In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy.
The sound Islamic Creed is based on the Qur’aan and the [authentic] Sunnah as opposed to the other creeds. The sources of the other creeds differ and you’ll find them being in opposition to each other- filled with contradictions and diverse orientations. As for the person who has been blessed with the sound Islamic creed, he is saved from all of this. The sound Islamic creed is the creed that agrees with Fitrah [natural disposition of (human beings)] and sound intellect. Allaah [The Most High] said:
فَأَقِمْ وَجْهَكَ لِلدِّينِ حَنِيفًا فِطْرَةَ اللَّهِ الَّتِي فَطَرَ النَّاسَ عَلَيْهَا لَا تَبْدِيلَ لِخَلْقِ اللَّهِ ذَلِكَ الدِّينُ الْقَيِّمُ وَلَكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لَا يَعْلَمُونَ
So set you (O Muhammad) your face towards the religion of pure Islamic Monotheism Hanifa (worship none but Allah Alone) Allah’s Fitrah (i.e. Allah’s Islamic Monotheism), with which He has created mankind. No change let there be in Khalq-illah (i.e. the Religion of Allah Islamic Monotheism), that is the straight religion, but most of men know not. [Soorah Ar-Rum: Ayah: 30]
The Prophet [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] said, “Every newly born child is born in a state of fitrah [i.e. upon a natural inclination to worship Allaah (alone)], and it is his parents who make him into a Jew, a Christian or fire-worshipper……”
The Prophet [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] said that Allaah said: “Indeed, I created my servants as Hunafaa [i.e. inclined towards monotheism and distanced from polytheism], but the devils divert them from their true religion [of Islamic monotheism]”.
When a person of sound intellect is introduced to the sound Islamic creed and its evidences, he will not oppose it. He will know that it does not contradict sound intellect. It was said to one of the Arabs, “How do you know that the Messenger of Allaah [sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam] is truthful? He replied, ‘I have not found him command something, except that it is commanded by the sound intellect; and I have not found him prohibit something, except that it is prohibited by the sound intellect’”.
This shows that those who nurture the people upon the sound Islamic creed are the callers to that which agrees with the natural disposition and sound intellect, as opposed to the false creeds because they are in opposition to the natural disposition and sound intellect. Those who call to false creeds utilise lies, deceit, fables, dreams etc…. to spread those false and deviated creeds.
The false creeds and their adherents contradict each other, but as for the sound Islamic creed, its people do not contradict one another. Allaah [The Most High] said:
أَفَلَا يَتَدَبَّرُونَ الْقُرْآَنَ وَلَوْ كَانَ مِنْ عِنْدِ غَيْرِ اللَّهِ لَوَجَدُوا فِيهِ اخْتِلَافًا كَثِيرًا
Do they not then consider the Qur’an carefully? Had it been from other than Allah, they would surely have found therein many contradictions. [Soorah An-Nisaa: Ayah: 82]
Allaah [The Most High] said: [لَا يَأْتِيهِ الْبَاطِلُ مِنْ بَيْنِ يَدَيْهِ وَلَا مِنْ خَلْفِهِ تَنْزِيلٌ مِنْ حَكِيمٍ حَمِيدٍ – Falsehood cannot come to it from before it or behind it (it is) sent down by the All-Wise, Worthy of all praise (Allah)]. [Soorah Fussilat: Ayah: 42]
The sound Islamic creed founded upon the Qur’aan and the Sunnah is free from falsehood. Falsehood cannot approach it because it is founded upon a pure source. As for the other creeds, they are based on contradictions and differences;
يُؤۡفَكُ عَنۡهُ مَنۡ أُفِكَ
إِنَّكُمۡ لَفِى قَوۡلٍ۬ مُّخۡتَلِفٍ۬ ]
And certainly, you (i.e. people of false creeds) have different ideas (about Muhammad and the Qur’an). Turned aside therefrom (i.e. from Muhammad and the Qur’an) is he who is turned aside (by the Decree and Preordainment of Allaah)]
The sound Islamic creed is clear and there are no obscurities in it, as opposed to the creed of the falsifiers. Its fundamental principles and evidences are clear, as opposed to the other creeds. For example one of the people of philosophical rhetoric wrote a very abstruse treatise on the knowledge of the existence of Allaah and then said, “None will comprehend it, except someone who is firmly grounded in knowledge”. Ibn Abil Izz Al-Hanafi (rahimahullaah) said that one of the philosophers said, “I spent all night looking at the evidences of the philosophers till morning came, but I could not understand anything”.
