OBSERVING A NEW, NEW YEAR BID’AH SAYYIAH
A Sister from Madinah Munawwarah writes:
A short audio clip by Maulana Yunus Palanpuri Saheb is being forwarded on a large scale on whatsapp in which he says that tonight on 31st December, instead of going out, take a tasbeeh and at 11.55 pm start doing zikr of Allah and keep doing it till 12.05 a.m. In this way Rahmaan will become raazi (pleased), and shaitaan will be defeated. This is very surprising, I told a lady who sent me the audio that this is a clear bid’at. This was never the way of Rasoolullah صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم, the Sahaaba رضی اللہ , the Salf Saleheen or our Akaabreen. She said Maulana Yunus Palanpuri Saheb has said do this. I told her this is a bid’at, but she still said Maulana Saheb has said don’t celebrate the new year. Do this instead to please Allah. Is Maulana Yunus Palanpuri Saheb right? Wassalaam
ANSWER AND COMMENT
The Maulana Saheb has grievously erred. He has failed to apply his mind. He failed to understand that, despite his good intention, he has advised Muslims to emulate the kuffaar in their custom of celebrating the initiation of the new solar year. This is an evil bid’ah (bid’ah sayyiah).
It is haraam to ‘celebrate’ or observe the kuffaar New Year’s occasion with Thikrullaah. It is indeed an evil bid’ah (bid’ah sayyiah). The Maulana Sahib has fallen into error. He is encouraging Muslims to emulate the custom of the kuffaar with Thikr. Indeed, shaitaan is a cunning ustaadh who succeeds to deceive even the Ulama.
It is not permissible to act according to the advice of the Maulana Sahib. His advice effectively means upholding a shaitaani practice with Thikrullaah. While the kuffaar will be celebrating their new year with raucous behaviour and immorality, the Maulana Sahib advises emulation of the kuffaar albeit with Thikrullaah. This is haraam. Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said:
“Whoever imitates a people is of them.”
It is surprising that the Maulana Sahib has so badly slipped and committed the lamentable blunder of introducing a bid’ah which is tantamount to kufr. The Fuqaha have ruled that if a non-Muslim asks for the direction of the church/temple, and a Muslim shows the direction, then he will be guilty of kufr. Indicating the direction of the church is in fact aiding in shirk.
The Maulana’s advice is not only Tashabbuh bil kuffaar (imitating the kuffaar), it is an introduction to a kuffaar practice of fisq and fujoor, and the most dastardly aspect of this new bid’ah is the use of Allah’s Name and Thikr to justify it. This is exactly how Iblees operates and how he succeeds to embed a bid’ah in the Ummah. The evil of tashabbuh and kufr is adorned with Deeni colours to deceive, not only the ignorant and unwary masses, but also Ulama who are short-sighted and lacking in the correct application of the mind. Regarding shaitaan’s success in his ploys of bid’ah and dhalaal (deviation), Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: “One Faqeeh is harder on shaitaan than a thousand Aabideen (pious worshippers who devote the greater part of their lives to ibaadat).”
Aabideen who are deficient in fiqaahat, are comparatively speaking easy prey for shaitaan. He is able to overwhelm their thinking with his ‘deeni’ arguments and inspirations. In this way he succeeds in planting the seeds of bid’ah. All bid’ah customs and practices were introduced by Iblees by subtle presentation of the haraam acts in ‘deeni’ hues. The Maulana Sahib who has advised the observance of the commencement of the kuffaar new year has fallen into the snare of shaitaan.
Firstly, there is no such practice as observing/celebrating the entry of the new year even if it is the Islamic new year. The beginning of the solar new year which is the kuffaar’s new year is on 1st January which commences with the passing of midnight. The Maulana Sahib surprisingly advises Muslims to join in this kuffaar concept in the Name of Allah Ta’ala. This is the kufr aspect of the bid’ah prescribed by the Maulana Sahib.
Imitating the kuffaar with the added ingredient of Thikrullaah, is not the way of saving fussaaq Muslims from participating in the haraam fisq and fujoor merrymaking activities of the new year’s occasion. The way is Amr Bil Ma’roof Nahy Anil Munkar. There has to be Ta’leem. The Maulana Sahib should have informed Muslims of the evils of this kuffaar celebration and of the consequence of Allah’s Wrath and Curse. This is the methodology of the Ambiya. They deliver the clear Message of the Deen, Hidaayat is the prerogative of Allah Ta’ala. Our obligation is only delivery of the Message of the Deen. Fabrication of acts and its presentation in the form of ibaadat are bid’ah which gnaws the foundation of Islam, hence the Sahaabah exercised extreme diligence and caution to prevent the germination of bid’ah. Even acts of the Sunnah were sometimes avoided and banned by the Sahaabah when they discerned the Sunnah developing into bid’ah. That is why, Hadhrat Ali (Radhiyallahu anhu) prevented people from performing Salaatudh Dhuha (Chaasht) in the Musjid, and that is why Hadhrat Abdullah Ibn Mas’ood (Radhiyallahu anhu) branded a group of thaakireen (people engaging in thikrullah) in the Musjid as ‘bid’atis’, and had them expelled from the Musjid for their ‘khaanqah’ type of halqah thikr. And that is why, Hadhrat Abdullah Ibn Umar (Radhiyallahu anhu) reprimanded a person who added Allah’s Name to the Masnoon dua at the time of sneezing.
When the Six Sunnah Fasts of Shawwaal assumed the form of Waajib, Imaam Abu Hanifah (Rahmatullah alayh) branded it bid’ah. When this is Islam’s attitude to even established Sunnah practices, the notoriety of the Maulana Sahib’s introduction of the new year bid’ah will be readily understood.
Minus Thikrullaah, the act will be Tashabbuh bil Kuffaar which although a major sin, will not be kufr. But to adopt a kaafir custom in the Name of Allah Ta’ala is kufr. It is like reciting Bismillaah when consuming pork or any haraam food. This, the Fuqaha have ruled is kufr.
Kufr destroys Imaan. It is therefore necessary for the Maulana Sahib to repent and renew his Imaan, and if he has a wife, he should also renew his Nikah. This advice should not annoy him. He should not permit pride to prevent him from doing what is imperative for Najaat in the Aakhirah. Furthermore, he should retract his haraam advice. Retraction of baatil is not humiliating. In fact, it portrays the sincerity and humility of the person.
Salaam on those who follow the guidance of Allah.
23 Rabiyuth Thaani 1440 – 31 December 2018