Shura (Arabic: شورى shūrā) is an Arabic word for "consultation". The Quran and the Prophet Muhammad encourage Muslims to decide their affairs in consultation with those who will be affected by that decision.
Shura is mentioned as a praiseworthy activity often used in organizing the affairs of a mosque, Islamic organizations, and is a common term involved in naming parliaments.
Sunni Muslims believe that Islam requires all decisions made by and for the Muslim societies to be made by shura of the Muslim community and believe this to be the basis for implementing representative democracy. Traditionally however, the Amir/Sultan/Khalifa would consult with his Wazirs (Advisors) and make a decision, after taking into consideration their opinions.
Shia Muslims say that Islam requires submission to existing rulers if they are correctly appointed, so long as they govern according to Sharia or Islamic law. This is a more traditional approach, characteristic of many centuries of Islamic history (see History of Islam).
The difference between the two appears more semantic than actual—the latter accept that the rulers must be accounted in all aspects of ruling, to ensure affairs are managed in the best possible way whether decisions were taken through consultation or not.
"Those who hearken to their Lord, and establish regular Prayer; who (conduct) their affairs by mutual consultation among themselves; who spend out of what We bestow on them for Sustenance" [are praised] 
Thus it is due to mercy from God that you deal with them gently, and had you been rough, hard hearted, they would certainly have dispersed from around you; pardon them therefore and ask pardon for them, and take counsel with them in the affair; so when you have decided, then place your trust in God; surely God loves those who trust.
The first verse only deals with family matters. The second proposed a lifestyle of people who will enter heavens and is considered the most comprehensive verse on shura. The third verse advises on how mercy, forgiveness and mutual consultation can win over people.
Muhammad made all his decisions in consultation with his followers unless it was a matter in which God has ordained something. It was common among Muhammad's companions to ask him if a certain advice was from God or from him. If it was from Muhammad, they felt free to give their opinion. Some times Muhammad changed his opinion on the advice of his followers like his decision to defend the city of Madinah by going out of the city in Uhad instead of from within the city.
Arguments over shura began with the debate over the ruler in the Islamic world. When Muhammad died in 632 CE, a tumultuous meeting at Saqifah selected Abu Bakr as his successor. This meeting did not include some of those with a strong interest in the matter—especially Ali ibn Abi Talib, Muhammad's cousin and son-in-law; people who wanted Ali to be the caliph (ruler) (later known as Shia ) still consider Abu Bakr an illegitimate leader of the caliphate.
In later years, the followers of Ali (Shi'atu Ali) as the ruler of Muslims became one school of thought, while the followers of Abu Bakr became the Sunni school of thought.
The Sunni school of thought believe that shura is recommended in the Qur'an (though some classical jurists maintained it is obligatory), The Qur'an, and by numerous hadith, or oral traditions of the sayings and doings of Muhammad and his companions. They say that most of the first four caliphs, or rulers of Islam, whom they call the Four Rightly-guided Caliphs, were chosen by shura. (See Succession to Muhammad, Umar ibn al-Khattab, The election of Uthman, and Ali Ibn Abi Talib.)
The Shi'a school of thought believe that Muhammad had clearly indicated that Ali was his appointed infallible ruler of Muslim nation regardless of shura, a recommendation that was ignored by the first three caliphs. Shi'a do not stress the role of shura in choosing leaders, but believe that the divine vice-regent is chosen by God, or Allah, from the lineage of Muhammad (Ahl al-Bayt). The largest Shi'a sect believes that the current imam is in "occultation", hidden away until the last days, but there are minority Shi'a who follow leaders believed to be infallible imams.
During and after Imam Ali's tenure as caliph, the Muslim community fell into civil war. Power was eventually grasped by the Ummayad caliphs and then by the Abbasid caliphs. There were also rival caliphates in Egypt and Al-Andalus, the latter of which is today known as Spain. Later the rulers of the Ottoman Empire inherited the caliphate. The Ottoman Caliphate was officially dissolved by the newly founded Grand National Assembly of Turkey in 1924.
Few of the later caliphs had anything but nominal control over the many Islamic states, and none were chosen by shura; all reached power by inheritance. The Muslim clergy counseled submission to rulers but also stressed the duty of the ruler to rule by shura. They based this recommendation on the passages from the Qur'an mentioned above. The verses indicate that shura is praiseworthy but do not indicate who should be consulted, what they should be consulted about, or whether the ruler or the shura should prevail in the event the two do not agree.
In some Muslim nations, shuras play a role in the constitution or governance. Some Muslim nations, such as Turkey, are secular republics, and Morocco is a constitutional monarchy. They could thus be said to be ruled by one version of shura. For instance, the bicameral Parliament of Pakistan is officially called the Majlis-i-Shura, although the Constitution uses various spellings of the term. In Egypt, the Upper House of Parliament is known as the Shura Council. The People's Consultative Assembly in Indonesia is called Majlis Permusyawaratan Rakyat in Indonesian language. The word musyawarat is derived from shura/syawara.
In some monarchies and clerical regimes, there is a shura with an advisory or consultative role. Saudi Arabia, a monarchy, was given a shura council, the Consultative Assembly of Saudi Arabia, in 1993; there are now 150 members. All real power is held by the King, who is elected by family members. Oman, also a monarchy has a shura council; all members are elected except the president, who is appointed by the Sultan. The council can only offer advice, which may be refused if vetoed by the Sultan.
In Iran, a council called the assembly of experts has the ability to impeach the supreme leader. In addition to that, a general shura wields legislative powers, equivalent to a modern-day Western parliament.
Shuras have also been a feature of revolutions in Islamic societies, such as in the Iranian revolution of 1979, where they were formed by workers and held considerable power over parts of the economy for a year before being dismantled. Shuras were similarly a feature of the uprisings in Iraq in 1991, where they functioned as a form of participatory democracy.
Many traditional Sunni Islamic lawyers agree that to be in keeping with Islam, a government should have some form of council of consultation or majlis al-shura, although it must recognize that God and not the people are sovereign. Al-Mawardi has written that members of the majlis should satisfy three conditions: they must be just, have enough knowledge to distinguish a good caliph from a bad one, and have sufficient wisdom and judgment to select the best caliph. Al-Mawardi also said that in emergencies when there is no caliphate and no majlis, the people themselves should create a majlis, select a list of candidates for caliph, and then the majlis should select a caliph from the list of candidates.
Many contemporary Muslims have compared the concept of Shura to the principles of western parliamentary democracy. For example:
What is the shura principle in Islam? ... It is predicated on three basic precepts. First, that all persons in any given society are equal in human and civil rights. Second, that public issues are best decided by majority view. And third, that the three other principles of justice, equality and human dignity, which constitute Islam's moral core, ... are best realized, in personal as well as public life, under shura governance.
Other modern Muslim thinkers distance themselves from democracy. Taqiuddin al-Nabhani, the founder of the modern transnational Islamist party Hizb ut-Tahrir, writes that shura is important and part of "the ruling structure" of the Islamic caliphate, "but not one of its pillars." If the caliph "neglects it," by not paying much or any attention, as happened after the first four caliphs, "he would be negligent, but the ruling system would remain Islamic."
This is because the shura (consultation) in Islam is for seeking the opinion and not for ruling. This is contrary to the parliamentary system in democracy.
The democratic parliamentary system being distinct from and inferior to the true Islamic caliphate system according to Taqiuddin an-Nabhani.
Under the Hizb ut-Tahrir constitution, non-Muslims may not serve a caliph or any other ruling official, nor vote for these officials, but may be part of the majlis and voice "complaints in respect to unjust acts performed by the rulers or the misapplication of Islam upon them."
Still others, such as the Muslim author Sayyid Qutb, go further, arguing that an Islamic shura should advise the caliph but not elect or supervise him. In a rigorous analysis of the shura chapter of the Qur'an, Qutb noted that Islam requires only that the ruler consult with at least some of the ruled (usually the elite), within the general context of God-made laws that the ruler must execute. In 1950 Qutb denounced democracy in favor of dictatorship, saying it was already bankrupt in the West and asking why it should be imported to the Middle East.
The practice of a consultative, but not bill-passing, caliph-electing or popularly elected shura, was adopted by the self-described strict Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan. While the Kandahar Shura of the Taliban debated issues, in the end its spokesman declared, "we abide by the Amir's view even if he alone takes this view." 
Elections for the Shura Council, the upper house of the Egyptian parliament, was held in Egypt on 11 June 2007 and 18 June 2007. From a total of 264 seats 88 are up for election every three years, another 44 are appointed by the president.
There were 587 candidates competing for the 88 seats in 24 provinces. The main parties running were the National Democratic Party (109 candidates) and the outlawed Muslim Brotherhood (whose 19 candidates were standing as independents, President Mubarak having had failed in an attempt to disqualify 17 of them). The elections were being boycotted by the New Wafd Party and the Nasserist Party.Egyptian media reported that 11 of the 88 seats were won uncontested by the National Democratic Party. In total, the NDP won 70 seats in the first round of the election, while one seat went to an independent and one to the National Progressive Unionist Party (commonly known as "Tagammu"). Turnout was reportedly 23 per cent. Of the 16 seats determined in the second round, the NDP won 14 while independents won another two, resulting in a total of 84 for the NDP, three for independents and one for Tagammu.Violence on election day led to the death of a supporter of an independent candidate in Sharqia province after fighting with supporters of the NDP.2010 Egyptian Shura Council election
Elections for the Shura Council, the upper house of the Egyptian parliament, were held in Egypt on 1 June and 8 June 2010. From a total of 264 seats 88 are up for election every three years, another 44 are appointed by the president. Out of 446 candidates for elections, 115 are from political parties and 331 are independents.2012 Egyptian Shura Council election
Shura Council elections were held in Egypt between 29 January and 22 February 2012. The Freedom and Justice Party emerged as the largest party in the Council, winning 105 of the 180 elected seats.Ash-Shura
Sūrat ash-Shūrā (Arabic: سورة الشورى, "Council, Consultation") is the 42nd sura of the Qur'an with 53 ayat.This Meccan Chapter has fifty three Verses and its title derives from the question of shura (“consultation”) referred to in Verse 38.Buynaksk
Buynaksk (Russian: Буйна́кск; Kumyk: Шура/Темирхан-Шура, Shura/Temirkhan-Shura) is a town in the Republic of Dagestan, Russia, located at the foothills of the Greater Caucasus on the Shura-Ozen River, 40 kilometers (25 mi) southwest of the republic's capital Makhachkala. Population: 62,623 (2010 Census); 61,437 (2002 Census); 56,783 (1989 Census); 40,000 (1970).Consultative Assembly of Saudi Arabia
The Consultative Assembly of Saudi Arabia, also known as Majlis Ash-Shura or Shura Council, is the formal advisory body of Saudi Arabia, which is an absolute monarchy. The Consultative Assembly has limited powers in government, including the power to propose laws to the King of Saudi Arabia and his cabinet, but it cannot pass or enforce laws, which is a power reserved for the King. It has 150 members, all of whom are appointed by the King. The Consultative Assembly is headed by a Speaker. The current chairman is Abdullah ibn Muhammad Al ash-Sheikh, in line with a tradition that kept the post in that family. The Assembly is based in the Al Yamamah Palace, Riyadh.Consultative Council (Bahrain)
The Consultative Council (Majlis al-shura) is the name given to the upper house of the National Assembly, the main legislative body of Bahrain.
The Council comprises forty members appointed directly by the King of Bahrain. The forty seats of the Consultative Council combined with the forty elected seats of the Council of Representatives form the National Assembly of Bahrain. All laws (except for "Royal decrees") have to be passed by both chambers of the Assembly. This allows technical expertise and minority communities a role within the legislative process: in Bahrain, a Bahraini Christian woman, Alees Samaan and a Bahraini Jewish man have been appointed. After there was widespread disappointment that no women were elected to the lower house in 2002's general election, four women were appointed to the Consultative Council.
Alees Samann made history in the Arab world on 18 April 2004 when she became the first woman to chair a session of parliament in the region. The BBC reported: "Incidents of this kind in the Arab world are increasingly being seen as signs of a gradual change towards more open and democratic societies in the entire region."
Supporters of the system refer to democracies such as the United Kingdom and Canada which operate the same bicameral model with an appointed upper chamber and an elected lower chamber. However, the government which nominates citizens to the upper chamber is accountable to the members of the lower house, and therefore the British and Canadian electorates respectively. Further, while these upper chambers each hold a constitutional veto over legislation, it is heavily restricted by constitutional and political convention.
Critics state that the ruling family has sought to use the appointed Consultative Council to guarantee veto power over all legislation. The council includes Faisal Fulad, an activist accused in the Bandargate scandal of illegally receiving a monthly stipend of BD500 (US$1,326) for fomenting sectarian hatred.
Following a political reconciliation between the government and the four party Shia Islamist Al Wefaq-led opposition, there have been persistent rumours that the government is preparing to nominate their activists to the Shura Council. While government officials have denied the plan, reports in the press in April 2006 claimed that opposition leaders have received assurances from a government middleman that some of their iconic figures could be appointed to the Shura. The report added that the opposition leaders "neither accepted nor rejected the offer, but promised to study it carefully".Two members of the Consultative Council, both of them women, have been appointed to the cabinet: Dr Nada Haffadh became Bahrain's first woman cabinet minister in 2004 when she became Minister of Health; the second woman to be appointed to the cabinet, Social Affairs Minister Dr Fatima Baloushi, also previous served on the Council.
The chairman of the Consultative Council serves as the chairman of the joint National Assembly of Bahrain when it meets. The term of the council is four years.Hana Shur
Hana Shur (Persian: حناشور, also Romanized as Ḩanā Shūr; also known as Hina Shūr, Hīneh Shūr, Hinshoor, and Honīshūr) is a village in Tasuj Rural District, Shonbeh and Tasuj District, Dashti County, Bushehr Province, Iran. At the 2006 census, its population was 216, in 49 families.Islamic Consultative Assembly
The Islamic Consultative Assembly (Persian: مجلس شورای اسلامی, translit. Majles-e Showrā-ye Eslāmī), also called the Iranian Parliament, the Iranian Majles (or Majlis), is the national legislative body of Iran. The Parliament currently has 290 representatives, changed from the previous 272 seats since the 18 February 2000 election. The most recent election took place on 26 February 2016 and the new parliament was opened on 28 May 2016.Majlis-ash-Shura
In Arabic culture, a Majlis-ash-Shura (Arabic: مجلس الشورى) is an advisory council or consultative council. In Islamic context, the Majlis-ash-Shura is one of two ways that a Khalifa (Islamic leader) may be selected, the other way being by nomination.
The noun شورى (shura), alone, means "consultation" and refers to (among other things) a topic in Islamic law or sharia; see Shura. Combined with the term Majlis, مجلس, which refers to a council or legislature, it is meant to indicate a body of individuals who advise, consult or determine.Mujahideen Shura Council (Iraq)
The Mujahideen Shura Council (MSC), (Arabic: مجلس شورى المجاهدين في العراق), was an umbrella organization of at least six Sunni Islamic insurgent groups taking part in the Iraqi insurgency against U.S. and coalition and Iraqi forces: Tanzim Qaidat al-Jihad fi Bilad al-Rafidayn ('al-Qaeda in Iraq'), Jaish al-Ta'ifa al-Mansurah, Katbiyan Ansar Al-Tawhid wal Sunnah, Saray al-Jihad Group, al-Ghuraba Brigades, and al-Ahwal Brigades.Al-Qaeda in Iraq—part of the Mujahideen Shura Council—was in September 2006 believed by the United States to be "the most significant political force" in the Iraqi Al Anbar province.In mid-October 2006, a statement was released, stating that the Mujahideen Shura Council had been disbanded, and was replaced by the Islamic State of Iraq.Mujahideen Shura Council in the Environs of Jerusalem
The Mujahideen Shura Council in the Environs of Jerusalem or simply the Mujahideen Shura Council (also known as the Mujahideen Shura Council of Jerusalem, in Arabic: Majlis Shura Al-Mujahideen, Magles Shoura al-Mujahedeen, and other names) is an armed Salafi jihadist group linked to al-Qaeda that is active in Egypt's Sinai Peninsula and in the Gaza Strip. The group was formed in 2011 or 2012 by Salafist Islamist Hisham Al-Saedni (also known as Abu al Walid al Maqdisi) to coordinate the activities of the Salafi jihadist groups operating in Gaza even before the Egyptian Revolution of 2011 and has carried out attacks against civilians in Israel. The group describes violence against Jews as a religious obligation that brings its perpetrators closer to God. Al-Saedni, who was the leader of the group and also of Jahafil Al-Tawhid Wal-Jihad fi Filastin, was killed in an Israeli airstrike in Gaza on 14 October 2012. The group is subordinated with Al-Qaeda in Sinai Peninsula as of August 2012.In February 2014, the group declared its support for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. The group was designated a terrorist organization by the US State Department on 19 August 2014. In its explanation for the designation the State Department noted that:
the Mujahidin Shura Council in the Environs of Jerusalem is an umbrella group composed of several jihadist terrorist sub-groups based in Gaza that has claimed responsibility for numerous attacks on Israel since the group's founding in 2012. For example, on August 13, 2013, MSC claimed responsibility for a rocket attack targeting the southern city of Eilat, Israel. Previously, MSC claimed responsibility for the March 21, 2013 attack in which Gaza-based militants fired at least five rockets at Sderot, Israel, and the April 17, 2013 attack in which two rockets were fired at Eilat, Israel. In addition to the rocket launches, MSC declared itself responsible for a Gaza-Israel cross-border IED attack on June 18, 2012 that targeted an Israeli construction site, killing one civilian. In addition to these physical attacks, the MSC released a statement in February 2014 declaring support for the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.
One of these sub-groups is Jahafil Al-Tawhid Wal-Jihad fi Filastin (or al-Tawhid wal-Jihad, "Unity and Jihad") which had been formed on 6 November 2008 and is also linked to Al Qaeda. In 2011 the group was also led by Hisham Al-Saedni. Another sub-group is Ansar al Sunnah, which has taken responsibility for several rocket attacks against Israel, including a rocket attack in March 2010 that killed a Thai worker in Israel. Following the March 2010 attack, Haaretz reported that the group was "apparently linked to Jund Ansar Allah," another jihadist group operating in Gaza.Politics of Egypt
The politics of Egypt is based on republicanism, with a semi-presidential system of government, established following the Egyptian Revolution of 2011, and the resignation of President Hosni Mubarak. The President of Egypt is elected for a maximum of two four-year terms and the Parliament is unicameral and unbiased. The President can appoint up to 5% of the total number of seats in Parliament, and can also dissolve it. Parliament can also impeach the President. Egypt was traditionally ruled by royals until 1952, but the first free elected President was in 2006. The Parliament of Egypt is the oldest legislative chamber in Africa and the Middle East.Quetta Shura
The Quetta Shura is a militant organization which is composed of the leaders of the Afghan Taliban, and believed to be based, since about 2001, within the city of Quetta in the Balochistan province of Pakistan. The Shura was formed at a time after the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan was toppled as part of events occurring during late 2001, the senior leadership at the time, including Mullah Mohammed Omar, proceeding to escape into Pakistan. In February 2010, several of the key members of the Quetta Shura, who were dispersed within a variety of cities and towns of Pakistan, were detained by Pakistan's Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI).
Pakistan proceeded to agree to repatriate these individuals to Afghanistan, if they were found to have not committed crimes within the boundaries of the Pakistani nation.Shura Council
The Shura Council (Arabic: مجلس الشورى, pronounced [ˈmæɡles eʃˈʃuːɾˤɑ], "consultative council") was the upper house of the formerly bicameral Parliament of Egypt. Its name roughly translated into English as "the Consultative Council". The lower house of parliament is the House of Representatives. The council was abolished by the 2014 constitution.The Shura Council was created in 1980 through a Constitutional Amendment. The Council was composed of 264 members of which 176 members were directly elected and 88 were appointed by the President of the Republic for six-year terms. Membership was rotating, with one half of the Council renewed every three years.
A legal challenge concerning the constitutionality of the Shura Council was to have been considered on 2 December 2012 by the High Constitutional Court, but the court postponed the verdict in response to protests. Mohamed Morsi's constitutional declaration issued in November 2012 bars the Shura Council from being dissolved by the judiciary. The constitutional declaration issued by Morsi in December 2012 allowed the Shura Council to be dissolved by the judiciary. The High Constitutional Court referred the lawsuit to the State Commissioners' Board, which is the advisory board of the High Constitutional Court, on 15 January 2013. The board of commissioners will review the lawsuit on 10 February 2013; after lawyers give the required documents, the board will create a report on the constitutionality of the election law. The report was received 22 April 2013. The formation of the Shura Council was ruled unconstitutional on 2 June 2013. As of early July 2013, 30 members of the Shura Council have resigned. The Shura Council was dissolved on 5 July 2013.Shura Council of Benghazi Revolutionaries
The Shura Council of Benghazi Revolutionaries (Arabic: مجلس شورى ثوار بنغازي, Majlis Shura Thuwar Benghazi) is a military coalition in Benghazi composed of Islamist and jihadist militias, including Ansar al-Sharia, Libya Shield 1, and several other groups.Shura Council of Mujahideen in Derna
The Shura Council of Mujahideen in Derna was a coalition of Islamist militias that advocate the implementation of Sharia law within Derna, Libya. Besides seeking to implement strict social mores in Derna, the alliance was known for its open opposition to Khalifa Haftar and the Libyan affiliates of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).On 11 May 2018, the Shura Council was dissolved as result of reversals during the Battle of Derna (2018), and replaced by the Derna Protection Force.Shura Kandi
Shura Kandi (Persian: شوراكندي, also Romanized as Shūrā Kandī and Shūrākandī; also known as Shiranshalio, Shīrvānshāhlū, and Shīrvān Shāhlū-ye ‘Olyā) is a village in Hasanlu Rural District, Mohammadyar District, Naqadeh County, West Azerbaijan Province, Iran. At the 2006 census, its population was 173, in 33 families.Shura no Mon
Shura no Mon (修羅の門, lit. "Asura's Gate") is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Masatoshi Kawahara. The story follows a young Karate practitioner named Tsukumo Mutsu, 40th master of the deadly Mutsu Enmei Ryu style. It was serialized in Kodansha's Monthly Shōnen Magazine from April 1987 to November 1996. The individual chapters were collected and published into 31 tankōbon volumes published between October 1987 and May 1997.
A prequel series, Mutsu Enmei-ryū Gaiden: Shura no Toki also ran in Monthly Shōnen Magazine, premiering in July 1989 and running until November 2005. Its chapters were published in 15 tankōbon volumes by Kodansha. It was adapted into a 26-episode anime series by Media Factory and Studio Comet that aired from April 6, 2004 until September 28, 2004 and is licensed for release in North America by Media Blasters.
Shura no Mon received the 1990 Kodansha Manga Award for the shōnen category, and has sold over 30 million copies. Two other spin-off series, Shura no Mon: Daini Mon and Shura no Mon: Fudekage, were published from 2010 to 2015 and 2010 to 2014, respectively.
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