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Dr. Hatem al-Haj on the term "Salafi"

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  • #46
    Dr. Hatem al-Haj on "Where is Allah?"

    All praise be to Allah and may His blessings and peace be on His messenger, Muhammad,

    Allah is above His throne, above the heavens. However, He is also with us, as He said. I would say that there is no conflict between His being above the Throne and being with us (ma‘iyyah) wherever we are because we are not limited in our beliefs about the Divine to our human categories of understanding. The (ma‘iyyah) meant to the Athari (scripturalist) scholars that His sight, hearing, knowledge and power are with us and everywhere. This is what they understood from the contextual and inter-textual interpretation of the verses that mention His presence with us wherever we are, and that is to reconcile them with the countless verses, hadeeths, as well as rational proofs on Allah’s transcendence and aboveness.

    Imam Ibn ‘Abd al-Barr (rA, d. 463 A.H), said,

    “… لِأَنَّ عُلَمَاءَ الصَّحَابَةِ وَالتَّابِعِينَ الَّذِينَ حَمَلْتُ عَنْهُمُ التَّأْوِيلَ فِي الْقُرْآنِ قَالُوا فِي تَأْوِيلِ هَذِهِ الْآيَةِ هُوَ عَلَى الْعَرْشِ وَعِلْمُهُ فِي كُلِّ مَكَانٍ وَمَا خَالَفَهُمْ فِي ذَلِكَ أَحَدٌ يُحْتَجُّ بِقَوْلِهِ.”

    “…because the scholars among the Companions and Successors, from whom knowledge of (interpretation of scripture) is taken, said concerning the interpretation of this verse, that God is upon His throne and that His knowledge is in all places, and no one whose opinion is considered authoritative has opposed them in this.” [al-Tamheed 7:139]

    I would not say that Allah is everywhere, but I would say that He is with us wherever we are, and that is not metaphorical. When it comes to the Divine attributes, we must first establish our beliefs as conveyed in the revelation (the supreme teller of the Truth), within the linguistic conventions and intellectual framework of the first audience, for they were meant to have the purest understanding of these beliefs – and they did. The aboveness of Allah is indicated by hundreds of textual proofs, of which Imam al-Dhahabi cited many in his book ‘al-‘Uloww’ (Transcendence and Aboveness). Here are some:

    Allah said,

    “الرَّحْمَٰنُ عَلَى الْعَرْشِ اسْتَوَىٰ”

    “The Most Merciful [who is] above the Throne established.” [Sahih International, 20:5]

    And He said,

    “إِلَيْهِ يَصْعَدُ الْكَلِمُ الطَّيِّبُ وَالْعَمَلُ الصَّالِحُ يَرْفَعُهُ”

    “To Him ascends good speech, and righteous work raises it.” [Sahih International, 35:10]

    In speaking about the revelation, the Quran always speaks of sending it down, and so is everything coming from God.

    The Prophet (Blessings and Peace be upon Him) said to a young slave girl, “where is Allah?” She said, “in the heaven” then he asked, “who am I?” She said, “The Messenger of Allah,” so he said to her master, “Set her free, for she is a believer.” [Al-Bukhari]

    All of this is established in the revelation and is not rejected by any mental axioms of the pure un-corrupted reason, as Imam Ibn Taymiyyah clarified in his magnum opus, ‘Dar’ Ta‘arud al – ‘Aql wal– Naql’ (The Refutation of the Contradiction of Reason and Revelation). It is in fact in conformity with reason. And as for the unfitting so-called concomitants (lawazim) of this belief, we don’t concede any of them. His aboveness does not mean spatial locatedness in the sense of Allah being contained by anything; it also does not necessitate corporealism, as Imam Abu al-Hassan al-Ash‘ari said,

    قَالَ أهل السّنة وَأَصْحَاب الحَدِيث: لَيْسَ بجسم وَلَا يشبه الْأَشْيَاء وَأَنه على الْعَرْش كَمَا قَالَ عز وجل {الرَّحْمَن على الْعَرْش اسْتَوَى} وَلَا نقدم بَين يَدي الله في الْقَوْل بل نقُول اسْتَوَى بِلَا كَيفَ.”

    “And Ahl-us-Sunnah and the Hadith scholars said: He is not a body and he is not similar to anything, and He is above the throne, as He (exalted is He) said, “The Most Merciful [who is] above the Throne established.” We do not oppose Allah in His statements, but we say that He established Himself above the throne without (ascribing any) modality.” [Maqâlât al-Islamiyeen, Ritter’s edition 211]

    The lack of concomitance between the aboveness of Allah and spatial locatedness and corporealism was admitted by some of the brightest philosophers, like Imam Ibn Rushd (rA) (Averroes). All of these concomitants are but the limitations of the human categories of understanding, like the substance category. Conflating the attributes of God with the qualities of substances caused many philosophers to reject those attributes. To us, we have a humble and flexible amodal affirmation of what we were told by the revelation creating no tension between the reports of the revelation and purports of reason.

