Thursday, January 3, 2013

Forewords for Simple Fiqh


Al Fiqh-ul Muyassar
(Simplified Fiqh)
Based upon great Imäm Abü Hanïfah an Nu'män’s school
Part I: Worships

Compiler and author
Shafïq-ur Rahmän An Nadwï
Professor at Därul Ulüm Nadwatul Ulamä, Lucknow

Publisher and Distributor:
Muassasat-us Sihäfati wan Nashr
Post Box: 93, Lucknow, India

Copyright reserved.

First Edition
1982 CE
1402 AH
Second Edition
1984 CE
1404 AH
Third Edition
1989 CE
1409 AH
Fourth Edition
1993 CE
1413 AH
Fifth Edition
1996 CE
1416 AH

Printed At:
Parikh Offset, Nadwatul 'Ulamä Road, Lucknow

In Allah’s Name, the All-Merciful, the Very Compassionate

Foreword 1

By Hazrat Maulänä Ni'matulläh Sähib A'zamï
President, Islämic Fiqh Academy, India; and
Senior Professor of Hadïth, Därul Uloom, Deoband
Maulänä Shafïqur Rahmän Nadwï’s Al Fiqhul Muyassar is a well-known popular book in Islämic jurisprudence based on Hanafï school of thought taught in many madrasahs. It takes its simple Arabic style from the acclaimed Fiqh compilation Nürul Ïzäh based on the needs and capabilities of the elementary madrasah students.
I was immensely pleased to know that Maulänä Shamsul Isläm Al Qäsimï has rendered it into English to enable English-educated people to benefit from it directly. At present, English is an internationally prevalent language and a large number of Muslims and Neo-Muslims are desirous of learning Isläm through it. In several countries all over the world, the work of rendering Islämic heritage into English is going on at a rapid pace.
I asked Maulänä Muhammadulläh Qäsimï – Head, Internet Department and Online Därul Iftä, Därul Uloom, Deoband – to have a look at the book, and he went through several portions of it. The book has used English alternatives along with the Arabic and Islämic jargons. The language is plain and simple in complete agreement with the original text and the title.
I hope this valuable effort of Maulänä will prove to be a significant addition to the Islämic repository in English. Alläh willing, this book will be beneficial to students, English-knowing Muslims and in particular, Neo-Muslims.
May Alläh bless and increase the knowledge and good deeds of Maulänä! Ämïn!

Alläh’s Peace be upon all
Ni'matulläh A'zamï (May he be forgiven!)
Därul Uloom, Deoband
29 Shawwäl 1433 AH = 17 Sep 2012

