Reminder for the Christians

July 14, 2009

From David Benjamin Keldani
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Benjamin_Keldani

“I must remind the Christians that unless they believe in the absolute unity of God, and renounce the belief in the three persons, they are certainly unbelievers in the true God … The Old Testament and the Qur’an condemn the doctrine of three persons in God; the New Testament does not expressly hold or defend it, but even if it contains hints and traces concerning the Trinity, it is no authority at all, because it was neither seen nor written by Christ himself, nor in the language he spoke, nor did it exist in its present form and contents for – at least – the first two centuries after him.”


The Advice of ‘Umar ibn ‘Abdul-‘Azeez for following the Salaf and Adhering to the Sunnah

June 4, 2008

Source

 

And whosoever contradicts and opposes the Messenger, after the right path has been shown clearly to him, and follows other than the Path of the Believers; We shall keep him upon the path he has chosen, and roast him in Hell. What an evil destination!” [Sooratun-Nisaa‘ 4:115]

Most muslims regardless of their culture will tell you and believe that one of the most fundamental tenets of Islam is that we understand the religion using The Quran (The Book of Allah) and The Sunnah (The sayings, actions, approval and disapproval authentically reported from the Prophet Muhammad).  What is either unknown, forgotten or neglected is that Allah has also commanded and warned us that we should also know, study and follow “The Path of the Believers.”  The “believers” in this case are none other than the Sahaba (Allah be pleased with all of them), the companions of the Prophet Muhammad (Allah send the prayers and blessings of peace upon him).  They were the ones who were eyewitnesses to revelation, they saw how the Prophet (sal Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) treated his family, his children and grandchildren, wives, relatives (both muslim and non-muslim), political leaders, elders etc.  They were the ones taught, as Abdullah ibn Umar ibn al-Khattab (radhi-Allah ‘anhumma) said: “what to think about a verse (from the Quran) and what our stance should be towards it” as we have reproduced here in another blog entry.  They were the ones who applied and explained the Quran after the death of the Prophet (sal Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) to thousands upon thousands of new muslims in dozens of lands and cultures.

So yes, may Allah be pleased with all of the companions of the Prophet Muhammad (sal Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) and may Allah guide us to follow His Book, the Sunnah of His Messenger, and the Understanding of these Two Sources of Islam with the understanding of the Companions of the Prophet (sal Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam).  This is Salafiyya – the methodology of understanding and applying the Book of Allah and the Sunnah with the understanding and application of the Prophet (sal Allahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) and his companions and all those who followed them exactly.

The following is the advice given by the great Muslim, a righteous predecessor without doubt, ‘Umar ibn ‘Abdul-‘Azeez, may Allah have mercy upon him, and forgive him of any mistake or sin he committed, and raise his rank in Paradise.  The advice is on following the Sunnah, not innovating into it, and admonishment to follow those who preceded the muslims of their day which were the sahaba.

From Shihaab Ibn Khiraash [1] who said: ’Umar Ibn ’Abdul-’Azeez (d.101H) – rahimahullaah – wrote to a man,

May peace be upon you, to proceed:
 
So verily I advise you to fear Allaah, and to make His Command the objective, and to follow the Sunnah of His Messenger, and to leave off what people invented after him (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam), from whatever is confirmed as his Sunnah, and his supply will suffice you.
 
Then know that there cannot ever be any innovation, except that a proof against it has already passed, and there is a warning in it.  So adhere strictly to the Sunnah, for verily the Sunnah is – with the permission of Allaah – a protection for you.  Verily the one who practices the Sunnah is one who indeed knows what opposes it from mistakes and error, and foolishness, and deep thorough study.
 
So be pleased with for yourself what the people (i.e. the Salafus-Saalih) were pleased with for themselves, for verily they stopped upon knowledge, and they sufficed with penetrating insight, and they were the strongest in studying the matters, and the virtue that was in them, in that case, they were the most adequate; since they (the Salafus-Saalih – Righteous Predecessors) have already preceded.  So indeed the guidance is not what you are upon, rather they preceded you to it.  Therefore you say, he innovated a newly invented matter after them, so no one invents something, except that he opposes their path, and considers himself to be better than them.  Indeed whatever they spoke was sufficient, and whatever they described was satisfying.  So whatever is below them is deficient, and there is no good above them.  Indeed people fell short of their mark, so they became dull, and others were too ambitious, so they went into extremes, and verily they (the Salaf) were in between the two, so they were upon the straight guidance. [2]

 
From Imaam Maalik [3] (d.179H) – rahimahullaah – who said: ’Umar Ibn ’Abdul-’Azeez used to say,

The Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) and the caretakers of the affairs (wulaatul-umoor) enacted Sunnahs, taking to them is affirmation (tasdeeq) of the Book of Allaah, and the completion of obedience to Allaah, and strength upon the Religion of Allaah. [And it is not for anyone to change it, nor to replace it, nor to oppose anything from it.[4]]  Whoever seeks guidance through them will be guided, and whoever seeks aid through them will be victorious, and whoever opposes them; he follows a path other than the Path of the Believers, and the close allies (wulaat) of Allaah are not with him, and his destination is Hell, and an evil end.[3]

 
Maalik said, “I was amazed at ’Umar when he obligated the Fire for such a person.”

