“And incline not to those who do wrong, or the Fire will seize you…” (Surah Hud 11/113) Are we going to be included in the scope of this verse if we have tendency towards the wrong-doers without any malicious intention?

Details of the Question
How should we understand the verse; “And incline not to those who do wrong, or the Fire will seize you…” (Surah Hud 11/113) Are we going to be included in the scope of this verse if we have tendency towards the wrong-doers (alladhina zalamu) without any malicious intention?
The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

The meaning of the related verse is as follows: “And incline or sympathize not to those who do wrong, or the Fire will seize you…” (Surah Hud 11/113)

This verse involves not only the persecutors (wrong-doers) but also the ones, who become an instrument to, proponent of and even have a small inclination towards that persecution because giving consent to unbelief is unbelief; similarly, giving consent to persecution is persecution. Being a proponent of aberration, lying, sin and haram is aberration, sin and haram.

Here, what s meant by “incline or sympathize not to those who do wrong” is not inclining towards those who persecute.

Badiuzzaman explains that the general disasters result from the wrongdoing of the majority: most people in effect participate in the actions of those tyrannical individuals by supporting them either actively or morally or in some connection and for this reason, troubles and calamities may affect everyone. (See the Words, Fourteenth Word – Addendum)

 “Participating in” the actions of those tyrannical individuals, ” means taking on a task on the side of the cruelty. “Supporting them morally” defines the promoting of that side of cruelty at heart by not taking on a task. Although the sentence “supporting them actively” is similar to “participating”, the first one is lower than the second one. For example, whatever purpose it has, becoming of a distributorship of such an action’s media organ or at least supporting them materially by buying those publications means supporting them actively.

That is to say, a Muslim neither persecutes nor shows any consent to the cruelty of a persecutor and his/her persecution nor praises the cruelty nor becomes a proponent nor contributes the distribution of that persecution by any means. Otherwise, he/she becomes a counterpart of that persecution by inclining towards his/her persecution.

In that case, every Muslim, no matter what kind of sin it is, has a duty not to show consent to them, obey, fancy, approve, befriend, support, defend, fawn and support them.

It is stated in the verse that even inclining towards persecution (zulm) is so bad. The verse implies that one must avoid persecution like death since inclining towards it is so bad.

Baydawi says the word “rukun” mentioned in the verse means bowing down slightly. That is, inclining towards them slightly. According to the scholars, what is forbidden here is to give consent to the persecution of the persecutors, to regard the persecution as something good, to tell others that it is good and to join them in their persecution or similar things. However, to be with them in order to prevent a harm that can come from them or in order to obtain something that has to be obtained immediately is not forbidden.  (see Razi, the interpretation of the above-mentioned verse)

The scholars have dealt with the issue of persecution in three categories:

1.  The persecution between man and Allah. The biggest one in this category is denial, associating partners with Allah and hypocrisy. In the verse, “Join not in worship (others) with Allah: for false worship is indeed the highest wrong-doing” (Luqman, 31/13), attention is attracted to that issue. It is persecution to deny the existence and oneness of Allah; similarly, it is persecution and unbelief to deny one of the fundamentals of belief.

2. The persecution among people. The crimes, sins and injustice committed by people against other people are included in this category. The persecution among people has a great scope. Besides, when persecution is mentioned, the wrong, bad and harmful acts of people against other people come to the mind; people are asked not to commit them, and those who commit them are described as persecutors.

For instance, killing a person (al-Maida, 5/27, 28, 29), stealing (Yusuf, 12/75), sexual intercourse between men (homosexuality) and cutting off the highway (al-Ankabut, 29, 30), fornication (Yusuf, 12/23), forgiving the guilty people and punishing the innocent ones (Yusuf, 12/78, 79), failing to judge by what Allah has revealed (al-Maida, 5/45) are included among the acts of persecution (wrongdoing) and a person who commits them or one of them is a persecutor (wrong-doer). Therefore, to incline towards, to adopt and to like those who commit the forbidden deeds means to join that persecution.

3. Another kind of persecution is to persecute oneself. There are several verses regarding the issue. Attention is attracted to persecution in the following verses: “…when they were unjust to themselves…” (an-Nisa, 4/64), “…But Allah wronged them not: nay they wronged their own souls” (an-Nahl, 16/33), “…but there are among them some who wrong their own souls…” (Fatir, 35/32)

Persecution causes disorders and deviations in the system of the creation no matter what kind of persecution it is. The beings other than human beings do not violate the system of the creation and they act in accordance with their creation. Human beings who do not heed the orders and prohibitions of Allah and who persecute deviate from the purpose of their creation. By doing so, they become the greatest persecutors.

In the verse mentioned in the question, it is stated that those who incline towards the persecutors will be regarded like them and will suffer from the torture of Hell.

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