In the name of Allah, the most Gracious, the most Merciful
As-Salaamu Alaikum Wa-Rahmatallahi Wa-Barakaatuhu Our Dear Shaykh, by Allah, I truly love you in Allah.
[Wa-Alaikum As-Salaamu Wa-Rahmatallahi Wa-Barakaatuhu, May you be loved by Allah, as because of Him, you loved me.]
Our Dear Shaykh. I have a few problems. I was discussing with a brother, who happens to have done Jihad in Afghanistan after September 11, about going to Jihad and the ruling on it. So I mentioned to him that it is fard ayn (an individual duty), and he wondered are the Mujahideen in need of you as a person, or do they need funds. Additionally, a week ago I was in touch with a brother who stated that after he finished training, he went for about 6 months without deploying to the battlefield but was asked to choose a martyrdom operation, but he did not want to and did not go to the battlefield. End of his words.
Are his statements right?? If yes, is Jihad an individual duty or fard kifaya (collective duty)? If his statements are wrong, is the ruling then that it is fard ayn, and should I ask the permission of my parents or not?
Alhamdulillah, and peace and prayers be upon the Messenger of Allah, his family, his companions, and his followers. And thereafter:
Yes, with regard to the battlefields of Afghanistan and Pakistan, the Mujahideen do not need at this stage (I stress the words “at this stage”, because this information may change from time to time) great numbers of combatant Mujahideen. Alhamdulillah, the numbers of Muhajireen and Ansar (the people of the land) present there are very great. However, this is the case only because of the capacity of the battlefield and its Jihadi system (the Jihadi group or groups present there) to absorb people in terms of their arming, training, teaching, education, as well as the development of their psychology and consciousness, etc., or even supporting their living: housing them (that is providing for their residence), their livelihood; that is, paying for their food and drink, etc.
The Mujahideen, whether the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (the Taliban), al-Qaeda, or others do not have the capacity to provide for extremely large numbers because of this reason; that is because of the lack of funds and other similar reasons, such as their geographic situation. Because of that, we see we are in a period of selection and choosing. So we call upon the specialized cadres that Jihad requires first, and then the regular fighters according to need and according to what the leaders and those running the Jihad decide. So we accept the numbers bit by bit through a process of selection and recommendation, may Allah grant success. This is concerning our battlefield here. But other battlefields are each according to their own measure. One battlefield may need numbers, while another does not, and so on and so forth.
However, does this make us say that Jihad now is fard kifaya (collective duty)? In my opinion, this is not accurate. I personally cannot say that Jihad now is fard kifaya because kifaya (collectivity) has not occurred in reality on the ground, since the meaning of collectivity, as the Ulema explained is the incidence of repelling the enemy or attaining the number that repulses the enemy, in that the enemy is in the process of being repulsed without the need for more than the numbers available. This is not the truth on the ground, but our kifaya that I talked about goes back to our inability to absorb great numbers (of Mujahideen), which in turn is in large part attributable to the negligence of the rich people among the Ummah and the negligence of those with scientific and leadership skills and the highly specialized cadres whom Allah blessed and distinguished with their abilities.
So give me money and provide me with cadres, and you will see what fronts and training camps we will open and what we will do to the enemies of Allah, with the help of Allah. Allah alone is the One whose help can be sought. Allah is sufficient unto us, and He is the best disposer of affairs.
Then, because this kifaya is temporary, I may say to you, we do not need numbers today, but maybe I will call after some days and say, come O Youth of Islam, we need greater numbers of fighters, because this is war, and war consumes men, and Allah is the Almighty. Therefore, fronts are opened according to capacity, wisdom and interest. Attention must be paid to this. I also called attention to another matter by my statements about our battlefield and similar battlefields: what about the lands of Islam when compared to the rest of the world?
Regarding the first (the lands of Islam), there is no doubt that many Muslim lands are occupied and seized by the infidels; some for centuries, may Allah provide assistance, from Andalusia in the West, parts of southern Europe, central Asia, the Balkans, the Caucasus, and nearby areas, to East Turkistan in China to many countries in Southeast Asia, Singapore, the Philippines, Thailand, and others, and even India, or many parts of it. These were all some time (ago) the lands of Islam and Dar al-Islam, and were taken by the Kaffir enemy. So Muslims must retrieve them and free them from the hands of the kuffar.
