Saturday, August 20, 2011

Is it obligatory to join a group?

The following was translated by Amjad Rafiq and posted on via westlondondawah archive #386

The questioner asks: Is it obligatory upon a Muslim that he adheres to a specific Jamaa`ah amongst the religious Jamaa'at present now?

Shaykh Muhammad Amaan al-Jaamee: Allaah is sought for aid, before the reply to this question, and the reply is actually in the introduction, it is obligatory that the Muslims are a single Jamaa'ah (i.e. one group), just like they were in the very first Jamaa'ah, which we were speaking about.

The Prophet (sallAllaahu `alayhi wa Sallam) described them as the Saved Sect (al-firqat an-naajiyah). When he described that sect as saved, and when he was asked about it, he said that it is "the Jamaa`ah" [i.e. singular group], Jamaa`ah with a taa marbootah (at the end), which unites together. As for the Jamaa`aat (i.e. multiple groups), then no, it is not permissible that there should be found numerous Jamaa'aat amongst the Muslims...

And when the Jamaa`aat (multiple groups) arose, beginning from the times of `Alee bin Abee Taalib (radiyAllaahu `anhu), beginning from that time to ours, whatever Allaah willed, the Muslims are in disturbance, in continuing and recurring woes. The Jamaa`aat (groups) did not arise except with the emergence of the Khawaarij (first deviated sect in Islam) during the time of Alee (radiyAllaahu `anhu), and with the emergence of the Raafidah (deviated shia) and the emergence of the Qadariyyah (a sect who deny Qadr), then they continued in succession. When the Jamaa'aat increased and the schools of thought and (variant) orientations increased, the great Islamic Ummah was afflicted with this splitting (division), and it became insignificant to its enemies, and so they aquired mastery over it, and colonial activities came after it, the colonialists colonised the lands of the Muslims, because they were far away from Islaam, and that which distanced them from this Islaam was splitting into these Jamaa`aat. It is upon the zealous Muslim today, who is sincere to himself, that he asks about what - I do not (even) say the Sahaabah - (but) about what the four Imaams that all of the Muslims blindly follow, "how were they?", and "were there any Jama`aat in their time?" No!! The Jamaa`ah is only one, and that is the one that the Qur'aan praised, in the verse that we recited a short while ago, "The first (to embrace) faith from the very first (vanguard of believers) from amongst the Muhaajireen and Ansaar...." [Surah Tauba 9:100]

And something that is observed: These Jamaa`aat (groups), just as the questioner mentioned, the Jamaa`ah of al-Ikhwaan al-Muslimeen, the Jamaa'ah Islaamiyyah, the Jamaa`at ut-Tableegh, the Youth (group) of Mohammad, the Youth (group) of so and so, the so and so Jamaa`ah, the so and so Jamaa`ah, if we were to mutually enquire as to what has made us into these Jamaa`aat ....?

The deen is one, Islaam was brought by the Qur`aan, the Quraan is one, our qiblah is one, our Prophet is one, Allaah, the diety is one, and these Jamaa`aat, from where have they come?

These Jamaa`aat came for political goals, or personal goals, or for deviation (ilhaad) in the deen of Allaah. That which was produced in these later times was the political Jamaa'aat which took Islaam as a stairway (i.e. a means) to enable them to reach the peak of Parliament (government), so when they reached the peak of Parliament, they threw it away. The deen does not have any place to them and nor any status. But it is a stairway by which they desire to arrive at the goal. And the majority of the Muslims are merely an expression of a flock of herd behind the leadership [to them], and the leadership know their own goal. And one of them has actually stated their criticism of the callers of the truth, "They are only concerned with the da'wah in aqeedah, and as for us, when we see them making tawaaf around the shrines (i.e. graves), we pass by them, we are headed towards the peak of parliament". These are the words of a big leader from amongst their leaders who is alive now, and perhaps he is currently in Baghdaad. This is the statement of their leaders in meaning.

Verily, the goal behind Islaam, or repeating the word of Islaam... because the delegates of the Parliament are Lords besides Allaah, the delegates of the Parliament, they are legislators on behalf of the society, as you know, and the parliamentary delegates and the Islamic Legislation never come together, ever. For this reason, this is their goal, and they have nothing to do with Islaam, except the mere ascription.

The Jamaa`ah which is obligatory for us to be with is the Jamaa`ah that adopts the way of the Sahaabah, the Taabi`een, and the Taabi`-Taabi`een (i.e. the first three generations), and they do not have any specific title.

And my advice, which the questioner seeks, is that you keep away from these Jamaa'aat and that you study with the students of knowledge, those who do not ascribe to the Jamaa`at and that you traverse alongside the Muslims. Study the Qur'aan, study the Sunnah, attend the lessons of aqeedah, the lessons of fiqh and the lessons of tafseer, and the lessons of hadeeth. Act upon what knowledge [you have gained]. The Sahaabah, their seeking was for knowledge, they would be in the valleys, would descend and attend the sittings of the Messenger of Allaah (`alayhis salaatu was salaam). They would hear, memorise and then convey it to those behind them (i.e. their families, or those who did not attend). So in the same way, you should learn.

There were no such things as academies, or organised universities, like in this time of ours. Learn from within this masjid, with alternation (i.e. rotating between yourselves in attending and conveying). This is what I advise the one who sought my advice, that he attends these lessons and benefits from them and acts by what he learns, and to be distant from the Jamaa`aat (groups). As for the speech about the Jamaa`aat then it will be prolonged, but we will suffice with this. However, my advice is that you do not affiliate with any Jamaa`ah from amongst the Jamaa`aat, so that they do not corrupt your heart. Because if you affiliate with Jamaa`at ut-Tableegh, you will hate others, if you affiliate with al-Ikhwaan, you will hate others, and so on. And this is not permissible in Islaam. Islaam calls you to mutual love and cooperation. You will not be of sound heart, loving all the Muslims, except when you remain far away from these affiliations and these (forms of) partisanship, and you will remain with the Muslims, from the general Muslims, those who are upon the right way. In this time, the gatherings of the general folk are better than the gatherings of the muthaqqifeen (academics, culturists), the gatherings of the muthaqqifeen do not have anything but comparisons between the Jamaa`aat. So and so Jamaa`ah has such and such, and so and so Jamaa`ah is like this. However, the gatherings of the general Muslims, then they ask you about the deen and so they benefit. When you advise them, they accept your advice. For this reason, it is binding upon you to hold fast to these lessons in this masjid, as long as you are in al-Madinah, and you keep away from these Jamaa`aat, these affiliations and (forms of) partisanship.

And with Allaah is success.