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Books- Constituents of the Divine Assignment-4th Constituent- Paragraph (4-4):Divine Method-Response
In the Name of Allah, The Most Gracious, Most Merciful  

 Man hears countless sayings (not facts) through his social connections and different activities, but should he accept or reject them? If he accepts them, on what grounds should he do so? If he rejects them, on what grounds should he do so? Is there a scientific method that can judge or can be the frame of reference to what we accept and what we reject?

 It has been only 1500 years since this great religion was revealed, and through those long years, countless opinions have been put forth, so as a Muslim, should I accept or reject them? On what grounds should I accept what I choose to accept? On what grounds should I reject what I choose to reject? Hence, we need a reference method according to which we measure things we come across, just like the fabric seller who needs a ruler in order to measure the length of the fabric he sells. The method according to which we perceive ideas and we do our research about them is very important in the life of Muslims, for it is one of the scientific means for them, as it allows the Muslim to know how to fish out any time he wants instead of eating it as a donation for one time only. This method has items and outlines.

The first item: The truth is a circle where 4 lines intersect:

 The scientific fact by definition is a verified piece of information that is congruent with reality and proved by evidence in the sense that it is certain 100%. Had it not been certain 100 %, it would have belonged to assumption (90%), doubtfulness (50%) or delusion (30%), and the scientific fact cannot belong to any of them for it should be certain.

 Since the scientific fact is in accord with reality, reality is the criterion of the fact. In case it is not in harmony with reality, it be false. The scientific fact also should be proved by evidence, and if we cancel the evidence, whatever we perceive will be tradition rather than a scientific fact, because Allah, Exalted and Glorified be He, says:

﴾So know (O Muhammad PBUH) that La ilaha ill-Allah (none has the right to be worshipped but Allah)﴿

[Muhammad, 19]

 Allah does not say "So say", but rather He says, "So know"

﴾So know (O Muhammad PBUH)﴿

[Muhammad, 19]

 There is an indication that we should sift all the convictions we adopt and know what belongs to delusion, what belongs to doubts, what belongs to assumptions, what belongs to ignorance and what belongs to traditions.

 The religious texts are Divine Revelation, the universe is Allah's Creation, the mind is the means Allah provided us with, Al-Fitrah is the inner detector Allah installed in us, and the reality is His Creation. Thus, since all these measuring means with which deal are from Allah the Almighty they come from one source (i.e. Allah), and so they should be in harmony.

 The fact that should be adopted is a verified piece of information, assured by reality and proved through evidence, and this fact represents a crucial side of the many sides of religion. Better yet, the truth that is approved by religion is conveyed to us through the authenticated reporting (the Divine Reporting or the authenticated Sunnah), that is rational to the sound mind, that is in harmony with the pure Fitrah and that is congruent with the objective reality. Hence, the truth is a circle where four lines intersect: the first line is the authenticated reporting, the second line is the sound mind, the third line is the pure Fitrah and the fourth line is the objective reality. Accordingly, the reporting should be verified, the mind should be rational rather than being a justifying one that serves man's interests and desires, the Fitrah should be pure not effaced, and the reality should be objective not forged.

The second item: physical matters, intellectual matters and the Divine Reporting:

 Man owns senses and reaching out for everything by using these senses is called the physical knowledge or the physical certainty. Humankind share other creatures with this. However, Allah the Almighty honored man with a pearl (i.e. the mind) that is the most complicated system in this universe, as the mind is the means to get acquainted with Allah.

 What marks the mind is that it builds its processes on physical findings that help it perceive the abstract things, so if the traces of something that does not exist are there, the mind is capable of reaching it by following the traces. For example, the table in front of me has a physical existence and its traces are just before me; I can touch it with my hand, I can hold it and I can pass my hand on its smooth surface. Thus, whatever is seen can be perceived by senses, while whatever is not seen, but it leaves traces, can be known with the mind. Thus, the mind's mission is to perceive something by using the human eye so that it can admire its manufacturer. Therefore, the traces lead to the existence of the object, just like the footprints which denote that someone passes by. Hence, the creation leads to the Creator and the system leads to the Organizer, and this sort of knowledge is called the intellectual knowledge or the logical deduction.

