Combining Prayers Due to Work or Lack of Location

Figure 1A: Muslims at prayer in Jerusalem.
Figure 1A: Muslims at prayer in Jerusalem.

The following is a very pertinent question that was brought forward by one of the believers:

Assalamu alaikum ya Sheikh

There is a student of medicine who works in clinics and is not allowed to pray during clinics.

Is there any dispensation in the hanbali school for him to combine his zuhr and asr in the time of zuhr in this circumstance?

I wanted to check with this ruling can this be done habitually if one is continually in this situation or is this allowed only rarely.

Jazakallah

 

Response from Br. Abu Ja`far Al-Hanbali:

as-Salaamu `Alaikum wa Rahmatullah, 

Noble brother, 

If someone cannot pray at the two prayer times stipulated due to the fact of commitments or lack of location, then they may combine the prayers of Zuhr and `Asr while at their location.

This is the ruling of Imam Musa Al-Qaddumi (d. 1336 AH), may Allah have mercy upon him. Therefore, he should not delay it until the end of the day or “when he gets home” after Maghrib and/or `Isha.

Rather, he should pray them at one time combined. The dispensation remains as long as the conditions that bring it about remain. 

was-Salaam, 

 Al-Hajj

More from Imam Al-Buhuti on Shortening Prayers

Figure 1A: Muslims praying on the road.
Figure 1A: Muslims praying on the road.

As-Salaamu `Alaikum wa Rahmatullah, from Br. Abu Ja`far Al-Hanbali

Noble brother/sister,

The text below is a long quote from Imam Mansur Al-Buhuti (d. 1051 AH (AD 1654), may Allah have mercy upon him on the topic. The verses of the Qur’an and ahadith and their citations I have quoted in bold.

Please note that the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, not only shortened on hajj (8th-12th) but also on the battle of Tabuk, which was the final battle he took part in and he was shortening for twenty days. Again, this was not hajj or some hardship, rather, he had passed over 16 farsakh, (i.e. 48 miles) so he was shortening, in addition to combining. Please read through below:

Ar. qasrAl-Buhuti, may Allah be pleased with him, gave a detailed response on the topic, “The evidence for shortening the prayer is the word of the Exalted One, When you move in the Earth, there is no harm for you if you shorten your prayer. {Surat un-Nisa (4), ayah 101}

Whoever intended to travel and set out on a permitted journey that was not disliked nor impermissible – and included with this is compulsory, praiseworthy, permitted travel in its’ widest sense, even if disliked or for travel, visit and sightseeing – and this travel reaches four burud which is 16 farsakh by land or see or it is two days of travel, it is the sunnah for him to shorten his compulsory prayers that are four raka`ah to two raka`ah.

The reason for this is that the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, always did this on travel in his compulsory prayer, the only exception being the Maghrib and Subuh prayers, which are three and two raka`ah, respectively. These two prayers are never shortened and this ruling is Consensus as quoted by Ibn Al-Mundhir.

When the traveler passes by the last of built up areas of his town or city, whether it is the houses within the walls or outside or the tents of his tribe or clan or what is customarily known as the boundary of the city – such as the boundaries of castles or parks and gardens and the like – then it is permitted to shorten at that time. The reason for this is that the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, only shortened when he traveled.

Whoever shortened his prayer with its’ condition then returned before completing the duration of time, he is not required to repeat the prayer again. Whoever has recently entered Islam, reached the age of adulthood or became purified would shorten on any permitted journey.

If the remainder of the journey was under the amount and it was not due to a journey of disobedience as one may not shorten on a journey of disobedience, it is permitted to shorten.

An individual should not shorten his prayers when he has doubt about whether he has traveled the distance required for shortening nor should anyone who did not intend to travel and became lost and had no direction in mind when he went far away.

An individual travelling to waste of time or just for the sake of shortening also may not shorten his prayer but one who is forced, such as in the case of prisoners, a woman for her husband, a prisoner for his master may shorten his or her prayer.

If someone began the prayer as a resident but began moving due to transportation or began the prayer while travelling but reached his destination while praying, then he needs to make the prayer in full as the prayer is upon the ruling of resident and travel but the dominant ruling is resident as he started the prayer as a resident in the first place or reached the destination not long after beginning the prayer in the second place.

