GÚaza@l^'s legal education is said to have began at a young age. As a youth, he had already begun to study Shafi¿ite law under Shaikh Ahámad b. Moháammad Ra@dka@n^, a prominent jurist of his home city, T®u@s. He later traveled to Jorja@n, where he continued his studies under Imam Abu@ Nasár Esma@¿^l^, which resulted in writing his first ta¿l^qa, in effect a graduate thesis. It must have dealt with the Shafi¿ite positive law, for we know that the ta¿l^qa that he later wrote under Ema@m-al-H®aramayn Abu'l-Ma¿a@l^ Jovayn^, is in the field of legal theory (osáu@l al-feqh), a work that came to be known under the title al-Mankòu@l men ta¿l^qa@t al-osáu@l.

GÚaza@l^ completed his studies in Jorja@n and returned to his home town, but he again left T®u@s for N^æa@pu@r to study with Abu'l-Ma¿a@l^ Jovayn^, who was then considered the most distinguished Shafi¿ite jurist and Ash¿arite theologian. He received from Jovayn^ license (see EJAÚZA) in a variety of disciplines at a relatively young age. They included positive law (foru@¿), legal disagreement (kòela@f), juridical disputation (jadal), legal theory, theology, and logic, all of which were essential for a thorough and comprehensive legal education (Sobk^, IV, p. 103).

In 484/1091, when GÚaza@l^ was thirty-four years of age, he was appointed by Nezáa@m-al-Molk as professor of the Nezáa@m^ya college in Baghdad, where, besides teaching, he issued fatwa@s and wrote a number of legal treatises. This prestigious appointment represented due acknowledgement of his stature as one of the leading scholars of his day.

Four years later, GÚaza@l^ left Baghdad for Jerusalem via Damascus, stayed there for a while, and then went back to Damascus, where he resumed his activities as a professor and moft^ for about ten years. Little is reported about his legal activities during the period between his departure from Damascus and his final return to T®u@s. We know, however, that he stayed in several places, including Egypt, Baghdad, and N^æa@pu@r, and in each place he made contact with a number of local legal scholars. In Táu@s, he lived in relative seclusion and taught law and mysticism in a college adjacent to his house (Sobk^, IV, p. 105).

GÚaza@l^ authored four works on positive law: al-Bas^tÂ, al-Was^tÂ, al-Waj^z, and al-Kòola@sáa, the first of which is the most comprehensive and based on Jovayn^'s Neha@yat al-matÂlab. Al-Was^t al-mohá^t be-aqtÂa@r al-bas^t was, as the title indicates, a condensation of al-Bas^tÂ, later abridged as al-Waj^z. In the 13th century, Muháyi-al-D^n Nawaw^ (d. 676/1277), could still consider al-Was^tá and al-Waj^z two of the five most recognized works in the Shafi¿ite school. ¿Abd-al-Kar^m Ra@fe¿^ (d. 623/1226), another Shafi¿ite author, wrote a commentary on al-Wa@j^z, entitled Fathá al-¿az^z, which was abridged by Nawaw^ in a work called al-Rawzµa. The heavy indebtedness of the Shafi¿ite positive law to GÚaza@l^ is mainly due to these two works of Nawaw^ and Ra@fe¿^ .

Shafi¿ite law in the 12th and 13th centuries depended heavily upon the contributions made during the immediately preceding period. The two most influential jurists who shaped legal developments during the 11th century were Abu@ Esháa@q ˆ^ra@z^ (d. 476/1083) and GÚaza@l^. Both Ra@fe¿^ and Nawaw^ largely drew on the positive legal works of these two authors. With the final formation of the legal schools after the middle of the 10th century, positive law was multifarious, each legal case having two, three, or as many as six or even seven different solutions. One of the major goals of the legal school was to reduce this variety into one authoritative opinion, this being the ultimate juristic desideratum. A jurist's achievement in the field of positive law was measured by his ability to determine which opinion was authoritative and which one was not. It is here that GÚaza@l^ excelled and ensured that his juristic legacy would persist. In al-Bas^tÂ, as in his two other works that were based on it, GÚaza@l^ was able to determine the strength of each and any of the opinions that had been formulated with respect to a particular case. His ability to make such determinations certainly established him as an accomplished jurist, for engaging successfully in such an activity meant that the jurist possessed first-rate competence in legal reasoning, the tool of the mojtahed. In this sense, GÚaza@l^ is one of the chief jurists involved in constructing the authoritative positive doctrine (madòhab) of the Shafi¿ite school.

