Sunday, 22 January 2012

Sectarianism and Religious Schools of Thoughts

It is a common practice to label various religious School of Thoughts as sects and as such they are condemned in the light of Quranic injunctions. In the succeeding lines, we will dwell upon the Quranic concept of sect/sectarianism and how it is different from other forms of grouping/ religious School of Thoughts.
 Quran states the concept of  sects/sectarianism as follow:
“And hold fast, all of you together, to the rope of Allah, and do not separate” (al-imran-103).
It is consensus among Islamic scholars that word ‘ rope’ used in this verse means Quran. There is also a saying of our Nabi (saw) in which Quran has been described as a link between ‘arsh’ and the earth. This Quranic verse is advising all Muslims to hold fast to Quran and not to be separated (tafarraqu); in other words, if any segment of Muslims  separate themselves from Quran, such an act is called by Quran as ‘tafarka’/sectarianism. It means merely division of Muslim society into various segments or religious Schools of Thoughts may not be labeled as sectarianism, as long as such religious Schools of Thoughts hold views/ beliefs on the basis of Quran and do not separate themselves from tenors of Quran.
 Grouping is based on something unique/peculiar to a group of people, which is missing in other groups of people. Quran approves of grouping of Islamic society within ambit of Quran.
“On the day when We call every segment of people (group) with their leaders, those whose record of deeds are given to their right hands will read the book and the least wrong will not be done to them(Isra-71).
From this verse, it is clear Quran approves of grouping of people; but this grouping has to be on the basis of Quran. 

As grouping is always based on peculiarity, grouping/religious Schools of Thoughts can have different views/ beliefs but they cannot have views/beliefs opposite to Quran. This is the basic difference between grouping approved by Quran and sectarianism not approved by Quran; grouping is based on various views but not opposite to tenors of Quran; but sectarianism is based on views which are opposite to Quranic tenors.

we can conclude that religious Schools of Thoughts (Hanfi, Shafi, Malki, Hanbali, Jafri) found in Islamic soceity  cannot be called as sects as long as they do not deviate from Quran. Merely having different opinions is not sectarianism, if such opinions are based on Quran. Having different opinions, based on Quran,  is called Grouping and Grouping is allowed in Quran. 

1 comment:

  1. we must learn about Quran, as a muslim we must fully aware aout every aspects of quran, so we must correct our thoughts,
    quran learning