The idealism of Islam in the light of the Prophet’s lifestyle

The first and the most important of imperatives in this discussion is the concept of the Oneness of the Almighty Allah. He is One and the Lonely. He is the Sustainer, the Owner and the Creator. He is for ever and from ever. His Person and all His attributes are for ever and from ever. He has none as a partner in His person or in His attributes. He has no sharer in worship or in prayers. We cannot visualize His Exalted Being in any degree in our imagination and thinking. His Person is far and far beyond the grip of our thought. He is Omnipotent, Omnipresent and Omniscient. Even a leaf cannot move without His permission.

Secondly, Creator is only the Same Allah and the rest all are the created. Man is the climax of his creation. This unique being is the complex of two entities, a material being and a spiritual being called the Spirit or ‘Rooh‘ in the Quranic terminology. The Creator, “Rabbul Aalameen” has attributed the relation of Rooh to His Own Being. “And lo When I gave it the finishing touches, and then blew onto it from my Rooh, (then commanded the angels) to go in prostrating posture before him {the Adam (Al Hijr 29 and Sad72). He created the ‘Jin’and the ‘Ins'(the man and the spirit) for his adornment (Ibadat). “And I have not created this Human being and the spirit but only for worshipping Me”.(Azzariyat 56). God granted these two classes of creatures a limited freedom in order to test their attitude whether they are doing the righteous or the wrong in this short span of the worldly life period. (Al Mulk 2) Similarly, Allah has pronounced, ” We have created the human being from the developed zygote, to test him and for that We have bestowed him with the faculties of hearing and seeing.” (Ad Dahr 2). This worldly life is a chance for the man to prove his worth in the test fixed by Allah. The real life will commence after death for each individual. “Living in this world is nothing but a show and play and the real life is the life in the Hereafter if these people have the sense to understand (the reality)”.(Al Ankaboot 64). The success of the unlimited life in the Hereafter will depend on the limited life in this mundane world, whether utilized rightly or wrongly. The final decision, however, rests with Allah of saving any individual from the retribution of the hellfire and granting him the bounties of the Paradize. Allah is free in His doings and nothing is compulsion on Him.

The third reality, related to this discussion of ours, is that the man has been sent onto this world for test and trial after making him well equipped with all requirements in a befitting manner. He has been given wisdom and intellect, intuition, the sense of love and benignity, thinking and ingenuity, and a deep sense of conviction and the faculties of five senses. Consequent upon his perfection both from physical and spiritual points of view, the man was declared by God as His viceroy on this earth in order to carry out His commandments in according to the discourse He wishes to be. Allah wants this mission to be fulfilled both on the individual as well as in the collective life of the human race for all times and all situations. On the basis of these gracious bounties man is subject to accountability for knowing Allah, the Creator and the Sustainer. Anyway, for further elaboration of what the Almighty Allah wishes the human should do, He has from the very first day of the start of human dwelling on this planet, arranged sending of His Divine guidance through His chosen people, the Messengers of Allah. This Divine arrangement has left no chance of ignorance for man on this earth. He cannot, on the Day of Resurrection pretend his unawareness of what Allah had ordained to be done. “These are the Messengers for pronouncing rewards and extending warnings so that the people are left with no excuse before Allah of being left unaware”. (An Nisa 165).

The fourth dimension of this discussion is that the human being was bestowed with two categories of knowledge prior to nominating him as “Khalifa Fil Arz” (Nominee on Earth). He was potentially endowed with the knowledge of the material or mundane world. As Allah says, “He taught him the names (characteristics) of all the things and then presented these before the angels saying, “Let me know the names of these things if you are the ones knowing.” (Al Baqara 31). This body of knowledge is the common heritage of the humankind and whosoever, makes its full use will be rewarded proportionate to the input without any consideration for his creed, faith, race, geography or any other distinction. This is the treasure of knowledge which has enabled the man to make new explorations, inventions in various disciplines and discovering new things, hitherto unknown to him. Man has utilized this arena to an amazing proximity where he has been able to conquer the moon and is now venturing further beyond. This door is open to everybody whether he believes in God, Prophets, the Books, the Revelation, the Angels, and the Day of Judgment or not.

