(Concealing One's Faith)
Islam permits Muslims, who are living under imminent and serious danger of persecution, to deny they are Muslims publicly and to practice Islam secretly. This concept is sometimes referred to as Taqiyya. Proper Taqiyya is permissible in Islam, but it is not an obligation and it is not a virtue. While in Shiism, Taqiyya is a an obligation, a praised virtue, and an important doctrine in Shiism. Taqiyya has played an significant role in the history of Shiism and Shia books.
In Islam, Taqiyya is permitted as a means for individual Muslims, living in exceptional conditions of persecution, to protect their lives. However, proper Islamic Taqiyya does not allow Muslims to twist the beliefs of Islam. More specifically, that means a Muslim should not write a book about Islam and twist or lie about the beliefs of Islam under the excuse of Taqiyya. Proper Taqiyya does not allow him to do so.
The Shia have taken this permission and mis-applied it. What is wrong with the way Taqiyya is practiced by Shia:
(a) Some of the early Shia scholars have incorporated Taqiyya in their classical reference Shia books about the principles of Shiism by softening their beliefs in order to make their beliefs not too objectionable to Muslims . This is extremely dangerous and Islamically unacceptable. It has resulted in Shia today not knowing the true beliefs of Shiism. When Shia scholars today read such mild classical books, they say the writers must have used Taqiyya. In other words, what was intended by Shia to deceive Muslims is today deceiving the Shia themselves.
(b) In Islam, Taqiyya is intended to be practiced only under limited circumstances, as an exception to the general rule about openness and honesty. Whereas, for the Shia, Taqiyya is the rule, not the exception of the rule. For Shia, the twisted form of Taqiyya is a prescribed duty and a pillar of their faith. Shiism could not stand without it. They learn the principles and methods of Taqi'ah and they practice it.
(c) Taqiyya is permitted to protect Muslims. The Shia are practicing it to hide their Shia beliefs, not the Islamic beliefs.
In support of their twisted form of Taqiyya, we find the following in Shia's classical reference books:
In a narration, Shia falsely attribut to the 8th Shia Imam, Ali bin Musa, he said: “ The one who is not wari (pious) has no religion and the one who does not practice Taqiyyah has no Iman ( deep faith).” So he was asked, "O grandson of the Messenger, until when (is one required to practice Taqiyyah)?" He replied, “Until a certain day (i.e. the day Imam Mahdi appears). Whoever does not practice Taqiyyah before the appearance of Imam Mahdi, is not one of us.” (Kashf al-Ghummah Al-Ardabili, pg. 341).
"Nine tenths (90%) of religion (Shiism) is Taqiyya (dissimulation), hence one who does not dissimulate has no religion." (Al-Kafi vol.9 p.110)
"He who conceals his religion has saved it, and he who makes it public has destroyed it."
"A believer who does not practice Taqiyya is like a body without a head." (Tafseer al-Askari)
"Mix with them (i.e. non-Shia) externally, but oppose them internally." (Al-Kafi vol.9 p.116)
"Taqiyya is necessary and the one who abandons it is excluded from the religion (of the Shia)." (Ehsan-ul-Fatawa Fi Shaeah-e-Aqa'id, p. 26)
"The most beloved thing on the surface of Earth is Taqiyya." (Usul Kafi, Part 2. Kitab Imaan wal Kufr, Bab Taqiyyah, Line 12, Riwayah 4, page 217, New Iranian Edition)
"The Imam has mentioned that Taqiyya is the coolness of his eyes." (Usul Kafi, Part 2, Kitab Imaan wal Kufr, line1, Riwayah 14, page 217, new Iranian Edition].
Concerning the verse, "Verily the most noble of you in Allah's sight is Atqakom (the most God-fearing)", the Shia mis-interpret the word "Atqakom" by falsely claiming that it means: "whose deeds are done by Taqiyya." (Al-I'tiqadat)
It is interesting to contrast this with Allah's statement in the Holy Qur'an: "Surely those who hide from people the clear proofs and guidance, which we clarified in the Book (Qur'an), will be cursed by Allah ...." (2:159)
Prophet Mohammad (s.a.a.w.s.) said: "Whoever is asked for knowledge and conceals it will have a bridle of fire around his neck on the Day of Judgment." (Abu Dawood and Tirmizi)