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June 20, 2009

 3 Possible Method and La ilahe illallah

First Issue Of Islam: Faith 
The Makkan portion of the holy Qur'an, revealed to the Prophet(sav) over a period of thirteen years, dealt with only one question. The nature of this question did not change, although the manner of its presentation varied according to the style of the Qur'an, which refers to this question in new ways, always as though it had been raised for the first time. 
This was the primary question, the greatest question, the fundamental question 
of this new religion, a question of faith with two main aspects, the Divine and the human, and the relationship between them. This question is addressed to the human being, as a human being, and in this respect the Arab of one era or any other, and the non-Arab, are equal, whether he belongs to that time or to later times. 
This is that human problem which does not change; this is the question of 
man's existence in the universe, his ultimate goal, and his position and 
relationship to the universe and the question of the relationship between him 
and the Creator of the universe. This aspect of man's life cannot change, as it 
relates to his very being. 
During the Makkan period, the Qur'an explained to man the secret of his 
existence and the secret of the universe surrounding him. It told him who he is, 
where he has come from, for what purpose and where he will go in the end, 
Who brought him from non-existence into being, to Whom he will return, and 
what his final disposition will be. It also informed him concerning the nature of 
the things which he can touch and see, and the things which he can sense and 
conceive but which he cannot see, Who created and administers this marvellous 
universe, Who alternates night and day, and Who renovates and varies things. 
Similarly, it told him how to relate to the Creator, to the physical world, and to 
other human beings. 
This is that great question upon which man's existence depends and will 
continue to depend until the end of time. And thus the full thirteen years of the 
Makkan period were spent in explaining and expounding this fundamental 
question, that question from which all other questions and details pertaining to 
human life are derived. 
The Qur'an made this question the only subject of its message during the 
Makkan Period and never discussed other subsidiary and derived matters. 
These subsidiary topics were not mentioned until the All-knowing Allah 
decided that matters pertaining to faith had been explained fully and had 
entered into the heads of that select group of people who were to establish His 
religion and were to give it a practical form. 
Those who call toward Allah's Religion and want to establish the way of life 
prescribed by this Religion should ponder over this significant fact that for 
thirteen years the Qur'an exclusively expounded this faith and did not deviate 
from this issue, to describe the details of that System which was to be 
established on this faith or any laws for the organisation of the Muslim society. 
It was the wisdom of Allah Almighty that made this fundamental question of 
faith and belief the central theme of the initial call of the Prophet(sav) to his 
people. The first message that the Messenger of Allah(cc) brought to his people 
urged them to bear witness that 'there is no deity worthy of worship except 
Allah,' and he devoted all his efforts to instructing people about their true 
Sustainer and admonishing them to worship him alone. 
From the viewpoint of the limited understanding of man, it does not seem as 
though this would be the easiest way to reach the hearts of the Arabs. They 
knew their language and knew the meaning of ilah (deity worthy of worship), 
and they also knew the meaning of 'La ilaha illa Allah' (There is no deity worthy 
of worship except Allah). They knew that 'Uluhiya' means sovereignty and they 
also realized that ascribing sovereignty only to Allah meant that authority would 
be taken away from the priests, leaders of the tribes, the wealthy and the rulers 
and would revert to Allah. It meant that Only Allah's authority would prevail in 
the heart and conscience, in matters pertaining to religious observances and in 
the affairs of life such as business, the distribution of wealth and the 
dispensation of justice; in short, in the souls arid bodies of men. 
They knew very well that the proclamation, 'There is no deity worthy of 
worship except Allah' was a challenge to that worldly authority which had 
usurped the greatest attribute of Allah, namely, sovereignty. It was a rebellion 
against all modes of behaviour which have been devised under this usurpation 
and was a declaration of war against that authority which legislates laws not 
permitted by Allah Almighty. It was no secret to the Arabs - who knew their 
language very well and knew the real meaning of the message, 'La ilaha illa 
Allah', what its significance was in relation to their traditions, their rule and 
their power. Hence they greeted this call, this revolutionary message, with 
anger, and fought against it with that vigour which is known to everyone. 
Why did this call begin in this manner? And why did the Divine wisdom decide 
that this call be confronted in its initial stages with trials? 
---3 Possible Methods And La Ilahe Illallah--- 
1st Possible Method:Nationalism 
At the time of the Prophets call to Messengership, land and the wealth of the 
Arabs was not in the hands of the Arabs but was in the hands of other People. 