Nonetheless, the second category of knowledge is the “Ilmul Adyan” or the Metaphysical realities and is solely related to the spiritual world. The source of this body of knowledge is the revelation and the Heavenly descended Books of Allah. The last and final of these Books is the Qur’an perfected and preserved for ever. All these Books were revealed to the humankind by the renowned prophets, Muhammad (pbuh) being the last and on whom the series of the prophets not only did come to an end but it was completely accomplished in all respects. In the light of this revelation the man is accountable as to the obligation to find out the safest way for his conduct in the life in this world. There is no prophet after the Great Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). Whosoever claims to be a prophet after Muhammad, is certainly a false offender and must be termed as notorious liar and Dajjal. There is a saying of the Prophet which informs us of thirty false prophets and imposters of the first water. The examples in the past have been Musailma Kazzab, Aswad Ansi, Talehaa and a lady Shaja and in the recent past Ghulam Ahmad Qadiyani. God has taken upon Himself the security and custodial keeping of the Qur’an and no body can make any tampering in its text. Allah says,” We have descended this Zikr and We are its protector”. (Al Hijr 9). Three principles are the most important imperatives for us regarding our belief about the Holy Book:

  • This is the “Word’ of God and the word is an attribute of the one whose words these are.
  • This Book was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad through the Angel Jibrael (Gabriel).
  • It is safe and in the same condition and stature as was revealed to the Prophet and will remain as secure for ever.

In the usual terminology it is the verbal revelation in contrast to another one which is called simple revelation which is available in the form of the authentic Ahadits of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). It is also the saying of Allah expressed in the words of Muhammad (pbuh).

The fifth point of our discussion is that Islam is not merely a religion in the conventional meaning of the term but it is a perfect way of life, named as Deen according to the Quranic terminology. It gives complete basic principles of life in every sphere of life both for individual and collective circles. Qur’an is using this terminology of Deen in different meanings according to the situation and the perspectives. This is a code of life for the humankind and is all embracive in its nature. The life of the Prophet is a complete and practical model of the teachings of Deen. The Prophet (pbuh) started his life in the guidance of the principles of Deen and completed his struggle exactly on the tract of Deen. What explanation the Prophet gave to the Islamic way of life is exactly what is termed as Ibadah in Islam. God Himself has called this Ibada to be the real objective of the human creation. It is the requirement of this Ibada which when expanded results in what is called Shahadat Alannas, and Iqamatud Deen. We can, in short say, what our Deen demands from us can be elaborated as follows.

The adornment of Allah (Ibadat-e-Rab): God wills us to completely surrender before Him with utmost sincerity and love. He wants us to lead all aspects of our life in accordance with what He wishes us to do. We lead a pure life in all spheres of life, in an all embracing manner and for every moment of the duration of our living here. To fulfill this requirement Allah has given us a set of worships or Ibadat which are helping us in achieving this goal. These are the obligatory assignments, which are called as the pillars of Islam. They are the obligatory prayers of five times a day, the fasting of the month of Ramazan, the annual compulsory monetary Zakawat (the Poor due) and the pilgrimage to Mecca once in life. All these four obligations are followed after the Kalma-e-Tayyeba or the oration of the Oneness of God both in words and with deep conviction at heart with a solemn declaration that Muhammad (pbuh) is the last of the prophets.

The second assignment as a true Muslim is that we call people onto Allah. This is called the testimony or the Shahadat and is what has been termed as the duty of the whole Umma after the chain of prophets has been closed at the Last Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). Islam and complete surrender before Allah is a great beneficence to which people must be called by every individual confessing Islam. Al Baqra (143), (Al Imran 110, and 104.)

