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Erasing the Accusation of Shirk

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

Erasing the Accusation of Shirk: A Conversation with a Kharajite - By Abu Ammar

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AUTHOR?S INTRODUCTION

THE BOOK THAT is before you is based upon real life conversations that I had with a brother over a period of time. The topics are those that we discussed and debated about. It amazes me how quick people are to accuse other Muslims with the most groteseque of accusations without themselves recognizing the opinions of scholars that have dedicated their lives in the pursuit and dissemination of knowledge. To these past masters do we owe great thanks for preserving, recording, classifying and elucidating upon that which was handed down from generation to generation.
    Today, we hear sweeping statements from Islamic personalities on TV shows broadcasted via satellite, internet chat-rooms, websites and pamphlets that I shudder at the impunity in which they seek to destroy and dismiss anything other than their own opinions.
   The problem today is that of education amongst the Muslims. While we expect our children to go to universities to gain education that allows them to become doctors or engineers, we feel that there is no need for ourselves to go through a similar training when it comes to Islam. Coupled with such a mentality are ideas that have been expunged from the mainstream by the scholars of this din. Today, these ideas are back with a vengeance and it is through mass communication and a void of religious authority that allows these dangerous ideas to exist and spread. Today, sadly, these ideas are taken to represent normative Islam when in fact the story is quite the opposite. These ideas have become so widespread that many sincere Muslims hold onto them without recognizing from where they originate. Unfortunatley, when these ideas are challenged, we are called innovators or misguided. These extreme ideas often come from ideologies that have no place in Islam. At the uppermost part of the extreme spectrum are those individuals that claim to follow the Qur?an only. They reject hadith and any of the sciences that evolved to understand the vast corpus of knowledge that our pious predecessors left behind for us to claim and this book focuses upon these individuals. Many readers will be surprised to find out that ideas that they hold onto are in fact contrary to orthodoxy, that is, the Ahl a-Sunna wa al-Jama?a.
    In my exchanges with people who adhere to a ?Qur?an only? mentality, it strikes me that they believe that the Qur?an is the word of Allah, yet they reject all the sources that explain the Qur?an and the circumstances of Revelation, the abrogated and abrogating verses etc. This is a deep science and one that began with the companions of the Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace). How can these people speak with absolute certainty about verses of the Qur?an when they ignore these sources? We know that they were not a witness to the Revelation, so how can they ignore those people that were? As a child, I was told that the Qur?an was the word of Allah and the Muslim community around me embodied this. As a teenager, I read some small books that also explained that the Qur?an is the word of Allah and then as I became older, I studied more in depth, consulting the earliest sources in Islam. These sources themselves were based upon the testimonies of previous generations that ultimately linked back to the tabi tabi?in whom took from the tabi?in who took from the sahaba who took from the Prohet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace). The point being, one cannot ignore the invaluable contributions that have been made by specialists and authorities, by-pass them and belive in the Qur?an only.
    I have observed eleven characteristics of such people that never fail to emerge when you engage with them in a discussion. I have noticed that all these traits manifest ? given enough time. They are:

1. They first create a sense of authenticity by making tawhid their central theme
2. They always talk highly about the Qur?an
3. Outwardly, they appear to be very pious
4. They criticize people who are less stringent than they are, sometimes calling them
   unbelievers
5. They are very harsh and aggressive in their approach
6. They never venerate the Prophet?s or the pious because they believe it is uneccessary,
   excessive and leads most people to shirk
7. When discussing about the Prophet?s and the friends of Allah, they are careless with the
   words that they use, to the effect that it is not only discourteous but simply insulting to
   their esteemed status
8. They reduce the Prophet?s and Friend?s of Allah to a status of ?older brother? and claim that
  they are pious only due to their worship
9. They always talk about the ?rights? of Allah and the ?rights? of humans and animals, but
   they never talk about the right that the Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant
   him peace) has over us
10. They are quick to call other Muslims non-believer over issues such as wasila (intercession).
11. They degrade the Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) by
   attempting to show instances of his ?weakness? and never talk about his greatness. For example, they will claim that the Prophet was unable to convert his uncle, Abu Lahab. This is tragic to say the least. They don?t mention the hundreds of thousands of people that embraced Islam because of the Prophet and nor do they see the weakness of Abu Lahab: he saw all the miracles of the Prophet and yet he chose not to embrace Islam. His weakness is projected onto the Prophet.

The Khawarij are very argumentative people.

Regarding the Khawarij,?Allamah Ibn Hazm, Hafidh Ibn Kathir and al Sharahstani write:

Hazrat Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) sent Abdullah bin Abbas to talk to them. He was wearing a robe and before he could even say anything to the Khawarij they began criticising him by saying that he was a kafir (non believer) as he was against the Qur?an even before he said anything.

The Khawarij believe that anyone who committed a major sin is a Kafir (non-Muslim)

They take everything that is said in the Qur?an literally and this is why they thought that if a ruler did not take the literal meaning of the Qur?an he was a kafir and war should be declared upon him. A companion of our blessed Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace), Abu Ayyub Ansari, once asked the Khawarij why they did what they did. When they heard him ask this they replied ?stop speaking to us! You are a man from the hell fire.?

