Jihad is the Way?
by Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik
Jihad is the way. We need to be fully aware of this
and to act and follow in its way. The faltering of faith has led the Muslims to their current state: one of laxity, disintegration, the dominion of Allah's enemies over the Muslim's resources, and
the succumbing of some of them to abandoning their faith.
The revival of the faith is the starting point for the revival and revitalization of the Islamic Ummah [nation], so that it can regain its power and be liberated and assume its rightful position which was intended by Allah, as the most exalted nation among men , as the leaders of humanity, and through this religion of truth they will deliver humanity from darkness unto light.
Together with the power of faith, there is no escaping from the power of unity among the Muslims to unify efforts. Then comes the power of arms and weapons, when nothing else will suffice, and this is the role of Jihad. The Imam (Muslim religious leader) and Shahid (Martyr), Hassan al-Banna (founder of the Muslim Brotherhood) learned of the need for these three forces, from the biography of the Prophet [Muhammad], may Allah bless him and give him peace...
Many questions arise regarding the Muslim
Brotherhood's stance as to Jihad... There is one who asks: Is the meaning of Jihad to force non-Muslims to become Muslim under threat of violence? While another says: Do you want to fight Allah's
enemies in the East and West while they are immensely powerful and you are weak...? ... And some say do you want, through the Jihad, to send Muslim youth to their death and to hand them over as easy
prey to the enemies of Islam?
At the same time we hear those among the enthusiastic youth who say: Has the [Muslim] Brotherhood grown weary after the challenges, thrown down its weapons and abandoned Jihad? Yet another says: Do you wish, with this passivity, to weaken the youth's vigor and kill the spirit of Jihad in them?
Another asks: How long will you content yourselves with Da'wa (Islamic missionary activity) and education without Jihad, while the enemies of Allah lie in wait and attack you from time to time, and you confront their attacks with submissiveness and without resistance?
These are all questions which are brought up regarding the [Muslim] Brotherhood and their position on Jihad... We feel it necessary to make these matters clear to all of us so that there will be a unified understanding and the efforts shall be unified with Allah's help.
...Our Islamic religion is not a religion of priests and monks, who worship their Lord individually without taking interest in others... but rather it is a complete religion which organizes peoples' lives in this world as well as in the next life: It organizes the economic, social and political matters of Muslims and still - [is] a religion of faith, law and ritual, which addresses every minor and major issue related to man...
It is, additionally, a religion of one nation, one society, one Qibla (prayer direction, i.e., Mecca) and one book. It transforms the Muslims into one body in their mutual relations, if one of its limbs suffers; the whole body comes to its protection...
The religion [of Islam] requires its believers to perform its laws and the rules of the Quran and the prophetic traditions, and to deliver this religion of truth to all of humanity...
Is it possible for such a religion to exist and for its believers to fulfill all of its requirements without the adherents of other beliefs persecuting it with attacks on the religion and its followers, and without their attempting to prevent the believers from performing this religion and establishing it? Should the believers of this religion cease to perform it... simply because the enemies of Allah attack them? And if they [Muslims] endure patiently, does this mean that this patience has no end? Do they not have a right to repel the aggression and to remove the hurdles from their path?
From this it is evident that Jihad is an inevitable necessity, and that's why it was made a religious duty in Islam, [a duty] which exists till the day of Resurrection. It is also the reason why [Islam] has excited the interest in [Jihad] and hastened towards it, and made it the highest pinnacle of Islam; Without it, the religion has no revival and the people of falsehood take over, and the religion of Allah becomes invalid and life is corrupted and goes astray from the path that Allah wanted. Is this appropriate for the religion of Allah, Exalted and Almighty?
In this book, we will clarify several issues pertaining to [the place of] Jihad in Islam...
