There exists a general worry about the taksub attitude among the followers of Abuya to him. It is said to bring negative implications. It is thus appropriate to explain the factors behind Abuya’s creating a bond between him and his followers, which some people have treated as dangerous. Does Abuya not know the dangers of taksub?
The truth is that, between Abuya and his followers there are intense feelings tying one with the other, and this is what Allah meant by the faithful holding to the rope of Allah. When every one holds to this rope, the rope will tie them together, until they form a strong network, a firm arrangement and an awesome building. The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) portrays the feelings of one faithful with another bonded like parts of a human body. When one part of the body is sick, the whole body is struck with sickness and stays awake at night so as not to let his team mates alone. The Companions of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) realized this fact of life of the faithful in their attitude during war. It has been famously related how one future martyr had cried with pain asking for water. When water reached him, he gave it up to B upon hearing B groaning in pain. As B was about to drink, he heard C pleading for water, so B forsook it for C. This continued until all the companions in the rotation for water died.
Can Muslims today, whether at a level of a family, organization, village, city, district, county, ministry, department, nation or the world, create such a living environment as had been testified Islamic history?
The answer is ‘no’, because there is no longer Muslims who struggle towards that. Even Muslims, who apparently struggle for Islam, have in actual fact no intention of repeating the Messenger of Allah’s struggle, but they rather try to accommodate the struggle with modern times. The ulama have become modernized and feel embarrassed to say, “Come, let us imitate the community of the Messenger of Allah, let us imitate the congregation of the Messenger of Allah and let us copy the environment in the mosque of the Messenger of Allah.”
How come the ulama not know, that only the Messenger of Allah is able to tie the hearts of the people so close to him, such that arouses the anger of the enemies of Allah and His Messenger. In order to extinguish such extreme manifestations of devotion, taksub is prohibited. The culture of taksub is opposed by the enemies of Islam, not by Muslims. The enemies disdain Muslims, as being stupid, poor, sexually promiscuous and others. How can the ulama be ignorant of this? Are they not aware that the majority of Muslims today do whatever the enemies want them to do? Are they blind to the fact that Abuya is today attacked by the so-called religious establishment? Can they not understand that near the end of time, people are against religion in the name of religion, in the name of salaried ulama whose life is not for God? Religious activity is made as a source of provision, so religion is willingly warded off if it obstructs their seeking of provision.
I have the courage to say so because my observation indicates the existence of a group of ‘religious’ people who sell religion not for religion but for money, and so they are willing to go against the true religion, which can obstruct their nefarious activities. My arguments are as follows:
1. In religion, Muslims are commended to perform daily prayers at the early hour. If Zuhr commences at 1.21, so the azan (Muslim call for prayer) is at exactly 1.21. And at 1.21, Muslims should be ready so that right after the azan ends, prayers begin. But today, many Muslims pray Zuhr at 3 pm, Asr at 6 pm and so on. In fact, many other Muslims do not even pray. If we travel from Johore to Perlis, it is so difficult to find a group of Muslims seriously ready to pray at the exact time of prayers, performing congregational prayers in a close and straight row. Only among Abuya’s congregation can we see prayer halls being filled with well disciplined people seriously waiting for Allah’s call in full preparation. But Abuya’s opponents, who claim to be fighters of Islam, oppose even Abuya’s congregation. The fact that the majority of Muslims neglect prayers has never been a topic of interest to them in their talks.
2. To be religious is to love Allah and His Messenger more than anything or anyone else. The ulama and religious teachers all know the stipulations in the Quran and Hadith that, whoever loves others more than he loves Allah and His Messenger, awaits destruction. Today, in Malaysia, if we compare all the religious figures, who is the most distinctive in seriously making God known, inculcating the feelings of love and fear of Allah and His Messenger in himself and his followers, expressing Allah as the supreme love, striving for God as his main agenda? Even his way of life is programmed according to the daily schedule fixed by Allah and His Messenger. Who? From my observation, Abuya has succeeded in connecting the hearts of the people to Allah and His Messenger, to love, fear and attempt to live on this path. Other figures can talk about Allah and His Messenger, but cannot realize the love and fear. Yet Abuya is the greatest enemy of some who claim to be religious fighters.
