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This article is about an Islamic scholar. Mufti can also refer to civilian dress.
A mufti ( , , Turkish: müftü) is a Sunni Islamic scholar who is an interpreter or expounder of Islamic law (Sharia). In religious administrative terms, a mufti to roughly equivalent to a deacon to a Sunni population. A muftiat or diyanet is a council of muftis.


Turkish mufti, Spanish drawing of the 17th Century, Bibliotheca Apostolica Vaticana
A Mufti will generally go through an Iftaa course and the person should fulfill the following conditions set by scholars in order that he may be able to issue verdicts (fataawa). They are five:

First: He must be a Muslim.

Second: He must have reached the age of puberty.

Third: He must be just and trustworthy.

The scholars have unanimously agreed upon these first three.

Fourth: Ijma; "scholarly consensus". This is the opinion of a majority of the scholars.

Fifth: He must have the qualities of intellect and be of a good mind.

The authority of the Mufti

An example of the influence of the mufti can be taken from this incident in Tunisia: Habib Bourguiba, the late President of Tunisiamarker once argued in 1961 (1381 Muslim Calendar) that "fasting" during Ramadan should not be observed for it reduces productivity. He then appeared on television with his cabinet, eating and drinking during Ramadan. Bourguiba then asked the Grand Mufti of Tunisia, Sheikh Altaher Ibn Ashoor ( ), to issue a fatwa accommodating the desires of the state.

The Grand Mufti of Tunisia went on television and addressed the audience and read sura Al-Baqara:183 (2:183) :

O you who believe! Observing the fasting is prescribed for you as it was prescribed for those before you, that you may become the pious.

God said the truth ( ), and President Habib Bourguiba lied.

Then issued a fatwa that not observing Ramadan is a sin and whoever doesn't observe the fasting has knowingly rejected his well-known religious duty forcibly and added that fasting does not reduce productivity.

See also


  1. Salaah-ul-'Aalam bi-Iftaa-il-'Aalim, (pg. 3 - 8), Haamid Ibn 'Ali Al-'Imaadi

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