Islam has dedicated much attention to the issue of Jihad and militancy and recruiting the nation and gathering it all in one line in order to defend the truth with all its might; it [Islam] has rendered Jihad a religious duty for every Muslim, which no [Muslim] can escape, and has aroused the will towards [performing] Jihad to the greatest degree; It has greatly increased the rewards for the Mujahidun (Jihad warriors) and the Shahids (Martyrs), and has threatened the procrastinators and those who avoid Jihad with the most terrible punishments...
[Translator's note: What follows are quotes from Hassan al-Banna on Jihad, fighting and Istish'had [Martyrdom-Seeker or achieved Martyrdom]
... The Imam and Shahid (Martyr) [Hassan al-Banna] writes in his Treatise on Jihad: "All of the sages, the earlier and the later ones... agree that Jihad is a religious public duty to spread Da'wa (Islamic missionary activity) incumbent upon the Islamic nation, and is a personal duty to fend off the infidels' attack on the nation... The Muslims today, as you know, are humiliated by others, dominated by infidels, their land is overrun and their holy places are desecrated... Therefore there exists an unavoidable personal duty for every Muslim to equip himself and prepare and gear-up towards Jihad until the opportunity arises and Allah will determine His word."
The Shahid (Martyr) Imam (Hassan al-Banna) said in another place of his Jihad Treatise about the tradition [attributed to Muhammad]: "We have returned from the smaller Jihad to the greater Jihad. They said: "And what is the greater Jihad? He said: the Jihad of the heart or the Jihad of the soul." He said: "This tradition is not authentic Hadith (tradition) and some say that it was said by Ibrahim b. 'Abla...
Allah has imposed the duty of Jihad on the Muslims, not as a tool for aggression or for achieving personal aspirations, but in order to defend the Da'wa (Islamic missionary activity), and to ensure the peace and as fulfillment of the Muslims' greatest mission, to guide people to truth and justice...
On mercifulness during Jihad, according to Hassan al-Banna: Allah has instructed the Muslims to be utmost merciful, when they fight they do not attack, and do not blow up (anything), and do not mutilate (dead) bodies, and do not steal, and do not plunder property, and do not desecrate (sanctity), and do not come to harm, because in their war they are the best warriors, just as they in their peace are the best peace-lovers. In addition to this it is forbidden to kill women, children and elderly, finish off wounded, provoke monks and isolated people and peaceful non-combatants.
Where is that compassion in the suffocating attacks of the civilized and the horrible atrocities and where does their International law stand in relation to this all-encompassing divine justice? Then he [Hassan al-Banna] turns to Allah and says: Allah, instruct Muslims in their religion, and save this world from this darkness through the lights of Islam.
The Muslim Brotherhood's stance regarding Jihad
Jihad for Allah's sake has been forcing itself upon the Islamic region in recent years, and has become tangibly noticeable in parts of the Islamic world. In other parts of the Islamic world, there is a tide of preparation for Jihad and a sense that it is unavoidable, and is the only way to retaliate against the aggressiveness of Allah's enemies, and to liberate Islamic land from its occupiers and invaders. It has become a widespread and convincing opinion, that the way of negotiation and peace-treaties with Allah's enemies instead of Jihad is surrender in the name of peace.
Additionally, without Jihad and the preparation towards it, the obligation cast upon every Muslim to establish an Islamic state and the Islamic Caliphate and to consolidate this religion, will not be realized...
He [Hassan al-Banna] felt the grave danger overshadowing the Muslims and the urgent need and obligation which Islam places on every Muslim, man and woman, to act in order to restore the Islamic Caliphate and to reestablish the Islamic State on strong foundations... and to liberate the Muslims and defend them from any attack, and to spread the Da'wa (Islamic missionary activity) of Islam in the world and to establish this great religion, which Allah wanted for his servants.
This is how the Prophet educated the Muslims through the Quran... and united them like brothers and arranged them and rushed them towards Jihad and [self-] sacrifice, until they were worthy of Allah's victory and support, and this is how the Arabian Peninsula was cleansed of idolatry and idols, and the Persian lands were conquered, and the Greeks [the Byzantines] subdued and the Jews [were] expelled and the shadows were dispersed and the light was spread...