    We can’t infer something about the unseen (ghayb), particularly God, on the basis of our experience of the seen (shahadah). There is nothing like Him. Some of the most distinguished philosophers, like Kant, also recognize the mind’s incapacity to apprehend metaphysical realities through innatist independent inquiry. We believe it is capable (by being equipped by God) of realizing His existence and some of His essential attributes, but completely dependent on the revelation for a more detailed and robust recognition of Him (exalted is He).

    Finally, I would like to note here that those of our beloved imams who erred in this issue will not be deprived of the one reward Allah promised the qualified mujtahids of when they exert their due diligence in pursuing the truth.

    Allah knows best.

    https://www.drhatemalhaj.com/qa/inde...re-is-allah-2/

    Comment


    • #47
      Originally posted by AmantuBillahi View Post

      "Between the God of the Prophets and the God of the Philosophers: Reflections of an Athari on the Divine Attributes" by Dr. Hatem al-Haj:

      https://www.amazon.com/dp/B085KHLL6C...860&pldnSite=1

      Description:

      The apophatic god of negative theology is the areligious philosophers’ preferred god; a god which is remote, detached, and can hardly be an object of adoration or worship, even though it may be an object of wonderment. This is not God according to the Prophets. However, the depiction of God in the theistic traditions has been always charged with anthropomorphism. In this book, I attempt to respond to this charge and explain what Athari (scripturalist) Muslim theologians believe about the Divine attributes and why. Where Do We Get Our Belief From? Our Epistemological Position. The Role of Truthful Reports. The Role of Reason. The Place of Kalâm: Reason as a Tool of Understanding and Armor for Defense. A Typology of Islamic Positions on the Attributes of God. What Do We Believe In? Why Do We Believe in Amodal Affirmation and Why? Do We Believe It Is Important? What Are the Counter Arguments? Reports from the Salaf; Conflict with Reason; The Perfect Does Not Change; The Composite god and Divisibility; Anthropomorphism and Assimilation. Conclusion: Ontologically, no extant being lacks quiddity and attributes. Noumenally, the apophatic god is nonexistent, and phenomenally, it cannot be felt or related to, let alone loved and worshiped. In conclusion of this work, here are my recommendations: •To be deserving of Divine guidance, we need to purify our intentions by true devotion to Allah. We also need to constantly rehabilitate our fiṭrah and heal it from the ills of bias (hawa), ulterior motives (aghrâḍ), blind imitation (taqleed), habit (‘âdah), and conjecture (gharṣ). This can only be done through spiritual labor and immersion in the Revelation as understood and practiced by the first community. •We must not subject the Divine instruction to prevalent intellectual or social conventions or transplant xenografts and foreign discourses into our hermeneutical system. We must affirm our belief in the epistemic superiority and self-sufficiency of the Revelation as the ultimate source of truth about the unseen. This will never require us to impugn the office of reason or undercut its value in understanding the Revelation and defending its doctrines. •Our belief in Allah must be rooted in His exoneration from all deficiencies and His absolute incomparability (tanzeeh), and the amodal affirmation (ithbât) of His attributes by which He has described Himself and His Messenger described Him. In our affirmation of the Divine attributes, we should never accept the so-called “necessary concomitants.” Inferring from the world of shahâdah (seen) about the world of ghayb (unseen) is both irrational and perilous.•We must be respectful of the imams of this deen, regardless of our agreement or disagreement with them. When we have to disagree, we must continue to love those who spent their lives serving Allah and His cause, and show them the requisite respect. •The public should be spared the confusion of intra-Islamic polemics on creed and taught the basics of ‘aqeedah that will provide them with enough guardrails. People should then be uplifted spiritually to want to seek Allah and earn His pleasure. When it comes to the Divine attributes, teachers must prime their understanding with tanzeeh and let the rhetorical strength and richness of the Revelation flow to their hearts, unimpeded by intellectual objections.
      Abu Sulayman

      I'm pretty much finished the book linked above by Shaykh Hatem al-Haj. I think you should also check it out if Kindle is available in your country, even if it's just to get an idea of what is being made available for English speaking Muslims.

      Comment


      • #48
        Shaykh Hatem al-Haj on the Madhahib:

        Comment


        • #49
          Originally posted by AmantuBillahi View Post

          The Hanbalis are not a monolith. I sympathize with Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah's methodology concerning Allah's Names & Attributes because it is what is naturally conceived by the Dhahir of the Quran & Sunnah without being influenced by Ilm al-Kalam. This is what we would presume to be the understanding of the Sahabah(ra) who were not familiar with the contentions of the Mutakalimoon that came later. The Salaf have also never stated that the Dhahir of the Quran & Sunnah implies Kufr and Tashbih(Tajsim).

