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  1. Unbeknown

    Unbeknown Senior Moderator

    reflections on celebrations [abu Hasan]

    new-year days, birthdays and anniversaries...milestones on a path that leads to a deep and rotting pit or a beautiful garden.


    i can see the joy
    and hastening fervent
    of those, who go
    home triumphant

    a warrior, valiant -
    returning from the front
    a diligent student,
    with accomplishment,

    and a lover ardent
    for a welcome fragrant
    a thriving merchant
    with his fortune present

    but does it warrant
    to rejoice frequent,
    for those errant -
    whose failure patent?

    a student, truant,
    and a fleeing tyrant
    insolvent vagrant
    or a lover peccant?

    yet, we celebrate our birthdays and have parties on new year's day. for what? for wasting another year? with the knowledge that we inch towards our graves which shall be a garden of comfort for those who strive, and a pit of darkness for those who spend their lives in heedlessness, ghaflah. truly, we have built skyscrapers for our dunya and not even a tattered thatch for our akhirah.

    may Allah ta'ala help us amend our state.

    when this milestone of a new year came around, i thought of starting afresh and to pick up the shambles that we call life. and where best to start other than imam ghazali? so i started reading it'Haf as-sadah al-muttaqin, an exegesis of the book iHya ulum ad-din.

    the preface by the exegete imam murtaDa az-zabidi is a concise and beautiful biography of imam al-ghazali. in the 9th section, he copies a letter by imam ghazali to one of his contemporaries wherein he says:

    "verily, i advise him to spend his efforts upon [gaining] the hereafter; that he account for his own self, before it is called into account. that he examine his character, his inward and outward behavior, his aims, his striving, his deeds, his speech and all his actions and intentions - whether he wishes to attain the nearness [qurb] of Allah ta'ala by them, and thus attain endless bliss [sa'adah al-abad]

    or whether he spends them collecting and establishing for mundane goals [dunya]; whether he is busy building for and caring for, tending for and worrying for success in this world? is he drowning in the swamp of worldly entanglements? does he live for this dunya and Allah forbid, and then die away in wretchedness and misery [shaqawah]?

    if it is the latter, then let his sight be awakened and eyes be opened; and let him check what he has prepared for tomorrow. let him understand that there is no one who loves him more than himself, and no one who knows him better than himself. let him ponder, reflect upon his ways - if he is busy constructing that which shall fall into ruin, then does he not know how many cities were destroyed by Allah, since their inhabitants were oppressing ones - and they fell into utter ruin after being prosperous, flourishing and opulent."

    it is not just moving, it is shattering. we make a song and dance about tasawwuf, but the real tasawwuf as elucidated by imam ghazali seems to be so far, as if it is a fairy tale...

    imam sha`arani [perhaps from shaykh ibn `arabi] said: the likes of ghazali have made these wonderful embroidered garments; where are those who want to wear it?

    what prompted this rant were videos i saw on a 'nasheed' site meemmusic.com. it is nothing less than a concert; you can also hear the screaming of girls.

    all of this is an excuse; hiding behind the ruling that sama'a is permissible. nobody bothers to inquire or heed which kind of sama'a is permissible and for whom.

    ask yourself, did you feel spiritually closer towards the sunnah after all the swaying and crooning, mindful of death and afterlife? did the awareness about your sins and indulgence in this dunya stab or prick you? did you feel like crying on the futility of worldly pursuits and the hollowness of all the glitter and shine?

    if it did not, then i am afraid this sama'a is another indulgence of this dunya - another kind of entertainment. another distraction.

    Allah ta'ala knows best.
    shibly and Ghulam Ali like this.
  2. Unbeknown

    Unbeknown Senior Moderator

    abu Hasan on Jumu'ah Speeches - the lightsome minbar obscured behind drapes of ignorance, rants, repetitive cliche-esque sermons and a lot of hot-air:


    I think the friday sermon is under-utilised as a platform to teach. sure, feel free to dismiss it as bookish thinking or impractical, but here is my opinion:

    1. a year has 53 fridays approximately.

