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The Qur’anic concept of Justice (al-ʿAdl) from a Nursian perspective

KARIMOV, DUSMAMAT (2017) The Qur’anic concept of Justice (al-ʿAdl) from a Nursian perspective. Doctoral thesis, Durham University.

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Justice can be accepted as a form of fairness or impartial distribution of rights as the consequence of a disagreement. However, this shallow classical definition is not enough to describe the real function of justice in every part of our lives. This is because, justice, as a concept, encompasses numerous other scientific disciplines within itself, such as philosophy, religion, ethics, law, physics and politics. Hence, in order to understand the concept of justice in a clear manner, every effect of justice on these abovementioned disciplines should be considered.

This thesis presents a critical analysis of the writings of Said Nursi (1876-1960) of Turkey, a 20th century Muslim scholar, theologian and exegete of the Qur’ān. This research aims to explore the concept and ontology of al-ʿadl (justice) in his Risale-i Nur by using the Qur’ānic worldview on the concept of justice.

According to Nursi’s outlook, the concept of al-ʿadl (justice) operates in different contexts in interconnected realms. For example, the concept of al-adl can be analysed by dividing it into three different meanings; (1) the relationship between God and the cosmos in general; (2) the relationship between God and man in particular; and (3) the relationships between man and his fellow men.

Hence, the leading research question of this thesis also seriously considers how and in what context, Nursi’s understanding of al-ʿadl (justice) is in line with the Qur’ānic Weltanschauung (worldview).
In this respect, the work of Toshihiko Izutsu (1914-1994) has been employed as a major methodological tools in making a comparative analysis between Nursi’s understanding and the Qur‘ān. Within this framework, this research will investigate the semantic field of al-aʿadl (justice) by analysing the semantically and lexically connected and opposite concepts to justice in the Qur’ān. Hence, t s research sheds new light on the three principal meanings of al-ʿadl (justice), which strongly correlates with the Nursian understanding of al-ʿadl (justice). These three principal meanings of al-adl (justice) can be highlighted as follows:
First, al-mīzān (balance and order) and al-mikyāl (just measure) are concepts which are semantically connected to al-ʿadl (justice). This alludes to balance and order in the creation of both nature and animate beings according to the Qur’ānic perception. This justice is seen in the relationship between God and the cosmos in general.
Second, the term qadara (to measure) is semantically connected with al-ʿadl (justice) and refers to a very wide cluster of meanings, which cover either measures of sustenance given to all creations or order in creation of all universes in the Qur’ān. This meaning of justice functions in the realm of the relationship between God and man.
Third, al-istiqāmah (to be moderate) and al-wasaṭ (middle way) have a direct relation with the concept of al-ʿadl (justice) in the Qur’ān and the overlapping connection between these three concepts refers to the mean state of human beings in their affairs with others. This meaning indicates the third realm which is the relationship between man and his fellow man.
This study does not argue that there is social justice present in Nursi’s writings. Rather it claims that Nursi mentions foundations or means for social justice in society and certain qualities that man possesses have social implications.

Item Type:Thesis (Doctoral)
Award:Doctor of Philosophy
Keywords:justice,theory of justice, Koran, Quran, Quranic justice, social justice, Said Nursi, Bediuzzaman, Qur'anic hermeneutics, Izutsu, Qur'anic semantic approach, design argument, predestination, free will, Risale-i Nur
Faculty and Department:Faculty of Social Sciences and Health > Government and International Affairs, School of
Thesis Date:2017
Copyright:Copyright of this thesis is held by the author
Deposited On:03 Jan 2018 08:11

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