– Aqeedah is the study of the basic creed of Muslims beginning with the nature of Allah, and His relationship to mankind. The class will focus on the classical understanding of Allah in terms of His essence, His qualities and His attributes. Historical controversies and ideological movements will be discussed briefly, but will be covered more in-depth in other courses. Students will formulate an understanding regarding Allah and contrast different conceptions of Allah and their ontological ramifications.


– Islamic jurisprudence, Fiqh in Arabic, is comprised of the rulings by Islamic scholars to direct the lives of the Muslim faithful. The general consensus among scholars is that Shariah is the collection of legal rulings that Allah has determined but are not wholly accessible by the jurists. The numbers of rulings in this subject are large and expansive; the topics of salat, tahaara (cleanliness), marriage, and siyam (fasting) are some of the main areas of concentration in the course. These rulings are taught with the perspective of one madhab, while expanding upon the differences between the other madhaahib. Students will see firsthand how the four schools of thought share many of their final decisions, but differ on the grounds of particular hadith they accept as authentic, or the weight they give to analogy and reason (qiyas) when determining their rulings. Usul al-Fiqh, the science behind determining these rulings based on the best understanding of the texts and practices at hand, will be examined in another course.