Sharī‘ah vs. Tarīqah
Question asked by .
Answered by Jhangeer Hanif

 I have a few questions and I would be obliged if you would be kind enough to answer them for me. First, please tell me the difference between Sharī‘ah and Tarīqah.


As you know, the Sharī‘ah is the Law that Allah has promulgated for the Islamic Ummah. This law was also given to the followers of all the previous Prophets (sws) with a little change that their respective scenarios demanded be incorporated.

On the other hand, Tarīqah is the corpus of systematic exercises devised by the Sufis to obviate the obstacles that one person feels while acting upon the Sharī‘ah. These exercises are supposed to help the subjects come closer to God and feel contented and elated while carrying out the commandments of Allah. It is noteworthy to mention that Tarīqah has no basis whatsoever in the fundamental sources of Islam, namely the Qur’ān and the Sunnah. It is a human endeavor of its own nature: Sufis being the innovators and pioneers of it. And it sometimes involves such exercises, which run quite averse to the spirit of Islamic teachings.

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