International Journal for Muslim World Studies (IJMWS)

Formerly known as International Journal of Muslim Unity (IJMU)

Ḥifẓ al-Dīn and Ḥifẓ a-Nasl: An Elementary Conceptual Inquiry

Ḥifẓ al-Dīn and Ḥifẓ a-Nasl: An Elementary Conceptual Inquiry

Mohamed El-Tahir El-Mesawi


This article is an attempt to provide a somewhat different reading of two of the foremost constituent concepts of maqāṣid al-Sharī’ah which form the fundamental category of the Sharī’ah objectives known as the necessary universals (al-kulliyyāt al-ḍarūriyyah) on which human socio-historical existence essentially depends and whose realization and preservation is on top of the ethico-legal teachings of Islam. Though not usually ranked as immediately succeeding each other in the established taxonomy of Muslim legal theorist (uṣūliyyūn) in their deliberations on maqāṣid al-Sharī’ah, our semantic and conceptual analysis of ḥifẓ al-dīn and ḥifẓ a-nasl has revealed that there good intellectual and practical reasons to depart from that taxonomy by virtue of the essential ontological connecttion between dīn and nasl.

Keywords: maqāṣid al-Sharī’ah, necessary universals, ḥifẓ al-dīn, ḥifẓ a-nasl.