          Some of the descriptions in the Quran and Sunnah imply what the Mutakalimoon refer to as A'radh (incidental attributes). For example, there is a famous Hadith which states that on the Day of Judgement Allah(swt) will become Angry unlike ever being angry before. Anyone who claims that we cannot believe in what is apparent from this Hadith and other similiar evidences because it entails a "change" or "''Aradh" has deviated from the clear theology of the religion. Mind you, the negation of "change" in the general sense is not necessarily the same as someone explicitly making Tafwid of the Dhahir because it implies an 'Aradh.

          Ibn Qudamah(ra) in his book prohibiting the study of Kalam:



          This is also an informative lecture explaining the reality of Ilm al-Kalam and its philosophical influence over the schools of Aqeedah:

          Shaykh Hatem al-Haj briefly addresses the nuanced negation of "change" without compromising the Dhahir implications of the texts at 07:24:

          Comment


          • #50
            Originally posted by AmantuBillahi View Post

            Shaykh Hatem al-Haj briefly addresses the nuanced negation of "change" without compromising the Dhahir implications of the texts at 07:24:

            The Shaykh speaks about the topic of "change" from pages 109 to 120 of the book linked above but I'm only going to quote his concluding remarks:

            "The proof of accidents and the origination of bodies is not the strongest proof for God's existence, let alone the only one. It is also not indubitable. Most philosophers believed in the "beginninglessness" of the universe; had it been an indubitable rational proof, it would have been obvious to the people endowed with intellect. However, the proof of change may be still used because the change in this universe is a change of the essence. Do you not see that we decompose and turn into dust, and the dust turns into plants which are eaten by animals? Change of the essence and essential attributes is not conceivable of the Eternal, but this does not preclude Him from engaging His creation temporally and effecting His eternal qudrah in successive acts of creation, provision, giving life and death, and yes, Istiwa' and Nuzool (descending).

            Aside from that proof in itself, we may also say that we cannot infer from the shahadah about the ghayb, so the principles applied to the universe through our emiprical experience may not be applied to God.

            '..everyday He is bringing about a matter..' [55:29]

            The perfect essence does not change. God's activity is not a change of His essence." (pp. 119-120)

            Comment


            • #51
              Originally posted by AmantuBillahi View Post

              Shaykh Hatem al-Haj briefly addresses the nuanced negation of "change" without compromising the Dhahir implications of the texts at 07:24:

              Excellent lecture on the guidelines of Islamic apologetics:



              Comment


              • #52
                Originally posted by AmantuBillahi View Post

                Abu Sulayman

                I'm pretty much finished the book linked above by Shaykh Hatem al-Haj. I think you should also check it out if Kindle is available in your country, even if it's just to get an idea of what is being made available for English speaking Muslims.
                I haven't read the book. Based upon what was posted here however and also based upon some statements from the book, that a brother sent to me I would like to make several points:

                - I find it rather shocking that a disbelieving philosopher like Kant is used in the argumentation not just against fellow Muslims, but against the leading scholars of Islam.

                You quoted this statement:
                "Some of the most distinguished philosophers, like Kant, also recognize the mind’s incapacity to apprehend metaphysical realities through innatist independent inquiry. We believe it is capable (by being equipped by God) of realizing His existence and some of His essential attributes, but completely dependent on the revelation for a more detailed and robust recognition of Him (exalted is He) and the unseen in general."

                Well, Kant himself did not believe that one could rationally prove the existence of God nor disprove it, but he merely said that it's very likely that he exists based upon the existence of morality and so on. This means that the issue of having the conviction in the existence God is not something absolutely established from a rational point of view in his understanding, but rather is an issue of "belief" - with the western definition of it - and this is why Kant played a huge role in the rise of agnosticism and even atheism in the West.
                Till this day the western mindset will not accept any rational proofs for God - I've encountered this more than once with them - and this "thanks" of them relying on his words that "God's existence can neither be rationally proven nor disproven".
                So if some of the Muslims follow their footsteps [into disbelief], then the likes of Hatem al-Haj will be also partially responsible for this.

                - The book is called as "Between the God of the Prophets and the God of the Philosophers" and yet it uses the arguments of the philosophers like Kant and Ibn Rushd al-Hafid (d. 595 AH) against the scholars of Islamic theology and even gives big titles to these philosophers! Why this Ta'dhim for those who call to disbelief (!), while at the same time acting as if the scholars of Islam were trying to prove an unislamic creed?

                - It makes the typical "Salafi" mistake of mixing up between the scholars of Kalam - Ash'aris and Maturidis! - on one side and the philosophers at the other side and this with the knowledge that historically these two were arch-enemies and the Takfir of Imam al-Ghazali (d. 505 AH) against the Falasifa is known and his very strong refutation of them - i.e. Tahafut al-Falasifa - made him famous as Hujjat al-Islam!

                Note that "Salafis" are unable to understand that the use of logic and the ten categories of Aristotle to categorize created things, doesn't mean that one is supporting Aristotle's creed!
                I mean if I say "this object is 3 meters long and this falls under 'quantity' according to the ten categories", does this now mean I've suddenly changed my creed to that of Aristotle? Or if I make usage of the science of biology - and the scientists of this science belong to all kind of religions - does this mean that I've changed my religion? This level of comprehension is seriously childish.

