Message No : 9Sr.No : 117/724
Question By : Tanzeel

as salamu alaykum,

I have been told and learnt that the correct position in Aqeeda were of the Ashari and Maturidi school in kalam. Unfortunately, today there are people from the Najd (in Saudi Arabia) and also some who call themselves "salafiyya" (although in reality they are "al-mutasallifa", the pseudo-salafis) who go around arrogantly stating that the Aqeeda of our great Ulama who follow Ashari and Maturidi school is incorrect and deviated. I feel disturbed at this attack on the Aqeeda of Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama'ah, who have followed the Ashari and Maturidi school. These pseudo-salafi people claim that they follow Shaykh Ibn Taymiyya and Ibn al-Qayyim in Aqeeda. They also quote from the works of these scholars stating that they said that the Ashaira and Maturidiyya have deviated (Naudho Billah!). This is disturbing and I hope you can clarify this matter. I have learnt that Ibn Taymiyya and Ibn Qayyim were scholars and people of knowledge, but made some strange statements in Aqeeda by interpreting the attributes of Allah literally, claiming that He has Hands, Eyes (haqiqatan), and that Allah is sitting on His throne literally (haqiqatan). I learnt from Hanafi and Shafi'i scholars, however, that Ibn Taymiyya and Ibn al-Qayyim made a few mistakes (May Allah forgive them) and that we have to follow the majority of scholars. Some of the Salafi even go to extremes in claiming that great scholars like Hafiz Ibn Hajr, Imam Nawawi, Bayhaqi, Allama Zahid al-Kawthari Hanafi, who were Ashari or Maturidi, made errors and deviated in Aqeeda. Could you please clarify this, so that Ahlus Sunnah don't fall into claims of this new group going around spreading fitna!

Jazak Allah Khair.


Reply By : M. Shihabuddin Qasmi
Designation : Mufti, ODI, MMERC, Mumbai 


In the name of Allah the All Gracious the All Merciful

Wa Alaikumussalam
Dear in Islam,

The answer of your question is as follows:

Your are correct in your understanding and you should not to be worried rather we all are suppose to take pain about the understanding of these so-called Salfi whom you mentioned in your question.

All the laws and teachings of Islam can be divided into two categories: (1) Ahkam (teaching related to practice such as Salah, Sawm and so on) (2) Aqueeda (teachings related to beliefs and faiths). There is a series of sect in Muslim community with different names. None of them follows the path of Prophet and his companions except Ahle Sunnah Wal-Jama¡¯ah. The Prophet of Islam is reported as having said, ¡°My people will break into seventy three groups. All of them will go to the hell except one. The companions asked, ¡°O, Messenger of Allah! Who are those people? He replied, ¡°The group follows me and my companions¡±.

There are four school of thoughts in Ahle Sunnah Wal Jama¡¯ah in Ahkamaat: Hanfiah, Shafiah, Malikiah and Hambaliah. And two in Aqueedah: Ash¡¯aree and Maturidy. Maturidy is named after Shaikh Abu Monsoor Maturidy who was a Hanfi while Ash¡¯aree was named after Shaikh Abul Hasan who was a Shafee. Therefore, most of Hanfee Ulama are Maturidee and Shafee are Asharee in Aqueeda. (Sharhe Aqaayid)

All the Ulama unanimously have agreed that all the above-described schools are ¡®Haq¡¯.
A Muslim is enjoined to follow Allah and His Prophet Muhammad (SAW) in every aspect of his life. But it is, at a time, impossible not only for common Muslims but for the great Ulama and jurists to practise on the commandments of Allah, altogether, by understanding the ups and down of the Glorious Qur¡¯aan and having command over the sayings of the Prophet. Therefore, Ulama have unanimously agreed to follow any particular Imam amongst the above-mentioned four Imams. (Fatawa-e-Raheemia V: 4 P: 189-191).
The great Ulama and jurists of Ummah like Imam Abu Usuf, Muhammad, Tirmizi, Ibne Hajr Asqalani, Imam Navawi, Tahavi, Shumsul Aymmah Alhalwani, Fakhrul Imam Bazdawi, Abul Hasam Karakhi, Shaah Waliullah Muhaddithe-Dehlawi and so on belong to a particular school of thought amongst the four schools. It is too difficult for a common person to understand the ins and outs of the Glorious Qur¡¯aan and practise on them according to the will of Allah. That¡¯s why prophets and messengers were sent down to convey the message of Allah to His slaves. It is also difficult for common Muslims to have command over the traditions of the Prophet and understand the commandments of Allah. It is the business of jurists and scholars.

It is highly regretted that there are some Muslims who have deviated form true path by refuting Taqleed because of lesser understanding and knowledge. They call themselves Salafi. But they are not Salafi in reality. For, the word Salaf is used for Sahaba (the companions of Prophet, Tabeyeen and Tabe-Tabeyeen). Their period is the best one in Islamic history and their consensus on a Masala and deduction of Masala from the Glorious Qur¡¯aan and Hadith is Hujjate Shar¡¯y (worthy following) for whole Ummah. And those who follow them are true Salafi and followers of Ahle Sunnah Wa-Lajamah. We follow the Sunnah and Jamah and abstain from neglecting Jamah, creating problems and dividing into parties. Sunnah is the path of Prophet and Jamah is the Unity of Muslims, the companions of Prophet and their followers till the Day of Judgment. One who follows them is going on the true path and one who does not is deviating from the track.

As far as Imam Ibe Taimia and Ibe Qyyeem are concerned, they were amongst the greatest Ulama of their ages. Ahle Sunnah Wal-Jamah respect them and take their names with great honour but do not agree with them in certain opinions those they have in Ahkamaat and Aqueedah such as following any particular Imam is not permissible according to Ibne Taimia while that is Wajib according to the unanimous decision of other Ahle Sunnat Ulama. On the other hand, though he says, ¡°To use the words of direction and shape for Allah Almighty whether in positive or negative is Bida¡¯h, and I do not say but whatever in the Glorious Qur¡¯aan and Hadith, he interprets the attributes of Allah Almighty like the attributes of human beings. (Jawharatut-Tawheed V: 1 P: 512-515) Ahle Sunnah Wal Jamah and Salfe Saliheen do not interpret the attributes of Allah almighty literally. For Allah is beyond the attributes of human beings and their description. Allah SWT himself says in the Glorious Qur¡¯aan, ¡°He has no likeness.¡± Ibne Umar (RA) is reported to have said, ¡°Allah is beyond the attributes of human beings and He can never be interpreted with the attributes of human. (Jawhartuttawheed V: 1 P: 513)

It is advisable for so-called Salafi to follow any particular school amongst the four schools of thoughts. If they do not, they should make up their minds to live in an evil refuge forever. The Lofty Qur¡¯aan says about such people, ¡°If anyone contends with the Messenger even after guidance has been plainly conveyed to him, and follows a path other than that becoming to men to faith, We shall leave him in the path he has chosen, and land him in hell, what an evil refuge!¡± (Suratunnisa: 4 V: 115)

And about the attributes, which are not, entirely clear, it is good to exercise our ingenuity about their meaning. We are only asked to believe in those verses and Hadith even without knowing their exact description. They refer to such profound matters that are sometimes beyond human language and manly comprehension but people of wisdom may get some light from them. But no one should be dogmatic, as Allah alone knows the final meaning.

Allah knows the best
Thank you

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