LET US CORRECT OUR ISLAMIC FAITH

دعونا نصحّح العقيدة الاسلامية

 

 

 

 

 

MAWDUDI'S SLANDER OF ISLAMIC BELIEFS
AND AHLE SUNNAH ULEMA
 
__________

 

Mawdudi, in the first edition of this book The Revivalist Movement in Islam, slandered the Islamic faith and the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars. Muslims with right belief in Pakistan began to defend themselves and refuted his slanders and heretical thoughts with documents. Mawdudi, altogether confused with these righteous criticisms, had to tidy his book up. Changing some parts of it and attempting to explain away some others stupidly, he published it again. In order to save his face, he wrote in the preface, "Reviewing the parts which are misunderstood, I have tried to prevent the heartbreaking criticisms.1" Yet, in the same book, he did not give up speaking ill of the words of reverence such as 'al-Imam', 'Hujjat al-Islam', 'Qutb al-'arifin' and 'Shaikh al-Islam', that had been presented to the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars by Muslims, and proclaimed that he did not regard the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars worth these high titles. But, in praising Ibn Taymiyya and 'Abduh, who are documentedly proved to have had departed from the Ahl as-Sunnat, the right path, he himself did not neglect to write the words 'Imam' and 'Ustadh' (master) in front of their names. The words of reverence, which he deems too much for the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars are given freely to them by him. It is written detailedly on page 487 of the fifth volume of Ibn 'Abidin's Radd al-mukhtar for whom and which words of reverence can be used. At the beginning of The Revivalist Movement in Islam, Mawdudi says: "Islamic faith puts forth its own philosophy, which greatly differs from irreligious philosophies. Its knowledge about the Universe and mankind is quite opposite to the knowledge of the irreligious." He means that there is philosophy in Islam and that Muslim scholars are philosophers. His deductions are similar to the Europeans' understanding of Islam by looking at it from the outside. As explained in detail in our book Se'adet-i Ebediyye, one's degrading Muslim scholars down to the degree of philosophers shows his misunderstanding of them. Islamic knowledge is divided into two parts: religious and scientific. Scientific knowledge in Islam is obtained by observation, close examination and experimentation, as is the knowledge of the irreligious in Europe and America about the Universe and man. The science Muslims learn is seen as "quite opposite" by Mawdudi, which means to deny that there is scientific knowledge in Islam. And this is to spoil the lot instead of being useful. It is pertinent to quote the exalted Islamic scholar al-Imam al-Ghazali here: "It will not be useful but harmful to the religion for the ignorant to attempt to help the religion."

 Mawdudi says on the thirty-third page of his book:

"One of the two reasons why the institution of khalifate weakened was because Hadrat 'Uthman did not have as much quality of a leader as his predecessors had had."
With these words, he tries to blemish Hadrat 'Uthman's (radi-Allahu 'anh) governance. Sayyid Qutb, a Freemason Egyptian writer, also attacks Hadrad 'Uthman (radi-Allahu anh) thus presumptuously in his book Al-'adalat al-ijtima'iyyata fi 'l-islam. Speaking ill of Hadrat 'Uthman Dhi 'n-nurain (radi-Allahu 'anh), who was recommended by Hadrat 'Umar (radi-Allahu 'anh) and elected by the Prophet's ('alaihi 's-salam) companions unanimously and whose superiority had been declared in many hadiths is a symbol of being too ignorant to understand that it is a grave sin to speak ill of him or a symbol of attempting to demolish Islam insidiously from behind the screen. Each of the Sahabat al-kiram was a hero honored by being praised in the hadiths, "The highest people are those who live in my time," and "My companions are like the stars in the sky. If you follow any one of them, you will find the right path," and in the ayat, "They are very strong against disbelievers." To misrepresent 'Uthman (radi-Allahu 'anh) as the cause of weakening of the institution of khalifate can be done only by those who cannot comprehend their honors. The history is obvious. The extent of lands conquered in the time of Hadrat 'Uthman (radi-Allahu 'anh) was much greater than the former. Muslim lands enlarged from Philippines to Tunisia. The capacity of this book does not suffice to tell about the improvements he made in administrative, military and social fields. His attempts and achievements in administrative, military and economic fields are told in detail in the fifth chapter of the Turkish Hak Sozun Vesikalari. Those who misrepresent Hadrat 'Uthman's (radi-Allahu 'anh) martyrdom as a defect for him reveal what they think about the prophets whom the Bani Israil had martyred and about the hadith, "No Nabi suffered as much torture as I have." Evidently, the reason why they do not speak ill of Hadrat 'Umar's (radi-Allahu 'anh) martyrdom by his servant is because they cannot find the favorable opportunity. Let us tell these ignorant people again that each of the Sahabat al-kiram was a perfect leader and a courageous mujahid. From Hadrat Habib (radi-Allahu 'anh), who challenged the enemies in his speech on the tripod of gallows in Mecca, up to Abu 'Ubaida (radi-Allahu 'anh), the Conqueror of Damascus, and to Hadrat Khalid (radi-Allahu 'anh), who was amongst the fighters of the army that came Constantinople, it would make a long legend to write about the superiority of each of them in every respect.. It is surprising that he relates the birth of Madhhabs to the movements of fitna (mischief, disunion). Rasulullah (sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam) foretold it and praised beforehand the four madhhabs in that their birth was Allahu ta'ala's compassion. They did not arise from worldly conditions. They arose from religious, divine reasons pertaining to knowledge. Those who look at Islam from the outside and cannot penetrate into its essence strive to end up the sacred, spiritual manifestations by the substance and appearance.

