The concept of Jihad and the Misconceptions of Contemporary Islamic groups
The concept of jihad is not a fundamental concept in religion, it is an imposition rather than an obligation, some even state that it’s voluntary; scholars also agree that it is impermissible without the consent of one’s parents and Imam, a thing repudiated by some misguided extremists who want to subject religious verdicts to their emotions and aspirations.
Although Jihad is primal in Islam, its prominence does not negate the prominence of other issues in the religion; perhaps, if you take a glimpse at the books of fiqh – from any of the madhhabs, you’ll notice that the Jihad section is enlisted right after the acts of the sections on worship and transactions and this demonstrates the awareness of the pious predecessors regarding its position.
Thus, this shows that the core issue in understanding this religion can never be a struggle for power or governance, which professor Mawdudi and Sayyid Qutb believed, and which was then espoused by sects who strayed and then repented except for the egotistical who regarded it one of the aspects of monotheism, though the Quran, Sunna and methodology of the predecessors did not mention any such concepts. Even more so, Professor Mawdudi insisted that Muslims for centuries never fathomed what he wrote in his book about the “the four terms” that are central in our religion and all religions: God, Lordship, worship and religion because they never understood its verdict.
Furthermore, speaking about fiqh of jihad in the books of the predecessors means that it is a variable issue based on effort, and not as some claim to be an issue linked to governance, and that it is the only method of reformation and Islamic revolution, disregarding education, development and construction, tolerance and other values of religion which are definitely not less important than Jihad. We notice as well, that fiqh books have become full of comments addressing the concept of jihad; especially during the eras of crisis such as: the Muslims’ retreat from Andalusia, Mongol attacks on the Islamic world, Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah’s era in which many fatwas were issued and modern colonial periods in Muslim countries.
And it goes without saying that a fatwa is not a fixed rule in the principles of jurisprudence, and is considered Ijtihad, which could be right or wrong, and is not included in the sections on the fundamentals of fiqh. Thus, we will try in this study, -in which we include “the false paper attributed to Ibn Taymiyya” – to trace out the causes behind the misconceptions about jihad based on the Tatar Fatwa that the Egyptian Islamic Group criticized, after espousing it in the assassination of late Egyptian president Anwar Sadat; they later regarded Sadat a martyr, and apologized for killing him, regarding his murder a great sin in spite of the fact that his assassination was considered an achievement at first .
The establishment of the concept
The first aspect of establishing jihad in contemporary Islamic discourse, is the scriptural aspect, as verses and hadiths in the Quran and Sunna affirm it and emphasize the virtues of martyrs, and how Allah assists the believers, and that it is in the name of Allah. Thus, the virtue of Jihad and its importance, is confirmed by the Prophet’s Hadith “(jihad is) the peak of Islam”, and it has also become synonymous with the broader expression “for the sake of Allah” (fi sabil-lillah). However ,when using the expression “for the sake of Allah”, it should include every rightful deed done for the sake of Allah Almighty, starting from inviting others to the religion, compassion for the needy, removing harmful objects from the road, and even stroking the head of an orphan.
The second aspect in the contemporary conception of jihad is the legacy of the historical glory of Islam and Muslims. Also, defiant and confrontational groups borrowed the concept (of a glorious past) to counter their opponent’s culture or heritage, which was left behind by them; as it regards Muslims communities’ social, political and cultural transformations a threat to its culture, a thing that was present in many phases of Islamic civilizations, especially in the two eras: the Abbasid and Fatimid, as cultural confrontation groups accused many of the educated elite and rulers of this sin, and initiated Islamic jihadism to battle them, as a pretext to restore Islamic state, especially after the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, in 1924. Thus, they resorted again to Jihad as if it’s the only method to restore Muslims’ glory, and not science, shura (agreement), justice, equality, or other values, which were emphasized by the Sharia more than the concept of battle.
Abu al-Hasan Nadwi, believes that « Islamic leadership requires accurate qualities, that can be summed in two words, namely: (ijtihad- diligence ), and (Jihad), these two simple words enriched with various meanings » (3) and notice that he started with diligence and did not start with jihad.
Furthermore, these powers emphasized that the restoration of the Islamic State, which called for one Caliphate, did not succeed in unifying the Muslim world, as in Caliphate conference in 1925, and other conferences, then turned the idea of one Caliphate, to the establishment of any Islamic state, governed by Sharia law in Qatar , to be the source of inspiration and revolution to others, a base from which mujahideen emerge, whether Iran after the Islamic revolution, or that Taliban; who collapsed after the events of September / September, in the perception of Al Qaeda and jihad .
