// Aga Khan and the Ismaili religion
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maya
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« on: Aug 24, 2011 07:44 PM »


Ismāʿīlism (Arabic: الإسماعيليون al-Ismāʿīliyyūn; Persian: اسماعیلیان Esmāʿiliyān; Urdu: إسماعیلی Ismāʿīlī) is a branch of Shia Islam. It is the second largest branch of Shia Islam, after the mainstream Twelvers (Ithnāʿashariyya). The Ismāʿīlī get their name from their acceptance of Ismāʿīl ibn Jaʿfar as the appointed spiritual successor (Imām) to Jaʿfar aṣ-Ṣādiq, wherein they differ from the Twelvers, who accept Mūsà al-Kāżim, younger brother of Ismāʿīl, as the true Imām.
Tracing its earliest theology to the lifetime of Muḥammad, Ismāʿīlism rose at one point to become the largest branch of Shī‘ism, climaxing as a political power with the Fatimid Empire in the tenth through twelfth centuries.[1] Ismailis believe in the oneness of God, as well as the closing of divine revelation with Muḥammad, whom they see as the final Prophet and Messenger of God to all humanity. The Ismāʿīlī and the Twelvers both accept the same initial A'immah from the descendants of Muḥammad through his daughter Fāṭimah az-Zahra and therefore share much of their early history. Both Shī‘ite groups see the family of Muḥammad (Ahl al-Bayt) as divinely chosen, infallible (ismah), and guided by God to lead the Islamic community (Ummah), a belief that distinguishes them from the majority Sunni branch of Islam.
After the death of Muhammad ibn Ismail in the 8th century CE, the teachings of Ismailism further transformed into the belief system as it is known today, with an explicit concentration on the deeper, esoteric meaning (batin) of the Islamic religion. With the eventual development of Twelverism into the more literalistic (zahir) oriented Akhbari and later Usooli schools of thought, Shi'ism developed into two separate directions: the metaphorical Ismāʿīlī group focusing on the mystical path and nature of Allah, with the "Imām of the Time" representing the manifestation of truth and reality, with the more literalistic Twelver group focusing on divine law (sharia) and the deeds and sayings (sunnah) of Muhammad and the Twelve Imams who were guides and a light to God.[2]
Though there are several paths (tariqah) within the Ismāʿīlīs, the term in today's vernacular generally refers to the Nizari path, which recognizes the Aga Khan IV[3] as the 49th hereditary Imam and is the largest group among the Ismāʿīlīs. While some of the branches have extremely differing exterior practices, Ismāʿīlīs will say that much of their spiritual theology has remained the same since the days of the faith's early Imāms. In recent centuries Ismāʿīlīs have largely been an Indo-Iranian (Iran, Pakistan) community,[4] but Ismāʿīlī minorities are also found in India, Syria, Yemen, Jordan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, East Africa, Lebanon, and South Africa, and have in recent years emigrated to Europe, Australia, New Zealand, North America and Trinidad and Tobago.[5]

I used to live in Kenya and there were a lot of Ismailis there, when asked they presented the same 5 pillars of Islam. I just was never sure if they actually worshipped Aga Khan..Inshallah someone knows more than I do on this subject.
I know that they are a sect within the Shia religion. How do Sunnis view Shias? I don't know why I never looked into these questioned before. I hope this isn't a banned topic. I'm not trying to start a debate back and forth. I would research this but I'm afraid of getting very slanted views.

Are Shias part of the brotherhood and sisterhood of Islam? I know that they only pray 3 times a day, is this just different but completely acceptable?

Most respectfully.

And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands,
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« Reply #1 on: Aug 25, 2011 05:14 AM »

I am Kenyan Muslim and know of the Shia/Ismailia community. I never delved into their history though I have heard stories, so I can't contribute anything here on that score.

Where in Kenya were you and which year(s)?

The Almighty Allah says,

"When a servant thinks of Me, I am near.
When he invokes Me, I am with him.
If he reflects on Me in secret, I reply in secret,
And if he acknowledges Me in an assembly,
I acknowledge him in a far superior assembly."

- Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as reptd by Abu Huraira
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« Reply #2 on: Aug 25, 2011 05:36 AM »

We have a quite large Ismaili community in Hyderabad. I even have a friend who's Ismaili.
Like sis Halima, I too heard a lot of stories, very strange ones, but I can't confirm anything. One thing that I can is that they don't pray like us. I've seen my friend pray and he did all sorts of weird things..for a while he would bring up his hands like we do while making Du'a, sometimes he would put them together like Hindus do for a namaste and then bow down, sometimes he would do the christian thing where they touch the forehead and the chest.. something to do with trinity? Weird stuff!
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« Reply #3 on: Aug 25, 2011 06:56 PM »

I am Kenyan Muslim and know of the Shia/Ismailia community. I never delved into their history though I have heard stories, so I can't contribute anything here on that score.