In Allah’s Name, the All-Merciful, the Very Compassionate

Foreword 2

To the Original Arabic Book
By the Highly Revered Maulänä Abul Hasan Ali Al Hasani An NadwïRector, Nadwatul Ulamä, and
Chancellor, Darul Uloom that runs under its aegis
All praise be to Allah and blessings and peace be upon the chief of prophets and last messenger Muhammad, upon his family-member, all his companions and those who follow him righteously till the Day of Judgment.
The educational system and academic curriculum in different ages and countries are based upon a number of factors. At times, it is experimental, based upon a specific educational ideology and in pursuance of well-defined goals. Sometime, it defers to religious, organizational and financial needs. At others, it is prepared to conform with the age, psychology, intelligence-level and needs of the students. However, the best curriculum and the one most deserving to persist and continue for the longest period is that which includes all the above aspects and pursues all the above goals.
This fact is observable in the old academic curriculum of the Indian sub-continent which has continued to be called the Nizami Curriculum from the second half of the 12th century after the learned Imäm Nizämuddïn bin Qutbuddïn As Sihäliwï Al Luknawï (d. 1161 AH[1]). This current traditional curriculum is the latest stage in the development of the old curriculum which has remained prevalent in the Indian subcontinent since the blessing of Islamic conquest. It has been expanded, reduced, improved and renewed in accordance with the needs of the country, the governments and the society of Islamic India. It has also been influenced by the trends in the neighboring Islamic country, especially Iran which has remained guide and leader for this country, and academic and ideological powerhouse for India, supplying and nourishing it with academic content, written books (especially in the science of wisdom and philosophy) and teachers excelling intelligence and academic research. The Iranians governed India in economic and academic fields and consequently had a huge impact on the academic system as well as on the standards of excellence, wisdom and intellect.
This ongoing high and low, and process of addition and reduction in the curriculum did not stop till the Nizamï Curriculum came into being. And then, it halted at the specific boundary. Sadly, this happened at a time when the curriculum was in far greater need of development and revision than in any other time in the past due to change in the political and legal landscape, change in the governmental language, and conquest of the Western culture and civilization over this country.
This curriculum started with extensive study of Färsï language, literature and poetry that went on for several years. The student in his early teenage would then turn to Arabic grammar and fundamentals i.e., syntax and morphology, rhetoric, and elementary books in logic. The books prescribed for Arabic morphology (Sarf) alone would reach seven and in Arabic syntax (Nahw), there would be five. As for logic, the minimum number of books that a student was supposed to study would be four or five. After completing all of this, he would enter the stage of studying books on Islamic jurisprudence when he would have reached puberty recently or some time back. As for a student who started his study late due to any reason, he would have reached youth by that time. So, the student would not find any difficulty grasping the juristic details, rulings in sophisticated matters, and rare assumptions which the juristic books prescribed in this curriculum were filled with, like Qudürï and Sharh Wiqäyah. He would not be overwhelmed by matters beyond his understanding, nor would his impulses and urges be aroused before time. The teacher, nowadays inhibited by modesty and consideration for the students’ age and intellect-level from explaining and elaborating certain age-inappropriate rulings, would not come across such a difficulty in this curriculum most of the time.  Similarly, there would often be no need of a bridge to fill the wide gap between the student’s age and his expected intellectual level, nor would there be a need for deviating from the curriculum. Moreover, the early academic levels would include the study of Färsï literature, advanced books on morphology and syntax, and sophisticated logic which would collectively tax the minds and develop the intellectual ability to take in, comprehend and grasp these sophisticated juristic rulings.
Then the time came when a considerable portion of the curriculum like the study of Färsï language and literature, which used to engage a large portion of the student’s formative years and academic sessions, was excluded. The number of books prescribed for Arabic morphology, syntax and logic was cut down. And above all, the goal of freeing up the student’s time and energy so that he got the opportunity to enter the field of professional life earlier became paramount in people’s mind, on account of financial pressures, ever-growing influence of Western educational system, and the goal of life and sphere of competition getting confined to the field of business and job. In this situation, the religious student had no option but to study the books on religion and jurisprudence at an early age, at most in his adolescent years, the most impressionable and complex years of life according to psychology, moral philosophy and medical science. He would be faced with rulings of cases, sub-cases and their derivations from the beginning of the chapter of Purification to the chapter of Marriage which would be hard to grasp. And in case, he was able to understand, it would arouse impulses and urges before the appropriate age, at times leading to psychological and ideological predicament wherein being safe is not commendable and getting into disaster is not ruled out.
When I used to teach children and adolescents at Därul Ulüm Nadwatul Ulamä, this thought would cross my mind time and again. The thought of writing a jurisprudence book appropriate for the age and intellect of students, conforming to the environment in which they live and the age in which they were born, would frequently occur to me. If I could not completely restructure the books, I should at least revise and amend them, I thought. And in spite of my numerous commitments, endless journeys and multifarious responsibilities, I did resolve to do this. I referred the book “Nür-ul Ïzäh” by the learned scholar Hasan bin 'Ammär Ash Shurumbulälï Al Hanafï Al Misrï[2]. It is a simple book in Hanafï jurisprudence which has gained widespread popularity and currency in recent years in our Islämic seminaries which are called “Arabic madrasahs”. I started my writing work limiting myself and my efforts to the realm of this book. I also took assistance from one of the professors of Därul Ulüm Nadwatul Ulamä, dear brother Nazrul Hafïz An Nadwï. However, my other writing commitments and journeys obstructed me from completing this work though its need was intense and I realized its importance. Yet, the thought did not part from me at any time. So when it became certain that there was no alternative, I decided to assign this to one of the professors of Nadwah[3] who had been engaged in teaching jurisprudence, was aware of the science of Hadith and was capable of writing for children in plain language and simple style.
My selection fell upon dear brother Ash Shaikh Shafïq-ur Rahmän An Nadwï. Alläh’s guidance was his ally in completing the work in accordance with what I envisaged and what I sketched out for him. He did the work in an excellent manner in a short time and came out with the book which I named “Al Fiqh-ul Muyassar”[4]. His main reference was the book “Nür-ul Ïzäh” owing to its several features. He has started every section and major chapter with Quränic verse and Prophet's Hadïth so that the student may know the significant position the juristic topic holds in Islämic Shari'ah and the important status it has with Alläh and His Prophet. This will inculcate in him the consciousness about faith in Alläh and working for His pleasure. He then took up the definition, literal meaning and juristic description of juristic jargons. He has kept away from mentioning the rulings which are inappropriate for the age and intellect of the students as this was the principal reason for writing of this new book for children. He has also avoided discussing different juristic opinions and has kept himself restricted to the juristic opinion to be followed in practice. He has also avoided things which could create confusion and misunderstanding. So he has mentioned the nouns instead of pronouns and classified the subject-matter in accordance with modern academic works. He has preferred plain and clear language and has added rulings of some issues which are needed in this age but had not occurred in the age of the authors of the past, like Saläh in a train or airplane. He has also provided the modern equivalents for ancient units of weights and measurements like dirham, mithqäl and sä'.
Thus, the book “Al Fiqh-ul Muyassar” which lies in front of the readers comes up as a simple book for the young for learning Islämic jurisprudence and grasping its basics. It fills a void in the religious academic library of the young and fulfills the need of our religious seminaries which was being felt by the people running these seminaries, and those concerned with the education and psychology of the children, and ardent about educating the young students in religion and training them in a manner suitable for their age and intellect, and conforming with the temperament of the modern age and its natural development in the permissible bounds.
Lastly, I thank dear author for his endeavor and present this book deriving authority from my strong bond with Nadwatul 'Ulamä and my general association with religious seminaries as a gift dedicated to the professors engaged in teaching at Därul 'Ulüm in the faculties of Arabic language, literature, grammar and composition. I hope that the religious seminaries will welcome this book warmly and broaden the field in their academic curriculum so that this book takes its rightful position among the books of jurisprudence and religious education. After all, wisdom is the lost property of a Believer. He is more worthy of it no matter where he finds it.
All praise be to Alläh in the beginning and in the end, and blessings of Alläh and peace be upon His Prophet and chose one.

