Joined: Sep 2002
Clarifying the types of Kufr |
By Khaalid bin ?Ali bin Muhammad al-?Anbaree,
The Types of Kufr
THERE are two main categories of disbelief: 1 The
major kufr that removes one from the religion; 2 The
minor kufr that does not.
The objective of this investigation is to clarify the
types of kufr that remove one from the religion.
There are six categories of this kufr, as follows:
1 Outright Rejection (taktheeb)
2 Denial (juhood)
3 Resistance or Obstinance (?inaad)
4 Despondence (i?raadh)
5 Hypocrisy (nifaaq)
6 Doubt (shakk)
Kufr is divided into these categories because of the
ways that people vary in their acceptance of the truth
that Allah sent His Messenger with, and revealed in His Book.
Outright Rejection (TAKTHEEB)
This occurs when one disbelieves with his tongue and
his heart and does not accept what the Messenger of
Allah (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam) brought. He is a disbeliever, both outwardly and inwardly, judged so in this life and in Hereafter. As Allah said (which means):
?And the Day when We shall gather out of every nation
a troop of those who rejected Our aayaat, they shall
be driven until when they come (before their Lord) and He says; ?Did you reject My aayaat when you comprehended them not in knowledge, or what (else) was it that you did??? (An-Naml 27:83-84)
This is the kufr of the outright rejection.
Sometimes, one?s heart is certain that (what the
Messenger of Allah brought) is the truth. But he
hides that and denies it with his tongue, and perhaps fights it at its foundations. This is like Fir?awn?s disbelief in Moosa and the Jews? disbelief in
Muhammad (sallallahu alayhe wa sallam).
About Fir?awn and his people, Allah said (which means);
?And they denied them (those aayaat) wrongfully and
arrogantly ...? (An-Naml 27:14)
Allah said of the Jews (which means);
?When there came to them that which they had recognised, they disbelieved in it.? (Al-Baqarah 2:89)
And He said (which means);
?A party of the Jews concealed the truth while they
knew it.? (Al-Baqarah 2:146)
This is denial, or kufr al-juhood.
Resistance or Obstinance (?INAAD)
In some cases, one approves of the truth of the
message outwardly and inwardly, with both his tongue
and his heart, but he does not comply with it out of anger, arrogance and resistance to Allah and His Messenger, he contests judgment and questions the
justice of what he has been commanded with. Even if
he trusts this truth (of the message), his denial and
resistance for it negates that trust. This is like the disbelief of the accursed Iblees. Allah said (which means);
?Except Iblees, he refused and was proud, and he was
one of the disbelievers.? (Al-Baqarah 2:34).
And; ?Shall I prostrate to what You have created from
clay?? (Al-Israa? 17:61)
?I am not one to prostrate to a human who You
created from sounding clay of altered black smooth mud.? (Al-Hijr 15:33)
Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah explained the kufr of
denial (juhood) and the kufr of resistance (?inaad)
?When a person commits a sin while believing that
Allah forbade him from it, and he believes in complying with whatever Allah prohibits him and obliges him, then he is not considered a disbeliever.
And as for thinking that Allah did not prohibit it,
or, that He did prohibit it - yet he refrains from
accepting that prohibition, and turns away from submitting to Allah and complying with the order ? then he is either denying or being resistant.
This is why it is said that everyone agrees to the
disbelief of one who proudly disobeys Allah, like
blees, but whoever disobeys as a result of his passions, only the Khawaaraj consider it disbelief, he has not committed disbelief according to Ahl as-Sunnah. Whereas the one who is arrogantly disobedient, even if he attests that Allah is his Lord - his denial and resistance negate his attestation.
To further clarify this:
Whoever does a prohibited act, believing that it is
lawful, then he is a disbeliever according to everyone. By virtue of his belief in permitting what it prohibits, he does not have faith in the Qur?an. This is the case even when one believes a forbidden act to
be lawful, but does not commit it. For the term
istihlaal simply means to believe that Allah did not
And sometimes, on the other hand, one doesn?t believe
that Allah prohibited something, due to a deficiency
in one?s faith in ruboobiyah, or because his faith in the message (of Islam) is deficient, in this case it is juhud, having no relation to the above.
Sometimes one knows that Allah prohibited it, and he
knows that the Messenger only prohibits what Allah
prohibited, yet he does not comply with this prohibition, and additionally, he opposes it. This case of kufr is worse than the previous one, because he is aware that Allah will punish anyone who does not comply with these prohibitions.
If this refusal is due to a deficiency in one?s belief in the wisdom of the command and its importance, then this is a sign of the absence of some necessary element of trust because it is known that everything he believes in rejecting or following is done to satisfy himself only.
This is because he is aware of all that Allah and
His Messenger informed him and he trusts that all
which the believers accept is true. However, he dislikes it and it angers him, and he is dissatisfied, so he does not act in accordance with it, nor desire to.
He says, ?I do not endorse, nor honour this.? Thereby
detesting the truth and being disgusted with it, so
this is a different type from the first, and labelling such a person as a disbeliever is a well known necessity in the religion of Islam. The Qur?an cites an
example of this category of takfeer. In fact, (it has
been said that) the Prophet mentioned that this kind
of person would receive the severest punishment.
?The most severely punished among people on the Day of
Judgment is a knowledgeable one whom Allah did not
allow to gain any benefit by his knowledge.?
This is the example of Iblees and whoever follows his
path. So from this the distinction between the different types of disobedience is clear. If he believes that an act is obligatory for him, and he wants to do it, but his desires and weakness prevent
him from acting accordingly, then he comes with faith
in the truthfulness and submission and the willingness
to comply, yet his saying that does not cause him to fulfil the act.?
The objective (here) is to clarify the intricacies and
subtle elements of resistance or obstinance (kufr
al-?inaad), that it does not apply to the avoidance of an act while admitting them necessity of the act, unless that is accompanied by animosity and hatred for
the truth and arrogance in the face of it.