The Secularisation of Tawhid

Some Muslims believe that the problem with the Muslim world is a lack of understanding of Tawheed, and consequently before advocating for the re-establishment of the Caliphate (Khilafah), they believe that the Muslim people must be called to tawheed first.

Furthermore, to back-up their argument, they point to the fact that the Prophet Muhammed (saaw) spent 13 years calling to tawheed before the first Islamic state was established.

When these Muslims say that there is a problem with the lack of understanding of tawheed – they are exactly right – but not in the way they believe. For when they call to Tawheed, they do not call to the comprehensive Tawheed of Allah (swt) being the highest and only direction of belief, human action, morality and law in all life’s affairs. Instead they only call to Allah being the only God to be worshiped by spiritual rituals and personal habits, leaving brazenly neglected, the vast majority of the worship of God that occurs in all life’s affairs.

In effect, these Muslims have secularised ‘Tawheed’, rendering the worship of Allah restricted only to ritualised spiritual actions (ibaadah), and they neglect the worship of Allah through establishing his hukm (laws) in life’s affairs and activities (mu’amalaat) which covers the social to the political. Thus they are the best example of the problem with the Ummah that they claim to campaign against. It is in reality, their ignorance of the true depth and breadth of Tawheed, that is the fundamental problem with the intellectual understanding of Islam amongst the Ummah.

So indeed they are right.

Secondly, these Muslims only possess a shallow understanding of the method of the Prophet (saaw). The Prophet (saaw) called to Tawheed in the spiritual actions and beliefs of the Pagan Arabs, because they were Polytheists. I think it is safe to say that the Arabs have stopped worshipping Hubaal, Allat, Manat and Al Uzza. If these spiritual-only ‘tawheed’ advocates were consistent with following the method of the Prophet (saaw), then as well as abstaining for calling to the laws of God, they should also abstain from calling people to the 5 daily Salah, since the command for the Salah was 12 years into the Prophet’s mission. But of course, that would be absurd – but so is neglecting to call the people to the laws of God too. As the Quran says about the people of the previous revelations who deferred ruling by the law of God – there is a part of the book they accept, and a part they reject – by not calling to comprehensively.

And what these Muslims additionally fail to realise is the Prophet (saaw) spoke out against female infanticide in Mekkah. Isn’t that a critical of a society’s culture and social norms? Didn’t he critique the lack of charity by the rich in that society, and attack its corrupt politicians (Abu Jahl, Abu Lahab, Abu Sufyan -all members of the ‘mala’, the Quraysh parliament of nobles)? All these things that the Prophet did in Mekkah during his first 13 years – are, yes you guessed it, POLITICAL. But Spiritual-only Tawheedists seem to overlook those particular Political criticisms by the Prophet (saaw), despite them being during the first 13 years of his mission!

However, due to the absence of guidance in the political sphere (thanks to colonialism), many Muslims have filled in these areas by worshipping the Secular gods of Nationalism (e.g. Egypt, Libya, Algeria, Saudi Arabia etc) by taking glory and pride in their ‘nations’ (which two european colonialist politicians, Skyes and Picot carved out for them in the Sykes-Picot treaty).

Muhammed (saaw) wasn’t wrong when he compared people, in a hadith, who believed in nationalism to being in the same condition of the Pagan Arabs before Islam came (i.e. Jahil/Ignorant). In fact, the more you think about it, the more nationalism really does resemble a religion. The nation is viewed as a higher power invisible power which provides sustenance for the people, and created them upon its land (who should be ‘grateful’ to it). The nation has rituals, symbols and a flag for its ‘believers’ (i.e citizens) which must be saluted like it somehow appreciates these salutes as supplications. If someone dies for their country, they are considered martyrs for a ‘noble cause’. Nationalism also has a clergy – the politicians of that state, which act as khulafah (successors) to the founding ‘prophet’ of that nation (which usually is some national hero or founder), whose pronouncements and actions become the Sunnah (tradition) of the state. The politicians are tasked to rule according to the will of their deity, the ‘national will’. And if that isn’t enough of a similarity with religion, consider that as religion defines morality based upon the will of God, so nationalism defines morality by the ‘national interest’. Thus following the interest of the nation becomes the halal, and going against the interest of the nation, becomes the haram.

We therefore see these Muslims, who declare their belief in One God, and make supplication and prayer to Him alone, yet ignorantly neglect, and even reject every hukm (law) that Allah (swt) has ordained for society and state. They do not intend to be negligent, but because the only thing they know of Islam, is ‘who to pray to’, they must seek for everything else, to ‘follow the national will’. And if a spiritual-only ‘Tawheed’ advocate approaches them, they respond ‘you do not need to instruct me, I know who I worship’, prompting the advocate to find some small obscure issue merely to find an excuse to continue their mostly irrelevant campaign.