Footnotes:
[1] He is Shihaab Ibn Khiraash Ibn Hawshab ash-Shaybaanee, from Koofah.  He moved to Shaam, and lived in ar-Ramlah inside of Palestine, and he died there.  He was sadooq (truthful), a person of the Sunnah.  Refer to Tahdheebul-Kamaal (12/568-572).
[2] Related by Ibn Battah in al-Ibaanah (1/321-322), and by al-Laalikaa‘ee in Sharh Usoolul-I’tiqaad (no. 16)
[3] This is Imaam Maalik Ibn Anas, Imaam Daarul-Hijrah (the scholar of the place of migration, i.e. al-Madeenah)
[3] The proof for this is the statement of Allaah, “And whosoever contradicts and opposes the Messenger, after the right path has been shown clearly to him, and follows other than the Path of the Believers; We shall keep him upon the path he has chosen, and roast him in Hell.  What an evil destination!” [Sooratun-Nisaa‘ 4:115]
[4] Related by Ibn Battah in al-Ibaanah (1/352-353)


The Virtues of Patience

May 30, 2008

Patience: Solution for Life’s Sorrows  

A lengthy excerpt from the tremendous work of Tawheed, Fathul-Majeed by Imaam ‘Abdur-Rahmaan Ibn Hasan.  The author begins by giving a proper definition of patience in Islaam from the speech of the Scholars. He then goes onto to mention the three kinds of patience and the various benefits attained by those who have it.
And know that sabr (patient perseverance) is of three kinds: [i] sabr whilst (fulfilling) the orders of Allaah, [ii] sabr whilst (abandoning and keeping away) from the prohibitions of Allaah, and [iii] sabr with the Decree of Allaah with respect to afflictions and difficulties.

The Virtues of Patience:

Imaam Ahmad (d.241H) said, “Allaah has mentioned sabr (patient perseverance) in over ninety places in His Book.” [2]

And there occurs in the authentic hadeeth, “Sabr (patient perseverance) is light.” [3] The Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) also said, “No one has been given anything more excellent and more comprehensive than sabr.” [4]

‘Umar – radiyallaahu ‘anhu – said, “We considered the best part of our lives to be that in which there was sabr.” [5]

‘Alee – radiyallaahu ‘anhu – said, “Indeed sabr is from eemaan (faith). Its position is like that of the head with respect to the rest of the body.” Then he raised his voice and said, “Verily, there is no eemaan (faith) for the one who has no sabr.” [6]

The Meaning of Patience:

The word sabr (in the Arabic language) is from sabara – to be patient and to persevere, and it indicates to holding back and restraining oneself. (In the Shaee’ah sense) it implies: restraining the soul from being agitated; restraining the tongue from complaining and restraining the hands from slapping the cheeks, tearing the clothes and doing other similar actions. This has been mentioned by Ibnul-Qayyim (d.750H). [7]
And know that sabr (patient perseverance) is of three kinds: [i] sabr whilst (fulfilling) the orders of Allaah, [ii] sabr whilst (abandoning and keeping away) from the prohibitions of Allaah, and [iii] sabr with the Decree of Allaah with respect to afflictions and difficulties.

Guidance for the Hearts:

Allaah – the Most High – says: “And whosoever believes in Allaah, He guides his heart aright. And Allaah has full knowledge over everything.” [8]
And this aayah begins with, “No affliction occurs, except by the permission of Allaah.” About this Ibn ‘Abbaas said, “By the command of Allaah – meaning: by His Will and His Power.” [9]

So the meaning of this aayah is: No affliction occurs except by His Mashee’ah (Will), His Iraadah (Desire) and His Hikmah (Wisdom) – as Allaah says: “No affliction occurs upon the earth, nor in yourselves, except that it is written before We bring it into existence. Indeed, this is easy for Allaah.” [10] And Allaah says, “Give glad-tidings to those who have sabr. Those who – when afflicted with a affliction – say: Indeed, we belong to Allaah and to Him shall we return. They are those on whom are the blessings from their Lord and His mercy. They are the ones who are guided.” [11]

And Allaah’s saying, “And whosoever believes in Allaah, He guides his heart aright.” Means, “Whosoever – when afflicted with a affliction – knows it is by the Decree of Allaah and His Power, and thus patiently submits to it, then Allaah rewards such a person by guiding their heart aright. So this is the root cause of all happiness, and the foundation of excellence in this world and in the Hereafter. And Allaah promises such a person (a reward) for what He has taken from them.” [12] And Allaah’s saying: “And Allaah has full knowledge over everything,” is a reminder that such a affliction is by His Knowledge which necessitates His Wisdom, which obligates sabr and being contented with His Decree.

Aboo Dhibyaan said: We were with ‘Alqamah [13] and this aayah was recited to him, “And whosoever believes in Allaah, He guides his heart aright.” So he said, “It is the man who – when afflicted with an affliction – knows it is from Allaah, so he is pleased with it and submits to it.” [14]
In the above narration is a proof that actions are a part of eemaan (faith).

Sa’eed Ibn Jubayr (d.104H) said about, “And whosoever believes in Allaah, He guides his heart aright.” He said, “That (at the time of a affliction) a person says: Indeed, to Allaah we belong and to Him shall we return.”

In the above aayah is an explanation that having sabr is the cause for the heart’s guidance; this being the reward for the saabir (the one having patience).

