Posts Tagged ‘Hadith’

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Wednesday word: Istisna’a

June 6, 2012

Like salam, istisna’a is an Islamic contract that allows two parties to agree on a price now for a product delivered later (although Islam generally prohibits deferred payment sales or sales of objects that do not yet exist).

Specifically, istisna’a is defined by Islamic finance specialist Brian Kettell as “a sale contract whereby the purchaser asks the seller to manufacture a specifically defined product, using the seller’s raw materials, at a given price.”*

One difference between istisna’a and salam is that is that istisna’a is used for major manufactured products, facilities, or equipment such as an oil rig, while salam is often used for agricultural or other objects.

However, while there is a marginal justification for salam in Islamic law, there is virtually none, if any, for istisna’a.  Kettell writes:

Similarly to Murabaha and Ijara, no direct support for the principle of Istisna’a can be found by studying the major sources of Sharia’a law.  In fact, the majority of religious schools argue that Istisna’a is inconsistent with Sharia’a law.  Only the Hanafi School accepts the Istisa’a contract and then merely because there is a need within society and customary practice (urf) to have an Islamically acceptable form of project finance.  Nothwithstanding the lack of juristic support for Istisna’a, it is still a widely employed method among Islamic banks.

In a 10 page document describing and justifying salam and istisna’a, Mufti Taqi Usmani (one of the two most notorious sharia finance proponents in the world) cites only one Hadith to justify salam, and none to justify istisn’a.  Usmani makes one vague reference to the Ottoman Empire as having utilized istisna’a.  Although Mr. Usmani supports jihad, sharia, and Islamic supremacy, his apparent support for istisna’a contracts may be based upon something other than Islam.

*Kettell, Brian B., Introduction to Islamic Banking and Finance (Chippenham: John Wiley and Sons, 2011).

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Wednesday word: Salam

May 2, 2012

Salam is a type of forward contract in sharia finance that allows a buyer to pay now for goods to be delivered later.  In general, Islam bans the purchase of any object that the seller does not currently possess, and salam is presented by sharia finance advocates as a narrow, clearly defined exception to the general rule.

Kettell defines salam as “a sale whereby the seller undertakes to supply some specific goods to the buyer at a future date, in exchange for an advanced price fully paid at spot.”*

Kettell also says that the exact price, quality, quantity, and delivery date should be included in a salam contract, and references an unspecified passage from the Hadith that says “He who sells on Salam must sell a specific volume and a weight to a specific due date.”

Yet selling on salam appears to contradict the Islamic reliance on possession before a valid sale can be made.

The fact is that “business” by any normal measure is impractical without a forward contract.  The business elites of the ummah have realized this and have simply determined that in this instance, the exception is the rule.

*Kettell, Brian B., Introduction to Islamic Banking and Finance (Chippenham: John Wiley and Sons, 2011).

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The Hadith’s ban on forward contracts

April 25, 2012

Agreeing upon a price now for merchandize to be produced or delivered later, which is a pretty common, uncontroversial, and healthy tradition in free market economics, is banned by the Hadith, the collection of sayings and actions of Muhammad.

The following comes from one of the most important and widely accepted Hadith among Muslims, the Sahih Al-Bukhari, Book 34 (The Book of Sales [Bargains]):

Chap. 33.  Al-Gharar (the sale of what is not present) and Habal-il-Habala (i.e. the sale of what is in the womb of an animal.)

1022.  Narrated ‘Abdullah bin’Umar:  Allah’s Messenger forbade the sale called ‘Habal-il-Habala which was a kind of sale practiced in the Pre-Islamic Period of Ignorance.  One would pay the price of a she-camel which was not born yet and would be born by the immediate offspring of an extant she-camel.

Similar language appears in Book 10 (The Book of Transactions), Chap. 8, of the Sahih Muslim, another widely agreed upon Hadith, which states that “it is invalid to sell the commodity before taking possession of it” in reference to grain.

It is unfortunate for the world’s Muslims and their economic development that Muhammad made this choice that forever limited the types of transactions available to willing buyers and sellers operating in a free market.

One Western source describes the benefits of production contracts which Muhammad seemed unable to understand:

There are several potential advantages for producers who may consider a production contract. Such contracts may provide for a more stable income for the producer by reducing traditional marketing risks. Such contracts may allow a producer to benefit from technical advice, managerial expertise and access to technological advances provided by the contractor. An agricultural production contract may provide the producer with a guaranteed market, provided that the commodities are produced in accordance with the contract. Finally, such contracts may allow a producer to increase the volume of his business with limited capital since the contractor may often supply the necessary production inputs…

From the contractor’s perspective, production contracts may provide an orderly flow of uniform commodities so as to allow the contractor to control production costs. And such contracts may allow contractors to better respond to changing market conditions. The use of such contracts may allow a contractor to protect its investment in genetics and other intellectual property associated with a particular commodity.

