In undertaking the translation of this book, al-Fatawal Muyessarah (Jurisprudence Made Easy), I did my best to convey the meaning to the English reader in standard English from a pattern of Arabic that is predominantly juridical. I hope I have succeeded in this task. I also hope that this translation may help, in some measure, to make this subject accessible to people, interested in Islamic jurisprudence and in religion, among those who are unable to read and/or understand Arabic.
However, I decided to use the same Arabic terminology - appearing in italic letters - that is, in the main, common to the subject matter, such as halal and haraam (licit and illicit) with their equivalent in English, as a first reference. I have done so to ensure consistency, for the majority of these terms denote specific meanings on which the mukallaf (the person obligated to observe the precepts of religion) rely in acting upon the fatwa (religious edict). Thereafter, I have confined the use to the Arabic term.
To further guide the reader through the maze of this broadly technical terminology, I listed the words and phrases, with their English definitions, in alphabetical order under the “Glossary”. It is noteworthy that the glossary is solely my contribution and does not constitute a section of the book. Where I opted for the English dictum rather than the Arabic, I found it necessary, at certain instances, to put the Arabic words between brackets after the English, such as “free of impurities”: mutlaq. This has been done to reinforce the translated word or phrase and remove any ambiguity; you may not find these in the Glossary.
Where I thought the meaning of the text would be enhanced or rendered more understandable, I put the additional words, which do not constitute part of the original text, between these ( ) brackets.
The use of masculine pronouns, such as he, his, him, and himself, refers to both the sexes, where applicable.
For the translation of Qur’anic verses, I used “Holy Qur’an”, translated by M.H. Shakir, published by Tahrike Tarsile Qur’an Inc. P.O. Box 1115, Elmhurst, New York 11373, U.S.A, although I have made some modifications as I deemed fit. For the benefit of those who would wish to trace the Qur’anic quotations, I have put the numbers of the sura (chapter) first and the ayah (verse) second between these ( ) brackets at the end of the quotation.
Notwithstanding, whatever knowledge and effort put in such work, it remains far from perfect, for perfection is the exclusive preserve of Allah, the Most High. I, therefore, urge the readers to write in, should they find it necessary to raise any point or make any remarks insofar as the translation goes.
In the end, I pray to the Almighty, to forgive me any inadvertent mistake or error of judgement I may have made in the course of the translation. I pray to Him to make this work of mine a step towards attaining His approval and that He accepts it favourably and makes it of use. Amen.
Najim al-Khafaji, B.A.