The Essentials Of Belief And Rules Of Apostasy

The Essentials Of Belief And Rules Of Apostasy
The Essentials Of Belief And Rules Of Apostasy

Chapter 1 The Meaning of the Testification of Faith (The Two Shahadahs)

It is obligatory upon the accountable persons to embrace the Religion of Islam, to remain steadfast to it, and to comply with what is obligatory upon them of its rules, i.e., every accountable person must be Muslim, stay Muslim, and follow the rules of Islam. Among what one must know, believe in, and utter immediately if one was a blasphemer, or else in the prayer, is the Testification of Faith, which is:


The meaning of ASHHADU ALLA ILAHA ILLALLAH is: “I know, I believe, and I declare that nothing deserves to be worshipped except Allah, Who is One (Wahid), Indivisible (‘Ahad), without a beginning (‘Awwal), Eternal (Qadim), Alive (Hayy), without an end (Qayyum), Everlasting (Da’im), the Creator (Khaliq), the Sustainer (Raziq), Knowledgeable (^Alim), Powerful (Qadir), the One Who does whatever He wills, i.e., whatever Allah willed to be shall be and whatever Allah did not will to be shall not be, the One Who without His protection no one can evade sinning, and without His help no one has the strength to obey Him, Who is attributed with all proper perfection and is clear of all imperfection. There is nothing like Him, and He is attributed with Hearing and Sight.”

Allah exists without a beginning and everything else exists with a beginning; He is the Creator and everything else is a creation. Every creation that exists, be it among entities or deeds, from the fine dust to the Ceiling of Paradise (^Arsh1), and every movement, rest, intention, and thought of the slaves is created by Allah. Hence, no one other than Allah–be it nature or reason–creates any thing. Things become existent by Allah’s eternal Will, Power, and Knowledge as mentioned in the Qur’an:

Surat al-Furqan, Ayah 2 means: [Allah created everything]. He raised all the creation from the state of non-existence into the state of existence. No one creates with this meaning of creating except Allah.

Surat Fatir, Ayah 3 means: [No one is the Creator except Allah]. An-Nasafiyy said: “If a person hit glass with a stone and broke it, then the acts of hitting and breaking and the state of being broken were created by Allah. The slave only acquires the act. Allah is the only One Who creates.

Surat al Baqarah, Ayah 286 means: [Every self will be rewarded by Allah for the good deeds it acquired and will be accountable for the sins it acquired].

The Speech (Kalam2) of Allah is without a beginning like all of His other attributes, because He, the Exalted, is unlike all the creations in the Self (dhat), Attributes, and Actions. Subhanahu wa ta^ala, He is greatly clear of all what the blasphemers say.

Summing up what has been mentioned before, it is affirmed that Allah, ta^ala, has thirteen attributes which were mentioned repeatedly in the Qur’an, either explicitly or implicitly. These are: Existence (al-Wujud), Oneness (al-Wahdaniyyah), Eternity (al-Qidam, i.e., al-‘Azaliyyah), Everlastingness (al-Baqa’), Non-neediness of others, (al-Qiyamu bin-Nafs), Power (al-Qudrah), Will (al-‘Iradah), Knowledge (al-^Ilm), Hearing (as-Sam^), Sight (al-Basar), Life (al-Hayah), Speech (al-Kalam), and Non-resemblance to the creation (-al-Mukhalafatu lil-hawadith). Since these attributes were mentioned many times in the Qur’an and hadith, the scholars said knowing them is a personal obligation (fard ^ayn).

Since eternity is confirmed to the Self (dhat) of Allah, His attributes are eternal, because a created attribute entails that the attributed self is created.

The meaning of ASHHADU ANNA MUHAMMADAR-RASULULLAH is: “I know, I believe, and I declare that Muhammad, the son of ^Abdullah, who is the son of ^Abdul-Muttalib, who is the son of Hashim, who is the son of ^Abdu-Manaf, from the tribe of Quraysh, sallallahu ^alayhi wa sallam, is the slave of Allah and His Messenger to all the creation. One must believe he was born in Makkah and sent as a Messenger therein; he immigrated to al-Madinah and was buried therein; and he was truthful in everything he told about and conveyed from Allah. Among what the Prophet informed us is: the torture in the grave and the enjoyment therein; the questioning of the two angels, Munkar and Nakir; Resurrection (Ba^th); Assembly (Hashr); the Day of Judgement (Qiyamah); Presentation of the deeds (Hisab); Reward (Thawab); Punishment (^Adhab); the Balance (Mizan); Hellfire (Nar); the Bridge (Sirat); the Basin (Hawd); the Intercession (Shafa^ah); Paradise (Jannah); seeing Allah, ta^ala, with the eye in the Hereafter, without Him having a form or being in a place or a direction–different from the way a creation is seen; the dwelling forever in Paradise or Hellfire; the belief in Allah’s Angels, Messengers, Books, and Destiny (Qadar1)–both good and evil; and that Muhammad, sallallahu ^alayhi wa sallam, is the last of the prophets and the best of all the children of Adam.”

