Friday, December 14, 2007

Syirik in Al-Asma was-Sifat

Syirik in Al-Asma was-Sifat

Dr. Bilal Philips

In the name of Allāh, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful;
All the praise and Thanks is due to Allāh, the Lord of al-‘ālamīn. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allāh, and that Muhammad, Sallallāhu ‘alayhi wa sallam is His Messenger.

The Syirik in Al-Asma was-Sifat includes both the common pagan practice of giving Allah the attributes of His creation as well as the act of giving created beings Allah’s names and attributes.

A. Syirik by Humanization

In this aspect of Syirik in Al-Asma was-Sifat, Allah is given the form and qualities of human beings and animals. Due to man's superiority over animals, the human form is more commonly used by idolaters to represent God in creation. Consequently, the image of the Creator is often painted, molded or carved in the shape of human beings possessing the physical features of those who worship them.

Hindus and Buddhists worship countless idols in the likeness of Asian men and consider them manifestations of God in creation. Modern day Christian belief that Prophet Jesus was God incarnate; that the Creator became His creation is another good example of this type of Syirik. There have been many so-called great Christian painters like Michelangelo [d. 1565], who painted pictures of God as a naked old European man with long flowing white hair and beard on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel in the Vatican. These pictures have in turn, been held by the Christian world in the highest of esteem.

B. Syirik by Deification

This form of Syirik in Al-Asma was-Sifat relates to cases where created beings or things are given or claim Allah’s names or His attributes. For example, it was the practice of the ancient Arabs to worship idols whose names were derived from the names of Allah. Their main three idols were: Al-Laat taken from Allah's name Al-Elah, Al-'Uzza taken from Al-'Aziz and Al-Manat taken from Al-Mannan. During the Prophet Muhammad's era there was also a false prophet in a region of Arabia called Yamamah, who took the name Rahman which only belongs to Allah.

Among the Shi'ite sects is the Nusairiyah of Syria, who believe that the Prophet Muhammad's cousin and son-in-law, 'Ali ibn Abi Talib, was a manifestation of Allah and give him many of Allah's qualities. Among them is also the Ismai'ils also known as Agha Khanis who consider their leader, the Agha Khan, to be God incarnate? Also included in this category is the Druze of Lebanon who believes that the Fatimid Caliph Al-Hakim Bin Amrillah was the last manifestation of Allah among mankind.

Claims of Sufis [Muslim mystics] like Al-Hallaj that they have become one with God and as such exist as manifestations of the Creator within His creation may also be included in this aspect of Syirik in Al-Asma was-sifat. Modern-day spiritualists and mediums like Shirley Maclaine, J.Z. Knight, etc., often claim divinity for themselves as well as mankind in general. Einstein's Theory of Relativity [E = mc2, Energy is equal to mass times the square of the speed of light] taught in all schools is in fact an expression of Syirik in Al-Asma Was-Sifat.

The theory states that energy can neither be created nor destroyed; it merely transforms into matter and vice versa. However, both matter and energy are created entities and they both will be destroyed as Allah clearly states:

"Allah is the creator of all things..." [80]
"Everything in [the world] will perish..." [81]

The theory also implies that mass and energy are eternal having no beginning or end since they are supposed to be uncreated and transform into each other. However, this attribute belongs only to Allaah who alone is without beginning or end.

[MSA-USC Editor's note: Understand that the author is pointing out a flaw in an informal part of the theory of relativity, that is, that matter and energy are eternal. The author is not arguing against the mathematical relationship between these two, but rather against their independence from Allah's all-encompassing power - both creative and destructive.]

Darwin's theory of evolution is also an attempt to explain the evolution of life and its forms from lifeless matter without the intervention of God. One of the leading Darwinists of this century, Sir Aldous Huxley expressed this thought as follows:

"Darwinism removed the whole idea of God as the creator of organisms from the sphere of national discussion." [82]

And Allāh Almighty Knows best.

80 Surah Az-Zumar, 39:62.
81 Surah Ar-Rahman, 55:26.
82 Quoted in Francis Hatching’s, The Neck of the Giraffe, [New York: Ticknor and Fields, 1982], p.254 from Tax and Calendar, 1960, vol.111, p.45.


[Via MSA].

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