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Misconceptions About the Scholars of the Salaf
  Imaam adh-Dhahabi on Ibn Taymiyyah : Removing the Misconceptions
Author: Shaikh Saleem al-Hilaalee
Source: Al-Kawkab ad-Durree (trans. A. Iyaad)
Article ID : MSC060003  


The life of Shaikh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah is well documented and the average Muslim will have heard of him, if not already aware of his great achievements in reviving the way of the Salaf us-Saalih amidst the confusion, strife, innovation and intellectual meanderings of his time. The purpose of this section is not to document facts and details regarding the Imaam of the Salafi da'wah but to highlight some of the deceit and treachery surrounding the manner in which he is portrayed by the Jahmiyyah of today, the Ash'ariyyah, Kawthariyyah, Kabbaaniyyah and others who make an applaudable display of their crippled intellects, feeble knowledge and diseased hearts.

Shaikh Saleem al-Hilaalee wrote, "Do you not know, O noble reader, that the publisher and financier of these two books[1] is 'al-Khassaaf', the ignominy of innovations and caller to the misguidance of the Ash'ariyyah, Kawthariyyah, Gumaariyyah, Soofiyyah, the one who boasts of his enmity for the Salafi da'wah and who brags about his declaring of Shaikh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah to be a disbeliever and who reviles the Companions of Allaah's Messenger (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) , the best (group of people) amongst creation!

And he blackened some pages, calling them 'at-Tanbeeh war-Radd 'alaa Mu'taqid Qadm il-'Aalam wal-Hadd'[2], filling it with lies and deep-rooted hate against Shaikh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah and imposing upon his words (meanings and understandings) that they do not carry. He made the matter worse by his slander against the people of knowledge and that is what occurs on page 19 where he said,

"A warning : And similarly al-Haafidh adh-Dhahabee rebuked Ibn Taymiyyah in his biography (of him) in 'Siyar A'laam un-Nubulaa'. The volume in which the biography of Ibn Taymiyyah is mentioned has not been printed, and we do not know the (secret) reason behind that. To date 23 volumes of the work 'Siyar A'laam un-Nubulaa' have been published and this is deficient. It is necessary to investigate the manuscript volume that is lost so that it can be printed in order that many things come to light".

I say : This warning from this idiot is but deception and distortion.

Firstly, his saying 'And similarly al-Haafidh adh-Dhahabee rebuked Ibn Taymiyyah...' is a slander, in fact mere idle chatter. So what or who has informed you that he rebuked him and yet you have not even come across it?! How free are you, O our Lord, from imperfection, and this is but a mighty slander.

Secondly, his saying, 'The volume in which the biography of Ibn Taymiyyah is mentioned ...' contradicts his saying , 'It is necessary to investigate the manuscript volume that is lost...'. For he claims that the (secret) reason for it not being published is not known and therefore he puts into the mind of the reader that the followers of Ibn Taymiyyah are delaying its printing. Then he says it is lost (and this is the actual reason for its not being available). So he first says the reason is not known then he says what the reason is. Where then is the information O you enemy of the narration!

Thirdly, justice requires that you compare the words of adh-Dhahabee that are lost with those that are known, not the other way round. The books of al-Haafidh adh-Dhahabee are overflowing with the praise of Shaihk ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah, may Allaah haver mercy upon him. He said in 'Tadkhirat ul-Huffaadh' (2/1496), "The Shaikh, the Imaam, the 'Allaamah, the Haafidh, the Naaqid (Skilled Critic), the Faqeeh, the Mujtahid, the Mufassir, the Proficient, the Knowledge of the Ascetics, the outstanding phenomenon of the era, Taqee ud-Deen Abul-'Abbaas Ahmad bin al-Fatee Shihaab ud-Deen 'Abdul-Haleem..."." End of Shaikh Saleem al-Hilaalee's words.[3]

So this is the nature of the contemptible innovators of this earth! The reality of the affair and the bare truth was decreed by Allaah, the Most High to be expressed in the words of al-Haafidh al-Bazzaar, who said, "You would not see a scholar opposing him (Shaikh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah), preventing (the people) from him, filled with hatred for him, except that he was the greediest of them in gathering the goods of this world, and the most cunning of them in acquiring them, and the most pretentious amongst them, and the most desirous of reputation, and the most prolific of them in having lies upon the tongue." [4]

