Question: As Salaam Wa Alaikum Wa Rahmatullahi Wa Barakaat Mufti Sahib
For years we have been battling the age old battle of those who are for Tazeem, Forty Days, Qaseeda singing to Indian music tunes, and these Haraam Nasheeds (western boy group want to be’s) etc vs those who try to stick to the proven ways outlined in the Quran and by our beloved Rasool pbuh.
How do we handle these situations? How do we live amongst MUSLIMS who perpetrate and brand other Muslims as kafirs, tabligh, wahabi etc because we choose to adhere to practices that are only evident to us? Why has nothing been done amongst the ulamah to educate people that even our beloved Islam has been infiltrated by the KUFFAR just as Christianity and Hinduism and Judaism etc….our practices have been corrupted by the West…Islam has been watered down…..and yes history dictates that what is happening must happen….but to live amongst your own Muslim people who claim to be Ahlus sunnah wal Jamaat and don’t even know that even the Ahlus sunnah wal jamaat is divided in to Barelvi and Deoband and can’t even distinguish between the two….how do we maintain peace with these people based on falsehood and irrelevant practices?
In Shaa Allah
Answer: Wa Alaikum As Salaam,
Two things were mentioned in your email that need some understanding are:
- Innovations and Mustahab. Both of these contradict each other. A practice cannot be an Innovation and a Mustahab act. Innovation means that which has been introduced and brought into Islam after the demise of the Prophet (s.a.w), and Mustahab means an act which the Prophet (s.a.w) did. Therefore, it is totally wrong for one to consider innovated practices as Mustahab acts, when the Prophet (s.a.w) did not do such practices. While indicating to tis understanding of the ruling which is known as Mustahab, the Fuqaha (Jurists experts) have written, ‘And it (Mustahab) is what the Prophet (s.a.w) had done at times and had left it out at other times, and the pious predecessors have shown likeness for it.’ (Ad Darrul Mukhtar – Arkaam Al Wudhu – Shami Vol. 1 Pg. 124 H.M Saeed Karachi).
- The Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jamaat is not divided into two groups (1) Berelvi and (2) Deobandi.
The Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jamaat is a name given to Muslims who follow the Sunnah of the Prophet (s.a.w) and uphold the ways/practices of the Sahabahs. Those who go against these teachings are not following the Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jamaah. In India, when the ignorant Muslims were practicing all sorts of innovations and Shirk practices under the guise of Islam, the scholars of Darul Uloom Deoband stood firm against such practices and propagated the true teachings of the Ahlus Sunnah.
Those who practiced and propagated the innovations were from a placed called Bereily. The Bereilis were not ready to accept the fact that they were upon innovations which did not come from Islam, and in fighting against the Ulama of Darul Uloom Deoband, started to use the word ‘Deobandi’ for them. It is from here the words ‘Berelvi’ and ‘Deobandi’ started to be used. Both are not groups that came about in Islam. Instead, ‘Bareilvy’ literally refers to anyone living in Bereily, and Deobandi literally refers to anyone who lives in the District of Deoband (in India).
From the beginning until today, the Darul Uloom Deoband have always propagated the true teachings of Islam, and have exposed and condemned the innovations brought about by the innovators.
Therefore, the Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jamaah is not divided into groups. The word ‘Ahlus Sunnah’ means ‘People of the Sunnah’ and ‘Jamaat’ means those who hold on to the teachings of the Jamaah (group) of Sahabahs.
It is sad to know that people would continue to hold on to these innovations when they are not evident in Islam. The most you can do is to work for the sake of peace and unity in the Jamaat. Speak with wisdom and understanding to others without touching these topics which can bring about quarrels and disputes. Is this way, some level of peace and unity can continue.
This way of branding others come on account of ignorance of the true teachings of Islam and due to the level of arrogance in a person. If Muslims seek proper knowledge of Islam, they will be able to come out of the darkness of ignorance and see what are the true teachings of Islam.
Muslims must fear Allah, and refrain from branding each other with names. Most of those who call others by names do not have any understanding of the ‘names’ or ‘groups’ they are referring to. They do not know what these names are, and where did they come from. Most of the people simply hear a ‘name’ and they begin to use it for others, without having any understanding of the name. By doing this, they sometimes become guilty of lying, and at times, lay false accusations against innocent Muslims. Both of these are grave sins in Islam and must be stopped.
As for calling a Muslim ‘Kafir’, this is totally Haraam in Islam. The Prophet (s.a.w) has prohibited Muslims from using this name for other Muslims, less ‘Kufr’ should return to the Muslim who is saying this to another Musim.
As Muslims, we must understand that Islam has been perfected and completed already, even before the Prophet (s.a.w) left this world. All the teachings and practices which were required for Muslims to know, belief in, and practice were all given already. Hence, no one was allowed to bring about any new teaching or practice and make it part of Islam.
Islam will always remain as that religion which was taught and practiced by the Noble Messenger of Allah (s.a.w). As such, whoever truly wishes to follow the religion which Allah Has completed and perfected, would have no choice except to follow and adhere to those teachings and practices which were taught and practiced by the Prophet (s.a.w).
In your situation, continue to try to maintain peace and unity, and work in the best interest of the Jamaat.
If, with all that you do, there is still uneasiness, and people remain pig-headed in their ways and speech, then you can attend a close-by Jamaat where this sort of conduct and disharmony does not exist.
And Allah Knows best.
Mufti Waseem Khan.