They are also well known for calling Muslim rulers Kafir and Tahgut (opressors)

The majority of them do not believe in hadith. Many Authentic hadith state that a person can only become a Caliph if he is part of the tribe of Quraish, but because the Khawarij are not part of Banu Quraish they deny this fact and say that anyone can become a Caliph.

The History of the Khawarij

It should be known that these traits that I have mentioned are normally associated with a herectical group that are called the khawarij, literally meaning ?the separatists.? They were the first sect in Islam and their history has been well documented. Imam Tabari, Hafidh Ibn Kathir, Ibn Athir and Ibn Khaldun wrote that:

?During the reign of Sayyidina Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) an incident took place which resulted in 16,000 people rebelling against him. These people were known as the khawarij. They used to tease Sayyidina Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) by calling him a mushrik, declaring that the blood of Sayyidina Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) and that of his follower?s was halal. The rulers who came after Sayyidina Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) such as the Banu Umayyah and the Banu Abbas, to the khwaarij their blood was known to be ?halal? as well. (Halal meaning it is right to slaughter them.).? [Tarikh Tabari by Imam Tabari and Tarikh Ibn Kathir by Ibn Kathir, Chaptre on Khawarij]

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The Evidence used by the Khwarij against
Hazrat Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) and other rulers

Hazrat Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) chose 2 arbitrators; whatever decision they made it would be agreed and accepted. When the Khawarij heard of this they said ?We only accept Allah?s order and His command,? they then continued by saying ?O Ali! By appointing this committee and saying that you will accept their decisions is wrong! This is kufr and shirk and you and your followers are amongst the losers.? They justified such audacious claims by citing the following verses:

1.        ?There is no order but of Allah? [6.57]

2.        ?And we decreed for them in it that: the life for the life, the eye for the eye, the nose
      for the nose, the ear for the ear, the tooth for the tooth, and an equivalent injury for any
       injury. If one forfeits what is due to him as a charity, it will atone for his sins. Those who
       do not rule in accordance with GOD's revelations are the Kuffar (Disbelievers)? [5:45]

3.        ?It has been revealed to you and to those before you that if you associate other GOD?s
       with Allah, all your works will be nullified, and you will be with the losers.? [39:65]

4.       ?O David, we have made you a ruler on earth. Therefore, you shall judge among the
      people equitably, and do not follow your personal opinion, lest it diverts you from the way
       of GOD. Surely, those who stray off the way of GOD incur severe retribution for forgetting
      the Day of Reckoning.? [38:26]

When Hazrat Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) heard these verses he said ?These verses are true although the meanings you are taking from them are false.? He then presented them with the following:

?When you arbitrate amongst people arbitrate with justice? [5:58]

Hazrat Ali (may Allah be pleased with him) explained that this proves that Allah has given people authority and permission to become arbitrators amongst people. If he selected and arbitrator and accepted his decision, this was NOT against the Qur?an, and nor did it assume that he was associating anyone with God. Despite showing this clear evidence from the Qur?an, the khawarij did not accept his explanation so they continued to call him a Kafir and a mushrik. They also continued calling these names to the rulers who came after Hazrat Ali (may Allah be pleased with him).

During the Hijri of 107 Abu Hamza (a Kharjite) took over Madinah. He told the inhabitants that his reason for overthrowing their ruler and taking control was because their previous ruler was against the Qur?an and this made him a Kafir.

The khawarij always rebelled against their Muslim rulers and used Qur?anic ayats against their Muslim rulers but in reality those ayats were revealed only for idolaters and those who refused to believe in the Message of God and His Messenger (may Alah bless him and grant him peace).

PART1

THE DECEASED PIOUS HAVE NEVER BEEN WORSHIPPED BECAUSE OF THEIR PIETY

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Qadhi: Brother Ali! How are you doing? I haven?t seen you for a while. Where have you been hiding?

Ali: I have just returned from my trip to Pakistan. Alhamdulillah the journey went well. I spent time with my family, visited many famous sites and met some very interesting people.

Qadhi: Ma-sha?Allah!

Ali: I was most impressed by a shaykh I met there. His name is Shaykh Yasin. Ma-sha?Allah he has a great amount of knowledge and uses the Qur?an as his only source of guidance and proof. I have never met anyone quite like him. He taught me many new things. In particular, he stressed the topic of grave worshipping. Brother Qadhi! I was shocked to learn that in Pakistan and other Muslim countries there is major shrik going on.

Qadhi: AstagfirAllah! This is a very tragic mistake to do, but what exactly did he explain?

Ali: The great Shaykh Yasin explained to me how people are going to the graves of pious Muslims and doing exactly what the polytheists of Makkah used to do. He further explained to me how previous nations would venerate Muslim saints and when they died, people would continue to invoke them for help. I was not even aware that this happened until Shaykh Yasin told me. He explained to me in considerable detail the manner in which the polytheists of Makkah used to invoke their deceased and how this practice is still continuing at the hands of some misguided Muslims. May Allah guide them!

Ma-sha?Allah he truly is a great Shaykh. He would prove everything from the Qur?an and said there was no need of hadith unless the issues mentioned in the hadith had a link to the Qur?an. One must acknowledge that the hadith do not have any guarantee of authenticity as they were only written by men, whereas the Qur?an is from Allah revealed to His Messenger

Qadhi: SubhanAllah! Brother Ali. I am very happy to hear that you have met a shaykh and have acquired knowledge from him. However, I am sad to hear that he uses verses that speak of polytheists and then applies them to Muslims. I am also saddened to hear from you that he does not give the hadith any importance. You know, these are the characteristic of the khawarij, who were the first heretical sect in Islam.

