was truthfulness and right which raised Muhammad the Trustworthy to the highest of the high.
Thus, the Companions, who held elevated sentiments and worshipped good morals and were illuminated with the light of the conversation of the Sun of Prophethood, did not stretch out their hands to the buffoonery and filth of the lying in Musaylima’s shop, which was so ugly and the cause of descent, and they shrank from unbelief. So too they shrank from lying, the companion of unbelief, and sought as far as they were able –especially in relating the ordinances of the Shari’a and propagating them– truth, truthfulness, and right, which are so fine and the cause of pride and glory, ascent and progress, and were the thing most in demand from the elevated treasury of the Glory of Messengership, and which illuminate man’s social life with their beauteous splendour; the Companions acted in conformity with them and were desirous of them; this is certain, definite, and necessary. Whereas at this time, the distance between truth and lying has become so narrow that they are now quite simply shoulder to shoulder. It is extremely easy to pass from truthfulness to lying. Lying is even preferred to truthfulness due to the propaganda of politics and diplomacy. And so, if the most ugly and the finest things are sold in the same shop for the same price, certainly the jewel of truthfulness and right, which is most elevated and penetrates to the essence of reality, will not be obtained blindly, relying on the word and skill of the shopkeeper.
Sacred laws change according to the ages. Indeed, in one age different prophets may come, and they have come. Since subsequent to the Seal of the Prophets, his Greater Shari’a is sufficient for all peoples in every age, no need has remained for different laws. However, in secondary matters, the need for different schools has persisted to a degree. Just as clothes change with the change of the seasons and medicines change according to dispositions, so sacred laws change according to the ages, and their ordinances change according to the capacities of peoples. Because the secondary matters of the ordinances of the Shari’a look to human circumstances; they come according to them, and are like medicine.
At the time of the early prophets, since social classes were far apart and men’s characters were both somewhat coarse and violent, and their minds, primitive and close to nomadism, the laws at that time came all in different forms, appropriate to their conditions. There were even different prophets