Abul Hasan Alï Al Hasanï An Nadwï
Rae Barelï
06 Jumädal Äkhirah 1402 AH = Thu, 01 Apr 1982 CE

In Allah’s Name, the All-Merciful, the Very Compassionate


To the Original Arabic Book
By Late Maulänä Shafïq-ur Rahmän An NadwïAuthor, Al Fiqhul Muyassar (Arabic Original); and
Erstwhile Professor, Därul Uloom Nadwatul Ulamä, Lucknow
Praise be to Alläh, the Lord of all worlds, and blessings and peace be upon the chief of all prophets Muhammad, his family-members and all his companions.
This is a brief book of juristic rulings covering the chapters of Purification, Saläh, Fasting, Charity, Haj and Sacrifice in accordance with the school of thought of the great Imäm Abü Hanïfah An Nu'män – May Alläh bestow upon him extensive mercy and envelop him in His pleasure!
My work in this compilation involved bringing together the juristic rulings in a format similar to that of “Nür-ul Ïzäh” by Ash Shaikh Hasan bin 'Ammär Ash Shurumbulälï Al Misrï Al Hanafï[5]. Most of the time, I referred this book for the rulings followed by other books in Hanafï jurisprudence. However, I made the presentation appropriate for the understanding of young students, so I rendered it using simple expressions in an agreeable style so that young students may be able to comprehend and grasp it. At the start of every major topic, I included a Quränic verse and a Hadïth out of the revered Hadiths of the Prophet as far as I could. The purpose was to draw the attention of the students to the significance and excellence of the topic. I worked hard to keep the book suitable for the level of young students who would be in the first stage of their age and education, so I left out the mention of differing rulings and opinions in various schools of thoughts except in rare cases. This was done so that the mind of the beginner is not confused. Similarly, I avoided the issues which would be difficult for the elementary learner to understand and grasp.
It is not possible for me to avoid expressing my due gratitude to our highly learned teacher and revered educator Abul Hasan Alï Al Hasanï An Nadwï – May Alläh preserve him and benefit Isläm and Muslims from him – who blessed me by assigning this monumental task to me, guided me to the right approach, and honored me with the opportunity of presenting this book. If I am successful in this endeavor, then to him goes the credit.
We were like arrows whose hitting the target
Is in fact the successful hit of the archer.
I am also obliged to express thanks to my teachers, colleagues and brotherly students who helped in various stages of the publication of this book. In particular, I feel indebted to my teacher Shaikh Muhammad Zuhür An Nadwï, the Muftï at Därul 'Ulüm, my teacher and noted Islämic author Sa'ïd Al A'zamï An Nadwï, Ash Shaikh Burhänuddïn As Sambhalï, Professor Ziyä-ul Hasan An Nadwï, all of whom kindly consented to revised the work and equipped me with wise suggestions and sound opinions which raised the value of this book.
I express gratitude to All, the Glorious and High and praise Him in the beginning and in the end as all good things are accomplished by His grant and guidance. I request you, noble readers, that if you come across an error or a wrong expression, kindly do let me know so that I may try to correct it in the next edition. I ask Alläh to guide me to the right and to benefit me from it on the Day of Return.

Shafïq-ur Rahmän An Nadwï
Därul Ulüm Nadwatul Ulamä, Lucknow, India
12 Jumädal Äkhirah 1402 AH = Wed, 07 Apr 1982 CE

[1] d. 1161 AH = 1748 CE (Al A'läm by Khairuddïn Az Ziriklï 8/34, 8/267)
[2] 994-1069 AH = 1585-1659 CE (Al A'läm by Khairuddïn Az Ziriklï 2/208)
[3] Nadwah = short form for Därul Ulüm Nadwatul Ulamä.
[4] The literal meaning is “Simplified Fiqh”.
[5] 994-1069 AH = 1585-1659 CE (Al A'läm by Khairuddïn Az Ziriklï 2/208)

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