                Note that the scholars of Kalam used logic to refute the major points made by the Falasifa and among that it is there claim that the universe is eternal and that substance can be divided infinitely without reaching a smallest particle that can not be further divided and their rejection of bodily resurrection and other than this. The ironic thing here is that Ibn Taymiyya (d. 728 AH) agreed with the Falasifa more on these issues and yet you point your fingers at the scholars of Kalam!
                Is this fair?

                If you want to see someone who follows Aristotle in his very creed, then Ibn Rushd al-Hafid - the one whom Hatem al-Haj gives big titles! - is the best example for he defends whatever he said and tries to argue that it's Islamic!

                Comment


                • #53
                  Another important point and that is Ibn Taymiyya's (d. 728 AH) affirmation of al-Qadar al-Mushtarak, which Hatem al-Haj also supports:

                  Al-Qadar al-Mushtarak is a common degree that exists according to Hatem al-Haj - and before him Ibn Taymiyya in some of his problematic works - between the Creator and the creation and Ibn Taymiyya regards this as NECESSARY in order to exist.
                  Now we know that for Ibn Taymiyya going through stages and moments is included in this "common degree" - and "Salafis" do not deny this being his position - and we also know that the absolute majority of the Hanabila regard Allah ta'ala to be transcendent from this and explicitly state so. So this is one major point where the Hanabila do not agree with Hatem al-Haj and this a fact. (For the Asha'ira this is more than enough to regard a person to be guilty of Tashbih!)

                  The other point or question is: Does having the 3 dimensions (al-Ab'ad al-Thalatha; meaning having a height / length, width / breadth and depth) - or let's use Ibn Taymiyya's own vocabulary: the genus of volume or size (Miqdar) - also fall under this "common degree" between the Creator and the creation?
                  If yes, then this is Tajsim by agreement of the Asha'ira and Hanabila and if no, then the difference on this becomes one of wording with Hatem al-Haj.

                  So which one is it? (Whenever I ask this, I don't get an answer. Why?)


                  Yet another point:

                  According to the Prophetic teaching - peace and blessings be upon him - Allah ta'ala is described with absolute perfection and is completely dissimilar to His creation. It's therefore not allowed for the believer to deny any of these two.
                  Note that even without having studied 'Ilm al-Kalam or knowing any of their terminologies, the above must be accepted and submitted to.
                  But this "common degree"-philosophy is basically going against this foundational creed, because it tries to find some sort of similarity between the Creator and the creation and also gets one into the reality of the divine attributes, which is beyond our imagination and comprehension and therefore disallowed.

                  Add to this: You're highlighting things that the Prophet - sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam - has not highlighted and ignoring things that have been highlighted. So when you for example say that "God has a real shin", then this is something that was never stated, but it has been stated that there nothing unto Him!


                  Regarding "Dhahir":

                  Dhahir is simply a terminology and Ash'aris and Hanbalis differ in their usage of it. The Ash'aris intend the lexical literal meaning and this is impossible regarding Allah ta'ala according to both Asha'ira and Hanabila. While the Hanabila intend that these descriptions are attributes and have a reality - which is beyond our comprehension and imagination - and this again is agreed upon by both sides!
                  For this reason Hanabila NEVER criticized for Tafwidh - because it's their own Madhhab also! -, but rather only for Ta`wil.

                  The problem with "Salafis" however is that they're actually trying to establish the lexical literal meaning such that Istiwa` or Nuzul becomes from the genus of movements in their minds.


                  So instead of repeating "dhahir theology" clarify what is intended and understand that there is no "apparent meaning" in the Mutashabihat otherwise the major scholars of Islam would have not disagreed regarding their meaning and would not have suggested to relegate its exact explanation to the Creator subhanahu wa ta'ala.


                  And what happened to the language?:

                  What happened the language of the Arabs? In which language was the noble Qur`an sent down? Is it okay to understand the book of Allah ta'ala in a rather weird way - such that one affirms "a real cloak and wrapper" for God and forget about the rules of the Arabic language and their usage of expressions? Would any Qurayshi have understood this? No by Allah and yet we see these "Salafis" arguing these rather weird things!

                  Would someone like Ibn 'Abbas - radhiallahu 'anhu - ever understood this in the way you people present? No, by Allah and his Ta`wil in these issues are known.


                  And what happened to the clear-cut statements of the leading early scholars?

                  What about the statements of Imam Muhammad bin Hasan al-Shaybani (d. 189 AH) that neither Tafsir (explanation) nor Tashbih (ascribing similarity) is to be done?
                  What about not getting into the meaning as explicitly stated by Imam Abu 'Ubayd (d. 224 AH)?
                  The reason for these statements is that the reality of the divine attributes are beyond the comprehension of human beings and therefore submission to the texts and relegation of their exact interpretation is the best and safest view.


