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Introductory Materials
  The Origins of Shirk
Author: Shaikh Naasir ud-Din al-Albaani
Source: Tahdheerus-Saajid min Ittikhaadhil-Quboori Masaajid
Article ID : TAW010004  [57140]  
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From that which has been established in the Sharee'ah (prescribed law) is that mankind was - in the beginning - a single nation upn true Tawheed, then Shirk (directing any part or form of worship, or anything else that is solely the right of Allah, to other than Allah) gradually overcame them. The basis for this is the saying of Allah - the Most Blessed, the Most high:

"Mankind was one Ummah, then Allah sent prophets bringing good news and warnings." (Surah Baqarah 2:213)

Ibn 'Abbas - radiallaahu 'anhu - said:

"Between Nooh (Noah) and Adam were ten generations, all of them were upon Sharee'ah (law) of the truth, then they differed. So Allah sent prophets as bringers of good news and as warners"(1)

Ibn 'Urwah al-Hanbalee (d.837 H) said:

"This saying refutes those historians from the People of the Book who claim that Qaabil (Cain) and his sons were fire-worshippers"(2)

I say: In it is also a refutation of some of the philosophers and athists who claim that the (natural) basis of man is Shirk, and that Tawheed evolved in man! The preceeding aayah (verse) falsifies this claim, as do the two following authentic hadith:

Firstly:His (the prophet (sallallaahu `alaihi wasallam) ) saying that he related from his Lord (Allah) : "I created all my servants upon the true Religion (upon Tawheed, fre from Shirk). Then the devils came to them and led them astray from their true Religion. They made unlawful to people that which I had made lawful for them, and they commanded them to associate in worship with Me, that which I had sent down no authority."(3)

Secondly:His (the prophet (sallallaahu `alaihi wasallam) ) saying: " Every child is born upon the Fitrah(4) but his parents make him a jew or a christian or a magian. It is like the way an animal gives birth to a natural offspring. have you noticed any born mutilated, before you mutilate them."

Abu Hurayrah said: Recite if you wish: "Allah's fitrah with which He created mankind. There is to be no change to the creation (Religion) of Allah."(Surah ar-Rum 30:30)(5)

After this clear explanation, it is of the upmost importance for the Muslim to know how Shirk spread amongst the believers, after they were muwahhideen (people upon Tawheed)

Concerning the saying of Allah - the most perfect - about the people of Nooh:

"And they have said : You shall not forsake your gods, nor shall you forsake Wadd, nor Suwaa', nor Yaghooth, nor Ya'ooq, nor Nasr."
(Surah Nooh 71:23)

It has been related by a group from the Salaf (Pious Predecessors), in many narrations, that these five deities were righteous worshippers. However, when they died, Shaytaan (Satan) whispered into their people to retreat and sit at their graves. Then Shaytaan whispered to those who came after them that they should take them as idols, beautifying to them the idea that you will be reminded of them and thereby follow them in righteous conduct. Then Shaytaan suggested to the third generation that they should worship these idols besides Allah - the most high - and he whispered to them that this is what their forefathers used to do!!!

So Allah sent to them Nooh (as), commanding them to worship Allah alone. However none responded to hiscall except a few. Allah - the mighty and majestic - related this whole incident in surah Nooh

Ibn 'Abbas relates:

"Indeed these five names of righteous men from the people of Nooh. When they died Shataan whispered to their people to make statues of them and to place these statues in their places of gathering as a reminder of them, so they did this.

However, none from amongst them worshipped these statues, until when they died and the purpose of the statues was forgotten. Then (the next generation) began to worship them."(6)

The likes of this has also been related by Ibn Jareer at-Tabaree and others, from a number of the salaf (Pious Predecessors) - radiallaahu 'anhum.

In ad-Durral-Manthoor (6/269):

'Abdullaah ibn Humaid relates from Abu Muttahar, who said: Yazeed ibn al-Muhallab was mentioned to Abu Ja'far al-Baaqir (d.11H), so he said: He was killed at the place where another besides Allah was first worshipped. Then he mentioned Wadd and said:

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