The same ruling holds for someone who traveled after the time for the prayer arrived. He must complete the prayer in full as it is compulsory to do so.

If he remembered a prayer that he did not pray as a resident while on a journey, he must pray it in full as the make-up of the prayer is based on where the prayer became due and that is four due to him being resident.

If he remembered a prayer that he forgot on a journey while he was resident, then he should pray in full as the shortening of prayer is a dispensation for travel and this dispensation is lifted by the reason for it coming to a stop.

If the traveler leads the resident in prayer, the resident is to pray the full prayer. Ibn `Abbas, may Allah be pleased with him, said, ‘That is indeed the Sunnah.’ This is collected by Imam Ahmad in Al-Musnad.

Another point to be kept in mind is that if a traveler is leading another traveler in prayer and for some valid reason a resident joins the two travelers in the prayer the resident must complete his prayer.

If the traveler is in prayer and the one who joins him does not know whether the one leading the prayer is resident or not, the one who has joined the imam should make the prayer in full and even if he finds out that the imam was a traveler due to his not knowing his intention, his prayer is intact.

In the case that he knew or had a strong reason to believe that the imam is a traveler by seeing his clothes that are different to the residents around him and that his imam has intended to shorten the prayer, then the individual to join the prayer would do so as well based upon examining the outward action.

If the one to join the prayer says or intends, ‘If he makes the prayer in full then so will I and if he is shortening the prayer, then so will I,’ there is no harm in this action. If someone began the prayer, the general ruling is one makes the prayer in full as he is following a resident or if he did not intend shortening as his beginning intention, then he needs to pray in full as his intention has been negated.

If he did pray without the correct intention, then he needs to repeat the prayer as it is necessary for the resident to pray in full. If he began the prayer without intention to shorten, then he has to complete as the general rule in prayer is that it is made in full and this is the general ruling regarding intentions in the manner.

If someone doubts whether or not he has made the intention to shorten, then he is to complete. The general ruling is that he has not intended it so he maintains the foundation, which is praying in full. If someone intended to be resident in a land more than four days, then he must complete the prayers.

If he was resident for just four days, then he would shorten based upon what is the agreed upon hadith in the collections of Imams Al-Bukhari and Muslim as narrated by both Ibn `Abbas and Jabir that the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, came to Makkah in the morning of the fourth of Dhul Hijjah and was resident there for the 4th-7thand prayed the Subuh on the 8th day and then went to Mina.

He was shortening the prayers on these days and combining them as well during that time.”

Al-Buhuti said further, “If the traveler was at sea journey and had with him his family and did not intend on residing in a land or becoming resident, then he would pray in full as he is not stopping there and he has his family and other matters with him. The same thing holds for the collector, shepherd or messenger of the sultan who must carry out his communications.

The traveler also prays in full when he passes his land or his city and his wife is there and he marries there and he stops by or if he intends on praying in full. If he has two directions he could take to get to the same place, one farther and one closer, then he travels the farther route in order to be a traveler and be able to shorten.

If the traveler while one his journey remembered a prayer that he had not made while on a journey, then he would shorten that prayer as well as its’ becoming compulsory and the act of doing it both came to pass while he was on a journey.

This is due to the fact that the prayer he is making up at that time is as if it is in its’ time as he is on a journey and has the time to make it up. Ibn Tamim and others said, ‘Making up some of the prayer in travel is like making up all of them.

Whatever needs to be made up from travel should be shortened. This has been discussed by Imam Burhan ud-Din Ibn Muflih in Al-Mubdi`.

If the traveler was detained due to some oppression, illness, rain or something such as that and did not intend to be resident, then he would shorten until the situation is resolved as based upon the action of Ibn `Umar, may Allah be pleased with him, when he was resident in Azerbaijan for six months and he shorted his prayers due to there being snow and ice between him and entrance into another land.

This is collected by Imam Abu Bakr Al-Athram. The easier situation is when someone knows that he is at war and will not be able to set out until after a number of days, he shortens his prayer as long as he is not resident in front of the enemy.

If the traveller is resident somewhere to complete some need without the intention to be resident and does not know when he will be able to complete his work, then he continues shortening based upon his knowledge of the matter, whether he is there for a long time or a short time.

