Islamism vs Islam
So make sure when you say you’re 'in it, but not of it'
You’re not helping to make this earth a place called Hell *
All Islam is not Political !
By Mahmoud Andrade Ibrahim
When Islam becomes ideologized (an ideology not a comprehensive religion) which is the same as being politicized, rather than being a method of self purification and a way of serving Allah and humanity, it steps down from the high heavens to dwell beneath the feet of corrupt and greedy men.
Definition: ideologize, 1) to give an ideological character or interpretation to some entity, i.e. principles, moral code etc. 2) to change or interpret in relation to a sociopolitical ideology often seen as biased or limited
This position does not mean that Muslims cannot agitate against tyranny and oppression but it does mean that the goal of our strivings as humans is to purify our hearts in order to gain Allah’s pleasure, our goal or ‘end game’ is to attain Allah's paradise in the next life not to establish an ‘Islamic State’.
Islamism is political nationalism, the very same kind of political nationalist entity that is Zionism only in the hands of Muslims.
Islamism = Zionism as political constructs. So if you oppose Zionism you should equally oppose Islamism.
O Muslims, it is my position that we should oppose Islamism and it’s quest for an Islamic State because Islamism seeks to change the essence of Islam and substitute chauvinism, militarism and loyalty to the Islamic State above the lofty and unchangeable principles of the Muslim faith given to us by Allah and our Beloved Prophet Muhammad (pboh).
In Islamism, the state is the idol that takes the place of Allah. Islamism uses religious language to attain a political end. This concept was unknown before the writings of Abu A’la Maududi of Pakistan and Syed Qutb of Egypt.
For example: Jahaliyyah was, for the past 1400 years, always understood to be the period of time of the pagan, idolatrous control of the Meccans prior to the Qur'an being revealed to Prophet Muhammad (pboh) and with the acceptance of Islam, the jahalliyah period ended. We must remember that he (pboh) came to rid the Arabs of idol worship and purify the House of Allah, as a mercy to all mankind, and then the period of jahaliyyah was over. We think of Jahalliyah as a specific time period in the same way we think of the Middle Ages in Europe as a specific time period, its over.
However, under Islamist thinking, Jahaliyyah is no longer a past historical period, it is any social situation that is not Muslim in essence or governed by Muslims.
Another example: Prior to Islamist thinking, when someone chose not to be Muslim after hearing about Islam they remained either Christian or Jew etc.. The Prophet did not refer to the Jewish or Christian tribes as kafirs, no, they remained what they were and had always been, ‘ahl kitab, people of the Book. However now, with Islamists redefining religious terms, anyone that does not become Muslim after hearing about Islam is Kafir, and so it becomes alright to dehumanize them or wage war against them, this would include many of our parents and relatives. Was this the sunnah of Muhammad (pboh) ? However when you ideologize the deen it’s alright to ignore Allah’s definitions.
Allah says :
وَلَوْلَا دَفْعُ اللَّهِ النَّاسَ بَعْضَهُم بِبَعْضٍ لَّهُدِّمَتْ صَوَامِعُ وَبِيَعٌ وَصَلَوَاتٌ وَمَسَاجِدُ يُذْكَرُ فِيهَا اسْمُ اللَّهِ كَثِيرًا وَلَيَنصُرَنَّ اللَّهُ مَن يَنصُرُهُ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَقَوِيٌّ عَزِيزٌ
"If Allah had not checked one set of people by means of another, there would surely have been pulled down monasteries, churches, synagogues and mosques in which the Name of Allah is commemorated in abundant measure." 22:40 Sura al Hajj
لَيْسُواْ سَوَاء مِّنْ أَهْلِ الْكِتَابِ أُمَّةٌ قَآئِمَةٌ يَتْلُونَ آيَاتِ اللّهِ آنَاء اللَّيْلِ وَهُمْ يَسْجُدُونَ
The People of the Book are not all the same: among the followers of earlier revelation there are upright people, who recite Allah's messages throughout the night, and prostrate themselves before Him.
يُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الآخِرِ وَيَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَيَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ الْمُنكَرِ وَيُسَارِعُونَ فِي الْخَيْرَاتِ وَأُوْلَـئِكَ مِنَ الصَّالِحِينَ
They believe in Allah and the Last Day, and enjoin the doing of what is right and forbid the doing of what is wrong, and vie with one another in doing good works: and there are among the righteous.
وَمَا يَفْعَلُواْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ فَلَن يُكْفَرُوْهُ وَاللّهُ عَلِيمٌ بِالْمُتَّقِينَ
And whatever good they do, they shall never be denied the reward thereof: for, Allah has full knowledge of those who are conscious of Him. SURA al IMRAN 113-115
This Islamist thinking is a recently innovated perspective. It is a post-modern movement, unheard of in the annals of Muslim history and increases in momentum because of its ‘in your face aggressiveness’, which is exactly what a defeated people look to when other avenues of legitimate expression fails.
It doesn’t matter that there are scholars that justify worshipping at the altar of Islamist thinking. They are, Islamist scholars. They have imbibed the Islamist ‘kool aid’. In the very same way that there were and probably are still scholars that justify racism, (does anyone remember the ‘Bell-Curve’), eugenics or any number of deviant philosophies. Scholars are just academics and prone to error just like you and me. To be a Muslim scholar only means that this person has put some time into the academic study of things 'Muslim', it does not mean that the conclusions that the scholar reaches are always the correct ones. Nor does it mean that a scholars position is beyond critique. This is why there are differences among the scholars, as there should be. ( see my essay on Scholars )
The observant Jews faced the same problem:
The Orthodox Rabbinical Scholars were overwhelmingly opposed to Zionism prior to the establishment of the State of Israel in 1948 for the very same reasons. They were concerned that the Jewish faith and lofty religious principles that have survived in tact for over 5000 years would take a back seat to the body politic of the zionist state. And they were right. Some communities of young millennial Jews here in America, even as late as 2016, established functional synagogues around the idea that Judaism is a spiritual tradition not a political entity. “I think anyone who comes to either a service or a program at Tzedek Chicago will see that we’re first and foremost a Jewish community,” Rabbi Rosen tells The Times of Israel. “We just happen to be an intentional Jewish community. That is, we’re founded on a common set of shared values – values of justice, anti-racism and universalism. We seek a Judaism that finds common cause with all who are oppressed around the world, including Palestinians.”
Asked what it means to be “non-Zionist,” Rabbi Rosen says, “Let me read from our core values: ‘While we appreciate the important role of the Land of Israel in Jewish tradition, liturgy and identity, we do not celebrate the fusing of Judaism with political nationalism. We are non-Zionist, openly acknowledging that the creation of an ethnic Jewish nation state in historic Palestine resulted in an injustice against its indigenous people – an injustice that continues to this day.’”
And in many ways, the advent of Islamism is a reaction to the State of Israel because the Muslims felt impotent and powerless to prevent the establishment of a Jewish state in their own backyard and so some intellectuals innovated a counter political philosophy which held that the establishment of the Islamic State was the primary objective of all Muslim endeavors. It is important to note that prior to the establishment of the State of Israel, Muslims weren’t concerned with Kalifah movements, not in the 1920's after the dissolution of the Ottoman Kaliphate or in the 1930's , or in the 1940 or in the 1950 or even in the 1960' when the most prominent and potent political entity in the whole Muslim world was al Fattah, the Palestinian Liberation Organization, a secular socialist entity (after the Nasser's Arab nationalist experiment in Egypt).
There had been some anti-colonial activities in Lybia and in the Sudan, for example, but again these were localized and very specific and limited in their political expectations. So nobody was concerned with the ideas of an Islamic State until the successes of competing socialistic ideas both from the USSR and Maoist China were witnessed by the world. Only then did the ideas of re-defining Islam as a 'politique' , not a deen, begin being discussed with the idea of establishing a state. Before that, Muslims were content with practicing this deen and demonstrating Allah’s grace to them by becoming the embodiment of Muslim morals, halal business practices and wholesome living.
link to essay on Scholars (click here)
* lyric by Stevie Wonder