The sound Islamic creed unites the hearts and prevents hatred and rancour between the people; rather it even unites creatures that are different from one another. For example, look at the bond between the angels and the pious people amongst the children of Aadam! Allaah said:
الَّذِينَ يَحْمِلُونَ الْعَرْشَ وَمَنْ حَوْلَهُ يُسَبِّحُونَ بِحَمْدِ رَبِّهِمْ وَيُؤْمِنُونَ بِهِ وَيَسْتَغْفِرُونَ لِلَّذِينَ آَمَنُوا رَبَّنَا وَسِعْتَ كُلَّ شَيْءٍ رَحْمَةً وَعِلْمًا فَاغْفِرْ لِلَّذِينَ تَابُوا وَاتَّبَعُوا سَبِيلَكَ وَقِهِمْ عَذَابَ الْجَحِيمِ
Those (angels) who bear the Throne (of Allah) and those around it glorify the praises of their Lord and believe in Him (i.e. believe in the oneness of Allaah) and ask forgiveness for those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah) (saying): “Our Lord! You comprehend all things in mercy and knowledge, so forgive those who repent and follow Your Way, and save them from the torment of the blazing Fire!’’ [Soorah Ghaafir: Ayah: 7]. So they (i.e. the angels) supplicate and ask Allaah to forgive the believers, and this bond between them and the believers is due to the sound Islamic creed they share.
Allaah (The Most High) said: [وَأَلَّفَ بَيْنَ قُلُوبِهِمْ لَوْ أَنْفَقْتَ مَا فِي الْأَرْضِ جَمِيعًا مَا أَلَّفْتَ بَيْنَ قُلُوبِهِمْ وَلَكِنَّ اللَّهَ أَلَّفَ بَيْنَهُمْ إِنَّهُ عَزِيزٌ حَكِيمٌ – And He has united their (i.e. believers’) hearts. If you had spent all that is in the earth, you could not have united their hearts, but Allah has united them. Certainly He is All-Mighty, All-Wise]. [Soorah Al-Anfaal: Ayah: 63]
It is Allaah Who unites (the hearts of the) believers through the sound Islamic creed and this is why Allaah (The Most High) said: [إِنَّمَا الْمُؤْمِنُونَ إِخْوَةٌ – The believers are nothing else than brothers (in Islamic religion)]. [Soorah Al-Hujuraat: Ayah: 10]
As for the bond you find between the people of corrupt creeds, they are all disconnected. Allaah (The Most High) said:[إِذْ تَبَرَّأَ الَّذِينَ اتُّبِعُوا مِنَ الَّذِينَ اتَّبَعُوا وَرَأَوُا الْعَذَابَ وَتَقَطَّعَتْ بِهِمُ الْأَسْبَابُ – When those who were followed, disown (declare themselves innocent of) those who followed (them), and they see the torment, then all their relations will be cut off from them]. [Soorah Al-Baqarah: Ayah: 166]
Allaah (The Most High) said:[الْأَخِلَّاءُ يَوْمَئِذٍ بَعْضُهُمْ لِبَعْضٍ عَدُوٌّ إِلَّا الْمُتَّقِينَ – Friends on that Day will be foes one to another except Al-Muttaqun ([the pious and righteous persons who fear Allah much (abstain from all kinds of sins and evil deeds which He has forbidden) and love Allah much (perform all kinds of good deeds which He has ordained)].
The sound Islamic creed gives one’s heart peace and tranquillity. Allaah (The Most High) said: [مَنْ عَمِلَ صَالِحًا مِنْ ذَكَرٍ أَوْ أُنْثَى وَهُوَ مُؤْمِنٌ فَلَنُحْيِيَنَّهُ حَيَاةً طَيِّبَةً وَلَنَجْزِيَنَّهُمْ أَجْرَهُمْ بِأَحْسَنِ مَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ – Whoever works righteousness, whether male or female, while he (or she) is a true believer (of Islamic Monotheism) verily, to him We will give a good life (in this world with respect, contentment and lawful provision), and We shall pay them certainly a reward in proportion to the best of what they used to do (i.e. Paradise in the Hereafter)]. [Soorah An-Nahl: Ayah: 97]
A good life is dependent upon Eemaan and righteous actions. Allaah (The Most High) said:
طه (1) مَا أَنْزَلْنَا عَلَيْكَ الْقُرْآَنَ لِتَشْقَى (2) إِلَّا تَذْكِرَةً لِمَنْ يَخْشَى
Ta-Ha. [These letters are one of the miracles of the Qur’an, and none but Allah (Alone) knows their meanings.] We have not sent down the Qur’an unto you (O Muhammad) to cause you distress. [Soorah Taahaa: Ayah:1-2]
Allaah (The Most High) said: [الَّذِينَ آَمَنُوا وَتَطْمَئِنُّ قُلُوبُهُمْ بِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ أَلَا بِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ تَطْمَئِنُّ الْقُلُوبُ – Those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah – Islamic Monotheism), and whose hearts find rest in the remembrance of Allah, Verily, in the remembrance of Allah do hearts find rest]. [Soorah Ar-Radd: Ayah:28]
Shaikhul Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullaah) said: The hearts were created to be upon Tawheed, but when they abandon what they were created for, they become confused and bewildered. The heart’s need of Tawheed and remembrance of Allaah is like a fish’s need for water. A fish dies when deprived of water and likewise the heart dies when deprived of Tawheed and remembrance of Allaah.
