Hall of FameHall of Fame  Active TopicsActive Topics  Display List of Forum MembersMemberlist  Search The ForumSearch  HelpHelp  chatChat
  RegisterRegister  LoginLogin
Questions and Discussions about Islam
 Whyislam.org Forums : WhyIslam : Questions and Discussions about Islam
Message Icon Topic: Basics of Group Shura? Post Reply Post New Topic
Page  of 4 Next >>
Author Message
Al-Cordoby  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Moderator
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 27002
Forum Rating: 159
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Topic: Basics of Group Shura?
    Posted: 14 June 2009 at 2:38pm
Moving in Shura from the family level to the group level, what are the basics of group Shura?
 
Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, commanded Muslims who go on travel to select one of them as the leader, even if they were only three
 
On the other hand, the prophet also advised Muslims not to seek leadership, as in this hadith:
 
Abu Sa'id 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Samura said:
 
"The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said to me,
 
'O 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Samura. Do not ask for leadership.
 
If you are given it without asking for it, you will be helped in it.
 
If you are given it through asking for it, it will be up to you.
 
If you make a vow and then see something other than it which is better than it, then do that which is better and expiate your oath.'" [Agreed upon]
 
So leadership is an important pillar, what are the other elements of effective group Shura?
 
Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

My Blog
Muslim Heritage

No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
a well wisher  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 8119
Forum Rating: 0
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote a well wisher Replybullet Posted: 14 June 2009 at 7:36pm
Originally posted by Al-Cordoby

 
On the other hand, the prophet also advised Muslims not to seek leadership, as in this hadith:
 
Abu Sa'id 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Samura said:
 
"The Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said to me,
 
'O 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Samura. Do not ask for leadership.
 
If you are given it without asking for it, you will be helped in it.
 
If you are given it through asking for it, it will be up to you.
 
If you make a vow and then see something other than it which is better than it, then do that which is better and expiate your oath.'" [Agreed upon]
 
So leadership is an important pillar, what are the other elements of effective group Shura?
 
 
Jazakh Allah Khair Brother Al Cardoby for the hadith....its a new one for me....
 
In my humble opinion apart from leadership, mutual trust would be another important pillar for group Shura so that it is easy to follow the leadership...pure and sincere intentions and the goal to benefit the whole group should be a priority.... also people that come together to consult should have enough knowledge about the issue at hand and should also know their limitations and are willing to admit to it as they might hinder the decision process with their ignorance to the matter at hand....so maybe integrity and personal accountability would be another pillar...
 
Wallahu A'lam
 
La ilaha ill-Allah, Muhammadur Rasulullah
No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
Al-Cordoby  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Moderator
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 27002
Forum Rating: 159
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 15 June 2009 at 6:39am
<< pure and sincere intentions and the goal to benefit the whole group should be a priority >>
 
You're quite right
 
The benefit of the group should take priority over individual interests when taking Shura-based decisions
 
For example, a group chooses one of them to be the Imam as he has all the required conditions more than all other members of the group, but the Imam prefers not to lead the prayer. In this case he should put the collective interest of the group before his personal preference and accept their nomination
 
How should shura-based decisions be made in a group?
 
Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

My Blog
Muslim Heritage

No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
a well wisher  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 8119
Forum Rating: 0
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote a well wisher Replybullet Posted: 15 June 2009 at 8:49pm

Jazakh Allah Khair for giving examples...it really helps in figuring out the nuances of the concept...

 
Shura decision I think should be reached with majority consensus in my opinion...if they have already established trust , elected their leader  and have discussed all differing viewpoints wouldn't a majority vote be more congruent with the process...as long as the decisions lie within the perimeters of law
 
I am just a layperson and my input is not scholarly...please correct me if I am wrong.... as I am speaking without really reading up on this subject, please excuse any ignorance or wild statement on my part... 
 
La ilaha ill-Allah, Muhammadur Rasulullah
No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
Al-Cordoby  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Moderator
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 27002
Forum Rating: 159
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 16 June 2009 at 3:08am
Yes, in most cases I agree that a majority vote is the right mechanism, though there are some exceptions:
 
1- When taking Shura for a personal matter which only involves one induvidual, this is known as (Istishara). It is not binding on that individual to follow the majority opinion of people he consults as the decision only involves him personally
 
2- When taking Shura for a matter which involves a personal property, like for example the owner of a company consulting his employess on a certain decision. Though this decision may have an impact on the whole company, including the employees themselves, it is not a binding majority vote as in the case of all voters being owners/partners in that company
 
We are all students of Islam by the way, and there is an interesting book titled (Fiqh Al-Shura wal Istishara) by the late Tawfiq Al-Shawy which is an important reference I would recommend (though for now I believe it's only available in Arabic)
 
 
Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

My Blog
Muslim Heritage

No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
Al-Cordoby  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Moderator
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 27002
Forum Rating: 159
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 16 June 2009 at 3:18am
As far as congregational prayers are concerned, the danger of an Imam leading prayers for a group of people who dislike him being the Imam is mentioned in a Hadith where the prophet, peace be upon him, said that one of the three (types of people) whose prayers will not be accepted is a man who leads the prayer for people who dislike his leadership (this Hadith is in Sunan Ibn Majah)
 
This is a clear evidence that binding Shura in selecting the leader within a group of Muslims is very important, both in prayers and outside prayers
 
Also, there is baraka in not asking for leadership, as in the hadith mentioned above:
 
'O 'Abdu'r-Rahman ibn Samura. Do not ask for leadership.
 
