Objectives (Maqāṣid) of the Noble Qurʾān (2)

Mohammedia, Morocco
Maqasid Centre Training Courses
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The inaugural session of the training course

The training course on the philosophy of Islamic law addressing the “Objectives of the Noble Qurʾān” (Part 2) was held at Avanti Hotel in Mohammedia, Morocco, over the course of two days, 4 – 5 May 2016. The course was organised by the Centre for the Study of the Philosophy of Islamic Law at Al-Furqān, in partnership with the Maqasid Research & Studies Centre (Rabat), and the Department of Islamic Studies, Faculty of Letters & Humanities in Mohammedia.

The inaugural session, chaired by Dr Nour al-Din al-Khadimi, began with a recitation from the Noble Qurʾān. Welcome speeches were then given by Dr Idris Mansuri, President of Mohammed V University in Casablanca, Dr Rachida Nafi’, Dean of the Faculty of Letters & Humanities (Mohammedia), Dr Ahmed al-Raissouni, Director of the Maqasid Research & Studies Centre, and Mr Sali Shahsivari, Managing Director of Al-Furqān Islamic Heritage Foundation. The Chair, Dr Nour al-Din al-Khadmi, also spoke on behalf of the lecturers. The session concluded with the award of memorial shields to the organisers by a delegation from Sri Lanka.

The first session of the course, chaired by Mr Sali Shahsivari and consisting of two lectures, started immediately after the welcome speeches. The first lecture was prepared and delivered jointly by Dr Mohamed Salim El-Awa and Dr Ahmed al-Raissouni. It was titled: “Why two courses on the objectives of the Noble Qurʾān, and what is the difference between the objectives of the Noble Qurʾān and the objectives of Islamic Law?” In their speech, the two lecturers linked this training course with its predecessor. They explained that the first course on the objectives of the Noble Qurʾān had focused on theoretical aspects, while the present one focused on other special elements. They also emphasised the pressing need for continued research into the objectives of the Noble Qurʾān, which could not be covered by one or more training courses. Indeed, drawing people’s attention to the ever-renewing facts of the Noble Qurʾān required expanded and continued treatment through similar training courses that open the horizons for research and reflection.

Subsequently, distinction was made between Qurʾānic and legislative objectives. It was stressed that from the terminological perspective, the objectives of Islamic law represented a subset of the Noble Qurʾān objectives. Indeed, the objectives of Islamic law focused on the practicalities linked to application, while Qurʾānic objectives addressed both these practical points and other matters.

The training course was attended by many scholars and researchers on Maqasid al-Shari'ah

The second lecture, “The objective of justice in the Noble Qurʾān”, was delivered by Dr Mohamed Salim El-Awa, with commentary by Dr Ahmed al-Raissouni. Dr El-Awa emphasised that the debate on the concept of justice in Islamic thought had been dominated by expanded treatment of theological issues. These revolved principally around disputation over the concept of divine justice, while the issues around human justice received quite limited attention. Dr El-Awa then laid the evidential foundation for the objective of justice, as taken from the Noble Qurʾān. He clarified the concept, and gave examples. Furthermore, he discussed the sayings of knowledgeable scholars on the topic. In his comments, Dr al-Raissouni principally added key statements extracted from the Islamic heritage regarding the importance of the objective of justice in urbanisation (al-‘umrān), legislation (al-tashrī‘), wealth (al-amwāl), and others.

The delegates were then given the opportunity to interact with the lecturers, and discuss the content of these first two lectures.