The reason for this is that the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, was resident at Tabuk for twenty days and he shortened his prayer. This is collected by Imam Ahmad in Al-Musnad and others as well. The chain of transmission of this narration and its’ narrators are sound.

If the traveler believers that he will not complete his need or business except after more than four days, then he completes his prayers in full.

If he intended to make the journey for someone that was impermissible, it is not valid for him to shorten and his ruling is like someone resident attempting to shorten his prayer, so both of these acts are invalid and the worship will not be sound.”Ar-Rawd ul-Murbi` Bi-Sharhi Zad il-Mustaqni`, pp. 121-123.

Ibn Al-Jawzi Translation and Dishonesty

Figure 1A: The circular design of Baghdad was the idea of the khalifah Abu Ja`far Al-Mansur
Figure 1A: The circular design of Baghdad was the idea of the khalifah Abu Ja`far Al-Mansur

This is an e-mail discussion that was conducted between myself and a brother on two very important topics. I hope that readers will find this of some benefit.

___________________________

As-salaamu alaikum Sheikh Abu Ja’far,

wa `Alaikum us-Salaamu wa Rahmatullah, 

Noble brother, 

May Allah keep you and your family in good health insha’allah.

Thank you.

I would like to ask a few questions that perhaps you may provide clarification on.

I will try my best. 

First, I have recently finished reading ‘The Attributes of God’, the English translation of ‘Daf Shubah al Tashbih bi Akaff al Tanzih’ by Imam Abul Faraj ibn al Jawzi rahimahullah, translated by Abdullah Hamid Ali.

There are significant errors made regarding the theology of Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal (d. 241 AH) and Imam Ibn Al-Jawzi, by both the translator and the publisher along with some of the issues of Imam Muhammad Zahid Al-Kawthari.

I know this as I was on the editing staff and I first warned them not to do this translation as they had neither studied comparative creed nor had they understood the issues surrounding the fact that this was an “in house” discussion between Imam Ibn Al-Jawzi (d. 597 AH) and some other scholars within the madhhab. 

After presenting my statements to the translation committee regarding my lack of confidence in their skill as well as mistakes made in theology by the translator, I was informed that they were still going ahead with the project and not going to consult authorities on the topic such as Imams As-Saffarini (d. 1188 AH) and others. 

I have enclosed some details as evidence of my statements so that you might see that they are not claims but rather assertions of facts and as the matter concerns foundational theology, the rulings regarding backbiting are suspended and the six dispensations on backbiting

(one of them being false theology) are being exercised (please see the notes at the end of the two large files and you will have a better grasp of my statements made above).

The Imam, while clarifying the meanings of around 60 ahadith, also criticises in many places the commentary of shuyukh such as al Zaghuni,

He is `Ali ibn `Ubaidullah ibn Nasr ibn As-Sirri Az-Zaghuni (455-527 AH). He was a major Imam in the madhhab and wrote on theology.

Imam Ibn As-Sam`ani says of him, “The faqih, the hadith scholar, the preacher, Abul Hasan. He was one of the elite of the madhhab.” 

Ibn Al-Jawzi himself says of him, “In every science he had a vast swath of knowledge and could preach for a good, long time.” Both are cited in Adh-Dhail  Ala Tabaqat ul-Hanabilah, vol.3 (this is a special edition, four volume set including the original tabaqat (2 vols) as part of the set), pp. 149-150, Beirut, 1417 (AD 1997) 

Qadi Abu Ya’la

Al-Qadi Abu Ya`la Al-Baghdadi (380- 458 AH) is Muhammad ibn Al-Hussain ibn Al-Farra Al-Baghdadi and is one of the renewers of Islam and was the one who brought the scholars back into rule during his time when laymen had taken over the Muslim world’s temporal ruling structure. 

According to Al-Qadi Abul Hussain, he was one of the many students of Ibn Hamid. Please see Tabaqat ul-Hanabilah, vol.2, pp. 166-167.

He is quoted by Abul Hussain as saying the following on pp. 178-179 in vol.2 of the said text aforementioned: 

“We have mentioned faith in the narrations of the attributes without denial, likening to the creation, meaning or interpretation. This is the statement of the early generations, both the beginning and end of them.