In the north, Syria was under the Romans who appointed local Arab rulers.Similarly, in the south, Yemen was under the tutelage of the Persian Empire and was ruled by Arabs under its domination. Arabs were masters only of Hijaz, Tihama and Naid, which were waterless deserts with a few oases here and there. Here it is also well-known that Muhammed(sav)was called 'al-Amin as_Sadiq', (The Trustworthy and Truthful) by his People. Fifteen years before his Messengership began, the leaders of the Quraish had made him arbiter in the incident of the placing of the Black Stone and had been pleased with his decision. 
His lineage was from the Banu Hashim, which was the noblest branch of the 
Quraish. It can therefore be said that Muhammad(sav)was capable of kindling 
among his compatriots the fire of Arab nationalism and would thus have united 
them. They would have responded gladly to this call for they were weary of 
continual tribal warfare and blood feuds. He would then have been able to free 
the Arab lands from the domination of Roman and Persian imperialism and 
would have been able to establish a united Arab state. 
It can be said that if the Prophet(sav)had called people in this way, instead of 
bearing tortures for thirteen years due to the opposition of the people in authority in the peninsula, the whole of Arabia would have accepted it. It can be said that if Arabia had thus been united under his leadership and the authority had once devolved into his hands, he could have used all this to make them accept the belief in the Unity of Allah, for which purpose he was sent, and to bring people to submit to their Lord after they had submitted to his own human authority. 
But the All-Knowing and All-Wise Allah did not lead His Prophet(sav) on this course. He led him to declare openly that 'There is no deity worthy of worship but Allah' and to bear patiently, with his few companions, whatever trials came to them. 
Why this? Obviously it was not for the sake of subjecting His Prophet(sav) and the Believers to oppression. Indeed, He knows that there is no other way. The way is not to free the earth from Roman and Persian tyranny in order to replace it with Arab tyranny. All tyranny is wicked! The earth belongs to Allah and should be purified for Allah, and it cannot be purified for Him unless the banner, "No deity worthy of worship except Allah", is unfurled across the earth. Man is servant to Allah alone, and he can remain so only if he unfurls the banner, "No deity worthy of worship except Allah", "La illaha illa Allah" as an Arab with the knowledge of his language understood it: no sovereignty except Allah's, no law except from Allah, and no authority of one man over another, as the authority in all respects belong to Allah Almighty. The 'grouping' of men which Islam proclaims is based on this faith alone, the faith in which all peoples of any race or colour, Arabs, Romans or Persians, are equal under the banner of Allah Almighty. 
And this is the way. 
2nd Possible Method:Socialism 
At the time of the Prophet's call to Messengership, Arab society was devoid of proper distribution of wealth and devoid of justice. A small group monopolized all wealth and commerce, which increased through usury. The great majority of the people were poor and hungry. The wealthy were also regarded as noble and distinguished, and the common people were not only deprived of wealth but 
also of dignity and honour. 
It can be said that Muhammad(sav) was capable of starting a social movement, declaring war against the class of nobles and the wealthy; taking away their wealth and distributing it among the poor. 
It can be said that had the Prophet(sav)started such a movement, Arab society would have been divided into two classes, the great majority supporting the new movement because they were sick of the tyranny of wealth, nobility and power and a small minority's possessing these things, instead of the Prophets having to confront the society with the Message of the Unity of Allah, which remained beyond the reach of all except a few noble souls. 
It can be said that after the majority had joined his movement and had given him the leadership, and after he had gained control of the minority of the rich, Muhammad(sav)could then have used his position and power to impose the belief in the Unity of Allah, for which task Allah had appointed him as His Prophet. Thus, first making human beings bow before his authority, he could have then made them bow before the True God. 
But the All-Knowing, the All-Wise Allah did not lead him to this course. Allah Almighty knew that this was not the way. He knew that true social justice can come to a society only after all affairs have been submitted to the laws of Allah and the society as a whole is willing to accept the just division of wealth prescribed by Him. And every individual of the society, whether he be a giver or a taker, firmly believes that this system has been legislated by Allah Almighty, by obeying which, he will not only prosper in this world but will be rewarded in the next. 
The society should not be in such a condition that some are driven by greed while others are burning with envy, that all the affairs of the society are decided by the sword and the rod, fear and threats, that the hearts of the population are desolate and their spirits are broken, as is the case under systems which are based on any authority other than Allah's. 
3rd Possible Method:Moral Movement 
At the time of the Prophet's call to Messengership, the moral level of Arabia 
was extremely low from every point of view. Only a few primitive tribal mores 
