Wednesday, April 3, 2013

The Governance of Jahiliyyah

To continue to shed further light on those who have taken positions that are not within the parameters of our god-given Islam. There is a Qur'anic word and a Qur'anic concept- this word is al jahiliyyah. Allah says in an ayah in the Qur'an
Is it the governance of jahiliyyah that they seek and who could be better to govern that Allah? But only people of certainty are aware of this. (Surah Al Maa'idah verse 53)
Now, this Qur'anic word, al jahiliyyah, is mentioned other times in the Qur'an. This ayah speaks to Muslim womenfolk, (the noon here is for an niswah).
And do not expose your charms (or) your physique the way you use to expose them in al jahiliyyah. (Surah Al Ahzaab verse 33)
The word jahiliyyah is also a word used by Allah's Prophet, (and we'll be coming to that). So this word, al jahiliyyah, has made its presence known in the contemporary literature of the Islamic momentum of today's world. Everyone who is deeply involved in the conceptualization and in thinking through the affairs of today's world from time to time uses the word al jahiliyyah. To some people, al jahiliyyah means that time period prior to Islam. The time period before the Prophet and the Qur'an came to humanity is called al jahiliyyah. That, of course, is a partial explanation of the word; to others al jahiliyyah means a time period between two Prophets in which the previous message of Allah of the previous Prophet's message to his society withered away and the new message from Allah is not here yet. So that period of time, according to some people's definition and some scholars, is called a jahiliyyah. Yours truly here would define al jahiliyyah- which is taken from the word jahila i.e. ignorant of- if you want to catch the aroma of it from the Qur'an, it refers to a society's mental absence from acknowledging Allah's power and authority- that's called al jahiliyyah regardless of where it is located in time- prior to the revelation of time, in-between the periods separating one Prophet from another, in Islamic societies themselves, (if we call them Islamic societies), just like in today's world. The public mind is not concentrated, meaning it's not focusing in a thoughtful way on Allah's power and authority therefore we have a jahiliyyah. Could this definition apply to the time in which Allah's Prophet was among us, (i.e.) he was living, he was teaching, he was guiding (and) he was leading? Could we say that in this context we can find traces of jahiliyyah ? Yes we can. One instance that is in our history is that two individuals, one of them from the Muhajirin (radi Allahu anhum) and the other one from the Ansaar (radi Allahu anhum), got into a tense moment with each other. They began to argue and they began to conflict with each other. One of them said O Ansaar- come and help me. The other one said O Muhajirin- come to my help. Of course, nothing happened after that. There was no battle between Ansaar and Muhajirin- it was just this moment of asabiyyah that one expressed and the other counter expressed it. So when this whole matter was referred to Allah's Prophet he said do you express yourselves with a call of jahiliyyah? You see- the word al jahiliyyah comes up again. Then he goes on to say part with this jahiliyyah or leave it because…We want to be sharp in the wording because muntina means pungent. If you want to bring it down to everyday language part with this jahiliyyah because it stinks. The Prophet was speaking to Al Muhajirin and Ali Ansaar. People who were taken out of their asabiyyah past- they were Al Khazraj, they were Al Aws, they were Quraysh, they were Bani Haashim, they were Bani Umayyah and they were Bani this and Bani that. These were all asabiyaat i.e. that group solidarity right or wrong is called asabiyyah. The Prophet gave them an honorific and an honorary title, i.e. you are Al Muhajirin; whichever part of Makkah you come from or whichever asabiyyah you used to belong to, you part with that- now you've become Al Muhajirin. And you in Al Madinah; whatever your history was in prior Yathrib (and) whether you were Al Aws or Al Khazraj, now you're called Al Ansaar. But still, human nature in moments of weakness forgets about Allah's authority and power. Right now they're referring to their own clan and their own tribe and their race and their culture and their nationality and all of these that form these different asabiyaat. So in the weakness of human nature even these select committed Muslims i.e. Al Muhajirin and Al Ansaar who are mentioned in honorific terms in the Qur'an, an individual here and an individual there succumbed to this jahiliyyah. So even in the time of Allah's Prophet, Allah's Prophet said these are notions of jahiliyyah- divorce them; it has a bad odour to it.