Ali: Qadhi, you are one of my dearest brothers. Please tell me what aggrieves you about what I have learned. If you feel it is wrong and that I have been mislead by a Kharjite, then please direct me. However, whatever you say must be proven by the Qur?an only. Referring to the hadiths should be kept to a minimum for the reason I just mentioned ? they are prone to be inauthentic.

Qadhi: It is a misconception that the polytheists of Makkah worshipped the deceased Prophets, saints and pious. Nowhere in the Qur?an does it state that this occurred. However, we do know that the polytheists of Makkah worshipped angels, Jinn, the stars and idols. I will select for you the relevant verses of the Holy Qur?an that inform us of this.

POLYTHEISTS OF MAKKAH WORSHIPPED ANGELS.

043.015 And they allot to Him a portion of His bondmen! Lo! man is verily a mere ingrate.
043.016 Or chooseth He daughters of all that He hath created, and honoureth He you with sons ?
043.017 And if one of them hath tidings of that which he likeneth to the Beneficent One, his countenance becometh black and he is full of inward rage.
043.018 (Liken they then to Allah) that which is bred up in outward show, and in dispute cannot make itself plain ?
043.019 And they make the angels, who are the slaves of the Beneficent, females. Did they witness their creation ? Their testimony will be recorded and they will be questioned.

These verses affirm that the polytheists of Makkah worshipped angels, thinking that they were Allah?s daughters. They worshipped the angels as if they were a part of Allah. (I seek shelter in Allah!)

HONOURED SLAVES

021.026 And they say: The Beneficent hath taken unto Himself a son. Be He Glorified! Nay, but (those whom they call sons) are honoured slaves; 021.027 They speak not until He hath spoken, and they act by His command.

These verses prove to us that some of the polytheists of Makkah would think that the angels were also the sons of Allah. As I just mentioned, some thought that they were daughters and it was due to this belief that they had that they worshipped them. However, as we know, both were wrong

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POLYTHEISTS OF MAKKAH WORSHIPPED IBLIS (SATAN) ?

004.117 They invoke in His stead only females; they pray to none else than Iblis, a rebel

This verse tells us that what the polytheists were worshipping was none other than Iblis. It was due to the whispers of Iblis that the polytheists worshipped the idols. Furthermore, the verse informs us that they worshipped females. This does not literally mean they worshipped females, though the names of their gods such as, Lat, Mannat and Uzza were female names.

?Jinn

006.100 Yet they ascribe as partners unto Him the jinn, although He did create them, and impute falsely, without knowledge, sons and daughters unto Him. Glorified be He and High Exalted above (all) that they ascribe (unto Him).
037.158 And they imagine kinship between him and the jinn, whereas the jinn know well that they will be brought before (Him

We can understand from these verses that the polytheists of Makkah also worshipped Jinn. They thought that the Jinn were related to Allah and therefore they were also entitled to being worship.

? stars and the Moon

041.037 And of His portents are the night and the day and the sun and the moon. Adore not the sun not the moon; but adore Allah Who created them, if it is in truth Him Whom ye worship.
053.049 And that He it is Who is the Lord of Sirius;

These verses tell us that the polytheists of Makkah would worship the stars and the Moon. However the reason why they did this is not given. One reason could be connected to astrology. As in the present day, astrologers of old used to study the positions of the moon, sun and other planets believing that their motions affect human beings. This may have caused them to believe the sun, moon and planets as something superior and of great importance so they worshipped them. Another reason could be because they felt that the sun and moon provide us with many benefits, such as producing heat, and giving light to plants enabling them to grow and due to the benefits they give to the world they felt they should be worshipped. And Allah knows best!

?and Idols

053.019 Have ye thought upon Al-Lat and Al-'Uzza
053.020 And Manat, the third, the other ?
053.021 Are yours the males and His the females ?

These verses inform us of the names of three idols which were worshipped by the polytheists of Makkah. Other names of idols that were worshipped by the polytheists of Makkah are mentioned in the books of Tarikh

ORIGIN OF IDOLS

053.023 They are but names which ye have named, ye and your fathers, for which Allah hath revealed no warrant. They follow but a guess and that which (they) themselves desire. And now the guidance from their Lord hath come unto them.

010.066 Lo! is it not unto Allah that belongeth whosoever is in the heavens and whosoever is in the earth ? Those who follow aught instead of Allah follow not (His) partners. They follow only a conjecture, and they do but guess

We can understand from these verses that the names of the idols did not originate from anywhere, rather, they were names made up by the polytheists and their fathers, as Allah clearly states: ?they are but names which ye have named?. Mistakenly, some people thought that the names of the idols were derived from the names of previous Prophets and pious people. However, the verses that I have mentioned clearly state otherwise: the names were given by the people themselves. Furthermore, when the Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) recited these verses, the polytheists did not argue with him by saying the names of their idols were in actual fact, names of previous Prophets and saints. Sayyidina Hud (peace be upon him), Sayyidina Yusuf, (peace be upon him) and our blessed Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) have all verified that the names of the idols are only names which the polytheists and their fathers innovated. The origin of the names of the idols did not come from previous Prophets and saints. If that were the case, Sayyidina Hud (peace be upon him) Sayyidina Yusuf (peace be upon him) and our blessed Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) would have said so. What they did say was that the idols were only names which the people themselves had chosen, as Allah Almighty says in the Qur?an:

053.023 They are but names which ye have named, ye and your fathers, for which Allah hath revealed no warrant. They follow but a guess and that which (they) themselves desire. And now the guidance from their Lord hath come unto them

In addition to this, even the names of the Prophets and the pious are important to Allah, as Allah has named some of the Prophets Himself, as Allah Almighty says in the Qur?an:

019.007 (It was said unto him): O Zachariah! Lo! We bring thee tidings of a son whose name is John; we have given the same name to none before (him).

