Status of Takaful
Glossary of Financial Terms
Gambling and Insurance
Gambling and insurance are two distinct and different operations. Gambling is speculative in its risk assessment whereas insurance is a pure risk and is non-speculative. In gambling, one may win or lose by creating that risk. In insurance, the risk is already there and one is trying to minimise the financial effects of that risk. Insurance shifts the impact of that risk to someone else and relieves the person of risk. The risk nevertheless still remains.
While gambling promotes dissension, ruin and hatred, insurance based on cooperative principles, enables the insured to lessen the financial impact without which it could drive the individual and his dependents to poverty, thereby weakening their place in the society. There is nothing in Islam that prevents individuals from making a provision for their dependents. Seen collectively for large groups of insured population, insurance strengthens the financial base of the society.
Islamic scholar, Yusuf Ali, in his translation of The Holy Qur’an, comments on Sura (chapter) Al-Baqara, ayat (verse) 219, "Insurance is not gambling, when conducted on business principles. Here the basis for calculation is statistics on a large scale, from which mere chance is eliminated. The insurers charge premium in proportion to the risks, exactly and scientifically calculated".
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