The third assignment on the part of a Muslim in the capacity of a member of the great Umma, is that he must strive for the establishing of the Deen of Allah as the dominant system to be all embracive and completely overwhelming all other man-made systems of the collective life. Unluckily, this most important duty is being overlooked by majority of the Muslims and even in the meetings convened in the name of the celebration of the Seerat or the lifestyle of the Great Prophet (pbuh) very little time and attention is given to this obligation of the Muslims, which was the mandatory mission of the last Prophet. We always observe on such occasions that the Prophet (pbuh) is greatly commended for his attributes of unmatchable character, sanctity, benevolence, bravery, kindness, mercy, graciousness, fortitude, generosity and other innumerable qualities. However, the sad aspect of the subject is that the real task of establishing the Rule of Allah on this earth is not being given the due consideration it deserves. What to speak of the secularists, even the religious segment of the Muslim society has turned a deaf ear to this most important aspect of the lifestyle of the Prophet. There are a number of the so-called Islamic scholars and intellectuals particularly in Pakistan and India who have gone back on their earlier stance and are now busy in preaching that there is no obligation for the Muslims to struggle for the establishment of Deen or the system of Allah. In other words it is stressed by these guys to limit Islam to the religious rituals comprising of the obligatory prayers, the poor-due (Zakat), the fasting and the pilgrimage to Mecca. The plea of such intellectuals is to preach these things and the people will be automatically getting better and better Muslims, thus the whole society will one day change into completely committed Muslims. Here is the point to be pondered in light of the lifestyle of the Great Prophet to know how he was able to change the society of the infidels of the known notoriety into a model of the establishment where the servility of Allah was the greatest manifestation and prevalence of justice was the order of the day. The Prophet (pbuh) called the people onto Allah. He organized them into a disciplined organization, groomed them into a group of the most obedient servants of God by imbibing into them the teachings of Islam revealed to the Prophet by Allah in the form of the Holy Qur’an. This group of the companions of the Prophet was indoctrinated to be responsible for preaching good and prohibiting evil at every strata of the society. They had to face most difficult odds in their way while attempting to change the very established customs, creeds and beliefs of the people which were so firmly embedded in their heart and souls. When the influential element of that ungodly society saw that their stakes were challenged by the new message of the Prophet, they came forward with all their might to resist this new call and maintain the statuesque. Thus the very crucial time of trial of the Prophet and his companions made the things harder for them. But the prophet (pbuh) did not remain contended with what he had. He had to accomplish the mission of establishing the Deen of Allah which was obligatory for him.

One of the important reasons of ignoring the real goal ahead (IQAMAT DEEN) is that the world today is in the grip of secular ideologies. There are almost five dozen of Muslim states on the globe yet none of them has established the order of Islam where the social justice should have been ensured under the Quranic commandments and the sayings of the Prophet. The prevailing order, on the whole of the globe is secularism, dialectical materialism, nudism, social anarchism, exploitation and repression. Therefore, we the Muslim should come out of this limited idea of Islam and seriously comprehend what the unique approach of the last prophet and what his mission was. Serious study of the struggle and lifestyle of our Prophet leads us to the conclusion that the final and ultimate goal of the last messenger of Allah was but the establishment of the complete Order of Allah as ordained by the Holy Book.

By its nature Islam wants its domination on all spheres, both in the private and public life. This irrevocable obligation has been mentioned with no change of an iota three times in the Holy Book which says, ” He it is Who hath sent His messenger with the Guidance and the Religion of Truth, that He may cause it to prevail over all religions…” (9-33),(48-28) and (61-9). The last prophet Muhammad (pbuh) in the capacity of the last messenger of Allah completed the Deen of Allah to the required level as ordained by Allah. He established this system with all perfection at the human level as to be a model for the world to come thereby leaving no room for the Muslim Umma to think of it an assignment beyond the reach of the human.

