Kadhis’ Intellectual legacy in the East African Coast: The contributions of Al-Amin Al-Mazrui, Muhammad Kassim Al-Mazrui and Abdulla Saleh Farsy
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The spread of Islam in Eastern Africa was not organized by structured missionary organizations or institutions; likewise, the penetration of deep Islamic thought and knowledge was not institutionally organised. Both the initial dissemination and intellectual penetration depended on individual; traders, workers, learned men and scholars. This chapter highlights the intellectual contributions by Qadhis to the development of Islam and Islamic culture in Eastern Africa during the twentieth century. The study focuses on individual Muslim scholars who contributed to Islamic thought through their own personal dedication and initiative. Apart from their official duties as judicial officers, the Qadhis had enormously contributed to various disciplines, including mosque-seminars, published literary and poetry. Qadhis also played a significant role in establishing Muslim legal and educational scholarship in the East African coast since the nineteenth century. This chapter will focus on three kadhis: Sheikh Al-Amin bin All AI-Mazrui, Sheikh Muhammad Kassim Al-Mazrui and Sheikh Abdulla Saleh Farsy all of whom were linked by an intellectual chain that has maintained the scholarly tradition of passing over knowledge and official responsibilities within their network.