And apostasy accusations were issued against those who refuted that , and the concept of jihad has become more effective in countering those who were charged of apostasy, and armed fundamentalist groups had to pursue, target and eradicate them!
Jihad in Quran
The term (Jihad) is more elaborate than the term (battle ), and perhaps the second expression was the equivalent of Muslims’ holy war against infidels in the Prophet’s time, but Quran’s term (Jihad) includes a more elaborate meaning than that of battle, which had been expressed by its verbal derivatives, such as ( fight – fighting), but jihad was always greater, and can even be used to refer to things other than fighting!
Quranic verses vary and include three categories, as commentators’ state:
First, the verses that legislated and authorized jihad, after it was unauthorized, Allah said : (Sanction (to fight) is given unto those who fight because they have been wronged; and Allah is indeed Able to give them victory) (Hajj 39), It is the first verse that was revealed to permit battle, as authorization in this verse is to defend, and not attack, for the cause of the permission is linked to the verse (because they have been wronged). Even more, Allah promises them of victory, as a reward for their belief and patience, and he didn’t urge them to fight under the pretext of others’ heathenry to convert their country to Islam, but instead was a response to injustice, and a victory for the oppressed. Secondly, the verses that incite fighting with money and soul , if justified reasons happen to be present, enlist the reason which is – according to some – a pattern of media war and psychological war against the enemy, and to raise morale, Allah said: (O Prophet! Exhort the believers to fight) ((Anfal 65). (Go forth, light-armed and heavy-armed, and strive with your wealth and your lives in the way of Allah).((Tawoba 41). ) (Allah hath bought from the believers their lives and their wealth because the Garden will be theirs )((Tawoba 111).(Think not of those, who are slain in the way of Allah, as dead. Nay, they are living. With their Lord they have provision.)((Al-Imran 169). (Make ready for them all thou canst of (armed) force and of horses tethered, that thereby ye may dismay the enemy of Allah and your enemy )((Anfal 60). In all these verses, it is noted that the word combat is direct, and is not expressed as Jihad.
Third: through the analysis of verses that identified fighting purposes, we apprehend that jihad is not legislated for the cause of domination, vengeance , aggression and terrorism, but rather, to counter injustice and aggression, and bring victory to the oppressed … Etc., and we enlist these verses to deduct the following:
1.) (Fight in the way of Allah against those who fight against you, but begin not hostilities. Lo! Allah loveth not aggressors.) ((Baqara 190)The condition here takes place as long as there isn’t any initiated assault by Muslims, for the principle here, is that Allah Almighty( does not love aggressors ).
2.) (They question thee with regard to warfare in the sacred month. Say: Warfare therein is a great (transgression), but to turn (men) from the way of Allah, and to disbelieve in Him and in the Inviolable Place of Worship, and to expel His people thence, is a greater sin with Allah; for persecution is worse than killing. And they will not cease from fighting against you till they have made you renegades from your religion) ((Baqara 217)Hence, battle is a serious matter , and if it weren’t for Muslims facing assaults on their religion, Allah wouldn’t have permitted it.
3.) (How should ye not fight for the cause of Allah and of the feeble among men and of the women and the children who are crying: Our Lord! Bring us forth from out this town of which the people are oppressors! Oh, give us from thy presence some protecting friend! Oh, give us from Thy presence some defender! )((Annesa 75).
4.) (So, if they hold aloof from you and wage not war against you and offer you peace, Allah alloweth you no way against them) ((Annesa 90).
5.) (How (can there be any treaty for the others) when, if they have the upper hand of you, they regard not pact nor honor in respect of you? They satisfy you with their mouths the while their hearts refuse) ((Tawoba 8), Thus, battling infidels may be justified, if they happen to break their treaties with Muslims, that is if fighting was less harmful than not fighting them.(And if they break their pledges after their treaty (hath been made with you) and assail your religion, then fight the heads of disbelief – Lo! they have no binding oaths – in order that they may desist.) ((Taowba 12).
