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Imam Ibn ul Hajj Al-Maliki As-Sufi al-Ashari

Posted by muhammedm on June 24, 2012

As-Salamu ‘Alaykum, أبدأُ بالحمدِ مُصَلِّياً على مُحمَّدٍ خَيِر نبيْ أُرســـــِلا

This is a continuation proving the ascription of scholars to a particular school of theology. The following are words of Imam Ibn ul Hajj, the student of the famous Ashari Sufi who needs no introduction in the scholarly scholar Ibn Abi Jamrah, Allah ta’ala have mercy on him. The following words in regards to the Ayat of Sifat indicate his preferred school of Aqidah, namely the Ashari School.

The Imam, on pg. 32 of the 2nd volume of al-Madkhal, under the chapter heading of “Words regarding verses and narrations those that have difficult apparent (Thahir – wording)” states: “He shouldn’t have with him books that are read and it contains difficult narrations for the listener in regards to the apparent wording, and at the same time there is no one to clarify the rulings and meaning, and clear the difficult passages, and even if there is somone who can clarrify the difficult wording then it a must that his voice encompass everyone that is in the gathering just like the voice of the recitor of Quran which encompasses it’s listeners, because if he doesn’t raise it then most likely there will be some who will leave (the gathering) and will carry with them doubts in regards to creed. Imam Malik was asked regarding the narration of the funeral of Sayyidina Sa’ad bin Mu’adh in regards to the throne shaking, and in regards to the narration “Allah ta’ala created Adam in his Surah” and regarding “the Saaq”, so he said (Imam Malik) “They should not be narrated nor should that which an individual wants to be narrated while knowing it is (a cause for) confusion. Ibn al-Qasim said, “it is not proper for the one who fears Allah ta’ala to narrate narrations similar to this, it was said to him, what about the hadith of “Indeed Allah ta’ala laughs” then he didn’t consider it from it and allowed it (the narration thereof).” After Ibn Rush narrates the complete narrations he says, “Imam Malik prohibited from narrating these two narrations and the narration of Allah ta’ala creating Adam in His Surah and those similar to it because their apparent wording necessitates resemblence (tashbih). If a narration is authentic regarding it, then it is (permitted) to interpret upon that which would negate resemblence to Allah ta’ala with any of His creation, as is done with that which has come in the Quran, the apparent of which necessitates resemblences and they are plenty, such as “al-Ityan (the Coming), al-Maji’ (Coming).” (And that) leaves two possibilities (in terms of solutions), one of which is the meaning of His words, “… Allah ta’ala will come” meaning (the coming) of His punishment and revenge if He is rejected”..”The second possibility the meaning would be appearance (Ath-Thuhur) for there is no difference between the Dunya (this world) and the Afterlife in relation to Him, Glory be to Him, for the veil is to us (from Him), for when He unveils the curtain (Hijab) from us, He will appear to us without limit (Hadd) and modality (Takyif) of form and howness, Glory be to Him… Imam Ibn ul-Hajj ends the discussion with saying “and if that is like that (the different possibilites of interpretations), then the matter is divided into three types, (the first one) and it is the best rather it is that which should not be turned away from, it is returning to the words of Imam Malik: not to narrate these narrations from fear upon the weak for some fitnah entering their beliefs, then how can that be done to the Laymen and the women, for the predominant nature is that they enter (the masjid) while believing and leave while being Maftun (subject to confusion)”

Translated with ommited portions.

The above clearly indicates the position of Imam Ibnul Hajj in regards the verses and narrations on the Sifat of Allah ta’ala. His agreement and position is taken from the early Maliki scholars including Imam Ibn al-Qasim and Imam Malik himself. It is only proper that Imam Malik’s words be interpreted and expanded from those who are experts in his thought, and Imam Ibn Rush and Imam Ibnul Hajj are two of those personalities. The above words of Imam Ibnul Hajj leaves no doubt as to his ascription to the Ashari school as the above is in line with the predominant Ashari position.

The link to the work:

Ma’ Salam


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The Mufassir JalaludDin al-Mahalli an Ashari

Posted by muhammedm on March 27, 2012

As-Salamu ‘Alaykum

One of the many Tafasir that has gained prominence amongst ulema is Tafsir al-Jalalyn. This work was authored by Imam Mahalli then completed by Imam Suyuti. Besides Imam Mahalli’s work on Tafsir, his other works on Usul al-Fiqh have gained prominance as well. His commentary on Waraqat is taught by many scholars including the Hanbali scholars Shaykh Namla whose lectures on the work are online. Another work of his is his commentary on the wonderful work on Usul al-Fiqh by Imam Subki entitled Jam’ ul Jawami’, a work that has received careful attention by scholars of all schools as their commentaries show. Imam al-Mahalli has authored a commentary on this wonderful work entitled “al-Badr ut-Tali’ fi Hal Jam’ ul Jawami'”, which can be read online. In this work, Imam Subki towards the end of his work writes about Usul ud Din or Principles of religion (Articles of Faith). Towards the end of the section on Aqidah, Imam Subki writes, “(we believe) Abu al-Hasan al-Ashari to be the Imam of Sunnah given precedence” Imam Mahalli writes the following, giving tacit approval of Imam Subki’s words by writing the following (in brackets are Imam Subki’s words):
“(And) we believe (Abu al-Hasan) ‘Ali bin Isma’il (al-Ashari) and he’s from the progeny of Abu Musa al-Ashari the Companion of the Prophet. (Leader in/of the Sunnah) meaning the theological path trodden (given precedence) in it above others such as Abi Mansur al-Maturidi. One should not give ear to those who speak in regards to him (negatively) for he is free from it.”

