THE PLIGHT OF A HANAFI WITH TOOTH DECAY
The masses happen to be the followers of a given sect without being aware of their true aspect and let themselves be instructed what the books on ‘Islamic catechism’ provide them with. For instance, the great majority of Turkish population claims to belong to the Hanafi sect. Yet, as they are ignorant of the fact that the filling or crowning of teeth is prohibited by their sect, they have their teeth filled or crowned. Under the circumstances, their ablution and consequently their prayer becomes null and void according to the viewpoint of their Hanafi sect. Clichés and threats have rendered the sectarianism into some sort of chauvinism and racism. Not to belong to the Sunni sect has been almost equated with heathenism. The same thing holds true as regards the Shiites and Alawis. Their approach to the Sunni is similar. The only alternative that is avoided by the masses who should be enlightened on this issue is the refutation of all the sects and the return to the unique source of Islam: the Quran!
The founders of the sects interpreted the Quran and the hadiths according to their idiosyncrasies, made a selection of the Quranic verses and hadiths transmitted peculiar to their characters, laid down rules under the guise of ra’y (opinion) and ijtihad (initiative) in the domains left to the discretion of the individual, and ended by establishing supremacy over the Quran and the hadiths. The exercise of this power received bitter censure not only from those who deemed the Quran self-sufficient, but also from the hadith imams who came after the sectarian imams we keep on criticizing. One of the major issues they contested was the prevalence of the personal opinions and viewpoints of the sectarian imams. Certain transmitters of the hadiths leveled criticism at the sectarian imams accusing them of inventing hadiths that best suited their own opinions. The criticism of accusing Hanafi, founder of the largest sect, of unreliability by Bukhari, the most renowned among the authors of hadith books, is an example of the depreciation of the sectarians by the authors of hadith books. The consequence has been present-day Islam, which is far from being the Islam of the Quran, not even the Islam based on an infinite number of invented hadiths. The Islam practiced today is the system established by sectarian imams. During the period when they established their sects there was neither a Bukhari nor a Muslim. Nor had the hadiths been sorted out according to the likelihood of their authenticity. In other words, the sects had been formed at a time when there was no trace yet of the Kutub-u Sitte (the six renowned books of hadiths). By this we try to stress the fact that the percentage of the invented hadiths was much higher than a good many hadith books. It is sad to observe that the great majority of people believe their sect to be tantamount to Islam and are unaware of the fact that it is at variance in many respects with the injunctions contained in the Quran. The Quran laid down explicit rules in certain domains leaving others to the discretion of the individual allowing the religion to conform to the time and milieu in question. The sects, on the other hand, believing that there had been gaps left by God in His revelation, ventured to intervene and tried to fill up the so-called gaps, bringing religion to clash with many a situation and even with human conditions.