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8 Rules of Engagement Taught by the Prophet Muhammad

8 Rules of Engagement Taught by the Prophet Muhammad

8 Rules of Engagement Taught by the Prophet Muhammad

Extremism ‘experts’ are everywhere these days. Assertions thrive about what Shariah law allows, especially when it comes to warfare and ‘Jihad’. Two very unlikely bedfellows, Islamophobes and extremists, have taken up one allegation, that Islam is violent, and run with it. They both misquote Islamic sources to prove their shared fantasies, and to good effect, with media outlets falling over themselves to give them a platform. This convenient lie has become the Blood Libel of the Muslims, which is spread by various groups to achieve their own agendas.

So here is a list of actual rules of engagement taken from Islamic law, together with their original sources. This is what forms the basis of what Muslims believe and follow. These 8 laws expose the ‘Islam is violent’ line as lazy and shamefully dishonest.

N.B. War is unfortunately an inevitable part of civilization and at times countries need to respond to aggression. Islam allows the use of force to stop evil and bring security to a country’s citizens therefore a set of laws pertaining to war has been laid out by the Prophet Muhammad himself.

What follows are mainstream laws of Islam as taught by the orthodoxy of the religion. This is what the vast majority of Muslims around the world observe as their religion. It does not mean however, that all those who claim to be Muslim actually follow orthodox Shariah laws. Such groups and individuals would rightly be labelled as heretics for inventing new beliefs that run counter to explicit statements found in original sources of Islamic law.

To begin with, all the following laws of war revolve around these overarching statements in the Qur’an that acts as a general rule:

وَقَاتِلُوا فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ الَّذِينَ يُقَاتِلُونَكُمْ وَلاَ تَعْتَدُوا إِنَّ اللَّهَ لاَ يُحِبُّ الْمُعْتَدِينَ

And fight in the way of God those that fight you, but do not transgress,
for indeed God does not like the transgressors. [Qur’an 2: 190]

لاَ ينْهَاكُمُ اللهُ عَنِ الَّذِينَ لَمْ يُقَاتِلُوكُمْ فيِ الدِّينِ وَلَمْ يُخْرِجُوكُم مِّنْ دِيَارِكُمْ أَنْ تَبَرُّوهُمْ وَتُقْسِطُوا إِلَيْهِمْ إَنَّ اللهَ يُحِبُّ المُقْسِطِينَ

God does not prohibit you from showing kindness and being just with those who do not fight you nor have driven you out of your homes. Indeed God loves those who are just. [Qur’an 60: 8]

The first verse forms the basis of all Islamic laws relating to fighting, i.e. you are allowed to fight those that fight you, but not to tyrannize those who have done you no harm. The second one goes further and explains that, not only is fighting innocent civilians forbidden, but Muslims are ordered to be kind and just with those who did no harm to them. It is these verses that inform all other laws of engagement, which are as follows:

1. The prohibition of killing women and children

women-and-children muslim-army-peacefulmankind.com

Anas ibn Malik reports that the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) forbade the killing of women and children. [Muslim: 4320]

This instruction of the Prophet became a universally accepted law in Islam, and it has been the practice of the Muslims throughout history. It is because Muslims obeyed this law that we never saw Islamic equivalents of things like the Spanish Inquisition or the slaughter of civilians during the Crusades, even after the Muslims reclaimed Jerusalem.

Or closer to our time, the genocide that Europeans exported to other continents, such as North and South America and Australia, or the widespread slaughter of humans during the 1st and 2nd ‘World War’, which was mainly a European feud. None of these have comparable Muslim examples, and it’s because of the Prophet’s advice.

2. Killing of non-combatants such as old people, monks and workers is explicitly forbidden in Islamic scripture

killing monks is prohibited peacefulmankind.com

Ibn Abbas narrates that the Prophet (may peace be upon him) said to an outgoing army, “Leave in the name of God, and upon the way of his messenger. Do not kill any old person”. [Al-Bayhaqi: 16689]

Ibn Abbas also narrates from the Prophet (may peace be upon him) said, “Do not ever kill the people living in towers (i.e. monks). [Nayl al-Awtar: 3324]

Rabah ibn Rabee’ says he left in an expedition with the prophet (peace be upon him), who went up to Khalid ibn Walid [his general] and said “Do not kill the workers / wage earners [i.e. those workers not fighting you]”. [Ahmad: 15562]

The above hadiths are the words of the Prophet himself, explicitly banning the harm of those who fall into the broader classification of non-combatants. These traditions specify that the old who cannot participate in any aggression, the monks who have forsaken any interest in worldly life, and those regular workers that are not involved in politics or war are to be left alone. Furthermore, Muslim scholars have used these traditions to deduce through analogy, that more groups stand protected by Islamic law.

