Schools of Thought

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1 week 6 days ago - 1 week 6 days ago #650 by AlAdala
AlAdala created the topic: Schools of Thought
Asalamu alaykum,

If Imam Ali (as) was not a Shi'i, and Imam Zayd (as) was not a Zaydi and Mousa (as) was not a Jew and Isa (as) was not a Christian and Qur'an called those who believe in ALLAH and ALLAH alone Muslims, why do we need these names which create division in the Ummah while Ahlul Bayt (as) and the Sahaba good and bad were all known as Muslims and the Qur'an spoke against sects when ALLAH said,

إِنَّ الَّذِينَ فَرَّقُوا دِينَهُمْ وَكَانُوا شِيَعًا لَّسْتَ مِنْهُمْ فِي شَيْءٍ إِنَّمَا أَمْرُهُمْ إِلَى اللَّهِ ثُمَّ يُنَبِّئُهُم بِمَا كَانُوا يَفْعَلُونَ

"Surely they who divided their religion into parts and became sects, you have no concern with them; their affair is only with ALLAH, then He will inform them of what they did."

Al An'aam
6:159

مُنِيبِينَ إِلَيْهِ وَاتَّقُوهُ وَأَقِيمُوا الصَّلَاةَ وَلَا تَكُونُوا مِنَ الْمُشْرِكِينَ

Turning to HIM, and be careful of (your duty to) HIM and keep up prayer and be not of the polytheists

Al Roum
30:31

مِنَ الَّذِينَ فَرَّقُوا دِينَهُمْ وَكَانُوا شِيَعًا كُلُّ حِزْبٍ بِمَا لَدَيْهِمْ فَرِحُونَ

Of those who divided their religion and became sect every sect rejoicing in what they had with them

Al Roum
30:32

We see this rejoicing when people show pride in their sects such as when they say, "Shia4lyfe" or "Ana Zaydi" (I am a Zaydi)
Last Edit: 1 week 6 days ago by AlAdala.

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1 week 3 days ago #653 by Imam Rassi Society
Imam Rassi Society replied the topic: Schools of Thought
Wa alaykum as salaam.
Thank you for your question! As you mentioned, sectarianism in Islam is something considered loathsome and haraam. One of our imams, Imam al-Qaasim bin Muhammad, upon him be peace, authored a text called Al-I'tisaam. His thesis is that dividing into various sects is haraam by proof of the Qur'an and Sunnah. However, he similarly argues that adhering to the school of Ahl al-Bayt is the source of salvation. It may seem contradictory to you but it isn't. Allow me to explain. Sectarianism occurs when there is an absence of a central authority. To ilustrate: Imagine that there is a company headed by a founder and CEO. The employees look to this person for all their directives and no one questions him/her when decisions are made. Now, imagine that this founder dies without appointing a successor or establishing a board of directors to fulfil his role. Although there is an existing set of company bylaws left behind, there is nothing in the way of centralised leadership. It's only natural that sectarianism would occur in such circumstances because every employee would be free to interpret and implement the bylaws in any way he or she pleased. Not only that but it is also logical that some of the employees would be more persuasive and charismatic than others and gain a following who agrees with his or her approach. What you would have is a number of splintered groups who all adhere to the methodology or ideas of the various leaders. As a result, you would have sects who affirm the truth of their way and degrade the others.

This splintering--argued Imam al-Qaasim bin Muhammad (as)--as evident in the various methodologies that exist in the Muslim ummah in regards to beliefs, hadith and jurisprudence. People who were not appointed as leaders forwarded their own agendas, methodologies, criteria and the like. They gained followings and that is the state that we are in until now.

One would have to wonder, if there is such abundant proof against sectarianism from the Quran and the statements of the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him and his progeny, is it logical to assume that Allah and His Messenger did not do something to prevent it from happening? I mean with all the clear verses and ahadith prohibiting splintering off into sects, shouldn't we assume that there was something established to facilitate the Muslims in this? As we mentioned, the only logical thing that could prevent sectarianism and division is if there was a unifying centralised authority. One cannot say that the Qur'an alone is this centralised authority because similar to the company's bylaws that we referenced earlier, the Qur'an can be interpreted in various ways and each interpreter could have a following that supports his/her interpretation. The Holy Qur'an is insufficient in preventing sectarianism. Rather, the only centralised authority that can prevent sectarianism is one central figure whose views are accepted as the most authoritative. The judgements and interpretation that this person makes must be considered the final authority in all matters; otherwise we will find ourselves back to the original problem. That is the logical basis as to the explicit appointment of Ali (as) as the Prophet's successor. We say that because of the potential of deviation, division and sectarianism, it was incumbent that the centralise leadership and authority of the ummah be made clear and unequivocal.