6.) (Sanction (to fight) is given unto those who fight because they have been wronged; and Allah is indeed Able to give them victory* Those who have been driven from their homes unjustly only because they said: Our Lord is Allah – For had it not been for Allah’s repelling some men by means of others, cloisters and churches and oratories and mosques, wherein the name of Allah is oft mentioned, would assuredly have been pulled down. Verily Allah helpeth one who helpeth Him. Lo! Allah is Strong, Almighty * Those who, if we give them power in the land, establish worship and pay the poor-due and enjoin kindness and forbid iniquity. And Allah’s is the sequel of events. )((Haj 39-41).
Furthermore, the verses of Jihad in Quran emphasize that jihad is not an obligation, unless certain conditions and circumstances are met, such as obtaining empowerment over land to establish prayer, pay alms, as illustrated by this last verse, and no verse nor Hadith commanded Muslims to fight without listing conditions and justifications for battle, which makes the so-called demanded jihad, (meaning always seeking the enemy in contemporary cultural language) an unlikely matter, as we’ll explain later on.
Jihad in the books of jurisprudence:
The first Jihad books, which identified the provisions of battle, and how Muslims behave during combat, appeared in the eighteenth and nineteenth century, as some scholars set foundations of what has become known as the Islamic jurisprudence regarding war.
Based on Quran and Sunnah, particularly the battles fought by the Prophet, peace be upon him, scholars sought to justify rules and principles that have been espoused during this conquest, instead of just resorting to religious texts. Imam Abdul Rahman Ouzai in Sham, stressed that Jihad with The Prophet peace be upon him, was an individual obligation upon his companions who were present; after his death, it became a communal obligation. Imam Malik ibn Anas opposed sudden overnight assaults (to attack the enemy at night), and Ibn Rushd, narrated that Malik opposed battling Ethiopians, due to the severe consequences it might lead to, Maalik said «refrain from fighting Ethiopians as long as they refrain » (), Ibn Rushd said: Malik was asked about the validity of this statement, but he did approve of it, and said people will still prefer invasion.
Moreover, Imam Shafii, considered Jihad an obligation of efficiency, meaning that Muslims who battle must be adequate in numbers that would help them conquer infidels, or until people of scriptures pay their taxes. Shafei differs in the jihad issue from other scholars, especially from Hijaz scholars, in that he considers shirk as the only justification for Jihad, and not assault against Muslim, as jihad aims to make Islam prevail over other religions. However, he who has an integral impact in the development of the doctrine of jihad, it is undoubtedly Ibn Taymiyyah, who had great popularity in the twentieth century, among those belonging to political or mobile Islam, as we’ll demonstrate in our reading of the book: (absent obligation).
Likewise, the logic of power and glory among nations in history, kept impacting the perception of the concept of Islamic Jihad, obligated by Allah on Muslims, an aversion to it. Thus, when a nation espouses the principle of victory upon others, it tends to invade neighboring countries, confront the powerful, and in rare cases spread cultural influence, perhaps a few exceptions in conquests of the Prophets of Israel (Joshua, David, and Solomon), but may come later on, as in Alexander’s conquests, who disseminated his Hellenistic culture, which combines Hellenic (Greek), and eastern cultures. However, in the history of Islam, the call to Islam, was always the primal motive, rather than tax or battle, as the aim of the call to Islam was originally a fundamental objective, rather than spoils of war, gaining empowerment , except to those who approve of the logic of war.
Thus, the concept of jihad in the Islamic perspective, is mainly a call for Islam, proportional to the power-ups of the Muslim community structure, that is weakened by oppression, and its transformation from a tormented group in Mecca to a nation, through migration – to Medina, an entity lead by the prophet. Also, immigration was an obligation on every Muslim, then was negated after the conquest, as the prophet said, «there is no migration after the conquest, but Jihad and intentions» obligating Muslims to battle infidels, which is a dislike to them, after it was just preferable, then the state phase, where conquests expanded outside of the Arabic Island, and later on came the struggle for sovereignty and governance after the Rashidi era, as the struggle for power between dominant Muslim sects over the Imamate took place, and legislated jihad to support the religion of Allah. This legitimacy increased, as the nation was in self-defense mode, such as the collapse of Andalusia, crusades, Mongol invasions, and finally in the modern colonialism era, which began with the French invasion of Egypt in 1798, then the subsequent invasion of other Islamic countries.
Jihad in this extended history, referred to battle and confrontation, and is divided into two parts:
First: Demandable Jihad: that was provoked by Muslims’ passion and enthusiasm , which helped them, within fifty years, conquer the largest empires in ancient history, the Persian and Roman empires, transforming Arabs – thanks to Islam – from shepherds to people of nations.
