This is the text of the speech given by Ustaz Ahmad (RA) in Georgetown, Guyana on 14th December 1977. Ustaz Ahmad began by saying: “Islam is a system for the practical life of humanity in all its aspects. It is a system that entails the ideological ideal, the convincing concept, which expands the nature of the Universe and determines the position of mankind in it, as well as his ultimate objectives therein. It includes the doctrines and practical organisations which, emanate from and depend upon the everyday life of the human being.”
In the name of Allah Most Gracious Most Merciful
THE IMPORTANCE OF ORGANISATION AND LEADERSHIP
Ustaz Ahmad Ibrahim Ehwaas
3rd Muharram 1398
14th December. 1977
Allah says in the Holy Qur’an:
وَقُلِ اعْمَلُوا فَسَيَرَى اللَّهُ عَمَلَكُمْ وَرَسُولُهُ وَالْمُؤْمِنُونَ ۖ وَسَتُرَدُّونَ إِلَىٰ عَالِمِ الْغَيْبِ وَالشَّهَادَةِ فَيُنَبِّئُكُم بِمَا كُنتُمْ تَعْمَلُونَ – 9:105
Waquli iAAmaloo fasayara Allahu AAamalakum warasooluhu walmuminoona wasaturaddoona ila AAalimi alghaybi wash shahadati fayunabbi-okum bima kuntum taAAmaloon
“Work (righteousness). Soon will Allah observe your work and His Apostle, and the believers: Soon will ye be brought back to the Knower of what is hidden and what is open: Then will he show you the truth of all that you did”. 9/105.
Islam is a system for the practical life of humanity in all its aspects. It. is a system that entails the ideological ideal, the convincing concept, which expands the nature of the Universe and determines the position of mankind in it, as well as his ultimate objectives therein. It includes the doctrines and practical organisations which, emanate from and depend upon the everyday life of the human being.
Islam is comprehensive and inter-dependent so that it deals with and organises the following aspects:
- Ethical foundation
- Social order
- Economic doctrine
- Political system
- International relation.
Since all the needs and activities are organised, therefore it is not a mere emotional belief cut off from the actual domain of human life. It is not the minimum rites of worship that believers would collectively or individually perform ‘to achieve a modicum of faith. But it is the perfect system for mankind’s life. It is the only system which can save humanity from the disastrous dangers towards which it is heading, attracted by the glittering illusions of material civilisation. Islam alone is the capable system ‘which coordinates and harmonizes its progress in material innovation and spiritual exaltation. Such coordination and harmony has never been experienced by humanity throughout all history except with Islam.
Islam does not admit a conflict, not even a significant separation between life spiritual and life mundane. It wants to mould individual life, as well as the social order in healthy patterns in order to establish the “Kingdom .of Allah” on the’ earth, and so that, peace, contentment and well being may fill the world. As Allah says:
وَلَوْ أَنَّ أَهْلَ الْقُرَىٰ آمَنُوا وَاتَّقَوْا لَفَتَحْنَا عَلَيْهِم بَرَكَاتٍ مِّنَ السَّمَاءِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَلَٰكِن كَذَّبُوا فَأَخَذْنَاهُم بِمَا كَانُوا يَكْسِبُونَ – 7:96
Walaw anna ahla alqura amanoo wattaqaw lafatahna AAalayhim barakatin mina assama-i wal-ardi walakin kaththaboo faakhathnahum bima kanoo yaksiboon
“If the people of the towns had but. believed and feared Allah, We should indeed have ‘opened’ out to them (all kinds of) blessings from heaven and earth; but they rejected (the truth) and We brought them to book for their misdeeds.” 7/96
Islamic system of life.
The purpose of life in the Islamic view is to establish, maintain, and develop the virtues with which the Creator of this Universe wishes the human’s life to be adorned, and to prevent and to eradicate the evils, the presence of which in the human’s life is utterly abhorrent to Allah.
