The Religion Of The Ignorant
It is revealed in the Qur'an that such people lack the means for such thought because they are devoid of reason:
Do you suppose that most of them hear or understand? They are just like cattle. Indeed they are even more astray! (Surat al-Furqan, 44)
With this conception of Islam, which is devoid of true faith, the Religion of the Ignorant has developed a most distorted model of religion, in which there are specific days and times for worshipping Allah. Special care is taken for religious formalities at these times to be observed. It is believed, for instance, that despite having spent the whole year without observing Allah's commandments and prohibitions, it is sufficient to go to prayer on the morning of a religious festival. They have a superstitious idea that they will be forgiven by fulfilling their obligations to Allah on that day alone. Of course, it is a good thing for a person to pray, by whatever means that comes about. However, it is revealed in the Qur'an that believers pray scrupulously five times a day, in fear and awe of Allah. A prayer performed solely as a tradition to conform to others may not be acceptable. Many who live by Ignorantism say they cannot find time for prayer due to the pressure of worldly affairs, and this is left to such specific days. However, the intention behind their prayers is rather different from that of the prayers of believers: Instead of begging for greater fear of Allah and for the continuation of their observances and faith, they beg Him only to remedy their difficulties, to be able to buy a better car, or to be able to marry the boy or girl they love. Whenever they land in troubleâ€”for example, when they are seriously ill or facing a major problemâ€”they pray to Allah, but forget Him again when that problem is resolved, and again begin ascribing partners to Him. This state of mind has been revealed in the Qur'an:
Any blessing you have is from Allah. Then when harm touches you, it is to Him you cry for help. But when He removes the harm from you, a group of you associate others with their Lord, ungrateful for what We have given them. Enjoy yourselves. You will soon know! (Surat an-Nahl, 53-55)
The members of the Religion of the Ignorant try to adapt the logic of profitable trading, which they have gained in their business dealings, to Islam. They persistently flout the rules of the religion, then ask for forgiveness on certain days and nights. The holy nights are an opportunity not to be missed, since it is thought that prayers sincerely offered on those nights will be answered. On those nights, going from mosque to mosque if possible and giving the impression this is a holy tour is common behavior. Some people who attend mosque on Fridays alone imagine that they are devout. It will be useful to recall one point at this stage.
Holy nights, festival prayers are important occasions for all Muslims. It is important to perform one's religious observances on these days. Many people's hearts are softened at such times, and they seem more eager to display proper moral values. For Muslims, however, other days are just as beauteous and valuable. Every day and every hour are important for the believer to keep Allah in mind, seek His forgiveness and be close to Him.
For members of Ignorantism, on the other hand, it is important that religious observances be carried out visibly. For that reason, they are most scrupulous when they must perform their prayers in a group setting, even though they do not perform them at all when they are alone. Although they should perform their prayers because they fear Allah and hope for His mercy, actually they perform them because they seek others' approval. Allah says the following in the Qur'an about those who perform their observances for purposes of show:
So woe to those who perform prayer, and are forgetful of their prayer, those who show off. (Surat al-Ma'un, 4-6)
As we have seen, the most distinct aspect of the Religion of the Ignorant is that despite being totally at odds with the essence of Islam and the Qur'an, most of its adherents imagine themselves to be true believers. That is because Ignorantismâ€”in contrast to the Qur'anâ€”sets out in detail the kind of religious conception a person will have and what they will practice, the kind of belief in Allah they will possess, and what their ethical conception must be. The beliefs and observances of this religion are totally different from those of a true believer. Indeed, in many regards they are the exact opposite.
Some of the major deceptions of the Religion of the Ignorant is making people believe they are Muslim, while adopting a religion that is actually far removed from Islam. Those who adopt the rules, beliefs and ethics of Ignorantism are even unaware that this is their actual religion. Such people live by a false religion adorned and set in front of them in accordance with their passions and weaknesses by satanâ€”but they are completely unaware of the fact.