 There is a third case when something exists, yet it has no physical existence, nor does it leave any traces, so neither the senses nor the mind will reach it, and in such a case the only thing left for man to realize its existence is the authenticated Divine Reporting.

 Based on the aforementioned points, there are three circles: the circle of the physical certainty which is related to things that have a physical existence, the circle of logical certainty when something does not have a physical existence, yet it leaves traces and the circle of the Divine Reporting certainty, which is for the matters that have neither a physical existence nor traces. The greatest problem from which Muslims suffer is that they tackle a matter from the circle of the Divine Reporting intellectually, so in such a case the mind gets confused.

 Despite the fact that the mind is the most amazing system given to man, it has limited potentials. It is like having a very expensive, sensitive and delicate scale, yet the utmost weight it can weigh is only 10 kilograms, so if someone wants to weigh his car using that scale, he will break it, but does this mean that the manufacturing company of the scale is bad? No, it does not, because the scale breaks upon being used beyond its potentials. Much in the same line, when man deals with a Divinely reported matter and tries to analyze it using his mind, he will be lost in mazes, and this may even lead him to reject religion.

 Educated people sometimes fall in this trap. Take for example the Jinn; we are told about the existence of this race through the Divine Reporting, so the mind cannot prove it not because it is helpless, but because man uses his mind to think about a matter that is beyond its potentials and capabilities. The same goes for angles, the ancient past, the far future, or the characteristics of the Divine Character, for all of which are matters that have neither a physical existence nor tangible traces, given the mind needs physical existence or traces to perceive things.

  In order to admire an exquisite bedroom or a luxurious vehicle, the mind needs to look at it and sense it, but offering the mind things that have no physical existence or traces is beyond its potentials, and it makes it confused and skeptic. Therefore, there is the circle of physical existence and the means to realize what belongs to it are the senses, there is the circle of intellectual matters, and the mind alone is able to put forth an evidence, explanation and judgment for them, and the other matters which have neither physical existence nor traces belong to the circle of the Divine Reporting. As a Muslim, you should categorize any thought offered to you and know to which circle it belongs, and beware of handling Divinely reported matters by using your mind.

 If we are in a lecturing hall, and this hall has physical objects like a table and seats which can be seen with our eyes and touched with our hands, these objects belong to the first circle (i.e. the circle of physical existence). Power, on the other hand, has only traces but cannot be seen, so our mind tells us that the speakers which magnify the sound and the lights, which are on, are traces that denote the existence of power, but if this hall is locked, in this case no matter how shrewd man is, can he speculate what is in it? He cannot unless the caretaker of this hall tells him that there are speakers in it to magnify the sounds, for example, and other objects that can be sensed by his hand, and there is power which existence can be figured out with the mind, and other things that can be heard with the ear.

 Let us move to a greater example, like the existence of Allah. Upon using your mind, you are able to believe in Allah, because everything in the universe speaks out the Existence, the Oneness and the Perfection of Allah, and also upon using your mind, you can believe in the Quran due to its inimitability. Allah says:

﴾He has let loosed the two seas (the salt water and the sweet) meeting together* Between them is a barrier which none of them can transgress.﴿

[Ar-Rahman, 19-20]

 The interpretation of this Ayah dazzled scholars in the past, but recently scientists have discovered through photos taken from the spaceships that there is a line between every two seas. Moreover, they have discovered that the waters of the two seas do not mix, and though the nature of this line between every two seas is still a mystery, they have found out that every sea has its own composition, density and saltiness. Allah says:

﴾And proclaim to mankind the Hajj (pilgrimage). They will come to you on foot and on every lean camel, they will come from every deep and distant (wide) mountain highway (to perform Hajj).﴿

[Al-Hajj, 27]

 Allah does not say, from every far land, but rather Allah says from every deep land, and this indicates the spherical shape of the earth, because the farther you are from Makkah the deeper you are on a curved line. Allah also says:

﴾The Romans have been defeated* In the nearer land (Syria, Iraq, Jordan, and Palestine), and they, after their defeat, will be victorious.﴿

[Ar-Rum, 2-3]

 This battle took place in Palestine Ghawr (valley), and after discovering laser ray, scientists found out that the deepest point on earth in terms of dry land is the shore of the Dead Sea (Palestine Ghawr). Allah says:

﴾And that He (Allah) creates the pairs, male and female* From Nutfah (drops of semen male and female discharges) when it is emitted;﴿

[An-Najm, 45-46]

 This means that the gender of the fetus has nothing to do with the egg. The more advanced science becomes, the more scientific breakthroughs discovered in the Quran. Thus, the miracle of our Prophet PBUH is this Quran.

 Our master Ali, may Allah be pleased with him, said, "There are Ayat in the Quran that are not interpreted yet." The Prophet PBUH ordered us to slaughter the animal by cutting its jugular vein without cutting off its head, but no scientific findings existed in the Prophetic era, in the Arabic Peninsula, in every civilization in the east or the west and even in the eras following that era could explain this Prophetic instruction. However, a few decades ago, scientists presented the explanation for this Prophetic instruction. The normal rate of the heart beats (of both mankind and animal) is 80 beats per minute, and it receives the order of pumping blood from an inner center that is independent from all the other body systems and is located within the heart itself. The function of this centre is safeguarded by two back-up systems.

 Let me put it like this; the heart is equipped with three sets of emergency batteries, so in case one of them malfunctions, the second one backs it and so forth. However, when man is in danger, such as confronting a snake, the rate of the heartbeat increases up to 180 beats per minute in order to pump more blood to the whole body and help it receive enough energy to get away from danger. This order is received from the pituitary gland passing it to the adrenal gland, which in turn passes to the heart the order of increasing the rate of its beats to more than 180 beats per minute. This whole process cannot be done if the animal's head is cut off.

 Upon using your brain you are able to believe in Allah's Existence, Oneness and Perfection due to pondering over this universe, and with your mind you believe in the Quran due to its inimitability, and so you believe in the Prophethood of the Prophet PBUH, but the mind's abilities stop there, because whatever beyond that point comes only from the Divine Reporting.

 I would like to pay your attention to an important point: you are informed about the things that your reason could not figure out through the Divine Revelation. In fact, the mind is your horse that you ride towards the door of the Sultan, but when you enter the mansion of the Sultan, you do that on your own without the horse whose mission stops at the door of the mansion. Much in the same line, your mind leads you to the existence of Allah, but it is unable to comprehend Allah just like when you ride your vehicle to reach the shore, but when you get there, you cannot sail by it deep in the ocean. Your mind leads you to Allah, but it cannot encompass His Knowledge just like all other creatures.

 The third item: If you are a conveyer, transmit authenticated information, and if you claim something, give your evidence:

 Scholars of Aqeedah put forth the third item in the Divine Method-response. They said, "If you are a transmitter, you transmit authenticated materials, and if you are a claimer, you should support your claims with evidences." If you have a religious text, and you want to transmit to other people, you should be very sure of its authentication, because you are conveying Allah's Message. On the other hand, If you are giving an opinion about something, you should prove it by putting forth a proof that is logical, reported and realistic, and it should go along with the common sense. Keep in mind that man's Aqeedah is the most crucial matter in his life.

 The Quran, Sunnah and the universe are available to man, and while the universe is Allah's Creation and the Quran is His Words, Sunnah is the Prophetic explanation of Allah's Words, so is it rational that Allah's Creations contradict His Words? It is rather impossible to find any contradiction between the Divine Revelation and man's reason, because man's reason is the judging device installed in man by Allah, and the Divine Revelation is His Words. Man mat claim that there is a contradiction between man's reason and the Divine Revelation, and this case might be true due to many reasons:

 -The Reporting is not authenticated.
 -The interpretation is wrong
 -The interpretation of the Reporting is wrong.
  -The Reporting is right, but the statement said about it is theoretical and not true.

