Karbalāʾ (Iraq) in 1956.18 He claims to be a descendent of the fourth Šīʿī imām ʿAlī b. Ḥusayn Zayn al-ʿĀbidīn (d. 95/713). Residing in Qum since the age of fifteen, al-Ḥaydarī is said to have followed the teachings of several prominent figures in contemporary Šīʿism. In Iraq, he first studied in the ḥawza in Naǧaf19 with Muḥammad Bāqir al-Ṣadr (d. 1980) and Abū al-Qāsim al-Mūsawī al-Ḫūʾī (d. 1992). When this centre of religious education was weakened by the Baath party in the late 1970s,20 he continued his training in Qum (Iran) after a stint in Kuwait with religious figures such as al-Mīrzā Ǧawād al-Tabrīzī (d. 2006) and Ḥusayn al-Waḥīd al-Ḫurāsānī (b. 1921). Drawing on his solid knowledge of both Šīʿī and Sunnī sources, al-Ḥaydarī is the author of more than 100 books all in Arabic, dealing with ethics (al-aḫlāq),21 foundations of jurisprudence,22 and philosophy.23 Generally, these books are transcriptions of his teachings, particularly in dars al-ḫāriǧ (dars-i khārej),24 or his many appearances on television.25

  • 26 For example, the controversy with the Šīʿī scholar ʿAbd al-Karīm al-ʿUqaylī who devoted six teachi (...)
  • 27 For example, see Stewart, “The Portrayal of an Academic Rivalry”, pp. 216–229.
  • 28 See <http://alhaydari.com/ar/2013/08/49998>, accessed on October 15, 2019.

6Based on his works and the controversies surrounding his ideas,26 it is possible to qualify the religious thought of al-Ḥaydarī as subversive among Šīʿī clerics. However, al-Ḥaydarī does not consider himself to be a subversive ʿālim but rather a defender of the authentic voice of imāms and Šīʿī scholars from the first centuries of Islam. He is thus keen to remind his critics of this fundamental point. It is also this image that drives him to want to overcome the doctrinal divisions between Sunnīs and Šīʿīs or the rivalries27 between the historical cities and centres of Šīʿī thought. In this regard, after his repeated criticism of the Naǧaf school, al-Ḥaydarī was asked during a television appearance in 2013 whether he was not reigniting the legendary rivalry between Qum and Naǧaf.28 However, he replied that his criticisms aimed only at reviving the Naǧaf school, which is “one of the most important pillars of Šīʿī identity (min ahamm arkān al-huwiyya al-šīʿiyya). If the Naǧaf school stands upright (nahaḍa) and its foundations are strengthened (qawiyya), then it will influence all Šīʿī intellectual cities (al-ḥawāḍir al-ʿilmiyya)”. He could not remain indifferent to the fate of this school and the city of Naǧaf to which he promised to return at the appropriate time.

His Reform Project

  • 29 “Literally, ‘source of emulation’; in practice, venerated senior Shiʿa clerics whose edicts provid (...)
  • 30 Mervin, “Writing the History of Religious Authority in Najaf”, p. 163.
  • 31 As already stated in 2012 in Maǧallat al-iǧtihād wa-l-taǧdīd, 22, 2012, p. 165. See also the colle (...)
  • 32 See al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 65.

7As marǧaʿ taqlīd29 (“reference to follow”30) and an important figure in contemporary Šīʿī thought,31 al-Ḥaydarī has initiated a bold reform project (mašrūʿ iṣlāḥī). This project has three main components:32 to lead the believer to cultivate an “effective will [to] move away from the blind imitation [of religious scholars or ancestors]” (al-irāda al-fiʿliyya li-l-ḫurūǧ min al-taqlīd al-aʿmā) (1); to promote a firm belief (al-iʿtiqād al-rāsiḫ) in the fundamental place of the Qurʾān in Islamic epistemology (2); and to set up epistemological tools (al-adawāt al-maʿrifiyya) to clarify qurʾānic principles (al-naẓariyyāt al-qurʾāniyya) (3). These principles are intended to “become the criteria for the acceptance (qabūl) or rejection (radd) of aḫbār” (attributed to the Prophet and the Imāms).

8In his view, the main objective of this project would be to take Šīʿīs—and Sunnīs—away from the ‘Islam of Tradition’ and lead them to the ‘Islam of the Qurʾān’; or in his words, “from the preponderance of the Islam of Tradition to the preponderance of the Islam of the Qurʾān” (min Islām al-Ḥadīṯ ilā Islām al-Qurʾān and min miḥwariyyat Islām al-Ḥadīṯ ilā miḥwariyyat Islām al-Qurʾān). This reform project is also a criticism of contemporary Šīʿism, which is said to be dominated by naïve visions (taṣawwurāt sāḏiǧa) and religious sectarian because, so he says, of the central place accorded to aḫbārs/ḥadīṯs at the expense of the Qurʾān.

  • 33 The first program in this series, entitled Min Islām al-Ḥadīṯ ilā Islām al-Qurʾān, was broadcast l (...)
  • 34 A Saudi preacher. In September 2017, al-Mālikī was arrested and imprisoned by the Saudi authoritie (...)
  • 35 Anā ūṣī šabāb al-Sunna wa-l-Šīʿa wa-kull al-maḏāhib an yuḍīfū aʿmāl al-Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī ilā (...)

9From this perspective, he criticizes those who adopt the slogan “the Qurʾān alone”, which means that Islam is only the Qurʾān, and instead promotes a profound rethinking of the place of the prophetic and imāmic traditions in Islamic thought. During Ramaḍān in July and August 2013, he detailed this reform project in twelve special programs on the Iranian satellite channel al-Kawṯar.33 At the end of each program, broadcast live for an average duration of one hour, viewers from Iran, Iraq, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, and elsewhere, could ask him questions, thus allowing him to elaborate some of his ideas. The reputation of these television programs quickly went beyond Šīʿī circles, as testifies the article by Ḥasan b. Farḥān al-Mālikī (b. 1970),34 in which he deplores the end of this series of broadcasts in the following terms:35

I recommend to young Sunnīs, Šīʿīs, and all doctrinal schools to consider the work of al-Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī as serious and worthy of study. Listen with discernment. Today’s young person does not need a doctrinal school; he needs work that brings him closer to the Book of God.

10Indeed, al-Ḥaydarī’s teaching does not only rely on Šīʿī sources. He also draws on classical Sunnī references such as al-Buḫārī, Muslim, al-Ašʿarī, al-Ġazālī, and Ibn Taymiyya, as well as works by modern and contemporary authors from Muḥammad ʿAbduh to Ṭaha ʿAbd al-Raḥmān and Muḥammad al-Ṭāhir b. ʿĀšūr.

From the ‘Islam of Tradition’ to the ‘Islam of the Qurʾān’

11The sources used by al-Ḥaydarī for the renewal of religious thought in Islam go beyond Šīʿī references alone. However, to better illustrate the religious reform that he is seeking, let me first clarify what he means by Qurʾān and Tradition (Ḥadīṯ).

  • 36 Al-Qurʾān al-karīm huwa al-kitāb al-munazzal ʿalā qalb al-nabī Muḥammad […] yabdaʾu bi-sūrat al-Ḥa (...)

12In his first broadcast on this reform project, al-Ḥaydarī stressed his definition of the Qurʾān. This is far from anecdotal, because, as a Šīʿī scholar, some may have attributed a ready-made belief to him, particularly in relation to the falsification (taḥrīf) of the Qurʾān. He thus provides the following methodical and applied definition:36

The Qurʾān is the book that descended upon the heart of the Prophet Muḥammad [...]. It is introduced by the Sūrat al-Ḥamd [=al-Fātiḥa] and ends with the Sūrat al-Nās. It is a book that is fully preserved from falsification […]. This is the foundation of the community’s consensus. This is our doctrine of the Qurʾān.

  • 37 Iʿtiqādunā anna al-Qurʾān allaḏī anzalahu Allāh taʿālā ʿalā nabiyyihi Muḥammad (ṣ) huwa mā bayna a (...)

13Would this not be a precautionary dissimulation (taqiyya) that allowed al-Ḥaydarī to exclude Šīʿī theses about the falsification (taḥrīf) of the Qurʾān? This issue was raised by al-Ḥaydarī himself. In response, he refers to his book Ṣiyānat al-Qurʾān min al-taḥrīf (lit. Preservation of the Qurʾān from falsification), which presents the positions of Šīʿī scholars regarding the falsification of the Qurʾān. In this book, the author reports the following words of Šayḫ al-Ṣadūq (Muḥammad b. ʿAlī b. Bābawayh, d. 381/992) on taḥrīf:37

Our doctrine is that the Qurʾān, which God sent down to our Prophet Muḥammad, is the one between the two covers [of Muṣḥaf]. The Qurʾān is the one that is in people’s hands [...]. He who claims that we are saying anything other than that is a liar.

  • 38 When questioned about “Muṣḥaf Fāṭima”, al-Ḥaydarī repeats the same doctrine: “Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥayd (...)
  • 39 Arkoun, Lectures du Coran, pp. 14–17.
  • 40 In his Faṣl al-ḫiṭāb. A detailed presentation of this book is given by Brunner, “La question de la (...)
  • 41 See al-Ṭihrānī, al- Ḏarīʿa, vol. 16, pp. 231–232, where he reports that al-Nūrī said: “I do not me (...)
  • 42 See Amir-Moezzi, Le Coran silencieux et le Coran parlant, pp. 15–25, 27–61; Brunner, “La question (...)
  • 43 For al-Ǧurǧānī, taḥqīq is “the confirmation (iṯbāt) of an outstanding issue (masʾala) by presentin (...)
  • 44 See al-Ḥaydarī, Ṣiyānat al-Qurʾān min al-taḥrīf, p. 12.
  • 45 Wa-ǧumlat al-qawl inna al-mašhūr bayna ʿulamāʾi al-Šīʿa wa-muḥaqqiqīhim, bal al-mutasālam ʿalayhi (...)
  • 46 Iḏā waǧadtum hunā wa-hunāk man yunsab ilayhi al-taḥrīf fa-huwa ḫāriǧ ʿan dāʾirat al-taḥqīq, hāḏā a (...)
  • 47 Indamā yuṭlaq al-ḥadīṯ yaʿnī al-sunna al-qawliyya li-rasūl Allāh, ṣallā Allāh ʿalayhi wa-ālihi, wa (...)

