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Fundamentals of Islamic Law (Part 2)

SHAFAQNA | by Mohammad Saeid Taheri Moosavi*: It has already been stated that the Shia Islam is based on five religious Pillars (Usul Ad-Din) plus ten practical elements of the Faith (Furu Ad-Din):

Pillars of Islam (Usul Ad-Din)

The five Islamic beliefs, which include:
1- Tawhid (monotheism: belief in the oneness of God)
2- Adl (divine justice: belief in God’s justice)
3- Nubuwwah (prophethood)
4- Imamate (succession to Muhammad)
5- Mi’ad (the day of judgment and the resurrection)

It is clear that these pillars are interrelated, and the result of such a connection is that rules and regulations cannot contradict these principles. This is because the main source of Islamic law is only God Almighty, who created the world on the basis of His absolute justice, and sent prophets to rule on the basis of justice and rightness, and to choose the infallible Imams (A.S) who are free from any sin and fault to teach the word of God and God’s Messenger to human beings without any shortcomings and interference, and the guarantee of the implementation of this process is the Day of Judgment, Paradise and Hell that God has ordained for human beings.

This precise relationship shows the absolute and expedient wisdom of God to finalize the continuation of God’s message which began with prophecy, with the Imamate. Hence, the permanent presence of Infallible Imams (AS) in every age and every ethnic group is proven, although, the will of God and the natural course of affairs should be realized so that the last Imam should disappear and return at the appointed time and establish absolute justice, a justice that is beyond the power of ordinary human beings and requires a perfect mankind.

2. Elements of the Faith (Furu Ad-Din)

The ten Islamic practical principles that are known as the Elements of the Faith from the Shia point of view are:

1- Salah: 5 daily prayers

2- Sawm: Fasting the holy month of Ramadan

3- Zakat: Alms-giving, similar to Sunni Islam, it applies to money, cattle, silver, gold, dates, raisins, wheat, and barley.

4- Khums: An annual taxation of one-fifth (20%) of the gains that a year has been passed on without using. Khums is paid to the Imams; indirectly to poor and needy people.

5- Hajj: Pilgrimage to Mecca (the Sacred House of God)

6- Jihad: Striving for the cause of Allah (Jihad al Akbar (Greater Jihad): the jihad against yourself, Jihad Al Asghar (Minor Jihad): the jihad against Satan)

7 & 8- Enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong (Al-Amr bi’l Maʿrūf wa Nahy An’il Munkar‎), to guarantee freedom of expression and enjoy a clean and healthy society and to prevent the aggression of evildoers and oppressors.

9- Tawalla: Expressing love towards those who are kind and whose love is recommended,

10- Tabarra: Expressing disassociation and hatred towards evil. Avoidance of the enemies of God and the Prophet and the infallible Imams (A.S).

These practical principle elements of the Faith make a human being a righteous, honest, active in good deeds, brave, pious and obedient to God and His guiding religion, and build a society in which men and women cooperate and unite with each other to eliminate all manifestations of corruption and injustice and form an exemplary society. In short, these Pillars and Ancillaries of the Faith compel us to establish rights based on the divine religion in the first place, and therefore to legislate Laws whose rules and regulations are not in conflict with that divine religion.

Law ought to be religious and Islamic, because God’s absolute intellect and His eternal will require that the rules, regulations and requirements that He has established for human beings are basically and necessarily the best, and without them human beings will not evolve. And in the second place, the Islamic society and Muslims have been formed in the shadow of the blessings of His guidance and will become a united nation through His worship and servitude.

* Dr. Mohammad Saeid Taheri Moosavi is a specialist in Public Law and Political Sciences. This article is written for Shafaqna French and translated by Shafaqna English. 

French Version [1]