Rector’s fatwa: the punishment for democracy is death
Scandalous pronouncements are contained in the encyclopedia compiled under the editorship of Mardin Artuklu University Rektor Ağırakça, who has suggested that academics wear turbans in place of gowns. The word “murtad” is defined as “believing ideologies external to Islam to be true and giving credence to polytheistic orders such as democracy” and it is said that “the punishment for this is death.”
Scandalous pronouncements have been included in the Comprehensive Encyclopedia of Islam produced under the editorship of Mardin Artukulu University Prof. Dr. Ahmet Ağırakça. The word “murtad,” meaning leaving Islam and passing to another religion, is described in the encyclopedia as, “Believing ideologies external to Islam made up by kafirs to be true; worshiping monuments, graves and the dead; giving credence to polytheistic orders such as Judaism, Christianity, Communism, Capitalism, Democracy and Social Democracy.” It was said in the entry that, “A person who begins to think like this after having become a Muslim has become an apostate. The apostate’s punishment, if he or she does not repent, is to be killed.”
Controversy has been provoked by the scandalous comments in the six-volume Comprehensive Encyclopedia of Islam published by Şamil Publishing House, which was edited by Mardin Artuklu University Rektor Ağırakça, who has suggested that academics wear turbans in place of gowns. In the encyclopedia, beneath the heading “These are the things that cause Muslims to leave their religion and become apostates” in the entry on the word “murtad,” meaning a Muslim leaving his or her religion, membership of another religion, democracy and communism are described as being polytheistic orders. The encyclopedia contains the pronouncement, “Believing ideologies external to Islam made up by kafirs to be true; worshiping monuments, graves and the dead; giving credence to polytheistic orders such as Judaism, Christianity, Communism, Capitalism, Democracy, Social Democracy etc. God Almighty has decreed all of these to be blasphemy. Consequently, those who do not accept them to be blasphemy are denying the Quran, Sunnah and consensus of opinion on canonical law. A person who begins to think like this after becoming a Muslim has become an apostate.”
The punishment is death
The encyclopedia, not restricting itself to a scandalous definition, states, “If a Muslim’s apostacy is seen, heard, confessed to or witnessed by two just Muslims, the apostate’s punishment, if he or she does not repent, is to be killed. Most doctors of theology are of the opinion that the same sentence is to be applied to women. Prior to being punished, the apostate is encouraged to repent and return to Islam. But the manner in which this is to be carried out is open to dispute. The opinion of the majority of scholars, though, is that they are to be killed after having been asked to repent three times.” It is also noted that, “There is clearly nothing illogical about the punishment applied to apostates in Islam. In fact, a glance at history shows that when those governing Muslims have turned away from applying this punishment to those who deserve it, the state has slipped from their hands at just such times and Islamic society has become susceptible to oppression by non-Islamic forces.”
The encyclopedia also contains scandalous statements targeting women and proclaims the following in the entry on “nushuz”: “Disobedience towards the husband; a woman acting malevolently and rebelling against her husband. A woman, for as long as she accepts the dowry spoken of in advance and her husband provides for her subsistence, must obey her husband’s legitimate orders. A husband initially warns and advises a woman who does not comply with her husband’s legitimate wishes and tries to persuade her, and, if he is unable to achieve a result from this, he leaves the woman alone in her bed, that is, in her room. If this, too, produces no result, the husband may apply ta’dib (chastisement, punishment) to his wife as a kind of disciplinary punishment. However, the husband may chastise his wife in a way that leaves no mark on her body.”
Do not leave a woman to her own devices sexually
The following comments are also included in the same encyclopedia: “Treating a woman well includes giving her immediately what is hers by right. Engaging in sexual relations with one wife in the company of the other wife amounts to disrespect and ill treatment towards her. According to the Shafiis, sexual union on one occasion is a duty because this is the husband’s right. After this, it is permissible to leave the woman, just like leaving a rented house unattended to without living there. For, it is lust and affection that invites sexual union. It is impossible, however, to impose this as a duty. Nevertheless, it is canonically laudable not to leave a woman to her own devices in sexual terms, because, if a woman is left to her own devices in this regard, there is a fear that the way will be opened for mischief-making and intrigue.”
ARE YOU GOING TO DISMISS HIM?
CHP member of parliament Ali Şeker has brought the encyclopedia onto the parliamentary agenda. In the written question he submitted requesting a reply from Prime-Minister Binali Yıldırım, Şeker said, “Supporting orders like communism, capitalism, democracy, social democracy etc. is described as being kafir-like and it is said that “the punishment for this is death” just as in the Islamic State mentality. Do you think this is so?” Şeker, recalling President Erdoğan’s comment with reference to certain religious scholars, “Certain people are emerging who assert doctrine that certainly has no place in our religion. These people either do not live in this century, or are living in a very different world,” inquired, “Is Ağırakça a rector who fits Erdoğan’s description? If so, are you contemplating dismissing him? Did the Comprehensive Encyclopedia of Islam obtain any kind of permission to publish? Did it undergo any kind of checking of content?”
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