Allah ﷻ has obligated every Mukalaf[1] to know that Islam is true. Knowledge however, is distinguished from false belief by virtue of evidence. For simple claims to truth are no better than others, if those claims are not well grounded in reason[2]. Thus, it is necessary to not only claim that Islam is true, but to also prove it to be so. The discipline dedicated to fulfilling this task is called ‘ilm Al-Kalam.

Defining “Kalam”

In his Tahzib Al-Mantiq wa Al-Kalam, Imam Sa’d Al-Deen Al-Taftazani offers a succinct definition for Kalam:

 الكلام هو العلم بالعقائد الدينية عن الأدلة اليقينية
Kalam is the knowledge of religious creeds, based on their decisive evidences[3].

The Mutakalim[4] therefore, is not only one who knows that Islam is true. But he is also one who knows why Islam is true. The job of the Mutakalim is as such, to demonstrate this truth to others.

Contents

This series is meant to summarise the fundamentals of Kalam, that will be then used in other submissions to build a rational case for Islam. The series is meant to be read as a single piece. Each article will assume the reader is familiar with the contents of the previous ones in the series.

Section 1 – Knowledge:

1.1. Knowledge
1.2. Ways of Knowledge
1.3. Concepts
1.4. Propositions

Section 2 – Judgements:

2.1. Standards of Judgement 
2.2. Categories of Rational Judgement
2.3. Categories of Nomic Judgement
2.4. Existence


 

[1] Mukalaf: the one who will be held accountable in the hereafter for his choices in this life.

[2] How else would the theological claims of a Muslim be any better than the claims of anybody else, except if those claims were supported with evidence?

[3] Tahzib Al-Mantiq wa Al-Kalam, (pg 15).

[4] Mutakalim: the one who engages in Kalam.

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