Translated by Ahmed Abu Turaab
The Meccan Man: I will mention now, O Shaikh, statements like this and how some of our noble brothers take it to have a bad meaning, and maybe you can correct the statements like these [which will be mentioned].
In some of his books, Sayyid Qutb says: that the idol-worship which Ibrahim عليه السلام asked his Lord to save him and his children from is not represented ‘only’ in those unsophisticated forms which the Arabs in their ignorance would practice or which various idol worshippers would engage in, in various bodily forms like stones, trees, animals, birds, stars, fire, spirits; that all of these primitive forms do not cover all the forms of associating partners with Allaah nor do they cover all the forms of idol worship; and that restricting shirk to refer to these unsophisticated forms prevents us from seeing the other forms of shirk which have no limit and prevents us from correctly viewing the reality of the forms of shirk which mankind engages in … the forms of shirk which mankind has been afflicted with from the new Jaahiliyyah; and that we must delve deeply into understanding the nature of shirk and its connection to idols just as we must delve deeply into the meaning of idols and its evolving representation in the newly fashioned ignorance [of today].
We would like our Shaikh’s comments and then we will read the comments of one of our noble brothers on these statements.
Al-Albaani: There is no doubt that this speech is sound, one hundred per cent.
And sufficient in that regard is His Saying, the Most High, “They have taken their scholars and monks as lords besides Allaah,” [Tawbah 9:31], that which has been reported concerning this aayah when it was revealed, [and] naturally, it was revealed concerning the Christians … from the few Arabs who did become Christians in the Days of Ignorance was Adiyy ibn Haatim at-Taa’i.
Then Allaah the Mighty and Majestic guided him and he embraced Islaam, [this is mentioned] in the well-known story reported in the Musnad of Imaam Ahmad and others. So when this aayah was revealed it was problematic for Adiyy ibn Haatim at-Taa’i because he understood it to mean the shirk of worshipping idols; the man [i.e., Sayyid Qutb] rejected that all of shirk be restricted to [mean] this type of idol-worship and idolatry.
So he عليه السلام said to Adiyy, clarifying to him that the general, comprehensive meaning of associating partners with Allaah the Mighty and Majestic is in following other than His Sharee’ah, he said to him, ‘Didn’t you, when they would declare something permissible to be forbidden for you, take it to be forbidden? And when they declared something forbidden to be permissible, you took it to be permissible?’ So Adiyy replied saying that as for that then it did occur. So he replied, ‘So that was your taking the scholars and monks as lords besides Allaah.’
So now this type of shirk is not noticed even by those who proclaim that Haakimiyyah is for Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic.
And in this regard I remember when I used to be in Damascus, in Yarmouk Camp specifically, in the Salaahud-Deen Mosque to be precise, the Imaam, a youth from the Ikhwaan al-Muslimoon, got onto the pulpit and gave a fiery sermon saying that judgement [al-Haakmiyyah] is for Allaah the Mighty and Majestic. Subhaanallaah!
When he prayed and finished … now look, I turned his attention to a mistake he made, I’ve forgotten now what the mistake was [exactly but], I said to him, ‘This is in opposition to the Sunnah.’
So he said to me, ‘I’m a Hanafi.’
I said, ‘O my brother, may Allaah guide you. All of your sermon was about the fact that Haakimiyyah should be for Allaah the Mighty and Majestic–so what is the meaning of haakimiyyah? [Is it] just that when a non-Muslim comes to you with a law that goes against the Legislation then, ‘This is disbelief and we must stick to the Sharee’ah,’ but when a ruling which goes against the legislation comes from a Muslim then you follow it even though it opposes the legislation–so where is the haakmiyyah for Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic?
So this meaning, in reality, is a comprehensive and all-inclusive meaning. And he [i.e., Sayyid Qutb] did well when he defended this doubt of those who stop [and don’t include these other forms of shirk], by saying, ‘… only …’ i.e., shirk is not ‘only’ this, he extended the meaning, and this extension is Islaam.
For this reason we say that when combatting shirk, stopping at individuals and leaving the rulers who judge by other than what Allaah has revealed [is not right, but at the same time] this does not mean that we enter the field of declaring people to be disbelievers and throwing them out of Islaam–it is enough of a sin on them that they judge by other than what Allaah has revealed.
And the detail which we regard as religion before Allaah is that there is disbelief and lesser disbelief, there is disbelief in actions and disbelief in belief. This true/correct particularisation is what makes us balanced and causes us not to rush into declaring the rulers to be disbelievers … so we differentiate between the ruler who believes in what Allaah has legislated but follows his desires in some of the things he opposes the legislation in. The callers must work on this aspect of tawheed too.
But the reality, [and] I will make a frank statement: I say that the callers to tawheed today are in a bitter test. Such that you will find that the answer to every resolution [passed by a ruler, whether it be right or wrong] is, ‘This is the order of the ruler.’ True or not? ‘This is the order of the ruler.’
So we’ve gone backwards, we’ve fallen into what we were warning against: why do we not then turn towards da’wah in general and not, ‘only’ that which is connected to the public. So this expression totally resembles the word ‘only’ used there, so he qualified it to mean combatting shirk associated with the public whilst leaving the rulers without advising them or warning them or renouncing [the shirk], [doing this] without rebelling against them.
Is the answer clear?
Someone else: This doesn’t demand confronting the rulers?
Al-Albaani: It doesn’t demand that. [Ed. Note: i.e., warning against judging by other than what Allaah has revealed does not demand that you confront the rulers but only that it is warned against in a scholarly manner, along with advising the rulers without doing that which will lead to harm]
Another questioner …