Much has been made in the news of the ISIS advance and also what they have done to countless historical sites; sites that were left from the time the Companions, may Allah be pleased with all of them, and their successors ruled Sham, Iraq and countless other places.
I also wanted to include the photo above of the grand masjid in Duma, one of the great places of faith and teaching for the Muslims. Please notice that this is a place of worship and what ISIS and its’ offshoots are responsible for in this regard. This is what they would like to do to every place that Sunnis inhabit.
Below is an e-mail from 4 December 2011 from a well meaning questioner named Ryan. It was on the question of salvation and the basis of what Muslims understand salvation to be and the only way one might be safe from Eternal Judgement. I hope that all readers find benefit in the answer:
I wanted to know what Muslims have to be sure that they are saved when they do not subscribe to the doctrine of original sin or a high priest as we have in our Lord Jesus Christ. I don’t want polemics but rather just a simple exposition of your faith. Thank you
Thank you for typing your message to HTS Publications after taking a look at our downloads. The website is specifically designed to cater to the needs of those who are trapped in either cults or false religions. Those of us who have worked on the site seek to follow the way of the Orthodox believers by preaching the faith with frankness and a generous heart.
We noticed that the faith of salvation had been hijacked and at times misrepresented by either schismatic sheep or well meaning Orthodox believers who were ill-equipped to deal with the matters that were challenging them. This in turn led to more confusion, so we decided to try to call back to the way of the Orthodox Fathers.
The first matter that every believer must understand is the matter of salvation. Salvation comes from the Arabic word Najah, which means, ‘unearned, unmerited salvation from the Eternal Fire and safety and admittance into the Paradise,’ which is indeed by the Mercy of Allah.
The Lord has mentioned salvation when he said,
“My people! What is the matter that I call you to salvation and you call me to the Fire. You call me to disbelieve in and to associate partners with Him that I have no knowledge of at all. I however invite you to the Almighty, the All-Forgiving.” 
The Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, stated,
“No one of you will be saved by his deeds, but by the Mercy of Allah.” 
Thus we understand that we are not simply barging into the Paradise, but that we are admitted by the Mercy of Allah from His Salvation. This matter is very important and has to be stressed. Why is it that we are not able to enter the Paradise by our deeds? It is simply due to the fact that our deeds are 1) not good enough and 2) are not even valid unless one is saved.
The Lord has said about the ineffectiveness of deeds such as sacrifices of meat and offerings for salvation,
Say, ‘It is neither their meat nor their blood that reaches Allah, but it is the piety from you that reaches Him.
Our Lord has spoken about the ineffectiveness of deeds through other people for salvation,
No one may bear the burden of another, but the human being only has what he has put forth.
Our Lord has spoken about the ineffectiveness of working good deeds and being a good person,
Those who do not believe, their deeds are like a mirage in a sandy desert. Those taking part in it think they will find refreshment and water, until when they come to it, they find nothing but Allahwaiting to give them their account – and Allah is swift in taking account.
None of these ways is sufficient to be saved in the sight of our Lord. It is only through His Word and Testimony of salvation that one might be saved,
Know that there is no god but Allah, then ask forgiveness for your sin.
We find here that the Lord has said first to bear witness to the testimony of faith La ilaha illallah, there is no god but Him. But there is a second part of the sentence, which is,
Thus the sentence, ‘There is no god but Allah and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah’ is the testimony of salvation. There is no salvation under any other way or testimony. Someone once asked the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings be upon him, after the death of his uncle, “What is salvation?” He answered, “Salvation is to believe in the word that my uncle had rejected today.”
This lofty belief must be stated with conviction and its’ implications understood by the one seeking the relationship with the Lord.
What are some of the outcomes of believing in the testimony of faith in the life of a believer? They are the following,
A direct relationship with the Lord Everlasting
Our Lord has said,
When My slaves ask you about Me, indeed I am Near.
