The Prophets, 'alayhimus-salaatu was-salaam, did not come to bring about the downfall of one state and to replace it with another. They did not seek after sovereignty, nor did they organise parties for that. Rather they came for the guidance of mankind and to save them from misguidance and shirk, and to take mankind out of darkness and into light and to remind them of the days when Allaah has sent favours upon them. If rule and sovereignty had been offered to them, they would have rejected it and continued upon their da'wah. Indeed Quraysh offered sovereignty to Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) and he refused it. It was also offered to him that he should be a Prophet-king or a Slave-Messenger, so he chose that he should be a Slave-Messenger. From Aboo Hurayrah, (رضي الله عنه), who said, "Jibreel sat with Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) and looked to the heavens and saw an Angel descending, so Jibreel said, 'This Angel has never descended since he was created until now.' So when he descended he said, 'O Muhammad! Your Lord has sent me to you, saying, "Shall He make you a Prophet-king or a Slave-Messenger?"" Jibreel said, 'Show humbleness to your Lord, O Muhammad.' He said, 'Rather a Slave-Messenger.'" 
So he did not used to take pledge of allegiance from the Ansaar or others except for Paradise, despite the fact that the pledge of the Ansaar was given in the most severe and difficult circumstances, yet it contained no promise of positions of authority, nor sovereignty, nor leadership, nor wealth, nor any other temporal gain.
'Ubaadah ibn as-Saamit, (رضي الله عنه), said, "I am one of those chiefs who gave the 'Aqabah pledge to Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم)," and he said, "We gave the pledge that we would not worship anything else besides Allaah, nor steal, nor fornicate, nor kill a person whose killing Allaah had made unlawful, except rightfully, nor rob each other, nor disobey, and (then) Paradise would be ours." 
From Aboo Mas'ood al-Ansaaree, (رضي الله عنه), who said, "Allaah's Mesenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) went along with his uncle al-'Abbaas to seventy of the Ansaar, beneath the tree. So he said, 'Let the one of you who is to speak do so, but he should not make his speech long since the mushriks have a spy watching you, and if they come to know about you they will expose you.' So their speaker, who was Aboo Umaamah said, 'Ask, O Muhammad, for your Lord whatever you wish, then ask for yourselves and your Companions whatever you wish. Then inform us what reward there is for us with Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, and what is due to us from you if we do that.' So he said, 'For my Lord, the Mighty and Majestic, I ask that you do not worship anything besides Him, and for myself and my Companions I ask that you grant us shelter and assist us, and defend us as you defend yourselves.' They said, 'So what is there for us if we do that?' He said, 'Paradise is for you.' They said, 'Then we will do that for you.'" 
From Jaabir ibn 'Abdullaah, radiyallaahu 'anhumaa, who said, "Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) spent ten years in Makkah following up the people in the places where they settled in 'Ukaaz and Majannah and in the times of pilgrimage at Minaa, and he would say, 'Who will shelter me, who will assist me, so that I may convey the Messages of my Lord, and Paradise will be his?' To the point that a man would arrive from Yemen or from Mudarr and come to his people, and they would say: 'Beware of the young man of Quraysh, do not let him put you to trial.' He would walk amongst them and they would point at him - until Allaah sent us to him, then from Yathrib and we gave shelter to him and affirmed the truthfulness of his Message. A man from us would go out and believe in him and be taught the Qur'aan by him, then he would go back to his family and they would accept Islaam as a result of his Islaam. To the point that there did not remain a single household amongst the Ansaar except that it contained a number of Muslims who openly manifested their Islaam. Then they all performed 'Umrah, so we said, 'For how long will we leave Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) cast out amongst the mountains of Makkah in a state of fear?!' So a group of seventy of our men travelled to him and came to him at the time of the pilgrimage. We agreed to meet him in the ravine at 'Aqabah. So we came in ones and twos until we had all gathered and we said, 'O Messenger of Allaah. May we give you pledge of allegiance?' He said, 'Give me the pledge that you will hear and obey, in that which is pleasing to you and in that which is burdensome, in difficulty and in ease, and that you order the good and forbid the evil, and that you speak for Allaah's sake and do not fear the reproach of anyone when speaking for Allaah's sake, and that you assist me, and defend me when I come to you just as you would defend yourselves and your wives and your children, and Paradise is yours.' He said, 'So we stood and gave him the pledge and As'ad ibn Zuraarah took his hand, and he was the youngest of them, so he said, 'Do not be hasty, O People of Yathrib, for we have not travelled this long distance except because we know that he is Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم), and that fulfilment today will mean splitting away from the rest of the Arabs, and that the best of you will be killed, and that the sword will be used against you. So either you are a people who will withstand that, and your reward will be with Allaah, or you are a people who fear that you may prove to be cowardly, then you should make this clear, and it will be an excuse for you with Allaah.' They said, 'Withhold, O Sa'd, for by Allaah, we will not abandon this pledge ever, nor will we be robbed of it.' So he took it from us upon these conditions, and promised us Paradise in return for that." 
So here also he would cultivate his Companions upon the Book and the Sunnah, and upon eemaan, sincerity and purity of intention for Allaah in every action, far from political methods and from tempting them with positions of authority. He did not give any of them, either before or after they entered Islaam, any wish or hope for a position of authority in the State. So with regard to 'Umar ibn al-Khattaab, (رضي الله عنه), one of the greatest of the Companions and the strongest personality amongst them, Allaah's Messnger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) did not promise him any position of authority, nor did he himself have any desire for that at all, until the day of Khaybar, twenty years after the beginning of the Messengership, when Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) surprised them by saying, "I will give the flag tomorrow to a man who loves Allaah and His Messenger. Allaah will grant victory at his hand." So 'Umar, (رضي الله عنه), and the rest of the Companions spent the night wondering whom he would give it to, and 'Umar, (رضي الله عنه), said, "I never had any love for leadership except on that day." 
So what was it that those noble Companions hoped for?! Was it leadership itself, or was it that great rank of loving Allaah and His Messenger? So why did 'Umar ibn al-Khattaab not love leadership if it was indeed something which Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) endeared to them, and trained them for and caused them to desire it?!
From Aboo Hurayrah, (رضي الله عنه), who said that Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said, "You will indeed desire for leadership, but it will be a cause of regret on the Day of Resurrection. So what a good wet nurse it is, but what an evil weaning one it is."  So he forbade seeking for it and desiring it. 
'Abdur-Rahmaan ibn Samurah, (رضي الله عنه), said that Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said to me, "O 'Abdur-Rahmaan! Do not ask for leadership, since if you are given it having requested it, then you will be left alone to discharge it, but if you are given it without requesting it you will be helped (by Allaah) in it." 
Indeed on top of all this he firmly implanted the Islamic principle that positions of authority are prohibited for those who earnestly desire and crave after them. From Aboo Moosaa al-Ash'aree, (رضي الله عنه), who said, "I entered upon the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) along with two men from the sons of my uncle, so one of the two men said, 'O Messenger of Allaah! Appoint us to take charge of one of the lands which Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, has given you authority over.' The other man also said the same. So he (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said, 'We do not appoint to that position anyone who asks for it, nor anyone who is keen to have it.'" In a wording of Muslim there occurs, "What do you say, O Aboo Moosaa, or 'Abdullaah ibn Qays?" He said, "So I said, 'By Him Who sent you with the truth, they did not disclose to me what they had in thier minds, nor was I aware that they were going to seek this appointment.'" He said, "And it is as if I can still see his (i.e., the Prophets (صلى الله علیه وسلم)) tooth-stick between his lips." So he said, "We shall not, or, do not appoint to authority in this affair of ours anyone who desires it. Rather you go, O Aboo Moosaa." So he sent him to Yemen, and then sent Mu'aadh in addition to him. And in the version of an-Nasaa'ee there occurs, "We do not seek the assistance in this affairs of ours of those who request it." 
Al-Haafidh ibn Hajar said, "al-Mu'allib said, 'Desire for leadership is the cause for people fighting each other for it to the point that they shed blood and make wealth and private parts lawful, and therefore great corruption results in the land. Then the reason for regret is that he may be killed, deposed or die and then regret having entered into it in the first place. Since he will be held to account for the evils he has committed and that which he craved for will be lost to him as soon as he leaves it.' He said, 'And an exception to this is the case of one who has to take it on due to the fact that the ruler dies and no one else is to be found to take over but him, and if he does not take over then this will cause corruption and chaos.'"  But leadership and the office of judge are matters which are essential, and vital to the life of the Muslims, and necessary for the protection of blood and wealth.