Complaining against the Decree of Allaah:

The Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said, “Two characteristics of the people are from disbelief: attack on one’s genealogy and bewailing the deceased.” [15] Meaning: that these two characteristics are actions of kufr (disbelief), since these are actions of jaahiliyyah (pre-Islaamic ignorance) which continue to remain in people. And no one will remain safe from them, except for the one to whom Allaah grants safety, and the one to whom Allaah grants knowledge and eemaan (faith).

However – it should be known – that whosoever has within him a branch of kufr (disbelief), then it does not cause the person to become a kaafir (disbeliever) with absolute kufr; just as a person who has within him a branch of eemaan (faith), is not called a mu’min (believer) with absolute eemaan . Indeed, there is a difference between the word kufr having the definite article attached to it (i.e. al-kufr) and the word kufr without the definite article – as occurs in the saying of the Prophet, “There is nothing between a servant and between al-kufr and ash-shirk, except abandoning the Prayer.” [16]

The saying of the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam), “Attack on one’s geneology,” means: finding faults and defects. Entering into this also is a person’s false denial of another man’s genealogy by saying, “This is not the son of such and such,” and the person knew that this denial was false.

And his saying, “And bewailing the dead.” means: raising the voice in lamentation and wailing and in enumerating the virtues of the deceased. All of this is a form of complaining against the Decree of Allaah and is against having sabr – such as the saying of the one bewailing: “He was my close friend,” or “he was my aid and supporter.”

So in the above hadeeth is a proof for the obligation of having sabr, and a proof that there is a type of kufr (disbelief) which does not cause its doer to become a kaafir.

Tender Hearts and Compassionate Tears:

The Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said, “He is not one of us who strikes the cheeks, tears the clothes and calls with the call of jaahiliyyah (pre-Islaamic ignorance).” [17] This is one of those textual threats related in the Revelation. It is related from Sufyaan ath-Thawree and Imaam Ahmad that they disliked explaining the meaning of such threats, so that people would have fear of committing such actions and would remain far away from them. This narration is a proof that the actions mentioned are against complete eemaan (faith).

Al-Haafidh Ibn Hajar (d.852H) whilst explaining the saying, “Whosoever strikes the cheeks,” said, “The cheeks have been particularised since that is the most common place of striking. However, striking any other part of the face is just the same.” [18]

The saying of the Prophet, “Tearing the clothes,” implies: tearing open the clothes from the chest. This was the practice of the people of jaahiliyyah (pre-Islaamic ignorance) as an expression of grieving for the deceased.

Ibn Taymiyyah (d.728H) said about, “And calls with the call of jaahiliyyah,” “It means to wail over the deceased.” [19]

Ibnul-Qayyim – rahimahullaah – said, “Included in calling with the call of jaahiliyyah is calling to tribalism, partisanship and party-spirit; being zealous and bigoted towards one’s madhhab (school of thought), party, or Shaykh; giving precedence to one over the other and calling to this; and forming alliances and enmity based upon this. All of this is from the calls of jaahiliyyah.”

Aboo ‘Umaamah relates the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) cursed the woman who strikes her face, tears her clothes and wails over the deceased. [20]

So this is a proof that these matters are from the major sins. Also, whosoever laments lightly-without being impatient with Allaah’s Decree, nor complaining against it, and says only that which is true – then such lamenting is acceptable. Just like the lamenting of Aboo Bakr [21] and Faatimah [22] (radiyallaahu ‘anhumaa) when the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) died. There is a text also from Imaam Ahmad concerning this. [23]

However, this is not a proof for the prohibition of crying, since there occurs in an authentic narration: That when the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) came to know about the death of his son Ibraaheem, he said, “The eyes shed tears, the heart grieves, but we do not say except that which pleases our Lord. O Ibraaheem! It is because of you that we are grieving.” [24]

In the two Saheehs Usaamah Ibn Zayd relates: That the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) went to one of his daughters, who had with her a young child that was dying. So she raised the child and placed the child in his lap, who was gasping for air. On seeing this, tears rolled down the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam’s) eyes. So Sa’d said: O Messenger of Allaah! What is this? So he replied, “This is mercy which Allaah puts into the hearts of His servants. And Allaah is merciful to those of His servants that show mercy to others.” [25]

Trials Faced by the Believers:

The Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said, “Whenever Allaah intends to do good to a servant, He hastens to punish him in this world. And whenever Allaah intends evil for a servant, He postpones the punishment until the Day of Judgement.” [26]

His saying, “Whenever Allaah intends to do good to a servant, He hastens to punish him in this world.” means: that he is punished by being inflicted with afflictions and difficulties due to the sins he has committed, due to which he is cleansed from them all, and in the Hereafter he has no sins to account for.

Shaykhul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah said, “The occurrence of afflictions are actually a form of blessing, since they are an expiation for sins committed and they call for a person to have sabr – for which he is duly rewarded. Likewise they cause the person to turn to Allaah in repentance, being humble and submissive before Him, whilst at the same time turning away from hoping in any of the creation. There are – besides these – other great advantages.