Muhammad bin 'Abdul-Barr as-Subkee said, "By Allaah, no one hates Ibn Taymiyyah except for an ignoramus or the person of desires which have diverted him from the truth after he came to know it."[5]

The Hanafi Imaam, Badr ud-Deen al-'Ainee said, "Whoever says Ibn Taymiyyah is a disbeliever is himself a disbeliever and whoever says that he was a heretic is himself a heretic. How can this be possible when his works are widely available and not a hint of deviation and departure (from the truth) is contained therein?"[6]

Ibn Katheer said, "And the least he would do when he heard something was to memorise it and then engage himself in learning it.he was intelligent and had committed much to memory. He became an imaam in tafseer and everything related to it. He was also knowledgeable in fiqh. And it was said that he was more knowledgeable of the fiqh of the madhhabs than the followers of those very same madhhabs, (both) in his time and other than his time. He was a scholar of the fundamental issues (usool), the subsidiary issues (furoo'), of grammar, language and other textual and intellectual sciences. And no scholar of a science would speak to him except that he thought that the science was the speciality of Ibn Taymiyyah. As for hadeeth, then he was the carrier of its flag, a haafidh, able to distinguish the weak from the strong and fully acquainted with the narrators."[7]

Thus, the issue of the personality of Shaikh ul-Islaam, the reality of his following in the footsteps of the Salaf and of his noble character, is one of clearing the injustices of the unjust, the deception of the deceivers and the foolishness of the foolish - and this is by narrating what has been said about him by the people of knowledge in order give a more realistic portrayal of his personality.[8]

Shaikh Saleem al-Hilaalee continued[9], "And he (al-Haafidh adh-Dhahabee in 'Tadhkirat ul-Huffaadh') said, 'And he was amongst the oceans of knowledge, from the limited intellectuals, the ascetics, the unique individuals, the great braves, the most generous nobles. He was praised by both the one who agreed with him and the one who differed with him and he became famous by his works, and perhaps they number three-hundred volumes'. And he also said, 'He held certain rulings which were unique to him and on account of which his honour was attacked. But these are obscured by the (vast) ocean of his knowledge, for Allaah the Most High, has pardoned him and is pleased with him. I have not seen the likes of him, and the word's of every person from this ummah can be accepted or rejected, so what was he?'

And al-Haafidh adh-Dhahabee said in 'al-'Ibar fee Khibar min 'Ibar' (4/84), "And Shaikh ul-Islaam, Taqee ud-Deen, Ahmad bin 'Abdul-Haleem died in the prison of Damascus on the 22nd night of Dhul-Qa'dah... and he excelled in tafseer, hadeeth, ikhtilaaf (the issues in which there is difference of opinion) and the principle affairs (of the religion). He used to display (remarkable) intelligence and his works number more than two-hundred volumes. He also had some strange opinions on account of which his honour was attacked, and he was a leader in generosity, braveness, and was content with little. His disciples numbered more than 50,000 and he was at the forefront, may Allaah have mercy upon him."

And he (al-Haafidh adh-Dhahabee) said in 'Mu'jam ash-Shuyookh' (1/56-57), "Ahmad bin 'Abdul-Haleem bin 'Abdus-Salaam bin 'Abdullaah bin Abul-Qaasim bin Taymiyyah, our Shaikh, the Imaam, Taqee ud-Deen Abul-'Abbaas al-Harraanee, the matchless individual of the time with respect to knowledge, cognizance, intelligence, memorisation, generosity, asceticism, excessive braveness and abundancy of (written) works. May Allaah rectify and direct him. And we, by the praise of Allaah, are not amongst those who exaggerate about him and nor are we of those who are harsh and rough with him. No one with perfection like that of the Imaams of the Taabi'een and their Successors has been seen and I did not see him (Ibn Taymiyyah) except engrossed in a book."

And he (al-Haafidh adh-Dhahabee) said, "And his followers consisted of nations, (the like of) their number could not be found at the graves of the Soofees, and he did not leave behind him anyone similar to him in knowledge, or even one who approached him in it."