3. The prohibition of hurting the disabled and infirm

disables peacefulmankind.com

The blind, the infirm and the monks are not to be killed according to Islamic legal scholars as they are not from among the combatants, similar to the old person. [Al-Mugni: 7612]

This is the statement of ibn Qudamah, the compiler of Islamic jurisprudence, who can be likened to Maimonides in Judaism or St Augustine in Christianity in terms of their influence and acclaim. Here you can see that he has deduced from the words of the Qur’an and Hadith laws to protect other groups not explicitly mentioned, but are understood through inference. This is stated in the book Al-Mughni, which is described as the ultimate book to Shariah law.

In addition to banning various types of killings, the Prophet goes further to include more restrictions on the way Muslims engage in war.

4. Islam prohibits the mutilation of dead combatants

Sulaiman b. Buraid through his father reports that when the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) appointed anyone as a leader of an army or detachment he would especially exhort him to fear Allah and to be good to the Muslims who were with him. He would say:

“Fight in the name of Allah and in the way of Allah… do not break your pledge; and do not mutilate (the dead) bodies; do not kill the children. [Muslim 4294]

This order is not concerning civilians but dead combatants. The Prophet taught Muslims to respect even dead enemy soldiers who were fighting against the Muslims just before their death. This was when it was common practice among the pagans of Makkah to disfigure dead enemy soldiers after the battle was over. In addition to dead enemy soldiers, there are also clear instructions of how to treat enemy soldiers that are still alive.

5. The Qur’an commands Muslims to show mercy to those combatants who surrender

surrender peacefulmankind.com

And if one of the disbelievers surrenders and pleads mercy, then show mercy so that they can hear the words of Allah, and then allow him to go back to his place of safety. [Qur’an 9: 5]

Verses like these are regularly overlooked by both the Islamophobe when they quote certain verses in isolation to the broader message of the Qur’an, as well as extremists who try to convince Muslims that Islam demands merciless violence and claim that anyone who disagrees are not real Muslims.

In fact, the most popularly quoted verse used to make Islam appear uber violent is, “And fight them wherever you find them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out” [Qur’an 2: 192]. This verse comes straight after the one quoted in the beginning of this article, (“And fight in the way of God those that fight you, but do not transgress”). However when taken on its own, without looking at what proceeded it, “them” in this verse could be understood as anyone and everyone, not just “those fighting you”.

So Islamophobes and extremists seem to misquote the same verses and choose to ignore the same ones, arguing the same lazy lie. Unfortunately for them, the sources of Islamic law say otherwise.

6. Treatment of prisoners of war

prisoner peacefulmankind.com

And they give food, in spite of their love for it (or for the love of Him), to the Miskeen (the poor), the orphan, and the captive, (Saying): ‘We feed you seeking Allah’s Countenance only. We wish for no reward, nor thanks from you”. [Qur’an 76:8-9]

Ibn ‘Abbas said: in those days their prisoners were mushrikeen (polytheists; on the day of Badr the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) commanded them to be kind to their prisoners, so they used to put them before themselves when it came to food… Mujahid said, this refers to the one who is detained, i.e., they would give food to these prisoners even though they themselves desired it and loved it. [Tafsir ibn Kathir: Al-Insan]

In Islam, prisoners of war are treated with dignity and care. Islam introduced such rules of war 1400 years ago while the Geneva convention only decided to outlaw torture in 1977. And just like the clear cut rulings of Islam have had no affect on the actions of terror groups that claim to be Muslim, similarly the Geneva convention has not stemmed the torture and abuse by western nations in recent history.

7. Even the cutting of trees, destroying surroundings and killing animals without reason is illegal

trees peacefulmankind.com

Abu Bakr said, “I advise you, do not cut the fruitful trees, or destroy homes. And do not wound the sheep, goats or cattle except to for eating”. [Al-Muwatta: 949]

This ruling, as ordered by the first and most important of the rightly-guided Caliphs sets the precedence for Muslim army conduct in foreign lands. This statement is part of a longer speech delivered to Muslim army generals who were about to set off for war against the Roman empire. There is no ‘shock and awe’ tactics which armies new and old employ, where infrastructure and civilian populations are terrorised into surrendering.

8. There can be no forced conversion

spanish-inquisition peacefulmankind.com

Let there be no compulsion in religion – Truth stands out clear from Error! Whoever rejects evil and believes in God has grasped the most trustworthy hand-hold, that never breaks. And Allah hears and knows all things. [Quran 2: 256]

As concise an instruction as can be; this one verse has stopped any attempt by Muslim armies to try and force people to accept Islam. Although Islam is indeed a missionary religion that seeks to win over followers, forced conversions are not counted.

There can never be a Spanish Inquisition in Islam. Simply because it won’t count. Islam can only be spread through strong arguments and debate, and it can only be embraced through sincere acceptance of the facts. So no, Islam did not, and could not have spread through the sword.

So there you have it, the rules of engagement of Islam, straight from words of the Prophet Muhammad and Shariah Law. It doesn’t sound nearly as bad as either the right-wing media or an ignorant extremist would have you think, right? That’s because there is a big difference between mainstream beliefs and practices of Islam which have been set in stone for 1400 years, and lazy tabloid readings of isolated quotes.