14In his book Ṣiyānat al-Qurʾān min al-taḥrīf, al-Ḥaydarī claims that by this doctrine,38 following the tradition of eminent Šīʿī scholars such as Šayḫ al-Ṣadūq, al-Šarīf al-Murtaḍā (ʿAlī b. Ḥusayn al-Mūsawī, d. 436/1044), al-Šayḫ al-Ṭūsī (Muḥammad b. Ḥasan, d. 460/1067), and al-Ṭabarsī (Abū ʿAlī al-Faḍl b. al-Ḥasan, d. 548/1153). By choosing this filiation, al-Ḥaydarī deviates from the opinion of al-Nūrī (al-Mīrzā Ḥusayn, d. 1902) for whom the Qurʾān, as a ‘Closed Official Corpus’39 imposed by the third caliph ʿUṯmān, is a falsified and revised version of the Revelation. In al-Ḥaydarī’s view, al-Nūrī certainly supported such an opinion,40 but “he repented” according to his disciple Āġā Buzurg al-Ṭihrānī (d. 1970).41 By focussing his argument on al-Nūrī, al-Ḥaydarī affirms that the thesis of taḥrīf is a marginal opinion in Šīʿism. For this reason, he refrains from referring to other Šīʿī authorities who implicitly or explicitly support the thesis of falsification prior to the 19th century.42 This omission is undoubtedly a deliberate choice, because, in the case of al-Ḥaydarī, it is necessary to distinguish between Šīʿī scholars who have reached the taḥqīq43 stage (i.e., muḥaqqiqūn, verifying scholars) and those like al-Nūrī who have not. In this regard, al-Ḥaydarī stresses in his book Ṣiyānat al-Qurʾān min al-taḥrīf that he relies exclusively on the works of muḥaqqiqūn. He quotes the names of thirty-two Šīʿī scholars from the first centuries to the contemporary period,44 all of whom are opposed to the thesis of falsification. This long list clearly shows that al-Ḥaydarī is aware of the trickiness of this theme. It also exposes the reader to the argument of the consensus doctorum to avoid any criticism. This consensus is summarized by al-Ḥaydarī in the words of al-Ḫūʾī, an authority figure in contemporary Šīʿism: “In summary, what is notorious among scholars and Šīʿī muḥaqqiqūn, more precisely what they admit, is the thesis of non-falsification.”45 Commenting on these remarks, al-Ḥaydarī states: “If you find [a scholar] who is attributed the thesis of falsification, be aware that he is not part of the muḥaqqiqūn. Such a person only tells fables.”46 Concerning the Ḥadīṯ, al-Ḥaydarī proposes the following definition:47

Ḥadīṯ refers to the verbal tradition of God’s Messenger, peace be upon him and his family. However, by Ḥadīṯ, I am referring not only to the verbal tradition but also to everything that is communicated to us about God’s Messenger, namely his words, approval, actions, virtues, attributes, clothes, food, and drinks. Everything that has come to us and has to do with God’s Messenger, I refer to as Ḥadīṯ.

15What is the place accorded to the Ḥadīṯ? And what is its relationship to the Qurʾān? According to al-Ḥaydarī, three types of responses were previously given in the context of Islamic thought.

  • 48 Mā waṣalahum min al-sunna maḥfūf bi-l-šakk wa-l-waḍʿ wa-l-dass (al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām (...)

16The first type of response was that of the Qurʾānists (al-Qurʾāniyyūn) who support the obligation to adhere firmly to the Qurʾān alone (ḍarūrat al-iltizām bi-l-Qurʾān waḥdahu), because what “has come to them from the Sunna is surrounded by doubt, invention, and machination”.48

  • 49 On Aḫbārism, see Gleave, Scripturalist Islam; Newman, “The Nature of the Akhbārī/Uṣūlī Dispute”, P (...)
  • 50 Al-Qurʾān ḥuǧǧa li-man ḫūṭibū bihi wa-hum al-nabī wa-l-aʾimma (al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām (...)
  • 51 Not to be confused with Muḥammad Bāqir Astarābādī (Mīr Dāmād, d. 1041/1631). On the nature of M.A. (...)
  • 52 See al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 54.
  • 53 See al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 54.
  • 54 “[T]he uṣūliyya, which maintained that major problems could only be solved by the greatest religio (...)
  • 55 See Richard, L’islam chiʾite, p. 94.
  • 56 Wa-hunā yaẓhar dawr al-Qurʾān [ʿind al-ūṣūliyyīn]: fal-ḥadīṯ ʿindahum huwa al-aṣl wa-l-miḥwar, wa- (...)
  • 57 See al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 55.

17In contrast to the Qurʾānists, other scholars consider the Ḥadīṯ to be the sole source in the construction of religious knowledge. However, according to al-Ḥaydarī, two attitudes dominate here in Šīʿism. The first attitude comes from the Aḫbārīs (al-Aḫbāriyyūn)49 who view the traditions attributed to the Prophet and the Imāms as the only source for elaborating laws and understanding the Revelation. They do not accord any place to the Qurʾān, because “the Qurʾān is a reference for its immediate interlocutors, namely the Prophet and the Imāms”.50 Muḥammad Amīn al-Astarābādī (d. 1036/1626–1627),51 Muḥammad Bāqir al-Maǧlisī (d. around 1111/1699), Yusūf al-Baḥrānī (d. 1186/1772), and Šayḫ al-Ṣadūq embody this trend in the Šīʿī context,52 while Aḥmad b. Ḥanbal (d. 241/855) and the ahl al-ḥadīṯ were its Sunnī promoters. This Islam is called “Islam of Tradition” (Islām al-Ḥadīṯ) by al-Ḥaydarī.53 The second attitude is that of the Uṣūlīs54 or rationalists55 who take the Ḥadīṯ as the main source of legislation but rely on the Qurʾān in cases of contradiction between traditions with authentic transmission chains (taʿāruḍ bayna al-riwāyāt al-ṣaḥīḥat al-sanad). Here, writes al-Ḥaydarī, “the role of the Qurʾān [among the Uṣūlīs] emerges: for them, the Ḥadīṯ is the foundation and pivot, while the Qurʾān is used only in a secondary way”.56 The symbolic and sporadic authority granted to the Qurʾān by the Uṣūlīs to resolve contradictions between riwāyāt (traditions) is considered unsatisfactory by al-Ḥaydarī. In his view, their “real reference” (al-marǧaʿiyya al-wāqiʿiyya) remains the Ḥadīṯ. Consequently, the Uṣūlīs are also the promoters of this ‘Islam of Tradition’57 even if they still promote iǧtihād contrarily to the Aḫbārīs. This would be an iǧtihād that remains locked in the ‘Islam of Tradition’ and not, regrets al-Ḥaydarī, an iǧtihād that seeks to transcend it.

  • 58 It should be noted that al-Ḥaydarī makes no reference to Muʿtazilism in any of the three responses
  • 59 Huwa al-ittiǧāh allaḏī nuʾminu bihi, fal-Qurʾān huwa al-miḥwar wa-l-maṣdar al-aṣlī fī ǧamīʿ maʿāri (...)

18The third type of response58 to explain the relationship between the Qurʾān and the Ḥadīṯ is formulated by those who affirm the centrality of the Qurʾān (miḥwariyyat al-Qurʾān) while simultaneously recognizing the role of the Tradition. Al-Ḥaydarī thus writes:59

This is the approach that we support. The Qurʾān is the centre and the source of all our religious knowledge: more precisely, it is the first and last source in this matter [...]. As for the Tradition or the Sunna, we resort to it in the shadow of the Qurʾān.

  • 60 In his listing of the Šīʿī approaches, there is no reference to Šayḫism. Initiated by Aḥmad b. Zay (...)
  • 61 Aqūl: ayy ḥadīṯ ǧāʾa sawāʾan kāna fī Ṣaḥīḥ al-Buḫārī aw fī Ṣaḥīḥ al-Kāfī, lā farqa ʿindī, yuʿraḍ ʿ (...)

19Declaring his adherence to this approach and putting the Uṣūlīs and the Aḫbāris on the same level,60 he adds:61

  • 62 Abū Ǧaʿfar Muḥammad b. Yaʿqūb b. Isḥāq al-Kulaynī (d. 329/941).
  • 63 For the sake of neutrality, al-Ḥaydarī makes reference to al-Buḫārī for Sunnīs and al-Kāfī for Šīʿ (...)

I thus affirm: any tradition, whether it comes from Ṣaḥīḥ al-Buḫārī or Ṣaḥīḥ al-Kāfī,62 I make no distinction,63 is to be submitted to the Book of our Lord. If it agrees with it, then it is accepted, but if it is incompatible, opposed, different, or contradictory [to the Qurʾān], then it is a false and worthless word.

  • 64 In his view, there are two types of Sunna: the first is “the Sunna from the Prophet” (al-sunna al- (...)
  • 65 Al-sunna lā istiqlāliyya lahā fī qibāl al-Qurʾān (interview with al-Mayādīn on the program Alif Lā (...)
  • 66 See al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 56.
  • 67 Al-muʾmin yaktafī bi-Llāh rabban wa-bi-l-Qurʾān kitāban (Manṣūr, al-Qurʾān wa-kafā, p. 6).

20The Sunna of the Prophet64 and the Imāms should therefore be evaluated in light of the Qurʾān and understood in its shadow (fī ẓil al-Qurʾān). Al-Ḥaydarī insists that this approach does not oppose the Qurʾān and the Sunna, as the latter is (or should be) closely linked to the Qurʾān.65 Indeed, the Qurʾān, not the Sunna, is the source of the intelligibility of prophetic and imāmic action. For al-Ḥaydarī, this is what is known as the ‘Islam of the Qurʾān’.66 The question thus beckons as to whether this is not the doctrine adopted by the Qurʾānists. Anticipating possible opposition, al-Ḥaydarī stresses how this doctrine in which the Tradition is submitted to the Qurʾān differs from the beliefs of the Qurʾānists. He strongly rejects the main thesis of an emblematic author of the Qurʾānist movement, the Egyptian Aḥmad Ṣubḥī Manṣūr (b. 1949). According to Manṣūr: “The believer is content with God as Lord and the Qurʾān as a book.”67 Al-Ḥaydarī’s project never seeks to completely abandon the Tradition but rather aims to set more moderate criteria for its evaluation and specify its relationship to the Qurʾān. Thus, rejecting the Qurʾānist doctrine, al-Ḥaydarī prefers to draw on the words of ʿAlī b. Abī Ṭālib (d. 40/661) as the basis for his attitude towards the riwāyāt: “When, affirmed ʿAlī, traditions are contrary to the Qurʾān, I reject them” (iḏā kānat al-riwāyāt muḫālifa li-l-Qurʾān kaḏḏabtuhā).

  • 68 Harabtum min al-Qurʾān ilā al-aḥādīṯ (during the second television broadcast of Min Islām al-Ḥadīṯ (...)
  • 69 Al-taḥawwul min al-Islām al-muḥammadī al-muwaḥḥid ilā al-Islām al-umawī al-mufarriq (al-Ḥasan, Isl (...)
  • 70 For example, he describes Caliph ʿUmar b. al-Ḫaṭṭāb as the true initiator of the Qurʾānist movemen (...)
  • 71 In one of his teachings, in which he refers to Orientalists and their attitudes towards the Sunna, (...)
  • 72 Goldziher, Beiträge zur Literaturgeschichte der Šîʿâ; idem, Études sur la tradition islamique.

