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Human Rights and Reformist Islam$
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Mohsen Kadivar

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9781474449304

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2021

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9781474449304.001.0001

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Imam Sajjad and the Rights of Mankind

Imam Sajjad and the Rights of Mankind

(p.73) 4 Imam Sajjad and the Rights of Mankind1
Human Rights and Reformist Islam

Mohsen Kadivar

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter investigates critically the Treatise on Rights (Resalat al-Huquq) of the fourth Shi‘a Imam ‘Ali b. al-Husain Sajad (48–94 h/658–713 ad), which is mostly ethical teachings and in fact, was a letter he wrote to one of his companions. The chapter includes the following: first, a brief consideration of the sources of the treatise, assessing the documents of the treatise, determining the most accurate text of the treatise among differing versions, and a general review of the introduction and categorization of the fifty-one rights listed in the treatise. Following this, the chapter addresses the meaning of “rights” in the Treatise of Rights. To do so, the chapter will distinguish various terminologies of right in the Qur’an, the hadith as well as in philosophy, theology, ethics and fiqh, and compare Imam Sajjad’s notion of “right” with the concept as it appears in the philosophy of law, political philosophy and law. Finally, and as an example, the chapter analyses the section on political rights (al-huquq al-asasi), that is, the rights of the sultan and the people (the ruler and the ruled) in relation to one another.

Keywords:   Treatise on Rights (Resalat al-Huquq), Imam Sajad, Shite Imams, Human rights, Terminologies of right, Philosophy of law, Political philosophy, Islamic law (fiqh), Political rights, Ruler and ruled

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