Religion has to be followed as is taught by the Prophet of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and as is understood by the righteous predecessors – The first three generations of Islam. Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “The best of my Ummah is my generation (Qarni), then those who follow them, then those who follow them.” [Bukhari and Muslim] We cannot add or subtract anything from Islam because it is perfect. Allaah says, “…“This day I have perfected your religion for you, completed My favors upon you, and have chosen for you, Islam as your religion…” Quran 5:3
Our righteous predecessors were upon guidance and goodness, and they are worthy of being taken as an example, and be followed. Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “For indeed, those who will still be alive after me will see many differences; so hold fast to my Sunnah, and to the sunnah of the rightly guided Khalifahs after me, Adhere to and cling tightly to it and beware of newly-invented matters, for every newly-invented matter is an innovation and every innovation is deviation.” [At-Tirmidhi, Abu Dawud]
Contemplate on the incident. Narrated `Abdur Rahman bin Abza: A man came to `Umar bin Al-Khattab and said, “I became Junub but no water was available.” `Ammar bin Yasir said to `Umar, “Do you remember that you and I (became Junub while both of us) were together on a journey and you didn’t pray but I rolled myself on the ground and prayed? I informed the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) about it and he said, ‘It would have been sufficient for you to do like this.’ The Prophet then stroked lightly the earth with his hands and then blew off the dust and passed his hands over his face and hands.” [Sahih al-Bukhari]
This companion tried to understand the method of Tayammum in his own way and even performed it but the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) corrected him by showing him the correct way of Tayammum. This incident shows that no Muslim can come up with his/her own interpretation of the tenets of faith. No one can add to the rak’ahs (units) of prayer in any obligatory prayer or add more days to Eid or to the fast in Ramadan and say we are only doing an act of worship. No, what was not worship then cannot be considered worship now. What was not part of Islam then cannot be a part of Islam now. It has to be understood and followed as is taught by the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him). Newly introduced matters in faith lead astray. Islam is complete and we as Muslims have to follow what we are told by the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) and shown by the first and best three generations.
We are a people of obedience – we hear and we obey.