 Mawdudi, from behind the screen, fiercely attacks tasawwuf and says:

"Philosophy, literature and knowledge coming from Greek, Persian and Indian skies were shared. The peoples belonging to polytheist societies that have converted to Islam brought with them many of their polytheistic beliefs and ideas. When they were introducing idolatry into Islam, the 'alims who were adherent to the world co-operated with them. With the idea of giving place to graves and to awliya' in worship, the meaning of the Qur'an was distorted. Many a hadith were misinterpreted."
 This passage, too, is entirely mendacious and slanderous. Greek, Persian or Indian philosophies have not taken place in any of the basic books of Islam. On the contrary, the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars have answered them one by one and refuted the ones which were incompatible with Islam. And, let alone comparing with Islamic literature, no one has ever condescended to use the word 'literature' for their sayings. If Mawdudi wants to attack the seventy-two heretical groups or the bidat' among ignorant people with these words of his, it does not prove him good-willed to attack them as if they were of Islam or religious scholars, for none of them can represent Islam. The Ahl as-Sunnat scholars of all ages have shown them Allahu ta'ala's path and distinguished their good aspects from the bad ones. They have written thousands of books for this purpose and have not left any need for the help of the people like Mawdudi. If Mawdudi wants to serve Islam, he should reproduce the advices and warnings of those blessed scholars of Islam, instead of misrepresenting, by putting forward the words of a few ignorant or heretical people, those most flourishing ages of Islam, during which the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars spread light. Thus he will prove himself to be sincere in the sense which he has attributed to the word 'mujaddid'. Also, he will render a true service to Islam. But he does not mean to do so. He claims that bad customs of Iranians spread among Muslims and thus Islam was spoilt. In this subject, too, he misrepresents the events very surprisingly.

 It is a historical fact that the evils of Iran and Rome had mixed with the pre-Islamic Arabs but not with Islam! As he says, idolatry had gone as far as even into the Kaba. As a matter of fact, it was for this reason that when the Prophet came forward and started to carry out his task of commanding what was good and prohibiting what was evil, all the Arabs became hostile against him. All of them were in a pitiable situation. The whole Arabian Peninsula was in ignorance and heresy. They could not understand the good word. They refused the exalted Prophet (Sallallahu alayhi wa Sallam) who invited them to salvation. Before Islam, the evils of the fire-worshiping Iranians and the idol-worshiping Romans had spread over the Arabian Peninsula. In Iran, a person named Majdak had made up a new religion and spread the partnership of property and woman far and wide. He had prohibited the right of possessing. He had established today's communism yet then in Iran. He had turned the social life and morality in Iran upside down. Afterwards, Nushirwan Shah struggled to brake this current, yet he was not able to clear it off entirely.

 As for the Romans, their morality had become even worse with the evils that had come to them from the Greeks. A philosopher named Aristipus of Cyrene had made up a moral theory and said, "The purpose of life and morals is amusement and sensual pleasure. It is to enjoy everything. Everything which satisfies one's ambitions, desires and tastes is good. One should run after them." This meant the end of morals. How can illegitimate acts ever be good? Those who worked only for this purpose tolerated the evils such as theft, perfidy, dishonesty and murder in order to attain their aims. Here are the moral principles of the ancient Greek civilization! An irreligious civilization should have been so. This system dragged many people on to despair and suicide, for not everybody could be without care and griefs; he could not obtain every taste he would desire and, when he could not get to his purpose, he would want to escape from life. Among the followers of this philosophy, a Greek named Agerias regarded it a heroism for those who could not attain their pleasures to commit suicide. With the influence of his exciting speeches, there were many suicides among his audience. Also in the twentieth century, there are those who kill others or commit suicide upon being unable to get a base flavor or a sexual desire. For this sheer reason, the ancient Greeks and Romans had been absorbed in pleasure and dissipation. Its consequence had been the corruption of social life and the demolition of economy. Both civilizations had died away for this reason. As the Romans began introducing these evils into the Arabian Peninsula, Islam came to rescue the humanity.

 With Islam, the fogs of ignorance over the Arabian Peninsula cleared away. The lights of virtue and spiritual knowledge shone out. Fraternity settled among the people and clans. The people who had remained behind for many centuries began to advance and got strong by following Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wa Sallam). They challenged shahs and kings whose sovereignties they had admired to see once upon a time. Conquering their lands they disseminated Islam in there. The history is evident! Books, documents, works are obvious!

 Mawdudi says on the thirty-seventh page of his book:

 "The morals of Greek philosophy and monastic life and a general pessimistic attitude towards life became natural in Islamic societies. Thus, it lured Islamic knowledge and literature to deviation and supported monarchism. It confined the whole religious life to certain rites and ceremonies."
 Rasulullah (sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam) gave the good news that a mujaddid would come and strengthen Islam at the onset of each century. So it happened. In every century, Islam has illuminated the humanity in every field through the leadership of the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars and has been the source of civilization. In order to portray Ibn Taymiyya as a source of illumination like the sun, Mawdudi tries to annihilate the great Islamic civilization and to misrepresent as obscure the luminous skies of the century of the Tabiin, who were praised in the Hadith, and the following century. Those who read Islamic books and true histories written by reasonable pens in Europe will not have difficulty in comprehending these destructive tactics of his.