To Allah ta’ala belongs all praise.

More to follow in regards to other scholars who were affiliated with the Ashari school.

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Imam Abu Ishaq Shirazi an Ashari

Posted by muhammedm on December 27, 2011

In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious Most Merciful.

There are several ways to know an individual’s affiliation with a particular theological school. Few of those ways can be differed upon while others everyone has to accept. One can gauge an individual’s affiliation through their works, testimony of contemporaries, testimonies of historians, dealings with different individuals of a particular group and testimonies of opponents. Imam Shirazi, a great Usuli and Faqih of the Shafi’I school, is an individual whom the Ashariah take pride in. There are many proofs for him to be rightly attributed to the Asharis as opposed to the Hanbali or the so called Hanbali school of today, the Salafis. Several proofs are given below with the different methods of ascription.

Testimony of Ashari scholars

Several scholars have ascribed Imam Shirazi to the Ashari School, from them Hafidh Ibn ‘Asakir, Imam Subki and Abu Ja’far Sharif al-Hanbali (refer below).

Historical events
Hafidh Ibn Kathir in his Bidaya wa an-Nihaya writes on pg. 1845 of pdf, “turmoil broke out in Shawwal between the Hanabilah and Ashariah because of Ibn al-Qushayri when he entered Baghdad and taught in Madrasa an-Nidhamiya. He took to censuring Hanabilah and attributing corporeality to them, and Abu Sa’id Sufi aided him and Shaykh Abu Ishaq Shirazi leaned towards him…The Khalifah gathered Shirazi, Sharif, and Abi Nasr bin al-Qurayshi in front of the Wazir. The Wazir turned towards Sharif and paid tribute in his words and actions, and Shaykh Shirazi stood up and said, “I was the one whom you knew when I was a young man and this is my book on Usul in which I say “this is opposed to the Ashairah” then he kissed Abi Ja’far’s head. Abu Ja’far said to him, “you’re saying the truth except that when you were a poor (chad) you didn’t make evident what was in you, but when helpers, the leader and Khawaja Buzurk, meaning Nidhamiya al-Mulk, came you showed what was hidden in yourself”. Refer to Al-Muntazim of Ibn al-Jawzi year 469 Hijri.
The actions and words of Abu Ja’far indicate that Shirazi agreed with the Ashariah even though his works might indicate otherwise.

Hafidh Ibn Kathir writes in Tabaqat as-Shafi’yah, pg. 430, “He studied Usul al-Kalam from Abi Hazim al-Qazwini student of Qadi Baqqallani”
Hafidh Ibn Kathir writes in Tabaqat as-Shafi’yah, pg.439, “Ibn ‘Asakir writes in his Tabaqat Ashab As-Ashairah in the end of his work, “Tabyin Kidhb al-Muftari ‘ala Abi al-Hasan al-Ashari, states, “I saw in the handwriting of some of the truthful, “What is the opinion of the great jurist scholars regarding a group who gather to curse the Asharis and pass verdicts of kufr on them, what should be their consequence? Give us a verdict. A group answered, “ the Ashairah are the people of Sunnah, who stood up to refute the innovators such as the Qadariyya, Rafidah, and others. So whoever reviles them reviles Ahlus Sunnah, and it is incumbent upon those who are over lookers of the matters of Muslim to discipline them such that it prevents others (from cursing). Ibrahim bin ‘Ali al-Fayrazabadi wrote, “I say, “as for the way of Shaykh Abul Hasan ‘Ali bin Isma’il al-Ashari in regards to the Attributes after he left the Mu’tazilities, rather after he entered Baghdad and took from the Ashab al-Hadith such as Zakariyya As-Saji and others for it is the most correct of paths and way because it affirms the Sifat of ‘Aqliyya and al-Jabarriya, none of it is denied or done takyif upon, and this is the path of the Salaf and the Imams of Ahlus Sunnah. May Allah ta’ala raise us in their ranks and cause us to die following them and loving them for He is the Hearer of supplications, the Generous the Bountiful. And upon this mode and manner did the Imams from the companions of Al-Ashari such as Abi ‘Abdillah bin Mujahid, Qadi Abi Bakr al-Baqqallani and their likes followed, May Allah ta’ala have mercy on them.

Testimony of Salafi works

The link below states that the reason for the spread of the Ashari school was because of the assistance and spreading of the Madhab due to the Fuqaha of the Maliki and Shafi’I school, scholars such as Shirazi, Juwayni, Ghazzali, etc.

Imams Contemporaries and acquaintances
A question must be asked if Imam Shirazi was opposed to the Ashari school, rather the claim put forward by Ibn Abdil Hadi in his refutation on Ibn Asakir that he would distance and oppose the Asharis all together, why did Imam Shirazi keep the company of well known and outspoken Asharis such as Imam al-Juwayni and Ibn al-Qushayri? Why did he praise and encourage seeking knowledge from Imam al-Juwayni? All of the above proofs leave no doubt that Imam Shirazi was an Ashari and not a Salafi!

To Allah ta’ala belongs all praise.

