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Ali J

Why Is Slavery Permissible In Islam?

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Salam,

There is nothing in Islams that makes me have doubt in it, other than this very topic. If there was ever a reason I were to become an Atheist, this would probably be the most likely one. How can Islam permit slavery? All this good, and then this? How, it makes me so sad, so annoyed, that the prophet wouldn't just ban it completely. Imagine you were a slave, how would you feel. "Yes you're equal but you must work for me for free.". And only the son of a slave can be come a slave. How is this fair? I know Islam discouraged it, and made it a very good deed to free slaves, but without a doubt this is just not enough. This very matter disgusts me to be honest brothers. I am very firm in my belief in Islam and have my reasons, almost everything I have considered, but this is something that I cannot find an answer for. I know that Allah(SWT) would consider it a very great deed that you would help me on this matter, to keep a fellow Muslim firm in his faith. Please give me answers with full evidence behind them. Thanks in advance.

W Salam.

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this issue also stabs me in the heart every time I think of it

I honestly think most of us will never understand it unless we were somehow able to travel back in time and ask questions. If there was one conversation I could have with the imams or the prophet it would be about slavery.

Edited by ImAli

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Oh, ImAli, you do not know how terrible it is to deal with these kids.

In my husband's country, I used to work for the destitute house he has opened for orphans and such kids, who have been bought back from their master.

It shatters one' heart and belief both to see such kids. Initially when I started working there, I did not know their language, but still looking at them was enough to kill me. There were days when I used to cry uncontrollably just by listening to what happened. Selling/ buying of girls is also a very favourite occupation here. young girl especially from the age of 7-12 are favourite merchandise and exported with pride to ME countries.

Maybe there is no answer, and no one would ever to be able to compensate for the pain , ignominy and humiliation of being a merchandise.

It is my understanding that some of these girls are stolen from their families and sometimes the girl is outright sold by her family. Being the mother of a young girl I couldn't imagine such a thing and every time I hear about this I see my daughters face....it eats me up inside. People can be so cruel and often forget that we are supposed to protect children....not exploit them.

Edited by ImAli

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One of the major problems with this topic is that people have no idea what the Islamic rules for slavery are, so all they have in their mind when thinking of slavery are images from non-Islamic examples of slavery.

With regards to girls sold into slavery by their parents, it would seem to me that they would be better off bought by a good Muslim than kept with the kind of low-life parents that were willing to sell them in the first place.

What 'good' muslim man is willing to buy the girl in the first place?

I mean yes I know he is following the rules but take a step back for a moment and realize u have assumed that this 'good' muslim man is soo much better then these terrible parents?

LOL

The 'good' muslim man can be a total creep. The only good is that if such an event occured, it would give access to the girl to Islam and she may be guided but let us not paint any pictures of good or bad.

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What 'good' muslim man is willing to buy the girl in the first place?

Are you trying to imply that anyone who buys a slave can't be a good Muslim?

I mean yes I know he is following the rules but take a step back for a moment and realize u have assumed that this 'good' muslim man is soo much better then these terrible parents?

Well, if he really is a good Muslim, then yes, obviously he is better than those parents.

The 'good' muslim man can be a total creep. The only good is that if such an event occured, it would give access to the girl to Islam and she may be guided but let us not paint any pictures of good or bad.

I'm not sure what you mean by 'total creep', but in my way of thinking, a good Muslim is a good... person. I thought that might have been rather obvious.

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Ali J

I am sorry, I am not trying to thread-jack your topic, I just wanted to ask a thing ---because every one is so learned here,

Is suicide permitted in such a situation, like during those days when I worked there, I met a girl who drank petrol in her feeble effort to save her from having to bed her master ?

or she should have kept on pleasing him happily ?

Both are Muslim countries and abducted kids/ girls and abductors, sellers and buyers are of course Muslims .

Suicide is not permitted in any circumstances.

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Are you trying to imply that anyone who buys a slave can't be a good Muslim?

