1. What arguments does al-Hilli give in support of his position that religious knowledge is incumbent? Why must this knowledge be obtained through proof rather than through imitation or faith taqlid? (p. 7)
2. How does al-Hilli prove the existence of God? (pp. 11-14)
3. How does al-Hilli prove that God is a free agent? (pp. 15-17)
4. How does al-Hilli explain God's speech? Why does he reject the Ash`arite doctrine of His speech? (pp. 25-28)
5. Why does al-Hilli believe that God is not compounded? (pp. 30-31)
6. Why is allegorical interpretation necessary? (p. 32)
7. What proofs does al-Hilli give for denying a partner to God? (pp. 37-38)
8. Why are God's attributes not superadded to His essence? (pp. 38-39)
9. What arguments does al-Hilli give in support of his position that reason can determine what is good and evil? (pp. 40-42)
10. What arguments does al-Hilli give in support of man's being a free agent? (pp. 42-43)
11. Why is it impossible for God to do evil? (pp. 44-45)
1. What arguments does Ibn Qudamah give against the use of ijtihad? When is ijtihad and the use of reason justified in his view? (pp. 17-20, 43)
2. What arguments does Ibn Qudamah give against the use of allegorical interpretation ta'wil? (pp. 20-24)
3. The theologians accuse the traditionalists of being anthropomorphists. What arguments does Ibn Qudamah present in defence of the tradtionalists? (pp. 27-30, 34)
4. What is Ibn Qudamah's position with respect to the Qur'an? (pp. 31-33, 37-38)
1. Compare al-Ash`ari's proof for the existence of God with that that of al-Hilli. (paragraphs 3-7)
2. How does al-Ash`ari seek to prove that God's attributes are eternal? (paragraphs 16-17) Is His attribute of acting also eternal? Why not? (paragraphs 37-39)
3. Explain al-Ash`ari's thesis that God's knowledge and other attributes are neither distinct from Him nor identical with Him. (paragraphs 20-26)
4. What arguments does al-Ash`ari present in support of his thesis that the speech of God is uncreated? (paragraphs 27-30, 45-48)
5. What reasons does al-Ash`ari give in support of his position that God wills everything which can be willed? (paragraphs 49-67)
6. Explain al-Ash`ari's doctrine of acquisition. (paragraphs 82-96)
7. How does al-Ash`ari explain God's creation of evil? Why cannot God be called unjust? (paragraphs 97-121, 165-179)
8. Compare the position of al-Ash`ari on the question of human freedom and divine power with that of al-Hilli. (paragraphs 82-121)
9. How does al-Ash`ari reconcile the doctrine that a man's capacity for an act is created by God with the doctrine that God does not impose upon a man an act for which he has no capacity? (paragraphs 122-140)
1. Compare the position of the Ash`arites with that of the Mu`tazilites on the question of human ability and God's power.
2. Compare the respective positions of the Ash`arites, the Mu`tazilites and the traditionalists with respect to God's attributes.
3. How do the theologians differ from the tradtionalists with respect to the use of reason and the allegorical interpretation of the Qur'an?
4. Compare the positions of the theologians and the traditionalists with respect to the Qur'an as the speech of God.
5. Describe and compare the various methods of gaining knowledge as expounded by Ibn Qudamah, al-Hilli, al-Taftazani, and al-Ghazali.