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Islamic Business Ethics!

Business Ethics – Mufti Menk – YouTube

Mufti Menk explains the rules of a good bargain.

I have taught business ethics for some years now and I have tried to emphasize the application of religion to the field. Several Protestant denominations have strong codes of business ethics, and the Catholic Church has an vast array of teachings on the proper conduct of business from a moral standpoint. However, both Judaism and the religion of Islam have a lot to say about business ethics. I have been impressed by the Islamic take on what constitutes proper business conduct.

This brief video is eloquent and beautifully explains the concept of “blessings” in business dealings. Blessings in this teaching are the benefits of the bargain. They are not to be concentrated on one side of the deal but both parties are to share in the prosperity brought about by business deals. I was delighted with the concept and I hope you enjoy it too.

 

Kaaba at night (from wikipedia)

In these days, when many are willing to judge all practitioners of Islam as militant radicals, it is important to recognize the basic morality of the religion and the benefits it has brought hundreds of millions of people. Among those benefits is a strong well taught set of rules for Islamic business ethics.

James Pilant

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Actress in “Innocence of Muslims” Says Director Lied to Her

Actress in “Innocence of Muslims” Says Director Lied to Her

 

Innocence of Muslims Actress Speaks “says film is nightmare” – YouTube

This film is very much like screaming fire in jam-packed movie house with one small door. This was designed to provoke violence. Whether or not it is protected speech under the first amendment is highly questionable. Remember, fighting words are an exception to free speech protections.

It would be a mistake to consider Moslems to be particularly violent compared to other racial and religious groups. We can offend dozens of religious groups around the world by destroying their symbols and literature, by alleging that their leaders and holy men are frauds and that their religion is based on nothing more than lies and deceit. Many of them can be expected to take to the streets under that kind of provocation.

What would happen Americans burned national flags or symbols, attacked their customs, and insulted their past? I suspect we could see some serious mob action, diplomatic problems and possibly military action.

And consider what would happen if such a film were made about head of the Christian religion and his followers in America. Would many people find charges of sexual misconduct offensive? What would worshippers do if confronted with a film alleging that Christianity is a bundle of lies and its followers deluded fools?

Patriotism and religion have always been sources of violence and conflict in spite of many great and reasonable men who have tried to seek peace and reconciliation.

What “Innocence of Muslims” does and is designed to do is to incite hatred for the United States and violence against its citizens, to disrupt the Moslem world and damage the reputation of their religion.

 

There are a billion and half followers of Islam on the earth. Very few are interested in damaging American institutions or killing Americans. If so many as 1/10 of 1 percent were devoted to the destruction of America, that would be one million and five hundred thousand Anti Americans. There are 5.62 million Americans overseas. Don’t you think we would we suffer some injuries and death on a daily basis if that number of enemies chose to take any kind of action?

Let’s keep our views of violence in perspective and realize that words have consequences. You may have the right to speak your mind in this country (and that is questionable in this case) but should you do it?

If any amount of rational judgment had been a factor in this matter, it would never have happened.

James Pilant

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Unethical practices – hall-mark of failed organisations (via Corporate Thinking)

“There is no charity more beloved to God than speaking the truth.”

An Islamic point of view in regard to the Murdoch scandals is here presented. I really liked it. Today, it would appear that appreciating the thought of other cultures and practicing tolerance toward them can result in a sentence of death from a right wing vigilante. Appreciation is merited by the followers of Islam and tolerance a hallmark of Western Civilization, perhaps more the ideal of Christian Civilization.

James Pilant

Lies, bribes, deception and cover-ups are hall-marks of many failed organisations. Unethical behaviour at the leadership level leads to breakdown of trust with shareholders, government and the public – Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation found this out the hard way when Internet and phone hacking by its employees hit the headlines this month. Conrad Black of Hollinger Intl., Bernard Ebbers of WorldCom, Dennis Kozlowski of Tyco, Sanjay Kumar of Comp … Read More

via Corporate Thinking

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Herman Cain: Americans Have The Right To Ban Mosques In Their Communities (via Huffington Post)

Herman Cain: Americans Have The Right To Ban Mosques In Their Communities (via Huffington Post)

No. they don’t.

