Question # 288: Is it permissible to deal in Bitcoin from the perspective of Islam?

 

Bismi-llahi r-raḥmani r-raḥīm,

Assalamu ‘laikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,

All praise and thanks are due to Allah (سبحانه و تعالى), and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم).

Dear questioner,

First of all, we implore Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) to help us serve His cause and render our work for His sake. 

Shorter Answer: Bitcoin is a digital currency that enables payment in a decentralized network that is powered and approved by the consensus of its users without the involvement of any central authority (banks or governments). The origin of bitcoin is ambiguous and equally, the operating algorithm behind it.  As for its commercial inherent criticism, it is not a legal tender, its platforms for trading are unsecured, transactions are irreversible and its price is volatile. Also, it has set the stage for fraud, theft, misrepresentation, and illegal activity such as money laundering in recent times.

On the other hand, the concept of money in Islamic Shari’ah is utterly different from the conventional economics. Money in Islam performs a “social role” and should be invested to promote socio-economic justice – for the benefit of the community as a whole. Further, according to Islamic economic principles, money has no intrinsic value, but is only a medium of exchange and store of value. Money cannot be sold nor rented out to generate “surplus value by itself”.

Applying the concept of Money to Bitcoin, we note that although Bitcoin passes the test of unit of account and to a certain extent, store of value function and its acceptance as medium of exchange, it fails drastically on being a legal tender with full decentralization and no control; and its volatility and speculative nature with no real economic activity and contribution to society, exhibits signs of maysir (gambling) and therefore, is considered haraam. Last but not the least, most importantly, trading in money opens door of injustice for the people and of devouring their wealth by false pretenses; and in fact, making money from money is riba, hence haraam.  It is one of five higher goals of Shari’ah Law (maqasid al‐Shari’ah), to protect wealth/property, through which the economic system is protected.

it’s a riba mentality, where people do not work to earn money but want to multiple by sitting idle or do nothing but just click a button. That is why in Islam, all transactions are linked to real economic activity.  A true Muslim should be wary of the doubtful things in order to keep himself clear in regard to his faith and his honor because one who falls into doubtful matters is sure to fall into that which is unlawful (haraam). The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said, “A time will come when one will not care how one gains one’s money, legally or illegally.”

As a side note to our answer, we have also justified the use of paper notes as against gold and silver in the olden days based on fatawa of renowned scholars.

(Note: I genuinely request the readers to go through the longer version of the answer to have a better perspective)

Long Answer: Before we delve into the Islamic viewpoint on dealing in cryptocurrency, let’s try and comprehend Bitcoin – how it works (in a very simple language for everyone to understand, avoiding technical jargons as much as possible) and briefly know its criticism in the commercial world. Then enlighten ourselves with the Islamic concept of money and using these standards, critically analyze Bitcoin.

Commercial Aspect

Definition and How Bitcoin Works

Unlike traditional currency, Bitcoin is a digital currency that enables payment in a decentralized peer-to-peer (P2P) network that is powered and approved by the consensus of its users. There is no central authority (banks or governments) or middleman that controls it.

The origins of bitcoin can be traced back to a ‘2008 White Paper’ that listed as its author someone named Satoshi Nakamoto. But to this day, no one is quite sure exactly who Satoshi Nakamoto is—the name appears to be a pseudonym—or whether the white paper was produced by just one person or, perhaps, by a group. It was introduced as an open source software. Think of it as a sophisticated computer program that encrypts, verifies and records bitcoin transactions. While Bitcoin users are anonymous, a public record or “block chain” is public and shared between Bitcoin system users. Mathematical proofs are used to verify the authenticity of each transaction.

Bitcoins are created by a process called “mining.” Like mining for gold, the process is labor intensive. Mining serves two purposes. First, miners use software algorithms to add transaction records to Bitcoin’s public ledger of past transactions and verify legitimate bitcoin transactions. For their efforts, Bitcoin miners get transaction fees. In addition, if the miner finds a new “block,” the miner is awarded new bitcoins. The reward is currently 12.5 bitcoins; but this will exponentially decrease, halving roughly every four years until a total of 21 million bitcoins (maximum limit) have been released into the network, which is expected to happen around the year 2140.

