Islam and the Issue of Jurisprudency (Ijtihad)
The struggle of the Shaykh alAnsari was such that he managed to build a solid foundation for the science of usul alfiqh; and it is said that he maintained that if Amin alAstarabadi had been alive he would have accepted his usul.
Naturally, the Akhbari school was defeated as a result of this opposition, and now it has no following except here and there. However, not all the ideas of Akhbarism, which penetrated people's minds so quickly and securely after the appearance of Mulla Amin, and which held sway for more or less two hundred years, have disappeared. Even now we see many who do not recognize the permissibility of an exegesis of the Qur'an unless a hadith is quoted. The inflexibility of Akhbarism still reigns in many of the matters of akhlaq (ethics) and in social problems, even in some parts of fiqh. But now is not the time for me to expand on this.
One thing which is a cause of the popularity of the Akhbari way of thinking is their selfrighteousness, which is pleasing to ordinary people, because their ideas are formulated in such a way that they seem to be claiming: "we are not saying anything we have invented ourselves, we are people of obedience and submission; we say nothing except what the Imam alBaqir (or the Imam alSadiq, etc.) said; we do not speak ourselves, we only say what the masumin said."
In the chapter on ihtiyat and bara'a (precaution and exemption from obligation) in his "Fara' id alUsul" the Shaykh alAnsari quotes from Nimat Allah alJaza'iri  , who maintained the doctrine of the Akhbaris:
Can any rational person conceive the possibility that on the day of Resurrection they will bring forth one of the slaves of Allah (i.e., the Akhbaris) and ask him how he acted, and that when he says that he acted according to what the masumin ordered and that everywhere there was no word from the masumin he desisted as a precaution, they will take such a person to Hell, while they will lead a thoughtless person who was inattentive to the words of the masumin (i.e., an Usuli who follows the doctrine of ijtihad), who rejects every hadith on the slightest pretext, to heaven? It is not possible!
The answer which the mujtahids give is that this kind of obedience and submission is not submission to the words of the masumin, but submission to ignorance. If it is really certain that the masumin said something, then we must submit; but these people wanted to submit ignorantly to everything they heard.
I will give as an example something which I have recently come across, so that the difference between the rigid Akhbari way of thinking and the ijtihadi way of thinking can be seen.
A sample of the two ways of thinking
It has been commanded in many hadiths that the end of the turban should always hang down and pass round the neck, not only at the time of prayer, but at all times. One of these hadiths is as follows:
The difference between a Muslim and an unbeliever is the passing of the end of the turban round his neck (altalahhi).