Issued by CEMO Center - Paris
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Atmane Tazaghart
Atmane Tazaghart

The Foundations of Islamic Dogma

Tuesday 24/July/2018 - 03:00 PM

From the trick of the "righteous ancestor" to the illusions of the God dominance" and "the wise caliphate"!

For every movement whether it is comprehensive or fundamentalist, religious, ideological or ethnic, a dogma which is based on it and takes from it an ideological basis for establishing a system of beliefs surrounded by a halo of sanctity and infallibility.

The thing that brings this "dogma" to the "absolute truth", which must be delivered in a form of demagoguery is not debatable or questionable, So that the encroachment on them or merely seeking to subject them to the authority of the critical mind is a form of intellectual heresy. Which calls for a response to it with the sword of atonement and exclusion rather than the logic of countering the argument with the counter argument.

The contemporary Islamic fundamentalism, with its different orientations, denominations and branches, was founded on a common basis by all of them. It is a loose saying that Islam is a religion and a state.

The Muslim Brotherhood took the lead in this regard, drawing on the messages of their founder imam, Hasan al-Banna,  particularly in his letter to the Fifth Conference of the Muslim Brotherhood, which stated that "Islam is a religion, nationality, state, a Qur'an and a sword.

From this assertion by the founder of the Mother Organization of Contemporary Islamic Fundamentalism in 1938, Sayyed Qutb ,then began his most radical concept of the "Islamic state", almost a decade later. Where he

Classifies all human societies into two types: Islamic society and pre-Islamic society. From this perspective, Qutb considered that "Islamic society is the one in which Islam applies faith and worship, law and order, and creation and behavior. Where pre-Islamic is the one in which it does not apply the rule.

 This radical division of human societies between Islamic and pre-Islamic was a pivotal sign in the course of polar currents, and later had significant effects on the thought and approach of the various fundamentalist organizations.

 This radical classification, in which the polarization was founded, played a pivotal role in inciting many Islamic fundamentalists that swept the Arab-Muslim world since the establishment of the Muslim Brotherhood in 1928 to the establishment of the so-called Daesh in 2014.

The fundamentalist movements whose efforts have all been united in working to destroy the achievements of the modernization and reform efforts that have established by the pioneers of the Renaissance.

 Muslim Brotherhood thinker Mohammed Salim al-Awa, the former secretary-general of the World Union of Muslim Scholars, admits that radical polarization has had decisive effects on the approaches and trends of contemporary Islamic fundamentalism.

Saying: "These two ideas: (ignorance) that not only affected the Islamic societies - but also all of humanity - and set free from it by applying (governance), are the two main ideas in the intellectual method of Sayed Qutb.

 The term "governance" referred to here, is one of the founding myths of contemporary Islamic dogma.

It was inspired by the founder of  Jamaat-el-Islami of India, Abu al- Aala al-Maududi (1903-79), who in turn carved the term from the views and ideas of the fundamentalist Sheikh Ahmad ibn Taymiyyah (1263-1328).

 The jurists who took governance as a rule, are quoted in partial, sometimes literal, and sometimes revisionist, versions of some of the Qur'anic verses.

Such as the verse: "Judgment only to God" or the verse "God governs what he wants" or "and does not involve in his rule anyone," and other Qur'anic texts. They distort the the meaning and their contexts, to make the "governance" referred to in these verses synonymous with power in its political sense, at the time that the original intention is the ruling in the sense of jurisprudence, judicial or moral.

The illusion of the "caliphate" and the fallacy of the "righteous ancestor":

The term "caliphate" itself, in its conventional sense as an Islamic system of government, only emerged with the establishment of the Umayyad state. Muawiya bin Abi Sufyan was the first to authorize the jurists of the Umayyad Fatwa that the Islamic ruler is "the successor of God in earth." This is a saying that has no basis in the fundamentals of Islamic jurisprudence. There is no doubt that if it were raised in the era of the "Righteous Caliphs", it would be regarded as a form of polytheism in God. How could he claim to be the "successor of Allah in the earth"?

