Lit. path or road which leads to water, Islamic law, divine law, four main schools: Hanafi, Shafii, Maliki, and Hanbali (most conservative)
It consists only about 30 ayat ul-ahkam (verses containing ordinances, nasus) of the Qur'an and about 70 ahadiths. These ordinances (nasus) are said to be self-evident (zahir) and not open to conflicting interpretations.
The Shar'ia specifies the obligatory acts (fardh), the omission of which constitutes sin, and forbidden acts (haram), the practice of which constitutes sins. Everything else, not derived from these principles, are said to be permissable (mubah).
A good introductory article by H.A.R. Gibb: The Shari'a
Is the Sharia applicable today? ... Was there ever a time when it worked?
Questions like these are reflected upon in this book by Emir Rishawi.
Muslim organizations are working towards the goal of introducing Sharia in Europe and North America. Dr. James Arlandson wrote a series of articles on why this should be resisted. The first entry is his overview article and the others are detailed discussions of specific matters:
Sharia impacts women the most negatively. Here are some articles that explain such laws as inheritance (men get twice the share as women do); courtroom testimony (men's count twice that of women); divorce (easy for men, but not for women); and a strange remarriage law (after a divorce, if the couple wants to reconcile and marry each other again, the ex-wife must marry another man and then get divorced from him),
De Facto Shariah Law in America – a review of events up to 2010.
Mufti encourages Muslims to break the law of their country of residence
More links on Sharia issues: Issues Regarding Sharia Law
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