Mir Sadeq Ansari

Proposed Title

The role of 'aql in matn (content) criticism in the works of Abu Ja'far Tahawi


How critical can we be when analysing the content of hadith (as opposed to its chain of narrators), particularly when there is some sort of 'ishkal' (difficulty)? In our modern world, where there is much doubt around hadith already, my thesis looks to find how classical Muslim scholars approached this issue 'without throwing out the baby with the bath water'. No scholar of hadith has written as extensively in this field of 'difficult hadith' as has Abu Ja'far Tahawi. My thesis looks to see how would answer this question, particularly when it comes to the issue of hadith appearing as 'unreasonable'.

Why I chose Charles Sturt

Islamic studies in Australia though relatively new, perhaps is most comprehensively studied and taught at Charles Sturt. There are also a good number of non-formal reading circles that I get an opportunity to participate with the wider community of students and friends as currently I am part of three separate study circles studying: Kimya-i Saadet (al-Ghazali), Risalat-i Mustarshideen (al-Muhasibi) and Usul al-Shashi.


  • Ansari, M. S. (Publication expected 2020). Concept of majority in Islamic Theology. Theological Refutation of Radicalism. Edinburgh University Press.
  • Ansari, M.S. (2018, April) Welcoming (Interfaith article) Fountain Magazine. Issue 122.

Conference Presentations

  • Ansari, M.S (2019, December). The rules of using historical events whilst engaging in hadith content criticism by Abu Jafar Tahawi (d. 933). Postgraduate Islamic Studies Conference, Graduate Research School, Western Sydney University.
  • Ansari, M.S. (2019, November). The use of historical anachronism and conflicting empirical evidence in evaluating hadith and hadith interpretations. Paper presented at the Centre for Indonesian Law, Islam and Society Conference, Melbourne, Australia.
  • Ansari, M. S. (2019, March).Sacred Texts calling for resistance whilst the creedal texts limiting it. Paper presented at the American Academy of Religion (Western Region) Conference, Arizona, USA.
  • Ansari, M. S. (2018, November). The concept of hurma (human dignity). Paper presented at the 2nd International Conference on Organ Transplantation in Islam, Western Sydney University, Sydney, Australia
Current candidate profiles