One thing is for sure, the Islamophobes who declare Islam to be barbaric and the isolated extremists dreaming up their own versions of Islam are two sides of the same coin. They both benefit from twisting scripture, and they both stand condemned as frauds when presented with the evidence from the sources of Islamic Law. With this knowledge at hand, you stand better equipped than 99% of the so-called experts out there, so use this information and spread it. Hopefully we will soon see a tide of unemployed ‘extremism experts’ lining up outside the job centre, where our trusted Job Centres will help them find real jobs.

Positive usage of Social Media as a Muslim

Positive usage of Social Media as a Muslim

Means to reveal the TRUE Islam

The messenger of Allah (SWT) has said, “Do not declare war on any person unless you have first invited him to Islam.” and that “…if Allah guides only one person through you, it will be better for you than all that the sun has risen or set over.” ( Al-Hurr al-Amili, Wasa’il al-Shi’ah, vol. 6, Kitab al-Jihad, Bab wujud al-Du’a ila al-Islam.). These hadith explain the importance of Spreading Islam through peace before war, and how great of an honor it is to be able to have this opportunity.

In today’s day and age, social media is the largest source through which information is passed on from person to person. Adults, children, seniors, nearly everyone uses it. Though it may seem great that such social media is accessible and used by many, this can also be a downfall. Anyone can post almost anything and because social media is viewed by such a large amount of people, information can be misinterpreted or wrongfully portrayed. This is where Islam comes in. Islam is one of the hottest topics on social media, especially when it comes to posts about terrorist attacks, extremists etc. Because of all these negative connotations given to Islam, one can use social media itself to portray the real Islam. Imam Ali has said, “The consequence of fear is disappointment and of bashfulness is frustration. Opportunity passes away like the cloud. Therefore, make use of good opportunities” (Nahjul Balagha, hadith n. 21). Being afraid of the accusations placed on our religion, and the potential threats you may face should not be an obstacle preventing you from speaking the truth.

There are many who are quite updated with their posts, constantly defend Islam, have a passion to make a difference, but not all are educated enough. Amir al-mu’minin, peace be upon him, said: “Whoever places himself as a leader of the people should commence with educating his own self before educating others; and his teaching should be by his own conduct before teaching by the tongue.

The person who teaches and instructs his own self is more entitled to esteem then he who teaches and instructs others.” (Nahjul Balagha, Hadith n. 73). This hadith explains that it is not just about updating your status with positive comments about Islam and participating in debates about it. It is important to first educate yourself about Islam, and then spread your knowledge on social media. Hazrat Zahra has said, “You the servants of Allah, are the ones to maintain His injunctions & prohibitions, & the carriers of His religion, & His revelation, & the trustees of Allah upon your souls, & the propagators of His religion among the other nations” (Ayan ush-Shia Ataba Al Jadeed, Vol. I, P 316). This hadith clearly demonstrates our responsibilities towards our religion.

Awareness

Everyday there is a new report on a terrorist attack, politicians committing genocide and getting away with it and millions of people suffer at the hands of injustice. News sources containing investigations to expose evil doers, must be shared to the general public to make them aware of the kinds of injustice certain people are doing. Making aware means preventing further support to these tyrants. Imam Musa al-Kadhim (a.s.) says: “If a person due to some difficulty takes refuge with his Muslim brother but in spite of being capable of helping him does not do so then he has for his own self cut off the Divine help.” (al-Kafi). Spreading the injustices going on around the world awakens people who may be able to make a larger difference. Spreading the injustices of corrupt politician may cause more people to participate in protests against these politicians. In fact, social media also publicises these protests, so without the help of social media, not many would even know about these events.

Corruption occurs through social media, but so does positive change. It is the duty of a Muslim to use social media to advertise the message of Islam and to make aware the injustices going on around the world.

Was Prophet Muhammad a role model?

Was Prophet Muhammad a role model?

Was Prophet Muhammad a role model?

If you are Muslim, would you like your sons to be like Prophet Muhammad?

It lists some of the teachings of Prophet Muhammad (S). You decide if you think he is a role model.

Spirituality

The Prophet said: ‘Wealth does not come from having great riches; (true) wealth is contentment of the soul.’ (Sahîh Bukhârî, Sahîh Muslim)

Cognizance

The Prophet said: ‘The similitude of the one who contemplates his Lord versus the one who does not is that of the living versus the dead.’ (Sahîh Bukhârî, Sahîh Muslim)

Sincerity

The Prophet said: ‘Actions will be judged according to their intentions.’ (Sahîh Bukhârî, Sahîh Muslim)

Mercy

The Prophet said: ‘Show mercy to those on earth so that He who is in heaven will have mercy on you.’ (Sunan At-Tirmidhî)

Gentleness

The Prophet said: ‘Whoever is deprived of gentleness is deprived of all good.’ (Sahîh Muslim)

