Today I'm going to talk Dhimmis in Islamic state. What rights are given to them by Islam?!! Are they free to practice their religious duties?!! Are they free to criticize and argue?!! Why they pay the Jizyah?!! Can they be rulers in the society?!! What Muslims really did with Dhimmis?!!! ... and more other.
A good starting point would be defining 'Dhimmi'. In the famous book of Al-Sayyed Sabeq; 'Feqh Al-Sunna' 'Dhimma' means troth and intergrity. 'Dhimmi' refers to any non-Muslim living under the authority of Islamic state.
Islamic religion gives them various rights; and some of the most important rights are the following;
*They are free to practice their religious rituals; not a church or temple can be demolished, not a cross can be broken, not a Muslim who marry from a Dhimmi woman has the right to prevent her from going to her temple or church.
*Muslims have no right to force any of them to leave their religion to Islam, as Allah said clearly in 2nd Surah verse 256; " Let there be no compulsion in religion..." and ".. wilt thou then compel mankind, against their will, to believe! " 10:99
*They are free to eat pork or drink wine whenever it's allowed in their religion.
*They can organize their marriage, divorce, spending, family issues .. etc freely and as they like without restrictions or limits.
*They are allowed to argue and discuss freely in the limits of logic as Allah said; " And dispute ye not with the People of the Book, except with means better (than mere disputation), unless it be with those of them who inflict wrong (and injury): but say, "We believe in the revelation which has come down to us and in that which came down to you; Our Allah and your Allah is one; and it is to Him we bow (in Islam)." " 29:46
*It's allowed to exchange visits with them, and to visit their ill, to present gifts to them, buy and sell, .... etc.
*Poor and weak Dhimmis have a part in Bait Al-Mall (Islamic house of money) as a stipend.
*They have the right to be in charge of all state employment -except those who have the religious character like Imams, Caliphs, Army leaders and Judgers- whenever they are better in these employments other than others.
*Muslims are obliged to protect them from any kind of aggression.
*Muslims aren't allowed to insult or hurt them.
It's important too to mention few main principles in dealing with Dhimmis:
*" Allah forbids you not, with regard to those who fight you not for (your) Faith nor drive you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with them: for Allah loveth those who are just. " Qur'an 60:8
*"Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said that they enjoy the same rights and carry the same responsibilities as Muslims themselves.
*The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said; "He who hurts a dhimmi hurts me, and he who hurts me annoys Allah"
After this theoretic speech we must see what Muslims really did and how they deal with Dhimmis.
*There is a famous story when the son of the Muslim ruler in Egypt whipped a Coptic Christian when the Coptic's horse beated his horse saying to him; 'Are you beating me when I'm son of the ruler?!!', so this Coptic travelled to Al-Madina in Saudi Arabia where the Caliph exists more than 1000 Km far from Egypt. When he narrated what happened to Umar Ibn Al-Khattab the Caliph he at once sent to the Muslim ruler ordering him to come with his son. When they arrived he gave the Coptic a whip and told him to hit the son of the ruler, after whipping him he said to him then to whip the ruler himself, but he refused. Then Umar the Caliph said; 'When did you enslave the people when they were born free?!!'
Beside what the Caliph did and beside his great word, there is an important lesson. This Coptic travelled more than 1000 Km which may take weeks in his time to go to the Muslim Caliph, Why?!!! That's obvious that he was sure that he will take his right.
*When Umar Ibn Al-Khattab entered Jerusalem, he was invited to pray in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre but he refused saying that Muslims after him may say 'Umar prayed here' and build a mosque instead of the church. And until now the church still in its place.
And what about the Jizyah?!!!
Yes, one may ask that question. If Muslims think that they deal kindly and justly with non-Muslims, so why they take the Jizyah from them.
First; one must know that there is no taxes in Islam. Instead; capable Muslims pay the Zakat yearly as 2.5% of their money to Bait Al-Mal, and Dhimmis pay the Jizyah as a sum of money specified in Shari'a. It's not taken from all Dhimmis, but there is many exceptions like; old men, women, kids, lunatic, poor, blind, monastics, .. and every one who can't pay it.
Second; we must realize that in this point; Dhimmis may be better than Muslims. All capable Muslims must pay the Zakat including Imams, Scholars, woman, .. and rich men, in the time when Dhimmis have many exceptions.
Third; the purpose of the Jizyah is that Muslims defend them and protect them in case of any war or to provide them the basic needs when they will need it due to the age or illness etc, so it's not a kind of discrimination according to the faith, but instead a contribution from all members of society for the good of society.
IMPORTANT NOTE: This post is ONLY a presentation about Dhimmis, BUT it's not all the thing, there are other details which can't be said all here. So for more information you can check Islamic websites..
Strongly recommended links:
... or ask directly a Muslim scholar in this link ( Ask the scholar) and he will answer you...