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Islamic Sharia Laws ( 13 Aug 2023, NewAgeIslam.Com)

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Why Is It Impossible To Reform Sharia Law?

By Hasan Mahmud, New Age Islam

13 August 2023

Global Consortium 'Resolve Network' in a research survey in Bangladesh found that more than 80 percent of the respondents believed that corruption in the country would be reduced if Sharia law was in place. A Pew Research Centre survey in 2011-12 found similar numbers – (both reported by Bangladeshi daily Prothom Alo on 26 January 2022).

This article- “Examples of Sharia Law” shows that many unjust and oppressive laws are found in the Sharia books:-

https://hasanmahmud.com/index.php/articles/islamic-english/240-examples-of-sharia-law

Maulana Mawdudi wrote - "(Muslim’s) sword and the pen were supreme rulers. But then the vigour of their efforts weakened, and they lost the ability to interpret the Sharia to suit the changing times" – page 8, - ‘The Sick Nations of the Modern Age’. He missed that if Islamic scholars try to “interpret the Sharia to suit the changing times”, their heads will hit a stone-wall of some wired “authentic" hadiths and Islamic documents.

Can they overcome it?

No, they can’t. They themselves tied their hands and feet by creating these laws.

Here are two examples proving my point. Please note that in general, punishments of these crimes are fixed by the Quran and Sunnah and can’t be updated. All other laws fall into Tazir section that can be updated:-  

(A)     Hudud crimes are apostasy, revolt against the ruler, theft, highway robbery, adultery, slander, and drinking alcohol.

(B)     Qiyas - Similar retribution for life and wounds, based on Quran 5:43,

(C)     Diyat – financial compensation payable to the victims or their legal heirs for murder or inflicting injury.

All other laws fall into Tazir section that can be updated.

Let’s start our bumpy ride, fasten your seat belts!

Punishment of planned murder is death in Sharia law except in 5 cases:-

(1)      Head of Islamic State can’t be punished for Hudud crimes – (Hanafi law Hedaya page 188 and CIL vol 3 law#914C),

(2)      Criminals of genocide and/or mass-rape can’t be punished if the repent in court (CIL** Vol1 Law# 13),

(3)      Murderers of apostates can’t be punished – “killing an apostate from Islam is without consequences” -  Shafi'i law book Umdat Al Salik, authenticated by Al Azhar university- law #o.1.2.3.

Other 2 types of cases of criminals of planned murders are:-  

Example 1: - If parents or grandparents kill their children or grandchildren, the murderer will not be punished with death. (CIL Vol. 1, law# 65A, 65B, Shafi'i law Umdat Al Salik law #o.1.2.4:-

“The following are not subject to retaliation: a father or mother (or their fathers or mothers) for killing their offspring, or offspring's offspring”. 

It is clearly an unjust law. But if the try to amend it, the scholars will hit their heads on the stone-wall of Sahih Tirmidhi 1405:-

د ب ُ ِ َال ُ الْو َُقاد ول َلا يـ ُ ق َُ َ يـ م َّ َل َس ِ و ْه َي َل ع ُ ه َّ ى الل َّ ِ َصل ه َّ ُ َول الل َس ت ر ُ ْ ِع سمَ Sayyidina Umar ibn Khattab (RA), said that he heard Allah’s Messenger (SAW) say, ‘A father will not be killed for slaying his son.” – Sahih Tirmidhi Hadis 1405.

Similar Ahadees are also in Sahih Tirmidhi 1406 and Sunan Ibn Majah Vol 3 Hadith 2662. What the scholars will do in such a dire situation? How will they resolve such terrible assault on justice and Islam by Sharia-Hadis coalition? Can they dare to change or reject those Ahadees? I don’t think so. However, we believe that our Prophet (S) could not be so unjust and imbalanced.

Example 2:- A Muslim shall not be put to death for murdering an unbelieve’ - Penal Law of Islam page 149, Shafi law book Umdat Al Salik law # o1.2 and o2.2.

Obviously, this is also an unjust law. But if the try to amend it, the scholars will hit their heads on the stone-wall of 4 Islamic documents:-

A. “No believer kills another believer in retaliation for an unbeliever (Kafir) ' - Article 14 of Madina Charter  of the Prophet (S), page 45 of 'The First Written Constitution in the World' - Dr. Hamidullah.

B. 'A believer should not be put to death for killing an unbeliever' - Sunan Abu Dawud Hadis  2745,

C. 'No Muslim shall be put to death for killing a non-Muslim' – “al-Shafii's Risala – Treatise on the Foundations of Islamic Jurisprudence”,

D. Narrated by Ali (R) - 'No Muslim should be killed for killing an infidel' - Sahih Bukhari Vol 4 Hadith 283.

What the scholars will do in such a dire situation? How will they resolve such terrible assault on justice and Islam by Sharia-Hadis coalition ? Can they dare to change or reject those Ahadees? I don’t think so. They have never shown the courage to question who, when, why and by what authority wrote such anti-Islamic laws in the Sharia books. Most of those laws are based on Hadis. We must not be hypnotized by the words ‘Hadis’, Bukhari Tabari Sirat etc. We must examine each reference because these books contain seriously objectionable reports. Few examples:- 

A.       Sahih Bukhari Vol 7 Hadis 173 is terribly pornographic. It is so nasty that I can’t type it here or read in front of others. 

B.       "Monkey committed Illegal sexual intercourse" - Sahih Bukhari Vol 5 Hadith 188,

C.       Verses on death by stoning, and a woman commanded by the Prophet (PBUH) to breast-feed an adult man were revealed but are not in our Qur'an because these verses are eaten by a goat – Ibn Majah Vol 3 Hadis 1943, 1944 and Sahih Muslim 3424 to 3429 (6 hadiths),

D.       Prophet Musa (A) running naked on a crowded road  – Sahih Bukhari Vol 1 hadith 277,

E.       Our Prophet (S) was naked in front of people - Sahih Bukhari Vol 1 hadith 360,

The list is very long. These are our books, and we must face them. In 2004 Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan took up “The Turkish Hadith Project” and created a new compilation of good hadiths rejecting bad ones. Now Saudi Prince MBS is doing the same. Our Alims must do the same. People’s respect to them is not unconditional, they must bring welfare of the society from Islamic sources. That’s why they are given an Islamic process of Ijtihad that they rarely use.

* The 9 volume Sahih Bukhari I used is the translation of Dr. Muhsin Khan of Medina university.

** “CIL” in this article is a three-volume "Codified Islamic Law" is compiled mainly from Hanafi law by a committee of 6 Islamic scholars. It is published by Bangladesh Islami Foundation.   

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Hasan Mahmud is a veteran researcher-author on Political Islam. He is one of the founding members of MRM – “Muslim Reform Movement”; he was in the advisory board of World Muslim Congress, the Director of Sharia Law of Muslim Canadian Congress and few other organizations. He authored thousands of articles, 4 books and 4 docu-movies critical to Sharia law. This article is from a chapter of his book – “How Sharia-Ism Hijacked Islam: The Problem, Prognosis and Prescription”.

 

URL:    https://newageislam.com/islamic-sharia-laws/impossible-reform-sharia-law/d/130437


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