By Sheik Muhammad Abubakr Makanjuola
ALL praise is due to Allah, and may His peace and blessings be upon the final Messenger, His pure family, noble companions, and all those who follow them with righteousness until the Day of Judgment.
Brothers and sisters in Islam, we shall be talking to one another on Tawheed, the Islamic monotheism, which is the firm belief in the oneness of Allah. Tawheed is the pillar of Islam, the foundation of its ethics and philosophy of life and the basis of its systems and institutions.
Tawheed simply means believing in Allah alone as God and Lord and attributing to Him alone all the attributes of Lordship and divinity. It is explained as believing that Allah is One with no partner or associate in His Lordship (ruboobiyyah), divinity (uloohiyyah) or names and attributes (al-asma’ wa’l-sifaat).
Tawheed begins by saying the word of confession, that is, “Laa Ilaaha Illallah, Muhammad-ur-Rasuul-Allaah” (None has the right to be worshipped truly but Allah, and Muhammad is His Messenger). Allah says: “And your Ilaah (God) is One Ilaah (ilaahun waahidun) (God — Allah), Laa Ilaaha illa Huwa (there is none who has the right to be worshipped but He), the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful” Quran 2:163.
“Surely, disbelievers are those who said: ‘Allah is the third of the three (in a Trinity).’ But there is no Ilaah (god) (none who has the right to be worshipped) but One Ilaah [ilaahun waahidun] (God —Allah). And if they cease not from what they say, verily, a painful torment will befall on the disbelievers among them”. Quran 5:73.
It has been noticed that most mankind, who embrace Islam, do not understand the reality of the meaning of the first fundamental principle of Islam which is Tawheed. So, I consider it essential to explain its meanings and types of Tawheed.
Tawheed (Islamic monotheism) has three aspects:
(A) Tawheed-ar-Rubuubiyyah – Maintaining The Oneness of Allaah -: This is to believe that there is only one Lord for all the universe, Who is its Creator, Organizer, Planner, Sustainer, and the Giver of security, etc, and that is Allah.
(B) Tawheed-al-Ibaadah – Maintaining The Oneness of worship of Allah. This is to believe convincingly that none has the right to be worshipped (e.g. praying, invoking, asking for help from the unseen, swearing, offering sacrifice, giving charity, fasting, pilgrimage) but Allah.
(C) Tawheed-al-Asma’ wa Sifaat – Maintaining oneness of the Names and Attributes of Allah: This is to believe that: (1) We must not name or qualify Allah except with what He or His Messenger has named or qualified Him, (2) None can be named or qualified with the Names or Qualifications of Allah; e.g. Al-Kareem, (3) We must believe in all the qualities of Allah which, as stated in His book (the Quran) or mentioned through His Messenger Muhammad, without changing their meaning or ignoring them completely or twisting the meanings or likening them (giving resemblance) to any of the created things.
It is also essential to follow Allah’s Messenger, Muhammad and it is a part of oneness of the worship of Allah. This is included in the meaning, “I testify that Muhammad is Allah’s Messenger and this means “None has the right to be followed after Allah’s Book (the Qurann), but Allah’s Messenger, may the peace and blessing of Allah Almighty be upon him”. Allah says: “And whatsoever the Messenger gives you, take it, and whatsoever He forbids you, abstain (from it). Quran 59:7.
Allah also says: “Say (O Muhammad to mankind), if you (really) love Allah then follow Me, i.e. accept Islamic Monotheism, follow the Quran and the Sunnah, i.e. legal ways of the prophet, Allah will love you and forgive you of your sin”. Quran 3:31.
Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased with him), as narrated in Saheeh al-Bukhaari (7372) and Saheeh Muslim (19), said: When the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) sent Mu’aadh ibn Jabal to Yemen, he said to him: “You are going to people from among the People of the Book, so let the first thing to which you call them be belief in Allah alone (Tawheed). If they accept that, then tell them that Allah has enjoined on them five prayers every day and night. If they pray, then tell them that Allah has enjoined them zakaah from their wealth to be taken from their rich and given to their poor. If they agree to that, then take it from them but avoid the best of people’s wealth.”
Islam is built on five (pillars): belief that Allah is One, establishing regular prayer, paying zakaah, fasting Ramadan and Hajj.
What is meant by Tawheed in all these texts is affirming the meaning of the testimony that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, which is the essence of the religion of Islam with which Allah sent His Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)
May Allah make this sermon a beneficial one for me, the writer, the readers and the entire Muslims.
And our last prayer, is praise be to Allah Almighty, Lord of the worlds.