The Islamic Economic Framework
This lecture is based on a forthcoming treatise being published by the Acton Institute. It is an attempt to re-discover the principles of commerce and economics, as revealed in the Quran, espoused by the Sunnah (practices of Prophet Muhammad) and understood by the jurists. It lays down essentially three claims: first, it presents the case that as a religion, Islam offers three definitive and broad principles of economic organization of a society evolved in the initial phase of Islamic history. These are: the principle of ownership which clearly delineates private and public property; principle of wealth creation, which is based on voluntary trade and price freedom and the principle of wealth distribution by assignment of rights in one's private property to claimants and non-claimants. Second, it further argues that these principles bear close resemblance to the modern economic system under free market capitalism with certain exceptions. Third, this text argues that the discipline of Islamic Economics, introduced in the latter half of twentieth century, actually deviates from these principles established by the classical Islam. Questioning the modern Islamic Economics, this text presents a new framework- that it calls New Islamic Economic Framework. The lecture offers both conceptual foundations and institutional tenets- with an Islamic vision of a small state, strong society and free market.
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