The essence of takaful could be seen in the system of mutual help in relation to the custom of blood money under the ancient Arab tribal custom, and eventually was approved by the Prophet (p.b.u.h.). The basis of shared responsibility in the system of “aqila”, as practised between Muslims of Mecca (muhajirin) and Medina (ansar) laid the foundation of mutual insurance. This practice was then followed by the Prophet’s companions. Aqila is non-commercial in nature and is aimed at helping those in need without demanding contractual payments. Instead, it is motivated by the sense of brotherhood and mutual responsibility to help fellow members of the tribe who are in need of contribution. For instance, in case of unintentional murder involving two different tribes, the accused person’s paternal relatives will bear the responsibility of paying the blood money which is pooled from the group members’ contributions to the victim’s relatives. For further details see: Islamic Financial System; Principles and Operations.

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