21According to al-Ḥaydarī, this rejection of the Tradition is not equivalent to ʿAlī’s questioning of the Prophet but instead applies a fundamental rule (qāʾida asāsiyya) in which the qurʾānic teaching is the criterion for the validation of the riwāyāt. Moreover, according to al-Ḥaydarī, ʿAlī’s mistrust can be explained by the schisms of the post-prophetic period. ʿAlī would have understood that each faction was looking for “religious coverage” (ġiṭāʾ dīnī) to legitimize its claims to power. In this context, al-Ḥaydarī mentioned Salmān al-Fārisī, another companion of the Prophet, who addressed a group of believers by saying: “You left the Qurʾān for the ḥadīṯs.”68 In other words, “they left the word of the Creator (al-ḫāliq) for that of a creature [the Prophet or imām]”. Here we encounter the ‘Islam of Tradition’ in its initial state when began “the mutation of Muḥammadan and unifying Islam towards the sectarian Islam of the Umayyads”.69 Therefore, the ‘Islam of the Ḥadīṯ’ corresponds to this Islam of personal and clan interests, or in other words, it represents the Islam of empires. By reading the history of the first centuries of Islam, al-Ḥaydarī attempts to contextualize the emergence of the Ḥadīṯ in the Islamic context. Although this attempt is not without ideological70 motives, this effort at contextualization recalls, mutatis mutandis, some of Ignaz Goldziher’s theses71 on the sectarianism and politico-religious struggles resulting from the multiplication of ḥadīṯs in the early centuries of Islam.72

  • 73 Islām takfīrī, wa-Islām ḫurāfī wa-usṭūrī (al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 14).
  • 74 This sacralization is manifested in the fact that when one tells a Muslim that “The Qurʾān says th (...)
  • 75 Min qadāsat al-ašḫāṣ ilā qadāsat al-naṣṣ (al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 93).
  • 76 Al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 69.

22Al-Ḥaydarī’s view of this period has one main objective: to question post-prophetic Islam (and non-Alid), which he describes as the “Islam of excommunication, superstition, and myth”.73 Thus, casting aside this post-prophetic religion would put an end to the sacralization of myths and opinions relating to the first generations and simultaneously put an end to the sacralization of people,74 thus moving towards the sacralization of the text—i.e., the qurʾānic text.75 Al-Ḥaydarī therefore calls for the restoration of the ‘Islam of the Qurʾān’ as the antidote to sectarianism, which would affect all Muslim communities throughout the world. The Qurʾān alone is the source that can establish the unity of the Umma (community):76

This religious reference, which is the Qurʾān, brings together all Islamic groups. It is neither from Naǧaf nor Qum, Azharite nor Zaytunian. It is neither from Mecca nor Medina. It is a pure Islamic reference, far from closed circles, tamed minds, and personal ideological reflections.

  • 77 The entire series in audio, video, and text format is available on the author’s website. It should (...)
  • 78 It is also a question of historicism and more precisely Karl Popper’s criticism of this trend. Al- (...)

23This reform project initiated by al-Ḥaydarī has been the major focus of his television interventions and teaching for several years. To explain this project, he devoted a series of 25 sessions to the theme of taǧdīd and iǧtihād at the ḥawza in Qum from December 2018 to April 2019.77 Entitled Muṭāraḥāt fī taǧdīd al-fikr al-dīnī (lit. Conversations on the renewal of religious thought), this series is divided into two parts: the first 18 sessions focus exclusively on the problem of iǧtihād and its redefinition in light of new challenges, while the last 7 sessions focus on “Man and religion in the historical method” (al-insān wa-l-dīn fī al-manhāǧ al-tārīḫī). In what follows, I will analyze the ideas developed by al-Ḥaydarī in the first part of these sessions. However, it should be noted that his objective in the second part is not simply to expose the historical approaches as developed by Western thinkers but also to explore philosophical issues such as Marxism and existentialism (al-wuǧūdiyya), which have sought to define man’s relationship to history.78

Iǧtihād as a Religious Obligation79

  • 79 In this section, unless otherwise stated, I rely on the aforementioned sessions, which are devoted (...)

Al-fikr al-dīnī fikr bašarī muqayyad ġayr muqaddas. ʿIndamā yaʾtī al-iǧtihād yaʾtī al-iḫtilāf (Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī)

  • 80 See Sangaré, Le scellement de la prophétie.
  • 81 In reference to Q V, 3.
  • 82 The translation of this qurʾānic passage, far from simple, will determine whether it is an inclusi (...)

24The starting point of al-Ḥaydarī’s thinking on the need for taǧdīd and iǧtihād is the doctrine of the finality of prophethood (ḫatm al-nubuwwa).80 As prophecy is sealed, religious thought should be able to renew itself through iǧtihād. However, he highlights that this idea of renewal is sometimes rejected in both Sunnī and Šīʿī contexts under the pretext that the religion of Muḥammad has been perfected by God.81 To establish the legitimacy of taǧdīd, it would therefore be necessary to deconstruct the links between “religion” (al-dīn) and “religious thought” (al-fikr al-dīnī). In this context, al-Ḥaydarī begins by clarifying what is meant by “Islam” when the Qurʾān states: “Today, I have perfected your religion for you, completed My blessing upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as your religion” (Q V, 3), or: “The religion in the sight of God is Islam” (Q III, 19).82

  • 83 Al-fikr al-dīnī fikr bašarī muqayyad ġayr muqaddas.

25For al-Ḥaydarī, a distinction must be made here between “Islam in the sight of God or perfected by God”, thus an unchanging and eternal religion, and Islam as conceptualized by Islamic schools throughout history. The latter Islam is characterized by its “plurality” to such an extent that we should speak of “Islams” in the plural form (islāmāt mutaʿaddida), because, al-Ḥaydarī says, the Islam of Aḫbārīs is not the Islam of theologians (mutakallimīn), which differs from the Islam of falāsifa and so on. Although religion in the sight of God (ʿind Allāh) is “invariable Islam” (al-Islām al-ṯābit), the Islam of theologians or jurists constitutes what is called “religious thought” (al-fikr al-dīnī). In other words, it is “human thought, conditioned, and non-sacred”.83 From this perspective, the effort to interpret the religious sources, or iǧtihād, constitutes a renewed attempt to draw closer (iqtirāb) to this invariant Islam. Yet making such an effort is not an option available to the believer; it is instead an obligation (farīḍa) and a necessity (ḍarūra) without which the qurʾānic message would remain silent in the face of history and new challenges (al-tasāʾulāt al-ǧadīda). Because iǧtihād is a religious obligation (farīḍa), the community of Muḥammad does not need a new law (šarīʿa ǧadīda) but rather new readings of the Revelation.

  • 84 Lā naḥtāǧ ilā šarīʿa ǧadīda wa-innamā naḥtāǧ ilā qirāʾa ǧadīda li-l-nuṣūṣ al-dīniyya.
  • 85 Al-Ḥaydarī, Mafāṣil iṣlāḥ, p. 6.

26To better emphasize this idea, al-Ḥaydarī adopted the following slogan in his 5th session on taǧdīd: “We do not need a new law but a new reading of religious texts.”84 This slogan is taken from his book Mafāṣil iṣlāḥ al-fikr al-šīʿī published in 2017, where he claims:85

We stated on various occasions that we do not need new šarīʿa but new readings of religious texts, new practices, instruments (āliyyāt) that support (dāʿima) the evolution of the iǧtihād process (taṭawwur al-ʿamaliyya al-iǧtihādiyya) and the process of deduction of law (istinbāṭ). Without this, only the generalization of excommunication remains, and this is what religious thought leads to [nowadays].

27Concerning the idea that iǧtihād and taǧdīd are religious obligations, al-Ḥaydarī uses different terminology in his arguments such as “divine obligation” (farīḍa ilāhiyya) and, above all, “epistemological necessity” (ḍarūra maʿrifiyya), because everything said by “our predecessors” (sābiqūnā) no longer necessarily coincides with the reality of the world. Šīʿīs or Sunnīs who renounce iǧtihād and are content to pray in this way are thus in error: “May God reward our first scholars (ǧazāhum Allāh al-sābiqīn min ʿulamāʾinā), of the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th centuries [of the Hiǧra], who made an effort of interpretation (iǧtahadū), wrote (katabū), published (allafū), gathered (ǧamaʿū), and so on.” To adopt such an attitude by exempting oneself from the practice of iǧtihād is to renounce one’s humanity. According to al-Ḥaydarī, the situation is as follows:

I think, therefore I am a human being (anā ufakkir iḏan anā insān); this is not the same idea as ‘I think, therefore I am’ (anā ufakkir iḏan anā mawǧūd), as some Western philosophers claim (baʿḍ falāsifat al-Ġarb). Your humanity is proportional to your ability to think (bi-qadr mā tufakkir fa-bi-qadrihi taqtaribu min al-insāniyya). And the more you move away from reflection, the closer you move towards bestiality (al-bahīmiyya) and beasts. No nation can rise, develop, or flourish without intellectual thought and intellectual freedom, and certainly not through intellectual tyranny and terrorism (lā yumkin li-ummatin an taṣʿad, wa-tanmū, wa-tanhaḍ illā bi-l-fikr wa-l-ḥuriyya al-fikriyya lā [bi-]l-istibdād al-fikrī wa-l-irhāb al-fikrī).

28Today’s Islamic Umma, regardless of its doctrinal tendencies, is far from capable of responding to these demands, since they excommunicate and massacre each other, because “thought (al-fikr), conscience (al-waʿī), reasoning (al-taʿaqqul), and intellectual freedom are lost”. In this manner, the community reproduces the dogmatism that dominated the Islam of empires instead of striving for a renewal of religious thought.

Iǧtihād and Divergence

  • 86 Muḥammad Ḥusayn al-Ṭabāṭabāʾī (d. 1981) was the successor of “Khomeyni to the Chair of Mystical Ph (...)
  • 87 Al-Ṭabāṭabāʾī, al-Mīzān fī tafsīr al-Qurʾān, vol. 1, p. 8.
  • 88 Badawi writes on this subject: “There are countless Islamic sects. The ancient Muslim authors, who (...)

29To avoid this sectarianism, al-Ḥaydarī praises divergence (al-iḫtilāf), since by advocating intellectual freedom and the effort of iǧtihād, opinions will forcibly diverge. Here he relies on al-Ṭabāṭabāʾī86 who, in the introduction to his Tafsīr, argues that in the first centuries of Islam, the divergence between Muslims reached such a level that nothing was left to unite them except the šahāda.87 This situation would have resulted in the condemnation of iḫtilāf by some scholars who relied on the famous ḥadīṯ of the “saved sect” (al-firqa al-nāǧiya).88 According to al-Ḥaydarī, this tradition was invented by Jews, Christians, and those who embraced Islam in order to pervert it from the inside.

  • 89 Such an affirmation was immediately taken up by Saudi and Egyptian preachers as confirmation of th (...)
  • 90 Ataḥaddākum ʿilmiyyan an tuṯbitū aṣl al-imāma qurʾāniyyan. In the 14th session, al-Ḥaydarī listed (...)

30Although the narrative of Islamic history proposed by al-Ḥaydarī falls into what Mohammed Arkoun (d. 2010) termed ‘mytho-history’, it is worth examining how he seeks to apply this principle of iḫtilāf to the theological-political opposition between Šīʿism and Sunnism. While calling himself a duodecimal Šīʿī, al-Ḥaydarī questions whether the doctrine of the Imāmate (imāmat) is a qurʾānic principle or whether it stems from iǧtihād. Can it be deduced from the following qurʾānic passage on Abraham: “I make you an imām for the people” (Q II, 124)? Or another verse that would prefigure the cycle of the twelve Imāms: “The number of months, with God, is twelve” (Q IX, 36)? While al-Ḥaydarī asserts that the esoteric meaning (bāṭin) of these passages may be linked to the cycle of the Imāmate, their apparent or exoteric meaning (ẓāhir) makes no reference to it. This is not surprising in his view, since the doctrine of the Imāmate has no (explicit) basis in the Qurʾān.89 Addressing his students, he said: “Scientifically, I challenge you to establish the qurʾānic basis of the Imāmate.”90 Canonical prayer has an explicit qurʾānic foundation (aṣl), but this is not the case with the Imāmate. So what is the foundation of the doctrine of the Imāmate?