OK- in the writings of contemporary scholars, (meaning in the past one-hundred years), we find that the word al jahiliyyah is used more often than others by two prominent figures in the Islamic Movement. One of them is Syed Abul A'la Al Maududi and the other one is Syed Qutb. Of course, other scholars used the word but these two dwelled on it. A close reading of Abul A'la Al Maududi, (he was the first to dwell on this word more than others; others would use other Qur'anic words and other words from the Prophet), but (with) this particular word, where did he detect the beginning of this expanding jahiliyyah? He said "it began in the latter years of the third successor of Allah's Prophet, Uthman ibn Affan (radi Allahu anhu). In his last years this jahiliyyah came on strong. It was so strong that it began to eclipse the hukm of Allah and the wilayah of Rasulillah and the committed Muslims." Then later, in the years that followed, (we're talking about the years 1950 to 1960's of the last century), Syed Qutb dwelled at length trying to explain and some Muslims misunderstood what he was trying to say and they still continue until this day taking these words to, (what you may call), their zealous extremes. He said "we have societies in Muslim countries and Muslim lands that have birth certificates that say that individuals here are Muslims and they express their shahadatayn and they perform their rituals very conscientiously but when you put the whole sum together, all of these individuals with their birth certificates and their rituals, you don't have an Islamic society. What we have is a jahiliyyah." Now, from here on we know we're going to have to preface what we're going to say with the following… All of the following information was taken from Sunni sources and Sunni references. It has nothing to do with Shi'ah or Al Khawarij or these other things that are sort of used to discredit what is being said. All of what you are going to hear are ahadith that came from Bukhari or Muslim or Abu Dawud or ibn Majah or these others who are "mainstream Sunnis."
To clear the air on this, we'd like to begin by saying because a lot of this extremism nowadays feeds off of the ignorance of this thirteen centuries plus of jahiliyyah. Some people think, (this is the way they were brought up), that if you honor Umar ibn Al Khattab (radi Allahu anhu) you have to automatically honor Muawiyah ibn Abi Sufyan. Who said so? Where did you get that from? Where did that come from? We don't care what background you come from- go back to your references, go back to your history books, go back to whatever- where do you find this connection? You can feel the sincerity of Umar ibn Khattab and you can feel the wickedness of Muawiyah ibn Abi Sufyan. What's wrong? You can't get your facts straight? You want to compare these two? In Umar's reign when Muslims suffered two years of drought, they were hungry; some Muslims began to steal because they wanted to feed their families. During that time period he was eating like an average person (or) less than an average person. He would dip bread into oil and eat that for weeks and months. He may have been a sharp person in confronting others but when it came to himself and his family he was as harsh to himself and his family as he was to the other Muslims. He wasn't discriminating. Compare that to a statement of Rasulillah when he wanted to see Muawiyah so he sent someone. He says go and call Muawiyah here. This is after Muawiyah became a Muslim. So the person goes to call Muawiyah (and) Muawiyah didn't come (or) didn't go to the Prophet. He told this person who the Prophet had sent, tell the Prophet that I'm eating meaning his stomach was more important to him than seeing the Prophet. When this go between (or) this person came back to the Prophet and said well he can't come and see you because he is eating. The Prophet said may Allah never cause his stomach to feel satisfied and that's who he was. All his life he would eat every two hours even when he was king over Muslims. You want to come and say that this person is like Umar? Where do you get your information from? Let us look at this beginning of jahiliyyah,(i.e.) when the Muslim public mind shifted from Allah's authority and power and then it became a tribal and a nationalistic issue. We don't want to go through the history of Uthman (radi Allahu anhu) and what happened there because this is a grey area in which people argue back and forth. We don't want to become argumentative. We want to take the information that we have. Read the books that you have. Read the information that you have. Read them! The mainstream books- it is known, every Muslim will tell you that the Prophet said Ammaar is going to be killed by the aggressive party (or) the offensive party. Ammaar calls them to Al Jannah and they call him to An Naar. This hadith is all over the place. OK- who killed Ammaar (radi Allahu anhu)? Read your history books. Go back. King Muawiyah was the head of al fi'aa al baaghiyah and when Muawiyah was told look, all of us know the Prophet's hadith that Ammaar is going to be killed by the offensive contingent and he was killed… He was the first person in Islam among Muslims who was beheaded. He was beheaded by a sahabi. This was an affair that was thought out by sahabis- some of them good some of some of them bad! Is someone going to come and say oh you say some sahabis were bad? That depends on your definition of sahabi.
