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Correcting the Statements of a Scholar of the Sunnah and Not Seeking to Totally Drop Him by Shaykh Saalih bin ’Abdul’Azeez Aali Shaykh




Also, if the issue is connected to beliefs, or if the issue is connected to a scholar from Ahl ul- ’Ilm, and  a  fatwa  that  was  given  in  the  matter  –  then  here  it  is  necessary  to  look  at  the implications of the matter with consideration of the Masaalih and averting the Mafaasid. For this reason, you will see that the Imams of the da’wah, (may Allah have mercy on them), from the time of Shaykh ’AbdurRahman bin ’AbdulLateef bin Hasan, one of the famous Imams, up to Shaykh Muhammad bin Ibraheem, if the matter is connected to a scholar or an Imam, or to one who is influential in the Sunnah, then they stop and stay away from getting involved in  it.


Shaykh Siddeeq Hasan Khan al-Qanuji  al-Hindi , who is well-known with our ’Ulama as having a status, and they hold his book ad-Deen ul-Khalis in high estimation – even though he criticised the da’wah in many instances in his book. However, they disregard that and do not escalate it in order to benefit from the principal matter which is to establish tawheed and avert shirk.


A second example is with: Imam Muhammad bin Isma’eel as-San’ani , who is well-known and the author of Subul us-Salam and other works. He also authored Tatheer ul-’I’tiqad and he has huge efforts in causing  people to return to the Sunnah and to stay away from censured taqleed, partisanship and innovation.  However, he slipped-up in some issues such as in the famous Qaseedah which has been ascribed to him wherein he praised the da’wah and then it was said “he retracted from that poem of his with another poem” when he stated: ‘I have retracted from the statement (of praise) that I stated about an-Najd ’ meaning Muhammad bin ’AbdulWahhab an-Najdi. This poem was seized upon by some leaders of innovation and the poem was ascribed to him and his son Ibraheem and disseminated, so even though as-San’ani  supported the da’wah he later retracted (his support for the da’wah).



Likewise, ash-Shawkani (rahimahullah),  and  his  status  is  also  famous,  yet  with  this  our ’Ulama…{sic} Ash-Shawkani  has some errant ijtihad in regards to tawassul and in regards to Allah’s Attributes and  his tafseer of some verses of the Qur’an contains some ta’weel, and he also said some things about ’Umar (radi Allahu ’anhu) which are not good, and he also said some things about Mu’awiyah (radi Allahu ’anhu) which were not good – however the ’Ulama do not mention this and Shaykh Sulayman bin Sahman (rahimahullah) authored a  book entitled Tabria’at ush- Shaykhayn al-Imamayn [The Innocence of the Two Shaykhs and Imams] meaning by  the two: Imam as-San’ani  and Imam ash-Shawkani , why? Why did he author the book? Because the foundation which those ’Ulama were based upon was the Sunnah and they did not oppose us in the foundation of belief,  tawheed or aiding the Sunnah, or oppose us in refuting innovation – rather they made ijtihad and erred in some issues, and a scholar is not to be followed in his error and it is to be left and kept quiet about while the truth is spread and his words which support it.


When Ibn Khuzaymah (rahimahullah) erred in regards to the issue of the Image, as is well- known wherein he negated affirming the Attribute of the Image from Allah Mighty and Majestic, the ’Ulama of the Sunnah refuted him. Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullah) refuted him on that in over one hundred pages.

Yet with that, the ’Ulama of the Sunnah say about Ibn Khuzaymah that “he was an Imam” and the ’Ulama of the Sunnah are not pleased with  anyone slandering Ibn Khuzaymah because he authored the book at-Tawheed which is filled with defending  Allah’s tawheed  and  affirming  Allah’s  Perfection  in  His  Names  and  Descriptions.  Adh-Dhahabi (rahimahullah) said in Siyar A’lam un-Nubala ’: “Ibn Khuzaymah erred in this issue” therefore, here then, if errors in these issues arise what should the position be?


The position is that:

his (the scholar’s) agreement with the with us on the foundation of the deen should be looked at along with his agreement with the Sunnah and support for tawheed  and supporting the spread of beneficial knowledge and his da’wah to guidance and the likes from general  principles. So he should be advised and possibly refuted with vehemence. However, he is not to be slandered in total. This was the manhaj of the Imams of the da’wah in these issues as is well-known.


And the virtuous Shaykh Saalih bin Muhammad al-Luhaydan (hafidhahullah) narrated to me when he mentioned the last Qaseedah of as-San’ani  wherein he was said to have said or wrote: “I have retracted from (the praise) that I stated about an-Najd ”, that:

I asked our  Shaykh Muhammad  bin  Ibraheem  (rahimahullah)  about it  and if  it  was (correctly) ascribed  to  him  (i.e.  as-San’ani )  or  not  and  Shaykh  Muhammad  said:  ‘It apparently appears to have been stated by him and the Masha’iykh of our Masha’iykh deem it to be accurately ascribed to him however they do not want it to be said because he supported the Sunnah and refuted innovation even though he attacked the da’wah (an- Najdiyyah,   the   da’wah   to   tawheed)   and   spoke   about   Shaykh   Muhammad   bin ’AbdulWahhab in his poem.’ Ash-Shawkani  has a poem which he sent to Imam Sa’ud wherein he forbade him from many actions such as killing, expanding the country and the likes of these things, however his status is preserved but what they erred in are not to be followed and it is forbidden to follow them in that.

This is because the Sharee’ah came with obtaining benefits and perfect them and averting harms and reducing them, this is a principle which has been agreed upon and it has a major influence, rather, it has to have a major influence in fatwa (rulings).


[ From  side B of the tape ‘al-Fatawa Bayna Matabiqat ash-Shar’ wa Masayarat ul-Ahwa  ’’ [Legal  Rulings: Between  Agreement with the Divinely Legislation and Following  Desires], it  can  be  heard  here  after  47:30 minutes: http://www.mahaja.com/library/lectures/lecture/1079 ]


Related Links:

Advice to the Youth of Ahl-us-Sunnah by Shaykh Sultan Eeid

      • The Phenomenon of Common People and Junior Students of Knowledge Issuing ‘Bayāns’ by Shaykh Ibrāheem bin ’Āmir ar-Ruhaylī

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