Product Development in Islamic Banks

By Habib Ahmed | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 2
ISLAMIC LAW
AND FINANCE:
CONCEPTS AND
PRINCIPLES

The essence of Islam is tawhid which means unity of God (Allah) and creation. Though the word signifies oneness and sovereignty of God, it has implications related to all aspects of life including economics and finance.1 Among others, the concept of tawhid implies that Allah is the owner of resources which are given to mankind in trust. In fulfilling the role of trustee, humans act as vicegerents (khalifah) of God on earth. These notions have implications for property rights and the nature of economic transactions that can be undertaken. All humans are created equal and given freewill by the Creator. An important inference of equality is the concept of justice, which forms one of the hallmarks of Islamic teachings. Tawhid also implies that Allah is the source of knowledge and value. As such, all discussions on law and morality ensue from this concept (Kamali 2008:17). A Muslim is one who accepts the sovereignty of God and freely submits to His will. The will of God is expressed to humans through different Prophets and revelation.

The teachings and commandments of Islam can be broadly categorised into three types: faith and belief (aqidah), ethics and morality (akhlaq), and rules and laws (fiqh) (Laldin 2006: 3). Fiqh consists of laws and principles related to dealings with other humans and the environment

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