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date: 23 January 2019

Abstract and Keywords

The Ḥanbalīs, as the most consistently traditionalist of the Sunnī law schools, had a disproportionate impact on the development of Islamic theology by providing a unified voice against Kalām. Many Ḥanbalīs rejected Kalām reinterpretation (taʾwīl) of anthropomorphism in the Qurʾān and Hadith and took a non-cognitive approach that affirmed God’s attributes without inquiring into their meaning or modality (bi-lā kayf). In the eleventh to thirteenth centuries, Abū Yaʿla, Ibn ʿAqīl, and Ibn Jawzī adopted Kalām views to varying degrees but faced stiff opposition from within their own Ḥanbalī ranks. In the fourteenth century Ibn Taymiyya also rejected Kalām theology but sought to interpret the meanings, although not the modalities, of God’s attributes to accord with his unique vision of God’s perpetual creativity. Ibn Taymiyya’s theological ideas were further developed by his student Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya and adopted by the Wahhābīs in the eighteenth century.

Keywords: Ḥanbalīs, Abū Yaʿlā, Ibn ʿAqīl, Ibn Jawzī, Ibn Taymiyya, Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya, Wahhābīs, taʾwīl, bi-lā kayf, anthropomorphism

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