Al-Mawardi, however, does not discuss the election of a licentious person as Imam. Al-Bagh_dadi says that his election will be void, even if it has taken place through a properly constituted electoral college. Al-Mawardi's 3 Al-Mawardi, op. cit., p. 3. 4 Al-Baghdadi, Ua7il al-Din, p. 272. 5 These qualifications are three: justice with all the conditions pertaining to it; knowledge of religion and of the interests and policy of the nation; and wisdom (al-Mawardi, op. cit., p. 4). 6 These conditions are: justice, learning, integrity of physical senses, wisdom, bravery, and Quraigh_ite descent (ibid., p. 5). omission is deliberate, being a concession to the Buwaihids, who appointed the Caliphs to suit their selfish ends. 3. The right of franchise is enjoyed not only by the people living in the capital. The Caliph is, however, traditionally elected in the capital because the death of the previous Caliph is first known there, and political considerations require the immediate appointment of a new Caliph, and also because most of the people possessing the necessary qualifications for the Imamate generally reside there. 7 This principle was hotly contended by the Khawarij who believed in complete democracy and universal franchise. 4. Among the seven conditions which according to al-Mawardi must be fulfilled by a candidate, the seventh one, that is, the Qurais_hite descent, is very important. Al-Mawardi lays great stress on it and says that if anyone objects to it on the ground that it excludes non-Quraishites from the Caliphate, such an objection would not be considered, because it was this Qurais_hite descent that was presented by abu Bakr as an argument for preference in the election of Sagifah Bani Sa'idah.s 5. The Imam is appointed in one of the two ways : 9 (a) He may be elected by the electoral college; (b) he may be nominated by the ruling Imam. In the first case some scholars say the Imam must be elected by all the members of the electoral college in all the cities. Others oppose this view and say that abu Bakr was elected only by the citizens of Madinah. Still others assert that only five persons are sufficient to elect the Imam, as happened in the case of abu Bakr and Ut_hman. In al-Mawardi's opinion, even one person is enough to elect the Caliph. 10 He cites the tradition of 'Abbas as evidence. `Abbas said to 'Ali, "Stretch your hand, I will swear my allegiance to you, and when people come to know that the Prophet's uncle has sworn his allegi ance to his nephew, nobody would object to your Imamate." This opinion has also been corroborated by al-Ash`ari? 1 6. The above extreme opinion has been advocated by al-Mawardi to advance another important opinion given in the next section, where he discusses the case of two candidates equally qualified for the Imamate. He says that the electoral college may nominate anyone of the two as Imam without assigning any reason. 12 7. The election of a less qualified person in the presence of a more qualified person is perfectly legal, provided the former fulfils all the conditions of the Imamate.' 3 It was this principle under which most of the worthless Caliphs took refuge. It was also directed against the Shi`ahs, who believe that an
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