Al-Hisbah in Islamic Economics

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  • Topic: Islam, Sharia, Ibn Taymiyyah
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Islamic Economics Term Paper

Al-Hisbah in Islamic Economics

Table of Contents:

What is the Al-Hisbah Institution?

Al-Hisbah objectives

Who are Rijal-al-Hisbah?

Qualifications of a Hisbah Official

How Al-Hisbah differs than Anti-corruption

Procedures of Al-Hisbah


I- What is the Al-Hisbah Institution?

The Hisbah is a religious institution under the authority of the state that appoints people to carry out the responsibility of enjoining what is right, whenever people start to neglect it, and forbidding what is wrong, whenever people start to engage in it. The purpose of this is to safeguard society from deviance, protect the faith, and ensure the welfare of the people in both religious and worldly manners according to the Law of Allah. Allah has made it obligatory upon all Muslims to enjoin good and forbid wrongdoing to the extent of their knowledge and abilities. Allah says:

"Let there arise from you a group calling to all that is good, enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong. It is these who are successful."(Q.3:104) Allah's Messenger (may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: "Whosoever among you sees an act of wrong should change it with his hands. If he is not able to do so, then he should change it with his tongue. If he is not able to do so, then with his heart, and this is the weakest of faith." We have already mentioned that the Hisbah is a religious institution, meaning that it is one of the official offices of a Muslim state, one that specializes in fulfilling the obligatory task of enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong. The Hisbah is the official means of carrying out this duty. The Hisbah is essentially organized around safeguarding the limits of Allah from being violated, protecting the honor of the people, and ensuring public safety. It also includes monitoring the marketplace, craftsmanship, and manufacturing concerns to make sure that the laws of Islam are upheld by these entities. It must also ensure that quality standards are maintained. The Hisbah carries out these responsibilities in conjunction with the appropriate government agencies and other relevant establishments. The importance of the Hisbah in the overall Islamic order: Islam aims to bring about a stable and secure society filled with love, whereby the members of society work together in righteous and wholesome activities. Such an environment allows everyone to carry out the responsibility of being Allah's vicegerent on Earth and to fulfill their purpose for existence, which is to worship Allah. Allah says: "I did not create Jinn and mankind except to worship me."

People are constantly in need of order in their lives and, consequently, they are in need of some authority to ensure that order. Because of this, there must be someone there to remind the people of this order and to keep tabs on how well they are adhering to it. This is why enjoining what is right and forbidding what is wrong is so important.

II- Al-Hisbah objectives

Islamic Law has come to ensure the welfare of humanity and to prevent or at least diminish all things that can cause harm. When faced with a choice, it always chooses the better of two good options or the lesser of two evils. Allah Almighty commands his servants to exert themselves in adhering to what is best and avoiding what is most harmful. This is the greatest principle behind Islamic legislation. Islamic Law centers on the following words of Allah: Fear Allah as much as you are able.

These words, in turn, explain another verse of Qur’ân: Fear Allah as He ought to be feared. Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said: “If I command you to do something, then do as much of it as you are able.”

The objective of Islamic Law is to ensure the welfare of humanity and to prevent or minimize harm. If two aspects of this welfare are in contradiction with one another, then the most important need will be fulfilled at the expense...
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