Oppression was the rule of the day, as the famous poet Zuhair Selma has 
------"One who does not defend himself with weapons will perish,----- 
----------And one who does not oppress will be oppressed".----------- 
Another famous saying of the Days of Ignorance points to this: 
-----"Help your brother, whether he is the oppressor or being oppressed."----- 
Drinking and gambling were traditions of the society and people were proud of 
these habits. All the poetry of the Days of ignorance revolves around the theme 
of wine and gaming. Turfah Abid says: 
--------"If there had not been three things for a young man's enjoyment,-------- 
--------Then I would not have cared for anything except some food.------- 
------------One of them is my excelling others in the drinking of wine which is so potent that if you add water to it, it bubbles.----------- 
------------Drinking and entertainment and spending I have been my life, and still are. 
At last the time has come when the whole tribe has abandoned me,--------- 
-------As if I were a camel with a terrible itch."------- 
Fornication was rampant in various forms and was considered something to be 
proud of, as is the case among all Jahili societies, old or new. Aisha, may Allah 
be pleased with her, describes the condition of society of the Days of Ignorance 
in the following words: 
"There were four kinds of marriages during Jahiliyyahh. One was as we have it today; that is, 
a man would ask a person for the hand of his daughter or his ward in marriage, would pay 
the marriage-gift, and would marry her. 
The second type was that a man would tell his wife, in between her menstrual periods, to call such and such man and become pregnant by him. He would stay away from her and would not touch her until the signs of pregnancy appeared. If he then wished, he would have intercourse with her. He adopted this method to obtain a son of high lineage.A third form of marriage was polyandry. A group of men, less than ten, would come to a woman and have sexual intercourse with her. If she became pregnant and then gave birth to a child, and a few nights passed after childbirth, she would call them. No one could refuse this call. When they would all gather, she would tell them, 'You know the result. I have given birth to a child.' Then she would point to one of them and would say, 'This is his child.' The child would then be named after that person and would be considered his, and he could not deny this. A fourth form of marriage was that many men would go to a woman, and she was willing to accept any. Actually, these were prostitutes and would place a flag in front of their doors as a sign. Anyone who wished would go to them. If such a woman became pregnant, after the delivery many people would gather by her and would call an expert in recognizing resemblances. To whomever he would ascribe the child's paternity, the child would be considered his and he could not refuse it." It can be said that Muhammad(sav) was capable of starting a movement of moral reform for the establishment of moral standards, for the purification of the society, and for self-evaluation. As is the case with every reformer, he would have found some upright and straight people who were also unhappy about the moral degeneration of their society. These people would certainly have come to him to join his reformist movement. Thus, one can say that if the Prophet(sav) had chosen this course, he would have easily gathered a sizeable group. Because of their moral purity and spiritual fortitude, this group of people, more than others, would have accepted the belief in the Oneness of Allah and would have carried the responsibilities pertaining to it. Thus the Prophet's call, "There is no deity worthy of worship except Allah," would have been spared the vigorous opposition which it encountered.But Allah Most High knew that this way is not the way. He knew that morality can only be built on faith, a faith which provides criteria, creates values, defines the authority from which these criteria and values are to be derived, and prescribes the reward of the one who accepts this authority and the punishment of those who deviate or oppose. Without this kind of belief or the concept of a higher authority, all valued remain unstable, and similarly morals based on them 
remain unstable - without accounting, without authority, without reward! 
The Real Method:La Ilahe Illallah 
When, after hard work, belief became firm and the authority to which this belief refers was acknowledged, when people recognized their Sustainer and worshipped Him alone, when they became independent not only of other human beings but also of their own desires, and when "La ilaha illa Allah" became imprinted on their hearts - then Allah Almighty, through this faith and through the Believers, provided everything which was needed. Allah's earth became free of 'Romans and Persians,' not so that the authority of 'Arabs' might prevail, but only so that Allah's authority might be established and that the earth might be cleared of all the rebels against Him, whether they were Roman, Persian or Arab. The society was freed from all oppression, and the Islamic system was established in which justice was Allah's justice and in which weighing was by Allah's balance. The banner of social justice was raised in the name of One God, and the name of the banner was Islam. No other name was added to it, 
and "La ilaha illa Allah" was written on it.

(Seyyid Qutb,Milestone)

More entries: 3 Possible Method and La ilahe illallah, In Quran,Islam and Knowledge , First Word:Bismillah

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