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Kitab at-Tawhid (a detailed treatise on the concept of the unity of Allah)
Belief in Monotheism and Messengership are part of those basic beliefs of Islam upon which is erected the entire edifice of this great religion. Both of these two are in fact sides of the same coin. Disorder emerged when difference was created between Monotheism and Messengership and this difference resulted into downgrading of the status of the Messengership. The idea of polytheism and innovation was so much blown out of proportions that every second person was branded as polytheist. When the energies of champions of Islam were focused on these negative aspects, it caused two losses. One is that the scope of promotion of Islamic teachings got limited and secondly the Muslims became enemies of one another with their daggers drawn as result of discrepancy and hatred.
The second point which needs to be understood is that Monotheism is not merely a semantic and theoretic subject, rather it represents a particular mindset and a state in addition to being a belief, which springs from inside of man. This is that spiritual taste, which makes the person indifferent to fears and greed of all the worlds and teaches him the principles and rules of subservience to God. Due to their strong faith in Monotheism, the saints or Friends of Allah are settled on the high pedestal of nearness to Him. No power of the world can attract them or allure them away from God. In the age of decline when Monotheism became a semantic subject, it created hardness, arrogance and conceit in the dispositions of its followers whose reflections could be seen in the world. These trends and attitudes are portraying negative impression of Islam in the entire world instead of our religion’s message of peace, harmony, brotherhood, tolerance and peaceful coexistence. Noise about innovation and polytheism and reactions to it have become the symbol of internal divisiveness and lack of unity within the Muslim world. It is a different matter that the forces of falsehood and enemies of Islam have arrayed against it by rising above all divisions of caste, creed, religion, race and geography.
In these compelling circumstances it was necessary that light would have been thrown on such topics of beliefs in a purely scholarly manner with moderate pattern of thinking to cope up with the challenge so that people could have come to understand the situation the situation more clearly. To respond these critical challenges, Shaykh-ul-Islam Dr Muhammad Tahir-ul-Qadri raised his scholarly and argumentative voice, a voice that put a stop to the marching forces of dissention and mischief. He played crucial role in not only containing the ‘storm’ of innovation and polytheism but also in eliminating the worst ever mischief of cancellation of Prophethood. If seen in this background, this book turns out to be such a great reconstructive contribution of Shaykh-ul-Islam which would continue to influence positively for centuries to come.
Kitab-ud-Touheed is a collection of speeches of Shaykh-ul-Islam which he delivered to the student of Minhaj University on the subject of lectures on the Holy Quran. Firstly these were included in “Aqeeda Touheed and Haqeeqat-e-Shirq”, which was published in 1999 for the first time with new revised edition getting published each year. Later on, lectures in English language delivered to the students of ICIS, a department of Minhaj University, were the cause behind the expansion of the subject. So when these lectures were reordered, it resulted in increasing the size of the book. It was then decided to publish it in two volumes.
The chief quality of the book is that facts have been explained with arguments and the effort has been made to help reader understand the subject. Simplicity and effective communication have been kept in view in the wake of novelty and lucidity of style and presentation, divisions of subjects and standard of arguments. The followers of Islam have been urged to inculcate such values as discretion, tolerance, balance instead of extremism etc. By grace of Allah Almighty, the study of this book would result in lessening the tensions and opposition in the realm of belief in both the Arab and non-Arab world and would help in understanding the true and actual concept of Monotheism. Important advancement would be made in bridging and eliminating the gaps between two groups in the sub-continent.
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Shaykh ul Islam Dr. Prof. Muhammad Tahir ul Qadri explains the prophetic Hadith in detail where he differentiated between the good and bad Bidah. He removes the misconception that that every new innovation is bad and explains in great detail about the concept and characteristics of bidah. This clip has been taken from the lecture ” History of Mawlid celebration and the concept of bidah”
Innovation in the view of Imams and Hadith-Scholars (a-Bid’a ind-al-A’imma wal-Muhaddithin )
Kitab al-Bid‘a (a comprehensive work on the concept of “innovations” in Islam)
Host (Question 3)
Dr sahib! I can infer from whatever you are saying that Islam is an accommodating religion. Then why is there so much extremism around us? What is your view about extremism?
