Islamic State Training Camp Textbook: "Course in Monotheism"- Complete Text, Translation and Analysis (Part Three)

11 August 2015

By Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi

Islamic State Training Camp Textbook: "Course in Monotheism"- Complete Text, Translation and Analysis (Part Two)

Islamic State Training Camp Textbook: "Course in Monotheism"- Complete Text, Translation and Analysis (Part One)


Following on from my post featuring the first lesson of the required reading Muqarrar fi al-Tawhid textbook for all Islamic State training camp recruits, below is my translation of the second lesson from that book.

The three principles

Which every Muslim and Muslim woman must learn.

Knowledge vs. ignorance: definitively realizing what something is.
Principles: plural of principle, and as a word: the foundation and basis of something.

As a technical term: that on which something else is based.

These three principles are the principles of religion to which all religion returns, and from which it spreads, as has been discovered from the words of God Almighty and the words of His Messenger (SAWS).

As has been established in a transmission of Imam Ahmad, and its origin is in the two Sahih collections on the authority of al-Bara bin Aazib and others of the Companions may God be pleased with them: from the Prophet (SAWS) in a hadith on the fitna of the long grave, and in this: "So he comes upon him saying: 'Who is your Lord? What is your religion? Who is your Prophet? So he says: My Lord is God, my religion Islam, my Prophet Muhammad (SAWS). So he says to him: 'You have spoken truthfully.' And it is the last dispute exposed upon the believer. But as for the hypocrite or the skeptic, he says: 'Haha! I don't know! I heard people saying something so I said it!' So he is struck with an iron anvil that everything except man hears, and if man heard it, he would be stunned.

So every Muslim must learn these principles, get to know them, believe them and practice them by showing outwardly and inwardly.


The three principles:

First: Man should know his Lord- blessed and Almighty is He- in what he has known himself in His Book and the Sunna of the His Messenger (SAWS), from His unity, His names, His qualities and His actions. For He is the Lord and ruler of everything. There is no deity or lord except Him.

Second: getting to know his religion: i.e. religion of Islam through which we have worshipped God.

And religion: as a word: Humility and submission: it is said: it made him profess so he professed; i.e. it lowered him, so he lowered in humility.

And in law: religion: the name for all by which God's creation worships Him, and His command for them to establish it.

And al-Sa'adi (may God have mercy on him) said: 'And it is submission to God alone, outwardly and inwardly in what is His law on the Sunna that He sent.'

And the religion of Islam: this is all that God has ordained in His book and the Sunna of His Messenger (SAWS), whether in beliefs, words and deeds, outwardly and inwardly.

Third: Getting to know His Prophet Muhammed the Messenger of God (SAWS), because he is the intermediary between us and God Almighty in his delivering the Message, and he is the best of creation, and the ayats and hadiths in his favour and nobility are very numerous. And getting to know him and believing in him is obligatory on every responsible one, because there is no path for us to worship God except in what the one upon whom God's peace and blessings be brought.

And testifying that Muhammad is the Messenger of God is the second half of the words of tawheed by which man enters into the religion of Islam, and witness of tawheed cannot be right except with the accompaniment of the witness to the Message and faith in the Prophet (SAWS) which will arise by getting to know him and having faith in his Message, and that requires: believing in him in what he brought and obeying him in what he commanded, and abstaining from and suppressing what he prohibited, and we worship God alone by law.


So when it is said to you: who is your Lord? Say: 'My Lord is God who cultivated me and all the worlds with His blessing, and He is the one I worship, and I worship no other but Him.'

The Lord: He is the Creator, the Master who directs. For He is Creator of everything and Master of it all, and He directs all affairs. Not a particle in existence is outside His creation, mastery and direction.

And worship as a word: The perfection of love with the perfection of humility and submission.

And the principle of the command to worship is based on affection, fear and hope.

Ibn Taymiyya (may God have mercy on him) says: Know that the movements of the hearts towards God- Almighty and Exalted is He- are three things: affection, fear and hope. And the most powerful of these is affection and it is intentionally sought in its own right because it is desired in this world and the Hereafter, whereas fear disappears in the Hereafter. God Almighty has said: 'Indeed no! The awliya of God have no fear upon them and are not sad.' And the meaning from this is suppressing and preventing deviation from the path, for affection brings man in course to his beloved and depending on its weakness or strength, his course will be towards it, while fear prevents him from the path of the beloved, and hope leads him. So this is a great principle that every man must heed for true servitude cannot be without this and everyone must be a slave/servant to God and no one else. [Collection of Fatwas: Part I, pg. 93]

Worship in law: collective name for all that God loves and is pleased with from outward and inward deeds and words.

e.g. Du'a, prayer, fear, hope, affection and besides that are among the acts of worship. So these acts must be purified and directed to God alone, no companion besides Him, for whoever expends any of these acts on one besides God, he is a idolatrous disbeliever.