Bitcoins can also be bought and sold online or at physical locations. A growing number of physical establishments and exchanges allow customers to buy and sell bitcoins using cash, credit cards, money orders and other methods. Bitcoins reside in a digital “wallet,” where they can be used to purchase items from establishments that accept bitcoins. Bitcoins can be traded for traditional currency at exchange rates that fluctuate. Bitcoin prices have been extremely volatile, and subject to wide price swings.

(Note: Bitcoin isn’t the only cryptocurrency in the world—there are more than a thousand—but it is the most popular. As of December 2017, it accounted for $328 billion out of the total value of $598 billion across the 1,360 cryptocurrencies that coinmarketcap.com tracks)

Bitcoin Risks (from commercial perspective) 

  • Digital currency such as Bitcoin is not legal tender. No law requires companies or individuals to accept bitcoins as a form of payment. Instead, Bitcoin use is limited to businesses and individuals that are willing to accept bitcoins. If no one accepts bitcoins, bitcoins will become worthless.
  • Platforms that buy and sell bitcoins can be hacked, and some have failed. In addition, like the platforms themselves, digital wallets can be hacked. As a result, consumers can—and have—lost money.
  • Unlike U.S. banks and credit unions that provide certain guarantees of safety to depositors, there are no such safeguards provided to digital wallets.
  • Bitcoin payments are irreversible. Once you complete a transaction, it cannot be reversed. Purchases can be refunded, but that depends solely on the willingness of the establishment to do so.
  • Bitcoin Is Volatile – It shares a trait associated with gold and other precious metals—it’s relatively rare. In fact, the algorithm that controls bitcoin production has a cut-off date of 2140. After that year, no more bitcoins will be added to the world economy. When an asset is scarce, that can make it an attractive investment, but it can also make it volatile.
  • In part because of the anonymity Bitcoin offers, it has been used in illegal activity, including drug dealing, money laundering and other forms of illegal commerce. Abuses could impact consumers and speculators; for instance, law enforcement agencies could shut down or restrict the use of platforms and exchanges, limiting or shutting off the ability to use or trade bitcoins.
  • Bitcoin transactions can be subject to fraud and theft. For example, a fraudster could pose as a Bitcoin exchange, Bitcoin intermediary or trader in an effort to lure you to send money, which is then stolen.

Islamic Viewpoint

Concept of Money in Islam

The concept of money in Islam is utterly different from the conventional economics basically because Islamic principles are based on Shari’ah. Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) is the exclusive and supreme Owner of everything as He says in the Qur’an: “To Him belongs everything in the heavens and the earth, and everything between them, and everything beneath the soil.” (Soorah Ta-Ha, 20:6). Money (or wealth), in Islam, is property held by man as vicegerents of the Giver, as Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) says in the Qur’an: “It is He who has appointed You vicegerent on the earth and exalted some of you in rank above others, so that He may test you by means of what he has given you.” (Soorah Al-Anam, 6:165). Hence, money should be used and invested wisely and in accordance to the Shari’ah – the Laws of the Creator. Money in Islam performs a “social role” and should be invested to promote socio-economic justice – for the benefit of the community as a whole, as Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) says in the Qur’an: “…and give them from the wealth of Allah which He has given you.” (Soorah an-Noor, 24:33)

According to Islamic economic principles and contrary to the conventional concepts, money has no intrinsic value, but is only a medium of exchange and store of value. Money cannot be sold nor rented out to generate “surplus value by itself”. Therefore, money in Islam can only be exchanged for goods and services. It cannot be exchanged directly for money unless the exchange is spontaneous… [else the] practice would be tantamount to making money from money (riba) hence haraam. Money in Islam can only be generated through lawful trade and investment where parties share the risks and rewards thereto. Money only becomes capital when combined with other factors of production. Money, by itself, has no opportunity cost. Islam totally negates the idea of time value for money.

The concept of money in Islam is summarized as:

  • Money has no intrinsic value but it is only a medium of exchange;
  • Money has standard/measurement of value which measures the relative different goods and services;
  • All units of money of the same denomination are 100% equal to each other;
  • The transactions of sale and purchase of commodity can only be affected on an identified and specific commodity.

