The Complete Works of Imam Hasan al-Banna (9)

(9) Oh Youth!

In the Name of Allah, The Most Gracious, The Most Merciful

All Praise be to Allah, and blessings and peace be upon our master and chief, Muhammad, upon His Companions and upon those who followed and supported Him.

[Say to them, O Messenger of Allah [May The Blessing And Prayer Of Allah Upon Him]: I give you but one piece of advice: that you stand up in the Name of Allah, two by two and one by one, and then reflect: your Companion is not possessed: He is no less than a Warning sign to you in the face of a dreadful torment. Say, If I have asked you for some reward, then keep it for yourself, no one is able to reward me except Allah. He is the Witness of all things. Say, My Lord hurls forth the Truth, and He is the knower of all the hidden realities. Say, The truth was revealed and now falsehood originates nothing nor does it restore anything. Say, If I am in error, the loss is surely Mine; but if I am on the right path, it is thanks to what my Lord has revealed to Me. He hears everything and is near at hand][1].

OH YOUTH!

I thank Allah, the only God, for you, and I ask for Allah’s Blessing and Peace for Imam of the spiritual reformers and the Chief of the Fighters in the way of Allah, Our Leader Muhammad and for His Family, His Companions and His Followers.

1. factors of success

OH YOUTH!

Verily, an idea succeeds, when the belief in it is strong, the sincerity for its sake is abundant, and the zeal for it increases; and when there is sufficient preparation that would lead to the sacrifice and action for its achievement.

THESE FOUR CORNERSTONES: belief, sincerity, zeal and action are; indeed, among the qualities of youth. That is because the foundation of faith lies in the lightened heart, that of sincerity in the purified heart, and that of zeal in strong emotions, and that of action in the youthful will. And all these attributes belong only to youth. Therefore, youth have always been, traditionally and recently, the instrument of renaissance in every nation, and in every such renaissance, youth is the secret of its power, and the carrier of every concept.

ALLAH SAYS IN THE QUR’AN [Chapter of the Cave]: [There were young men who had faith in their Lord and to whom We had granted more guidance to the straight path][2].

Consequently, Your duties have increased, your responsibilities have become enormous, the rights of your nation have doubled, and the trust became heavy on your shoulders. Therefore, you ought to think continuously and to work substantially hard. Further, you ought to define your stance and to step forward to rescue your Ummah [nation]. Finally, you ought to give the Nation its full due right.

Youth may grow up in a passive, quiet, long lasting nation, with great power and strong authority, occupied by their desires. They spend time in calm and self-assured play rather than occupy themselves with the affairs of their nation.

On the other hand, Youth may grow up in the making of a diligent nation that was seized by its enemies and governed by its opponents. Such a nation is always in continuous strife to regain:

1. Its usurped right,

2. Its looted heritage,

3. Its lost freedom, and,

4. Its noble glory and lofty morale.

At such times, giving thought to the affairs of the Ummah more than the affairs of oneself has become imperative for the Muslim Youth. The one who abides by this will reap the immediate good of success, and the long-term reward from Allah.

AL-Hamd Li Allah! [Thanks to Allah], Allah has created us amongst those of the second team: those who continuously indulge in Jihad [strife] constantly fight to champion freedom and justice. Therefore, Be ready; O men! For victory is near to those who believe. And what a great success for those who are in continuing action!

OH YOUTH!

Among the most dangerous issues in the early stages of a progressive nation are:

1. Divergent philosophies,

2. Mixed slogans,

3. Multiple doctrines,

4. Conflicting plans and strategies,

5. And the existence of several persons who aspire to leadership. All of these issues tend to hinder the realization of established goals, by dispersing the collective efforts and disrupting the CO-operative energies and strengths. Therefore, studying and weighing out these various Da’wahs [calls] and philosophies is an essential element for whomsoever strives for reformation.

Likewise, it is our duty to explain to you, in clear terms and in brief, the call of Islam in the fourteenth century after Hijrah [migration].

2. THE CALL OF THE MUSLIM BROTHERHOOD, OR THE CALL OF ISLAM IN THE 14th. CENTURY AFTER HIJRAH

1-2 OUR CREED:

OH YOUTH!

