Shari’ah: What It Is and Isn’t (interview)

By: Asifa Quraishi-Landes

“For Muslims, Shari‘ah is the way they believe God wants us to live in the world. One would look to a particular source of understanding of what God wants us to do and would follow that way. Shari‘ah literally means “way” or “street.” Shari‘ah would be the way or the path a Muslim would want to follow what God wants us to do as living our lives in a spiritual way. What often gets mixed up and misunderstood are the particular details of laws that would govern an individual Muslim’s life. So often people have heard of particular Islamic law, they will call it Shari‘ah, that might be disagreeing with some particular values of gender equality or human rights. That is generally where the concerns come up in the West.”

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