Second: defensive jihad: that was their method to liberate their countries, holy lands, and counter assaults, in deterioration eras, old and modern.
Before going further, in this study, which traces the development of the concept of jihad in contemporary Arabic and Islamic thought, starting from Muslim reformation heritage in Jamal al-Afghani and Muhammad Abduh, to the Egyptian Islamic Jihad group Mufti, and it’s leader Mohammed Abdel-Salam Faraj, the architect of the assassination of Sadat Fatwa. We will refer to some explanatory statements which enable us to fathom the concept, as this study does not only seek to date or compare between Islamic reformation Schools, and contemporary Islamic schools, represented by Jihad groups and al-Qaeda, as far as it is aimed at the detection of a valid concept for the term jihad, repositioning it in the system of religion, as well as consciousness, without being over- emotional or unfair as in the case of some fanatics.
Aspects of concept distortion:
Our study emphasizes that the clarity of the concept of jihad, as the Holy Quran and Sunnah stated, has been deformed due to three crucial aspects:
First: infinite conflicts between Muslims and their enemies, as there is a historical load of fake and real conflicts, internal and external, between Muslims on one hand, and others on the other, or between true Islam and heretical Islam, a load that extends from the prophecy era, to the conquests era in the Islamic domination periods, until the defeats’ age in deterioration periods, as manifested in the Crusades and Mongolism, to the colonialism and imperialism era, and to this day. Hence, these historical loads utilized this concept as a tool to expand religion, and conquer countries, which is not true according to any in-depth historical reading, since a country like Egypt did not become an Islamic country until two hundred years after its conquer, and attempting to pressure people to change their belief has always proved unfeasible, or at least works on certain minorities .
Furthermore, many countries have been conquered; Persian, Roman, Islamic, empires, yet their peoples never converted to the religion of the victors. As Thomas Arnold mentions in his book (the call to Islam), colonized Islamic communities didn’t convert to the religion of the colonizer, from the Salagek Turks in the eleventh century, or Mongols in the thirteenth century, but instead was overwhelmed with the colonized religion (Islam), although people usually tend to convert to the religion of the victorious.
Some rulers have even sought to entice communities and people to convert to their religion, as – for example – Shah Abbas Safawi did, founder of Safawi state and Safawi Shiism in Iran, where he sought to convert Isfahaan’s Jews to Islam, by paying every converting Jew, four Tomanat, which a lot of Jews accepted and took at first, pretending to accept Islam, but when the Shah – After a brief period – realized that they converted out of fear, and not belief , he allowed them freedom of religion. Hence, this demonstrates that using jihad as a method to spread Islam, is a wrong notion, promoted by jihadists, and enemies of Islam itself, without the accountability of intellect or historical reference.
Second: explosive interpretive statements – old and new – helped the concept of jihad iconography, transfixing it to historical contexts, as a jihad against heretical creeds, other sects, enemies of the nation, such a flexible descriptions that can be applied to anyone, if they will, that might provoke conflicts of civilizations, religions, and sects, though it has a deeper basis, as it is religiously deeper than Bin Laden’s speech on the two factors : faith and disbelief factors.
Third: a modern factor, is the collapse of caliphate, with the collapse of The Ottoman Empire in 1924, which represented both unity and Islamic state, symbolically at least. Although the occupation of most of Islamic countries was during its time, but many interpreters called for the Study of the Imamate of history, to use it to promote the need for caliphate retrieval. Thus, they began to politicize religion, and the logic of jurisprudence (prevail and overcome) emerged, a method issued by the loser in refuting anyone who does not approve of his logic. (10)
Likewise, these three factors distorted the concept of jihad, yet the Islamic reformation school, represented by Afghani, Abdu and others, has focused on refuting these misconceptions, so that the concept of Jihad reverts back to its rightful meaning, this school was engrossed in finding answers for the eternal question : ‘Why did we regress, while others progressed?’ , a question that initiated Renaissance, and we like to emphasize that this question and in this format did not begin – as several authors confirmed – with Shakib Arslan and his book that has the same title, as this question has been known for at least four decades – as inducted – before his book has been published .
