The rules of the Sharia signify the set of principles determined with precision and their subordinate legal maxims which the great Muslim jurists have derived from the Quran and the Sunna to determine the Islamicity of any act, institution and policy. They are the systematic exposition of the spirit of the text which coincide and guide man towards different situations in human society throughout the ages. This study is an attempt at selecting the largely accepted rules (legal maxims) that are relevant to economic life of individuals and society, and applying them to contemporary situations. These maxims, if broadly classified, relate to claim and practice, doubt and certainty, eliminating detriment, the rules, of relaxation, give and take, benefit versus liability, public welfare vis-a-vis the discretion of the government, the role of custom and usage, and penalty for evasions. The study begins with a statement of limitations to restrict their liberal application.

The subject has been discussed in all major works of jurisprudence including some works dealing only with legal maxims. But it will be found that in almost all these works the scholars have confined themselves to applying these maxims either on rituals or on citing the precedents of the few economic activities which were prevalent in the medieval period. This study, while retaining this latter part, is an attempt at applying the maxims to contemporary economic activities, institutions and policies. Being perhaps the first attempt of its kind, the study does not include all the maxims that may possibly be applied on economic matters nor those which are controversial as judged by the majority of jurists.