Thus, those afflictions which befall a person are actually the cause of Allaah wiping away his sins, and this is one of the greatest blessings. So the occurrence of afflictions are a source of mercy and bounty, providing such a person does not enter into that which is a cause for even greater disobedience than before. For this affliction will then become a cause of great evil to the person’s Religion. Indeed, there are people who – when afflicted with a trial or a affliction; such as poverty, illness or starvation – causes hypocrisy to sprout in them, or causes their hearts to become diseased, or it causes them to fall into ingratitude and disbelief, or to abandon certain obligations or commit certain prohibited acts – all of which is extremely harmful to one’s Religion. So to remain safe from, and to be protected against such afflictions and trials, is better for a person, since the afflictions and trials – rather than being a source of blessings – becomes a source of great injury. However, if the person had sabr and remained obedient, then such an affliction would have been the cause of mercy and blessings from Allaah – the Mighty and Majestic -which necessitates praising Him.

So whosoever is afflicted with a calamity and is provided with sabr, then this sabr is a blessing for the person and a mercy for him, since his sins are expiated due to it. Likewise his Lord bestows upon him praises and prayers, as Allaah – the Majestic – says,

“They are those on whom are the blessings and praises from their Lord and His mercy. They are the ones who are guided.” [27]

Such a person is also forgiven by his Lord for his sins, and is raised to higher ranks – all of this is due to the one who has sabr.” [28]

The saying of the Prophet, “Whenever Allaah intends evil for a servant, He postpones the punishment until the Day of Judgement,” means: such a person’s punishment is delayed until the Hereafter, where he will receive severe punishment.

Al-‘Azeezee (d.1070H) said, “Such a person is not punished in this world, so that in the Hereafter he can be punished for his sins in a way that he fully deserved.” [29]

In the above hadeeth is a lesson and a reminder that one must have good expectations in Allaah and a good opinion about Him with regard to what He has decreed for a person, as Allaah – the Most High – says,

“It is possible that you hate a thing and it is good for you, and love a thing and it is evil for you. Allâh knows and you do not know.” [30]

Rewards are Proportional to Afflictions:

The Prophet sallallâhu ‘alayhi wa sallam said, “Reward is directly proportional to the affliction. If Allaah loves a people, He inflicts them with a calamity. Whoever accepts it, Allaah is pleased with them, and whoever resents it, Allaah is displeased with them.” [31]

Likewise, the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said, “Whenever Allaah loves a people, He sends affliction upon them. So whoever is patient, is one of the patient-ones, and whoever resents it, is one of the resenters.” [32]

The meaning of the first hadeeth is: the greater the affliction, the greater the reward. And it is said: Indeed, afflictions bring about a reward as well as expiating sins. This was the preferred saying of Ibnul-Qayyim that the one afflicted with a calamity is not only rewarded for it, but his sins are expiated as well. However, if this affliction was the cause of him doing certain righteous actions – such as having sabr, contentment with the Decree of Allaah, repenting to Allaah or asking for His forgiveness – then the person will be rewarded for such actions as well. Because of this it is said that the meaning of the hadeeth is: Indeed, the reward is proportional to the affliction, providing there is sabr and expectation of reward.

Similarly, in the hadeeth of Sa’d, ‘The Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) was asked, ‘Who from mankind suffers the greatest afflictions?’ He replied, ‘The Prophets, then those most like them, then those most like them. A person is afflicted with calamities in comparisons to his Religion, so if he is firm in his Religion, then his afflictions are strong and if he is weak in his Religion, then his afflictions are lighter. A person is afflicted with calamities until he is left walking upon the face of this earth without any sins.” [33]

This hadeeth and its like are from the proofs for Tawheed. Since if a person knew that the Prophets and the awliyaa’ (the friends of Allaah) are themselves afflicted with calamities and that none can remove these afflictions from them except Allaah, then it will be known that they can bring neither benefit nor ward of harm to themselves – so how can they ward off harm for others! Thus rather than turning to the Prophets and righteous people for the removal of harm, or relief from worries and grief, one should turn directly to Allaah alone – the One who is able to accomplish this.

ATTAINING TRANQUILITY:

And ar-Ridaa (the pleasure of Allaah) – which occurs in the saying of the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam), “So whosoever is pleased, then Allaah is pleased with him.” – is one of the Attributes that Allaah has described Himself with in various places in His Book, such as His saying,

“Their rewards are Gardens of Adan, beneath which rivers flow, to dwell therein forever. Allaah is well pleased with them, as they are with Him.” [34]

The way of the Salaf (the Pious Predecessors) and those who follow them from Ahlus-Sunnah (the followers of the Sunnah) is to affirm those attributes which Allaah has affirmed for Himself, or which have been affirmed by His Messenger (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) – in a way which befits His Majesty and Greatness – without tamtheel (likening Allaah to any of His creation), and without ta’teel (divesting Allaah of His Attributes). So when Allaah – the Most High – is pleased with any one, then such a person has acquired all good and excellence and is safe from all evils.

Ar-Ridaa is: a servant’s surrendering his affairs to Allaah, whilst having a good opinion about Him and expecting His reward. Such a person will then experience tranquility and joy, love of Allaah and reliance upon Him.