 He tries to separate the meaning of the word 'mujaddid' in the hadith we have quoted above from the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars. He blames the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars, e.g. Hadrat al-Imam ar-Rabbani, for having said that Hadrat al-Mahdi, who had been mentioned in the Hadith would be the mujaddid of the third millennium. In addition, he insults Muslims and men of tasawwuf by calling them "ancient type reactionary people". He makes fun of sacred beliefs by saying, "Shall jihad be performed with spirituality, amulets and prayers and would tanks be destroyed with malediction?" He marks those who believe so with the words 'populace' and 'ignorant'. He defends that al-Mahdi will be far from the said spiritual values, that he will be "the most modern of the modern who has a deep authority in the main problems of life," that he is afraid that scholars and mutasawwifs will clamor against the novelty which he will bring. Whereas, in the times when Hadrat al-Mahdi will appear 'Isa ('alaihi 's-salam) will descend from heaven and they will meet each other, there will not be any Islamic scholar left on the earth and Islamic knowledge will have disappeared. Ignorance and heresies, which Mawdudi tries to impute on the early Muslim ages praised in the Hadith, will appear in that future time as pointed out again in the Hadith. The attacks of the people like Mawdudi to the Ahl as-Sunnat and their attempts to extinguish the Ahl as-Sunnat knowledge indicate that those gloomy days pointed out in the Hadith are drawing near. When Hadrat al-Mahdi will appear and renew the Ahl as-Sunnat knowledge, those same non-madhhabite people, heretics and religion reformers will cry and oppose him and Hadrat al-Mahdi will put them to sword. Hadrat al-Imam ar-Rabbani wrote in the 255th letter in the first volume of Maktubat that al-Mahdi will kill the heretics occupying religious posts in Medina. Mawdudi thinks that al-Mahdi will be "not a man of supernatural works or karamat, inspirations and spiritual accomplishments, but a man of struggle like other revolutionists." He says, "Al-Mahdi will found a new school of thought. As this world has witnessed sinful leaders such as Lenin and Hitler, so there will come a virtuous leader."

 Mawdudi, who departs in many respect from the Ahl as-Sunnat, takes Hadrat al-Mahdi as an ordinary leader. Great scholar Ahmad Ibn Hajar al-Makki gave about two hundred characteristics derived from the hadiths about him in his book Al-qawl al-mukhtasar fi 'alamat al-Mahdi. A person who reads this book can easily see the difference between the real al-Mahdi whom Rasulullah ('alaihi 's-salam) described and the imaginary one whom Mawdudi tries to form.

 That the first mujaddid in Islam was 'Umar ibn 'Abd al-'Aziz is another product of Mawdudi's short sight. 'Umar ibn 'Abd al-'Aziz was one of the mujaddidin of the first century of the Hegira, but he was not the first mujaddid. According to the unanimity of Islamic scholars and historians, the first mujaddid was Abu Bakr as-Siddiq (radi-Allahu 'anh) who, after Rasulullah's ('alaihi 's-salam) death, overpowered the renegades and prevented the mischief and instigation that arose among the new Muslims on the Arabian Peninsula.

 He says on the fifty-fourth page:

 "After the death of 'Umar the Second, the administration was obtained by irreligious hands, which became an obstacle against Islam's way. But the Umayyads and 'Abbasids could not prevent Islam's progress. Since the hadith and fiqh scholars were unfamiliar with rational knowledge, they remained deprived of interpreting and explaining the Islamic system under the light of contemporary inclinations of thought. They could do nothing but resort to bad influences. Imam Abu 'l-Hasan al-Ashari and his successors were not successful, either, because, though they possessed scholastic knowledge, they had not been educated in rational knowledge. They went so far in opposing the Mutazila that they introduced into the religion things which did not have place in the religion. Scholars, rulers and masses of people altogether turned their backs to Allah's Book and our Prophet's Sunnat. The wars declared for luxury, ambition and avarice by a notorious group governing the State cause a serious retrogression. Knowledge and arts disappeared. Meanwhile, Imam al-Ghazali came up and won the confidence of the khalif in Baghdad. But he departed from the palace and tried to refute the Greek philosophy. He criticized all the [Ahl as-Sunnat] madhhabs for their weak aspects and inclinations incompatible with Islam. He revived the system of education which had been decaying. Worldly knowledge and religious knowledge had been far away from each other. Yet he was inefficient in hadith. He had dealt too much with rational knowledge. It was a defect for him to have too much interest in tasawwuf. It was Ibn Taymiyya's lot to revive Islamic thought and spirit by abstaining from these three dangers."
 It is true that there have been some Muslim rulers who committed cruelty and sin under the influence of sycophants and renegades who surrounded them. But Muslim scholars struggled to draw them to the right course by telling them Islamic commands and prohibitions in speech and writing. Thus, the worst ones among them became more just and more useful than the best ones of irreligious rulers. The world's histories write about this fact. Those who read the book of Lord Davenport, an Englishman, will easily comprehend not only that Mawdudi is wrong but also that he is in a struggle of hostility. We want to emphasize that non-Sahabi Islamic khalifs might have been cruel and committed sins, yet none of them ever was an unbeliever. They were by no means hostile to Islam. Each of them had commissions of knowledge, Shaikh al-Islam and counselors. None of them ever thought of preventing Islam's progress. All of them struggled to serve Islam. Mosques, schools, madrasas, roads, hospitals, fountains, baths, bridges and various institutions of benevolence and arts which each of them handed over to the next generation were innumerous. Their remains and many of them themselves are evident. Millions of Muslims get use from them today. It is a tactic of the enemies of Islam to attempt to speak ill of them by putting forward their human defects. Islamic scholars' staying away from the sultans does not show that sultans were evil. Following the hadith, "The one who approaches and is modest towards a rich man because he is rich will lose one-third of his iman," scholars have abstained from every rich or famous person, yet they did not neglect to tell them Islamic commands and prohibitions. Mawdudi, who cannot comprehend the subtlety between these two, attacks Islamic scholars and khalifs writing at random. If, instead of writing about their few faults, he had the honor of writing about their goodness and services to Islam, he would fill volumes of books. Especially the Ottoman khalifs were all learned, pious, just, perfect and blessed persons.

