Posts Tagged ‘Salaf’

The Sunnis Versus the Quasi-Salafis

August 18, 2010

I want to, in-sha’ Allah, shed a little more clarity on the controversy between the Sunni `aqidah and that of the quasi-salafis (Wahhabis).  Sadly, many of those who profess to follow traditional Sunni scholarship and `aqidah have only exacerbated the confusion, for they (these pseudo-tradtionalists) have now tried to “close the door” on discussing matters of kufr (disbelief) and riddah (apostasy).  None of this, of course, should be very surprising given that one of their main propagators/institutions has now refused to call even Christians and Jews of this era “disbelievers and kuffar” without a great deal of equivocation—that’s if they are willing to do so at all (and I am not talking about the genuine followers of Jesus or Moses of the past—I am talking about those people who today ascribe to Allah non-befitting attributes and deem that our Messenger Muhammad lied about his Prophethood—such people aren’t Muslim; hence they are kuffar (disbelievers)).

Every (genuine) Muslim believes that Allah is One and that there is only correct belief in Allah.  If the person does not have the correct belief in Allah, then he is not a Muslim.  Plain and simple.  Consequently, you cannot have two people who self-identify as Muslims, yet they have two opposing and contradictory beliefs in Allah—for they would be praying to two different beings.   They may both be, but one must necessarily be, wrong.  This requires us to establish what the correct belief in Allah is, and as a result, we will know what the wrong belief(s) in Allah are.

Allah is One; Allah is Incomparable; Allah is Free-of-Need; Allah is Omnipotent; Allah is Omniscient; Allah is the One and Only Creator.  Nothing is to be except what Allah wills.  The quasi-salafis would not disagree with those statements mentioned above (although they do, in reality disagree with their implications).  It should be obvious that the Creed that is rationally consistent and consonant with the Qur’an and Hadith is superior to the creed that contradicts the Qur’an and Sunnah and is riddled with logical absurdities.  The Sunnis say that there is nothing in our belief in Allah that contradicts the judgment of reason.  We can start from two premises (that the quasi-salafi is forced to agree with, at least on the surface) to demonstrate the inconsistencies of the Wahhabi doctrine.  The Sunnis say:

1.  Allah ABSOLUTELY does not resemble the creations (112:4, 16:74; 42:11).

2.  Allah ABSOLUTELY does not need the creations (112:2; 29:6; 3:97)

These are two premises derived not from “falasafee,” but, as we can see, from the Qur’an itself.  The Sunni scholars derived from the above Verses the principles that (1) Allah is not an object (or spatial entity) and (2) that Allah exists without being in a location (not in one particular place, nor in all places).  If Allah had been an object or a spatial entity, then Allah would share in common qualities that are shared in common with the creations Simply look at the things around you: they are objects that exist in space.  Allah ABSOLUTELY does not resemble the creations; hence, Allah is not an object and Allah is not in space.

Furthermore, Allah absolutely does not need the creations.  Allah is not a location (or direction).  Location (place/direction) is something other than Allah.  And since everything that exists other than Allah is a creation, and Allah does not need the creations, then it should be evident to all that Allah exists without being in a location or direction.  Furthermore, the thing that is in a location requires a specified amount of space to exist.  Allah does not require any of the creations for His Existence (including, space or place), for Allah is Incomparable and Free-of-Need.

LOST IN SEMANTICS

Why do the Wahhabis believe Allah is a giant spatial entity located above their heads?  The Wahhabis (quasi-salafis) believe such because they insisted on a (selectively) literalist doctrine.  They innovated a rule that says that all the Verses (and Hadith) referring to Allah have to be taken at “face value”—that is, they (claim to) reject the idiomatic nature of the Arabic language.  However, even with this premise, they are inconsistent.  They do not take Verses that (if taken literally would) mean: Allah is closer to us than out jugular veins (50:18); or that Allah forgets (45:34); or that Allah is everywhere (57:4); or that Allah is below us (96:19); or that Allah is a giant illumination that fills up the Heavens and Earth (24:35); etc.  in their literal sense.  The same can be said about numerous Hadiths for which the quasi-salafis reject literal interpretations.