Ibn Mas’ood – (radiyallaahu ‘anhu) – said, “Indeed Allaah – from His Justice and Fairness – made delight and tranquility the fits of yaqeen (certainty) and ridaa (pleasure). And He made grief, anxiety and worry the result of doubt and resentment.”  [35]

The meaning of resentment being: “A dislike for something, with the absence of pleasure.” [36] Thus, whosoever resents what Allaah has decreed, then Allaah will resent that person; and this is sufficient as a punishment from Allaah. Also, from the above hadeeth, some Scholars have deduced that ridaa (contentment and pleasure) with the Decree of Allaah is obligatory – this being the view of Ibn ‘Aqeel. However, al-Qaadee Aboo Ya’laa did not consider it to be obligatory [but rather preferable], and this was the preferred view of Shaykhul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah and Ibnul-Qayyim. [37]

Shaykhul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah said, “Just as there is a specific command attached to having sabr (patience), there is, however, no such command for having ridaa (contentment and pleasure). Rather, there is a praise and an excellence for those who have ridaa with the Decree of Allaah.” He further said, “The narration: ‘Whosoever does not have sabr with My afflictions, nor have ridaa with My Decree, has taken a Lord other than Me.’ [38] This narration is one of the Israa’eeliyyaat and is not authentically related from the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam).” [39]

Shaykhul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah also said, “Indeed, there is a station higher than [both sabr and] ridaa, and that is to show shukr (gratitude) to Allaah for the affliction, since this is the cause of receiving excellence and bounties.” [40]

Footnotes:

[1] Edited and adapted from Fathul-Majeed li Sharh Kitaabit-Tawheed (2/603-615); Chapter: From eemaan (faith) in Allaah is to have sabr (patience) with the Decree of Allaah.
[2] Related by Ibnul-Qayyim in Madaarijus-Saalikeen (2/152).
[3] Related by Muslim (no. 223) and Ahmad (5/343), from Aboo Maalik al-Ash’aree (radiyallaahu ‘anhu).
[4] Related by al-Bukhaaree (no. 1469) and Muslim (no. l053), from Aboo Sa’eed al-Khudree (radiyallâhu ‘anhu).
[5] Related by al-Bukhaaree (1 l/303) in ta’leeq form, and it has been related in connected form by Imaam Ahmad in az-Zuhd with a Saheeh isnaad – as al-Haafidh Ibn Hajar mentioned in Fathul-Baaree (11/303).
[6] Related by al-Laalikaa’ee in Sharh Usool I’tiqaad Ahlus-Sunnah wal-Jamaa’ah (no. 1659), al-Bayhaqee in Shu’abul-Eemaan and Abee Shaybaan in Kitaabul-Eemaan (no. 130), with a slightly different wording.
[7] Madaarijus-Saalikeen (2/156) of Ibnul-Qayyim.
[8] Sooratut-Taghaabun [64:11]
[9] Tasfeer Qur’aanul-‘Adheem (2/164) of Ibn Katheer
[10] Sooratul-Hadeed [57:22]
[11] Sooratul-Baqarah [2:155-157]
[12] Tasfeer Qur’aanul-‘Adheem (8/163)
[13] Related by Ibn Jareer at-Tabaree in Jaami’ul-Bayaan ‘an Ta’weelil-Qur’aan (28/123), ‘Abdur-Razzaaq in his Tafseer (3/95) and also as-Suyootee in ad-Durrul-Manthoor (8/183). Its like is also related by al-Bukhaaree in ta’leeq form (8/652) from Ibn Mas’ood.
[14] Tahdheebut-Tahdbeeb (7/276) of Ibn Hajar al-‘Asqalaanee
[15] Related by Muslim (no. 67) and Ahmad (2/377), from Aboo Hurayrah (radiyallaahu ‘anhu).
[16] Related by Muslim (no. 82), Aboo Daawood (no. 4679) and at-Tirmidhee (no. 2621), from Jaabir Ibn ‘Abdullaah (radiyallaahu ‘anhu).
[17] Related by al-Bukhaaree (no. 1294) and Muslim (no. 103), from Ibn Mas’ood (radiyallaahu ‘anhu).
[18] Fathul-Baaree (3/164) of Ibn Hajar.
[19] Iqtidaa’us-Siraatil-Mustaqeem (l/204) of Shaykhul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah.
[20] Saheeh: Related by Ibn Maajah (no. 1584) and also Ibn Hibbaan (no. 737). Al-Bawseeree authenticated it in Masaabeehuz-Zajaajah (1/521).
[21] Related by Ahmad (6/31), from ‘Aa’ishah (radiyallaahu ‘anhaa).
[22] Related by al-Bukhaaree (no. 4462) and Ibn Maajah (no. 1629-1630), from Anas (radiyallaahu ‘anhu).
[23] As az-Zarkashee mentions in Sharh Mukhtasarul-Kharqee (2/356).
[24] Related by al-Bukhaaree (no. 1303) and Muslim (no. 2315), from Anas and Asmaa’ Bint Yazeed (radiyallaahu ‘anhumaa).
[25] Related by al-Bukhaaree (no. 1283) and Muslim (no. 923).
[26] Saheeh: Related by at-Tirmidhee (no. 2398) and al-Haakim in al-Mustadrak (1/340), from Anas (radiyallaahu ‘anhu). It was authenticated by Shaykh al-Albaanee in as-Saheehah (no. 1220).
[27] Sooratul-Baqarah [2:155-157]
[28] Abridged from Majmoo’ul-Fataawaa (10/48) of Ibn Taymiyyah.
[29] as-Siraajul-Muneer (l/88) of al-‘Azeezee
[30] Sooratul-Baqarah [2:216]
[31] Hasan: Related by at-Tirmidhee (no. 2398) and Ibn Maajah (no. 4021), from Anas (radiyallaahu ‘anhu). It was authenticated by al-Albaanee in as-Saheehah (no. 146).
[32] Saheeh: Related by Ahmad (5/427), from Mahmood Ibn Lubayd (radiyallaahu ‘anhu). It was authenticated by al-Mundharee in at-Targheeb wat-Tarheeb (4/283), al-Haythamee Majma’uz-Zawaa’id (2/291) and Ibn Hajar in Fathul-Baaree (10/108).
[33] Saheeh: Related by Ahmad (l/172), at-Tirmidhee (no. 2398) and Ibn Maajah (no. 4023). It was authenticated by al-Albaanee in as-Saheehah (no.143).
[34] Sooratul-Bayyinah [98:8]
[35] Related by Ibn Abee Dunyaa in Kitaabur-Ridaa (no. 94) and also al-Bayhaqee in Shu’abul-Eemaan (no. 205).
[36] an-Nihaayah fee Ghareebil-Hadeeth (2/350) of Ibn al-Atheer
[37] Madaarijus-Saalikeen (2/171,184) of Ibnul-Qayyim.
[38] Da’eef Jiddan: Related by at-Tabaraanee in al-Kabeer (22/320), Ibn Hibbaan in al-Majrooheen (1/324) and al-Khateeb in at-Talkhees (39/2) all by way of Sa’eed Ibn Ziyaad. Al-Haythamee said in al-Majma’ (7/207), “In it is Sa’eed Ibn Ziyaad who is matrook (abandoned).” And al-Haafidh al-‘Iraaqee said in Takhreejul-Ihyaa’ (3/296), “Its isnaad is weak.” And al-Manaawee said, “Da’eef Jiddan (very weak)” as occurs in ad-Da’eefah (no. 505).
[39] Ibnul-Qayyim related this in Madaarijus-Saalikeen (2/171).
[40] Majmoo’ul-Fataawaa (11/260) of Ibn Taymiyyah


