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Last Updated: Feb 11, 2014 - 5:11:05 AM
Nigeria: Islam Forbids Extremism


The pristine Islam preached by the noble Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) and his immediate Companions as understood by the righteous predecessors (Salaf) who came after them totally condemns extremism in all affairs of the religion.

Let it be said without any apology that extremism as understood by the Western Orientalists and people who do not want Muslims to practise their faith as taught to them by their Prophet (pbuh) is not what Islam condemns but the real extremism as defined by the Lawgiver, Allah and His Messenger (pbuh).

To follow the rules and laws of one's religion to the letter is not extremism according to Islam. A Muslim who makes effort to carry out Allah's injunctions as stipulated in the Qu'ran and the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) without going beyond the limits in doing so should not be tagged as extremist. A proper definition of extremism would then be the one given by the religion itself.

The term extremism (guluww/tatorruf) as defined by scholars is to extend the religion beyond the bounds set by Allah and His Prophet (pbuh). In other words, it can be said to be exceeding the proper shariah limits in trying to worship Allah.

There are numerous evidences in the Book and Sunnah censuring extremism. Allah says, " O ye who have believed, do not put (yourselves) before Allah and His Messenger but fear Allah. Indeed, Allah is Hearing and Knowing."{al-Hujurat(49): 1}

Allah also says, "Say, O people of the scripture do not go to excess in your religion and do not say about Allah except the truth."{an-Nisa(4):171}.

He also says, "So remain on the right course as you have been commanded,(you) and those who have turned with you (to Allah), and do not transgress. Indeed, He is Seeing of what you do."{Hud(11):112}

The Prophet (pbuh) said: "Beware of extremism in the religion."(reported by an-Nasae). And he (phuh) also said: "The extremist are destroyed, the extremists are destroyed, and the extremists are destroyed." (Muslim)

Also, he (pbuh) said: "I was sent with the upright moderate way." (Ahmad). Yet in another narration, the Prophet of Islam (pbuh) said: "This religion is ease and no one is hard on the religion except that it overcomes him." (Bukhari).

Deriving their understanding from the above quoted Qur'anic verses and the traditions of the Prophet (pbuh), Muslim scholars, who adhere to the path of pristine Islam, also condemn extremism and terrorism in totality.

The great scholar, Shayhk Muhammad Bn Salih Al-Uthaymen while cautioning Muslims against being violent said, "I invite you to have respect for those people who have the right that they should be respected from the Muslims and non-Muslims with whom there is an agreement of security and protection. The land in which you are living is such that there is an agreement between you and them. If this were not the case they would have killed you or expelled you. So, preserve this agreement, and do not prove treacherous to it, since treachery is a sign of the hypocrites, and it is not from the way of the believers. And know that it is authentically reported from the Prophet that he said, 'Whoever killed a person who was under a pledge (of safety) will not smell the fragrance of paradise."

Also, a contemporary Saudi-based scholar, Dr Abdul Salam bin Salim as-Sihiyme said, "The religion of Islam has prohibited extremism and negligence and instructs balance in all matters and from the most prominent characteristics of this religion is justice and avoiding oppression "

While also advising Muslim youths on the need to shun violence and extremism, another contemporary scholar of Islam, Shaykh Rabee' ibn Hadee al Madkhalee, said: "I, as well as other than me, have realized that there are two waves that have struck the core of the Salafe Da'wah(the call to original Islam); a wave of harshness and extremism and a wave of excessive lenience that goes beyond the legislated bounds, and negligence/laxity. And both of these waves have been exaggerated to the point that they almost engulfed all the people of Salafeyah(those sticking to the pristine Islam).

Indeed Allah has forbidden both extremism and negligence/laxity because of the harms and evils that they generate. And He has legislated for this 'Umah at tawasut (middle path) and to be just; this is the straight path of Allah which He has ordered us to follow. In it is all that is good, happiness, and salvation from destruction. So when I saw the dangers of these two waves, I directed advice to the Salafee youth everywhere a number of times. So I hope that this advice is welcomed and accepted by our brothers and sons and beloved ones from amongst the Salafes."

With these quotes from the Qur'an and the traditions of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) prohibiting extremism, one keeps wondering why some people continue to say Islam encourages extremism and by extension terrorism.

Could it be possible that Islam, whose light ended the Dark ages in Europe, is now responsible for terrorism? Could a faith that has over one billion followers world-wide and over 7 million in America, actually advocate for the killing and maiming of innocent people? Could Islam, whose name itself stands for "Peace" and "submission to God", encourage its adherents to work for death and destruction? No, Islam does not encourage extremism but rather prohibits it. Not only that, it also condemns terrorism, the offshoot of extremism.

Source: Daily Trust (Nigeria) via

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