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A. Haroun (Abu Imran)

*Refusing to declare as disbelievers the mushrikeen (Polytheists); or having doubts about their disbelief; or considering their way of life/religion as correct or valid

Our society here in Nigeria has witnessed so much religious and cultural integration, albeit unfortunate, so much so that any attempt to place things in their right perspective will be considered religious intolerance and be met with strong opposition from muslims and non-muslims alike. What is appalling is the hypocrisy with which Nigeria and Nigerians deal with the issue of religious tolerance where it is typicaly translated as Muslims compromising the basic tenets of their religion in other to look like 'others' and be considered societally integrable. This is itself a topic of discuss for another day.

It is painful to note that in a bid to appear civilised and in tune with the 21st century, there are now muslims who come out to say "all religions are one and thesame and we worship one God" wa iyaadhu billaah! You would not find this except among a severely ignorant muslim. It has become heavy for some muslims to tag people who outrightly denounce and reject the message and messengership of prophet muhammad (صلى الله عليه و سلم) as disbelievers. They feel such an appellation hurts their feelings, so instead they start to say all religions are thesame! This is both annoying and funny. 

Do we not see the ease with which they label us as unbelievers? Do they not repeatedly mention whenever they preach, "whoever does not receive salvation by accepting Jesus christ as his Lord and savior will be condemned to eternal damnation..."? No. This does not hurt our feelings! It is the muslim who is typicaly the champion of religious tolerance because the world has considered him typicaly intolerant. But from that very statement "accepting jesus christ as Lord and savior' stems our reason for considering them unbelievers because the enormity of such a statement to any muslim is grievous. Allaah says "
"the skies are ready to burst, the earth to split asunder, and the mountains to fall down in utter ruin, that they should invoke a son for (Allah) Most Gracious...". (Q  19:90 -91). 

This of course, to any unbiased reader, is not a call to hostilities  or anything of the sort, but an attempt to ensure that things and people are placed in the right perspective,  rather than being deceived by the foolery and trickery of the double standard sold out as religious tolerance. A muslim is a muslim and a non-muslim is an unbeliever. Allaah says "whoever desires a religion other than Islaam,  never will it be accepted from him; and in the Hereafter He will be in the ranks of those who have lost " (Q 3:85).

This however does not hinder appropriate social interactions as long as they do not require compromise of individual religion especially since we (hypocritically) refer to Nigeria as a secular Nation.

Having made the rather stern introduction above, which was necessary because of the kind of society we live in, the third nullifier consists chiefly, three parts viz;

1. Whoever does not believe that polytheists, atheists, agnosts and their likes are disbelievers.

2. Whoever doubts over the disbelief of the disbelievers (i.e he is unsure whether they are disbelievers or not). This goes as an example of how doubts may nullify a person's Islaam.

3. Whoever considers the way (and religion by extension) of the disbelievers as correct, praising them and equating them with Islaam. And this is worse than the first two.

Therefore, whoever holds any of these three with respect to those whom the Qur'aan and the sunnah regarded as disbelievers has exhibited one of the nullifiers of Islaam.

Two points should be noted however;

1. That as for the case of those whose disbelief is subject to difference in the opinion of scholars i.e, there is no consensus, like the case of one who abandons salat or people who fall into error as a result of ijtihaad (intellectual and knowledge-based strive to arrive at the appropriate solution or answer to a problem) then, refraining from pronouncing or considering them as a Kaafir does not fall under this category, and Allaah knows best. Imaam Ahmad ibn Hanbal lived at a time when people considered the Qur'aan a creation of Allaah rather than the word of Allaah, he refuted them a great deal, yet he never refered to them as disbelievers. 

2. As for praising the disbelievers with respect to some inherent qualities such as honesty, sincerity, and intelligence then this is not blameworthy. However, care should be taken lest this creates such an extreme love in the heart like the case we see today between football fans and some football stars.

And Allaah knows best...
و فوق كل ذي علم عل.


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