Tag Archives: salafi dawah


“But what’s your daleel!”

[ لا عبرة بقول من يريد إلزام الناس بمعرفة الدليل لكل مسألة ]

There are no satisfactory grounds for the one who desires to compel people to know the evidence for each and every point

قال الفقيه أبو الوفاء ابن عقيل رحمه الله :

The Faqih, Abul Wafa’ Ibn `Aqil,[1] may Allah be pleased with him, remarked:

» ولا عِبْرَة بقول من زَعَم أن على العامِّيِّ العلمَ بدليلٍ يرشِده إلى حكْم الحادثِة ؛ لأن ذلك يقطعه عن مصالحهِ، ولا يَتأَتى منه ولا له دَرْك البغْيَةِ؛ لكون ذلك يحتاج إلى تقدُّمِ معرفةِ أصولِ الفقهِ على ما قدَّمْنا، وأَنَّى ذلك للعامِّيِّ.«

“There are no satisfactory grounds for the one who would claim that the layman must have knowledge of an evidence in order to resolve a new affair as this will assuredly take him away from the affairs necessary for the upkeep of the earthly realm and its continuation.[2] And this is not of him or for him to know this level of information as that gives rise to also needing to access the aforementioned knowledge of Usul ul-Fiqh and how is that the providence of the layman?”

الواضح (1/270).

And this is taken from Imam Ibn `Aqil’s work, Al-Wadih, vol.1, p.270.

قلت : ويقصد ( قول من زعم أن على العامي …) المعتزلة ، لأنهم يوجبون على العوام معرفة الدليل لكل مسألة ، وقد صرح بذلك أبو الحسين البصري المعتزلي ، وكذا القدرية كما ذكر ذلك الموفق في الروضة ، وتقي الدين رحمهما الله .

I would like to mention that the intent of his expression the one who would claim that the layman must have knowledge of an evidence references to the Mu`tazilah, as they made it wajib for the laity to know the evidence and proof for each and every matter. And that was explicitly mentioned by the Mu`tazilah scholar Abul Hussain Al-Basri. And the same thing was the position of the Qadariyyah as that was mentioned by Imam Muwaffaq ud-Din Ibn Qudamah[3] in Ar-Rawdah and Imam Taqi ud-Din Ibn Taymiyyah,[4] may Allah be pleased with both of them.

فكل من يلزم أو يزعم أن على عامة الامة معرفة الدليل فهو في مصاف أهل البدع.

So anyone who requires or claims that it is required of the laity of the Ummah to know the evidence in all matters, then he is following on the pathway of the people of innovation and astrayness.

وكتب فارس بن فالح الخزرجي

And this was written by (Shaikh) Faaris ibn Faalih Al-Khazraji

21 / شعبان / 1442

21 Sha`ban 1442

[1] 431-513 (AD 1036-1118). He is Abul Wafa’ `Ali ibn `Aqil ibn Muihammad ibn `Aqil ibn Ahmad Al-Baghdadi Az-Zufri. One of the luminaries of his time, Shaikh ul-Islam and theologian of many areas, he is author of many works covering fiqh, usul and theology. cf. Ibn Rajab’s Adh-Dhailu `Ala Tabaqat il-Hanabilah, vol. 3, pp.118-135.

[2] This is in reference to taqlid. Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal, may Allah be pleased with him, from the third blessed generation, said of the matter of taqlid, “Whoever says that he does not believe in taqlid and that he does not follow anyone in his religion, such is the statement of a rebellious sinner in the sight of Allah and His Messenger, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. Such a one only seeks by doing so to nullify and strip the footsteps given before, and to nullify the knowledge and the Sunnah. They want to stay isolated and alone with personal opinion, speculative theology, innovation and contradiction, and opposition to what came before them.” Tabaqat ul-Hanabilah, vol.1, pp. 33-34. Imam al-Khatib al-Baghdadi (d. 463 AH), may Allah be pleased with him, when commenting upon these and other statements of Imam Ahmad and other scholars, said: “We have already mentioned in detail the evidence that the mujtahid will use when he looks into knowing the rulings of the Revealed Law. Now all that remains is to discuss what authority the common person returns to in acting on an issue, and this is known as taqlid. The general meaning is that taqlid refers to accepting the statement of someone without knowing any evidence for it. Rulings are built upon two matters; rational and those pertaining to the Revealed Law. As for the rational, then it is not permissible to make taqlid in this area, in matters such as knowing the Creator, Exalted be He, and His Attributes, knowing the Messenger, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, testifying to his truthfulness and other matters that have to do with judgements and punishments to come in the Hereafter. It has, however, been narrated from `Ubaidullah ibn Al-Hasan al-`Anbari, who said that taqlid in the foundations of the religion is permissible, but this is a mistake due to the Words of Allah the Exalted, Follow what was sent down to you from your Lord and do not follow those besides Him as protectors. Little indeed do you reflect.  Surat ul-A`raf (7), ayah 3. Allah has also said, When it is said to them, ‘Follow that which Allah sent down,’ they say, ‘We shall follow what we found our fathers upon.’ And if your fathers did not know anything nor were they guided. Surat ul-Baqarah (2), ayah 170. The Exalted One has further said, Likewise, we did not send before you to any town a warner except that its inhabitants said, ‘We found our fathers upon a religion and we shall follow in their footsteps.’ Say, ‘What if I have come to you with more guidance than that which you found our fathers upon.’ Surat uz-Zukhruf (43), ayah 23. When the following of their fathers prevented them from accepting that which is more guided, they said, We do not believe in that which you have sent to us. Surat uz-Zukhruf(43), ayah 24. The Exalted One has said, Recite to them the news of Ibrahim when he said to his father and people, ‘What do you worship?’ They said, ‘We worship idols and we are steadfast in maintaining them.’ Say, ‘Do they hear you when you call on them and can they benefit or harm you?’ They said, ‘We found our fathers doing likewise before us.’ Surat ush-Shu`ara’ (26), ayat 69-74. They, therefore, abandoned giving the answer to the issue due to their inablility to do so and the question actually exposed the falsity of their position. The people mentioned what they had not been asked regarding their fathers and their making taqlid of them. The Exalted One has also said, ‘They said, Our Lord, we obeyed our leaders and senior folk, and they led us astray from the path.’ Surat ul-Ahzab (33), ayah 67.The Exalted One also said, They took their priests and rabbis as lords besides Allah. Surat ut-Tawbah (9), ayah 31. `Adi ibn Hatim said, I came to the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, while I was wearing a crucifix around my neck made of gold. He said, Ibn Hatim, remove this idol from your neck. I took it off and then he recited the whole of Surah Bara’ah until he reached, They took their priests and rabbis as lords besides Allah. Surat ut-Tawbah (9), ayah 31. I said, Messenger of Allah, we did not worship them. So the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said, Did they make permissible the impermissible and you obeyed them and they made the permissible impermissible and you obeyed them? I said, yes and he said, Then that is worship of them. Abul Bukhtari said that Hudhaifah was asked about the ayah, They took their priests and rabbis as lords besides Allah, how the people worshipped their priests and rabbis. Hudhaifah answered, ‘They made permissible what Allah declared impermissible and they made impermissible what Allah had made permissible’.” Imam Al-Khatib al-Baghdadi, may Allah be pleased with him, commented further after quoting all this, “So because the principles of the faith that we mentioned have to do with what is awareness and intellect, and the people all share in that matter, there is to be no taqlid in the foundations. As for the judgements and rulings of the Revealed Law, then there are two points regarding taqlid: 1) One knows by necessity from the religion of the Messenger, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, the compulsory nature of things like the five prayers, zakah, fasting the month of Ramadan, Hajj. It is also known by necessity the impermissibility of fornication and adultery, taking intoxicants and other such things. In these matters, there is no taqlid, for all people share in knowing them and having knowledge of them, so taqlid has no basis in this matter. 2) There are the things that are not known except by investigation and gathering evidence, such as the branches of worship, transactions, marriage, divorce matters and other things that are connected to the foundational rulings. This is a matter in which one does taqlid, according to the evidence of the statement of Allah the Exalted, Ask the People of Knowledge if you do not know. Surat un-Nahl (16), ayah 43. If we should stop taqlid in these matters that are from the branches of the religion, it would have been necessary for everyone to learn that knowledge, and by obligating this it would stop all occupations, the cultivation of the earth, whether it be crops, livestock or the movement of people from place to place. Thus it is necessary that everyone is not responsible for this knowledge. The one who does taqlid is the layman. The layman does not know the different ways that the rulings of the Revealed Law are found, so it is permissible for such a person to make taqlid of a scholar and act by his words. Allah the Exalted has said, Ask the People of Knowledge if you do not know. `Amr ibn Qais said of the ayah, ‘Those to be asked are the People of Knowledge’. It is narrated from Ibn `Abbas, may Allah be pleased with him, that there was a man with a head injury in the time of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, who had a wet dream and was commanded to make ghusl, and upon doing so died. Once this reached the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, he said, ‘They have killed him. May Allah kill them. The only cure for when someone does not know something is to ask a question’. When the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, was asked after that, he answered, ‘If he had washed his body, but left his head and wiped over it, this would have been sufficient’. Because that man was not from the people of ijtihad, it was compulsory for him to make taqlid just as the blind person makes taqlid regarding the direction of prayer. If he does not have with him the tool of ijtihad in the direction of prayer, he is to make taqlid of the person with sight regarding the matter. It is narrated from one of the Mu`tazilah, who said that it is not permissible for the layman or common man to act by the statement of the scholar until he knows the ruling for it. When he has asked the scholar the matter, then he only asks him to know the ruling and when he finds the evidence behind it, he acts by it. This is a clear mistake, as there is no way for the layman to go to the evidences except after studying for years and keeping the company of and mixing with the scholars of fiqh for a long period of time. He will then have to investigate the rules and ways of analogy, know what validates and nullifies it and what is compsulory to give preference to in regards to other evidence and the preference of one evidence over another, but by making the layman responsible for this, one is charging him with what he is not able to do and has no way to reach it. As for the scholar, is it permissible for him to make taqlid of another scholar? The matter has to be investigated. If there is plenty of time to look into the issue and it is possible for him to make ijtihad, then it is necessary for him to make ijtihad for the ruling and it is not permissible for the scholar to make taqlid. There are some who have declared it permissible for the scholar to make taqlid, and this has been stated by Imam Sufyan ath-Thawri. He said, ‘Whatever the scholars of fiqh have differed in, I do not forbid any one of my brothers from taking hold of it. When the man sees an action being done that the scholars of fiqh have differed in and you have another position besides him, do not forbid him from the action’. Muhammad ibn Al-Hasan ash-Shaibani remarked, ‘It is permissible for the scholar to make taqlid of the one with more knowledge than him and it is not permissible for him to make taqlid of the one equal in knowledge to him’. The reason for the principle that it is not permissible for him to make taqlid of one of the same calibre is because of the length of time that he has and the the tools of ijtihad that he can use to make the ruling sought. In this case, it is not permissible for him to make taqlid of someone besides him as we have said of the matters of the intellect. Now if the time should be short and he believes that worship may be left if he spends much time in ijtihad, then there are two points to this matter: 1) It is permissible for him to make taqlid in that affair, 2) It is not permissible for him to make taqlid so long as he has the tools of ijtihad, so the ruling is the same as if he had plenty of time. It is said that this is the more correct of the two positions. Allah knows best. Abu Ibrahim al-Muzani said of this affair, ‘It should be asked of the one who makes ruling by taqlid whether he has proof. If he should say that he does, then he has nullified the taqlid, as the proof makes that compulsory for him to follow and not taqlid. If the person should say that it is by other than the proof, then it should be asked about the rulings on judicial punishments and rulings on the lives of people and the charity in wealth Allah has made all that impermissible then you have made it permissible without evidence. If he should say that he knows the proof and that if he does not know it he will ask his teacher, as he is from the senior scholars, and his opinion in the knowledge takes more precedence. Anything that he might say is only with proof that is hidden from me at the moment. It should then be said to to him that the taqlid of the teacher of your teacher is more befitting of taqlid than that of your very own teacher, as he does not speak except by the proof that has been concealed from your own teacher, and your teacher speaks of things and has the proof concealed from him. If he should agree to this, he has abandoned taqlid of his teacher to taqlid of the teacher of his teacher and, likewise, whoever is higher until he reaches the scholars from the Companions of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. If he should refuse to do that, he has contradicted his own words. It should be asked of him how it is permissible for him to make taqlid of the one who is less than him and has less knowledge, and it is not permissible for him to make taqlid of one who is greater than him and has more knowledge? Is this not a contradiction? If he should say that the matter is because the person is his teacher and that even if he has less knowledge, he has gathered knowledge of those above him and added it to his knowledge, so he has greater insight and more knowledge of what has been left. It should be said that, likewise, whoever learned from your teacher, has added the knowledge of your teacher and the knowledge of those above him to his knowledge. It then becomes compsulsory to make taqlid of him and abandon taqlid of your teacher. Likewise, you have more right to make taqlid of yourself than your teacher, as you have added his knowledge and the knowledge of those above him to his knowledge, so by the words of this person mentioned he has contradicted himself. He has made the one who is less and speaks from the lesser in knowledge of the scholars greater than the taqlid of the companios of the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, and he put taqlid of someone less than a companion over them and the taqlid of the one who is higher, subservient to the one who is less, and this is the case in the analogy. He has made it necessary for whoever is correct to follow other than his teacher in the mistakes of his teacher, and he is mistaken in this matter regarding his teacher and his taqlid alone’.” Kitab al-Faqih wal-Mutafaqqih, vol.2, pp. 66-70. Thus, those who are not people of ijtihad of any calibre are obligated in this area to accept the evidence that the scholars have given, even though we do not know all the texts on the topic. One example is Consensus. Allah has indeed mentioned it in the Qur’an, And whoever contends with the Messenger after the guidance has been made clear to him and he who follows other than the path of the believers, We will hand him over to whatever he has turned to and We will roast him in the Fire. What an evil destination. Surat un-Nisa’ (4), ayah 115.