Contemporary sharia financiers have tried to distinguish a forward contract from a futures contract, saying that a forward contract is clear enough to satisfy the requirements of sharia law.  However, that interpretation still seems at odds with the plain language of the text above.  More on the contract loopholes of sharia finance (salam and istisna’a) later…

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Pak pastor told to convert, pay, or die

May 8, 2011

The jizya rears its ugly head again.  With the Islamic revivalism of the Arab Spring, we’re likely to see more and more demands for jizya against non-Muslims. The governments appear to be increasingly unable to protect the rights of religious minorities, and acting on behalf of Christians would undermine their political position in relation to the Islamists.

Here are the relevant excerpts from The New American on May 4:

The April 27 attack on Rev. Ashraf Paul and his family left one son, Sarfraz Paul, critically wounded after he was struck by three bullets. The attack from the Islamic group Tehreek-e-Gazi Bin Shaheed (TGBS) came after Rev. Paul refused to either convert to Islam, or pay a supposed “poll tax.”

The attack on the Paul family is a far from isolated incident: The overt, and growing, persecution of Christians in Pakistan has long made it clear that Pakistan’s status as an “ally” against the Islamic Jihad is a farce…

A similar report of the attack has been posted by the Pakistan Christian Post, with the added clarification that the Jihadists had allegedly not only told Rev. Paul to shut down his ministry, but also to convert to Islam: “Pastor Ashraf Paul has received threat calls and letter before this incident for converting to Islam or pay[ing] money.” As noted elsewhere, the supposed “poll tax” is nothing other than a demand that Rev. Paul pay the Jizya — a “tax” which a Muslim ruler extracts from his non-Muslim citizens.

Muslims would have us believe that jizya is for the “protection” of non-Muslims.  If it’s for our protection, why is it always accompanied by a death threat?  (For the answer, see the Sahih Muslim, Book 19, Number 4294.)

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Terror donations followed laws of Allah

March 13, 2011

The court defense of two terrorist financiers in Indonesia show that they are true believers in the rewards of the money jihad.

Donors behind Abu Bakar Bashir’s funding operation for a terrorist training camp say that they were making their donations in order to obtain “rewards from Allah.”

Their actions were perfectly legal, even required, within the context of sharia law.  Remember what the profiteer Muhammad said, “The warrior gets his reward, and the one who equips him gets his own reward and that of the warrior” (Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 14 No. 2520).  The jihadist financier is doubly blessed, and these two defendants believe it to their core.

From the Jakarta Globe on Mar. 9 (h/t RoP):

Two men accused of channeling funds to firebrand cleric Abu Bakar Bashir to set up a paramilitary camp in Aceh firmly maintained their innocence in two separate hearings at the South Jakarta District Court on Tuesday.

Defendant Abdul Haris, aka Haris Amir Falah, the leader of the Jakarta branch of Jemaah Anshorut Tauhid, an Islamic organization founded by Bashir, and Dr. Syarif Usman, who joined JAT last year, said they had simply made donations to a good cause.

Abdul told the court that he found himself faced with a dilemma. “If I move forward and follow the orders of Allah, I will be charged under the Anti-Terror Law. But if I turn back on His orders, then I have to face His wrath.”

He is facing nine years in jail for allegedly collecting money from donors and channeling it to Bashir.

“When we have to choose between the regulations and laws of Allah, and those that are man-made, any good Muslim will choose the laws as written out by Allah,” he said.

At a separate hearing, Syarif, whom prosecutors have accused of providing Rp 200 million ($22,740) for the Aceh camp, also presented his defense, insisting that his donation was based on Shariah law, and therefore, criminal charges should not be laid upon him.

“Who owns the land of Indonesia? We acknowledge that Allah has created the sky, the earth and all its contents,” said Syarif, who is also facing a nine-year sentence.

“As for this trial, it can deliver any verdict it wants, because my donation is meant to seek rewards from Allah.”

In their handwritten defense, containing mainly verses from the Koran, neither of the men mentioned Bashir.

Asludin Hatjani, a lawyer representing both defendants, said the terrorism charges were groundless because the prosecution failed to prove that the money had been channeled to the Aceh camp, which was raided by police in February last year.

In the indictment prepared by prosecutors, the two are accused of collecting the funds after Bashir allegedly told them: “We are launching a program of major jihadi activities. If you have extra money, you can donate to us and the biggest returns will come from God.”

The panel of judges on the case have said they will deliver their verdict on Friday.

