The economic system of Islam book is written on a lecture delivered by Hadrat Mirza Bashir-ud-Din Mahmud Ahmad to a gathering of academia in Lahore, Pakistan, in 1945.
I started this book to gain an insight into the economic science, as to understand what all compose a country's economic system and how Islamic economic system is different from others'. However, the book covers more of ideology and less of science.
If you don't enjoy reading ideologies (like choosing spirituality over materialism) then the book is not for you.
At times I found the text to be biased in favor of Islam and author preaching about Islamic economic system. However such occurrences were not so frequent to annoy.
Initial text of the book focuses upon how a person should take responsibility about the society and spend his wealth in correct ways.
Author tells us about 3 types of economic systems in world and how Islam presents a path that is a combination of the later two.
3 Types of Economic systems:
Without any system or law
System that is not governed by any specified rules and regulations. Such systems do not distinguish between individual and national goals.
Is the one where maximizing national interest is the only thing which Govt. seek.
Individualist is the one which provides maximum benefits to common man, It gives individuals opportunities and freedom to work on their own for betterment and progress.
Then he touches upon laws followed by Islam for enslavement during wars, and strongly condemn the enslavement of children and women from unfortunate societies of the world, which is exemplified by what United States did with Africans in 18th Century.
In some part of his lecture, he cites a verse from Qur'an which enlist the core motivations that lie behind the human urge to amass wealth:
- Desire for entertainment, play, amusement, gambling, betting, horse racing.
- Desire for leisure, to have so much that the need to work no longer exists.
- Desire for elegance, to have most luxurious cloths, dresses, cars and food.
- Desire to be able to boast.
- Mere addiction of accumulating wealth. And since Islam demands of us that we curb all such temptations, the urge to earn beyond reasonable amount dies away.
To sum up, he states that Islamic economic system is based upon following rules:
- Exhortation against undue accumulation of wealth.
- Insistence on expenditure redistribution of concerned wealth.
- Recognition that it is the state's responsibility to spend money on meeting the legitimate basic needs of the poor and weak members of society.
After that the author takes us to communism and elaborates how Islamic economics system is superior over communism. Half of the book is dedicated on this section. This is the part where I lost interest in the book.
This book did not serve what I was expecting from it, but gave me an altogether new perception on ideology for an economy, and further motivated me to contribute for a stronger economy.
It made me realize that for a healthy economics system, one should understand that all the earnings do not belongs to him but to the needful too.
I could not agree more on author's view,
However virtuous a person's actions may seem on surface, they yield no reward if done under compulsion.
All the comparisons with communism made me more interested, that I am looking forward to read about communism, maybe something by Karl Marx.