Tuesday, 2 February 2016

Authority in Islam

Al-Hajj Abu Ja'far al-Hanbali's foreword to the soon-to-be-published translation of Imam an-Nawawi's 'The Etiquettes of the Scholars and the Learner'


In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful, the Compassionate
Praise be to Allah as He is the Sufficer and Peace and Blessings
be upon the one whom there is to be no Prophet after him.

The city of Damascus with Mount Qasioun in the background

Anyone taking a look at the Qur’an would find that there were indeed authorities in Islam, people that have been left in charge; but we must not speak without citing evidences. Allah has mentioned a clerical class of people who are to be given authority and possess the same temporal and spiritual authority as Allah and His Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him.

Indeed their power derives from the command of Allah and His Messenger,

You who believe! Obey Allah, obey the Messenger and those in authority among you.[1]

This ayah is using the Arabic expression, Uwl ul-Amr, which literally translated would be the People of Command. These people have the authority and the right to command the people. Obedience to them has been commanded.

After the prophets, peace be upon all of them, these are the best of people and they have inherited the prophetic mantle of authority. The Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said,

“Whoever travels a path seeking knowledge, Allah makes him travel a path to Paradise. The angels spread out their wings in pleasure for the one seeking knowledge. Every creature in the skies and the earth seeks forgiveness for the scholar, even the fish in the sea. The virtue of the scholar over the worshipper is like the virtue of the moon over the rest of the stars in the sky. Indeed the scholars are the inheritors of the prophets. They do not leave behind any coin or measure of wealth, but it is the knowledge that they leave behind. Whoever should take hold of it takes hold of much good indeed.”[2]

These people also have the right to derive rulings and make judgements in the absence of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, and have their word obeyed,

When news of any matter reaches them they spread it about, whether it is of a reassuring or disquieting nature. If only they had referred it to the Messenger and those in authority among them, those among them able to derive the truth about it would have had proper knowledge of it.[3]

Allah commands us to ask them when we do not know the answer to a question,

Ask the People of Knowledge if you do not know.[4]

This same clerical class of people are to delve into the faith and teach it to the Slaves of Allah returning from warfare so that they might understand the religion. They are to teach those in the city so that they might also understand the religion. Allah has revealed,

It is not for the believers to march out altogether. Let there be a group from every party that shall delve into studying the religion so that they might warn their people when they return to them in order for those returning to take heed.[5]

The Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said, “When the judge makes ijtihad and is correct, he has two rewards. When he is mistaken he has one reward.”[6]

The Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, sent out authorities (maraji`) who were scholars to explain the religion to people and this was not the providence of laymen.

The word “authorities” is used frequently but this is a translation of the Arabic expression, Maraji` ut-Taqlid wal-Ittiba`, which means, “Authorities and Sources Worthy of Imitation and being Followed”.

Another title for them is Ahl ul-Halli wal-`Aqd, which in translation literally means, “The People who Loose and Bind”. This binding and loosing refers to temporal authority. Imam Mansur Al-Buhuti (d. 1051 AH) describes this for us when he says,

We have the statement of Allah,

If two parties of believers take up arms one against the other, make peace between them. If either of them unjustly attacks the other, then fight the aggressors until they submit to the judgement of Allah.

When they have submitted themselves, then make peace between them in justice; indeed Allah loves those who are just. Only the believers are brothers. Make peace among your brothers and fear Allah so that you might be shown mercy.[7]

A number of benefits can be taken from the statement above. One such benefit is that a group that is wrong doing or in rebellion that exits from authority does not leave the faith even though it is compulsory to fight them.

When a group rebels in the manner mentioned, there is lifted from them the normal rulings in order for them to be fought and brought to heel. Permission has been granted to fight anyone who might hinder a right or ruling due from him or against him and the Ahadith on this subject are many in number.

The second benefit derived is what was narrated from `Ubadah ibn As-Samit in which he said, ‘The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, accepted our oath of allegiance to hear and obey when it was enjoyed and when it was disliked and that we do not dispute in the affairs of those who are qualified to speak.’ This is agreed upon by Imams Al-Bukhari and Muslim.