It is that which was mentioned by the leader of the believers Al-Qadir, may Allah be pleased with him, in his text Al-Qadiriyyah: What Allah has described Himself with or what the Messenger, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, described Him with are on their reality and not by way of metaphor.” 

Thus the theology of the Hanbalis in general and in particular of Al-Qadi Abu Ya`la Al-Baghdadi is mentioned clearly. Please be aware of this principle. 

and ibn al Hamid

He is ِAl-Hasan ibn Hamid ibn `Ali ibn Marwan Al-Baghdadi  (d. 403 AH). Described by Al-Qadi Abul Hussain (d. 526 AH) as, “The Imam of the Hanbalis in his time, their teacher and mufti and he has numerous texts in various sciences as well as a collected text on the Madhhab.” Tabaqat ul-Hanabilah, vol.2, pp.145-146.

This particular Imam, in the early part of his career, delved into kalam and for this reason, as quoted in the Nihayah (pp. 31-32, Maktabat ur-Rushd, Riyadh, 1425 AH (AD 2004) of Ibn Hamdan (d. 695 AH), as stating that,

“He is above the throne in His Essence and touching it. He descends from His Place which He is in and changes from place to place.” This was early in his theological career and in his middle passage, changed his positions on kalam and moved back into the principle of “without how, without meaning.” 

Besides this, his theology is the same as that of Al-Qadi Abu Ya`la Al-Baghdadi (who came some time after him) other than for a few tertiary issues in theology. This position was also refuted (as per the above cited text) by Ibn `Aqil and other scholars who faulted him,

censured him but they held him to be correct in affairs besides that. Just like Al-Qadi Abu Ya`la has said, “He is above the Throne, not like one sitting on a chair or riding on a beast.” (source cited above). 

*As a point of context, although the word `alaa is being used in relation to the fact that Allah is above the throne, contextually in the text and to the Hanbali scholars, it is understood that `alaa means fawqa (“above”) and we already know that it is not known according to any human understanding. Please keep this in mind.*

on the said ahadith, calling their remarks self-contradictory and confused, mentioning a few times that they have ‘disgraced the madhab’ of Imam Ahmad, and in one or two places mentioning that their commentary is disbelief.

This issue has to do with the understanding of the doctrine of “without meaning and without how”

(this was later named as tafwid or consignment). Imam Ibn Al-Jawzi advocated for a partitive form of “without meaning and without how” (again tafwid) in which ta’wil (“interpreting attributes according to the language and also principles of speculative theology,” known as kalam).

The scholars of the madhhab had always made a division when discussing attributes that was of three types (this can be gleaned from Al-Qadi Abu Ya`la in his Ibtal ut-Ta’wilat li-Akhbar is-Sifat, vol.1, pp. 41-80 (Dar Iyla id-Dawliyyah Li-Nashar wat-Tawzii`, Kuwait, 1407 AH) and after that he then works with the texts on the attributes;

Ibn Hamdan in his  Nihayah, pp. 21-39; 40-43; Ibn Balban in his Mukhtasar ul-Ifadat fi Rub` il-`Ibadati wal-Adabi wa Ziyadat, pp. 485-499, creed section (Dar ul-Basha’ir il-Islamiyyah, Beirut, 1419AH (AD 1998;

Muhammad As-Saffarini in his Lawami` ul-Anwar il-Bahiyyati wa Sawati` il-Asrar il-Athariyyah: Sharh ud-Durrat il-Madiyyati Fi `Aqidat il-Firqat il-Mardiyyah, vol.1, pp. 110-112 (Al-Maktab ul-Islami, Beirut, 1411 AH (AD 1991)

and also Lawa’ih ul-Anwar is-Sanniyyah wa Lawaqih ul-Afkar is-Sunniyyah: Sharh Qasidah ibn Abi Dawud Al-Ha’iyyah, vol.1, pp.259-270 (Maktabat ur-Rushd, Riyadh, 1421 (AD 2001):

 1) Sifat udh-Dhat: Attributes of the Essence that are neither solely Allah nor other than Allah. These are the fourteen main attributes that Allah uses to differentiate between Himself and idols in the Qur’an and Sunnah.