However it is obligatory that in choosing the governors and the judges that we follow the methodology of Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم), so these positions are not to be given to those who ask for them, or desire them, or put themselves forward, in elections for example, since this pertains to desiring these positions.
Rather the ones to be chosen are those who are suitable in knowledge, absence of desire for such a position and piety. Then we must also benefit from this Prophetic methodology in our education and training. So we should not bring up the youth to have love for leadership, authority and position. If we bring them up upon love of these things, then we have acted contrary to the way and guidance of Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) and have led the youth to that which will only destroy them. Then what success can we expect in this world or the Hereafter if we act contrary to the methodology of Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم)?
"And the Hypocrites say, 'We believe in Allaah and His Messenger, and are obedient to Allaah and His Messenger.' Then they turn away from Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) to others for judgement, and they are not Believers. And if they are called to the Book of Allaah and to His Messenger for judgement about that which they dispute in, then a group of them turn away from acceptance of the truth." 
So in what has preceded, we have come to know the methodology of the Prophets in calling to tawheed and in fighting against shirk and its manifestations and causes, and that it is a methodology built upon intellect, wisdom and the true and inborn nature. We have also come to know the proofs for this - both the general proofs and the proofs in detail - from the Book and the Sunnah, and from the intellectual angle. So now we ask: Is it permissible for those who call to Allaah, in any time, to turn away from the methodology of the Prophets in calling to Allaah? The answer: In light of what has preceded and what will come, it is not permissible in the Sharee'ah, nor intellectually, that anyone should turn away from this methodology and prefer a different way.
Firstly, This is the straight and upright way which Allaah laid down for all the Prophets, from the first to the last of them. And Allaah, the One who laid down this methodology, is the Creator of mankind, and the One Who knows everything about human nature, and knows what is most beneficial for their souls and their hearts:
"How can He Who created not know when He is the One Who knows the innermost secret of His servants and is fully aware of them and their actions?!" 
Secondly, The Prophets adhered to it and followed it, which shows clearly that it is not an area for ijtihaad (independent interpretation and judgement), so we do not find:
- any Prophet beginning his call with Sufism;
- another one beginning with philosophy and theological rhetoric (kalaam);
- and others beginning with politics.
Rather we find that they all followed a single methodology, and all gave the same primary importance to tawheed of Allaah.
Thirdly, Allaah made it obligatory upon our noble Prophet, whom Allaah made it obligatory upon us to follow, that he should follow them and their methodology. So He said, after mentioning eighteen of them:
"They are those whom Allaah has guided, so follow the way and guidance which they were upon." 
And he followed their way by beginning with tawheed and giving the greatest importance to it.
Fourthly, since their call in its most complete form was to be seen in the call of Ibraaheem, 'alayhis-salaatus was-salaam, Allaah further emphasised the matter and ordered our Prophet Muhammad (صلى الله علیه وسلم) to follow his methodology. He says:
"Then We revealed to you, O Muhammad (صلى الله علیه وسلم), that you should follow the religion of Ibraaheem who was a Muslim upon the true religion and was not one of those who worshipped idols and associated partners with Allaah." 
So the order to follow him covers adherence to his religion which is tawheed and fighting against shirk. It also covers following his methodolgy in beginning by calling to tawheed. Then Allaah, the Most High, further emphasised this order also by ordering the ummah of Muhammad (صلى الله علیه وسلم) to follow the way and the religion of this Prophet who was upon the true religion. So He, the Most High, says:
"Say, O Muhammad (صلى الله علیه وسلم), Allaah has indeed spoken the Truth, so follow the religion of Ibraaheem who was upright, upon the religion of Islaam, and he did not make any share of his worship for any created being." 
Therefore the ummah of Islaam is commanded to follow his religion and way. So just as it is not permissible to act contrary to his religion, then likewise it is not permissible to turn away from his methodology in calling to tawheed and fighting shirk and its manifestaions and causes.
Fifthly, Allaah, the Most High, says:
"So if you disagree in any of the affairs of your religion, then refer it back to the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah of His Messenger, if you truly believe in Allaah and the Last Day. That is better for you in this world and the Hereafter, and better in its final consequences." 
So if we refer back to the Qur'aan we are informed that all of the Mesengers had as their 'aqeedah the 'aqeedah of tawheed and that their call began with tawheed, and that tawheed is the most important and greatest thing which they came with. We also find that Allaah ordered our Prophet to follow them and to follow their methodology. Then if we also refer back to the Messenger, we find that his call from start to finish gave the greatest importance to tawheed and to fighting shirk and its manifestations and causes, and we have already seen this in what has preceded.
Sixthly, Allaah created the creation and organised and ordered it with laws governing its nature, and laws and prescriptions relating to and ordering its behaviour. So He caused it to proceed upon natural laws which are such that if they were broken then this creation would end in destruction. So He made the heavens and the earth, the planets and the stars, the sun and the moon and provided laws by which they proceed, and if they were to be broken then this creation would cease to be. From these natural laws laid down by Allaah is that animals, humans and others cannot live except with a spirit and a body. So if the spirit leaves the body then the body dies and rots, and this body must be buried so that other animals are not harmed by its stench. Also from the creational laws laid down by Allaah in the world of plants is that trees cannot stand and survive except upon a trunk, so if the trunk is cut off then the branches die.
With regard to the world of prescribed laws, no system of prescribed laws can stand except based on belief/creed ('aqeedah). So if a system of prescribed laws has no 'aqeedah, then it will be ruined and will not remain as a correct and sound system of prescribed laws. So, for example, the prescribed laws followed by Ibraaheem, 'alayhis-salaatu was-salaam, remained for centuries amongst the Arab nation, then when 'Amr ibn Luhayy al-Khuzaa'ee entered shirk into it, then it became an idolatrous system of laws and its reality changed and it became corrupted and ruined. This was because it was the 'aqeedah of tawheed which provided its firm foundation upon which it stood. From Aboo Hurayrah, (رضي الله عنه), who said that Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said, "I saw 'Amr ibn 'Aamir al-Khuzaa'ee dragging his intestines in the Fire. He was the first one who introduced the practice of setting animals free for the sake of their deities."  So Aktham said, "Perhaps the fact that I resemble him  will cause harm to me, O Messenger of Allaah?" He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said, "No, you are a Believer and he was an unbeliever. He was the first one who altered the religion of Ismaa'eel. He created the idols, and established the practice of keeping the milk of certain animals for the deities, and of freeing animals for the sake of the idols, and of freeing for their idols the she camels which gave birth to female camels as their first and second deliveries, and of freeing for their idols male camels completing their allotted number of sirings." 
After 'Amr ibn Luhayy corrupted the 'aqeedah supporting the Sharee'ah which Ibraaheem came with and which was followed by Ismaa'eel, then it became an idalatrous religion, and the Arabs became idol worshippers, even though they continued to associate themselves and attach themselves to Ibraaheem and his religion and his code of laws, and even though they still clung to a few remnants of what he came with such as honouring the Ka'bah, and performing tawaaf around it, and making hajj and 'umrah, and standing in 'Arafah and Muzdalifah, and making sacrifices, and other acts of devotion to Allaah. Likewise the message of Moosaa and 'Eesaa was a message of tawheed and a revealed system of laws. But when they lost their basis of tawheed due to the saying of the Jews: ''Uzayr is the son of Allaah,' then the saying of the Christians: 'The Messiah is the son of Allaah,' then they became religions of unbelievers, which it is not permissible to attribute to Allaah, nor to those noble Prophets.
Allaah, the Most High, says:
"Fight those who do not believe in Allaah, and do not believe in the Hereafter, nor make unlawful that which Allaah and His Messenger declare unlawful, nor obey Allaah truly by following Islaam, from the People of the Book (Jews and Christians), until they pay the jizyah tax in a state of being subdued and debased. For the Jews said that 'Uzayr is the son of Allaah and the Christians said that the Messiah is the son of Allaah. That is merely the false saying of their tongues, like the saying of the idolaters before them. Allaah's curse is upon them. How can they deviate from the truth which is manifest?" 