The Companions made Consensus on fighting those who rebel against authority as is evidenced by Abu Bakr As-Siddiq having fought against those who refused to pay the zakah. There is also the case of `Ali ibn Abi Talib when he fought against rebellions in both the incidents of the Camel and the Battle of Siffin.

The Grand Imam discharging affairs for the Muslims is a collective obligation as the people have need of that for the protection of the weak, driving away oppression, establishing judicial punishments, discharging the rights of the people and enjoining the right and forbidding the wrong.

Two groups of people that have the authority in bringing this about are the following:

1. The people of ijtihad so that they might make the choice of who is to go forward in the post.

2. Those who have present in them the conditions of holding the post of Grand Imam and the People who Loose and Bind attribute the authority them.

The People who Loose and Bind that will make the choice on who should be the Grand Imam should be outwardly upright, have knowledge connected to who has the right to hold the post of Imam, sound opinion of  worldly affairs and the ability to discharge the most sound judgement and bring into effect the one who shall have the post of Imam.

The conditions for establishing the post of the Grand Imam have been discussed by the people of authority, including Imam Musa Al-Hajjawi, who in his words explained that the post can be brought about by the Consensus of the Muslims upon the individual.

An example of this is Abu Bakr As-Siddiq, may Allah be pleased with him, the successor to the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. His authority was established by the Consensus of the Muslims, meaning the oath of allegiance given by the People who Loose and Bind from the scholars and the high ranking people who stand as witnesses and are outwardly upright. There is no room for the consideration of anyone else's besides these mentioned as they are considered like drowsy people.[8]

The post can also be filled by the agreement of a specified panel of the People who Loose and Bind on an individual from their ranks. This occurred when `Umar ibn Al-Khattab, may Allah be pleased with him, commanded a panel of six Companions to decide upon the Imam after him and the decision settled upon `Uthman ibn `Affan.

If an Imam in the post leaves an explicit statement on someone to succeed him or an Imam has been named to fill his post after him, then in this case the People who Loose and Bind do not have to agree on the matter. This occurred when Abu Bakr As-Siddiq explicitly left the post of Imam to `Umar ibn Al-Khattab after him.

In the case that the People who Loose and Bind make ijtihad on bringing about the office and selecting the one who is most fit for it and deserving of obedience, then this is also valid.[9] 

This should tell you that the People who Loose and Bind enact and demolish government, choose people for posts and so forth. There are a myriad of historical references for the authorities bearing spiritual and temporal authority. Let us look at history.

The Authorities Preach and Clarify Faith

Some of the students of Mu`adh ibn Jabal stated: When the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, prepared to send Mu`adh ibn Jabal to Yemen, he asked him, “How will you answer if an issue arises and your judgement is sought?”

He said, “I will judge according to the Book of Allah.” Mu`adh was asked further, “And if you do not find the answer in the Book of Allah?” Mu`adh then responded, “I will look in the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him.”

The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, then queried, “So if you do not find it in the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, and the Book of Allah, how will you judge?”

Mu`adh replied by saying, “Then I will judge according to my opinion and exert the utmost effort (i.e. ijtihād).” The Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, patted his chest and said to him in reply, “Praise be to Allah who caused the emissary of the Messenger of Allah to agree with that which pleases the Messenger of Allah.” [10]

The one chosen to speak to the ruler of Ethiopia was none other than the scholar Ja`far ibn Abi Talib, who was a scholar in his own right and spoke as one when in the presence of the king. Keep in mind the following dialogue.

An-Najashi, the King of Ethiopia – through his translator – asked Ja`far ibn Abi Talib, “What is this religion that you have joined that caused you to part faith from your people and you have neither entered into our faith or the other religions around you?”

Ja`far ibn Abi Talib, may Allah be pleased with him, responded in the following way:

“I will now address you, dear king. We were a people in the Age of Ignorance. We worshipped idols, ate meat found dead, committed all type of perversions, cut family ties.

Yes, we even neglected to help our neighbours, leaving the strong to devour the weak, as well as having this condition in ourselves. This continued to be the case until Allah sent to us a Messenger from among us.

We indeed knew of his lineage, his truthfulness, trustworthiness and chastity and righteousness. He called us to Allah so that we might declare Him One and Unique and then worship Him Alone.

