Articles

Religion and Sharia
Author : Dr. Jadallah Bassam
Date Added : 30-01-2024

Religion and Sharia

 

All perfect praise be to Allah the Lord of the Worlds. May His peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Mohammad and upon all his family and companions.

 

"The Deen/Religion" with a short vowel on the "D" refers to divine rulings that guide humans towards happiness. It is named "Deen" because it is the means by which individuals are rewarded or punished in the afterlife. This concept is vital and significant, influencing human life and remaining an essential societal need. Therefore, countries, institutions, and individuals need to incorporate it into their laws, priorities, and plans. It cannot be ignored, as it is inherent in human nature, a natural disposition created by Allah, and it aligns with sound reasoning and solid evidence. This is particularly true when the religion encompasses a comprehensive legal framework covering various aspects of life, including worship, transactions, and ethics.

 

In the precise sense, scholars like Al-Fakhr al-Razi have defined religion as a "divine constitution that guides people of intellect towards virtues through their praiseworthy choices." This notion is reiterated in various expressions, such as Sharif al-Jurjani's statement: "Religion is a divine constitution that invites people of intellect to accept what is with the Prophet Mohammad, peace be upon him." Similarly, they say, "Religion, in terminology, is a celestial law guiding people of intellect toward virtues in essence, such as the legal rulings revealed to the Prophet Mohammad, peace be upon him." The underlying idea is that religion consists of a set of rulings and teachings from God, which, when pondered upon by those of sound intellect, lead them to recognize their validity and the necessity of adhering to them. The ultimate goal of these rulings is to bring happiness to humanity.

 

Discussions about the concept of religion have arisen in both ancient and contemporary philosophical debates. These discussions have explored the meaning, origin, evolution, and the extent of religion's intertwining with human life. Scholars have debated the comprehensiveness of its rulings, leading to the classification of religion into various types. Philosophers, for example, have described it as civil religion, natural religion, the religion of philosophers, or the religion of the ancients. Some philosophers have even denied the validity of religion altogether, considering it a cause of backwardness. Others have gone so far as to invent, synthesize, or distort religions, viewing religion as a human, earthly creation.

 

Whatever the case may be, our focus in this article is to clarify an important issue from the perspective of the Islamic creed: "The Religion before God is Islam (submission to His Will): " [Al-Emran, 19]. The point emphasized here is that religion in Islam is not a matter of personal desires or whims, nor is it subject to human experiments, societal evaluations, or individual opinions. Rather, it consists of divine judgments and teachings with an absolute source.

 

One of the characteristics of these divine judgments is that they align with reason and do not contradict it. Indeed, those endowed with reason find themselves naturally inclined towards these judgments when they understand them. The result of this inclination is the attainment of goodness for the adherent, leading to complete happiness. This happiness encompasses both the worldly and the hereafter, as emphasized by the Quran. Allah, the Most High, says {What means}: " And those who are blessed shall be in the Garden: They will dwell therein for all the time that the heavens and the earth endure, except as thy Lord willeth: a gift without break." [Hud, 108]. Additionally, it is narrated that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) supplicated, "...O Allah, I ask You for success in judgment, and [to be] among the martyrs, and to live a life of the fortunate." [Sunan At-Tirmidhi].

 

If we contemplate this concept in its principles and objectives, we find that by adhering to Islam and its teachings, we strive for complete happiness. In the religion of Islam and its laws, there is no conflict between male and female, father and mother, father and son or daughter, ruler and ruled, or between the rich and the poor. There is no contradiction between duties, and no preference is given to any individual over another among the children of Adam. Instead, everyone is equal in the eyes of this upright religion, and dignity is accorded to all based on the fundamental principle. Allah, the Most High, says {What means}: "And We have certainly honored the children of Adam." [Al-Isra, 70].

 

Afterwards, people vary based on what Allah has entrusted them with in terms of abilities, capacities, and readiness to bear the responsibility of the divine commandments. Allah, the Most High, says {What means}: " We did indeed offer the Trust to the Heavens and the Earth and the Mountains; but they refused to undertake it, being afraid thereof: but man undertook it;- He was indeed unjust and foolish;-." [Al-Ahzab, 72]. Moreover, the variation among people is functional, depending on their constitution, nature, and abilities. However, fundamentally, the address is directed to every individual, regardless of differences in classes, colors, nationalities, or races. Whoever does good and carries out the trust as it deserves has done good for themselves, and whoever does evil has wronged themselves.

 

Delving into the concept of religion, as we have mentioned, leads us to the pinnacle of the religious perfection that takes into consideration humanity in the most complete sense. It neither unjustly equates individuals through a forced equality that some advocate, nor neglects them, leaving them adrift without divine guidance. Rather, it strikes a balance, embodying a system filled with wisdom, mercy, and justice, guiding towards goodness.

 

Finally, we must fully understand these realities. Such understanding is sufficient to fortify us against a significant influx of contemporary doubts that may undermine our intellectual and societal security, jeopardizing natural relationships between people and even within oneself. After grasping these principles, we should take a decisive stance on the issue of religion: to adhere to it. As narrated from the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), "None of you believes until his desires conform to what I have brought." We ask Allah for continuous blessings and a good ending. All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of all worlds.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Summarized Fatawaa

Is abortion permissible when the family isn`t ready to receive a new baby?

Abortion is forbidden unless it constituted a serious threat against the mother`s life based on the opinion of trustful and God fearing physicians.

Is it permissible for a pious Muslim woman to stay with her husband who had quit praying out of laziness?

Quitting prayer is one of the major grave sins that come after disbelieving in Allah, but the wife of such a person isn`t considered divorced, rather, she should exert all her efforts in order to bring him back to the way of Islam. However, if his sin is likely to lure her from the way of Islam, then she had better separate from him by lawful means such as Mokhal`aa(When a wife pays a compensation for her husband in return for divorcing her). Moreover, if she exercises patience, and remains steadfast on her faith, then there is no harm in doing that.

Is it permissible to give the expiation due on the vow of anger to one person?

The expiation for the vow of anger-and that of the oath-is to be given to (10) needy persons, or a needy family of ten individuals, but giving it to one person is impermissible.

1-A young man whose father and grandfather are dead has died leaving a mother, two sisters and a brother. Do his paternal uncles inherit him?2- A man died leaving daughters, a wife, brothers, a mother or no mother. It is well known that the daughters inherit two thirds and the wife one eighth. To whom does the rest of the estate go and what is the evidence on that from the texts of Sharia?

All perfect praise be to Allah, the Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad, sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, is His slave and Messenger.
1- The full brother or the paternal half-sibling disinherits the paternal uncles. The paternal half-sibling takes one sixth and because they are from the Asabah (Male relatives on the father`s side) of the deceased they take the rest of the estate. The proof of this is that Ibn ‘Abbas (May Allah Be Pleased with them) reported God’s Messenger as saying: "Give the shares to those who are entitled to them, and what remains over goes to the nearest male heir." [Agreed upon]. In this case, nothing is left to them.
2- The brothers take the rest of the deceased`s estate and the full brother disinherits the paternal half-sibling, and the proof of this is the aforementioned narration. And Allah The Almighty Knows Best.