This is a little off here but in a hadith after the battle of Uhud the Prophet of Allah comes to those Muslims who died shuhada' in Uhud. He says I bear witness on their behalf, I can vouch for them. They gave their lives, they died here in Uhud for Allah and His Prophet and Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) was standing next to him he said how about us?- meaning the rest who did not die at Uhud. They were fighting on the Prophet's side against the Mushrikeen of Makkah but they didn't die. The Prophet said to him I've been told that some of these who survived Uhud- I don't know what they are going to do in the future. The Prophet was told you don't know what they're going to do after you're gone. This person who killed Ammaar ibn Yaasir (and) beheaded him was the type of, (let's say), conscientious Muslim who would refuse to drink water from a cup that is made of silver. You judge here. So how did this jahiliyah begin to shift people's attention from Allah's power and authority to this tribalistic polarization in Arabia that Muawiyah was leading? Muawiyah said he and his group out there to take vengeance for the blood of Uthman- that was his excuse. He ran that down as a propaganda piece in Arabia. We have to see to it that the people who killed Uthman be brought to justice- its called qamis Uthman, (i.e.) the shirt of Uthman that was tainted with his blood- we have to take revenge for that. Do you know what that revenge meant? Seventy-thousand Muslims killed! What an ego here. (We're) looking at a person who has an ego here and then we have some Muslims who say "but no brother please- you know Muawiyah is mujtahid ma'jur. That was his ijtihad and he is going to be rewarded for that ijtihad even though the ijtihad is wrong." That's what they tell you. He is mujtahid ma'ajur? Wait a minute- let's get the full picture here, it doesn't begin here and it doesn't end here. Let's go on. Let's trace Muawiyah in his life who set in the re-focus of the Muslim mind from the power and the authority of Allah to that of state and armies and kings and princes and the rest of the mess that continued from that time up until this day! Because those people who can't see today's corruption it's because they can't see a corruption that's one thousand and four hundred years old. It's the same people. You watch- they do the same thing. When we're going to speak about Muawiyah think about today's kings and presidents.
Al Imam Ali (radi Allahu anhu) said I've been ordered to bear arms against an naaqifeen and al qaasiteen and al maarikeen. Three segments in this society now that has shifted its focus of thoughts and its focus of emotions away from Allah's authority and power and placed it in human beings. The first one is called an naaqifeen, those who went back on their pledge. You can put in this category Umm Al Mu'mineen Aa'isha, Az Zubayr and Talha (radi Allahu anhum). These were Mujtahids. They were wrong. Whether they will carry the day on the day of judgment is Allah's affair- it's not our affair and this is not an area to bad mouth people. So if they, and they did participate in the battle of Siffin and Ali was there to set the record straight and to try the best he could to place the Muslim public mind back where it belonged, (i.e.) on Allah's authority and power. Then there is al qaasiteen. This is Muawiyah and his tribalistic, asabi coalition of clans and families and dynasties in Arabia. Then al marikeen, this is in reference of those who are called in Islamic history Al Khawarij, those who broke with the Imam who were with him all the way up until at tahkeem and then when there was this arbitration they turned around and then they said now is our time to fight you. The Prophet of Allah says, (also in a hadith that you'll find all over the place, a hadith in the sihah in the mainstream literature), if a person or anyone comes and wants to divide you when you are united, in harmony with a leader (or) a leadership, then you strike his neck, that's another way of saying you get rid of him, you finish him off, you execute him whoever he is. You go back to in these books that are selectively quoted for you in the manabir of today's contemporary Muawiyah dynasty in Arabia. You read. Which territories were Ali's territories in which he had the loyalty and the jurisdiction of peoples? Everywhere except Bilad Ash Shaam- that's where Muawiyah had managed to group and regroup his types. So this person came when the Muslims were all in agreement to the Imamah, the leadership (and) to the Khilafah of Ali and he wants to break this agreement. So what's his penalty according to this hadith from Allah's Prophet? You strike life out of him at the neck level whomever he is. Then some people have difficulty with Muawiyah?! You can even see this type (if you) go to Minhaj As Sunnah An Nabawiyyah, a book by ibn Taymiyyah; refer to that on this particular issue. See what you find there. What happened? You want to place this hadith in the context that serves the tribal or national or nationalistic interests but this hadith is excluded from this first chapter of jahiliyah in Islamic history?! If it applies, it applies everywhere to anyone.