We then left off and put away all of what we and our fathers from before had worshipped of the different idols of stone and idolatrous images. This same Messenger commanded us to be truthful in speech, fulfil our trusts, keep family relations, be a help to neighbours as well as restraining ourselves from violating the honour and properties of others.

We were forbidden from all manner of perversions, bearing false witness, stealing the wealth of the orphan, slandering chaste and noble women. He also commanded us to worship Allah Alone in His Uniqueness and Oneness and not to associate partners with Him as well as making prayer, giving zakah and fasting and more.

So we testified to his truthfulness and believed in him. We followed him and all of what he came with from Allah, the Exalted. We worship Allah, who is Alone in His Uniqueness and Oneness and we do not associate any partners with Him.

We hold to be impermissible what he has forbidden us and declare as permissible what he has declared permitted for us. Due to this our people began to show enmity to us, punished us, put us to task due to our faith in order to push us towards the worship of idolatrous symbols rather than the worship of Allah, the Exalted.

They put us to trial in order to have us consider as permitted all manner of filth. Once they overwhelmed us, oppressed us, straitened affairs for us, put a barrier between us and our religion to try to force us to choose one over the other, we decided to emigrate to this land of yours.

We chose to live with you rather than anyone else, hoping to live as your neighbour and had firm conviction that we would not be oppressed while under your rule, dear king.”

An-Najashi then responded, “Do you have anything with you that came from Allah?” Ja`far ibn Abi Talib responded in the affirmative and An-Najashi asked for him to recite from it.

Ja`far ibn Abi Talib then recited to the king the opening passages of Surah Maryam (19) and the Ethiopian Monarch wept when the words were explained.

The theologian, Ja`far ibn Abi Talib, may Allah be pleased with him, was asked to clarify the theology of Muslims on the topic of the identity of the Messiah, his rank, the position of his mother, Maryam As-Siddiqah, peace be upon him, and her virginity.

The response that Ja`far ibn Abi Talib gave was the following,

“We say what Allah has said in this regard and what our Prophet brought to us, be whatever it may. He, `Isa, is the Slave of Allah, His Spirit and His Word that was imparted to Maryam, the Pure Virgin.” [11]

What we notice from this is that not only did Ja`far ibn Abi Talib speak, but he was chosen by the Companions and even addressed by the king as a representative to speak on these matters.

No laymen among them were chosen to discuss these matters. This should indeed demonstrate to us the rank that these scholars should have in our sight.

In the month of Safar in the year 7AH, when the people of Najd asked for people to come and teach them Islam, there were 40-70 scholars of the Companions sent to complete the task and they were murdered in cold blood. [12]

So it was not just laymen sent to preach the faith and disseminate the faith; but rather it was indeed scholars that were sent to complete the task.

The Authorities Act as Representatives of the Prophets

It was in the year 9AH, in the month of Dhul Qa`dah that Abu Bakr As-Siddiq, another authority, was sent to reteach the Makkans – after they had entered Islam – to carry out the Hajj without idolatrous rituals. When further revelation came, `Ali ibn Abi Talib, another scholar, was sent to inform them of the new revelation.[13]

The great Companion, Abu Umamah As`ad ibn Zurarah Al-Bahili – may Allah be pleased with him – led and conducted the first jumu`ah in Madinah when he was sent by the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him,[14] to accompany another scholar, Mus`ab ibn `Umair –may Allah be pleased with him – in the teaching of knowledge of Islam.[15]

Even the passing of authority has a rich symbolic value, from one authority to another. Take for example the case of Al-Hasan Al-Basri, who upon becoming an authority was given the sash of `Ali that was also used as his `amamah.[16]

The symbolic handing over and wrapping of this cloth on the head, the black `amamah, was a sign that this person was now a successor to `Ali and held the same authority.   

The Safeguarding of the Sources of Islam was Done by the Authorities

The authority Abu Bakr As-Siddiq ordered the Qur’an to be in one script in a series of folios and the one in charge of overseeing all the scribes (who were scholars) was none other than Zaid Ibn Thabit.[17]

This is the same Zaid ibn Thabit who was fluent in Hebrew and Syriac, one of the scholars of the Companions and one of the 70 scribes of the Qur’an.

