16. Capitalists among the inhabitants of cities need

rank and protection.



This is because a sedentary person who has a great deal of capital and has acquired a great number of estates and farms and become one of the wealthiest inhabitants of a particular city, who is looked upon as such and lives in great luxury and is accustomed to luxury, competes in this respect with amirs and rulers. The latter become jealous of him. The aggressiveness that is natural to human beings makes them cast their eyes upon his possessions. They envy him them and try every possible trick to catch him in the net of a government decision and to find an obvious reason for punishing him, so as to confiscate his property. Government decisions are as a rule unjust, because pure justice is found only in the legal caliphate that lasted only a short while. Muhammad said: "The caliphate after me will last thirty years; then, it will revert to being tyrannical royal authority." 128

Therefore, the owner of property and conspicuous wealth in a given civilization (community) needs a protective force to defend him, as well as a rank 128a on which he may rely. (This purpose may be met by) a person related to the ruler, or a close friend of (the ruler), or a group feeling that the ruler will respect. 129 In its shade, he may rest and live peacefully, safe from hostile attacks. If he does not have that, he will find himself robbed by all kinds of tricks and legal pretexts.

"God decides, and no one can change His decision." 130