Moreover, it is obligatory to believe every prophet of Allah must be attributed with truthfulness, trustworthiness, and intelligence. Consequently, lying, dishonesty, vileness, stupidity, and dullness are impossible to be among their attributes. They must be attributed with impeccability of blasphemy, enormous sins (kaba’ir), and the small, mean sins before and after Prophethood. On the other hand, they are not impeccable of committing other small sins, although they are immediately guided to repent before others imitate them. Prophethood was not bestowed upon the brothers of Yusuf, who, excluding Binyamin, committed the mean deeds mentioned in the Qur’an. The Asbat are the descendants of those brothers who were chosen for prophethood.

Chapter 2 Types of Apostasy (Riddah)

It is obligatory upon every Muslim to preserve his faith in Islam and protect it against whatever invalidates, abolishes, and interrupts it, namely, apostasy (riddah); we seek refuge with Allah, ta^ala, from it.

The meaning of what an-Nawawiyy and others said is: “Apostasy is the most abhorrent type of blasphemy.” In this age it has become common to speak carelessly to the extent some people utter words which turn them out of Islam, and they do not deem such words sinful despite them being blasphemous. This is asserted by the saying of the Prophet, sallallahu ^alayhi wa sallam: This hadith was related by at-Tirmidhiyy who classified it as a hasan1 hadith. A hadith related by al-Bukhariyy and Muslim has a similar meaning. This hadith is evidence it is not a condition for a person to commit blasphemy that he must have learned the judgement per se or that he must have liked or believed the meaning of the uttered blasphemous words–as falsely stated in the book called Fiqh-us-Sunnah. It is also not a condition for falling into blasphemy that one is not angry when uttering blasphemy. Imam an-Nawawiyy said: “If a man was angry with his child or slave and hit him severely, then another person asked him, ‘How could you do this? Aren’t you a Muslim?’ and to that his deliberate answer was ‘No,’ he blasphemed.” This was said by Hanafiyy scholars as well as others.

An-Nawawiyy and other scholars among the four schools (madhhabs), classified apostasy into three categories: beliefs in the heart, actions committed by different parts of the body, and sayings with the tongue. Each category of apostasy is divided into many subdivisions.

1) Examples of the first category of apostasy, i.e., the beliefs in the heart, are:

having the doubt in Allah, His Messenger, the Qur’an, the Day of Judgement, Paradise, Hell, Reward, Punishment, or similar matters upon which there has been scholarly consensus (ijma^1);

believing the world is eternal by kind and elements or by kind only;

renouncing one of the attributes of Allah, ta^ala, known by ijma^ He is attributed with–such as knowing about everything;

ascribing to Him what is known by ijma^ does not befit Him–such as being a body;

legitimating what is commonly known among the Muslims to be unlawful (haram)–such as adultery and fornication (zina), sodomy (liwat), killing (qatl), stealing (sariqah), and taking money of others by force (ghasb);

deeming unlawful (haram) what is commonly known among the Muslims to be lawful (halal)–such as selling and marriage;

renouncing the obligation of the matters commonly known among the Muslims to be obligatory–such as the five prayers or one prostration of them, Zakah, Fasting (Sawm), Pilgrimage (Hajj), and Ablution (Wudu’);

deeming obligatory the matters commonly known among the Muslims not to be obligatory;

renouncing the legitimacy of what all Muslims know is legitimate;

intending to blaspheme in the future;

intending to do any of the aforementioned;

hesitating whether or not to blaspheme–but not the mere involuntary thought of it;

denying the companionship of our master Abu Bakr, may Allah raise his rank;

denying the Message of he who is recognized by all Muslims as a messenger or a prophet;

renouncing, just to be stubborn, a letter of the Qur’an which is known by all Muslims to be of it;

adding, just to be stubborn, a letter to the Qur’an which is known by all Muslims not to be of it;

belying a messenger or blemishing his attributes;

making a messenger’s name diminutive with the purpose of degrading him;

believing in the possibility of the prophethood of someone after our Prophet Muhammad, sallallahu ^alayhi wa sallam.

2)The second category of apostasy, i.e., the apostasy of actions committed by different parts of the body, includes prostrating to an idol or the sun, or prostrating to any other creation with the purpose of worshipping it.

3) The third category of apostasy, i.e., the apostasy of sayings uttered with the tongue, are very numerous and uncounted. Some examples are:

to say to a Muslim: ‘O blasphemer’, ‘O Jew’, ‘O Christian’, or ‘O you without religion’, meaning the religion of the addressed person is blasphemy, Judaism, Christianity, or not a religion–but not with the purpose of likening him to those non-Muslims in behavior;

to mock one of the names of Allah, ta^ala, His Promise, or His Threat, by someone who is aware these have been attributed to Him, subhanahu;

to say: ‘If Allah ordered me with such a thing I would not do it’–out of belittlement or out of stubbornness which is showing that Allah does not deserve to be obeyed even though one believes He does;

to say: ‘If the Qiblah were changed to another direction I would not pray towards it’–out of belittlement or out of stubbornness which is to show that it is not an obligation to face the Qiblah in prayer although one believes it is;

