Chapter 49 - Blog Rants about Riba

Riba is usury. Usury is now commonly understood as the lending of money at illegally high rates of interest. But this deliberate corruption of terminology took place in Europe in order to permit the 'money lender' (now called banker) to bypass the Christian church and its objection to all forms of usury. [491]

Riba in Islam (as in medieval Christianity) is the lending of money on interest, regardless of the rate of interest. When a 'money lender' lends money on interest, then money by itself, independent of any labor or effort or the assumption of any risk by the investor, increases over time. The increase is realized by deception through the exploitation of labor, goods and property. [491]

This becomes clear when attention is directed to that which Allah has unambiguously declared in the Qur'an: [491]

... man is entitled to nothing except that for which he labored. [Qur'an, al-Najm, 53:39]

... do not deprive people of what is rightfully theirs by diminishing the value of their things (such as their labor, merchandise, property etc). [Qur'an, al-'Araf, 7:85; Hud, 11:85; al-Shu'ara', 26:183; etc.]

Umar ibn Khattab said: The last verse to be revealed was on Riba, but Allah's Messenger was taken without having expounded it to us; so give up not only Riba but also Reebah (i.e., whatever raises doubts in the mind about its rightfulness). [Sunan, Ibn Majah; Darimi]

Ibn Abbas said: O you who believe, fear Allah and give up what remains (due to you) from Riba (from now onwards) if you are indeed believers...And none shall be dealt with unjustly. [al-Baqarah, 2:279-281]

Those who spend of their wealth by day and by night, secretly and openly, for such there will be reward with their Lord, nor will they have cause for fear, nor will they grieve. (Provided that wealth is spent in a manner that is Halal, such spending will stimulate the economy and put wealth into circulation.) [491]

Those (on the other hand) who consume Riba will not stand (before Allah on the Last Day) except as though Satan drove them to madness with his touch (this is because Riba represents the opposite of 'spending' - in Riba wealth is sucked out of the economy until the masses are reduced to poverty and destitution.) [491]

That is because they say business and Riba are similar to each other. (They argue that 'lending money on interest' is a legitimate form of business.) [491]

But Allah has permitted business and forbidden Riba. (Their argument is false. Allah has made business Halal but has made Riba Haram. And so Riba is not a form of business. This is because the very essence of a legitimate business transaction is that it must admit of the possibility of either a profit or a loss. When money is lent on interest the possibility of a loss is so minimized that it is almost eliminated! Hence the lending of money on interest cannot qualify as a business transaction.) [491]

Abdullah Ibn Hanzala reported that the Messenger of Allah said: A dirham (silver coin) of Riba, which a man receives knowingly, is worse than committing adultery thirty-six times. Baihaqi transmitted it, on the authority of Ibn Abbas, with the addition that the Prophet continued to say: Hell is more fitting for him whose flesh is nourished by what is Haram. [491]

Allah Will Destroy Riba (Usury)

Praise be to Allah who destroyed usury and its companies, banks and institutions.

The Almighty Allah says: Allah will destroy Riba (usury)... [Al-Baqarah 2:276] [493]

Usury establishes an economy which completely destroys the humanity, causes misery to groups and individuals, lowers humanity morals, makes disorder in money cycle and economic development and finally leads to, as today status, a result that concentrates the real authority and practical power in the hands of the most inferior and ignoble people (usurers) who collect- without spending any effort- the real outcome of peoples' effort and blood in a shape of usurious interest. [493]

Whereas the usurer always gains profit in every transaction and the debtor exposed to profit and loss (as we previously mentioned), this makes shortage in liquidity in most people hands (because of their losses) which leads to reducing the request on purchase, factories stop working, the stock market collapse and the usurious banks bankrupt because of the deficit of those debtors to refund (as what is happening now). [493]

Also we should reduce our production of oil and only produce our needs of it and leave the rest in the bottom of land for the next generations of Muslims. [493]

Dear brothers: Islam has put many regulations for debt to control it and make good use of it without causing any kind of damage to the individual or society; we find a lot of Islamic legislation texts warning of debt dangers which include the following:

One of the prophet's invocations was the following '...O Allah I seek refuge with You from the debt dominance...' [Declared Authentic by Al-Albani] [493]

The Prohibition of Riba

There are two schools of thought among Muslims about prohibition of riba: orthodox and modernist. [492]

