The Sunni Belief – Al-Taftaazaaniyy

August 6, 2013

I thought some of you might appreciate the below. I have inserted some comments of my own for clarification purposes in [brackets like these]:

The way of the Sunnis is to believe that:

  • The world has a beginning.

وطريقة أهل السنة أن العالم حادث

  • The Creator is beginningless and is attributed with attributes that are beginningless.
  • The attributes of the Creator are not Him Himself [i.e. Aļļaah is not merely an attribute, e.g. we do not believe that Aļļaah is power, but that He is attributed with power], nor other than Him [i.e. His attributes are not divisible or parts].

والصانع قديم متصف بصفات قديمة ليست عينه ولا غيره

  • The Creator is One, He does not have a like [so He is not something with size nor something that has bodily characteristics], or an opposite, or a partner [i.e. there is only one Creator]

وواحد لا شبه له ولا ضد ولا ند

  • He does not have an end [to His existence or to that of His attributes] or a shape, or a limit. [Thus, He is not a body, or a plane or a particle or dot.]

ولا نهاية له ولا صورة ولا حد

  • He does not exist in something else [because He does not need anything]

ولا يحل في شيء

  • Events do not occur in Him, and [hence,] He is not attributed with movement or changing position [or stillness, since He is not a body] or ignorance, or lying, or imperfection.

ولا يقوم به حادث ولا يصح عليه الحركة والانتقال ولا الجهل ولا الكذب ولا النقص

  • He is seen [by Muslims] in the Hereafter without being in a location or direction. [I.e. seeing Him is not like seeing a creation.]

وأنه يرى في الآخرة وليس في حيز ولا جهة

  • Whatever He has willed will be, and whatever He has not willed will not be.

ما شاء كان ومالم يشأ لم يكن

  • He does not need anything.

لا يحتاج إلى شيء

  • Nothing is incumbent upon Him.

ولا يجب عليه شيء

  • Everything created [i.e. everything that has a beginning, including bodies and what occurs in them of movement, color, shape, ideas, intentions, etc.] is according to His predestination, specification, and will.

كل المخلوقات بقضائه وقدره وإرادته ومشيئته

  • [All acts of creation are created by Aļļaah,] however, acts of creation that are said to be ugly due to their sinfulness [by Aļļaah’s legal prescription] are not said to be liked, ordered or accepted by Him.

[Note: Aļļaah is not attributed with emotions, since emotions imply needs as well as change in state of being, and Aļļaah does not change. Hence, words like mahabbah (literal translation: love) are ascribed to Aļļaah in Arabic with reference to certain acts of creation to mean that these acts are rewardable in the Hereafter].

لكن القبايخ منها ليست برضاه وأمره ومحبته

  • bodily resurrection [not just in soul];
  • the torture of the grave; the accounting of the deeds [in the Hereafter];
  • the Bridge [that crosses from the plain over Hell to Paradise];
  • the scale [with pans and a fulcrum on which deeds are weighed]
  • that non-Muslims will stay in Hell without an end, but not sinful Muslims. [i.e. Muslims sent to Hell will eventually come out of Hell and go to Paradise];
  • that Aļļaah forgives [without punishment in Hell] some sinful Muslims [whose bad deeds are more weighty than their good deeds] ;
  • there is intercession.

وأن المعاد الجسماني وسائر ما ورد به السمع من عذاب القبر والحساب والصراط والميزان وغير ذلك حق وأن الكفار مخلدون في النار دون الفساق وأن العفو والشفاعة حق

  • The signs of the day of judgment are true, such as the coming of Dajjaal, as well as Ya’juuj and Ma’juuj; the descent of Jesus, the sun rising in the west, the coming of the beast [that will tell everyone whether he is a Muslim or a Blasphemer].

وأن أشراط الساعة من خروج الدجال ويأجوج ومأجوج ونزول عيسى وطلوع الشمس من مغربها وخروج دابة الأرض حق

  • The first of the prophets is Adam and the very last is Muhammad.

وأول الأنبياء آدم وآخرهم محمد

  • The first Khaliifah was Abu Bakr followed by Umar, Uthman and Ali, may Aļļaah please them.

وأول الخلفاء أبو بكر ثم عمر ثم عثمان ثم علي رضي الله عنهم

  • The status of these four is in the same order, except for some [strange and unusual] hesitation regarding the order between Uthman and Ali.