 Accordingly, the mind might be in conflict with unauthenticated Reporting or the authenticated Reporting might be in conflict with the deviated reason, and this is the only explanation for any contradiction that might exist. Due to the fact that the Aqeedah is very crucial to man, and because it is the ground of the rightness of deeds, it cannot bear having any doubts, so it belongs to certainty. Thus, Aqeedah is not considered sound if it is mere tradition (the outcome of following other people blindly without true belief).

 It is fine that you offer Salah as you are told about the way the Prophet PBUH offered his Salah, but you cannot adopt your Aqeedah by imitating other people,, and if imitation is accepted, then all the followers of the misguided sects will be excused, won't they? Hence, you should adopt your Aqeedah after you accomplish your mission by searching and seeking the evidence. Allah says:

﴾Say (O Muhammad PBUH): "This is my way; I invite unto Allah (i.e. to the Oneness of Allah - Islamic Monotheism) with sure knowledge, I and whosoever follows me (also must invite sh3er to Allah i.e to the Oneness of Allah - Islamic Monotheism) with sure knowledge. And Glorified and Exalted be Allah (above all that they associate as partners with Him). And I am not of the Mushrikun (polytheists, pagans, idolaters and disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah; those who worship sh3er along with Allah or set up rivals or partners to Allah)."﴿

[Yusuf, 108]

 If you are a follower of the Prophet PBUH, then call to Allah with sure knowledge. In other words, by putting forth proofs and evidences, because, without proofs anyone might say whatever he likes. Thus, accustom yourself to avoid accepting or rejecting anything without a proof.

((Narrated 'Ali: The Prophet (PBUH) sent a Sariya under the command of a man from the Ansar and ordered the soldiers to obey him. He (i.e. the commander) became angry and said "Didn't the Prophet (PBUH) order you to obey me!" They replied, "Yes." He said, "Collect fire-wood for me." So they collected it. He said, "Make a fire." When they made it, he said, "Enter it (i.e. the fire)." So they intended to do that and started holding each other and saying, "We run towards (i.e. take refuge with) the Prophet (PBUH) from the fire." They kept on saying that till the fire was extinguished and the anger of the commander abated. When that news reached the Prophet (PBUH) he said, "If they had entered it (i.e. the fire), they would not have come out of it till the Day of Resurrection. Obedience (to somebody) is required when he enjoins what is good."))

[Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

 The human mind should be submissive to the Quran and the authenticated Sunnah, but when it comes to anything other than these two, the mind should not be shut down (it should seek evidence to verify it).

The fourth item: The religious references for Muslim are three:

 The first religious reference is the Noble Quran. Since the Quran is Allah's Words, it is self-evident, and the only thing we can do about it is to comprehend it.

 The second reference is Sunnah, and it is Zanniyat Ath-Thuboot (it needs evidence to prove its authentication). Thus, dealing with Sunnah requires two tasks: the first one is to verify the authentication of every Hadith:

((It was narrated from Abu Sa'eed said: "The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) said: 'Whoever tells lies about me deliberately, let him take his place in Hell."))

[Al-Bukhari and Muslim by Abi Sa'eed]

 The second task is to comprehend the meanings of the Prophet's Hadith. As I have just said, the only thing we can do about the Quran is to comprehend its meanings, but with Sunnah we have to do two things; first, we should verify the authentication of any Hadith, and second we should comprehend it.

 The third reference is the text we come across and make sure of its soundness after verifying it in the Quran and Sunnah. In other words, any text in general other than the Quran and Sunnah, and regardless of the position and the importance of the one who says it should be dealt with in three steps. The first step is to know for sure that a statement is said by a certain man. Some people attributed to a companion the following statement, "The woman is pure evil, and the worst trait in her is that she is needed by man." This statement is not said by that companion and it is groundless.  The Prophet PBUH said:

((Treat women in an honourable manner. By Allah, none but a noble man treats women in an honourable manner, and none but an ignorant man treats women disgracefully. They defeat the noble man, but they are defeated by the ignorant one, and I would rather be a defeated noble man than a defeating ignorant one.))