We know this is the case, but the scholars have given the verses and explained them in such a manner that means, if we ask them the evidence for an understanding (i.e. abrogation, the categories of strong, authentic, weak in Hadith science etc), they state that this is Consensus, but if we ask them for an explicit text upon that which they have all agreed, there is not one present, but just the general texts on Consensus. This goes back to what the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, said of the scholars, “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 believe 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.” Musnad Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal, vol.16, pp. 70-71

[3] 541-620 AH (AD 1146-1223). He is Muwaffaq ud-Din Abu Muhammad `Abdullah ibn Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn Qudamah. One of the Revivers of Islam in his time, scholar of fiqh, hadith, ihsan, math and many other disciplines, he is one of the highest voices of authority in the school of Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal. Please see Ibn Rajab’s Adh-Dhailu `Ala Tabaqat il-Hanabilah, vol.4, pp. 105-119.

[4] 661-728 (AD 1263-1328). He is Abul `Abbas Taqi ud-Din Ahmad ibn `Abdul Halim ibn `Abdus-Salam ibn Taymiyyah. Born in Harran to a family of scholars, he learned from his father, Imam Shihab ud-Din Ibn Taymiyyah (d. 682 (AD 1283) and read the books of his grandfather, Imam Abul Barakat Majd ud-Din Ibn Taymiyyah (d. 653 (AD 1256), who is the second highest authority in the school and was the chief judge in Iraq. At a young age, Imam Taqi ud-Din Ibn Taymiyyah showed promise and studied with various scholars until he was given the title of Mujtahid Murajjih. A vast pillar of knowledge, he made restricted juridical reasoning in the creed and some areas of Consensus and was opposed by scholars from the schools. A quiet man who was known for his referencing, he was often pardoned due to his retraction of some of his positions that were divergent. Some of his more novel rulings include prophets committing sin, three pronouncements of divorce in one sitting being counted as one, the three categories of Tawhid  as well as rulings he passed against scholars of the Ash`aris and Maturidis, two groups within Muslim Orthodoxy. Scholars of the school sifted through his works and corrected the things in them, i.e. in books such as Al-Ikhtiyarat ul-Fiqhiyyah, Kitab ul-Furu`, Tashih ul-Furu` and others. It is in the best interest of the wise man to read these documents first, to know what can be kept or discarded from the works of Imam Taqi ud-Din Ibn Taymiyyah.


لقد دار بيني وبين بعض أدعياء السلفية منقطعي النسب، اتصال صوتي بعد أن رايتهم يتبجحون بطلب المناظرة مع بعض أصحابنا الحنابلة كالشيخ فارس الخزرجي وغيره حفظ الله الجميع

There has already been communication between myself and some of the claimants of “Salafiyyah” that ascribe themselves to this title after I saw that they were eagerly looking to debate with some of our colleagues from the Hanbalis – like Shaikh Faris Al-Khazraji and others, may Allah preserve them all.

وقد أحسن الشيخ فارس بعدم مناظرتهم، لأن هذا هو مذهب السلف -رضوان الله عليهم. وقد امتنعت من مناظرتهم موافقة للسلف في منعهم المناظرة والجدل وقد تواتر ذلك عن السلف باسانيد صحيحة، وقد نقل الاجماع على ذلك غير عالم من علماء المسلمين

It is just as well that Shaikh Faris did not respond to them as this is the way of the First Three Generations – may Allah be pleased with them, in which they were forbidden from debating with these people and this is in agreement with the First Three Generations, namely that they do not debate or dispute and this is popularly known from the First Three Generations with sound transmission. Consensus has been narrated on this topic by more than one of the scholars of the Muslims.

وقد تبينت عدة نقاط:أنهم عوام ليسوا طلاب علم، بل دجالون يحترفون القفز واللعب والضحك على الذقون.أنهم يكذبون صراحة وينقلون عن المخالف كلامًا لم يقله، إذا عجزوا عن إسقاطه أو تسجيل مخالفة للسلف عليه.

