The Quran has given laws for life and death of nations and clarified that those who abide by these laws it will receive the glad tidings for their observance in this world. While those who violate these laws will perish. Those nations which establish society on false foundations and build an oppressive structure around it perished because of its false social order. The destruction of that nation is implicit in its very foundations. Such is called the law of requital. This requital comes about in accordance with the law of Allah which cannot be tampered with by anyone as all are powerless to do so. The rise and fall of nations is by virtue of these immutable laws.
The Prophets of Allah used to come with such societal orders which gave life and longevity to the believers from their dead and decadent state. The Quran has invited to such a social order when it declares:
“O you who believe, respond to Allah and His messenger when it invites you to that which gives you life.” 8:24
This was the same call of prophet Essa pbuh:
“And I give life to the dead by Allah’s permission.” 3:49
Likewise the followers of Essa pbuh received life from moral demise (61:14) and Prophet Muhammad pbuh gave a societal order about which he had said:
“I’m leaving for you that illuminated Millat whose night shines brighter than its day.”
However it is unfortunate that today our days are darker than our nights.
The social order established by the Messenger of Allah pbuh was based on Divine attributes. That is why in it every individuals potential was fully realised. (62:2, 3:164). It had surplus sustenance and it monitored the nations of the world. (22:78, 5:8).
It was a social order which fulfilled prayers. (58:1, 27:62). Most importantly it was by means of the social order that God was served and His messenger was obeyed. When Muslims abandoned this social order then they were left nowhere in the world.
“How shall Allah guide a people who disbelieved after their belief and had witnessed that the Messenger is true and clear signs had come to them? And Allah does not guide the wrongdoing people.” (3:86)
Quran has used Ebadut in the sense of obedience. References to this effect have been provided in previous essays. (23:47, 12:40, 18:110).
Keeping in consideration the meaning of Ebadut consider this verse as to how it relates to us:
Your Lord says, ‘Call on Me and I will answer you; those who are too proud to serve Me will enter Hell humiliated.’ 40:60
Quran has cited the consequences of not serving Allah to be Jahanam, which we are experiencing among our life.
The Quran has not only cited this principle but also given historical evidence of people of Aad.
And that was ‘Aad, who rejected the signs of their Lord and disobeyed His messengers and followed the order of every obstinate tyrant.
And they were [therefore] followed in this world with a curse and [as well] on the Day of Resurrection. Unquestionably, ‘Aad denied their Lord; then away with ‘Aad, the people of Hud. (11:59-60)
A Muslims purpose of Life is to establish the rule of Allah in human affairs. The Messenger of Allah pbuh demonstrated this in practical terms so people wouldn’t think of it as a utopia.
The entire world witnessed the fruits of this social order with their own eyes. But it is amazing that Muslims left this social order even after witnessing it and after Khilafat-E-Rashida no thinker tried to establish that social order. They instead changed the Deen into a mazhab. In a social order or government, obedience to a central authority is necessary but in mazhab this is not required. The limits of Mazhab are confined to Parastish. Muslims became addicted to Mazhab and adjusted Quranic concepts to religious rituals. But the previous century is quite fortunate that in it the Tolu-E-Islam movement came about with the publication of its journal after Indian independence from January 1948 till present times.
After Khilafat-E-Rashida, a very large number of scholars, thinkers and jurists emerged among the Muslims who attempted to initiate reform and revival. However the condition of Muslims remained stagnant even till present times. This was so because all these thinkers could not identify the cause of Muslim downfall. The diagnosis of the Quran was that if Muslims were to leave the governance of laws of Allah and chose man made laws for governance then this would lead to their downfall. In the light of Quran it is a heinous sin, or Shirk that man worships another being and accepts the sovereignty of another. Prior to Quran if revelation Ebadut was understood as Parastish only and religion had its heyday. But the Quran gave the concept of Deen and linked the revival of Muslims with it. The Tolu-E-Islam movement identified this symptom ailing the Muslims, a fear that was not done by any previous thinker or reformer. It then spread the message with such vigour that today almost every Muslim country has movements for Iqamat-E-Deen. But since none of these movements established any communication with Tolu-E-Islam they remained confined to religion and their efforts bore no fruit.
