Islamic Civilisation — 27 July 2011
Islamic Polity of Caliphate as the Organ of True Globalism, and the falsity of Nationalism

Globalism and universalism is essential for Islamic politics, because Allah is not the Lord of any certain country but the Lord of the earth, thus Tawhid (uniqueness of Allah) requires the acceptance of oneness of the lordship of Allah on the earth as well as denial of the lordship for any other creatures on any part of it. And the place on which the unique lordship of Allah is realized, namely the Shari`ah alone is enacted and implemented to rule the people, is called Dar al-Islam. The uniqueness of Khalifah only symbolizes the unity and integrity of Dar al-Islam.[1]

Khalifah must also be one person and two or more Khalifahs(Khulafa’)’ coexistence is severely forbidden. The Prophet Muhammad(peace be upon him) ordered loyalty to single Khalifah in one age in order of accession to the throne, saying,; “although there is no prophet after me any longer, Khulafa’(successors) will appear and their number will quite a large. Give loyalty in order one by one, and follow the authority which Allah vested in them.” (Hadith: Muslim), and he did not only reject the legitimacy of the second and following Khalifahs but ordered decisively execution of them, saying; “When the pledge of allegiance is given to two Khalifas, kill the second one.” (Hadith: Muslim)

When the Prophet Muhammad passed away, many tribes of Arabia refused to give Zakah to Madinah, the capital of the Khalifah Abu Bakr. At this time, the Khalifah Abu Bakr subjugated them in spite of the fact that they confessed “there is no god but Allah and Muhammad is the apostle of Allah” and performed the prayer (Salah). This battle is called the “apostasy (Riddah)” war. This decision of the Abu Bakr shows that the supremacy of the headship, Khilafah, and the unity of the Ummah(Muslim community) as a critical issue for Islam.

Although in Fiqh, Khalifah is abbreviation of Khalifah Rasul Allah, i.e., the successor of the Apostle of Allah, not Khalifah Allah, the vicegerent of Allah on the earth, but the connotation of the vicegerent of Allah on the Earth has never been forgotten. Al-Mawsu`ah al-Fiqhiyyah[2] cites the Qur’anic commentary of al-Qurtubi, “This verse (And when thy Lord said unto the angels: Lo! I am about to place a viceroy in the earth…Q:2:30) is the base for the appointment of Imam or Khalifah who is listened to and obeyed in order that the opinion would be agreed and rules of the people be carried on.”(al-Qurtbi, al-Jami` li-Ahkam al-Qur’an, n.p., n.d., vol.1, p.264) Allah is the Lord of the heavens and the earth, Rabb al-Samawat wa-al-Ard. In this context, the term “al-Ard(the earth)” in Qur’an is always single contrary to “al-Samawat(heavens; plural)” . That is because the earth is one and indivisible, and consequently, the Khlifah as the vicegerency of Allah on the earth should be one and indivisible, as the lordship of Allah for the earth is one and indivisible, there is no god but Allah.

Fiqh prescribes the uniqueness of Khalifah and strictly forbids its plurality, because the Islamic order includes security of the freedom of immigration. An angel says in Qur’an; “But was not God’s earth spacious that you might have emigrated therein. (4:97), and Ibn ‘Abbas in his Qur’anic commentary Tanwir al-Miqbas, explains this verse; “…My earth is spacious…” as “the land of al-Madinah is safe, so immigrate to it.” (Ibn ‘Abbas, Tanwir al-Miqbas, 1992, Lebanon, p.102) Namely, al-Madinah, Dar al-Islam should be the place to which all the Muslims can immigrate. The oneness of the Khalifah symbolizes the oneness of the Islamic order, and the Islamic order secures the free movement of human beings and commodities within its territory, Dar al-Islam.

The earth belongs to nobody, but solely to Allah. No one is allowed to cut it into parts and restrict immigration in it. Contrary to the ideology of the “territorial nation state” of modern Western Europe, Islam does not allow human beings to be divided into separate nations. This is because Allah created human beings as various ethnic groups so that they could know each other, as Allah says; “We have indeed created you from a male and a female, and made you nations and tribes that you may come to know one another.” (49:13), and the freedom of the immigration is the precondition for mutual-understanding. And Allah orders us to travel in the earth to learn the history of nature and the history of human beings by saying,; “… Travel in the land and observe how He originated creation.” (29:20), “…so travel in the land and behold how was the end of those who denied.” (3:137, 6:11, 16:36). The liberation of the earth by the abolition of the borders and the unity of the Islamic order are essential conditions for the Islamic mission.

The earth differs in climate regionally, and there are also differences in its underground resources. Additionally life in a particular area may be made temporarily difficult by a natural or manmade disaster. So, freedom of migration on the Earth is the first step to enabling the justice and equality of life among mankind. So, the abolition of borders which bar the migration of people is an indispensable part of the Islamic order. And for realizing this, the existence of the single Khalifah is necessary to prevent the discriminatory “territorial nation-state” system, which is nothing but the cartel of the rulers of each country in the world, who mutually agree to divide the world for the purpose of protecting their own vested interests.

John Rawls (d.2002) argued that the unfairness is the situation, in which any rational person cannot choose living under the veil of ignorance, i.e., without knowing whether he or she is part of the poor members or the rich. Without doubt, the contemporary “territorial nation state” system is unfair, in which the small number of nations of the advanced countries enjoy the wealth while the majority of human beings are forced to live inside the under developed countries separated by borders of “territorial nation state” from the advanced countries in order that they cannot immigrate, and number of the poor who live in starvation with less than 1 US dollar per day is 960 millions, which any rational person can accept, assumed under the veil of ignorance.