The following things are clear from this situation: (1) those seeking these debates are not students of any knowledge but in fact are dajjals, loving to jump around, play and laugh on the slightest thing that touches their tongue, (2) they explicitly lie and narrate things from the shaikhs that they did not say when they are unable to clearly bring a reply or record any of the shaikhs that are contradicting the First Three Generations,

أنهم يخالفون السلف في بعض المسائل كالجدل والمناظرة والسكوت عما سكت عنه السلف ونحو ذلك، مما سجلته عليهم بالصوت والنص.

أنهم يحرفون كلام السلف تحريفًا خطيرًا لا يقل عن تحريف أهل البدع والضلال.

(3) they oppose the First Three Generations in some areas – like disputation and debate and being silent about things the First Three Generations and so forth – which has been recorded from them and is also written explicitly by themselves.

عندما يعجزون عن نقل قولٍ عن السلف، يهربون لمعتمد الحنابلة، وعندما نحاققهم بالمعتمد يهربون لقول السلف الذي زوروه عليهم.

ينسبون للسلف نصوصًا ضعيفة وموضوعة، وعندما نحاققهم في صحتها، إما يتهربون، أو يعجزون عن إثباتها.

(4) whenever they are unable to narrate something from the First Three Generations, they flee to the mu`tamad of the Hanbalis but when the mu`tamad of the Hanbalis abandons them they flee to a statement from the First Three Generations that belies them, (5) they attribute to the First Three Generations weak and fabricated statements and (6) whenever the authentic statement from them belies them, they flee from it or are unable to affirm it,

عندما نقمعهم ونطالبهم بالادلة يتهربون بطرح الأسئلة بعد مطالبتنا، كي يشتتون الموضوع وبالتالي الهروب التكتيكي.

يلفون ويدورون كالثعالب، ليس لهم نقطة بحث جوهرية، ولا يعلمون ماذا يريدون.

(7) Whenever we ask them for proof or seek evidence in this regard, they run to a myriad of new questions after we sought from them clear answers. This is only to move the subject, subvert it, keep the goal posts constantly moving. They are like foxes in which they rummage from place to place without any fixed domain and they don’t know what they want to do.

يضعفون ما يرونه مخالفًا لقولهم وإن صححه الحنابلة وغيرهم من أهل العلم، ويصححون الضعيف، ويتبحون بتصحيح بعض الحنابلة.

ليس لديهم أي شيء صحيح صريح في الكتاب والسنة والاجماع يلزمنا، بل هم يريدون إلزام الناس بأفهامهم، وبدعهم ومقالتهم المبتورة عن السلف.

(8) They declare as weak whatever has been narrated that opposes their opinion, even if the Hanbalis and others from the People of Knowledge declared it authentic. They declare the weak as authentic by using one of the Hanbalis against all the others. There is nothing with them that is authentic and explicit in the Book, Sunnah and Consensus that requires us to follow them. On the contrary, they seek to force people to follow their statements, innovations and false declarations that lead away from the First Three Generations.  

يكذبون على العلماء ويدلسون عليهم نصوصا، ليست في المسألة المطروحة.لا يحسنون فهم كلام العلماء، ويحملونه ما لا يحتمل.ونصيحتي لطلاب العلم: أن يحذروا هؤلاء المتمسلفة، ومن أراد أن يطلع على تساجيلهم فهي عندي بالنص والصوت، وعلى الجميع الانشغال بالعلم والدروس وضبط المسائل

(9) They lie about the scholars, attribute to them corrupted or false statements that are not in reference to the matter at all. They do not understand well the statements of the scholars and they hold it according to an understanding that was not intended. So my advice to the students of knowledge is that they take caution with these philosophers. So whoever wants to look at their recordings, I have them with me in terms of writing and spoken lectures detailing their deviation. And everyone should be busying himself with knowledge, lessons and grasping matters and principles.

ولا تنشغلوا بهؤلاء لانهم يريدون صدكم عن العلم الصحيح وإرجاعكم لوصايتهم ، وتقزيمكم، وإخضاعكم، وفرض السيطرة عليكم، وهم جهال عوام، تافهون لا قيمة لهم في العلم بل هم عصابات وقطاع طرق.

They don’t busy themselves with any of this as they are seeking to impede you from the sound knowledge and return you over to their evil, doubts, submission to their ideas and they make it compulsory for them to rule over you. These are ignorant laity that have no knowledge and there is no weight to them in knowledge but they are a gang of thugs and robbers.

ولا تنخدعوا بدعوتهم لمذهب السلف، فقد حاققتهم بنصوص السلف. فما وجدت عندهم شيء ذو قيمة ولا اسانيد صحيحة. فهم فارغون ثرثارون متشبعون بما لم يعطوا.

Do not let their innovations deceive you into thinking that this is the “madhhab of the Salaf” as the texts of the First Three Generations have already abandoned them. You don’t find any value among them nor authentic chains of transmission. They are nothing more than a confused rabble that move around, claiming that which they were not given.

أبو الأمين آل جراح الحنبلي.

Abul Amin Ala Jarrah Al-Hanbali


I had been hunting for more details on assistance with memorising Ar-Rawd ul-Murbi` by Imam Mansur Al-Buhuti (d. 1051)[1] and some students of knowledge had shared with me some possibilities for the affair. A few had asked, “Well, why are you memorising the Rawd. Just do the Dalil”.

So the argument opened up again (as friendly as it is!). There is a friendly discussion among students of knowledge and some scholars about the best text for memorisation when people look at mastering fiqh. One body is composed of the scholars of northern Arabia, Sham and half of Iraq. Their understanding is that the best text for memorisation is Dalil ut-Talib by Imam Mar`ii ibn Yusuf Al-Karmi (d. 1033).[2]

Before we lay out their argument, let us first look at the origin of the discussion. Imam Muwaffaq ud-Din Ibn Qudamah (d. 620),[3] the great Palestinian sage and one of the Renewers of the Religion for his age, wrote a text known as the Sufficer.[4] This was his gathering together all the previous literature on the topic of fiqh and especially the Renewer of the Religion that succeeded the Imam and Shaikh, `Abdul Qadir Al-Jilani (d. 561)[5] in the mastery of fiqh, namely Abul Fath Nasr ibn Futyan – known as Ibn Al-Manni.[6]

After the death of the Imam Ibn Al-Manni there were two main scholars that collected together the books before them, including Ibn Al-Manni’s and perfected the affair. They were the two great Imams, Majd ud-Din Ibn Taymiyyah (d. 652)[7] and Imam Muwaffaq ud-Din Ibn Qudamah (d. 620).

The former was a detailed writer and put together a systematic but brief approach to fiqh but it was not voluminous. In the latter’s case, he was more voluminous and detailed and wrote an entire curriculum in fiqh. The intermediate text, known as the Sufficer, was taken and commented upon judiciously by scholars down through the ages.

By the time of the 9th century, the great Palestinian Imam, `Ala’ ud-Din Al-Mardawi (d. 885)[8] had brought together two texts that fleshed out the Sufficer, one being the mammoth Way of Equity,[9] while the other was The Rectifier.[10]   

Then came the 10th century and the commentators of that period, Imams Musa ibn Ahmad Al-Hajjawi (d. 968),[11] a Palestinian and Taqi ud-Din Al-Futuhi (d. 972),[12] an Egyptian. They would add additional commentary notes on the Sufficer and also other statements of literature to flesh out meanings and give new insights when the newer issues of their time appeared.

Imam Musa Al-Hajjawi (d. 968) went one step further and summarised the Sufficer in his celebrated work, The Provision for the Seeker of Sufficiency.[13] This was not just a summary but also leaned back on the great Iraqi law scholar, Ad-Dujaili’s[14] text The Brief Exposition [15] to buffer it.

Then the 11th century came and there were the two stand out scholars of that time, Imams Mar`ii ibn Yusuf Al-Karmi (d. 1033) and Mansur ibn Yunus Al-Buhuti (d. 1051). Imam Al-Karmi took his own and Imam Al-Futuhi’s commentary on the Sufficer and summarised it and created a smaller text entitled, Dalil ut-Talib.    

Commentary works on The Sufficer/Dalili

Imam Al-Buhuti took The Provision and made a large commentary entitled, the Enclosed Meadow. After the time of Imam Al-Karmi came the commentary works upon from Imams Ahmad ibn `Awad Al-Mardawi (d. 1101), Salih ibn Hasan Al-Buhuti (d. 1121), `Abdul Qadir ibn `Umar At-Taghlabi (d. 1133) in his Obtaining the Means in Commenting upon Dalil ut-Talib,[16] Muhammad ibn Ahmad As-Saffarini (d. 1189),[17] Isma`il ibn `Abdur-Karim Al-Jarra`ii (d. 1202), Ahmad ibn Ahmad Al-Maqdisi (d. 1204) and Ibrahim ibn Duwayyan (d. 1353). And these are just main commentaries.

Cliff Notes on The Sufficer/Dalil

Next came smaller commentary works like Imams Ahmad ibn `Awad Al-Mardawi (d. 1101), Mustafa Ad-Dumani (d. 1194), `Abdul Ghani ibn Yasin Al-Lubadi (d. 1319), Musa ibn `Isa Al-Qaddumi (d. 1336), Salih ibn `Uthman Al-Qadi (d. 1351), `Uthman ibn Salih Al-Qadi (d. 1366) and Muhammad ibn `Abdul `Aziz ibn Mani` (d. 1385).

