The famous Maaliki Andalusian 6th Century Scholar- Abu Muhammed ash-Shaatibi interestingly describes all the way back then the pitfalls of some of the scholars of his time, and from them, their use of any fatwa (Legal Edict) available, either from their generation or previous generations, to help their congregations follow their desires, under the guise of the statement “The differences of opinion of the ummah is a Mercy”!
He geniously observes that their modus-operandi is to front their scholarship to their people via actual ‘taqleed’ (blind-following) of the Fatawaa (pl. Fatwa) of other scholars through picking and choosing Islamic Rulings from the range of scholarly views out there which they intellectually find soothing and appropriate to their time and place, without they themselves having any Usool (legal theory/jurisprudence methodology) to build a fiqh ruling as per its epistemic tools and processes upon.
Honestly, it is as if the Imam is living and observing, and commenting in real-time today! Could he be describing those who take an Western Academic approach, as opposed to a scholarly approach when studying the religion?
For further reading, please refer to the Arabic treatise: al-I’itisaam, 2/537, 542).
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