The right to practice or not practice a religion is enshrined in the Constitution.

Here’s Herman“Our Constitution guarantees the separation of church and state,” Cain said in an interview with Chris Wallace on “Fox News Sunday.” “Islam combines church and state. They’re using the church part of our First Amendment to infuse their morals in that community, and the people of that community do not like it. They disagree with it.”  

Don’t any number of American churches, for instance, Christian Reconstructionists, combine those elements, if you accept and it’s a big acceptance, that Islam is how he describes it.

As for infusing their morals into the community. I live in a dry county – enough said; there is plenty of infusion going on right now with the Christian religion.

If you watch Fox News for an hour, you might get his view point that Islam is a combination of church and state, a Sharia time bomb waiting to put all of our women in burkas and all of our men wearing unmarred beards with a little hand chopping for theft thrown in. However, the actual religion of Islam, not the comedic version on Fox, is the religion of more than one and one-half billion people. They range from deep into the South Pacific – Indonesia and Malaysia, all the way across the world to Surinam in South America. They have a wide range of laws and belief systems about those laws. As an attorney, I assure you I have seen nothing that would in any way suggest any attempt to make Sharia law part of American law, further it cannot creep on us anymore than any other set of laws.

Muslims are being painted as part of world wide campaign of subversion. I say to you with complete confidence, that if one and one-half billion followers of Islam were on the warpath, we would know about it. In that kind of conflict our deaths would be in the thousand per day with the toll mounting by the hour. There are estimated to be around twenty thousand members of Al Queda. Those are our principle enemies, they and other small groups angry at American actions in the Middle East. That’s it. There is no evidence that American Muslims are anything but patriots barring the occasional violent individual we can find in every religious sect.

This is the politics of fear, of unreason, of moral cowardice. Please don’t let yourself or anyone you know be led on a “moral” crusade to destroy a threat that does not exist while destroying a critical component of American Democracy. If you cannot build a mosque in America, if popular opinion is enough to stop it, who else’s church can we stop? I know of no church in the United States, – not one – that is not controversial.

They start here by claiming to defend religion while setting a precedent that can limit or eliminate building any church anywhere in the nation.

If we believe in the Bill of Rights, then the mosque should be built. If we believe in toleration of different religions and ideas, the mosque must go up. If we believe in allowing patriotic Americans who happen to have a different faith to exercise their rights, the mosque must go up.

Americans are a great people, this is one of those opportunities to demonstrate that.

James Pilant

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"Islam: Message of Peace" Comments on One of My Posts – In Search of a Good Dictator (via Diasporadical)

"Islam: Message of Peace" Comments on One of My Posts – In Search of a Good Dictator (via Diasporadical)

“Islam: Message of Peace” is the internet name of one of my blogging friends.

Here are his comments on a previous post which can be found here.

(The following is two comments which I have folded into one.)

James Pilant

“If a man like Muhammad were to assume the dictatorship of the modern world, he
would succeed in solving its problems that would bring it the much needed peace and
happiness.” –George Bernard Shaw

“Philosopher, orator, apostle, legislator, warrior, conqueror of ideas, restorer of rational
dogmas, of a cult without images; the founder of twenty terrestrial empires and of one
spiritual empire, that is Muhammad. As regards all standards by which human
greatness may be measured, we may well ask, is there any man greater than he?” –Lamartine, HISTOIRE DE LA TURQUIE, Paris, 1854, Vol. II, pp. 276 -277

“He was Caesar and Pope in one; but he was Pope without Pope’s pretensions, Caesar
without the legions of Caesar: without a standing army, without a bodyguard, without a
palace, without a fixed revenue; if ever any man had the right to say that he ruled by the
right divine, it was Mohammed, for he had all the power without its instruments and
without its supports.” –Bosworth Smith, Mohammad and Mohammadanism, London, 1874, p. 92.

My point is… if only Middle East follow the footstep of this Man (Muhammad – peace be upon him), in all aspect of social, economical, financial, legislative, institutional, judicial, leadership (…etc) matters of life, no dictator would assume leadership.

