Science of Tawhid (monotheism) and purification
From its author: Sheikh Farid AL ANSARI
The Science of Tawhid (monotheism) and purification is the third category targeted by the scientific training of those who want to follow the path of knowledge, which is in fact the main purpose of the purposes of religion. So, its neglection and omission lead to major destruction in the acquisition of knowledge and its application. It is not in vain that Baji – may God have mercy on him – insisted in his sermon to his two sons, as I have seen, on the contents of faith and moral truths; which makes them ones of the most revered of the major foundations that are at the origin of the good formation of the divine savant, who is a source of good for himself and for his nation.
However, one of the most serious problems people face today – at the methodological level – in this question of education is a conceptual problem – that is, the concept of Tawhidas far as the purification of the soul is concerned, not just as far as words are concerned. So, Tawhid and purification (tazkiah) are, therefore, inseparable and two manifestations of a single reality. As a result, not understanding them well leads some people to many flaws in the way they treat the concepts of the Islamic creed (belief).
Based on their induction of the texts of the Koran and Sunnah, the scholars divided the realities of Tawhid into two parts: the uniqueness of knowledge and affirmation and the uniqueness of intention and worship.
The first refers to the Oneness of the Seigniory (Tawhid Ar-Rubiyya) and its substitutes, and the second to the Oneness and Worship (Tawhid Al-Uluhiyya) and its complements.
The meaning of the Oneness of the Seigniory is centered on the definition of Almighty God as Lord of the Worlds, and what should be his responsibility and what should not be his sacred names and attributes, as well as everything that has to do with His Lordship.
The meaning of the Oneness of Worship is centered on unifying Almighty God – alone without association- and moving towards him through obedience and worship, with fear and hope, and this is included by the Quran in the concept of sincerity (ikhlas) in different versions, as in the word of Almighty God who says:
« We sent down to you the Book with the truth, so serve God, devoting your religion to Him.Is not to God that sincere faith is due? As for those who take guardians besides Him, “We only worship them that they may bring us nearer to God.” God will judge between them regarding their differences. God does not guide the lying blasphemer.» (Az-Zumar: 2-3).He also included the two above-mentioned sections together in Tawhid’s motto: “No deity is worthy of worship except Allah”. This is all they have basically decided in the books of doctrine (Aqida).
However, the problem lies in the method by which this knowledge and knowingshas been presented. Except few, most of the books that have studied Tawhid have adopted the dialectical approach, even if they belonged to the Salafist doctrine! This is because of the historical controversy surrounding the subject of beliefs and everything that has accompanied it, such as groups and sects oscillating between excess and moderation, and that is another matter.
But this has led to a problem at the methodological level, namely the absence of the “educational objectives” of most books of belief, which have detailed the elucidation of the two cited sections; but with a dialectical theoretical approach, not with an educational method, based on “the intention to purify souls” whose purpose is to make Allah known to his servants as Lord and God! This important meaning has been neglected to be taken up by other books and arts, sometimes described as sensitizing books, and other books of asceticism, behavior or mysticism.
Regardless of the problem of naming and the controversy it raises, the healthiest of these works is the purification of the soul: to ensure the concept of “sincerity” (ikhlas), this is the objective of Tawhid in general and the basis of Oneness and Worship (Tawhid Al-Uluhiyya) in particular. The reader of the neatest of these books and works will find that they revolve around the realities of faith in the same sense.
Consequently, “purification” is nothing but the education of “Tawhid” in its exhaustive Koranic sense, which is the purpose of the Prophet’s mission mentioned in several verses of the Book of Allah, as in the verse:” God has blessed the believers, as He raised up among them a messenger from among themselves, who recites to them His revelations, and purifies them, and teaches them the Scripture and wisdom; although before that they were in evident error.” (Al-Imran: 164).
Therefore, we must restore the Koranic approach in the presentation of the substance of Tawhid, which is the approach of education and purification. For Tawhid to achieve its desired result, namely: Sincerity, which is realized only with theoretical knowledge and practical action; Knowledge is the good reception and sound understanding from Allah and His messenger, based on the statement of the Quran and the authentic Sunnah of the prophet, about the beliefs and rules of faith; and no acteme would be valid without being supported by knowledge. The deviation from this original approach has led some of the adherents of contemporary Islamic action and some Islamic leaders to wallow in the swamp of heresies, deviance in the worship of Allah and wandering in the darkness of error and superstition. All these aspects are only obvious consequences of the neglection of the foundation of science leading to the path of knowledge of Allah the Almighty.
It is not in vain that Imam Al-Bukhari explained, in “the Chapter of Science” of his book “Sahih Al-Bukhari”, the exhaustive locution relating to religion, namely: “The heading of knowledge before speech and action! ». He points out that the nation (our Islamic Ummah) only fell after it deviated from this solid foundation! And the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) was right, describing Muslims during the period of the seditionwhen he said: “Allah does not make science disappear by removing it from the hearts of his servants, but he makes it disappear by the death of scientists. To the point where when there are no more scientists left, people will take ignorant people as leaders who answer people’s questions without knowing the facts, and that is how they will misguide themselves and mislead others.
With regard to the act: it is the effort of the soul to struggle in the way of Allah – in the light of this knowledge – to encourage the servant of Allah to follow the ways of those who advance towards Allah the Lord of the Worlds, by acquiring the virtues of fear of Allah and devotion and to distinguish himself from envy and love; but also to abandon everything that will damage his decency with Allah and his loyalty towards him alone without others. This is how the Tawhid will be realized in her as a living virtue expressed by the act, not by inert words in the air, projected into assemblies of controversy and dialectical debates.
