Kalam (theology)

Ilm al-Kalam (علم الكلام‎‎, literally "science of discourse"), usually foreshortened to kalam and sometimes called "Islamic scholastic theology", is an Islamic undertaking born out of the need to establish and defend the tenets of Islamic faith against doubters and detractors. A scholar of kalam is referred to as a mutakallim as distinguished from philosophers, jurists and scientists. There are many possible interpretations as to why this discipline was originally called "kalam" (lit. speech); one is that the widest controversy in this discipline has been about whether the Word of God, as revealed in the Qur'an, can be considered part of God's essence and therefore not created, or whether it was made into words in the normal sense of speech and is therefore created.

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