The orthodox school claims that all types of interest are riba and all types of banking transactions involving interest are illegal. This school of thought is the most influential. [492]

Several serious and well-meaning Islamic scholars differ on this issue. Even among orthodox scholars, the prohibition is not categorical. [492]

The modernist school says that only exorbitant and high rates of interest, along with that taken from needy persons, are riba. Interest on commercial bank loans is not riba. The weakness in this position is that there are no benchmarks to decide which rate is exorbitant and which borrower is poor and needy. [492]


Which goal, by the way, is what the "Moslem finance" ... is about: collecting handsome rates of interest on loans of money while *pretending* to do no such thing.

Economic system of the Qur'an

As, historically, the money-lending profession was forbidden to Christians, and still is, or should be, forbidden to Muslims, Jewish families were the first to establish themselves in this business and to date control it almost exclusively. Little surprise, therefore, that Zionism almost always gets its way with governments who find themselves in ever-increasing debt. [495]

In 1865 Abraham Lincoln stated his monetary policy: 'Money is the creature of law, and the creation of the original issue of money should be maintained as the exclusive monopoly of national government. Money possesses no value to the State other than given to it by circulation[...] Government should stand behind its currency and credit and the bank deposits of the nation. No individual should suffer a loss of money through depreciation of inflated currency or bankruptcy. Government possessing the power to create and issue currency and credit as money [...] need not and should not borrow capital at interest as a means of financing governmental work and public enterprise.' These words need no updating over a hundred years later. But Lincoln was assassinated, and money-lenders stayed in power. In America this power is exercised by the Federal Reserve which issues the nation's money instead of the government. John F. Kennedy was about to take this right away from them, but then he, too, got assassinated. This money-power has upset the balance more than any other means of control. Fertile, self-sufficient countries were plunged into debt and made dependent on outside aid. Yet, the West's income from interest payments is a multiple of Third World Aid dispatched by the West. Only the interest income goes on to the lenders, whereas the aid bill is footed by the people and their governments. Considering that this evil money-power is at the root of some of the worst injustice troubling our planet -- war, pollution, starvation, social disorder -- Muslims should be amongst the first to fight it. Considering that this creation of money out of nothing, this usurpation of wealth by crooked means is almost taking the shape of playing god - a sign of the Dajjal, the false Messiah -- it should be the most important issue on the Muslim's agenda. For good reason, interest has been forbidden in Islam. Yet Muslims happily pray in mosques built with interest money, and the so-called Islamic banks happily contend themselves with trying to beat the others at the game. Instead of offering a real alternative, they simply change the labels and shamelessly call it fair partnership, when they get half the profits of an entrepreneur's hard labour after lending him some money, which cost them nothing. 2 [495]

12.2.ii Unprecedented debt crisis facing the Third World

We now turn our attention to some of the Western nations who pride themselves on their 'democracy' and 'freedom', yet whose attitudes and behaviour towards other nations often lack both of these virtues in the extreme. The reason for this is that the people who govern these countries can only stay in power by promising a constantly rising standard of living, which in most cases is achieved by robbing the Third World. Most of these rich nations behave like money sharks. They corrupt the people who rule the Third World countries by giving huge loans for imports which in most cases the country does not need but accepts under political coercion. Thus, huge debts are built up under pressure. The political leaders can do very little to resist, since they correctly surmise that they would be liquidated and then replaced by people who would again be subservient to the rich nations. Very often these Third World leaders are pressurised to hand out contracts to the foreign countries by accepting huge bribes as well as by taking an undisclosed share of the profits. This has made it impossible for any genuine Third World leader, who wants to improve the well being of his countrymen, to succeed. [495]

Abu Rafey

Is it not amazing that a Muslim will never eat pork because it is haram (unlawful); never marry his mother or sister because it is also haram, yet that same person has no problem devouring riba (e.g. interest, usury)? Did you know that engaging in riba is a major sin which could lead you to Hell? [494]

...but whoever returns (to dealing in riba), such are the dwellers of the Fire -- they will abide therein. [Qur'an 2:275]


[492] Prohibition of riba: Modernist vs. Orthodox and the 'need' for Islamic Financial Institutions - by Muhammad Akram Khan


[494] Abu Rafey

[495],0,0,1,0,0 retrieved 20/07/2015