003.045 (And remember) when the angels said: O Mary! Lo! Allah giveth thee glad tidings of a word from him, whose name is the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, illustrious in the world and the Hereafter, and one of those brought near (unto Allah).

In these verses, we learn that Allah Almighty has given his Prophet Sayyidina Yahya (peace be upon him ) [John] the glad tidings of a name which none have had before, and in the case of Sayyidina Isa, (peace be upon him) he too was given a unique name. This indicates that there is an importance attached to the names of the Prophets and pious. So this must mean that if Allah degrades names as in 053.023, it cannot be the names of the Prophets or the pious as these are important to Allah. As the Qur?an asserts, the names of their idols were derived from names which they had named. In other words, these names had no origin, other from their own minds.

NO ORIGIN FROM PREVIOUS NATION?S IDOLS

007.071 He said: Terror and wrath from your Lord have already fallen on you. Would ye wrangle with me over names which ye have named, ye and your fathers, for which no warrant from Allah hath been revealed? Then await (the consequence), lo! I (also) am of those awaiting (it).

This verse speaks of Hud (peace be upon him) who told his nation how they had named their own idols. While some people argue that the names of the idols originated from names of previous Prophets and saints, if this was true, Hud?s nation would have rhetorted back to such a claim. However, this verse explicitly states that the names of the idols were names that the people themselves had concocted.

012.040 Those whom ye worship beside Him are but names which ye have named, ye and your fathers. Allah hath revealed no sanction for them. The decision rests with Allah only, Who hath commanded you that ye worship none save Him. This is the right religion, but most men know not.

In this verse, Yusuf (peace be upon him) is telling his nation that the names of the idols are only names which they themselves have named. Just as the nation of Hud (peace be upon him) did not argue with with their Prophet who had made a similar statement, neither did the nation of Yusuf (peace be upon him).

Ali: Very interesting! However, I have many questions and I will present each of them Insha?Allah. Firstly, you have said that the polytheists of Makkah worshipped idols, but Shaykh Yasin told me that they would invoke the deceased pious. Can you present me one verse of the Qur?an which indicates that the polytheists of Makkah would worship idols? Brother please do not try and be clever and present me the verse which mentions Yusuf (peace be upon him) and his nation. I am curious to find the word ?worship? applying to the polytheists of Makkah.

Qadhi: Brother, the reason I presented you the verses that speak of previous Prophets was to stress to you that even during previous nations, the deceased pious were never worshipped. Insha?Allah the following verses will show you the word worship and not the word invoke as Shaykh Yasin said. Also please note that when the word ?invoke? has been used with Allah, it also means ?worship?.

1. 010.018 They worship beside Allah that which neither hurteth them nor profiteth them,
    and they say: These are our intercessors with Allah. Say: Would ye inform Allah of
    (something) that He knoweth not in the heavens or in the earth ? Praised be He and
    High Exalted above all that ye associate (with Him)!

4. 016.073 And they worship beside Allah that which owneth no provision whatsoever for
    them from the heavens or the earth, nor have they (whom they worship) any power

5. 025.055 Yet they worship instead of Allah that which can neither benefit them nor hurt
    them. The disbeliever was ever a partisan against his Lord.

6. 026.092 And it will be said unto them: Where is (all) that ye used to worship

7. 039.003 Surely pure religion is for Allah only. And those who choose protecting friends
    beside Him (say): We worship them only that they may bring us near unto Allah. Lo!
    Allah will judge between them concerning that wherein they differ. Lo! Allah guideth not
   him who is a liar, an ingrate

In the verses that I have just recited, the word ?worship? has been used countless times. Allah is saying they worshipped those idols and not invoked. For example, in verse 039:003 they are themselves admitting they worshipped the idols! I am sure your Shaykh Yasin must have misunderstood this as I know he would not contradict Allah?s words.

THE MEANING OF THE WORD TAD?U

You should know that the word tad?u does not always mean to call upon (worship), it has various meanings, as I will explain, Insha?Allah. In many circumstances, it can simply mean ?to bring something to one?s attention,? while at other times, it means ?to call upon? (worship).

003.153 When ye climbed (the hill) and paid no heed to anyone, while the messenger, in your rear, was calling you (to fight). Therefore He rewarded you grief for (his) grief, that (He might teach) you not to sorrow either for that which ye missed or for that which befell you. Allah is Informed of what ye do.

024.063 Make not the calling of the messenger among you as your calling one of another. Allah knoweth those of you who steal away, hiding themselves. And let those who conspire to evade orders beware lest grief or painful punishment befall them

003.104 And there may spring from you a nation who invite to goodness, and enjoin right conduct and forbid indecency. Such are they who are successful.