We have embraced an unquestionable, doubtless faith and have believed in a creed that is mightier than the mountains and deeper than the invisible consciences.

Our creed is that, there is not but only one concept that will save this tortured world, guide the hesitant humanity and will lead the people to the right path.

Therefore, this concept confers upon us the following obligations:

1. The right of sacrifice for the sake of its adoption.

2. The right of propagation: bringing glad tidings for those who will follow it.

3. The right of implementation: people acting according to its principles.

This concept will only achieved by fighting for it with our souls, our money, and all cheap and expensive things, only for the sake of Allah.

This concept is the true Islam that is associated with no evil, no delusion and no fault for those who follows it.

ALLAH SAYS IN THE QUR’AN, [Allah Himself has testified that there is no deity save Him, and the angels and men of knowledge too, He is the Ruler of Justice; there is no God but Him, the All-Mighty, the All-Wise. Indeed, Islam is the only right way of life in the sight of Allah][3].

THE QUR’AN ALSO SAYS, [To-day I have perfected your religion for you and completed My Blessing on you and approved Islam as the way of life for you][4].

2-2 CHARACTERISTIC OF OUR CONCEPT

Our concept is purely Islamic:

1. It depends and focuses on Islam.

2. It derives its rules and principles from Islam.

3. It wages strife only for the sake of Islam.

4. It strives only to make Islam superior to all other religions.

Our concept:

1. Does not equate Islam with another system,

2. Does not accept any guidance other than Islam’s.

3. Does not apply any rules other than Islam’s.

ALLAH SAYS IN THE QUR’AN, [And whoever adopts a religion other than Al-Islam, it will never be accepted from him][5].

2-3 ISLAM & THE MODERN WORLD

There was an era when Islam and Muslims had significantly suffered

1. Catastrophes have followed in succession.

2. Disasters have followed one after the other.

3. The opponents of Islam did their utmost to achieve their goals, described as:

· To put off the light of the greatness of Islam.

· To conceal the beauty of Islam.

· To mislead the children of Islam.

· To break and disrupt the limits of Islam.

· To weaken the soldiers of Islam.

· To distort teachings of Islam, either by:

A. Subtracting from them, at certain times.

B. Adding to them, at other times.

C. And thirdly, by misinterpreting them.

1. The following helping factors offered the opponents of Islam the chance to achieve their goals:

* Loss of the authority of Islamic politics.

* Collapse of the global Islamic Empire.

* Dismissal of Islamic armies.

* Fall of the Islamic nations into the occupying and tyrannical hands of the non-believers.

2-4 OUR DUTIES:

Our concept is composed of two elements:

FIRST:

THE THEORITICAL ELEMENT

The first duty of Ikhwan [The Brothers] is to convey in clear-cut terms to the people, every defined boundary of Islam:

1. With clarity,

2. In entirety,

3. In Exact Terms,

4. Without deletion,

5. Without contradiction.

SECOND:

THE PRACTICAL ELEMENT

Ikhwan [The Brothers] are commanded to:

1. Ask people to follow the teachings of Islam,

2. Uplift people in order to establish the religion of Allah,

3. And to take people into action.

2-5 OUR METHODOLOGY

The foundations that we rely on in all these elements are:

1. Allah’s Book: Falsehood can neither reach it from before it nor from behind it.

2. True Tradition and teachings of the Messenger of Allah.

3. And the purifying biography of the righteous ancestors [Salaf] of this Ummah [nation].

2-6 OUR PURPOSE:

Out of all this, all we aspire to is:

1. To ultimately please Allah.

2. To perform our duty.

3. To guide mankind, and

4. To lead people to the straight path.

2-7 OUR STEPS:

Our steps seek to make us live by our concept with dignity or die with dignity.

These steps are:

1. Exertion of our utmost effort to achieve our concept.

2. Strife for the sake of our concept as long as we live.

3. Call upon all people to learn about our concept.

4. Spend everything for the sake of our concept.

2-8 OUR THEME:

Our permanent theme will be: Allah is our objective. The messenger is our leader. The Qur’an is our constitution. Jihad is our way. Dying in the way of Allah is our highest hope.

OH YOUTH!

