Language of data  |   Arabic   ·  English

Kitāb al-ḥalāl wa-l-ḥarām

Part of
Number of part

Kitāb 14


Date of creation
  • 12th century   Gregorian
Preferred title

Kitāb al-ḥalāl wa-l-ḥarām   Arabic  IDEO-IFAO transliteration scheme

كتاب الحلال والحرام   Arabic  

Work type Single work
Work manifested Early work
Work genre Textual work

Adult, serious


Al-Ghazali’s Book of the Lawful and the Unlawful is the fourteenth chapter of The Revival of the Religious Sciences, which is widely considered as the greatest work of Islamic spirituality. Written by one of the most famous of theologian-mystics of all time, The Book of the Lawful and the Unlawful is unlike other Islamic works concerned with legal issues.
Here, Abu Hamid al-Ghazali aims to teach his readers firstly the theory of what is lawful and what is unlawful and how to deal with dubious or ambiguous issues, and secondly how to apply the knowledge they have gained to their everyday lives. The main support for this application, especially in matters that are unclear, is caution or prudence (wara) and Ghazali explains the degrees of prudence necessary beginning with the prudence of the upright and ending with the prudence of the saintly. Thus the sincere practice of what is lawful and desisting from what is unlawful become integrated into one’s spiritual life. As in his other works, Ghazali bases himself on the Qur’an and narrations from the Prophet Muhammad, followed by examples from the Companions, the Successor generations and the pious Predecessors.


Diamond   W 215268

Created at 12-10-2016 by Dalal Adib (IDEO)

Updated at 04-01-2020 by René-Vincent du Grandlaunay (IDEO)