Then we follow, (in your books, go back to these history books; unfortunately many of them are in Arabic, but however way you can, go to an Arabic speaking person, whatever), and when finally Muawiyah became the king of the Muslims, (we know this is a hard expression for people to swallow and to digest but that's the fact of life), he's not a Khalifah and he is not an Imam in the Shar'i definition of these words. He is a king, he is a malik and still we don't have Muslims (with) whatever hemisphere of the brain they are activating that can come out and say Muawiyah was a king. Sunnis don't want to say it; Shi'is don't want to say it! Let's think straight. Let's take these facts and collect them (and) see what we have. So now he's become the number one ruler. Ali is gone. He's no longer alive. There were still some people who were implicated in the killing of Uthman. They were still around. He didn't pursue them?! If he was true to what he originally said, I'm going to pursue those who killed Uthman, when Ali met Allah and left this life some of these individuals who came there to assassinate Uthman were still alive; Muawiyah didn't pursue them, he didn't bring them to court, he did say I'm going to hold you responsible for killing Uthman because it was all over. When Ali was gone it's all over for him. He's no longer interested in qamis Uthman, in the killers of Uthman, in the assassins of Uthman. He no longer was interested. This person is out there for his power not Allah's power, his authority not Allah's authority.
You go to sahih Muslim- you see a hadith the affection you have for Al Ansaar and the affection you have for Ali is indicative of your iman. This doesn't come from a Shi'ah book, it doesn't come from a minority book, it doesn't come from a maverick scholar- it comes from mainstream ahadith. Also in sahih Muslim, the meaning of this hadith is the Prophet said concerning Ali, only a committed Muslim would adore him and only a Munafiq would be adverse to him or against him; only a Munafiq will hate him. OK- hadith sahih Muslim. How does Muawiyah figure in to this? Where is Muawiyah in all of this? Did he have a close relationship with Ali? Did he like Ali? This Muawiyah he was the one who began an evil sunnah; sunnah here is not the Shar'i word, it's the linguistic word. He institutionalized a procedure that was evil and that was cursing (and) using foul language against Ali. This Muawiyah himself used to do that in his life how does that fit? You want to say this is a Sahabi?! This is, you know, someone who is good?! Look- Iblis himself was in the company of Angels. Was there something good about him? He was in the company of Angels- maybe something good about him? Ash Shaytaan himself is not one hundred percent evil but the effectiveness of Ash Shaytaan is that him mixes what is evil with what is virtuous but he makes the evil overcome the virtuous- that's Shaytaan. So from there Muawiyah makes an official policy of the state of this new structure jahiliyyah to condemn the Imam from the Mimbar and that continued for many years- fifty (or) sixty years more until Umar ibn Abdul Aziz (radi Allahu anhu) came and said what's this? Let's change this. Take this away. This is nonsense and he replaced this with the ayah from Surah An Nahl which many khateebs end their khutbahs with.
… Allah requires justice… (Surah An Nahl verse 90)
Every time you hear this ayah remember that when our jahiliyyah began at the time of Muawiyah the Imams on the mimbars used to condemn Ali, Hassan (and) Hussein (radi Allahu anhum) from the Manabir in the Masajid in the Muslim world at that time. Tell us there was no jahiliyyah?! Tell us something didn't go wrong?
