The Original Suicide "Bombers"

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ

This idea of wanton killing is not a new experience for Muslims.  In the days when the Khwarij sects proliferated, there was the Muhakkimiyyah.  The Muhakkimiyyah were a group too small to be a sect by themselves, but they had an impact outsized from their small numbers.  They used to go out with their swords to the market places, and when the people gathered together unaware, they would suddenly cry out, “Laa hukm illa lillah!” “The Decision is with Allah Alone,” the slogan of the original Khwarij when they rebelled against ‘Ali ibn Abi Thalib (k.w.).  They then attacked everybody in the viscinity; and they went on killing people until they themselves were killed.  They were like the Zealot sect of Judaism during the Maccabean Revolt.  The people used to live in constant fear of them.

Imam Abu Husayn al-Malati (r.a.) wrote, in his at-Tanbih wa ar Radd ‘ala Ahl al-Ahwa wa al-Bid’ah, on the Muhakkimiyyah.  He said, “Those Muhakkimiyyah used to go out with their swords to the market places.  And when the innocent people gathered together without being aware of it, they suddenly cried out, ‘Laa hukm illa lillah!’ and lifted up their swords against anybody they happened to overtake, and they went on killing people until they themselves were killed.  The people used to live in constant fear of them; it caused a terrible commotion. But, fortunately, not even one of them remains now on earth.”  This was translated by Dr. Toshihiko Izutsu (r.a.).


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