The Real Face of Wahhabism
Dr. KHURSHID ANWARThe debate about terrorism has always forced the common man to think of Islam. However, the attack on the WTO and two slogans of “war against terrorism” and “clash of two civilisations” created such a mindset that a dangerous idea started taking shape among the common masses that “All Muslims are terrorists”. Several people would try to soften the issue by saying “All terrorists are Muslims”. It was a political ploy, but it is not possible that the common people would investigate every issue and then make an opinion about things. Values are forced into their heads. What exactly is it that is being named as “Islamic Terrorism”? Is it really Islamic or something else? If it is Islamic then what are its roots? For the answer to these queries it is extremely necessary that we mention and the reason of the word “Jihad” be done forthwith. What exactly is “jihad”? Where did it exactly originate and what was the reason behind it?
The very first mention of jihad in Quran is as “Jihad-al-Nafas” which means a war against your own evils. If it is so then from where does the jihad comes which made bloodshed of not just humans but even innocent children a part of Islam? The “Islamic” terrorism became a threat to the whole world. But how was this threat born?
With time Islam, as other religions, started subdividing into groups. One form of Islam which has always been there is ‘Political Islam’. It is obvious that lots of war have been fought for power. Muhammad himself fought the battle of Badr. It can be easily concluded that this war was also fought for the expansion of the religion. The real motive was power and Islamic power. The battle of Badr was as any other form of war is but the definition of jihad in Quran remained unchanged. In 1299 the ‘political Islam’ took the first major step and the Ottoman kingdom or ‘Sultanate-e-Osmania’(1299-1922) was established. It is a concocted story that it was fought in the name of jihad. Its main reason was the hunger for power.
Muhammad-ibn-Abdul Wahab redefined jihad in the eighteenth century. It gave a new outlook to Islam which brought out the jihad in a very crooked form. The order that was started by Muhammad-ibn-Abdul Wahab who was born in Najd in known by the name of Wahhabi Islam which intends to submerge the whole world in a circle of havoc and bloodshed.
The sufi order which propagated the message of love and brotherhood had come into existence much before Muhammad-ibn-Abdul Wahab. It spread very quickly in Turkey, Iran, Arabia and West Asia. The rituals that got associated to Sufism is a completely different matter but the fact remains that the Sufi order had presented a complete new outlook of Islam to the world which had broken the shackles of narrow mindedness and had gone beyond the realm of Islam.
Two most important steps that the Sufi order initiated from Faras to the extent of Arabia was the abolishment of slavery and opening the doors for women liberation.
In the thirteenth century the followers of Maulana Rumi in the Mevlevi order not only opened the gate of Sufism for women in Faras but also gave them equal status. The beginning of participation of males and females in Sama on an equal basis gives a clear idea of this. Fakrnisha was the main disciple of Rumi. Her status was so high that 700 years after her death the then head of Mevlevi order, Sheikh Suleman, got her shrine built under his supervision.
The great Sufi saint Sheikh ibn-Al-Arabi (1165-1240) himself was a disciple of Fatima bint-e-ibn-Al-Mutthanna. Sheikh ibn-Al-Arabi built a cottage for Fatima bint-e-ibn-Al-Mutthanna on his own, where she lived and later passed away.
Muhammad-ibn-Abdul Wahab started destroying all the beautiful and progressive traditions that had developed in Islam one by one and gave it such a narrow purview that there was no scope left for freedom, openness, tolerance and inter mingling. He took the responsibility of destroying everything that did not fall in the realm of Quran and hadith. Islam had subdivided into many groups by that time. The Ahmediya community came into existence in the 19th century, long after Abdul- Wahab. By then many faiths like Shia, Hanfi, Mulayiki, Safayi, Jafariya, Bakariya, BAshriya, Khulfiya Hambli, Jahiri, Ashri, Muntjili, Murjiya, MAtrudi, Ismali, Bohra etc had carved out their own identity within Islam and their identity was thoroughly recognised within the Islamic periphery.
Apart from these the Sufi doctrine had spread all over the world and most groups had associated themselves with these Sufi doctrines. But the advent of Muhammad-ibn-Abdul Wahab stood against all these groups. In his book ‘Mukhtar Sirat-ul-Rasool’, Muhammad-ibn-Abdul Wahab wrote “Whoever pays homage to shrine or is associated to anyone other than Allah is “Mushrik”(one who opposes monotheism) and killing a Mushrik and taking over their property is valid and ‘halal’(lawful).