All other attributes of the 3,000 names and attributes mentioned in the Qur’an are based upon these 14 attributes. These are further divided into two points: the Sifat thubutiyyah, which are affirmation and salbiyyah, which negate all imperfections from Himself.

2) Sifat ul-Khabariyyah (also referred to as Akhbar us-Sifat): Attributes in which we have no information about them other than what Allah said and He possesses them. We solely know about them just by what He said and we have no other information. These include things such as the attribute yad, saq, wajh, `ain, nafs and so forth. 

3) Sifat ul-Fi`liyyah: There are attributes that have to do with what Allah does. These are things such as creation, willing, istiwa, judgement and so forth.

Imam Ibn Al-Jawzi, when someone reads his full theology (by this I mean not just the daf`, but also his text Akhbar us-Siffat, which was translated into English by someone at Princeton with facing Arabic parallel text and it is correct,

along with statement he made in his book Talbis Iblis and also theological pronouncements in Said ul-Khatir), one can see that he did not hold that no.2 were attributes but rather sifat in the sense of descriptions but as he interpreted them they were actually references or by-words for other attributes and not independent attributes to them. 

This is a minority opinion and caused a great rift between him and the vast majority of the other scholars of the school.

The reason for this is that. One of the freakish corruptions that results from this is the statement held by some well wishers that Imam Ibn Al-Jawzi was an Ash`ari. The problems with this are manifold: 

1) Ash`aris have not said that the second category of attributes are not attributes, so this is a clear distinction between them and the Imam. 

2) when one reads the complete set of texts on theology by Imam Ibn Al-Jawzi, we can see that he heavily disparaged kalam and the people that engaged in it and considered it nullifying the attributes of Allah, which is the standard position of the Hanbali school. 

3) the Ash`aris in Baghdad were still quite a fledgling organisation. They had only just crystallised as a jama`ah in the time of Al-Qadi Abu Ya`la and were referenced in his text, Ibtal ut-Ta’wilat. 

They are first mentioned as a unified jama`ah in the text aforementioned and also Shahrastani’s Al-Milal wan-Nihal under the heading: Al-Ash`ariyyah.

4) the Ta’wil of Imam Ibn Al-Jawzi went so far as to state that no.2 were not attributes at all but by-words for other attributes; this has never been the Ash`ari position. 

5) he also held that no.3 were not necessarily attributes in the same way that no.1 were attributes. Again, this caused massive issues with the other scholars of the madhhab. 

I do not mind if someone should choose to take on some of the theological positions of Imam Ibn Al-Jawzi. However, what I would say is that they should do the following: 

1) know that Hanbali scholars of theology write books in a series, so to grasp the whole topic, you have to read their full pronouncements. This is especially the case with Imam Ibn Al-Jawzi

2) read his tafsir under the topic of the verses of the attributes

3) understand that the daf` is a summary of his more expansive statements in Akhbar us-Sifat. It is dishonest to not consult these when knowing otherwise.

The ending statement I therefore make is that the creed of Imam Ibn Al-Jawzi has been grossly misrepresented based upon what was explained above.

Again I present the information in the enclosures only as you asked about it for detail. As this is fundamental theology, the affair must be put in perspective. 

Having said this, what is the stance of the scholars of Ahl al Sunnah wal Jamaat upon the aforementioned scholars?

I have already treated this above. 

The second question is more personal; in the course of my daily work I happen to spend a lot of time with a colleague of the Wahhabi persuasion, who is especially active in propagating this madhab in his spare time.

I am sorry to hear that and may Allah protect you from the major kufr and risk of rejecting salvation that is fundamentally part of their organisation. 

Seeing his zeal in doing so in a way drives me to want to do more for the cause of Ahl al Sunna in my locality, in order to curb the influence of his jama’a. But is this a good/permissible foundation or niyyah for me to work on?

Yes, if you see that a greater harm would result from not doing so.

You also have to make sure that you have the requisite knowledge to answer doubts and also accurately assess the falsehood and offer credible alternatives to their evil. 

Also, his da’wa is having an increasing impact on other work colleagues who, though from Sunni families, are awaam and know little of the situation. Moreover, his da’wa is of the ‘Al-maghrib’ taqiyya-style approach, which is working well on them. What can I do to protect them from falling into the fitnah he is preaching?