[Faid Al-Qadeer]

 In another Hadith, the Prophet PBUH said:

((Do not hate your daughters, for they are the precious companions))

[Musnad Ahmad]

 The second step is to comprehend the statement, and the third step is to evaluate it according to the Quran and Sunnah, so if this statement is not in conflict with them, then we can accept it, but if it contradicts them, we reject it. The Prophet, peace be upon him, said:

((This knowledge is a matter of Deen, so be careful who you take your deen from,))

 Since religion is a crucial matter in man's destiny, it is irrational to take it from this or that person blindly. Is it acceptable to adopt our religion that is related to our destiny whether in eternal Paradise or Hellfire by taking it blindly from someone and becoming his victim?

 If man's Aqeedah is sound, his deeds will be right, but if his Aqeedah is corrupted, his deeds will be corrupted as well. Aqeedah is like a scale in the sense that if you weigh something using a good scale, and you err in weighing, this error will not be repeated, but if the scale itself is damaged, then every time you weigh something the weight will be wrong. Much in the same line, when man errs, he can repent and turn back to Allah, but if his Aqeedah is corrupted, he will never repent, and he will even accuse sh3er of being wrong. Thus, the innovator is considered a hopeless case for he will not repent.

 Since man's Aqeedah is the most crucial matter in his life, he should take it from the Quran and the authenticated Sunnah, and he should not accept or reject any thought without a proof. Furthermore, when man acquires sound Aqeedah, and he errs, most likely he will repent and will get back to the Right Path.

 Let me ask you this question, do you not think that Muslims are in dire need of being united? This can be achieved by going back to the authenticated texts in the Quran and Sunnah, simply because these two resources will unite us, whereas corrupted ideologies will sow dissension among us. In fact, the opinionated thinkers are the gravest class in any society, because these people build their opinions on whatever satisfies their desires, and they use the religious texts in ways that serve their opinions. Thus, they search for any text that might support their opinion and they turn a blind eye to any text that might refute their opinion. This is exactly why they adopt weak and fabricated religious text, and by doing so, people become sects and cults who have contradictory beliefs. Allah says:

﴾Verily, those who divide their religion and break up into sects (all kinds of religious sects), you (O Muhammad PBUH) have no concern in them in the least. Their affair is only with Allah, Who then will tell them what they used to do. ﴿

[Al-An'am, 159]

 Allah the Almighty also says:

﴾Say: "He has power to send torment on you from above or from under your feet, or to cover you with confusion in party strife, and make you to taste the violence of one another." See how variously We explain the Ayat (proofs, evidences, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.), so that they may understand. ﴿

[Al-An'am, 65]

 When people start to adopt false or fabricated texts or misinterpretations, they will be divided into groups that have different ways (religious sects, etc.). Nowadays, we desperately need to become one and to have united hearts, concepts, potentials, goals and grounds, which really count for Muslims. Besides, we should not affiliate with other than the group of believers, for belonging to a small sect and an insignificant group that seems important shall shatter this Ummah. Allah says:

﴾And be kind and humble to the believers who follow you.﴿

[Ash-Shu'ara', 215]

 The second Ayah is:

﴾And lower your wings for the believers (be courteous to the fellow-believers).﴿

[Al-Hijr, 88]

 The Muslim takes every believer as a brother though he might not attend in the same Masjid, might not come to the same religious session or might not follow the same School of Thought. If we believe in this, we will become one, but partiality to small sects will shatter us. Allah says:

﴾And obey Allah and His Messenger, and do not dispute (with one another) lest you lose courage and your strength depart, and be patient. Surely, Allah is with those who are As-Sabirin (the patient ones, etc.).﴿

[Al-Anfal, 46]

 Muslims are powerful when they are united, but they are weak if they remain shattered.