Smaller Rhyming Texts on the Sufficer/Dalil

Then scholars made smaller rhyming texts on the Dalil and they include Imams Muhammad ibn Ibrahim Al-Wa’ili (d. 1271), Ahmad ibn Ahmad ibn `Abdul Qadir As-Siddiqi (d. 1343), `Abdul Qadir Al-Qassab (d. 1360), Sulaiman ibn `Atiyyah (d. 1363), Sulaiman ibn Hamdan (d. 1397) and Musa Muhammad Shahhadah Ar-Ruhaibi, one of the students of Imam Ahmad ibn Salih Ash-Shami (d. 1414).

And there it is, in terms of the history of the text and its layout, commentaries, notes, rhyming texts that were smaller that fleshed it out. And it is due to this that northern Arabia, Sham and half of Iraq (and this includes the Hanbalis of Kuwait and northern Iran who actually came from Iraq) have chosen this text for judgement and the courts, scholars and the like fall back on it for commentary and use of day-to-day matters, not just merely pure worship. 

Adherents of the ‘Dalil is best’ understanding lay out their arguments in the following fashion:

Firstly, the sheer volume of literature in commentary on the Dalil, in both large commentaries and also smaller rhyming texts. This then stands to reason that the Dalil is the best choice for memorisation and not The Provision or The Meadow.  

Secondly, there has been more than three hundred years of fleshing out issues and resolving affairs from the Dalil and associated literature. Any ambiguity and the like has been removed.

Thirdly, the text is clearer and easier to work out rather than some cryptic statements that might appear in The Provision. And one of the points of a text for memorisation is clarity and easy use in memorisation. So the Dalil stands in the best position for this act.

These are indeed very convincing statements; but let’s look at the other end of the spectrum for the rank of the Provision by Al-Hajjawi (d. 968) as well as its commentary The Meadow by Al-Buhuti (d. 1051).

As was said, Imam Al-Hajjawi (d. 968) wrote the Provision as a summary of the Sufficer but also included Ad-Dujaili’s (d. 732) Exposition as a big influence. Now understand that this summary spread through most of Arabia, Egypt, big portions of Iraq and most of the Gulf region. And this was indeed the preferred text.

In fact, when the Imam, Sulaiman ibn `Ali Al-Musharraf (d. 1079)[18] found that Al-Buhuti had written his commentary on the Provision, he burned his own copy and told his students to follow only that one alone. The fact that this is the preferred one should be indicative of how high in esteem students and scholars alike held the text. So let’s talk about this some more.

First: the literature on the Provision is very lengthy as well.

Commentary works on The Provision/Meadow

There is a commentary on the Provision by Burhan ud-Din Ibrahim ibn Abi Bakr Al-`Awfi’s (d. 1097) Bughyat ul-Mutatabbi` fi Halli Alfaz ir-Rawd il-Murbi`. The Imam of his time, Ahmad ibn ibn Manqur (d. 1125) wrote his Al-Fawakih ul-`Adidah fil-Masa’il il-Mufidah which follows the Provision quite closely.

Cliff Notes on The Provision/Meadow

This includes `Abdul Wahhab ibn Fairuz’s (d. 1205) notes on the Meadow, Salih ibn Saif ibn Ahmad Al-`Atiqi’s (d. 1223) notes on the Meadow, `Abdullah ibn `Abdul `Aziz Al-`Anqari (d. 1373) also wrote a cliffnote layout on the Meadow. We also have `Abdul Qadir ibn Badran Ad-Dumi’s (d. 1346) smaller commentary on the Meadow as well as another one by Ibn Dawayyan (d. 1353).

There is Ibn `Atiyyah’s (d. 1363) Al-Masa’il which examines the differences between the Provision and the Uttermost Boundary. Then there is also the same author’s Rawdat ul-Murtaad, which covers the most important issues of the Provision, takes Al-Buhuti’s commentary notes and shrinks all of this down into a versified poem spanning 1091 lines.

Second: since Al-Hajjawi (d. 968) wrote the Provision and Al-Buhuti (d. 1051) wrote his commentary, there have been ample commentaries and discussion on the texts together. In some instances, the Meadow is seen as a text and not just the Provision alone. And this is the reason for the commentaries on the Meadow being given added attention.

Third: although some passages of the Provision by themselves are more cryptic, together with the Meadows the problem is solved. In addition to this, far more issues are covered and resolved in the Meadow than its rival and there are no rare issues listed (and Al-Hajjawi asserts this to be the case at the beginning of the Provision).

Fourth: Al-Buhuti (d. 1051) has preference over Al-Karmi (d. 1033) in consideration of rulings and thus it makes more sense to study Al-Buhuti’s works as he has done and published far more.

Fifth: the Meadow is a doorway to all the other texts on the topic by the same author.

Sixth: Al-Azhar has put together a three-volume curriculum that is more expansive and user friendly than the one it collected for Al-Karmi’s work, which would obviously give it higher rank.

Seven: this text, along with the rest of Al-Buhuti’s works, are what is dominant in the Gulf countries, Arabia proper and other locations so it would make more sense to make use of the text as it is more popularly spread.

Eight: this is one of Al-Buhuti’s final works, his final being the `Umdat ut-Talib, which was written about six months before his death and follows along the same track as his Meadow.

Nine: Although it might appear to have fewer commentaries, this is because fewer things needed to be fleshed out on account of how detailed the first commentary was in the first place. All other comments on the texts have tended to deal with footnotes, cliffnotes and other affairs. There are countless advantages to the Meadow that simply cannot be denied.

Ten: the text in print is almost always on yellow paper, which aids for it being easy on the eyes.

Eleven: it has a flow and cadence that makes it FAR easier to memorise.

And it is this that leads me to today’s book review. The book review is covering Hashiyat ur-Rawd il-Murbi`, a two-volume work written by the great scholar, `Abdul Wahhab ibn Muhammad ibn Fairuz At-Tamimi (d. 1205).

In terms of the topic, let us talk about the author first. He is none other than the Shaikh, the Imam, the high ranking and senior scholar, `Abdul Wahhab ibn Muhammad ibn Fairuz Al-Wuhabi At-Tamimi.

The historian and Qadi, Muhammad ibn Humaid An-Najdi (d. 1295),[19] may Allah have mercy upon him, said of him:

عبد الوهاب بن محمد بن عبد الله بن فيروز التميمي الأحسائي. ولد قبيل الظهر يوم الثلاثاء غرة جمادى الآخرة 1172، وأخذ عن والده من صغره فقرأ عليه الحديث ومصطلحه والأصلين، والنحو، والمعاني والبيان، والمنطق، والفقه والقرائض، والحساب، الجبر، والمقابلة، والهيئة, وغير ذلك،

He is `Abdul Wahhab ibn Muhammad ibn `Abdullah ibn Fairuz At-Tamimi Al-Ahsa’ii. He was born at the time of Zuhr, Tuesday at the onset of Jumada Al-Akhirah 1172. He took knowledge from his father[20] in his early years and recited hadith, terminology of hadith and the Book and Sunnah, grammar, expression, public speaking, logic, fiqh, inheritance, general math with engineering, algebra, science and other things besides that.

وأخذ أيضًا الحساب عن

العلامة السيد عبد الرحمن الزواوي المالكي وأخذ النحو عن الشيخ عيسى بن مطلق، وكان عنده أعز من أبنائه ومهر في جميع ما قرأ، وبهر في الفهم حتى فاق أقرانه

He also took general math and engineering from the scholar, As-Sayyid `Abdur-Rahman Az-Zawaawi Al-Maliki. He took grammar from the Shaikh, `Isa ibn `Abdullah ibn Mutlaq[21] and he was occupying a higher position than the sons of the scholar and he mastered all of what he read and excelled in comprehension of his time above that of his contemporaries.

فصار كثير من رفقائه تلاميذ والده يقرأون عليه، وكان ذا حرص واجتهاد إلى الغاية، قليل الخروج من المدرسة حتى إنه اتفق له سبع سنين لم يخرج منها إلا لصلاة الجمعة، وأما الجماعة ففي مسجدها، والأكل يأتي له من بيت والده مع الطلبة، وأكبّ على تحصيل العلم وإدمان المطالعة والمراجعة والمذاكرة والمباحثة ليلًا ونهارًا،

So he became from the most beloved of the students of his father and the students read to him. He strove hard and went to the furthest point of effort and ijtihad. He left only a little bit from the Madrasah until he spent 7 years without having left from it except for the Jumu`ah. And as for praying in jama`ah, then this is in the masjid of the Madrasah. At the time of eating, it would be brought from the house of his father and he would eat with the students at the Madrasah. He spent his nights and days striving to obtain knowledge and was always reviewing, revising, remembering and researching.

لم تنصرف همته إلى غيره أصلًا

And his intent never left from striving to perfect the knowledge.