The great Companion, `Uthman ibn `Affan, may Allah be pleased with him, collected further folios and made one mushaf, in which the Qur’an had a leather back and, thick script and had it sent out to ten provinces. [18]

He did not just send it out, but he also sent scholars with it to assist Muslims – convert or born – with reading the text accurately according to the rules of grammar and the revealed laws of articulation. [19]

The same thing can be seen just by examining the books of Hadith, Tafsir, Fiqh and all the other 18 sciences of the Revealed Law. They were all written not just by any scholars but the very authorities and highest ranking scholars of this religion.

Wars are Commenced or Led by the Authorities

In the month of Jumada al-Uwla, 8AH, the leader chosen in place of the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, to lead the Muslims in the Battle of Mu’tah against the Byzantine Army was Ja`far ibn Abi Talib.

When he fell in the battle, the next one designated to take leadership was`Abdullah ibn Rawahah (another scholar and former Jewish nobleman) and then it was Khalid ibn Al-Walid (a layman) from among the generals after he had been killed.[20]

In the battle of Yamamah, several scholars of the Qur’an were killed as they were leading the battle and guiding the movements of the people. [21]

Global Jurisdiction and the Continents

Imam Abdul Qadir ibn `Umar at-Taghlabi (d. 1133 AH (AD 1738) makes the matter clear to us:

It is necessary for the Imam to designate Qadis to discharge all duties in every jurisdiction. There are seven jurisdictions where law is discharged and they are, 1) Undivided India, 2) Al-Hijaz, 3) Undivided Egypt, 4) Babel, 5) Rum/Byzantium and Sham, 6) the Turkish Lands, and 7) All of Asia. This has been explained in the handwritten statement of my teacher and master, Shaikh `Abdul Baqi Al-Hanbali.[22]

Let the reader therefore understand that the scholars and marja` people, in carrying out these activities, are carrying out their jurisdiction, which is global. Undivided India refers to the landmass that contains the nations of Pakistan, India, Bangladesh and a large portion of Afghanistan.

Al-Hijaz is shorthand for all of Arabia while Babel refers to all of Iraq, Persia and the rest of Afghanistan. Byzantium is the former Byzantine Empire which includes Italy, Sicily, Turkey and lower Europe along with upper Europe. Sham refers to the lands now known as Syria, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine and Israel. As for the Turkish lands, this was a reference used not just for Turks but for all Central Asian people, sometimes including Slavs.

Asia (Ar. As-Sin) was used to refer to the whole continent. As for the Americas, their governing usually was administered by North Africa and referenced by Sultan Mawlay Isma`il in the year AD 1787 in a treaty of the same year with George Washington acting as plenipotentiary ruler over what would later become the United States of America.

When referencing Australia, this is under the same ruling as Byzantium while Antarctica, although uninhabited, bounds against the continent of Africa, which is considered Egypt in general as it was a capital province. This therefore shows that all seven continents have jurisdiction and that jurisdiction is the laws that govern areas with discipline, not ideas, thoughts or personal opinions.   

Are Maraji` without Madhhab?

Today’s Maraji` do indeed have madhab. There has not been a marja` that was an absolute mujtahid since the third generation and the last absolute mujtahid was Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal.
Imam Dawud ibn Sulaiman al-Khalidi (d. 1299 AH), may Allah be pleased with him, said the following, “The last absolute mujtahid was Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal when he was put in his grave and the dust put over it.” [23]

What Type of Authority Do the Maraji` Possess over the Rest of the Scholars?

A great example of this can be illustrated in discussing the Imam, the Marja`, Abu `Abdullah Shams ud-Din Muhammad ibn Muslim Az-Zaini As-Salihi (d. 727 AH), when he prevented Imam Taqi ud-Din Ibn Taymiyyah (661-728 AH) from giving any further rulings as it was creating such dissension.

How Do We Identify Maraji`?

The authorities are identified in the following ways:

1)      Living authorities or a living authority commands them to author an independent book or set of books on the science of fiqh.

An example of this is when Imam Mustafa Ad-Dumani (d. 1200 AH), may Allah have mercy upon him, was asked by one of the maraji` to author a text clarifying issues in the religion connected with worship and transactions.[25]

2)      Someone is specifically referred to as a marja` and teaches in place of his teacher (with the permission of that particular teacher) when he is not present.