Therefore, the territorial nation state system is contradicting the ideal of the justice and the humanity which the West claim to advocate, thus the borders of the territorial nation states should be eliminated, in order that the earth would be liberated for all the human beings and the complete freedom of migration would be guaranteed.

Moreover, even in terms of economical development, the liberation of the earth, i.e., permission of the free migration is the best way. Newsweek writes that pretty much every expert agrees that creating a guest-worker program in the rich world would be one of the best ways to fight poverty and boost global incomes. The economic effects of migration are “profound,” says Dilip Ratha, an economist at the World Bank. “Even a small increase in migration can produce significant welfare gains, and those welfare gains can be much larger than complete trade liberalization.”.[3]

In fact, the establishment of “the House of Islam” means liberation of the earth for free migration of the whole of humanity through the elimination of the unfair rulers who enclose their exploited subjects by the border of their territory. It should be started from so-called “Muslim countries”, then expanded to all over the world.

In order to understand the true implication of Islamic globalism, we should reconsider the conception of nationalism in the light of Islam..

Nationalism is a form of neo-tribalism born in Western Europe in the second half of the 18th century. The Prophet Muhammad (SS) said; “Those who were killed under the flag of delusion which appeals for or support tribalism(`Asabiyyah) died the death of the Jahiliyyah (pre-Islamic ignorance)” (Hadith: Muslim)

The Prophet Muhammad said, “Those who appealed for tribalism are not our fellows. And those who fought for tribalism are not our fellows. And those who died for tribalism are not our fellows.”

(Being asked “What is tribalism?”) He answered “It is supporting your tribe in injustice.” (Hadith: Abu Dawud)[4]

Tribalism was of the normal way of life for the Arabs of the Jahiliyyah (pre-Islamic ignorance), and the good tidings for all mankind was the advent of Islamic justice. Now the conquest of this “neotribalism” has become the major objective of the Islamic mission. The big problem is that “neotribalism” is not only the ideology of the anti-Islamic regimes of modern Muslim countries which oppose the reestablishment of Khilafah and the “House of Islam”, but is also polluting most of dissident and resistance groups which believe themselves to be an “Islamic movement”.

In the Islamic world, the neotribalism of these “Islamic dissident movements” makes the transformation of “their own country” into “an Islamic state” their goal based on the illusion that the practice of Islamic law inside “their own country” alone is possible under the framework of the “territorial nation state”. The neo-tribalism of Islamic resistance movements which fight against the invasion of the infidels usually aims for the liberation of “its own country” from the infidels and the recovery of its national sovereignty.

As mentioned before, the unity of the Khalifah and the Islamic world is the essential prerequisites of the Islamic domain, the “House of Islam”, thus enforcement of the Islamic law inside one country alone is only an illusion as we have already shown.

The precedent for the establishment of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, which resulted in the miserable “independence” or separation of Bangladesh (ex East Pakistan) and defeat in the Indo-Pakistan war which led to the sacrifice of 3 million lives in spite of having previously sacrificed hundreds of thousands of victims for the establishment of a state entitled “Islamic”, clearly shows the fate of all the alleged “Islamic movements” based on neo-tribalism which lacks an understanding of the true idea of the Islamic mission.

Dr. Hassan Ko Nakata is former Professor of Theology at Doshisha University, Kyoto, Japan. He is the author of several books and articles in English, Arabic and Japanese.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect New Civilisation’s editorial policy.

This article was originally published as part of the study “The Deconstruction of the Sunnite Theory of Khilafah – Spreading the Rule of Law on Earth”

[1] As for the concept of Khilafah and Dar al-Islam, see,  Hassan Ko Nakata,  The Mission of Islam in the Contemporary World Aiming for Liberation of Earth through reestablishment of the Caliphate, 2009, Saba Islamic Media, Kuala Lumpur


[2] al-Mawsu‘ah al-Fiqhiyyah, 45 vol.1, is officially edited by the Ministry of Islamic Affairs of Kuwait and Supreme Council of Islamic Affairs of Arab Republic of Egypt, and published on the Website of the Ministry of Islamic Affairs of Kuwait

(, and endorsed by the Ministry of Islamic Affairs of Saudi Arabia also(, therefore it is duly regarded the most voluminous and authoritative Encyclopedia of Islamic law in contemporary Muslim world.

[3] His 2005 study showed that if the OECD countries let in just 14 million additional migrants by 2025 – that’s about 700,000 extra migrants a year, spread across the entire rich world – the global economy would be better off by $356 billion. By comparison, if the world could completely eliminate agricultural barriers, the benefit would amount to barely half that: $182 billion.” Cf., Barret Sheridan, “People, Not Goods: Immigration may trump freer trade in terms of increasing prosperity”, NEWSWEEK, Dec 8, 2008.

[4] “Tribalism” is partisanship or factionalism. “Natural” love for one’s own kinsmen or kinswomen as family is not necessarily reproachable. In another version of this Hadith, the Prophet Muhammad was also asked, “Is tribalism that man loves his tribe?” and answered, “No, it is supporting your tribe in injustice ” (Hadith: Ahmad)


The deconstruction of Sunnite Theory of Caliphate:


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