Islam is not just Jihad:
The iconography of jihad, from being the call for religion and compassion, to a revolution against history, endangers both religion and nations, Indeed, according to this view, the Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him, wouldn’t have been the symbol of mercy, but a symbol of a revolution, initiated by the sword, as Abdullah Azzam said: “this religion came with a blade, and was established with a blade, and remained with a blade, and is lost without a blade, and this religion is the religion of fear, power, intimidation, and weaknesses is a crime whose owner is worthy of Hell”(12) or as the Salafi Jihadist theory, Abu Muhammad al-Maqdisi, and Sheikh al-Zarqawi, emphasize on the revolutionary perceptive of the Islamic Call, by saying: “had the call of the Prophet peace be upon him, been merely a call of reformation to some of the problems of society, and only engaged in programs to fight poverty, corruption, and underdevelopment, and dependency, and other things that advocates of rationality claim, without declaring his innocence of idolaters , and without being distinguished with his believers from the enemy and infidels, for he says to them(Allah said: (O disbelievers! * I worship not that which ye worship;:) ((Kaferoon 1-2); for the torment he and his companions went through , migration, leaving behind their loved lands”.
An idol to Issam Barqawi is ‘all that is worshiped instead of Allah, the Almighty, and is satisfied with the worship,’ and the most prominent examples in this time are , rulers who legislate with Allah , and govern with man-made laws. (13)
Following with that, Mawdudi and Sayyid Qutb’s approaches, who we can say : They redefined the system of religion as a whole, whether in the first book “the four terminologies” or in other Qutbs’ books in prison phase, which Abu al-Hasan Nadwi criticized in his book (political interpretation of Islam ). Nadawi mentioned in his introduction that Mawdudi agreed with him on what he criticizes him for, before his death in 1978 -, and asked him to trace such errors in the rest of his books.
Likewise, Islamic land is the home of Muslims, and is not attributed to overriding verdicts, as modern jihadists aim for, for if we happen to apply this meaning, many Muslim lands that prohibit females from inheritance, or that do not take into account the law of Allah in verdicts, will be regarded as non-Islamic lands . Therefore, lands – in our opinion – are attributed to their owners, rather than provisions.
Moreover, it is unscientific to say: that Islam is a spiritual religion and not terrestrial, as it is unhistorical to say: The provisions of scholars are more important than history ,yet the most serious is the reduction of Islam and its glory to conquests era, for it is faith rather than an empire or dominant state, which is for the better of the world before being a judgment, in the house called: (House of Islam).
In addition, The “House of Islam” was a small village in India, which the owner gave to God as an offering, and spoke about it to Muhammad Iqbal Mawdudi, who emigrated to it, believing it is the land of Islam … and grieved for its loss, when Britain defeated India, and set in 1804 a reformation group called (no Friday group), which believed that Friday is not permissible in India, since it has become the land of Shirk, having been defeated by Britain, and Muslim abandoned educational schools established by the British. They even had the upper hand and excellence in all things, during the British occupation and after their departure, rejectionists remained shunned and accused by the nation, like Mr. Ahmed Khan in India, or Mr. Mohammad Abdu in Egypt, who the contemporary Salafist question his the faith and religion (14) .
Thus, this is how some envisioned jihad, and what’s even more odd is that they found those who believed in them, but contemporary Islamic distortion is the most heinous distortion to the concept of jihad, since it infiltrated it historically, as it is actually human made, which is contrary to religion’s morals ( 15) (), or what we witness today of suicidal bombings, Muslims’ slaughter, massacring tourists and custodians, non-Muslims’ funds’ looting. Many have committed unforgivable mistakes, victimizing guiltless people, who are not from the people of the( battle), as named by these groups, called for, and became the dream of many young naive Muslims to receives a command from his leader to murder or commit suicide!
Moreover, the bomber has a defeated tormented identity, unable to validate, and if capable of validating he wouldn’t have resorted to death, he also didn’t apprehend religion and its history, for strength of religion is in its belief ,rather than the power of its believers. This is not an invitation to defeatism, as some may hint, but an invitation to trust and reconcile with oneself.
Regarding life an eternal struggle, is a thing claimed by a person who only harbors hatred, and never gains sense of accomplishment unless he obliterates others , religion is not about boasting, nor a duel between Knights manifesting their power, between Amr Ben Kalthoum and Amr ibn al-Hind, or a weeping preacher complaining about who abused him in Taif, saying, as the Prophet said: «O Allah, guide my nation ; for they are ignorant».