As part of his activity as a jurist, GÚaza@l^ was also heavily involved in the study of legal disagreement, a discipline essential to the task of determining the school's authoritative opinions. In the field of disagreement, he wrote Beda@yat al-heda@ya wa'l-ma÷a@kòedò fi'l-kòela@f^ya@t, and also Mofasásáal al-kòela@f f^ osáu@l al-q^a@s. In addition, he wrote a number of other works dealing with a variety of legal issues, including Baya@n al-qawlayn le'l-ˆa@fe¿^ (highly relevant to the determination of the school's authoritative doctrine), GÚa@yat al-g@awr f^ dera@yat al-dawr, and a retraction of the latter, GÚawr al-dawr f'l-mas÷ala al-sorayj^ya, a work of law that depended to a large extent on the logical analysis of infinite regress and petito principii.

Aside from his Fata@wa@, GÚaza@l^ wrote at least three other works, al-Mostasáfa@, al-Mankòu@l and ˆefa@÷ al-g@al^l f^ baya@n al-æabah wa'l-mokò^l wa-masa@lek al-ta¿l^l, all works of legal theory. Here, as in positive law, GÚaza@l^ made a lasting contribution, albeit more in form than in substance. He was the first jurist in Sunni Islam to integrate logic into legal theory. At the outset of his al-Mostasáfa@ he provides a manual on logic, it being the shortest in a trilogy of expositions of this topic that includes Meháakk al-nazáar and Me¿ya@r al-¿elm. Although he makes the study of this introductory treatise entirely voluntary, he asserts most unequivocally that ignorance of logic in effect amounts to ignorance of all sciences. However, when he moves on to the strictly legal portion of al-Mostasáfa@, there is, surprisingly, little sign of any formal logical analysis, such that his treatment stands perfectly within the conventions of classical osáu@l al-feqh. What GÚaza@l^ obviously intended in this treatise was not to revolutionize legal analysis but rather to insist on the necessity of logic as the only meaningful tool by which all inferences can be tightly moulded according to a rational design.

Apart from a number of brief notes on legal theory, GÚaza@l^'s Me¿ya@r consists largely of illustrations of the three figures of the categorical syllogism, together with their moods, and featuring examples drawn not only from philosophy and theology but also from law. This is also done in the case of conjunctive and disjunctive syllogisms, reductio ad absurdum and induction. It is quite obvious that with these examples GÚaza@l^ was merely trying to bring closer to the minds of jurists an understanding of the logical structure of these inferences. There is no attempt at analyzing legal cases through the medium of these arguments. Nor is there any effort at identifying, in terms of standard logic, the distinctive structure of legal logic. The sole exception to this rule, however, is that of analogy, which GÚaza@l^, following the Aristotelian tradition, insists must be converted to a first figure syllogism in order for it to be logically valid (Me¿ya@r al-¿elm, p. 165).

GÚaza@l^ regarded legal logic as that part of the field in which legal arguments are subjected to formalization, rather than as a systematic explication of a particular series of arguments (Hallaq, pp. 336 ff.). While discarding most Greek philosophical formulations, he tenaciously clung to formal Aristotelian logic and made it the methodological foundation of all enquiries. His conception of formal logic as an indispensable instrument for all areas of knowledge is evidenced in the fact that the examples that he provides in his logical works extend over a wide range of religious sciences. In these same works, specific legal cases given as examples are often no more than illustrations of how a demonstrative argument must be constructed and validated. For after all, GÚaza@l^ tells us, "reasoning about legal matters does not differ from reasoning about rational sciences … except in that which concerns the premises" (1961, p. 60). Although for GÚaza@l^ the forms of legal and rational arguments are identical, one looks in vain in his works for an analysis of specifically legal arguments from the standpoint of logic. A noteworthy exception, however, is found in his otherwise traditional legal work Sefa@÷ al-g@al^l, where in one chapter (pp. 435-55) he analyzes, mostly in terms of syllogistics, three major legal arguments commonly subsumed under juridical q^a@s, namely, causal demonstration (q^a@s al-¿ella), indicative, non-causal demonstration (q^a@s al-dala@la), and reductio ad absurdum (q^a@s al-¿aks).

