Assalamu alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh
Respected Mufti Sahab, I acknowledge that democracy is kufr and shirk, but some Ulama advocate that Pakistani democratic system is not shirk. Please advice us on the correct legal ruling. Also please clarify whether voting is permissible or not?
May Allah bless you.
Wa’alaykum as Salam wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu.
Our lives are governed by the laws of Shari’a (Quran and Hadith) and not by any man made laws.
Allah Ta’ala says:
فَلَا وَرَبِّكَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ حَتَّى يُحَكِّمُوكَ فِيمَا شَجَرَ بَيْنَهُمْ ثُمَّ لَا يَجِدُوا فِي أَنْفُسِهِمْ حَرَجًا مِمَّا قَضَيْتَ وَيُسَلِّمُوا تَسْلِيمًا
“So, never by your Lord! Never shall they become believers, unless they make you (Muhammad –Sallallāhu alayhi wa sallam) the judge in the disputes that arise between them, then find no discomfort in their hearts against what you have decided, and surrender to it in total submission”. [4:65]
Legislation is the right of Allah Ta’ala. Man is bound to the legislation of Allah Ta’ala. The democratic system has taken the right of legislation from Allah Ta’ala and given it to man, whereby man has the power to invent laws to suite himself. This is purely un-Islāmic. Supporting democracy is tantamount to supporting the laws invented by man and abandoning the laws of Allāh Ta’ala. Allāh Ta’ala strongly condemns such action and has labelled its perpetrators as Fasiqun (transgressors) and in another verse as Dhalimun (oppressors).
Allah Ta’ala states in the Quran:
وَمَنْ لَمْ يَحْكُمْ بِمَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ فَأُولَئِكَ هُمُ الْفَاسِقُونَ
“And those that not rule by that which Allāh has revealed are surely the transgressors”. [5:47]
وَمَنْ لَمْ يَحْكُمْ بِمَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ فَأُولَئِكَ هُمُ الظَّالِمُونَ
“And those that not rule by that which Allāh has revealed are surely the oppressors”. [5:47]
So there is no doubt that the democratic system is incorrect and un-Islamic. However, the sin for bringing about this system will be on the legislators .
As for us as citizens who do not have any authority, it is permissible for us to vote within such a system.
Our objective of voting within a democratic system is not to promote its values and un-Islāmic teachings. On that premise, our mere living in a non-Muslim country will also indicate that we support the evils of the country as we pay taxes to the government, who in turn uses that funds to promote their own laws. By that rational, we should not be living in a non-Muslim country.
Hence, the reason why we vote is to protect our own faith and freedom.
When voting, we are offering our opinion on who we think will rule the country in the most just way. The ideal is that if there is a pious and upright Muslim candidate, then we will vote for him, as he will be in the best interest of Islām and the Muslims.
However, if there are no Muslim candidates, then we will see who will cause the least harm to Islam and the Muslims. In such a case, we will not be response for the evils of this candidate, as our reason for electing him was for the sake of safeguarding Islam and the Muslims from a greater evil.
If we, as Muslims do not vote, we will have no option but to submit to the rules of peope elected in power. If we do not vote for a party that does not oppose Islamic values, then others will vote for a candidates who are enemies of Islam.
And Allaah Ta’aala knows best
Ismail Moosa (Mufti)
Fatwaas of our Asaatidha and seniors