From Mauritius a Molvi Sahib querying the status of the Tabligh Jamaat, writes:
Q. What is the status of the Tabligh Jamaat. Among its beliefs, practices and attitudes are the following:
(1) They regard their specific methodology of tableegh to be Fardh-e-Ain. In both belief and practice they display this attitude.
(2) They narrate maudhoo’ (fabricated) and extremely dha-eef (weak) narrations, and justify these on the basis of far-fetched interpretation.
(3) They resort to tahreef-e-ma’nwi of the Qur’aan and Ahaadith, e.g. they apply the Aayaat and Ahaadith of Jihad to their specific method of tableegh. The fadhaa-il which are related specifically to Jihad are applied to their tareeqah of tableegh.
(4) They regard only their method to be valid tableegh while they despise all other forms of Tableegh such as Madaaris, Khaanqas, etc.
(5) They are opposed to Qur’aan dars. They believe that teaching the Qur’aan leads to disunity.
(6) A mubah practice leads to fasaad on account of the excesses.
(7) Unqualified persons are appointed zimmidaars.
What is the Shariahs view regarding the Tabligh Jamaat movement on the basis of these factors? Is it therefore not proper to declare the Tabligh jamaat a deviant sect?
ANSWER (by Mujlisul Ulama):
Undoubtedly, there is much ghulu’ (haraam extremism) in the Tabligh Jamaat. All the facts you have enumerated, besides No.5, are correct. The Tabligh Jamaat is undoubtedly veering away from Siraatul Mustaqeem.
With regard to No.5, above, the Jamaat is not anti-Qur’aan. Anyone who is opposed to the Qur’aan becomes a kaafir. The reason for not allowing Qur’aan dars, is to avoid baatil being imparted. Qur’aan dars is not to be imparted by laymen. Most of the speakers and ‘zimmidaars’ of the Jamaat are from the masses or lack adequate expertise. Baatil interpretations from baatilcommentaries will be propagated under the auspices of the Tabligh Jamaat if Qur’aan dars is allowed. The Tabligh Jamaat has six principles. It is necessary that they remain within the confines of their SIX points in order to ensure that the Jamaat stays on the course of the Shariah. Divergence from the six points will lead to greater corruption and propagation of baatil.
The Tabligh Jamaat is a mass movement, hence infiltration by baatil and corrupt elements cannot be avoided. People from baatil sects can easily infiltrate and misguide their audiences with baatil commentaries. Therefore not allowing Qur’aan dars is valid.
Although it is conceded that the Tabligh Jamaat has strayed from Siraatul Mustaqeem, at this juncture it is not appropriate to label the Jamaat a deviant sect. However, if the Jamaat continues along its current trajectory of ghulu’, then the time will come when there will be no option but to excommunicate the Tabligh Jamaat for having become one of the baatil sects. It is our fervent dua that the elders of the Jamaat divest themselves of the bigotry and ghulu’ which have fossilized their thinking. Thus, they are unable to discern the grievous errors which have already corroded the Jamaat and split the Jamaat into two hostile factions each one harbouring intense shaitaani hatred for the adversary.
It is undeniable that innumerable Muslims all over the world have derived considerable Deeni benefit from the activities of the Jamaat. In the curriculam of the Jamaat there is nothing in conflict with the Shariah. It is the shaitaani attitude of ghulu’ which has developed in the Jamaat which threatens the existence of the Tabligh jamaat as a movement of Haqq.
The Tablighi groups all over the world are still engaging in teaching only what the Shariah allows. Their ta’leem is restricted to the Kalimah, Tahaarat and Salaat. They are not propagating beliefs of baatil. It is only their evil attitude of ghulu’ stemming from ujub and kibr which has sullied the Jamaat. Their success which they lamentably base on numbers, has intoxicated them with pride and vanity, hence the ghulu’. They measure success on the basis of the number of people attending Ijtimas, on the number of busloads of people, and the number of jamaats sent out.
They have not understood the true Maqsad of the movement. They are fossilized into the idea that the Tabligh Jamaat is the Maqsad (the actual objective of tabligh). They have also failed to understand the meaning of Tabligh, hence they believe that only their specific methodology is tabligh, and all other Deeni activities are futile. This attitude is indeed lamentable and dangerous.
Despite the many ghulu’ deviances, it is not proper at this juncture to brand the Tabligh Jamaat a sect of baatil. The Jamaat is like a damaged ship, listing on its side and adrift on the ocean. It can still be saved from sinking and perishing. It is incumbent for those Ulama who understand the ghulu’ of the Jamaat, to resort to Amr Bil ma’roof.Intelligent people who are not Ulama should also draw the attention of the Jamaat people to their grave errors. Silence and condonation of the evil ghulu’ are aiding the process of the destruction of the Jamaat.
The ghulu’ compound of the Jamaat consists of a number of evil ingredients:
(1) The notion that Tabligh is confined within the specific methodology of the Tabligh Jamaat.
(2) Deriding all other forms of Tabligh.