An Islamic scholar is a great person who has reached the grade of ijtihad in religious knowledge and learned well what has been discovered up to his time in experimental knowledge and who has attained the degree of Wilayat al-khassa al-Muhammadiyya in the marifa of the heart..It is obvious that people like Mawdudi, Sayyid Qutb have remained outside this circle.  Nothing can be so credulous as regarding as Islamic scholars the people who do not know anything about Islamic knowledge and Islamic scholars and who cannot penetrate into the inner essence of Islam but observe it from the outside like non-Muslim orientalist authors. The branches of knowledge taught in madrasas which are called "scholastic knowledge" by Mawdudi are 'ulum an-naqliyya (religious knowledge). And what he calls "rational knowledge" is 'ulum al-'aqliyya (scientific, literary knowledge). Both of these make up the Islamic knowledge. It does not befit a Muslim to say that fiqh and hadith scholars have known one of these branches of knowledge without knowing the other. Islamic scholars have been the very exalted people praised in the Qur'an and Hadith. They are the heirs of prophets. They have organized the division of labor among themselves, each undertaking the job of disseminating a separate branch of knowledge. This division of labor confuses the ignorant, and they suppose that Islamic scholars have not been exalted in other branches of knowledge. Hadrat 'Abd al-Wahhab ash-Sharani wrote at the beginning of his book Al-mizan al-kubra: "Hadrat Abu Hanifa, the founder of and expert in the knowledge of fiqh, was a also agreat wali. But he did not undertake to spread the knowledge pertaining to the heart or to purify the souls. He undertook the task of spreading all kinds of worship done with the body, that is, the knowledge of fiqh. The mujtahids whom he educated were like him." It is seen that the insidious enemies, who want to demolish Islam from within, try to blemish Islamic scholars in this respect also in order to deceive the Muslim youth. They may praise Islamic scholars through false, roundabout words exaggerating them greatly in order to conceal their destructive plans. We should not believe them. One who reads, for example, Imam Muhammad al-Ghazali's Persian book Kimya' as-Saada will easily realize his deepness in medical knowledge. He tells that blood is cleaned as the bile and other harmful substances are separated from the blood in the liver, that the spleen, kidneys and the gall bladder play roles in this procedure and that the health will get out of order when the quantities of substances in blood change, just like it is told in today's physiology books. Since Islamic scholars were so superior not only in scholastic knowledge but also in rational knowledge, they have been successful in everything they did in every century, and Islamic countries have been the home of civilization. Their thousands of books, which spread their superiority over the world, are evident. They fill the world's libraries. Many of them have been translated into foreign languages. Everybody except insidious enemies see and expresses this fact. It is sufficient to see the book Kashf az-zunun to know about their works. The mischief-makers, who bore Muslim names and who belonged to the seventy-two groups, the members of which, according to the hadith, will go to Hell, introduced into Islam some superstitions long before, like contemporary religion reformers do now. But the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars investigated and cleaned them off one by one. Today there is no superstition or mawdu' hadith in the basic books of Ahl as-Sunnat. Shams ad-din as-Sahawi, ash-Shawkani, Ibn Taymiyya, 'Abduh, 'Ali al-Qari and Ismail Hakki said that there were mawdu' hadiths in the basic books of Ahl as-Sunnat, especially in al-Baidawi's tafsir book and in al-Ghazali's Ihya'. They are not right; it is a calumniation against these great scholars.

 Mawdudi mistakes the rightful madhhabs for the heretical groups. In none of the Ahl as-Sunnat madhhabs, either of itiqad or 'amal, is there a mawdu' hadith or anything incompatible with Islam. There are mawdu' and un-Islamic aspects in the seventy-two heretical groups. All Islamic scholars, especially Hadrat Imam al-Ghazali, criticized these heretical groups. Mawdudi does not like the Islamic education, which has spread its arts and established its universities over three continents from Philippines and India to Portugal and from Bukhara to Morocco. This is like attempting to plaster the sun with sticky mud to hide the truth. One is surprised not at such a writer but at those who suppose him to be a Muslim scholar.

He says on the seventy-ninth page:

 "Shah Wali-Allah ad-Dahlawi removed the old doubts concerning itiqad. He illuminated the heads with a new spirit."
 He means that Shah Wali-Allah ad-Dahlawi (rahmat-Allahi 'alaih), too, was a religion reformer. Wali-Allah ad-Dahlawi's works bear witness for the fact that he belonged to Ahl as-Sunnat; this fact is also declared by Hadrat 'Abdullah ad-Dahlawi. That Muslims' Iman has been doubtful for centuries is a lie made up by the la-madhhabi. Mawdudi could not be too ignorant to know that doubtful iman is not iman. But it is a heresy worse than ignorance to say that Muslims' iman has been doubtful for centuries. The iman of the Ahl as-Sunnat who form ninety percent of Muslims on the world, has been true in every century, and they did not doubt anything in which they believed. Besides, the members of the heretical groups were not so numerous as to represent Islam.

