THE THIRD PRINCIPLE
Kufr is of two types;
Kufr in belief, that takes one out of the fold of Islam. It is also referred to as major kufr.
Kufr in action that does not take one out of the fold of Islam on its own except, if after the establishment of the proof, his actions portray manifest denial, rejection, arrogance, etc. It is also referred to as minor kufr.
So this principle necessitates the establishment of whether the judgment by other than what Allah has revealed, falls under the type of kufr in belief which is rejection, denial, or making it permissible or even believing that one has a choice in the matter. Or does it fall under the type of kufr in action that does not make you a kaafir. Therefore if the scholars of Islam judge that the kufr in a particular instance was kufr in action then we would have indeed lied against Allah if we were to make them unbelievers.
EVIDENCE FOR THE PRINCIPLE 3
If kufr was not of two types then how would be understand the hadith narrated by Abdullah ibn Mas’ood (radiyallahu anhu). The Messenger of Allah (sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) said:
“Abusing a Muslim is fisq (sin) and fighting him is kufr.” [Agreed upon]
So is this fighting kufr in belief or kufr in action, bearing in mind that if it is kufr in belief, then the person who does this act becomes a disbeliever (Kaafir). The answer is clearly that it is kufr in action, the minor kufr which does not remove from the fold of Islam, and this is established from Allah’s statement;
“And if two parties from amongst the believers fight, then make peace between them and if one transgresses, then fight the one who transgresses till it complies with the command of Allah.” [Al-Hujuraat (49):9]
Here, Allah is describing those Muslims who fight each other as believers. Therefore fighting amongst believers is kufr in action or minor kufr cannot be kufr in belief or major kufr. Each and every verse in the Qur’an and the hadith that mentions kufr must be verified to find out what type of kufr it is. This is a task for the scholars alone and not the common people. Other examples of such cases can be found in the following authentic ahadith, where all the examples are of kufr in action or minor kufr.
“Two things if done are kufr, abusing of genealogies and wailing over the dead.” [Saheeh Muslim]
“Arguing over the Qur’an is kufr.”
“Speaking about Allah’s favors is giving thanks and leaving that is kufr.”
“Do not return to being Kaafir after me by same to you striking the necks of others (fighting).” [Al-Bukhaaree]
“Whoever goes into his women from behind (anus) has indeed done kufr.”
And also the statement of Allah:
“Whoever does not judge by what Allah has revealed such are the disbelievers?” [Al-Maa’idah (5):44]
Like this there are many more verses and ahadeeth, that need to be explained by tafseer or ahadeeth using principles of the shari’ah in order to arrive at the correct ruling – a work only befitting scholars. This is where many of the Muslims become confused and are lead astray. They try to implement the verses of Surah Al-Maa’idah and other texts, as they are, literally, without applying the principle that the kufr mentioned in the text can be one of two types.
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