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Relationship of the Ashari Maliki Qadi Baqillani and Imam Daraqutni

Posted by muhammedm on October 31, 2011


“Abul Walid al-Baji writes in his work entitled “Ikhtisar firaq al-Fuqaha” under the section on Qadi ibn Baqillani, “Shaykh Abu Dharr (Narrator of Sahih Bukhari) informed me, and he used to lean towards his madhab (being Ashari’), so I asked him, “Where did you get this from?” He said, “I was walking in Baghdad with Hafidh Daraqutni and we met Abu Bakr bin at-Tayyib (Qadi Baqillani), Shaykh Abul Hasan (Imam Daraqutni) hugged him and kissed his face and his two eyes. When we left him (Qadi), I said to him, “who is this whom I have seen you do something to whom I have never seen done towards, while you are the Imam of your time?” He (Imam Daraqutni) said, “He is the Imam of the Muslims, who defends the Din, He is Qadi Abu Bakr Muhammed bin At-Tayyib”. Abu Dhar continues and says, “from that time, I have frequented him (Qadi) with my father. Every land that I entered such as Khurasan and others, no one would be singled out from the Ahlus Sunnah except that the person was on his Madhab and methodology.”
Imam Dhahabi continues and says, “…in his work on defense of Imam Ashari he (Qadi) Says, “we have elucidated our religion and the creed of Ahlu Sunnah that the Attributes are to be passed on as they have come without modality, limitations, type, or image.” I (Imam Dhahabi) say, “this methodology is that of the Salaf, and this is what Abul Hasan (Imam Ashari) and his companions were upon which is acceptance of the text of the Book and Sunnah, and this was held by Ibn Baqillani, Ibn Fawrak, and the elders until the time of Abil Ma’ali, then the time of Shaykh Abi Hamid; then differences occured, we seek Allah ta’ala forgiveness.”
Siyar al-‘Alam an-Nubala Pg. 197 Under the section on Abu Dhar al-Hirawi.

There are few things that this narration and event clarifies and shows; one of them is the fabrication or fantasy that Qadi used to be afraid of coming out in public, as the report from Kurji indicates. The text quoted by Imam Dhahabi is clear that Qadi is not only walking in public without fear, he’s being given the utmost respect by the Imam of hadith in his time, Imam Daraqutni, this is excluding the fact that Qadi was a Qadi which means he was in front of the public during the duration of his tenure. Another lie that is spread is that the madhab of Imam Ashari spread in the time of Ibn Turmut, but as the quote of Abu Dhar, the Ashari narrator of Sahih Bukhari, indicates, that anywhere he would go, Asharis were the ones that were considered to be defenders of Ahlu Sunnah. The text also shows Imam Dhahabi’s full acceptance of Qadi’s, and consequently the early Asharis, methodology as he says that the salaf were upon that methodology. The last indication from the quote is that there were no differences between Imam Daraqutni and Qadi in Aqida, for had there been, Imam Daraqutni mustn’t have shown the respect that he showed towards Qadi, for it is forbidden to praise let alone kiss the cheek and eyes of an innovator, and Qadi was far from being an innovator, as these great scholars themselves held Qadi to be a defender of Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jama’ah.

To Allah ta’ala belongs all praise.

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The ‘Ulema on Imam Ibn Kullab

Posted by muhammedm on December 19, 2010

أبدأُ بالحمدِ مُصَلِّياً على مُحمَّدٍ خَيِر نبيْ أُرســـــِلا

– Imam At-Taj as-Subki says in his Tabaqat, “and Ibn Kullab in any case is from the Ahlus Sunnah… the father of Imam Razi, Diyaud Din al-Khatib, mentioned Ibn Sa’id (ibn Kullab) in the end of his book ‘Ghayatul Maram fi ‘Ilm al-Kalam’ that from the scholastic theologians of Ahlus Sunnah in the days of al-Ma’mun was ‘Abdullah bin Sa’id at-Taymi who destroyed the Mu’tazilites in the gatherings of al-Ma’mun…”
– Ibn ‘Asakir in Tibyan writes regarding Ibn Abi Zayd’s, known as the Little Malik, epistle to a Ibn Isma’il al-Baghdadi al-Mu’tazili, “and you’ve attributed Ibn Kullab to Bida’, and then you didn’t mention anything that would be known as bida’ such that it be called bida’. And what has reached us is that he was a follower of Sunnah and took to refuting the Jahimites and others from the people of bida’h.”
– Ibn Qadi Shuhbah writes in his Tabaqat, “He was from the great scholastic theologians and from the Ahlus Sunnah, his path and that of Al-Harith al-Muhasibi, Imam Ashari’ followed.”
– Jamal ud Din al-Isnawi in Tabaqat as-Shafi’iyah writes, “He was from the great scholastic theologians and from the Ahlus Sunnah…. Al-‘Ibadi mentions him in the Tabaqah (rank in regards to level of students) of Abi Bakr As-Sayrifi that he said, “He is from our companions the Mutakallimin”.
– Imam Dhahabi in Siyar writes, “The man is closest of the scholastics theologians to the Sunnah rather he’s from their Munatharihim”. Shaykh Shu’ayb al-Arnaout writes under Imam Dhahabi’s comments, “He was an Imam of the people of Sunnah in his time and was their source. Imam al-Haramayn described him in al-Irshad as him being from “our companions”.”
– ‘Allamah Ibn Khuldun writes, “until Shaykh Abul Hasan al-Ashari came on the scene… he was on the path of ‘Abdillah bin Sa’id bin Kullab and Abi al-‘Abbas al-Qalanisi and al-Harith al-Muhasibi from the followers of Salaf and on the path of Sunnah.”
– ‘Allamah Bayadi writes, “And Imam Abu Muhammed ‘Abdullah bin Sa’id al-Qattan preceded Imam Ashari in defending the madhab of Ahlus Sunnah.”
– After Hafidh quotes Ibn Nadim’s words wherein he says Ibn Kullab is from the Hashawiya, “he means by it that he’s upon the way of the Salaf in leaving ta’wil of the Ayat and Ahadith related to the Sifat, and they are called al-Mufawwidah.”
– Hafidh says in al-Fath, “Imam Bukhari in what he narrates from the difficult tafsir he relates from the people of that fann (science) such as Abi ‘Ubaydah, An-Nadr bin Shumayl, al-Fara’ and others, as for juristic issues most of them from Shafi’, Abi ‘Ubayd and their likes, and issues of Kalam then most of them from Al-Karabisi, Ibn Kullab and their likes.”

