Ijtihad in matters of belief: a study in the development of ideological thought among Muslims


The meaning of ijtihad is linguistically: exerting effort and emptying effort into an act, whether that effort is focused on deriving a legal ruling from its detailed evidence such as the Qur’an and the Sunnah, or the actions of the mind to arrive at the correct belief by meditating and thinking about the secrets of the universe and life, or exerting an effort to identify Some linguistic, mental, or hoistic rulings. However, the jurists who began to compose in the fundamentals of jurisprudence since the end of the second century AH tried to narrow the meaning of ijtihad and limit it to the limits of deducing practical legal rulings from their detailed evidence from the Qur’an and Sunnah and the following sources of jurisprudence such as analogy and consensus. Al-Amdi (who died in the year 21 AH) defined ijtihad as: “Absorbing the widest in asking one of the rulings of Shari’a in a way that he feels that the soul is incapable of more in it.” They considered the mujtahid to be rewarded for his diligence, whether he was right in reaching the truth or he was wrong by his saying (p.: If the ruler ruled and worked hard then he would have two rewards, and if He made a judgment, then he made a mistake.It is noticed that the Qur’an called people from the beginning to strive to search for their beliefs, because it aimed to convert people from polytheism to the doctrine of monotheism, so it urged people to use reason to reach the correct belief in about forty-nine verses.