Dhimma – living under Islam
Dhimma – living under Islam

Non-Muslim Subjects of the Islamic State (Ahl Al-Dhimma)

I am not an Islamic scholar. I am relying totally on The reliance of the traveller and tools of the worshipper. This appears to be an authoritative source. The following view on the merits of The reliance of the traveller appears to accord with those of amazon reviewers:

It is considered an authoritative source on Sunni Islamic law, because it is certified as such by Al-Azhar University in Cairo. There is no higher authority on Sunni Islamic doctrine than Al-Azhar; it is the closest equivalent to the Vatican that can be found in Islam.

So whatever you find in Reliance of the Traveller is definitive Islamic law. No Sunni Muslim jurist would argue against anything cited there.

Source: The ESW Defense File

Here is what the The reliance of the traveller has to say about non-Muslim subjects of the Islamic State:

Non-Muslim Subjects of the Islamic State (Ahl Al-Dhimma)

011.1 A formal agreement of protection is made with citizens who are:

(1) Jews;

(2) Christians;

(3) Zoroastrians;

(4) Samarians and Sabians, if their religions do not respectively contradict the fundamental bases of Judaism and Christianity;

(5) and those who adhere to the religion of Abraham or one of the other prophets (upon whom be blessings and peace).

o11.2 Such an agreement may not be effected with those who are idol worshippers (dis: o9.9 (n:)), or those who do not have a Sacred Book or something that could have been a Book.(A: Something that could have been a Book refers to those like the Zoroastrians, who have remnants resembling an ancient Book. As for the pseudoscriptures of cults that have appeared since Islam (n: such as the Sikhs, Baha’ is, Mormons, Qadianis, etc.), they neither are nor could be a Book, since the Koran is the final revelation (dis: w4).)

o11.3 Such an agreement is only valid when the subject peoples:

(a)   follow the rules of Islam (A: those mentioned below (o11.5) and those involving public behavior

(b)  and dress, though in acts of worship and their private lives, the subject communities have the

(c)   laws, judges, and courts, enforcing the rules of their own religion among themselves);

(d)  (b) and pay the non-Muslim poll tax (jizya).

The Non-Muslim Poll Tax

o11.4 The minimum non-Muslim poll tax is one dinar (n: 4.235 grams of gold) per person (A: per year). The maximum is whatever both sides agree upon. It is collected with leniency and politeness, as are all debts, and is not levied on women, children, or the insane.

o11.5 Such non-Muslim subjects are obliged to comply with Islamic rules that pertain to the safety and indemnity of life, reputation, and property. In addition, they:

(1) are penalized for committing adultery or theft, thought not for drunkenness;

(2) are distinguished from Muslims in dress, wearing a wide cloth belt (zunnar);

(3) are not greeted with “as-Salamu ‘alaykum”;

(4) must keep to the side of the street;

(5) may not build higher than or as high as the Muslims’ buildings, though if they acquire a tall house, it is not razed;

(6) are forbidden to openly display wine or pork, (A: to ring church bells or display crosses,) recite the Torah or Evangel aloud, or make public display of their funerals and feastdays;

(7) and are forbidden to build new churches.

o11.6 They are forbidden to reside in the Hijaz, meaning the area and towns around Mecca, Medina, and Yamama, for more than three days when the caliph allows them to enter there for something they need).

o11.7 A non-Muslim may not enter the Meccan Sacred Precinct (Haram) under any circumstances, or enter any other mosque without permission (A: nor may Muslims enter churches without their permission).

o11.8 It is obligatory for the caliph (def: o25) to protect those of them who are in Muslim lands just as he would Muslims, and to seek the release of those of them who are captured.

o11.9 If non-Muslim subjects of the Islamic state refuse to conform to the rules of Islam, or to pay the non-Muslim poll tax, then their agreement with the state has been violated (dis: o11.11) (A: though if only one of them disobeys, it concerns him alone).

o11.10 The agreement is also violated (A: with respect to the offender alone) if the state has stipulated that any of the following things break it, and one of the subjects does so anyway, though if the state has not stipulated that these break the agreement, then they do not; namely, if one of the subject people:

(1) commits adultery with a Muslim woman or marries her;

(2) conceals spies of hostile forces;

(3) leads a Muslim away from Islam;

(4) kills a Muslim;

(5) or mentions something impermissible about Allah, the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace), or Islam.

o11.11 When a subject’s agreement with the state has been violated, the caliph chooses between the four alternatives mentioned above in connection with prisoners of war (o9.14).

Source: on The reliance of the traveller and tools of the worshipper

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