As for Imam Ahmed’s censure of Karabisi, Ibn Kullab, al-Muhasibi was because of their delving into Kalam issue not because of their position. The Hanbalis took Imam Ahmed’s statement to another level such that they went against many of the Imams. Imam Bukhari himself says in Khalq, “as for what the two groups who ascribe to the Madhab of Imam Ahmed and each calling itself to it, for the narrations are not established, and sometimes they don’t understand the subtleness of his (Imam Ahmed’s) madhab, but what is well known from Ahmed and the people of knowledge is ‘the Kalam of Allah ta’ala is ghayr makhluq and whatever else besides it is makhluq, and they disliked delving into it and poking in matters that are difficult. And they avoided the people of Kalam and those who delved and argued except in matters that knowledge has been given and the Prophet’s explications.”

Imam Ahmed said, “whoever says the Quran is created is a Jahimi, and whoever says the Quran is the Kalam of Allah ta’ala but doesn’t say it’s ghayr mukhluq is Waqifi, and whoever says Lafhdi (my lafhd) of the Quran is makhluq is a Mubtadi’.” From the Imams who were explicit in their statements regarding the lafdh issue were Imam Bukhari, Imam Muslim, Imam Tabari, al-Karabisi and others. And the Hanbalis censured those who were explicit in their statements and went against Imam Ahmed’s statements, and from those who were attacked by the Hanbalis were Al-Karabisi, Imam Tabari, and others.

The Ibanah is also on the tariq of Ibn Kullab as the Imams have stated, yet some of the Hanabilah in the time of Imam Ashari didn’t accept his work. Refer to Siyar, Lisan al-Mizan and others. This is another proof that Imam Ibn Kullab was from the followers of the salaf as everyone agrees that Imam Ashari’s madhab was explicated in Ibanah which was written after Imam Ashari left the Mu’tazili madhab.

So we ask todays so-called Hanbalis who use Imam Ahmed’s statement without context, who was correct Imam Ahmed or Imam Muslim, Imam Bukhari and others who were explicit in the lafdh issue? We also ask the reader to see the descrepency in the description of Ibn Kullab by the above scholars and todays’ so called Hanbalis wherien they insult Ibn Kullab and deem him to be a mubtadi’!

Ma’ Salamah

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‘Allama Shamsul Haq’s commentary on hadith of Mujaddid

Posted by muhammedm on November 11, 2010

Regarding the hadith mentioned in Sunan Abi Dawud, “on the authority of the Prophet of Allah, peace be upon him, he said, “Allah ta’ala will raise for this Ummah at the head of every century who will revive for it it’s religion” ‘Allama Shamsul Haq al-Adhim Abadi says in his commentary on Sunan Abi Dawud, “(it’s religion) meaning explicate the Sunnah from the Bida’, spread knowledge, assist scholars, break the people of innovation and rebuke them. They (the scholars) say that the Mujaddid will only be one who is a scholar of the outward and the inward knowledge, as Munawi says in Fathul Qadir Sharh Jami’ as-Saghir. ‘Allama Shamsul Haq continues, “indeed you know from what has preceded that what is intended of revival is the revival of what has been left of the actions that are in accordance with the Book and the Sunnah, the matters that result from them, and destroying what has appeared of the innovation.” The author if Majalis al-Abrar said, “the Mujaddid is known except through preponderant opinion of those who are contemporaries of the Mujaddid through his contextual conditions and his benefiting others with his knowledge. Then the Mujaddid has to be one who has knowledge of the outward and the inward sciences, eliminating innovations, his knowledge is widespread in his times…”

After quoting Imam Suyuti’s poem on the possible Mujaddids, ‘Allama writes, “from those who are also considered amongst the Mujaddidin are, in the 1st century Ibn Shihab Zuhri, Qasim bin Muhammed, Salim bin Abdillah, Hasan al-Basri, Muhammed bin Sirin, Muhammed al-Baqir, in the 2nd century the Imam of Jarh wa Ta’dil Yahya bin Ma’in, in the 3rd century Imam Nasa’I, the 4th century al-Hakim[i] and Abdul Ghani bin Sa’id al-Misri, in the 9th century Imam Suyuti as he claimed, in the 10th century Shamus Din bin Shihab ud Din ar-Ramli[ii]. Muhibbi wrote in Khulasatul at-Athar fi ‘Ayan al-Qarn al-Hadi al-‘Ashar in his biographical note, “a group of the scholars have considered him (Ar-Ramli) to be the Mujaddid of the 10th century.”

From the Mujaddids of the 11th century is Ibrahim bin Hasan al-Kurdi al-Kawrani[iii] the last of the Muhaqqiqin the pillar of the Musnidin (Hadith Scholars) resident of Madina. In the 12th century Shaykh Salih bin Muhammed bin Nuh al-Fulani resident of Medina, and Sayyid Murtada al-Husayni az-Zabidi[iv]. In the 13th century, Our Shaykh (after three lines of titles of praise) Sayyid Nadhir Husayn, Qadi Husayn bin Muhammed al-Ansari al-Khazraji as-Sa’di al-Yamani[v] and ‘Allamah Siddiq al-Hasan Khan Al-Bhopali al-Qunuji[vi], Allah ta’ala cover him with His forgiveness and enter him into Jannah. This is what I believe in regards to these three scholars that they are from the Mujaddidin of this 13th century.”