  • 91 Al-Ḥaydarī relies on the following qurʾānic verses: “We have appointed for every nation a holy rit (...)
  • 92 During his interview on al-Mayādīn in the program Alif Lām Mīm entitled Asbāb iḫtilāf al-umma (The (...)

31Al-Ḥaydarī provides the following answer: “It is one iǧtihād among many” (iǧtihād min al-iǧtihādāt). And “if someone asked me: ‘So you don’t believe in the Imāmate?’ I would answer: ‘I believe in it as the [fruit] of an iǧtihād, [so] one can agree or disagree with me [on this doctrine]’”. Continuing his argument, he specifies: “I believe in the doctrine of the twelve Imāms, I have written 10 books on the Imāmate, but this is the result of a [personal] iǧtihād. I cannot argue with someone on the basis of my own personal reflection and then excommunicate him because he disagrees with me. We each have our own iǧtihād.” From this argument, al-Ḥaydarī concludes that a Šīʿī cannot use the rejection of the Imāmate doctrine as a reason to excommunicate a Sunnī. Whether or not one believes in the Imāmate is a matter of iḫtilāf, which he also defines as “divine law” (sunna ilāhiyya). Therefore, it is God himself who will determine this type of doctrinal divergence91 on Judgment Day by revealing those who “were stubborn (ʿinād), doubting (ištibāh) or moderate (iqtiṣād/iʿtidāl)”. Thus, following the qurʾānic logic (al-manṭiq al-qurʾānī), the act of “excommunicating or excluding the other” (takfīr aw iqṣāʾ al-āḫar) can only be “blameworthy” (maḏmūm), not “commendable” (mamdūḥ). However, as he points out, this is the prevailing attitude between Šīʿīs and Sunnīs who call each other “innovation people” (ahl al-bidʿa). But once again, it is the Ḥadīṯ that fuels these divisions, particularly the traditions similar to that of the “saved sect”. The Ḥadīṯ thus promotes a religious culture based on blame:92

What is rooted in the spirit and culture of the Umma is the culture of the Ḥadīṯ (al-rākiz fī ḏihn al-umma wa-fī ṯaqāfat al-umma hiyā ṯaqāfat al-Ḥadīṯ). When [the Muslim] speaks to prove the truth (iṯbāt šayʾin), he relies (yastanid) on a ḥadīṯ; when he wishes to deny something (nafī šayʾin), he uses a ḥadīṯ; when he wants to exclude (aqṣā) the other, he quotes a ḥadīṯ; when he tries to excommunicate (kaffara) others, he draws on a ḥadīṯ; when he wants to insult (sabba) and curse (laʿana) others, he quotes a ḥadīṯ [...].

  • 93 ʿIndamā yaʾtī al-iǧtihād yaʾtī al-iḫtilāf.

32In al-Ḥaydarī’s opinion, only a return to the ‘Islam of the Qurʾān’ could make it possible to escape such a culture. Rehabilitating iǧtihād is thus a decisive and necessary step to enable this return, which also implies the restoration of iḫtilāf, because “once there is iǧtihād, there is a discrepancy”.93

The Prophet’s iǧtihād

  • 94 Chaumont, “La problématique classique de l’ijtihâd”, p. 105.
  • 95 See al-Ṭūsī, ʿUddat al-uṣūl, vol. 2, pp. 733–734, n. 4.
  • 96 Al-Ṭūsī, ʿUddat al-uṣūl, vol. 2, p. 733.

33The Prophet’s iǧtihād is a classic theme of the treaties of uṣūl al-fiqh.94 Was the Prophet a muǧtahid? If so, under which circumstances did he practice iǧtihād? And what authority should be given to his iǧtihādāt? These questions are addressed by al-Ḥaydarī in his teaching series on taǧdīd and iǧtihād. Before setting out his opinion, he takes stock of the divergences on this subject. Among the Sunnīs, some admit the practice of iǧtihād for the Prophet such as the Ḥanafite al-Qāḍī Abū Yūsuf (d. 181/798), al-Šāfiʿī (d. 204/820), and Aḥmad b. Ḥanbal, while others reject it like Ibn Ḥazm (d. 456/1064).95 Among the Šīʿa, al-Šayḫ al-Ṭūsī writes:96

This question is not addressed in our foundations, because we demonstrated that qiyās and iǧtihād are not allowed to be used in the Revelation (lā yaǧūz istiʿmāl al-qiyās wa-l-iǧtihād fī al-šarʿ). Having established this, it is therefore not permitted for the Prophet [to use qiyās and iǧtihād], nor for any [member] of his community, whether he be present or concealed.

  • 97 See al-Ḥillī, Maʿāriǧ al-uṣūl, p. 180.
  • 98 See al-Ḥaydarī, al-Sunna al-nabawiyya: mawqiʿuhā, ḥuǧǧiyyatuhā, aqsāmuhā (lit. The prophetic tradi (...)

34Quoting al-Muḥaqqiq al-Ḥillī (d. 676/1277), al-Ḥaydarī points out that he is not entirely of this opinion: he admits the possibility of iǧtihād for the Prophet in religious law (al-aḥkām al-šarʿiyya),97 while specifying that Muḥammad’s interpretation effort implies the obligation of obedience (mafrūḍ al-ṭāʿa) among the faithful.98 What is al-Ḥaydarī’s (personal) position on this issue? Firstly, he distinguishes here between two types of iǧtihād: iǧtihād to extract religious law (istiḫrāǧ/istinbāṭ al-aḥkām al-šarʿiyya), and iǧtihād to apply religious law (al-iǧtihād fī taṭbīq al-aḥkām al-šarʿiyya). Since the elaboration of religious law is reserved exclusively for God, the Prophet’s iǧtihād falls into the second category. For example, God imposed zakāt, but the Prophet detailed its application (taṭbīq) through his personal iǧtihād rather than waḥy or ilhām. However, al-Ḥaydarī asks whether the Prophet’s iǧtihād is valid at all times and in all places.

35To respond to this question, he makes a distinction between what is based on doctrinal foundations (uṣūl) and what constitutes the Prophet’s implementation of these uṣūl:

We need to distinguish between the basis (al-aṣl) and the practice (al-taṭbīq) [...]. We must observe the foundation and try to find a proper application according to our objective reality (naltazim bi-l-aṣl wa-nuḥāwil an naǧida taṭbīqan mulāʾiman lahu fī ẓurūfinā al-mawḍūʿiyya).

  • 99 Camels, cattle, sheep, wheat, barley, dates, dried grapes, gold, and silver; see Ghatâʾ, Le Shiʿîs (...)
  • 100 During the 12th session when these remarks were made, al-Ḥaydarī referred to Maḥmūd Muḥammad Ṭaha (...)
  • 101 Al-Ḥaydarī devotes no less than 200 sessions to the review of Islamic jurisprudence relating to wo (...)

36To support this view, the author uses the example of the zakāt collected during the Prophet’s lifetime based on nine types of belongings (al-umūr al-tisʿa).99 However, over time, the Šīʿī Imāms included other goods as well. This was possible, because it was considered to be a prophetic iǧtihād under taṭbīq al-aṣl.100 This work of contextualizing the Prophet’s iǧtihād remains to be done by the muǧtahids of our time, so that any confusion between the universal teaching of Islam and its detailed implementation can be avoided. The contextualization discussed here is not limited to the Prophet’s iǧtihād but also applies to many qurʾānic passages, particularly those relating to women.101

Iǧtihād and Mahdism

37Another sensitive issue raised by al-Ḥaydarī concerns the link between iǧtihād and Mahdism. Is it possible to reconcile iǧtihād, viewed here as a religious obligation, and the expectation of the Mahdī? This is a very delicate theological issue, especially since al-Ḥaydarī was previously accused of challenging Mahdism. For this reason, whenever discussing this doctrine, he now takes care to clarify the origin and sources of his reasoning. The expectation of a Saviour (munǧī) is not “specific to monotheistic religions” (ġayr muḫtaṣṣa bi-l-adyān al-tawḥīdiyya), and nor is it a “Šīʿī innovation”. On the contrary, it has been one of the characteristics of human thought for at least “three thousand years”. Faced with the anguish of existence, “the social sciences tell us that man has conceived deities and religions as a refuge”. Similarly, when a community was dominated and persecuted, it conceived the coming of a Saviour as a way to take revenge and reverse the course of history. According to al-Ḥaydarī, some even go so far as to believe that the coming of a Saviour to restore justice is one of the “laws governing history” (al-sunan allatī taḥkum al-tārīḫ). He refers here to Marxism, particularly the doctrine of “historical necessity” (ḍarūra tārīḫiyya/iḍṭirār tārīḫī) according to which “we are moving towards a society without a class struggle (ṭabaqāt/ṭabaqiyya)”.

  • 102 On this issue, see Amir-Moezzi, La religion discrète, pp. 298–315.

38The expectation of a Saviour or Mahdī102 goes beyond religious belief alone, and for this reason, the real question to ask is thus: is it a harmful or beneficial belief for humans? From al-Ḥaydarī’s perspective, the harmful or salutary nature of Mahdism depends on how it is viewed by human societies. Thus, it could be detrimental to expect a Saviour who “will restore the right of the oppressed” (yaʾḫuḏ bi-ḥaqq al-maẓlūm), as this can divert the “human” (al-insān) from defending his own rights. In this case, Mahdism becomes a utopia that hinders action and leaves the field open to the “despots (mustabiddūn), emperors (abāṭira), and pharaohs (farāʿina)”. Nevertheless, the belief in a Saviour could be beneficial if it is understood, as in Šīʿī eschatology, as an ideal of justice and a refusal to give up before the vicissitudes of history. For this reason, when dealing with this theme in Islamic thought, al-Ḥaydarī believes that a distinction should be made between the “shell (qišr) of this notion and its kernel (lubb/ǧawhar)”. In Mahdism and especially in Šīʿism, it is superficial to simply list the acts to be performed by the future Mahdī/Imām, as this turns such a doctrine into a series of “hollow slogans” (šiʿ ārāt ǧawfāʾ).

  • 103 In contemporary Šīʿism, Ali Shariati was undoubtedly one of the first to denounce the passive expe (...)

39By contrast, waiting for the Mahdī or the return of the Imām does not mean hoping for the establishment of a just society sometime in the future, but rather striving for its realization here and now.103 For al-Ḥaydarī, believing in the return of the Imām would require adhering to the values and ideals promoted by all imāms and thus acting to make them effective in society. To support this view, al-Ḥaydarī quotes the qurʾānic verse: “Indeed, We sent Our Messengers with the clear signs, and We sent down with them the Book and the Balance so that men might uphold justice” (Q LVII, 25). The mission of prophets is to help men establish justice. This also applies to the Imāms, especially to the twelfth, who will not return because anarchy, injustice, and fitna (disorder, sedition) dominate the world, but rather because those awaiting his return will have truly turned towards moral values and built the ideal city where his teaching can be applied.

40Drawing a parallel between this ideal city and the current world, he affirms that it cannot be a city of anathema or a place of oppression for those who do not expect or believe in the Imām. The city of the Imām cannot be conceived in the same way as a global city of today, where globalization (al-ʿawlama) has brought about a standardization of cultures, beliefs, and ideologies as the norm. For al-Ḥaydarī, the city of the Imām is not for banishing differences, and even less, for “the conflict of civilizations” (ṣirāʿ al-ḥaḍārāt).

