Saudi Ulema: ‘It’s Not Jihad that Brings More Harm to the Country and Its People’


The primary criterion is that Jihad should bring about greater good and not result in greater harm to the country and its people.

Saudi scholar Dr. Abdus-Salam Al-Suhaymi highlights the consensus among Sunni Salafi scholars that any form of fighting that inflicts greater harm upon a country and its people is considered unlawful and cannot be deemed Jihad.

Instead, these scholars stress the importance of patience, thorough preparation, and the acquisition of necessary religious and material equipment to deter potential threats.

Dr. Al-Suhaymi’s post references the teachings of renowned Salafi scholars of Saudi Arabia, including Sheikh Ibn Baz, Sheikh Al-Albani, Sheikh Ibn Uthaymeen, and Sheikh Al-Fawzan, who have collectively advocated for the ethical limitations of Jihad.

The scholars argue that engaging in battles or conflicts that bring about greater harm to the nation and its inhabitants goes against the principles of Islam. True Jihad, they assert, requires careful consideration of the potential consequences and the ability to mitigate harm to the greatest extent possible.

Ibn Baz’s Stance on Ethical Jihad

Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah bin Baz, a highly respected Islamic scholar from Saudi Arabia, emphasized the importance of ensuring that any armed conflict, termed as Jihad, must not bring about greater harm than good.

In his view, the ethical dimension of Jihad is paramount, and careful deliberation is necessary to prevent unnecessary harm.

For more on Ibn Baz’s views, click here.

Al-Albani’s Contributions to Ethical Jihad

Sheikh Muhammad Nasiruddin Al-Albani, known for his contributions to Hadith studies, shared a similar viewpoint regarding the ethical dimensions of Jihad.

He asserted that Jihad should only be pursued after a thorough examination of potential consequences and that the greater good must always prevail.

To access Al-Albani’s perspective, click here.

Ibn Uthaymeen’s Advocacy for Caution

Sheikh Muhammad ibn Saleh Al-Uthaymeen, another prominent Islamic scholar, supported the idea that Jihad must not result in greater harm to the nation and its people.

He underscored the need for a measured and cautious approach, ensuring that the principles of ethics and justice are upheld.

For more insights from Ibn Uthaymeen, click here.

Al-Fawzan’s Commitment to Ethical Principles

While the post by Dr. Al-Suhaymi did not provide a direct reference to Sheikh Saleh Al-Fawzan, this contemporary scholar is also known for advocating ethical principles in various aspects of Islamic jurisprudence.

His views on Jihad align with those of Ibn Baz, Al-Albani, and Ibn Uthaymeen, emphasizing the ethical and compassionate dimensions of armed conflict.

The consensus among these eminent Sunni Salafi scholars emphasizes that Jihad is not a carte blanche for violence, it is subject to strict ethical conditions.

The primary criterion is that Jihad should bring about greater good and not result in greater harm to the country and its people. The preservation of human life and well-being is of paramount importance, underlining the importance of deliberation, patience, and the avoidance of indiscriminate violence.

This clarion call for ethical Jihad resonates in the modern world, where it serves as a reminder of the moral framework within which Jihad is understood within the Sunni Islamic tradition.

These teachings stress the importance of preserving human life, minimizing harm, and ensuring that armed conflict is only resorted to as a last, carefully considered resort.

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