The book of idols by al-Kalbi

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The book of idols by al-Kalbi
« on: November 12, 2017, 06:43:45 AM »

Studied some background information about pre-Islamic Arabia, I remembered an old book I had called "Kitab-ul-Asnam" by the infamous Hisham al-Kalbi. I read and summarized the small book for a friend so I'll share with the rest of you what's relevant:

When the progeny of Isma`il bin Ibrahim (as) dominated Makkah, they turned into enemies then divided into groups and fought each-other until groups of them expelled others. What started their idolatry was that they would carry on their journeys rocks from the sacred city and would circumambulate around it just as they did around the Ka`bah in order to honor it as was the tradition of their father Ibrahim (as).

With time they were influenced by other nations and fell into idolatry and the worship of statues thus mixing a lot of the correct Abrahamic rituals with paganism. For instance, the lineage of Nizar when the circled around the Ka`bah would chant the popular "Labbayk Allahumma Labbayk" with certain addtions:

"Here I am at your service O Allah, here I am - Here I am at your service O Allah for you have no partner - Save a partner You chose, You own him and all that he owns."

Each tribe had specific chants they recited with different variations.

Thus they'd declare God's oneness but then include with Him their own gods when worshiping; claiming that the latter are all subservient and owned by Him.

This is why God describes the pagans in the Qur'an as: {And most of them believe not in Allah except while they associate others with Him.} [12:106]

From the early people to introduce idols around the Ka`bah was a man called `Amr bin Luhayy. He forcibly took over the guardianship of the Ka`bah and when he got sick he traveled to the lands of al-Sham (levante) and bathed in a holy place. When he was finally healed, he became impressed then brought back a few sacred idols to the house of God. It is said he was a priest.

As for the idols Isaf and Na'ilah, they were lovers who fornicated inside the Ka`bah in ancient times then they were struck by God's punishment and petrified (turned to stone). The Arabs of Khuza`ah & Quraysh took them and placed them as objects of worship and so did the pilgrims. Originally, they were left there as an example for sinners near the well of Zamzam.

Other Arabs such as the people of Hudhayl took Suwa` as their idol and they were in the land of Yanbu`. Kalb took Wudd as their idol in Dawmat-ul-Jandal, Mudhhij took Yaghuth and Khaywan took Ya`uq near San`a' (Yemen). Others such as Hamdan and Himyar adopted Judaism as their faith after abandonning Nisr, their previous idol.

These are the idols mentioned by God and who were worshipped by Nuh's (as) people: {And said, 'Never leave your gods and never leave Wadd or Suwa` or Yaghuth and Ya`uq and Nasr} [71:23]

The five of them were righteous people who died in a single month, so a man from the progeny of Cain created statues to honor them and he erected five for their families. Then the next generation came and they honored them excessively, then the next generation came and began asking for their intercession in front of God, so they became objects of worship among the folks which is why Idris (as) was sent and later Nuh (as).

Thus, idols became popular among Arabs and the oldest of the idols was Manat who was glorified by all of them. This idol stood near the shoreline between Makkah and Madinah. The Aws and Khazraj used to sacrifice around it and offer. This was described by God {So have you considered al-Llat and al-`Uzza? - And Manat} [53:20]

As for the Arabs of Ma`ad, Rabi`ah and Mudar; they still held on to what remained of Isma`il's (as) religion. Whereas Thaqif took al-`Uzza as their lord in al-Ta'if and it was a cube shaped rock that they built a structure over. As for al-`Uzza, it stood in a valley in the road towards `Iraq and Quraysh glorified it, even the famous poet Aws bin Hajar used to take oaths by it and saying: "By al-Llat, al-`Uzza and all those who believed in their religion --- And by Allah too, He is Greater than both."

These three major idols were called the daughters of Allah as they intercede. Quraysh when circumbling the Ka`bah would recite "By al-Llat and al-`Uzza and Manat, the other third one. They are the highest of cranes and their intercession is hoped for."

This is why when Muhammad (saw) came, God revealed to him {So have you considered al-Llat and al-`Uzza? And Manat, the third - the other one? - Is the male for you and for Him the female? - That, then, is an unjust division. - They are not but [mere] names you have named them - you and your forefathers - for which Allah has sent down no authority.} [53:20-23]

In the end, the Prophet (saw) would send `Ali, Mughirah and Khalid each to a different one of these idols to destroy them.

Hubal was an idol inside the Ka`bah, a man made from quarts with a single hand then Quraysh added a second golden hand. They used to toss arrows (Azlam) in front of it for divination as a part of belomancy. It was destroyed when the Muslims entered Makkah.

For the rest of the book, the author talks about other minor idols and describes their shapes, about altar stones (Ansab) placed around the Ka`bah by poor folks who couldn't afford to build idols, about sacrificial animals (`Itr), about how Arabs had personal gods in their houses whom they touched for blessing, about how certain Arabs worshiped Jinn, about how bani al-Harith had a different Ka`bah in Najran and for Iyad another in `Iraq and whatnot...

« Last Edit: November 12, 2017, 06:45:13 AM by Hani »
عَلامَةُ أَهْلِ الْبِدَعِ الْوَقِيعَةُ فِي أَهْلِ الأَثَرِ. وَعَلامَةُ الْجَهْمِيَّةِ أَنْ يُسَمُّوا أَهْلَ السُّنَّةِ مُشَبِّهَةً. وَعَلامَةُ الْقَدَرِيَّةِ أَنْ يُسَمُّوا أَهْلَ السُّنَّةِ مُجَبِّرَةً. وَعَلامَةُ الزَّنَادِقَةِ أَنْ يُسَمُّوا أَهْلَ الأَثَرِ حَشْوِيَّةً

Religion = simple & clear


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