Disiplinlerarası Çalışmalar Dergisi Journal of Interdisciplinary Studies

Two Scholars, Two Candidates for Caliph: Juwayni’s Nizamulmulk, al-Ghazali’s Mustazhir

This article explore the question of the preconditions required for those who wish to rule over the Muslim society, and whether these preconditions change depending on historical and geographical contexts. The article discusses this question through the ideas of Juwayni and al-Ghazali, who had a mentor-pupil relationship, who belonged to the same legal and theological schools (Shafi‘i and Ash‘ari, respectively), and who subscribed to the same theoretical framework (based on the classification of qat‘iyyat versus zanniyyat). Juwayni argued that the Seljukid Wazir Nizamulmulk was the only Caliph of the time whereas al-Ghazali reserved this title for the Abbasid Caliph, Mustahzir, for his own time period. This study thus tries to determine the motives behind the ulama’s intervention into politics, by focusing on the fact that there were great similarities between Juwayni and al-Ghazali, who lived under the sovereignty of the same political organization, in terms of the goals and aims of their views on the different names that they proposed for the political leadership of all Muslims in roughly the same historical period but under different social and political circumstances. Özgür KAVAK
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