41With this reinterpretation of the messianic expectation, al-Ḥaydarī specifies the attitude to be adopted by the muǧtahīd towards this doctrine. His task is not to deny the return of the Saviour but rather to conceive it as a dynamic process towards the fulfillment of qurʾānic moral values as opposed to the expectation of future revenge.

Iǧtihād across Doctrinal Boundaries: The Voice for an Alternative Islam

42The approach proposed by al-Ḥaydarī will certainly raise questions: Notably, how can he overcome doctrinal oppositions when he still clearly affirms his affiliation to duodecimal Šīʿism and assumes the clerical function of marǧaʿ? In his teaching, al-Ḥaydarī strives to reconcile his role as a cleric with the demands of bold religious thinking aimed at restoring the ‘Islam of the Qurʾān’. He also does this with his students through his erudition that is open to all aspects of contemporary Islamic thought from both the East and the West, as well as to the social sciences.

  • 104 During his teachings, al-Ḥaydarī does not refer to works that are not at his disposal. He shows ea (...)

43The bibliography used104 by al-Ḥaydarī in his sessions on taǧdīd and iǧtihād is highly significant. Although I cannot cite here the almost 80 books included in this bibliography, let me mention a few important titles in addition to those already quoted in this article:

Šīʿī Sources/Authors

– al-Āmilī, ʿAlī al-Kūrānī, Muʿǧam aḥādīṯ al-Imām al-Mahdī [Glossary of traditions of Imām Mahdī], 2 vols, Qum, Muʾassasat al-Maʿārif al-Islāmiyya, 1990.

– Ḥaydar, Asad al-ʿAlāma, al-Imām al-Ṣādiq wa-l-maḏāhib al-ʿarbaʿa [Imām al-Ṣādiq and the four schools], 4 vols, Bayrūt, Dār al-Kitāb al-Islāmī, 2004.

– al-Mašhadī, Muḥammad Riḍā, Tafsīr kanz al-daqāʾiq wa-baḥr al-ġarāʾib [Exegesis: The treasure of subtleties and the ocean of wonders], 17 vols, Ḥusayn Darkāhī (ed.), Ṭihrān, Šams al-Ḍuḥā, 2008–2009.

Sunnī Sources/Authors

– Maḥmūd, Muḥammad, Nubuwwat Muḥammad: al-Tārīḫ wa-l-ṣināʿa, madḫal li-qirāʾa naqdiyya [Muhammad’s prophecy: History and construction. Introduction to critical reading], Lundun, Markaz al-Dirāsāt al-Naqdiyya li-l-Adyān, 2013.

– Šahrūr, Muḥammad, Dalīl al-qirāʾa al-muʿāṣira li-l-tanzīl al-ḥakīm: al-Manhaǧ wa-l-muṣṭalaḥāt [Manual of contemporary reading of the Revelation: The method and terminologies], Bayrūt, Dār al-Sāqī, 2016.

– Charfi, Abdelmajid, al-Islām bayn al-risāla wa-l-tārīḫ [Islam between message and history], Bayrūt, Dār al-Ṭalīʿat li-l-Ṭibāʿ a wa-l-Našr, 2000.

Other Sources/Authors

– Armstrong, Karen, Allāh wa-l-insān [God and man], Muḥammad al-Ǧūrā (trans.), Dimašq, Dār al-Ḥaṣād li-l-Našr wa-l-Tawzīʿ, 1996.

– Arkoun, Mohammed, al-Qurʾān min al-tafsīr al-mawrūṯ ilā taḥlīl al-ḫiṭāb al-dīnī [The Qurʾān: From traditional exegesis to the analysis of religious discourse], Hišām Ṣāliḥ (trans.), Bayrūt, Dār al-Ṭalīʿa li-l-Ṭibāʿa wa-l-Našr, 2001.

– Badawī,ʿAbd al-Raḥmān, Mawsūʿat al-falsafa [Encyclopedia of philosophy], 3 vols, al-Muʾassasa al-ʿArabiyya li-l-Dirāsat wa-l-Našr, 1984.

– Kant, Immanuel, Naqd al-ʿaql al-naẓarī [Criticism of pure reason], Mūsā Wahbah (trans.), Bayrūt, Markaz al-Inmāʾ al-Qawmī, n.d.

  • 105 Sometimes the new thinkers may include a critical cleric like Mohsen Kadivar. Paradoxically, unlik (...)
  • 106 The term ‘New thinkers’ refers here to the category of Muslim intellectuals who reject traditional (...)
  • 107 Roussillon, La pensée islamique contemporaine, p. 11.

44This bibliography deserves our full attention, since it informs us about al-Ḥaydarī’s teachings in the ḥawza. Firstly, it can help explain the striking affinities between his review of iǧtihād and the approaches of so-called reformist Muslim thinkers. However, clerical figures like al-Ḥaydarī,105 who are mostly trained in the religious sciences, remain largely absent from current studies on subversive or reformist discourses within Islam. In examining such discourses, it is ‘New Muslim thinkers’106 or ‘New Muslim intellectuals’107 who attract the attention of researchers.

  • 108 Roussillon, La pensée islamique contemporaine, p. 48.
  • 109 Roussillon, La pensée islamique contemporaine, p. 174.

45The particular case of al-Ḥaydarī should therefore lead us to question this classification of contemporary Muslim authors and thinkers. However, it is not an easy task to circumvent this pantheon of authors who are presented as acting “freely, without being bound by pre-existing political, religious, or ideological orthodoxy”.108 Indeed, a significant investment would be required to identify the influential scholars within contemporary Arab Islamic societies, constitute a corpus of their ideas, and identify the major themes, particularly in regard to their reinterpretation of the founding texts. Without investigating these voices that express an Islam differing from that of the contemporary “authorized clerics”,109 it is not surprising to hear discourses that abusively present the ʿulamāʾ as a homogenous group. Such an investigation on al-Ḥaydarī’s thought, for example, requires reading his writing and listening to his teachings broadcast live on social media. The latter should certainly be taken into account, as universities, ḥawzāt, and ʿulamāʾ all broadcast their teachings on the Internet and social media. These digital platforms are becoming places for the production of contemporary Islamic knowledge—whether apologetic discourses or views that ostensibly deviate from the traditional vulgate of Islamic doctrines. When al-Ḥaydarī reinterprets iǧtihād, redefines the role of muǧtahid, and pits the ‘Islam of the Qurʾān’ against the ‘Islam of Tradition’, while drawing on Muslim and non-Muslim authors, he uses these multimedia platforms without fear of anathema or misunderstanding among the faithful or religious authorities.

  • 110 See his book al-Islām wa-uṣūl al-ḥukm (lit. Islam and the foundations of political power), publish (...)
  • 111 Based on an expression borrowed from Pierre-Jean Luizard for whom iǧtihād, in the Šīʿī context, “h (...)

46Like ʿAlī ʿAbd al-Rāziq (d. 1966), a traditional Sunnī scholar who advocated a critical reading of Islamic sources,110 al-Ḥaydarī also demonstrates a bold freedom from the Šīʿī intellectual and religious tradition. Yet unlike ʿAbd al-Rāziq, he is (clearly) open to the social sciences and the most diverse Islamic sources with the aim to make iǧtihād the instrument of a “permanent dogmatic revolution”.111 Thus, al-Ḥaydarī’s thought puts iǧtihād at the service of theological reflection (on Mahdism, the Imāmate, etc.), and no longer confined to the fiqh or uṣūl al-fiqh.

  • 112 Mervin, “Muhammad Husayn Fadlallah”, p. 283.

47Based on the above analysis, al-Ḥaydarī can be presented as a modernist cleric, because he takes into account the social sciences and believes that theological discourses should be influenced by new knowledge and renewed in the face of new challenges. It is possible to connect this portrait of al-Ḥaydarī with another figure of contemporary Šīʿism: Muḥammad Ḥusayn Faḍlallāh (d. 2010). According to Sabrina Mervin, Faḍlallāh considered himself to be: “un marǧaʿ moderniste (il se réfère aux scientifiques et aux médecins), féministe (il pourfend les crimes d’honneur et l’excision, permet l’hyménoplastie)…”112

  • 113 See Aziz, “Fadlallah and the Remaking”, pp. 205–215; Carré, “Quelques mots-clefs”.
  • 114 Letter available on the website <http://sayedfadlullah.com/article/727>, accessed on December 10, 2019.

48Some supporters of Faḍlallāh like to point out the affinities between his doctrinal ideas113 and those defended by al-Ḥaydarī. The reason for drawing this parallel is because al-Ḥaydarī was previously a fervent critic of Faḍlallāh and his religious thought. Thus, Muḥammad Ṭirāf, the author of an “open letter” (risāla maftūḥa) to al-Ḥaydarī, writes:114

Al-Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī is one of those who opposed Faḍlallāh and violently rejected his ideas. During his lifetime and after his death, they objected to his discourse of renewal (taǧdīd) and his positions on controversial historical and doctrinal issues. No one disputes that al-Ḥaydarī has his own opinions and legal and doctrinal positions. As muǧtahid, this is allowed, and God will reward him. [However,] al-Ḥaydarī, after declaring himself marǧaʿ, subsequently adopted most of Faḍlallāh’s controversial and innovative ideas (taǧdīdiyya). He even ended up following the same legal approach as Faḍlallāh, and making the same deductions that he had previously rejected.

  • 115 See, for example, <www.youtube.com/watch?v=atduyYmdSDo> or <www.youtube.com/watch?v=4TDI108M8XA>, with the evocative title: “Al-Ḥaydarī an imitator of Faḍlallāh” ( (...)
  • 116 On some of the critics of Faḍlallāh, see Mervin, “Muhammad Husayn Fadlallah”, p. 283. As for al-Ḥa (...)
  • 117 On this competition for religious authority in a Šīʿī context, see Louër, Sunnites et Chiites, pp. (...)

49Sometimes, audio-visual montages are used to put this similarity between al-Ḥaydarī and Faḍlallāh into perspective.115 Some criticize these two religious figures for being too conciliatory with Sunnism116 or less virulent towards Sunnī sources. Nevertheless, al-Ḥaydarī rarely makes explicit references to Faḍlallāh in his teachings. Indeed, he is not only a cleric calling for theological renewal, but with the system of marǧaʿiyya, he is also a figure in competition or, at least, in rivalry with other clerics in order to impose himself as a religious authority.117 Given the obvious affinities between his tajdīd project and some of Faḍlallāh’s religious ideas, al-Ḥaydarī has every interest in not appearing to be his imitator. If al-Ḥaydarī were to begin quoting Faḍlallāh, he would have to justify his initial distance and criticism.

50Apart from the figure of Faḍlallāh, there are also clear affinities between the thought of al-Ḥaydarī and Šīʿī clerics such as al-Munṭazirī (Ḥusayn ʿAlī, d. 2009) or Kadivar. These affinities particularly concern the relationship between religion and politics. For al-Munṭazirī and later Kadivar, the role of the faqīh or cleric is not the exercise of power as formulated in the wilāyat al-faqīh but rather the “control of the Islamicity of the laws”, called niẓārat al-faqīh (supervision of the doctor of the law).

