Qur'anic religious and political law

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Posted by Brett Zamir ( on May 12, 2002 at 00:25:42:

'Abdu'l-Baha in "Secret of Divine Civilization", His anonymous appeal to His country of birth for making certain reforms, states that a fully learned individual would need to have a knowledge of Qur'anic religious and political law.

I was wondering whether other Baha'is perceive this to be due to this being an anonymous recommendation to the existing establishment (and thus no longer relevant--at least to Baha'is who have a new law and abstain from politics)?

Would His recommendation for study of Qur'anic religious and political law translate to Baha'i administrative teachings as they have now been (authoritatively) interpreted and, to a certain degree, elaborated and legislated?

Or does there remain for Baha'is the necessity of studying the Qur'an, not only for its timeless moral principles, appreciation of its role in advancing civilization, comparative religion value for teaching, and appreciation of symbols used in Baha'i Writings, but also for its elaboration of legal principles not yet fully elaborated in the Baha'i Faith? If so, how could such study be based given that individual interpretation and judgments of scholars are excluded from being authoritative in the Baha'i Faith? Would the body of law inspired by the Qur'an and subsequently developed by scholars and judges since, but not elaborated therein, be included in this recommendation as a scientific, though fallible, endeavor? If so, to what end would this knowledge be applied?

(Payment of Zakat is one explicit area where Baha'u'llah refers the believer to the Qur'an--though the Universal House of Justice is to legislate on this.)

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