Totemism has been around for a while. Not only among the native Africans and Americans, but among all religions. Owing to their ‘humanoid’ nature, Totemists lack the ability to question and explore the meaning of their existence through contemplation, and therefore, can’t experience their essential selves. They assume the entire existence, including themselves, is comprised of physical matter only. They bear an image of a god out there, either on earth or up in space, somewhere high above or down below, and they do everything they can for the sake of that god. They eat, they drink, they reproduce, they worship and they kill, all for the sake of their god whom they think is watching over them from afar! Or, they don’t believe in anything at all, hence their totem is their own body! If you remove their apparent label or their religious tag, you’ll see no difference between them; they all share the same viewpoint, their only difference is their clothes, appearances and local conditionings. They perform good deeds in the name of their god and obey him in order that they may be granted an eternal life of abundant food, drinks, and sex. Otherwise, their god would simply cast them to his hell and torment them forever.
Since their images of “god” are often at odds with one another, most of them question, judge, criticize and reject each other’s god, and even take up axes against each other. Because, they have either not heard Muhammad’s (saw) message, “La ilaha” i.e. THERE IS NO GOD (or concept of god/godhood)” or have heard of it before but have never really thought on it. Most of them have a voice-recorder-brain. They simply memorize and repeat! Their limited nature does not allow them to contemplate on the meaning of what they say.
Such are the Totemists! They’re also known as the ‘dualists’. And by definition, if duality isn’t removed, oneness/unity (tawhid) cannot emerge. After all, whether veiled or apparent, it’s the same concept: A person and his ‘external’ god far beyond!
As a matter of fact, all the religious beliefs that we have listed above have shortcomings and are incomplete and ineffective in terms of man’s future, in contrast to the teachings of Islam. None of these beliefs give any explanation or make any emphasis to the Sunnatullah (the mechanics of the system) as does Islam. Therefore, the very important offers and teachings regarding the future of man based on Sunnatullah made by the final Nabi, Muhammad (saw), do not exist in any other understanding.
As for Muslims who have actually grasped and embraced the only true understanding of religion, Islam, disclosed by the servant and Rasul of Allah, Muhammad (saw), the most magnificent brain and personality to have ever lived on earth and the most sublime spirit of eternity:
Muslims do not believe in a god out there, far and beyond them or somewhere up in space. They believe in the divine qualities, which are explained in the Quran, pertaining to whom the most eminent Rasul (saw) referred to as “ALLAH”. They try to attain certainty (yaqeen) in faith and strive to achieve certitude (iqaan) in this matter! In addition to the certainty which they have already obtained, they also seek to realize and understand the Sunnatullah and live to fulfill its necessities and requisites.
So now we have come to the most important point of distinction!
Yes, let us now mark the most important point where the Rasul of ALLAH differs from previous Rasuls:
People who seek to become aware of the intellectual fundamentals of the understanding of “religion” presented under the name “Islam” will inevitably enter the field of Sufism. This journey of questioning what lies beyond is the first stage of getting to know the one referenced as “ALLAH”.
During this journey, which is referred to as “fanafillah” (annihilation in Allah) in Sufi terminology, the person will realize that in the sight of the one named “Allah”, the existence of his self and the universe consists of “nothing” and that the only true absolute being that exists is the One called “ALLAH”. This awareness will eventually lead the person to the realization of his nonexistence and nothingness. This is the point where his comprehension and understanding will disappear completely!