حتى إنه لما تزوج بأمر والده وإلزامه أخذ ليلة الدخول معه المحفظة فلما انصرف عنه الناس نزل السراج وقعد يطالع الدروس التي يريد أن يقرأنها في غد، ويقدر في نفسه أنه بعد إتمام المطالعة يباشر أهله فاستغرق في المطالعة إلى أن أذّن الصبح، فتوضأ وخرج للصلاة، وحضر دروس والده من أولها، ولم يعلم والده بذلك لكونه لا يبصر، ولما فرغ من الدروس أتى إليه ولده وسلّم عليه فبارك له وبارك له الحاضرون،

This carried on until the time that his father ordered him to get married and he did so but the night that they came to him and the people pulled away to leave him with his wife, he had a lantern brought and sat going over his lessons so that he would have what he needed for review the next day. He carried on doing so by himself and intended that after he finished his review he would consummate with his wife. However, he became engrossed in his review to the time that the Adhan was made for Subh prayer. So he make wudu,’ headed out to Salah, attended the lesson of his father from the beginning. His father did not know he was doing that on account of the fact that he could not see. So when the lessons finished, his son would come to him, give salam and the father would bless him and so did the congregation.

وفي الليلة الثانية فعل كفعله بالأمس ولم يقرب أهله من غير قصد للترك، لكن لاشتغاله بالمطالعة فيقول في نفسه: أُطالع الدرس ثم ألتفت إلى الأهل، فيستغرق إلى أن يصبح، فأخبرت المرأة وليها بذلك، فذهب وأخبر والده بالقصّة،

So the second night the same thing happened as what had happened in the first instance and he did not go near his wife other than the fact that he wanted to be left alone but he busied himself with his review and said to himself: I will review my portion and then I will go to my wife. However, he again became preoccupied and the time for the Subh prayer came. It would be at that point that his wife would inform her wali of what had happened. The wali then went to the father and informed him of what had happened.

فدعاه والده وعاتبه وأخبذ منه المحفظة، وأكّد عليه بالإقبال عليها، وكان رحمه الله كثير التحرير، بديع التقرير، سديد الكتابة، قلّ أن يقرأ كتابًا أو يطالعه إلّا ويكتب عليه أبحاثًا عجيبة واستدراكات غريبة، وفوائد لطيفة،

The father then called his son, rebuked him and stressed to him the importance of going to his wife. `Abdul Wahhab ibn Muhammad – may Allah have mercy upon him – was one who spent a lot of time bringing forth researches, going over written principles, writing on detailed matters. Seldom did he read a book or review it except that he would write some wondrous or insightful points upon it as well as oft missed matters for the reader to ponder, and detailed benefits.

فمنها القليل ومنها الكثير، فمن أكثر ما رأيته كتب عليه “شرح المنتهى” للشيخ منصور ملأ حواشيه بخطه الضعيف المنوّر، فلم يدع فيه محلًا فارغًا بحيث إنّي جرّدتها في مجلّد، وضممت إِليها ما تيسّر من غيرها، وفيها فوائد بديعة، لا توجد في كتاب، وكذا رأيت “شرح الإقناع” و”التصريح” و”شرح عقود الجمان”للمرشدي و”شرح جمع الجوامع” الأصولي وغيرها وصنّف تصانيف عديدة، منها ما كمل، ومنها ما لم يكمل، لاخترام المنية له في سنّ الشبيبة،

Sometimes he wrote a little bit and then at times he would write a great deal. Must of what I saw him write was what he noted upon the commentary of the Uttermost Boundary by the Shaikh Mansur Al-Buhuti. He dictated some things down in very light but illuminated marginalia. He did not leave any page blank but instead he would put it in notes and these notations reached one volume. I looked at some of what he wrote and there were a number of benefits of noteworthy value that had not been present in the original work. I also saw his commentary on The Sufficiency,[22] the Exposition, Well Tied Ropes by Al-Murshadi, the Collection of All Collections in Foundational Principles by As-Subki[23] and other things. He wrote a number of works, some of them complete while others not so due to the onset of difficulties associated with old age.

فمنها “حاشية على شرح المقنع” وصل فيها إلى الشركة، وهي مفيدة جدًا، وممّا كمل “شرح الجوهر المكنون” للأخضري في المعاني والبيان والبديع،

Some of these works include his Cliff Notes on the Commentary on the Sufficer,[24] in which he reached to the Book of Partnerships.[25] And this was a book that was very beneficial. Then there was another text on the Commentary of the Preserved Gem [26]by Al-Akhdari[27] in analysis, public speaking and prosody.

ومنها “إبداء المجهود في جواب سؤال ابن داود” وذلك أن تلميذه الشيخ عبد الله بن داود

There is another in which he had notes on the[28] Exposition of the Ijtihad coming from the Questions offered by Ibn Dawud.[29]

سأله عن القول المرجوح وعن المقلد المذهبي، وعن الناقل المجرد، ومنها “القول السديد في جواز التقليد”،

And this came about regarding a question brought to him by his student, the Shaikh, `Abdullah ibn Dawud[30] who asked about the preferred statement and the taqlid of a madhhab and the transmission of a text from a verified authority.  And then there is another work by him entitled, The Decisive Word before the Deed regarding the Permissibility of Taqlid [31] that was penned.[32]

ومنها “زوال اللبس عمّن أراد بيان ما يمكن أن يطلع الله عليه أحدًا من خلقه من الخمس” وله قصائد بليغة ومقطعات عديدة،

There is also another work Lifting the Doubt regarding the one who wanted to clarify what is possible that Allah unveil to one of His Creation regarding the Five Matters of the Unseen[33] that he put together.[34] He also possesses rhyming texts and a number of other texts that use Arabic letters to rhyme and make poetry.

Imam Muhammad ibn Humaid An-Najdi goes on to say:

وتوفاه الله في مرضه ذلك في شهر رمضان سنة 1205 في بلد الزبارة ومن ساحل بحر عمان، ودفن بها، ورثي بقصائد شتّى من غير أهل مذهبه وبلده فضلاً

عنهم، وعظمت مصيبة أبيه به، لكنّه صبر واحتسب، وأتته التعازي والمرائي من علماء الشام وبغ وغيرهما.

Allah would take him back to himself due to an illness in the month of Ramadan in the year 1205 while in the land of Az-Zubarah not far off from the sea of `Uman and he was buried at that place. Much poetry and the like was recited for him even from people not from his madhhab and land as a blessing and favour from them. This was a great blow to his father but he was patient and remained steadfast. Those coming to give condolences and see the site include scholars from Sham, Baghdad and other locales. [35]

In terms of the work, it is exactly what it purports to be, a brief text that comments upon points laid out by Al-Buhuti. Without too much fanfare or lengthy introduction, the author heads straight into the topic and begins fleshing out meaty issues.

As I am memorising the Rawd after having completed hifz of Al-`Umdah, the yellow/golden paper is a handsome and easy-on-the-eyes aesthetic that eases the process of hifz. There is very little variation between Al-Buhuti and Al-Ahsa’ii and the line in the middle of the page for interlinear style is a welcome approach.

There are no intrusive notes and the only footnotes tend to be the hadith, ayah citations or listing manuscript variations. Neither the publishing house nor the editor has put anything superfluous into the text or the associated notes that belong with it.

Amazing points that will assist you

So here come the notes that should snatch your attention:

1): clear Arabic text without smudging

2): the notes are taken by the commentator and similar terminology is used so that it aids in hifz. You can tell this was the point of Al-Ahsa’ii

3): the commentator has kept the same order as the author as well as the headings

4): the commentator gives grammar points, permitted variations in the original work and permissible ways of reading the text and the subtleties that come with these readings

5): strong pedigree. The commentator comes from a long line of scholars and the text through examination can be seen to have been proofread or at least trialed with students of knowledge. Some of the answers to queries can be seen to have come from post or pre-lesson exchanges that students brought in the first reading

6): the constant insertion of the benedictions upon the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him into the text. This is useful for the one who holds doing so as wajib and is a good reminder for those who hold it as mustahabb.

7): the expression of the mu`tamad or depended upon ruling but also the second strongest statement in the event that the depended upon cannot be carried out

8): he explains the reason for disputes happening, the evidence depended upon by each side and the grammar utilised by each side in cases where it is appropriate.

9): the commentator gives the takhrij of the ahadith and even gives discussions on variances that may exist in individual manuscripts, the commentary citing the hadith and the hadith itself from the original manuscript. And on the same topic he gives some concise but useful jarh and ta`dil on certain narrators and the wording in the ahadith that are cited.

Drawbacks to the book?

Drawback #1: I don’t think this would be too much of a drawback but the notes only go up to the book of Waqf. This is not a problem but only one of the issues with the author dying before completing the topic. And as a side note, the rest of the text of Al-Buhuti is easier to memorise and also sort out so the absence of cliffnotes might not be too much of a loss.

Drawback #2: There seems to have been a battle between the editor and the publisher which from my side I am happy the publisher won as the editor had an agenda. It would appear that the editor had Salafi tendencies that he wanted to inflict upon the text along with numerous spelling errors and slips in attention to detail but the publishers detected this and halted it. In terms of the errata, they were judicious in pointing it out.