If someone should look at the case of Imam Mar`ii ibn Yusuf Al-Karmi (d. 1033 AH), may Allah have mercy upon him, it can be seen that there were some 7 citations of maraji` asking him to write his text Dalil ut-Talib and his authority to write it and commentate upon it.[26]

3)      Someone becomes marja` after training under scholars, who then find him qualified and declare the individual as such.

What is the Relation Between Maraji` and Abdal?

We would like to start by saying that the matter can in the initial point be summed up by saying, “Every Badal (Ar. sing. of the Ar. pl. Abdal) is a marja` but not every marja` is a badal.”

The reason for this is that the Abdal are either from Sham or Iraq, as the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, has stated:

“The High Ranking Saints of this Ummah are 30 men and their hearts are like the heart of Khalil ur-Rahman, Ibrahim, peace be upon him. Whenever one of them dies, Allah then puts another in his place.” This is collected by Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal from the narration of `Ubadah ibn as-Samit and it is authentic. [27]

He, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, further proclaimed,

“The High Ranking are thirty and due to them the Earth is established and you receive help.” This is collected by Imam At-Tabarani from the narration of `Ubadah ibn as-Samit and it is authentic.[28]

He, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, also informed us,

“The High Ranking Saints are in Sham. It is due to them that the people receive help and it is due to them that they are sustained.” This is collected by Imam At-Tabarani from the narration of `Awn ibn Malik and classed as sound.[29]

There is also a narration where he, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, stated,

“The High Ranking Saints are in Sham and they are 40 men in number. Whenever one man dies, Allah replaces him with another. The Earth receives its’ rain due to them and the land receives help against its’ enemies due to them. It is also due to them that punishment gets kept away from the people of Sham.” This is collected by Imam Ahmad in his Musnad as narrated from `Ali ibn Abi Talib, may Allah ennoble his face, and classed as sound. [30]

Imam Taqi ud-Din Ibn Taymiyyah (661-728 AH) mentions that there is indeed a pecking order and a clerical class in charge of the affairs of the Muslims on a global scale. Please read the following:

“Those who take hold of the pure and unadulterated Islam – free from deviation and crookedness – they are Muslim Orthodoxy (Ahl us-Sunnah wa al-Jamaa’ah); within them are the righteous and upright holy ones (Ar. As-Siddiqun), the martyrs (Ar. Ash-Shuhada’), the pious (Ar. As-Salihun) – and from them are the great luminaries of guidance (Ar. A`lam ul-Huda), the lamps of goodness (Ar. Masabih ud-Duja) who possess numerous virtues and favours that have and could be mentioned.

Now within this group are the High Ranking Saints (Ar. Al-Abdal) – and within them are the Imams of the Religion (Ar. A’immat ud-Din) that the Muslims have made Consensus on their being upon right guidance – and these are the Victorious Group and Aided Group (Ar. At-Ta’ifat ul-Mansurah)  who the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said of them,

‘There will always be a group from my Ummah, upon the truth and manifest with it. Those who oppose them or abandon them will not harm them until the Hour comes.’

We ask Allah that He makes us from them and that He make our hearts not slip after He has guided us and bestowed on us mercy from Himself. Indeed He is the Bestower and Allah knows best.” [31]

Government and Judicial Leadership Lay in the Hands of the Authorities

The First Rulers of the Muslims after the death of their Prophet were high ranking scholars and this continued until the first layman, Yazid ibn Mu`awiyah or Yazid I.

He seized power and this marked the beginning of the scholars who rule by divine right in temporal and spiritual matters and the earthly rulers who attempt to control affairs. His rule was one in which numerous scholars were put to the sword.[32]

When the new cities of Al-Basrah and Al-Kufah were built by `Umar ibn Al-Khattab, he sent scholars from the Companions to teach the people. [33]

This was the case for all the cities that were built by him and for each city an authority was appointed, e.g. Abu Musa al-Ash`ari was appointed the head over Al-Basrah.[34]

Authorities, with the permission and explicit commands of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, executed apostates, like in the case of Mu`adh ibn Jabal (who killed apostates to Judaism that took up the sword against Islam in Yemen) [35]  and `Ali ibn Abi Talib (who also executed apostates), [36]  may Allah be pleased with all of them; but know that the only people that can carry out such rulings are the marja` people or those appointed by them.

