One of the Maraji` of Sham
He is Imam Wahbah Az-Zuhayli Ad-Dimashqi Ash-Shami Ash-Shafi`ii. Born in the village of Dair `Atiyyah in the year 1349 AH, his father had memorised the Qur’an and worked very hard for his son and others students to do the same.
Early life and Upbringing
His youth was quite amazing and at six years of age began the search for greater knowledge. He has studied at Al-Azhar, Damascus University and holds numerous chains of transmission and teaching licenses in various subjects and books.
Some of his teachers include Mustafa Ash-Shatti and others members of the Shatti clan in the subject of inheritance while he was taught creed by Shaikh Mahmud Ar-Rankousi, fiqh by Shaikh Hashim Al-Khatib and some 10 other teachers and he was certified by all of them.
The Imam is both conservative but flexible so he cannot easily be classed as “strict” or “liberal.” On the one hand, he insists that those who are not mujtahids should not be teaching or writing books unless they are citing the people of authority. This is the reason for his dismissal of the works of Al-Albani, known Salafi member and propagator of their doctrines.
He has stated that the taking of nationalities by Muslims living in Dar ul-Kufr having fled the Muslim heartlands is not permissible as this would involve giving allegiance to other than Allah.
Learning and work
The Imam is the author of some 50+ books and recently released a mammoth text on fiqh entitled, Mawsu`at ul-Fiqh il-Islami wal Qaday al-Mu`asirah in 14 volumes covering much of the contemporary issues that are currently plaguing Muslims in the Muslim majority countries and also in Dar ul-Kufr.