                  Wallahu a'lam.

                  Comment


                  • #54
                    Originally posted by Abu Sulayman View Post

                    Ibn Taymiyya (d. 728 AH) stated in his al-Tis'iniyya 2/492:

                    وقد ظن من ذكر من هؤلاء كأبي علي وأبي الحسن بن الزغواني، أن الأمة قاطبة اتفقت على أنه لا تقوم به الحوادث، وجعلوا ذلك الأصل الذي اعتمدوه، وهذا مبلغهم من العلم، وهذا الإجماع نظير غيره من الإجماعات الباطلة المدعاة في الكلام وغيره -وما أكثرها- فمن تدبر وجد عامة المقالات الفاسدة يبنونها على مقدمات لا تثبت إلّا بإجماع مدعى أو قياس، وكلاهما عند التحقيق يكون باطلًا
                    - end of quote -

                    So he mentions Abu 'Ali al-Hashimi [al-Hanbali] (d. 428 AH) and Ibn al-Zaghuni [al-Hanbali] (d. 527 AH) and their statement regarding the consensus that Allah ta'ala is not subject to changes.
                    He thereafter rejects that such a consensus exists.


                    Now just look at the death dates: There is LITERALLY 300 years between them and we do not find a single Hanbali telling to Imam Abu 'Ali al-Hashimi "no you're wrong"! In fact we find it explicitly stated in the creedal books of the Hanabila BEFORE AND AFTER Ibn Taymiyya that Allah ta'ala is transcendent from being subject to changes. We likewise see Ibn Taymiyya explicitly stating that he has left the position of his [Hanbali] forefathers on this and other issues.

                    Yet we're supposed to believe Dr. Hatem al-Haj that there is no difference between him and [most of] the rest of the Hanabila.
                    If only people would start reading the actual sources.
                    'Ibn Rajab attributes the belief in "movement" for Allah, or "Harakah", to some of the Hanaabilah around 'Ibn Taymiyyah's time. He doesn't call it "Tashbeeh" either.

                    Like a house of playing cards, your arguments fall due to a lack of knowledge of the evidence or just your lame attempts at selectively quoting only the Hanaabilah YOU WANT readers to consider as representative of the "majority".

                    I can't be bothered to go back and forth with you either as it takes too long to verify every single one of your alleged quotes and translations, as well as mentioning the evidence you conveniently leave out in order to give false impressions or due to ignorance.
                    Last edited by AbuNajm; 20-01-21, 02:10 AM.

                    Comment


                    • #55
                      Originally posted by TheHaqq View Post

                      So which strand of Hanbalism did Ibn Taymiyyah follow? Who before him held the same views?
                      This from the other thread:

                      _____

                      The different directions among the Hanbalis regarding creed:


                      - The majority of the Hanabila are in agreement with the creed that is found in Nihayat al-Mubtadi`in by Imam Ibn Hamdan (d. 695 AH), which is to accept the Ayat and Ahadith regarding the Sifat as they have come while adhering to transcendence and not exaggerating in affirmation.

                      - There is also another direction, which exaggerates in affirmation and that is the direction of the Shaykh Ibn Hamid (d. 403 AH), who was among the teachers of al-Qadhi Abu Ya'la (d. 458 AH) who did not agree with him in this direction.
                      What is interesting to note here is that Imam Ibn Hamdan mentioned the statements of Hanbali scholars regarding 'Uluw, Istiwa and Nuzul and when he mentioned the statement of Ibn Hamid he directly and clearly rejected his position, while he did do the same with any of the other statements! (See HERE)

                      - There is another direction which is that of Imam Ibn al-Jawzi (d. 597 AH) and Imam Ibn 'Aqil (d. 513 AH), who were inclined towards Ta`wil of the Ayat and Ahadith of the Sifat and this is rejected by the rest of the Hanabila as it is known.
                      It should be however noted that Imam Ibn al-Jawzi has also statements in line with the majority direction.



                      Now the question is: Upon which direction was the Shaykh Ibn Taymiyya (d. 728 AH)?

                      The answer: The Shaykh Ibn Taymiyya was inclined towards the way of Ibn Hamid and exaggerated in affirmation and was therefore criticized by major Hanbali scholars like Imam Ibn Rajab (d. 795 AH).
                      His statement that emergent (or created) things have no first (Hawadith la Awwala laha) was stated by no Hanbali before and those after him also did not support this. In al-Mu'tamad fi Usul al-Din by al-Qadhi Abu Ya'la this position is even regarded as an atheist one!
                      It should be noted however that Hanabila understood his exaggeration as a refutation of Ta`wil and that his intention was not to establish God to be a body, while they at the same time acknowledged that he had abnormal and wrongs views, which should not be followed.