Islam cultivates these values from self, to family to society, (just like a pyramid) so when everyone is prepared to live a life like Muhammad (peace be upon him) did, there won’t be any chance for dictators to play with people’s lives.

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Hi Jolly (via AZCentral)

http://www.city-data.com/picfilesc/picc73461.php

Hi Jolly (via AZCentral)

Arizona has had many visitors from many parts of the world. Generally speaking we don’t think of Muslims in the wild West. But Hadji Ali was there. He was a living legend across the American West. He died in 1902 in Quartsite, Arizona.

From AZ Central

He died almost 97 years ago, but his name is still immediately recognized here. His tombstone is the largest monument in the city. It’s topped by a copper camel and it attracts thousands of visitors every year.

 And he is the direct cause of Camelmania, a rare but harmless malady that descends upon the desert town Quartzsite every year. Those who happen to be in attendance may, if they choose, become one if its victims.

The person under consideration here came to this country as Hadji Ali, but when he died, most people knew him as Hi Jolly.

From Wikipedia –

As near as anyone can determine, he was born of Jordanian Bedouin parentage in Jordan in the region of Greater Syria around 1828.[3] Hi Jolly, originally named Ḥājj ‘Alī, was an Ottoman citizen. He worked for the Ottoman armed forces and he was a breeder and trainer of camels. Some sources allege that he took the name Hadji Ali during his early life after making the pilgrimage to Mecca. The title hajji was given when, as a Muslim, he made the Hajj pilgrimage.[4] Other sources report that his mother was of Greek origin and his father was Syrian.

Why the name, Hi Jolly? Well, then as now, Americans cannot pronounce names from that part of the world. I have always thought that Hi Jolly’s story would make a good Western television series. He traveled all across the Southwest in the 1850’s, lived through the Civil War, ran a shipping business, prospected for gold, married, had children,participated in Crook’s campaign against the Sioux – he lived the history of the Wild West from the 1850’s to the closing of the frontier in 1900.

It drives me crazy when Americans lump all the followers of Islam into one angry group of terrorists, when the fact is that there are a billion and a half Muslims divided into many factions often with little interest in the United States.

Hadji Ali became an American citizen and was here when it was tough going. I’m proud to live in a country that can claim such figures as Hi Jolly.

James Pilant

From around the web.

From the web site, You Tube.

The New Christy Minstrels sing Hi Jolly.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=OZ5pKav9vCU

From the web site, AZCentral.com.

http://www.azcentral.com/travel/articles/2011/02/07/20110207arizona-hi-jolly-camel-military.html

Do you realize that if it hadn’t been for the Civil War there might be herds of wild camels roaming Arizona’s deserts today? That would be something to see, don’t you think?

slideshow Photos: Arizona’s Camel Military Corps and Hi Jolly

Of course, if it hadn’t been for the Civil War lots of things would be different, but that’s neither here nor there. Arizona’s adventure with camels began in 1855 when Jefferson Davis, then secretary of war and later president of the Confederacy, was sold on the idea of importing camels to build and travel on a wagon road through the Southwest.

 He pitched the idea of the Camel Military Corps to Congress, telling members, “For military purposes and for reconnaissance, it is believed the dromedary would supply a want now seriously felt in our service.”

Congress bit, and appropriated $30,000.

From the web site, SCVHistorian.

http://www.scvhistory.com/scvhistory/hijolly-ap.htm

When the desert cools this winter … when the burn is gone from the sand and the dry air packs a brisk tang, old Bill Keiser is going to get himself a pair of binoculars and look for wild camels.

Right now old Bill, a retired prospector and one of the few residents left in this ghost town, is content to sit on his front porch, shielded from the heat waves that dance in the street, and speculate about the camels.

He’s pretty sure he’ll find those wild camels, descendants, he says, of animals brought to this country nearly 100 years ago.

“There are sure signs that camels are in these parts,” Keiser explained. “Just the other day, for instance, a prospector from St. Louis found fresh camel tracks in the hills a few miles from here.”

