In the last lesson we spoke about our methodology for researching this subject. We said our sources can be books, the scholars and their words, or they can be the practices of the Muslims. Of course, a scholar and a mujtahid has every right to express their opinion in terms of what they believe the texts are saying.
One of the best examples of the third source (Islam of Muslims) are the various acts that have now come to exist in the days of Muḥarram, which have no place in our books, and neither in the words of the scholars. Where does it say in the words of our scholars that you should walk on fire or many other acts? But today these things have become “symbols of Ḥusayn” and have become sacred. If you dare speak against these things, you will be labelled anti-Imām al-Ḥusayn or anti-religion amongst other things.
Some might say if we give the words of the scholars any value or not – we say yes, we do, but not as a source for our discussion on this subject. Neither their famous opinions, nor their consensus, neither their well-accepted premises, neither what they considered necessary or anything else. Unless any of these can be seen in the Qur’ān and other related reliable texts, we are not using them as our source of discussion here.
Response to Questions and a technical – Uṣūli – clarification on the verse of Maryam
25 minutes in:
During the age of ignorance, a woman was not considered a human, she was considered a thing and was inherited like other things. She had no role in society. A girl was considered a source of shame when she was born. Islam came to fix this perspective. Of course, Islam would not have been able to provide all the rights to a woman as soon as it came, rather the Prophet (p) began the process by providing them a little bit of their rights. Now how many rights was the Prophet (p) able to give in the short span of time with the challenges he had in society? Let us say even 10 or 20 – but the question remains, was this the end of it for women, or are they meant to receive all of their rights over the span of time.
Over here there are two views. One view says, whatever the Prophet (p) and Imams (a) described is what we will stick with and they are the end all. They will not increase. The other view says, this was only the beginning, and rather as times change and cultures change, her rights her meant to increase. Don’t say Sayyid we will turn our societies like Western societies – no. Who mentioned the word West in this discussion? I am talking about within our religious, cultural, ethical and theological worldview.