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Foundational Defintion To Determine Which Non-Islamic Ritual-Acts Are Worship.

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In Islam acts of worship are sanctioned by Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) and performing any act instructed by Him and demonstrated by His Messenger (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). As such any act of worship without explicit sanction or Ijtihadi evidence is invalid and rejected. This raises an interesting question about acts of worship performed by polytheists in general, Satanists, Hindus, and those performed by followers of modern polytheistic religious innovations. Question arises are their innovated acts of worship actually worship in terms of Islam? To answer this question we need to interpret their actions in context of all inclusive definition of worship. There is another component to this question from perspective of innovation and it has been responded to,

Fundamental And Ritual-Acts Definition Of Worship:

(i) Fundamental: To invoke an Ilah with belief and intention of worship is worship. (ii) Ritual Acts: To perform any ritual-act with belief and intention of worshiping an Ilah is an act of worship.

Interpreting Ritual-Acts In Light Of Definitions Of Worship:

General principle is that any/every action be it dancing, breaking a coconut, performing Tawaf of candle, offering food, crawling, prostrating, bowing, fasting, singing praises, invoking for help, smacking an idol with dirty shoe, draging idol in streets … all would amount to worship if these are performed with belief and intention of worship. These acts would be worship with or without feeling of obedience, submissiveness, humility, love, respect, or fear of  an Ilah/idol. Essential requirement is affirming belief of Ilahiyyah/Ma’budiyyah for a creation, belief, desire, and intention of worship. And then any act deemed appropriate by disbelievers as an act of worship would be worship even if we as Muslims deem it inapropriate.

Wama alayna ilal balaghul mubeen.
Muhammed Ali Razavi

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