If you are given it without asking for it, you will be helped in it.
 
If you are given it through asking for it, it will be up to you
 
A leader who does not seek leadership will receive Allah's help, and the opposite is also true
 
This means that it is in the best interest of Muslims not to select leaders who seek leadership, but to select the best qualified person
 
 
Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

My Blog
Muslim Heritage

No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
a well wisher  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 8119
Forum Rating: 0
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote a well wisher Replybullet Posted: 16 June 2009 at 4:12pm
Jazakh Allah Khair for this informative and enlightening discussion
 
Can you recommend any books in english ...i have just started learning arabic...still a long way to go...
 
Thank you so much for elaborating these points...
 
 
La ilaha ill-Allah, Muhammadur Rasulullah
No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
Al-Cordoby  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Moderator
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 27002
Forum Rating: 159
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 17 June 2009 at 7:25am
I don't know of a book in English dedicated to the topic of Shura, but here are some reading which may be of interest:
 
Two IOL links on Shura & Democracy:
 
 
 
The Seeds of Shura in Islam: The First Generation

The First Islamic Democracy in Madinah

http://www.readingislam.com/servlet/Satellite?c=Article_C&cid=1203758804840&pagename=Zone-English-Discover_Islam%2FDIELayout

 

The Nature of the Islamic Political System

Similarities and Differences (by Dr. Jamal Badawi)

Some of the fundamental principles in democracy are similar to Islam: first, the idea or notion of freedom of the people to choose the rulers they want.

Another idea that is similar is that of participation in the decision-making process in some form or the other.

The third similarity between democracy and Islam is the notion of the removal of some governments which fail to meet the expectations of the people

http://www.readingislam.com/servlet/Satellite?c=Article_C&cid=1154235111003&pagename=Zone-English-Discover_Islam%2FDIELayout

 
Islam And Democracy

The Emerging Consensus

There seems to have emerged a general agreement among mainstream Islamists that democracy is the spirit of the Islamic governmental system, even though they reject the philosophical assumption of Western democracy that sovereignty rests with the people.
 
They maintain that the majority's voice can constitute the basis for legitimate exercise of political authority in an Islamic state only if it recognizes and remains within the perimeters of God's political and legal sovereignty.
 
 

Shura and Democracy in Islam

Take a Break with Yusuf Estes on Hoda TV

Can Islam, which started 14 centuries ago, cope with the problems of today's modern life?

Can Islam match democracy as a political solution?

Yusuf Estes answers these questions and explains the beauty of the concept of Shura in Islam

http://www.youtubeislam.com/video/4553/Take-A-Break-Episode-3-by-Sheikh-Yusuf-Estes

 

Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

My Blog
Muslim Heritage

No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
a well wisher  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 8119
Forum Rating: 0
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote a well wisher Replybullet Posted: 17 June 2009 at 4:49pm

Jazakh Allah Khair

 
Thank you so much...I will try to read it in depth inshaAllah
La ilaha ill-Allah, Muhammadur Rasulullah
No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
Al-Cordoby  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Moderator
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 27002
Forum Rating: 159
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 01 July 2009 at 6:23am
To continue with the topic of Group Shura, some extracts from an article by Dr. Tariq Ramadan:
 
Shura is the space which allows Islam the management of pluralism
 
The principles of managing pluralism
 
1- The choice of the people
 
The choice of the one placed ahead is delegated in Islam to those who place themselves behind. One can go through by means of elections, a representative system or any other original idea. The important thing is that the people choose their representative. This means, a fortiori, that one must be granted all the conditions that allow one the opportunity to choose with full knowledge of the facts.
 
Any pressure or play of influence on public opinion must be the subject of strict regulations, for this means that there is a deficit in the real participation of the people ....
 
2- Freedom of opinion. The first element cannot be without this second. One cannot have the right to choose one’s representative and, at the same time, be prohibited from formulating one’s own opinion. ....
 
3- Alternation. To govern is tantamount to being responsible before the people who choose us and before the institutional organs which play this role in the society in question ....
 
It cannot, therefore, be the fact of a man, a family or a clan, who takes hold of power in a definitive fashion because his name or action made his glory in a given moment of history. Competence in matters of governing, as indeed moral responsibility, are not hereditary.
 
