There is no question that modern Western society would agree that amputating someone for stealing would be looked at as a vile act, and people would certainly feel sorry for the thief and would see him as a victim of a medieval punishment, regardless of his criminality.
I also understand your point about connecting disability to crime, but I don't believe the point of the Hadd is to amputate people so that they can be identified.
What I didn't find strong is that the stigma would make it hard to incorporate a thief back into society in this day and era, as opposed to the early Islamic age, considering the fact that having a working hand in those days was more necessary in the old societies for occupational purposes.
Nope, imprisonment in and of itself was a hadd, not a ta'zir.
The first time someone steals, you cut off the fingers of their right hand. But what if they repeat it again and again? Well, another hadd exists for that.
قال: إذا أُخذ السارق قطعت يده من وسط الكفّ، فإن عاد قطعت رجله من وسط القدم، فإن عاد استودع السجن، فإن سرق في السجن قتل
This is a reliable hadith, among more, which explains the process.
And the process in the hadith is as Sayyed Al-Khoei mentions here:
2805. If a person who is adult and sane steals 3 3/5 grains of coined gold or anything of equivalent value, and he satisfies the conditions prescribed for it in law, four fingers of his right hand should be cut from their root on his first offence, and the palm of his hand and the thumb should be allowed to remain in tact. If he repeats the offence his left foot should be cut off from the middle and if he steals for the third time, he should be imprisoned for life and his expenses should be paid from the public treasury (Bait ul Maal) and in case he commits theft for the fourth time, whether in the prison or outside it, he should be killed.
1) It is true that the situation of imprisonment of those captured in war would usually resolve, most likely in slavery or ransom.
2) It is however not true that imprisonment was not used in early Islamic Arabia, as it was used apparently used by Imam Ali (عليه السلام) in the case of those who do not pay back their debt, although it is disputed by the fuqaha on whether he (عليه السلام) used it to investigate someone's status (whether they have the ability to pay) or whether it was a punishment to force them to pay knowing they have the ability to.
3) And also as I mentioned, it was mentioned as a hadd for a repeated offense in stealing.
I'm asking; if deterrence is the end goal of punishments, why was lashing not used as a punishment for stealing?
Why was a more severe punishment in amputation necessary?
Would lashing only deter a potential fornicator, as opposed to a thief who would somehow require a more severe punishment in order to achieve deterrence from stealing in society?
Even if we did not know the reason for it, which we don't for hundreds of ahkam, it would still be categorised as makruh simply because the narration says so.
This is not to say that the ahkam do not have a reason behind them as they very well may have one, but that we do not need to know the reason, and in the event that we do then that is a plus, but not a necessity.
Most Muslims, for example, when they go to Hajj, do not know the reasons behind most of the rites that are performed, but they do it anyway with the intention of nearness and obedience. There was no necessity for them to "make sense" of why they are engaging in actions that non-Muslims would see as absurd.
Those hadiths were understood to be ma'soom specific and I have seen some Shi'a use them as proof that the hudood should only be performed by a ma'soom, which is actually a belief that was held by some fuqaha both past and present, although it was not the mashoor view.
The idea is that only the ma'soom who is granted knowledge which we do not have, will know if certain exceptions can be made. (this can be an argument that hudood should only be performed by a ma'soom).
In that hadith you have cited, the Imam (عليه السلام) for example mentions that the Angels have wept for the man in question, so Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَ تَعَالَى) had accepted his repentance, something which we obviously would not know of, and so therefore we can only implement what we have been given, which is to rule by what is apparent to us (witnesses, confessions etc.)
So I would say the reconciliation is that this would be the exception to the rule, which would concern the ma'soom alone.
I don't know if some fuqaha see it as wajib to enforce the hudood or simply permissible, as that would be an interesting thing to research about.
I'm sure they all see it as a futile attempt in a non-accepting society anyway, seeing as the ulama in Najaf have not even tried to implement this in Iraq since 2003. Iraq obviously has much more urgent things to worry about.
Finally I would like to say that I have enjoyed this discussion with you brother, but I believe this thread should be more concerned about the topic in question which is the current situation in Iran and any potential updates with the protest situation.
I will await and read your response to this insha Allah, but I won't respond to back. I will say that I have already learned and opened my mind to a few things that you have said, and for that I am grateful. Thank you and stay blessed brother.
It's strong as far as comparative arguments go. I was trying to get at the idea of recognition of human dignity. There seems to be much more reverence for human rights now, and I reckon there would be quite an outcry if people started associating disabilities and crime in such large societies where there would be more crime, in general, and where countries are under constant surveillance and check. It also begs the question, if identification of a criminal was the end goal (as someone might argue), don't we have a substitution for that now with databases doing the job?
So a hadd punishment was utilized before a discretionary punishment? Or was jail not considered ta'zir? I'd like to look into that. Any source?
No, it would be out of the norm. Prisoners of war weren't serving unusually long sentences. Prisoners of war were not being punished either, they were simply being temporarily detained until they could find some other place to be. Most of the time, this would only last a couple of days or weeks. No one saw imprisonment as "punishment" in pre-Islamic or early Islamic Arabia. This is nowhere to be found. Putting a roof over someone's head, providing him a set of clothes, and feeding him, all while he gives little to no output, was never going to be considered a punishment in that sort of society where everyone was really just out for themselves and where there is no recorded instance of resource surplus until much later. Most societies did not propose imprisonment as a solution for a reason. It was extremely counterproductive.
