Is Islam Against Democracy? - Page 2 of 6

Ahsant Ascent Mutashakkir Agha . When I said - Page 2 - Studies of Islam - Posted: 30th May, 2007 - 10:09am

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Poll: In general, when the words Islam, Muslim or Quran are spoken to you... can you associate any to the meaning of democracy?
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  Yes!       16.67%
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  Sometimes       0.00%
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  Most times not       33.33%
3
  No!       50.00%
Total Votes: 6
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30th Jan, 2005 - 7:29pm / Post ID: #

Is Islam Against Democracy? - Page 2

I don't think Islam, as a religion opposes Democracy, at least not more than any other religion.

QUOTE
why is there not a single democratic system throughout ALL of the Islamic world?


That's a good question. I would say that democracy is a more modern approach, which is going away from the Bible or Koran. Having the president be elected by the people rather than god, defies divine right. Maybe the Islamic countries are just not modernized enough to make the change, or just not willing to give up on their religion.



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Post Date: 30th Jan, 2005 - 9:19pm / Post ID: #

Is Islam Against Democracy?
A Friend

Democracy Islam Is

There is one country that is democratic in the Arab world. Turkey is a republic, maybe not as democratic as the US or Britain, but still technically a democracy. Turkey is primarily Muslim also.

Iran is moving toward democracy. They have a long way to go, but they have publicly elected officials while retaining an appointed religious head of the country.

Some of the arab countries are moving towards a more free society so we know that Islam allows for this type of society. Its a matter of the people wanting freedom bad enough to rise up and take the government into their hands and bring about a change. I think the mindset of the people of the country is why democracy and freedom do not come about.

Post Date: 11th Jan, 2006 - 11:37am / Post ID: #

Is Islam Against Democracy?
A Friend

Is Islam Against Democracy? Islam Studies

Things you guys might want to know:

1) We never ever believe anything from the media, specially if its western media.

2) Democracy is the last thing the US want in our countries because many dictators are out there and the US support them. From along list of of countries with dictators, the US chosed iraq. Why !?

3) We believe in freedom but democracy...never heard of it...don't need it....don't know what it means or even if it has a WORD in arabic language...I think its your way of saying we want freedom !

4) Zarqawi....heard of him....fighting US forces in Iraq...US call him terrorist but we call him resistance...normal for the media to give a bad image about him....anyone against the us for any reason gets a bad image in the media :)

Think this way: Fighting the US forces for muslims is not fighting democracy but simply fighting the US forces !

22nd Sep, 2006 - 4:59am / Post ID: #

Page 2 Democracy Islam Is

QUOTE
Q. Why is there not a single democratic system throughout ALL of the Islamic world?


I think it's all about constitutional issues. With Muslims the basic belief is that the Koran is 100% the word of Allah, and is to be used to guide how they live their lives. As I understand it (in their opinion), it is the only constitution that they should live under so as to be pure in the eyes of Allah. Now, as every State requires a constitution - which needs to have a secular basis, so that people of many religions can be accommodated - then these constitutions are often at odds with what the Koran preaches.

Consider this: The Koran talks a lot about non-believers but look at the following Suras (italics added):

QUOTE
[2.89] And when there came to them a Book from Allah verifying that which they have, and aforetime they used to pray for victory against those who disbelieve, but when there came to them (Prophet) that which they did not recognize, they disbelieved in him; so Allah's curse is on the unbelievers.
[2.90] Evil is that for which they have sold their souls-- that they should deny what Allah has revealed, out of envy that Allah should send down of His grace on whomsoever of His servants He pleases; so they have made themselves deserving of wrath upon wrath, and there is a disgraceful punishment for the unbelievers.


These ideas are common within the Koran that if you are not a believer then you are to be rejected, destroyed, cast into Hell, penalised, boiled, or one of the many other punishments mentioned within that "Holy Book". So there in lies the problem (in my opinion). If to be a truly Islamic State means to adopt the Koran as your "constitution" (as is your duty to Allah) then there is no room for tolerance to anyone who does not believe in Allah. Tolerance is one of the most important aspects of a democracy as all people are to be considered equal and enjoy equal rights and status within society.

The problem even goes further, though. To be absolutely true to their belief, Muslims must either convert non-believers to Islam or kill them (Koran 2:39, 5:33, 8:50 and so on). Logically, that means that Muslim countries must be at odds with all non-Islamic countries. So where is the end game if Islamic countries cannot be tolerant towards the beliefs and systems of others? Interestingly, I find it somewhat ironic that Muslims are migrating to Western countries in huge numbers so as to escape the oppression (or whatever) in their own native countries yet when they finally get there they (or their children) then want to change or destroy what is good about those countries to which they go (in some cases).

So in answer to your question Nighthawk: I believe that there are no true democratic systems within the Islamic world because democracy is at odds with what the Koran commands. And because of this Muslims are willing (although probably not happy) to put up with dictators (political and religious) and other non-tolerant regimes so that they can "fit in" to the culture/s in which they live. There are many good things in the Koran, but some mix with democracy like oil mixes with water.