A third suspect, Hariadi Usman, is also on trial in South Jakarta on similar charges .

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Wage jihad with your life, wealth, and words

December 19, 2010

Islamic law is full of verses urging Muslims to strive with their wealth against the infidel in order to achieve salvation.  Take for instance the Koran 9:20*:

It’s no wonder then that fundraising appeals by Muslim terrorists are chock-full of references to Islamic texts.  The latest example comes from the Global Islamic Media Front (GIMF), which serves as Al Qaeda’s press office.

According to Jihadology, Views from the Occident, and The MEMRI Blog on Dec. 7, GIMF released a lengthy appeal for donations to support jihad.  (MEMRI may have supplied the original source material, but that wasn’t clear from these blog posts.)

This is a longer text than we would normally post on Money Jihad, but it goes right to the core of the money jihad, Al Jihad bi-al-mal, and must be retained here for the record.  Here’s GIMF’s message as posted by Views from the Occident:

A Message to Those Who Spend in Allah’s Cause

All praise be to Allah, the Lord of all that exists, who has said in His Wise Book:

يُرِيدُونَ أَن يُطْفِؤُواْ نُورَ اللّهِ بِأَفْوَاهِهِمْ وَيَأْبَى اللّهُ إِلاَّ أَن يُتِمَّ نُورَهُ وَلَوْ كَرِهَ الْكَافِرُونَ

“They wish to extinguish Allah’s Light with their mouths, but Allah will not allow except that His Light should be perfected, even though the infidels hate it.” (At-Tawbah: 32)

He also said:

ادْعُ إِلِى سَبِيلِ رَبِّكَ بِالْحِكْمَةِ وَالْمَوْعِظَةِ الْحَسَنَةِ وَجَادِلْهُم بِالَّتِي هِيَ أَحْسَنُ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ هُوَ أَعْلَمُ بِمَن ضَلَّ عَن سَبِيلِهِ وَهُوَ أَعْلَمُ بِالْمُهْتَدِينَ

“Invite to the Way of your Lord with wisdom and fair preaching, and argue with them in a way that is better. Truly, your Lord knows best who has gone astray from His Path, and He is the Best Aware of those who are guided.” (An-Nahl: 125)

And may peace and blessing be upon the Messenger of Allah, Muhammad, the son of Abdullah, who said:

“Wage Jihad against the idolators with your wealth, your lives, and your words.” (Ahmed, Abu Dawud)

Read the rest of this entry ?

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Second verse, same as the first, a little bit quieter, a little bit worse

December 17, 2010

Here’s a music-free version of our Jesus-Muhammad tax video:

The earlier version was disabled by YouTube because it included music from Sony.  But like life under Islam, it’s no fun without music.

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Weekly word: zakat al-fitr

August 18, 2010

Simple “zakat” is the 2½ percent Islamic tax on wealth often given during Ramadan.  (Note:  some Islamic scholars insist that zakat should be paid within one year of accumulating wealth that surpasses the threshold taxable nisab amount rather than at Ramadan.)

Zakat al-fitr is a smaller, more specific type of zakat paid in food on Eid, the last day of Ramadan.  Brill explained it this way:

By zakat al-fitr (zakat of the breaking of the fast) is meant the obligatory gift of provisions at the end of the month of Ramadan, which according to Tradition was ordered by the Prophet in the year 2 and fixed as regards the amount (the latter is however not certainly historical).  There were differences of opinion regarding the relation of this zakat to the general one and regarding the question whether it was obligatory.  According to the view which finally prevailed, the zakat al-fitr is obligatory (according to the Malikis only sunna) and has to be handed over by every free Muslim for himself and all persons whom he is legally bound to support at latest on the first of the month Shawwal which follows Ramadan.  A man is exempted only if he possesses the bare necessities of life for himself and his family.  The amount of this zakat is 1 sa (=1/60 wask) or 4 mudd of the usual foodstuffs of the country for each member of the household.

Compared to basic zakat (which some people call zakat al-mal), zakat al-fitr is a smaller tax that may be of less direct use for terrorist financing.  However, much like zakat, zakat al-fitr always carries a thinly veiled threat against Muslims for non-payment.  Take for instance this passage of the Sahih Bukhari, in which Muhammad swore that most occupants of hell are women for failing to pay zakat al-fitr:

On ‘Id ul Fitr [Eid al-Fitr] or ‘Id ul Adha Allah’s Apostle (p.b.u.h) went out to the Musalla. After finishing the prayer, he delivered the sermon and ordered the people to give alms. He said, “O people! Give alms.” Then he went towards the women and said. “O women! Give alms, for I have seen that the majority of the dwellers of Hell-Fire were you (women).” The women asked, “O Allah’s Apostle! What is the reason for it?” He replied, “O women! You curse frequently, and are ungrateful to your husbands. I have not seen anyone more deficient in intelligence and religion than you. O women, some of you can lead a cautious wise man astray.” Then he left. (Volume 2, Book 24, Number 541)

In Christianity, tithing is voluntary.  Under Islam, failing paying zakat and zakat al-fitr are punishable by eternal damnation.