Drawback #3: For those that are beginning readers, there is no tashkil on the consonantal text thus one will have to have some knowledge of grammar or perhaps a teacher help with sounding out both the text and the commentary notes.

Drawback #4: The notes from the commentator leave you wanting more as they are so enticing and pregnant with meaning! Perhaps this is not a drawback but more of a desire.

So for the students of knowledge using this as a hifz manual for Al-Buhuti’s classic text or a reference manual altogether when doing research and fleshing out principles, this is a must have!

[1] d. 1051 (AD 1656). He is Abus-Sa`adat Mansur ibn Yunus ibn Salah ud-Din ibn Hasan ibn Ahmad ibn `Ali Al-Buhuti. Egyptian marja` and one of the depended upon sources in the Hanbali School in the later age, he studied with premier scholars of Sham, such as Imams Yahya Al-Hajjawi and others. He became the leading Hanbali scholar in Egypt, even outranking the senior Subki, Futuhi and Sa`di families in importance. He wrote five large works in fiqh and smaller texts on selected topics. The Imam, Sulaiman ibn `Ali (d. 1079 (AD 1674), when he learned that Al-Buhuti had penned his fiqh text, Ar-Rawd ul-Murbi`, burned his own text and told all his students in Najd to follow the Imam. Please see Ibn Humaid’s As-Suhub ul-Wabilah, pp. 472-474

d. 1033 (AD 1623). He is Mar`ii ibn Yusuf ibn Abi Bakr ibn Ahmad ibn Abi Bakr Al-Karmi. Considered by his peers to be a master of all sciences, this Palestinian marja` was the premier scholar of Egypt in his time but studied with the great scholars of Sham as well. Although concentrating his energies on creed and fiqh, he covered many of the most trying issues of his time, such as the widespread use of coffee and cigarettes. He was renowned as a defender of righteouness and an enemy to sin. cf. Ibn Humaid’s As-Suhub ul-Wabilah, pp. 463-467.

[3] 541-620 (AD 1146-1223). He is Muwaffaq ud-Din Abu Muhammad `Abdullah ibn Ahmad ibn Qudamah An-Nabulsi Al-Jamma`ili Al-Maqdisi. Renewer of his age, scholar, judge, jurist and expounder, he wrote some 200 or more books, touching on every subject in Islam. He learned from scholars of Iraq and Sham, combining both traditions successfully to bring about one of the greatest scholars the world had seen. cf. Ash-Shatti’s Mukhtasar Tabaqat il-Hanabilah, pp. 52-54

[4] Ar. Al-Muqni`

[5] 470-561 AH (AD 1078-1166). Reviver of the Religion in his age and one of the two people in history to have permission to give rulings in all four madhhabs, he was a scholar of all disciplines but focused the bulk of his time on purification of the heart, theology and higher mind sciences. Please see Adh-Dhail `ala Tabaqat ul-Hanabilah, vol. 3, pp. 244-253. 

[6] 504-583 AH (AD 1111-1187). He is Abul Fath Nasr ibn Futyan ibn Matar Al-Baghdadi. A great scholar of Iraq and teacher to multitudes, he is the teacher of most of the scholars of Sham and Iraq in his age with respect to the sciences of fiqh, theology and hadith. Please see Adh-Dhail `ala Tabaqat ul-Hanabilah, vol. 3, pp. 301-307.

[7] d. 652 (AD 1266). He is Majd ud-Din Abul Barakat `Abdus-Salam ibn `Abdullah ibn Abil-Qasim ibn `Abdullah Al-Khidr ibn Muhammad ibn `Ali Ibn Taymiyyah Al-Harrani, also referred to as Al-Majd. The second highest voice in the school for canonical texts, he wrote his famous work, Al-Muharrar fil-Fiqh (Eng. The Consecrated and Recorded Matters Regarding Legal Rulings), which quickly became one of two foundational sets of works for cataloguing opinions and rulings of the scholars. Adh-Dhail `Ala Tabaqat il-Hanabilah, vol.4, pp. 201-205

[8] 820-885 (AD 1417-1480). He is `Ala’ ud-Din Abul Hasan `Ali ibn Sulaiman ibn Ahmad ibn Muhammad Al-Mardawi As-Sa`di As-Salihi. Judge, jurist, historian and grammarian, he was known for writing books on the narrations and debates within the Hanbali School. He organised the arguments under chapter headings, then acted as chief judge for most of his later life until his death. He wrote more than 20 books and was a mujtahid murajjih. Please see Ash-Shatti’s Mukhtasar Tabaqat il-Hanabilah, pp. 76-81

[9] Ar. Al-Insaf fi Ma`firat ir-Rajih fi Madhhab Ahmad ibn Hanbal

[10] Ar. At-Tanqih

[11] 895-968 AH (AD 1490-1561). He is Abun-Naja Sharaf ud-Din Musa ibn Ahmad ibn Musa ibn Salim ibn Ahmad ibn `Isa ibn Salim Al-Hajjawi Al-Maqdisi As-Salihi. Hailed widely as a mujtahid, theologian, Shaikh ul-Islam, as well as the chief faqih of Sham, he wrote books and made fatawa that caused his fame to grow. Once he reached over the age of thirty, the scholars convened and declared him the source of authority for the school of Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal in his time. The Imam did not rest at this point, happy with his achievement, but continued on, writing numerous texts, summaries and foundational works. One of these was Zad ul-Mustaqni`, which is a summary of the depended upon book Al-Muqni` by Imam Muwaffaq ud-Din Ibn Qudamah (d. 620 AH/AD 1223). A simple yet effective summary, the document is the most widely used and commented summary of the book today. As-Suhub ul-Wabilah `ala Dara’ih il-Hanbabilah, vol.3, pp. 1134-1136

[12] 972 AH (AD 1565). He is Taqi ud-Din Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn `Abdul `Aziz ibn `Ali ibn Ibrahim ibn Rushaid Al-Futuhi Al-Masri. Known as Chief Qadi, Shaikh ul-Islam, Imam Al-Futuhi was one of the greatest Egyptian Hanbali scholars to have ever lived. In his youth, he memorised Al-`Umdah, Al-Muqni`, Al-Kafi and scores of other texts. His first teacher was his father, Imam Shihab ud-Din Ahmad Al-Buhuti Al-Hanbali, and was also in the company of others such as Imams Ahmad Al-Maqdisi, and a host of others. As per the practice of the Egyptian Hanbalis, he then travelled to Sham and studied with the Hanbali scholars for a number of years and then returned and became the most knowledgeable in Egypt of the madhhab, not long after penning his masterpiece Muntaha Al-Iradat, a book that was so lauded, senior judges Mansur ibn Yunus Al-Buhuti and Mar`ii ibn Yusuf Al-Karmi commented on it in their works Daqa’iq Uwl in-Nuha and Sharh ul-Muntaha, respectively. Upon the death of Imam Taqi ud-Din Al-Futuhi, some scholars said that the madhhab died, as there was no one who brought about another legacy as rich as his own and that of his father. Fortunately, others such as Imam Mansur Al-Buhuti came after, and today we have some Subki, Futuhi and Sayyid families teaching the original methods and principles. Students of Imam Al-Futuhi included Shihab ud-Din Ash-Shuwaiki in Madinah and his student, Imam Musa Al-Hajjawi, who would later be the great judge of Sham. As-Suhub ul-Wabilah `Ala Dara’ih il-Hanabilah, vol.2, pp. 854-858  

[13] Ar. Zad ul-Mustaqni` fikhtisar il-Muqni`

[14] 664-732 (AD 1278-1346). He is Siraj ud-Din Abu `Abdullah Al-Hussain ibn Yusuf ibn Muhammad ibn Ad-Dujaili Al-Baghdadi. Born in a town near the Tigris River, he was a faqih, preacher, grammarian, teacher and author, he was known for righteousness and good conduct and was one of Baghdad’s premier scholars. cf. Ibn Rajab’s Dhailu `Ala Tabaqat il-Hanabilah, vol.2, pp. 417-418

[15] Ar. Al-Wajiz

[16] Ar. Nail ul-Maarib

[17] 1114-1189 (AD 1702-1775). He is Abul `Awn Shams ud-Din Muhammad ibn Ahmad As-Saffarini An-Nabulsi Al-Hanbali. Renewer of his era and one of the chief authorities of the Hanbali Legal School in his time, he learned from Grand Imams such as Muhamamd Hayat As-Sindi, `Abdul Qadir At-Taghlabi and others. He acted as judge and jurist for all of Sham. He wrote books in the field of comparative creed, fiqh, inheritance, manners, medicine and grammar. It was this noble scholar who received a letter of assistance from the scholars of Arabia against the Salafi Movement. He wrote five volumes of books against the group, the shorter and more famously known being, Questions and Answers Regarding Najd, which upon receipt by the scholars of Arabia became a rallying point for the Orthodox. Please see Muhammad Jamil Ash-Shatti’s Mukhtasar Tabaqat ul-Hanabilah, pp. 140-143

[18] d. 1079 (AD 1668). He is Sulaiman ibn `Ali ibn Al-Musharraf At-Tamimi An-Najdi. Chief Qadi and judge of Najd in the Arabian Peninsula during his life. Imam Sulaiman famously sat with Imam Mansur Al-Buhuti and learned most of his knowledge. Upon hearing that Ar-Rawd ul-Murbi` had been written, he commanded his students to burn his own fiqh books and use only Ar-Rawd ul-Murbi` and related texts. He had just ten students, but focused on advanced level studies, making them Qadis after him, including Imam `Abdul Wahhab ibn Sulaiman. cf. Ibn Humaid’s As-Suhub ul-Wabilah, pp. 173-174

[19] 1236-1295 (AD 1821-1878). He is Muhammad ibn `Abdullah ibn `Ali ibn `Uthman ibn `Ali ibn Humaid ibn Ghanim An-Najdi Al-Makki. Chief Judge in Makkah, he studied under some of its greatest scholars and in his travels gained knowledge from the Qaddumi and Shatti families. He suffered persecution, and directly witnessed atrocities and other trials under the Salafi movement, which was gaining more of a foothold in Makkah where he resided. He was the author of some ten books on various subjects. Please see Ash-Shatti’s Mukhtasar Tabaqat il-Hanabilah, pp. 160-161.