If you truly contemplate the nature of the Jahil Muslim, and the Muslim who calls only to the Tawheed of the spiritual actions, they are both exactly the same in their outward activities. Both neglect the political aspect of Islam, and both may indulge in the spiritual aspects of it, with no problem.

In fact, I would dare say the Jahil Muslim is better than the Muslim who calls to the ‘tawheed’ of only the spiritual actions, for while the Jahil Muslim is only concerned with their own affairs, the Spiritual-only ‘Tawheed’ caller, actively goes out of their way to block Dawah Carriers from their work, and acts as an obstacle to them until they make the dawah carrier abandon the call to a holistic Islam.

It is no surprise then to find, that Secularists, and certain corrupt Muslim countries (backed by the USA) and financed by natural resources, love the Spiritual-only ‘Tawheed’ caller, and support him, for he is their first line of defence against the return of Islam, and the holistic Tawheed, they so fear and loathe.

And in calling to only a part of the comprehensive and all-embracing worship of God, they have secularised Tawheed, and are more part of the problem with the Ummah, then part of the solution.

Categories: ARTICLES, Revival Thought (Al Nahda), The Muslim Debate Initiative, WRITINGS

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11 replies

  1. “The Return of Mubarak’s Children” – A good article on the Muslim Brotherhood rule in Egypt. Gives an in-depth and well referenced account of the ways in which the Mubarak loyalists sabotaged Morsi and his government at every step, and in the words of the author, “But how did they (the secularists/Army) return? Simple, they never left.”

    I seriously disagree with some of the conclusions the author has drawn, and his taking shots at the reformation efforts of those who focus on Tawheed. For us, replacing the sharee’ah with man-made laws is as great a Kufr and Shirk, as in worshipping the graves; but the author seems to believe otherwise, referring to this in his other article as “Secularisation of Tawhid”. Nothing could be further from the truth.

    His insistence that the MB should have taken a more aggressive approach than the gradual one they did, seems to be out of line with the fact his article tries to establish; i.e. the MB never had a decent chance, its rule constantly faced sabotage, and was at the whims and mercy of the secular elite.

    Better relations with the Iranian-Rafidah can never be a good thing, and any sunni Islamic minded individual should not look at this matter purely from the political point of view; not after the fact that Iran is a state-sponsor of Shi’ism, and an active participant in the oppression of Muslims within and beyond its borders.

    My particular interest in the Egyptian drama that has unfolded in front of us, is that it is another clear example of the extent to which the kuffaar will go to deprive any kind of Dawlah (state) for Islam, even if it is just in name and no additional rules of sharee’ah were implemented at the state level. And what are their conspiracies and evil plans for the other states where many aspects of the sharee’ah are practically applied; and where the sharee’ah holds official status?

    Therefore their opposition here is not about democratic legitimacy, or of a lenient v/s a hard-line approach, or even about actual implementation of the sharee’ah that they may see as curtailing rights and freedoms. Their problem and enmity is for ISLAM itself.

    If they conspire, and contradict their slogans of freedom and democracy, and refrain from calling a duck (coup) a duck; for SUPERFICIAL ISLAM, what is their level for evil for the REAL ISLAM.

    We ask Allah in these blessed last days of Ramadaan to protect the Muslims of Egypt, and to foil the conspiracies of the kuffaar.

    “This (is the fact) and surely, Allah weakens the deceitful plots of the disbelievers.” [Al-Anfal 8:18]

    ” And those before them had plotted, but to Allah belongs the plan entirely. He knows what every soul earns, and the disbelievers will know for whom is the final home.” [13:42]

    ” Then, do those who have planned evil deeds feel secure that Allah will not cause the earth to swallow them or that the punishment will not come upon them from where they do not perceive?” [16:45]


    • Perhaps you have misunderstood my article. If a Muslim comes and tells you that we should call Muslims to pray to God directly, and worship only him, but when asked why he does not condemn people going to palmists, grave intercession shrines, pirrs etc he says ‘that’s not a priority just yet’. What would you say? you would say that he calls to the principle of the thing, but neglects the practical significance of that call, and thus is not actually properly calling people to the khair.

      Likewise, if you assert that Allah (swt) is the sovereign and ultimate lawmaker for mankind, yet refuse to call to all the laws he has prescribed, then your call to Tawheed is deficient. And although you may not believe in secularism, your silence over it, and silence of the political laws of Islam, is in effect a consent to it.

      Putting it simply, the Muslim that calls to a comprehensive tawheed, calls to Khilafah, in the same breath, he calls to praying without intercessors. Those who do not do this, have IN EFFECT, secularised their preaching, and secularised Tawheed in the mind of the public.