Imam Musa ibn Ahmad Al-Hajjawi (d. 968 AH), may Allah be pleased with him, said the following, “The judicial punishments are not established by anyone except the Imam or his appointed representative and it is not to be done in the masjid.”[37]

Why Do We Need Maraji`?

In order to lead the Muslims, safeguard the religion, establish the faith and eventually hand authority over to Al-Imam Al-Mahdi and the Messiah, `Isa the son of Maryam, peace be upon both of them, at the Second Coming.

This Ummah is led either by prophets or scholars in the absence of a prophet. At the second advent of a prophet, the Ummah is then led by prophets once again.

It is neither permissible nor right and proper for the Ummah to be led by laymen. The first example of the Ummah being led by laymen was Yazid ibn Mu`awiyah in 60 AH. This precipitated the murder of several Companions and countless other innocents.

We are living in a current age of laymen rule. Laymen did not build the observatories, hospitals or invent bifocals in Baghdad, Iraq some 900 years ago. Authorities did. 

In the Anglosphere countries, what has been missing for Muslims is documentation, detailed but also decisive in laying out how to recognise who these people are, the conditions for being considered someone in authority and how questions and answers are handled with such people.

Criminals, thugs, hucksters and other assorted groups have taken advantage of Anglosphere Muslim blind spots regarding these matters. There has been no more a deceptive tactic used than promoting laymen to the post of scholar in order to control these Muslims.

These self-appointed scholars and teachers have worked to destabilise grassroots efforts of Muslims towards entrepreneurship in masjid building, economics, schooling and education.

Destabilisation methods have by and large worked based upon a two prong strategy: undermining theology and then after that undermining authority and the means to accessing authority.

The theological prong is well known and has been written on thoroughly by many in various languages, more recently English. But this work translated by Br. Mahdi Lock represents the first time an attempt has been made to respond to the attack on Muslim authority and the means to accessing it.

Current religious activists in the Anglosphere countries where Muslims reside have been telling the believers since AD 1995 to reconcile to the world and that we must ‘honour the law of the land’ in terms of patriotic fervour and even living in the same way that unbelievers live in their lives.

This covers transactions. Buying, selling, renting, indeed trade of all types are regulated by groups and bodies of ‘experts’ offering Muslims a brunch of interest- bearing, ‘Shari`ah compliant’ loans, accounts and other services that are the same as those of the unbelievers but are dressed up in the Arabic language.

By ingesting and then digesting this economic poison, Muslims sabotage their earthly life as well as the Hereafter and find themselves in the same economic pits that other people find themselves lumbered with that includes everything from their mortgage to their life insurance premiums.

When the Muslims first arrived in these countries, this did not exist among them due to the fact that many were pooling money, setting up business or investing in an underground economy that led to the foundation stones of many communities in the Anglosphere being laid.

Now the challenge that we face is that some of the Muslims are stepping away from holding onto entrepreneurial activities and the transactions of the Revealed Law; the sad thing is that the most avid encouragers and well-wishers to them are those who sit on their own thrones.

Every Muslim enclave has these self-appointed leaders and their tenuous links to any systematic theology and structured knowledge of fiqh is becoming more apparent as they become emboldened by the realisation that they live outside of the Muslim heartlands and are thus not within a jurisdiction to be prosecuted.

Brother Mahdi and I first encountered this when we translated an article on the ‘Fiqh of Minorities.’ The author of the text, Imam Muhammad Sa`id Ramadan Al-Bouti – may Allah have mercy on him and accept his martyrdom – proved himself a seer and a sage when he uncovered the smoke screen of dishonesty being used against Muslims by a shadow leadership structure.

The article suffered a number of setbacks and was eventually published independently due to the threat that it posed. The threat was that in its’ unvarnished, unpasteurised form, it could shake the very foundation of this shadowy world of phantom scholars, bank board muftis and magicians that have built their lives off Islam as a job.

Now we find that our brother, Br. Mahdi Lock, has translated the work in front of us, written by Imam Yahya an-Nawawi, a towering authority in his own right. It is our hope that this same work will do more damage to the current status quo and offer succour to those Muslims who are trying to make sense of this entire thing that is happening.

