Hasan on Leaders: Obedience to corrupt rulers is difficult, but necessary

Ibn Rajab reported: Hasan al-Basri, may Allah have mercy on him, said regarding the rulers, “They take charge of five matters: the Friday prayer, the congregational prayers, the Eid celebration, guarding the frontiers, and the legal punishments. By Allah, the religion will not be upheld without them, even if they are tyrannical and oppressive. By Allah, what Allah sets right by them is greater than their corruption. By Allah, obedience to them is difficult, but seceding from them is unbelief.”

Source: Jāmi’ al-‘Ulūm wal-Ḥikam 2/117

عن ابن رجب وَقَالَ الْحَسَنُ رحمه الله فِي الْأُمَرَاءِ هُمْ يَلُونَ مِنْ أُمُورِنَا خَمْسًا الْجُمُعَةَ وَالْجَمَاعَةَ وَالْعِيدَ وَالثُّغُورَ وَالْحُدُودَ وَاللَّهِ مَا يَسْتَقِيمُ الدِّينُ إِلَّا بِهِمْ وَإِنْ جَارُوا وَظَلَمُوا وَاللَّهِ لَمَا يُصْلِحُ اللَّهُ بِهِمْ أَكْثَرُ مِمَّا يُفْسِدُونَ مَعَ أَنَّ وَاللَّهِ إِنَّ طَاعَتَهُمْ لَغَيْظٌ وَإِنَّ فُرْقَتَهُمْ لَكُفْرٌ

2/117 جامع العلوم والحكم الحديث الثامن والعشرون أوصيكم بتقوى الله والسمع والطاعة وإن تأمر عليكم عبد