      • But are they really “silent”? Have they not done amar ma’ruf nahi munkar? How can you be certain? It could be a case of them calling the masses to tawhid rububiyyah, uluhiyyah and asma was sifat, and to the rulers, an emphasis to the hukumiyyah part as well. The only thing is that we would not hear about that because their approach would be in line with the following hadith:

        Reported by Ahmad (3/403) and Ibn Abee ‘Aasim (2/521) with a saheeh isnaad. It is authentically reported from the Messenger in the hadeeth of ‘Iyaad ibn Ghunum who said,

        “The Messenger of Allaah (saaws) said, ‘Whoever desires to advise the one with authority then he should not do so openly, rather he should take him by the hand and take him into seclusion (and then advise him). And if he accepts (the advice) from him then (he has achieved his objective) and if not, then he has fulfilled that which was a duty upon him.’ ”

        But we do sometimes hear or read that they call to what you are saying. For e.g. music is haram, but national anthems are still played in Muslim countries.


      • Your argument makes one key error, advice and dawah are not the same. Advising an Islamic Amir is one thing, like how he could implement a better traffic light system. But if the ruler is does not implement Islamic law, then he no longer becomes legitimate from a Shariah perspective. He must be called back to implementing Islam through dawah (invitation). If he rejects, then the soldiers who obey him must be invited, and so on and on until the dawah reaches the people. For if someone those fahisha in public, and no one accounts him, then the people would believe it to be acceptable. Caliph Umar (ra) was held to account IN PUBLIC (even during a khutbah), yet he never complained that this was against the Sunnah.

        Advising someone, for the sake improving their work in the halal is one thing – but accounting someone for open injustice and making the public see this accounting, is a completely different thing.


  2. As mentioned above, one of the major reasons for the original Islam becoming an alien religion among the Muslims is that for latter day generations the basis for the Islamic ethos became the later history of Islam instead of the Qur’an and Sunnah. Muslims found their glorious history far more attractive than the Qur’an and Sunnah. For them they were just sets of words. Their history, on the contrary, gave them an immense sense of pride, as it was full of imperial grandeur and conquests. Although they continued to pay lip service to the Qur’an by reciting it, they were, in fact, lost in the glories of Islamic history. Gradually they came to associate themselves and Islam with this grand history: instead of the Qur’an and Sunnah, history became their chief source of inspiration.

    This change of the source of inspiration wrought immense harm. When the Qur’an and Sunnah are one’s intellectual sources it is modesty that is bred in the mind, whereas if one takes history as one’s intellectual source, pride is bound to be generated.

    If the Qur’an and Sunnah are taken to be the true sources of knowledge of God’s will, all mankind, in the words of a Hadith, will be regarded by the believers as God’s family; the whole of humanity will become their concern: whereas, when the mind is shaped by history, Muslims see themselves as rulers, and others as subjects. If they derive Islam from the Qur’an and Sunnah, then all God’s creation—even a blade of grass—will appear to them as God’s signs. Whereas when history is the source of their Islam, the forts and palaces of their kings become signs of grandeur and glory to them. This is exactly what has happened with the latter day Muslims. Almost all the activities of Muslims in present times bear testimony to this fact. The speeches of their leaders, the books of their writers, the poetry of their poets, seem to centre on their glorious history. Their writers and speakers provide them food for thought about historical glory rather than divine glory. This is the reason why in modern times a large number of books have been written by the Muslims bent on the celebration of history, while perhaps not a single book has been produced on the majesty of God Almighty.

    Given this state of affairs, when a reformer arises to call Muslims to the religion of the Qur’an and Sunnah, his voice naturally appears strange to his hearers. For they feel that this person is calling them to a position of modesty, whereas their religion (that is, history) aims at placing them in a position of strength. In such an atmosphere, the words of the reformer will impinge as worthless, alien and unacceptable.


  3. This is i used to think…but nobody suppoerted my views, i am greatly indebted n enlightend to read your article…very well explained …may God Almighty reward you greatly.


  4. surely. …ya ayuhal lazeen aamenu fi silmi kafah


  5. very true… I would like to add that all the parties today that are working to establish a khilafah, are unsuccessful because they do not follow the way of the Prophet (salallahu aleyhe wassalam) in doing so.. We need to know how did the Prophet succeeded in bringing the greatest revolution in the history of the world. Read this article, these are the steps taken by the Prophet s.a.w.. But today Muslims start calling people to tawheed, & immediately after that they start fighting & this is why they fail…


  6. leave, reject despise shirk and attain tauheed!
    e.g its palatable to worship a human because he/she merely can provide for himself, so how can he provide us ? this is how you reject shirk!
    watch this really amazing video i found on youtube explaining about shirk!



  1. En sekulær tawheed | islamkontroverser

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