There are many arguments that the pro-democrats bring forth to support their claims. We’ve listed almost all of them here and refuted these claims, with all praise and thanks due only unto Allah Azzawajal. Remember, its not about the claim – its about the evidence supplied.
“The lesser of the two evils”
Voting for a kafir (disbeliever) who is more supportive/inclined towards Muslims than the other candidates is the ‘lesser of two evils’ and therefore justified.
The ‘lesser of two evils’ is a valid Islamic principle. However it has restrictions and conditions. If one is on the verge of death, with no food around, one is permitted to eat haraam (forbidden) meat in order to survive. The restriction is that one may only eat what is sufficient in order to recover from his ills.
What then can be said about one who, once his survival needs were met, went on to enjoy a feast of the haraam meat and also encouraged others to participate in the feast? Absurd indeed!
If we don't vote, will we die? No!
Therefore the application of this principle cannot be justified even if there are candidates who might allow the recognition of Muslim Marriages or canvas for an increase in Hajj quotas etc.
The greater danger here is that if Muslims are continuously asked to vote for the lesser of the two evils, they will eventually start believing that the man-made system of democracy has more solutions that the Shari'ah. Some may even end up leaving the fold of Islam after some time!
In a lesson for us all, the Muslims in the US and UK voted for Bush and Blair on the same principle of choosing the lesser of two evils!
2) “The Shari'ah is about taking what is beneficial and preventing harm (Maslaha)”
The purpose Allah Azzawajal revealed the Shari'ah was for the benefit of mankind and consequently, all those things that are perceived to be beneficial are allowed and all those things that are harmful are haraam.
“Have you seen him who takes his own lust (vain desires) as his ilah (god), and Allah knowing (him as such), left him astray, and sealed his hearing and his heart, and put a cover on his sight. Who then will guide him after Allah? Will you not then remember?” (TMQ Al Jathiya: 23).
Rasulullah sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam said:
“None of you [truly] believes until his inclination is in accordance with what I have brought.” (An Nawawi)
Islam is not based on our own emotions and desires. Our emotions and desires have to be in line with the commandments of Allah Azzawajal in their entirety. Allah Azzawajal is Al-Naafi’ (The Benefactor) and Al-Daar (The Harmer) and only He can bring us both. The beneficial and harmful was Revealed by Allah Azzawajal (Qur'an and the Sunnah).
There is no place in the Shari'ah for one to make a decision upon a matter once Allah Azzawajal has decreed it: “It is not for any believer, man or woman, when Allah and His Messenger have decreed a matter, to have any choice in the affair. Whosoever disobeys Allah and His Messenger has gone astray into manifest error.” (TMQ Al Ahzab:36)
The Islamic principle of
maslaha (benefit) exists but also with conditions. It cannot be applied when there are clear texts from the Qur'an and Sunnah.
The harm of sinning that
could possibly lead to kufr (disbelief) is a far greater danger than any perceived benefit due to voting.
3) “Many/majority scholars allow it”
Muslims are never concerned with numbers but rather about the strength of the Islamic evidences based upon the understanding of the Sahaabah radiallaahu 'anhum and Salaf (pious predecessors). Allah Azzawajal dispraised the majority a number of times in the Qur'an:
“If you obey the majority of the people on the Earth they will take you astray from Allah's path” (TMQ Surah Al An’aam:116) and
“Most of mankind will not believe even if you desire it eagerly.” (TMQ Yusuf 12:103)
Do the same scholars who allow participation in man-made systems of governance inform the people of its reality and dangers?
Do the same scholars remind the people of the obligation to work for the establishment of the Shari’ah?
4) “Yusuf 'alayhis salaam worked as a minister for a kaafir (non-Muslim) king within a non-Muslim government and so can we”
Those who bring forth this claim either suggest one of two things:
1) Yusuf 'alayhis salaam applied the law of the king (kufr law) while he was a minister, or
2) Yusuf 'alayhis salaam applied Allah Azzawajal's Law
Fortunately, Allah Azzawajal didn't leave this matter to chance or for us to guess:
"... when he had talked to him, he said.. “Today you are established in a rank of trust with us" (TMQ Yusuf: 54). Yusuf 'alayhis salaam participated in the ministry with complete authority from the king. He was given this authority by Allah Azzawajal: “Thus did We give full authority to Yusuf in the land, to take possession therein, when or where he likes” (TMQ Yusuf: 56). He had no opponent and no one could ask him about his work or actions.
Do politicians today have the option of administering a ministry based on their own laws?
Therefore this argument is invalid.
5) “Democracy is Shura”
Some take Allah Azzawajal's Words about the monotheist believers:
“And whose affairs are settled by mutual consultation” (TMQ Ash Shura: 38) and to Rasulullah sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam: “and consult them in the affairs” (TMQ Aal ‘Imraan: 159), as support for democracy, calling it shura (the Islamic method of consultation). This is nothing but an attempt to give a religious feel to this un-Islamic system. Changing the name of something does not change it's nature.