Source: ‘Awn ul Ma’bud Sharh Sunan Abi Dawud li Shamsil Haq

[i] The Author of al-Mustadrik and al-Ulum al-Hadith. He kept the company of Abu Uthman al-Maghribi. Ibn ‘Asakir includes him amongst the Asha’irah.

[ii] Faqih of Misr, he writes “to delve into ‘Ilm al-Kalam such that it is possible to provide evidence and remove doubts is Fard Kifayah upon all of those who are Mukallifin (responsible). Everyone of them is addressed in learning ‘Ilm al-Kalam, however if some of them learn it, then the responsibility is removed from the rest, but if everyone of them refuses to learn it, each individual who has no excuse and knows it’s his responsibility and can learn it sins.” Ghayatul Bayan Sharh Zubad ibn Raslan

[iii] Shah Waliullah writes, “Shaykh Ibrahim al-Kurdi was from the signs of Allah ta’ala in al-Aslein (Aqidah and Usul al-Fiqh), Jurisprudence, Hadith, and Tasawwuf. He has treatise in every science which indicates his powerful explication. He has authored works which no one similar to, especially in hadith, such as ‘Al-Amam’ and al-Musalsalat, and a treatise regarding the authentication of Ahadith mentioned by Sufis. In his time, people from all over the world would turn towards him in Tasawwuf, al-Aslein, Shafi’ fiqh and Hadith. Questions would be posed to him from the east and west which he would answer and were made into many treatises.” Page 105 Ithaf an-Nabih fima Yahtaj ilayhi al-Muhadith wal Faqih

[iv] The Hanafi, Sufi Mutakallim, author of Sharh ul Ihya.  The student of Shah Wailullah and ‘Allama as-Saffarini al-Khalwati al-Hanbali.

[v] He says in his Ijazah, “I used to frequent him (Shaykh Sulayman al-Ahdal), and I read parts of the Six books and others, Hizb of Imam Nawawi and it’s commentary by ‘Allama al-Jurhazi, Hizb of Ibn ‘Arabi and others. He gave me authorization in specific works and in general”. He was a student of ‘Allama Shawkani.

[vi] An admirer of Ibn Arabi and Qasidah Burdah. Refer to and his work Abjadul Ulum..

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Sufi Khirqa (cloak): Hafidh Ibn Taymiyya, Hafidh as-Sakhawi, Hanbali Sufis

Posted by muhammedm on January 16, 2010

أبدأُ بالحمدِ مُصَلِّياً على مُحمَّدٍ خَيِر نبيْ أُرســـــِلا

This post is concerning a particular aspect of the issue on Khirqa (the cloak of the Sufis). Salafis are known to speak out against almost everything that is done by Sufis. I thought I would write a little bit about the Khirqa from the writings of ‘Allama Ibn Taymiyya, and while I was reading Maqasid al-Hasanah, I came upon the narration of Sayyidina ‘Ali dawning the cloak on Sayyidina Hasan al-Basri, and so I thought that would be good addition to the post. And then I thought of how much todays salafis have a great dislike for the sufis, but great respect for the Hanbalis, and rightfully so, since the Hanabilah have produced great Ulema, that being said, I took notice of the fact that many Hanabilah took the sufi path, and wore the cloak, as this post will make clear. It should be kept in mind that these Hanabilah listed below aren’t just regular Hanbali Ulema, but they are referred to as Shaykh ul Hanabilah, or Shaykhul Islam. And salafis have taken recourse to their works, and called themselves Hanbalis, which I believe is a great lie when it comes to the issue of tasawwuf, and so here it is:

‘Allama Ibn Taymiyya on the Khirqa:
“As for the wearing of Khirqa which some of the Mashayikh garb the spiritual students (Muridin), it doesn’t have a basis with relied upon evidence from the Kitab and Sunnah. The olden Mashayikh and most of the later ones didn’t clothe the spiritual students; however a group from the later ones considered it and liked it.
Some of them sought evidence from the fact that the Prophet, peace be upon him, gave Umm Khalid bin Sa’id bin al-‘As a clothing, and said to her, Sana?”, and al-Sana in the language of al-Habasha is goodness/excellence. She was born in the land of Habasha, that’s why he addressed her in that language. They also seek evidence with the hadith of the Burda which was knitted by a woman for the Prophet, peace be upon him. One of the Sahaba asked him for it, and he gave it to him, and (the Sahabi) said, “I wanted it to be my kafan”.
In these two ahadith there’s no evidence for the manner in which they use it, for the giving of a man to someone else which he will wear is like giving him that which will benefit him, and the taking of the clothing from the Prophet, peace be upon him, concerned (to obtain) blessing (barakah) like the taking of his hair for blessing. This is not like wearing a piece of clothing or a hat in a manner of following and imitating, however it resembles from another angle renouncing the king which they renounce from the one who befriends them, as if it’s a hallmark and a sign for Wilayah and Karamat.
This is why they deem it as noble. The purpose of this and other things like it is to be put under the category of permissible acts (Mubahat), and if it’s combined with a righteous intention, it would be excellent/good (hasan) from this angle, as for deeming it a Sunnah and a path to Allah ta’ala then the matter is not like it.
As for ascription of the group (Sufis) to a particular Shaykh, then there’s no doubt that people are in need of those who teach them al-Iman and Quran, just as how the Sahaba learned from the Prophet, peace be upon him. And the Tabi’in learnt from them, and through this is the obtainment of following the foremost in goodness. Just as a man learns Quran from someone, and things like it (the Shariah), it is likewise that he learn the Inner (Batin) and the outward (Thahir) Din.
Source: Majmu’ al-Fatawa