In these three verses, ?calling? translates into the Arabic word tad?u. As I have just mentioned, one must recognize that this word does not only mean to ?call upon?. If this were the case, in verse 003:153, the Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) is ?calling upon? the companions! (I seek shelter in Allah!) In this context Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) is calling the companions for Jihad. The following verse that I shall mention is an example where the word tad?u?does in actual fact, mean to ?call upon? (worship).

028.088 And cry not unto any other god along with Allah. There is no God save Him. Everything will perish save His countenance. His is the command, and unto Him ye will be brought back.

The only time when the word tadu? does actually mean to call upon, (worship) is when it is mentioned with the words ?along with Allah?, explaining clearly to us that something other than Allah is being worshipped. Remember that at other times tad?u will have other meanings, such as ?to bring something to one?s attention.?

Ali: My Shaykh proved to me that the polytheists of Makkah worshipped the deceased pious!

Qadhi: AstaghfirAllah brother. I have just explained to you what the polytheists of Makkah would worship! Surely the Qur?an mentioned angels, Jinn, idols, the stars and the moon but nowhere does the Qur?an state that the deceased pious have been worshipped. What kind of an absurd claim is this? Here are some verses of the Qur?an proving that the deceased pious were not worshipped:

1.     006.108 Revile not those unto whom they pray beside Allah lest they wrongfully revile Allah through ignorance. Thus unto every nation have We made their deed seem fair. Then unto their Lord is their return, and He will tell them what they used to do.

In this verse, Allah Most Glorious is commanding His beloved Messenger Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) not to insult the polytheist?s gods. If what the polytheist?s worshipped besides Allah was in actual fact pious Muslims that had passed away, then why would the Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) curse and insult pious Muslims who had passed away?

2.     010.062 Lo! verily the friends of Allah are (those) on whom fear (cometh) not, nor do they grieve ?
010.063 Those who believe and keep their duty (to Allah).
010.064 Theirs are good tidings in the life of the world and in the Hereafter - There is no changing the Words of Allah - that is the Supreme Triumph.
010.065 And let not their speech grieve thee (O Muhammad). Lo! power belongeth wholly to Allah. He is the Hearer, the Knower.
010.066 Lo! is it not unto Allah that belongeth whosoever is in the heavens and whosoever is in the earth ? Those who follow aught instead of Allah follow not (His) partners. They follow only a conjecture, and they do but guess.

In these verses, Allah Most High is differentiating between the pious and what the polytheists worshipped. The first verse describes pious Muslims as ?the friends of Allah.? Then, in the final verse, Allah mentions what the polytheists worshipped besides Him saying that ?they follow only conjecture,?meaningthat they only speculate that the idols etc are gods. From the verses that I have recited, we can see that Allah is clearly differentiating between the pious people and what the polytheists worshipped, proving that they are both completely different to one another. So, how can that which was worshipped besides Allah, be the pious who have passed away when Allah has differentiated between them and the idols that were worshipped?

3.     021.036 And when those who disbelieve behold thee, they but choose thee out for mockery, (saying): Is this he who maketh mention of your gods? And they would deny all mention of the Beneficent.

In this verse, the disbelievers are saying Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) is the one who insults and mocks their gods. If what the polytheists worshipped besides Allah were the deceased pious, then why would Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) mock and insult pious Muslims who would never had told people to worship them? Rather than focusing on the object of worship, surely, had they been pious Muslims, the Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) would have scolded and corrected the polytheists in saying that these pious people never would had commanded people to worship anyone other than Allah.

4.     021.098 Lo! ye (idolaters) and that which ye worship beside Allah are fuel of hell. Thereunto ye will come.
021.099 If these had been gods they would not have come thither, but all will abide therein.

In this verse, Allah is telling the polytheists that what they worshipped besides Him, will be the fuel of the hell fire. Do you think Allah desires His pious people to be the fuel of hell fire?

5.     022.012 He calleth, beside Allah, unto that which hurteth him not nor benefiteth him. That is the far error.
022.013 He calleth unto him whose harm is nearer than his benefit; verily an evil patron and verily an evil friend!

 

In these verses the polytheists and what they worshipped have both been called evil. Had what they worshipped were pious Muslims, do you think that Allah would call His pious men evil, considering that He has already called them the ?friends of Allah?? (in 010.062)

6.     022.062 That is because Allah, He is the True, and that whereon they call instead of Him, it is the false, and because Allah, He is the High, the Great.

In this verse, Allah is informing us that what the polytheists worshipped besides Him were ?false.? If you are claiming that the deceased pious were worshipped then you are contradicting the Qur?an, as clearly the verse is telling us that what was worshipped, was false whereas the deceased pious were the true friends of Allah.

7.     029.017 Ye serve instead of Allah only idols, and ye only invent a lie. Lo! those whom ye serve instead of Allah own no provision for you. So seek your provision from Allah, and serve Him, and give thanks unto Him, (for) unto Him ye will be brought back.

029.025 He said: Ye have chosen only idols instead of Allah. The love between you is only in the life of the world. Then on the Day of Resurrection ye will deny each other and curse each other, and your abode will be the Fire, and ye will have no helpers.

These verses prove two things: that the polytheists worshipped idols and second, that on the Final Day, the polytheists will curse that which they worshipped besides Allah. If you believe they worshipped deceased pious people, do you think Allah will allow the polytheists to curse His pious people on Judgment day?

