Another characteristic of jaahiliyyah is to follow and take examples from evil and wicked scholars and worshippers. The kuffaar of Makkah asked the Jews and the Christians about their religion and claimed to be on the right path. Allaah says: "Have you not seen those who were given a portion of the Scripture? They believe in Jibt and Taghuut? And say to the disbelievers that they are better guided as regards the way than the believers (Muslims)." (Q4: 51)
This type of questioning of the kuffaar is a way to justify their own way of life since those they asked are those who believed in Jibt and Taghuut and consumed the wealth of people illegally. Allaah says: "0 you who believe! Verily, there are many of the (Jewish) rabbis and the (Christian) monks which devour the wealth of mankind in falsehood, and hinder (them) from the Way of Allah ... " (Q9: 34) Also Allaah says, "Say (0 Muhammad: 0 people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians)! Exceed not the limits in your religion (by believing in some things other than the truth) and do not follow the vain desires of people who went astray in times gone by, and who misled many, and strayed (themselves) from the Right Path.". (Q5: 77) The kuffar of Makkah followed the Jews despite of the fact that they were those who consume the wealth of people illegally.
What is right is to follow the righteous people. However, whoever has purchased this world with the hereafter would not consult the righteous for guidance; rather, he would look for evil and wicked scholars who will justify his evil way of life for him. This is the trait displayed by the kuffar of Makkah and it is a trait common to the people of misguidance in every age. Man, by nature, wants somebody to justify his evil way, even if he knows that what he is doing is not right. He hates being told that he is doing wrong or on the wrong path. For instance, if he is told that he is or, the right course that makes him happy.
Nobody will be happy to be told that he is doing wrong or on the wrong path except the seeker of the truth and working towards it. This trait of jahiliyyah is not peculiar to any age. People with this characteristic are found in every community. For example, a judge may knowingly Judge a case wrongly because of. the bribe he received from the criminal. Somebody With similar trait, in order to hide his , Wickedness, would make reference to the case judged by the bribed judge as his precedent This attitude of making reference to a wicked and evil scholar is something common among some Muslims today. Whenever they are told that what they are doing is against the teachings of Islaam they quickly make a reference to a particular scholar that violates that order.
For instance, if you ask somebody why he is not keeping his beard he would cite many scholars [particularly, professors doctorate degree holders in Islaamic studies] who do not keep their beard as his mentors. He would go further to challenge you whether you have a better knowledge of Islaam than the scholars in question. Similarly, when you challenge a Muslim woman for not wearing jilbaab, the immediate response is Alhaja so-and-so or Iya Addiini so and- so does not wear it. By implication, if these people are not wearing it and are our "leaders" in Islaam, why should she be blamed? This is not the way of intelligent people. Allaah says: "When it is said to them: Follow what Allah has sent down. They say: Nay! We shall follow what we found our fathers following. (Would they do that?) Even though their fathers did not understand anything nor were they guided?" (Q2: 170)
This article was culled from the publications of Deen Communication Limited