For if they are told who not to follow, it behoves us just as much to tell them who they ought to follow, why and what signs to look for when someone should be followed. If that goal is realised with just one family, then we have at least helped to stem the tidal wave of kufr and riba that threatens Muslims on not only an individual level but also as families.


Brother in Islam

Al-Hajj Abu Ja`far Al-Hanbali

Sunday 20 Rabi` ul-Akhir 1437 AH
31 January AD 2016

In the 93rd  Year of the Holy Land Captivity

Related Posts:

[1] Surat un-Nisa’ (4), ayah 59
[2] Collected by Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal in the Musnad, vol.16, pp. 70-71
[3] Surat un-Nisa’ (4), ayah 83
[4] Surat un-Nahl (16), ayah 43
[5] Surat ut-Tawbah (9), ayah 122
[6] Collected by Imam Muslim ibn Al-Hajjaj in Al-Jami` us-Sahih, Book of Giving Judgement under the chapter of Explanation of the Reward of the Judge When He Makes Ijtihad and He is Correct or Mistaken and classed as authentic.
[7] Surat ul-Hujurat (49), ayat 9-10
[8] i.e. unaware
[9] cf. Kash-shaf ul-Qina` `An Matn il-Iqna`, vol.5, pp. 136-137, Alam ul-Kutub, Beirut, 1418 AH
[10] Collected by Imam Abu Dawud in his Sunan, Book of Judgements under the chapter of the Ijtihad of the Opinion in Giving Rulings and classed as authentic.

[11] Please see `Abdul Malik Ibn Hisham's As-Sirat un-Nabawiyyah, (Ar.) vol.1, pp.290-291, Dar ul-Jail, Beirut
[12] As-Sirat un-Nabawiyyah, (Ar.) vol.3, pp.103-108, Dar ul-Jail, Beirut
[13] As-Sirat un-Nabawiyyah, (Ar.) vol.4, pp.139-143, Dar ul-Jail, Beirut
[14] As-Sirat un-Nabawiyyah, (Ar.) vol.2, pp.58-63, Dar ul-Jail, Beirut
[15] As-Sirat un-Nabawiyyah, (Ar.) vol.2, pp.56-58, Dar ul-Jail, Beirut
[16]  Please see Majmu`a Min Rasa'il is-Suyuti: Ithaf ul-Firqati Fi Rafw il-Khirqah, pp. 37-40, Dar  ul-Kitab il-`Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1434 AH
[17] Collected by Imam Muhammad ibn Isma`il Al-Bukhari in his Al-Jami` us-Sahih, Book of the Virtues of the Qur’an under the chapter of Gathering the Qur’an and classed by him as authentic.
[18] Collected by Imam Muhammad ibn Isma`il Al-Bukhari in his Al-Jami` us-Sahih, Book of the Virtues of the Qur’an under the chapter of Gathering the Qur’an and classed by him as authentic.
[19] Collected by Imam Muhammad ibn Isma`il Al-Bukhari in his Al-Jami` us-Sahih, Book of the Virtues of the Qur’an under the chapter of Gathering the Qur’an and classed by him as authentic.
[20] As-Sirat un-Nabawiyyah, (Ar.) vol.4, pp.7-15, Dar ul-Jail, Beirut
[21] Collected by Imam Muhammad ibn Isma`il Al-Bukhari in his Al-Jami` us-Sahih, Book of the Virtues of the Qur’an under the chapter of Gathering the Qur’an and classed by him as authentic.
[22] Please see Nail ul-Maarib Bi-Sharhi Dalil it-Talib Li-Nail il-Matalib, pp. 434-435.
[23] Ashadd ul-Jihadi Fi Ibtali Da`w al-Ijtihad, pp. 74-75
[24] Adh-Dhail `ala Tabaqat il-Hanabilah (2 vols in a collection of 4), vol.4, pp. 314-315, Dar ul-Kutub il-`Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1413 AH
[25] Hashiyah `ala Dalil it-Talib Li Nail il-Matalib, vol.1, pp. 23-24, Dar un-Nawadir, Beirut, 1432 AH
[26] Dalil ut-Talib `Ala Nail il-Matalib, Muqaddimah, pp. 5-14, Dar Tayyibah, Beirut, 1429 AH
[27] Al-Musnad, vol. 16, pp. 410-411
[28] Al-Mu`jam ul-Kabir, vol.10, pp. 179-181
[29] Al-Mu`jam ul-Kabir, vol.18, pp. 64-66
[30] Fada’ il us-Sahabah, vol. 2, pp. 905-907
[31] Matn ul-`Aqidat il-Wasitiyyah (Ar.), pp. 30-31.
[32] As cited from Imam Ibn Al-Jawzi's monumental historical work, Al-Muntazim fi Tarikh il-Muluki wal-Umam, vol.5, pp.320-335; vol.6, pp.6-21.
[33] Al-Muntazim fi Tarikh il-Muluki wal-Umam, vol.4, pp.231-233
[34] Al-Muntazim fi Tarikh il-Muluki wal-Umam, vol.4, pp.231-233
[35] Collected by Imam Muhammad ibn Isma`il Al-Bukhari in his Al-Jami` us-Sahih, The Book of Calling the Apostates and Rebels to Repentance and Fighting Them under the chapter of The Judicial Punishment to be Carried Out on the Apostate and classed by him as authentic.
[36] Shaikh ul-Islam Sulaiman ibn `Abdul Wahhab An-Najdi As-Sudairi (d. 1209 AH) said of this incident: The Fanatics, they were idol worshippers and People of Apostasy, manifested Islam until they manifested kufr clearly and openly without any doubt in it for anyone. That is why when `Ali, may Allah be pleased with him, came out to them at the Kandah Gate, they prostrated to him. When that happened, he said to them, “What is this?” They said, “You are Allah!” He said to them, “I am one of the slaves of Allah.” They answered, “But you… you are Allah!” He asked them to repent and threatened them with the sword and warned them, but they refused to repent. He ordered that a series of ditches be dug in the earth and that a fire be kindled in them while he warned them. He admonished them, “If you do not repent, I will punish you and burn you!” They would not repent and continued to say, “Indeed you are Allah!” Imam `Ali then burned them with fire. Once they felt the fire burning them, they said, “Now we are sure that you are Allah, for no one punishes with fire other than Allah!” Taken from The Divine Lightning: The Decisive Speech from the Lord of Lords, the Words of the Messenger of the King, the Bestower, the Statement of the People of Wisdom in Answer to Muhammad ibn `Abdul Wahhab, pp. 134-135.
[37] Zad ul-Mustaqni` fi-khtisar il-Muqni`,  pp. 217-218