 

8.     039.043 Or choose they intercessors other than Allah ? Say: What! Even though they have power over nothing and have no intelligence ?

039.045 And when Allah alone is mentioned, the hearts of those who believe not in the Hereafter are repelled, and when those (whom they worship) beside Him are mentioned, behold! they are glad.

In these verses, Allah informs us that what the polytheists worshipped had no means to think. The pious were human beings and had the faculty of thought, unlike the idols that were made of stone or wood etc. Is having no intelligence a trait of humans? Also, He tells us that the polytheists were angry when Allah?s name was mentioned alone, but when Allah?s name was mentioned alongside other names (the names of their idols) they were glad. Establishing this, why then would they want to invoke the names of pious people who had passed away, when it were the names of their idols that pleased them?

9.     037.095 He said: Worship ye that which ye yourselves do carve

 

In this verse, Sayyidina Ibrahim (peace be upon him) is telling his nation that they worship that which they themselves created with their hands. In other words, they worshipped what they created and innovated. The deceased pious were humans and were not created by other humans, proving once again that what the polytheists worshipped was not the deceased pious. Please do not object by saying this is what the nation of Sayyidina Ibrahim, (peace be upon him) would do and not the polytheists of Makkah. The polytheists of the nation of Sayyidina Ibrahim (peace be upon him) worshipped exactly what the polytheists of Makkah did; all polytheists from all time have always worshiped the same thing.

10.                        043.026 And when Abraham said unto his father and his folk: Lo! I am innocent of what ye worship

026.075 He said: See now that which ye worship,
026.076 Ye and your forefathers!
026.077 Lo! they are (all) an enemy unto me, save the Lord of the Worlds,

In this verse, Sayyidna Ibrahim (peace be upon him) is saying that he is innocent of what they worship, meaning, he wants nothing to do with them and that what they worship are his enemies. If you think what was worshipped were the deceased pious, then how could Sayyidina Ibrahim (peace be upon him) possibley say the pious are his enemies?

11.                        039.038 And verily, if thou shouldst ask them: Who created the heavens and the earth? they will say: Allah. Say: Bethink you then of those ye worship beside Allah, if Allah willed some hurt for me, could they remove from me His hurt; or if He willed some mercy for me, could they restrain His mercy? Say: Allah is my all. In Him do (all) the trusting put their trust.

In this verse, the question ?could they remove from me His hurt?? uses the Arabic word hunna, which is used for females. So, we know that what the polytheists worshipped were females; angels or the idols which they had given female names, as Allah Almighty says in the Qur?an:

004.117 They invoke in His stead only females; they pray to none else than Iblis, a rebel

Ali: I know of many of the verses in the Qur?an which prove that the deceased pious were worshipped by the polytheists of Makkah. However, I would first like to present you with a hadith from Bukhari telling us that the deceased pious were worshipped.

Narrated Ibn Abbas:

All the idols which were worshipped by the people of Noah were worshipped by the Arabs later on. As for the idol Wadd, it was worshipped by the tribe of Kalb at Daumat-al-Jandal; Suwa' was the idol of (the tribe of) Murad and then by Ban, Ghutaif at Al-Jurf near Saba ; Yauq was the idol of Hamdan, and Nasr was the idol of Himyr, the branch of Dhi-al-Kala.' The names (of the idols) formerly belonged to some pious men of the people of Noah, and when they died Iblis inspired their people to (prepare and place idols at the places where they used to sit, and to call those idols by their names. The people did so, but the idols were not worshipped till those people (who initiated them) had died and the origin of the idols had become obscure, whereupon people began worshipping them. [11]

Qadhi: I thought you did not want any evidence from hadith? However now that you have referred to hadith, let us examine this narration.

1. The narrator of this narration, A?ta Al Khurasani? made a mistake in reporting this narration. The hadith says that the names of the idols formerly belonged to some pious men of the people of Noah. However the Qur?an says the five mentioned idols were already present during the time of Noah, may Allah be pleased with him, as Allah Most High says in the Qur?an:

071.023 And they have said: Forsake not your gods. Forsake not Wadd, nor Suwa', nor Yaghuth and Ya'uq and Nasr.
071.024 And they have led many astray, and Thou increasest the wrong-doers in naught

save error.

These verses explain two things to us: Wadd, Suwa', Yaghuth, Ya'uq and Nasr, were present during the time of Noah, may Allah bless him, and that they led many astray. The pious do not lead others astray; they lead them on the correct path.

2.     A?ta al Khurasani?

A?ta al Khurasani? said that he had heard this narration from Ibn Abbas, however the scholars of hadith who have written biographies on each narrator have said that A?ta Al Khurasani? had never even met Ibn Abbas during his lifetime.[12] Even if he had meet Ibn Abbas and did hear the narration from him it is still false, as Ibn Abbas is a companion and this narration is his own opinion. How can Ibn Abbas have the knowledge of the previous nations without being told by Allah or his Rasul? It is amazing that the khawarij believe that even the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) himself did not have the knowledge of the unseen! However, due to this narration they are prepared to suddenly say that even Ibn Abbas has the knowledge of the unseen! SubhanAllah!!