Thus began the “real” jihad of Muhammad-ibn-Abdul Wahab who prepared an army of six hundred people and set them in all directions. He started killing people of various Islamic faiths. He went on propagating his own ideology and those who refused to follow him were killed and their property was ceased. He personally attacked and destroyed the shrine of the famous Islamic thinker Zaid ibn Al-Khattab. A new chapter of attacks on shrine and the Sufi order was being written. In the meanwhile he had an alliance with Muhammad ibn-Saud. Muhammad ibn-Saud was the ruler of Al-Diriyah and was affluent as well as had an army. In alliance they started not just the use of swords but also modern weaponry. Their pact made it very easy for them to force their ideology on people in farfetched lands and to destroy other faiths. Burning the religious texts of other faiths had sort of become the hobby of Muhammad-ibn-Abdul Wahab. He also passed a very repugnant order of destroying the all the Sufi shrines and constructing toilets at these very places.
Saudi Arabia, which is a declared nation following the Wahabi faith, continued the tradition set by Muhammad-ibn-Abdul Wahab. It went to such an extent that in 1952 the whole graveyard where the family and friends of Muhammad were buried, was destroyed in the name of idol worship. This was done because people used to pay pilgrimage to these places in remembrance of Muhammad and his kin. In October 1996 one part of Kaaba, Al-Mukarammah, was also brought down for the same reason. The beautiful stones of Al-Multazam, which is located to the east of the door of Kaaba and falls in the Yemen region, was also replaced with plywood. This was done because people used to kiss those stones and according to Wahabi Islam this was equivalent to idol worship. According to a recent report by “The Independent”, the pillar at the back side of Mecca which had the important incidences of Muhammad’s life inscribed on them were also brought down. Among the inscriptions on these pillars there was also the mention of Muhammad’s Miraj (Ascend of Muhammad to God).
Wahabism had been playing around with the history, beliefs, mutual brotherhood and co-existence of identities of Islam. Wahabis laid the foundation of one identity, one kind of people, one book and racial purity in the 19th century, much before Hitler took to it.
Although the Wahabis raising havoc in the name of racial purity from the limits of Arabia to West Asia long back, but for the last few decade their despicable intentions have become much more clearer. On one hand the Mevlevi order had started giving women equal rights in the thirteenth century itself, while on the other the Wahabis transformed women to nothing more than ‘walking deads’. Distorting women’s faces in the name of “bepardagi” (not covering their faces adequately with hijab) and stoning them to death in the name of polygamy became Islamic customs. Outcasting those Muslims from Islam who did not believe in the Wahabi ideology and then killing them started being termed as valid and lawful. This is just the story of the followers of Islam. The killing of people from other religions in the name of ‘Kufr’(),usurping their property and forcefully converting the females in their families to adopt the Wahabi faith became a daily routine.
Wahabi ideology or Wahabi Islam has been posing a constant threat to the world. The deeds of these merchants of death is termed as Islamic terrorism, the ploy for which is plotted in Washington and London and the plan of action is prepared in regions ranging from Saudi Arabia to West Asia. Organisations like Al-Qaeda, Taliban, Sipah-e-Sahba, Jamat-ud-Dawa, Al-Khidmat Foundation, Jaesh-e-Mohammad, Lashkar-e-Taiba have been continuously taking innocent lives and giving shape to these conspiracies.
Maulana Maudoodi has been strengthening the roots of Wahabi Islam in West Asia. Hukoomat-e-Ilahiya is a part of this conspiracy which intends to uproot any belief, Islamic or non Islamic, which is not in favour of the Wahabi ideology and replace them with an Iman who can unfurl the Wahabi banner in the Hitler fashion. The fact that America is well aware of every initiative taken by Saudi Arabia is not a hidden fact. Isn’t America aware of the fact that Saudi Arabia has been helping these organisations in all way possible the dark clouds of which are hovering over India too?
The Wahabi faith of the recent times is not just armed with swords and rifles rather they have the most modern weapons at their disposal. They even have an eye on the nuclear weapons of Pakistan. When faith turns to lunatic, it sees no limits. The people who are savage enough to lead a widespread bloodshed in a mosque that too on the pious day of Id are capable to stoop to any level. The dangers of Wahabi ideology cannot be perceived without this perspective. Every person who stands in the way of such animalistic mindset stands at risk.