Thoughtfully thoughtless

Danish. In my ninth entry for Weekendavisens lexicon, I draw on Peter Adamson’s Don’t Think for Yourself to explore the concept of taqlid from Arabic philosophy, theology, and jurisprudence. Taqlid refers to a thoughtless reliance on the words of others, as opposed to ijtihad, thinking and examining for oneself. Medieval Arabic thinkers recognized that taqlid was a fact of life: one cannot investigate every topic oneself, so for most topics, we must rely on expert opinion. But in the current political climate, the question of when and how this reliance on experts is justified has become particularly pressing.

“Taqlid,” Weekendavisen (4 November 2022). Link.