Twenty-first century debates

While many of the previous debates discussed above go unsettled, sever other issues of difference have emerged particularly strongly in the twenty-first century pertaining to the Ikhwan:

The prayers behind Imams of Two Grand Mosques: A group of Ikhwan Ahong in Gansu and Qinghai issued Fatwas in December 2001, claiming that the prayers in The Two Grand Mosques in Makkah and Madinah, were invalid. This is because the Imams were Wahabis and they are infidels (non-believers). The prayers behind Wahabi Imams are invalid and unacceptable. They persuaded people not to perform Haj during this time.  If they happened to go to Makkah, they should avoid the prayers behind Wahabi Imams and avoid eating meats slaughtered by Wahabis, for those meats are Haram. On the other hand, others considered this as non sense. They argued that if the prayers in the most holy places were unacceptable, where else the prayers would be accepted. Although, the Imams were Wahabis, they were not equivalent to infidels despite some deficiencies in the Wahabi faith. Therefore, their prayers are valid and it is lawful to follow the prayers behind them.

Attitude towards infidels: The same extremist group of Ikhwan Ahongs hold that only the Ikhwan are on the right path.  Others are on astray and they are infidels. Allegedly, the Menhuan obey their master, doing a Shirk and the Salafiyya set a direction to Allah.  They stated that all infidels deserve to be killed. However, since the legislative law does not allow to kill anybody, the true believers should be patient until the law is changed.  In March 2009, Jing Biao, a moderate young Imam in Xining city of Qinghai, a graduate of Al Azhar University, was injured when three armed men tried to kill him for he had been accused of being a hidden Wahabi within the Ikhwan.

The controversy over Tabligh movement: From early 1980s, Jama’at Tabligh of India and Pakistan kept sending missionaries to China and especially to the northwestern provinces. At the beginning, the foreign delegations were well received by Chinese Muslims.In 1990s, some Chinese Muslims visited Tabligh headquarter in Lahore, Pakistan.  Some youth also spent years in Lahore to learn the ideology and approach of Jama’at Tabligh. Eventually, the Tabligh gained popularity among Chinese.  A strong mass movement seemingly had been brewing in early 2000s as Chinese groups started Tabligh activities in different parts of China.  Many circles and centers were established. Suddenly the government interfered and banned Tabligh activities in Xinjiang, Qinghai and Ningxia provinces and declared it as heterodox and heresy. In the same time, Tabligh itself exposed its deficiencies, namely the lack of knowledge and extreme attitude towards others. Some of them maintained the view that getting out of the house and preaching Islam is obligatory on every Muslim and it is the only way of preaching which was practiced by the Prophet and his companions. Whosoever denies this method or do not follow this way of preaching is infidel (non-believer). Moreover, every member of the Tabligh tried to speak in the name of Islam without mandatory knowledge. They pretended to be an authority presenting Islam in an unreal form. As a result, they are widely criticized by all sects especially Ahongs (clerics). The influence of the Tabligh penetrated into all classes of Muslims even among college students and the debate is still ongoing.