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Ruling By Other Than What Allaah Has Revealed
  Shaikh Salih al-Fawzan Explains his Words in Kitaab ut-Tawheed on Ruling by Other Than What Allaah Has Revealed
Source: Trans. Abu Iyaad
Article ID : MNJ050014  [19838]  
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And Shaikh Muhammad bin Ibraaheem said, ‘As for what has been said regarding it, that it is the lesser disbelief (kufr doona kufr) when he judged to someone other than Allaah (or something other than what Allaah has revealed) while believing that he is disobedient and that the judgement of Allaah is the truth, then this is something that occurs from him once or something like that (i.e. occurs infrequently or intermittently). As for the one who lays down laws in an organised and arranged manner and requests submission and compliance to them, then this is disbelief, even if he says, ‘We have erred, and the Shari’ah laws are more just’, so this is disbelief that expels from the religion’. So he distinguished between the partial judgement (by other than what Allaah has revealed) which does not recur and between the general law which becomes a reference point in all of the rulings or most of them. And he affirmed that this disbelief expels from the religion absolutely. This is because the one who removed the Islamic Shari’ah and put secular law in its place, in replacement of it, then this indicates that he considers that this [secular] law is better and more beneficial than the Sharee’ah, and there is no doubt that this is the major disbelief which expels from the religion." [7]

End of chapter

And to finish, we quote also the words of the remainder of our Ulamaa:

Imaam Ibn Baaz said, "Whoever holds the belief (i'taqada) that the systems and laws which people have prescribed [secular laws] are better than the Sharee'ah of Islaam, or that they are equal to it, or that it is permissible (yajooz) to refer to them for judgement… and if he believes that establishing the system of Islaam is not beneficial in this twentieth century ...and entering into this is everyone who holds that carrying out the rule of Allaah with respect to cutting of off hands, or stoning the adulterer - that it is not suitable for these times... "and entering into this is everyone who holds the belief (i'taqada) that it is permissible (yajooz) to judge by other than the Sharee'ah of Allaah [secular law]..." [Majmoo' Fataawa wa Maqaalaat Mutanawwa'ah [2/326-330]

He also said, "The rulers who judge by other than what Allaah has revealed [i.e. secular laws] are of different categories. The ruling upon them varies according to their inner beliefs and actions. Hence, whoever judged by other than what Allaah has revealed and considers that to be better than the Shari’ah is a kafir (disbeliever) in the view of all the Muslims. And likewise the one who makes the secular law a reference point for judgement (man yuhakkim al-qawanin al-wad'iyyah) in replacement (badlan) of the Shari’ah of Allaah and considers that to be permissible – even if he were to say that judgement by the Shari’ah is superior – then he is a disbeliever, due to his having made lawful (istahalla) what Allaah has made unlawful." (Majmoo Fataawaa Samaahat us-Shaikh Ibn Baaz 3/990-991)

As for Ibn Uthaimeen, then all of his statements, when put together, analysed and reconciled give the same meaning and understanding that has been alluded to above.

He said, "So we say: the one who does not judge by what Allaah has revealed, belittling it, deeming it repugnant or holding the belief that other than it is more suitable and more beneficial than it for the creation then he is a kaafir with a kufr that takes out of the religion - and amongst such people are those who prescribe for the people, laws and legislations which oppose the sharee'ah that it may become a way 'minhaaj' that the people adopt and travel upon - for verily they did not prescribe these laws that oppose the sharee'ah except due to their belief that they are more suitable, or of greater benefit to the creation, since it is known by necessity by the intellect and the natural inclination (fitrah) that a person does not turn from one methodology to another that opposes it except that he believes in the superiority of that which he turned to over that which he turned away from" (Majmoo’ Fataawaa Shaikh Ibn Uthaimeen 2/103)

He said, "As regards the one who lays down legislative laws, despite his knowing the judgement of Allaah and that these laws are contrary to Allaah's judgement [8] - then this person has substituted these laws in place of the Sharee`ah. Therefore he is a kaafir - this because he does not choose these laws and turn away from Allaah's Sharee`ah except due to his belief that they are better for the people and the land than the law of Allaah. But when we say that he is a kaafir, then the meaning of this is that this action leads to disbelief." (al-Qawl ul-Mufeed alaa Kitab ut-Tawhid 2/263-269)

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