Being given the promise of seeing the Most Merciful in the Hereafter.
Allah, the Almighty, has said the following,
Faces that day will be radiant, looking at their Lord.
This promise is made some 11 or more times in the Word of Allah (the Qur’an) as well as the Sunnah of His Messenger Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him.
Salvation from eternal judgement and admittance into the Paradise
You who believe! fear Allah as is His Right to be feared and do not die except as Muslims. Hold fast to the rope of Allah and do not become divided. Remember the favour of Allah upon you when you were enemies and then by His Favour he put love between your hearts and made you brothers. You were on the very edge of the pit of the Fire and He gave you salvation from it.
Forgiveness of sins along with continuous cleansing of sins with righteous deeds committed thereafter
Allah will exalt those among you who believe who have knowledge in ranks. Allah knows everything you do.
This is also further stated by Allah when He proclaims,
Further, as a believer, you will want to obey Allah and do things pleasing to Him. Believers do good deeds because Allah saved them, not to become saved. Your obedience shows that you are in a committed relationship,
Say, “If you love Allah, then follow me. Allah will love you and forgive your sins. Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.” Say, “Obey Allah and Obey the Messenger. Allah does not love the unbelievers.”
Thank you again for contacting me and may the Lord richly bless you with sound faith and salvation.
 Collected by Imam Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj in his Al-Jami` us-Sahih, Book of the Description of the Day of Resurrection, the Paradise and the Fire, chapter, No One is Entering Paradise Because of His Deeds but by the Mercy of Allah, and classed by him as authentic.
I had first encountered the texts of the grand Imam, Diya’ ud-Din Khalid Al-Baghdadi (1193-1242 AH (AD 1779-1826) some 11 years ago through my brothers at Maktabat ul-Haqiqah by recommendation. I was thoroughly impressed by the layout, the diligence of the writing style and also his concern for other Muslims. It is for this reason that I wanted to give a biography of this man, who was a real warrior and a late marja` in the Ottoman period.
He is Khalid ibn Ahmad ibn Hussain Ash-Shahrazuri Ash-Shafi`ii An-Naqshabandi Al-Mujaddidi Al-Qadiri As-Suhrawardi Al-Kibrawi Al-Shishti. Born in the year 1193 AH (AD 1779) in Qurrah Taagh, some five miles from the city of As-Sulaimaniyyah and he was raised there. He was raised there under the authority of his father and recited the Qur’an in the local madrasah with the recitation of Hafs from `Asim.
He studied the texts of Ar-Rafi`ii, the rhyming text of Az-Zinjani in grammar and morphology and some other texts on the topic. He memorised countless texts even though he had not reached adulthood. After fifteen years of age, he traveled on to obtain knowledge. He learned from different Imams such as `Abdul Karim Al-Barzanji, `Ali Al-Manla Muhammad Salih, Al-Manla Ibrahim Al-Byari, `Abdullah Al-Kharbani.
Al-Baghdadi would later head to Damascus and also learn from such stellar Imams such as Muhammad Al-Kazbari and his student Mustafa Al-Kurdi and also took on the Qadiri Way. It was at this time that he also began writing his texts on theology. These would later be collected together in books such as Al-Iman wal-Islam.
By the time he died in the year 1242 AH (AD 1826), he had left behind some twenty texts or more in different languages and had also taken part in wars against colonists, cults and used the pen against them as well. If I was to tell anyone to follow someone or to attach someone to the Naqshabandis, attach yourselves to this one.
This Naqshabandi fought colonialism, preached the faith, recited the Qur’an accurately, broke the back of prostitution in Turkey, wrote extensively, built schools, learned from numerous scholars, left behind dozens of students.
This Naqshabandi made rulings against making people into eunuchs, was fluent in several languages and used the language of Islamic thought (ARABIC) as the primary resource when he wrote. You should follow this man if you want to attach yourself to someone.