And he said in 'Mu'jam al-Muhadditheen' (p.25), "Ahmad bin 'Abdul-Haleem... the Imaam, the Scholar, the Haafidh, the Hujjah (the decisive proof), the unique individual of the era, ocean of sciences, Taqee ud-Deen Abul-'Abbaas al-Harraanee, then Dimashqee."

And he said, "And he wrote, read and corrected (works) and also excelled in the sciences related to the narrations and the sunan. He studied, gave verdict, made tafseer and authored the most amazing of works. He was alone in holding certain opinions and as a result his honour was attacked, yet he is a man who has sins and mistakes. But despite this, and by Allaah, my eyes have not seen the likes of him and he has not seen the likes of himself. He was a skilled and erudite Imaam in the various sciences related to the religion, had a correct and sound mind, extremely quick in his perception, fluent in his understanding, overflowing with good deeds and was characterised by excessive braveness and generosity. He kept away from the desires of food, clothing and sexual relations. He did not find pleasure in anything but the spreading of knowledge, putting it into books and then acting upon its requirements. Abu Fath al-Ya'maree mentioned him in answering the questions of Abul-'Abbaas Ibn Dimyaatee al-Haafidh, saying, 'I found him to be amongst those who had acquired a fortune of knowledge and he fully and completey memorise the Sunan and the Aathaar. If he spoke about tafseer then he would be the carrier of its flag or if the gave a legal ruling in fiqh, he would know its extreme depths. And if he was to recall a hadeeth he would possess all the knowledge related to it and would carry its flag (i.e. make the hadeeth take precedence over all else). And if he was to talk about the various religions and factions, no one who was more vast in knowledge or greater in meticulousness could be seen. He surpassed his contemporaries in every science and my eyes have not seen the likes of him and nor have his eyes seen the likes of himself.' I (adh-Dhahabee) say: He was imprisoned on more than one occasion in order that he would slacken with respect to his antagonists and so that the fluency of his tongue and pen may diminish. Yet he would not recant and nor turn around upon the advice of anyone, up until he died while imprisoned at the Damascus Prison on the 20th of Dhul-Qa'dah, in the year 728H. And his followers consisted of nations, (the like of) their number could not be found at the graves of the Soofees, may Allaah forgive him and have mercy upon him, aameen."

So these are four books of al-Haafidh adh-Dhahabee which testify to the lie of this ignominy of innovations and caller to misguidance. They (the books) speak out against his slander and show that he is merely shooting in the unknown, following the desires, and we seek refuge in Allaah from (His) abandonment, the absence of success and from deprivation.

Fourthly, Allaah defends and protects those who believe, for He has willed, free is He from imperfections, that He should preserve for us the biography of Shaikh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah which is present in 'Siyar A'laam un-Nubulaa'. Ibn al-Wazeer has quoted it in his extraordinary book 'al-'Awaasim min al-Qawaasim' (5/261-264).

Its verifier said, "And there occurs here in the manuscript 'jeem' a lengthy biography of Shaikh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah which is not present in all of the manuscripts. So I saw it fit to affirm it in these footnotes, along with its text. On some of its lines there is some deficiency (in quality) on account of which some words have been cut off, and I have shown this by establishing the diacritical marks, and I have affirmed them here. This is because the volume of 'Siyar A'laam un-Nubulaa' in which this biography is found - and that is the last one - has not been printed, and this is because we have not found a manuscript which is fit for publishing. This is a biography of the Imaam, the 'Allaamah, Ibn Taymiyyah from 'an-Nubulaa' of adh-Dhahabee. I have quoted it to here (only) because I have quoted from it frequently in this book, especially in this volume. Abu 'Abdullaah adh-Dhahabee said regarding him,

"The Shaikh, the Imaam, the Scholar, the Mufassir (Exegete), the Faqeeh (Jurist), the Mujtahid, the Haafidh, the Muhaddith, the Shaikh of Islaam, the prodigy of the era, author of amazing works, and (a manifestation) of excessive intelligence, Taqee ud-Deen Abul-'Abbaas Ahmad the son of the Scholar, the Muftee, Shihaab ud-Deen 'Abdul-Haleem, the son of the Imaam, the Shaikh of Islaam, Majd ud-Deen Abul-Barakaat 'Abdus-Salaam, the author of 'al-Ahkaam' (meaning the book 'al-Muntaqaa') Ibn 'Abdullaah bin Abul-Qaasim al-Harraanee..." until his saying "...he heard from so and so and so and so and from (attending) many circles (of knowledge). And he increased, reached far limits and read over a group of people by himself. He also wrote with his own hand numerous chapters (of certain works) as well as 'Sunan Abu Daawood'. He looked at the various narrators of hadeeth and the hidden defects (in the chains of narration) and then became one of the Imaams of criticism and Scholars of the narrations, along with his recording of knowledge (in books), his piety, remembrance, and constant devotion.

