Tag Archives: Salafi minhaj

ASH-SHAWKANI AND ABSOLUTE IJTIHAD?

Shaikh Faaris ibn Faalih Al-Khazraji was asked the following:

لماذا لا ندرِّسَ فقه الشوكاني ـ رحمه الله ـ

So why don’t we learn the fiqh of Ash-Shawkani, may Allah have mercy upon him?

إعادة نشر

This is an answer that is being re-published after the question has appeared once more.

منذ عقدين أو ثلاثة تقريباً ظهرت دعوة ــ مُستغربة ـ قائمة بين الشباب السني لالتزام دراسة كتب الشوكاني والشبهة في ذلك :

أنه متجرد للدليل وليس مقيد بمذهب !.

So there are three or more instances, since a type of da`awah has appeared and has become established among the Sunni youth and have led to the question of studying the books of Ash-Shawkani and the ambiguity in the affair.

وجوابنا على ذلك :

The answer to this is from a number of points:

1. من معلوم أن الشوكاني أصل مذهبه زيدي ثم وافق مذهب أهل السنة الا في بعض المسائل ـ واعني بها العقدية ـ كما بين في الرسائل السلفية .

One: It is well known that Ash-Shawkani – as the source of his madhhab – is a Zaidi and then he started to agree with the madhhab of Muslim Orthodoxy except in some areas. And I mean by that with regards to theology and the like. And this is very clear in the book he wrote, The Salafi Messages.

2. بقاء تأثره بفقه الزيدية يتبين من خلال نقولاته عن علماء الزيدية في نيل الأوطار.

Two: he remained under the influence of the Zaidiyyah[1] as becomes clear from his writings and citing the scholars of the Zaidiyyah in the work[2] Nail ul-Awtar.[3]

3.كونه ليس متأثراً بمذهب هذا لايدل على تجرده لأن منهجه بعد الفقه الزيدي كان شافعيًا ويوصي في كتابه ( أدب الطلب ) بدراسة المذهب الشافعي ، ثم تأثر بالظاهرية .

Three: he does not have any influence in any madhhab that is proof of this as his methodology after Zaidi “fiqh” is to follow the Shafi`ii fiqh[4] like in his book Etiquettes in Seeking Knowledge in which he taught the Shafi`ii madhhab. Then he was influenced by the Zahiriyyah.[5]

4. فقهه لا يُعرف عند عامة الأمة ولاشك من أنه يعتبر شاذًا عن الأقوال المعلومة لدى الأمة من مدرسة المذاهب الأربعة ، بالتالي ليس معلومًا لدى الأمة كمذاهب أئمة الهدى .

Four: his “fiqh” is not known of among the body of the Ummah. There is no doubt that he depended upon rare or divergent matters from the well known statements in the Ummah from the study of the Four Madhhabs. And it follows that he is not well known among the Ummah like the madhhabs of the Imams of Guidance.

5. الشوكاني ليس مجتهدًا مطلقًا لتكون له مدرسة مستقلة بل ولاينبغي أن يلحق بمدارس الأئمة المتبعة ، لأنه تأثر بالظاهرية .

Five: Ash-Shawkani was not an absolute mujtahid in which he would have an independent school and he did not even see the importance of attachment to the scholars of the Imams that are followed as he was under the influence of the Zahiriyyah.

6. أصوله مستقلة رجحها هو بنظره ، ولاتنطبق الا على فقهه ، ومعلوم أن المدرسة الاجتهادية الفقهية يأتي من يحرر ويقرر ويجدد لها أما الشوكاني فلا يعرف عنه متبع سوى صديق حسن خان وكتابه الروضة الندية لاتختلف عن نيل الاوطار ، ويكفي ماسطره من طعن بحق معاوية رضي الله عنه في نهاية كتابه .

Six: his “usul” are independent according to his preference and his research. And there is no dependence made use of for him except upon his “fiqh”. And it is well known that the way of fiqh ijtihad comes from bringing out the principles, affirming and setting them down and renewing them or bringing fresh things to light. As for Ash-Shawkani, there is no known follower of him besides Siddiq Hasan Khan Al-Qannuji and his book The Well Ornamented Meadow and it does not differ in practice from Nail ul-Awtar. And it is sufficient the lines that he wrote in disrespect to Mu`awiyah, may Allah be pleased with him, at the end of his book to show Ash-Shawkani’s reality.