The sound Islamic creed is a creed of uprightness and justice- neither going beyond bounds nor falling short, as opposed to the other creeds. There is not an affair in the religion- be it the beliefs, acts of worship and its laws- except that the people are divided into three categories in that regard; [a]The Extremists [b]Those who fall short and [c]Those who remain upon uprightness and justice upon the sound creed-those who cling to the Qur’aan and the Sunnah. (1)
The (sound) creed in the Religion is like the roots of a tree and the foundation of a building. And just as a tree cannot stand (firm) except by way of its roots and a building cannot stand (firm) except by way of its foundation, likewise the Religion cannot be established except by way of (sound) Eemaan and Sound Creed. A person without sound creed is similar to a body without a soul. Allaah (The Most High) said:
[أَوَمَنْ كَانَ مَيْتًا فَأَحْيَيْنَاهُ وَجَعَلْنَا لَهُ نُورًا يَمْشِي بِهِ فِي النَّاسِ كَمَنْ مَثَلُهُ فِي الظُّلُمَاتِ لَيْسَ بِخَارِجٍ مِنْهَا كَذَلِكَ زُيِّنَ لِلْكَافِرِينَ مَا كَانُوا يَعْمَلُونَ – Is he who was dead (without Faith by ignorance and disbelief) and We gave him life (by knowledge and Faith) and set for him a light (of Belief) whereby he can walk amongst men, like him who is in the darkness (of disbelief, polytheism and hypocrisy) from which he can never come out? Thus it is made fair-seeming to the disbelievers that which they used to do]. [Soorah Al-An-aam: Ayah: 122]
Allaah (The Most High) said: [يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آَمَنُوا اسْتَجِيبُوا لِلَّهِ وَلِلرَّسُولِ إِذَا دَعَاكُمْ لِمَا يُحْيِيكُم – O you who believe! Answer Allah (by obeying Him) and (His) Messenger when he (Muhammad) calls you to that which will give you life] [Soorah Al-Anfaal: Ayah: 24]
This is why Allaah called the revelation ‘Rooh’. Allaah said:
وَكَذَلِكَ أَوْحَيْنَا إِلَيْكَ رُوحًا مِنْ أَمْرِنَا مَا كُنْتَ تَدْرِي مَا الْكِتَابُ وَلَا الْإِيمَانُ وَلَكِنْ جَعَلْنَاهُ نُورًا نَهْدِي بِهِ مَنْ نَشَاءُ مِنْ عِبَادِنَا وَإِنَّكَ لَتَهْدِي إِلَى صِرَاطٍ مُسْتَقِيمٍ صِرَاطِ اللَّهِ الَّذِي لَهُ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الْأَرْضِ أَلَا إِلَى اللَّهِ تَصِيرُ الْأُمُورُ
And thus We have sent to you (O Muhammad) Roohan (an Inspiration, and a Mercy) of Our Command. You knew not what is the Book, nor what is Faith? But We have made it (this Qur’an) a light wherewith We guide whosoever of Our slaves We will. And verily, you (O Muhammad) are indeed guiding (mankind) to the Straight Path (i.e. Allah’s religion of Islamic Monotheism).” [Soorah Ash-Shoorah: Ayah: 52-53]
And why did Allaah (The Most High) call it Rooh? It is because the real life of the hearts cannot exist, except by way of the revelation, and the sound creed is the greatest affair in the revelation. Allaah (The Most High) said: [أَتَى أَمْرُ اللَّهِ فَلَا تَسْتَعْجِلُوهُ سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَى عَمَّا يُشْرِكُونَ (1) يُنَزِّلُ الْمَلَائِكَةَ بِالرُّوحِ مِنْ أَمْرِهِ عَلَى مَنْ يَشَاءُ مِنْ عِبَادِهِ أَنْ أَنْذِرُوا أَنَّهُ لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا أَنَا فَاتَّقُونِ – The Event (the Hour or the punishment of disbelievers and polytheists or the Islamic laws or commandments), ordained by Allah will come to pass, so seek not to hasten it. Glorified and Exalted be He above all that they associate as partners with Him. He sends down the angels with inspiration of His Command to whom of His slaves He pleases (saying): “Warn mankind that La ilaha illa Ana (none has the right to be worshipped but I), so fear Me (by abstaining from sins and evil deeds)]. [Soorah Nahl:Aayaat: 1-2]
This (i.e. the sound creed, Tawheed, sincerity in worship) are the greatest affair in the revelation.
