Encyclopaedia of the Qurʾān

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Dissimulation [Supplement 2017]
(1,604 words)

Dissimulation, called taqiyya in Arabic, is the action of concealing one’s religious convictions when divulgence would bring danger or death. Two Qurʾānic verses seem to allow Muslims to conceal their true convictions in case of danger: Q 3:28 and 40:28 (cf. Q 16:106). The two main terms for tactical dissimulation or mental concealment in matters of faith found in these verses are taqiyya, literally “care” or “fear” (from the same root w-q-y come tattaqū and tuqātan in Q 3:28), and kitmān, literally “the act of concealing or hiding” (from k-t-m, cf. yaktumu in Q 40:28).

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Mohammad Ali Amir-Moezzi, “Dissimulation [Supplement 2017]”, in: Encyclopaedia of the Qurʾān, General Editor: Jane Dammen McAuliffe, Georgetown University, Washington DC. Consulted online on 10 July 2020 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1875-3922_q3_EQCOM_050513>
First published online: 2017

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