The Punishment System in Islam

Abdurrahman Al Maliki


Paperback, 334 pages
5083 x 8.26 inch
Istinarah Press


Punishments were legislated to deter (zajara) people from crimes (jaraim).


 Allah (swt) said,  “Verily there is life for you in retaliation, O men of understanding”      [TMQ Al-Baqarah:179],


 ie in legislating retaliation for you, which is killing the killer, there is great wisdom, that is the survival and preservation of life. This is because if the killer knew that he would be killed, he would desist from his work, thus protecting the life of the souls.  Moreover, if the sane person knew that if he killed he himself would be killed, he would not venture into killing.  This is the case for all deterrents. The meaning of it being a deterrent is that it restrains people.


 The offence is the repugnant/ugly action), and the repugnant is that which the Shar’ made repugnant. Therefore, the action is not considered an offence unless the Shar’ stipulates that it is a repugnant action.  At that point, it is considered an offence, irrespective of the level of its repulsiveness ie irrespective of the offence being great or small. The Shar’ ordained the qabeeh action as a sin over which there is punishment, thus the sin is the offence itself.


 The offence does not exist in the innate nature of man, nor is it acquired, (just as it is not an illness man is afflicted with.  It is rather a violation) of the system that organises man’s actions, in his relationship with his Lord and with himself, and the relationships of people with each other. That is because man was created by Allah (swt), where He created in him instincts and organic needs; and these instincts and organic needs are vital energies in man that drive him to strive to satisfy them. So, he undertakes the actions that emanate from him for the sake of satisfaction. Leaving this satisfaction without a system leads to chaos and confusion, resulting in erroneous or abnormal satisfaction. Allah has organised the satisfaction of these instincts and organic needs when He organised man’s actions by the Shar’iyyah rules, so the Islamic Shar’ explained the rule in every incident occurring to man, and legislated halal and haram. Accordingly the Shar’ came with its orders and prohibitions,  commanded  man to act according to what it  ordered and  abstain from what it prohibited. If he violates that, then he has performed the qabeeh ie performed an offence.  So a punishment is necessary for this offence, so that man abides by what Allah (swt)  ordered him with and abstains from what He prohibited him ; or else there is no meaning to these  orders and prohibitions, if there is no punishment for violating them. 

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