The two important functions [mentioned above] of money – measurement of value and medium of exchange – were especially mentioned by lbn Taimiyah in his discussion of the nature and functions of money. He says: “Athman (sing. thaman, that is, price or that which is paid as price, money, etc.) are meant to be a measurement of objects of value (mi’yar al-amwal), through which the quantities of objects of value (maqadir al- amwal) are known; and they are never meant to be consumed.” Al-Ghazali, for his part, viewed the existence of money as being derived from the need for: “A measure on the basis of which price can be determined, because the exchanged commodities are neither of the same type, nor of the same measure which can determine how much quantity of one commodity is a just price for another. Therefore, all these commodities need a mediator to judge their exact value… Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) has, therefore, created dirhams and dinars (money) as judges and mediators between all commodities so that all objects of wealth are measured through them… That is why Allah has created them, so that they may be circulated between hands and act as a fair judge between different commodities and work as a medium to acquire other things…” By this statement he clearly means that the essential function of money is to measure the value of goods and to be paid in exchange for different quantities of goods.” So, one who starts trading money and make it like a commodity or an object of sale is going against the original intent of the money. That is why, it is not allowed to sale money as a commodity as it leads to riba.

lbn al-Qayyim, states the same fact more clearly: “Money and coins are not meant for themselves but they are meant to be used for acquiring goods (that is, they are a medium of exchange only).” How close that formulation is to the one that appeared more than six hundred years later in An Outline of Money: “The essential characteristics of money, which sets it apart from all other substances, is that it is not desired by itself. It is, in the fullest sense, a medium or means, or mechanism of exchange.” Since lbn Taimiyah considers the main function of money to be a medium of exchange, he is against trade in money because it diverts money from doing what it is meant to do. If money must be changed for money, the exchange must be completed simultaneously (taqabud) and without any delay (hulul). In this way a man will be able to use money as a means for obtaining his requirement. If two persons exchange money for money, with one of them paying cash while the other promises to pay later, then the first person will not be able to use the promised money for transaction till he is actually paid. This means a loss of opportunity. In lbn Taimiyah’s opinion this is the reason why the Prophet forbade such transactions.

Ibn Taimiyah was distressed by the repeated debasement of the coinage which occurred in Egypt under different Mamluk sultans. He asked the Sultan to check erosion of the value of money, which caused such a disturbance in the economy. He opposes debasement in the currency and over-production of money. He says: ‘The authority should mint the coins (other than gold and silver) according to the just value of people’s transactions, without any injustice to them.’ [Further he said,] the volume of fulus (copper currency) should be in such a proportion to the volume of transactions that ‘just prices’ are ensured. …he considered it necessary that the intrinsic value of coins, i.e. the value of the metal, should match their purchasing power in the market so that no one (including the ruler) could profit by either melting the coins and selling the metal or by converting metal into coins and putting them into circulation.

lbn Taimiyah advises a ruler ‘not to start business in money by purchasing copper and minting coins and thus doing business with them; neither should he invalidate the money in the people’s possession and mint other kinds of coins. Rather, he should mint coins of real value without aiming at any profit by so doing, and while keeping in view the public welfare (al-maslahah al-ammah); he should pay the salary of workers from the public treasury (bait al-maal). Without doubt, trading in money means opening a great door of injustice for the people and of devouring their wealth by false pretenses. It should be noted that some of the Mamluk Sultans were involved in the practice which lbn Taimiyah refers to as ‘trading in money’… The state is responsible for controlling currency expansion and for checking erosion of the value of money, both major causes of economic instability.

Among the five higher goals of Shari’ah Law (maqasid al‐Shari’ah), is the protection of wealth/property, through which the economic system is protected. For this, Islam forbids hoarding because of the harm that it causes to people, as is indicated by the report narrated by Muslim in his Saheeh from ‘Amr ibn ‘Abd-Allah (رضي الله عنه) who said: The Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said: “No one hoards but one who is in error.” Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) says in the Qur’an: “And those who hoard up gold and silver (Al‑Kanz: the money, the Zakaah of which has not been paid) and spend them not in the way of Allah, announce unto them a painful torment” (Soorah al-Tawbah, 9:34) To achieve the goal of Shari’ah, there must be a systematic order in the economy, which can be trusted and relied on. Alongside, there must be cooperation, removal of injustice and exploitation. This has in effect led to the prohibition of riba (interest) and gharar (uncertainty) in business transactions.