Note: To any people of the Islamic faith, I apologize if you have taken offence to any of my views, but that is how I see things from my part of the world. Please feel free to enlighten me with your opinions should you believe that I am wrong.



Post Date: 25th Apr, 2007 - 4:31am / Post ID: #

Is Islam Against Democracy?
A Friend

Democracy Islam Is

Interesting topic. May require some analysing. This took a lot of hard work to compose an accessible synopsis of the issues in this thread please read all the way thoroughly.

First thing first what is democracy in practical terms?
There are many sorts of systems each with different approaches to the concept of "democracy". Socialist democracy, liberal democracy, direct democracy, republican democracy etc etc. To make things simpler may I suggest democracy is simply a system where people have a substantial say in their governance.

Is Islam against people controlling their own destinities? NO. A simple challenge is to find any islamic law or commandment which requires muslims to establish any system (whether good or bad) AGAINST the will of a nation of people.

QUOTE
Also, I have yet to see any evidence, anywhere, that the majority of Muslims are NOT opposed to religious liberty and pluralism. I would love to see such evidence.

Islam is NOT against free practise of religion within an Islamic state. People within an islamic state are free to practise their religion as long as it doesnt impeach or harm others (so a religion which burns a widow alive a custom in India not so long ago, cannot be given complete liberty). Here is an illustration Iranian Jews enjoying religious freedom in Iran https://news.bbc.co.uk/1/Hi/world/middle_east/5367892.stm

QUOTE
Now, as every State requires a constitution - which needs to have a secular basis, so that people of many religions can be accommodated - then these constitutions are often at odds with what the Koran preaches.

QUOTE
then there is no room for tolerance to anyone who does not believe in Allah.

It is incorrect to assume every constitution requires a secular basis. Religions are accomodated and tolerated in the Koran. But it is a bit farfetched to expect the Koran to validate every religion. The Koran does NOT mandate force against people of other religions.

Now to deal with the Koranic verses cited by Tonester. This may be lengthy please bare with me.

5:33 talks about those who are hell bent on destroying you by force and violence . Are you going sit by and watch them do it with a smile in the name of "liberty"?

2:39 2:89 2:90 and 8:50 talk about the punishment in the hereafter for those who disrespect the signs of God and reject Prophets. Then Tonester comes with the false conclusion
QUOTE
Logically, that means that Muslim countries must be at odds with all non-Islamic countries.
.
Do you expect the Koran to praise people who reject Truth? Maybe you expect God to reward them in the hereafter for rejecting salvation? The wage of rejecting truth can only be punishment it is only fair. BUT and it is a big BUT does this mean Muslims are at war with non-believers to convert them?
QUOTE
Muslims must either convert non-believers to Islam or kill them
NO! Nowhere in the Koran are muslims commanded to forcefully convert non-believers. They are simply to deliver the message. Their affair rests with God and God alone for there sin is between them and God. THIS IS VERY CLEAR IN THE KORAN!
QUOTE
6:66 Thy people have denied it, though it is the Truth. Say: I am not put in charge of you

QUOTE
6:107 Had Allah is willed, they had not been idolatrous. We have not set thee as a keeper over them, nor art thou responsible for them.

QUOTE
17:54 Your Lord is best aware of you. If He will, He will have mercy on you, or if He will, He will punish you. We have not sent thee (O Muhammad) as a warden over them

QUOTE
10:108 Say: O mankind! Now hath the Truth from your Lord come unto you. So whosoever is guided, is guided only for (the food of) his soul, and whosoever erreth erreth only against it. And I am not a warder over you.

QUOTE
26:216 And if they disobey thee, say: Lo! I am innocent of what they do.


I could go on and on but this should suffice. Democracy therefore I can conclude is not incompatible with Islam.
QUOTE
I believe that there are no true democratic systems within the Islamic world
I disagree I believe Islamic Iran is the closest manifestation to a true Islamic democratic state.

QUOTE
Interestingly, I find it somewhat ironic that Muslims are migrating to Western countries in huge numbers so as to escape the oppression (or whatever) in their own native countries

True in the case of gulf dictatorships backed by everyones favourite Leader of Humanity Mr. Bush. People are fed up of oil rich king who are only in Power not due to lack of the will of people but because of 4 letters BUSH.

QUOTE
And because of this Muslims are willing (although probably not happy) to put up with dictators (political and religious) and other non-tolerant regimes so that they can "fit in" to the culture/s in which they live.

Which muslims put up with them? No as history evidences it is the US administration who keep these people in power!


Post Date: 29th May, 2007 - 9:59pm / Post ID: #

Is Islam Against Democracy?
A Friend

Is Islam Against Democracy?

