Religion Past and Present

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Šarīʿa
(226 words)

[German Version]

Šarīʿa (Arab.; pl. šarāʾiʿ) is the imagined totality of the message given by God to Muḥ̣ammad, his last prophet. Comprising both legal procedures and statements of faith, it is contained not only in the Qurʾān but also in the exemplary Sunna of the Prophet. In an extended sense, the messages of Judaism and Christianity are earlier examples of Šarīʿa. Literally Šarīʿa means “the path to the waterhole” (cf. Qurʾān sura 45:18) – the path the devout believer must follow to secure salva-tion in this world and the next. The complementary term to Šarīʿa or šarʿ is fiqh, “jurispru…

Cite this page
Krawietz, Birgit, “Šarīʿa”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 11 December 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1877-5888_rpp_SIM_025216>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013



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