(3) Believing that the Tabligh Jamaat is like the Ship of Hadhrat Nooh (Alayhis salaam). The implication of this corrupt understanding is that whoever is not in the Tabligh Jamaat is a kaafirdoomed for perdition.
(4) That the specific method of the Tabligh Jamaat is Fardh-e-Ain.
(5) Misinterpretation of the Qur’aanic Aayaat and Ahaadith to convey the idea that the Fadhaa-il for Jihaad substantiated by Nusoos apply to the specific Tabligh Jamaat methodology. This is tahreef (haraam interpolation and misinterpretation).
(6) Insisting stupidly on joining the Jamaat for extended periods although adequate arrangements for the family at home are not made. Many Tablighi chaps abandon their families, leaving them without sufficient house expenses and without mahrams.
(7) Condoning, in fact, even encouraging women who join the Tabligh Jamaat to travel without mahrams if not available.
(8) The Makshufaat groups which are erroneously dubbed ‘masturaat jamaat’.
9) Wasting huge sums of money on ijtimas when there is no real and no imperative need. These ijtimas are gradually assuming bid’ah proportions.
10) Amenability to Bid’ah. Since the focus has shifted from the Maqsad of Tabligh, Bid’ah has crept into the Jamaat. Among their Bid’ah acts is the haraam act of expunging the Shariah’s rule pertaining to Sunnatul Muakkadah Salaat. Ittisaal (i.e. joining or performing without undue delay)between the Fardh and Sunnatul Muakkadah is Waajib. After the Fardh of Zuhr, Maghrib and Isha’, there are two raka’ts Sunnatul Muakkadah. Instead of engaging in the Sunnatul Muakkadah immediately after the Fardh, the Tablighis have introduced the practice of kitaab-reading. This act is in flagrant disregard for the Shariah. They accord preference to their own methodology over the Shariah. Thus this practice is Bid’ah.
Another Bid’ah, is to interfere with the concentration of the Musallis. Even before the Musallis have completed their Sunnat Salaat, the Tablighis rush to the front, face the Musallis who are still engaged in Salaat, and disturb them with their announcement to join in the bayaan. This is indeed shameless and demonstrating disregard for the communion the Musallis have with Allah Ta’ala in Salaat. They lack the patience to wait until the Musallis have completed their Sunnat and Nafl Salaat. The haste they display in this impermissible performance is further evidence for the Jamaat having lost focus of the actual objective of Tabligh.
(11) Loss of Focus. A glaring example of loss of focus is the Jamaat’s wooing of villains such as Tariq Jameel whose religion brings within its scope acceptance of the baatil of Shiahs and of any and all hues of Fussaaq and Fujjaar. Merely because this Dajjaal is able to attract crowds, does the Jamaat deem it appropriate to include the villain within their ranks regardless of his blatant Shar’i infractions. Since the Maqsood is no longer the Pleasure of Allah Ta’ala, shaitaan has adorned baatil with deceptive ‘hikmat’ for acceptance by the Jamaat.
Once the public in Deoband had desperately kicked up considerable shaitaani smoke against Hadhrat Maulana Rashid Ahmad Gangohi (Rahmatullah alayh) who had rejected the proposal to appoint a prominent faasiq to be a member of the Shura Council of Darul Uloom. The severity of the fitnah had threatened the closure of the Madrasah. Senior Ulama advised Hadhrat Gangohi to accept the membership of the faasiq to save the Madrasah closing. Thousands of Students would be deprived of Ilm-e-Deen if Darul Uloom had to close.
Hadhrat Gangohi, Imaam-e-Rabbaani, resolutely stated: The Madrasah is not the Maqsood. Ridha Ulaahi (the Pleasure of Allah) is the Maqsood.”
If the Madrasah has to close in the wake of the fitnah of the juhala, let it close. They will be hauled into the Divine Court to answer for their shaitaaniyat. Hadhrat did not compromise with baatil. The fitnah was extinguished and the faasiq was not accepted. This should be the attitude of the Ahl-e-Haqq.
Besides the aforementioned list of baatil, there are other infractions of the Shariah as well. Nevertheless, at this juncture it would not be proper to proclaim the Tabligh Jamaat a deviant sect among the 73 Firaqah Baatilah. We can only make dua that such a stage shall not be reached.
The need is to strive to reform the Jamaat by deracinating the bid’ah, baatil and ghulu’ which permeate all levels of the Jamaat – seniors and juniors, and which gnaws the foundations of Tabligh Jamaat. The Jamaat elders should become cognizant with reality, ingrain Ikhlaas in themselves, meditate on their infractions and understand the real Maqsood. They should not commit the fatal blunder of viewing our Naseehat as destructive criticism. Hadhrat Yahya Bin Muaaz (Rahmatullah alayh) said:
“Your Brother is he who alerts you to your deficiencies and your Friend is he who warns you of your sins.”
May Allah Ta’ala guide us all and save us from the villainy of our nafs and the snares of Iblees.