Bismillaah. All praise is to Allaah Lord and Cherisher of the worlds. I testify that none and nothing has the right to be worshiped except Allah alone and Muhammad is His Final Messenger.
Bismillaah Al-Hamdulillaah wa salatu wa salaamu ‘ala rasulullaah
Recognize the Khawaarij and their characteristics when you see them, so that you are not deceived by them
A Concise Introduction to the Khawaarij, by Shaikh Ibrahim al-Ruhayli
Many authentic hadeeth from the prophet (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) condemning them have come in ten different forms of narration like what al-Khalal narrated from Imam Ahmad that he said: “The Khawaarij are wicked people, and I don’t know of any people on earth more evil than they.”
- The Khawaarij collectively [declared] that both ‘Uthman and later ‘Alee (the 3rd and 4th caliphs of Islam) were disbelievers as [they declared] other companions. [Aoodhoobillaah!]
- And they think revolting against the leaders and governments is permissible. [Aoodhoobillaah!]
- They also believe that any major sin is an act of disbelief… [Aoodhoobillaah!]
The Khawaarij Ideology, by Shaikh Fawzaan
This is the exact methodology of the Khawaarij. It includes three things:
1. Making Takfir of other Muslims.
2. Renouncing obedience to the leader or government.
3. Declaring the blood of other Muslims lawful to spill.
This is precisely the methodology of the Khawaarij. Even if a person were only to believe any of these things with his heart, yet he may not actually speak or do anything of them, he is still one of the Khawaarij in his baseless belief and opinions.
Descriptions of the Khawaarij, by Shaikh al-Albani
It was asked, “What is their distinguishing sign?” He (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) answered: “Their sign is shaven heads.”
Yet, they used to twist and misinterpret the Qur`an from its intended meanings. They used to persist on their own personal opinions, and they used to appear very strict and devout in their humility, their renouncement of worldly things, and other things.
From the Attributes of the Khawaarij
From their attributes is their outward portrayal of righteousness and piety while concealing corruptive beliefs inside. [The Prophet (salallaahu 'alaihi wa sallam) said:] One of you would belittle his own prayer when compared to their prayer and his fasting compared to their fasting. They will recite the Qur`an, but it will not go beyond their throats. They will pass through the religion as an arrow passes through a target.
From the attributes of the Khawaarij are their ignorance of the Book and the Sunnah and their wicked interpretations of their meanings just as the Prophet (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: They read the Qur`an, thinking it is in support of them while it is actually against them.
The reason for this ignorance of theirs is that they abandon and avoid the genuine scholars. They conceitedly consider themselves higher than the scholars, and discourage others from attending their lectures. All this because they think they are the ones responsible for scrutinizing and monitoring the scholars. This is what ignorance does to a person.
Another attribute of the Khawaarij is that they are as the Prophet (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) described them: Young in age, having reckless and deficient intellects.
And from the virtues bestowed by Allah is that there is never anyone with them from the people of knowledge, dignity, or the Sunnah.
The Fitnah of the Khawaarij, by Shaikh Salih Ali-Shaykh
The second point I want to clarify about the verse [ayah 7 of Soorat al-'Imran] is regarding the statement, As for those in whose hearts is deviation, they follow what is unspecific, unclear to them. Allah affirms here that it is possible for people to have deviation in their hearts. He first mentions, As for those in whose hearts is deviation, (before mentioning that they follow the unclear verses) meaning that the presence of these unspecific, unclear verses is not the cause of their deviation. Rather, they already had a form of deviation within themselves, so they chose to follow only these unspecific verses. This happens often; someone with personal desires and misguidance searches for anything to use as proof to support his preconceived notions and what he’s already decided on.
Ibn Ḥazm mentioned at the beginning of his book, “al-Iḥkaam fee Uṣool al-aḥkaam” that one of the reasons people deviate from the truth is that they often have preconceived ideas they have already decided to follow, so they look for evidence to support the direction they have chosen to take. This is one of the main reasons that leads to tribulations occurring, divisions among people, and misguidance.
So, beware of having preconceived personal preferences in something and then afterwards you look to the evidences. Then you look in the Book for something to support and back what you have already decided on, what you already began to do, or perhaps to support the direction your group is taking, or for similar reasons. We warn against this.
Warning against the Fitnah of Takfir, by Shaikh al-Albani
Then, if we look to the people who are ruled – and from amongst them there are the scholars, the righteous, etc. – how can you then pass judgment upon them with disbelief just because you see them living under these laws, the same laws that encompass you too just as they do them? But you declare only them to be disbelievers and apostates, insisting that ruling by what Allah has revealed is obligatory! Yet you make an excuse for yourselves and contradict yourselves by stating that differing with the judgments of the Shari’a by mere actions does not necessarily hold the ruling that the one who does it is an apostate from his religion.
This is exactly what people other than you are saying, those you accuse wrongly with the ruling of Takfir and apostasy!
Are the Khawaarij Those Who Only Revolt against a Just Ruler? by Shaikh Rabee’ bin Hadee al-Madkhalee
He (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said (about the rulers): Obey them as long as they establish the prayer among you. And he (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: (You will see things from them) that you know (to be right) and things you dislike. And when asked, “Should we oppose them with our swords?,” he (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: No, not as long as they pray.
These texts were regarding unjust rulers and still the Messenger (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) instructed (the people) to have patience with them. He did not allow rebelling and opposing them. The one who revolts and renounces allegiance to them (the leaders), then he does so against all the Muslims. In this case, such a person should be killed (legitimately by capital punishment), even if the ruler he opposed was indeed oppressive.
So, the solution is that as long as the ruler is within the circle of Islam – and the Messenger (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) clearly defined it – then even if such a ruler were wicked and oppressive; as long as he is within Islam, as long as he establishes prayer, then it is impermissible to oppose and revolt against him. Have you all understood this? This is the ruling of Allaah and the ruling of the Messenger (salallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam), not the ruling of the ignorant people.