It is well known that within a democracy it is the judgement and legislation of the majority that counts. Whereas within
shura, the Khalifah (Muslim Amir/leader) is not obliged to accept the opinion of the majority. Rather he is obliged to accept the opinion that is closest to Qur’an and Sunnah.
A clear case of this occurred during the Khilafah of Abu Bakr radiallaahu 'anhu when he sent out the army of Usamah bin Zaid radiallaahu 'anhu to fight the Romans despite the majority of the Sahaabah radiallaahu 'anhum advising against it due to the recent death of Rasulullah sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam and the subsequent weakness of the Muslims. Abu Bakr radiallaahu 'anhu stood firm in his ruling, due to it being an order of Rasulullah sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam and the Sahaabah radiallaahu 'anhum eventually accepted the stronger and ultimately wiser decision of Abu Bakr radiallaahu 'anhu – a hard slap in face of the proponents of “democracy is shura”!
6) “If we don’t vote we’ll have a one party state (Zimbabwe situation)”
Even if all the Muslims in South Africa were to vote, the 1 million votes will do nothing to change the course of the overwhelming majority. This is merely another deceptive means of getting stuck into frivolous man-made politics by wasting valuable time that can be better spent doing
da'wah and working for the restoration of Allah Azzawajal's Law on earth. Even if there is a change in the political party that governs the land, what more harm can they possibly do?
In South Africa:
§ Gambling has been legalised
§ Sodomite and lesbian marriages have been legalised
§ Alcohol sale and consumption is legal
§ Murder of unborn babies is legalised
§ Darwin's theory of man descending from apes is taught to children in schools
§ Interfaith (equality of tawheed and shirk) is propagated to children in schools
§ Muslims homes have been raided and Muslims arrested by non-South African security forces
§ Muslims have been deported without a valid reason
§ The legal age for sexual consent is sixteen
7) “We are living in ‘their land' so we must obey the law of the land and participate in the elections”
This ludicrous claim signals a defeatist post-apartheid mentality that is very prevalent among us. Just because one resides in a particular land, it does not mean that one should engage in the deeds of the people around them. By this twisted logic one should also become homosexual, drink alcohol, gamble and allow their children to fornicate!
The analogy propagated by some Muslims that states that ‘we might as well not pay taxes if we aren't going to vote’ is devoid of logic for the mere fact that if you don't pay taxes you will be arrested.
Will you be arrested if you choose not to vote?
It must be made very clear here that this is not a call to disobey all the laws of the land. However, when laws contradict the Shari'ah then as Muslims, we cannot obey those laws unless our life is literally in danger as Allah Azzawajal Commanded in the Qur’an:
“O Prophet! Fear Allah, and do not obey the Unbelievers and the Hypocrites: verily Allah is full of Knowledge and Wisdom” (TMQ Surah Al Ahzab:1)
The Muslims should reply to the call to participate in the kufr (disbelief) electoral systems the same way Allah Azzawajal ordered the Messenger sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam to reply to the Quraish who invited him to join their system of governance:
“O disbelievers! I do not worship that what you worship! And you do not worship that what I do worship. And I will never worship that what you worship. Nor will you worship that which I worship. To you your Deen (religion, way) and to me mine.” (TMQ Surah Al Kafirun:1-6)
8) “We need to give back to the society”
This is indeed a responsibility of the Muslims i.e. to positively impact on the society. To suggest that voting is “giving back” is in effect, trying to weasel out of actually doing the work that is required:
1) Take the message of Islam to the masses of the land,
2) Live by it and show it in your character,
3) Enjoin the good and forbid the evil with dignity,
4) Treat non-Muslim employees with the justice of Islam, and
5) Assist the poor and needy.
9) “There is no politics in Islam”
This has to be one of the most ignorant statements ever made in the name of Islam. It emanates from the mouths of both defeatists and secularists. Such people due to their ignorance about Islam, and embarrassment at being Muslim, wish to change the Divinely-revealed texts to suit the current age and time.
The secularists contend that those who wish to return the Shari'ah to life are like those wish to return to the ignorance of the Middle Ages. Allah Azzawajal says to these people,
“Then is it only a part of the Book that you believe in, and do you reject the rest?” (TMQ Al Baqarah: 85)
Was/is/will there ever be a greater political statement that La ilaaha Illallaah?
10) “If you don't like it here go live somewhere else”
“Indeed, the earth belongs to Allah” (TMQ Surah Al A’raaf: 128)
Those Muslims who utter this statement are so steeped in the disease of
‘asabiyyah (nationalism) that they would prefer for Muslims, who try to enjoin the good and forbid the evil, to go and live elsewhere instead of call to Tawheed.The earth belongs to Allah Azzawajal in its entirety despite some disbelievers having been given temporary power and authority over some lands. Allah Azzawajal's servants have a right to live anywhere on His earth and while they are under the temporary rule of disbelief, they still have to fulfil the obligation of enjoining the good and forbidding the evil.
(With references from IslamBase and Abu Muhammad al Maqdisi, may Allah reward them)