Where does it say in the Qur?an or hadith that the idols which were made were idols whose origination could be traced back to pious people that had long passed away? If people were to make statues of the pious during the time of Noah (peace be upon him) then would it not make sense for them to make the statues of previous Prophets such as Sayyidina Adam, Sayyidina Sheesh and Sayyidina Idrees (peace be upon them all) as these were the most pious of people to ever exist during that time? Hafidh Ibn Kathir and Hafidh Ibn Hajr Asqalani both write that the making of idols began when previous nations lost members of their families. They used to miss them so much and they used to cry so much for their deceased. Upon seeing this, Iblis inspired them to make idols of their deceased family members for their remembrance. And in this way the people carved idols of their family members.[13]

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The Calf was not pious

The As-samiri produced a calf made of gold for the Nation of Sayyidina Musa (peace be upon him) so that they could worship it, as Allah Almighty says in the Qur?an:

020.087 They said: We broke not tryst with thee of our own will, but we were laden with burdens of ornaments of the folk, then cast them (in the fire), for thus As-Samiri proposed.

020.088Then he produced for them a calf, of saffron hue, which gave forth a lowing sound. And they cried: This is your god and the god of Moses, but he hath forgotten.

020.089 See they not, then, that it returneth no saying unto them and possesseth for them neither hurt nor use?

From these verses we learn that the idol (calf) they worshipped was made of gold. The claim by the Khawarij that all idols were based upon worshipping the Prophets and pious becomes redundant as the verses that I have recited clarify that the idol that was worshipped was neither a Prophet nor a pious person. If the calf had originated from the memory of a Prophet or a pious person, then please show me the necessary proof of which Prophet or pious person this calf had been inspired from. In the same way, could you tell me what idols were worshipped that had been derived from the Prophets Sayyidina Ibrahim (peace be upon him), Sayyidina Yusuf (peace be upon him), Sayyidina Shu?ayb (peace be upon him), Sayyidina Hud (peace be upon him) Sayyidina Musa (peace be upon him)?

Ali: I presented you with a hadith, however you have just objected to it, so now I will present verses of the Qur?an only. I will number each one as I go along, this is the first verse:

017.057 Those unto whom they cry seek the way of approach to their Lord, which of them shall be the nearest; they hope for His mercy and they fear His doom. Lo! the doom of thy Lord is to be shunned.

In this verse, that which was worshipped has been described as wanting mercy from Allah and fearing Allah. These are not the characteristics of an idol, only of humans. Therefore, what was being worshipped were deceased pious people.

Qadhi: What you have recited is correct, but this verse is not talking of the idols, and nor is it referring to the deceased pious either. The verse is talking in the present tense ?they hope for His mercy and they fear Allah?. If the verse was discussing the deceased pious, would it not be written in past tense such as, ?they hoped for His mercy and they feared Allah?? This verse applies to those who are living and not those who have passed away, because they are already receiving blessing or punishment. Furthermore, when the words ?fear Allah? are used, it means one fears Allah and due to this fear one will carry out good deeds. Moreover, it means to fear the punishment. How will the deceased pious or any deceased human be able to fear Allah in their graves, as they cannot carry out any good deeds in the graves and neither can they fear the punishment, since they will either be saved from it or bearing it.

I mentioned earlier that the people of Makkah worshipped two living things, angels and the Jinn and the verse you recited is in fact referring to either the angels or Jinn. However the verse cannot be talking of angels as the verse states, ?they fear His doom. Lo! the doom of thy Lord is to be shunned.? This statement is not appropriate for the angels as they will not suffer from the punishment, therefore this verse cannot be talking of them. Therefore, this verse refers to the Jinn, more precisely, those Jinn whom the polytheists would invoke for some help. Even those Jinn that embraced Islam would still be worshipped and this is when Allah Most Glorious revealed this verse, explaining that the Jinn are those who fear Him and hope for His mercy and they (the Polytheists) wrongfully invoke them as Allah Most High says in the Qur?an:

072.001 Say (O Muhammad): It is revealed unto me that a company of the Jinn gave ear, and they said: Lo! we have heard a marvellous Qur'an,
072.002 Which guideth unto righteousness, so we believe in it and we ascribe no partner unto our Lord.
072.003 And (we believe) that He - exalted be the glory of our Lord! - hath taken neither wife nor son,
072.004 And that the foolish one among us used to speak concerning Allah an atrocious lie.
072.005 And lo! we had supposed that humankind and jinn would not speak a lie concerning Allah -
072.006 And indeed (O Muhammad) individuals of humankind used to invoke the protection of individuals of the jinn, so that they increased them in revolt against Allah);

These verses prove two things: that the Polytheists of Makkah did worship the Jinn and that when the Jinn heard the recitation of the Qur?an they embraced Islam. Allah Most Magnificent talks about those Jinn:

017.057 Those unto whom they cry seek the way of approach to their Lord, which of them shall be the nearest; they hope for His mercy and they fear His doom. Lo! the doom of thy Lord is to be shunned.

Proof from Hadith

Imam Bukhari writes

Narrated Abdullah:

Regarding the explanation of the Verse: Those Jinns who were worshipped by some Arabs became Muslims (embraced Islam), but those human beings stuck to their (old) religion. Al-Amash said extra: 'Say, (O Muhammad): Call unto those besides Him whom you assume (to be gods).' (17.56) [14]

Narrated Abdullah:

Regarding the Verse: 'Those whom they call upon (worship) (It was revealed regarding) some Jinns who used to be worshipped (by human beings). They later embraced Islam (while those people kept on worshipping them).[15]

These narrations clearly explain that those who hoped for the mercy from Allah and feared Allah were the Jinn.