                      What do the modern day "Salafis" do?: They reject the direction of the majority of Hanabila and rely solely on the direction of the Shaykh Ibn Taymiyya.
                      They add to this there own lack of understanding and that of Ibn 'Abd al-Wahhab (d. 1206 AH) and mix to this their lack of clear principles such that they reach a creed and a jurisprudence that the Shaykh Ibn Taymiyya himself would have rejected and even regarded as deviant!

                      So they are not Hanbalis in any way or form or direction!
                      _____

                      Comment


                      • #56
                        AmantuBillahi

                        I watched the following video:

                        The Hanbali School Part 3: 'Aqida, with Dr. Hatem Alhaj



                        I found it interesting from one side and at the same time it's confusing. From one side he says that he's rejecting corporeality and then he basically says we neither reject nor affirm? So which one is it?

                        (I mean if he's believing that Allah ta'ala is transcendent from being a 3-dimensional being, then his difference with non-Taymiyyan Hanbalis and even with Ash'aris will be mostly in wording and not in meaning in reality (as affirmed by Shaykh al-'Awni).)

                        I believe that Ash'aris and non-Taymiyyan Hanbalis are much more straightforward when presenting their creed. When reading their books, you will clearly know what they believe and what not and this is not the case with Ibn Taymiyya for me. Ironically Imam Ibn Taymiyya's (d. 728 AH) creed seems to be much more philosophical than that of the two other Sunni directions.

                        There is another interesting point and that is how Ibn Taymiyya (and even his foremost student) answered the Christians - and Dr. Hatem does mention an example in the above video - and basically he there speaks like Ash'aris and non-Taymiyyan Hanbalis and not like a Taymiyyan.

                        Another point, which is not mentioned in the video:
                        Do you know that Imam Ibn Hajar (d. 852 AH) mentioned that Imam Ibn Taymiyya basically made Tawba from some of his abnormal views regarding creed - and even signed it himself with witnesses present - and thereafter he was released from prison. This happened in the year 707 AH, if I remember correctly.
                        Now the interesting point here is that afterwards (meaning for the next 21 years!) he did not get arrested a single (!) time for any issues of 'Aqida anymore, but rather only for Fiqhi issues (Tawassul, Talaq, etc.). So I guess that some of his rather weird views in creed - which even the Hanabila regarded as such - where not necessarily views that he held on to until the end.
                        Anyways, Allah ta'ala knows best.

                        Comment


                        • #57
                          Originally posted by Abu Sulayman View Post
                          JazakAllahu Khayran for sharing. I'll check it out shortly inshaAllah.

                          Originally posted by Abu Sulayman View Post
                          I found it interesting from one side and at the same time it's confusing. From one side he says that he's rejecting corporeality and then he basically says we neither reject nor affirm? So which one is it?

                          (I mean if he's believing that Allah ta'ala is transcendent from being a 3-dimensional being, then his difference with non-Taymiyyan Hanbalis and even with Ash'aris will be mostly in wording and not in meaning in reality (as affirmed by Shaykh al-'Awni).)
                          I haven't watched that segment yet but I don't see anything odd with explicitly negating Tajsim at times and explaining the correct methodology elsewhere.. You could find statements from Ibn Taymiyyah and his sympathizers condemning Tajsim when it is accompanied with the correct definition.

                          With regards to the phrase "3-dimensional" then I can honestly say that I have never heard anyone describe Allah or even condemn their opponents using this particular term. The mind of the average Salafi-Athari is not conditioned to even entertain dubious language that is not clearly derived from the Quran and Sunnah.

                          The way I would address term if I was questioned is by asking if affirming Allah's Attribute of Nuzool upon the Salafi application of Dhahir without negating movement, spatial extension, limit, or body indicates that Allah is "3-dimensional"? If the answer is yes then this concept of negating "3-dimensions" is either being misapplied or a false standard not worthy of theological consideration.

                          Originally posted by Abu Sulayman View Post
                          I believe that Ash'aris and non-Taymiyyan Hanbalis are much more straightforward when presenting their creed. When reading their books, you will clearly know what they believe and what not and this is not the case with Ibn Taymiyya for me. Ironically Imam Ibn Taymiyya's (d. 728 AH) creed seems to be much more philosophical than that of the two other Sunni directions.
                          I guess it is subjective because I largely disagree.. From my perspective the Taymiyyan position is extremely straight-forward and clear with no beating around the bush. The Ash'aris/Mufawwidah on the other hand are borderline cunning and deceptive in their usaage of Tafwid and underlying philosophical standards which often need to be called out in order to make sense of their biases.

                          Originally posted by Abu Sulayman;n12760311
                          There is another interesting point and that is how Ibn Taymiyya (and even his foremost student) answered the Christians - and Dr. Hatem does mention an example in the above video - and basically he there speaks like Ash'aris and non-Taymiyyan Hanbalis and not like a Taymiyyan.
                          [/QUOTE

                          Hmm. Does this have to do with his refutation of his Christian contemporaries who accused Islam of anthropomorphism? I'm not familiar with the specific details but I remember hearing that he flipped the argument and demonstrated how the Bible exceeds the Quran in this regard.