He (Hassan al-Banna) knew the role of Jihad in leading the Da'wa (Islamic missionary activity) and the importance of preparing for it, because the truth needs a force to protect it. He noticed that the spirit of Jihad was almost absent from the Muslims of that time and the spirit of surrender prevailed.
The Jihad is Our Way - The Motto of the Da'wa (Islamic missionary activity)
... "Allah is our goal, the Prophet is our leader, the Quran is our constitution, the Jihad is our way, and the Death for Allah is our most exalted wish."
The symbol of the [Muslim] Brotherhood is the book of Allah [the Quran] between two swords. The swords symbolize Jihad and the force that protects the truth represented in Allah's book...
[I]n all his (Hassan al-Banna's) writings and conversations, he always urged towards Jihad and aroused the desire for seeking Shahada (Martyrdom)... he did not content himself only with speech and writing, and when the opportunity arrived for Jihad in Palestine he hurried and seized it. The [Muslim] Brotherhood provided the most magnificent models [for Jihad and courage] and were it not for the [evil] scheming and the treachery on the part of the leaders of the Muslim countries of the time, the situation would have been different.
After Allah honored him with Shahada (Martyrdom) -and his murder was part of this scheme [of the Muslim leaders] - the [Muslim] Brotherhood continued on the path of Jihad against the British on the banks of the Suez canal in the early 1950's, and also continued their Jihad against the Jews in other Islamic regions outside of Egypt, as Da'wa (Islamic missionary activity) was made to disappear in the prisons during [President] Abdul Nasser's rule. Today we witness the [Muslim] Brotherhood joining their brothers, the Mujahideen (Jihad warriors) in Afghanistan, and fighting against the infidel and repressive regime in Syria.
Has the [Muslim] Brotherhood grown weary of the challenges, thrown down their guns and abandoned Jihad?!! No! ...
[D]espite this, the [Muslim] Brotherhood is not rushed by youth's enthusiasm into immature and unplanned action which will not alter the bad reality and may even harm the Islamic activity, and will benefit the people of falsehood...
The [Muslim] Brotherhood knows that hastiness without proper preparedness may be like an aborted [action]. Likewise, they know that the negligence and hesitation after the right time [for Jihad] has come... might be a spiritual death...
When the [Muslim] Brotherhood sends their youth to Jihad in the appropriate time they do not thrust them towards destruction, rather the abstention of Jihad in its appropriate time is destruction. As well, one should know that it is not necessary that the Muslims will repel every attack or damage caused by the enemies of Allah immediately, but [only] when ability and the circumstances are fit to it.
In the early days of Islamic Da'wa (Islamic missionary activity), when the Muslims were a persecuted minority, the Prophet Muhammad did not instruct the Muslims to retaliate but rather instructed them of 'Sabr', patience and steadfastness ... and when the conditions were right, permission to fight was given in the words of Allah: [Quran, sura 22, 39]:
"Permission [to fight] is given to those upon whom war is made because they are oppressed, and most surely Allah is well able to assist them."
Jihad is not only for Repelling an Assault but also for the Purpose of Establishing an Islamic State.
It should be known that Jihad and preparation towards Jihad are not only for the purpose of fending-off assaults and attacks of Allah's enemies from Muslims, but are also for the purpose of realizing the great task of establishing an Islamic state and strengthening the religion and spreading it around the world...
As for the incorrect saying that the aim of Jihad in Islam is to coerce the people into the religion under threat of the sword, we do not need to work hard to disprove it. Many have already written on the subject, and it should suffice that it contradicts Allah's saying, Exalted is He: "There is no compulsion in religion; truly the right way has become clearly distinct from error." [Sura 2, 256] Reality and history negate this false claim.
Following this clarification and answer for the ponderings regarding Jihad in general, and the Muslim Brotherhood specifically, it is only left for us to address our Muslim youth with several basic terms which need to accompany Jihad and the preparation for Jihad so that they will be worthy of this immense honor.
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