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Weekly word: Shahid

June 2, 2010

Shahid or shaheed means martyr.  In the Christian tradition, Random House defines the English word martyr as “a person who willingly suffers death rather than renounce his or her religion.”  In the Islamic tradition, however, martyrdom is not about dying because of religious belief, but dying while fighting for Islam.

Brill defined shahid as, “witness, martyr… The martyr who seals his belief with his death, fighting against the infidels is shahid throughout the Hadith literature at the great privileges which await him in heaven are readily depicted in numerous hadiths…”

And what did Muhammad say about martyrdom?

The Prophet said, “The person who participates in (Holy battles) in Allah’s cause and nothing compels him to do so except belief in Allah and His Apostles, will be recompensed by Allah either with a reward, or booty (if he survives) or will be admitted to Paradise (if he is killed in the battle as a martyr). Had I not found it difficult for my followers, then I would not remain behind any sariya going for Jihad and I would have loved to be martyred in Allah’s cause and then made alive, and then martyred and then made alive, and then again martyred in His cause.”  (Sahih Bukhari, 1.2.35)

Several prominent Muslims have condemned terrorism, but have steered clear of committing to whether suicide bombing “martyrs” count as terrorists.  Attacks in Israel, Kashmir, and the Balkans are portrayed as nationalist movements in public but are justified in private by Muslims as martyrdom operations.

It may seem like it would be inexpensive to kill yourself, but when you’re trying to take out as many infidels with you when you go, suicide bombings require expensive explosive devices plus pensions for martyrs’ families.  This requires an international financial apparatus to support the martyr business.  More on that tomorrow…

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Wednesday word: Mujâhid

May 5, 2010

Like the definitions I’ve added to Money Jihad’s glossary for riba and nisab, this definition comes from Muslim translators of Islamic texts:

Mujâhid (Plural: Mujâhidûn) A Muslim warrior in Jihâd.”

This concise explanation appears in the appendix of the Summarized Sahih Al-Bukhari.

Remember what Islam and its fundamentalist spokesmen say about the mujahideen and the money jihad?

“Your duty is to support the Mujahideen with money and men. I have experienced Jihad myself and I know how costly it can be. The Zakat of one affluent Muslim merchant is enough to finance all the Jihadi front against our enemies”—Osama Bin Laden.

“Collecting money for the mujahideen was not a donation or a gift but a duty necessitated by the sacrifices they made for the Muslim nation”—Yusuf al-Qaradawi.

“When  you use your money for the sake of Allah…you are a mujahid for the sake of Allah”—Mahmoud Al-Habbash, Palestinian Authority.

Oh, and zakat contributions “are only for the Fuqara’ (poor), and Al-Masakin (the poor) and those employed to collect (the funds), and to attract the hearts of those who have been inclined (towards Islam), and to free the captives, and for those in debt, and for Allah’s Cause (i.e. for Mujahidun – those fighting in a holy battle), and for the wayfarer (a traveller who is cut off from everything); a duty imposed by Allah.”—Koran (Sura 9, Verse 60).

Some of these quotations deserve a special new place in our blog’s sidebar as a reminder of what “jihad with money” is all about.

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Word of the week: Nisab

March 1, 2010

In the United States, earners with incomes above a specified amount become subject to the federal income tax.

Likewise, local governments often tax property only if it is worth more than a pre-determined amount.  For example, your canoe is exempt from ad valorem tax, but your yacht is not.

Islam also establishes minimum amounts to be taxed.  This definition comes from the glossary of the most authentic rendering of the Hadith, the Sahih Al-Bukhari, as translated by Dr. Muhammad Muhsin Khan:

Nisâb:  Minimum amount of property liable to payment of the Zakât…

Khan provides specific examples of how much the nisab is for money, crops, and livestock.  Muslims only pay zakat on wealth beyond the nisab amount.

What’s worth noting with this definition is the tax discrimination associated with the nisab.  Zakat is paid by Muslims, and the nisab applies to zakat.  No nisab applies to the jizya or kharaj, the taxes that non-Muslims are forced to pay.

Having less than a certain amount of wealth does not exempt non-Muslims from paying the jizya.  Producing a tiny amount of crops does not exempt non-Muslim farmers from paying the kharaj.

This definition has been added to the Money Jihad glossary.