In The Name Of God The Most Merciful, Most Compassionate

No need to fear Shariah law


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SHARIAH LAW – NOT REALLY THAT SCARY

The question of Shariah Law and the application of Shariah Law in Australia has been the topic of fervent conjecture and feverish debate and more so since the recent assault of a Sydney man in an incident termed; “Shariah lashings”, by some commentators, while others have questioned whether or not having a beer will get a bloke flogged under Shariah Law.  Before we delve into this question it is appropriate to establish some context.

OBJECTIVES OF SHARIAH

The reality of the Shariah Law is it an intricate and well developed system of judicial, social, communal, fiscal and moral laws designed to mould a person into a compassionate, freethinking and righteous human being.  One of the fascinating aspects of Shariah Law is that legislation is enshrined with ethical and moral codes of conduct.

In order to establish and maintain an ethical and humane society, Shariah controls the moral conduct of a Muslim, firstly by moral instruction and secondly by the enactment of legislation regulating ethical and moral conduct and thirdly, as a corollary of the codification of ethical and moral norms a regime of enforcement safeguarding the ethical standards set by the legislation.

In contemporary times this form of government is alien to public comprehension.  In fact, this way of legislation is an anomalous not only to public comprehension but also to modern criminal law.  Modern criminal law is primarily focused on violations of the person; property or the state and moral codes and behaviours are not directly regulated by the state unless a violation of one of the abovementioned occurs.  As a case in point, one of the reasons we have great difficulty in answering the question, “what are Australian values?” is because ethical behaviour for an Australian is not codified in legislation but rather subject to public interpretation. Contrarily, in specific situations an Australian’s moral and ethical behaviour is codified by civil legislation such as in situation whereby an Australian holds a position of responsibility and is required to maintain the highest echelons of moral practice such as in the Corporations Law.  In this example, a company director is bound by a moral and practical duty to act “with loyalty and in good faith”.  By way of clarification, Shariah clearly defines the moral and ethical role of a citizen and the responsibility of being a citizen in all facets of public and private life not just in the circumstance whereby a citizen holds a specific position of responsibility.

Conditions for Application

Before undertaking an explanation of the Shariah Law and its application, it is imperative to understand that Shariah Law only applies to Muslims. Yes that is right, you can rest easy; Shariah law does not apply to those who do not profess the faith of Islam i.e. Muslims.  Further, most people, unfortunately including some Muslims, know Shariah Law by hearing or reading of isolated incidents of “supposed applications of Shariah” reported by mainstream media so it is understandable that fear and anxiety and even anger are expressed when the topic of Shariah is raised.

CURRENT SITUATION

The example of the “so called” application of “Shariah Law” in the case of the abovementioned assault leaves a trail of devastation, bewilderment and resentment.  The facts reported in the press indicate a man was assaulted, in his home, by a group of men who were purportedly enforcing the legislated punishment in Shariah for drinking alcohol.  In order to give a theoretical and practical example of the application of Shariah Law, a hypothetical incident of similar nature to one mentioned in this article will be discussed as though it occurred in past history, in a nation where Shariah Law was applied (there are currently no countries worldwide applying Shariah Law).  Remember that Shariah only applies to Muslims!

Firstly, how did the perpetrators of the assault come to know that a Muslim drank alcohol or became intoxicated?  If a Muslim is drinking in her/his own home and not in public s/he could not be persecuted under Shariah Law.  Secondly, if the perpetrators broke into a Muslim’s home without proper authority s/he would again not be persecuted under Shariah Law.  Thirdly, if the perpetrators were not authorised by state to act in the capacity of law enforcement officers the Muslim drinking alcohol would not be punished under Shariah Law.  The application of Shariah Law like any other law is subject to due process and the alleged offender is innocent until proven guilty.  Fourthly, if the Muslim drinking alcohol was an alcoholic then s/he is not persecuted under Shariah Law but in fact a program of rehabilitation is prescribed.  Fifthly, if the facts reported in the media are true, under Shariah Law it would be the perpetrators of the assault who would be arrested and brought to justice not the person who was allegedly punished, which is exactly what is occurring.

Sheikh Haisam Farache is a qualifed Sheikh and practising solicitor based in Sydney, Australia.