Forgiveness

The Prophet said: ‘Whoever suffers an injury done to him and forgives (the person responsible), Allah will raise his status to a higher degree and remove one of his sins.’ (Sunan At-Tirmidhî)

Virtue

The Prophet said: ‘Do not be people without minds of your own, saying that if others treat you well you will treat them well, and that if they do wrong you will do wrong. Instead, accustom yourselves to do good if people do good and not to do wrong if they do evil.’ (Sunan At-Tirmidhî)

Justice

The Prophet said: ‘The most virtuous jihâdis when one speaks a word of truth before an unjust ruler.’ (Sunan Abî Dawûd, Sunan At-Tirmidhî, Sunan Ibn Mâjah)

Civility

The Prophet said: ‘The Muslim does not slander, curse, speak obscenely, or speak rudely.’ (Sunan At-Tirmidhî)

Honesty

The Prophet said: ‘Honesty leads to righteousness and righteousness leads to Paradise. A man remains honest and concerned about honesty until he is recorded as an honest man with Allah. Lying leads to sinfulness and sinfulness leads to the Fire. A man keeps lying and remains partial to lies until he is recorded as a liar with Allah.’ (Sahîh Bukharî, Sahîh Muslim)

Tolerance

Once the Prophet was seated at some place in Madinah, along with his Companions. During this time a funeral procession passed by. On seeing this, the Prophet stood up. One of his companions remarked that the funeral was that of a Jew. The Prophet replied, “Was he not a human being?” (Sahîh Bukhârî, Sahîh Muslim, Sunan An-Nasâ’î)

A disbelieving Bedouin urinated in the mosque, and the people rushed to beat him. Allah’s Apostle ordered them to leave him alone, let him finish and pour water over the place where he has passed urine. The Prophet then explained to the Bedouin calmly, “This is a place of worship, in it is the worship of God and the reading of Qur’an.” After the Bedouin had left, the Prophet then said to his companions, ” You have been sent to make things easy (for the people) and you have not been sent to make things difficult for them.” (Sahîh Bukhârî, Sahîh Muslim)

Equality

The Prophet said: ‘There is no superiority for an Arab over a non-Arab, nor for a non-Arab over an Arab, nor for a fair-skinned person over a person with dark skin, nor for a dark-skinned person over a person with fair skin. Whoever is more pious and God-fearing is more deserving of honour.’ (Musnad Ahmad)

Gratitude

The Prophet said: ‘Contemplate those who have less than you and not those who have more than you, lest you belittle the favors of Allah conferred upon you’. (Sahîh Bukhârî, Sahîh Muslim)

Simplicity

The Prophet said: ‘What is little but sufficient is better than that which is abundant but causes heedlessness.’ (Sahîh Ibn Hibbân)

Humility

The Prophet said: ‘God has revealed to me that you must be humble, so that no one oppresses another and boasts over another.’ (Sahîh Muslim, Sunan Abî Dawûd)

Generosity

The Prophet said: ‘The food of two people is enough for three, and the food of three people is enough for four.'(Sahîh Bukhârî, Sahîh Muslim)

Appreciation

The Prophet said: ‘Whoever does not thank people (for their favors) has not thanked Allah (properly), Mighty and Glorious is He!’ (Musnad Ahmad, Sunan At-Tirmidhî)

Calmness

The Prophet said: ‘Calmness and determination is from Allah and haste is from Satan.’ (Sunan At-Tirmidhî)

Patience

The Prophet said: ‘No one can give a better or more abundant gift than patience.’ (Sahîh Bukhârî, Sahîh Muslim)

Perseverance

The Prophet said: ‘There is no clement person who has not stumbled, nor is there no wise person who possesses no experience.’ (Sunan At-Tirmidhî, Mustadarak Al-Hâkim)

Nonjudgemental

The Prophet said: ‘Do not search for (the faults of others), for if anyone searches for (others) faults, God will search for his.’ (Sunan Abî Dawûd)

Selfcritical

The Prophet said: ‘Blessed is he who preoccupies himself with his own defects, rather than those of others.’ (Musnad Al-Bazzâr)

Advice

The Prophet said: ‘Make things easy (for people) and do not make them difficult, and cheer people up and do not drive them away.’ (Sahîh Bukhârî, Sahîh Muslim)

Moderation

The Prophet said: ‘The religion (of Islam) is easy. No one ever made it difficult without it becoming too much for him. So avoid extremes and strike a balance, do the best you can and be cheerful, and seek Allah’s help (through prayer) in the morning, and evening, and part of the night.’ (Sahîh Bukhârî)

Charity

The Prophet said: ‘Charity (sadaqah) is due upon every joint of a person on every day that the sun rises. Administering justice between two people is an act of charity; and to help a man concerning his riding beast by helping him on to it or lifting his luggage on to it is an act of charity; a good word is charity; and every step which you take to prayer is charity; and removing that which is harmful from the road is charity.’ (Sahîh Bukhârî)