 

 

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Poverty and its negative effects, and means of eliminating it in Islam (via Islam: Message of Peace)

 

 

 

Islam by country

 I have a special list of web sites, one set of favorites I check on every day. There are only a handful of web sites listed. It is the beginning of my search for relevant subjects each day. Islam: Message of Peace is one of those web sites.

 

Poverty is a matter of business ethics since in the developed world, poverty is closely related to business practices and also related to business philosophies that have worked their way into the political spectrum. Islam: Message of Peace addresses these kinds of issues through religious texts and commentaries. The approach is often very different from the academic, political and religious ideas of the Western world. I find that both refreshing and a possible source of potent ideas.

Since I value this kind of material, it should be obvious that I do not believe that the followers of Mohammed are all terrorists. I find much to praise in the religion of Islam and it is only fair to give people credit for the good and great things they do.  At the time of the Crusades, the follower of Islam had universities (Madrasa), and in those schools was the most advanced knowledge of medicine and mathematics in the world. It is through their libraries that Aristotle’s and other philosophers’ writings were rediscovered. Those potent ideas led to the Renaissance and the current civilization of the West. If you benefit from a doctor visit, value the ideas of the Ancient Greeks (like democracy), or balance a checkbook with Hindu-Arabic numerals, you can thank the civilization of Islam. If you as a civilized human seek intelligent answers to difficult questions, this is a good place to look.

Let’s look at what Islam has to say about ending poverty – (this is a portion of the article, please click on the link to read all of it)

 
Praise be to Allaah.   

Firstly: 
Poverty is one of the calamities that Allaah has decreed should happen, either to a specific person or a family or a society. Poverty has negative effects on people’s beliefs and conduct. Immoral behaviour becomes widespread to a large extent because of poverty, as a means of meeting people’s needs, so theft, murder, zina and sale of haraam things become widespread. 
Undoubtedly these things have a negative effect on individuals and societies. Allaah tells us that some of the mushrikeen used to kill their children, the apples of their eyes, either because of the poverty in which they were living or for fear of poverty that might befall them. Allaah says of the first case (interpretation of the meaning): 
“kill not your children because of poverty — We provide sustenance for you and for them”
[al-An’aam 6:151] 
And He says of the second case (interpretation of the meaning): 
“And kill not your children for fear of poverty. We shall provide for them as well as for you. Surely, the killing of them is a great sin”
[al-Isra’ 17:31] 
In al-Saheehayn there is narrated the story of a woman of the Children of Israel who, when she needed money and felt under pressure, she could not find anyone but her paternal cousin who wanted to have his way with her in return for giving her money. Then Allaah saved her from that after she reminded him of Allaah and told him to fear Him. 
Whatever the case, it is well known that poverty leads to crimes and corruption. Many nations suffer from it and are looking for solutions to this problem, but to no avail, and there is no solution except in Islam, which brought rulings for all people until the Hour begins. 
Secondly: 
The means that have been prescribed by Islam to solve the problem of poverty and combat it are as follows: 
1 – Teaching people to believe truly that provision comes from Allaah and that He is the Provider (al-Razzaaq), and every calamity that Allaah decrees is for a reason, and that the poor Muslim should be patient in bearing his calamity and strive to relieve himself and his family of poverty
Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning): 
“Verily, Allaah is the All‑Provider, Owner of Power, the Most Strong”
[al-Dhaariyaat 51:58] 

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THE UPPER HAND! (via Uganda Muslim Brothers and Sisters(UMBS) Marhaban مرحبا)

Giving money is a critical part of business activity in the United States. Without it, there are no non-profit corporations and many other economic activities are either wholly or partially funded by giving.

This posting is a discussion of the importance of giving for those who practice the religion of Islam. More interestingly, it discusses the rules of this giving and these rules I highly recommend.

We would do well in the United States to practice our giving with these kinds of things in mind, whatever our religious beliefs may be.

