A rich array of twelfth to fifteenth century Arabic texts captures the advent of a supererogatory prayer known as salat al-raghāib (the prayer of great rewards), on the eve of the first Friday of the month of Rajab in late eleventh-century Jerusalem, and its wide dissemination. This corpus offers an unusually vivid picture of the formation and the transformation of a medieval bid'a (to use the Islamic term), or, of an 'invention of tradition' (to use HOBSBAWM's term). Combining our expertise in Islamic law and in Ayyūbid and Mamlūk era history, we use this corpus for an in-depth study of popular piety, power politics, scholarly polemics and legal discourse. Twenty eight translated excerpts of various texts are presented in this paper, preceded by a detailed introduction. Exploring legal reasoning in its concrete political and social context provides a nuanced understanding of the development, mass proliferation and ensuing debate over a highly controversial and extraordinary potent religious practice.
|Number of pages||26|
|Journal||Islam - Zeitschrift fur Geschichte und Kultur des Islamischen Orients|
|State||Published - 1 Nov 2012|
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Cultural Studies