An effort in f a c i l i t a t i o n

Shun Ribaa, Fear Allah, Have success!

Dear brothers/sisters, Assalamu Alaikum. Due to work stress and domestic compulsion, I am unable to post frequently on the series Yaaa Ayyuhal Lazeena Aamanu. Sorry about that. This is the 15th post of this series. Read on, Inshaa’Allah…..

Those who consume usury, among the Believers in Islam, cannot achieve success.

And how can they achieve success when they go against the commands of their Lord Almighty?

In this ayah of Surah Aali Imran, we Muslims are enjoined to adopt Allah-consciousness in our economic life so that we are saved from eternal damnation and perpetual  misery. 

“O you who have believed, do not consume usury, doubled and multiplied, but fear Allah that you may be successful.” (Surah Aali Imran 3: 130)

Listen to this Beautiful Recitation

* Please note that this ayah was revealed long before this ayah that prohibits ribaa completely!

There is a special event behind the revelation of this verse. In pre-Islamic Arabia, the general pattern of ribaa transactions was that loans were given on ribaa for a set period of time; when that period expired and the borrower was unable to pay it back, he was given an extension of time on the condition that the amount of ribaa was to be increased. Similarly, if payment was not made even on the expiry of the second deadline, the amount of ribaa was further increased. This fact is mentioned in general books of tafseer, especially in Lubab al-Nuqul, on the authority of Mujahid.

This verse was revealed to eradicate this inhuman custom of pre-Islamic Arabia. Therefore, by saying أَضْعَافًا مُّضَاعَفَةً (multiplied many times) in the verse, their prevailing practice was condemned and they were warned on their selfishness and anti-community conduct, and naturally so, it was declared prohibited.

This does not mean that ribaa will not be prohibited if it happens not to be multiplied many times, because the absolute prohibition of ribaa has been very clearly stated in Surah al Baqarah and Surah an-Nisaa irrespective of its being doubled or multiplied many times. This is like it has been said at several places in the Holy Qur’an, “Do not take a paltry price in exchange of My verses”. The expression ‘paltry price’ was used here to indicate that even if the kingdom of the whole world was taken in exchange for the Divinely revealed verses, the price will still be ‘paltry.’ It does not mean that taking a paltry price against the verses of the Qur’an is haram, but taking a higher price would be permissible. Similarly, the expression “multiplied many times” has been introduced only to focus attention on their shameful method and it is not a necessary condition for the prohibition.

Moreover, if we think about the prevalent methods of ribaa, we will reach the conclusion that once the habit of taking ribaa is settled, the ribaa does not remain simple ribaa anymore; it necessarily becomes doubled and multiplied because the amount accrued from ribaa becomes a part of the total amount owned by the creditor and, when he further circulates this additional amount of ribaa on interest or usury, the ribaa becomes multiplied. Should this chain action go on building up, nothing can stop it from becoming “multiplied many times”. This way every ribaa will end up increasing several times.

May Allah save all Muslims from the dangers of ribaa. Aameen. May He guide us unto the Straight Path. Aameen.

Jazakallaahu Khayra for reading this post.


Note: Explanation taken from Ma’aariful Qur’an.

Read this related post, Inshaa’Allah: Ribaa is Evil and Strictly Prohibited in Islam

June 18, 2013 - Posted by | O You Who Believe!, Reflections | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

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