What the Wahhabis did is read the Verses that refer to Allah as being “above” or “high” in their literal sense (while ignoring those Verses that if taken literally would say otherwise).  The Wahhabis took this position because of their erroneous assumptions about Allah (that is, they assumed Allah to be an object of some sort, and that Allah requires space for His Existence) and their general weakness in the Arabic language (or English language, for that matter).  When the Sunnis say Allah is Al-`Aliyy (“The Most High”) they are referring to the Glory, Perfection, Holiness, and STATUS of Allah—they do not mean a literal location or direction.   Just as in the olden days when the English subjects of the crown referred to the king as “their royal HIGHNESS,” they did not mean that the king occupied the highest location in the kingdom, but that he had the highest social STATUS (at least according to them).

Another semantic problem of the Wahhabis is the absurd of claiming to take the Verses “literally” and then in the same breath reject the literal meaning.  The Arabic language is vast.  A single word may contain a dozen or more meanings.  The Wahhabis claim that Allah has a literal “Face,” “Eyes,” “Fingers,” “two right Hands,” one “Shin” and a “pair of  Feet” (on the comparatively small Kursiyy).   Now all of us who know English know that, for instance, a “face” (in its literal—non-figurative sense) is the “front part of the head” and that hands are the “organs of grasping beginning at our wrists.”  Imam Al-Qushayri (a genuine Sufi and Sunni scholar of `Aqidah) said that it is absurd to claim that Allah has a literal shin (saaq) and then turn around and say that this alleged literal shin is not a bone in the lower leg.   Similarly one can’t say Allah has a literal front part of the head, but it’s not a front part of the head.  Either one means that Allah has literal limbs, organs, and appendages that is, one believes Allah is an object (which is tashbeeh and disbelief)—OR—one does not mean that Allah literally has a face, fingers, eyes, shin, etc.  And if they do not mean that Allah has a literal face, fingers, eyes, shin, then the quasi-salafis shouldn’t (mis)translate Verses and Hadiths and say that Allah does.

Furthermore, we see the Wahhabis get lost in translation.  If one opens even an Arabic-English dictionary, such as, Hans Wehr or Al-Mawrid (which are by NO MEANS comprehensive Arabic dictionaries), we see that the term “Wajh” (what the Wahhabis claim is a “face when attributed to Allah) has about TWENTY-FIVE meanings listed in Al-Mawrid.  The term “saaq,” (from Al-Qalam, 42), which the Wahhabis attempt to use to “prove” that “Allah will show off the front part of His (alleged) lower leg” (that is, a shin), actually means “the matter became difficult,” (page 443, Hans Wehr—the idiom of “showing the shin,” kashaf `an saaq is sort of like the English phrase “roll up your sleeves”).

Contrary to the claims of the quasi-salafis, the Sunnis do not “deny the Attributes of Allah.”   We confirm what Allah ascribed to Himself IN THE ARABIC LANGUAGE.   Allah is attributed with “Yad,” “Wajh,” “`Ayn,” etc.—FULL STOP—while being absolutely certain that none these Attributes refer to something with bodily or spatial characteristics.  Or, we can follow the method of many of the Sunni scholars, including the Salaf, such as, `Abdullah ibn `Abbas, At-Tabari, and Mujahid: we can apply an ACCEPTABLE specific meaning (or translation) for these Attributes that conforms with the Arabic language AND conforms with two of the basic premises of the `Aqidah: (1) Allah ABSOLUTELY does not resemble the creations (2) Allah ABSOLUTELY does not need the creations; hence, any meaning that would lead to ascribing to Allah the attributes of objects and bodies or implying that Allah is in space or a location is categorically rejected.

In conclusion, Allah is One—that is, Allah is Unique, Allah has no partners, Allah is not a body or object composed of parts.  The True Creed is one and the same among the Muslims: Our Lord is too Great and Glorious to be ascribed with the deficiencies of being in a place or direction, for Allah is the Creator of all places and directions and Allah does not need the things He created.  Again, this matter is not complicated to understand.  Sadly, however, there are pseudo-traditionalists out on the circuit who seem bent on making the most elementary matters of Imaan and kufr as obscure as possible.  And on the other hand, we have those who have fallen for the corporealist and anthropomorphic Najdi doctrine from the Saudi Arabia kingdom.  May Allah make us among people of the moderate way—those who make a just distinction between Imaan and kufr, who enjoin good and forbid evil, and do so with sincerity and wisdom and without transgression.