Bitcoin – Islamic Perspective

Let’s apply the above concept of Money with its criteria in Islam to Bitcoin:

  • Unit of account: Bitcoin has its unit of account (i.e., 8 decimal point).
  • Medium of exchange: Bitcoin is accepted as a mode of payment within the virtual community.
  • Store of value: Reliability of Bitcoin as medium of exchange indicate the ability of Bitcoin to store value because it can be used to measure the value of goods and debt in relation to time. However, Bitcoin value is very volatile; hence limiting its ability to be a store of value.
  • Widely Acceptance: The money should be widely and commonly accepted by the society, which is not the case with Bitcoin at present.
  • Legal Tender: The money should be conferred by the government. with the objective to regulate inflation and deflation risk that may harm the value of the currency and the underlying purchasing power it holds. Hence, there must be a systematic order in the economy, which can be trusted and relied on. This criterion is completely out of picture for Bitcoin. A free system with no control/in-charge/decentralization is not acceptable in Islam; Abu Sa’id Al-Khudri and Abu Hurairah (رضي الله عنه) reported: The Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said, “When three persons set out on a journey, they should appoint one of them as their leader.” (Abu Dawud)
  • Volatility and Speculation: Earning income from mere speculation on prices without having an explicit part in the real activity [contribution to society] comes under the category of maysir (gambling) and considered haraam. Hence, Islam prohibits all transactions that depend just on chance and speculation, those in which the rights of the contracting parties are not clearly defined and those that enable some to amass wealth at the expense of others. And that is what we see with Bitcoin, some people lost huge sums of money overnight and others have made fortune.
  • Trading in Money: The essential characteristics of money, which sets it apart from all other substances, is that it is not desired by itself. Its function is to measure the value of goods and to be paid in exchange for different quantities of goods; and is never meant to be consumed. So, trading in money and making it like a commodity or an object of sale is against the original intent of the money. Money in Islam can only be exchanged for goods and services; exchanging money directly is subject to the rules of Bai‘ al Sarf, i.e. equal for equal and hand to hand, and Islam totally negates the idea of time value for money; consequently, trading in money would be tantamount to making money from money (riba) hence haraam.

Conclusion

Although Bitcoin passes the test of unit of account and to a certain extent, store of value function and its acceptance as medium of exchange, it fails drastically on being a legal tender with full decentralization and no control; and its volatility and speculative nature with no real economic activity and contribution to society, exhibits signs of maysir (gambling) and therefore, is considered haraam. Last but not the least, most importantly, trading in money opens door of injustice for the people and of devouring their wealth by false pretenses; and in fact, making money from money is riba, hence haraam. It is one of five higher goals of Shari’ah Law (maqasid al‐Shari’ah), to protect wealth/property, through which the economic system is protected.

It is to be remembered that human wants are unlimited. Imam Ahmad, an-Nasai, at-Tirmidhi and Ibn Hibban in his Sahih report the hadith of Ka’b ibn Malik al-Ansari, (رضي الله عنه), from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) that he said: “Two hungry wolves let loose among sheep are not more harmful then a person craving after wealth and status is to his Deen (Religion).” at-Tirmidhi said, “It is hasan Sahih.” Also, narrated Anas bin Malik (رضي الله عنه): Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said, “If Adam’s son had a valley full of gold, he would like to have two valleys, for nothing fills his mouth except dust. And Allah forgives him who repents to Him.” (Al-Bukhari). Imam Ibn ul-Qayyim (rahimahullah) said: “Feeling powerless is a deceptive excuse.”  (al-Fawaaid)

In fact, when Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) was asked ‘what form of gain is the best? [the Prophet] said, ‘A man’s work with his hands, and every legitimate sale’. (Ahmad) However, it’s a riba mentality, where people do not work to earn money but want to multiple by sitting idle or do nothing but just click a button. That is why in Islam, all transactions are linked to real economic activity.  Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) allowed trade and forbade riba.

Apart from all the criticism and discussion over non-permissible aspect of cryptocurrency mentioned above, no doubt there is lot of ambiguity surrounding Bitcoin. In fact, in Islam, things legitimate and illegitimate are clearly defined and, in between them, are doubtful things, which should be avoided. A true Muslim should be wary of the doubtful things in order to keep himself clear in regard to his faith and his honor because one who falls into doubtful matters is sure to fall into that which is unlawful (haraam). Al-Hasan bin ‘Ali said: “I remember that the Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said: ‘Leave what makes you in doubt for what does not make you in doubt. The truth brings tranquility while falsehood sows doubt.’” (Tirmidhi; graded Sahih) He (صلى الله عليه و سلم) also said:  Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said, “A time will come when one will not care how one gains one’s money, legally or illegally.” (al-Bukhari)

On A Side Note – Use of Paper notes

While examining the issue on hand, we came across several arguments on the social media, whereby some Muslims justify the use of Bitcoin similar to the use of paper money. Hence, we decided to include a section on this issue to clarify the doubt for our readers.