"And when it is said to you: What is your religion? Say: my religion is Islam, and it is surrender ['istislam] to God in tawheed, submission to him in obedience, and disavowing shirk [idolatry] and its people."

Istislam, i.e. humility and submission to God in tawheed which is singling out God alone in worship, from their words: So-and-so surrendered to the killing when he handed himself in, was lowered, yielded and submitted. So the Muslim submits, lowers himself and subjects himself to God alone, surrendering in obedience to worship Him and none other besides.

Yielding to Him in obedience: istislam and subjecting oneself alone are insufficient, for one must also submit to the commands of God Almighty and the commands of His Messenger (SAWS), abandoning what has been forbidden, obedience to God, outwardly and inwardly desiring to do so, and fearing His consequences.

Disavowing shirk and its people: disavowing and renouncing shirk great and small, as well as its people, in showing hostility to them, hating them, and declaring them to be kuffar (takfir), and not living with them, or eating with them, and not imitating them in words or deeds.

When it is said to you: Who is your Prophet? Say: Muhammad bin Abdullah bin Abd al-Mutallib bin Hashim.

God sent him to the words as a herald, warner and caller to God by His permission, a lightening lamp, and he is the seal of the Prophets, and the best of all creation.

And he is a man not to be worshipped, and a Messenger not to be deemed a liar, but to be obeyed and followed. God ennobled him with servitude and the Message.

So everyone responsible must get to know him, have faith in him, love him, obey him, and show deference and reverence to him.


Tawheed: Three Types

First: Tawheed al-Rabubiya: this is tawheed of God in the Almighty's deeds, like creation, nurturing, giving life, guarantee, benefit and harm.

The evidence: the Almighty's words: "Say: 'Who nurtures you from the Heavens and the Earth? Or who controls hearing, sight and who brings out the living from the dead and the dead from the living and who arranges every matter?' So they will say: 'God'. So say: 'So will you not fear Him?'" (Yunis 31: Qur'an 10:31). And the ayat on this are very numerous

This is the type on which the kuffar were established in the time of the Messenger of God (SAWS), and he did not bring them into Islam, and the Messenger of God (SAWS) fought them, and he deemed their blood and property lawful targets, because they committed idolatry in worship.

Second: tawheed al-Uluhiya: this is tawheed of God by the deeds of worship, and it is the one in which conflict has arisen between the customs of old and their contemporary counterparts: like du'a, pledging, slaughter [i.e. animal sacrifice to God], hope, fear, trust, desire, fear, authorization. All of these types have evidence from the Qur'an to support them.

Signs of evidence of tawheed al-Uluhiya are very numerous in the Book and the Sunna. The Almighty has said: "They have taken their scholars and monks for lords besides God, and the Messiah, son of Mary. And they were not commanded to worship anyone except God alone: there is no deity except Him, and He is exalted above whatever they associate with Him." (Tawba 31: Qur'an 9:31).

The Almighty has said: "And they have not been ordered except to worship God, showing purity to Him in religion, supporting truth, establishing prayer and giving zakat. That is the correct religion." (al-Bayyina 5: Qur'an 98:5).

And SAWS [the Prophet] said: "Whoso has said: There is no deity but God, and has disbelieved in what is worshipped besides God, his wealth and blood are sacrosanct, and his reckoning is on God."- narrated by Muslim.

And SAWS has said: "Whoso faces God not associating anything with Him, he enters Paradise. But whoso faces God associating something with Him, he enters Hellfire."- narrated by Muslim.

Third: tawheed al-dhat wa al-asmaa wa al-sifat: that is faith in the existence of God Almighty, and He in His own being has sufficiency in His greatness, and created beings are not like unto Him; and establishing what God has established for Himself- in His book and the Sunna of His Messenger (SAWS)- from the names and qualities, without hindrance, imitation, deviation or conditioning. And one must deny what God has denied about Himself in His book and the Sunna of His Messenger (SAWS).

God Almighty has said: "Say: He is the One God, the eternal God, He begets not, nor is He begotten, and there is none like unto Him."- al-Ikhlas 1-4 (Qur'an 112:1-4).

And the Almighty's words: "And God has the finest names, so call Him by them and abandon those who deviate in naming Him. They will be recompensed for what they do."- al-Araf 180 (Qur'an 7:180).

And the Almighty's words: "And there is nothing like Him, and He is the hearer, the seer."- al-Shura 11 (Qur'an 42:11) 



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