Islam and democracy:
As a Shia Muslim from Iran, perhaps I can explain this better. Let us be clear Islam is against democracy, but why?
Before I get into details I will give you an example which helps to clarify our mentality for you.
Prophet Lut (pbuh) was sent to his people to warn them of a great punishment that would afflict them if they continued in their wrong ways.
As you may know it is said that people of Lut were the first who were involved in homosexuality. God sent 4 angles in the appearance of young men on a mission to warn Lut and his daughters that God was about to punish his people and that he should leave the city. When the angles arrived at the Lut's home a large gathering took place and a majority, shall we say 50 or 100 or 500 people less or more gathered in front of the home of Lut and demanded that Lut should hand over his guests to them. Lut went to the balcony and asked his people to stop their way of life.
Now imagine you are among these people and they all demand that Lut should give his guests to them, would you stand with the messenger of God or with a people who are gone astray? Who is right, prophet or his people?
Allah (swt) punished them, they were blinded first and then some natural disaster wiped them.
Of course you may not believe in God, and this story was only to clarify the viewpoint of those who do.
Flaws of democracy, from Islamic point of view:
1- Majority can be wrong.
2- Morality is subject to people's desires.
3- God is out of equation.
When you become sick, you do not go and seek for a cure from just anyone, instead you go to a doctor and often you visit a specialised doctor. In short you trust people of knowledge and you act according to what they say. Is governance any lighter of a matter than seeing a doctor?
Suppose you want to paint a building in such a way that it would be camouflaged, would you conduct a voting system to decide what colours to use? And if anyone voted for a colour that did not match the surrounding environment would you trust their sanity? Why should a flawed vote count?
Let us assume there are two Islands, one has 10 million population and is very wealthy, the other has 100 million and is very poor. Both are governed democratically and free. One year famine destroys the farms of the poor Island and they will ask for help from the other island, the other island conduct a 3 options vote to decide what to do. Option A- Large increase in tax to totally help the poor island. Option B- Some increase in tax to help the poor island. Option C- No tax increase and no help.
No one is interested to pay more taxes so majority will vote C and so no help for the other island. Both islands have been free and fair, and two democracies have functioned perfectly, but the outcome is immoral, if a democracy allows such an outcome then it is seriously flawed.

Why a moral democracy is nonsense?
A moral democracy is no longer a democracy, because of the following reasons:
1- If majority are moral people, then they are already governed by the rules of morality most of which is defined by religions. In such a society no vote is contradictory to the will of God meaning that people are already governed by a "higher authority" and not their own desires at an "individual" level.
2- Or if we assume that majority believe in rule of law and that also includes ethical values that scientists have found to be useful for the progress of society, still this system is not an absolute democracy, since people have to agree on issues that the intellectuals of the society have decided and chosen for them. And this maybe a semi-democracy.
3- But the most important point of all is that it is not the rule of people on people. At the top there are think tanks who guide the majority. Indeed since the population is so large it is impossible for all to vote so they have representatives.
This is why what we have in west is Liberal Democracy:
Liberalism is against morality. I will not get into this now.
So what is the difference between a Theocracy that enjoys the majority support and a Democracy that enjoys majority support? The only difference is the superiority of morality in the theocracy.
In a way democracy is trying to artificially create an environment in which opposing beliefs can coexist, but it is also evident that liberalism has been active and efficient in weakening religion.
----------
Dr. Hassan Abbasi strategist of Islamic Republic of Iran, explains that democracy and liberalism are like a tree that only grows in the ground of humanism/individualism in which human is the centre and everything bows to it even God. In such a system human is not going anywhere from himself, because it is the centre. He also explains that in a theocracy and what he terms جامعه هجری, human is going towards God and this is what we want to achieve in Iran.
There are plans to design and implement fully compatible social systems with Islam and god willing build a prototype of an Islamic utopia in Iran in next 20 or 30 years.

Vaya Con Dios

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29th May, 2007 - 10:14pm / Post ID: #

Is Islam Democracy - Page 2

Very interesting and detailed post Ascent, so basically you are saying that Islam is against Democracy and prefers a Theocracy put in place and that's what the people from Iran are looking forward to? This is exactly what I thought. Another member of our forum, Karbala, who is also a Muslim stated "Democracy therefore I can conclude is not incompatible with Islam." Is it that it may not be incompatible with Islam but at the same time just not accepted or are we speaking of a total rejection of democracy? After all, Iran's President was chosen for such position in a similar way democratic governments are chosen.



Post Date: 30th May, 2007 - 10:09am / Post ID: #

Is Islam Against Democracy?
A Friend

Is Islam Democracy Studies Islam - Page 2

Ahsant Ascent Mutashakkir Agha .

When I said democracy is not incompatible with Islam I did not mean that liberal democracy is the ideal form of Government. Hence if the people choose to reject a theocracy a theocracy cannot be imposed on them. So for example in Islamic Iran there was a 98% approval rating during the time of Imam Khomeini(ra) for an Islamic Government after which it was established.

If the people choose a liberal democracy for themselves Islam as a religion cannot force them to establish an Islamic Government.

The example of the Prophet Lut (as) is a good one. Indeed God punished them for their collective decision. At first glance this shows God is against any liberal democracy. However it was GOD who punished them not the people. In islamic Sharia or law there is no commandment on the muslims to actively oppose a liberal democratic Government unless there is oppression involved.

The ideal form of Government in the present age in my view is what you call theocracy or what me and Ascent will call the system of "Wilayat al-Faqih".

Liberalism as a concept I am completely against. Liberal Democracy is bound to fail and is certainly not ideal.

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