والأفضلية بهذا الترتيب مع تردد فيها بين عثمان وعلي رضي الله تعالى عنهما

  • The famous scholars of Sunni beliefs in the areas of Khurasan, Iraq, Levant, and most areas in general, are the Ashˆaris, the companions of Abu Al-Hasan Ali son of Ismaaˆiil son of Ishaaq son of Saalim son of Ismaaˆiil son of Abdullaah son of Bilaal son of Abu Burdah son of Abu Muusaa Al-AshˆAriyy, the companion of the Prophet. He was the first [student of Al-Jubbaa’iyy] to disagree with Abu Ali Al-Jubbaa’iyy [the Muˆtazilite] and reject his school of thought in order to embrace the way of the Sunnah, i.e. the way of the Prophet (may Aļļaah raise his rank further) and the jamaaˆah, i.e. the way of the companions.

والمشهور من أهل السنة في ديار خرسان والعراق والشام وأكثر الأقطار هم الأشاعرة أصحاب أبي الحسن علي بن إسماعيل بن إسحق بن سالم بن إسماعيل بن عبدالله بن بلال بن أبي بردة بن أبي موسى الأشعري صاحب رسول الله (صلى الله عليه وسلم) أول من خالف أبا علي الجبائي ورجع عن مذهبه إلى السنة أي طريقة النبي e والجماعة أي طريقة الصحابة

  • [The famous scholars of Sunni beliefs] in the lands behind the river [i.e. Amu Darya] are the companions of Al-Maaturiidiyy, who was the student of Abu Nasr Al-ˆiiaađ, the student of Abu Bakr Al-Jurjaaniyy, the companion of Abu Sulaymaan Al-Jurjaaniyy, the student of Muĥammad ibn Al-Hasan Al-Shaybaaniyy, may Aļļaah have mercy upon him. Maaturiid is a village in Samarkand [in today’s Uzbekistan].

وفي ديار ما وراء النهر الماتريدية أصحاب أبي منصور الماتريدي تلميذ أبي نصر العياض تلميذ أبي بكر الجرجاني صاحب أبي سليمان الجرجاني تلميذ محمد بن الحسن الشيباني رحمه الله وماتريد من قرى سمرقند

  • Some disagreement has appeared among these two groups with regard to belief and methodology issues like that of takwiin, exemption in belief [i.e. does the one who says “I am a believer – in shaa’ Aļļaah” imply doubt or not? All agree that doubt is kufr], the belief status of the imitator [but all agree that the imitator that thinks he might leave Islam if the one he imitates leaves is a kaafir, because ones commitment to the belief must be unconditional), and some other issues.

وقد دخل الآن فيها بين الطائفتين اختلاف في بعض الأصول كمسئلة التكوين ومسئلة الاستثناء في الإيمان ومسألة إيمان المقلد وغير ذلك

  • The great authenticators from the two groups of scholars do not accuse one another of bad innovation or heresy. This is unlike bigots that may even base heresy accusation on disagreements regarding detailed legal issues like animals slaughtered without mentioning the name of Aļļaah when it was not due to forgetting, or the wuđuu’ not breaking due to najis coming out of other than the private organs, or the validity of marriage without a waliyy, or prayer without reciting Fatihah.

والمحققون من الفريقين لا ينسبون أحدهما إلى البدعة والضلالة خلافا للمبطلين المتعصبين حتى ربما جعلوا الاختلاف في الفروع أيضا بدعة وضلالة كالقول بحل متروك التسمية عمدا وعدم نقض الوضوء بالخارج النجس من غير السبيلين وكجواز النكاح بدون الولي والصلاة بدون الفاتحة

  • The bigots do not recognize that bad innovations are the new matters in religion that either:
  1. were not existent [i.e. accepted] in the time of the companions or those who met the companions [and died as Muslims], or
  2. do not have a legal Islamic proof as a basis.

ولا يعرفون أن البدعة المذمومة هو المحدث في الدين من غير أن يكون في عهد الصحابة والتابعين ولا دل عليه الدليل الشرعي

  • Some ignorant people claim that all things that were not present at the time of the companions are bad innovations, even if there is no legal Islamic proof for it being bad. They base this on the saying of the Prophet (may Aļļaah raise his rank even further) [literal translation:] “Beware of new matters…” They do not know that what is meant by this is making a matter part of the religion when it is not a part of it.