20 comments
Leigh
Leigh

Great to hear from men but where are the other women? Not given any say in Islam I think and that is the real problem. There are so many intelligent and capable women who could contribute so much in this world if they were not treated as second rate citizens from a bunch of useless men who are on power trips. Men need to earn respect not think it is their right.

jamal
jamal

go into the muslimvillage forum, there are alot of women there giving their opinions on a variety of topics.
women are not silenced or treated as 2nd class citizens in islam.

Muhummed Shah Idil
Muhummed Shah Idil

Thanks for this much needed article. I am glad that you mentioned that Shari'a law applies to MUSLIMS, and that currently, no country applies Shari'a law.

Kathy
Kathy

What are you talking about Mostly. A large list of countries use a strict form of sharia or parts of it. You can be executed for blasphemy in a bunch of them. Australia doesn't need this. There's plenty of "basket case" countries in that list also. Just forget about it because it just aint happening. Move on.

Mosty
Mosty

You can be executed in many Western Countries for treason, what's your point? No country is ruled by Sharia Law, if there was, you would find a Caliphate. And the last Caliphs were the Ottomans. Although, I do accept that some countires adopt forms of Sharia Law. But the application of it, has been an issue as illustrated in the article.

Ferguson
Ferguson

War ridden mess because those in power and even down at the grass roots, religion is confused and mixed up with culture and tradition and customs and politics and greeds. And it isn't just Shariah Law, no country is perfect, regardless of what laws are in place. NOT a single country, because people are people and regardless of the laws in Australia, America, Saudi Arabia, wherever, there will always be crime, thats just how it is. So the laws at the end of the day are guidelines that many don't follow, whether it is something as simple as throwing rubbish out of a car, or killing someone, happened in the past, happening now, will happen in the future. Every country has law, every country has crime. Having law doesn't equate to having a crimeless society.

Ferguson
Ferguson

Also, these are not the only countries in a huge mess, western countries are in an even bigger mess, with all the examples I gave above. Just a mash of immoratlies, abuse, sin upon sin upon sin, greed, those with no basic rights such as health the list is endless of the atrocities western countries experience For Shariah law to be implemented the way God intended, we would need those of the calibre of our wonderful prophets, in this day and age and like Yusuf Estes said, having a Muslim ruler like that, probably not just yet, hopefully in the future. War is great to keep people away from doing what they need too and want too, scare people, divide and conquer.

Kathy
Kathy

The reality of the Shariah Law is it an intricate and well developed system of judicial, social, communal, fiscal and moral laws designed to mould a person into a compassionate, freethinking and righteous human being. ...

Hasn't worked for the muslim world. It's a war ridden mess.

Guest
Guest

That's right. There is no Muslim country worldwide that has based its laws and practices on the teachings of Shariah Law. They have ignored the true teachings and limits prescribed by Shariah, and instead based laws on their own desires. We don't have God-fearing people holding positions of leadership in Muslim nations. I wonder why.

Australian Law is probably far more consistent with Islamic teachings/ideals than any Muslim country's law.. period.

Sad irony.

Mosty
Mosty

Because they haven't been using Shariah Law... there are no countries worldwide that pratice Shariah Law, did you read the article?

Ferguson
Ferguson

Apart from my replies above, this article did a great job in explaining the basics with a clear, honest, credible and concise viewpoint pursuant to the Quran and teachings, without confusing culture and tradition with religion, which is what a lot of people do unfortunately. I am sure the article could of been pages long, but obviously that isn't possible here, it is basically trying to write a detailed article on a case study in a legal matter in a few paragraphs, so great job on that basis. There is no compulsion in religion and as always the small group of people in the media want to control the masses so in order to do that they scare them, divide and conquer. Gods true followers have always been on the forefront, happened to Moses and his followers, to Jesus and to Muhammad (pbut). If you're sick I would hope you wouldn't just ask someone down the street what is wrong with you that you would go to the most educated credible specialist/professor who would help you in your course. Learning Islam is the same.