    2. usually 70-80% of attendees will be regulars (at least in our countries where people will be from the locality).

    3. if the friday speaker uses a book like say: riyad al-salihin and takes one topic a week and reads out, translates and explains that topic by citing aayats and hadith (don't have to worry, imam nawawi raHimahullah has already done it), the friday speaker can give a unique khutbah (without sounding repetitive) for at least four years. and the 4-5 hadith that he mentions in the khutbah can be written on a whiteboard outside the masjid in summary, so people can memorise it until the next jumu'ah. the shorter hadith can be listed in arabic too for enthusiasts who do not have the means or circumstances to attend a proper madrasah, but would love to memorise sayings of our Master sallAllahu alayhi wa sallam.

    4. after the fourth year, start from the first again - assuming 99.9% of them will not be like imam bukhari to memorise stuff in a single majlis, repeating now will seem fresh to all of them.

    5. in 8 years, if people retain even 2% of riyad al-salihin that would mean approximately 40 hadith. if masjid goers and khutba-audience has been attending khutbas for 20 years and cannot mention 40 hadith (not in exact wording but in exact meaning) that clearly shows the failure of the khuTaba.

    6. leave alone hadith, even if people memorise the captions of riyad al-salihin (i have listed it just now for illustration) and the general idea, we are bound to make huge progress as a community. besides riyad al-salihin is just one book, there are at least a dozen such compilations. one need not have a room full of books to benefit common people and teach them hadith via khutbas.

    Allah ta'ala knows best.


    "My criticism of speakers stems from my frustration of listening to them for years - in jumu'ah and eyd; apart from the special occasions. and as a member of the audience and public, we can only complain. there was a time when there were wa'yizin who were humble and sincere and would graciously acknowledge an error; but my experience of going up to the wa'iz and pointing out such errors has largely been futile.

    once a wa'iz in an eid khutbah, huge gathering said about Allah ta'ala coming into a tent on the day of judgement, and it was not a slip of the tongue - he explained it rather vividly. al-iyadhu billah. i went up to him after the namaz (which thankfully someone else led) and i told him that this is kufr, and where did he find this riwayat. he first asked me where i graduated from and who i was ba'yat from etc. and eventually mentioned something which i could easily counter, but he had to hurry as it was eid day and he had many engagements. i never saw or heard of him again.

    another wa'iz in a friday khutbah began making strange statements not consistent with our aqidah about prophets, and i promptly went to him after namaz (thankfully again, the namaz was led by your poor non-celebrity hafiz) and argued with him. he first tried to talk me down with naming books, and i told him that we can go through 30 or so tafsirs on my laptop to ascertain his claim. he invited me to his maktabah and we never met.

    another egyptian wa'iz claimed first in juma khutbah and then in eid khutbah that sadaqah fitr is wajib on everyone - including the poor. i went up to him and i said, how is it possible? he said, the poor should give it to someone poorer than him. i asked him who does the receiver give - he promptly replied poorer than him. his claim was that sadqah-fitr is an equaliser (i am NOT making this up.) and that the rich man gives sadaqah and gets sawab; so here is the chance for the poor man to give sadaqah too and be equal to the rich man. when i prodded him, he asked me: 'are you eligible for sadaqah fiTr or not?' (he thought i was worried about giving sadaqah myself). the same person in various other khutbahs lacked the adab for mentioning prophets, and it became a habit; once, he said you hanafis have this-that in a manner of making fun of our madh'hab. (even though the wa'iz is self-proclaimed sunni following maliki madh'hab; and his khutbahs during mawlid sharif corroborate his claim. but alas, wa'iz he was.) i got piqued and began countering him and questioning him where he got this information about our madh'hab; finally, he ended up with sayyid sabiq's reference. i stopped going to his masjid, even though it is closer.

    i can relate n number of stories and i don't attend any speeches (except juma and eydayn); even on youtube, people make silly mistakes. see, when you are on stage for the first time; or in stage-fear or inexperience or forgetfulness - mistakes are pardonable. but even those, comfortable in the spotlight and even enjoy such mass adulation, either do not use that goodwill for public benefit, or say things without proper research off-the-top of their minds; worse, peddle an agenda against ahl al-sunnah.

