Principle of Purity in Ismā‘īlī Interpretation
Tahārah, purity in Arabic, is one of the primary principles of interpretation of the Islamic faith in the Ismā‘īlī intellectual and spiritual traditions. This article, drawing on the primary sources, explores the concept of purity and purification as it appears in the Qur’ān. Besides physical cleanliness related to the human body, hygiene, and dwelling and praying spaces, the article investigates the concept in an abstract sense, that is, interpreting it through sources of authority as to how it is understood in terms of thought, behaviour, and belief. It concludes that for Ismā‘īlīs, the imām is the person who has the authority to interpret the faith and his knowledge and guidance are the sources of purification.
Publication of material in the journal means that the author assigns copyright to Islamic Studies including the rights to electronic publishing. This is, inter alia, to ensure the efficient handling of requests from third parties to reproduce articles as well as to enable wide dissemination of the published material. Authors may, however, use their material in other publications acknowledging Islamic Studies as the original place of publication. Requests by third parties for permission to reprint should be addressed to the Editor, Islamic Studies.