ومن الجهلة من يجعل كل أمر لم يكن في زمن الصحابة بدعة مذمومة وإن لم يقم دليل على قبحه تمسكا بقوله عليه الصلاة والسلام إياكم ومحدثات الأمور ولا يعلمون أن المراد بذلك هو أن يجعل في الدين ما ليس منه

May Aļļaah protect us from following deviant whims and make us firm in following the guidance of the Prophet and His followers.

عصمنا الله من اتباع الهوى وثبتنا على اقتفاء الهدى بالنبي وآله

 

Source: Sharĥ Al-Maqaaşid, SaˆdudDiin Al-Taftaazaaniyy (712-793 H.), ˆAalam Al-Kutub, 1998, p. 231-232

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The Quran does not imply that Allaah could have taken a child by the use of “if”

November 23, 2010

Ibn Kathiir states: “Aļļaah made it clear that He does not have a child, unlike what the ignorant idolaters claimed with regards to the angels, and the obstinate among the Jews and the Christians claimed with regards to Al-^Uzayr and Jesus, and said (what might be literally translated as): “If Aļļaah had willed to take a child for Himself, then He would have selected from what He creates whatever He wills.” That is, it would have been different from what they claim. And this condition (of “If Aļļaah had willed”) is not necessary to happen, or even be possible (in the mind’s eye). Actually, it is completely impossible that it could be. It is only meant to show their ignorance in their claim.”

Then Ibn Kathiir gave a couple of similar uses of “if” for impossibilities, and said, “it is allowed to make a statement conditional upon something impossible for some purpose of the speaker.”[1]

Accordingly, the meaning is: ” if it was possible, and it is not, then it still would not be the angels, Jesus, or Al-^Uzayr.” In other words, the purpose is to show that their claim about them is wrong from several viewpoints, not only in the sense that it is impossible that Aļļaah should have a child.


[1] تفسير ابن كثير (7 / 85) : ثم بين تعالى أنه لا ولد له كما يزعمه جهلة المشركين في الملائكة، والمعاندون (6) من اليهود والنصارى في العزير، وعيسى فقال: { لَوْ أَرَادَ اللَّهُ أَنْ يَتَّخِذَ وَلَدًا لاصْطَفَى مِمَّا يَخْلُقُ مَا يَشَاءُ } أي: لكان الأمر على خلاف ما يزعمون (7) . وهذا شرط لا يلزم وقوعه ولا جوازه، بل هو محال، وإنما قصد تجهيلهم (8) فيما ادعوه وزعموه، كما قال: { لَوْ أَرَدْنَا أَنْ نَتَّخِذَ لَهْوًا لاتَّخَذْنَاهُ مِنْ لَدُنَّا إِنْ كُنَّا فَاعِلِينَ } [الأنبياء:17]{ قُلْ إِنْ كَانَ لِلرَّحْمَنِ وَلَدٌ فَأَنَا أَوَّلُ الْعَابِدِينَ } [الزخرف:81]، كل هذا من باب الشرط، ويجوز تعليق الشرط على المستحيل لقصد المتكلم. وقوله: { سُبْحَانَهُ هُوَ اللَّهُ الْوَاحِدُ الْقَهَّارُ } أي: تعالى وتنزه وتقدس عن أن يكون له ولد، فإنه الواحد الأحد، الفرد الصمد، الذي كل شيء عبد لديه، فقير إليه، وهو الغني عما سواه الذي قد قهر الأشياء فدانت له وذلت وخضعت.


William Lane Craig’s Unreasonable Faith

April 9, 2009

Someone claiming to mend the unmendable is a cause for suspicion. Is he mad? A scoundrel? I do not think William Lane Craig is mad, but here is a man who claims to preach “reasonable faith,” and claims that this faith is actually christianity. A religion that even the priests themselves admit is not compatible with logical reasoning.

Someone sent me a link on Youtube where Craig presented a number of arguments for christianity and against Islam. After several minutes of insufferable boredom from him trying to convince the audience that the biblical version of Jesus is true etc., he ventured to say that he had two objections against Islam. The first was that the history of Jesus is not correct in the Qur’aan, which I am not going to bother with, because it is much quicker and efficient to expose christianity as a severely flawed belief system. By doing that, one has undermined the religion of the book and there is no longer a need to bicker about historical documents. After all, historical documentation alone (without some external support, such as miracles) hardly ever gets you to necessary and unequivocal conclusions.