Community

The Prophet said: ‘The believer is not the one who eats his fill when the neighbour beside him is hungry.’ (Sunan Al-Bayhaqî)

Affability

The Prophet said: ‘The believer is one who is sociable [with others], and there is no benefit in one who is not sociable [with others] nor in one who is not met sociably [by them].’ (Mustadarak Al-Hâkim, Shu’ab al-Îmân Al-Bayhaqî)

Business Ethics

The Prophet said: ‘A truthful and trustworthy merchant will be in the company of the prophets, the very truthful, and the martyrs.’ (Sunan At-Tirmidhî, Sunan Ad-Dârimî, Sunan Ad-Dâraqutnî)

Employment

The Prophet said: ‘Pay the laborer his due before his sweat dries.’ (Sunan Ibn Mâjah)

Leadership

The Prophet said: ‘On a journey, the leader of the group is their servant.’ (Sunan Ibn Mâjah, Shu’ab Al-Îmân Al-Bayhaqî)

Reliability

The Prophet said: ‘He who does not keep his trusts lacks in faith and he who does not keep his agreements lacks in religion’. (Shu’ab Al-Îmân Al-Bayhaqî)

Accountability

The Prophet said: ‘The burden of proof is upon the plaintiff and the taking of oath is upon the defendant.’ (Sunan Al-Bayhaqî)

Responsibility

The Prophet said: ‘Each one of you is a guardian and is responsible for what he is entrusted with.’ (Sahîh Bukhârî, Sahîh Muslim)

Morality

The Prophet said: ‘The most perfect of the believers in faith are the best of them in moral excellence, and the best of you are the kindest to their wives. (Sunan At-Tirmidhî)

Nobility

The Prophet said: ‘None but a noble man treats women in an honorable manner, and none but an ignoble treats women disgracefully.’ (Sunan At-Tirmidhî)

Unity

The Prophet said: ‘Believers are like a single person; if his eye is in pain his whole body pains, and if his head is in pain his whole body pains.’ (Sahîh Muslim)

Family

The Prophet said: ‘The best of you is the one who is best to his own family, and I am the best of you towards my family.’ (Sunan At-Tirmidhî, Sunan Ibn Mâjah)
The Prophet said: ‘He is not one of us who does not show mercy to our little ones and respect to our elders.’ (Sunan At-Tirmidhî)

Efficiency

The Prophet said: ‘There are two blessings that many people fail to make the most of: good health and free time.'(Sahîh Bukhârî)

Education

The Prophet said: ‘Seeking knowledge is a religious obligation for every Muslim (male or female).’ (Sunan Ibn Mâjah, Sunan Al-Bayhaqî)

Inquiry

The Prophet said: ‘The cure for ignorance is to question.’ (Sunan Abî Dawûd)

Vigilance

The Prophet said: ‘A believer is not stung from the same hole twice.’ (Sahîh Bukhârî, Sahîh Muslim)

Discipline

The Prophet said: ‘The wise one is he who has subdued his lower self and has prepared for what follows death. And the foolish one is he who has placed his lower self in pursuance of its desires and has vain hopes about Allah.'(Sunan At-Tirmidhî, Sunan Ibn Mâjah)

Modesty

The Prophet said: ‘Modesty is part of faith.’ (Sahîh Muslim)

Beauty

The Prophet said: ‘Allah is beautiful and loves beauty.’ (Sahîh Muslim)

Hygiene

The Prophet said: ‘Purity and cleanliness is part of faith.’ (Sahîh Muslim)

Diet

The Prophet said: ‘There is no vessel worse for the son of Adam to fill than his stomach. A few morsels are sufficient for him. If he is to consume more then a third is for his food, a third for his drink, and a third for air.’ (Sunan At-Tirmidhî, Sunan Ibn Mâjah)

Nature

The Prophet said: ‘If a Muslim plants a seedling or cultivates a field, whenever a bird a human or an animal eats of it, it will be counted as a charity for him.’ (Sahîh Muslim)

Animals

The Prophet said: ‘Anyone who kills even a sparrow for no reason (should know that) it will cry alound to Allah on the Day of the Resurrection, saying, “O my Lord! So-and-so killed me just for fun; he killed me for no reason!” ‘(Sunan An-Nasâ’î)
A’isha said: ‘I was once riding a difficult (slow-moving) camel, so I kept hitting it. When the Prophet saw me, he said: ‘Be gentle, for gentleness adorns everything in which it is found, and its absence leaves everything tainted.'(Musnad Ahmad)

I Planned to Destroy Islam, I Became Muslim -Shariffa Carlos

I Planned to Destroy Islam, I Became Muslim -Shariffa Carlos

I Planned to Destroy Islam, I Became Muslim

Shariffa Carlos amazing Journey to Islam

The story of how I reverted to Islam is a story of plans.

I made plans; the group I was with made plans, and Allah made plans. And Allah is the Best of Planners.