Some claim that paper money is Haraam and insist that only gold and silver are legitimate currencies. Others demand that paper money must be backed by gold and silver. Some see paper money as a product of the interest-bearing international banking system, and therefore non-Sharı´ah compliant. Some of the statements made concerning currencies in Sharı´ah claim that Fiat currencies are haraam since they are based on debt and interest, while other statements claim that Sharı´ah requires a currency to have intrinsic value.

Nothing could be further from the truth. Sharı´ah does not require a currency to have intrinsic value nor does it forbid Fiat currencies. Paper money is Halal. This has been shown time and time again throughout the history of Islamic Jurisprudence including the modern era.

First, let’s review the currency situation in the early Islamic period before analyzing the permissibility of paper money:

During that period, gold and silver were the currencies, and they are mentioned in The Quran as Dinar (gold), and Dirham (silver). The word “Waraq” is also mentioned and the interpreters deemed it to refer to silver. There were also some coins made of copper that were called “Fuloos”, in small denominations. When someone only has a few Fuloos, he was considered bankrupt, from which the word “Taflees” originates.

Byzantine coins remained accepted for some time in the first Islamic century, although very early on, governments began striking their own coins, first silver and then gold. Because the quality of the first coins was poor and therefore variable, they were weighed instead of counted, indicating that their value was based on content rather than as a unitized medium of exchange. Some silver and copper were however counted, indicating that the idea of money as units was considered.

The history of money and coinage in the Islamic world is far too long to recount, however suffice it to say that it took many shapes and varieties of different minting throughout the ages under different leaders. There has even been a brief but failed attempt at paper money by the Mongols in the 13th century.

Of course, there have been throughout history some scholars who have argued for gold and silver only money, but without any convincing evidence from Sharı´ah, since they relied mainly on the custom of its usage during the early time period, as well as on its mention in the Quran as money, as opposed to a clear and unequivocal text either from The Quran or The Hadith.

They also regard gold and silver to be money by nature and refer to some scholars who have limited the characteristic or causation (Illah) of riba and zakat to only gold and silver, as they are a measure of value (Thamaniyyah).

The opponents of the exclusivity of gold and silver as money have a stronger case, as they rely on the basic principle that everything is permissible unless it is clearly forbidden in The Qur’quan or The Sunnah. There is nothing unequivocal that limits money to only gold and silver.

They also evaluate customs by their meanings and not their appearance. Whilst gold and silver were the main money items, it was due to custom and availability and not any Sharı´ah sanction.

They reject the idea that the measure of value argument; that attracts riba and demands zakat; is limited to only gold and silver. Other items can have those characteristics and thus the “Illah of Thamaniyyah” exists in them as well.

By performing Qiyas scholars attempt to discover the cause (Illah), which is the characteristic that attracts laws into action. The Illah therefore of gold and silver that triggers riba and zakat are their properties of measure of value and store of wealth (Thamaniyyah). Paper money has the same characteristic.

The opponents of money as only gold and silver, it must be said, also have a very big arsenal to defend their view in the personalities that have ruled on this issue. Here are three famous quotes, among others:

  • A well-known story from very early on during the reign of the second Khalifah (Caliph), Umar Ibn Al-Khattab (رضي الله عنه)  tells of him advocating the making of money out of “skins” of camels but was advised against it due to the lack of enough animals. This clearly shows that he didn’t view money as exclusively gold and silver.
  • Another great scholar, Imam Malik bin Anas (711-795 A.D.); for whom is attributed one of the four main schools of thought, Al-Maliki; states in his book (Al-Mudawwanah: Kitab Al-Sarf): “If the people were to agree amongst themselves on using “skins” (as money), such that these were made into coins and monetary units, I would dislike these to be sold for gold and silver with deferred payment.” This clearly shows Imam Malik’s view that “skins” as money would have acquired the same attributes, as gold and silver, and the rules of currencies forbidding deferred delivery must be maintained.
  • The most influential of scholars in the history of Islamic Jurisprudence, Ibn Taymiyyah (1263-1328 A.D.) himself who stated in his Fatawa: “As for dirhams and dinars, there is no natural or Sharı´ah definition for these; however, the matter returns to habit and terminology. This is because the basic principle is that the objective is not these coins in themselves; rather, the objective is that they should be a standard for mutual transactions. Dirhams and dinars are not sought for themselves. Rather, they are means by which mutual transactions are carried out, and this is why they serve as money … A pure means, the substance or form of which is not an objective in itself, achieves the objective, whatever it may be.”