You need to expose and bring to light the fact that they are salafis and particularly contrast this with the theology of the believers of the previous 12 centuries. My advice would be to use the Divine Lightning and Divine Texts 

The divine texts can be used for answering some general disputes. the Divine Lightning is for someone more developed. I would say that you should gauge the situation and use these texts accordingly. 

Thirdly, I was interested in your analysis of the spread of Wahhabism into the Indian subcontinent; can you direct me to some sources of historical information on the early exponents of this methodology e.g. Sayyed Ahmed Khan, Ismail Dehlvi, Titu Mir, Haji Shariatullah, Karamat Ali, Wilayat Ali etc. There seems to be little literature compiled on these figures that is publicly available.

Once could access some of the documents that are in English: 

 The Wahhabi Movement in India by Qeyammuddin Ahmed

 Sayyid Ahmad: A Study of the Religious Reform Movement of Sayyid Ahmad of Ra’e Bareli by Muhammad Hidayetullah, Ashraf Press, Lahore, 1970. 

 Please also refer to the history series that covers the same period and my give you texts on the topic (Please start by listening to the very first lecture in the whole series in which canons of evidence and their sources are discussed):

 Jazakallahu khairan

was-salaamu alaikum

was-Salaam, 

Al-Hajj

 

The Trial of Takfir Reloaded

Figure 1A: The Deobandi-Barelwi conflict has ruined every community in which it has appeared.
Figure 1A: The Deobandi-Barelwi conflict has ruined every community in which it has appeared.

Below is a useful and edifying message from a Muslim brother on a re-occurring problem among some of the ranks of the Muslims. My response immediately follows:

 

Assalamu Alaykum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatu respected brother

Alhumduillah I have benefitted from many of your talks via youtube & I pray that my Allahu Ta’ala accept your works & efforts.

By the Grace of Allahu Ta’ala I also hav a youtube channel (AfwaunMumeen) where I was able to also take some of your talks & re-upload it for the benefit of the Ummat.

Respected brother, my reason for contacting you is to insha’Allah enlighten you with regards to certain aspects of the Ummat you may not be aware of.

I came across a talk where you likened the Deobandi Jamaat to the Wahaabis while the Barelvi Jamaat were likened to the Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jamaah based on some misinformation that was forwarded to the honorable Ulama of the Hijaaz.

This isn’t your fault but if it’ll please my Allahu Ta’ala, I’d like to forward you something concerning the honorable Ulama of the Hijaaz retracting their statements of kufr & deviation placed on the Ulama-e-Deoband.

Insha’Allahu Ta’ala you find it of great benefit & may my Allah Ta’ala bestow upon you the ability to remember me in your Duaas

Wasallam

 

Response of Br. Abu Ja`far Al-Hanbali:

Assalamu Alaykum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatu respected brother

wa `Alaikum us-Salaamu wa Rahmatullah, 

 Noble brother, 

Alhumduillah I have benefitted from many of your talks via youtube & I pray that my Allahu Ta’ala accept your works & efforts.

I understand. 

By the Grace of Allahu Ta’ala I also hav a youtube channel (AfwaunMumeen) where I was able to also take some of your talks & re-upload it for the benefit of the Ummat.

As long as they are left in their original full format, I have no issue with this but if they are cut and sectioned in a way in which they convey misinformation, then this is wrong. 

Respected brother, my reason for contacting you is to insha’Allah enlighten you with regards to certain aspects of the Ummat you may not be aware of. I came across a talk where you likened the Deobandi Jamaat to the Wahaabis,

while the Barelvi Jamaat were likened to the Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jamaah based on some misinformation that was forwarded to the honorable Ulama of the Hijaaz.

No, I did not. Rather, what I said in the 13 centuries lecture is that some Deobandis do have 5 or 6 of the sixteen masa’il of Salafiyyah, and this is error. Not all of them have these errors.

I further said that the book Taqwiyat ul-Iman is a re-load or poor copy of Kitab ut-Tawheed by Muhammad ibn `Abdul Wahhab.

It has the exact same errors in it and the same false conclusions, such as “shirk in one’s daily chores,” that the Quraish and previous nations believed that Allah was the only creator (when at the same time they denied the Resurrection,

which is part of believing that He is the only Lord, thus constituting a major theological error in Salafiyyah and Deobandis that hold that position).