[20] d. 1216 AH (AD 1801). He is Muhammad ibn `Abdullah ibn Muhammad ibn Fairuz at-Tamimi Al-Ahsa’ii Al-Hanbali. Born in Al-Ahsa,’ he was one of the torch bearers of truth against the organisation founded by Muhammad ibn `Abdul Wahhab. Imam Muhammad ibn Fairuz (as he is popularly addressed) studied with some of the brightest minds of his time, coming to hold double digit licenses in each of the eighteen sciences of Islam. There is no scholar of hadith in the era in which we live that does not have him in their chain of transmission. After continued opposition and hatred between the Orthodox scholarship and the Muwahhidun cult, the Imam was exiled from the city and fled to Iraq, not before seeing scores of scholars murdered or suffer the same fate as himself. Most of his works remain in manuscript form in libraries throughout the world, such as Princeton, Berlin, Chester Beatty and others. cf. Ibn Humaid’s As-Suhub ul-Wabilah, pp. 400-406

[21] 1179 (AD 1768). He is `Isa ibn `Abdur-Rahman ibn Mutlaq ibn Khamis Al-Maliki. One of the chief scholars of Al-Ahsa’, he was an enemy to Salafiyyah, firm in Religion and was strong against innovation and modernism that was trying to make an appearance. Born with diminishing division, he worked hard in the memorisation of the Qur’an, the Sahih of Imam Al-Bukhari and numerous texts. cf. `Abdul Qadir’s Tahfat ul-Mustafid, pp. 394-395

[22] Ar. Al-Iqna` , the author being Imam Musa Al-Hajjawi.

[23] 727-771 (AD 1327-1370). He is Taj ud-Din Abun-Nasr `Abdul Wahhab ibn `Ali ibn `Abdul Kafi As-Subki. Chief Qadi, historian, hadith scholar and specialist in fiqh who although born in Egypt in the capital city of Cairo moved to Damascus with his father. Coming from a long line of Egyptian scholars with roots in South Egypt, he left behind a large footprint in Usul, fiqh, history and a number of other areas. cf. Az-Zirkili’s Al-A`lam, vol.4, pp. 184-185.

[24] Ar. Hashiyat ur-Rawd il-Murbi`

[25] Ar. Kitab ush-Sharikah.

[26] Ar. Sharh ul-Jawhar il-Maknun

[27] 920-983 (AD 1519-1582). He is Abu Zaid `Abdur-Rahman ibn Abi `Abdullah As-Saghir ibn Muhammad ibn `Amir Al-Akhdari. Algerian specialist in many sciences of Islam, this high ranking judge, jurist and Sufi wrote a number of rhyming texts to assist students of knowledge in learning detailed matters of Islam. Tarjumat ul-Akhdari, pp. 19-20

[28] This came about because Salafis started to try to make a difference between “following the evidence” and being “madhhabi”. And as is typical, Salafis would use violence and death threats to try to spread the new religion. And this is in additional to their repulsive and repugnant theology in which they liken Allah with/to His Creation. As Imam Hasan Ash-Shatti (d. 1274) said, “May Allah curse whoever has this creed”. The Divine Texts, pp. 115-117

[29] Ar. Ibda’ ul-Majhud fi Jawab Su’ali Ibn Dawud

[30] d. 1225 (AD 1810). `Afif ud-Din `Abdullah ibn Dawud Az-Zubairi, Al-Basri Al-`Iraqi Al-Hanbali. Preacher, teacher, heresiographer and soldier, this particular scholar was born and lived most of his life in Az-Zubair, the great stronghold of Orthodox scholarship just outside Basrah. He studied under its premier scholars but decided to go to Al-Ahsa’ in Arabia to continue his studies. He learned from the scholars Muhammad ibn Fairuz and his son, `Abdul Wahhab. As-Suhub ul-Wabilah `ala Dara’ih il-Hanabilah, pp. 254-255

[31] Ar. Al-Qawl us-Sadid fi Jawaz it-Taqlid

[32] This issue was tackled because the cursed Salafi cult that was in Yemen and Arabia came and said that every common Muslim is obliged to be his own mujtahid and “follow the evidence” and that the madhhabs “contradicted the Book and the Sunnah.” So this text was crucial for dispelling some foolishness. As Imam Hasan Ash-Shatti (d. 1274) said, “May Allah curse whoever has this creed”. The Divine Texts, pp. 115-117

[33] Ar. Zawal ul-Labsi `Amman Arada Bayan Ma Yumkin An Yutli`ullahu `Alaihi Ahadin Min Khalqihi min Al-Khams

[34] And this work would break the back of fake Sufis (and is even applicable today) who claim their shaikhs have the knowledge of the Five Things of the Unseen and even some aberrant Sunnis today that try to insist that the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, possessed this, in spite of the fact that the First Three Generations never understood anything of the sort (!) How fitting it is that fake Sufis should have the grandshaikh, `Abdul Qadir Al-Jilani say the following and destroy their sectarian diatribe:

“So Allah the Exalted said of the matter:

And what will make you know what is the Night of Power [Surat ul-Qadr (97), ayah 2].

“So it is as if He is saying, ‘Muhammad, if it was not that Allah taught you it and its grandeur, you would not have known it!’ So everything that is in the Qur’an with the expression ‘what made you to know’ (Ar. adaraaka), then Allah has indeed taught him what it was while the expression ‘what will cause you to know’ (Ar. yudareeka) then he did not know it and did not disclose to Muhammad the knowledge of it. An example of this is the statement of His, Mighty and Majestic,

And what will make you to know? It may be that the Hour is indeed near. [Surat ul-Ahzab (33), ayah 63]

“Thus He did not make it clear to him when its time was to come”. cf. Al-Ghunya, vol.2, pp. 261-262, Dar Ihya’ it-Turath il-`Arabi, Beirut, 1416 (AD 1996) [with editorial and prep. notes by Muhammad Khalid `Umar and Riyadh `Abdullah `Abdul Hadi]

As for the Five Things of the Unseen, they are mentioned by Allah, Exalted be He, in the following ayah:

Indeed Allah has in His Sight the knowledge of the Hour, what shall be sent down of weather, what is the wombs while no soul knows what it shall earn tomorrow and no soul knows in which land it shall be taken. Surah Luqman (31), ayah 34

[35] cf Ibn Humaid’s As-Suhub ul-Wabilah, pp. 277-279, Maktabah Al-Imam Ahmad (no date of print given)


The grandson of the marja`, Imam `Abdul Ghani Al-Lubadi (d. 1319)

So who are the Mujassimah/Mushabbihah/Hashawiyyah?

The greatest theologian of the Ummah and the Imam of Ahl us-Sunnah, Ahmad ibn Hanbal (d. 241) has said the following:

وأما الجهمية: فإنهم يسمون أهل السنة: المشبهة وكذبت الجهمية أعداء الله بل هم أولى بالتشبيه والتكذيب، افتروا على الله عز وجل الكذب، وقالوا الإفك والزور، وكفروا بقولهم.

“In terms of the Jahmiyyah, they name Muslim Orthodoxy to be Mushabbihah. The Jahmiyyah lie as they are Enemies of Allah. In fact they are the ones closest to likening Allah with the creation and lying. They lie upon Allah, Mighty and Majestic. They speak with falsehood and bear false witness and reject faith by their very words”.[1]

Hmmm. Let’s look further.

The Imam went on to say further,

وأما أصحاب الرأي: فإنهم يسمون أصحاب السنة: نابتة، وحشوية. وكذب أصحاب الرأي أعداء الله بل هم النابتة والحشوية، تركوا آثار الرسول صلى الله عليه وسلم وحديثه، وقالوا بالرأي، وقاسوا الدين بالإستحسان، وحكموا بخلاف الكتاب والسنة وهم أصحاب بدعة، جهلة ضلال، وطلاب دنيا بالكذب والبهتان.