(At) one time Muawiyah encountered Sa'ad ibn Abi Waqqas (radi Allahu anhu), one of the high ranking companions of the Prophet and Muawiyah asks Sa'ad what is it with you (or) what is it in you that forbids you from condemning Aba Turab. Aba Turab is like the nickname of Ali so Muawiyah is asking Sa'ad what's wrong with you? You can't come out and express condemnation of Aba Turab. Sa'ad answers and he said but I've heard the Prophet of Allah say three things about Ali which if he had only said one of those things about me I would have considered myself to be the luckiest person in the world, a person who has everything they would want.
In sunan ibn Majah- this is another mainstream hadith in one of the six books of as sihah in Sunni hadith literature. This hadith in the hadith literature says sah'hahahu which means another scholar took a look at the same hadith and said "this hadith is sahih." Now who's this other scholar? For those of you who are Salafis out there, (because we know this khutbah goes out and more than you are listening to it), Albaani your musah'hih. The hadith that we are going to quote in this context- Muawiyah came to Al Madinah and he came to a place where someone was mentioning Ali. He heard this (and) Muawiyah couldn't control himself. The person was jaded and then he began his foul language, his dirty words (and) his curse words against Ali. Ali was gone, he was dead. He wasn't around. We mean this type of grudge (and) this type of internal psychological vengeance that dwells in this person who became the first king whose effects are still being felt in Islamic circles today- what type of character is this? Remember for those of you who need a little tick to your memory- this is the son in law of the Prophet, he's the cousin of the Prophet, he is the husband of Fatima Az Zahra (radi Allahu anha), he is the father of Al Imamayn- Hassan and Hussein. Think about it for a moment- what's with this king who's out on a mission in life to even mention a person who has passed away with the types of words that he uses?! This is the Imam that the Prophet said concerning him, (there's two narrations here, one of them in Bukhari and Muslim), I would give the banner tomorrow to a person who loves Allah and His Prophet and is loved by Allah and His Prophet and then ibn Majah's narration is today I'm going to give it to him. Listen to what Allah's Prophet is saying about Ali and listen to what Muawiyah is saying- that's all it takes. Ali became a Muslim when he was still a child. He never bowed down to an idol, he never partook of any intoxicants and let us look at Muawiyah. You want a little comparison?
We go to Musnad Al Imam Ahmad and the line of narratives is what is called as sahih. All the characters who are narrating this hadith are beyond doubt. From Abdillah ibn Burayda, what did Abdillah say? Abdillah and his father went to Muawiyah's palace and they were told to sit down on luxurious mats and seats. They brought us all this food and then they brought us these drinks. Sharaab here means alcoholic beverages. Then this narrator Abdillahi ibn Burayda says Muawiyah drank of that khamar and then he came and he wanted to give my father a glass of that intoxicant. Then my father said I've never tasted this stuff, (we're bringing up the meaning as it is in its original and as it would equate in English); I've never tasted that stuff since Rasulillah said it is haraam.
