Most of the time, many scholars, even madhabds have difference of opinion. What does Islam says about it and what are the general opinion of scholars in this case that which ruling to follow? How to resolve the conflicts and how to accept specific ruling to be accurate and follow it?

What should be the approach of Muslims towards differences of opinions? Because most of time, differences of opinions result in fights, confusions and hatred among difference groups of people.

What Quran and hadith have to say in this regard?

3 Answers 3


Walaykumsalam. First, it is fard upon us to refer back to Allah and his Messenger in all things, especially when we differ. Allah said in Surah an-Nisa' 4:59 =

"O you who have believed, obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those in authority among you. And if you disagree over anything, refer it to Allah and the Messenger, if you should believe in Allah and the Last Day. That is the best and best in result."

And in Surah ash-Shura 42:10 =

"And in whatsoever you differ (ikhtalaftum), the judgment thereof is with Allah"

Referring to Allah and the Messenger is the only way to end differing.

In Islam, there's no valid differing (ikhtilaaf). Allah said in Surah an-Nisa' 4:82 =

"Then do they not reflect upon the Quran? If it had been from other than Allah, they would have found within it much contradiction (ikhtilaaf)"

Differing happens for two main reasons =

1) When people don't obey Allah. If they had obeyed Allah, they would not differ, as differing is sign of Allah taking away His Guidance. The proof for this is in Surah al-Baqara 2:213 =

"But Allah guided those who believed to the truth about what they had differed (ikhtilaaf) in, by His permission. And Allah guides whom He wills to a straight path."

2) People differ out of hatred and jealousy. Allah said in Surah aali-Imran 3:19 =

"Indeed, the religion in the sight of Allah is Islam. And those who were given the Scripture did not differ except after knowledge had come to them - out of jealous animosity between themselves. And whoever disbelieves in the verses of Allah, then indeed, Allah is swift in account."

One of the purposes of the Quran is to end differing, as Allah said Surah an-Nahl 16:64 =

"And We have not revealed to you the Book, except for you to make clear to them that wherein they have differed and as guidance and mercy for a people who believe."

Just because scholars differ, doesn't mean they're correct. Either one of them is right or they're all wrong. And only way to know who's correct, is to see what Allah has said.

Everything in Islam must be proven from Quran and Sahih sayings of the Prophet, since the Prophet was the last and final Messenger of Allah who received revelation, and no one else.

It's obligatory upon every Muslim to seek knowledge from the source = Quran and Sunnah and to follow Islam based on this knowledge. This is the only way to end differing.

  • this is an excellent answer!
    – user5608
    Aug 7, 2014 at 2:40
  • 1
    "Either one of them is right or they're all wrong. And only way to know who's correct, is to see what Allah has said. " - I am not sure it is this easy...
    – Kilise
    Jun 7, 2017 at 18:50

There is no sanction in Quran and Sunnah, that the opinion of anyone (other than the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) of course) can be regarded as a source of islamic ruling (deen). Thus all the opinions of different scholars should be treated as "good suggestions". You are free to choose any suggestion of any scholar or have your own opinion about it.

  • Down vote: as answer does not cover most of the parts of question. and answer does not provides any views from Quran or hadith about this situation.
    – Farhan
    Dec 27, 2013 at 12:55
  • As mentioned in the answer, there is no reference found in Quran and hadith, thus no reference can be provided :)
    – goto
    Dec 27, 2013 at 13:09

Wa Alaykum Assalam,

This answer is based on Shia Islam view

It is obvious every human is free to accept or not any opinion. But important is to discover which opinion is accepted by real Islam of prophet SAWW. I.e. if prophet SAWW was alive today what opinion was accepted by him. Every scholar claim to have correct understanding of Quran and hadith and Sunnah. No scholar say I do not accept Quran and Sunnah. The conflict is: what is Sunnah and what is not Sunnah (weak or fabricated hadith). Every scholars claims that what I say is Sunnah and adds an "and Allah knows the best" at end of it.

Indeed Allah should have s solution for this problem. Looking at Quran, we see there are only three reference for obeying:

  1. Allah
  2. Rasul SAWW
  3. Ulel Amr

ا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا أَطِيعُوا اللَّهَ وَأَطِيعُوا الرَّ‌سُولَ وَ أُولِي الْأَمْرِ‌ مِنكُمْ ۖ فَإِن تَنَازَعْتُمْ فِي شَيْءٍ فَرُ‌دُّوهُ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَالرَّ‌سُولِ إِن كُنتُمْ تُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الْآخِرِ‌ ۚ ذَ‌ٰلِكَ خَيْرٌ‌ وَأَحْسَنُ تَأْوِيلًا

O you who believe! Obey Allah and obey the Messenger and Ulel Amr. (And) if you differ in anything amongst yourselves, refer it to Allah and His Messenger (SAW), if you believe in Allah and in the Last Day. That is better and more suitable for final determination. http://tanzil.net/#4:59

But who are hte Ulel Amar. About this there is conflict among Shia and Sunni Muslims. According to Shia Muslims (which is based on their ahadeeth) Ulel Amr are the Ahl al Bayt (i.e. infallible Imams after prophet). And based on this verse they accept only sayings of infallible Imams in case of conflicts in Islamic opinions.

Another verse says if we do not know we should ask from "The members of Zikr":

وَمَا أَرْ‌سَلْنَا قَبْلَكَ إِلَّا رِ‌جَالًا نُّوحِي إِلَيْهِمْ ۖ فَاسْأَلُوا أَهْلَ الذِّكْرِ‌ إِن كُنتُمْ لَا تَعْلَمُونَ

And We sent not before you (O Muhammad SAW) but men to whom We inspired, so ask the people of the Zikr if you do not know.

Again there is conflict between Shia and Sunni scholars about who are "The members of Zikr". According to Shia Ahadith they are again progeny of prophet SAWW (Ahl al Bayt) (i.e. infallible Imams after prophet).

Shia Muslims agree that around 500,000 hadith remained from Ahl ul Bayt are the only valid source of Islam after Quran and Ahadeeth of prophet SAWW to should be used for solving unclear Islamic problems and conflicts.

Also another famous hadith is the hadith of two weighty things. This hadith from prophet SAWW says that he lefts two weighty things for Muslims that if Muslims use them will never go astray. According to Shia Ahadeeth and some Sunni Ahadeeth they are Quran and Ahl al Bayt. But some other Sunni Ahadeeth say they are Quran and Sunnah. While Shia scholars say following Sunnah is obligatory but the correct version of this hadith is Quran and Ahl al Bayt.

So in short the answer of this question is: referring to Ahadeeth of Ahl al Bayt.


Is it “the Book of Allah and my Progeny” or “the Book of Allah and my Sunnah”?

  • 1
    The verse (4:57) that you mentions states that the sources of deen are Quran and Prophet Muhammad(PBUH). How can you include "Ulel Amr" to be a source of religious guidance?
    – goto
    Dec 27, 2013 at 13:16
  • @goto do you see أُولِي الْأَمْرِ‌ in this verse? it is Ulel Amr. Obey Allah and Obey Rasul SAWW and Ulel Amr Dec 28, 2013 at 16:36
  • But the verse say that if you find yourself in conflict with what Ulel-Amr say, then turn to Quran and Sunnah. Does this not show that Allah and his Prophet PBUH have the final say in religious matters?
    – goto
    Dec 29, 2013 at 15:56
  • @goto lets talk in chat: chat.stackexchange.com/rooms/12205/… Dec 30, 2013 at 6:15

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .