In the name of God, the Compassionate and the Merciful

لله ربّ العالمين و الحمد لله الذی لا مُضادّ له في مُلكه و لا مُنازِعَ لَهُ في
أمره. الحمدالله الذی لا شريك لَهُ في خلقه ولا شبيه لَهُ في عَظَمَتِه جزء من
دعاء الإفتتاح وصلّی الله علی سيدّنا ونبيّنا محمّد صلّی الله عليه وعلی آله
الطاهرين واصحابه المنتجبين.

عبادالله ! أُوصيكم و نفسي بتقوی الله و
اتّباع امره و نهیه.


One important affair that is presented about the sharia of Islam is
that when Muslims know their obligations and act them, they have done their
responsibilities. In other words, there are rights versus obligations. Such
matters can complete our discussion. It is appropriate that the relationship
between rights and obligations can be somehow analyzed.

It seems that if we pay attention to the two words rights and
obligations , it can be concluded that there is a relationship between them
even in their meanings. In other words, if we want to know the meaning of the
word obligations , we should know the meaning of the word rights and
if we want to know the meaning of the word rights , we should know the
meaning of the word obligations . Hence, some have considered the relationship
and correspondence between rights and obligations the same as the relationship
between a father and his child. As a child is meaningless without his father,
rights without obligations are meaningless as well.[1] Some
scientists have interpreted rights and obligations as two faces of a coin.[2] Some
experts and scientists of Islam believe about the relationship between rights
and obligations that obligations do not mean to oblige others to do actions or
give them up and there is a mutual relationship between obligations and rights.
In other words, rights involve obligations and obligations involve rights. The
only difference is that the choice is hidden in the meaning of rights and people
that include rights can choose whereas such a thing is not true about obligations.
However, human beings are able to give them up practically[3]. It
has also been said that obligations are accompanied by rights that have been
considered for others and rights include obligations for others. Hence, we can
say that rights and obligations are two interrelated meanings; in other words,
they are two faces of a coin. When we say that someone has the right to use
something, it means that others are obliged to respect his or her rights [4].

What is vital to pay attention to is that from the point of view of
the sharia of Islam, there is a tight relationship between rights and
obligations of human beings in a way that we cannot separate. This topic is one
of important matters that should be paid more attention to because it can be
seen nowadays that some people crush responsibilities and obligations under
their feet on the account of freedom right in a false meaning whereas if there
is a right, there should definitely be an obligation in line with the right.
For example, if freedom right is well known for human beings, this right is
defined according to the value of the people and environment around him. Hence,
human beings should preserve their values and virtues as the most honorable
creature and respect the rights of others in life. Likewise, it is not
appropriate that because a human being has freedom right, he or she can gain
his or her desires and temptations by any means and ways. Therefore, there are
rules with specific conditions for all rights and obligations so that human
beings can achieve bliss and the desired perfection with using their rights and
responsibilities left to them.


Of course, this point should be paid attention to that when there
is a relationship between rights and obligations in their real meanings, people
should try to behave fairly and wisely and in fact, they want that all human
beings achieve their real rights. However, the societies that exploit the individuals
of the society by force consider right for themselves and violate the rights of
other people easily. From the point of view of Amir Al-Momenin peace be upon
him , the relationship between rights and obligations is in the way that one of
them cannot exist without the other one. Hence, he stated


جَعَلَ اللَّهُ سُبْحَانَهُ لِي عَلَيْكُمْ حَقّاً بِوِلَايَةِ أَمْرِكُمْ وَ
لَكُمْ عَلَيَّ مِنَ الْحَقِّ مِثْلُ الَّذِي لِي عَلَيْكُمْ- [وَ الْحَقُ‏]
فَالْحَقُّ أَوْسَعُ الْأَشْيَاءِ فِي‏ 
التَّوَاصُفِ وَ أَضْيَقُهَا فِي التَّنَاصُفِ لَا يَجْرِي لِأَحَدٍ إِلَّا
جَرَى عَلَيْهِ وَ لَا يَجْرِي عَلَيْهِ إِلَّا جَرَى لَهُ وَ لَوْ كَانَ لِأَحَدٍ
أَنْ يَجْرِيَ لَهُ وَ لَا يَجْرِيَ عَلَيْهِ لَكَانَ ذَلِكَ خَالِصاً لِلَّهِ
سُبْحَانَهُ دُونَ خَلْقِهِ لِقُدْرَتِهِ عَلَى عِبَادِهِ وَ لِعَدْلِهِ فِي كُلِّ
مَا جَرَتْ عَلَيْهِ صُرُوفُ قَضَائِه‏..[5]


After I admire God, I should express that the good God has determined rights
for me since I am the guardian of your government and he has determined rights
for you as well. Hence, rights are more extended than we can describe. However,
when they are described, they are unique. If a right is implemented in the
favor of someone, it will be implemented against his or her favor one day
because if it is implemented against his or her favor, one day it will be in his
or her favor. If it is supposed that a right is implemented in the favor of
someone not against his or her favor, it is specialized only for God not other
creatures because God is powerful and he has his justice over his creatures
that obey his orders.


Whenever common people and leaders respect the rights of each other
and people implement the rights of their leader and vice versa, rights will be
highly valuable in that society and the rules of the religion will be
implemented. Moreover, fairness will be implemented in the society, the
tradition of the prophet peace of Allah be upon him and his descendants will
be established and the life of people will be improved. According to the
mentioned matters, it can be concluded that relationship between right and
obligation can be seen in the life of common people and this right is not only
true about people and their leader. Hence, Hazrat Amir Al-Momenin peace be upon
him also stated      


ثُمَّ جَعَلَ سُبْحَانَهُ مِنْ
حُقُوقِهِ حُقُوقاً افْتَرَضَهَا لِبَعْضِ النَّاسِ عَلَى بَعْضٍ هفَجَعَلَهَا تَتَكَافَأُ
فِي وُجُوهِهَا وَ يُوجِبُ بَعْضُهَا بَعْضاً وَ لَا يُسْتَوْجَبُ بَعْضُهَا
إِلَّا بِبَعْضٍ


Good God has considered some rights vajeb for some people and other rights for
other people. Rights are vajeb provided that the same people implement the same
rights . [6]


The exalted God has established rights for people in the society
against each other. A right depends on another right and a right is not vajeb
without the other one. 



Muhammad Ali Movahed, the book the atmosphere of truth and
fairness p 35 1.

Muhammad Jafar Langarudi, the book   a
comprehensive explanation of rights p 1403

Ayatollah Allame avadi Amoli, the book the philosophy and the rights of
human p 75-76

The book the philosophy of rights p 24

5. Nahj Al-Balaghe , sermon 216

6. Nahj Al-Balaghe/ khotbe 216

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