With Allah is the success.

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No Unity Upon Error

September 10, 2009

This is a pretty rough draft of something that needs to be discussed regarding various groups here in the West.  This was written as a response on another blog to the absurdity of those who claim to be Sunnis (i.e., those who follow a madhhab and either the Ash`ari or Maturidi schools of explaining Doctrine) with the Wahhabis (i.e., those who pray to a giant (imaginary) corporeal entity with a smiling face, tibia, fingers, feet, and eyes that allegedly mounts the `Arsh). 

 

I know that i can’t be the only one in the Islamic blogosphere who sees that there is a problem here. One of the primary principles of this Deen is to enjoin the good and forbid the wrong. We have two, or one may say, three trends taking place here. These positions, in spite of what some “pledge” may claim, are irreconcilable.

 

Let’s start from the top and be blunt about it. The Maghrib Institute is a Wahhabi institute. Now before the pseudo-salafis start lying and saying there is no such thing as a “Wahhabi,” this was the name given to the movement by the Sunnis when this movement arose from the accursed region of Najd. By “Wahhabi,” i mean those who follow Muhammad ibn Abdul-Wahhab and believe in the anthropomorphic teachings of that movement. It is the Wahhabis, who pray to a giant corporeal smiling faced entity, with a tibia, a pair of relatively small feet, eyes and fingers, who moves up and down, sits in person, and mounts the Ceiling of Paradise (the `Arsh). The Sunnis have deemed this outrageous belief kufr.

 

On the other hand, there are those who claim to be “traditionalist” Muslims who follow a madhhab and one of the two schools of Sunni theology (Ash`ari or Maturidi). These people have gained almost rock star status among some Muslims. Nonetheless, these same “rock stars” have made claims, such as:

—-”the Hurul-`Ayn” (Virgins of Paradise) are figurative,

—that murder interupts the predestined deathtime of a person (this is outright kufr, for nothing alters that which Allah has predestined)

—that we are “the children of Allah,” (on at least two, although i heard from someone else on at least three occassions)

—that (one of these quasi-scholars) does not know what happens to the kaafir when he dies (and refers to kaafirs as “martyrs”)

—there is no martial jihaad mentioned in the Qur’an

—in an interview with Bill Moyer one of these (so-called) “scholars” for dollars just outright denies and rejects a verse in the Qur’an (whose meaning is commonly known by any student of knowledge)

—claims that we cannot call a person a “kaafir” because we do not know what state a person will die upon (this is a lie–we judge a person based upon their current condition)

—cannot even give a clear unambiguous definition of who a kaafir is and what is their destination in the Hereafter—-In essence, there is a trend among these quasi-traditionalists to obliterate the entire notion of kufr (disbelief) and riddah (apostasy) from the minds of Muslims (so that they (these swindlers) won’t be challenged in their misguidance/kufr)

—another one of these “scholars” oversaw a Ph. D. dissertation that attempts to prove that “the original Asiatic blackman is Allah,” (by some twisted line of logic that since the early Muslims (allegedly) had anthropomorphic notions about Allah, and that the original inhabitants of Arabia were allegedly black, ergo, Allah is a “blackman.”) This same “scholar” said in one of his books that it is not important for African-American Muslims to study the matters of `Aqidah.

—then we have one of the former Maghrib teachers asking Allah to have mercy on a well-known (dead) deviant, who denied the miracles of the Prophets, denied the existence of the jinn, claimed that the accountable Christians are not condemned to Hell, that the Christian male can marry the Muslim female, etc. Even some of his (now former?) students couldn’t wrap their minds around that–for they said that they learned FROM HIM that the one who does the above commits kufr (i.e., denies what is necessarily known in the Deen), and one cannot ask Allah to forgive the one who dies in a state of disbelief (for it belies what Allah revealed).