51Without adopting the notion of niẓārat al-faqīh, al-Ḥaydarī is opposed to the exercise of power by “men of religion” (riǧāl al-dīn). He believes that scholars (al-ʿālim) and religious institutions (al-muʾassasa al-dīniyya) should have an advisory role for “politicians” (riǧāl al-siyāsa) and should work to cultivate the political conscience (al-waʿī al-siyāsī) of the Umma. For this purpose, the ʿālim cannot be a politician. The cleric is thus no longer at the centre of political power.

Conclusion

  • 118 Iqbal, The Reconstruction of Religious Thought in Islam, p. 139.
  • 119 Lā taqsirū awlādakum ʿalā ādābikum, fa-innahum maḫlūqūn li zamān ġayr zamānikum (al-Ḥaydarī, Mafāṣ (...)

52Since at least the 19th and the first half of the 20th centuries, iǧtihād has re-emerged as an important theme among Muslim scholars and thinkers. It will suffice to remember here Muḥammad Iqbāl (d. 1938) and his redefinition of iǧtihād as the “principle of movement in the structure of Islam”.118 He believed that it was necessary to rehabilitate iǧtihād and the status of muǧtahid in order to reconstruct religious thought in Islam. The problem is identical for al-Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī with his reform project that aims to rediscover the earliest prophetic message beyond doctrinal borders. Only iǧtihād, redefined as a religious obligation (farīḍa) and imperative necessity (ḍarūra), can “revitalize the Qurʾān” (iḥyāʾ al-Qurʾān) to “keep it alive for every era, place, and community” (ibqāʾ al-Qurʾān ḥayyan li-kull zamān wa-makān wa-fī kull umma). To prepare the ground for such an intellectual and religious dynamic, ʿAlī would have said: “Do not model your children on your habits. They are made for a time that is not yours.”119 To allow the continual renewal of religious thought, or permanent reclaiming of ‘Islam of the Qurʾān’, al-Ḥaydarī refuses to limit iǧtihād to the domain of uṣūl al-fiqh, and thus reduce it to a simple instrument for deductions (istinbāṭ).

  • 120 Soleimanieh, “La vie quotidienne des étudiants”, p. 101.

53The fact that such theological thought is no longer reserved for the ṭullāb of ḥawza but is broadcast live on the Internet is not incidental. It contributes to the construction of a “digital ḥawza120 and allows its author to find echoes in a Sunnī context.

  • 121 Amine Brahimi’s PhD thesis provides some reflections on this reception in the West. See Brahimi, “ (...)

54Finally, the religious thought of al-Ḥaydarī reinforces the idea that in Islamic societies, the production of reformist and modernist discourses is not the prerogative of secular intellectuals alone. Such an assertion would certainly need to be refined by considering the singularities and dynamics specific to the Sunnī and Šīʿī contexts. However, we can already observe that the reception of these reformist discourses in the West remains massively restricted to the works of secular intellectuals.121 A cleric like al-Ḥaydarī, does not fully correspond to the stereotypical image of Muslim reformer or reformist discourse in Islam.

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Notes

1 Lotfy, “Prêches, médias et fortune”, pp. 14–15.

2 See Lotfy, Ẓāhirat al-duʿāt al-ǧudud, pp. 23–30.

3 The “most famous telecoranist in the Muslim world” according to Pierre-Jean Luizard in his article “Les effets du réformisme”, p. 27.

4 Launched in 2012, with headquarters in Beirut; see <www.almayadeen.net>.

5 With Manṣūr Mandūr (al-Azhar, Egypt) and ʿAlī al-Šuʿaybī (Syria).

6 Debate between Faraḥ Mūsā (Islamic University, Lebanon) and Muḥammad b. Saqqāf al-Kāf (Egypt).

7 With Youssef Seddik (Tunisia) and Lwiis Saliba (Lebanon).

8 Professor in History of Religions at the University Āl al-Bayt (Jordan).

9 A private university officially recognized by the Iraqi authorities in 2004. According to the statistics available on its website, the university had 6,415 students in 2011/2012; see its website <http://iunajaf.edu.iq/ar>. Its YouTube channel broadcasts some of the university’s conferences, cultural meetings, and teachings: <www.youtube.com/user/islamicuniver>.

10 See its official YouTube channel: <https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC9rl8fUlMM0BxTQKKGP5YzQ>.

11 Like other Islamic universities such as the Islamic University of Medina with its YouTube channel: <https://www.youtube.com/user/IslamicUniversitySA>. Similarly, the Open Islamic Academy (al-Akādīmiyya al-Islāmiyya al-Maftūḥa) was established in Saudi Arabia in 2011, offering a complete E-learning course in Islamic studies; see its website: <https://benaa.islamacademy.net>.

12 This is the case with al-Šayḫ Bašīr al-Naǧafī born in 1942 in Jalandhar (British India). He emigrated to Naǧaf in 1965 to pursue his education in Islamic studies. He is now one of the great religious figures in Naǧaf’s ḥawza. Its teachings are available on his website: <www.alnajafy.com>.

13 Ḥawza (pl. ḥawzāt) “are religious seminars that were traditionally called madrasa, a term now used in Iran for elementary and high school” (Manoukian, City of Knowledge, p. 219).

14 It is also possible to access the teachings of other religious scholars such as Ǧaʿfar al-Subḥānī, founder of Muʾassasat al-Imām al-Ṣādiq (Imām Ṣadīq Institute) in Qum: <http://imamsadeq.org>.

15 Like al-Šayḫ Ḥasan al-Ǧawāhirī, the author of several books including Daʿwa ilā al-iṣlāh al-dīnī wa-l-ṯaqāfī (lit. Invitation to religious and cultural reform, 2015); its teachings are accessible via the portal Šīʿa Voice, <https://shiavoice.com>.

16 His teachings are present on a website in three languages (Arabic, Persian, and Urdu), a Facebook page, a YouTube channel, a Tweeter account, smartphone application, etc.

17 In addition to the aforementioned religious figures, let me cite here Āyatullāh Nāṣir Makārim al-Šīrāzī who was also a guest on the Alif Lām Mīm show during which he spoke exclusively in Persian: <https://makarem.ir>.

18 See the biographical data available on the website of Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī: <http://alhaydari.com/ar>. See also al-Karbāsī, Muʿǧam al-maqālāt al-ḥusayniyya, vol. 2, p. 21, n. 3.

19 “C’est certainement la hawza de Naǧaf qui a le plus marqué l’histoire du chiisme. Fondée en 1056 par le cheikh al-Tûsî lorsque, fuyant Bagdad celui-ci vint s’installer dans la ville abritant le mausolée de ʿAlî, elle demeura la plus grande concentration d’écoles et de savants chiites jusqu’au xxe siècle, même si elle était concurrencée par les autres ‘seuils sacrés’ (al-ʿatabât al-muqaddasa) du chiisme, abritant, eux aussi, des tombeaux d’imams : Karbalâʾ, Sâmarrâʾ, et al-Kâzimiyya” (Mervin, “La hawza à l’épreuve du siècle”, p. 71).

20 Medoff, Ijtihad and Renewal, p. 131. It should be noted that the persecution of religious schools by the Baath party based on the suspicion of “participating in the activities of the Islamic Daʿwa Party (the Islamic Call) against the Baʿathist government” led to the remodelling of the religious landscape in the region, particularly in Lebanon; see Nir, Lebanese Shiʿite Leadership, pp. 26–27.

21 For example, Muqaddima fī ʿilm al-aḫlāq (lit. Introduction to ethics).

22 Such as al-Ṯābit wa-l-mutaġayyir fī al-maʿrifa al-dīniyya (lit. The invariable and the variable in religious knowledge).

23 Such as al-ʿAql, al-ʿāqil wa-l-maʿqūl (lit. The intellect, the intelligent and the intelligible).

24 “In order to become a Mujtahid in Shiʿite Islam, an ʿAlim must pass through three stages of learning and training: Muqadamat, Sutuh and al-Dars al-kharij. These stages can be said to correspond to the B.A., M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Western academic study programs” (Nir,  Lebanese Shiʿite Leadership, p. 25). On the organization of training at the ḥawza, see also Mervin, “La hawza à l’épreuve du siècle”, pp. 69–70; Mottahedeh, “The Najaf Ḥawzah Curriculum”, pp. 341–351.

25 He appeared especially on the Iranian channel al-Kawṯar. However, in August 2013, al-Kawṯar decided to stop broadcasting al-Ḥaydarī’s interventions for obscure reasons and no longer invited him. This raised questions from al-Kawṯar’s audience living outside of Iran. See the article on this subject by al-Wasaṭ: <http://www.alwasatnews.com/news/800961.html> (the article received more than 200 commentaries online).

26 For example, the controversy with the Šīʿī scholar ʿAbd al-Karīm al-ʿUqaylī who devoted six teaching sessions to the refutation of Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī’s book al-Tawḥīd. These refutations were then collected by the Kuwaiti Aḥmad Muṣṭafā Yaʿqūb in a book entitled Naqd ʿilmī li-kitāb al-Tawḥīd: Buḥūṯ fī marātibihi wa-muʿṭayātihi, available on ʿAbd al-Karīm al-ʿUqaylī’s website: <www.oqaili.com>, accessed on October 16, 2019.

27 For example, see Stewart, “The Portrayal of an Academic Rivalry”, pp. 216–229.

28 See <http://alhaydari.com/ar/2013/08/49998>, accessed on October 15, 2019.

29 “Literally, ‘source of emulation’; in practice, venerated senior Shiʿa clerics whose edicts provide guidance over spiritual, social, juridical, and, in some cases, political matters” (Wehrey, Sectarian Politics in the Gulf, p. XV). Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī declared his marǧaʿiyya in May 2011.

30 Mervin, “Writing the History of Religious Authority in Najaf”, p. 163.

31 As already stated in 2012 in Maǧallat al-iǧtihād wa-l-taǧdīd, 22, 2012, p. 165. See also the collective work Mašrūʿu al-marǧaʿiyya al-dīniyya.

32 See al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 65.

33 The first program in this series, entitled Min Islām al-Ḥadīṯ ilā Islām al-Qurʾān, was broadcast live on July 17, 2013.

34 A Saudi preacher. In September 2017, al-Mālikī was arrested and imprisoned by the Saudi authorities on several counts: his criticism of the Supreme Council of Scholars (Maǧlis hayʾat Kibār al-ʿUlamāʾ) and his supposed “sympathy” towards Ḥasan Naṣrallāh (Secretary General of Ḥizbullāh). See the article by Human Rights Watch, <www.hrw.org/news/2019/06/23/saudi-arabia-religious-thinker-trial-his-life>, accessed on April 25, 2020.

35 Anā ūṣī šabāb al-Sunna wa-l-Šīʿa wa-kull al-maḏāhib an yuḍīfū aʿmāl al-Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī ilā al-aʿmāl al-ǧādda allatī tastaḥiqq al-wuqūf ʿindahā kaṯīran, ismaʿūhā bi-ʿaql, al-šābb al-yawm lā yaḥtāǧ li-maḏhab [wa-lakinnahu] yaḥtāǧ li-l-aʿmāl allatī tuqarribuhu akṯar min kitāb Allāh (<https://almaliky.org/subject.php?id=705>, accessed on April 10, 2020).