You have raised an important and interesting question. It is highly relevant to the present-day circumstances. I would first answer in a categorical manner in one sentence and then would delve into details. Islam has no space for extremism, fundamentalism or obscurantism and those who happen to be extremists are in fact unaware of the real spirit of Islam. You see, there are four steps and when you talk of extremism, there is a need to understand this phenomenon within the ambit of these four steps. There is a step in human psychology, personality and approach that precedes extremism. You see, many people are conservative in their approach. Their vision of Islam happens to be conservatism-based. They tend to look at every thing with short-sightedness and closed mind. Allah Almighty has not created any contraction in religion.
The Holy Prophet (saw) said that Islam creates ease and does not pave way for difficulties. The Prophet (saw) said in Sahih Bukhari, “When you preach religion, create easiness and do not create difficulties and contraction. Convey the message and invitation to people in such a manner that they get glad tidings, feel openness within themselves lest they should adopt hatred and run away from Islam.” Islam not only condemns conservative approach but also ordains us to root it out. The approach of the Holy Prophet (saw) was open, frank and accommodating.
It should also be kept in mind that conservatism is not merely found among Muslims but in the British, American, Jewish, Christian and Hindu communities etc. It is sociological and human phenomenon. It has nothing to do with any religion. You will find extremists in politics and other fields too. People here do politics on basis of language and kill others having different languages. There are also people who do politics on the basis of region etc and brand people living in other areas as traitors or hate them. This is trait of human psychology and approach. Whether it is religion or issues of life, these things operate in the similar manner. If there is conservatism in religion, it begets extremism. So when such a person will pass out religious edict, a tinge of extremism will be reflected in his rulings. He will hold others infidels, banishing them from the ambit of Islam. His emphasis will be placed on conservatism and extremism.
Then the third stage is that of radicalism. If extremism is not stemmed, radicalism cannot be controlled too. This is also anti-Islam. When radical people emerge from extremism, radicalism is born. People take up arms and attack one another on the basis of religious edicts.
They want to impose their doctrines upon others through armed struggle. It is as a result of this effort that terrorism comes into being. Those who are waging a war against terrorism want to eradicate plant of terrorism without taking into account the process by which the sampling of conservatism grew into terrorism gradually. They do not want to eradicate the root. They water and provide air to the root, bring it up, give funds both internationally and through local agencies. The first thing is that there is no space for terrorism in Islam nor has it anything to do with Islam. I do not merely talk of Islam. No other religion be it Judaism, Christianity or Buddhism recommend or encourage terrorism.
The fact is that every religion, be it Islam or any other, aims at teaching people love and brotherhood. It eradicates hatreds among people by bringing them together. This is wrong interpretation of Islam. People who have taken up arms and adorned the mantle of Muftis have done an irreparable damage to Islam. This also deserves to be seen where have these people emerged from? Has Islam produced them or other bigger powers created and brought them up for their own political and war agendas? They gave them weapons, sponsored their ventures, prepared them fully and planted them in a particular setting. They played them off against others and armed them to teeth in such a measure that they have become Frankenstein.
So Islam has nothing to do with terrorism. It is a political phenomenon and a global issue. It will be most unfortunate if it is seen through the prism of Pakistan or Islam. It deserves to be seen from global and historical perspectives as to where it has emanated from? Why has it been created and why is it not ending? Is it not so that those wanting to eliminate it want it to survive and those fighting against it are actually providing arms and weapons? Is it not so that double standards are being practised? I have serious doubts about it. I have clarified Islamic concept about it. It has nothing to do with Islam. Rather Islam condemns it regarding it infidelity and anti-humanity. Both extremism and terrorism are against religion.