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Lost in Translation: Taqlid and Marja`iyya in Shiite Islam

15 January, 2017 14:59
Lost in Translation: Taqlid and Marja`iyya in Shiite Islam

Date: January 19, 2017 @ 3:00pm

Venue: Royal Holloway, University of London, Egham, Surrey, UK

Lecturer: Dr Mohammadreza Kalantari

Organized by: Al-Mahdi Institute

Usuli Shi‘ism categorizes laymen into Mujtahid, Muqallid, or Muhtat. Mujtahid is the qualified cleric capable of deducing the religious law from the resources and evidences. Muqallid is a layman who follows the verdicts of Mujtahid in auxiliaries of the faith. Muhtat, on the other hand, is a lay Shiite who does not follow anyone, yet acts on such precaution that assures him the fulfilment of his religious obligations. The question of Taqlid and Marja’iyya has been embedded at the heart of this categorisation. Notwithstanding, throughout the history, the concept of Taqlid, its definition, and practices stimulated numerous critics and some asked for its reconstruction facing the contingencies of the modern era. Reviewing the Shi‘i jurisprudential evolutionary phases, this paper tries to provide a more clear outlook towards the concept.It also evaluates three approaches to readdress the practice of Taqlid, the follower-Marja’ relationship, in Shi‘ism: (1) The minimalist religion, (2) Council of Jurists, and (3) the A.I.Jtihad.

Al-Mahdi Institute’s Research Seminars are a platform that brings together academic researchers, postgraduate students and other practitioners from different institutions for the dynamic exchange of ideas and research. The key objective is to showcase, develop and encourage cutting edge research in those areas of the study of Islam and Muslim societies that corresponds to the overall goals and aspirations of the Institute. 

The Institute invites and facilitates renowned academics to present their research papers in a unique forum, which includes the Institute’s faculty and post-graduate students, alongside practitioners and experts from across a wide institutional base. The aim is for participants to gain information regarding the latest research in a variety of fields, as well as being given the opportunity to contribute to the further development of the research ideas presented.


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Lost in Translation: Taqlid and Marja`iyya in Shiite Islam
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