James Pilant

  Islam encourages the Muslim to spend from his money for Allah's Sake whenever he is capable of doing so, and it stresses on the great virtues of giving a charity. The prophet (PBUH) said, 'The Upper Hand is better than the Lower Hand. The upper hand is the one that gives, and the lower hand is the one that takes'. Allah SWT said in the Holy Book, 'The likeness of those who spend their money for Allah's sake, is as the likeness of a grain (of co … Read More

via Uganda Muslim Brothers and Sisters(UMBS) Marhaban مرحبا

Forbidden Business Transactions – The Teachings Of Islam

One of my good friends suggested I look at a short (20 page) article that is basically a lecture by Shaikh Saalih bin Fawzaan Al-Fawzaan. (Yes, that’s all one name. Shaikh” is a title given out of respect to any scholar or elderly person in Arabic. His name is “Salih” and “bin Fawzaan” means the son of Fawzaan.)

This is a great summary of the teachings of Islam as applied to business ethics. It is most impressive. This civilization has a lot to say about what is a legitimate business practice, and they don’t shy away from the concept of right and wrong.

Listen to this –

Also, the scholars of Fiqh have stated that what falls under Najash is when a seller tells his customer: “I bought this item for such and such price”, lying about the price, so that the buyer may be fooled and buy the item at an increased value. Or it is when the seller says: “I was given this product at this price” or he says: “I received it for this much”, lying about the price. He only wants to fool the customers into bidding the price up to reach this alleged and false price, which he claims he spent for the item. This is from the Najash, which Allaah’s Messenger (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) forbade. It is a treachery and deception of the Muslims, and it is lying and disloyalty, for which he will be accountable for before Allaah. So what is obligatory on the seller is that he reveals the truth if the buyer asks him how much he got it for. He must tell him the truth and not say that he attained it for this much money, lying about the price. What also falls into the definition of An-Najash is if the people of the marketplace or the storeowners agree to not outbid one another when an item is presented for sale, for the purpose of forcing the owner to sell it for a (discounted) cheaper price. So therefore, they are all participating in this act, which is Haraam. And this is from An-Najash. It is also a form of taking the people’s money unjustly.

Where do we in this culture have the courage to call the continuous wall of “PR” lies and distortions, treachery and deception? That’s wonderful teaching. Now there is much in this that is not in accordance with the common beliefs in the United States, but is not every single branch of the Christian religion committed like the religion of Islam to avoid the things of this world and not to be worldly? Is that not repeatedly stated in the New Testament?

A dose of of the business ethics teaching of Islam would not be to the detriment of this country, it would be a blessing.

James Pilant

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The Islamic Workplace

The religion of Islam has a strong and well developed system of business ethics.

From An Islamic Approach to Business Ethics

Ethics in Islam

Islam places the highest emphasis on ethical values in all aspects of human life. In Islam, ethics governs all aspects of life. Ethical norms and moral codes discernable from the verses of the Holy Qur’an and the teachings of the Prophet (sws) are numerous, far reaching and comprehensive. Islamic teachings strongly stress the observance of ethical and moral code in human behaviour. Moral principles and codes of ethics are repeatedly stressed throughout the Holy Qur’an. Besides, there are numerous teachings of the Prophet (sws) which cover the area of moral and ethical values and principles. Says the Holy Qur’an:

You are the best nation that has been raised up for mankind; You enjoin right conduct, forbid evil and believe in Allah. (3:110)

The Prophet (sws) also says:

I have been sent for the purpose of perfecting good morals. (Ibn Hambal[1], No: 8595)

This goes without saying that there is a general consensus among human beings about certain fundamental ethical values. However, the Islamic ethical system substantially differs from the so-called secular ethical systems as well as from the moral code advocated by other religions and societies. In the Islamic scheme of things, adherence to moral code and ethical behaviour is a part of I%man (faith) itself. According to the Islamic teachings, Muslims have to jealously guard their behaviour, deeds, words, thoughts, feelings and intentions. Islam asks its believers to observe certain norms and moral codes in their family affairs; in dealings with relatives, with neighbours and friends; in their business transactions; in their social affairs, nay in all spheres of private and public life.

The You Tube site, TheIslamicWorkplace (all one word), has a number of brief lectures on the subject. You should watch if only for the parables used in the teaching.

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