What is Sharia law?
The term "Sharia" (Arabic شريعة Šarīʿa; "way" or "path") is the sacred law of Islam. Sharia law literally means religious code of life. It is used to refer both to the Islamic system of law and the totality of the Islamic way of life. Sharia guides all aspects of Muslim life including politics, daily routines, foods, clothing, amusements, sports, familial and religious obligations, and financial dealings. Traditional Muslims (all mullahs, Mawlanas, Muftis, and Islamic scholars) who understand the Quran and the Hadith believe that sharia (Islamic law) expresses the highest and best goals for all societies on Earth. It is the “law of Allah” and bound to be the best of all. Because of this ardent belief, devout and fanatical Muslims all over the world are in constant struggle (Jihad) with their ruling Government to establish “Islamic Sharia” as the country’s only rule by replacing modern secular democracy (Laws made by human).
Sharia and its origin and sources:
The “sharia law” in all the four Madhabs are esentially the same. The principal sources of Sharia are: the Quran, Hadiths, and Sunnah—(the sayings, practices, and teachings of the Prophet Mohammed). The secondary sources are: Ijma (consensus), Kiyas (analogy), Ijtihad (responsible individual opinion), and Istihsan (Juristic references).
There are four main schools of Sharia law:
Hanbali: This is the most conservative school of Shari'a. It is used in Saudi Arabia and some states in Northern Nigeria.Maliki: This is based on the practices of the people of Medina during Muhammad's lifetime. Shafi'i: This is a conservative school that emphasizes on the opinions of the companions of the Prophet Muhammad. Hanifi: This is the most liberal school, and is relatively open to some limited modern ideas.
Brief History of Sharia compilations:
Brief History of Sharia compilations:
Although, “Sharia law” principally derived from the emulations of early Islamic rules by Prophet Muhammad and his four rightly guided Caliphs , but written format (except some hand-written notes) was not available during the early period of Islamic Caliphates. However, hand-written Sharia formulation was started right from the time of Prophet and continued thereafter during four rightly-guided Caliphs, Umayyad and Abbasid Caliphs until the time of Ottoman Empire. Sharia developed during the long period of: 750-850 CE. Actual Hand-written “Sharia booklets” were formed and compiled by four schools of Islamic scholars and were used by various caliphs as the constitution of the court and final version of the Sharia was compiled after 150 years of the death of Prophet Muhammad in 632 CE. Modern-day Saudi Courts use most conservative Sharia formulated by Imam Hanbali (Hanibali booklet) and Imam Jafri booklet is used in Iran. (Al-Cistani is the guru of Shiite jurisprudence). Actual paper-backed Islamic Sharia books were prepared during 17th Century King Auwrangazev (Alamgir) of Mugal Empire in India.
Some common laws of “Islamic Sharia” which are regularly practiced in the Islamically ruled (Sharia-based) nations with some minor variations:
- 1- Jihad defined as “to war against all non-Muslims to establish the religion” is the duty of every Muslim and Muslim head of state (Caliph). Muslim Caliphs who refuse jihad are in violation of Sharia and unfit to rule.
- 2- A Caliph can hold office through seizure of power meaning through force.
- 3- The head of an Islamic State (Caliph) cannot be charged, let alone be punished for serious crimes such as murder, adultery, robbery, theft, drinking and in some cases of rape (Hudood cases) - Codified Islamic Law Vol 3 # 914C of and page 188 of Hedaya the Hanafi manual.
- 4- A percentage of Zakat (alms) must go towards jihad.
- 5- It is obligatory to obey the commands of the Caliph, even if he is unjust.
- 6- A caliph must be a Muslim, a non-slave and a male.
- 7- The Muslim public must remove the Caliph in one case, if he rejects Islam.
- 8- A Muslim who leaves Islam (apostate) must be killed immediately.
- 9- A Muslim will be forgiven for murder of : a) an apostasy b) an adulterer c) a highway robber. Making vigilante street justice and honor killing acceptable.
- 10- A Muslim will not get the death penalty if he kills a non-Muslim.