In addition, Mr. Jamal al-Afghani, and Muhammad Abduh, are considered the most prominent representatives of the Islamic reformation School, in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century; as the two tried to overcome tradition, and restore human mind and criticism consideration. Mohammed Abdu (1849-1905), Says, explaining his message: “I called for two major things: first: to liberate thought from traditional restrictions, and second; to understand religion the way our ancestors did, before the dispute emerged, and revert to origins in gaining knowledge, and balance it with human mind, to refute disputes, research scientific facts , and respect facts “(17) ().
Both: Afghani and Abdu compared between two types of Islam: and labeled it: (Rulers’ Islam), and (Quran’s Islam), which Abdu calls (true Islam), and (fake Islam) (18) (). Although Muhammad Abdu, didn’t write a book for jihad, as he did with theology and speech science , but – he did hint in his interpretation of Quran – that this concept has been developed a lot, eliminating it’s historical loads , he mentions in his interpretation of the verse 218 of Al-Baqarah: (those who believe, and those who emigrate (to escape the persecution) and strive in the way of Allah, these have hope of Allah’s mercy. Allah is Forgiving, Merciful, that Jihad is derived from Mujahida , which is struggle and hardship, and is not exclusive to battle, for believers who have migrated with the Prophet, or migrated to him, to support righteousness, and counter infidels, are the ones who seek Allah’s mercy and kindness. Thus, he considers jihad with oneself and money , in the sense of fighting, and Jihad with money, was legislated to maintain righteousness, which invalidate – in his view – what the enemies of Islam babble about , as they claim that Islam was spread by the sword (19) ().
As for assault , it is a taboo in Imam’s opinion , since the polytheists are the ones who raged battle against Muslims, asserting that initiating call for Islam before fighting is a condition for the permissibility of fighting, and that preaching is by proof and evidence, and not by the sword and spear, as Allah said : (There is no compulsion in religion. The right direction is henceforth distinct from error) ((Al baqara 256), which the Sheikh confirms that it wasn’t copied by sword’s verse, he also believes that what happened after the reign of the Caliphs, from conquests and wars, in order to conquer countries, wasn’t for the sake of religion ; Sheikh confirms that “it is a thing the nature of sovereignty demanded , and didn’t befit provisions of religion” (20) ().
Nonetheless, Abdu confirms that jihad – which refers to fighting – is an obligation of efficiency on Muslims, which if done by some, exempts others from doing it, hinting that the jihad referred to in verse 142 of Surat Al-Imran: (Or deemed ye that ye would enter paradise while yet Allah knoweth not those of you who really strive, nor knoweth those (of you) who are steadfast) does not mean that everyone who did not strive, did not enter Paradise, as jihad in the Quran and Sunnah is used in its linguistic sense, which is withstanding hardship and adversity, and the jihad against oneself, which is narrated from the salaf that (major jihad) is one of its examples. The Imam also mentions “withstanding human desires, especially in your youth, striving with money, fending vice and supporting rightfulness”, a Jihad “that may be more preferable than the Jihad of enemies in battle ” (21) .
Sheikh defines Shahada , in his interpretation of the verse : (that Allah may know those who believe and may choose witnesses from among you )((Al-Imran 140), which was revealed during Uhod battle. it is interpreted in two ways:
First: martyrdom in battle, in which a believer is killed in defending rightfulness .
Second: Testimony against mankind, in the sense stated in verse 143 of Surat Al Baqara : (Thus We have appointed you a middle nation, that ye may be witnesses against mankind, and that the messenger may be a witness against you (and it is testimony).
Also, in his debate with Farah Antun (Islam and Christianity between science and civility), to confirm the tolerant values of Islam, which has already been confirmed in his debate with Hanoteau, he confirmed that fighting is only for the purpose of fending off injustice, and that jihad war was to ensure freedom of belief, and tax was a bounty for protecting them, since they didn’t take part in Islamic battles().
On the other hand, Jihad to Jamal al-Afghani, who had few articles yet lots of speeches, is a requirement to face colonization, yet he wasn’t in favor of random violent Jihad, as he had understanding of political methods, didn’t reject negotiations, didn’t resort to war as a solution .
Rashid Rida from Reformation to politicization:
In the first phase of Rashid Rida’s life, prior to the collapse of the Ottoman Empire, Reda followed his teacher Mohammed Abdu’s footsteps , as has addressed the issue of jihad at length in his numerous articles, explaining that the word Jihad in Quran is not synonymous with war and fighting, but scholars agreed to name fighting a jihad, a word gentler and lighter than the word battle, because its meaning is achieved through struggling to resist, without killing anybody, and fighting is not like that, as its meaning is only achieved through bloodshed, and Jihad in the religious war sense, is a European heresy spread in the East, via Crusades.