Some Virtues of the Sound Creed
The sound creed is the basis upon which the Religion of Allaah is built. This is manifested in the parable in the Ayah:
أَلَمْ تَرَ كَيْفَ ضَرَبَ اللَّهُ مَثَلًا كَلِمَةً طَيِّبَةً كَشَجَرَةٍ طَيِّبَةٍ أَصْلُهَا ثَابِتٌ وَفَرْعُهَا فِي السَّمَاءِ تُؤْتِي
أُكُلَهَا كُلَّ حِينٍ بِإِذْنِ رَبِّهَا وَيَضْرِبُ اللَّهُ الْأَمْثَالَ لِلنَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَذَكَّرُونَ
See you not how Allah sets forth a parable? – A goodly word as a goodly tree, whose root is firmly fixed, and its branches (reach) to the sky (i.e. very high). Giving its fruit at all times, by the Leave of its Lord and Allah sets forth parables for mankind in order that they may remember.” [Soorah Ibraaheem: Aayaat: 24-25]
“Whose (i.e. this tree) roots are firmly fixed and its branches (reach) to the sky (i.e. very high)”. The firmness of these roots are [the sound Creed, sound Eemaan and Sincerity in worshipping Allaah alone], and thereafter, the branches are made strong and the fruits are produced. “Its roots are firmly fixed”; and what is well known is that a tree cannot be of benefit when its roots are not firmly fixed; so if the roots are firm, the branches will be strong and the fruits are produced. This is a parable in explanation of the Religion of Islaam and the status of the sound creed in the Religion.
And if you wish to know the status of the sound creed in the Religion of Allaah, then look at the date palm tree because the Prophet (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) said that the goodly tree which has been compared to the believer is the date palm tree. Ibn Umar (radiyallaahu-anhumaa) narrated: While we were with the Messenger of Allaah (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam), he said: ‘’Inform me of a tree which resembles a Muslim man. Its leaves do not fall and it does not, and does not, and does not; and it gives its fruits every now and then.’’ It came to my mind that such a tree must be the date palm, but seeing Abu Bakr and Umar saying nothing, I disliked to speak. So when they did not say anything, the Messenger (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) said: ‘’It is the date-palm tree’’………[Al-Bukhaari: Vol 6: Number: 4698]
This (hadeeth) shows the nobility of this tree amongst other trees, because Allaah specified it and compared it to the believer. The date-palm tree has roots which are firmly fixed and deeply rooted, and it seeks after water by way of which it is given life. And whenever there is water, its roots seek after it; likewise the heart of the believer seeks after Allaah’s revelation by way of which it is given life. Allaah (The Most High) said:
أَلَمْ يَأْنِ لِلَّذِينَ آَمَنُوا أَنْ تَخْشَعَ قُلُوبُهُمْ لِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ وَمَا نَزَلَ مِنَ الْحَقِّ وَلَا يَكُونُوا كَالَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ مِنْ قَبْلُ فَطَالَ عَلَيْهِمُ الْأَمَدُ فَقَسَتْ قُلُوبُهُمْ وَكَثِيرٌ مِنْهُمْ فَاسِقُونَ اعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللَّهَ يُحْيِي الْأَرْضَ بَعْدَ مَوْتِهَا قَدْ بَيَّنَّا لَكُمُ الْآَيَاتِ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَعْقِلُونَ
Has not the time come for the hearts of those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah – Islamic Monotheism) to be affected by Allah’s Reminder (this Qur’an), and that which has been revealed of the truth, lest they become as those who received the Scripture [the Taurat (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel)] before (i.e. Jews and Christians), and the term was prolonged for them and so their hearts were hardened? And many of them were Fasiqun (rebellious, disobedient to Allah). Know that Allah gives life to the earth after its death! Indeed We have made clear the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) to you, if you but understand.” [Soorah Al-Hadeed: Ayah:16]
Allaah revives the dead earth by way of water; so just as a tree is given life by way of water and dies when deprived of water; likewise, the hearts cannot be alive, except by way of the revelation. And if (the hearts) are deprived of the revelation, they become dead. And that is why whenever a person is distanced from the revelation, he comes closer to death (i.e. his heart comes closer to corruption), and whenever he comes closer to the revelation, his heart is given life (i.e. obedience to Allaah, worshipping Allaah alone, distanced from sin etc) in accordance with his closeness to the revelation. (2)
[Ref 1: Source: Al-Madkhal Li-Diraasah Al-Aqeedah Al-Islaamiyyah: Lesson 1 of Shaikh Abdur Razzaaq Al-Badr (may Allaah preserve him)]
[Ref 2: Source: Al-Madkhal Lidiraasat Aqeedah Al-Islaamiyyah’ by Shaikh Abdur-Razzaaq Al-Badr ‘ lesson 3]