7. كون الشوكاني رحمه الله ليس بمقلد هذا مفهوم مغاير لما هو عليه في نيل الأوطار ، لأن الشوكاني قلد في تخريج أحاديث المنتقى الحافظ بن حجر ـ رحمه الله ـ تقليدا أعمى في تلخيص الحبير ومن رام التأكد فليقارن.

Seven: Ash-Shawkani – may Allah have mercy upon him – was not a follower of this understanding and underwent change to what he was later upon in Nail ul-Awtaf  as Ash-Shawkani followed Al-Hafiz Ibn Hajar – may Allah have mercy upon him – in his addressing and examination of the Ahadith in Al-Muntaqa. And he is actually the one making “blind imitation” to what is in Talkhis ul-Habir. And whoever wants emphasis proving my point, go and look it up and compare!

8.الشوكاني يخالف اعتقاد أهل السنة في معاوية رضي الله عنه وارضاه ، وهذا لاشك أنه مأخذ كبير .

Eight: Ash-Shawkani contradicted the creed of Muslim Orthodoxy regarding Mu`awiyah, may Allah be pleased with him and show pleasure to him, and there is no doubt that this is a large matter indeed.

9. من قرأ الرسائل السلفية العقدية له ، سيعلم جيدًا مخالفته من يدعو الى دراسة فقهه ، في الاسماء والصفات.

Nine: Whoever read The Salafi Creed Messages as written by him will know very well his contradiction and opposition (to Muslim Orthodoxy) to the one who is calling to studying his “fiqh” and in the topic of the Names and Attributes.

10.عدم العمل بفقه الشوكاني : ففي أي مصر من أمصار المسلمين بل ولا في قرية واحدة يعمل به ، فكيف يلزم بفقهه ، وكيف تدرَّس كتبه .

Ten: No one acts by the “fiqh” of Ash-Shawkani. In which urban centres of the Muslims is it being used? In fact it’s not utilised in one village. So how can his “fiqh” be necessary to look into? How can his books be learned? How can one cling to them?

فإن قيل : ألا يستفاد من كتب الشوكاني :

Someone may ask, “So can one not benefit from the works of Ash-Shawkani?”

فجوابنا : لاشك أن فيه فائدة لكن ليست للدراسة ، ولا للتدريس .

Our answer is that there is no doubt that there is a benefit but not for learning or teaching.

هذه الأسباب التي تجعلنا ننصح الشباب بعدم دراسة فقه الشوكاني رحمه الله ، خاصة في بداية الطلب ، إن لم يكن الا سبب عدم العمل به في عموم الأمة بل ولا في قرية من قرى الأمة لكفى به سببًا.

So these are the reasons that we have put for advising the people not to study the “fiqh” of Ash-Shawkani – may Allah have mercy upon him – especially at the beginning of seeking knowledge and if there is no reason to act by it in the main body of the Ummah, in one of the villages of the Ummah then this is reason enough to not take anything from it.

والله اعلم

And Allah knows best.

