Nation of Islam
Fatwa No: 83361

Question

I want to know that if there is any scholar that has said anything about the Nation of Islam, the black Muslim movement. Please can you give a quote of the big scholars.

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

 

The Nation of Islam or that movement of Afro-Americans, which is said to be a Muslim movement, has nothing to do with Islam. We would like here to quote a Fatwa (with little changes) issued by the Board of scholars of the Italian Muslim Association (AMI) about this movement. We think this Fatwa is clear and authentic.

On March 7, 1998 the Board of scholars of the Italian Muslim Association (AMI) issued the following Fatwa against the "Nation of Islam". The official text of the Fatwa was issued in Arabic and Italian; the English translation was rendered by Prof. Abdul Hadi Palazzi, Secretary-General of the Italian Muslim association and Director of the Cultural Institute of the Italian Islamic Association. In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful. Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds; and blessings and peace be upon His servant and Messenger, the Prophet Muhammad Ibn 'Abdullah, upon his Family, his Companions and those who follow his guidance until the Day of the Resurrection.

Allah, the Most High, says in the Quran (what means): {And of the people are some who say, “We believe in Allah and the last Day,” but they are not believers. They [think to] deceive Allah and those who believe, but they deceive not except themselves and perceive [it] not. In their hearts is disease, so Allah has increased their disease; and for them is a painful punishment because they [habitually] used to lie.} [Quran 2:8-10]

During the past few months, an active group in the United States that calls itself the "Nation of Islam" has received worldwide press coverage. Its leader, Louis Farrakhan, met Islamic scholars and heads of state, introducing himself as a representative of American Muslims. Some brothers of ours asked this Board: "Can Mr. Farrakhan and his followers be accepted as 'Muslims' in the sense that this word is defined by the Sharee’ah?" With the permission and the Help of Allah, and after due investigation on the matter, this Board answers as follows:

Praise be to Allah, the One Who created good and evil, and who revealed the difference between the truth and falsehood. Generally speaking, the ruling is that each one who claims to be a Muslim must be accepted as such by other Muslims unless there is clear evidence which proves the contrary. The most common ruling is that "unbelief is not proved by actions," but "it is proved by the principles that are believed". The most common way to prove what a man actually believes in is by analyzing his speeches and writings. That means that the fact that someone does not usually observe the rulings of the Sharee’ah is not enough to prove his unbelief. This view is held by the Hanafi, Maliki and Shaafi’i Schools of jurisprudence, but the school of Imam Ahmad Ibn Hanbal says that "unbelief is not proven by actions, expect for the obligatory prayers". According to this School, a Muslim who refuses to pray an obligatory prayer must be regarded as a renegade, but the other three schools say he is a Muslim, although a dissolute person. Notwithstanding this divergence, the four schools are unanimous in considering non-Muslim someone who - without being under pressure - says “I do not regard prayer as compulsory”, or “There is no need to fast on Ramadan”, or “It is permissible to drink intoxicants”, etc.

That kind of declaration proves that a person has rejected one of the clear rulings of Sharee’ah about which there is no doubt or possibility of misunderstanding. The consensus of Islamic jurists is that rejecting a single ruling is like rejecting them all, and that abandoning an element of faith is like abandoning them all. There is no difference between a ruling concerning things that must be believed by the heart or things that must be done by the body.

As a general rule, it is forbidden to investigate whether or not Muslims observe the Sharee’ah even if their belief is correct from all points of view. Notwithstanding this, as soon as a Muslim hears from his brother something that can be identified as a wrong belief, he should correct him and teach him the correct doctrine according to the Quran and the Sunnah. In cases when some wrong doctrines can imply unbelief, it is necessary, for the involved person, to repent and to pronounce again the Two Testimonies of Faith. The case is different when a person or a group is openly preaching and teaching doctrines that look unusual. In that case, the scholars are bound to investigate the matter, and judge whether these doctrines imply innovation or apostasy.

Regarding the “Nation of Islam”, their official doctrine is that Allah appeared in the form of a human being named Fareed Muhammad, and that this “incarnation of God” chose another man, called Elijah Muhammad, as his Prophet. This is a clear contradiction to the Monotheistic faith (Tawheed), and to the Quranic teaching according to which Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is the Seal of the Prophets. That is enough to say that everyone who belongs to the “Nation of Islam” is not, ipso facto, a Muslim, but an unbeliever. Muslims must declare this truth, and each one of them who keeps silent while listening to Mr. Farrakhan being called “a Muslim leader” is committing a sin. Since the matter concerns “faith and unbelief”, it is not permitted to avoid a judgment due to political or diplomatic considerations. Every marriage between a Muslim and a member of the “Nation of Islam” is null and void, and whoever, after becoming a member of this organization, wants to return to Islam, must repent and re-embrace Islam. In case he was married, he must renew his marriage contract; in case he performed the Pilgrimage, he must perform it again. In addition to this, no Muslim should eat from the meat of an animal slaughtered by one of them.

We pray to Allah to make all this clear to our brothers in Islam, and to help them avoid to deviate from the doctrine that was revealed in the Quran and that is presently accepted by the Islamic Community. And we call upon Allah to be a Witness of what we say.

Sheikh 'Ali Moallim Hussein, President

Board of Ulema (scholars)

Italian Muslim Association

Mail to: islaminst box.infomark.it

Allah knows best.

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