Reda, having explained the meaning of jihad in Islam, and the difference between it and battle, reviews provisions of fighting in Islam, illustrated battle provisions in Islam, as they were based on mercy and wisdom, used to counter enemies, who raged a war against Muslims, as seen in the following verse : (Fight in the way of Allah against those who fight against you, but begin not hostilities. Lo! Allah loveth not aggressors)((Al Baqara 190), stressing that the Quran did not forbid Muslims from being loyal to those who never fought them, as battle is only limited to those who initiated assaults .
However, in the middle of the twentieth century decade, Reda launched an extensive campaign on who he called (westernizers )and atheists in the Islamic world, especially in Egypt and Turkey, who form – in his opinion – an internal army ,more harmful than external armies, , Reda urged people to counter These atheists – as he described – such as Slama Mosa, Muhammad Husayn Haykal, Taha Hussein, and others.
Contrary to his teacher Mohammed Abdu’s views, who called to forsake heathenry accusations as it is originally one of the assets of the true Islam, in his debate with Farah Antoun. Yet Muhammad Rashid Rida insisted on causing some Egypt university professors of apostasy, differing from his teachers Abdu and Afghanistani , in making faith biased on submission rather than intellect, which assumes the existence of evidence and proof. Rashid Rida was more rigid and ancestral in this stage, issuing a lot of heathenry accusations, which made some people consider him a hindrance to reformation and renaissance, which as well led to the deterioration of Muhammad ‘s Islamic reformation project, and the proposals of violent political Islam later on, but we noticed that Reda, who did not desert his teacher Mohammed Abdu’s research, in his interpretation (Manar), in using intellect in interpretation, denies the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) Hadith about the casted spell on him, and rejects much of what was narrated by Bukhari and Muslim, since it disagreed with intellect, and regards Allah’s curse on Jews, turning them to apes and pigs, a metaphoric curse instead of an actual curse, because this is not acceptable to the mind. Thus, what made him get into this controversial dilemma, is the political interpretation of Islam, and the emotional reaction to the collapse of Caliphate, which affected his rationality, and made many of the Salafis – regard him as semi-Salafi, and consider him heretical like his teacher, as the deceased Yemeni Salafi ,Sheikh Moqbel Bin Hadi bin Alwadei said.
Hence, we notice that Reda’s position, who deserted his teacher’s visions, due to the “cholera” of politicization, which overwhelmed many Islamic thought representatives, after the collapse of Othman empire, though some of these were initially opposes of this empire during its establishment, still, it is the historical finale, and Study of Imamate in doctrine books, which makes some compare between political movements and Shiites in twisting Imamate and governance issues to belief issues rather than efforts.
Hassan al-Banna and his motto “Jihad is our way”:
“Allah is our objective, the prophet, our ideal, Quran our constitution, Jihad is our way, and death in the name of Allah the highest aspiration” Is Hassan al-Banna and Muslim Brotherhood ‘s motto. This group, which was established as a reaction to the collapse of the Ottoman Empire and the spread of secular thought, considered all its deeds a jihad in the name of Allah. Hassan al-Banna wrote in his letter (Jihad), stressing out that Jihad is an obligation on every Muslim, unlike the majority of scholars, which is what most Islamic groups espoused later on, he said: “Allah imposed Jihad on every Muslim, an inescapable duty Allah greatly favored it, setting the highest reward for Martyrs, as no one exceeds them in this deed, except for those who do so, and joined them in their struggle, gave them spiritual and practical privileges, in this world and hereafter, made their pure blood a token of Victory in this world and hereafter, and has vowed most horrible penalties to who refrain, described them with the most horrendous descriptions, reproached them, prepared shame for them in this world that won’t be lifted unless they fight, and punishment in Hereafter, and considered refraining from battle a major sin, and one of the sins that dooms one to Hell”»().