“The People of Speculative Opinion have named the People of the Sunnah as Nabitah and Hashawiyyah. The People of Speculative Opinion lie and are Enemies of Allah. Indeed they are Nabitah and Hashawiyyah. They have left the narratives of the Messenger, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, and his hadith and they speak with their speculative opinion. They make analogy in the Religion with what seems fear to them. They have made judgement to what contradicts the Book and the Sunnah and they are people of innovation, ignorant, astray, seekers of earthly favours by lies and false attribution”.[2]

Right. Well this tell us a great deal.

The philosopher and Shafi`ii Maturidi, Abul Fath Muhammad ibn `Abdul Karim Ash-Shahrastani (d. 548) said the following:

القاعدة الأولى : الصفات والتوحيد فيها وهي تشتمل على مسائل :

“The sects of Islam are built upon a number of major rules. There are four rules and in particular the great foundations:

الصفات الأزلية : إثباتاعند جماعة ونفياعند جماعة وبيان صفات الذاتوصفات الفعل وما يجب الله تعالى وما يجوزعليه وما يستحيل وفيها الخلاف بين الأشعرية والكرامية واجملسمة والمعتزلة

“Foundation 1: the Attributes and the Tawhid on the matter. This is in general to do with the Eternal Attributes that were affirmed by one group and then denied by another, as well as making a clear explanation of the Attributes of the Essence and the Attributes of the Actions and what is compulsory for Allah, Exalted be He, what is possible for Him and what is impossible for Him. There is dispute about this topic between the Ash`aris, the Kurramiyyah, the Mujassimah and the Mu`tazilah”.[3]

Hmmm. This is highly informative.

Ash-Shahrastani goes on to say:

وثار من الشبهة الثانية مذاهب : القدرية والجبرية والمجسمة حيث قصروا فيوصفه تعالى حتىوصفوه بصفات المخلوقي

“So the ambiguous and doubtful matter in the second place gave rise to the following groups: (1) the Qadariyyah, (2) the Jabariyyah, (3) the Mujassimah to the point that they fell short in the description of the Exalted One to the degree that they described Him with the attributes of creation”.[4]

Ash-Shahrastani continues:

فالمعتزلة : غلوا في التوحيد بزعمهم حتى وصلوا إلى التعطيل بنفي الصفات والمشبهة : قصروا حتىوصفوا الخالق بصفات الأجسام والروافض : غلوا في النبوة والإمامة حتى وصلوا إلى الحلول والخوارج : قصروا حتى نفوا تحكيم الرجال

“So the Mu`tazilah exaggerated in the matter of Tawhid with their claim until they reached the level of denial by repudiating the Attributes of Allah. The Mushabbihah fell short until they described the Creator with the Attributes of bodily form. The Rafidah exaggerated in prophethood and imamhood until they reached the level that some of them believed in incarnation. Then you have the Khawarij that have fallen short to the degree until they denied the judgement of men in cases of arbitration”.[5]

This should give you a good understanding of things when people go to question whether or not the First Three Generations and their successors had this understanding at all.

Historical accounts tell us that this is not the case with the First Three Generations nor those who came after Imam Ahmad that safeguarded the theology.

[1] Tabaqat ul-Hanabilah, vol.1, pp. 36-37

[2] Tabaqat ul-Hanabilah, vol.1, pp. 36-37

[3] Al-Milal wan-Nahal, vol. 1, pp. 10-11

[4] Al-Milal wan-Nahal, vol. 1, pp. 14-15

[5] Al-Milal wan-Nahal, vol. 1, pp. 14-15


Figure 1A: The great scholar of hadith and fiqh, Shaikh Muhammad Bakr Isma`il (d. 1426), dressed in the fine decorum of a Muslim man.

Someone once asked Imam Taqi ud-Din Ibn Taymiyyah:

Some initiates of Tasawwuf gather together making Remembrance of Allah, reciting from the Qur’an, then they make supplication and remove their head coverings and make themselves humble while not intending by that any self display or fame; instead they do this as a way to gain nearness to Allah. Is this sound or not?

Taqi ud-Din Ibn Taymiyyah (d. 728) remarked:

“Praise be to Allah, Lord of all creation. Gathering together for recitation of the Qur’an, Remembrance of Allah and supplication is good and praiseworthy as long as one does not take this as a regular and continuous customary action that the people must do like the gatherings that are called for in the Revealed Law. And this gathering should not resemble those of the people of innovation.

“As far as removing the headcovering with all of this, then this is disliked, and especially when one is doing so at a time of worship or during an act of worship. This is the case as it is a wrong action and it is not permitted for one to seek to gain nearness to Allah in this way.” [Al-Fatawa Al-Kubra, vol.1, pp. 52-53]

The Residual Effect of Salafiyyah

Figure 1A: Imam Mohammed Ghanem (above), a real Imam of a local masjid, is forced to pick up the pieces from the mess Salafiyyah left.
Figure 1A: Imam Mohammed Ghanem (above), a real Imam of a local masjid, is forced to pick up the pieces from the mess Salafiyyah left.

This goes in line with what I have been saying for years about the John McEnroe form of Islam, but people insist on learning their own way. After Salafiyyah is removed from a people, one of the outcomes is a dislike for the symbols of the faith.

The reason is that these things have been forced and punishments have been implemented (even though there is no lashing or punishment listed in the Revealed Law for people who were not in the masjid or praying in public) for affairs that are not mandated with punishments and also upon those who are not responsible or even ignorant..

The “enjoining of the right and forbidding of the wrong” method Salafiyyah prides itself on produces robots and also thugs, so it is no strange thing that the people of Mosul (long known for producing hadith scholars, theologians, wandering preachers and great ascetics of history) can be pushed to the brink. Responses to Salafiyyah always produce hatred for the cult from people allowed to choose.

Remember the great theologian and hadith scholar Abu Ya`la Al-Mawsili. Such a wonderful city that made some great people that suffered such a difficult time.

I offer the following article below just for your perusal and reflection.


Imam Mohammed Ghanem was forbidden to conduct Friday prayers under Islamic State rule because he refused to pledge allegiance to the group

Imam Mohammed Ghanem was forbidden to conduct Friday prayers under Islamic State rule because he refused to pledge allegiance to the group

In recaptured areas of Mosul, the extreme interpretation of Islam that jihadists forced on the local population for more than two years has sparked a backlash against religious observance.

After the Islamic State group seized the city in June 2014, it made prayers compulsory for people who were outside their homes, banned smoking, mandated beards for men and veils for women, smashed artefacts it said were idolatrous, publicly executed homosexuals and cut off the hands of thieves.

The jihadists cast their efforts as enacting the true interpretation of Islam — an assertion that most Muslims reject — but for some people, rather than making them more religious as intended, IS extremism had the opposite effect.

Iraqi men pray outside a mosque in Mosul's al-Masarif neighbourhood

Iraqi men pray outside a mosque in Mosul’s al-Masarif neighbourhood

The call to prayer sounds over a mosque’s loudspeakers in a recaptured area of Mosul, but a butcher named Omar continues working — something that would have been impossible under IS rule.

“Mosul is an Islamic city and most young people used to pray,” but IS was “forcing us… we had to go to the mosque against our will”, he said.

Before eastern Mosul was retaken from IS during the massive operation to recapture the northern city that was launched on October 17, shops had to close five times a day for prayers.

“One day, the boy who works with me received 35 lashes because he hadn’t been praying,” Omar said.

“Now, we are no longer obliged to close our stores… Whether we pray or not, the decision is ours.”

Imam Mohammed Ghanem, who was forbidden to conduct Friday prayers under IS rule because he refused to pledge allegiance to the group, said the jihadists sparked a backlash against religion.

“Now some people hate the time of prayer because IS forced them” to pray, Ghanem said.

– ‘Too much pressure’ –

“They reject these rules because they associate them with IS, even if they are in fact true Islamic precepts,” he said.

“Put too much pressure on something and it will explode. This is what’s happening now with the people: they want to live the way they want,” he said.

A children's nursery in eastern Mosul with the faces of girls and animals painted over by Islamic State group fighters

A children’s nursery in eastern Mosul with the faces of girls and animals painted over by Islamic State group fighters

According to Ghanem, part of his work before IS seized Mosul was educating people about Islamic practices and correcting them if necessary.

“Now, we say nothing because they reject religious authority. If we tell them they are doing something wrong, they tell us that we are from IS,” he said.

In another area of eastern Mosul, where rain is accumulating in craters left by the fighting, Imam Fares Adel said he too has changed the way he interacts with the faithful.

“Now we are afraid to give advice to people because they feel uncomfortable with the religious clothing” worn by imams, said Adel.

The imam said he understands those residents who “reject Islam”, but thinks the situation will “gradually” return to normal.

“The number of people is gradually increasing and they will all come back once of the footprint of IS has disappeared,” said Adel.

In Ghanem’s mosque, latecomers have to pray outside.

Around 40 worshippers kneel near fruit and vegetable stands to pray, while hundreds are squeezed inside the mosque.

“The imam has a good mentality and he speaks well to us. More and more people are coming back” to the mosque, said 25-year-old resident Mohammed Ali.

Now, without the threat of IS reprisals, “they come because they choose to”.