From Aboo Sa'eed al-Khudree, (رضي الله عنه), from the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) who said, "On the Day of Resurrection a caller will call out that every nation should follow that which it used to worship. So none will remain from those who used to worship others besides Allaah, idols and false deities, except that they will fall into the Hell-Fire until none remain except those who used to worship Allaah, the righteous and the impious, and the remainder of the People of the Book. So the Jews will be called and it will be said to them: 'Whom had you used to worship?' They will say: 'We used to worship 'Uzayr, the son of Allaah.' So it will be said to them: 'You have lied, Allaah did not take any wife, nor any son, so what do you want?!' So they will say: 'We are thirsty, O our Lord, so give us something to drink.' So they will be directed: 'Will you not then drink?' And they will be gathered and taken to the Hell-Fire, which will be like a mirage, some parts of it devouring others, and they will fall into it. Then the Christians will be called, and it will be said to them: 'Whom had you used to worship?' They will say: 'We used to worship the Messiah, the son of Allaah.' So it will be said to them: 'You have lied, Allaah did not take any wife, nor any son.' It will be said to them: 'What do you want?' So they will be treated like the others, until none remain except those who used to worship Allaah (alone), the righteous and the impious. The Lord of the Worlds will come to them in a form closest to what they will expect. Then it will be said to them: 'Why are you waiting? Every nation has followed what it used to worship.' They will say: 'We separated ourselves from the people in the world despite being in need of them, and we did not associate ourselves with them, and we are waiting for our Lord whom we used to worship.' So He will say: 'I am your Lord.' So they will say twice: 'We do not worship anything besides our Lord.'" 
The point in question which is seen in both of the Aayaat and the hadeeth is that the messages of Moosaa and 'Eesaa, two messages comprising tawheed and eemaan were corrupted by the Jews and the Christians, by their worship of 'Uzayr and 'Eesaa and their saying about them. So because of this they became idolaters and unbelievers, and these two messages, due to their abominable action and their foul distortions, turned into false and idolatrous religions, which it is not permissible to attribute to Allaah, nor to those two noble Messengers, even though very many of the laws from the prescribed law of Moosaa and 'Eesaa still remained.
So it will be clear to the reader that the 'aqeedah of tawheed is the relation to all of the prescribed law systems of the Prophets, including the final Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) like the relation of the foundation to the building. So the building cannot stand without the foundation, and it is like the trunk of the tree, it cannot stand without it. Or like the spirit with relation to the body: the body cannot live without the spirit. So the person with intellect must compare and judge all other calls with these intellectual and Sharee'ah proofs in order to see which of them are upon the way of the Prophets and which are far removed from that. Then I wish to add three examples which will increase our understanding of the prescribed ways laid down and commanded by Allaah, and that the organisation and order found in them is something required, and must be followed, and that it is not permissible to turn aside from it.
1. The Prayer. Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) taught the Prayer by practical examples, and he said: "Pray as you have seen me praying"  So he (صلى الله علیه وسلم) began by standing, then the takbeer, then the recitation, then the rukoo', then the sujood, and he did this in every rak'ah. He performrd the second rak'ah in the same way, followed by the tashahhud, then at the end of the Prayer the final tashahhud, followed by salaam.
So if a Jamaa'ah now said that it is better in this age, or that it is obligatory that we should begin the Prayer with the salaam and finish it with the takbeer, or that we should say the tashahhud in the place of Faatihah and vice versa; if this Jamaa'ah did this, or any of these things, then would this Prayer be correct, and would it be Islamic?!
2. The Hajj. Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) performed Hajj and taught the people the rites of Hajj, and said, "Take your rites of pilgrimage from me." He made the standing in Arafah in a specific place, at a specific time, the ninth day, and he made the night-stay in Muzdalifah on a particular night, and he made the Day of Sacrifice, and the days and nights of Tashreeq in a particular time and place. He also made the Tawaaful-Ifaadah at a particular time, and he laid down a particular place for the Sa'ee between Safaa and Marwaa, its starting point and finishing point were laid down. So if a Jamaa'ah wished to change any of these rites and alter their time or place, for example saying, "We want the Tawaaful-Ifaadah to be performed on the ninth day, and to be done between Safaa and Marwaa, and we want to move the standing in 'Arafah to the eighth or the tenth day, and that it should be done in Muzdalifah or Minaa, and we want the sacrifice to be done in 'Arafah, or we want to bring some rites forward and delay others according to what will be helpful and according to the stituation of the pilgrims." Then would this be an Islamic Hajj, or would it rather be an evil distortion and a disfigurement of this rite?!!
3. The Main Point. Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) began his da'wah with tawheed , and likewise all the Messengers. He also used to command his governors and daa'ees to begin by calling to tawheed. There are many examples showing this, from them is his saying to Mu'aadh when he sent him to Yemen: "You are going to a People from the People of the Book, so let the first thing which you call them to be the testification that none has the right to be worshipped except Allaah. So if they accept that from you, then infrom them that Allaah has obligated upon them five Prayers in every day and night. So if they accept that then inform them that Allaah has obligated upon (them) a charity which is to be taken from their rich and given to their poor." 
So do you not see that it was an organised call and an ordered Sharee'ah?! It begins with the most fundamental principle and then moves on to what is next in importance, then what follows in importance. So why do we fail to understand this precise organisation? Why do we fail to comply with it? And why do we understand that it is obligatory upon us to comply with the way laid and prescribed by Allaah and the precise organisation in matters of worship and its parts, but we do not understand the way laid down and prescribed by Allaah and the precise organisations in the field of da'wah, which was followed closely by all of the Prophets in succession? How is it that we make it permissible to act contrary to this great and fundamental methodology and to turn aside from it?! This is a very serious matter and the callers must re-examine their minds and change their standpoints. Has the Islamic ummah, and in particular its callers, benefitted from this great methodology, the methodology of the Prophets, in giving importance to tawheed and in making it the starting point for their da'wah?!! The answer is that the state of the ummah is a very painful and bitter one. If a person were to die due to pain and grief at this dark and painful situation, then that would be fully appropriate. How is that?!! Indeed many of the people of the ummah of Islaam, which includes its daa'ees and its thinkers, are ignorant of this methodology, and some of them merely pretend to be ignorant of it. The devils have come between them and have led them away from it. Instead they have taken up methodologies contrary to the methodology of the Prophets, methodologies which are disastrous for their religion and their wordly life. How appropriate is the saying of the truthful and trusted Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) to them, "You will certainly follow the ways of those who came before you, handspan by handspan, and cubit by cubit, even to the point that if they were to enter a lizard's hole you would enter it." We said, "O Messenger of Allaah, (do you mean) the Jews and the Christians?" He said, "Who else."  And his (صلى الله علیه وسلم) saying, "The Jews split into seventy one sects, and the Christians split into seventy two sects, and this ummah will split into seventy three sects, all of them in the Fire except one, and that is the Jamaa'ah."  And in a wording, "Which is that, O Messenger of Allaah?" He said, "That which I and my Companions are upon." 
So the people have become like the scum found upon the surface of flood-water just as Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) said, "It is about to happen that the nations invite one another to come upon you just as those invited to a meal come together to eat from the dish." So someone said, "Is that because of our small number on that day?" He said, "Rather on that day you will be many, but you will be like the scum found upon flood-water, and Allaah will pluck away fear of you from the hearts of you enemies, and Allaah will cast wahn into your hearts." Someone said, "And what is wahn?" He said, "Love of this world and hatred of death." 
Certainly they have become like the scum upon flood-water, and the nations have invited each other to attack them just as those invited to a meal come together to eat from the dish. They have attacked them within their own lands, humbled them, subjugated them, taken possession of them and their lands, plundered their riches, and corrupted their manners - all of this is a result of being far from the methodology prescribed by Allaah, the methodology of the Prophets. Then when fully submerged in this painful state and when it was too late, many people opened their eyes and awoke from their slumbers. So they began shouting out to the people, "Return to Allaah, for these are the ways to salvation." They began writing and delivering speeches, giving directions to the people, making plans and outlining the means to attain might, honour and salvation. Each of them strove and acted according to what appeared to them to be the truth. So I say in truth: They put forward a great deal in the field of manners, society, politics and economics, and they are many and represent a number of different orientations. If their efforts were united and they began with what the Messengers began with, and they earnestly strove to follow their methodology, then their ummah would escape from what it has fallen into and they would be able to reach what they desire. The most significant of these orientations are three:
The first is represented by a group who follow the methodology of the Messengers in its 'aqeedah and its da'wah, and who cling onto the Book of their Lord and the Sunnah of their Prophet, and who follow in the footsteps of the Pious Predecessors (as-Salafus-Saalih) in their 'aqeedah, their worship and their da'wah. This is the orientation which it is obligatory upon the Muslims to adopt, in obedience to the saying of Allaah, the Most High,
"And hold fast, all of you together to the Rope of Allah and be not divided." 