The People of Hadeeth – Aspire to Them Else Conspire Against Them

May 27, 2008

Hadeeth (arabic, plural ahadeeth) – A saying, statement of story that can be authentically traced to the Prophet Muhammad, Allah send the prayers of peace and blessing upon him.  So to be “People of Hadeeth” or “Companions of Hadeeth” is for a person to let the hadeeth guide him, teach him what the Qur’an means, inform him of the various decisions of everyday life that keep him on the right path;  in essence it is to be “saved” from every evil and guided-to and rewarded-with every good.

A very beneficial, brief, yet comprehensive, survey of the characteristics of this group can be found in the following words of al-Khateeb al-Baghdaadee, may Allah have mercy on him.

al-Khateeb al-Baghdaadee (d.463H) said,

And if only the people of blameworthy opinion [about the religion] busied themselves with beneficial knowledge, and seeking the Sunnah [hadeeth] of the Messenger of the Lord of Creation, and followed the way of the fuqahaa’ [scholars of fiqh] and muhaddithoon [scholars of hadeeth] – then they would find that this would be sufficient for them.

And the narration would take the place of his opinion which he used to hold; since the Hadeeth comprehends the fundamentals of Tawheed, the reported Threats and the Promises, the Attributes of the Lord of Creation – who is High above the saying of the apostates, it also contains information about Paradise and Hell-Fire, and what Allaah has prepared therein for the pious and the wicked, and what Allaah has created in the earths and the heavens, and the remarkable things and great signs, and a mention of the nearest Angels – those drawn up in ranks and those who recite tasbeeh [rememberance of Allah].

And the Hadeeth comprehends stories of the about the pious ascetics and Awliyaa’ [friends of Allah], wonderful admonition and sayings of the Scholars. It contains histories of the kings of the ‘Arabs and non-‘Arabs, and the accounts of past nations, and descriptions of the battles of the Messenger (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam); his expeditions, rulings, judgements, sermons, warnings, predictions and miracles. It also contains information about the number of his Wives and Children, his Relatives and Companions, and a mention of their excellence and merit, and a mention of their lives, their actions and their ancestry. And the Hadeeth contains tafseer

 of the Qur’aan, information and the wise remembrance contained in it.  It contains the sayings of the Companions about its preserved rulings, the different sayings they held, as well as those of the Scholars and mujtahideen [scholars who exert great effort in understanding the rulings and giving decisions on issues].

And Allaah made Ahlul-Hadeeth (the People of Hadeeth) the pillar of the Sharee’ah [Divine Law] and the destroyer of every despicable innovation.  So they are Allaah’s wardens amongst His creation, and the link between the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) and his Ummah, and the strivers to preserve His Religion. So their light shines brightly, their excellence remains, their signs are clear, their positions evident and their proofs are over-powering.