    thus, if a sunni speaker commits errors of citation or mixes up names, we can shrug it away and ignore - it is mostly a harmless error as the awam hardly cares about names and dates; but when a popular speaker attacks imam bukhari and attempts to smear him as an enemy of the ahl al-bayt, he must prove his worth and he is obviously asking for trouble.

    coming back to shah sahib's challenge, i am not a speaker (let alone a public speaker) though, on one or two occasions, i have been forced to talk by my friends in a private gathering, who unwittingly put me in such a precarious position. but you are right. if i happen to be a speaker, i must follow this and should be rated against this proposal. i cannot guarantee (nor did i claim in the first place) good showing, but inasmuch as being graded/rated, you can use this meter and publish your results.

    back home, friday-speakers mix up facts, and other than shout, give precious little to the awam. we have a khatib in our city, who has been giving juma khutbah for about 20 years - and if he stuck to a simple principle, his audience would have a good grasp of hadith and aayat by this time. yet, the whole 45 minute khutbah (which sometimes stretches to 90 minutes with utter disregard to office-goers, workers or students who have to return to work/college) is mainly shouting and obscure references which i doubt the awam will appreciate."
    Ghulaam and Ghulam Ali like this.
  3. Unbeknown

    Unbeknown Senior Moderator

    Found here and also in ridawipress title, 'Who is Alahazrat?'

    Discussing indexes, Alahazrat says in the preface of the first volume:

    This volume ends with the topic of tayammum. Initially, I thought of dividing the fatāwā in 12 volumes, and each volume containing approximately 800 pages; and the first volume to contain the complete chapter on matters of purity. But, even after 850 pages, only the topics until tayammum could be covered. Hence, it was decided to close this volume here. At the outset, this volume contains only 114 fatāwā and 28 monographs. Yet, praise be to Allāh táālā, there are numerous issues on various subjects and sub-topics discussed in the course of these rulings; and hundreds of key points that may not be found elsewhere. We shall have two main indexes: the first, a topic-wise table of contents; and the second, a list of monographs contained within the volume. This volume contains rulings that mainly pertain to matters of purification/cleanliness, until the topic of tayammum; but in the course of discussing the main topic, and explaining the issue, many sub-topics and related issues are mentioned; from ritual purity to prayer, and then subsequent fiqh topics until [the topic of] inheritance; thereafter, issues other than fiqh, like topics on áqīdah, ĥadīth, usūl, geometry, mathematics etc. Therefore, I think it is appropriate to split the first index into two parts:

    a) Index of main topics, and according to the order of [fiqh] chapters
    b) Index of related and secondary issues mentioned alongside the main topic of the fatwā.


    Indexing as a science is in itself, a fairly modern phenomenon. The Society of Indexers was established by Norman Knight and inaugurated in 1957 and the first issue of its journal The Indexer was published in 1958. The American Society for Indexing, inspired by the SI, was formed about ten years later in 1968-69.

    See http://www.asindexing.org/i4a/pages/index.cfm?pageid=3313.

    1. Norman Knight, in his oft-cited article ‘Book Indexing in Great Britain: A Brief History’, from The Indexer, Vol. 6, p17, 1968, mentioning the pioneering efforts of indexers says:

    Other excellent examples published during that century include The analytical index to the works of Jeremy Bentham (1843), compiled by J. H. Burton, George Birkbeck Hill’s index to his own edition of Boswell’s Life of Johnson (1887)—the Life (1791) had originally been indexed in characteristic fashion by the biographer himself—and the index to Wheatley’s edition of the Diary of Samuel Pepys (1893-9).