No ur trying to lead me down a path where I have to defend a statment I never said...Are u saying that all muslims are good (u c what I did there :lol: )

Well, if he really is a good Muslim, then yes, obviously he is better than those parents.

Again ur assuming that every muslim who would do this is good, I am crushing ur assumption as faulty...think about how silly ur statment is, "if he really is a good muslim" I mean thats not the issue, u are equating being a good muslim to buying a slave girl, flawed haydar Husayn logic at its best.

I'm not sure what you mean by 'total creep', but in my way of thinking, a good Muslim is a good... person. I thought that might have been rather obvious.

HEHEHEHE there we have that same silly satment again and again "a good Muslim is a good" ya.. but how is that guranteed if someone was to do this. flawed HH logic.

Haydar Husayn Logic: U must buy a non muslim as a slave girl to be a good Muslim

Here is a little about Abu Musab...you two should talk: http://islamevents.com/speakers/speaker_detail.php?spid=32

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No ur trying to lead me down a path where I have to defend a statment I never said...Are u saying that all muslims are good (u c what I did there :lol: )

Me: they would be better off bought by a good Muslim than kept with the kind of low-life parents that were willing to sell them in the first place.

You: What 'good' muslim man is willing to buy the girl in the first place?

I'm not sure how else to interpret this other than you questioning why a good Muslim would be willing to buy a girl. If you meant something else, then please explain, and in future learn to express yourself better.

Again ur assuming that every muslim who would do this is good, I am crushing ur assumption as faulty...think about how silly ur statment is, "if he really is a good muslim" I mean thats not the issue, u are equating being a good muslim to buying a slave girl, flawed haydar Husayn logic at its best.

You know, it's a good idea when you are about to boast about 'crushing assumptions' to actually make sure what the person said in the first place. All I said was the girl in that scenario would be better off as the slave of a good Muslim, than to remain with such parents. That is all. I never said that she would necessarily be better off with any Muslim, or that all Muslims are good, and I certainly never equated being a good Muslim with buying a slave girl. In your rush to point out 'flaws' in my logic, you seem to have not read what I wrote very carefully. Not to worry, there are plenty of others around here who do the same, so you aren't alone.

HEHEHEHE there we have that same silly satment again and again "a good Muslim is a good" ya.. but how is that guranteed if someone was to do this. flawed HH logic.

Haydar Husayn Logic: U must buy a non muslim as a slave girl to be a good Muslim

See above.

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Salam,

There is nothing in Islams that makes me have doubt in it, other than this very topic. If there was ever a reason I were to become an Atheist, this would probably be the most likely one. How can Islam permit slavery? All this good, and then this? How, it makes me so sad, so annoyed, that the prophet wouldn't just ban it completely. Imagine you were a slave, how would you feel. "Yes you're equal but you must work for me for free.". And only the son of a slave can be come a slave. How is this fair? I know Islam discouraged it, and made it a very good deed to free slaves, but without a doubt this is just not enough. This very matter disgusts me to be honest brothers. I am very firm in my belief in Islam and have my reasons, almost everything I have considered, but this is something that I cannot find an answer for. I know that Allah(SWT) would consider it a very great deed that you would help me on this matter, to keep a fellow Muslim firm in his faith. Please give me answers with full evidence behind them. Thanks in advance.

W Salam.

Please take a look at this: http://www.al-islam.org/slavery/

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I would like to begin by saying its almost dhuhr time here and now I kind of feel ashamed to bow to Allah (aj) when it obvious u are very angry with me. I thought I was joking light heartedly but it seems it has stung you a bit more then intended. InshAllah if I have hurt ur feelings then I am sorry.

However if we get back to the academic nature of what we were saying then lets address ur reply.

Me: they would be better off bought by a good Muslim than kept with the kind of low-life parents that were willing to sell them in the first place.

You: What 'good' muslim man is willing to buy the girl in the first place?