When I was a teenager, I came to the attention of a group of people with a very sinister agenda. They were and probably still are a loose association of individuals who work in government positions but have a special agenda — to destroy Islam. It is not a governmental group that I am aware of, they simply use their positions in the US government to advance their cause.

One member of this group approached me because he saw that I was articulate, motivated and very much the women’s rights advocate. He told me that if I studied International Relations with an emphasis in the Middle East, he would guarantee me a job at the American Embassy in Egypt. He wanted me to eventually go there to use my position in the country to talk to Muslim women and encourage the fledgling women’s rights movement.

I thought this was a great idea. I had seen the Muslim women on TV; I knew they were a poor oppressed group, and I wanted to lead them to the light of 20th century freedom.

With this intention, I went to college and began my education. I studied Quran, hadith and Islamic history. I also studied the ways I could use this information. I learned how to twist the words to say what I wanted them to say. It was a valuable tool.

Once I started learning, however, I began to be intrigued by this message. It made sense. That was very scary. Therefore, in order to counteract this effect, I began to take classes in Christianity. I chose to take classes with this one professor on campus because he had a good reputation and he had a Ph.D. in Theology from Harvard University. I felt I was in good hands. I was, but not for the reasons I thought. It turns out that this professor was a Unitarian Christian. He did not believe in the trinity or the divinity of Jesus. In actuality, he believed that Jesus was a prophet.

He proceeded to prove this by taking the Bible from its sources in Greek, Hebrew and Aramaic and show where they were changed. As he did this, he showed the historical events which shaped and followed these changes.

By the time I finished this class, my religion had been destroyed, but I was still not ready to accept Islam.

As time went on, I continued to study, for myself and for my future career. This took about three years. In this time, I would question Muslims about their beliefs. One of the Individuals I questioned was a Muslim brother with the MSA [Muslim Students’ Association]. Alhamdulllah, he saw my interest in the deen, and made it a personal effort to educate me about Islam. He would tell me about Islam at every opportunity which presented itself.

One day, this man contacts me, and he tells me about a group of Muslims who were visiting in town. He wanted me to meet them. I agreed. I went to meet with them after Isha [night] prayer. I was led to a room with at least 20 men in it. They all made space for me to sit, and I was placed face to face with an elderly Pakistani gentleman.

Mashallah, this brother was a very knowledgeable man in matters of Christianity. He and I discussed and argued the varying parts of the bible and the Quran until the fajr [dawn prayer]. At this point, after having listened to this wise man tell me what I already knew, based on the class I had taken in Christianity, he did what no other individual had ever done. He invited me to become a Muslim.

In the three years I had been searching and researching, no one had ever invited me. I had been taught, argued with and even insulted, but never invited.

So when he invited me, it clicked. I realized this was the time. I knew it was the truth, and I had to make a decision. Alhamdulillah [All praise be to Allah], Allah opened my heart, and I said, “Yes. I want to be a Muslim.”

With that, the man led me in the shahadah [the testimony of faith] – in English and in Arabic.

When I took the shahadah, I felt the strangest sensation. I felt as if a huge, physical weight had just been lifted off my chest; I gasped for breath as if I were breathing for the first time in my life.

Alhamdulillah, Allah had given me a new life — a clean slate — a chance for Jannah [Paradise], and I pray that I live the rest of my days and die as a Muslim.

Ameen.

Idol Worship, the Unforgivable Sin

Idol Worship, the Unforgivable Sin

Idol Worship, the Unforgivable Sin

(if maintained until death)

 

What is the meaning of idol worship?

A simple definition of idol worship is to believe that anything beside God can help us, or to hold something as more important to us than God. Thus if we hold our property (for example) as more important than God, or give our jobs more time and attention than God—we are committing idol worship.

Unfortunately, the majority of people who believe in God commit this gross offense without even realizing it. If you ask them, “Who is your god?”, they will be outraged to hear this question. “What do you mean, `Who is your god?’ they will ask, `My god is the Creator of the heavens and the earth.’ ” And most of these people will be shocked to find out that their proclamation that their god is the Creator of the heavens and the earth is no more than lip service, and that they are in fact destined for Hell (12:106). Idol worship is a gross injustice, the violation of the first commandment in all the scriptures of God, and is an unforgivable sin if maintained until death.

[31:13] Recall that Luqmaan said to his son, as he enlightened him, “O my son, do not set up any idols beside GOD; idolatry is a gross injustice.”*

Footnote: *31:13 How will you feel if you take care of a child, give him the best education, and prepare him for life, only to see him thank someone else? Thus is idolatry; injustice.

[12:106] The majority of those who believe in GOD do not do so without committing idol worship.

(sub-title) The Unforgivable Sin

[4:48] GOD does not forgive idolatry,* but He forgives lesser offenses for whomever He wills. Anyone who sets up idols beside GOD, has forged a horrendous offense.

Footnote: *4:48 Idol worship is not forgivable, if maintained until death. One can always repent from any offense, including idolatry, before death comes (see 4:18 & 40:66).

