Bida’, “It shall be rejected”
Earlier in an article (“Deeds are upon intention”) we discussed the importance of ‘intention’ for the acceptance of a deed in Islam. Another essential factor is that it should be in accordance to the teaching (methodology) of the Prophet (S), which merely means to follow strictly, the prophetic tradition. It does not stop there, but, it demands not to establish ‘new’ in affairs of Islam. Prophet (S) said: “the best guidance is the guidance of Muhammad and the most evil of affairs are the ‘newest’ of them.”(1)
While intention is the scale for what is inherent of the deed, adhering to the methodology of the Prophet is the scale for what is apparent. And it does not just restrict to deeds alone, rather it is inclusive of everything that is a part of the Islamic legislation. In a prophetic tradition from both Bukhari and Muslim, Prophet (S) states that all affairs should be rejected that which is ‘not in accord with our matters’ . (1)
The Islamic Shari’a fundamentally based on the Qur’an and the prophet tradition deals with the overall life of a human being. The fact that it began and developed fourteen centuries back, does not restrict its practicality in the contemporary era, for Shar’ia opens a wide space which extracts principles from the fundamental evidences in order to address contemporary issues. Thus stated Prophet (S), his words, actions and tacit approvals, which the living interpretation and example of Shari’a, are model for a human being. Sticking to his methodology in whatever we faces is the most appropriate attitude a person could take, for He is best of human being; the most obedient of slaves; and the one who practiced the Sharia’ in its entirety. The way and methodology of Prophet (S) would be perfect for one who wants to live ‘Islam’, whether it be spirituality, politics etc. Thus, a methodology other than Prophet’s, would be rationally absurd to obtain the ultimate goal.
1. The Complete Hadith in Bukhari and Muslim reads on the authority of the Ayesha (R), who said, The Messenger of Allah said, ‘whoever introduces anything into this matter of ours that is nor from it shall have it rejected. In Sahih Muslim, the hadith states, “whoever does an act that is not in accord with our matter will have it rejected.”