Allah has honored you by making Himself known to you, by making you have faith in Him and by upbringing you according to His religion. Also, Allah has decreed upon you a level of superiority, and dignity in this world. He has chosen you not only to lead humanity to His path but to become the teachers of the world as well.

ALLAH SAYS IN THE QUR’AN, [You are the best Ummah (nation) which has been raised up for the guidance of mankind: you enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong and believe in Allah][6].

Allah also says, [Thus We have made you a moderate Ummah (nation) so that you may be witnesses against the people (who reject the religion of Allah)][7].

First of all, Allah asks you to:

1. Believe in yourselves.

2. Know your stance.

3. Believe that you are the chiefs of the world, even at the time of humiliation, and

4. Believe that you are the teachers of mankind, even if there come upon you a people of worldly power, because the ultimate outcome will be dominated by the righteous.

OH YOUTH!

1. Refresh your faith.

2. Define your purposes to reach your goals.

3. Acknowledge that faith is the first sign of power and unity is the end result. Finally, this will lead to a clear and decisive triumph of unity and success.

Therefore;

1. Strengthen you faith.

2. Enjoin in brotherhood.

3. Seek knowledge.

4. Be on the lookout for success. [And give glad tidings to the believers].

Nowadays, the disturbed world is in a state of confusion, and all its own organizational systems have failed to resolve its problems. The only cure is Islam.

So, keep on the straight path of Allah so that you can rescue the world. The world is a savior except the message of Islam that you carry like a torch shining with its bright light, which in the end will make you enjoy the ripen fruits of glad tidings.

OH YOUTH!

The Methodology of the Ikhwan [The Brothers] is specific in its stages and clear in its steps. Therefore, we also know the means that will achieve the ultimate goal.

FIRSTLY: We need to redeem the Islamic personality: in thought and in creed, in behavior and in emotion, as well as in action and dealings. Then this is our individual configuration.

SECONDLY: We need to establish the Islamic family: in thought and in creed, in behavior and in emotion as well as in action and dealings. Therefore, our areas of work include the Muslim woman, the Muslim man, the Muslim child as well as the Muslim youth. And this he is our family configuration.

THIRDLY: We need to establish the Islamic nation, in all the previously mentioned characteristics. We thus must work hard, by using all possible means, in order to achieve the following goals:

1. Make our Da’wah [call] reach every home,

2. Spread our message everywhere,

3. Make our concept easily accepted,

4. Make our concept reach the villages and the hamlets, the cities and the capitals, and all world nations.

FOURTHLY: We need the Islamic government that:

1. Leads this nation to the mosque.

2. Directs people to the guidance of Islam, as they were directed during the time of the Sahabah of Rasul Allah [saas] [companions of Allah’s messenger] like Abu Bakr and ‘Umar.

Therefore:

1. We do not confess any governmental system that does not observe the precepts of Islam.

2. We do not recognize any governmental system that does not derive its rules and principles from Islam.

3. We do not support these political parties.

4. We do not recognize these traditional systems whose laws had been forced upon us by “intellectuals” and the enemies of Islam.

5. We will strive for the revival of the Islamic way of life in its entirety.

6. And we will act in order to establish the Islamic government on the basis of this system.

FIFTHLY: We want to regain every part of our Islamic nation that has been usurped by Western nations’ policies. Therefore:

1. We do not accept these political divisions and these international agreements that have torn the Islamic nation into small and weak mini-states that can easily be swallowed by their aggressors.

2. We also do not disregard the usurpation and violation of freedom of these nations.

3. For Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Hijaz, Yemen, Tripoli, Tunisia, Algeria, Morocco and each span of a land containing a Muslim who bears witness that, [There is no deity worthy of worship except Allah] constitutes an essential part of our great motherland that we strive hard to liberate, rescue, free and unify.

As every German Reich believed that it was imposed upon him to support every one else, and German blood flows in his veins, likewise, the Islamic creed requires every strong Muslim to consider himself a protector for every person whose soul has absorbed the teachings of the Qur’an.

According to the Islamic tradition, it is not permissible to allow the racist factor to overpower the belief factor. Creed dictates everything in Islam. Faith is nothing but love and hate!