Only the knowledge of purification (Tazkyia) is a guarantee to achieve this for the soul, because it constitutes the practical side of Tawhid and the practical translation of sincerity, but this is where the problem lies: Because of the confusion of concepts and perceptions; People have turned away from this knowledge either towards excess or towards negligence.
As knowledge, its name has been surrounded by another term, “Sufism”, and everything that has accompanied it with controversy in the history of the nation, and which has spread to our time for various reasons that cannot be mentioned in this context.However, it can be said that in this way, two teams have gone astray: one of them has denied everything and by that they have challenged, without being aware, a large part of what necessarily belongs to religion! And the other accepted everything and by that,that team admitted many lies and superstitions! But what is right is to acquire knowledge according to its rules, its methods, and this will only be possible through the scientific rooting of all the words of Sufism and its rules. This has been achieved by many divine scholars, who have been right and have done much good by their writings which have been material to guide many people to the right path. Among these scholars are Sheikh Abdelkader Al-Jilani Al-Baghdadi, Imam Abu Is’haqAchatibi Al-Andaloussi, Sheikh Ahmed Zarrouk al-Malki Al-Maghribi, Imam Ibn al-Qayyim al-Hanbali, and many others.
Exaggeration brings no good, whether from the Sufi people or from their enemies. We have written a commentary on Ibn Al-Qayyim’s text in this same context, taken from our book “The Beauty of Religion” (جمالية), of which an extract is mentioned here: “May Allah have mercy on the scholar Ibn Al-Qayyim, who gave himself to the criticism of the Sufi and who is a visionary towards their defects and blessings”.
He spoke about this subject with words that deserve to be written with gold water: “These chimeras caused sedition between two groups of people:
The elements of the first group: were flabbergasted by these chimeras and missed the virtues of this community, the kindness of their souls and the truthfulness of their treatments, so they wasted all these good things and completely denied themwhile being absolutely suspicious of them. This is considered an injustice and an extravagance! For if everything that has been wrong or made a mistake is left out in the cold, the knowledge and its practices would be corrupted in the same way as their benchmarks.
As for the second group: they were stunned by the purity of their hearts, their determination and their good treatment, which obstructed their vision of their chimeras, which they covered with good things, and chose to accept and defend it and then adopted it in their behavior. These two are considered to be excessive transgressors.
But those in the third group – who are people of equity – have given rights back to those who are entitled to them while giving everyone their true value. »
The basis of all this is that many students in the sciences of Islamic jurisprudence have abandoned spiritual education both for the renunciation of evil and for the enjoyment of good. Then their morals deteriorated, their intentions were corrupted and their actions distorted. But the purpose of learning is to have Allah’s satisfaction, and if the servant fails him, he will be disappointed and lost. We are content with the word of Allah, which says: “.Only those fear Allah, from among His servants, who have knowledge.” (Fatir: 28)The scholars have interpreted the word “knowledge” in this verse by those who know Allah and His recommendations.
Whoever considers himself a scholar without having with his Lord Allah: isolation at the end of the night to invoke him by desire and fear, moments to praise his graces and blessings and ask his forgiveness, desires and tastes, an emotional life on the path of love of faith and who has no displeasure who knows the ways of fear and hope ;What good can one expect from him for this nation? And what educational benefit will he offer to his fellow men, when he who has lost something cannot give it?
The scientist who has no spiritual depth can benefit the nation in no way, for the call to God is based on watering the thirsty and the needy through the solution of the soul and by spreading the affections of mercy and love for the helpless and the grieved. Will never reach this state, the one with a lignified heart. So how do we expect him to pass it on to others? This can only be possible for: “In that is a reminder for whoever possesses a heart, or cares to listen and witness. ” (Qaf: 37).”What is there, beyond the truth, except falsehood? How are you turned away? ” (Youness: 32).
It is, therefore, necessary for the learner to charge his soul to be humble and polite in his treatment with Allah and his creatures. Otherwise, he will perish! Thus, it is advisable that he choose for himself an apprenticeship program, under the auspices of a learned and divine Sheikh – not the ignorant or the charlatans – an educational program, combining theory and practice at the methodological level, that he will follow in order to purify his soul and rid it of impurities from his whims; hoping that his knowledge and actions will be purely and faithfully destined for Allah the One and Dominator, so that He may therefore bless all his actions, with His permission, and pass on much good through him.
As for the books that deal with education and purification, they are books of spiritual education, classified in the science of asceticism and behavior, of what scholars have written, who are known to be just and trustworthy, who have specialized in the knowledge of the conditions of the soul and its vicissitudes, and have followed the entries of passions and those from which Satan can enter the coffins of the soul. They have, therefore, made it known and have demonstrated its dangerousness to generations. This is a property that is proper to divine and visionary scientists thanks to the light of Allah.
With regard to the fear of false statements and false fantasies, this includes the sections of the Quran and Sunnah, the totality of doctrinal precepts, and the rules of Sharia law, which are able to refute all the bad words! Indeed, no one is lost except the one whose soul is subjected to any passion that autographed it! Otherwise, the truth is clear and unambiguous while the lie is confusing and incoherent! And certainly, success is due only to Allah.
Excerpt from the book “The concept of knowledge, from book to divinity” (Pages 114 to 123)