By a former member, Abu Uwais
BismillahirRahmanirRahim wa salaat as-Salaam ala Rasulihil-Karim, wa ahla ahli hi wa as-Sahabihi l-karim.
In my youthful, naive and over-zealous days, I was attracted to the group called “Hizbut-Tahrir”, it was when their main man was OBM. They appealed to my insecurities and gave me a channel to vent my anger at society and my community and be part of a wider identity driven by “youth”.
Anyway after spending a number of years, pamphleting and vandalising public and private property with “Khilafa is coming back” type posters and other such throw away slogans I really started to assess what all this was about and where I was heading as a Muslim. I could not reconcile our anti-kufr stance with most of my HT friends and their love of their designer labels and their materialistic outlook on life. I could not reconcile the fact that one of my acquaintances worked for a large bank in the city; the very ribawi institution that HT purportedly stood against. I could not reconcile the fact that HT did not hold the punishment of the grave as part of their aqida when Imam al-Tahawi clearly states it in al-Aqida al-Tahawiyya:
“80. We believe in the punishment in the grave for those who deserve it, …”.
Imam Tahawi was one of the early imams of Ahl al-Sunnah wa’l Jama’at who listed what the beliefs of Ahl al-Sunnah are in this short treatise. I was told by one of the more “knowledgeable” brothers that “we trust in the punishment of the grave” and that ahad hadith reports do not form part of our aqidah. I later found out that the ahad reports can form part of aqida if one condition can be met: that the tenet of faith mentioned in the hadith is salimun min al-muarada or “free of conflicting evidence”, as is the case for this hadith. Besides, I was recalling this belief in the dua after my five daily prayers: “rabana atina fi dunya hasanatan, wa fil akhirati hasanatan, wa kina azabin-naar. WA KINA AZABAN QABRI [and from the PUNISHMENT OF THE GRAVE], wa kina azaban hashiri, wa kina azaban mizan”. None of my questions were satisfactorily answered and so the inevitable end came ever closer.
Then OBM left HT and set-up the alternative “Muhajiroon”. This I never did quite understand and no one ever explained to me why OBM left seeing as though both parties are working towards the same goal? I also questioned the leadership of the one who allowed himself to be used by the media in the documentary “Tottenham Ayatollah” in which OBM was made to look like a fool. Needless to say my disillusion grew. All I seemed to be doing was pamphleteering and daubing walls with posters and memorising the odd ayat of the Quran to pull out on unsuspecting Muslims to prove my point. I decided to call it a day as I realised that these people were going nowhere and nowhere fast, the bus they were on, so to speak, had not only run out of fuel without the driver noticing; but was heading in the wrong direction in the first place. I could not see how their program would bring about the Khilafa when most of my peers could barely pray properly. All we seemed to concern ourselves with was “siyasa”. I increasingly became concerned with my own personal practice of my religion, I recalled the hadith that basically tells the Muslims that if he sees an ill in a brother make sure that ill doesn’t exist in yourself and what I saw with my brothers was not good and it existed in me. I wanted to know if I was praying properly ie knowing what the faraid, wajibat, sunan etc of my ibadah were but we just seemed interested in “establishing” the khilafa and nothing else. We were brainwashed into thinking that this was the single most important issue in the ummah today when in fact it was one of many. It seemed to me that if you want to build something like a khilafa it has to be done on good strong and solid foundations, HT/Muhajiroon have put foundations in place but matchsticks cannot hold much for long. Not only have they neglected the foundations but the ground upon which they hope to build on is sand and of no real substance. If they were to establish a “khilafa” it would be just an empty shell and the whole structure would come crashing down.
I now know that these people are totally deficient in the three areas of the Din (Islam, Iman and Ihsan). In fiqh they are pretty much la-Madhhabi, they don’t ascribe to any Madhhab and are pre-occupied with their own “ijtihads”, in aqida they follow a crypto-Mutazilite rationalism and they are completely devoid of anything spiritual and mock those who make dhikr and attend such gatherings. In short they are the flip side of Wahhabism.
HT/Muhajiroon’s goal of establishing the Khilafa is no different to those who are awaiting the Mahdi to do it. It is all to do with tawfiq that Allah bestows and from what I know personally there is no tawfiq in either HT/Muhajiroon and there will never be. In fact I have come to realise that if you don’t want the establishment of the Islamic state then the best way is to join up with one of these two groups.
I am much older now and I can see things a lot more clearly without the blinkers and naivety of youth. I know many people who have left this group after maturing and would urge the youth of this group to learn their deen first and expend their energies in creating an environment that would be conducive to da’wah and not prohibitive as is currently with HT/Muhajiroon. Once we all sort ourselves and the community out it will be fertile ground for the seeds of tawfiq to be sown and Allah will cause them to flourish in abundance with the rains of His Mercy.
In closing I am thankful to HT for at least awakening me to my deen even though they did very little to nurture it. I have had a few friends “burn out” from HT and go completely back to their jahiliyya state and this can be blamed on no one else but HT who will be questioned on That Day.