                          QUOTE=Abu Sulayman;n12760311]
                          Another point, which is not mentioned in the video:
                          Do you know that Imam Ibn Hajar (d. 852 AH) mentioned that Imam Ibn Taymiyya basically made Tawba from some of his abnormal views regarding creed - and even signed it himself with witnesses present - and thereafter he was released from prison. This happened in the year 707 AH, if I remember correctly.
                          Now the interesting point here is that afterwards (meaning for the next 21 years!) he did not get arrested a single (!) time for any issues of 'Aqida anymore, but rather only for Fiqhi issues (Tawassul, Talaq, etc.). So I guess that some of his rather weird views in creed - which even the Hanabila regarded as such - where not necessarily views that he held on to until the end.
                          Anyways, Allah ta'ala knows best.
                          Yes. I am familiar with this so-called repentence but not really buying it. Like most people who sympathize with Ibn Taymiyyah you would think that somebody who was so effective in refuting the fundamental precepts of Ash'arism would probably never flip sides and accept the Madhhab he practically dismantled. One also has to remember that the pro-Ash'ari rulers of his time were relatively oppressive and trigger-happy when it came to imprisoning scholars with alternative viewpoints. If the story is actually established in history then it wouldn't completely surprise me given the Imams trackrecord with the authorities.

                          WaAllahu A'lam.

                          Comment


                          • #58
                            Originally posted by AmantuBillahi View Post

                            JazakAllahu Khayran for sharing. I'll check it out shortly inshaAllah.



                            I haven't watched that segment yet but I don't see anything odd with explicitly negating Tajsim at times and explaining the correct methodology elsewhere.. You could find statements from Ibn Taymiyyah and his sympathizers condemning Tajsim when it is accompanied with the correct definition.

                            With regards to the phrase "3-dimensional" then I can honestly say that I have never heard anyone describe Allah or even condemn their opponents using this particular term. The mind of the average Salafi-Athari is not conditioned to even entertain dubious language that is not clearly derived from the Quran and Sunnah.

                            The way I would address term if I was questioned is by asking if affirming Allah's Attribute of Nuzool upon the Salafi application of Dhahir without negating movement, spatial extension, limit, or body indicates that Allah is "3-dimensional"? If the answer is yes then this concept of negating "3-dimensions" is either being misapplied or a false standard not worthy of theological consideration.
                            The term "3-dimensional" is clearly not ambiguous and everyone understands it in the same manner.

                            Here a picture for our Taymiyyan brothers (who also know very well what 3-dimensional means, but somehow act otherwise):



                            As for the Dhahir meaning of Nuzul that you're affirming: Now that is indeed ambiguous, because no one really knows what this meaning is that you're intending here? In fact I get the impression that you yourself don't know it and that's why you can't articulate it.

                            If it's the literal lexical meaning - which is displacement from a higher place to a lower one -, then Dr. Hatem seems to reject that (which is good). And if it's a meaning that is not found in any lexicon, then you're upon Hanbali Tafwidh without even realizing.
                            Or is it something completely else?

                            Comment


                            • #59
                              Originally posted by Abu Sulayman View Post

                              The term "3-dimensional" is clearly not ambiguous and everyone understands it in the same manner.

                              Here a picture for our Taymiyyan brothers (who also know very well what 3-dimensional means, but somehow act otherwise):

                              My brain does not imagine shapes when I think about Allah and His Attributes. This terminology would contradict the Bila kayf doctrine as understood by the Salafis unless one engages in Kalam.

                              As for the Dhahir meaning of Nuzul that you're affirming: Now that is indeed ambiguous, because no one really knows what this meaning is that you're intending here? In fact I get the impression that you yourself don't know it and that's why you can't articulate it.

                              If it's the literal lexical meaning - which is displacement from a higher place to a lower one -, then Dr. Hatem seems to reject that (which is good). And if it's a meaning that is not found in any lexicon, then you're upon Hanbali Tafwidh without even realizing.
                              Or is it something completely else?
                              It is ambiguous in the sense that we cannot see Allah with our eyes to describe for you the specific details. "Nuzool" or "descend" is not an ambigous term and unlike some of the Ash'aris we don't misinterpret it as meaning His mercy.

                              Descending is the opposite of ascending which means to come down. It is possible that this Attribute is performed involving movement or vacating the throne in a manner that befits His majesty.

                              Hatem al-Haj doesn't affirm movement, body, spatial extent, vacation of the throne, etc., but he also doesn't completely negate them. For example, in the video he clearly rejected the possibility of Allah being composed of parts. Hence, from Dr. Hatem's perspective "limb" is not even a possible interpretation of "Yad". The same cannot be said about body, limit or movement because we don't want to completely negate what is possible or disputed from them.

                              So, it is possible that Allah's descent involves Harakah in a manner that befits His Essence. If Harakah compromises your standard of negating 3-dimensons for Allah then either your understanding of the concept is flawed or it is a false standard which should not be given importance.