‘Allama as-Sakhawi in Maqasid al-Hasanah:
In the hadith of Hasan al-Basri receiving the khirqa from Sayyidina ‘Ali, which is fabricated as many of Huffadh have said, including Ibn as-Salah, Ibn Dihya, Hafidh ibn Hajar, ‘Allama Sakhawi writes, “(the position) was held by a group of scholars, even those who wore it and gowned others, such as Ad-Dimyati, Ad-Dhahabi, al-Hakkari, Abi Hayyan, al-’Alai, Mughlataya, al-Iraqi, Ibn al-Mulaqqin, al-Abnasi, al-Burhan al-Halabi, Ibn Nasir ud Din…I have discussed this in a separate treatise as well as in other of my works, while taking this position (of Hasan not wearing the claok from Sayyidina ‘Ali), I’ve gowned the khirqa to a group of Sufis, by way of imitation of their concern regarding the khirqa, even in front of the honored ka’aba, by way of seeking blessing with the mentioning of the righteous and following the ones who have established (this) from the relied upon Huffadh.
Hafidh Sakhawi wore the khirqa from: al-Mahyuwi, Abi Madyan al-Ashmumi, Abi al-Fath al-Fawi, Umar an-Nabtiti and others.

From Dhayl Tabaqat al-Hanabilah by Ibn Rajab
1. Muhammed bin Ahmed bin Umar bin al-Husayn bin Khalaf al-Baghdadi al-Qati’I al-Azji al-Hanbali born in the year 546 Hijri, he received the khirqa from Abi an-Najib as-Suhrawardi, and gave him Ijaza.
2. Muhammed bin Ahmed bin ‘Abdullah bin ‘Isa bin Abi ar-Rijal, as-Shaykh, al-Faqih al-Muhaddith, az-Zahid, born 572 Hijri, he wore the khirqa of tassawuf from Shaykh Abdillah al-Batayihi, the companion of Shaykh Abdul Qadir,.
3. Muhammed bin ‘Abdullah bin ‘Umar al-Muhaddith as-Sufi al-Katib, born in the year 623 Hijri, wore the Khirqa of Tassawuf from as-Suhrawardi.

From the Thabat of ‘Allama as-Saffarini al-Khalwati
1- ‘Allama As-Shaykh Abu at-Taqi ‘Abdul Qadir bin Shaykh ‘Umar bin Shaykh Abi Taghlab al-Hanbali as-Sufi al-Qadiri Mufti As-Sadat al-Hanabilah fi Dimishq.
2- Mustafa bin as-Sayyid Kamalluddin al-Bakri al-Khalwati (a Sufi Tariqa), after praising his shaykh with wonderful words he (as-Saffarini) says, “He gave me permision (to narrate, teach, etc) all of them (the works he lists which includes al-Mawlid), and (he gave me permision) in the al-Khalwatiyya Tariqa, and that I give authority and permision whomever I deem approriate for it (in the Tariqa).” (sadly the salafi editor has a problem with the Sufi as-Saffarini, as well as with Shaykh ‘Abdul Ghani an-Nabulusi, who was one of ‘Allama as-Saffarini’s biggest Shayukh as is apparent).
3- He says about himself, “I’m Ahmed bin Salim as-Saffarini, of HanbalI Madhab, Athari in regards to ‘Aqidah, and Qadiri in regards to method/way (of Tassawuf). Page 268

From Mashikha of Abu al-Mawahib ‘Abdul Baqi al-HanbalI (practically all of the Shuyukh were Sufis, though I restricted myself to HanbalI Sufis from his work.)
1- ‘Abdul Baqi Taqi ud Din bin ‘Abdul Baqi al-HanbalI, known as ibn Badr, the father of the author of the work Mashikha, writes quoting his father, “I took the Sufi Tariqa from the son of my uncle, Shaykh Nurud Din the Khalifa of Muhammed al-’Alami, he encouraged me to seek ‘ilm. Shaykh Muhammed al-’Alami gave me Ijazah (permision) in al-Quds to initiate in awrad, dhikr, etc.”
2- Regarding Shaykh Ayuub bin Ahmed al-Khalwati he (the author) says, “and from them our shaykh and teacher in the Khalwatiya Tariqah, and in Shariah Shaykh Ayyub…”
3- Shaykh ‘Isa bin Muhammed al-Maghribi ath’alabi, “Imam of the two Harams, the scholar of the two west and east” He took from Shaykh Sa’id bin Ibrahim al-Jazairi, “dhikr and wore the Khirqa” from him. Even though the shaykh is Maliki, I’ve brought him to show how the Imams of the two Haram were sufis.
4- Muhammed bin Ahmed al-Khalwati al-Hanbali

For more on Sufi Hanbalis who took the Tariqa you can refer to As-Suhb al-Wabilah ‘ala Daraih al-Hanabilah by Ibn Humayd an-Najdi al-Hanbali, a Hanbali biographical work, the author was born after Shaykh AbdulWahhab and before the recent Salafi movement. As an added bonus, the readers can see the difference between salafis and hanbalis, as the muhaqqiq is vocal on his stance. So for those who want to label anyone and everyone who dawns the sufi cloak and are judgmental on anyone who takes the sufi path, are they ready to label these Hanabilah, whom I’ve restricted to the sufi path for were I to list those who were known as ‘sufis’ the list would end in pages, as deviant or misguided they so easily label others as such?