GÚaza@l^'s conception of the relationship between logic and law as expressed in al-Mostasáfa@ seems to have put the final stamp on the attitudes of a number of his successors toward the role of logic in law. These successors, however, exercised a great deal of caution in introducing into their osáu@l works the principles of logical theory as expounded by GÚaza@l^. While following his example closely, they have, with remarkable discretion, chosen the most relevant parts of the theory and imported them into their jurisprudence. But the fact remains that GÚaza@l^'s pioneering endeavor left an indelible mark on the jurisprudential thought of many of his successors. Just as he conceived logic as the organon of any inferential procedure, prefaced his al-Mostasáfa@ with a manual on formal logic, and insisted upon the conversion of analogy into a first figure syllogism, we find many of these successors to have employed logic to ground their theories in what is fundamentally an Aristotelian conception of knowledge (Hallaq, pp. 318 ff.).

Bibliography: Abu@ H®a@med Moháammad GÚaza@l^, al-Mankòu@l men ta¿l^qa@t al-osáu@l, ed. M®.-Há. Haytu@, Damascus, 1980. Idem, Meháakk al-nazáar fi'l-mantáeq, ed. M. Na¿sa@n^ and M. Demaæq^, Cairo, n.d. Idem, Me¿ya@r al-¿elm f^ fann al-mantáeq, ed. S. Donya@, Cairo, 1961. Idem, al-Mostasáfa@ men ¿elm al-osáu@l, 2 vols., Cairo, 1324/1906. Idem, ˆefa@÷ al-g@al^l f^ baya@n al-æabah wa'l-mokò^l wa-masa@lek al-ta¿l^l, ed. H®. Kab^s^, Baghdad, 1390/1971. Idem, al-Waj^z f^ feqh al-Ema@m al-ˆafe¿^, 2 vols., Cairo, 1317/1899. For biographical information on his legal career, see Ta@j-al-D^n Sobk^, T®abaqa@t al-æa@fe¿^ya al-kobra@, 6 vols., Cairo, 1906, IV, pp. 101-82; Jama@l-al-D^n Esnaw^, T®abaqa@t al-æa@fe¿^ya, ed. ¿A. Jobu@r^, 2 vols., Baghdad, 1970-71, II, pp. 242-45; Taq^-al-D^n b. Ahámad Ebn Qa@zµ^ ˆohba, T®abaqa@t al-æa@fe¿^ya, ed. ¿A.-¿A. Khan, 4 vols., Hyderabad, 1408/1978, I, pp. 326-28; and H. Laoust, La politique de Gazali, Paris, 1970. For his legal contribution, see W. B. Hallaq, "Logic, Formal Arguments and Formalization of Arguments in Sunn^ Jurisprudence," Arabica 37, 1990, pp. 315-58; R. Brunschvig, "Valeur et fondment du raisonnement juridique par analogie d'apreàs al-Gaza@l^," in R. Brunschvig, Etudes d'Islamologie, 2 vols., Paris, 1976, II, pp. 363-94; ¿A.-M. Tork^, "Nazáar^yat al- estesála@há ¿enda'l-GÚaza@l^," in Abu@ H®am^d al-GÚaza@l^: Dera@sa@t f^ fikreh wa-¿asáreh wa-ta÷t¯^reh, Rabat, 1988, pp. 275-90. H. M. Qar^bulla@h, The Influence of al-Ghaza@l^ upon Islamic Jurisprudence and Philosophy, Beirut, 1993.