وكتب فارس بن فالح الخزرجي

6 / محرم / 1439

As written by Faaris ibn Faalih Al-Khazraji

6 Muharram 1439


[1] This is another word for the Shi`ah cult. Among the Shi`ah are groups such as Twelver (and within them Akhbari and Usuli), Isma`ili (also known as Seveners or Saba`iyyah), but when discussing them collectively, they are known as Rafidah (or in the plural form, Rawafid). Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal, may Allah be pleased with him, said of them, “The Rafidah are those who disavow and renounce the Companions of Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, and they also curse and consider as low the Companions, along with labelling as unbelievers the four Imams among them, namely `Ali, `Ammar, Al-Miqdad, Salman, and the Rafidah have nothing to do with Islam at all. The Mansuriyyah are a group of Rafidah, but are more wretched and filthy than the others, as they say that whoever should kill 40 people who contradict their belief shall enter the Paradise. They terrorise the people, consider the wealth of them permissible to be seized. They further state that Jibril, peace be upon him, made a mistake when he came to the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, with the message. Such a thing is clear kufr, and there is no way of faith in holding this matter. We seek refuge in Allah from this matter. There is among them the sect of the Sabiyy’ah, which is closer to those who oppose the four Imams mentioned before. They deny the description and they say that `Ali is in the clouds and will be sent before the Day of Resurrection, and this is clear lying, slander and open falsehood. The Zaidiyyah are another group with them and they disavow `Uthman, Talhah, az-Zubair and `A’ishah, believing that they must fight against any of those who resisted and went against the children of `Ali, whether they are righteous or sinful, even if they are victorious or overcome. The Khashabiyyah say the same thing as the Zaidiyyah, but they claim that they love the Family and Household of Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, while they lie, for they hate the Family and Household of Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, more than any of the people. The only partisans and lovers of the Family and Household of Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, are the pious, and these are Muslim Orthodoxy, whoever they are and wherever they may be located. They are those who love the Family and Household of Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, and all the Companions of Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. Those who love them do not mention the Companions with any evil, flaws, hatred or sinful words. Whoever should mention the Companions of Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, with evil or hatred towards them, or disavows any of them, curses them, refuses the oath of allegiance that they gave, such a one is nothing but a member of the Rafidah, filthy and he makes others filthy. The Rafidah label Muslim Orthodoxy as insulters of the Family and Household, yet they lie. They are the ones who deserve this title due to their insult of the Companions of the Messenger, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, by cursing and insult. They speak of the Companions in other than the truth, attribute to them things that are not true and say they are guilty of kufr and oppression. This is making a lie towards Allah, Mighty and Majestic, and making light of the right of the Messenger, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, and the people doing this have more reason to be faulted and shown wrath than the Companions.” Tabaqat ul-Hanabilah, vol.1, pp. 35-37

[2] d. 653 (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

[3] This is actually an attempted commentary by Ash-Shawkani on the original work of the grand Imam, Majd ud-Din Ibn Taymiyyah’s legal text using ahadith entitled, Al-Muntaqa. It is always a wonder in the writer’s mind as to why Ash-Shawkani and cultists that agree with him insist on styling themselves absolute mujtahids but then insist on following or making use of other mujtahids’ works when in all fairness they should be penning their very own. (!)

[4] It is thanks to people such as Muhammad Al-Amir As-Sana`ani (1099-1182), Ash-Shawkani and Al-Qannuji (1248-1307) that a body of fake Shafi`iis came among Muslim Orthodoxy saying that they are Shafi`ii in fiqh yet Salafi in “aqeedah”. Now where have we heard this before? And these fake Shafi`iis influenced others in this era such as `Abdullah ibn Judai` (b. 1379) and countless others.

[5] This was a pseudo-madhhab created by Dawud ibn `Ali Al-Asbahani (201-270), a student of knowledge and later shaikh who sat with Imam Ash-Shafi`ii and then decided (although having not completed his studies or done substantial memorisation to have even been a muqayyid mujtahid, let alone an absolute mujtahid!) to found his own school. Claimants to this “madhhab” (which is more like claiming absolute ijtihad) include Ash-Shawkani, Ibn Hazm (384-456), Muhy ud-Din Ibn Al-`Arabi (558-638) and even some in the last forty years claiming to have “revived” it and no less  one of them a former Azhar attendee as well (!) cf. Adh-Dhahabi’s Siyar A`lam in-Nubala, vol.13, pp.97-98

AND SO SHALL IT BE…

Imam `Abdul Qadir Al-Hattawi (d. 1402), a figure of unity in the Religion.

So in the interim of dealing with the situation of the state of Muslims in the United States, Canada and the UK, we had to contend with a very strong contingent of cultists in the early ’90s. This in particular was Salafiyyah. It came and undermined brothers that had previously been of one accord.

Before their arrival, it did not matter what madhhab of fiqh we were. I ate with brothers who were primarly Malikis and Shafi’iis and some of us were Hanbalis (some of the fruit of the students of Shaikh Abdullah ibn Muhammad Al-Khulaifi and also others) and it made no substantive difference.

When Allah blessed us, we prayed together in jama`ah for tahajjud and also would go jogging after Fajr. In matters of theology however we were of one accord. We had no disputes and our theology was soundly based upon that of the First Three Generations and nothing else.

Up and down the West Coast were social programmes and also Zakat ul-Fitr drives in which the wealth from the Zakah was divided up, food was purchased and we went and distributed it.

I never remember a time, from my youth, all the way to before leaving the US that we did not distribute it in the form of food. Converts were slow but dedicated and grew maturely into upright believers.