(sub-title) The Unforgivable Sin

[4:116] GOD does not forgive idol worship (if maintained until death),* and He forgives lesser offenses for whomever He wills. Anyone who idolizes any idol beside GOD has strayed far astray.

 

God tells us that idol worship nullifies all work

Any work we do, if not devoted absolutely to God, does not serve to grow our souls. On the day of Resurrection, if our souls have not grown strong enough to withstand the presence of God—we will have to forsake God’s kingdom on our own volition. Everything we have done in this world will be nullified.

[39:65] It has been revealed to you, and to those before you that if you ever commit idol worship, all your works will be nullified, and you will be with the losers.

The natural instinct of monotheism that God has placed in us ( 30:30; to make it easier for us to choose the right path) commands us to dedicate our worship to God Alone, and not associate anything with God. All places of worship should be dedicated to God Alone. Belief in God includes the understanding that He alone is worthy of worship.

[72:18] The places of worship belong to GOD; do not call on anyone else beside GOD.

Many so-called Muslims commit mistake by associating Muhammad with God at the places of worship, and by upholding Hadith and Sunna falsely attributed to prophet Muhammad. For example, mentioning the names of Abraham, Muhammad, and/or Ali in the Azan and/or the Salat prayers violates God’s commandments in 2:136, 2:285, 3:84, & 72:18. Unfortunately, this is a common idolatrous practice throughout the corrupted Muslim world. Many Christians commit this same mistake by exalting Jesus to the same level as God, or sometimes by even calling him God. This is idol worship. In Matthew 7:21-23: Jesus clearly disowns those who call him “Lord.”

 

Types of Idols

Idol worship includes, but is not just restricted to the worship of statues or icons. The Quran cites many forms of idol worship. Some of these are listed below.

1. Calf, statues as idols.

[2:51] Yet, when we summoned Moses for forty nights, you worshiped the calf in his absence, and turned wicked.*

[21:51-53] Before that, we granted Abraham his guidance and understanding, for we were fully aware of him.* He said to his father and his people, “What are these statues to which you are devoting yourselves?” They said, “We found our parents worshiping them.”

2. Worshipping other gods (is worshipping the devil).

[4:117] They even worship female gods besides Him; as a matter of fact, they only worship a rebellious devil.

3. Jesus as an idol.

[5:72] Pagans indeed are those who say that GOD is the Messiah, son of Mary. The Messiah himself said, “O Children of Israel, you shall worship GOD; my Lord* and your Lord.” Anyone who sets up any idol beside GOD, GOD has forbidden Paradise for him, and his destiny is Hell. The wicked have no helpers.

4. Jinns as idols.

[6:100] Yet, they set up beside GOD idols from among the jinns, though He is the One who created them. They even attribute to Him sons and daughters, without any knowledge. Be He glorified. He is the Most High, far above their claims.

5. Children as idols.

[7:190] But when He gives them a good baby, they turn His gift into an idol that rivals Him. GOD be exalted, far above any partnership.

6. Humans as idols.

[7:194] The idols you invoke besides GOD are creatures like you. Go ahead and call upon them; let them respond to you, if you are right.

7. “Intercessors” as Idols. The Quran makes it clear that there is no intercession by anyone on the Day of Judgment.

[10:18] They worship beside GOD idols that possess no power to harm them or benefit them, and they say, “These are our intercessors at GOD!” Say, “Are you informing GOD of something He does not know in the heavens or the earth?” Be He glorified. He is the Most High; far above needing partners.

8. Satan as an idol.

[14:22] And the devil will say, after the judgment had been issued, “GOD has promised you the truthful promise, and I promised you, but I broke my promise. I had no power over you; I simply invited you, and you accepted my invitation. Therefore, do not blame me, and blame only yourselves. My complaining cannot help you, nor can your complaining help me. I have disbelieved in your idolizing me. The transgressors have incurred a painful retribution.”

9. Property as an idol.

[18:32-36] Cite for them the example of two men: we gave one of them two gardens of grapes, surrounded by date palms, and placed other crops between them. Both gardens produced their crops on time, and generously, for we caused a river to run through them. Once, after harvesting, he boastfully told his friend: “I am far more prosperous than you, and I command more respect from the people.” When he entered his garden, he wronged his soul by saying, “I do not think that this will ever end. “Moreover, I think this is it; I do not think that the Hour (the Hereafter) will ever come to pass. Even if I am returned to my Lord, I will (be clever enough to) possess an even better one over there.”

[18:42] Indeed, his crops were wiped out, and he ended up sorrowful, lamenting what he had spent on it in vain, as his property lay barren. He finally said, “I wish I never set up my property as a god beside my Lord.”

10. The dead prophets, messengers and saints as idols.

[16:20-21] As for the idols they set up beside GOD, they do not create anything; they themselves were created. They are dead, not alive, and they have no idea how or when they will be resurrected.

