Is Slavery Legal in Islam?
Islam has long tried to end such inhumane practices and it has not left any stone unturned in the effort to free women. In dealing with this issue, the Islamic religion has done so with great dignity. It has set the goal of eliminating slavery from its inception, which was accomplished gradually. However, in a number of instances, slavery is still practiced.
Taking a female slave as a concubine
Islamic law does not prohibit a man from taking a female slave as a concubin. The early Muslim communities did not see any problem with this, and Prophet Muhammad even took a female slave from the Roman governor of Alexandria. This practice was illegal, but it was not entirely outlawed.
The term concubine has several different meanings. A concubine was a woman who was used by a man to have sex. She was treated as property in some societies, but in Islam, a concubine had rights equal to a wife. Concubines were provided with multiple ways to gain their freedom and raise their social status.
Another important characteristic of a concubine is that it is illegal to sell her. The slave has to be kept in a proper environment, and the slave’s life is subject to a high standard. If the slave is given the opportunity to bear a child for her master, then she becomes an umm walad, which means “mother of the master.”
Taking a female slave as a hadd
Islamic law regards the taking of a female slave as a hadd (marrying a slave). A Muslim is permitted to marry a female slave who already has a husband and gives her a dower in return. In the past, slave owners did not have to marry their slaves in order to have intercourse with them.
According to Islamic law, taking a female slave as a hadd is considered a heinous crime. The punishment is reduced to half when the hadd is accepted as hudud. In order to avoid committing this sin, Muslims must first have a clear understanding of what it entails.
Although the Koran does not mention a specific punishment for taking a female slave, it does mention that a female captive can have sexual intercourse if she is not a virgin. Furthermore, the Koran states that the female captive must be purified before intercourse.
Manumission of slaves as a means of performing zakat
In Islam, the manumission of a slave is a legal way of performing zakat. It gives the slave the opportunity to free himself. This is achieved through a manumission contract between the slave and his master, where the slave agrees to pay the owner a certain amount of money in return for his freedom in the future. This kind of contract is highly recommended in Islamic law, as it encourages the master to enable the slave to obtain money. If the slave does bring the money to the master, he will be freed.
Islam has long advocated the emancipation of slaves. In fact, it has been a traditional aspect of the prophetic tradition. The emancipation of slaves enables the former slave to attain high positions in society. In fact, the first official muezzin of Islam was Bilal ibn Ribah, an emancipated slave.