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Khutbah Jummah (22th January 2010)

Some Basic Characteristics of Islamic Path (Manhaj) – Part 1


Human history has witnessed several civilizations and the contributions of Islamic civilization towards
building humanity are well known to all. Each of these human civilizations has some laid down concepts or
principles to follow such as capitalism, Socialism, Communism, etc. Therefore it is the duty of every Muslim
to know the characteristics of Islamic path that led human civilization the greatest period in the world history.
When we know those basics, we will be able to take from them what we can apply to our lives in order to
develop ourselves towards better personalities and through which we can influence and bring about
reformation to our environments. So in this khutbah in shaa Allah, we are going to examine some basic
concepts of Islamic path and how we can apply them in our daily lives. We also need to emphasize that
Islam is neither a system for specific period, place, culture, etc. nor is it a local system for specific group of
people to facilitate their lives. But rather Islam is for all humanity at all times! It is the system that Allah has
chosen for His slaves to conduct their affairs in this life in order to free themselves from slavery to their
fellow human beings and to prepare them for the hereafter.

Therefore the testimony that There is no god but Allah, and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah
(that is saying Sahahadah: “lâ ilâha illallâh, Muḥammadun rasûlullâh”) is the foundation of the Islamic
path upon which perfect Islamic nation is built through strictly adhering to it (the path). Allah says: “The
decision rests with Allah only, Who has commanded you that ye worship none save Him. This is the
right religion, but most men know not” Q12:40.

Then what are the characteristics of the Islamic path?


The Islamic path has the following characteristics: rabbaniyyah (Divineness), Shumuliyyah
(comprehensiveness), wasatiyyah (moderateness), yusr (simplicity), ma’quliyyah (rationality) and
practicality (‘ithoou wa tajdeed). In shaa Allah, today we are going to talk about the first character which is
Rabbaniyyah.

The Divineness of Islamic Path


The Islamic path in its entirety both in principles and all it entails comes from Allah to man; he is not to add
to it or remove from it because Islam is a path and a unique system whose sources are through revelations
of words never known to man and can never be corrupted. Allah says: “Lo! even We, reveal the Reminder,
and lo! We verily are its Guardian” Q15:9. Therefore, Islam is a divine path in its ideology, worship, morals
and laws.

Divinity in ideology – that the source of Islamic ideology the revealed verses of the Qur’an and purified
tradition of the Prophet PBUH which informs about the oneness of Allah and His attributes, the belief in His
Angels, books, prophets, the judgment day and the act of God (al-qaddau wal-qaddar).
Divinity in worship - that worship is solely for Allah. We do not worship anyone in partnership with Allah or
do we worship Allah except by that which He has ordained for all His messengers which Muhammad PBUH
is the last of them.
Divinity in Morals – that the foundation of morals is not by culture, consensus, logic, rationality or
conjecture but it is by divine revelation. Allah says: “Lo! Allah commands you that ye restore trust
(deposits) to their owners” Q4:58. It is also to advise others to the truth, to have humility, to fulfill trust, to
avoid immorality ……. and so on. All the ethical teachings of Islam in its entirety are divine.
Divinity in Laws – that regulations with respect to all aspects of life whether related to marriage, financial
transaction,…and maintaining balances …….all of which are divine. This is evident in the narration by
Imam Ahmad and Imam al-Tirmidhi that Adi bn Hatim the chief of the tribe of Ti’u in Sham was seen
carrying cross on his neck while with the Prophet PBUH listening to the verse: “They have taken as lords
beside Allah their rabbis” Q9: 31. and Adi responded that: “no, they did not worship them!” and the prophet
PBUH then asked: “Do they not make lawful for you what is prohibited and make prohibited what is lawful
and you follow them?”. Adi responded: “truly, they do”. The prophet then said:” that is their worship of
them!” From this we know that worship is not merely bowing and prostrating alone but also to believe in
oneness of Allah and that He is the only one who has the right to legislate and it must be followed. “The
decision rests with Allah only, Who has commanded you that ye worship none save Him…” Q12:40.

What are the benefits of this Concept?

It is clear to us that the concept of Divinity of Islamic Path in all its features and characteristics has great
effects and benefits that distinguish it from other form of ideologies whether terrestrial or human. Of these
benefits are
Immunity from Contradictions and differences experienced by the distorted man-made laws
and regulations - There are several examples of these man-made systems that contradicted
herself between the spiritual and material such as Europe in the middle ages and the current age.
As in the Middle Ages, there was a clear contradiction between what the church and the state. Islam
does not admit any separation between "material" and "moral," "mundane" and "spiritual" life, and
enjoins man to devote all of his energies to the reconstruction of life on healthy moral foundations. It
teaches him that moral and material powers must be welded together and that spiritual salvation
can be achieved by using material resources for the good of man in the service of just ends and not
by living a life of asceticism or by running away from the challenges of life.
• Conferred Sanctity and Respect – On of the fruits of this divine Islamic path is that Allah confers
on the path respect and sanctity which does not accrue to any man-made system.
• Balanced nature of the path -The world has suffered at the hands of the one-sidedness of many
other religions and ideologies. Some have laid emphasis on the spiritual side of life but have
ignored its material and mundane aspects. They have looked upon the world as an illusion, a
deception, and a trap. On the other hand, materialistic ideologies have totally ignored the spiritual
and moral side of life and have dismissed it as fictitious and imaginary. Both of these attitudes have
resulted in disaster, for they have robbed mankind of peace, contentment, and tranquility. Even
today, the imbalance is manifested in one or the other direction. The French scientist Dr. De Brogbi
rightly says: "The danger inherent in too intense material civilization is to that civilization
itself; it is the disequilibrium which would result if a parallel development, of the spiritual life
were to fail to provide the needed balance".
• Liberation from the bondage of man by man – One of the fruits of the concept of divineness of
the path is that the Lord liberates man from the slavery of his fellow human being either borne of
inferiority complex, distinction in colors and languages or financial subjugation. The goal of any
other system is to subject man to humiliation and servitude to other human being. The path of Islam
requires to comply with Allah injuctions and surrender to Him alone for He is the king of the people.
“And whatever of comfort ye enjoy, it is from Allah. Then, when misfortune reaches you, unto Him ye
cry for help.” Q16:53
• Tranquility and peace of Mind – Those who follow the path feel in their hearts tranquility and
peace because it is ordained by their Lord, the all knowing. Its commandments guides their lives
and bring about peace in their minds out of their submissiveness to their Lord.
• Acceptance and Quick implementation – Because the nature of the path is divine, all its
regulations are quick to be followed by the believers who strive for rewards and this quickly bring
about change in their lives. Two examples are very instructive in this regards namely: the
commandments to prohibit alcohol in Madinah and the institution of Hijab for the believing women.
In these two cases, the people quickly accept and implement the rule thereby bringing about turning
point in their lives. This is not so with any man-made sytems.