In addition to this, the article, Takfir: A Problem for Some Sunnis Too, I pointed out that Imam Ahmad Rida Khan is from Muslim Orthodoxy (Ar. Ahl us-Sunnah Wal-Jama`ah).

The reason for this is two of the great Hanbali mujaddids of the time praised his works and said noble things of him regarding his texts. 

As for the Muhannad, I have a copy of this that was actually signed and given to me by Mufti Muhammad ibn Adam Al-Kawthari. I have made reference to it a number of times in other lectures;

but this does not address the particular issues in question to which I was making reference, namely the 5 or 6 masa’il of Salafiyyah. None of those questions were answered in that text. 

This isn’t your fault but if it’ll please my Allahu Ta’ala, I’d like to forward you something concerning the honorable Ulama of the Hijaaz retracting their statements of kufr & deviation placed on the Ulama-e-Deoband.

As for the fatwa from the scholars of the Hijaz, I have the original Arabic and no text of kufr from the scholars of my madhhab and to the best of my knowledge any other was every placed upon Deoband as a group or specific individuals. No one in the text was referred to as an unbeliever.

I know this as I have the original rulings of Imams Muhammad ibn Humaid An-Najdi (d. 1295 AH), who was also a teacher of Ahmad Rida’ Khan. No statement that they were unbelievers was every made by him or the grand judge Imam Hasan Ash-Shatti (d.1275 AH) or the son of Imam Ibn Humaid. 

What you will need to do is look at those rulings again and you will see that the rulings were given in a general sense: “Whoever believes this, then that is kufr.”

Another example: “Whoever says this, then he is a kafir.” This does not mean a said individual is a kafir. They do not know that individual.

So they cannot say a specific person is a kafir, “Due to my previous fatwa, YOU are a kafir,” as they do not know the condition of people living miles away from them that they cannot assess for the impediments, conditions and other matters related to takfir.

So speaking in general terms is permitted and perfectly fine. Again, as for the Muhannad, this does not solve things for the Deoband people that have Salafi masa’il in their ranks. There is a statement from Imam Mustafa Ash-Shatti (d. 1348 AH), whose works I have already translated.

He gives a rather cautious statement on the text due to the fact that again, he does not know the Deoband or its’ people. Not only this, I would advise you to read the works of Imam Mustafa Ash-Shatti and see if you still think that this is someone you would like to go to as a source of the Deoband being upon right guidance. 

In his text, he discusses making intercession at the gravesites, when the deceased are absent and using them in one’s supplication as well as the position that the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, can be seen in a wakeful state in his natural form.

If all of deoband adheres to this, along with the Salafis in general being Kuffar and Muhammad ibn `Abdul Wahhab being upon the same level as Musailimah the Liar, then this is perfectly fine. 

Go right ahead. But if not or in consideration, I really suggest you read the works of Mustafa Ash-Shatti here: 

And those of Muhammad ibn Humaid An-Najdi (d. 1295 AH). Even read the works of the great Hanbali sages before Muhammad ibn `Abdul Wahhab’s appearance (and also during and after) and you will find them making intercession with the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, after every prayer in supplication.

I am not talking about making intercession with your IMAN in him, I mean making intercession with HIM, HIMSELF in every supplication after every compulsory prayer and addressing him as if he is present. Using him as part of the supplication. 

If the deoband is fine with this, then this should be no problem and should be made public so the people know the truth. If this is not the case, you have a lot of reading to do and some studying as well.

I am not interested in the Deobandi/Barelwi conflict as most of this has come in the aftermath of the death of Ahmad Rida’ Khan. Rather, I compared them both to Imam Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, his students and scholars after and the theology passed down by their luminaries. 

Measuring both Deoband and the Barelwi against the school of Imam Ahmad, both are defective and without complete merit and missing the complete truth. However, Barelwi his some aspects of that truth and Deoband has some aspects of truth. Abandoning both is the truth, the true path. Thank you for your time. 

was-Salaam, 

Al-Hajj Abu Ja`far Al-Hanbali

Insha’Allahu Ta’ala you find it of great benefit & may my Allah Ta’ala bestow upon you the ability to remember me in your Duaas

Wasallam