Where in Kenya were you and which year(s)?

I reverted in Nairobi, I was there studying at USIU from 2004-2008. Alhamdulilah, if my husband were to agree, I'd go back!! I love Kenya, I loved being a muslim there so much. Granted thats the only place other than the US I've been muslim in.

Akhan- One Ismaili told me they don't even have to wear hijab or cover to go into their mosque, inshallah she was only mistaken. I can say that their leader, sounds like a real philanthropist, mashallah- in THIS way religion apart, he has done a lot for 3 world countries however controversial they seem.

I would like to know more, not because I find it appealing, but more just on an educational note. I love being sunni alhamdulilah., though as a revert the second time around there's much strength I need to pray for. inshallah I will be much more educated and dedicated to the deen. allahu akbar

And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands,
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« Reply #4 on: Aug 28, 2011 06:20 AM »

I reverted in Nairobi, I was there studying at USIU from 2004-2008. Alhamdulilah, if my husband were to agree, I'd go back!! I love Kenya, I loved being a muslim there so much. Granted thats the only place other than the US I've been muslim in.

Maasha-Allah! Reverted in Nairobi! I live in Nairobi. Maybe you will get the chance to visit again, Insha-Allah.

I hope you find answers to all the questions you have on Islam from reliable sources and your local Masjid.

The Almighty Allah says,

"When a servant thinks of Me, I am near.
When he invokes Me, I am with him.
If he reflects on Me in secret, I reply in secret,
And if he acknowledges Me in an assembly,
I acknowledge him in a far superior assembly."

- Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as reptd by Abu Huraira
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« Reply #5 on: Aug 28, 2011 11:43 PM »

I was born in nairobi eons ago....
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« Reply #6 on: Aug 29, 2011 02:44 AM »

I was born in nairobi eons ago....
Aha!

The Almighty Allah says,

"When a servant thinks of Me, I am near.
When he invokes Me, I am with him.
If he reflects on Me in secret, I reply in secret,
And if he acknowledges Me in an assembly,
I acknowledge him in a far superior assembly."

- Prophet Muhammad (SAW), as reptd by Abu Huraira
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« Reply #7 on: Aug 30, 2011 02:53 AM »

I reverted in Nairobi, I was there studying at USIU from 2004-2008. Alhamdulilah, if my husband were to agree, I'd go back!! I love Kenya, I loved being a muslim there so much. Granted thats the only place other than the US I've been muslim in.

Maasha-Allah! Reverted in Nairobi! I live in Nairobi. Maybe you will get the chance to visit again, Insha-Allah.

I hope you find answers to all the questions you have on Islam from reliable sources and your local Masjid.

It was mosque in Westlands...I can't remember if it was the one on the side of the highway or I think there was another one. I never got the chance to go to Jamia but would go there to buy Islamic books. I miss Eastleigh where I'd buy abaya, bukhoor and hijabs. Diamond plaza for oud...
ANYWAY...I could right pages and pages about Nairobi. Inshallah Halima I go for a visit next year..I promised my hubs I'd take him there and his gran back to kenya...
Back to the OP...

I have done a little bit of research on them on my own, some would say that they are a cult because some in their religion face towards a portrait of their leader when praying and also when getting married. Others might say since they hold the 5 pillars that they are in fact muslims.

I am of the idea that I'd rather draw upon the one true Islam which we know we should be practicing. For only Allah subhana wa taala, Allahu Alam, knows our hearts. I would like to not judge other peoples Islam.

And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands,
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« Reply #8 on: Aug 30, 2011 09:16 AM »

Lets make a distinction from what the followers of Agha Khan claim to be, and what they are.
And I will use the word, "followers of Agha Khan" instead of the Word Shia or Ismiali.
Why?



Firstly, Agha Khan and his followers are not Muslim. The have their own religion which blatantly contradicts La illaha illalah.
Agha Khan claims to be the Mirror of God.
They do not follow our Shariya at all. They believe it has been abrogated, just as we believe the Shariya of the Christians and Jews have been abrogated by ours.
We do salat, they don't. What they do is do dua to Prophet Mohummed pbh and Ali ra.
We do Huj, they don't, their Huj is to see Agha Khan.
We fast in Ramadhan, they don't, what they do is one day on, one day off.
We pay Zakat, 2.5% of wealth, they don't, they pay money to Agha Khan, 15% 25% or 33% of pre tax earnings depending on what dua he has shown them.
 