They must also free all Islamic territories among the lands of the Arabs and the foreigners, which are under the authority of the kuffar and apostate governments who belong to our own race. It is a duty to fight them and wage Jihad against them. It is the duty of every able person to do that. According to the foundation of the Sharia, fighting them in their countries has priority over seeking the original kuffar. However, the priority is to fight the original kuffar now (America and its allies) and this has occurred only because of chances which favoured them. So who will rise to fight them? How can we say that Jihad is a fard kifaya?! Indeed, we are bold!
Secondly (regarding my saying 'the entire world'), and considering that the entire world is expecting us to conquer them with Islam by invading the countries of the kuffar and conquering them so that there is no more fitna and faith in Allah prevails, and so that infidelity does not have the dominating and oppressive power that prevents people from embracing Islam. This is fundamentally a collective obligation upon the Islamic Ummah that you see is wasted and not practiced.
Everyone is subject to reproach, with the exception of those whom Allah forgives, because they have done what they can and according to their means. We may also add other aspects, such as releasing prisoners, which is a collective obligation for the Ummah and can be carried out through all legitimate means, including paying a ransom, force, war, weapons, spying, and deception; and the obligation to strive to establish a Khalifa for Muslims and an inclusive Islamic State insofar as is possible, and so on. Therefore, to clarify what we mean by stating Jihad is fard ayn for us now, we say that every Muslim must do it according to his means and according to what he finds to be suitable for him and is required of him.
And in conclusion, as I have said repeatedly, quoting the words of Sheikh Abdullah Azzam, may Allah have mercy on him: “Join the Caravan”, so whoever joins the caravan of Jihad and the Mujahideen by sacrificing his person, preparing, and saying while putting words into deeds: Here I am, one of the arrows of the Muslims, so let the leadership of the Muslims aim me wherever they please. So it is said, for example, you so-and-so go to Chechnya, for they are in need of your like and because going to it is possible for you. And you so-and-so go to such-and-such place, and you stay in your location and do such-and-such pertaining to economy, finance, business, writing, speaking, preaching, media, or seeking knowledge. And you so-and-so, do such-and-such. So the situation is clear for whoever is capable of communicating with the leaders of Jihad so that they know what is suitable for them and required of them, with devotion, honesty, and faithfulness.
Those who are not capable of doing so, who constitute the majority, these follow the usual general plans and make efforts as much as possible, show piety to Allah, consult with the more knowledgeable, honest and righteous people of Jihad, knowledge and faith. May Allah grant them success and guidance. Thus, they will have honoured their duty and acquitted themselves, Allah willing. Allah accepts the pious. Therefore, truthfully, it is not necessary to ask for parental permission to do Jihad in our time. Allah is more knowledgeable, and there is no might and no power except from Allah.
As for the above-mentioned brother who continued to wait for six months more or less before he was given an opportunity for military action (participating in operations), this is normal. It is something that happens often, because of the season he coincided with, or because of various other factors.
Living in Afghanistan and among the tribes is not all about operations, killing, and slaughtering the enemies of Allah. Rather, it is a full life that includes training and fighting according to the proper times, and on the right occasions which also takes into account the person’s suitability for it, the need for him and so on. It also involves other activities that are necessary and that complement Jihad, such as logistics and administrative activities, and many other various specializations.
Mostly, anyone who has the opportunity, whether they are few or many, to engage in fighting (military combatant operations), will be given that opportunity. It is just that sometimes “he needs some patience for it”.
Success is in the hands of Allah Almighty alone. So, if the brother comes to the battlefield of Jihad, he has to put this before his eyes, prepare himself, and set his mind to have patience, to wait, and stay where he is until given orders and not to rush into anything. The life of Jihad is good, blessed and rewarding and it is full of righteous acts.
The brothers in the Jihad al-Qaeda Organization have a paper they give to the brother who goes to Jihad which he reads before he marches out. It contains a reminder of some matters and a clarification of some important things. We believe it is extremely important to search for this document and become familiar with it before going to Jihad. You can ask the brothers in 'The Global Islamic Media Front' for it. I ask Allah to grant guidance, direction, and help to me, you, and all our loved ones.