I'm not sure I understand your question. Are you asking if lashing was a good enough deterrent at the time of the Prophet (s)? To that, yes, I think it probably was. Mosaic law was good for that purpose overall. It wasn't unusual either; I know the Assyrians would impale women and the Chinese had castration and the Romans would do all sorts of bizarre shows, so it's safe to assume the Arabs would have been following that same trend.
Not necessarily. It was makruh to cut bread with a knife because it resembled the ways of the kuffar. Namely the Persians ('ajam), as it says in the tradition. Sure, we don't need to know the reasons, but they are out there for those who want to find out.
I'm not sure why this verse would be used to negate 'logic'. Allah and his Messenger are deciding matters by some sort of reason, not on a whim. Trying to understand that reasoning is not the same thing as disobeying it and straying into error. So how the traditional "well, we don't need things to make sense" is somehow even slightly related to this verse is not clear to me.
How would you reconcile that with some of the narrations we have, though? I believe there was one in al-Kafi where a man was to be punished for having sexual intercourse with another man, but he ended up repenting at the very moment of his punishment, leaving 'Ali b. Abi Talib in tears. And he was not punished thereafter. The Prophet (s), similarly, would often delay punishments and pretend to not understand people's own confessions at times.
Sure, they can stay in their rigid format. For one, they might help some people in acknowledging the fact that these sins are not to be taken lightly, since they were worthy of corporal punishments at some point in our history. Other than that, if they are to stay in their old format, I'm afraid they are not tuned to modern society anymore and, if anything, do the opposite of creating a civilized society - which was the entire point of shari'a in the first place.
I will try to give you a different perspective, especially among sunnies.
My father was sunnies and and so was my paternal grandfather. Our paternal grandmother was Shia. My father became convinced once he started reading and listening to Islamic history.
Once you also realize that all 4 sunnie madhab leaders were either directly or indirectly student of Imam Jaffar e Sadiq ( AS ) it changes your perspective. The reason was that many non Shia gained immensely from his father's and his lecture series given on a huge variety of topics from Science, astronomy, medicine, jurisprudence, logic, Philosophy etc....this was the beginning of the Islamic Enlightenment period and fostered the likes of Ibn Sina, Razi, Ibn Arabi, Ibn Rushd, Ibn tufail, ibn al nafees, Khawarizimi, Omar Khayyam, al Kashi...among many others.
If you read Peshawwar Nights, I am sure most of your doubts will be quickly erased.
I also suggest , then i was guided by Sheik Tijani, who we used to meet in Dar Al Hikmah in Dearborn. He is a bit of polemic, and is often the case with sunni to Shia converts...quite anti sunni.
I don't agree with that perspective, most sunnies are not really anti Shia, their just misguided by their leaders.
However, salafis and wahabis are close to kuffar and munafiqueen than muslimeen , unfortunately for them.
The problem is that the Saudi regime has Been paying lots of money for the pro ibn tammiya, ibn kathir, sheikh albani and propagating wahabi sheiks to take over the sunni world.
I understand why they feel furious, because they see this as part of a 'class system' where some have privileges that others don't have. If that is truly the case, i.e. that they are 'trading in influence' in order to give their children an unfair advantage over other Iranians, I would agree that is wrong, and if they are doing this they should be punished in some way.
At the same time, this isn't always the case. In every country on earth, you have a group of wealthy people. Some gained their weath in legitimate ways, some in illegitimate ways. The U.S. government will give almost anyone (so long as they don't have ties to organizations that they deem 'terrorist') if they can show that they have 1 million dollars in cash in a US or European bank. That amount might be slightly higher now (I haven't checked in a few years), but basically that is the only requirement. So if they don't have that, they have to meet other requirements (like relationship with a US Citizen, etc). That is how the system works. It's an unjust system, but that's how it works
So it is the wealthy Iranians who come to the US. Yes, some also increase their wealth once they are here, but they had this wealth to begin with. I would say 80% of the Iranians who came here (1st generation immigrants) came here in the late 70s, early 80s and used the wealth they stole from the people of Iran via their connections with the previous govt in order to secure a visa. Most of them live in Los Angeles (the Shahs of Sunset, et. al). The ones who live in Michigan are not from that group (at least I haven't met any of them here). They earned their money in other ways. Many bought real estate in Tehran after the revolution (in the early 80s) and sold it so they made money that way. That is what I know, and there is alot I don't know about this subject.
I have not met anyone yet (here in Michigan) who is actually connected to the Iranian govt. As you know and have mentioned, the Iranian govt is under very severe sanctions by the US govt and I doubt that they would give a visa to any Iranian govt official or someone who has an official connection, or any of their children, if they knew that they were their children. The only place where their are govt officials from Iran is in New York, at the UN. Even there, the only ones they give visas to are the ones they are required legally to let in, so that they can participate in meetings at U.N. Headquarters.
Most of the children of govt. officials go to Canada or Europe, where the sanctions are not as severe. The Iranians here in the US, and their children, are private business people, not govt officials, from what I know.