This is the purpose to be achieved in order to establish the “Kingdom” or the “government of Allah”, which means the Islamic system of life. In other words, in the sphere of life in which man has been granted authority, he should of his own· will and desire accept the jurisdiction of Allah in the same way as every single particle of matter in the Universe is bound .to accept the natural laws of Allah. The system of Islamic life applies to both the individual and the social life – to prayers, fasting, pilgrimage and charity; as well as to economy and society, culture and politics. The whole system in its entirety.
System and method:
The areas which are related to the individual’s personal life should become a part of the true believers existence.. And those which cannot be established. individually should be striven for by collective efforts of the believers through group organization.
We have, to keep in mind that the true believer’s real aim in this life is to attain acceptance by Allah and salvation in the Hereafter. This aim cannot be obtained without making efforts to establish the system ordained by Allah. For this worldly life. How can one attain the acceptance of Allah and salvation in the Hereafter? . How can we establish the Islamic system of life?
It is very important to know that the best and the perfect way is the method of Muhammad (on whom be peace and blessings of Allah). That method has to be studied, understood and practised by all Muslims. If they do so they will not go astray. Allah says:
لَّقَدْ كَانَ لَكُمْ فِي رَسُولِ اللَّهِ أُسْوَةٌ حَسَنَةٌ لِّمَن كَانَ يَرْجُو اللَّهَ وَالْيَوْمَ الْآخِرَ وَذَكَرَ اللَّهَ كَثِيرًا – 33:21
Laqad kana lakum fee rasooli Allahioswatun hasanatun liman kana yarjoo Allahawalyawma al-akhira wathakara Allahakatheera
“Ye have indeed in the Apostle of Allah a beautiful pattern (of conduct) for anyone whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day, and who engage much in the praise of Allah” 33/21.
The main principles of the method are:
- To seek the guidance of Allah with sincerity.
- To seek knowledge and understanding of the Holy Qur’an which is the constitution for humanity, and the tradition (sunnah) of the Prophet (u.w.b.p) which is the practical implementation of it.
- Not to follow, use, or accept any means which violates the principles, of truthfulness, honesty and morality.
Unfortunately, the Muslims of today have forgotten their mission. They conduct themselves differently to their belief. It is their habit to break the laws and principles of Islam one after another and they lose its significance. After all this, they still consider themselves Muslims.
The Muslim’s Duties:
It is necessary at this time of misunderstanding of the.nature of. Is1am to outline the duties of the individual Muslim in terms of character as follows:-
- To know the difference between Islamic and non-Islamic action in all aspects, to be familiar with the limits ordained by Allah in order to enjoy the lawful (ha1al) and to avoid the unlawful (haram).
- In all matters, one’s point of view should be moulded according to the teaching of the Holy Qur’an and the tradition (sunnah} of the Prophet Muhammad (u.w.b.p)
- To smash the idol of self-worship, so that one may accept the commands of Allah, in their entirety whether he likes or dislikes.
- To purge from his life those customs and habits of non-lslamic ways which are against the teaching of the Holy Qur’an and sunnah of the Prophet (u.w.b.p) in ah attempt to build one’s internal and external life according to Islam.
- To purge one’s thinking of those narrow prejudices and interests of no importance in Islam.
- To establish one’s routine affairs of personal life .on the principles of honesty, justice, fear of Allah, and uncompromising support for right and truth.
- To limit the relation with persons who are unmindful of Allah, to terminate the relation with those who are flagrantly immoral and criminal character, and to strengthen and promote the relation with those who are God-fearing, righteous and good in conduct.
A Muslim should dedicate his, life to Islam, and also his death should be persuaded for this purpose. He has to urge others to do the same, but if no one steps forward, he must not hesitate to undertake the duty alone. To reach this degree of understanding one must:
- Prepare himself for quite a long time to be fit for this unrelaxing task.
- Be prepared by means of exalting himself to the level of the true religion AL-ISLAM.