What is better for a person who is beginning on the path of seeking knowledge and who has found a path to Jihad: should he hasten to Jihad or should he complete his education and then go? Also, what books do you recommend for the Mujahid’s provision of faith?
This varies from person to person and from situation to situation. Nothing said with regard to it will apply to all individuals or all situations, so one should consult those whom he trusts among the dependable and trustworthy people of knowledge, opinion, and advice, and seek the help of Allah.
However, to assist you in assessing the situation in general: if this student has excelled in knowledge, and it is hoped that he will be one of its people, and that he will grow in it and its attainment, and he does not fear that he will (fall into) fitna or turn to mischief, Allah forbid, it is better then that he finishes his education and his quest while maintaining his intention of Jihad and going forth on Jihad when that is required. This intention is a condition and without it his obligation is not met. Its regulation is such that should it become clear that marching out on Jihad is required of him by the Sharia, at that moment, he would march out, give up studies, and leave everything.
As for the books I recommend, they include: “Wells of Longing” [مشارع الأشواق] by Ibn al-Nahas, and from it a letter under the title “Exposing the Fallacies of those who have Abandoned Jihad” [كشف شبهات المخذلين عن الجهاد], the compilation of Harith al-Masri available on the internet and in the comprehensive electronic library, and from it the book, “The Deluge of the Good Word” [الوابل الصيب من الكلم الطيب], “The Sufficient Response for Those Who Ask for Medicine” [الجواب الكافي لمن سأل عن الدواء الشافي], both by Ibn al-Qayyim, and the book “Our Fortifications Are Threatened from Within” [حصوننا مهددة من داخلها] by Muhammad Muhammad Hussein, and many other good books, walhamdulillah. May Allah grant success.
The Ulama have put in place requirements and impediments for holding supporters of the enemy as kaffir. Must these requirements be present and the impediments absent in the person by asking for an explanation from him directly, or is his general situation enough? For example, in the land of al-Haramain, people who make light of the faith on television shows had studied Tawheed and should have learned that mocking the faith is kufr. So I do not think that they do not know the ruling on this and others. Should they be judged according to the general situation or should we verify their situation?
A specific person is not judged to be a kaffir unless we are aware that the requirements for the judgement to apply to him are present and impediments are absent. This is a fact known to the Ulama. As for the general public and those who have no access to ‘Ilm, they are to be warned against making charges of kufr against anyone out of personal interpretation and inference. That is the work of the people of knowledge. The common person who is not specialized in knowledge says: I do not know. Ask the Ulama. This is his duty, along with his complete faith in Allah the Almighty, His religion, and His messengers...and so on, and total unbelief in taghout.
However, there is the kufr of infidels that both the common person and the scholar know equally, such as the kufr of the original kuffar, who do not belong to Islam in the first place, as well as the overt apostate who declares his abandonment of the Islamic faith and moves away from it, may Allah forbid, and those similar, including: the one who curses Allah Almighty, His Messenger, and His Religion, and the one who scoffs at Allah the Almighty, His Religion, His ayat, and His Messenger, but on the condition that the cursing or the scoffing is clear. There are no disagreements in that regard, but what is considered as serious cursing or mocking is left to the Ulama.
And, in general, being reserved in this respect is compulsory and necessary. Otherwise, humans would be ruined. We ask Allah to grant us safety and health. This is a dangerous aspect that the Ulama of the faith still fear and warn against engaging in unjustly and without the strength of a preacher. On this basis, those in the land of al-Haramain who you said make light of the faith in the television shows are to be referred to the people of knowledge who are familiar with their situation and know their reality to investigate that. May Allah grant success.
Jazaak Allah Khairan and may Allah grant you success in everything and in Jihad in his cause according to guidance and piety from Allah. And may He make me and you firm on His straight path, bless me and you with martyrdom in His cause, advancing and not retreating, certain, honest, and holy. Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the Two Worlds. Allah's peace be upon Muhammad, his family, and all his companions.
Wa-Assalaamu Alaikum Wa-Rahmatallahi Wa-Barakaatuhu
Your Brother Attiya Allah Abu Abdulrahman
Mid-Jumada al-Awla 1431H.