Supplicating against the Oppressor in Proportion to the Injustice Caused by Him
Fatwa No: 424378

  • Fatwa Date:13-7-2020 - Thul-Qi'dah 23, 1441
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Question

Assalamualikum,
If someone is not good person and always try to harm us, can we make dua for his death. Is it permissible...? like dua in the below hadith.
"Hisham b. Urwa reported on the authority of his father (Allah be pleased with him) that Arwa bint Uwais disputed with Sa'id b. Zaid that he had seized some of the land belonging to her. She brought this dispute before Marwan b. al-Hakam. Sa'id said:
How could I take a part of her land, after what I heard from Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon'him)? He (Marwan) said: What did you hear from Allah's Messenger (?)? He said: I heard Allah's Messenger (?) say: He who wrongly took a span of land would be made to wear around his neck seven earths. Marwan said: I do not ask any evidence from you after this. He (Sa'id) said: O Allah, make her blind if she has told a lie and kill her in her own land. He (the narrator) said: She did not die until she had lost her eyesight, and (one day) as she was walking in her land, she fell down into a pit and died." (Sahi Muslim)
Jaza Kallahu Khair,

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and that Muhammad,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

The Islamic Sharee‘ah allows a wronged person to supplicate against the one who wronged him. Allah, The Exalted, Says (what means): {Allah does not like the public mention of evil except by one who has been wronged. And ever is Allah Hearing and Knowing.} [Quran 4:148] Ibn ‘Abbaas, may Allaah be pleased with him, said about the interpretation of this verse: “Allah, The Exalted, does not like that someone supplicates against another unless he is oppressed. He permitted him to supplicate against the one who wronged him.” [End of quote]

If the oppressor supplicated Allah, The Exalted, for the death of the oppressed person, then there is nothing wrong with the oppressed person treating him in the same manner and supplicating for his death; otherwise, supplicating Allah, The Exalted, for the death of the oppressor may not be proportional to his injustice. The scholars held different opinions regarding the permissibility of supplicating Allah for the death of the oppressor. Some held that it is permissible, citing as evidence the story of Sa‘eed when he supplicated against that woman saying: “O Allah! If she is lying, deprive her of her eyesight and cause her to die in her land.” [Muslim] Al-Qurtubi  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said in Al-Mufhim: “The saying of Sa‘eed: ‘O Allah! If she is lying, deprive her of her eyesight and cause her to die in her land,’ is proof that Sa‘eed believed that it was permissible to supplicate that the oppressor be afflicted with a punishment that exceeds the injustice he committed. This Hadeeth gives rise to a problematic aspect in light of the verse wherein Allah, The Almighty, Says (what means): {And the retribution for an evil act is an evil one like it} [Quran 42:40] and the verse wherein He Says (what means): {So whoever has assaulted you, then assault him in the same way that he has assaulted you...} [Quran 2:194] The problematic aspect is that just as it is impermissible to take from the oppressor or usurper what is beyond the prescribed Qisaas (retribution) or beyond what he has taken, it is also impermissible to supplicate against him with a harm beyond the harm he had done … The response to this is that there is a difference between supplicating that the oppressor be afflicted with what exceeds his injustice and exacting retribution from him beyond his injustice. This is because a supplication is not definitively answered. So if the wronged person makes such a supplication out of distress caused by his grievance and the severity of his suffering, we do not say that he has committed a prohibited act. The utmost objection to his act would be that he had left out what is better in this regard since he is supported by the Islamic law, and because he did not adhere to patience (which is better and more virtuous).” [End of quote]

Some scholars, on the other hand, are of the view that the permissibility in this regard is not well-founded and that the wronged person should only supplicate that the oppressor be afflicted with a punishment that is in proportion to the injustice he committed. The Maaliki scholar An-Nafaraawi  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said in Al-Fawaakih Ad-Dawaani: “Al-Qaraafi said, ‘Supplicating against the oppressor may take multiple forms:

First, to supplicate that an oppressor (unjust ruler) be deposed only to eliminate his injustice, and this is fair.

Second, to supplicate that he be deprived of his children, family, and the like of his close ones and those who have not wronged the supplicant, and this should be forbidden because he would be harming those who have not wronged him.

Third, to supplicate Allah, The Exalted, to cause him to fall into a sin, such as being afflicted with alcohol addiction, backbiting, or slander, and this is also forbidden because wishing others to fall into sin is itself a sin.

Fourth, to supplicate that he be afflicted with physical harm beyond what he deserves as a punishment for his injustice. This is not acceptable as well because Allah, The Exalted, Says (what means): {So whoever has assaulted you, then assault him in the same way that he has assaulted you.} [Quran 2:194]” [End of quote]

There is no doubt that adherence to patience is better than supplicating against the oppressor, and supplicating against him in proportion to his injustice is better than supplicating against him with what exceeds it. Verily, safety with regard to one’s religion is an unmatchable attainment.

Allah Knows best.

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