- 11- Sharia never abolished slavery and sexual slavery and highly regulates it. A master will not be punished for killing his slave. Slavery still exists amongst Arab Muslims.
- 12- Sharia dictates death by stoning, beheading, for sins like killing, adultery, prostitutions; and other Quranic corporal punishments like: amputation of limbs (chopping hands and feet), floggings, beatings and other forms of cruel and unusual punishments even for the sins like: stealing, sexual promiscuity, robbery, burglary etc.
- 13- Non-Muslims are not equal to Muslims and must comply to Sharia (pay Zizzya: poll tax) if they are to remain safe. They are forbidden to marry Muslim women, publicly display wine or pork, recite their own religious scriptures, or openly celebrate their religious holidays or funerals. They are forbidden from building new churches or building them higher than mosques. They may not enter a mosque without permission. A non-Muslim is no longer protected if he commits adultery with a Muslim woman or if he leads a Muslim away from Islam.
- 14- It is a crime for a non-Muslim to sell weapons to someone who will use them against Muslims. Non-Muslims cannot curse a Muslim, say anything derogatory about Allah, the Prophet, or Islam, or expose the weak points of Muslims. However, Muslims can curse, criticize or say anything derogatory they like to the religions of others.
- 15- A non-Muslim cannot inherit from a Muslim.
- 16- Banks must be Sharia compliant and interest is not allowed.
- 17- No testimony in court is acceptable from people of low-level jobs, such as street sweepers or a bathhouse attendant. Women in such low level jobs such as professional funeral mourners cannot keep custody of their children in case of divorce.
- 18- A non-Muslim cannot rule even over a non-Muslims minority.
- 19- Homosexuality is punishable by death.
- 20- There is no age limit for marriage of girls under Sharia. The marriage contract can take place anytime after birth and consummated at age 8 or 9.
- 21- Rebelliousness on the part of the wife nullifies the husband’s obligation to support her, gives him permission to beat her and keep her from leaving the home.
- 22- Divorce is only in the hands of the husband and is as easy as saying: “I divorce you” and becomes effective even if the husband did not intend it.
- 23- There is no common property between husband and wife and the husband’s property does not automatically go to the wife after his death.
- 24- A woman inherits half what a man inherits. Sister gets half of what brother gets.
- 25- A man has the right to have up to 4 wives and wife has no right to divorce him even if he is polygamous.
- 26- The dowry is given in exchange for the woman’s sexual organs.
- 27- A man is allowed to have sex with slave women and also with women captured in battle (concubines), and if the enslaved woman is married her marriage is annulled.
- 28- The testimony of a woman in court is half the value of a man; that is, two women equal to one man.
- 29- A woman looses custody if she remarries.
- 30- A rapist may only be required to pay the bride-money (dowry) without marrying the rape victim.
- 31- A Muslim woman must cover every inch of her body which is considered “Awrah,” a sexual organ. Some schools of Sharia allow the face and some don’t.
- 32- A Muslim man is forgiven if he kills his wife caught in the act of adultery. However, the opposite is not true for women since he “could be married to the woman he was caught with.”
- 33-It is obligatory for a Muslim to lie if the purpose is obligatory and is known as Taqiyya (Islamic Deception). That means that for the sake of abiding with Islam’s commandments, such as jihad, a Muslim is obliged to lie and should not have any feelings of guilt or shame associated with this kind of lying.
- 34. The perpetrators of genocide, mass rape and plunder will not be punished if they repent - Codified Islamic Law Vol 1 # 13.
- 35. To prove rape, a woman must have 4 male witnesses. Women’s testimony is not accepted - Pakistan’s Hudood ordnance 7 of 1979 amended by 8B of 1980. Thousands of raped women and girls in many countries have been charged with Zena (physical relations outside marriage) and punished by Sharia courts for want of witnesses.
- 36. All modern music including sexually explicit music of any kind is strictly prohibited and punishable by Islamic Sharia code of justice. Only Islamic songs are allowed.
The above are clear-cut laws in Islam decided by great Imams after years of examination and interpretation of the Quran, Hadith and Mohammed’s life.