Concerning the ancient people of `Ad, ”who were rebellious, disobedient, arrogant, outside His obedience, deniers of His Messengers and rejectors of His Scriptures,”[fn1 Tafsir Ibn Kathir] and similarily those of today:

Quran Sura 89 verses 6-8

{Have you not seen how your Lord dealt with the people of `Ad, people of pillars,
the like of which was not seen in the land? }
Sura Al-Fajr 89:6-8




Eight Points About The Economic System of Islam

“Islam is an entire way of life, and Allah's Guidance extends into all areas of our lives. Islam has given detailed regulations for our economic life, which is balanced and fair. Muslims are to recognize that wealth, earnings, and material goods are the property of God, and that we are merely His trustees. The principles of Islam aim at establishing a just society wherein everyone will behave responsibly and honestly. The fundamental principles of the Islamic economic system are as follows:”

  1. Muslims are not to deal in interest. (Qur'an 2:275-6). (Qur'an 3:130)
  2. It is forbidden to gain property or wealth by fraud, deceit, theft, or other falsehoods. (Qur'an 7:85).
  3. It is particularly hateful for a guardian to take from an orphan's property. (Qur'an 4:2).
  4. Forbidden are earnings from gambling, lotteries, and the production, sale, and distribution of alcohol. (Qur'an 5:90).
  5. It is unlawful to hoard food and other basic necessities. Everyone should take what they need and no more. (Qur'an 3:180).
  6. A Muslim should be responsible in spending money. Extravagance and waste are strongly discouraged. (Qur'an 25:67). (Qur'an 7:31).
  7. Muslims must pay Zakat (alms). (Qur'an 98:5).
  8. Muslims are encouraged to give constantly in charity. (Qur'an 64:15-16).
    The Prophet Muhammad ( sallAllahu `aleihi wa sallam ) once said that "nobody's assets are reduced by charity."
    By Huda, About.com Guide link-green18




New Perspectives For The Modern World:

Islamic Economics

What People Will Gain From It

by Omar K Neusser, M.E.

Toward A Holistic (View of) Economics

Economics is meant to guide decision-makers in the economic sphere. Usually it is seen as “the branch of knowledge concerned with the production, consumption, and transfer of wealth.”[fn Apple Dictionary], but we will have to expand this definition.

Economies represent one of many areas of human interaction and are a reflection of a certain human (or policy-) intent at a given time. Compare Raw Capitalism with Global Capitalism, Socialism, or Islamic Economics (=IE).

As we see it, economic theory has to describe processes and relationships in economies, for the overall well-being of its citizens. This well-being cannot be restricted to the material level only, and there is no well-being if the rest of fellow men live in misery. Because of various interest groups or classes in society, economic theory is not a neutral, but always a political science.

As a consequence, economics cannot be a natural, or “experimental science”, such as physics or biology. The human element in economic interactions determines the character of the (inter-)actions. In order to be realistic, economic theory has to take account of the irrational, stochastic behaviour and egoistic choices of the human agents. As this "dark" element is always present, it must neither be ignored nor neglected, nor should one restrict oneself to one-dimensional, or mathematical theories, or overestimate such constructs.

The recent negative development of Western economies, as in 2008 to 2011 ..., have (again) abundently proven that they have somewhere and somehow become corrupted, played counter to conventional economic theory and have destroyed wealth, or transferred unbelievable amounts of resources to those, who have it all already.

Islamic Economics Is Simple

The main problem with modern, Western economics compared to Islamic economics, is that the former have restricted their understanding of the reality of man to one dimension only: the materialistic dimension. This reduction, which of course is part and parcel of the modern, anti-traditional outlook since the Renaissance and the French Revolution of 1789, has in turn led to a whole lot of very negative consequences, due to unbridled greediness, egotism and ethical decadence.

In contrast has Islamic economics always viewed the human agent as a locus of three levels: the spiritual, the psychological, and the bodily (material) levels. This means for an economy that its modus operandi has to be adjusted to the reality of those three levels in human beings. Even some Western economists are lately trying to move away from one-dimensional, materialistic economics, partly because of the economic crisis, and partly because of the failure to preserve the human habitat.

