What does it mean?

“When you deal in eena and you hold onto the tails of cows and you are content with agriculture and you abandon jihad, Allah will inflict humiliation upon you and will not remove it until you return to your religion”

This hadeeth is from the signs of Prophethood as you can see. And indeed, this humiliation has become a fact amongst us as is unfortunately visible. It is obligatory upon us that we acquire the remedy from this hadeeth after the disease has been described along with the humiliation it will produce. Indeed, we have hung on persistently to the illnesses which have led us to the disease; which is none other than humiliation. Therefore, it is upon us that we return to the application of the remedy which the Messenger of Allah described and which he made clear that if we return to it, Allah will lift this humiliation from us’. And that remedy is none other than Tasfiya and Tarbiya – purification and cultivation.  Allah indicates that these two components were central to the prophets (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) mission:

The cure…

He it is Who sent among the unlettered ones a Messenger from among themselves, reciting to them His Verses, PURIFYING them (from the filth of disbelief and polytheism), and TEACHING them the Book  and Al-Hikmah. And verily, they had been before in manifest error (62:2)

  1. 1. Purification

Purification (or tasfiya) is required in regards to the sources of our islamic knowledge, in regards to our Islamic beliefs and in practices or actions.

a)       Purifying our sources of knowledge

Wrong beliefs and practices deriving from weak reports has marred the beauty of Islam and prevented the Muslims advancements.  Therefore we must purify our knowledge from weak and fabricated narrations.

b)       Purifying our beliefs

Beliefs of the Muslim masses have become contaminated with dogmas coming from sources alien to Islam.  Therefore, part of the necessary purification process is to purify our beliefs so that they are only based authentic texts from the Qur’an and Sunnah, in compliance with the beliefs of the sahabah, and clean from shirk (joining partners with Allah).

c)       Purifying our actions

We should also purify our actions so that they conform to authentic texts from the Qur’an and Sunnah, compliant with the understanding and practice of the sahabah, and clean from human innovations.

  1. 2. Cultivation

Cultivation (or tarbiya) is to establish our beliefs and action upon the purified knowledge.  Cultivation goes hand in hand with purification.

a)       Becoming true followers of the Salaf

The above discussion about purifying our beliefs and actions must extend to cultivating ourselves and our communities upon the purified teachings.  If we do this, we can hope to be true followers of our great Salaf – the Sahabah.  This cultivation should bring back to Muslims the spirit of truth-seeking – instead of stubborn and narrow-minded adherence to the madhabs and prejudiced loyalty to parties.

b)       Inviting to the pure religion

We should educate and guide the Muslims toward the purified Islam, so as to implement its teachings and revel in its virtues and ethics.  We should also invite the non-Muslims to the unadulterated truth of Islam.

c)       Presenting the Islamic solution

Inviting to the truth includes providing realistic Islamic solutions to contemporary problems.  There is no doubt that Allah’s guidance is the only comprehensive way to resolving people’s problems at the individual and communal levels. Allah says;

“Judge between them according to what Allah has revealed, and do not follow their errant views”. (5:49)