Refutation of Maududi’s principle of Shirk in Haakimiyah by Shaykh SafiurRahman Mubarakpuri rahimahullah

Impressions of Shaykh Safiur Rahman Mubarakpooree about Maududi.

A view of Maududi upon which he stood with firmness and the truth is that he laid the foundation for his Jamaat (group, i.e Jamat e islami) upon this view. And presented this view with such strength that even great scholars were influenced by him and they even accepted it, even though they did not enter him Jamaat, but they were influenced by his thoughts and accepted them. When these views came before me, even I was confused for a few days. But after that Allaah Ta’la opened this matter (mas’ala) in such a clear way that no type of doubt or confusion remained . Now I will present it before you, then there will be no doubt or confusion for you too Insha’Allaah. So clearly Allaah Ta’ala has opened it.

The view of Maulana (Maududi) was that if there is continuous following (Ita’ah) of someone, then this is the worship (Ibadah) of that person .the Muslim is in continuous following (Ita’ah) of Allaah Ta’ala and he follow (Ita’ah) the Prophet SalAllaahu alaihiwasallam because Allaah Ta’ala ordered to follow him. Thus the following (Ita’ah) of the Prophet salAllaahu alaihiwasallam is in accordance to the following (Ita’ah) of Allaah Ta’ala, therefore when he SalAllaahu alaihiwasallam is followed it is the following of Allaah Ta’ala and this worship (Ibaadah) becomes the  worship (Ibaadah) of Allaah. Now from here he (Maududi) has raised another problem that if a government does not govern according to the law laid by Allaah Ta’ala then following that government will be worshipping  that government and this is Shirk. And this is where he (Maududi) took his view of Shirk in Haakimiyyah and presented it strongly, and many a people are busy in it till date. Now I will present its truth before you, I mean t say that books of about a hundered, two hundred, three hundred, four hundred, six hundred and in some cases eight hundred pages have been written by many people on this topic. The matter has been confused in such a way and with such long debates that it becomes difficult to imagine. That is why I present this matter before you in a few clear and firm way.

Is Ita’ah (following) the same as Ibaadah(worship). Or is Ibaadah something else and Ita’ah something else? Understand this well! To explain it I will present one or two examples before you. A youth of Jamaat-e-Islami came to me and started talking, I was also talking to him. Now he came to his Da’awah (Call) that Sir(Saheb), this is our Da’awah. I said: Yes, I know that. He wanted me to accept it so I said Look this Da’awah (Call) of yours is not Saheeh (right). He asked How is it not right? I said: If this quote of yours is right that if someone follows (Ita’ah) a government and that government does not govern according to the law laid down by Allaah then this following (Ita’ah) becomes worship (Ibaadah). If this is right then please do me a favour, go out and watch any muslim on the road, that if he is riding a bicycle on the left hand side of the road (in India vehicles need to keep left- keep left rule’) then tell him O Brother! do not ride your bicycle this way, it is shirk to ride your bicycle by left side of the road.

Now he got violently irritated and asked Maulana (Shaikh) what are you saying ?

I said: I am saying the same thing you said , I am just showing you the consequences of your da’awah. He asked How? I said: this government of India.., it’s governance in accordance to the laws laid down by Allaah or not? He said Its is not, it is being governed without accepting the law of Allaah. Then I said then this following its laws (of the Indian Governement) is Shirk, is’nt it? He said It will be (Shirk) then I said, The riding of bicycle on the left side is the part of the same law, therefore if someone rides a bicycle on the left side then he is following the government, and you call its following (Ita’ah) to be worship(Ibaadah). And Ibaadah (worship) of Ghayr Allaah (other than Allaah) is supposed to be shirk, therefore it (this following) becomes Shirk. Now he got extremely worried. He then said Sir (Saheb) now you show me what is right then and what is’nt right.

I said – Now see Itaa’ah (following) is something else and Ibaadah(worship) is something else. It is possible that sometimes a  deed (amal) is Ita’ah (following) and also Ibadah (worship) but it is also possible that a deed is Ita’ah but not ibaadah, and it is also possible that a deed is Ibaadah but not Ita’ah, all of this is possible.

He asked How come?

I said You listen I will show you, Ibraheem alaihisalaam came to his people and asked what do you worship? the people said we worship idls and to them we are ever devoted. Now tell me that the idols the people were worshipping were they also following these idols? These idols were unable from the beginning  that they could order to do or not to do something, then these people who were worshipping it does mean worship but does no mean following over here. It must be agreed that these pople were not following but were worshipping.

He agreed to this.

Now a little more ahead, Allaah ta’ala has mentioned regarding Christians at many places ( meaning verses) in Al Qura’an Al Majid. Allah Ta’ala will ask Eesa alaihisalaam on the day of resurrection  Did you say to men: Worship me and my mother as two gods (Ilaah) besides Alaah so Eesa alaihisalaam will immediately deny this and will say I was a witness over them while I dwelt  amongst them, but when You took me up You were the watcher  over them and You are a Witness to all things:. This way he will deny all knowledge about their actions and will declare himself free from what they used to do. Well, and in the same Al Qura’an, it is shown regarding the Christians and those who used to worship Eesa alaihisalaam, that these people used to worship such a person who canot give them any gain nor any loss. So it is known that they used to worship Eesa alaihisalaam and Eesa alaihisalaam cannot givem them gain or loss. Now the matter is that, is their worship of Eesa alaihisalaam to be considered his following also? I asked him Their worship is proved, Al Qura’an also calls this action of theirs as worship. So  the Christians who worship Eesa alaihisalaam  were they also following him?  They were not following Eesa alaihisalam , as Eesa alaihisalaam never ordered them to worship him on the contrary he has ordered them not to worship him. So they were exaggerating in this matter, and instead of following him they were rebelling against him and it was worship. So for worship it is not necessary that the one being worshipped is being followed worship can be done without following and even on the condition of rebellion, will it not be worship?.