Thousands of years ago, we can visualize when the human race was in its infancy, the man had to live and had to be contented to remain in a cave or on the side of mountain quite in loneliness. For such an individual and simplistic form of human being it was more than sufficient to imagine of a Creator and just bow his head before Him. This individual was not a part of a complicated collective management where he had to fulfill his responsibilities of being a member of a social group, municipality or government. With the march of time this primitive man had now become an essential member of a complicated society where he had to live in accordance with the norms, rules regulations and the laws and taboos of that society. Now there remains no ambiguity in understanding the fact that if such a collective system is being run and controlled by forces which are opposed to the commandments of Allah and are antagonistic to the principles and teachings of Islam, then it will have to be called a society rebellious to God and with a life being lead quite contrary to the will of Allah. Such a collective system becomes an unjust, exploitative and cruel dispensation where the people will not be able to receive full justice regarding their social, economic and political rights. There will be lack of justice and lack of balance between the rights and responsibilities resulting in a disrupted society with dreaded chaotic situation. Now a man claiming to be a follower of Muhammad (pbuh) living in such an ungodly society and not the least worried of what is going on around him has to think on his attitude. It means that such a person has fully compromised with the system he lives in quite contrary to the spirit of Islam. Today’s man is so firmly entangled in the complicated structure of collectivity that he can do nothing without having a direct attachment to the society. Let’s for the sake of understanding take a few spheres of our life and make an assessment how the collective life has become dominant over the human attitude and his doings. The world has become a global village and a Muslim is influenced by the prevailing factors in the same manner as the rest of the people. If the collective system is based on injustice and wrong lines then none can escape its consequences. If the system is governed by wrong hands and is ungodly, then we all become part and parcel of the same as is the case with us in Pakistan and most of the Muslim countries at present. As is said in the Sura-e-Yousaf (Verse 106) “And most of them believe not in Allah except that they attribute partners (unto Him)”

This is true that preaching with soft words and demonstrating good attitude were very important factors in the propagation of Islam but they were not the only means. The Prophet and his followers offered great sacrifices for Islam and they had to face a number of battles with the enemies of Islam who were bent upon creating every hurdle in the way of Islam. Such information is disseminated either out of sheer ignorance or it is done with a bad intention. History is speaking of the ‘battles of Badr, Ohad, Khyber, Hunain, Ahzab, Tabook and so many others. It was the struggle and sacrifices of the Prophet and his companions which were granted by Allah and His kingdom was established in a limited geographical area. This was the kingdom of God to be represented by this Hizbulla or the Party of God. It was the Khilafa, the manifestation of the rule of Allah on the earth. Here all the human conduct both individual and the collective were being governed by the Quran and the Sunna. Since it was the Kingdom of Allah, therefore, it had all the right and legal authority to be recognized and to be given allegiance to by all. It was now obligatory on all human beings to surrender before this Authority with total servility. Now any force or power which rendered hindrance or obstacles to this system of Khilafa was liable to be punished in accordance to the Divine Commandments. It is in this context that the battles of Islam have been fought with no other intention except to establish the authority of Allah. A note of caution here is very important that every battle of a Muslim may not necessarily mean to be Jihad Fi Sabeelillah. It can be a war for the personal whim and greed of a Muslim king or ruler. If we revert to the Holy Book we find there in a number of Suras directly talking of the Islamic battles, giving all the principles and rules of the game of the battles fought for the establishment of Islam. One may refer to such Suras as Al Baqara, Al-e-Imran, Annisa, Almaida, Anfal, Attawba, Al Hajj, Assaf, Al Hadeed and scores of Ayas (verses) throughout the Holy Book.

Let’s not be influenced by the false propaganda of the Western world which has been crying hoarse of the bloodshed of Islam by magnifying them manifold. History tells us that in the whole process of the Islamic revolution brought by Muhammad (pbuh) and his companions the total number of death is not exceeding a few hundreds. On the other hand when we study the bloody history of the Christian and Jewish world we find that million and millions of human beings have been killed for the personal interest of the kings and emperors just for the lust of power. The first world war, the second world war and the Arab Jews series of wars in the Middle East and the brutality of Americans and their allies in Iraq, Afghanistan are the eye openers. We should not be apologetic in our approach and tell the world that this universe is to be ruled by Allah and Allah alone. All those who claim to be sovereign are challenging the authority of Allah. As such the true Muslims in the capacity of the Khulafa (Caliphs) of Allah have to face the forces of infidelity to establish what is called as the Kingdom of God.