All the groups that call for establishing the Deen are of the errant view that correcting religious practices is the goal. However this view is incorrect and does not pave the way for Deen. This is so because Deen and religion are opposed to one another and one who truly calls to Deen will have to part ways with the former. Until or unless such callers make their beliefs purely Quran if, neither will they be able to establish Deen nor will it ever get established. In the present era the Iranian Revolution is a prime example of this. Even after much sacrifice it failed. We would like to pinpoint those ideas that act as a hurdle in establishing Deen.
The Messenger of Allah pbuh established Deen in Madinah after almost eighty two defensive wars, and this social order spread in the Arabian peninsula during his lifetime covering over a million square miles. As the boundaries of the state were far and wide, every individual did not come to the capital of Madina to get matters resolved. The Messenger of Allah pbuh had appointed regional governors who have been termed as Ulil Amr by the Quran and has made their obedience obligatory (4:59).
Obedience to the Messenger was obedience to Allah (4:80) and obedience to the Messenger was through Ulil Amr (4:59). Thus this obedience did not imply to the personal obedience of the Messenger but obedience of the administrative set up which he had established. This obedience was the obedience of Allah and His Messenger pbuh.
This way the Quran abolished the rule of man over man and introduced the rule of law and system and apprised man of his high status.
In the era of the Prophet pbuh people who were residing at a distance from Him used to refer their disputes to the regional administrators that he had appointed and were submissive to their decisions. Obedience of those regional governors was the obedience of the Prophet pbuh. In the time of the Prophet pbuh, this was the manner of obeying him and all are in agreement to this. Our scholars also consider obedience to Ulil Amr as obligatory. The problem arises about obeying the Prophet pbuh after his demise. Tolu-E-Islam considers that obedience to the central authority that enforces the Quranic laws will be like obedience to Allah and His Messenger. Thus obedience of the Messenger pbuh was referred to his successor like Abu Bakr Siddiq R. A as he was the living authority running the social order established by the Messenger pbuh.
Bulk of our Islamic nomenclature came into being during the Abbasid era, years after Khilafat-E-Rashida. The Abbasids did not have the credentials that their obedience would be in succession to Allah and His Messenger. It was due to this reason that instead of referring obedience to Allah and His Messenger to the Caliph or the central authority enforcing the Divine laws, our commentators and exegists limited the obedience to the messenger to the obedience of reports that were attributed to him and were in circulation in those days.
When obedience to the messenger could be done easily by obeying traditions, no need was thought to be necessary for a government or social order and the concept of an Islamic social order went into oblivion.
Allah’s obedience was thought to be by the Quran while obedience to the messenger was considered through tradition, this was made common by the scholars of the time. To term obedience to Allah and His messenger as two separate sources of obedience violates the Quran.
The Quran has termed both as one source of obedience and has used the words Allah and His Messenger pbuh for it. However by this term it means the central Islamic government and its living authority. For these the Quran has always used singular pronouns.
(1) “Those [believers] who responded to Allah and the Messenger after injury had struck them. For those who did good among them and feared Allah is a great reward.” (3:172)
(2) The Jews of Madina broke their treat with the Muslim state. This was termed as opposition to Allah and His Messenger.
“That is because they opposed Allah and His Messenger. And whoever opposes Allah – then indeed, Allah is severe in penalty.” (59:4)
(3) “Indeed, those who abuse Allah and His Messenger – Allah has cursed them in this world and the Hereafter and prepared for them a humiliating punishment.” (33:57)
It would not make sense if by the term Allah and His messenger the person of God and His prophet is meant because the Almighty cannot hurt in any sense. It is only the Islamic social order that can bear any suffering and such is implied by the term Allah and His Messenger.
