Sh. ‘Abdulrahman al-Kawakibi d. 1320H/1902CE (may Allah have mercy on him) writes in his book (Tabai’ al-Istibdad wa-Masari’ al-Isti’bad):

The commoners are the strength of the oppressor and his force. Through them and upon them he runs rampant. He imprisons them, so they cheer for his might; He takes their wealth unjustly, so they praise him for having spared their lives; He insults them, so they admire his high rank; He tempts some of them against others, so they find pride in his policies; When he spends their money wastefully, they say: How Generous!; And if he kills from them but does not maim, they consider him Merciful; He drags them to the dangers of death, and they obey him out of fear that they would be reprimanded; If a few of those with dignity resented him, he fights them as if they were transgressors.

What results is that these commoners slaughter themselves with their own hands because of this fear which develops from their ignorance and foolishness. If that ignorance was to alleviate, and the mind was to become enlightened, then that fear would go away and the people would habitually no longer follow except that which would bring them benefit, as the saying goes: A wise person only serves himself. At that time, the oppressor would have to either retire or straighten [himself].


  1. Tabai’ al-Istibdad wa-Masari’ al-Isti’bad (p. 37)

Al-Kawakabi (al-sirat al-mustaqeem)


Arabic Quote