Lets go one more step back to ur original comment ( it would seem to me that they would be better off bought by a good Muslim than kept with the kind of low-life parents that were willing to sell them in the first place. )

My response to that was to highlight the fact that u are assuming that a muslim who does this has to be good. This is the assumption I keep reffering to.

You know, it's a good idea when you are about to boast about 'crushing assumptions' to actually make sure what the person said in the first place. All I said was the girl in that scenario would be better off as the slave of a good Muslim,

There is that assumption again. I think u may be misunderstanding that what is allowed doesnt mean its recommended and that not every muslim who does this is good or bad but u have prejudged the candidates, thats all i'm saying.

I never said that she would necessarily be better off with any Muslim, or that all Muslims are good, and I certainly never equated being a good Muslim with buying a slave girl.

Yes but the implications of ur statement said that without u having to say it

it would seem to me that they would be better off bought by a good Muslim than kept with the kind of low-life parents that were willing to sell them in the first place.

As if any muslim who would do this is good. u are pre judgin the parents by calling them low life as well. May be there is a rahma in this, maybe the girl becomes a muslim. Maybe the girl will starve and die and so its an act of rahma. Again, u have prejudged by ur statment.

In your rush to point out 'flaws' in my logic, you seem to have not read what I wrote very carefully. Not to worry, there are plenty of others around here who do the same, so you aren't alone.

U seem angry and again it was light hearted banter that has got steam coming out of ur ears. Pls lets calm down and I think I have addressed ur points.

Edited by La fata illa Ali

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argh, sayed ammar did a lecture here in london a month or 2 back, on biography of lady fizza. It was quite good and it answered the question of why the prophet and ahlalbayt (as)(pbut) has slaves. I cant seem to find it, but if i do then iA i will post it.

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" people have no idea what the Islamic rules for slavery are, so all they have in their mind when thinking of slavery are images from non-Islamic examples of slavery."

I tried to stay away from this topic, honestly I even deleted my posts, but, I think i need not a slap but a lobotomy right now.

My knowledge of religion is extremely sketchy and superficial as it's been only 2 months, but you seem to be exceptionally knowledgeable, so there has to be some valid justification for letting the tradition continue.

there are piles upon piles of text, which provide detailed information about the different aspects of religious practices; isn't there any such text which would give at least a shaky answer that why this tradition was kept alive.

It's the religion which, in its revolutionary spirit banned many things which have been part of not just arabic civilization but of human civilization, like alcohol, music and dance, so why not this practice ?

It's not the question of treating them, treat them whatever way one wants to, once one buys a merchandise, you just buy it----use it, throw it, break it, whatever, ----your treatment with it, won't change the fact that it has been purchased in the first place.

it's the question of why to buy it in the first place ?

Why to buy a human being in the first place ?

Edited by ShahBano_BZ

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" people have no idea what the Islamic rules for slavery are, so all they have in their mind when thinking of slavery are images from non-Islamic examples of slavery."

I tried to stay away from this topic, honestly I even deleted my posts, but, I think i need not a slap but a lobotomy right now.

My knowledge of religion is extremely sketchy and superficial as it's been only 2 months, but you seem to be exceptionally knowledgeable, so there has to be some valid justification for letting the tradition continue.

there are piles upon piles of text, which provide detailed information about the different aspects of religious practices; isn't there any such text which would give at least a shaky answer that why this tradition was kept alive.

It's the religion which, in its revolutionary spirit banned many things which have been part of not just arabic civilization but of human civilization, like alcohol, music and dance, so why not this practice ?

It's not the question of treating them, treat them whatever way one wants to, once one buys a merchandise, you just buy it----use it, throw it, break it, whatever, ----your treatment with it, won't change the fact that it has been purchased in the first place.

it's the question of why to buy it in the first place ?

Why to buy a human being in the first place ?

Please take a look at this: http://www.al-islam.org/slavery/

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I would like to begin by saying its almost dhuhr time here and now I kind of feel ashamed to bow to Allah (aj) when it obvious u are very angry with me. I thought I was joking light heartedly but it seems it has stung you a bit more then intended. InshAllah if I have hurt ur feelings then I am sorry.