Ma’ Salama

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Dhun Nun al-Misr as-Sufi and al-Zajjaj al-Mufassir

Posted by muhammedm on January 7, 2010

أبدأُ بالحمدِ مُصَلِّياً على مُحمَّدٍ خَيِر نبيْ أُرســـــِلا

Dhun Nun al-Misri (Allah ta’ala have mercy on him)

“Az-Zahid, Shaykh of Misr (Egypt), Thawban bin Ibrahim. He narrated from Imam Malik, Imam Layth, Bin Luhay’a, Fudayl bin ‘Ayyad, Salim al-Khawwas, Sufyan bin ‘Uyayna and others. Those who narrated from him include: Ahmed bin Sabih al-Fayumi, Rabi’ah bin Muhammed at-Tai, Ridwan bin Muhaymid, Hasan bin Mus’ab, al-Junayd bin Muhammed az-Zahid, Miqdam bin Dawud ar-Ra’ini, and others. He narrated only a few hadith, and wasn’t an expert in it. Daraqutni said, “he narrated from Malik Ahadith, in which are difficulties, and was a religious orator.” Bin Yunus said, “he was a wise eloquent scholar he passed away in Dhil Qi’dah in the year 245 Hijri.”
Sulami said regarding the trail of the Sufis, “Dhu an-Nun was the first want in his land to speak about spiritual states, to which Abdullah bin Abdul Hakim censored him, and the scholars of Egypt deserted him, and it spread that he spread that he invented this knowledge which the Salaf didn’t speak about, and they left him and labeled him an opostate.”
‘Ali bin Hatim said, ‘I heard Dhu an-Nun say, ‘Quran is the Speech of Allah ta’ala, and is not created (is eternal).” Yusuf bin al-Husayn said, “I heard Dhu an-Nun say, “what image comes in your mind, then Allah is not that”.
He passed away in the year 246 Hijri.
Page 2047 Siyar al-‘Alam of Imam Dhahabi.

‘Thawban bin Ibrahim, one of famous Mashayikh, Ibn Khalkan wrote a biographical note about him in al-Wafayat, and mentioned his merits and states, and stated his death was in the year 245 Hijri. He’s considered amongst those who narrated Muwatta from Imam Malik, Ibn Yunus mentioned him in Tarikh Misr, and he was eloquent and wise.”
Bidaya wa an-Nihaya li Ibn Kathir

It should be kept in mind that there is no censure on the terminology (of the Sufis) as long as the meaning is sound, and what Dhun Nun al-Misri spoke about and is recorded doesn’t contradict any ‘Aqidah of Ahlus Sunnah, his statements of ‘Aqidah, two of which are recorded here, are in clear conformity with Ahlu Sunnah. Scholars have accepted him and quoted him abundantly which shows that he wasn’t deviant, scholars such as Imam Nawawi, Hafidh Ibn Hajar, Hafidh Ibn Qayyim and others.

az-Zajjaj, The Grammarian and Mufassir (Allah ta’ala have mercy on him)
“Ibrahim bin as-Sirri bin Sahl Abu Ishaq az-Zajjaj, was from the people of virtue and religion, of good path and belief, from his works are Ma’ani al-Quran an exegis, Khalq ul Insan, Tafisr Jami’ al-Mantiq, he passed away in 310… He said in his last breath, “O Allah ta’ala raise me upon the madhab (path) of Ahmed bin Hanbal, as is mentioned in Mawdu’at al-‘Ulum of Tash Kobri and Tarikh Mir’at al-Jinan.”
Page 16 Tabaqat al-Mufassirin of Ahmed bin Muhammed al-Udnarwi

“Ibrahim bin as-Sirri bin Sahl Abu Ishaq az-Zajjaj, he was a virtuous religious individual, of good (correct) belief, he authored great works, from them Ma’ani al-Quran and other beneficial works.”
Al-Bidaya wan Nihaya Ibn Kathir

Hafidh Ibn al-Jawzi says the same in al-Muntadham, page 512. That he was of good ‘Aqidah.

‘Al-Imam, the Grammarian of his time, Abu Ishaq…”
Siyar al-‘Alam an-Nubala’ li Dhahabi Pg 2588

Suffice it to say major Mufassirin quote him in their works. For those who want to attack him because of ta’wil, then it should be made clear that the Salaf did ta’wil, and what Zajjaj did wasn’t something new or in contradiction to Ahlus Sunnah.
These two biographical notes are presented because of the slander that a neo-hanbali salafi (ironic since he claims he follows the salaf but vilifies them whenever he gets a chance) attacked these two personalities from the salaf, and I thought it would be best to write about them from the pen of such scholars as Imam Dhahabi and Hafidh ibn Kathir.

Wa ‘alaykumus Salam

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Shihab ud Din as-Suhrawardi as-Sufi As-Shafi’i

Posted by muhammedm on January 3, 2010

أبدأُ بالحمدِ مُصَلِّياً على مُحمَّدٍ خَيِر نبيْ أُرســـــِلا

Many people have taken to criticising those whom they disagree with, especially the sufis, amongts them is Shaykh Shihab ud Din the author of ‘Awarif al-Ma’arif, here is a biographical sketch from two ulema, Imam Dhahabi and Imam Ibn Kathir, filled with praise. These two historians and Ulema are relied upon by virtually everyone. For those who want to criticise Shaykh as-Suhrawardi let them also criticise these two Ulema, from amongst the hundreds who agree with them.