 
 
 
Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

My Blog
Muslim Heritage

No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
a well wisher  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 8119
Forum Rating: 0
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote a well wisher Replybullet Posted: 01 July 2009 at 1:43pm
Jazakh Allah Khair....
 
I am learning quite alot although i get stumped whenever politics comes into the picture because i generally dont have a liking for it...so western democracy and islamic shura then are similar concepts ...but its just the matter of sovereignty right?
 
Also shura is an all compassing concept...so it is not a political ideology but part of it right?
 
And Group Shura....on what qualifications should a leader be elected...majority vote or the one suited best for the job...i mean in our everyday life...our responsibilty is to stand for truth but what if we feel to be in the minority...is it incumbent to follow the majority to maintain peace...i am really confused sometimes on how to apply this beautiful concept in our day to day life...
 
Thank you for explaining it....
La ilaha ill-Allah, Muhammadur Rasulullah
No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
Al-Cordoby  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Moderator
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 27002
Forum Rating: 159
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 01 July 2009 at 9:42pm
Originally posted by a well wisher

so western democracy and islamic shura then are similar concepts ...but its just the matter of sovereignty right?
 
In principle, the objectives are similar, which is reaching the best collective decisions for society through mutual consultation and ideally consensus, but in Shura it should be in a framework that is compatible with the teachings of Islam and that does not contradict Islamic Law
 
Originally posted by a well wisher

 
Also shura is an all compassing concept...so it is not a political ideology but part of it right?
 
Right. Shura among Muslims should ideally be applied at all levels, including the political level. It should become a way of life for Muslims and an important part of our culture and education
 
Originally posted by a well wisher

And Group Shura....on what qualifications should a leader be elected...majority vote or the one suited best for the job...i mean in our everyday life...our responsibilty is to stand for truth but what if we feel to be in the minority...is it incumbent to follow the majority to maintain peace...
 
The first step is for people to identify the best potential leader(s) qualified for the job, then decide through consultation and majority vote whom to choose
 
If we feel we are in the minority, we still should have the freedom to express our views and concerns, but at the end of the day when the decision is taken by consensus or simple majority vote, we should abide to the collective decision as this is in the best interest of the group
 
 


Edited by Al-Cordoby - 01 July 2009 at 9:43pm
Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

My Blog
Muslim Heritage

No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
a well wisher  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 8119
Forum Rating: 0
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote a well wisher Replybullet Posted: 02 July 2009 at 11:10am
Jazakh Allah Khair for clearing out these confusions...
 
One more question...I was discussing this with someone and i told them that its always better to appoint a leader withing a group...for example if it constitues even two people ...one should be the leader among the two to decide things ...isn't it the sunnah way to appoint a leader...like men are qawam of women...they have a degree over them...but among two men or two women is it necessary for one to lead or not in order to maintain the shura?ofcourse the decision reached would be by mutual consultation but is leadership a necessary component of this concept or not?
 
Thank you once again for explaining this...
 
La ilaha ill-Allah, Muhammadur Rasulullah
No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
Al-Cordoby  
Admin Group
Admin Group
Avatar
Moderator
Religion: Islam(Muslim)
Posts: 27002
Forum Rating: 159
Rating: 0 of 0 votes Quote Al-Cordoby Replybullet Posted: 02 July 2009 at 11:20am
To my knowledge, the minimum number for appointing a leader is three, based on the hadith of Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, who said that even if three Muslims are on a journey, they must choose one as leader
 
Qualities for Leadership:
1: knowledge and hikmah (wisdom, insight);
2: taqwa;
3: ‘adl (justice) and rahmah (compassion);
4: courage and bravery;
5: shura (mutual consultation);
6: decisiveness and being resolute;
7: eloquence;
8: spirit of self-sacrifice;
9: sabr (patience).

Emergence of a leader

A person is thrust into a position of leadership both by circumstances and by his ability to motivate and lead others towards the realization of a particular goal. When a group of people accept this vision, it creates a movement for change.

The leader, however, must first articulate the vision and demonstrate the ability to turn it into action by aligning performance with vision to create a climate of success for the realization of the stated goal.
Islam is radically different from other systems in that it discourages the practice of seeking leadership; if a person desires it for power and glory rather than serving the people by implementing the divine laws, he is not fit to occupy it.
 
In a well-known hadith, the noble Messenger of Allah has said that he who seeks leadership is not fit to assume it.
 
 
Think Win-Win for a better world for all...

My Blog
Muslim Heritage

No Guest-Voting   IP IP Logged
Page  of 4 Next >>
Post Reply Post New Topic
Printable version Printable version

Forum Jump
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot create polls in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum

Bulletin Board Software by Web Wiz Forums version 8.03
Copyright ©2001-2006 Web Wiz Guide
Disclaimer
The opinions expressed by members of the Whyislam Forum do not necessarily reflect the beliefs of the Whyislam Team, or any of its subsidiaries, or parent organizations.