In the Islamic worldview, justice denotes placing things in their rightful place. It also means giving others equal treatment. In Islam, justice is also a moral virtue and an attribute of human personality, as it is in the Western tradition. Justice is close to equality in the sense that it creates a state of equilibrium in the distribution of rights and duties, but they are not identical. Sometimes, justice is achieved through inequality, like in unequal distribution of wealth. The Prophet of Islam declared:
“There are seven categories of people whom God will shelter under His shade on the Day when there will be no shade except His. [One is] the just leader.”(Saheeh Muslim)
God spoke to His Messenger in this manner:
“O My slaves, I have forbidden injustice for Myself and forbade it also for you. So avoid being unjust to one another.” (Saheeh Muslim)
Thus, justice represents moral rectitude and fairness, since it means things should be where they belong.
The Importance of Justice
The Quran, the sacred scripture of Islam, considers justice to be a supreme virtue. It is a basic objective of Islam to the degree that it stands next in order of priority to belief in God’s exclusive right to worship (Tawheed) and the truth of Muhammad’s prophethood. God declares in the Quran:
“God commands justice and fair dealing…” (Quran 16:90)