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Baderin, Mashood (2022) 'Prophet Muhammad as "A Mercy for the World": A Human Rights Perspective in Relation to the Blasphemy Laws and Respect for the Rule of Law in Pakistan.' The Asian Yearbook of Human Rights and Humanitarian Law, 6. pp. 54-80.

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Alternative Location: https://brill.com/view/serial/AYHR

Abstract

This chapter analyses the epithet of being “a Mercy for the Worlds” (rahmah li al-ālamīn) ascribed to Prophet Muhammad in Q 21:107, as an axiomatic concept that can be advanced for enhancing the promotion and protection of human rights in the Muslim World. While this epithet of the Prophet is well known throughout the Muslim World, its latent impact in relation to the effective protection of human rights in Muslim-majority states has not been specifically advanced in human rights and Islamic law literature. Muslims constantly refer to Q 21:107 mainly in the context of devotional and moral matters but not in the context of civic engagement and issues of public order such as the promotion and protection of human rights and respect for the rule of law. In pursuance of the author’s established view that human rights and Islamic law are not inherently antithetical, the chapter advocates that the advancement of human rights, freedom and liberty for all humanity is inherent in the Prophet’s persona as “a Mercy for the Worlds”, substantiating the arguments with relevant authorities from within Islamic sources. The chapter analyses the concept with reference to the application of blasphemy laws and lack of respect for the rule of law in Pakistan in that regard. This is against the background that former Prime Minister of Pakistan, Imran Khan, established a “Rehmatul-lil-Alameen Authority” (Mercy for the Worlds Authority) in October 2021 to promote the implementation of the teachings of Prophet Muhammad in Pakistani society as a catalyst for the country’s progress both in the religious and temporal spheres. After a critical analyses of the manipulative exploitation of blasphemy laws with reference to relevant cases, the chapter concludes that it is imperative for the new “Rehmatul-lil-Alameen Authority” to reorientate the Pakistani society and make them appreciate that the arbitrary taking of peoples’ lives extra-judicially on unsubstantiated accusations of blasphemy amounts to taking of innocent life without due process and justice which is clearly prohibited in many verses of the Qur’an and ahādīth of the Prophet. The chapter concludes by noting that the persona of Prophet Muhammad as “a Mercy for the Worlds” does not admit of the merciless extra-judicial killing of any human being without due process, even if the perpetrators claim that they were doing so to protect the Prophet’s honour.

Item Type: Journal Article
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > School of Law
ISSN: 9789004520806
DOI (Digital Object Identifier): https://doi.org/10.1163/9789004520806_005
Date Deposited: 29 May 2022 12:14
URI: https://eprints.soas.ac.uk/id/eprint/37317
Related URLs: https://brill.c ... iew/serial/AYHR (Publisher URL)

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