 Let me repeat the main point we are discussing; it is the Divine Method-response. Having the right religious reference of what is right and what is wrong grants prosperity to man. It is like owning a detector of gold to detect the gold in a room which contains 1000 yellow bricks, but only 100 of them are pure 24 carat gold, whereas 100 of the bricks are made of 21 carat gold, another 100 are made of 18 carat gold, another 100 are made of 16 carat gold, another 100 are made of 11 carat gold, another 100 are made of copper coated with gold and another 100 bricks are made of iron, and all you have got is only 15 minutes to take 100 bricks of them. Therefore, owning this gold detector will help you choose the 100 bricks made of 24 carat gold and be rich, but if you do not own this detector, you might choose the iron bricks and lose everything. Religiously speaking, your success lies in having the detector when you intend to adopt any ideology since countless people write books about religion. Let alone, there are different sects, delusions and false ideas that are prevailing these days.

Why are there four Schools of Thoughts?

 In man's life there are constant and variable matters, so as for the self-evident religious texts, they cover the constant matters, whereas the Zanniyat Ath-Thuboot (it needs evidence to prove its authentication) texts, they cover the variable matters. Take for example Zakat, Allah orders us to pay Zakat, but since people live in cities and in the suburb, giving someone who lives in the city a bag of wheat will be a burden over his shoulders, for he does not know how to grind or bake it, but if you give him money he will make use of them. Allah the Almighty says:

﴾And perform As-Salat (Iqamat-as-Salat) and give Zakat,﴿

[Al-Muzzammil, 20]

 Allah does not mention how to pay Zakat, so scholars studied the texts in Sunnah, and some of them said that Zakat can be paid as goods, whereas sh3er said that Zakat can be paid with paper-money. This difference in opinions is not a negative contradiction, but rather it is a variety and enrichment. Also, when scholars agree upon something, their agreement is a self-evident ruling, and when they disagree upon something, their disagreement is mercy on people.

 I would like to clarify this point by giving you an example. If you say, "Give this person 1.500 Dirhams", this order does not need scholars or jurisprudents to interpret it, because it is crystal clear, but if you say, "Give this person one thousand and a half" we cannot tell if this half indicates half Dirham or 500 Dirhams. Therefore, the second order is not as clear as the first one, and it might bear multi probabilities.

 When someone says statements that have many probabilities, this indicates his weakness in language, for he means to say one meaning, but he uses a statement that can bear multi meanings. For that very reason, all man-made laws need interpretation, explanation and jurisprudence, but when Allah mentions a text that bears many probabilities, this means that Allah intends to embrace all possible meanings out of Mercy upon His servants. Therefore, there is a big difference between the Divine Text and the human text that bear probabilities.

 Let me ask again, why do we have four Schools of Thoughts? We have this variety in Schools of Thoughts because in the Quran and Sunnah, there are texts that contain many probabilities in the sense that all meanings are embraced in these texts out of mercy, so that matters are made easier for Muslims.

 The different Schools of Thoughts put forth different opinions for the situation of a menstruating woman who cannot do Tawaaf Al-Ifadah (is the Tawaf performed by the pilgrim on the 10th of Dhul-Hijjah as the last formal rite of Hajj in Makkah after changing into street clothes.). According to Hanafi School of Thought, she should offer a sacrifice, because she fails to do something that is obligatory on her, which means that she should pay close to 150.000 to buy a camel. According, to Shafi'i School of Thought, "Muslims in the early generations would not leave Makkah until the menstruating women in their group got a chance to complete their period and perform Tawaf Al-Ifadah", and according to Maliki School of Thought, she is allowed to do Tawaf Al-Ifadah though she is menstruating.

 These three opinions cover all conditions women might have; the rich woman will offer a sacrifice (according to Hanafiyah), whereas the one who comes with her people to Hajj, they will wait for her until she is pure and able to do Tawaf Al-Ifadah (according to Shafi'iyyah), but if she is with a group and she cannot stay behind till she does Tawaf Al-Ifadah, and she cannot leave the group because she cannot pay for her stay, we say to her, you can do Tawaf Al-Ifadah (according to Malikiyaah).

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