Hajj and Sayyid Qutb
An integrated belief system is an amalgamation of the eternally pertinent core beliefs which can be recontextualised so Islamic principles are entwined with social practice. Therefore, through the integration of the Islamic faith into an individual’s life, the pursuit of Al-Akhira becomes a consistently relevant part of a Muslim’s life. The “excellent reward for the next [world]” is encapsulated in the contemporary revivalist Sayyid Qutb’s teachings and the pilgrimage of Hajj. These two expressions of Islamic faith reinvigorate an adherent’s perception of how we can attain the “reward of the next” through “Allah’s love.”
Islam is kept alive in the contemporary world through the core belief of turning from fitna (temptation). Hajj is the ongoing model for symbolically intensifying tis struggle against sinful natures and remains an integrated part of the Hajji’s life from the habits to shift in perceptions gained. The state of Ihram (purity) is reached during Umrah (preparation); a white garment is adorned, financial and social debts are paid and the adherent does not shave or clip their nails. These symbolically represent the rejection of impurity, sin and vanity respectively. The ritual of stoning the Devil on the steps of Jumraat in Muzdaliah also encapsulate the symbolic rejection of worldly temptation. The wuquf (stand) on Mount Arafat is a profound moment of humility which reconnects the adherent to the inevitability of Al-Akhira (judgement day) reinvigorating the foundational reason why a Muslim must turn from the Devil and embrace the purity of Allah’ love. Submission for the purpose of divine emancipation is therefore rekindled within the adherent. This is reflected in the adherent’s daily living as the ongoing model for purity and desire for good habits are instilled. Adherents “return from Hajj as perfect as a newborn baby, free of all sin.” (Surah 30:30) The self-renewal reflects in to future habits, teaching Umma (community) about the experience of Hajj, and a long-lasting integration of the symbolism into tangible action in their daily life in a this world, for reward in the life that is to come.
Islam is kept alive in the contemporary world through the progressive, revivalist teachings of Sayyid Qutb highlighting the core beliefs of the ‘lesser jihad’ and the infinitely perennial belief’s expression in a modern context. Sayyid Qutb provided a criticism to the increasingly Western, materialist, ambition-driven, capitalist world, highlighting its effect as an instigator of jahiliyya (age of ignorance) as the Muslims and greater society were consumed with the promise of immediate gratification of this world. Sayyid Qutb thus proposed they were “heedless of the life that is to come” (Milestones 1964). The only way towards Hakimyya (heaven on earth) was through the unity of Sharia Law with the state law. He proposed religious ethics and moral codes should be enforced by the government. Qutb’s highly inflammatory book...