Islamic Economics Institute

Wednesday Academic Dialogue (23)


The Doctrine of Necessity and its Application in

Contemporary Financial Matters

Full Text

Yahya Munawar Iqbal

Islamic Economics Institute

King Abdulaziz University, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

Wednesday 29-03-2017 (01-07-1438H)


Abstract. Alleviation of difficulty and promoting ease in commandments is one of the defining characteristics of the Islamic Sharīʿah. The scholars have derived a number of rules and legal maxims which explain and clarify this characteristic. One of the most important of these is the legal maxim “necessities make forbidden things canonically harmless”. Scholars past and present have used this maxim extensively in their writings and fatāwá (edicts). At the outset, the paper explains this maxim and establishes its scope and the rules and regulations for its application. It then discusses some contemporary financial issues in which scholars have used this maxim and critically evaluates its application in those matters.

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