Islam’s relation with capitalism

Private ownership of property and capital is common among the Muslims of Turkey. This is according to a research carried out in the Islamic center of Turkey where Islamic devotees amass wealth and expand their businesses using connections with their fellow Muslims. These wealthy businessmen are known as Islamic Calvinist due to their dependence on religious networks. The research leads to a conclusion that Islam and Capitalism have a connection.

Islam is a wide religion with a variety of beliefs and consequently there are a number of subgroups. Each group or individual chooses to believe whatever suits them most. The Islamic Calvinists also tend to choose particular aspects of their religion e.g. the Scriptures in the Koran that favor their trading.

Family inheritance laws

The Islamic family law has in the past advocated for passing on of family wealth from one generation to another. This according to Prof. Timur Kuran of Duke University limited the amassing of wealth and therefore dragging down development. Prof. Kuran’s look at India brings about the comparison between Muslims and Hindu who have similar inheritance laws. The Hindu laws allow accumulation and buildup of wealth only among close family members while the Muslims share family wealth even among the most distant of relatives.

However, an exception is seen in Turkey where secular law is combined with religious law. The Islamic Calvinists are keen to observe the secular laws governing business and trading while at the same time maintaining the standards set by the Kuran.

Flexibility of Islamic institutions to changes in doctrines

Religious beliefs and teachings tend to change over time depending on various circumstances. One challenge however still stands according to Prof. Kuran. Institutions that run on religious doctrines can barely keep up. Some are not as flexible as the doctrines. An example of such an institution in Islam is the waqf.

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