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Istislah

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The Oxford Dictionary of Islam What is This? Covers the religious, political, and social spheres of global Islam in the modern world

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    Istislah

    Public interest. Regarded as the object and purpose of Islamic law. Ibn Hanbal used this principle to seek the best solution in order to serve the general interest of the Muslim community. Use is limited to necessity and specific circumstances, and often requires the reinterpretation of relevant Quranic verses, hadith, and fiqh materials. Permitted only in cases that are not related to religious observances, that involve necessities as opposed to luxuries, and in which its application does not contradict the principles of shariah. Not recognized by the Shafii school due to concerns about the possibility of reliance on unrestricted subjective human opinions and because public interests vary according to context and time. Particularly useful in modern cases for which there is no exact historical precedent, such as blood transfusions and organ transplants. Recognizes the sanctity of human life and enjoins human beings to take action against suffering and injustice.

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