Dr Mohamed Salim El-Awa then chaired the second session, which comprised a paper on: “The objective of preserving security in the Noble Qurʾān”. This was presented by Dr Abd al-Karim al-Hamidi, and commented upon by Dr Abd al-Nur Bazza. The lecturer substantiated the argument, by presenting evidence, that keeping the peace or assuring security was an objective of Islamic law. He explained that this was inclusive of the diverse aspects of human life, whether through religion, politics, governance, thought, sociology, etc.The second paper in this session, “Da‘wah objectives in the Noble Qurʾān”, was delivered by Dr Nour al-Din al-Khadimi, with commentary by Dr Ahmed Kafi. Dr al-Khadmi detailed the Qurʾānic perspective on Da‘wah or proselytising. He explained its aims, instruments, and objectives (maqāṣid) in the individual, collective, public or private spheres. The audience then discussed some of the points raised in the two papers and associated commentaries.

The first part of the third session was both delivery and commentary by Dr Umar Jadiyyah of Dr Ahmed Hasan Farhat’s paper, titled “The effect of the Qurʾān’s organisation in explaining the objectives of the Divine Names and Attributes”. Subsequently, “The objectives (maqāṣid) related to creed (‘aqīdah) in the Noble Qurʾān: a reading into the methodological and knowledge framework”, was delivered by Dr Moulay al-Moustafa al-Hind, with commentary by Dr Abd al-Azim al-Saghiri.

The first day’s sessions concluded with discussion and exchange over the various topics raised in the papers and companion commentaries.

Participants received certificates on the final day of the training course

The second day of the training course, Thursday 5 May, began with the fourth session, chaired by Dr Moulay Umar bin Hammad. The first paper, “The objective (maqṣad) of reform (iṣlāḥ) as derived from the Qurʾān”, was presented by Dr Zayd Bousha’ra, with commentary by Dr Wael al-Harithi. The second paper, titled “The edification (tarbiyah) objectives of stories in the Qurʾān: the story of Luqman al-Ḥakīm, as an example”, was delivered by Dr Ahmed Nasri, with commentary by Dr Jamilah Tilut.

The fifth session, chaired by Dr al-Tuhami Majuri, comprised the paper: “A methodological introduction to the mapof the universal objectives (al-maqāṣid al-kulliyyah) in the Noble Qurʾān”, by Dr al-Tayyib Barghouth, with commentary by Dr Mohamed Awwam.

The sixth and final session, chaired by Dr al-Tayyib Bargouth, was an open discussion with a panel formed of Dr Mohamed Salim El-Awa, Dr Ahmed al-Raissouni, and Dr Nour al-Din Khadimi. These knowledgeable scholars made observations regarding some of the methodological aspects of the papers and commentaries, as well as answering questions from the participants. In particular, they urged the application of diverse methodological approaches in the treatment of the papers. They also emphasised the need to modify university teaching, so that lessons in legal theory (uṣūl), jurisprudence (fiqh), and objectives of Islamic law (maqāṣid) would be more productive.

A group picture taken on the final day of the training course

The final session comprised speeches by the organising committees, the participating lecturers and participants. This was followed by the award of certificates, and statement of the course recommendations, including:

The participants’ strong endorsement and petition for:

● A third training course next year on the objectives of the Noble Qurʾān.

● A training course on the objectives of the Prophetic tradition, so as to fully treat the explanation of the revelation.

● A training course on the objectives of the family and edification (tarbiyah).

●A training course on the jurisprudence (fiqh) of wealth (al-amwāl) and dealings/transactions (al-mu‘āmalāt).

● A training course regarding the Prophetic practices.

● Publication of an encyclopaedia on the objectives of the Noble Qurʾān.

● Publication of an encyclopaedia on the terminology of objectives (maqāṣid), legislation (tashrī‘), and Qurʾān.

● Workshops to reflect on the methodology for applying the objectives of the Qurʾān, and research into the means to stimulate them.

● A periodical or journal specifically on objectives (maqāṣid).

● Publication of distinguished papers as individual monographs.

● Laying the foundation for the discipline of objectives of creed (‘aqīdah), on the basis of the Noble Qurʾān.

● Opening the way and facilitating the participation of researchers in such training courses.

● Regular training courses on the issues related to minorities in Asia.

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