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  • 6/19/2013

Freedom and Liberalism


Therefore Islam has a moderate view towards freedom. According to Islamic principles, freedom is not the ultimate purpose and value. It is means for man to consciously move towards ultimate perfection because of his own accord.

Based on Islamic view, the real freedom can only be achieved through godliness and freedom from the clutches of selfishness and lust. Selfishness and submission to the demands of the carnal soul are the main obstacle to true freedom. [1]

Another issue is that the ideal freedom of liberalism is release from external obstacles. For liberalism, like mystical schools particularly eastern ones such as Buddhism, only pays attention to external freedom. But the truth is that internal freedom, from carnal desires, and external freedom, as long as it does not conflict with divine values and truths, are both important for achieving perfection and developing sublime talents. [2] lack of trying to achieve spiritual freedom and liberation from internal chains endangers external freedom.

About Prophet Muhammad, Qur’an says: “[The Messenger… relieves them of their burden and the shackles which were upon them.] (al-Araf: 157).

If liberalism considers freedom in politics, culture and economy as the ultimate purpose and fundamental principle for regulating social relations, and if socialists believe the most important ideal to be economic equality and reducing class gap, Islam regards godliness and man’s nearness to God as the ultimate purpose and ideal perfection. Freedom and equality must help achieve this ultimate purpose. “And I did not create the jinn and mankind except to worship Me.”‌  (Adh-Dhariyat)


[1] . Muhammad Javan Noroozi, An Introduction to Political system in Islam, p.57

[2] . Abdullah Nasri, Modernity discourse, p. 44

Ahmad Niazi, graduate of Qom Seminary and Phd student of Al Mustafa international university

Source: political science journal, No. 3

Transclated by: Sadroddin Musawi

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