Islamic economics is simple with a few essential but powerful principles. It is simple because it is not meant to camouflage or idealize economic relationships or real events, and it is powerful, because the application of its principles will contribute to reform the economy in a positive, equitable way.

Allah says in Sura 102, verse 1:
{Mutual rivalry for piling up of worldly things distracts you …}

Al hâkumu takâthur

Just as with all human activity, if unguided by Divine revelation, there will be problems. Divine revelation teach man on the one hand, how to be on his guard against his self or ego, i.e. his or her desires and passions of always wanting more. On the other hand it teaches him to give freely from what he has, as this ”charity” (sadaqah) will in fact purify him and make him grow spiritually. That way the misery of poverty will be reduced - even erased, as was the case in the Islamic civilisation in some countries before the onslaught of colonialism. (Ibn Batuta)
However man is never satisfied - it is his natural desire to always demand more than he has. However the resources of this world are not enough to satisfy the overblown “needs” of some people or even nations.

Therefore economics has to take an ethical stand, but an ethics which is based on truth, and the highest, unshakable truth is found in the Divine Revelation of Islam, and its legal tradition. Otherwise the earth we live on will be destroyed by the greed of man.

IE: Fair Dealings

IE: Islamic economics fosters trade and international relations on equal footing, fair dealings - beneficial for both sides, which means justice and the upholding of p e a c e. This is the way of the Prophet Muhammad ( sallAllahu `aleihi wa sallam ), who was himself a very successful tradesman. All this has been laid down by the Sharí`ah, the law of Islam. The main principles, which have to implemented were quoted above (Eight Points).

Too many are the examples of countries and governments which judge by other than the divine message of Islam and therefore perform less than well when it comes to developing their economies. This is not the fault of globalization per-se. It is the fault of corruption among the ruling classes, including their disdain for the poor, and at heart it is because of their materialistic, short-sightet worldview.
Gone are the times when a traveller such as Ibn Batuta witnessed how difficult it was in some parts of the Islamic world to find anyone to receive charity, including gold, because people were not in need.

To propose an answer right at the outset, we would state that without a few essentials principles there will be no development. These are the principles of compassion for the poor and downtrodden combined with justice for everyone, which should inform the various elements of government and the society at large, to strive to please God - Allah.
Justice includes correct and sincere conduct by the decision makers, whose main function is to serve the people, in a system with checks and balances.

The Fallacy of the 'Great Gap' Theory

A number of economic concepts of Islamic economics were developed long before they did in conventional Western economics.

These cover a number of areas including interdisciplinary approach; property rights; division of labor and specialization; the importance of saving and investment for development; the role that both demand and supply play in the determination of prices and the factors that influence demand and supply; the roles of money, exchange, and the market mechanism; characteristics of money, counterfeiting, currency debasement, and Gresham's law; the development of checks, letters of credit and banking; labor supply and population; the role of the state, justice, peace, and stability in development; and principles of taxation.[fn Umer Chapra]

It is not possible to provide a comprehensive coverage of all the contributions Muslim scholars have made to economics. Their contributions give enough evidence in order remove the concept of the ”Great Gap of over 500 years” that exists in the history of conventional economic thought as a result of the incorrect conclusion by Joseph Schumpeter in History of Economic Analysis, that the intervening period between the Greeks and the Scholastics was sterile and unproductive.
[fn Islamic Economics: What It Is and How It Developed; M. Umer Chapra, Islamic Research and Training Institute]

Related texts:

• A New Factor In The Global Economy: Islamic Economics

• Other Topics Due For The Benefit Of Every Seeker Of Truth, Muslim, Christian or Other
- On The Wars Of The Neo-Imperialists, [including economic wars; economic blackmail].
- Inequality is devicive and socially corrosive: Islam tends to lighten the burden of the poor.
- Globalization is Westernization - the negative aspects of globalization
- International trade is not on an equal terms, for example: Fair Trade Tough