Then Salafiyyah arrived. There came the takfir, the denouncing of the madhhabs (remember this is before the time that people would start making the distinction between creed and fiqh with statements like: “I am salafee in aqeedah but hanafee in fiqh” at this time if you were following a madhhab you were running COUNTER to Salafiyyah and you had “manhaj issues”).

The theology discussions went crazy and two Trinities were introduced to Muslim brothers: (1) in day to day life and (2) in creed. The first was Bin Baz, Uthaimin and Al-Albani. With respect to the second, it was the three Tawhids.

Then on the back of that came the discussion of Tawheed ul-Hakimiyyah as per the Jihad Fikrah and Shaikh Umar Abdur-Rahman. Is it three or four? Three or four? We insisted ONE.

It was not just this but Salafiyyah ruined people’s knowledge of fiqh and worship and it caused catastrophic effects. You were either upon Salafiyyah or you were one of “the callers to misguidance”. Then Salafiyyah started to fade as a new group came into the forefront. They weren’t Shi`a people (they started to get popular around the same time as Salafiyyah and it caused the whole Salafi/Shi`a rift. We choose the third option of neither and tribulations ensued).

This new group came in and started to demand that people follow madhhabs. When I visited the Bay Area, I saw that there was some return to the study of fiqh but much of it was hollow. The cult of the trinity of three and sectarianism was replaced by another thing. Introducing the new trinity.

Now everyone had to be Ashari/Maturidi/Sufi vs Salafi or nothing and we choose the third option, which was to not be part of it. This tore what had already been split into more pieces. The Zakat ul-Fitr drives had stopped, the da’awah had stopped (this is strange because they claimed to be calling people to the truth of Islam, just like Salafiyyah) to a trickle.

The converts that were coming in were in large butter like dollops but they were arrogant, violent in some instances and haughty to others that differed with them. All of a sudden, you had to have bai’ah to someone, had to be linked with this and that, had to make takfir on these groups (just like Salafis). Then another reality came into fruition: Ashari/Maturidi/Sufi vs AICP/Sufi vs Salafiyyah.

What the…? Marriages fell apart, brotherhoods were torn asunder. Those of us that had stuck to our guns found ourselves often on the rim with a confused congregation. “I am just trying to perfect my salah, akhi. What the hell is an anthropomorphist?” The brother asked surprised, not sure what the word even meant.

Imaginary enemies that were little more than shadows and phantoms were fought and for what? Nothing came of it. More people fell away. Then I left to go to ma’ahad, leaving the US and Canada (the same thing had reared its head in the Afghani community but I think their stridency kept it at bay; while in Mexico the people just wouldn’t allow it to get a foothold. This was in the Yucatan Peninsula many years ago so I don’t know what it is now).

It was in London. Those of us who were students of knowledge managed to just steer clear of it for the most part, although there were occasional flare ups. Then I became resident in a small city and it started there. People there theologically were of one accord, then it started.

This foolishness reared its head yet again. People theologically were of one accord and then the tribulations began. Now brothers started being divided up. I tried to stop it but was unsuccessful because the cavity had gone too deep. Now it was in the roots.

This same Ashari/Maturidi/Sufi vs AICP/Sufi vs Salafi ruined everything once again. And all the battling threatened to drag everyone into the mud. No one became anymore knowledgeable than they had been and instead they had regressed.

BIOGRAPHY: SHAIKH MUHAMMAD JAMIL ASH-SHATTI

He is Muhammad Jamil ibn `Umar ibn Muhammad ibn Hasan ibn `Umar Ash-Shatti. Coming from a well-known Iraqi family from the city of Baghdad in origin, he was born and lived his life in Damascus.

This very scholar is the cousin of Imam Mustafa ibn Ahmad Ash-Shatti (d. 1348) –  author of The Divine Texts – , the great grandson of one of the Revivers of the Religion, Imam Hasan Ash-Shatti (d. 1274) and one of the students of one of the Revivers of the Religion, Imam `Abdullah Sufan Al-Qaddumi (d. 1331).

Born in the year 18 Safar 1300, he was raised in a house of knowledge from his father, the Shaikh, `Umar Afandi Ash-Shatti (d. 1337). He started his beginning knowledge with him and also his uncle, `Umar Murad Afandi (d. 1314). Then he would go to his paternal uncle, Shaikh Abul Fath Al-Khatib and take inheritance and fiqh, along with whatever he took from his father as well.