Ali: Earlier you recited ten verses and said they were for the idols, however the verse I am about to present is talking of pious people have have passed away and not idols made from stone. Listen to the second verse I am presenting very carefully

025.017 And on the day when He will assemble them and that which they worship instead of Allah and will say: Was it ye who misled these my slaves or did they (themselves) wander from the way ?
025.018 They will say: Be Thou Glorified! it was not for us to choose any protecting friends beside thee; but Thou didst give them and their fathers ease till they forgot the warning and became lost folk.

This last verse is stating that Allah will ask what was worshipped ?was it you who mislead my slaves?? This question could not possibly be asked to the idols as the idols will not be able to answer as they are made from stone and also the idols could not have mislead anyone! Surely, this will be asked to those pious people who had passed away.

Qadhi: Firstly you mentioned that the idols cannot mislead anyone, however this is incorrect. Idols do mislead the people as Allah Most High says in the Qur?an:

014.036 My Lord! Lo! they have led many of mankind astray. But whoso followeth me, he verily is of me. And whoso disobeyeth me - Still Thou art Forgiving, Merciful.

071.023 And they have said: Forsake not your gods. Forsake not Wadd, nor Suwa', nor Yaghuth and Ya'uq and Nasr.
071.024 And they have led many astray, and Thou increasest the wrong-doers in naught save error.

It is proven that the idols will be questioned on the Day of Judgment where they will be asked if they had misled people. Also I have not said that the polytheists of Makkah worshipped idols alone. I have discussed the other things that they worshipped, like the angels and Jinn. The verse you presented has been mentioned in two places in the Qur?an. The second place where this verse has been mentioned also explains what exactly was worshipped as Allah Almighty says:

034.040 And on the day when He will gather them all together, He will say unto the angels: Did these worship you ?
034.041 They will say: Be Thou Glorified. Thou (alone) art our Guardian, not them! Nay, but they worshipped the jinn; most of them were believers in them.

This verse states clearly that the angels will be questioned and they will explain that the Jinn were those who were worshipped.

A clarification

A question may arise as to why will the angels be questioned, or why will the Muslim Jinn be questioned? Why is Allah not questioning those who worshipped them? The answer is Allah Most High will be too angry to even talk to the polytheists and those who worshipped others besides Him. Just as Allah will not talk to those who buried the new born girls alive, but He will ask the new born girls themselves as Allah Almighty says in the Qur?an:

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081.008 And when the girl-child that was buried Alive is asked
081.009 For what sin she was slain,

Furthermore, there is a verse where Allah Almighty says that He will not speak to the non-believers on the Day of Judgment:

002.174 Allah will not speak to them on the Day of Resurrection, nor will He make them grow. Theirs will be a painful doom.

 

Ali: I am now going to present you with a third verse. It is your choice whether you chose to believe it or not, however I have the Qur?an with me, I will always use the Qur?an until the day I die!

016.020 Those unto whom they cry beside Allah created naught, but are themselves created.
016.021 (They are) dead, not living. And they know not when they will be raised.
016.022 Your God is One God. But as for those who believe not in the Hereafter their hearts refuse to know, for they are proud.

From these verses, various characteristics have been mentioned of that which was worshipped:

1.     They have created nothing but they themselves are created.

2.     They are dead (the angels or idols cannot be said to be dead)

3.     They know not when they will be risen (this also cannot be used for idols made of stone!)

Qadhi: You have tried your very best to present a verse which is talking of the deceased pious, however I am sorry to break this to you: even this verse is not talking of the deceased pious. Let me explain how the Qur?an contradicts your statement.

        The first point you mentioned is that they (that which is being worshipped) have created nothing themselves but are created. Here Allah is talking of how the polytheists made the idols themselves as Allah most Merciful says in the Qur?an:

 

037.095 He said: Worship ye that which ye yourselves do carve

Was that which they worshipped the deceased pious or idols of stone? Polytheists could not create humans, but they could carve images from stone.

        Your second point stated that they were dead, and this is in reference to the deceased pious. However one must understand that the word ?dead? has been used to describe different things. Some believe that the word ?dead? can only be used to describe something living which has died, however, in the verse I will just recite to you, Allah has described mankind as being dead even before he gave them life, proving that one does not need to be living before he is dead.

002.028 How disbelieve ye in Allah when ye were dead and He gave life to you! Then He will give you death, then life again, and then unto Him ye will return

In this context ?dead? means nothing. Allah is describing mankind as ?nothing? before he gave them life. In the same manner he is describing the idols as ?dead? as ?nothing? Furthermore, in the following verse, Allah Almighty is calling the non living earth as dead, and then He continues to say how He has revived it:

036.033 A token unto them is the dead earth. We revive it, and We bring forth from it grain so that they eat thereof;

Again this is proving that something non living can be called dead, such as stone or the earth.

        Your third point was that what was worshipped will not know when they will be raised; however we, as humans, know that we will be raised on the Day of Judgment. On the other hand, idols are not aware that they will be raised or when they will be raised, but we know that Allah will raise them on the Final day, as He Most Glorious says in the Qur?an:

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