    In two of the mentioned works above, indexes for multi-volume books are compiled as a separate volume, Vol.9 in the case of Diary of Samuel Pepys and Vol.6 for Boswell’s Life of Johnson. Alahazrat’s approach to indexing is strikingly similar; even though he was contemporary, one can safely assume that he did not have access to aforementioned works or had any knowledge of such developments. As far as I know, such a detailed topic-wise indexing was practically non-existent in Urdu or Arabic literature at that time, and particularly in books of Fatāwā. Another issue is that an alphabetic index of words in English is much different than a topic index; Alahazrat’s index is therefore, comparable with the second volume of Index to Legal Periodical Literature by Leonard A. Jones, published in 1899, who writes in its preface:

    “The general plan of this volume is the same as that of my Index published in 1888, a portion of the Preface to which is now reprinted. In one respect, however, this volume differs, not in plan, but in result, from the former; and that is, it contains many more references to articles relating to Legal Science in general, and many more references to articles relating to Political Science, to Economics, and to Sociology; for in the years since the former Index was compiled, the Bar Associations organized in many States have published a great number of addresses, papers, and reports upon general, rather than technical, subjects connected with the law; and since that time also there have appeared numerous periodical publications devoted to subjects which have an important, if not direct, bearing upon Law and Legislation”.

    It should be noted that such pioneers were specialist indexers; and Alahazrat was an author who also made his own indexes. The legal index mentioned above was certainly not the work of one man.


  4. Unbeknown

    Unbeknown Senior Moderator

    Translation by abu Hasan posted here.

    Fatāwā ar-Riđawiyyah, vol.24, page 127-133
    Fatwā No.20

    What is the ruling concerning the issue that: Samāá or recitation/singing is permitted for an eligible [ahl] person and impermissible for an ineligible [nā ahl] person. Just as Shaykh Sáadī raĥimahullāh has said:

    na goyem samāá ay birādar key chīst
    magar mustamiý rā ba-dānam key kīst

    I cannot say anything, O brother, about the status of samāá
    Until I see the status of the person who listens to it.
    So, why should the samāá that is prevalent among mashāyikh [sufi shaykhs] in our time which is along with music be impermissible for them, when they are qualified and eligible? it should be forbidden for those who are not qualified to listen to it. [The shaykhs who listen to it do so] because it is nourishment for the soul and they consider it as a form of worship.


    O Allāh, give us guidance towards the truth and the right.

    The differentiation of eligible – ineligible, qualified-unqualified is when the samāá in question is exclusively vocal. [samāá e mujarrad; only voice of the reciter and nothing else]. The couplet of Shaykh Sáadī quddisa sirruh is also about such vocal samāá.

    Concerning music [mazāmīr or musical instruments], there is no question of eligibility or qualification; nor is it allowed for anybody to listen to music. Except for the mesmerised, the enthralled [majdhūb, khud raftah]: those who have lost their mental faculties and are hence not held liable by the Divine Law. And for these [latter] folk, it is not just music – they are not liable for anything:

    sulţāN na-gīrad kharāj az kharāb
    The king does not demand tribute from a wasteland
    In this matter concerning [all] sane people – creating a difference of qualified and unqualified is inciting and emboldening commonfolk to commit sin; and opening the door to the devices of accursed devil.

    Any fāsiq [transgressor, impious man] will then claim that he is among the eligible and qualified folk and it is permissible for him to listen to music, commit a sin openly, assert that a thing forbidden by Allāh is actually permissible and make common and ignorant people like himself to go astray.

    Does the Divine Law of Muĥammad şallAllāhu álayhi wa sallam enjoin this kind of a ruling? Allāh forbid.

    The pure sharīáh closes the door to mischief and this categorization [of qualified/unqualified] breaks open a small crevice into a huge hole.

    Do you not see in these days, how many utterly uncultured and uncivilized, uneducated – those who do not even know the basic islamic rulings concerning the toilet on what is necessary, mandatory and forbidden – such a boor wears saffron robes and lets down long hair like women engrossed in this kind of satanic noises [that is music]?

    People forego mandatory prayer [farđ] but they don’t miss the banging of drums; and these people are called as ‘divine’ or the ‘guide’ [pīr o murshid] and people fall to prostration on their feet! And these people openly claim: ‘It is permissible for US. It is pure food for our souls.’

