Development of Muslim Theology, Jurisprudence, and Constitutional Theory

Development of Muslim Theology, Jurisprudence, and Constitutional Theory

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Development of Muslim Theology, Jurisprudence, and Constitutional Theory

Development of Muslim Theology, Jurisprudence, and Constitutional Theory

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Excerpt

In human progress unity and complexity are the two correlatives forming together the great paradox. Life is manifold, but it is also one. So it is seldom possible, and still more seldom advisable, to divide a civilization into departments and to attempt to trace their separate developments; life nowhere can be cut in two with a hatchet. And this is emphatically true of the civilization of Islam. Its intellectual unity, for good and for evil, is its outstanding quality. It may have solved the problem of faith and science, as some hold; it may have crushed all thought which is not of faith, as many others hold. However that may be, its life and thought are a unity.

So, also, with its institutions. It might be possible to trace the developments of the European states out of the dying Roman Empire, even to watch the patrimony of the Church grow and again vanish, and yet take but little if any account of the Catholic theology. It might be possible to deal adequately with the growth of that system of theology and yet never touch either the Roman or the civil law, even to leave out of our view the canon law itself. In Europe the State may rule the Church, or the Church may rule the State; or they may stand side by side in somewhat dubious amity, supposedly taking no . . .

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