They must do this so that their efforts can achieve success and so that they attain the Pleasure of their Lord, and so that they achieve strength in order to attain the honour, nobility and success which they desire. A point to be held against them is that they have not expended the necessary monetary and physical efforts needed to broadcast the true da'wah, and have not presented the truth vigorously in the form of da'wah and publications such as benefit the rank and loftiness of their da'wah.
The second is represented by a group who direct their attention to some of the actions of Islaam, and are dominated by Soofee tendencies which have seriously undermined the 'aqeedah of tawheed in the souls of many of its followers, and have produced that which is to be held against them in their creed ('aqeedah) and their worship. Shaykh Taqiyyuddeen al-Hilaalee and Shaykh Muhammad Aslam, a graduate of the Islamic University, and others have written critiques directed to this group, and it is binding upon them to benefit from this and to return to the truth and the correct way.
The third, is represented by a group which directs its attention to the political, economic and social aspects of Islaam. It has put forward a good deal, and what they have forwarded is known by what is to be found in the libraries, upon the pulpits and in the Universities. They are to be thanked for the efforts they have expended. From the criticisms that need to be made of this orientation is that they have written a great deal in the political field in the name of Islamic Politics, and the call to the supremacy and authority of Allaah, and the establishment of the Islamic state. They urge the Islamic ummah, especially its youth, to devote all their efforts and to mobilize their potential in order to realise this goal. They use very forceful and captivating methods, so as to captivate the hearts and seize the minds. They have written a great deal of good and beneficial things in the field of Islamic economics and about the virtues of Islaam, such things as are needed by the ummah, particularly at this time, and this is something for which they deserve praise.  But at the same time they are to be criticised for the fact that while giving importance to these aspects, they have clearly neglected the right of 'aqeedah. So if they had directed the same vigour and importance to the correction of 'aqeedah upon the methodology of the Prophets, and had utilised their efforts and their pens to uproot practices of shirk and its manifestaions, and innovations, and false superstitions and fables, then they would have been able to achieve a great deal of good for Islaam and the Muslims, and they would have set about the matter in the correct manner. Then they would have truly been upon the methodology of the Prophets, 'alayhimus-salaatu was-salaam. So since their da'wah and their intellectual writings are as I have described, and I am one of the many readers of these writings, I wished to put forward some observations to the leaders of this orientation, bearing in mind the heavy responsibility which they bear before Allaah, Who said in the clear and decisive Aayaat of His Book,
"Remember when Allaah took the covenant from the People of the Book that they would explain it to the people and not hide it." 
This a duty to be done following the way of the scholars of this ummah and its sincere callers, beginning with the Companions and continuing right up to the sincere scholars of this present time. So I hope those who are inclined to this orientation will have good thoughts about their brother and share his feelings concerning the heavy responsibility which we bear before Allaah, and open their hearts to criticism which I hope will lay the foundation for and will lead to good and benefit the Islamic ummah. I also hope that they will understand that the Companions of Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) used to discuss some of his decisions with him and he would open his heart to discussion and would give up his own view if he saw that something else was more correct, from the view and opinions put forward by his Companions, and sometimes the Qur'aan was sent down in support of their views.
So from the greater leaders of this orientation is the thinker Abul-A'laa al-Maududi.  There are very serious and severe criticisms to be made concerning him, and it is not permissible for a Muslim who fears Allaah and respects Islaam, which raises its followers above veneration of people and their ideas, to remain silent about this. So from these criticisms are:
Firstly: He did not make the starting point of his da'wah the starting point of the Prophets, 'alayhimus-salaatu was-salaam, which was the call to tawheed, and to make all worship purely for Allaah, and to fight against shirk and its manifestations. This was despite the fact that his country which he grew up in is one of Allaah's lands having the severest need for the call of the Prophets, and the situation there greatly demands it. It is a land rooted in many centuries of idolatry, where idols, cows, rocks, monkeys and private parts are worshipped. In it are found the lowest, foulest and most despicable forms of idolatry. Then the Muslims in this land, except for a few of them, are some of those furthest removed from understanding Islaam and from tawheed. Their beliefs are greatly influenced by the beliefs of their neighbours, the idol-worshippers. How often a person will see an idol worshipped by the idolaters garlanded with flowers - and opposite it you will see a mosque of the Muslims containing a decorated tomb, likewise garlanded with flowers. Incense is burned around it and it is dressed with silk. The Muslims come to them with the utmost devotion, with extreme fear, humility and respect, along with their belief that the pious in the graves know the Hidden and the Unseen and have some control over the creation.  So have you ever seen a land upon Allaah's earth throughout history, in the present or the past, having a greater need for da'wah to tawheed than this land?!
Secondly: He gave most importance to the political aspects and this took up a very large proportion of his da'wah, and gave it a greater emphasis than that given to it by Islaam and which was understood by the scholars of the Salaf of this ummah, the scholars of hadeeth and Fiqh, and he laid down for himself and his followers a goal not laid down by Allaah and His Messengers, and which He did not make a duty upon them or their followers, since it is beyond human capability. Maududi said, speaking about this goal:
(a) "Perhaps it has become clear to you from our books and treatises that the final goal which we aim for in our present struggle is to cause a revolution overthrowing the leadership, and what I mean by that is that which we wish to attain and be successful in achieving in this world , is to purify the earth from the filth of wicked leaders and their supremacy, and to establish the system of pious and rightly-guided leadership (imaamate). So this continuous struggle and striving is seen by us to be the greatest and most effective way of attaining the Pleasure of the Lord, the Most High, and of seeking His Face, the Most High, in this world and the Hereafter." 
Hopefully the bright, intelligent and knowledgeable reader who memorises the Qur'aan and recites it during the night and at each end of the day, and considers the call of the Prophets, from the first to the last of them, will not know that this is supposed to be the goal of the Messengers for which they struggled. Nor will he understand that this striving and effort is the greatest and most effective way of attaining Allaah's Pleasure and seeking His Face. Rather the greatest and most effective way of attaining the Pleasure of the Lord is by following the methodology of the Prophets in their da'wah, and following in their footsteps by purifying the earth of corruption and shirk, and the greatest means is eemaan with its well-known pillars and Islaam with its pillars which are also well known.
Then  Maududi knows fully well the state of the people of India with regard to their ignorance of Islaam and the innovations and misguidance which they are upon. He knows full well that there is within them remnants of the beliefs, manners and customs of their previous religions. He has himself has spoken about this in his book "Waaqi'ul Muslimeen-wa-Sabeelun Nuhood-Bihim" (The State of the Muslims and the Means for their Revival), in a section in which he talks of the shortcomings and negligence of the rulers with regard to Islamic education, and that the institutions that are established for education only benefit the higher and middle levels of people. He said, "The ignorant and the deluded have continued in a state of total ignorance about the teachings of Islaam, deprived to a great extent of its effect of reform and rectification. The reason for this is that non Muslims used to enter into Allaah's religion as whole nations and tribes, but many of the false and futile practices and customs of the days of ignorance which they used to be upon before Islaam are still widespread amongst them today. Indeed not even their thoughts and beliefs have completely changed; so even now many of the beliefs of the mushriks remain and the false ideas which they inherited from the religions of their unbelieving forefathers. The most that can be said to have changed after they entered into Islaam is that they brought new gods into the history of Islaam. These were the same gods which they worshipped before, except that they chose new names using Islamic terminology for their ancient idolatrous actions.
"They then continued to behave as before, the only thing that changed was the outward appearance. If you wish to see proof of what I say, then closely examine the religious state of the people of one area of your land, and then look into history and research the religion which the people of this area used to practice before Islaam. You will realise that there are many things which are very similar, in both beliefs and actions, to the previous religion except that they have taken on a different form and appearance. So those areas in which the Buddhist religion, for example, was found before Islaam, and where the people used to worship relics of Buddha: here there would be one of his teeth, there would be some of his bones and so on - which would be worshipped by the people, and from which they would seek to derive blessings. Then today you will find that the people in those areas do the same thing with the hair from the head of the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم), or with his footprints, or they seek blessings from any relics left behind by the righteous Muslims and worshippers from amongst them. Likewise if you were to examine many of the practices and customs which have found their way into the Islaam practiced by some tribes, and were then to see the practices and customs of the non Muslim people of the same tribes - you would find that there is very little difference between them. Is this not a clear proof that those who were in charge of the Muslims and their social affairs in past generations fell far short of their duty in that they did not aid and assist those who strove individually to propagate Islaam..." 