- Raise himself to its height by genuine and deep faith in Allah by knowing Him, for no one can believe in Allah securely unless he knows Him well.
- Raise himself to its level by understanding all the surrounding and contemporary means and methods to know how to deal with others.
- Join an existing working group, and if there is no active group working towards these objectives he should take the initiative to find one for there is no Islam without an organised group (Jama’ah).
Organisation and leadership:
A Muslim cannot be alone because Allah says:
وَلْتَكُن مِّنكُمْ أُمَّةٌ يَدْعُونَ إِلَى الْخَيْرِ وَيَأْمُرُونَ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَيَنْهَوْنَ عَنِ الْمُنكَرِ ۚ وَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْمُفْلِحُونَ – 3:104
Waltakun minkum ommatun yadAAoona ilaal khayri wayamuroona bil maAAroofi wayanhawna AAanialmunkari waola-ika humu almuflihoon
“And there may spring from you a nation who invite to goodness, and enjoin right conduct and forbid indecency. Such are they who are successful” 3/104. So he must seek out others with whom he can cooperate to please Allah, who will encourage each other to practice the Islamic way of life.
وَتَعَاوَنُوا عَلَى الْبِرِّ وَالتَّقْوَىٰ ۖ وَلَا تَعَاوَنُوا عَلَى الْإِثْمِ وَالْعُدْوَانِ ۚ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ ۖ إِنَّ اللَّهَ شَدِيدُ الْعِقَابِ – 5:2
wataAAawanoo AAala albirri wattaqwa wala taAAawanoo AAala al-ithmi wal AAudwani wattaqoo Allaha inna Allaha shadeedu alAAiqab
“… But help ye one another unto righteousness and pious duty. Help not one another unto sin and transgression, but keep your duty to Allah. Lo! Allah is severe in punishment.” 5/2
If a Muslim is ordained to be in a group, then it becomes an obligation for this group to have a leader (Imam) or (Amir) because the Prophet (u.w.b.p) said “If you are three Muslims or more you should select one of you as (an Amir) leader. “
Discipline is very important, so Muslims should obey the orders and commands of the leadership for Allah says:
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا أَطِيعُوا اللَّهَ وَأَطِيعُوا الرَّسُولَ وَأُولِي الْأَمْرِ مِنكُمْ ۖ فَإِن تَنَازَعْتُمْ فِي شَيْءٍ فَرُدُّوهُ إِلَى اللَّهِ وَالرَّسُولِ إِن كُنتُمْ تُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللَّهِ وَالْيَوْمِ الْآخِرِ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ خَيْرٌ وَأَحْسَنُ تَأْوِيلًا – 4:59
Ya ayyuha allatheena amanoo ateeAAoo Allaha waateeAAoo arrasoola waolee al-amri minkum fa-in tanazaAAtum fee shay-infaruddoohu ila Allahi warrasooli in kuntum tuminoona billahi wal yawmi al-akhiri thalika khayrun waahsanu taweela
“0 ye who believe! Obey Allah, and obey the Messenger and those of you who are in authority; and if you have a dispute concerning any matter, refer it to Allah and the Messenger if ye are (in truth) believers in Allah and the Last Day”, (4/59) as long as those orders are not against Allah’s commands… A Muslim is totally convinced in the idea of “No objectives can be achieved without planning, no planning without leadership. No sense for a leadership without discipline in the organisation (Jama’ah).”
The (Amir) leader of the group in any level should have some qualifications such as -beside the fearing of Allah -a special knowledge of the Qur’an and the (sunnah), religious acumen, an understanding of practical matters, foresight and prudence, resolution and perseverence in the path of Allah.
But if there is no one who possesses these qualities at once Muslims are asked to select the best of the available.
We must not forget that sacrifices are required all the time, for great objectives cannot be achieved easily ••• So Muslims must not reserve any effort, time, or wealth for the respectable cause •••• the cause of Allah.