                              Comment


                              • #60
                                Originally posted by AmantuBillahi View Post
                                My brain does not imagine shapes when I think about Allah and His Attributes. This terminology would contradict the Bila kayf doctrine as understood by the Salafis unless one engages in Kalam.
                                The point here is not whether you imagine shapes or not, but rather whether you regard this possible regarding our Lord subhanahu wa ta'ala or whether you regard Him ta'ala transcendent from this? (And there is no doubt whatsoever that Allah jalla jalaluhu is transcendent from this, for He is distinct and beyond all of His creation!)

                                Ibn 'Uthaymin for example - who is one of the heads of these "Salafis" - does regard it possible for that which he worships to have a "round face" as already shown in another thread (see here: "Putting the puzzles together regarding the Tashbih of Ibn 'Uthaymin").
                                So when "Salafis" say "bila kayf", then their intention is not to deny absolute similarity as the Ash'aris and Hanbalis intend, but rather only to say "we don't know and ask regarding the exact size, color, shape, etc.", which is quite obvious Tashbih.

                                Originally posted by AmantuBillahi View Post
                                It is ambiguous in the sense that we cannot see Allah with our eyes to describe for you the specific details. "Nuzool" or "descend" is not an ambigous term and unlike some of the Ash'aris we don't misinterpret it as meaning His mercy.
                                So you think that if you were to see Allah ta'ala, you would understand specific details of His reality? This is in opposition to what Imam Ibn Qudama [al-Hanbali al-Athari] (d. 620 AH) stated (and he was absolutely Anti-Kalam, so don't mention Kalam please!), for he regarded it impossible for the creation to comprehend the reality of the Creator.

                                As for what the Ash'aris stated, then they only mentioned it as a possibility and you can't deny that this is a possible interpretation within the Arabic language and the context given and the existence of other narrations even making this a probable interpretation!

                                Originally posted by AmantuBillahi View Post
                                Descending is the opposite of ascending which means to come down. It is possible that this Attribute is performed involving movement or vacating the throne in a manner that befits His majesty.
                                "Vacating the throne in a manner that befits His majesty"? How is this even befitting His majesty in the very first place? Was He literally located on the throne in order to vacate it?
                                So what's next? "Walking on earth in a manner that befits His majesty"? "Being settled on the back of a mosquito in a manner that befits His majesty"?

                                Let me make it very clear: Being literally in the lowest heaven is NOT befitting His majesty! This is a clear-cut issue and agreed upon.

                                Originally posted by AmantuBillahi View Post
                                Hatem al-Haj doesn't affirm movement, body, spatial extent, vacation of the throne, etc., but he also doesn't completely negate them. For example, in the video he clearly rejected the possibility of Allah being composed of parts. Hence, from Dr. Hatem's perspective "limb" is not even a possible interpretation of "Yad". The same cannot be said about body, limit or movement because we don't want to completely negate what is possible or disputed from them.

                                So, it is possible that Allah's descent involves Harakah in a manner that befits His Essence. If Harakah compromises your standard of negating 3-dimensons for Allah then either your understanding of the concept is flawed or it is a false standard which should not be given importance.
                                Well, in that case I will play the same game that you Taymiyyans like to play with others (while you usually know what we're intending!):
                                What do you intend with "not being composed of parts"? I mean we know that Ibn 'Uthaymin does believe in eternal inseparable parts (which is Tashbih!), but simply doesn't call it as "parts". So it's possible that HH is intending the same (or at least regarding it as possible) and just being deceptive when rejecting "the possibility of being composed of parts"?

                                Like I said previously: The Taymiyyan creed is nowhere clear. No one really understands what you believe and what not and this due to the deceptive language that Ibn Taymiyya (d. 728 AH) himself was using in his Bayan [of his own] Talbis.

                                Dr. Hatem at one point calls both Imam al-Khattabi (d. 388 AH) and ['Uthman bin Sa'id] al-Darimi (d. 280 AH) as "Athari" while speaking about the issue of movement (and he's intending here the paganism that is ascribed to al-Darimi in al-Naqdh): This for me shows a level of dishonesty, because the creed that is in al-Naqdh is diametrically opposed to that of Imam al-Khattabi's creed.
                                I've already quoted Imam al-Khattabi on the issue of movement HERE (he clearly doesn't regard it as a matter of valid difference of opinion and regards it as a HUGE mistake to affirm its possibility!) and also shown his view regard the issue of the divine attributes (see here: 'The way of the early Muslims regarding the divine attributes according to Imam al-Khattabi"), which is in line with that of the Asha'ira (because he allows Ta`wil!) and not even the Hanabila!


                                On another note: I really hope that YQ will also realize these issues and become a normal Athari - I mean like Imam Ibn Hamdan (d. 695 AH) for example here- just like he was able to see through the propaganda and lies of the Najdis.

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