to say: ‘If Allah gave me Paradise I would not enter it’–out of belittlement or out of stubbornness, i.e., refusing to glorify Paradise although one knows glorifying it is part of the Religion;

to say: ‘If Allah punished me for leaving out prayers despite my sickness He would wrong me’;

to say: ‘Something happened without the will of Allah’;

to say: ‘If prophets, angels, or all Muslims testified before me about something I would not accept from them’;

to say: ‘I will not do that even if it is a recommended matter (sunnah)’–with the purpose of mockery;

to say: ‘If someone were a prophet I would not believe in him’;

to say: ‘What is this law (Shar^)?’ when a scholar gives a religious judgement–with the purpose of belittling the judgement of the Islamic law;

to belittle the status of knowledge by saying: ‘May Allah’s damn be upon every religious scholar’;

to say: ‘I do not acknowledge Allah, the angels, the Prophet, the Qur’an, the Islamic law (Shar^), or Islam;

to say: ‘I do not know the judgement’–with the purpose of mocking the judgement revealed by Allah;

to say Ayah 34, Surat an-Naba’ after one has filled a cup:

This ayah refers to a cup full to the brim with the drinks of Paradise;

to say Ayah 20, Surat an-Naba’ after one has emptied a drink:

This ayah refers to mountains that will vanish on the Judgement Day as if they were a mirage;

to say Ayah 30, Surat al Mutaffifin upon weighing or measuring:

This ayah refers to some people cheating in measuring and weighing;

to say Ayah 47, Surat al-Kahf when seeing a crowd:

which refers to the Judgement Day when the people will be assembled without any of them left out–with the intention of belittling the meaning of these ayat, and likewise whenever the Qur’an is used for that purpose. If it is used in such situations for other than that purpose, one does not blaspheme; however, Shaykh Ahmad Ibn Hajar, may Allah have mercy upon him, said: “This is not far from being unlawful (haram).”;

to cuss a prophet or an angel;

to say: ‘I would be a pimp if I performed prayer’;

to say: ‘I have not gained any good since I have performed prayer’;

to say: ‘Prayer is not good for me’–with the purpose of mockery;

to say to a Muslim: ‘I am your enemy and the enemy of your Prophet’;

to say to a descendent of the Prophet (Sharif): ‘I am your enemy and the enemy of your grandfather’–meaning the Prophet, sallallahu ^alayhi wa sallam;

to say anything similar to those aforementioned, abhorrent, and ugly words.

A large number of faqihs,(A faqih is the one who is authoritatively knowledgeable in the Religion.) like the Hanafiyy faqih, Badr-ar-Rashid, who lived close to the eighth Hijriyy Century, and Qadi ^Iyad, may Allah, ta^ala, have mercy upon them, enumerated many blasphemous words one needs to know, because whoever does not know evil is more likely to fall into it.

The rule is: any belief, action, or saying which belittles Allah, His Books, His Messengers, His Angels, His Rites, the well-known practices of His Religion, His Rules, His Promise, or His Threat is blasphemy. Hence, the human being must use caution with the utmost effort to avoid blasphemy.

Chapter 3 Repentance of the Apostate from Islam Murtadd)

It is obligatory upon the apostate from Islam (murtadd) to return to Islam immediately by uttering the Testification of Faith and leaving off whatever caused apostasy (riddah). Moreover, it is obligatory upon him to regret having done that and to intend not to return to committing anything like it. If one does not quit the blasphemy by uttering the Testification of Faith, he must be ordered to do so. If he does not reembrace Islam, the caliph will have him killed. The caliph will rely on the testimony of two upright (^adl) male witnesses or upon the person’s own admittance of committing blasphemy. This is done in compliance with the hadith related by al-Bukhariyy, which means: One’s Fast (Sawm), Dry Purification (Tayammum), and marriage before the first sexual intercourse are invalidated as a result of apostasy, as is one’s marriage after the first sexual intercourse if one did not return to Islam within the post marital waiting period (^iddah). The marriage contract of an apostate–male or female–is not valid with a Muslim or a non-Muslim. It is unlawful (haram) to eat from what the apostate slaughters; the apostate does not inherit; his wealth is not inherited; he is not prayed for, washed, shrouded, or buried in Islamic cemeteries; and his money1 will be in the Muslim treasury (fay’).

Chapter 4 Commanding the Obligatory (Ma^ruf) and Forbidding the Unlawful (Munkar)

Every accountable person is obligated to perform all what Allah made obligatory upon him. One must satisfy their integrals (rukns2) and their conditions (sharts3) and one must avoid their invalidators. If one sees another leaving out any of these obligations or performing them incorrectly, one must order him to perform them correctly and force him to do so if able. One must denounce that negligence or misperformance in one’s heart when one cannot force or order its change. This is the least that is required if one was unable to change the unlawful by hand or by tongue.

It is obligatory to leave out all the unlawful matters, forbid whoever commits them, and if able, force him not to commit them, or else one must reject that action in one’s own heart. The unlawful (haram) is what Allah threatened its committer with punishment and promised its avoider with reward, and the obligatory is its opposite.

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