SIXTH: We seek to make the banner of Islam rise high and wave over those lands, which were cheered, for a certain period of time with Islam and the sound of Mu’azin [the caller for prayer] with Takbeer [I.e.: the uttering of the phrase: Allah is greater] and Tahleel [I.e.: the uttering of the phrase: there is no deity worthy of worship except Allah] echoing the air. Then when bad luck struck upon those lands, it was, hence, decreed that the light of Islam has to be stopped and finally, each of these Islamic lands receded to a state of disbelief.

Andalusia, Sicily, The Balkan, South Italy and Roman Sea Islands were all Islamic lands that had to be restored to the homeland of Islam.

The Mediterranean and Red Sea should equally be part of the Islamic Empire as they were before.

As Senior Mussolini believed that it was within his right to revive the Roman Empire, which was founded upon greed and personal desires, similarly, it is our right to restore to the Islamic empire its glory that was based upon Justice, equity and the spread of light and guidance among human beings.

LASTLY: We want to:

1. Make our Da’wah [call to Islam] reach to the whole world,

2. Propagate it to all nations,

3. Spread it to the remotest parts of the earth, and

4. Subjugate every unjust ruler to its command, [Until there is no more tribulation and Allah’s religion reigns supreme] [And on that day, the believers will rejoice in the victory granted by Allah. He gives victory to whomsoever He wills. He is the All Mighty the Most Merciful] [The Qur’an, 30:4-5].

FINALLY: each of these stages involves certain steps, branches and means; yet all that was mentioned here is only a summary of the entire process. Allah is the ultimate Helper [Allah is All-Sufficient for us and excellent guardian is He].

Let those cowards who failed to observe their responsibilities say that this is a fantasy and an illusion that seized the souls of those people. That is but the weakness that we are unfamiliar with and Islam does not know.

That is but the frailty that has been thrown into the hearts of this nation so that its enemies can overpower it. That is only the ruin of faith in the hearts and it is the primary cause of Muslim’s downfall.

Verily, we clearly and sincerely declare that, every Muslim who does not have faith in this ideology [Minhaj] and does not act towards its achievement has no salvation So, let him searches for another ideology to acknowledge and strive for.

OH YOUTH!

You are not weaker than the people who came before you. With their hands Allah caused the achievement of this curriculum. Therefore, do not be faint-hearted and weak. And bear in your mind the saying of Allah Almighty, [Those who, on being told, (the people have gathered against you: so fear them) became more firm in their faith and answered: Allah is All Sufficient for us and the excellent guardian is He] [THW QUR’AN, 3:173].

OUR PRACTICAL STEPS:

1. We will contribute with the community members, in educating our people so that the true individual Muslim rises among us.

[N.B. Training in Al-Ikhwan takes a number of different approaches to accomplish the Islamic upbringing known as [Tarbiah]. Some techniques used include Halaqah [weekly unit study and practice meeting], Katibah [monthly meetings of several-units], trips, camps, courses, workshops, and conferences].

2. We will also co-operate with our household members in the education process so that the true Muslim household will rise among them.

3. Also, we will co-operate, with our people, in the education process so that the true Muslim populace will rise among them. And we will be amongst this Muslim populace.

Finally, we will move along with firm steps towards the next objectives and will follow the target that Allah has set for us, not the one that we have set for ourselves. Verily, we will arrive, with Allah’s permission and support, [Allah will not allow but that His Light should be perfected even though the disbelievers be much averse to it] [THE QUR’AN, 9: 32].

OUR TOOLS:

We have prepared to take these practical steps:

1. Have a belief that is unshakable.

2. An action that is unstoppable.

3. A confidence in Allah that does not wane.

4. And souls that believe in the fact that, their happiest day is the day they meet Allah martyred for His cause.

Let this be at the heart core of internal and external policy. We only derive that from Islam. We also believe that separation between religion and politics is not permissible in Islam. It is also unknown to the Muslims, who are truthful in their religion and who are intelligent in their understanding of the true spirit and percepts of Islam. Let them abandon us, whose who wish that we divert from the true path of Islam and its approach. They are either opponents to Islam or ignorant of its message, and there have only these two options.

REFUTATION OF SOME DOUBTS OF DA’WAH’S FEATURES

OH YOUTH!