All of that withstanding, when one calls oneself a 'shia of Ali,' one acknowledges that Allah through His Prophet designated a means by which the ummah will not divide and splinter after the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him and his progeny. When one says that one is a 'shia of Ali,' one recognises that Allah provided a way that Muslims could avoid falling into the dizzying spell of confusion and personality-worship but instead 'hold on to the rope of Allah' as the verse says. Calling oneself a 'shia of Allah' is not sectarianism but rather the remedy of sectarianism.

It is redundant to say that Ali was not a shia because the term 'shia' simply means a partisan of an individual. One cannot be his own partisan! Furthermore, the word 'shia' is not always used pejoratively in the Qur'an. It is also noteworthy that the Qur'an refers to Ibrahim (as) as a 'shia' of Nuh (as) in Q. 37:83. As for Imam Zayd (as) not being a Zaydi, this is also rather superfluous because 'Zaydi' simply means that one adheres to a certain set of beliefs and practices exemplified but not exclusive to Imam Zayd bin Ali (as). Many people get confused with this term 'Zaydi'; they believe that a Zaydi is a person who adheres to the exclusive teachings and madhhab of Imam Zayd (as). However, this is rather misleading because Imam Zayd (as) followed a methodology that was not unique to him. Many of the imams of Ahl al-Bayt, including Imam Zayd, held to a system of beliefs and practices passed down from their venerable ancestors. Therefore, the judgements and fatawa of Imam Zayd (as) are not exclusively Zaydi, just as they were not exclusively Alawi or Hasani or Husseini. Zaydis are labelled as such because they hold to the activist stance Imam Zayd (as) took against the oppressive regimes. These are certainly not titles and names to be used in order to degrade others but neither should they be abandoned in favour of an imagined 'unity.'

And Allah knows best!

IRS

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1 week 2 days ago - 1 week 2 days ago #654 by AlAdala
AlAdala replied the topic: Schools of Thought
What if no book was written after the Prophet (pbuh)? Today we have no book written by him, the Progeny present at his time or the Sahabah.

Furthermore, the most hated people of all by the corrupt empires may the Grand Curse of ALLAH be upon them were the descendants of Fatima (pbuh). How can it be that the texts written by those who followed the descendants were preserved and even allowed to be written during the lifetime of those wicked regimes including the Isma'ili Fatimid regime, remaining unchanged until now such as Musnad Zayd.

Also, today, different Muslims do have different interpretations of Qur'an as it is even among the Shi'ah.

There are the Imamiyyah Shi'ah with differing branches, the Zaydiyyah with differing branches, the Isma'iliyyah with differing branches, the Kaysaniyyah, the Waqifiyyah, the Dawudi Bohras, etc. All claim Ali (pbuh) was the Khalifah of Rasoul ALLAH but why the divide? Why and HOW could Zayd Ibn Ali differ from his Brother Muhammad Al Baqir while they were on the same manhaj? Also, they had the same father, Imam Zaynul Abideen. Did they ignore his sayings?

Those who choose sects simply choose what works with their own intellect and depend on scholars to do the thinking for them. For all we know Imam Zayd may be free from Zaydiyyah and even from the book atrributed to him just as Imam Ja'far Al Sadiq has nothing to do with Imamis and the first three Khalifas have nothing to do with Ahlul Hadith also known as Sunnis. Imam Zayd's nephew Ja'far did not call himself a Zaydi. He did not even go along with Imam Nafs Al Zakiyyah when the latter claimed to be the Mahdi. As we see, none of the 12 Imami Shi'ah Imams except Al Hussain pbuh charged against the empires. Nor did any of them write books we know of. One should ask why? It seems the Imami Imams, the Prophet (pbuh) and the Sahabah were all in line as far as not writing anything and not fighting battles that would end in loss. Ali lost no battles. He had tawfeeq. Hussain was besieged. Nobody brings his family to war. He responded to an offer of protection in Iraq and did not seek soldiers. They were indeed united while other members of Ahlul Bayt who fought only failed and may have caused divisions due to them not all being Zaydi but Zaydis support them for their rebellions which I believe were generally done out of their sincere intentions. However upon looking at unity in Islam, the Progeny of Muhammad from Ali to Hussain to Zaynul Abideen to Zayd to his respected brother who he did not ignore before going into battle but simply did not take his advice or follow his lead, to Ja'far down the line to the 11th Imami Imam Al Askari, they were all in unity with the righeous Sahabah as far as keeping to a rope called the Rope of ALLAH. During Ali's time, the only ones calling to forms of sectarianism were the khawarij and followers of mu'awiyah. Ali's followers stuck to the Qur'an and the main path. They kept to Rasoul ALLAH's message.
Last Edit: 1 week 2 days ago by AlAdala.

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1 week 1 day ago #657 by Imam Rassi Society
Imam Rassi Society replied the topic: Schools of Thought
Thank you for your question although I am not really sure what your point is. Nor do I really understand how your question relates to the topic or your original question. Maybe you can elaborate.

Thanks!

IRS

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