Seeking judgment from Sharee`ah and not from tribal rules

Question: Please explain the ruling on two people who, for example, if they are disputing, resort to the tribal rules, and each of them appoints a “Mi`dal,” as they call him, and they choose one of the tribal chieftains to judge between them. They then sit in front of him and state their complaints against the other. If it is a simple dispute, the guilty party is ordered to slaughter an animal for the other party. If it is a major dispute, the guilty party is ordered to be given “Al-Janbiyyah;” this used to mean that they were beatenon their head with a sharp tool until they bleed, nowadays it involves the guilty party paying an amount of Dirhams as a fine. They call this practice a reconciliation, and it is common among the tribes-people. They also call it Al-Math-hab (the doctrine), and if someone does not accept their judgment, they call them “Qati` Al-Math-hab (a dissenter from the doctrine).” Dear shaykh, what is the legal ruling on this?

Answer: It is obligatory for Muslims to resolve their disputes in courts that apply the Sharee`ah (Islaamic law), not tribal rules or man-made laws. In fact, what you have mentioned is not really reconciliation; it is judging according to tribal principles and rules… read more here.

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