Meaning of Dar al-Islam

The world has been divided into two parts by various Islamic scholars. One of these two parts is Dar al-Islam.

Dar al-Islam means 'house of Islam'. It refers to any country that any Muslim country. A country is either considered to be dar al-Islam or dar al-Kufr.

There are several other names for Dar al-Islam. Narrations also indicate other terms that share the same meaning.

  • Dar al-Salam (House of Peace)
  • Dar al-Tawhid (House of Tawhid)

There is a criterion for determining whether a country is Dar al-Islam. These criteria have been established by various Islamic scholars. If any of these conditions are missing, then the country cannot be Dar al-Islam.

Criteria of Dar al-Islam:
  • The country should be ruled by Shariah
  • The leader must be Muslim

What if there is no Dar al-Islam?

There is no country today that meets the exact criteria of Dar al-Islam. The traditions indicate that in the future there will be a land of Islam.

There will come a time when the Muslims will have a land of Islam. It will be ruled by a righteous leader, also known as the Mahdi.

But before that time comes, the Muslim must deal with the present situation. When there is no Dar al-Islam, then every country is Dar al-Kufr.

The Muslim should be peaceful. He does not rebel against the president or king of the country in which he lives. As long as the country has made peace with you by allowing the practising Islam, you should deal with them peacefully.

Can you not practice Islam in dar al-Kufr? Then you should perform Hijrah (to emigrate). Be peaceful and avoid committing chaos, even if you were to live in such a country.

Those who break the Covenant with Allah after they have entered into it and break what Allah has commanded to bind and commit chaos on the earth: it is they who are the losers.
[Surah Baqarah verse 27]

How do you recognize a false Dar al-Islam?

There are several countries that claim to be Muslim countries. But this also has to meet the criteria. You can recognize false claims by knowing the criteria of Dar al-Islam and Dar al-Kufr.

A country that does not rule completely by the Laws of Allah, cannot be Dar al-Islam. So this is an important condition in order to claim to be a Muslim country.

Another condition is that the leader is Muslim. The order is broken as soon as a non-Muslim comes to rule the land of Islam, because this is not according to the Laws of Allah.

Once the land contains widespread disbelief, it cannot be a land of Islam. The disbelief must therefore be removed in order to be considered as a Muslim country.

The danger of extremists

One should be careful not to fall into the tracks of extremism. Some extremists claim to own land of Islam. You should therefore always verify whether this is a correct statement.

Anti-Extremism Verification List:
  • The country must not incite hatred
  • The country must not incite violence
  • The country must not break peace with countries who want peace
  • The country should not violently take over other countries
  • The country must not kill innocents
  • The country must offer order to its inhabitants

You mainly recognize extremists by the fact that they attack other countries. They are calling for countries to be taken over by force, and this is not according to Islam. Everyone has the right to believe whatever they want.

Islam forbids violent takeover of countries. The correct way is Da'wah (invitation to Islam). The leader of another country then has full choice to embrace Islam, and if he does not want to, then he is left alone.

Extremists do the opposite, because they force the leader to embrace Islam, which is against the teachings of Islam.

Abu Athari writes about basic principles within Islam. He uses his critical and well-researched way to spread knowledge of the first three Muslim generations.

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