36 Al-Qurʾān al-karīm huwa al-kitāb al-munazzal ʿalā qalb al-nabī Muḥammad […] yabdaʾu bi-sūrat al-Ḥamd wa-yantahī bi-sūrat al-Nās, wa-huwa kitāb maṣūn ʿan al-taḥrīf muṭlaqan […] wa-iǧmāʿ al-umma qāʾim ʿalā ḏālika, hāḏihi ʿaqīdatunā fī al-Qurʾān (this definition was given by al-Ḥaydarī in al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 51).

37 Iʿtiqādunā anna al-Qurʾān allaḏī anzalahu Allāh taʿālā ʿalā nabiyyihi Muḥammad (ṣ) huwa mā bayna al-daffatayn, wa-huwa mā fī aydī al-nās, laysa bi-akṯar min ḏālika […] wa-man nasaba ilaynā annā naqūl annahu akṯar min ḏālika fa-huwa kāḏib (al-Ḥaydarī, Ṣiyānat al-Qurʾān min al-taḥrīf, p. 12).

38 When questioned about “Muṣḥaf Fāṭima”, al-Ḥaydarī repeats the same doctrine: “Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī argues that the Qurʾān is the most significant source for the Shīʿa and that most Shīʿa scholars have not denied this position. To the Shīʿa, Muṣḥaf means ‘book’, so Muṣḥaf Fāṭima literally means ‘the book of Fāṭimah’. Sayyid Kamāl notes that the Shīʿa do not consider the book of Fāṭima a ‘Qurʾān’ as claimed by the traditionalist ʿulamāʾ. Instead, Muṣḥaf Fāṭima is an inferior book to the Qurʾān” (Ismail, Saudi Clerics and Shīʿa Islam, p. 80).

39 Arkoun, Lectures du Coran, pp. 14–17.

40 In his Faṣl al-ḫiṭāb. A detailed presentation of this book is given by Brunner, “La question de la falsification du Coran”, pp. 22–42.

41 See al-Ṭihrānī, al- Ḏarīʿa, vol. 16, pp. 231–232, where he reports that al-Nūrī said: “I do not mean falsification as alteration and modification [...]. It would have been more appropriate to call [my book] ‘The decisive discourse on the non-falsification of the Book’” (laysa murādī min al-taḥrīf al-taġyīr wa-l-tabdīl, fa-kāna ḥariyyan bi-an yusammā Faṣl al-ḫiṭāb fī ʿadam taḥrīf al-kitāb).

42 See Amir-Moezzi, Le Coran silencieux et le Coran parlant, pp. 15–25, 27–61; Brunner, “La question de la falsification du Coran”, pp. 1–42.

43 For al-Ǧurǧānī, taḥqīq is “the confirmation (iṯbāt) of an outstanding issue (masʾala) by presenting relevant proofs” (al-Jurjānī, Le livre des définitions, p. 122).

44 See al-Ḥaydarī, Ṣiyānat al-Qurʾān min al-taḥrīf, p. 12.

45 Wa-ǧumlat al-qawl inna al-mašhūr bayna ʿulamāʾi al-Šīʿa wa-muḥaqqiqīhim, bal al-mutasālam ʿalayhi bayna-hum huwa al-qawl bi-ʿadam al-taḥrīf (this passage is taken from the book Ṣiyānat al-Qurʾān min al-taḥrīf, p. 18, and quoted in extenso during the first television broadcast of Min Islām al-Ḥadīṯ ilā Islām al-Qurʾān).

46 Iḏā waǧadtum hunā wa-hunāk man yunsab ilayhi al-taḥrīf fa-huwa ḫāriǧ ʿan dāʾirat al-taḥqīq, hāḏā al-insān yanqul ḥikāyāt (during the first television broadcast of Min Islām al-Ḥadīṯ ilā Islām al-Qurʾān).

47 Indamā yuṭlaq al-ḥadīṯ yaʿnī al-sunna al-qawliyya li-rasūl Allāh, ṣallā Allāh ʿalayhi wa-ālihi, wa-lakin anā ʿindamā aqūl al-ḥadīṯ laysa murādī faqaṭ al-sunna al-qawliyya, murādī kullu mā nuqila ʿan rasūl Allāh ilaynā min aqwālihi, wa-min aqārīrihi, wa-min afʿālihi, wa-min aḫlāqihi, wa-min ṣifātihi, wa-min malbasihi, wa-min maʾkalihi, wa-min mašrabihi wa-min ayy šayʾin murtabiṭ bi-rasūl Allāh nuqila ilaynā uʿabbiru ʿanhu al-ḥadīṯ (during the first television broadcast of Min Islām al-Ḥadīṯ ilā Islām al-Qurʾān).

48 Mā waṣalahum min al-sunna maḥfūf bi-l-šakk wa-l-waḍʿ wa-l-dass (al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 53).

49 On Aḫbārism, see Gleave, Scripturalist Islam; Newman, “The Nature of the Akhbārī/Uṣūlī Dispute”, Part 1, pp. 22–51; Part 2, pp. 250–261.

50 Al-Qurʾān ḥuǧǧa li-man ḫūṭibū bihi wa-hum al-nabī wa-l-aʾimma (al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 54).

51 Not to be confused with Muḥammad Bāqir Astarābādī (Mīr Dāmād, d. 1041/1631). On the nature of M.A. al-Astarābādī’s Aḫbārism, see Abisaab, “Was Muḥammad Amīn al-Astarabādī (d. 1036/1626-7) a Mujtahid?”, pp. 38–61; Gleave, Scripturalist Islam, pp. 31-60, in which the author examines the role of Muḥammad Amīn al-Astarābādī in the formation and spread of the Aḫbārī school. Concerning Muḥammad Bāqir Astarābādī, see Terrier, “Aspects d’une lecture philosophique du Coran”, pp. 101–126.

52 See al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 54.

53 See al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 54.

54 “[T]he uṣūliyya, which maintained that major problems could only be solved by the greatest religious authority of the day, a man who could be trusted to use his own independent judgement (ijtihād) appropriately. Every generation had its own supreme legist or mujtahid […] The name uṣūliyya given to this school is derived from its belief in the main principles (uṣūl) of Islamic jurisprudence used for the derivation of legal rulings using ijtihad” (Sindawi, “The Zaynabiyya Ḥawza in Damascus”, p. 861). More generally on the opposition between the Aḫbārīs and the Uṣūlīs, see Gleave, Scripturalist Islam; idem, “The Akhbari-Usuli Dispute”.

55 See Richard, L’islam chiʾite, p. 94.

56 Wa-hunā yaẓhar dawr al-Qurʾān [ʿind al-ūṣūliyyīn]: fal-ḥadīṯ ʿindahum huwa al-aṣl wa-l-miḥwar, wa-ammā al-Qurʾān fal-ḥāǧa lahu farʿiyya ǧiddan (al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 55).

57 See al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 55.

58 It should be noted that al-Ḥaydarī makes no reference to Muʿtazilism in any of the three responses.

59 Huwa al-ittiǧāh allaḏī nuʾminu bihi, fal-Qurʾān huwa al-miḥwar wa-l-maṣdar al-aṣlī fī ǧamīʿ maʿārifinā al-dīniyya, bal huwa al-maṣdar al-awwal wa-l-aḫīr fī-hā […] wa-ammā al-ḥadīṯ aw al-sunna fa-taʾtī fī ṭūlihi wa-fī ẓillihi (al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 55).

60 In his listing of the Šīʿī approaches, there is no reference to Šayḫism. Initiated by Aḥmad b. Zayn al-Dīn al-Aḥsāʾī (d. 1241/1826), the Šayḫīs’ approach is known for the doctrine of waḥdat al-nāṭiq according to which “there is in each time an imām and only one, who speaks in the name of God or the Prophet, what they call ‘the uniqueness of the one who has the word’ (vahdat-e nâteq)” (Richard, L’islam chiʾite, pp. 95–102). Al-Ḥaydarī is very critical of Šayḫism, which gave rise to Rukniyya, Bābism, and Bahaism (bahāʾiyya). In his view, Šayḫism falsified Šīʿī doctrines to the point of negating the Imām. On these trends, see Richard, L’islam chiʾite, pp. 95–102; Hermann, Le shaykhisme à la période qajare; Amir-Moezzi, “Une absence remplie de présences”, pp. 1–18.

61 Aqūl: ayy ḥadīṯ ǧāʾa sawāʾan kāna fī Ṣaḥīḥ al-Buḫārī aw fī Ṣaḥīḥ al-Kāfī, lā farqa ʿindī, yuʿraḍ ʿalā kitāb rabbinā fa-in kāna munsaǧiman maʿahu fa-huwa maqbūl, wa-in kāna ġayr munsaǧiman, muḫālif, muʿāriḍ, mubāyin, munāqiḍ, fa-huwa zūḫruf narmī bihi ʿarḍa al-ǧidār (during the first television broadcast of Min Islām al-Ḥadīṯ ilā Islām al-Qurʾān).

62 Abū Ǧaʿfar Muḥammad b. Yaʿqūb b. Isḥāq al-Kulaynī (d. 329/941).

63 For the sake of neutrality, al-Ḥaydarī makes reference to al-Buḫārī for Sunnīs and al-Kāfī for Šīʿīs.

64 In his view, there are two types of Sunna: the first is “the Sunna from the Prophet” (al-sunna al-ṣādira min al-nabī), as if “one hears or observes it directly (mubāšaratan)”, it is the “real Sunna” (al-sunna al-wāqiʿiyya), as it is in conformity with the facts. The second type is the “reported Sunna” (al-sunna al-maḥkiyya) through a transmission chain (bi-ʿanʿana), which is found in collections of traditions. Al-Ḥaydarī made this distinction on July 14, 2016, during an interview with al-Mayādīn on the program Alif Lām Mīm entitled Asbāb iḫtilāf al-umma (lit. The causes of Umma divergence).

65 Al-sunna lā istiqlāliyya lahā fī qibāl al-Qurʾān (interview with al-Mayādīn on the program Alif Lām Mīm on July 14, 2016).

66 See al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 56.

67 Al-muʾmin yaktafī bi-Llāh rabban wa-bi-l-Qurʾān kitāban (Manṣūr, al-Qurʾān wa-kafā, p. 6).

68 Harabtum min al-Qurʾān ilā al-aḥādīṯ (during the second television broadcast of Min Islām al-Ḥadīṯ ilā Islām al-Qurʾān).

69 Al-taḥawwul min al-Islām al-muḥammadī al-muwaḥḥid ilā al-Islām al-umawī al-mufarriq (al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 14).

70 For example, he describes Caliph ʿUmar b. al-Ḫaṭṭāb as the true initiator of the Qurʾānist movement. In his view, ʿAlī’s attitude towards the traditions is not of the same nature as that of ʿUmar who declared (when the Prophet wanted to write a will on his deathbed): “The Book of God is enough for us (ḥasbunā kitāb Allāh).” For al-Ḥaydarī, ʿUmar’s attitude is not far from that of the Qurʾānists because, he argues, ʿUmar, by his refusal, rejected the writing of the living and concrete Sunna of Muḥammad (al-sunna al-wāqiʿiyya; al-Ḥaydarī during the third television broadcast of Min Islām al-Ḥadīṯ ilā Islām al-Qurʾān).

71 In one of his teachings, in which he refers to Orientalists and their attitudes towards the Sunna, al-Ḥaydarī mentions Joseph Schacht (d. 1969). According to him, like other Orientalists, Schacht contributed to the questioning of “the probative force of the prophetic Sunna” (ḥuǧǧiyyat al-sunna al-nabawiyya) and, therefore, contributed to its rejection by contemporary groups. Al-Ḥaydarī’s opinion on Schacht relies on an article written by al-Aʿẓamī, “Schacht wa-l-Sunna al-nabawiyya”, pp. 63–107.