FIRST: Erroneous is the one who believes that the Muslim Brotherhood is a low level [dervishes] group. They have besieged themselves in a restricted circle of Islamic acts of worship. Salah [prayer], Siam [fast], Zikr [Imploring Allah] and Tasbeeh [Glorifying Allah] are all their concern.

The early Muslims were not familiar with this image of Islam and did not believe in it in this way. Rather they believed that:

A. Islam is:

1. Creed as well as worship,

2. Homeland and nationalism,

3. Behavior and matter,

4. Culture and law,

5. Leniency and harshness.

B. Islam is a Divine Comprehensive way of life that imposes itself upon all aspects of life and regulates the worldly matters as well as matters of the hereafter.

C. Islam combines the Practical as well as Spiritual aspect of life. For them, Islam in is:

1. Both Religion and State.

2. Both Scripture and Sword.

Along with all of this great concepts of life,

1. They did not neglect the matter of their worship.

2. They did not fall short in performing their religious duty towards their Lord.

3. They tried to bring their prayers to perfection.

4. They recited the book of Allah [the Qur’an].

5. They also make Zikr [remembering of Almighty Allah] in the way that He had decreed and within the limits that He had defined for them, neither grudgingly nor excessively, so there was neither shallowness nor over analysis.

They are more familiar with the saying of the messenger of Allah [saas]: [Verily, this religion is strong, so deal with it delicately and nicely. The knight who forcefully beats his horse will not cross the land and his horse will be die] [FROM MUSNAD AHMED].

1. Despite the above, they enjoyed their material share of this world, without harming their obligations towards Allah in the hereafter, and they understand what Almighty Allah said: [O Muhammad! Ask them, Who has forbidden the decent garments that Allah brought forth for His servants and who has forbidden the pure things of life bestowed by Him?][8]

2. Also, the Ikhwan [the Brothers] know that the best description for the best Religious group is the description of the messenger of Allah [saas]: [Monks at night, knights, at daytime] and that is what they strive for, and Allah alone can be asked for help.

SECOND: Erroneous is the one who believes that the Muslim Brothers severe their ties with their homeland and the patriotism.

1. Muslims are superior to all nations in their loyalty to their homeland.

2. Muslims are superior to all people in their strife to serve these nations.

3. Muslims are superior to all nations in their respect of all who sincerely work for the sake of their nations.

However, the difference between Muslims and the preachers of the utter patriotism lies in the fact that the essence of Muslim patriotism is based on Islamic creed:

1. Muslims strive hard for a motherland such as Egypt, exert their utmost effort for its cause and exhaust themselves in the Jihad because Egypt is a part of the Islamic land and the leader of its nations. Moreover, Muslims do not confine these sentiments within its limits, but they enjoin within these sentiments each Islamic land and nation.

2. But every staunch nationalist confines himself within the limits of his nation. He feels compelled to work for his nationalism not because it is a religious duty that has been bestowed by Allah upon His servants but because of one of the following:

· Imitation and tradition.

· Parading and show.

· Flaunting and boasting.

· Personal gain, Self-gratification, personal profit.

3. Finally it is sufficient to know that the patriotism of the Muslim brotherhood is based on a firm and compelling belief that: To abandon any inch of a land in which Muslim dwells is an unforgivable crime until they either liberate it or perish in the process. There is no rescue to them from Allah except in this way.

THIRD: Erroneous is the one who believes that the Muslim Brothers preach irresponsibility and carelessness.

1. The Muslim brothers reiterate that the Muslim has to be primarily an Imam in all matters. They do not suffice themselves with anything but leadership, action, Jihad and precedence in all matters, namely:

· Science, Power, Health, Finance.

2. The abstention from assuming the role of an Imam in any of these matters is a danger perilous to our ideology and goes against the teaching of our religion.

3. In spite of all this, we rebuke people for this sweeping wave of materialism:

· Violent strong materialism leads people to live only for their own sake.

· Violent materialism causes people to be subjugated to all their talents, times and efforts for their personal selfishness. So, they are unable to achieve anything for anyone other than their own selves.