Discussions and disputes continued till our modern era, with the supporters of gold and silver claiming that paper money has no intrinsic value and therefore not permitted, and that paper money is easily torn or destroyed and therefore not fit for currency, or even that it’s nothing but a debt instrument and therefore it’s not permitted to be traded.

None of these arguments hold a strong Sharı´ah proof against paper money to the modern scholars.

In 1971, Shaikh Abdullah bin Sulayman bin Mani, of the Council of Senior Scholars of Saudi Arabia issued a paper arguing for the permissibility of paper money, a long document detailing some of the above history and arguments on both sides. A few quotes would be sufficient to give the type of conclusions made: “Money is thus whatever is agreed to be such, whether by government authority or public practice. Regarding gold and silver as having been created for money thus lacks support from a legal, theoretical, or historical perspective.”

And as for those who assert that paper money is debt, Shaikh Abdullah states: “This is precisely the secret of the validity of paper money, since its value is not intrinsic but guaranteed by government. This does not imply that it is an IOU or debt since it cannot be redeemed in gold and/or silver.”

In September 1973, the Council of Senior Scholars of Saudi Arabia reviewed the characteristics of paper money and the history of gold and silver, and the backing of such currencies by gold and silver. They also discussed the issue of whether paper money is in fact a debt instrument. They re-iterated the sayings of both Imam Malik and Ibn Taymiyyah noting that currencies are not dependent on their nature and their usage is based on custom. They also came to the same conclusion concerning the riba and zakat aspect of paper money as well as the forbidden rule of forward sales of currencies against each other. Their view was that paper money is not haraam. 13 scholars signed the Fatwa of the Council with 2 abstentions, one of which later approved the ruling.

In 1982, when the Islamic Fiqh Academy in its 5th session held in the city of Makkah Al-Mukarramah issued a ruling on paper money: The origin of money is gold and silver. The characteristic (Illah) of riba that occurs within them is due to their measure of wealth and store of value (Thamaniyyah), based on the strongest views amongst the scholars. The characteristic of a store of value is not limited to only gold and silver even though originally it was so.

The paper currency that exists today has become a store of value and has replaced gold and silver as a means of payment, because the community has accepted it as a store of value and as a means of payment even if its value is not the paper but the trust that is placed in it in commercial dealings.

Therefore, members of the Council of Islamic Fiqh Academy have decided that the paper currency is a stand-alone currency, which takes all the laws of gold and silver. That includes the legal prohibition of the riba al-fadl and riba al-naseea, the compulsory zakat and other laws. This is based on qiyas (analogy) of the existing currency against gold and silver. The Ruling was signed by 18 members with no abstention.

The conclusion is clear. Paper money has replaced gold and silver and serves as a store of value and a medium of exchange in the market. The rules of riba, zakat, and sarf (currency exchange) apply to it equally. There is no absolute text in Sharı´ah making gold and/or silver the exclusive currencies. Very important scholars have throughout history asserted the same view.

(The above reply is based on the following resources:

  • ‘Derivatives in Islamic Finance: Examining the Market Risk Management Framework’ by Sherif Ayoub
  • Financial Industry Regulatory Authority
  • ‘Economic Concepts of Ibn Taimiyah’ by Abdul Azim Islahi
  • A LinkedIn Article on ‘The Concept of Money in Islamic Economics’ by Mudhakkir Abdul, CIFE
  • Presentation on ‘Shari’ah Analysis of Cryptocurrency: Bitcoin’ by Marjan Muhammad (PhD), Head of Research Quality Assurance Office, ISRA
  • Video Lecture ‘Problem with Bitcoin – Islamic perspective’ by Almir Colan, Director of Australian Centre for Islamic Finance and Awqaf Australia
  • Article ‘Paper Money’ by Nizar Alshubaily on site:co
  • ‘Understanding Islamic Finance’ by Muhammad Ayub)

Allahu A’lam (Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) knows best) and all Perfections belong to Allah, and all mistakes belong to me alone. May Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) forgive me, Ameen.

Wassalaam