(4) “This is a declaration of] disassociation, from Allah and His Messenger, to those with whom you had made a treaty among the polytheists.” (9:1)
The Quran has used the words “Allah and His Rasul” for the central authority or social order which enforces the divine laws. There are many verses which allude to this and some are reproduced here to maintain brevity. (24:54, 80:20, 9:74, 9:62, 59:8, 33:36, 58:20, 58:5, 9:107, 24:63, 8:46, 8:13)
It is a reality that obedience to the messenger pbuh cannot be done solely through traditions but it has to be done through a central government which enforces those divine laws. The Quran has made “hearing” a condition for “obedience”.
Consider the following:
(1) “The only statement of the [true] believers when they are called to Allah and His Messenger to judge between them is that they say, “We hear and we obey.” And those are the successful.” (24:51)
In this verse hearing is termed as a condition of obedience. This cannot be done through books of traditions but for it a living authority is necessary.
(2) “O you who have believed, obey Allah and His Messenger and do not turn from him while you hear [his order].” (8:20)
(3) “The Messenger has believed in what was revealed to him from his Lord, and [so have] the believers. All of them have believed in Allah and His angels and His books and His messengers, [saying], “We make no distinction between any of His messengers.” And they say, “We hear and we obey. [We seek] Your forgiveness, our Lord, and to You is the [final] destination.” (2:285)
(4) “So fear Allah as much as you are able and listen and obey and spend [in the way of Allah ]; it is better for your selves. And whoever is protected from the stinginess of his soul – it is those who will be the successful.” (64:16)
The Usage of singular pronoun for Allah and His Messenger and the condition of hearing prior to obedience makes it clear that this is obedience to the living authority of a government or social order. It is only by obeying the state controlled system that obedience to Allah and His Rasul is possible. Today there is no state controlled system which can be identified as such. That is why on earth there isn’t a meter length where obedience to Allah and His Rasul takes place. We Muslims are engulfed in worship, which in no way is a substitute for obedience. Those who invite towards the Deen have a responsibility to understand the aforementioned interpretation of obedience of Allah and His Rasul, for only then will they be able to establish the Deen otherwise they will fail. It should be borne in mind that it is ritualistic worship which is the cause of our downfall.
It is said in Sura Nur
“Obedience is recognised.” (24:53)
That action which is concrete, it does not need to make a claim for its validity. It is visible and immediately recognised. The next verse states:
“Say: Obey Allah and obey the Messenger.” (24:55)
The recognition of obedience of the Messenger will be succession on Earth:
You can notice that obedience results in power in the land. This is not possible through worship only.
According to Quran an Islamic government comes in place because of believe and correct actions. Worldly governments come about by bloody revolts, coercion and ruthless power but in contrast an Islamic government comes about by imaan and amalu salih. It is not the outcome of the barrel of a gun. The outcome of a government acquired by Amaalu Salih is: ” And Allah will change their fear into security.” (24:55). The very aim of the Quran is to provide peace prosperity to all mankind through the establishment of Kingdom of God and this is possible only through AmaaluSalih. It is stated:
“Indeed there has come to you from Allah a light and a clear book. With it Allah guides all who follow His good pleasure to ways of Peace.” (5:15-16)
In another place in the Quran it is stated that obeying its laws takes the people to Dar As-Salaam:
“For them is the home of Peace from their Nourisher and He will be their protector by virtue of their deeds.” (6:127)
Allah almighty always invites to peace and security. “And Allah invites to the home of Peace.” (10:25)
All efforts of believers are towards the Garden of Peace.
“Surely the righteous will be in gardens and springs. Enter it in security” 15:45
Humanity uses force and coercion to establish its social order but in contrast Quran declares:
“To Him rises the good word and He elevates deeds of improvement.” (35:10)
The verse highlights the deeds of an Islamic social order that it comes about through AmaluSalih i.e. righteous deeds and this is what moves this social system. Acts of parastish are not Amalu Salih. When we look at Salat, Zakat, Saum etc we observe that these were made obligatory once Muslims had their own community in Madina and not during the time the Messenger of Allah pbuh spent in Mecca. However we note that during the Meccan era the order for Amalusalih also exists. This was for the establishment of an Islamic government in Madina. It is well established and clear that in Quran there is a mention of the spirit of Allah but no mention of man’s spirit. When Allah breathed into man of his spirit (38:72, 15:29), then man’s came to possess Nafs. Allah gave the Nafs all the potentialities that were its goodly attributes in a dormant form. It is the duty of every individual to actualize their latent potential to the maximum.