Don't worry, I wasn't angry. I just found your post to be ridiculous, I'm sorry to say.

Lets go one more step back to ur original comment ( it would seem to me that they would be better off bought by a good Muslim than kept with the kind of low-life parents that were willing to sell them in the first place. )

My response to that was to highlight the fact that u are assuming that a muslim who does this has to be good. This is the assumption I keep reffering to.

No, I am not assuming that at all. I am simply making an observation that it is better to be the slave of a good Muslim than to live with parents who are willing to sell them into slavery. I never assumed, or implied, that every Muslim who bought a slave would necessarily be good. That would be a completely absurd assumption, and it should have been obvious that I couldn't possibly have meant that, and instead simply meant what I said.

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alot of us today are slaves for the capitalism or whatever system, no matter how hard we work we are given a limited amout nof money just to live

the slavery in the quraan is called " right hand posession" which means what is posessed rightly and hence the slave has a good status and many people may choose to volentarily be servents for some one they trust....

the problem is when people are made slaves against thier choice or born slave !!!

i think islam is against that because that is not rightly posessed

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alot of us today are slaves for the capitalism or whatever system, no matter how hard we work we are given a limited amout nof money just to live

the slavery in the quraan is called " right hand posession" which means what is posessed rightly and hence the slave has a good status and many people may choose to volentarily be servents for some one they trust....

the problem is when people are made slaves against thier choice or born slave !!!

i think islam is against that because that is not rightly posessed

So why slave ? Why not just call them employees ?

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argh, sayed ammar did a lecture here in london a month or 2 back, on biography of lady fizza. It was quite good and it answered the question of why the prophet and ahlalbayt (as)(pbut) has slaves. I cant seem to find it, but if i do then iA i will post it.

I don't think those lectures were recorded

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irrelevant,

as he was just trying to give an example of emotional and social bonded labour, nothing else

Who would volunteer to be a slave ?

Employees of what?

Of the people they work

Maybe its me, but slave just has a negative connotation, being muslim or treating them better than others doesnt make it right

Why not invest in programs to help them ?

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Who would volunteer to be a slave ?

Of the people they work

Maybe its me, but slave just has a negative connotation, being muslim or treating them better than others doesnt make it right

Why not invest in programs to help them ?

That's the point, isn't it ?

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Slaves don't have the freedom to chose their 'job' unlike employees.

Slaves don't have the freedom to leave their 'job' unlike employees.

Slaves can be sold and bought unlike employees.

Slaves don't have a paid salary unlike employees.

Treating a slave with respect is an oxymoron.

Edited by Ugly Jinn

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Don't worry, I wasn't angry. I just found your post to be ridiculous, I'm sorry to say.

No, I am not assuming that at all. I am simply making an observation that it is better to be the slave of a good Muslim than to live with parents who are willing to sell them into slavery. I never assumed, or implied, that every Muslim who bought a slave would necessarily be good. That would be a completely absurd assumption, and it should have been obvious that I couldn't possibly have meant that, and instead simply meant what I said.

Ok, thats fine, there is no need to say anymore, u are unable to see what I am trying to point out but thats okay as its not central to the thread and so its okay that u misunderstand.

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I don't think those lectures were recorded

i think they might ve been recorded and probably put on sale in the bookshop. Thats what usually happens nowadays i think.

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Salaam alaykum

Firstly we need to understand that slavery in Islam is vastly different to the slavery most people know/understand when they hear the word 'slavery'. Islam has many laws in place in relation to slavery and how to treat captives of war who are under your power.

As far as I know, Muhammad (pbuh&hf) order his men to, when they did have captives from war, to treat them like they would their own family and guests. "Feed them what you eat and clothe them with what you wear". I have heard a lecturer use that phrase before.

I also heard a speaker say that our Prophet (pbuh&hf) forbade the use of the words 'slave' & 'master' saying that no one is to call someone their slave because we are all Slaves of Allah and He is our Master. I don't know if this is true or not, it's what I heard a lecturer say.