 Mawdudi says on the eighty-first page of his book:

 "The difference between the idea and doctrine of khalifate and sovereignty was explained by Shah Wali-Allah, and the pictures from the Hadith, which were not known before him, were drawn by him. He wrote in his book Musaffa: 'The idiots of four century have abandoned ijtihad. They do not know where they are going, with their rings put on their noses like camels. Each has chosen a different path. It is a pity that they do not have a common understanding.' "
 Hadrat Shah Wali-Allah ad-Dahlawi did not say "idiots" about the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars in any of his books, but he complained about the heretical groups who dissented from the four madhhabs. The following passage from him is very descriptive of his reverence towards the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars:
 "Rasulullah ('alaihi 's-salam) said, 'Great scholars will come in Iran.' Besides great hadith scholars such as al-Bukhari, Muslim, at-Tirmidhi, Abu Dawud, an-Nasai, Ibn Maja, ad-Darimi, ad-Dara-Qutni, Hakim, al-Baihaki and many others who were educated in Iran, there are the great fiqh scholars such as Abu 't-Tayyib [Qadi Tahir at-Tabari], Shaikh Abu Hamid [al-Isfaraini], Shaikh Abu Ishaq ash-Shirazi, and al-Juwaini ['Abdullah ibn Yusuf and his son], Imam al-Haramain 'Abd al-Malik ibn 'Abdullah al-Juwaini and Imam Muhammad al-Ghazali and many many others, who were also educated in Iran. Even Imam Abu Hanifa and his disciples in Mawara an-nahr and Khurasan are the scholars of Iran and are the subject of the good news in the Hadith. A hadith declares, 'There will come a mujaddid in every hundred years.' As he declared, a mujaddid came in each century and strengthened the religion. In the first century of the Hegira, 'Umar ibn 'Abd al-Aziz removed the cruelty of the rulers and established the principles of justice. In the second century, al-Imam ash-Shafi'i explained the knowledge of iman and separated the knowledge of fiqh. In the third century, Abu 'l-Hasan al-Ashari formulated the Ahl-as-Sunnat knowledge and rebutted the people of bidat. In the fourth century, Hakim and al-Baihaki and the like established the fundamentals of the knowledge of the Hadith, and Abu Hamid and the like spread the knowledge of fiqh. In the fifth century, Imam al-Ghazali opened a new way and said fiqh, tasawwuf and kalam were not different from one another. In the sixth century, Imam Fakhr ad-din ar-Razi spread the knowledge of kalam; and Imam an-Nawawi spread the knowledge of fiqh. Thus, a mujaddid, coming in each century up to our time, strengthened the religion. We should not dismiss the matter by just saying that the above hadith and the like are the miracles predicting future happenings. We should also realize the importance and the value of the predicted happenings." [Shah Wali-Allah ad-Dahlawi, Izalat al-Khafa 'an khilafati'l-Khulafa'. v II. p. 377, Karachi, 1372.]
Shah Wali-Allah ad-Dahlawi (Rahmatullahi Ta'ala Alayh) wrote in another book:
 "One of the wajibs of Islam is to learn the Divine Rules (al-Ahkam al-Ilahi), which can be learned from the Qur'an, the Hadith, the athars of as-Sahaba and of the Tabiin and from the teachings deduced from the Qur'an and the Hadith. Fiqh is the branch of knowledge that deals with the Divine Rules, and fuqaha' are the scholars of fiqh. Fuqaha' had different madhhabs, and the scholars who came later differed from one another in choosing and following these madhhabs. Many of them said that one of the famous madhhabs should be chosen and be followed in one's every affair. For those who cannot understand the Qur'an, the Hadith and the books of scholars, such form of following (taqlid) is very rewarding on condition that they should have resolved to follow the Qur'an and the Hadith in this taqlid. If one fairly presumes that his madhhab's ijtihad concerning one of his affairs is in disagreement with an explicit ayat or hadith, he should follow another mujtahid's ijtihad which agrees with the Qur'an and Hadith more. He should not be prohibited to follow another madhhab for that affair. A scholar of later generations who learned the Sunnat and the athars well, studied the sayings of one of the fuqaha' of Islam well, who could deduce rules by comparing the hadiths that seemed disagreeing to a hadith all the transmitters of which were known by him and which had been used as a support (sanad) by a faqih, thus served the madhhab of his imam, and who could deduce new rules according to the methods of the madhhab of his imam, was called the mujtahidu fi 'l-madhhab. This way of following is very rewarding, too. Most Muslims follow the madhhab which has spread in their country or which they learn from their fathers or masters. This way of following is suitable for those who can read the books of only one madhhab and cannot study the sanads of the madhhab. Islamic teachings are composed of three parts, namely, zahir, nawadir and takhrij teachings, the last one being the teachings deduced by scholars. All three of them exist in the sciences of fiqh, tasawwuf and 'aqa'id. One who is able to distinguish the three kinds of Islamic teachings from one another in all of these three sciences and to deduce rules for each kind of these teachings is called an alim of Islam or mujtahid. Only such an alim can understand the Qur'an and Sunnat. In the books Tahzib by al-Baghawi, Hidaya by Imam al-Haramain, Sharh al-wajiz by ar-Rafii, Ghaya by 'Izzad-din ibn 'Abd-as Salam, Sharh al-muhadhdhab by an-Nawawi, Adab al-futya by Abu 'Amr ibn Salah and in Kitab al-bahr by Badr ad-din az-Zarkashi, knowledge is divided into two, one of which must be learned by everybody. Learning the other is a fard kifaya, and, therefore, an alim who has become a mujtahid learns it; if there is such an alim in a town, others need not learn it and, if there is no such alim, all Muslims are sinful. If such an alim can deduce rules from the Qur'an, Hadith, ijma' and qiyas without depending upon a madhhab, he is called a mustaqil (independent) mujtahid. There has not been such a mujtahid for a long time.