    And all of this is a result of the ignoramuses' classification of 'qualified' and 'unqualified'. [by making this kind of classification when it does not exist, it is emboldening wayward sinners to commit their sins wantonly with the excuse that they are ‘qualified’].

    This blatant lie is laid bare when we ponder that, even in such recitations [samāá] without music in which [the ruling differs for] qualified and unqualified, the ruling of permissibility is ONLY on the condition that unqualified people should not be present in the gathering.
    Ghulam Ali likes this.
  5. Unbeknown

    Unbeknown Senior Moderator

    Someone said:

    Reply by abu Hasan posted here.


    the adab of knowledge is the most important first-step in the path of knowledge. where is the 'big need' for ulama (assuming: 'from the subcontinent') to write in arabic?

    if you want another sharh in arabic to boast alongside devbandis: 'we have written so many shuruH in arabic...' then it is unnecessary. but if it is for a genuine reason - like refuting people like prof.tahir or the devbandi faDayiH so that the world knows of what is happening here in our countries, then such books are necessary on such topics.

    it is my belief, that ulama in the subcontinent should translate to urdu/etc, the already present shuruH of well-known books for the benefit of the ummah instead of writing new shuruH in arabic. (just what mawlana zia'ul mustafa has done below)

    the responsibility of the ulama in the subcontinent is towards their own people and their writing/translations in local languages is more important than writing in arabic, and for a foreign audience.

    why would anyone read a sharh of shamayil in arabic written today, skipping al-qari or al-haytami? unless of course, such a sharh is a direct refutation of the heretic albani's shenanigans or in some way complementary to these aforementioned ones?

    we should never let the prime objective of `ilm go out of focus; knowledge is and should be only for the sake of Allah ta'ala.
    one who seeks knowledge to argue with fools or to be among scholars, or to draw attention of people towards his own self, Allah ta'ala will make him enter fire.

    look at alahazrat's approach - almost all of his books are as a result of some istifta or the other. he was a great writer without a shadow of doubt - his command of the languages, the erudition, an impressive and superb style - unique and exquisite; and an unflinching commitment to the cause and learning/ilm itself.

    it was not beyond him to write volumes on any topic - be it tafsir, hadith, fiqh etc. either as shuruh or as compilations. but he answered the call of duty - of fatwa - rather than do other activities. i am not saying that other activities were unnecessary, but his fatawa were more important at that juncture, than anything else.

    his single work - sub'Han as-subbuH - is an achievement of a lifetime. that one book saved and SAVES the aqidah of muslims to this day. if not, even ulama would fall prey to the befuddling of wolves. even if alahazrat wrote nothing else, except this one book, he still deserved to be called the mujaddid of his time - for annihilating the kazzabiyyah - may Allah ta'ala destroy them and their fitna - and by Allah! they will never be able to answer till judgement come.

    yet, it is in urdu - not in arabic. because the immediate need was an answer in urdu to save the aqidah of the local population. in spite of this being - perhaps the first book fully dedicated to this subject - or remains the only one. wAllahu a'alam.

    such was the way of our ulama.

    Allah ta'ala knows best.
    shibly, Aqdas and Ghulam Ali like this.
  6. Unbeknown

    Unbeknown Senior Moderator

    " know, that the mutazilah parted into 17 factions.

    1. ghaylaniyyah: followers of ghaylan al-dimashqi [1] this faction gathers [heresies] of iytizal and irjaa [2]. it is this ghaylan who was executed by hisham ibn abd al-malik, the seventh khalifah of banu marwan.

    2. waSiliyyah: followers of waSil ibn `aTa al-ghazzal [3] he was the first to say that the sinner [fasiq] is neither a kafir, nor a believer, nor a hypocrite, nor a polytheist. according to this faction, [the Companions] `ali and TalHah raDiyallahu anhuma, if they both bore witness in the same matter, their [combined] witness is invalid. however if each of the two bore witness, such that each of the two had another person with them, then their witness can be accepted.

    3. `amariyyah: the followers of `amr ibn `ubayd. according to them the witness of TalHah and zubayr is absolutely invalid, regardless of the combination.

