Saturday, 10 November 2018

Avoid the Government and Rulers

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
والصلاة والسلام على افضل الابنياء والمرسلين
وعلى اهل بيته الطيبين الطاهرين المظلومين
Part and parcel of Islam’s unique political narrative is the idea that, generally speaking, the worldly rulers are a corrupting influence and ought to be avoided as much as possible. A sign of the genuine Ulama of Islam is their remoteness from the palaces of the rulers. According to sayyidina Ibn Abbas رضى الله عنهما Prophet Muhammad صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم said:
مَنْ أَتَى السُّلْطَانَ افْتُتِنَ
“One who goes to the sultan will be tried”
(Sunan Abi Dawud #2859)
In in another version:
وَمَنِ اتَّبَعَ السُّلْطَانَ افْتُتِنَ
“One who follows the sultan will be tried.”
(Sunan an-Nasa’i #4314)

According to a similar report from an elder of the Ansar, narrating from sayyidina Abi Huraira رضى الله عنهما the Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم said:
وَمَنْ لَزِمَ السُّلْطَانَ افْتُتِنَ وَمَا ازْدَادَ عَبْدٌ مِنَ السُّلْطَانِ دُنُوًّا إِلاَّ ازْدَادَ مِنَ اللَّهِ بُعْدًا
“One who clings to the sultan will be tried. A worshipper does not increase in nearness to the sultan except that he increases in distance to Allah.”
(Sunan Abi Dawud #2860)

The word sultan denotes a ruler with authority. This Hadith does not apply to the rightly-guided Caliphs of Islam, or other very pious emirs and leaders in whose company a Muslim is uplifted and comes nearer to Allah. However, such pious rulers have always been extremely rare in our history. Beginning with the Umayyads and lasting till this day, the Muslims have been ruled by a succession of impious, self-serving sultans who sought to manipulate the Religion through bribing and corrupting the Ulama. This is why the Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم  warned us to stay away from the sultans, otherwise we would be put to trial. Nowadays, the office of “Grand Mufti”, despite such a pretentious title, is a figure that should be treated with extreme skepticism by the Muslims. We ought to disregard the supposed Ulama who are seen frequenting the rulers, happily sitting next to them, dining with them, etc. The sign of a genuine mystic or learned scholar is that he does not go willingly to the court of the ruler. But when does happen to be in the presence of the ruler, a Believer should rebuke him for his injustice, oppression and other shortcomings with regard to observing and implementing the Shari’a:

عَنْ طَارِقِ بْنِ شِهَابٍ أَنَّ رَجُلًا سَأَلَ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ أَيُّ الْجِهَادِ أَفْضَلُ قَالَ كَلِمَةُ حَقٍّ عِنْدَ سُلْطَانٍ جَائِرٍ
Tariq ibn Shihab reported: A man asked the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, “What is the best Jihad?” The Prophet said, “A word of truth in front of a tyrannical sultan.”
(Musnad Ahmad)

The very nature of the modern state means it is authoritarian, coercive, and repressive of Islam.

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