Necessity is a state or quality of being necessary or in need (according to Merriam-Webster). It can be happened because of pressure of circumstance, physical or moral compulsion, impossibility of condition, urgent need or desire, or maybe because of certain requirement.
As muslim perform our prayer or dua is form of necessity, if we did not do that then it will affect our soul and mind that can make it became empty and vain.
Therefore performing worship are our necessity. But there are some challenge too from muslims in the form of necessity. It will be a challenge for muslims to perform their religious matter in the future.
Since nowadays we found lot of conflict arround us from the Islamic Sharia and the effects of ignorance in Islam. For example is usury, we know that this transaction is fully prohibited in Islam, but we see many muslims involved in it.
Whether in work or buying and selling transaction muslims sometimes can not avoid it. But do we really think it is necessity? And how Islam see an act perform under necessity? what is the law of necessity in Islam itself? In this article we would like to discuss more about it. Let’s us look further in the review below.
Necessity in Islam
In Islam we have rules and guidance called Islamic Sharia or Islamic Law and in any possible ways it must be implemented both in our personal, social, and other affair in our life.
There will be a time when muslims will under a circumstance when they can not perform their religious matter freely. And if we take a look now, this time will came faster than we have expected. When we are ruled by non-muslims and under such applicable rules we may can not perform certain practice in our religion. You may want to read of the law of refusing guest in Islam.
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said in the following hadith,
“There will come a day where a Muslim holding fast to his deen (religion) is like he who gripping a hot coal.” (Al-Tirmidhi)
Muslims should strive of Islam and it’s teaching. Carrying out all the commands of Allah is a must for us. But when we face this conditions it is better for us to perform as much as we could and ask forgiveness to Allah SWT of what we can not perform under some conditions.
“O you who have believed, obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those in authority among you. And if you disagree over anything, refer it to Allah and the Messenger, if you should believe in Allah and the Last Day. That is the best (way) and best in result.” (QS. An-Nisa : 59)
The verse mentioned that any worldy affair we faced should be decided by refering to Allah SWT and the Messenger it means that Quran and Hadith. Thus it is clear that if we facing necessity condition we should refer to Quran and Hadith. You may to read of law of kneeling for pleading in Islam.
Law of Necessity in Islam
But when the situation becomes over-bearing and muslims are hardly to strive in the Islamic law or in the state of necessity, then it can be considered that unlawful things become permissible.
This is the ease that Islam gives to its followers, even among the scholars there are still debates about what is allowed and not in a forced state or necessity state. Let’s take a look in the Quran verses below :
“Prohibited to you are dead animals, blood, the flesh of swine, and that which has been dedicated to other than Allah, and (those animals) killed by strangling or by a violent blow or by a head-lng fall or by the goring of horns, and those from which a wild animal has eaten, except what you (are able to) slaughter (before its death) and those which are sacrificied on stone altars, and (prohibited is) that you seek decision through divining arrows. That is grave disobedience.
This day those who disbelieve have despaired of (defeating) your religion; so fear them not, but fear Me. This day I have perfected for you your religion and completed My favor upon you and have approved for you Islam as religion. But whoever is forced by severe hunger with no inclanation to sin – then indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.” (QS. Al-Maidah : 3)
The verse clearly spoken that by the extreme condition like “severe hunger” muslims are permissible to eat prohibited food. Another verses also mentioned as follows,
“He has only forbidden to you dead animals, blood, and flesh of swine, and that which has been dedicated to other than Allah. But whoever is forced (by necessity), neither desiring (it) nor transgressing (its limit), there is no sin upon him. Indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.” (QS. Al-Baqarah : 173)
“And why should you not eat of that upon which the name of Allah has been mentioned while He has explained in detail to you what He has forbidden you, excepting that you which you are compelled. And indeed do many lead (others) astray though their (own) inclinations without knowledge. Indeed, you Lord – He is most knowing of the transgressors.” (QS. Al-An’am : 119)
However, necessity should not be used to removed illegitimate or haram law from things. And it is important to distinct between necessity and pressure of desire.
Since Islam must have a reason for prohibited things such as prohibition of dancing in Islam and prohibition of cigarettes in Islam. Therefore necessity should be followed by constraints and conditions under some kind of rule of necessity can be applied.
“But of the Truth had followed their inclinations, the heavens and the earth and whoever is in them would have been ruined. Rather, We have brought them their message, but they, from their message, are turning away.” (QS. Al-Mu’minun : 71)
Here are some rules and conditions when necessity is applicable :
- The incident or the conditions should be unexpected and it happened in current time.
- The necessity should be face in reality by person and not just an imagination or presuppositions in the future that might or might not happen.
- If there are no other way to embrace the necessity except engaging the forbidden act or thing. For example if person in the state of hunger, and there is no source of food except the haram food, and they do really need to drink and eat to keep their life, then the haram thing is permissible.
- The solutions in necessity should be less harmful for them.
- The permissible act or thing should be enough for them only to keep them survive and not fulfill their desire.
- Permissible things usually have a valid period or time and not last forever, when the state of necessity has been overcome then the law returns as usual. You may want to read of effects of divorce in muslim law.
And those are the explanation of law of necessity in Islam, indeed Allah SWT never trying to burden His people belong their capacity. This is precisely the proof of the ease of Islam and being a Muslims.