Abu Dawud, another mainstream sahih book of hadiths and also here sah'hahahu Albaani; once again, for those who call themselves Salafis out there who are quick to use foul language themselves against upright Muslims and then they want to protect a character like Muawiyah. So what does Abu Dawud tell us here? There is a person by the name of Al Miqdam ibn Ma'diqar (radi Allahu anhu) who was in the company of two others. He is a well know figure. The other person with him was from the tribe of Asad and the other one's name was Umar ibn Al Aswad so they go to Muawiyah. Muawiyah says to Al Miqdan- this was at the time when the Hassan had passed away. So Muawiyah is speaking to Al Miqdam and telling him, Al Hassan died? Remember, Al Hassan was the one to save thousands of lives. This was after Siffin, before the internal strife among the Muslims- as if he could see the future coming. So he relinquished but with a condition that after a time period Al Hassan would resume the leadership of the Muslims. So what happened here? He got poisoned. We are told in these history books that his wife poisoned him. Now if we were to stop there you could say even though there is also a statement referenced to Muawiyah that says Allah has troops whose constituency is honey; that's in reference to the poison that was placed in Al Hassan's food after which he did not survive. If it stopped here you'd say, (some people argue history back and forth), if it was another person who was poisoned obviously Al Hassan was perceived by Muawiyah as a threat. There is another person by the name of Abdurrahman ibn Khalid ibn Walid, the son of Khalid ibn Al Walid. He was also perceived as a threat by Muawiyah (and) he was also poisoned. Malik Al Ashtar was also perceived as a threat by Muawiyah (and) he was also poisoned. Now wait a minute. What's going on here? You tell the Muslim mind- is this coincidental, (i.e.), these things happening like this? All of a sudden this sequence of poisoning of individuals who were considered to be a threat to Muawiyah? Now we have for the first time in Islamic history assassination by poison. So when Miqdam ibn Ma'diqar heard that Al Hassan passed away he said inna lillahi wa inna ilayhi raji'um. Muawiyah says why do you say that? Do you see this as a musibah? Do you think this is a calamity that has befallen us? In other words, you should be happy that this thing has happened and he passed away. Then Al Miqdam says to him how can I not see it as a calamity and I saw Rasulullah in his chamber (or) in his room saying, (the meanings is more or less like this), Al Hassan is more like me and Al Hussein is more like Ali. I heard him say that, Miqdan is telling Muawiyah. You'd think a person who'd have some type of taqwa in him (and) after all of this- these things would seep into Muawiyah (and) they'd get to him and one day they'd wake up and say "wait a minute here I did something awfully wrong. This is terrible." But no- he keeps on going. Then Muawiyah turns to Al Asdi, the other person. Remember, Miqdam had two others with him. He turns to the other from Bani Asd and he says what do you think? Hassan passed away- what's your ideas on this? He said an amber (or) a piece of stoked fire, (you know you'd have in a fire place the amber), has been put out meaning right now the possibilities of a wildfire catching up among the Muslims is gone. A Munafiq- these words indicate who he is. Then Al Miqdam says to Muawiyah I want you to speak as if it was to Allah. Have you not heard Rasulullah forbidding us to wear gold and to wear silk and to sit on the leather or the skin of wild animals? By Allah I see all of this right now happening in front of you right here in your own room, in your own palace. Abu Dharr saw this corruption happening in the court of Muawiyah, in the lands that were ruled by Muawiyah and he asked Muawiyah where did you get all of this from? Wealth, money, lavish lifestyle, israaf, tafdeed- where did all this come from? Abu Dharr kept on pushing this line against Muawiyah until Muawiyah got sick and tired of him. Leave! Get out of here. He sends him back to Uthman in Arabia and we know the rest of the story. Ibn Asakir (and) Ibn Kathir- for those of you who are not familiar with Islamic history ibn Asakir and ibn Kathir are considered to be pro-Umawis not like ibn Jarir At Tabari who they say he has Shi'i sympathies. No one says this about ibn Kathir (and) ibn Asakir. What do they tell us about Muawiyah? Ubadah ibn As Samit (radi Allahu anhu), another one of these figures around the Prophet from the time of the Prophet comes to Muawiyah and tells him what's wrong? Why are you transacting in riba', usury? Riba' al fadal a particular type of usury. Muawiyah says I didn't see anything wrong in that. What are you talking about? Ubadah said there is a hadith, this is the hadith; listen to the hadith. Muawiyah said no, I don't recognize the hadith.
Al Imam Malik- some people say "Imam Malik is a Khaariji, is a Shi'i, is a peripheral Muslim." Everyone knows who Imam Malik is. He cited Aba Darda (radi Allahu anhu), another one of these Sahabis, who left Muawiyah's jurisdiction where Muawiyah has direct rule because of this riba' issue. Tell us- after you know some of this, this is only some of the facts that come out about this. (Sorry. We've taken so long. We're going to have to terminate at this point. We didn't realize my time went way over.)

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