    4. huzayliyyah [4] followers of abu huzayl [5].according to this faction the Power of Creation of Allah ta'ala has ended and reached such a stage that He cannot create anything new.

    5. naZZamiyyah: followers of ibrahim ibn sayyar al-naZZam.[6] according to this faction, a slave [creation] has power to do things which Allah ta'ala does not have upon His creation. according to them, ijma', lone-narrator reports and analogical reasoning have no legal standing in shar'iah. [laysa bi Hujjah]. however, they do not criticise or speak ill of the Companions nor ali raDiyallahu anhu.

    6. thumamiyyah: the followers of thumamah ibn ashras.[d. 213 AH] he lived in the time of ma'mun. according to them an action can occur even if there is no actor (by whose act the action materialises).

    7. bishriyyah: the followers of bishr ibn mu'ammar ibn `ubbad al-sullami [d. 226 AH]; this faction affirms on the rational soul [nafs al-naTiqah] similar to the belief of philosophers [see plato's tri-partite soul: rational soul, spirited soul and appetitive soul]. and they also attest that bodies can have attributes of being infinite.

    [in two different editions: both my hard copy and a PDF the eighth faction is missing; i suppose this is because of a mixup of bishr ibn mu'tamar and mu'ammar ibn ubbad thus omitting the eighth faction. actually, in milal wa'n niHal of shahrastani, they are two people: bishr ibn mu'tamar with taa, the leader of bishriyyah; and mu'ammar ibn ubbad al-sullami, the leader of mu'ammariyyah; this i believe is the eighth missing in our copies.]

    9. muzdariyyah: [7] followers of abu musa ibn yisa ibn masih al-muzdar [8]. he was the disciple of bishr and the teacher of ja'afar ibn al-Harith [9] and ja'afar ibn al-mubash'shir.[10]

    10. hishamiyyah: the followers of hisham ibn `umar al-quti.[11] he would prohibit from saying: "Allah ta'ala is sufficient for us, and He is the Best Dispenser of Affairs" [Hasbuna Allah wa niymal wakil] because according to him, it is not permissible to use the word 'wakil' for Allah ta'ala.

    11. jaHiziyyah: followers of `amr ibn baHr al-jaHiZ.[12] according to this faction, knowledge is essential by nature and it is not gained by action of [one who acquires knowledge].

    12. jubba'yiyyah: followers of muHammad ibn abd al-Wahhab al-jubbayi.[13] according to this faction that the same accident [`araD in something] can be existent and non-existent at the same time. and thus they described the Divine Speech of ALlah ta'ala.

    13. [not mentioned in either copies]

    14. bahshamiyyah: followers of abu hashim or abu bahsham. abd al-Salam ibn abi ali al-jubbayi.[d. 321 AH] this faction believed in the State of Being [Haal; that is Divine Attributes are states; for example, Samiy is a state; BaSir is a state..] they also consider it possible that Allah ta'ala may punish a slave without his committing a sin.

    15. aHshadiyyah: followers of aHshad ibn abi bakr,[14] the student of muHammad ibn umar al-Saymari. they do takfir of abu hashim [above] and his followers.

    16. khayyaTiyyah: followers of abu'l Hasan abd al-Rahim al-khayyaT [d. 300AH] and he is the teacher of abu'l qasim al-ka'abi [15]. this faction says, that a body which was non-existent [`adam] is a body; so much that they say "a rider on a horse [both] non-existent." is a thing [16].

    17. Husayniyyah: followers of abu'l Husayn ali ibn Muhammad al-baSri. he is the disciple of qaDi abd al-Jabbar ibn aHmad. thereafter, he opposed him and rejected the doctrine of "states" and "non-existent" and "meaning" and accepted that miracles of the friends of Allah [karamat al-awliya] and refuted the muridiyyah; though he was non-commital about the Divine Attributes of 'Hearing' and 'Seeing'. most of these factions of the mutazilah [died away and] didn't remain until our time except these two factions of abu hashim [see #14 above] and abu'l Husayn al-baSri [#17 above].

    end of razi's text."

    Posted by abu Hasan.

    Read the complete post here.
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