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Monday, April 11, 2011

Sheikh Hamza Yusuf: Law, Ethics, and Sharia

11:30 AM

5C students: sign up at

Guests: email to RSVP

Recently, lawmakers in several states introduced bills seeking to
prevent courts from using Sharia law, but what exactly is it? Sharia
is not limited to law or legal opinions alone, but is much broader in
its scope and has more impact on the lives of its devotees. Muslim
scholars contend that Islamic law presupposes a certain ethical
paradigm, but modern discourse on ethics and Islamic thought often
focus on the extensive ethical principles embedded within the Quran
and the practice of the Prophet Muhammad.

To what extent do such ethical narratives inform the development of
legal judgments on any given issue? This relationship between ethics
and law within Sharia is a relatively new discussion emanating, to
some extent, from the unique experiences of Western and American
Muslim communities.

Hamza Yusuf converted to Islam in 1977, and subsequently traveled
to the Muslim world and studied for 10 years under several re-
spected scholars. He has received teaching licenses in various Is-
lamic subjects. He gives talks on Islam, serves as an advisor to many
organizations, leaders, and heads of state, and is a co-founder of
Zaytuna College in Berkeley.