Ferguson
Ferguson

Great article, thank you for this. Gotta love the people in the photo, living such ignorant lives based on misterpretations and dillusions and hate. If their way is so great, if their law and order is so great, then they shouldn't have any crimes happen there, repeat offending happen there, so obviously they DON'T know better. Once again God bless you for putting this article together. They need to add a lot more posters in that photo, starting with remember what America has done in the past and present, and list all the lies and deciets and corruption and war they have started and been in, that would be a long list. Those in glass houses shouldn't throw rocks, even if they are uneducated twits.

SurryMuslim
SurryMuslim

Sheikh Farache, congratulations on a well-written article. I hope that your article is used by mainstream newspapers such as The Daily Telegraph to alleviate the ignorance and fear shared by many when it comes to Sharia Law.

God bless you.

Mounir
Mounir

Ameen!

May Allah bless you Sheikh and make you a cause for peace to spread throughout Australia and worldwide

Concerned
Concerned

Well, all four schools of sunni jurisprudence agree on what should be done with one who "blasphemes" Muhammad: death. Other laws pertaining to "apostasy" are equally as frightening. Of course none of this will make it onto this heavily moderated site, where Islam is presented in a soft light to placate a genuinely concerned population that shudders at the thought of this outdated political system.

Ferguson
Ferguson

Also I really dont think (as per my link below regarding this topic) is an issue in this day and age. Firstly, this isn't a country that is run by Shariah Law, so from the get go, its a non issue. Not many countries in this world that are, and you would be hard pressed to find this law implemented, otherwise there would be many people dead already, if the internet is anything to go by lol. At the end of the day, Allah will be everyones judge. No one can even come close to being as fair and just and objective as our prophets. We as Muslims and humans are a work in progress.

Ferguson
Ferguson

At the end of the day this is Australia and it is not under Islamic Law, so there is no bearing. Lets put everything where it fits, this is one example, one incident, lets hope they get a fair and just trial and let the punishment fit the crime. The bond conditions were ridiculous and not fair at all, especially when quite recently the men who broke into that ladys house, she chased them out, they stabbed her to death, not only had a lower bond but their conditions were limited if any at all. This is one example, every other piece of news on tv w/e is from NONMUSLIMS and all the horrific crimes and things that take place amongst them. This incident is a needle in a haystack. This is fact. Also if you're not Muslim it doesn't concern you. Just like I don't drink so I am not worried what morons who drink and drive or who drink and beat up their wives and kill people, doesn't reflect on me either. Peace.

Ferguson
Ferguson

Sharia law is nothing new, the Christians and Jews lived by it back in the day, before everything else the books and laws were changed, God law was changed to suit the people, the kings etc. I submit that sharia laws are not hard on any nation and only were sent by Allah to get rid of crimes in a society. These laws are not to be changed and no one has authority to change them. Instead of changinging our lives to suite the God-given laws, we are trying to change the laws. This is ridiculous. See what happened to the Judo-Chritian laws. They have chaged the orignal laws to the whims of people with the result that crimes cannot be controlled in the the society. So those who are thinking to change the sharia laws to enable them in conformity with the present secular laws are living in a fool''s paradise . If changes are made in the sharia laws then we shall get which is not islamic at all.

Ferguson
Ferguson

Australia and other countries especially western countries have a much more shady past, moreso than any Sharia law you should be concerned about, when in fact you have only given one flawed example and if you're not Muslim it shouldn't even be of concern to you because it doesn't pertain to you, period. Even now, behind closed doors, even though sometimes the truth leaks out, countries like America etc and what they do to detainees and the torture perpetrated to people, who haven't even had their time in court, is just outrageous. This happens to this day also.

Ferguson
Ferguson

I think you totally missed the point. And just because you don't like something doesn't make it not true. Also as our brothe stated below, it pertains only to Muslims. Also, you are a little incorrect in your conclusions. I too have read the information and you have not understood it as I have. Oh please how is this site moderated heavily, I have said some pretty straight forward and harsh things which always made the post. The article was a way to understand Sharia law, with a general rule pertainining to the current situation with the lashings. Islam is a soft place, there is nothing harsh about it. How many countries still have the death penalty. how many things happen outside of the law that are MUCH worse than what happens under Islamic Law. The only people who are concerned are those who don't know any better, sorry, that is fact. Also be careful where you get your info from, the internet is a place where the truth and falseness get confused, anyone can say anything online saying its from so and so this school that school, doesn't make it true and doesn't make it credible.

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