This Naqshabandi was pivotal in understanding the growth of fractional banking – along with another marja`, Imam `Abdul Qadir Ibn Badran (d. 1346 AH) – and assessing its’ rapacious impact on society and the bleak future this represents for all countries that indulge in that madness.
I hope that people will follow this man rather than the filth that they have been following in this present age in the Anglosphere. If you are looking for a role model from the past, then look no further.
One of the reasons why I did not discuss the cartoon controversies that have raged except in the article on This has Everything to Do with Islam, is due to the fact that these cartoons, particularly the scribblings and crayon diplomacy of Pamela Geller, have a common pool of origin.
One in particular is of the apes.
This is a standard method used against all people who are dark skinned as during the 19th century, it was thought that the Caucasian man was the highest developed form of homo sapien and that all others were in some form or other, transitional forms on the way up from being primates.
Then there are the images that exaggerate the nose of the dark skinned individual so as to set them apart. The features are usually grotesquely out of proportion with the rest of the face. Please take a look below for yourself.
This is something that can be seen with Muslims and Arabs as well. There should be no misunderstanding in this regard.
It is as if these images are being directly recycled. Another favourite image of the cartoon mob has been the depiction of the enemy nation with dark skin and usually engaged in acts of violence. Let us look at the Jewish example:
Then we have the Muslim example just below. Remember, these are within sixty years of one another:
Then a personal favourite is the depiction with the gold tooth:
We next have the belief put forward that Muslims are consuming and annihilating the human race and anyone not just like them. This has parallels to the following below:
Take a careful look at this poster:
The point of putting all of these images here is for the reader to do the following three things:
1. Understand that this is not the first time these images have been drawn. Sometimes it looks to be the case that they were updated.
2. The mind of an individual that could draw such figures has to be questioned and thought out carefully. “People put to pen what is in them,” as Dorothy Decker once told me in writing class in vocation school.
3. All of these images came from the same people: Europeans. The fear expressed by these people and the means used to personify it are all shown in the same way. The racist imagery utilised to put forward their greatest fears is only a reminder of their only recent primitive past.
The relative peace that has been known in Europe and the United States for the past 60 years is not the norm; rather it i the exception, which is proof of the general rule. As time has passed and laws have been tightened, it looks to be that we are heading back into a feudal police state type of fiefdom similar to what was in place before the 1689 Bill of Rights in the United Kingdom.
These things cannot be changed by meetings, anymore than segregation by the forced integration that I was subjected to in the 1970s. Legislation cannot change hearts. One has to want to change in order for transformation to take place. The societies have never dealt with their recent past.
Due to this fact, they have not asked the wider questions and sought the healing necessary after admitting wrong, repentance, restitution and then renewal. Isn’t it now just to the case that the Germans are spinning their web stating that they were not the losers in WWII but victims of Hitler like everyone else?
This is the nation that legally, through democratic means, voted this man into power. Rather than dealing with the sickness of that move and the inherent malady in themselves as a people at the time, they have instead chosen to rationalise it. This is the same attitude employed by Americans when they chose George W. Bush twice.
Rest assured, action has to be taken against people committing murder and the wickedness that they perpetrate; but the images being conjured up and the language being used have nothing to do with that at all. They are echoes of a previous age or infantile growth of Europeans, a juvenile streak that has not been outgrown.
It is for this reason that I do not answer these cartoons or even have any anger regarding the matter. If someone’s best intellectual defense against an enemy is to draw a cartoon against him, then there is really not much else that can be said. Just as I do not respond to children that might call me “stupid face” or insert my name into rhyming couplets ending in K-I-S-S-I-N-G, then I put no importance on people who have their highest calling in doodling and making caricatures that (if I do say so myself, although not having an art background) are first grader classics at most.
The images my children draw are atleast proportional and resemble human beings. But that is just it, isn’t it? Those pictured aren’t meant to be human. And in the minds of those who drew them, the subject lost whatever humanity he had a long time ago when he was perceived as different.