Although, he conveys – in the same letter – a lot of jurisprudence texts, which state that it is an obligation of efficiency, but Sheikh said after listing texts, Hadiths on the virtue of Jihad, justifying his conception, which aims to the iconography jihad and favor it over others aspects, as an Islamic group party aspiring for a country that governs with their visions, a vision influenced by people’s emotions and beliefs , rather than jurisprudence, saying: “Muslims – now as you know – are demeaned, governed by infidels, had their land trampled, sanctities violated , controlled by their opponents’ affairs, had their faith disrupted, as well as their inability to spread their call, so it is obligatory on every Muslim to prepare himself for jihad, until the opportunity comes for actual Jihad”(25) Al-Banna also rejects other interpretations of Jihad, that jihad of the soul is the greatest jihad, even greater than war Jihad, insisting on supporting the latter, he says: “it has become quite common among many Muslims, that fighting the enemy is minor jihad, and that self-jihad is greater, many of whom infer with the narration : “we came back from minor jihad to greater jihad, they said: What is greater jihad? He said: Jihad of the heart or the soul”, he emphasizes that this is an incorrect Hadith, and says: As this Hadith, is an incorrect Hadith, since Omar said in Hafiz Ibn Hajar hadith, in (tasdeed al qaows): it is famous among people, but it is the words of Abraham Ben Abla .
Iraqi said, in Hadith narrations (revival): Narrated by al-Bayhaqi with a weak bond from Jabir ,and al-Khatib narrated it in his history, from Jabir, and even if it’s true, it never implies that Muslims neglect the jihad to save the Muslim lands, but emphasizes the importance of soul -Jihad, to reinforce sincerity in Muslims virtuous deeds .
In addition, There are things attached to the jihad, including: the Promotion of Virtue and prevention of vice, as in the hadeeth: “One of the greatest jihad , is a rightful word to an unfair Sultan”, but none of this will earn anybody the major reward of the Mujahideen, unless they kill or be killed in the name of Allah, for war jhad – to al-Banna – precedence anything else, and with it alone one can attain Shahada, hence the motto: “Death in the name of Allah the highest aspiration”. Thus, al-Banna in his assertion, that his call, is to restore caliphate, establish an Islamic state, eliminate other parties, and refuse other’s culture and other doctrines of secularism, was aiming to establish radical Islamism, that began in Muhammad’ youth , and continued after his death with the views of Sayyid Qutb , and all other contemporary jihadi groups.
However, the most serious effects of Hassan al-Banna, and Rashid Rida, on the path of jihad conception, is that they transmitted it from jihad against the West to a Jihad used to establish an Islamic state, which they consider not present, as long as a caliphate doesn’t rule, or Allah’s Sharia isn’t applied, according to their perception.
Rashid Rida and al-Banna have represented contemporary jihadist input, which is committed to governance’ thought, as launched by Mawdudi, and Sayyid Qutb, then was attributed to Salf due to Tatars’ Fatwa of Ibn Taymiyyah, as shown in (absent obligation) to Muhammad Abdel-Salam Faraj, which we notice that he merely applies Tatars’ Fatwa of Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah on the ruling regime in Egypt, without understanding the different contexts, or differentiating between the levels of reading of Ibn Taymiyyah, when he is a founder and theorist, when the is a mufti, When speaking about a historic crisis, and when speaking about a theory. He also did not refer to the original manuscript of Mardin Fatwa in which Shaykh al-Islam said “are treated as they deserve,” and not fought for what they deserve.” We believe that Faraj, who was originally an engineer, and never heard of other books written by him except for “absent obligation”, was too weak to achieve a text or an original manuscript, as scientific fragility appears in his writings.
Abdel-Salam Faraj was like that, with Saleh Sareya , in the message of faith, then writers and theorists of contemporary Salafi jihadist, who are the final and most dangerous in the series of Islam distortion, loading the concept of jihad with additional political and regional loads, disowning those who don’t participate in Jihad, some even define them as Neo-Kharijites (26) despite the constant disapproval of this charge .
But wasn’t the Kharijites a sect who regarded others as refrainers? And Muslims other than them unbelievers? Although some of them were killed, and the Prophet said “it is his master” ,wtat makes us agree with him greatly, as the old distortion of the concept of jihad, was used in their struggle to Imamate, which they made an asset of religion and belief. Whereas the modern distortion of Jihad , stretched jihad and shirk accusations to far more than faith/belief, to include all intellectual, legislative, and contemporary cultural perspectives, and issued heathenry accusations according to departments of Jurisprudence and legislation rather than just doctrine;. a concept that also espoused previous perceptions , but increases its depth and bloodiness at the same time, which damages the image of Islamic civilization, both internally and externally.