This gets us to his second point, in which he stated, “Christians and Muslims agree that God is the greatest conceivable being, thus, necessarily, God is the greatest conceivable being.” So this is where we supposedly agree, but then he goes on to say: “So besides being All Powerful, All-Knowing,” which means that he believes that the Creator is All-Powerful and All-Knowing, in agreement with Muslims. Then, based on the idea of “greatest conceivable being,” he says in brief, “He must be All-Loving also because it is better to be loving than unloving, and God is a morally perfect being. The Bible says God is Love, thus sent His son to be the sacrifice for our sins. The Qur’aan says that He does not love sinners or unbelievers. This contradicts “All-Merciful.” It is partial and has to be merited.”

In other words, he is claiming that Aļļaah is not All-Merciful as stated in the Qur’aan, because it is also stated that He does not love sinners, unlike in christianity, where He is claimed to be “All-Loving.”

The answer to this is, first, the translation of Ar-Raĥmaan as “All-Merciful” is misleading, because it implies that Aļļaah will give mercy to all things always, which is clearly not the case. It would be better if it was translated simply as “merciful”, because then all it means is that Aļļaah does show mercy, and does not necessitate that this is always the case. Moreover, his claim that God is a morally perfect being is illogical, because morality requires standards, and no one sets standards for God, as that would imply subjugation and weakness, and this is not compatible with the idea of the greatest conceivable being.

Second, the idea that the “greatest conceivable being must be All-Loving,” is not acceptable. This is because love is an emotion of need, a need to please the beloved, a need to be accepted, and a being with needs is not the greatest conceivable being, but a being flawed by needs. Surely having no needs is greater than having needs.

Third, it is not possible that the Creator would be All-Knowing and All-Powerful as well as All-Loving, because that would mean there would be no suffering in the world. We clearly witness suffering, and since the Creator is All-Knowing He does know about this suffering before it happens, when it happens and after it happens. Moreover, since He is All-Powerful, He could surely prevent it based on the fact that He knows about it. Clearly then, you cannot believe in all of these attributes at the same time, as this contradicts observable reality. If one was to believe in all-lovingness, then this would only agree with the observable suffering of the world, if one denied the Creator’s knowledge or power or both.

Muslims choose to deny all-lovingness, because this is a flaw in the first place, and they affirm the Creator’s absolute knowledge and power.

Sorry William Lane
But your talk is vain

You’re a sitting duck
or a hen to pluck

Whichever you choose
you’re going to lose

Your claim to reason
is an open season

For a rational mind
of Muhammadan kind


Q & A: Someone asked, “Did Jesus die on the Cross?”

July 9, 2008

Question: Did Jesus die on the cross?

Answer: Allah said in the Quran:

وَمَا قَتَلُوهُ وَمَا صَلَبُوهُ وَلكِن شُبّهَ لَهُمْ

Meaning: “They did not kill him and they did not crucify him. Rather, it was made to look like they had .” (An-Nisaa’ , 157 )

Then in the following aayah it is stated:

بَل رَّفَعَهُ اللَّهُ إِلَيْهِ

Meaning: “Rather, Allah made Jesus ascend to the Sky.” (An-Nisaa’, 158 )

These two statements tell us that Jesus was not crucified or killed, but ascended to the Sky instead. The Second Sky to be more exact, as this is where the Prophet Muhammad met him during Al-Mi`raaj (the ascent to the skies from Jerusalem.)

Regarding the claimed crucifixion, it was narrated from Ibn `Abbas that Prophet Jesus was with twelve of his elite companions in a house. He told them that among them were those who would blaspheme in the future. Then he asked them, “Who among you would want to be made to look like me, be killed in my place, and be my companion in Paradise.” The youngest among them stood up and said, “Me.” Prophet Jesus told him to sit, then repeated the same question. Again, the same young man said, “Me.” Again, Prophet Jesus told him to sit, and again he asked the same question. When the same young man volunteered for the third time, Prophet Jesus received the Revelation that this young man was the one who would be made to look like him and killed in his place. Prophet Jesus was raised to the Sky from an opening in the ceiling of the house. When the Jews came after Prophet Jesus, they saw the young man that Allah had made look like Jesus. They took him, thinking he was Prophet Jesus, and crucified him. This narration was authenticated by Ibn Kathiir in his tafsiir, and he stated that it was also narrated by An-Nasaa’i and mentioned by a number of the salaf.

Authored by Shaykh Abu Adam