The proof that Omar ibn al-Khattab's intention is not related to the term "caliphate" or "caliphate al-rasheda" in their common and progressive sense from the sixth century AH, that Omar himself when he was prostrate after the death of Abu Bakr,  some suggested to call him "caliph, successor of the Messenger of God," from the linguistic perspective back to inherit the rule of his predecessor.

But Omar refused this, saying: "And what do you say to those who take over after me?, and he continued "You are the believers and I am your Prince".

'The believers' prince' became the official title of the guardian of Muslims after him, in the custody of Uthman ibn Affan and Ali ibn Abi Talib, that is, until the end of what is described as "the Caliphate."

The system of rule during the time of the caliphs was irrelevant to the caliphate system in the concept that was created after them in the Umayyad era. Where the Muslim guardian was no longer a successor to the Prophet or his predecessors. But he was seen as a successor to God in the earth.

On the other hand, the system of governance in the era of "Caliphs" did not have such a sacred aura promoted by Islamic fundamentalism, from the sixth century AH to the present day.

None of the four "Caliphs" claimed that he was God's successor to the earth or that he was the ruler by God's command. But each of them sought to manage the affairs of the Muslims according to his vision, personality, and diligence.

Abu Bakr inherited from the Prophet, who was his closest friend, his wisdom and his kindness. But this did not prevent him from engaging in "apostasy wars," contrary to the principle of non-coercion that prevailed during the time of the Prophet.

 The argument here was not religious, but political, because the motive for the "apostasy wars" was not to compel people to believe, but to hold those who believed in them to continue to pay Zakat. Because the abstention from some of them after the death of the Prophet caused great financial damage to the Muslim state. At a time when the need for financial resources to meet the expenses of the conquests increased.

For his part, Umar ibn al-Khattab was an ascetic hard-liner with others and with his family and himself, so that he was closer to the model of the fair autocrat, while the style of his successor Osman ibn Affan was quite the opposite. While the caliph Ali bin Abi Talib gathered between the wisdom of Abu Bakr and asceticism of Omar.

These disparities between the methods of the rule of the four caliphs refute the "old caliphate" promoted by Islamic fundamentalism. As there is no actual model of rule based on the foundations of a fixed or unified concept.

  Rater each one of the "caliphs" was striving from his personal perspective to reflect the values ​​of justice, goodness and ethics recommended by the Qur'anic texts and Prophet's biography. With each one keen to adapt to the peculiarities of his era and the nature of the challenges, events and tribulations that confront him.

Thus, the "Caliphs" were human rulers who, like others, were exposed to the error and the correctness, and were, in their own way, aware of Islamic ideals and Qur'anic teachings.

But none of them called himself Infidelity or possessing the absolute truth that entitles him to be the successor of God in the earth.

All of the above shows that the concept of the "caliphate" as the embodiment of the "ruling" state, as promoted by Islamic fundamentalism, is closer to the dream desired rather than the established historical truth.

Perhaps the best proof is that the halo of holiness surrounded by fundamentalists what they call the "righteous ancestor", specifically in the era of the "four caliphs" can not withstand criticism and scrutiny.

The political differences between the "good ancestors" reached the point of infighting and bloodshed. Three of the four "caliphs" were killed.

But Salafi scholars seek to preserve the glorious aura of the achievements of the golden age of the "righteous ancestors", claiming that the sanctities of the Sunnis "to hold what is between the companions", and not going into it or discuss it.

Therefore, any critical reading of the Islamic history in the era of the "Caliphate" and the "good ancestors" should be included in the religious taboo, and stigmatized by those who are involved in the exodus.

Of course, if the critical mind is absent, it is easy to rise with allegations that are merely illusions and misrepresentations. Such as the misguided "righteous advances" and the "caliphate" that embodies the state of governance.