I know next to nothing about this topic so I don't want to say something that may be incorrect (If I havnt already) so I'll leave it to you to watch this lecture by Seyed Ammar Nakshawani:

http://m.youtube.com/index?desktop_uri=%2F&gl=AU#/watch?v=zxUihG159lk

I am currently on my iPad so it may not work because the iPads use mobile links but just type the following into YouTube search engine and you should find the lecture, inshAllah: Ammar Nakshawani - How & Why Islam reformed Slavery

Wassalaam

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Yes we should all strive to keep the slave trade active because after all it is halal and it might infringe of the rights of a muslim brother or sister should he/she want to purchase another human. It doesn't matter that 99 percent of the time slaves are abused and treated worse than animals. Also if we work to eliminate slavery it might result in homosexuals taking over the world.

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Fantastic Islamic argument. Soon it will be 'cmon guys this is the 21st century. we should be more accepting of gays'. The century we are in has no relevance to what Islam considers to be allowed or not. something doesn't go from halal to haram just because some time has passed.

if u wanna have a slave than be me guest but it was wrong then and it is wrong now.

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Yes we should all strive to keep the slave trade active because after all it is halal and it might infringe of the rights of a muslim brother or sister should he/she want to purchase another human.

I never said we need to strive to keep the slave trade alive. However, there is a difference between not doing anything to maintain the slave trade, and saying that buying slaves shouldn't be allowed. This is making something halal into something haram.

As it happens, the slave trade still exists, just not officially.

It doesn't matter that 99 percent of the time slaves are abused and treated worse than animals.

Well, if that is the case then it would be better for Muslims to buy slaves, since they would not be allowed to treat slaves in that way, and if they did, the slaves would have some legal and religious protection.

The problem at the moment is officially there is no slave trade, even if it exists underground, so there is no way of monitoring it, and people caught up in it have no legal protection. At least if there was an official slave trade, then it could be regulated to some extent..

Also if we work to eliminate slavery it might result in homosexuals taking over the world.

Completely missing the point, which is that arguments like the one I was responding too can be applied to any other area of Islamic law modern society deems outdated and backward. I understand that some people have no problem with 'updating' Islam as time goes by, but I am not one of those people.

if u wanna have a slave than be me guest but it was wrong then and it is wrong now.

So the Prophet (pbuh) and the Imams (as) did something wrong, and they didn't even realise it. And Allah (swt) allowed something wrong, and put it in His final revelation to mankind. Great.

Remind me why you are a Muslim again?

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Any decent individual would consider slavery to be immoral by definition. To all those who say "Islamic slavery is different", it is irrelevant, since the entire moral premise upon which even our kinder laws of slave treatment are established is immoral by definition. If you are willing to study the evolution of religious practices then the Islamic treatment of slaves is quite understandable, in fact is its even commendable. For its time, islam went a long way in reforming the institution of slavery, granting slaves more rights and demanding better treatment from the slave owners. For its time, this was quite an achievement, and since slave labour etc was a bedrock of a lot of economies, it was practically impossible to get rid of the institution entirely.

However as muslims, we aren't just historians looking at Islam from the outside, we are to believe in the divine laws, we believe in an islamic code of morality. The question then arises, since we consider slavery to be immoral, why did Islam institutionalize slavery? Islam could have outright condemned the institution of slavery, and then taken gradual steps to slowly eradicate it from society. Instead it was institutionalized, it is inherently part of our system, which means it is totally justified and moral. Islamic slavery laws might be of little relevance in this day and age, but they still do exist. This topic is a touchy subject with scholars I have spoken to though, they are a bit reluctant to discuss it, for understandable reasons.

To those who cite the capitalist model as an example, most decent people consider the owner/employee relationship in that framework also immoral, the term is wage slavery, and it has immense contemporary relevance. This arrangement severely infringes on the rights of working people, but at least the working class can do something about that, it is a different ball game when an arrangement has been institutionalized by divine laws.

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