Expert: No ‘Islamic state’ in Quran

Sheith Khidhir Bin Abu Bakar | May 30, 2016
Free Malaysia Today

PETALING JAYA: There is no such thing as an Islamic state and no obligation to create one, according to Law Professor Abdullah Ahmed An-Na’im from Emory University, Atlanta, United States.

Speaking at a lecture entitled “Islam and the Secular State” at the Sunway University here today, Ahmed said that the term “Islamic state” was not mentioned in the Quran or the sunnah (sayings and actions of Prophet Muhammad), nor was it known in any of the languages until the 20th century.

“We do not have this obligation in the Quran or sunnah,” he said. “Islam does not have a prescribed order for a political state.”

In fact, he added, an Islamic state was an “impossibility” as there was no criteria to measure what an Islamic state was.

There were differing views in classic Islamic knowledge on jurisprudence and there was no independent authority that could verify an Islamic state.

“Arabia and Iran both claim to be Islamic states, but to each of them they are heretics,” he quipped.

When asked to comment on Malaysia’s Shariah Index, Ahmed bluntly said that there was no such thing as a Shariah Index.

“Ask them where does it come from and who designed it. There is no Shariah Index.”

(The Shariah Index was set up by various bourses to cater to the ever increasing number of Islamic investors in businesses across the world. The aim is to enable the Islamic financial world to invest in shariah-friendly businesses across the world.)

On hudud, Ahmed said that the term “hudud” was also never mentioned in the Quran or Hadith.

“The Quran and the Hadith provide for crime and punishments, but the definition of the crime is not mentioned in the Quran and is instead created by jurists.

“For example, the Quran says that the punishment for theft is to cut off the hands but it never defines what theft is.

“The definitions are created by the jurists and sometimes they are problematic.

“Some jurists say that stealing public property is not theft as all have a claim to public property.

“But that means that you can siphon millions of public funds into your bank account, but if you take 10 ringgit from someone’s pocket, then you’ll have your hands cut off.”

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  1. #1 by Bigjoe on Tuesday, 31 May 2016 - 8:33 am

    All very fine, but truth is you are not going to convince the masses of indoctrinated with such fine ideas.

    To change in Malaysia, the next step must be Hadi Awang has to lose, big time and by no other than Najib’s hand. So it’s time to call what Hadi’s Bill really is – Najib’s cover for 1MDB and Hadi’s lying – the very thing Nik Aziz warned about UMNO. – the masses buy it – then you can talk about these fine points

  2. #2 by Bigjoe on Tuesday, 31 May 2016 - 10:26 am

    Those who argue that non-Muslim.opposing Hudud disrespect Islam is simply FULL of it. Those who accuse non-Muslim in this country of disrespecting Islam is NOT after respect, they are after FEAR AND REVERANCE. FEAR AND REVERANCE is glory seeking and excess not respect.

  3. #3 by Bigjoe on Tuesday, 31 May 2016 - 10:55 am

    Is there a deep Najib-Hadi deal in Kuala Kangsar and SG Besar. It appears there is a deal for Najib to take SG Besar while Hadi takes Kuala Kangsar..

  4. #4 by good coolie on Tuesday, 31 May 2016 - 11:53 am

    Moderate Muslims must have the courage to speak up against those who want to deny people the benefit of humanity’s development. These days, people see each other (even if they belong to different races, tribes and religions), as brothers and sisters. We have become ‘soft’, compared to the wild violent ways of our primitive past, and thanks be to God for the change!

    In Malaysia, we have the benefit of a Constitution blessed by God. It ensures every group will play its part for the benefit of the country. Do not support demagogues who wish to undermine the Constitution. Do not support corrupt, confused and craven politicians who only care about fattening their purses.

    As for the blinkered politicians of PAS, at least they are honest and upright as to their aims, and so far at least, they have not resorted to violence to achieve their Islamic State.

  5. #5 by good coolie on Tuesday, 31 May 2016 - 6:34 pm

    The Islamic State is a country where Islamic Law is the law of the land. In this sense there have indeed been Islamic States in existence. Examples of modern Islamic states are Iran and Saudi Arabia. This essay seems to be clutching at straws by saying there were no Islamic States mentioned in the Quran or Hadith. The term “Islamic State” may not have been mentioned in those authorities but the reality of Islamic States certainly did exist!

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