 "There are four kinds of non-mustaqil mujtahids. A mujtahid of the first kind does not follow the imam of his madhhab in searching for documents and deducing rules. Because he is on the way of an imam, he is said to belong to an imam's madhhab and is called a mujtahid muntasib. He is a mujtahid mutlaq, and there must always be such a mujtahid. The Ashab at-tarjih, of the second kind, depend on the methods and documents of the imam of the madhhab, and each is called a mujtahid muqayyad. A mujtahid of the third kind knows the documents of his madhhab. The one belonging to the fourth kind can understand the teachings of his madhhab and conveys them to others.

 "The ordinary Muslims who are not able to perform ijtihad and do not study knowledge are permitted to follow a madhhab. For the one who has reached the degree of performing ijtihad, however, following a madhhab is disapproved." [Shah Wali-Allah ad-Dahlawi, Al-intibah, part III. The author of It'haf, an annotation to Al-intibah, wrote: "The one who said that a Muslim should give up following a madhhab and do his actions direct according to ayats and hadiths was not Shah Wali-Allah but ash-Shawkani," and added that ash-Shawkani's words were better and superior, thus displayed that he was against the madhhabs.]

Shah Wali-Allah's above writings clearly show the fact that Mawdudi is a heretic who has not realized the greatness of the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars, all of whom were praised in the Hadith and who followed the same path and spread and strengthened Rasulullah's (sall-Allahu 'alaihi wa sallam) path.

 Mawdudi writes altogether nonsense on the eighty-third page; see what he writes out of delirium:

 "Because of the difference of opinions with regard to fiqh, the Hanafi and the Shafi'i madhhabs have judged each other resentfully to defend its own opinion and have become excessively dangerous to each other. Every madhhab overflows with details, and facts get lost in muchness of interpretation."
 These delirious words are excessively slanderous against the madhhab leaders. In no fiqh book is there a single word written with resent or jealousy against any of the four madhhabs. On the contrary, each madhhab considers it permissible to follow other madhhabs when in difficulty. [For details, see Abd al-Ghani an-Nabulusi's Khulasat at-tahqiq and our book The Sunni Path, p. 32.] Such a corrupt, absurd and obvious lie as this can be written only by a heretic attacking Islam behind the curtain. poor Mawdudi has tried to dive into kalam and fiqh, which are the important subjects of Islam, but, being inexperienced, he has been drowned.

On the ninetieth page, he praises Shah Wali-Allah and says that he selects the following lines from his book Al-tafhimat:

 "In the contemporary age, reality, which is compatible with the spirit of Divine Knowledge, combines the Hanafi and the Shafi'i madhhabs. The Qur'an commentaries should be reviewed and the parts that are against the Hadith should be sifted out, and what is without essence and value should be discarded."
 A Muslim who knows his religion and madhhab becomes infuriated at these words. It is unbelievable that such a great scholar as Shah Wali-Allah would have such heretical ideas. In order to show the fact to our brothers-in-Islam and to disgrace Mawdudi, we will give some quotations from the same book:

 "The origins of Islam are the Qur'an and the Hadith. There is no other source. Ijtihad is permissible in deciding about worldly affairs. If such an affair was decided about before, the decision cannot be changed. There is not qiyas or ijma' in the knowledge of Islam." [Shah Wali-Allah ad-Dahlawi, at-tafhimat al-ilahiyya, v. II. p. 142, Pakistan, 1387 (1967).] The anti-madhhabite people say, "The gate of ijtihad cannot be closed. Ijtihad can be done anytime," thus they want to change the religious knowledge. They refer to Shah Wali-Allah as a support for these words. Whereas, Shah Wali-Allah clearly writes above that he never admits ijtihad and qiyas in the religious knowledge and also shows that the words and references of such non-madhhabite people as Mawdudi and Sayyid Qutb are unsound.

 "Read the hadith books of al-Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawud and at-Tirmidhi and the Hanafi and Shafi'i fiqh books! Hold fast to the books 'Awarif al-ma'arif and Ar-risalat an-Naqshibandiyya! These great people wrote about the dhikr and yad dasht so clearly that there is no need to learn them from a murshid. It is a very great blessing to attain the grades of the great men of tasawwuf..[ [Shah Wali-Allah ad-Dahlawi, at-tafhimat al-ilahiyya, v. II. p. 290, Pakistan, 1387 (1967).]. I dreamt of Rasulullah ('alaihi 's-salam). I asked him which madhhab and Tariqa were better and which he liked most. 'All the madhhabs and Tariqas are equal. None is superior to another,' he said." [Shah Wali-Allah ad-Dahlawi, at-tafhimat al-ilahiyya, v. II. p. 301, Pakistan, 1387 (1967).]