So Maududi was fully aware of the state of his land. He knew its history, and he knew the extent to which the beliefs of the Muslims were connected to and influenced by the beliefs of their forefathers and indeed present day idolaters. Then he criticised the Muslim rulers of the past for falling short in their duty of propagating Islaam, and failing to assist those individuals who strove to propagate Islaam, and for failing in their duty of establishing Islamic education. So this profound understanding should have lead him to see the strength of the methodology of the Prophets in calling to tawheed, and that all worship should be made purely for Allaah, and in concentrating upon giving importance to the Muslims' 'aqeedah in order to save them from the claws of the shirk of Hinduism, Buddhism and their like. Indeed it was upon him that he should desist from opposing the callers to tawheed at the very least - if he was not going to assist them with the strength he was given in da'wah and writing - and that he should assemble his followers in this field instead of applying huge resources in the field of politics and economics. Furthermore, if the people were to die having certainty upon all of his books written about politics and economics, then would that save them from the idolotary which they are upon, and then would that save them from the Fire.
Then with whom will he establish the system of righteous and rightly guided rulership  when he has opened up the doors for anyone to enter into his Jamaa'ah and organisation. The door is open for the Bareilawi - the extreme grave worshipper, and for the Raafidee Shee'ah, and for the Deobandi, and for the Salafee - so that the sick are mixed with the healthy. Then the result of this, as is seen, is that sickness overcomes them all and its germs are spread to the healthy, so at the very least their tongues and pens are afflicted and become paralysed and unable to give da'wah to and write concerning tawheed and the Sunnah, and unable to fight against innovation and shirk. This is one of the results of this form of gathering together and the programmmes and outlines laid down for it. So will the like of these people be able to purify the earth from corruption, and to establish the system of righteous and rightly guided rulership, which in his view the Companions of Muhammad (صلى الله علیه وسلم) were not able to establish after the four rightly guided Caliphs, nor were the sons of the Muhaajiroon and the Ansaar: since Maududi holds - and in that he is following the severest enemies of the Companions and those who love and ally themselves with them - that rulership after 'Uthmaan and 'Alee was based upon principles of the days of ignorance instead of the principles of Islaam. So if the rulership of those whom Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) and his rightly guided Caliphs and his noble Companions were pleased with was a rulership based upon principles of the days of ignorance, then what can we expect from an organisation (jamaa'ah) which gathers the most alien orientations and the furthest of them away from the way of the Prophets.
(b) And he said, "One of the reasons for regret is that we see the people today, all of them, the Muslims and the non-Muslims, are heedless of this thing that we have made our goal and have set our sights upon. As for the Muslims, then it is because they regard it as a purely political goal, and they hardly realise its status and importance in the religion. Then as for the non-Muslims due to their being brought up with blind hatred towards Islaam, and their ignorance and lack of knowledge about its teachings, then they certainly do not know that the leadership of the wicked and evil-doers is the source of all disasters and calamities that afflict mankind, and that the well-being and happiness of mankind rests solely upon the reins of authority over the wordly affairs lying in the hands of the righteous and just." 
That which he takes as his goal and the goal of his followers and what they set their sights upon is something important, but it is something other than the goal of the Prophets. But rather what is greater and more deserving of attention is to strive for the guidance of the people, and to call them all, the weak and the strong, to tawheed. This was the goal of the Prophets and those who seel to rectify the affairs.
As for his saying, ' "The leadership of the wicked and evil-doers is the source of all disasters and calamities that afflict mankind..."
Then I say: This may be one reason and alongside it are other causes: the unbelief of the nations in Allaah, and their commission of shirk, and their rejection of the guidance brought by the Prophets.
Allaah, the Most High, says:
"And when We wished to destroy a town (of transgressors) We ordered those in authority to be obedient, but they were disobedient and transgressed, so Allaah's threat of punishment became certain for them, so we destroyed them totally." 
He, the Most High, says:
"And any misfortune which strikes you in this world in your selves, family and wealth, then it is as a punishment from Allaah for the sins which you have committed, and your Lord forgives many of your sins and does not punish you for them." 
He, the Most High, says:
"And how many towns transgressed against the orders of their Lord and His Messengers, so We gave them a severe reckoning and punished them with a tremendous and terrible punishment (Hell-fire)." 
So because of transgression of the people, the rulers and the ruled, the rich and the poor, Allaah sends disasters, misfortunes and calamities upon them. He sends upon them wars of destruction, deadly diseases, devastating famines, thunderbolts, torrents, removal of blessings from the earth and so on. Then the worship of idols present in India and elsewhere is more hateful to Allaah and to His Prophets and the righteous rectifiers than the oppression of the rulers, even though it also serious and hateful to Allaah.
Therefore you see what Ibraaheem said:
"And keep me and my sons away from worshipping idols. O my Lord they have indeed caused the misguidance of many people." 
It was in his time that the most oppressive, arrogant and corrupt ruler lived. But Ibraaheem, 'alayhis-salaam, took as his goal the call to tawheed and the obliteration of shirk. So when the word of tawheed becomes manifest and the voice of shirk is wiped out then the condition of the people, both the rulers and the ruled, is rectified.
(c) He also said, "So if someone today wishes to purify the earth and change the corruption to well-being, unrest to security, corrupt manners to righteous manners, sins to good deeds, then it will never be enough for him to call them to good, and to admonish them to have taqwaa and fear of Allaah, and to encourage them upon good manners. Rather it is a duty upon him to gather what he is able with regard to the resources of righteous people, and form them into an organised group and a strong community, such as will enable him to snatch the reins of authority from those who are in charge of the civilisations in this world, and bring about the revolution aspired for, to attain leadership of the world and rulership (imaamate)." So how is it that these people in a sorry condition turn away from the methodology of the Prophets, and leave alone the most severe sickness afflicting the nations, which is shirk? They take no notice of this, and instead they want to gather righteous people into organised groups and a strong community, in order to attain what they have laid down as their goal and have set their sights upon! So tell me, by your Lord, where will these resources of righteous people come from when we have conceitedly turned away from the 'aqeedah of the Prophets and their methodology in raising the people (tarbiyah) and in da'wah?! Will they fall down from the sky for us?!
(d) Then al-Maududi says, '"Indeed the matter of leadership and rulership is the most important matter in human life and the most fundamental principle. Then the importance of this matter and its seriousness is not something new to this age, rather it is something which is tied to human life and which human life is dependent upon since the most ancient of times, and what an excellent witness to this is the common saying, 'The people are upon the religion of their kings.' So because of this it is reported in the hadeeth, 'The scholars of the ummah and its leaders are the ones responsible for its well-being or its corruption.'  " 
This is the view of this great thinker! Whereas I bear witness before Allaah that if I had merely heard it reported by a truthful person I would have thought that he was perhaps mistaken in attributing it to this thinker. But what can I or anyone else say when it occurs in his book, al-Usasul-Akhlaaqiyyah lil-Harakatil-Islaamiyyah, which he gave as a lecture to a gathering of the committee members of the Islamic University and its helpers and those influenced by it. He gave the talk in a crowded conference more than forty years ago, and the people, particularly his followers, circulated it whilst giving it a warm welcome and respecting it, from that day till this.
But in reality the most important matter is that which all of the Prophets, 'alayhimus-salaatu was-salaam, came with, and that is the matter of tawheed and eemaan. This is summed up by Allaah, in His Saying:
"We did not send any Messenger before you, O Muhammad (صلى الله علیه وسلم), except that We revealed to him that none has the right to be worshipped except Allaah, so make all of your worship purely for Him." 
"We sent a Messenger to every nation, ordering them that they should worship Allaah alone, obey Him and make their worship purely for Him, and that they should avoid everything worshipped besides Allaah." 
"And We have revealed to you, O Muhammad (صلى الله علیه وسلم), and to the Messengers before you that if you commit shirk with Allaah then your actions will be nullified and you will be one of those destroyed. Rather worship Allaah alone, and be one of those thankful for Allaah's favours, of being guided to worship Him alone, and being free of worshipping idols and false gods." 
This is the most important matter and because of it occurred the struggle between the Prophets and the misguided nations, and due to it those who drowned were drowned, those who were destroyed were destroyed, those who were swallowed up in earthquakes were swallowed up, and those who were punished were punished, and we have already quoted the many proofs for this in what has preceeded, so refer to that.