[3:79] Never would a human being whom GOD blessed with the scripture and prophethood say to the people, “Idolize me beside GOD.” Instead, (he would say), “Devote yourselves absolutely to your Lord alone,” according to the scripture you preach and the teachings you learn.

11. God’s servants as idols.

[18:102] Do those who disbelieve think that they can get away with setting up My servants as gods beside Me? We have prepared for the disbelievers Hell as an eternal abode.

The idol need not be an image in front of you.

12. Ego as an idol.

This is a common form of idolatry. Most humans, because of their ego cannot bring themselves to worship God, nor can they make their opinion subordinate to God’s opinion spelled out in the Quran because of their ego. If we disobey God and His messenger, we are committing idol worship even though there is no image in front of us. This is because we would be giving our opinion more importance than God’s words.

[25:43] Have you seen the one whose god is his own ego? Will you be his advocate?

[45:23] Have you noted the one whose god is his ego? Consequently, GOD sends him astray, despite his knowledge, seals his hearing and his mind, and places a veil on his eyes. Who then can guide him, after such a decision by GOD? Would you not take heed?

13. Upholding religious Sources other than God’s words, as an idol

As a Submitter (Muslim) if we follow a source other than Quran for religious guidance it is idolatry. Verse 6:19 makes it clear that the Quran is God’s testimony. Following any other source is defined as idolatry. Worshipping God means we obey His words only (Quran) and not the words of humans (scholars, religious leaders, mullahs, etc.).

[6:19] Say, “Whose testimony is the greatest?” Say, “GOD’s. He is the witness between me and you that this Quran* has been inspired to me, to preach it to you and whomever it reaches. Indeed, you bear witness that there are other gods* beside GOD.” Say, “I do not testify as you do; there is only one god, and I disown your idolatry.”

Footnote: *6:19 This verse proclaims the Quran as the only source of religious guidance. Those who uphold additional sources, such as Hadith & Sunna (lies attributed to the Prophet), are defined as idolaters.

14. Religious leaders and scholars as idols.

(sub-title) Upholding the Teachings of Religious Leaders, Instead of God’s Teachings

[9:31] They have set up their religious leaders and scholars as lords,* instead of GOD. Others deified the Messiah, son of Mary. They were all commanded to worship only one god. There is no god except He. Be He glorified, high above having any partners.

Footnote: *9:31 If you consult the “Muslim scholars” about worshiping God alone, and upholding the word of God alone, as taught in this proven scripture, they will advise you against it. If you consult the Pope about the identity of Jesus, he will advise you to uphold a trinity. If you obey the “Muslim scholars” whose advice is contrary to God’s teachings, or if you take the Pope’s advice instead of God’s, you have set up these religious leaders as gods instead of God.

15. Creating sects in religion is idol worship.

The Quran forbids dividing ourselves into sects. Those who divide into sects are termed as idol worshippers.

[30:31-32] You shall submit to Him, reverence Him, observe the Contact Prayers (Salat), and – whatever you do – do not ever fall into idol worship. (Do not fall in idol worship,) like those who divide their religion into sects; each party rejoicing with what they have.

16. Dividing believers and providing comfort to those who oppose God and His messengers is practicing idol worship.

[9:107] There are those who abuse the masjid by practicing idol worship, dividing the believers, and providing comfort to those who oppose GOD and His messenger. They solemnly swear: “Our intentions are honorable!” GOD bears witness that they are liars.

Footnote: *9:107 Any masjid where the practices are not devoted absolutely to God ALONE belongs to Satan, not God. For example, mentioning the names of Abraham, Muhammad, and/or Ali in the Azan and/or the Salat prayers violates God’s commandments in 2:136, 2:285, 3:84, & 72:18. Unfortunately, this is a common idolatrous practice throughout the corrupted Muslim world.

We learn from the Quran that idols cannot judge (40:20), idols cannot create anything and are powerless (13:16, 46:4), and idols do not bring us closer to God (39:3). We learn that idolaters follow conjecture (6:148) and that idolaters deny their idol worship — now & on the Day of Judgment (6:22-24).

God grants perfect security and happiness for believers who are devoted to Him alone without committing idol worship.

[6:82] Those who believe, and do not pollute their belief with idol worship, have deserved the perfect security, and they are truly guided.

[39:17] As for those who discard the worship of all idols, and devote themselves totally to GOD alone, they have deserved happiness. Give good news to My servants.

 

May God protect us from worshiping idols.

[14:35] Recall that Abraham said, “My Lord, …. protect me and my children from worshiping idols.

[6:162-164] Say, “My Contact Prayers (Salat), my worship practices, my life and my death, are all devoted absolutely to GOD alone, the Lord of the universe.He has no partner. This is what I am commanded to believe, and I am the first to submit.” Say, “Shall I seek other than GOD as a lord, when He is the Lord of all things? No soul benefits except from its own works, and none bears the burden of another. Ultimately, you return to your Lord, then He informs you regarding all your disputes.”

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