A Treasury of Sacred Maxims
A Commentary on Islamic Legal Principles
Author(s): Shahrul Hussain
Islamic juristic maxims (al-qawa[id al-fiqhiyyah) – or scared maxims as called by the author of the book under review – are short axioms, principles or rules drawn by Muslim jurists over the centuries. They are very important and of tremendous benefit in explaining and simplifying the rules of the Shari[ah with regards to particular issues, from the Qur’an, the Sunnah, Ijma[ (consensus of Muslim jurists) and Ijtihad (Jurists’ reasoning). Islamic legal maxims come in the form of short, abstract statements that express major legal Islamic principles and concepts, covering a number of topics and themes of Islamic law. They play a significant role in Muslim life, as they cover most, if not all, actions relating to family law, economics, sociology and politics. The book under review discusses in a brief, clear and concise manner the legal and moral implications of forty (40) selected legal maxims. Although brief and short, these maxims speak volumes when translated into practical ideas and guidelines about different matters. Mastering these juristic maxims reduces the need to memorize numerous legal rulings while, at the same time, enables jurists to be precise in their judgement and to realize Maqasid al-Shari'ah (objectives of the Islamic law).