Question: I don’t believe in sects. I call myself Muslim. What do you say to this? Should I believe or follow a certain sect?
Sects are not something to believe in. Sects are like different teachers. They provide you answers and ways to solve your problems. They represent the vast knowledge and life experiences of Muslims from different times and cultures. They can be right or wrong on various subjects. What you should do is to benefit from their opinions, because you simply cannot solve all the problems in your mind on your own. Even if you do, it would be like reinventing the wheel for most of the time. What you should avoid is following any of them without questioning them. You need to know their evidences in their arguments, because you need to be following the Quran in the end. You cannot just imitate. You need to know the basis of what you are doing.
Abu Hanifa (also known as Imam Azam) is one of the most respected scholars. He wisely says the following for the ones who want to follow him:
“It is not lawful for someone to adopt our opinion on a subject without knowing its basis.”
Allah the Almighty commands:
“They listen to all what is said and follow the best of it. They are the ones whom Allah has guided to the right path. They are the brightest ones.” (39:18)
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