He then moved on and took knowledge from his paternal uncle, the Shaikh, Ahmad Ash-Shatti (d. 1316). He studied theology and fiqh with him and also began to make a detailed study of hadith with the Shaikh, the scholar Bakri Al-`Attar (d. 1320).

He also studied hadith with the Shaikh, Badr ud-Din Al-Maghribi (d. 1354), Jamal ud-Din Al-Qasimi (d. 1332) and others scholars of Damascus of high rank and regard. He took ijazahs of teaching and high level from many of these scholars, particularly in the science of hadith, the six collections, tafsir, Hanbali fiqh and inheritance. He was also alive to sit with and take from the peerless author and grand Imam, `Abdullah Sufan Al-Qaddumi (d. 1331).

Soon he reached the level of mufti and was told to give fatawa while in Damascus. It would be not long after reaching the rank of faqih that he would also start authoring books. In the year 1317 he authored a book on the history of the prominent Hanafi family, the Farfur tribe that covered their scholarship and righteousness.

In the year 1322 he printed another text on rhyming together the different sciences of the Revealed Law and making it simple to memorise for students of knowledge. Between the years 1323-1324 he put together a history book on the scholars of Damascus for the past century or more.

The next text came in 1329 when he made more texts and another book that rhymed covering the science of inheritance. Two years later he put together a book on the legal code utilised by the Turks.

After this came his work on Hanbali scholars up to his era which he completed in the year 1339. The year directly after he put together a text dealing with the topic of the Wahhabi cult and their arguments followed by another text in 1350 tackling the topic of the Qadiyani movement (after he received a letter from one of their leaders).

In the year 1360 he wrote stinging rebuttal against a Maliki faqih who allowed the printing of mushafs using modern spelling and contradicting the mushaf of `Uthman. In the year 1363 he printed another text on inheritance that went further with more details and covered modern issues.

The faqih also wrote a book detailing issues differed in with Hanafi scholars particularly when a woman has been raped by her father-in-law and the status of her husband and so forth.

Shaikh Muhammad Jamil Ash-Shatti continued a writing career that inspired him to bring into print once again rare works by his Shatti ancestors. An entire treasure chest of different works was put together and disseminated in Damascus and the rest of the Muslim world. An entirely new generation of students of knowledge were introduced to books that they had not seen before or perhaps had fallen out of circulation among new students.

In terms of the post of Faqih, he was head of some Courts in Damascus in the year 1313 and also wrote the rulings down in the `Ammarah court. He went on to head another court at the Damascus gate in the year 1327 and was made chief judge of his area in the Redressing of Offenses office portion of the Court. He then became chief judge in the courts and head for the Hanbalis in the non-sentencing courts (which brought him to be a Qadi) and head in the Damascus Courts in the year 1348.

Even during this busy time, he was still teaching fiqh, creed and inheritance in the Umayyad Family Masjid from the time he started in the year 1334. In the year 1352 he was asked to be the khatib in Al-Madrasat ul-Badra’iyyah. All in all the Qadi and Faqih left a vast inheritance of books to the Ummah for use by the laity and elite alike.

He would breathe his last in the year 1379, may Allah reward him and give him good.[1]


[1] cf. Ash-Shatti’s A`yan Dimashq, vol.2, pp. 433-435 for the Shaikh’s personal account and then Shaikh Muhammad Bahjat Al-Baitar’s death notice and details in vol.1, pp. 5-11 in the said work.

COVERING THE HEAD AS PROPER DECORUM

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]

Salafiyyah and the Earthly Governments are Closer Than You Think

Figure 1A: King `Abdul `Aziz ibn Sa`ud (AD 1876-1953), temporal leader of Salafiyah, in cordial meeting with US President Franklin D. Roosevelt (AD 1882-1945)
Figure 1A: King `Abdul `Aziz ibn Sa`ud (AD 1876-1953), temporal leader of Salafiyah, in cordial meeting with US President Franklin D. Roosevelt (AD 1882-1945) on Feb. 20, 1945. (Photo courtesy of http://www.hws.edu)

Take a look at this video and I ask that you reflect regarding the prophecies of the Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him in which he said that the Khawarij would be in the army of the False Messiah (as collected by Imam Ahmad in Al-Musnad, vol.6, pp. 348-349 hadith #6871 ). Then think about the fact that our scholars have made Consensus that Salafiyyah is the Khawarij theology

Remember that creed matters and this is what our scholars died defending.