Reconciliation of the Four Schools of Jurisprudence

Question:

I am a student at the Teachers Institute in Ha’il. The teacher of religion told us that we can not follow the ways of the Four Imams (Imams Abu Hanifah, Malik, Al-Shafi’i, and Ahmad) with regard to Salah (Prayer), Wudu’ (ablution), Sawm (fast) and other obligations. The teacher meant that we could not combine between the ways followed by the Four Imams in Shari’ah (Islamic law). I hope you can clarify for us if this saying is true or false. Are there any books that tackle this problem?

Answer:

A Muslim is not required to combine between the ways followed by the four Madhabs (Schools of Jurisprudence) in his deeds. If he is able to derive the rulings from their proofs, then he has to follow what appears to him to be the truth. If he can not do that, then he has to follow one of the reliable Imams. Allah (Exalted be He) says: “So keep your duty to Allâh and fear Him as much as you can” [Al-Taghabun: 16] and “So ask the people of the Scripture, if you do not know.” [Al-Nahl: 43]

May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet, his family and Companions