True Monotheistic Concepts – Tawheed, Shirk, Islam
Based on a Document By: AbuBakr Karolia - December 26, 1999
Based on a Document By: AbuBakr Karolia - December 26, 1999
The term is derived from the three consonants root w-h-d, which serves as the vehicle for the basic concept of ‘oneness,’ or ‘unity,” along with the closely related ideas of ‘singularity’ and ‘uniqueness.’ These root letters are clearly apparent in the numerical adjective wahid [one]. In the words of the Qur`an:Your God is surely One.
(37:4) inna Ilaaha-kum-la-Wahid
The term Tawheed demands a lengthier translation, namely: “the realization-and-affirmation-of-Oneness. The Unity of God, the Divine Unity, Unity in its most profound sense. Allah is The Real, The Absolute. Allah is One in His Essence, His Attributes and His Acts. Before the existence of the universe there was nothing but The Creator.
The Qur`an declares that “Nothing is like Him” (42:11). Allah is omniscient and all-powerful. All of Allah’s attributes belong to Him exclusively. He is the first and there is no last but His oneness. He is the First without anything before Him. He is the Last without anything after Him. The end is with Him alone, and He is the End. He is All-Existing: with him there is no end. Allah is now as He was before. He is Eternal.
Tawheed can be viewed from the perspectives of:
- Tawheed al-Rububiyah – Unity of Lordship
- Tawheed al- Uluhiyah – Unity of Worship
- Tawheed al- Asma wa Sifaat – Unity of His Names and His Attributes
- Tawheed al Itabaa – Unity in the following the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him
Tawheed undoubtedly is the central theme and message of the Qur`an, the Book of Allah and it is repeated in many other verses.
The Arabs in Mecca and later the Jews in Medina inquired from Allah’s Rasul (SAW), who is Allah? Allah revealed in Surah Ikhlas (S: 112) as follows:
In the name Of Allah, The most Gracious, The Most Merciful.Say, Allah is One,
Allah The Everlasting, The Eternal,
He has not given birth and was not born,
And no one is comparable to Him
In another verse, Surah (chapter) 24:35, an image of spiritual discernment of Allah is mentioned,
Allah is the Light of the heavens and the earth……….. Light upon Light! And Allah guides to His Light whom He will.
These verses confirm the Unitary belief, which is the mainspring of Islam and the core of The Qur`an.
Further, only in total acquiescence in Allah’s good pleasure, renunciation of one’s own will, and surrender to His will and guidance is Tawheed made perfect. Allah’s absolute unity is the beginning and the end of the spiritual life for Muslims.
The Unity of Allah is a magnificent and a beautiful concept, and Muslims reaffirm their adherence to it many times a day. To acknowledge the fact of the “affirmation-of-Oneness” renew your faith by frequent invocation of “La ilaha illa llah” [there is non worthy of worship accept Allah] will be the means to eradicate Shirk
It is a powerful and effective concept for focusing and organising one’s worldview and epitomising a religious and psychological orientation and authentically expressive of an important facet of the spirit of Islam.
Shirk – Polytheism
The opposite of Tawhid is expressed by the Arabic term Shirk (polytheism), derived from the root Sh-r-k which conveys the notion of “sharing” or “partnerships.” The word Sharik (plural shurakaa) means “partner” or “associate.” It encompasses far more than the more blatant forms of idolatry and denial of Allah’s Unity. The term Shirk means associating partners with Allah, and the related term mushrik is applied to someone guilty of such polytheistic association.
Forms of Shirk:
Major Shirk Includes
- Shirk ad Du’a – invoking or supplicating to a false deity besides Allah
- Shirk al-Niyah wa Iraada wal Qasd – having the intention and determination to deliberately worship a deity other then Allah.
- Shirk at- Ta’a – obeying any created being against the command of Allah.
- Shirk al-Muhabbah – loving a created being or an object more than Allah
- Hidden Shirk as:Shirk al- khafi means the hidden, or covert, association of partners with Allah, the One and Only God. This is an insidious form of Shirk.
Minor forms of Shirk as:
Shirk ar- rea –carrying out religious acts for worldly gain, e.g. showing off.Shirk at- Tasmee – swearing by other then Allah.Allah says in the Noble Qur`an that Shirk is the greatest sin. (S 31: 14)He also says that He will forgive all other sins if He wishes, except Shirk (S 4: 49)Muslims must understand the term Shirk (polytheism) and be conceptually and practically clear that it is diametrically opposed to, Tawheed, the affirmation to the Oneness of Allah.
(Surrender, Submission, Obedience, Sincerity, Peace)
Islam is an Arabic word and its means ‘peace’ and submission. Peace from the root word Salaam.
Allah says in the Qur`an: ‘The only 'deen' ('way of Islamic religion' or 'way of life') approved by Allah is Submission….
(S 3: 19)
Submitting to the divine will and guidance of the One Creator Allah (SWT). Islam connotes total obedience and surrender of the entire creation that obeys the law of Allah.
The whole universe, therefore, literally follows the way of Islam.
Man through submission to the divine will and guidance of Allah, finds Peace in His Creator, peace within himself and peace with Allah’s creation.
The definition of Islam is grasped in a Hadith Qudsi, which explains the essence of the ‘divine’ plan. Allah says that He was a hidden treasure and wished to be known thus; He created Man and Jinn purely to worship Him. A clear understanding of this Hadith is the basis for all creation, which is love, obedience and worship of Allah.
Allah is the one God. He has no partner. He is All Powerful, Absolutely Just. He is The First, The Last and The Everlasting, He was when nothing was, and will be when nothing remains. He only grants life and knows what is in the Heavens and the earth. He knows what is in our hearts and listens to the entire creation. He sent all the prophets to guide man to Worship only Him.
Islam is the religion of Allah, which permeates peace:
Islam simply means Peace.
One who accepts and follows the way of Islam is known as a Muslim. Muslim is an adjective to Islam, which means Peaceful and one who submits to the divine, will and guidance to no other god (ilah) accept Allah.
One of Allah’s name is As – Salaam which means Peace.
A supplication by His creation is Ya – Salaam which affects and enables one to inculcate a character of Peace.
The daily greeting of Muslims and Angels are Peace be upon everyone.
Islam is a religion of Unity, which is in the affirmation of the Oneness of Allah; a Unity, which is a consistent message in the worship of Allah, forms the origin of creation.
Islam enjoys a unique distinction that it is not a product of a human mind. It’s message and meaning, that whosoever submits to the One Creator and follows the divine order of creation, recognising and submitting to His guidance and divine will, are Muslims. It’s a way from the beginning of creation to the end of the divine plan.
Islam is the natural religion of man, the way of nature; it is not associate with any one person, people, period or place. All Allah knowing and truth loving Men have believed and lived this religion. They were all Muslims as all the prophets from Adam to Nuh to Ibrahim to Musa to Essa to Muhammad on all be Peace were Muslims.
All of mankind, like all creatures are born Muslims and invariably obey the injunctions of Allah and Men is further bound as everything in creation to remain a Muslim.
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