“‘As-Shaykh al-Imam al-‘Alim al-Qudwa az-Zahid al-‘Arif al-Muhaddith Shaykh ul Islam unique from the Sufis, Shihab ud-Din Abu Hafs, and Abu ‘Abdillah ‘Umar bin Muhammed bin ‘Abdillah bin Muhammed…bin Abi Bakr as-Siddiq al-Qurashi at-Taymi al-Bakri as-Suhrawardi as-Sufi. Born in Rajab in the year 539 Hijri, He kept company of his uncle, Abu an-Najib, studied fiqh, wa’dh and Tassawwuf with him. He accompanied Shaykh Abdul Qadir (Jilani) for a little while, Shaykh Abi Muhammed bin ‘Abd in Basrah…
Ibn al-Dabithi said, ‘he entered Baghdad, and had a firm footing and eloquent toungue in Tariqa (Tassawwuf), he was in charge of a number of Sufi hospices, and sent different students to different places.”
Ibn al-Najjar said, ‘Shihab ud Din was the Shaykh of his time in knowledge of reality; he was sought in the spiritual upbringing of students, calling people to Allah ta’ala and for spiritual wayfaring. He kept company of his uncle and trod the path of exertion and spiritual exercises. He studied fiqh, khilaf, and Arabic, and heard (hadith), then he took to seclusion, dhikr and fasting until it occurred to him in his old age to present to the people (the din) and speak to them, so he held gatherings of sermons in the madrasa of his uncle, his sermons would benefit many. Many would attend his gatherings, the elite and common folk accepted him, and he became famous. Many repented at his hands, and reached Allah ta’ala through him, his companions became guiding stars. He sent his students to Syria, and to Sultan Khuwarizm Shah, and he gained honor and respect that none had seen…
Ibn An-Najjar continued, ‘I studied various works with him, and kept his company for a while, he was honorable and truthful, he wrote a book on Tassawwuf in which he explained the states/condition of the people (sufis), and he taught it many times, meaning ‘Awarif al-Ma’arif. He dictated near the end of his life a refutation of philosophers’…
He wore the Sufi cloak from his uncle. Abu an-Najib. Shaykh Shihab ad-Dun, Allah ta’ala have mercy on him, passed away in the year 632 Hijri.”
Source: Siyar al-‘Alam an-Nubula li Hafidh ad-Dhahabi Page 4296

“The author of ‘Awarif al-Ma’arif, Umar bin Muhammed… The Shaykh of Sufis in Baghdad, he was from the giant righteous individuals, and from the leaders of the Muslims…He obtained much wealth which he distributed amongst the poor and the needy, he performed Hajj once and with his company were many of the poor, whom Allah ta’ala only knows… Ibn Khalkan mentioned much of his poetry and praised him. He passed away in the year 630 Hijri, Allah ta’ala have mercy on him.”
Source: Al-Bidaya wa an-Nihaya of ‘Allama Ibn Kathir.

Wa ‘alaykumus Salam

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‘Allama As-Saffarini Athari Hanbali (Allah ta’ala have mercy on him)

Posted by muhammedm on March 17, 2009

He is Abul ‘Awn Sham ud Din Muhammed bin Ahmed bin Salim As-Saffarini born in the year 1114 Hijri Saffarin, a village in Nabulus, and raised there. He studied the primary sciences from the Ulema of Nabulus, and then traveled to Damascus, fortress of knowledge and ‘Ulema. He read with Shaykh Al-Jalil AbdulQadir At-Taghlabi his commentary on Dalil at-Talib, and debated with him on some of the matters. He read the following with Shaykh AbdulGhani An-Nabulusi: Arbai’in, the Thulathiyat of Bukhari and Musnad Imam Ahmed, and attended his durus on Tafsir Baydawi. He read Sharh Jam’ al-Jawami’ of Mahalli, Sharh Al-Kifaya of Jami, Sharh Al-Qatr of Fakahi with Shaykh Ahmed al-Minini, and would attend his durus on Sahih. In the year of 1148 Hijri, he performed the obligatory Hajj, and heard al-Musalsal Bil Awwaliya and the beginning of the six books with Shaykh Muhammed Hayat al-Sindhi. He passed away in the year 1188 Hijri in Nabulus.

From his works include:

1. Al-‘Aqida al-Farida
2. It’s Sharh entitled Lawami’ Al-Anwar Al-Bahiyya wa Sawati’ al-Asrar al-Athariya Li Sharh Ad-Durra al-Madiyya fi ‘aqd al-Firqa al-Mardiyya.
3. Sharh Fadail al-‘Amal of Diya’ Al-Maqdisi
4. Nafaath As-Sadri al-Mukmadi bi Sharh Thulathiyat al-Musnadi.
5. Sharh ‘Umdatul Ahkam
6. Sharh Nuniyya As-Sarsariyyi
7. Al-Mulhul Gharamiyyati Sharh Manthuma ibn Farh Al-Lamiyyati
8. Sharh ud Dalil
9. Al-Buhur Az-Zakhiratu fi ‘ulum al-Akhira
10. Tahbir al-wafa fi Siratil Mustafa
11. Ghidha ul Albabi Bi Sharh Mandhumatil Aadabi.
12. Al-Jawab al-Muharrar fi kashfi Hali al-Khidr al-Iskandar
13. At-Tahqiq fi Butlan at-Talfiq
14. Al-Qawl al-‘Aliyyu Sharh Athari Sayyidina al-Imam ‘Ali.
15. Nataij al-Afkar Sharh Hadithi Sayyid al-Istighfar
16. Fadl al-Faqir As-Sabir
17. Muntakhab az-Zuhd li Imam Ahmed
18. Ta’ziyatul Labib

Books by ‘Allama As-Saffariniyyaالسفاريني&Mode=0&Page=1&orderby=rdate&dir=desc

Sources: Al-‘Aqida As-Saffariniyya

Sharh Thulathiyyat Musnad Imam Ahmed

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