And all the sects coil themselves around vain desires and prefer opinion which they cling to – except for Ahlul-Hadeeth, since the Book is their provision, the Sunnah is their proof, the Messenger their leader and to him is their ascription. They do not deviate upon vain desires, nor turn to mere conjecture. They accept what is reported from the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) and they are the trustworthy and reliable ones, who memorise the Religion and are its treasurers, its storehouses of knowledge and its bearers. If anyone differs about a hadeeth, then it is referred back to them [scholars of Hadeeth who refer it back to the Quran and the Sunnah]. Thus, their judgement is accepted and listened to. From them is every Scholar and Imaam, and every true ascetic, and one of excellence, and precise reciter and righteous Khateeb. They are the Saved-Sect and their way is the straight one…”**

Many people have heard of or believe they know what “Salafi” or “Salafiyya” is and it is mostly wrong.  The above description by al-Baghdaadee is exactly what Salafiyya is.  It isn’t hatred for the illustrious Imaams, it isn’t about deducing fiqh for yourselves (as is commonly misuderstood or propagated)…it is precisely:  (1) How do you follow and understand the religion of Islam and (2) Who/What do you turn to for that understanding and direction.  It’s that simple.  This is all falls under the rubric of Islamic Methodology.

**Sharafu Ashabul Hadeeth pgs7-9  (The Honor/Nobility of the People of Hadeeth)


The Importance of Aqeedah

November 1, 2007

 Link: The Importance of Aqidah

Author: Dr. Abdul Aziz al-Qari

The Messenger informed Mu’adh bin Jabal, when he was going to the land of Yemen, “You are going to a people from the People of the Book. Let the first thing that you call them to be the worship of Allah. If they acknowledge Allah, then inform them that Allah has obligated upon them five prayers during their days and nights.” [Al-Bukhari, Muslim] This hadith is clear. It does not require much of an explanation. The Prophet applied this principle in his practical calling to Islam. He stayed in Makkah for thirteen years to each the people iman and to educate his Companions on this point and to correct the beliefs of the people. That is the pattern upon which the Companions were brought up.

Jundub Ibn Abdullah al-Bajaly said, “We learned iman (faith) and then we learned the Quran and it increased our iman.”

Read the rest of this entry »


Why the title?

July 27, 2007

There was a small but extremely beneficial book written by the great scholar, the shaykh, the preserver of Hadeeth, “the helper of the religion of Islam (“Naasir-ud-Deen”) Abu Abdur-Rahman Muhammad al-Albaani, may Allah have mercy on him, and raise his rank, and forgive him of his mistakes and sins and reward his parents by his many great and continuing services for the Ummah of Muhammad, sal Allahu 3layhi wa sallam.  The title of the book was aptly named: “Tawheed First O Callers to Allah!”.  The booklet’s premise centers on the need for all those who believe themselves to be “callers” to Allah and Islam, known as a Da’i (Du’aat pl.) to be firmly grounded in and include in their da’wah Tawheed – The unique and purely Islamic concept of worshipping, believing in, and calling and relying upon Allah alone without any partners; believing that He alone created the Universe and everything in it, and believing that the names and attributes that Allah described himself with and what His Prophet, sal Allahu 3layhi wa sallam, described Him [Allah] with are not in any need of interpretation and especially not denied outright.

 So not only do we need to know Tawheed as ordinary everyday muslims (and non-Muslims too), but before that we need to begin just to understand the importance of knowledge, the reward for seeking it, the happiness that is attained by gaining it, and the unspoken and unseen treasures that await those who implement it, not only in Paradise, but even right here on this earth in our lives.

 Also, about the title, I am constantly reminded when I see various groups, and anyone who has spent time at a masjid (mosque) knows what I mean, but in particular I am talking about the groups who call to Tableegh (i.e. going out and doing Da’wah/Calling to Allah).  The title of this blog is for people who think in this manner.  And not only for them, but all those muslims especially those who are educated with advanced degrees who believe that the religion is as simple as reading a verse in the Quran or reading a hadeeth, believing that they know exactly what it means, and then going off and acting on their ignorance.  So before we go out to spread Islam and before we go out to change the world all of which are great actions, they will be futile, unyielding and disappointing, if not altogether or otherwise unappealing to the intended audience and at worst maybe even violent and homocidal, since so many of these things are done with abject ignorance buttressed by a willful and disgusting obstinancy.

 So attain some knowledge, authentic knowledge, and then act upon it.  I advise myself firstly before I would advise anyone else.


Why this blog?

July 27, 2007

In the Name of Allah, Most Beneficent, Most Merciful; may the prayers of peace and blessings be upon the Prophet Muhammad, his family, his companions, and all those who follow his way in righteousness till the Last Day, ameen. 

It would seem to me that anytime someone wanted to share with the world, literally, their thoughts and ideas, what they like and dislike etc. that it might be worth stating why such an endeavor would be undertaken.  Primarily, i wanted to blog just so that maybe someone who read it and is now walking a path i once walked, might take notice, and thus have the pleasure of correcting themselves before they are ultimately and irrevocably corrected.

 When I first became muslim I spent alot of time learning about what, to me, were important issues.  I was seriously a rabid student of all things Israeli/Palestinian.  I could tell you all kinds of useless facts and historical evidences.  I debated openly on my college campus with Jewish student groups.  I constantly wrote letters-to-the-editor, signed petitions, called into C-SPAN etc.  I was a living testament to civic responsibility.  The apt reader will note though what was missing.  Learning about my new religion: Islam.  I did, however, take a great amount of what I thought was a religious experience in doing all this; verbally fighting for my brothers and sisters in Palestine.  In the hospital I worked in during college, I met a Resident (student physician) at lunch and as usual I launched into my diatribes against Israel and her apartheid policies and the machinations of groups like AIPAC and CAMERA (with whom I had just had a verbal run-in against).  The young resident said to me calmly but sincerely, “Brother, all of this stuff you are talking about is really not going to help you.  Study your religion, study Islam.  You are spending your time on something that would be better spent elsewhere.”  I am sure the look on my face was nondescript, but inside i was thinking to myself that this guy was some kind of traitor.  “…better spent elsewhere.” ???  Inside I was stunned.  We finished our lunch that day and strangely I never saw that guy again.