1 comment:

Abu Nur al-Mizzi said...

In line with the above article's contents appended below is a quote by the contemporary Sunni theologian, Sa`eed Foudeh. It clearly demonstrates how the Wahhabi viewpoint on past "authorities" can lead to the undermining of the fundamentals of our religion by those who may not even label themselves as "Salafis" but nonetheless have been (knowingly or unknowingly) affected by their attitudes and mentalities. A perfect case in point that illustrates this is "The Study Qur'an" endeavor.
Here are Shaykh Sa`eed's words:

"This understanding that is deeply embedded in the minds of the Wahhābīs and modern-day Salafis has proven to be the greatest cause disconnecting the present day Ummah from its past. It is no secret that this mental separation weakens the Ummah both in ideas and beliefs, and leaves them to fall victim to attacks from those who oppose them in the fundamentals of the religion. It is also no secret that if this disconnection is true, it will serve as the greatest opening, allowing the secularists to find fault with the fundamentals of the religion. This has in fact occurred; there are groups of secularists who find fault with the fundamentals of the religion and who do not attest to the fundamentals of Ahl al-Sunnah wa al-Jamā‘ah. Most of their objections stem from this point of view; a refusal to submit to the understandings and rulings issued by the scholars over successive generations, whether concerning issues of creed, issues of jurisprudence, or other issues. They claim that these opinions are merely the opinions of other humans and that they are not obliged to hold fast to them, rather; they claim that they must go back to the original sources and commit to a re-reading of the religious texts and reach new conclusions that are suitable for this day and age. The secularists have adopted the fundamental premise of the Wahhābīs and added to it by going well beyond the Salaf." -