72 Goldziher, Beiträge zur Literaturgeschichte der Šîʿâ; idem, Études sur la tradition islamique.

73 Islām takfīrī, wa-Islām ḫurāfī wa-usṭūrī (al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 14).

74 This sacralization is manifested in the fact that when one tells a Muslim that “The Qurʾān says that...”, he will answer “Yes, but in al-Buḫārī/al-Kāfī, the Prophet/Imām said that...” or “Such a companion said...”. However, these references to the Prophet or the Imāms do not take into account the context in which the traditions were collected and put into circulation.

75 Min qadāsat al-ašḫāṣ ilā qadāsat al-naṣṣ (al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 93).

76 Al-Ḥasan, Islām al-Qurʾān wa-Islām al-Ḥadīṯ, p. 69.

77 The entire series in audio, video, and text format is available on the author’s website. It should be noted that the texts are not always verbatim transcriptions of the teaching sessions; they are sometimes shortened, especially when al-Ḥaydarī multiplies his digressions.

78 It is also a question of historicism and more precisely Karl Popper’s criticism of this trend. Al-Ḥaydarī reminds his students that Popper opposes the idea that it is sufficient to “discover (iktišāf) the unchanging and obvious laws of history (qawānīn al-tārīḫ al-ṯābita wa-l-qaṭʿiyya)” to be able to predict the destiny of civilizations (ḥaḍārāt) and thus humans. In the same way, it is a question of historicity (al-tārīḫiyya/al-tārīḫāniyya) with Dilthey and Gadamer.

79 In this section, unless otherwise stated, I rely on the aforementioned sessions, which are devoted exclusively to taǧdīd and iǧtihād.

80 See Sangaré, Le scellement de la prophétie.

81 In reference to Q V, 3.

82 The translation of this qurʾānic passage, far from simple, will determine whether it is an inclusive or exclusive verse. This is evidenced by the variant translation choices of Yusuf Ali and Arthur J. Arberry who respectively translate the verse as: “The Religion before Allah is Islam (submission to His Will)” and “The true religion with God is Islam”.

83 Al-fikr al-dīnī fikr bašarī muqayyad ġayr muqaddas.

84 Lā naḥtāǧ ilā šarīʿa ǧadīda wa-innamā naḥtāǧ ilā qirāʾa ǧadīda li-l-nuṣūṣ al-dīniyya.

85 Al-Ḥaydarī, Mafāṣil iṣlāḥ, p. 6.

86 Muḥammad Ḥusayn al-Ṭabāṭabāʾī (d. 1981) was the successor of “Khomeyni to the Chair of Mystical Philosophy at Qum in the early 1950s” (Richard, L’islam chiʾite, p. 90).

87 Al-Ṭabāṭabāʾī, al-Mīzān fī tafsīr al-Qurʾān, vol. 1, p. 8.

88 Badawi writes on this subject: “There are countless Islamic sects. The ancient Muslim authors, who wrote about sects, especially Sunnīs, wanted to count them by using a fake ḥadīṯ, the content of which is as follows: ‘The Jews are divided into 71 sects, the Christians into 72, my community will be divided into 73’. Sometimes one adds something to it to show that his own is the one who will be saved, while the others will go to hell” (Badawi, Histoire de la philosophie en islam, vol. 1, p. 17).

89 Such an affirmation was immediately taken up by Saudi and Egyptian preachers as confirmation of the Sunnī attitude to the Imāmate. In January 2018, the satellite channel Ṣafā (Safa TV, Egypt) broadcast a rebuttal of the foundations of Šīʿism based on this statement by al-Ḥaydarī, classified by the presenters under the heading “Ḥaydariyyāt” (which lists statements by al-Ḥaydarī). The broadcast is available at: <www.youtube.com/-watch?v=k965yYMn0DY&list=PLUt-ZF_lm9lSduh4zgAfbWHBGiHfm2mN-&index=3&t=0s>.

90 Ataḥaddākum ʿilmiyyan an tuṯbitū aṣl al-imāma qurʾāniyyan. In the 14th session, al-Ḥaydarī listed the four other qurʾānic passages often considered to be the basis for the doctrine of the Imāmate: Q IX, 33; Q XXI, 105; Q XXIV, 55, and especially, Q XXVIII, 5: “Yet we desired to be gracious to those that were abased in the land, and to make them leaders (aʾimma), and to make them the inheritors (al-wāriṯīn).”
For al-Ḥaydarī, this passage has nothing to do with the Imāmate as a doctrine, since the context of this verse can be explained by the following passage: “And to establish them in the land, and to show Pharaoh and Haman, and their hosts, what they were dreading from them” (Q XXVII, 6). This qurʾānic passage refers to the very specific period of the Pharaoh and does not prefigure the coming of the Imāms.

91 Al-Ḥaydarī relies on the following qurʾānic verses: “We have appointed for every nation a holy rite that they shall perform. Let them not therefore wrangle with thee upon the matter, and do thou summon unto thy Lord; surely thou art upon a straight guidance. And if they should dispute with thee, do thou say, God knows very well what you are doing. God shall judge between you on the Day of Resurrection touching that whereon you were at variance” (Q XXII, 67–69).

92 During his interview on al-Mayādīn in the program Alif Lām Mīm entitled Asbāb iḫtilāf al-umma (The causes of Umma divergence) on July 14, 2016.

93 ʿIndamā yaʾtī al-iǧtihād yaʾtī al-iḫtilāf.

94 Chaumont, “La problématique classique de l’ijtihâd”, p. 105.

95 See al-Ṭūsī, ʿUddat al-uṣūl, vol. 2, pp. 733–734, n. 4.

96 Al-Ṭūsī, ʿUddat al-uṣūl, vol. 2, p. 733.

97 See al-Ḥillī, Maʿāriǧ al-uṣūl, p. 180.

98 See al-Ḥaydarī, al-Sunna al-nabawiyya: mawqiʿuhā, ḥuǧǧiyyatuhā, aqsāmuhā (lit. The prophetic tradition: its place, its probative value, its categories), session no. 53, out of a total of 84 sessions devoted to the Sunna theme; see <http://alhaydari.com/ar/2015/02/55981>, accessed on October 17, 2019.

99 Camels, cattle, sheep, wheat, barley, dates, dried grapes, gold, and silver; see Ghatâʾ, Le Shiʿîsme, p. 160.

100 During the 12th session when these remarks were made, al-Ḥaydarī referred to Maḥmūd Muḥammad Ṭaha (d. 1985) to show his students that this Sudanese thinker considered the Medina period to correspond to the period of the Prophet’s management of a state when he worked to apply universal qurʾānic principles dating back to the Mecca period. Thus, according to Ṭaha, what really matters are these principles dating from the Mecca period rather than their application in specific historical circumstances in Medina.

101 Al-Ḥaydarī devotes no less than 200 sessions to the review of Islamic jurisprudence relating to women (fiqh al-marʾa). The sessions available on his website are aimed at the most advanced students in the religious sciences, especially in fiqh and uṣūl al-fiqh.

102 On this issue, see Amir-Moezzi, La religion discrète, pp. 298–315.

103 In contemporary Šīʿism, Ali Shariati was undoubtedly one of the first to denounce the passive expectation of the Imām in a revolutionary theory. On this subject, see Khosrokhavar, “Le nouvel individu en Iran”, pp. 143–144.

104 During his teachings, al-Ḥaydarī does not refer to works that are not at his disposal. He shows each book to the camera and reads selected passages.

105 Sometimes the new thinkers may include a critical cleric like Mohsen Kadivar. Paradoxically, unlike Kadivar, a cleric and politician who “refers neither to Christian theologians nor to the humanities and social sciences”, al-Ḥaydarī is a cleric open to the humanities and social sciences and incessantly invites his students to take them into account. On Kadivar, see Mervin, “Mohsen Kadivar”, here p. 417.

106 The term ‘New thinkers’ refers here to the category of Muslim intellectuals who reject traditional Islamic knowledge but work towards a renewal of the relationship to religion, heritage (turāṯ), and so on. See, for example, Benzine, Les nouveaux penseurs de l’islam.

107 Roussillon, La pensée islamique contemporaine, p. 11.

108 Roussillon, La pensée islamique contemporaine, p. 48.

109 Roussillon, La pensée islamique contemporaine, p. 174.

110 See his book al-Islām wa-uṣūl al-ḥukm (lit. Islam and the foundations of political power), published in 1925.

111 Based on an expression borrowed from Pierre-Jean Luizard for whom iǧtihād, in the Šīʿī context, “has involved a process of permanent dogmatic revolution since the 9th century” (see his introduction in Cohen, Joncheray & Luizard, Les transformations de l’autorité religieuse, p. 12).

112 Mervin, “Muhammad Husayn Fadlallah”, p. 283.

113 See Aziz, “Fadlallah and the Remaking”, pp. 205–215; Carré, “Quelques mots-clefs”.

114 Letter available on the website <http://sayedfadlullah.com/article/727>, accessed on December 10, 2019.

115 See, for example, <www.youtube.com/watch?v=atduyYmdSDo> or <www.youtube.com/watch?v=4TDI108M8XA>, with the evocative title: “Al-Ḥaydarī an imitator of Faḍlallāh” (al-Ḥaydarī muqallid al-Sayyid Faḍlallāh).

116 On some of the critics of Faḍlallāh, see Mervin, “Muhammad Husayn Fadlallah”, p. 283. As for al-Ḥaydarī, when he declared that “the Imāmate is a foundation of the Šīʿa school but not a foundation of religion”, some said that through this declaration, he had just left Šīʿism to convert to Sunnism. But for the supporters of al-Ḥaydarī, he is only repeating an idea from al-Ḫūʾī. On this subject, see the website dedicated to the defence of al-Ḥaydarī’s thought and entitled “Rejection of suspicions against his Eminence and authority to follow al-Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī” (Dafʿu al-shubuhāt ʿan Samāḥat al-marǧaʿ al-dīnī al-Sayyid Kamāl al-Ḥaydarī): <https://al7aydari.wixsite.com/alhaydarii/119>.

117 On this competition for religious authority in a Šīʿī context, see Louër, Sunnites et Chiites, pp. 68–72.

118 Iqbal, The Reconstruction of Religious Thought in Islam, p. 139.

119 Lā taqsirū awlādakum ʿalā ādābikum, fa-innahum maḫlūqūn li zamān ġayr zamānikum (al-Ḥaydarī, Mafāṣil iṣlāḥ, p. 7).

120 Soleimanieh, “La vie quotidienne des étudiants”, p. 101.

121 Amine Brahimi’s PhD thesis provides some reflections on this reception in the West. See Brahimi, “La réforme islamique contemporaine”.

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Youssouf T. Sangaré, « Iǧtihād as a Religious Obligation »MIDÉO, 36 | 2021, 99-133.

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Youssouf T. Sangaré, « Iǧtihād as a Religious Obligation »MIDÉO [En ligne], 36 | 2021, mis en ligne le 05 juin 2021, consulté le 03 juillet 2022. URL : http://journals.openedition.org/mideo/6800

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Youssouf T. Sangaré

Université Clermont Auvergne

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Institut Dominicain d'Études Orientales

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