Most, if not all, muslims I had spoken with personally over the first 5-6 years of me being muslim were as angry as I was but therein is the rub.  Whether it was Palestine, Kashmir, Chechnya, Somalia, you name it, the average muslim was upset (But that was about it).  Over the next couple of years I remained vigilantly committed to all the “causes.”  I had forgotten about the Resident.  And then one day it hit me.  I had devoted a full decade, 10 years!! to learning everything I could about Israel, Palestine, India, Pakistan, Kashmir etc. and i realized sadly it had gotten me absolutely nowhere.  I used to get depressed all the time because of everything I knew but couldn’t do anything about.  Then came 9/11

 I had a new found sense for my political and historical knowledge.  I was called on (due mainly to my being a white american convert, surely not for my Islamic knowledge) to go and speak about Islam to churches and boy scouts and high schools and jewish clubs.  I did this all fairly ignorant of Islam.  I said things that I wish I could take back, not because they were rude or insensitive but because when you stand before 180 non-Muslims and you want to impress them and give them “da’wah” (inviting to Islam) you often misspeak, and you don’t convey Islam correctly.  So feeling uneducated, i began to read, and during that time alot of muslims fell into reading and alot of the material at this time was glorifying fighting.  It is often called Jihad in books and on websites, but its little more than revenge given an arabic name that many of these Islamic groups deal in.  But i fell for it.  I didn’t want to go and blow up anything, but the inherent radicalism of these groups, the feeling of despair and helplessness all coupled with the sincere desire to want to change the world for the better, led me and many other young people even still today to waste their time in politics and arguing.  I started saying bad things about every muslim gov’t on the planet, if not outright calling them non-believers and all of this is back-biting and even worse – slander.  And I ask forgiveness for this from Allah.    Out of my ignorance, i did it because these gov’ts may have been accused of committing sins or not implementing Islam the way I thought it should be implemented or not “hardcore” enough.  In my community I organized protests against the gov’t of the US, Israel, anyone who I thought was oppressing muslims.  Some of you may ask what’s wrong with that, and inshaa Allah, i’ll get to that if not here then in some series of posts on what is the correct Islamic methodology for disagreeing with gov’ts and leaders.  The Islam that I practiced and what most everyone practices nowadays is a mixture of socialism, communism, radical revolutionism, democratic fundamentalism, a little or a lot of secular humanism and interestingly Liberation Theology (as is popular among Latin American Catholics) all distilled and given arabic sounding names till its called Islam.  This is NOT Islam.

What I learned Islam really is was hard for me to accept at first especially after having learned all I had learned thinking that was Islam.  What non-Muslims see on the television today even from what are termed “moderate” muslims (we all know what they see regarding terrorism) is also not Islam and they too will be surprised and I also think it may be hard for them to accept as well what true Islam is because it is so beautiful.  I have given a very very brief insight into what true Islam is in the “Methodology” section and in the “About” page.  But true Islam is understanding the Quran and the Sunnah (the customs of the Prophet Muhammad, sal Allahu 3layhi wa sallam) WITH the understanding of the first three generations of Muslims.  This is important because if you want to understand anything in life you always ask those closest to the source.  And the Sahaba (the companions of Prophet Muhammad), may Allah be pleased with all of them were the closest to the source (the Prophet, sal Allahu 3layhi wa sallam) and their students (called Taabi’een in arabic) were the next closest etc.  To understand Islam any other way is to misunderstand it.  To teach Islam any other way is to misguide people.  To criticize Islam, the religion, based on the actions of people who fall into the former two groups (those who misunderstand and those who misguide) is unfair, unjust and intellectually dishonest with yourself.

My appeal is to those people who think being radical, revolutionary and/or violent is Islam, or if Che Guevara is your hero, or if you think Rage Against the Machine and various other culturally and politically aware rock, hip-hop or rap groups sing “Islamic” music then be not mistaken.   This is not the path.  This is not Islam.  This is not the way our forefathers treaded.

 The Prophet, sal Allahu 3layhi wa sallam, mentioned in a long hadeeth where he had drawn a straight line (which was the path to Paradise) and lines coming off to the right and left that there were little devils standing at each of the ways that come off to the right and left calling/inviting the muslim to go on that path and all those paths lead to torment and the Fire.  The scholars have said no doubt that these littlle devils are deviant groups and scholars because only they are capable of leading a muslim away.  So beware of those scholars who seem to never find anything forbidden.  They allow all sorts of activities and say that it’s simply a “difference of opinion.”

 My Advice is to read all you can about Tawheed (The Oneness of Allah)
Know what is the criteria for being a scholar of Islam, so that you can
Know who the Major Scholars are, so that you may
Rely on the Major Scholars of Islam, learn from them and their students.

And inshaa Allah we will all be led correctly, ameen.

 There will be more articles coming inshaa Allah that give more advice on these very topics.

 Your brother
Ismael


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