"Muslims have parted into madhhabs. The scholars reported the religion that had come from Rasulullah ('alaihi 's-salam). They agreed on most of the teachings, and there remained some insignificant disagreements on a minor part. But the majority of scholars held on to the right path and disapproved those who separated from them. From fear, the separatists either hid themselves or behaved double-facedly, which showed that they were the people of bidat. We should hold fast to the teachings on which the right madhhabs agreed, and we should not deny the ones on which they disagreed. He who says that it is fard to follow the madhhab of a certain person who was not a prophet becomes an unbeliever; Islam had existed before that person was created, and fiqh scholars had preached it. Muslims have always followed one of the right madhhabs, for they have believed that the imam of the madhhab reported the religion coming from Rasulullah ('alaihi 's-salam) correctly. It occurs to my heart that it would be good to compare the present teachings of the two most widespread madhhabs, the Hanafi and Shafi'i, with hadith books. When the teachings without foundation, [By these words, Shah Wali-Allah meant the teachings made up in the books written by ignorant men of religion. Such teachings do not exist in the basic books of the Hanafi and Shafi'i madhhabs or in hadith books. When such teachings are cleared off, it will be seen that there is very little difference between madhhabs, for there is no difference pertaining to the teachings that are expressed clearly in the Hadith between the two madhhabs, even among the four madhhabs; and there are not many differences pertaining to the teachings that are not expressed clearly. These different teachings are either rukhsa (easiness, facility) or azima (difficulty). For more detail, see The Sunni Path, published by Hakikat Kitabevi in Istanbul.] are excluded, the two madhhabs will seem as if they are united. Of the remaining teachings, the ones in common with both madhhabs would be taken. Those which are not common would be classified as rukhsa or 'azima. In case of darura (necessity or emergency), the ones that are rukhsa would be followed." [Shah Wali-Allah, At-tafhimat, v. I, pp. 277-9.] Here he gives definite answers to the la-madhhabi and shows that their statement, "Our opponents are polytheists," is unbelief. This passage, only the last sentence of which is played as a trump card by Mawdudi, does not ever support his point of view, but it rescues the madhhabs, from the slanders with which the ignorant people and heretics smeared the madhhabs. As a matter of fact, Shah Wali-Allah explained it more clearly: "What Allahu ta'ala likes is to search firstly through the Qur'an and Hadith. If a person can comprehend and draw conclusions from them, he has attained to a great blessing. If he cannot comprehend them, he should follow the madhhab of an imam who, he believes, understood them correctly and suitably with the Sunnat and communicated clearly what he understood. Arabic knowledge and the lessons at the madrasa should be studied with the view of understanding them, not for other purposes!" [." [Shah Wali-Allah, At-tafhimat, v. I, pp. 283.] As it is seen, Shah Wali-Allah, too, prohibited the scholars who were mujtahids from following another mujtahid and wrote that we ignorant people should follow one of the right madhhabs.

 In the book Endless Bliss, Shah Wali-Allah's invaluable writings praising the four madhhabs in his works Al-insaf and 'Iqd al-jayyid [These two arabic books are reproduced photostatically in one volume by Hakikat Kitabevi, Istanbul, 1395 (1975).] are quoted lengthily. Even the Turkish book Nimat ul-Islam clearly states that the madhhabs cannot be united and it is superstitious to be a mulfiq. In the fatwa book Fatawa al-Haramain and Persian Saif al-abrar, which were written in India, and in Hadrat 'Abd al-Wahhab ash-Sharani's preface to his Al-Mizan al-kubra, [These three books are reproduced in Istanbul.] 'madhhab' is explained clearly, and it is proved with documents that the madhhabs cannot be united. To pioneer something about which has been unanimously said "cannot be done" for a thousand years means to turn Islam upside down. Are those who defend it Muslims or are they are enemies of Islam? It is left to the readers to decide about it.

Shah Wali-Allah explained and praised tasawwuf and the Tariqas throughout his Persian work Hama'at (Pakistan, 1944), from which the following lines are extracted:

 "If the salik is not so learned as to study the hadith books or the knowledge coming from as-Sahaba and the Tabiin, he should follow one of the four madhhabs. All the Tariqas are the same in respect of belief, of doing the commands and abstaining from the prohibitions. They have been different in doing the dhikr and supererogatory worship. If worldly thoughts come to one's mind while performing the dhikr, one should sit near an exalted person whose tawajjuh is strong and pay his tawajjuh to him. Or one should pay his tawajjuh to the souls of the mashayikh al-kiram, and, therefore, visit their graves and beg them to attract him towards themselves. If the dhikr causes vexation to the nafs, this has various reasons. One of them is the lack of following the rules of adab towards the mashayikh of the Tariqa he follows. If the salik cannot understand the reason, the shaikh will understand it with his tawajjuh and insight and will let him know of it. This faqir [Wali-Allah ad-Dahlawi himself] paid my tawajjuh to the world of souls and understood that each Tariqa had a different relationship to it. Also i'tikaf in shrines will help one make progress. Speaking ill of the Salaf as-Salihin is one of the reasons which block the way. It has often been seen that angels scatter blessings onto the gatherings of dhikr and that those who perform the dhikr are surrounded by light. If one's soul is in relation with the pure souls of prophets or of awliya' or with angels, facts not taught to others will be taught to him. If one understands that someone is a wali and loves him, his soul gets attached to the wali's soul. Or, he loves his murshid or his pious ancestor and gets attached to his soul. He gets faid from him. Visiting the graves of awliya', reading the Qur'an and giving alms and sending its thawab to their souls, and revering their works and children will help one get attached to their souls. One will dream of them. Appearing in their own figures, they will help and rescue one at dangerous places. One who gets benefit from the souls is called an Uwaysi. Because his attraction is very strong, Hadrat El-Sheikh 'Abd al-Qadir al-Gilani has the ability to be beneficial as alive awliya have. This faqir paid my tawajjuh to the souls of the mashayikh and attained many blessings. Five hundred years after the death of the mashayikh, there is not any natural power left in their bodies and their effects on those who visit their graves become more. Benefit by tawajjuh to the soul can be done in two ways: by thinking that the two souls are attached to each other, which is like seeing somebody in the mirror; or by visiting his grave and thinking of him, which is like opening one's eyes and seeing somebody facing him."
 Wali-Allah ad-Dahlawi (rahmat-Allahi 'alaih) further wrote: "One is permitted to gather the rukhsas of the four madhhabs only when it is not prohibited by the explicit nasses of the Qur'an and Hadith, by the ijma' of the Salaf as-Salihin or by an explicit qiyas." [Izalat al-khafa, p. 522, Pakistan, 1386 (1966), original Persian and translated Urdu versions together.] As it is seen, Shah Wali-Allah, let alone saying that the madhhabs should be united, he makes conditions even for taking their rukhsas.

 Mawdudi goes on attacking the Ahl as-Sunnat scholars and again claims to quote from Shah Wali-Allah's book Musaffa, on the 91st page of his book The Revivalist Movement in Islam: "Ijtihad is necessary in every age. It is necessary to put new rules event if it may not agree with a certain madhhab. Because it is a must to have divine responsibilities according to the peculiarities of every century. The books of the madhhabs that have been written up to now are inefficient and full of differences. It is the only way out to remove these differences through the principles of Islam."

 He attributes these exaggerations, which he likes very much and, his mouth watering, praises excessively, to Shah Wali-Allah. He makes that great scholar a false witness for himself. These slanders reveal his real purpose and raise his mask. Hadrat Wali-Allah, however, wrote in the preface of his famous work Izalat al-khafa:

 "Most of the rules declared in the Qur'an are concise. They cannot be solved or understood without the explanation by the Salaf as-Salihin. Most of those hadiths reported by one person cannot be documents unless they were reported by many of the Salaf as-Salihin and unless the mujtahids derived rules from them. If those great people had not worked so hard, the hadiths that seemed to disagree with one another would not have been brought together. Likewise, unless all the branches of religious knowledge, such as 'ilm al-qira'a, 'ilm at-tafsir, 'ilm al-'aqa'id and 'ilm as-suluk, have come from those great people, they cannot be documents. In all these branches of knowledge, as-Sahaba were the source for the Salaf as-Salihin and shed light on their way. The pillar to which the Salaf as-Salihin held on is the cuffs of the Khulafa' ar-rashidin. The person who breaks this origin, this pillar, will be demolishing the whole religious knowledge."
 Shah Wali-Allah further wrote: "For being a mujtahid, it is necessary to know the majority of the detailed documentation from the Qur'an, Hadith, ijma' and from qiyas of the knowledge of fiqh. He must know the document of every rule and form a firm opinion about the documents. Being a mujtahid in this time requires being specialized in the following five branches of knowledge: 'ilm-i kitab qira'atan wa tafsiran; 'ilm al-hadith, that is, to know each hadith together with its documents and to recognize the daif hadith and the sahih hadith immediately; the third one is 'ilm al-aqawil as-Salaf, that is, to know what the Salaf as-Salihin said about each matter so that one will not go out of ijma', so that one will not swerve to the third way if there were two different decisions on a matter; the fourth one is 'ilm al-'arabiyya, i.e., Arabic with branches of lughat, nahw, [mantiq, bayan, ma'ani, balagha,] etc; the fifth one is 'ilm at-turuq al-istinbat wa wujuh at-tatbiq bain al-mukhtalifain. Such a profoundly learned scholar is called a mujtahid. Such a scholar ponders very hard on every small matter and observes each rule similar to it together with its documents. It should be known certainly that interpreting the Qur'an also requires being deeply specialized in these five branches. In addition, it is necessary to know the hadiths telling the reason for the descent of the ayats. He should know what the Salaf as-Salihin said about interpreting the Qur'an. His memory and comprehension should be very strong. He should understand the siyaq, sibaq and tawjih of ayats and the like." [Izalat al-khafa, p.21.] Those people who attempt to do ijtihad and to write Qur'an commentaries, such as Mawdudi, Sayyid Qutb and Hamidullah, should have read these lines and realized the greatness and exaltedness of Islamic scholars. However, this realization is a great virtue. Hence arises the fact that those who do not realize this or do not want this to be realized either by themselves or by others are trying to demolish Islam from within under the mask of Muslim scholars. May Allahu ta'ala protect Muslims against believing such insidious enemies of Islam! Lest my dear readers should be taken in by wrong, very dangerous articles of anti-madhhabite people, I deem it proper to give additional information on ijtihad in the following.
 
                                                     (Courtesy other sources)
 

السلام عليكم و رحمة الله و بركاته

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