(e) Then he says, "The true goal of the religion is to establish the system of righteous and rightly guided leadership (imaamate)" 
I say, rather the true goal of the religion, and the purpose for the creation of Jinn and mankind, and the purpose for the sending of the Messengers, and the sending down of the Books, is the worship of Allaah, and that all the religion (Deen) be made purely for Him. Allaah, the Most High, says:
"Alif Laam Raa. This is the Book whose Aayaat are perfected and free from falsehood, and fully explained, from the One All-Wise, and All-Knowing. Making clear that you should worship none but Allaah alone, attributing no partner to Him. Say, O Muhammad (صلى الله علیه وسلم), to the people, 'I am a warner to you from Allaah, warning of His punishment for those who disobey Him and those who worship the idols, and a bringer of good tidings of His reward for those who obey Him and make worship purely for Him.'" 
So since this is Maududi's view of leadership, rulership and imaamate, i.e. that it is the true goal of the religion and is the most important matter in the life of mankind, and the most fundamental principle, then it is fitting here that I quote Shaykhul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah's refutation of Ibnul-Mutahhir al-Hullee, one of the Imaamee Raafidees, who went to extremes and beyond bounds with regard to the matter of imaamate. Shaykhul-Islaam said, "The Raafidee author said, 'To proceed, this is a noble treatise and fine saying, comprising the most important of the rulings of the religion, and the most excellent of all the affairs of the Muslims, which is the issue of imaamate, which causes through its attainment the achievement of the level of highest esteem, and it is one of the pillars of eemaan, which produces the right to everlasting life in Paradise, and freedom from the Anger of the Most Merciful...'  (So Shaykhul-Islaam, rahimahullaah, said) So it is to be said that speech with regard to this is necessary from a number of angles:
Firstly: That it is to be said: One who says that the question of imaamate is the most important of the rulings of the religion is a liar according to the consensus (ijmaa') of the Muslims, both the Sunnis and the Shee'ah. Indeed it is kufr (unbelief) since the matter of eemaan in Allaah and His Messenger is more important than the question of the imaamate, and this is something known necessarily from the religion of Islaam. So the unbeliever does not become a Believer until he testifies that none has the right to be worshipped except Allaah, and that Muhammad (صلى الله علیه وسلم) is the Messenger of Allaah. This was what Allaah's Mesenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) fought the unbelievers for, firstly, as is well-reported in the Saheehs and elsewhere, that he said, "I have been ordered to fight the people until they testify that none has the right to be worshipped except Allaah, and that I am the Messenger of Allaah, and they establish the Prayer, and pay the Zakaat. So if they do that then their blood and their wealth is safe from me, except due to a right pertaining to it.'" 
"And Allaah, the Most High, says:
"So when the Sacred Months are completed then kill the Mushriks wherever you find them on the earth, and take them captive, and prevent them from travelling freely in the land, and seek to ambush them wherever possible. But if they repent and leave their worship of others besides Allaah and their denial of Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم), and instead make their worship purely for Allaah, upon tawheed, and they establish the Prayer, and pay the Zakaat, then leave their way free." 
"So this is what 'Alee, (رضي الله عنه), proclaimed when he (صلى الله علیه وسلم) sent him, and likewise the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) used to come across the unbelievers, and he would safeguard their blood merely due to their repenting from kufr; he would never make any mention of the imaamate to them. And Allaah, the Most High, says after this:
"So if they repent from their unbelief and their shirk, and they establish the Prayer, and pay the Zakaat, then they are your brothers in the religion (Islaam)." 
"So He made them brothers in the religion due to repentance. So the unbelievers in the time of Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) when they became Muslims, then the rulings of Islaam became operative upon them. The imaamate was never mentioned to them. No one from the people of knowledge reports such a thing from Allaah's Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم), neither through a report with limited sources, nor a report widely reported. Rather we know by necessity that the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) had not used to make any mention of the imaamate, neither generally nor specifically, so how can it be the most important matter from the rulings of the religion...
"Secondly: It should be said: eemaan in Allaah and His Messenger is more important than the question of imaamate in every time and place. Indeed the imaamate will neither be the more important, nor the more excellent at any time.', '"Thirdly: It should be said: It would have then been obligatory upon the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) to explain it to his ummah remaining after him, just as he explained to them the matters of the Prayer, the zakaat, fasting and hajj, and just as he precisely explained the matters of eemaan in Allaah, and tawheed of Allaah and the Last Day. And as is known the question of the imaamate is not explained in the Book and the Sunnah with the explanation given to these fundamental matters." Then he said, "Also, as is known, the most excellent of the affairs of the Muslims, and the most important matter in the religion has the right that its mention in the Book of Allaah, the Most High, should be more frequent and prominent than other things, and that the Messenger's explanation of it should take precedence over other matters. So the Qur'aan is replete with the mention of the tawheed of Allaah, the Most High, and with mention of His Names, His Attributes, His angels, His Revealed Books, His Messengers, the Last Day, narratives, orders and prohibitions, prescribed punishments and laws of inheritance, contrary to the case with the imaamate. So how can the Qur'aan be replete with other than that which is most important and most excellent? Also, Allaah, the Most High, has made success dependent upon that wherein there is no mention at all of the imaamate. So He says:
"So whoever obeys Allaah and His Messenger - by submitting to their commands, and being pleased with their judgement, and witholding from what they forbid, then he is with those whom Allaah has blessed with guidance and obedience in this World and with Paradise in the Hereafter - with the Prophets, their sincere followers who were upon their way, the martyrs and the righteous. And what an excellent Companionship in Paradise they are." 
"And He says:
"Whoever obeys Allaah and His Messenger, then Allaah will enter him into the Gardens of Paradise..., and whoever disobeys Allaah and His Messenger and transgresses the limits which He has laid down, then Allaah will enter him into the Fire in which he will remain forever and recieve a humiliating punishment." 
"So Allaah explains in the Qur'aan that whoever obeys Him and His Messenger will be successful in the Hereafter, and that whoever disobeys Allaah and His Messenger and transgresses the limits He has laid down, then he will be punished, and this is the difference between the successful and the miserable, and the imaamate is not mentioned.
"So if someone were to say, 'But the imaamate is part of the obedience to Allaah and His Messenger!' Then it is to be said, 'Its status can at most be like some of the obligatory duties such as Prayer, Zakaat, Fasting and Hajj, and other duties which are a part of obedience to Allaah and His Messenger. So how can it alone be the most excellent of all the affairs in the religion?!'" 
Shaykhul-Islaam says, "The fifth aspect is his saying, 'And it is one of the pillars of eemaan which produces the right to everlasting life in Paradise.' Then it is to be said: Who makes this a pillar of eemaan except for the people of ignorance and falsehood?! And we will speak, if Allaah wills, about what he mentioned concerning that. But Allaah, the Most High, has described the Believers and their condition, and the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) explained eemaan and mentioned its branches. And Allaah did not mention the imaamate nor did His Messenger, amongst the pillars of eemaan. As occurs in the authentic hadeeth, the hadeeth of Jibreel when he came to the Prophet (صلى الله علیه وسلم) in the form of a desert Arab and asked him about Islaam, eemaan and ihsaan. He (صلى الله علیه وسلم) replied, "Islaam is that you testify that none has the right to be worshipped except Allaah, and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah, and you establish the Prayer, pay the Zakaat, fast in Ramadaan and perform Hajj to the House." And he said, "Eemaan is that you have eemaan in Allaah, His Angels, His Books, His Messengers, the Last Day and the Resurrection after death, and that you have eemaan in Pre-Decree (qadr), the good and the bad of it." And he did not mention the imaamate. And he said, "Ihsaan is that you worship Allaah as if you were seeing Him, and even though you do not see Him, yet He certainly sees you." And the authenticity of this hadeeth is agreed upon, the scholars having knowledge of narrations are united in agreeing to its authenticity. It is also reported by the Compilers of the Saheehs through different chains, and it is agreed upon from the hadeeth of Aboo Hurayrah,  and it is reported by Muslim from the hadeeth of Ibn 'Umar.  And Allaah, the Most High, says:
"The Believers are only those who when Allaah is mentioned then their hearts tremor with fear, those who comply with His orders and are humble and submissive when He is mentioned, and when the Aayaat of His Book are recited to them their eemaan increases, those who have certainty that His judgement and decree is operative upon them and they do not place their hope in other than Him, nor fear other than Him. Those who correctly establish the Prayer, and spend of the welath which Allaah provided them with as He ordered and obligated upon them. They it is who are truly the Believers. For them are high ranks with their Lord and forgiveness and excellent provision in Paradise." 