The Divine self is complete in all respects. It is a model for human beings. By keeping these attributes before himself, every person awakens the divine attributes within his self and within human limitations. This is how he gets close to God. Within human being such attributes get developed only in an Islamic government. If Allah is Razaaq, then every Muslims should strive to provide rizq to others. If Allah is Rahim and Kareem then every Muslim should be Rahim and Karim towards others. These attributes should be present collectively within the Muslim Ummah. It is obvious that when all Muslims possess these attributes then the entire Ummah will be as such accordingly. The basis of an Islamic government are the attributes of Allah. This government provides nourishment to all its citizens. We believe in the attributes of Allah but our belief is ideological and intellectual. The Islamic government puts these attributes to work in a practical manner. This way permanent values merge with the nature of man. The latent potential of all citizens gets actualized in this manner. This society is worthy of praise and appreciation says the Quran (17:79).
We had written about the Divine attributes in one of our essays titled “Istadrak”. This was published in November 2014 issue of Tolu Islam. Therein was discussed the relationship between the Divine Attributes and an Islamic government and is replicated as follows:
“Albeit we relate these attributes with the state, as to what relationship these have with an Islamic state. The foundation of an Islamic state are the Divine Attributes. These are the basis of permanent values and within political parlance these are human rights.
Every Islamic state should be Adil (just), Raziq (provider of sustenance) Hakim (wise), Aleem (knowledgeable), Khabeer (Fully aware), Qawi (Strong), Aziz (powerful), Raheem (Merciful) etc. It is also the duty of the individual that he too has the attributes of justice, knowledge, patience, listening, insight etc actualized within his person. When the individual obeys the state which has Divine attributes actualized in its rule then it’s obedience is the development of the individual self. Like drinking water is solely for oneself, similarly obedience to the state that rules on the basis of divine laws is to one’s own benefit. We all believe in Allah and believe in His attributes. But to us these are abstractions. When an Islamic government actualized divine attributes in its governance and provides all with likes of justice, sustenance and nourishment, then these divine attributes are seen in a concrete manner in our daily lives and metaphorically Allah descends on Earth in His shining glory. In an Islamic government, the obedience to the ruler who enforces divine laws results in development of the individual’s self. This leads to the development of the society as a whole. Just like acquiring knowledge of physical laws results in power, the acquisition of knowledge of revealed laws and action on permanent values too results in power.
“Verily your Sustainer is strong and powerful.” (11:66)
When these attributes are actualized then the state too will have power and strength. This is the social order which is the shadow of God on Earth. It was this social order about which the Prophet pbuh had said: “I am leaving for you that Millat whose illumination at night is like the illumination of the day.”
But regrettably today this nations day is darker than its night!”
Also consider that one of the attributes of Allah is As Salaam and another is Al Momin. When these attributes are prevailing within the Muslim Community as well as their rulers then as a whole they will manifest peace and security everywhere around the world. Quran is the only guide of the Muslims and is an embodiment of Peace and security. The central direction of Muslim polity is the Kaabah, it is the symbol of Peace and security. “Whoever enters it attains security.” (3:97) Thus whoever enters the Islamic system initiated at the behest of the Kabah will enter security of Allah. Quran has claimed that whichever nation obeys revelation, it will have such a society in which their is peace and security.
“So whenever there comes to you My guidance, so whoever follows My guidance on them shall be no fear nor shall they grieve.” (2:38)
The Tolu Islam movement strives to bring about such a society. You are requested to join hands with this noble mission. This is a movement which will give life to a dead nation.
“You will soon remember that which I say unto you! And I dedicate my task to Allah.” (40:44)