This is the matter which becomes thoroughly clear. Now that it is clear. What must you know? To accept someone’s orders and put them in action, this is  Ita’ah(following). And to seek nearness to someone I mean by pleasing him. And his pleasure is  not conditional upon reasons. Then to do something for his pleasure is Iba’dah (worship). So those people (Christians) used to work for the pleasure of Eesa alaihisalam , therefore this is worship (as they thought this would please him). Yet they were not obedient to him, so this is not Ita’ah (following). When we pray (offer salaah), we seek Allaah ta’ala’s pleasure and nearness in that sense this (Salaah) is worship. And we are acting upon the orders of Allaah in that sense this (salaah) is following. Ita’ah(following) is in a different meaning and ibaadah (worship) is in a different meaning. Salaah is a single act but it is a combination of both Ibaadah and Ita’ah.

Now as Maulana Maududi has raised this point that continuous Ita’ah o f someone is Ibadah. Therefore he says that if a slave lives his life in following Allaah Ta’ala then the whole life becomes Ibadah. But it is apparent by relying on the view of Al Qura’an this whole life will not be Ibaadah whatsoever, but will be Ita’ah of the slave acts upon the orders of Allaah ta’ala, then he has followed for his whole life and this is worthy of being rewarded for which he will be rewarded (Insha’Allaah). But it will not be called Ibaadah, This is the right conclusion of meaning.

Translated from urdu to english by brother Sameer ibn Haneef Semna. Urdu post made by brother Tariq Ali in noortv mailing list (which is transcript of speech made by Shaykh SafiurRahman Mubarakpuri rahimahullah).

An extract from letter of Shaykh Ibn Baz to Al-Mawdudy rahimahumullah concerning the difference between ‘Ibadah (worship) and obedience

In the name of Allah, the most Gracious, the most Merciful

An extract from my letter I sent to His Excellency Shaykh Abu Al-A`la Al-Mawdudy concerning the difference between `Ibadah (worship) and obedience

On 2/4//1392 AH, Abu Al-A`la Al-Mawdudy sent me a letter no. 1526, dated 2 Safar, 1392 A.H. explaining his case and Tufayl’s, his successor in the leadership of Islamic Group. I replied in the same year when I was the president of the Islamic university in Medinah and the following is some of my reply:

Some brothers from Milbar living in the country told me that Your Eminence see that `Ibadah is clarified by obedience and that when someone obeys another, he worships him. `Ibadah is also interpreted as enslavement and idolization. Furthermore, Sheikh `Umar ibn Ahmad Al-Millibary, owner of Al-Salsabil Magazine, wrote to me concerning this issue asserting what is mentioned about you and the Group. He sent me a copy of a survey pertaining to this question. You will find an enclosed copy of it.

This question appears strange for me so I determined to write to you before I receive your letter to know whether these statements which are attributed to you are true. So, please let me know your opinion. I see that obedience has a wider scope than `Ibadah. Every act of `Ibadah a person does in compliance with Allah’s Shari`ah is seen as obedience, but not every act of obedience to anything other than Allah (may He be Exalted) is seen as `Ibadah. This matter needs more elaboration. Obedience to Allah (may He be Exalted) is seen as `Ibadah when a person seeks to please Him. However, it may be valid or corrupt depending on whether the requirements of `Ibadah are met.

Please tell me in details your view on this question. It adds further explanation that `Ibadah may be denied by when tainted with Shirk as Allah says concerning Mushrik (one who associates others with Allah in His Divinity or worship),(Surah Al-Kafirun, 109: 3) Nor will you worship that which I worship. `Ibadah is negated because of their acts of Shirk. It is known that they worship Allah (may He be Exalted) during times of hardships through showing Tawhid, performing Hajj and `Umrah, offering Sadaqah and so on.

Since these acts of `Ibadah are spoiled by Shirk, disbelief in the Hereafter and other kinds of disbelief during times of prosperity, it is permissible to negate the `Ibadah of people who show it. Furthermore, I would like to explain another point. The person who obeys the authorities or rulers in something forbidden by Allah (may He be Exalted) is not seen worshipping them when he does not believe in the permissibility of obedience to anyone in something opposing Allah’s Shari`ah. They rather obey these rules out of fear of their evils or vain desires while they know that they are sinful. Due to their act of obedience, such persons are sinners, not Mushriks, unless they obey such rulers in matters which involve Shirk. Examples of these matters include striking, killing, and taking someone’s money unjustly. There are many other examples that come under this heading. I think this view is known by the people of knowledge whose status is below yours. I find it imperative to ask you about this and know your detailed opinion so that I can refute any claim against you and support you with sure knowledge and show the truth concerning the Islamic Group to any one who seeks it.

If what is attributed to you is true, we can discuss it thoroughly and examine the problematic issues using the evidence. The truth is the long-sought aim of everyone.

We ask Allah (may He be Exalted) to grant us success to do what pleases Him and to comprehend His Religion and to adhere to it. May Allah purify our hearts and deeds and make the truth our long-sought aim wherever we are, for He is the Most Generous! As-salamu `alaykum warahmatullah wabarakatuh (May Allah’s Peace, Mercy, and Blessings be upon you!)

President of the Islamic University in Medinah
‘Abdul `Aziz Bin `Abdullah Ibn Baz

source: Ibn Baz fatwas

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