· Violent materialism causes people not to take care of the affairs of their nation. The messenger of Allah [saas] says, [Whomsoever does not give thought to the affairs of the Muslims is not considered one of them]. He [saas] also said, [Verily, Allah has prescribed proficiency in all things].

FOURTH: Erroneous is the one who believes that the Muslim Brothers are preachers of racial discrimination among the different classes of the Ummah [nation].

1. We are aware that Islam pays an extreme attention to respecting the common social ties among human. Allah says, [O mankind! We have created you of a male and a female and appointed your castes and tribes that you may recognize one another][9].

2. Islam was sent down to be:

· Beneficial for all nations.

· Divine Mercy for all mankind.

This is the mission of al-Islam.

Therefore, Islam is far from promoting dissent hostility in the hearts of its followers.

3. The Holy Book [Qur’an] has been revealed to glorify as well as to confirm the unity amongst mankind, stating this as in the saying of Allah Ta’ala, [We make no division between any one of his messengers] [THE QUR’AN, 2:285].

4. Islam has prohibited transgressions, even in times of anger and animosity. Allah says, [Never do leave justice for the hatred of a nation. Do justice][10].

5. Islam has advised Muslims to observe Birr [righteousness] and Ihsan [perfect work] with other peoples, regardless of their creeds and religions. The Qur’an says, [Allah does not forbid you to treat kindly and act equitably toward those who have neither fought you in the matter of religion nor driven you out of your homes][11].

6. Islam also has advised Muslims to deal justly and kindly with the people of book [Zimmi]. The messenger of Allah [saas] says, [Their rights as our rights and their punishments are as our punishments].

7. We understand all these Divine teachings, so:

· We do not promote to join the faction of discrimination.

· We do not promote to join the zealous partisanship. But, besides all of this:

· We do not trade this unity with our faith.

· We do not bargain, in the interest of this unity, with our creed.

· We do not abolish, for its sake, the advantages of the Muslims.

· We only trade this unity with Truth, just, equity and validity. And that is enough. And whosoever tries to go against these teachings, then,

· We will stop him in the process,

· We will explain the wrongs of his approach: [But Honor, power and Glory belong to Allah, and His Messenger, and the believers][12].

FIFTH: Erroneous is the one who believes that the Muslim Brothers are working for an agency or depending on an organization.

1. The Muslim brothers work to achieve only their own purpose with guidance from their Rabb. This purpose is Al-Islam and its people in every time and everywhere.

2. The Muslim brothers spend what Allah has provided them with His pleasure, in desire of His good pleasure.

3. The Muslim brothers take pride in being able to provide for themselves with their clean hands:

4. They have not begged from anyone yet,

5. They have not asked for help from any individual, or agency or organization.

OH YOUTH!

On these firm rules and to these honorable teachings, we call upon all of you.

Then, if you:

1. Believed in our ideology,

2. Followed our steps,

3. Passed with us on the way of the righteous Islam,

4. Had Tajarrud [cast away of any non-Islamic ideas].

5. And excreted all efforts for the sake of your creed, then it is:

* 1. Al-Khair [the best reward] for you in this life and in the afterlife,

* By harnessing you, Allah will achieve, what He had achieved with your ancestors [Salaf] in the early ages of Islam,

* And every truthful worker will find, in the Islamic arena, what will satisfy his will and what will encompass his activity, if he is indeed truthful. But if you refused this ideology, turned away to vacillation, doubtfulness, and spent your time in considering a choice between undecided preachers and the failed Ideologies, then the small group or the mighty host will never stop the ordained faith of Allah. [And victory and succor come from Allah alone, Who is All-Mighty, All-Wise][13].


[1] [the Qur’an, 34:46-50]

[2] [The Qur’an, 18:13]

[3] [THE QUR’AN, 3:18-19]

[4] [THE QUR’AN, 5:3]

[5] [THE QUR’AN, 3:83]

[6] [THE QUR’AN, 3:110]

[7] [THE QUR’AN, 2:143]

[8] [THE QUR’AN, 7:32]

[9] [THE QUR’AN, 49:13]

[10] [the Qur’an, 5:8]

[11] [THE QUR’AN, 60:8]

[12] [THE QUR’AN, 63:8]

[13] [THE QUR’AN, 2:126]

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