There is no difference of opinion about them being Kaffir. It isn't just Sunnis who call them Kaffir, Shia call them Kaffir as well.
We can't even use the word Ismiali for them because Ismailis who don't follow/worship Agha khan call them Kaffir too.
You cant even call them Nazeris because not all Nazeris follow him.

When it comes to Agha Khan's claim that he is the 49th, that is a lie.
The truth is his chain is only a couple of generations long!
His great grandfather was a politician in Iran. He rebelled against the Iranian government. He was defeated and escaped to British India.
In British India he claimed he was the inheritor of the cult of the assassins. A line that ended when the Mongol slaughtered them all in 1256 and claimed all the Khoja property and places of worship.
The Khoja disputed his claims, but he sued them in a British court and the British Judge declared he was the leader of the Khoja and all their places of worship and communal property were given to him.

If you look at the 49 links on the chain he has fabricated it is really funny. Because a lot of the people he lists as his ancestors died before their fathers were born.
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« Reply #9 on: Aug 31, 2011 01:21 AM »

Salam MS-
I ttlly hear what you're saying.
However, I am sure it's hard if you've grown up seeing one side of the story, i.e. you're parents and your whole family & community has raised you thinking one way, doing good deeds enjoying their side of the faith... shaykh and then you hear another side of the story  oldshaykh ... You might think that it's just people 'hating' on your religion.
It's like when you have two friends who tell you a story, it's often easier to believe or side with the one you hear first, the other side of the story is a slip from what you have come to determine as "FACT."

That said and done, this is not how I typically am. I was raised Catholic and have been non denominational Christian-Baha'i and now Muslim Alhamdulilah. But, I also come from a family where they don't care if you choose Islam or Christian as long as you have a relationship with God and are living what you preach, Alhamdulilah they do not mind, so it was easy for me.

I also think though that it is easier to attract more people with honey than with things that are bitter. So, although we may think to ourselves, "These Aga Khan followers are waay off,  Undecided God forbids what they are doin', they got it all wrong," no body is really persuaded by that type of statements, unless Allah subhana wa taala is TALKING to them Himself and they are seeking ====> You religion is wrong, mine is right, let me tell you!


I think to persuade a person, in my experience you can draw upon similarities, in this case "Aga Khan believer, here is what we both apparently believe, what you say you believe and what is true Islam according to the Quran, we are similar in these ways...however, what oftens happens that is not permitted is ABCD..." or "what sets us apart and makes me question the validity of your religion is..."

more later baby needs me...
thanks for your honesty EID mubarek

And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands,
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« Reply #10 on: Aug 31, 2011 01:52 AM »

Give my salam to the baby Smiley

It is true that you attract more flies with honey than you do with vinegar, but you do need to know the reality of someone if you want to do dawa to them.

The method of giving dawa to a Muslim whose views are way off Quran and Sunnah is completely different to the method of giving dawa to a non-Muslim who doesnt believe in Quran and Sunnah.

For example, with a Muslim you will show their views contradict Quran and Sunnah. But to a non-Muslim that would be irrelevant because Quran and Sunnah are not a criteria.
When you were a Catholic, if I went up to you and said pork is Harram because the Quran said so, how would that be relevant to you?

And that is the issue with Ismialis.
Quran and Sunnah are not a criteria for them. With them, you need to prove Islam in the way you would with a Christian or Jew.
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« Reply #11 on: Aug 31, 2011 05:31 AM »

Give my salam to the baby Smiley   Grin Yes indeed!

It is true that you attract more flies with honey than you do with vinegar, but you do need to know the reality of someone if you want to do dawa to them.


The method of giving dawa to a Muslim whose views are way off Quran and Sunnah is completely different to the method of giving dawa to a non-Muslim who doesnt believe in Quran and Sunnah.

For example, with a Muslim you will show their views contradict Quran and Sunnah.

And that is the issue with Ismialis.
Quran and Sunnah are not a criteria for them. With them, you need to prove Islam in the way you would with a Christian or Jew.


I see your point. I experienced this when talking with old friends of the Baha'i Faith to which I previously belonged. I was explaining aspects of Islam that I like, hijab, salat. To which my friend, who knows prob. knows nothing about what it mean to be a muslim though she knows some things about Islam stated, "Well, you don't need to wear hijab to be a muslim..."  Huh?

So, yes you're right, this debate was for a completely other time as I was crossing the street and leaving her anyway...

Bottom line MS, Baraka Allahu fika you have such a strong iman.


And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their modesty; that they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands,
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