When & how did shirk originate amongst humans?

Do you know when and how did shirk originate amongst humans? Read on …

Concerning the saying of Allaah – 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 Allaah – the most high – and he whispered to them that this is what their forefathers used to do!!!

So Allaah sent to them Nooh (Alayhis Salaam), commanding them to worship Allah alone. However none responded to his call except a few. Allaah – the mighty and majestic – related this whole incident in surah Nooh

Ibn ‘Abbas relates:

“Indeed these five names were of righteous men from the people of Nooh. When they died, Shaytaan 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.”(1)

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 Allaah was first worshipped. Then he mentioned Wadd and said:

Wadd was a Muslim man who was loved by his people. When he died, the people began to gather around his grave in the land of Baabil (Babel), lamenting and mourning. So when Iblees (Satan) saw them mourning and lamenting over him, he took the form of a man and came to them, saying : I see that you are mourning and lamenting over him. So why don’t you make a picture of him (i.e. a statue) and place it in your places of gatherings so that you may be reminded of him. So they said: Yes, and they made a picture of him and put in their place of gathering; which reminded them of him.

When Iblees saw how they were (excessively) remembering him, he said : “Why doesn’t every man amongst you make a similar picture to keep in your own houses, so that you can be (constantly) reminded of him.”

So they all said “yes”. So each household made a picture of him, which they adored and venerated and which constantly reminded them of him.

Abu Ja’far said: “Those from the later generation saw what the (previous generation) had done and considered that……..to the extent that they took him as an ilaah (deity) to be worshipped besides Allaah. He then said :” This was the first idol worshipped other than Allaah, and they called this idol Wadd”(2)

Thus the wisdom of Allaah – the Blessed, the Most High – was fulfilled, when he sent Muhammed (sallallaahu `alaihi wasallam) as the final prophet and made his Sharee’ah the completion of all divinely Prescribed Laws, in that He prohibited all means and avenues by which people may fall into Shirk – which is the greatest of sins.

For this reason, building shrines over graves and intending to specifically travel to them, taking them as places of festivity and gathering and swearing an oath by the inmate of a grave; have all been prohibited.

All of these lead to excessiveness and lead to the worship of other than Allah – the Most High. This being the case even more so in an age in which knowledge is diminishing, ignorance is increasing, there are few sincere advisors (to the truth) and shaytaan is co-operating with men and jinn to misguide mankind and to take them away from the worship of Allaah alone – the Blessed, the Most High.

(1) Related by Al-Bukhaaree (11/418) and Muslim (18/52)
(2) Realted by al-Bukhaaree (8/534)


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