Questions on Sects and Schools of Thoughts

Questions on Sects and Schools of Thoughts

Chapter 4: Questions on Sects and Schools of Thoughts


Question 40: We Christians have many denominations, and so do you Muslims.  You have Shi’as, Druzes, Isma’iliyyas.  Why all these sects, and what are the differences between them?

Answer 40: Sectarian divisions occurred in Islam as they occurred in previous religious communities.  The prophet (pbuh) had predicted this phenomenon by stating that his community will split up, but only one sect will be on the right path, that is the people of the prophet’s way, the orthodox community (ahl al-sunnah wal jama’a).  They will remain true to the path of the prophet and his companions.  As for the other sects, which developed in the Islamic world, they have, generally speaking, deviated from the truth.  The reasons for this

1. Ignorance about the religion, whims and ethnocentrism.

2. Conspiracy against its people.

Our stance towards these sects depends on how much they have deviated from the truth.  Accordingly, we place some of these sects, such the Druze and Isma’ilis, beyond the pale of Islam.