"So He attested to the eemaan of these people without any mention of the imaamate. And Allaah, the Most High, says:
"The Believers are only those who truly believe in Allaah and His Messenger, and then do not doubt about that, and devote themselves to obedience to Allaah and His Messenger, not doubting about the duties made obligatory upon them by Allaah. Those who fight the Mushriks with their wealth and their selves, fighting them as ordered by Allaah so that Allaah's Word should be uppermost. They are the ones who are truthful in their saying that they are Believers." 
"So He declared them truthful in their eemaan without any mention of the imaamate. And Allaah, the Most High, says:
"It is not righteousness that you (O Jews and Christians) turn your faces to the east or the west, but rather righteousness is the righteousness of those who truly believe in Allaah and the Last Day and the Angels and the Book and the Prophets, and who give their wealth despite loving it to the near relatives, the orphans, the poor, the needy travellers, those who ask, and for freeing slaves. Those who correctly establish the Prayer and pay the Zakaat, and those who keep the Covenant which they have made. Those who patiently persevere upon obedience to Allaah and in avoiding disobedience to Him at times of need and times of illness. Those who remain firm at the time of fighting. They are those who are true in their eemaan and they are the ones who protect themselves from the punishment of Allaah, by doing what He has ordered and avoiding what He has forbidden." 
"And He did not mention the imaamate. And Allaah, the Most High says:
"Alif Laam Meem. This Qur'aan is the Book containing no doubt. It is a guidance for those who seek to avoid Allaah's punishment - by avoiding disobedience to Him and doing what He has commanded. Those who believe truly in the 'Hidden and Unseen' (al-Ghayb, i.e. Belief in Allaah, His Angels, His Books, His Messengers, the Last Day, the Resurrection, Paradise and the Hell-Fire etc.) and who correctly establish the Prayer, and spend out of the wealth which Allaah has provided them with - as Allaah ordered. Those who truly believe in the Revelation sent down to you (the Qur'aan) and the Revelation sent down to the Messengers before you, and those who are certain of the Hereafter. They are the ones upon guidance from their Lord, and they are the successful ones who attain Paradise and avoid the Fire." 
"So He declared that they are the rightly guided and successful, and He did not mention the imaamate.
"Furthermore, we know necessarily from the religion of Muhammad ibn 'Abdillaah (صلى الله علیه وسلم) that when the people used to enter into Islaam, their eemaan was not held dependent upon being aware of the imaamate. Nor did he make any mention of that to them. But as for whatever is a pillar of eemaan, then it is a duty upon the Messenger to explain it to the people of eemaan, so that they may have eemaan in it. So when it is known necessarily that this is something which the Messenger did not make a condition for eemaan, then we know that declaring it to be a condition for eemaan is one of the sayings of the people of falsehood. But if someone were to say, 'It enters within the general text, or it is arrived at through the principle that it is something essential for the completion of an obligation, or something indicated by a further text.' Then it is to be said: Even if all of this were correct, then it would at most mean that it was one of the matters pertaining to the details of the religion, not that it is a pillar of eemaan. Since the pillars of eemaan are the things which are essential for the attainment of eemaan, such as the two testifications of faith, so a person cannot be a Believer unless he testifies that none has the right to be worshipped except Allaah and that Muhammad (صلى الله علیه وسلم) is the Messenger of Allaah. So if the imaamate were a pillar of eemaan, and eemaan were not completed except with it, then it would have been binding upon the Messenger (صلى الله علیه وسلم) to explain it openly to the people in such a manner as to remove any excuse, in the way he explained the two testifications of Faith, and eemaan in the Angels, the Books, the Messengers and the Last Day. So how about when we know necessarily from his religion that the huge throng of people who entered into his religion, did not have the imaamate made a condition for eemaan upon any of them, neither in general nor in particular." 
I have given a lengthy quote from Ibn Taymiyyah, rahimahullaah:
- Due to his being one of the foremost scholars of the religion, and his standing and the trust which the people have for the strength and depth of his understanding of Islaam, and their belief in his sincerity.
- Due to the similarity between the claims of Maududi and the claim of the Raafidee Shee'ee. Indeed it is very unfortunate that the reader will see that the claims of Maududi are even greater than the Shee'ee who said, "It is the most important of the rulings of the religion,'  and he said, "And it is one of the pillars of eemaan." Whereas Maududi declared it to be, "The most important question in human life and the most important principle," and, "The most important goal of the Prophets," as will follow.
- My intention is to give sincere advice to the Muslim youth so that they may cling to the way and guidance of their Prophet, and from my advice to them is that they should not merely seek to make a comparison between Rabee' and Maududi, but rather they must raise the importance they give to the Qur'aan, the Speech of their Lord, and raise the importance they give to the Sunnah of their Prophet. Then they should not equate the speech of any human with them, no matter what position and status they hold. This is what is demanded by eemaan and is a proof of a person's sincerity.
 Reported by Ahmad (2/231) and Ibn Hibbaan, as occurs in al-Mawaarid (no.2137), both of them by way of Muhammad ibn Fudayl: from 'Umaarah ibn al-Qa'qaa: from Aboo Zur'ah: from Aboo Hurairah, radiyallaahu 'anhu. Al-Albaanee said in his as-Saheehah (3/4), "This is a chain of narration saheeh to the standard of Muslim, and it has a witnessing narration from the hadeeth of Ibn 'Abbaas reported by al-Baghawee in Sharhus-Sunnah (13/248-249) and its chain of narration is weak."
 Reported by al-Bukhaaree (Eng. trans. 9/6 no.12) and Muslim (Eng. trans. 3/925 no.4238).
 Reported by Ahmad in his Musnad (4/119-120), saying: Yahyaa ibn Abee Zakariyyaa ibn Abee Zaaidah narrated to us: My father narrated to me: from 'Aamir - meaning ash-Sha'bee, then he reported it with this chain of narration from Mujaalid: from 'Aamir ash-Sha'bee: from Aboo Mas'ood al- Ansaaree. Then he reports it with this chain of narration from Ismaa'eel ibn Abee Khaalid: from ash-Sha'bee who said, "Neither old men nor young men had heard a speech like it."
 Reported by Imaam Ahmad (3/322) who said, "'Abdur-Razzaaq narrated to us: Ma'mar related to us: from Ibn Khuthaym: from Abuz-Zubayr: from Jaabir, and (3/339): Ishaaq ibn 'Eesaa narrated to us: Yahyaa ibn Sulaym narrated to us: from 'Abdullaah ibn 'Uthmaan ibn Kuthaym: from Abuz-Zubayr: that he narrated to him from Jaabir..." and he mentioned the hadeeth. It is reported by Ibn Hibbaan in his Saheeh, as occurs in Mawaariduz-Zamaan (p.408), and al-Haakim (2/624) and he declared it saheeh and adh-Dhahabee agreed, and Abuz-Zubayr's narration is witnessed to by Imaam ash-Sha'bee, rahimahullaah: al-Bazzaar, rahimahullaah, said, "Muhammad ibn Ma'mar narrated to us: Qubaysah narrated to us: Sufyaan narrated to us: from Jaabir and Aboo Daawood, who is Abee Hind: from ash-Sha'bee: from Jaabir who said, 'Allaah's Messenger (sal-Allaahu 'alayhe wa sallam) said to the chiefs amongst the Ansaar, "You will shelter me?" They said, "Yes, then what is there for us?" He said, "Paradise."'"
 Reported by Muslim (Eng. trans. 4/1285 no.5917) from Aboo Hurairah and (no. 5918) from Sahl ibn Sa'd and its wording includes, "So they spent the night wondering which of them would be given it." and "A man who loves Allaah and His Mesenger, and who is loved by Allaah and His Messenger." and (no.5915) from Sa'd ibn Abee Waqqaas, and its wordiing is, "I will give the flag to a man who loves Allaah and His Messenger." He said, "So we hoped for that." And the reason for this was their eagerness for this high station before Allaah, not a desire for leadership itself. It is also reported by al-Bukhaaree (Eng. trans. 4/156 no. 253 and 5/43 no. 51).
 Reported by al-Bukhaaree (Eng. trans. 9/196 no.262) and Ahmad (2/4048). Ibn Hajar said in Fathul-Baaree (13/126), "'What a good wet nurse it is' due to the status, wealth and implementation of ones word that go with it, and attainment of physical and imagined delights that are enjoyed whilst it is attained, and, 'what an evil weaning one it is,' due to the cutting off of all these upon death or due to other causes, and due to the serious consequences of it in the Hereafter."
