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Warning Against the Innovators
  The Methodology of Ahl-us-Sunnah wal-Jamaa'ah in Warning Against Innovators and Their Books
Author: Shaikh Rabee' bin Haadee al-Madkhalee
Source: book Manhaj Ahl-us-Sunnah wal-Jamaa'ah Fee Naqd-ir-Rijaal wal-Kutub wat-Tawaa'if
Article ID : BDH050002  [31915]  
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"The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) has informed us that this ummah would divide into groups, and that desires and innovations would appear amongst them. And he (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) declared salvation for whosoever follows his Sunnah and the Sunnah of his companions RAA. So it is a must upon every Muslim, when he sees a man dispersing any type of vain desire or innovation knowingly, or he is scorning any part of the Sunnah, to abandon him and free himself of him, whether he is dead or alive. Thus, he does not greet him with Salaam when he encounters him nor does he respond to him if he is greeted initially. He is to continue doing this until that individual abandons his innovation and returns to the truth. As for the forbiddance of abandoning (i.e. making Hijrah from) one’s brother for more than three days [18], then that is in regards to a disagreement that occurs between two people in respect to matters of companionship or family ties. It is not in regards to the Religion, for indeed, abandoning the people of vain desires and innovations is unending, until they repent." [19]

Ash-Shaatibee (ra) said:

"Indeed the saved sect – and they are Ahl-us-Sunnah wal-Jamaa’ah – are commanded with disassociating themselves from the people of innovations, expelling them and punishing severely anyone that follows in their direction, whether by killing or less than that. The scholars have warned us from accompanying and gathering with them. That is the best way for casting hostility and hatred for them. However, the one who achieve this are the ones who give themselves cause for it, by splitting away from the jamaa’ah (Qur’aan and Sunnah), due to what he has innovated from adhering to the ways other than that of the believers’ way, not just for the sake of showing hostility. And how could this be, when we are commanded to disassociate from them while they are commanded to befriend us and return to the jamaa’ah?" [20]

Ash-Shaatibee (ra) said:

"When these groups begin to call towards their misguidance and they beautify it in the hearts of the common people and those who have no knowledge, then indeed, the harm that these people cause to the Muslims is just like that of the harm that Iblees causes. And they are the devils from among mankind. Thus there is no doubt that they must be exposed for what they are –people of innovation and misguidance – as well as those who attribute themselves to these divisions, if there is sufficient evidence that shows that they are from among them. So there is no doubt that these types of people must be exposed and expelled, so that the harm that emanates from them will not return to the Muslims. And if they abandon exposing them and withdrawing away from them, then the outcome of this is far worse than the harm caused by them, if the reason for abandoning the exposition of them is done out of fear of causing division and hatred..." [21]

I say that this is the way of the Salaf and these are their rules and regulations. This is the way they dealt with these types of books and with their authors, the innovators, as you have seen in the statements of Ibn Taimiyyah, Al-Baghawee and Ash-Shaatibee and in the words of Ibn ‘Abd-il-Barr who relates it to Maalik and his companions. There is also the statements of Al-Khateeb and Al-Muwaffiq Ibn Qudaamah who relate it to Imaam Ahmad and all of the Salaf, without exception.

Ibn Al-Qayyim (ra) said:

"Likewise, there is no insurance to be paid for burning and destroying the deviant books. Al-Marwazee said: ‘I said to Ahmad: I borrowed a book that has evil and wicked things in it. Do you think that I should tear it apart and burn it? He said: Yes. So I burned it.’

The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) once saw a book in the hand of ‘Umar, that he had transcribed from the Torah and that he was amazed at how much it conformed with the Qur’aan. So the anger reflected on the face of the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) until ‘Umar went over to a fire and threw it in.

So how would it be if the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) were to see what was written after him, from the books that oppose and contradict what is in the Qur'aan and Sunnah?! And Allaah is the One in whom we seek assistance! The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) commanded everyone that recorded his (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) statements to erase what they had recorded from him (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam), except for the Qur'aan. Afterwards, he permitted his Sunnah to be recorded, but did not give permission for anything other than that.

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