Sects in Islam

It has been reported in an authentic tradition that Allah’s Messenger (saws) said: “There will befall my Ummah exactly all those evils which befell the people of Israel (Jews and Christians), so much so that if there was one amongst them who openly committed fornication with his mother, there will be amongst my Ummah one, who will do the same.  And if the people of Israel were fragmented into seventy-two sects, my Ummah will be fragmented into seventy-three sects.   All of them will be in Hell Fire except one sect.”   The noble Companions asked: “O Allah’s Messenger (saws), which one is that?”   Whereupon he (saws) said: “It is one to which I and my companions belong.”

Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) prophesized that Islam would be broken down into seventy three sects. Out of seventy three sects only one will be on the right path whereas the other seventy two would burn in hell for eternity. This hadith does not instructs the Muslims to break the ummah into sects and claim there sects to be on the right path rather it highlights the issue of sects and how the Muslim ummah would break into  pieces if they do not follow the path of Allah and his messenger.  Allah says in the holy Quran that Muslims belong to the same sect and they should fear only one Lord i.e. Him alone. Yet the people divide themselves into different sects and claim to be on the right one.

“And you all belong to one and the same ummah, and I am your Lord; so fear Me Alone!  Yet afterwards the people divided themselves into different sects, and each sect rejoices in what it has.  Well, leave them deeply involved in their heedlessness up to an appointed time.”  [Quran 23: 52-54]

Allah does not like sectarianism nor does He have any favorite sect or group of people for whom he has promised Paradise.  He is not biased upon religion, sect, color, race etc. For Him everyone is equal.

“The (Jews and Christians) say: “None shall enter Paradise unless he be a Jew or a Christian.”  These are their wishful fancies!  Say to them, “Bring your evidence if you are right in your claim!”.  The fact is that no one has any special claim to Paradise!   Whoever surrenders himself to Allah in obedience, and is a door of good deeds, shall have his reward with His Lord.   There shall be neither fear nor grief for such people.”  [Quran 2: 111-112]

Muslims should recognize that they are one ummah and keep in mind that Allah is the only creator. Breaking the ummah into sects would only weaken the strength of Muslims and make them vulnerable to kufaar or the non-Muslims. 

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