Relating Law and Ethics by Arif Jamal

It is sometimes remarked that law and ethics have very much to do with each other in theory but little in practice – especially in the practice of law! This article explores the relationship between law and ethics and proposes a process which might serve as a framework for relating these two important areas of social life. In constructing this framework, reference is made to elements of the Islamic tradition and in particular the nexus between din and dunya, the spiritual and the temporal.


At its most basic level, law represents a set of ‘legal norms.’ In contemporary discourse, the term ‘legal norms’ can mean simply legal rules, that is, the text found in statutes and judgements and, in the common law world, in case law. This is the ‘stuff’ of the law. But I would like to elevate this definition of legal norms somewhat so that we might think of legal norms as the grander, more general and more over-arching principles, standards and values which exist in every legal system. Legal norms in this sense are often found in constitutions and similar types of instruments.

Complete at the source: Institute of Ismaili Studies
Islam and Human Rights By Ann Elizabeth Mayer: The Role of Islamic Law

Author: ismailimail

Independent, civil society media featuring Ismaili Muslim community, inter and intra faith endeavors, achievements and humanitarian works.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.