3. Allah and His Messenger have stressed a lot regarding the importance of the Hereafter compared to the world. The Hereafter and death come first; the world and life come second. A Muslim must make the agenda of the Hereafter and death as priority. The world and life in it are not major goals, even if there are programmes to further them; they can just be appended to the primary agenda of the Hereafter, not the other way round. For example, the prayer programme comes prior to the worldly programme. Meetings take place after Zuhr. Rubber tappers go to plantations after Fajr prayers. Economic projects are executed after praying.
Where among Islamic workers make this a big issue, as demanded by Allah and His Messenger?
Only Abuya inculcates in his congregation this Hereafter-emphasizing culture. The talk of an economy based on the capital of God, all-out sacrifices, the feelings of brotherhood and togetherness in cooperatively to develop the religion in the hope of fulfilling the ISO of the Hereafter, we only hear in Abuya’s struggle. To other people, why bother with such matters? In this situation, Abuya is accused of inventing new teachings in the religion. Without investigation, Abuya’s books are banned. The religious establishment does all this. But their own religious lives are chaotic. Their family is religiously upside down. They can lecture eloquently on the Quran and Hadith, but their actions do not correspond to their speeches. Yet they boldly find fault with the religious practice of others! They are actually opponents of religion in the name of religion. Simply because they have some religious knowledge; although they do not practice it, they willingly accuse as deviant others who truly revive God’s religion.
4. Today, who truly educates their children on Allah and His Messenger? Who struggles to give God to our youth? Their lives are devastated, but whoever is serious enough in saving them with religion? The most conspicuous endeavour is found among Abuya’s congregation. Abuya’s youth are different from the other youth. Today the country has adopted Abuya’s youth as assets. But the antagonists ignore all these, as though such tangible outcome of Abuya’s struggle does not exist. They continue their attacks with irrelevant allegations, focusing on the danger of taksub. In actual fact, when the youth can love their leader and be loyal to Allah, His Messenger and their leader, then only will they be secure from the traps of the devil and evil desires.
Without such taksub, with what can we tie these youth from falling into the valley of the devil and evil desires? Why do these antagonists not fight taksub to other objects idolized by today’s youth?
5. Abuya’s disciples are actually utterly convinced in the veracity of Abuya that love and maintain allegiance to Abuya, even in receiving Abuya’s punishment. They fear being separated from Abuya and being ditched from Abuya’s congregation, because it is impossible to obtain God, as Abuya has given, in other organizations or from some other leader. A thousand and one other goodness can be obtained from Abuya and his struggle. Faith and Islam of such nature can be found in no other place. In fact we fear for those people who leave the congregation and break their relationship with Abuya. They have lost the connection to God, so they become opponents of truth, losing faith and Islam, and together they conspire with the anti-religious group. They then become the opponent of religion in the name of religion.
The worries generated by the taksub of Abuya’s followers towards him have become mere speculation. Yet the countless material benefits are all to be seen. People continue to speculate and worry – what is this? What kind of truth is this group using?
The establishment of economic and educational projects, one after another, by Abuya, via the hands of his followers, derives from the intense feelings of love, loyalty and fear. The wives can be loyal and the children can be obedient due to the cooperation in instilling love and loyalty towards the leader, tied to the rope of Allah and His Messenger.
Unity, cooperation, mutual assistance and love and care with one another in matters of life and struggle that exist in Abuya’s congregation are the fruits born from Abuya’s success in moulding the hearts of his people to love, fear and be loyal to Allah, His Messenger and the leaders.
Where is there such a leader who can do this? Which organization, other than Rufaqa’, has lifted the dignity of the Malays in all aspects? What are other organizations doing now, as compared with Rufaqa’, which is busy in building up Malay economic strength in reality?
All these are because Abuya takes off from an accurate platform in his struggle to construct a strong nation. Muslims must have taqwa for Allah to lift them to be a strong nation. The taqwa then must be tied by a congregation, not individually and not individualistically. The congregation must then make the rope of Allah as its foundation, not any other ideology, political party or economic project.
Abuya is now reaping its harvest. Certain jealous quarters have deemed Abuya as dangerous because of the taksub of Abuya’s people towards him. It makes no sense at all.