 

It is clear that if these two groups were sincere to their methodology, they would necessarily not only speak out against each other, but they would have to make takfeer on one another. The Sunnis have always deemed those who claim Allah occupies space, or has body parts, or changes as a non-Muslim. The Prophet only taught one belief in the Eternal Creator. You simply can’t reconcile the Sunni belief that Allah is clear of time, place, and direction with the claim (the lie) that Allah has organs, limbs, appendages, a smiling face, and sits down inside of a location. As for the so-called Salafis, they deem the mainstream Muslims kaafir for making tawassul (asking Allah by the virtue of the righteous Muslims) and tabarruk (seeking blessings thru the traces of the righteous). These two points are the rationale the Wahhabis employed to go on a wholesale massacre of the Muslims in Medinah, Taa’if, and starve the Muslims in Mecca in the early 1800’s.

 

Regarding Abdullah Hakim Quick, he was what some used to call the “Afrocentric Wahhabi”–although it seems he’s toned it down over the years. For one, you can’t do a historical study of Islam in Africa come to the conclusion that the Muslims of Africa were following the anthropomorphic doctrines of the Wahhabis (to the contrary, they are Ash`aris), and that Islam spread thru Africa largely by way of the Sufi tariqahs. Also, in a video Abdullah Hakim Quick did, he has a scene where there are WOMEN visiting the graves to seek blessings of some of those who are said to be among the awliyaa’. He doesn’t make any objection to that–although, the Wahhabis consider such an act kufr. In-sha’ Allah, i hope he’s changed–but it makes no sense that if he did for him to join Al-Maghrib.

 

In summary, unity is based upon sincerity–that is, sincerity to Allah and unity is based upon seeking to defend the Deen from corruption. These various factions have been willing to put aside CORE DIFFERENCES IN CREED(S) in order to attract large numbers of people (and to make A LOT of loot). If we wish to get united, we need to get down to what the core issues/differences are (primarily those related to `Aqidah), establish what is correct and warn against and expose those who are wrong. Until these alleged leaders are willing to that (and fix their mistakes), then we shouldn’t forget what Cheryl Benard laid out in her Rand Report article on how to undermine Islam.

With Allah is the success.

swarthmoor.wordpress.com

Bilal Philips EXPOSED (Audio Lesson)

December 2, 2008

at-tahawiyy-26-refutation-of-bilal-philips

 

This is a lesson dedicated to the refutation of Bilal Philips, who claims that Allah is a giant body that lives above our heads.  Allah is the Creator of space and direction.  Allah existed before space and direction and does not occupy space or direction.

At-Tahawi and Predestination

December 2, 2008

at-tahawiyy-24-more-on-destiny1

 

Another lesson from the famous Sunni Salaf scholar, Abu Ja`far At-Tahawiyy on the Islamic Creed.

Lesson 4 from Summary of Islamic Knowledge (Audio)

November 23, 2008

summary-4 

This is a lesson from the Fard-ul-`Ayn Knowledge (knowledge required for every legally accountable person) related to the matters of the Creed.

At-Tahawi #20 The Night Journey and Ascension of the Prophet (Audio)

January 12, 2008

At-Tahawi #20

A short lesson on the Israa’ and Mi`raaj of Prophet Muhammad.

At-Tahawi #19 Allah Exists Without Direction (Audio)

January 10, 2008

at-tahawiyy-19-allah-is-clear-of-directions

An explanation of the famous saying of Abu Ja`far At-Tahawiyy:

“Allah is clear of all boundaries, extremities, sides, organs, other body parts/devices.  None of the six directions contain Allah as is the case with all the created entities.”

At-Tahawi #18 Explanation of Aal `Imraan, 7 AUDIO (continued)

January 8, 2008

This is a continuation of Lesson #17 and a refutation of those who distort the Verses of the Quran and Hadith.

At-Tahawi #17 Aal `Imran, 7 and the Mutashaabih Verses

January 7, 2008

At-Tahawi #17

This is a lesson on the methodology of how the Sunni Muslims interpret the Mutashaabih (“figurative”) Verses of the Qur’an and the Hadith of the Prophet.  This is a critical lesson to help one understand the difference between the Islamic belief and that of the quasi-Salafis (Wahhabis).