 Publisher's note: Also refer to "The Evil of Craving for Wealth and Status" by Haafidh Ibn Rajab (Al-Hidaayah Publishing and Distribution, U.K.).
 Reported by al-Bukhaaree (Eng. trans. 9/194 no.260) and Muslim (Eng. trans. 3/1013 no.4487).
 Reported by al-Bukhaaree (Eng. trans. 9/196 no.263), Muslim (Eng, trans. 3/104 no.4490) and an-Nasaa'ee (8/198).
 Fathul-Baaree (13/126).
 Soorah an-Noor (24):47-48.
 Soorah al-Mulk (67):14.
 Soorah al-An'aam (6):90.
 Soorah an-Nahl (16):123.
 Soorah Aal-'Imraan (3):95.
 Soorah an-Nisaa (4):59.
 Reported by al-Bukhaaree (Eng. trans. 6/116/no.148) and Muslim (Eng. trans. 2/426/no.1966 and 4/1485/no.6839) and Ahmad (2/257).
 i.e. physical resemblance. [Translator's Note]
 Ibn Hishaam said in his Seerah (1/76): Ibn Ishaaq said: And Muhammad ibn Ibraaheem at-Taymee narrated to me that Aboo Saalih as-Sammaan narrated to him that he heard Aboo Hurairah say: I heard Allaah's Messenger (sal-Allaahu 'alayhe wa sallam) say... and mentioned the hadeeth. So Ibn Ishaaq clearly states that he heard it directly, and the rest of the narrators are reliable so it is a hasan (good) chain of narration at the very least.
 Soorah at-Tawbah (9):29-30.
 Reported by al-Bukhaaree (Eng. trans. 6/85/no.105) and Muslim (Eng. trans. 1/117/no.352).
 Reported by al-Bukhaaree (Eng. trans. 1/345/noi.604, and 8/24/no.37, and 9/266/no.352), Muslim (1/327/no.1423), an-Nasaa'ee (2/8), ad-Daarimee (no.1256) and Ahmad (3/436), all of them from Maalik ibn al-Huwayrith, radiyallaahu 'anhu.
 Its reference has preceded.
 Reported by al-Bukhaaree (Eng. trans. 4/440 no.642 and 9/314 no.422), Muslim (Eng. trans. 4/1403 no. 6448) and Ahmad (3/84,89 and 94) from the hadeeth of Aboo Sa'eed from the Prophet (sal-Allaahu 'alayhe wa sallam). And Ibn Maajah (no.3994) and Ahmad (2/327) from the hadeeth of Aboo Hurairah. Muhammad Fu'aad said in az-Zawaa'id, "Its isnaad is saheeh and its narrators are reliable." Ibn Abee 'Aasim reports it in as-Sunnah (1/36,37) from the hadeeth of Aboo Hurairah, 'Abdullaah ibn 'Amr and Aboo Sa'eed, some of that being saheeh and some hasan.
 Reported by Aboo Dawood (Eng. trans. 3/1290 no.4580), Ahmad (4/102), ad-Daarimee (2/158) and al-Haakim (1/128) from the hadeeth of Mu'aawiyah, radiyallaahu 'anhu. Ibn Maajah (no.3993) from the hadeeth of 'Awf ibn Maalik. Ibn Abee 'Aasim reports it in as-Sunnah (1/32), and al-Albaanee said, "Its isnaad is good." Aboo Daawood also reports it (Eng. trans. 3/1290 no.4579), at-Tirmidhee (no.2640), Ahmad (2/332) and Ibn Maajah (no.3991) from the hadeeth of Aboo Hurairah. Ibn Abee 'Aasim also reports it (1/36) and al-Albaanee said, "It is saheeh." Ahmad reports it (3/120,145) from the hadeeth of Anas through two chains, and it has many witnessing narrations, some of which are to be found in as-Saheehah. Ibn Abee 'Aasim reports it in as-Sunnah (1/32) and al-Albaanee said, "The hadeeth is certainly saheeh since it has six chains of narration and witnesses reported from a group of the Companions."
 Reported by at-Tirmidhee (no.2641) from the hadeeth of 'Abdullaah ibn 'Amr ibn al-'Aas.
 Reported by Aboo Daawood (Eng. trans. 3/1196 no.4284), Ahmad (5/278) and Aboo Nu'aym in al-Hilyah (1/182). It also has a witness in the hadeeth of Aboo Hurairah, reported by Ahmad (2/359), so it is saheeh, and it is declared saheeh by al-Albaanee. Refer to as-Saheehah (no.958).
 Soorah Aal-'Imraan (3):103.
 I wrote these words at a time when my view was still obscured and deceived, and much of this has been uncovered and cleared, and it has become clear to me that most of what they have put forward is in reality harmful and injurious.
 Soorah Aal-'Imraan (3):187.
 Refer to the treatise, Ash-Shaqeeqaan: al-Maududi wal-Khomeini (The Two Brothers: Maududi and Khomeini), and you will see some of his deviated beliefs (p.17) and how he closely resembles the Raafidee Shee'ah, and how he has served their ideology, which is something acknowledged by the leader of the Shee'ah (p.31 and p.33).
 A person such as this is not termed a Muslim, unless he does it out of ignorance, and has not had the proof established against him. (al-Fawzaan)
 Al-Usasul-Akhlaaqiyah lil-Harakatil-Islaamiyyah, p.16.
 This portion of the text, beginning here until point (b), was missed from the printed Arabic version and was inserted upon the instructions of Shaykh Rabee' (the author) from his handwritten manuscript copy. [Publisher's Note]
 Waaqi'ul Muslimeen-wa-Sabeelun Nuhood-Bihim, pp130-132.
 What we say is something well known, and for those who do not know I will quote the following evidence. The Pakistani newspaper "The Jang" published an interview by Mahmood Ash-Shaam with the vice President of Jamaati-Islaami in Karachi, Professor Ghafoor Ahmad, on the 25th April 1984, and this is a translation of it: "What do you think of the people's opposition to Jamaati-Islaami on the grounds of madhhabs?" Professor Ghafoor Ahmad: "Yes, it is true that the Jamaa'ahs of madhhabs oppose us in many matters, indeed it seems that they do not think we are Muslims. However religious Jamaa'ahs should not make the religion a means to cause disagreements and separation. But the situation today is that the disagreements blaze away in the mosques also, on the basis of 'aqeedah, and this leads to disputes and arguments. As for the matter of beliefs ('aqaa'id) of the Jamaati-Islaami, then it contains individuals from the Ahlul-Hadeeth, the Deobandis, the Shee'ah and the Bareilawis. Furthermore, I myself am a Bereilawi, and the fact that a person is a Bareilawi does not prevent him from joining Jamaati-Islaami."
 Al-Usasul-Akhlaaqiyah lil-Harakatil-Islaamiyyah, pp.16-17.
 Soorah al-Israa (17):16.
 Soorah ash-Shooraa (42):30.
 Soorah at-Talaaq (65):8.
 Soorah Ibraaheem (14):35-36.
 I am very surprised at his using as proof for the most serious matter, the "most important matter," a common saying, and another saying whose author is unknown, which he thought was a hadeeth.
 Al-Usasul-Akhlaaqiyyah, pp.21-22.
 Soorah al-Ambiyaa (21):25.
 Soorah an-Nahl (16):36.
 Soorah az-Zumar (39):65-66.
 Al-Usasul-Akhlaaqiyyah, p.22.
 Soorah Hood (11):1-2.
 Minhaajus-Sunnah (1/20).
 Its sources have preceded.
 Soorah at-Tawbah (9):5.
 Soorah at-Tawbah (9):11.
 Soorah an-Nisaa (4):69.
 Soorah an-Nisaa (4):13-14.
 Minhaajus-Sunnah (1/28-29).
 Reported by Reported by al-Bukhaaree (Eng. trans. 6/285 no.300), Muslim (Eng. trans. 1/3 no.4) and Ibn Maajah (no.64).
 Muslim (Eng. trans. 1/1 no.1), Aboo Daawood (Eng. trans. 3/1315 no.4678) and at-Tirmidhee (no.2610).
 Soorah al-Anfaal (8):2-4.
 Soorah al-Hujuraat (49):15.
 Soorah al-Baqarah (2):177.
 Soorah al-Baqarah (2):1-5.
 Minhaajus-Sunnah (1/32-33).
 i.e. he did not say that it was the most important of the fundamentals of the Religion. [Translator's note]