Then he turned to fiqh, its minutae, its foundations, evidences, concensus, and matters of difference until sheer amazement would arise when he would mention one of matters in which there was difference of opinion, then he would bring evidence (from the texts), would evaluate and point out the stronger of the positions and would strive (in seeking out the truth), and all of that was deserving to him for the various conditions of making ijtihaad had combined in him. Certainly, I have not seen anyone quicker in extracting the verses which would be relevant to the matter which he was discussing, and nor one who was greater in recalling the texts of the ahaadeeth..." Then he said, "...He would constanly enjoin the good and forbid the evil and the reproach of the criticisor would not prevent him from the path of Allaah, the possessor of authority (i.e. in his knowledge and speech) and boldness. He had no concern with the jealous and whoever mixed with him and knew him well will accuse me of falling short in describing him and whoever opposed and hated him will accuse me of overpraise and exaggeration... yet I do not believe that he is infallible. Never, for he, despite the vastness of his knowledge, overflowing braveness, fluidity of mind, extreme respect and venerance for the sanctities of the deen, is a man from among me. Zealousness would overcome him in study, and he would become angry ... hatred for him would develop in the souls and they would avoid him. And if he had not (been like this), by Allaah, if he had been kind with his antagonists, was kind to them, was amiable with them and made his speech cordial with them, their would have been a word of agreement and concensus[10]. For certainly, their senior scholars and imaams humbled themselves in front of the knowledge and sciences and fiqh he possessed, acknowledging (at the same time) that they disliked him. And it was as if they affirmed the rarity of his mistakes. I do not mean those scholars whose charactersitic and habit is to belittle him and mock his excellence, who have such intense hatred of him that they declare him to be ignorant and also to be a disbeliever, who attack him without even having looked at his works, who do not understand his words and who do not have any share of vast understanding and cognizance.

However, a scholar from among them would do justice to him... with knowledge, and the route of intelligence (in this matter) is to remain quiet about what occurrs between rivals, may Allaah have mercy upon them all. And I am the very least of those whose words speak of his greatness or whose pen makes his (mental and characteristic) composition clear. His associates and also his enemies humble themselves in front of his sciences, acknowledge the swiftness of his understanding, that he is a river which has no banks (i.e. no end), a treasure for which there is no equal, that he had determined generosity and that his braveness had no end. However, they would seek vengeance against him and those who were fair in just in that will be rewarded, those who took the middle course (i.e. were not excessive) will be excused, those who were oppressive will be subdued and overcome, but most of them are in fact deceived, to Allaah do all affairs return and every man can have his saying accepted or rejected. Perfection lies only in the Messengers and decisive proof is only in concensus. So may Allaah show mercy to a man who spoke about the scholars upon knowledge and who assiduously scrutinized their problematic pronouncements out of consideration and good understanding, who then sought forgiveness for them and spoke of excuses for them. And if this is not (the adopted path of an individual) then he is someone who does not know and who doesn't know that he doesn't know. If you pardon the most senior of scholars for their errances and you do not pardon Ibn Taymiyyah for his limited mistakes then you have affirmed for your own soul (the following of) desires and the lack of justice. And if you were to say, 'I do not pardon him because he is a disbeliever, the enemy of Allaah and His Messenger' then a portion from the people of knowledge and deen say to you, 'By Allaah, we do not know of him except that he is a believer who guards his prayers, ablutions, fasting in Ramadaan and who venerates the Sharee'ah both inwardly and outwardly. He would not approach (any matter) with a faulty and evil understanding, rather he had excessive intelligence. And nor would he approach any matter with lack of knowledge, for he was an overflowing ocean, having firm knowledge and insight of the Book and the Sunnah, withouth there being any equal to him in that. And nor was he one who played with the religion. For if he had been like that then he would have deceived his antagonists straight away, (pretending to) agree with them and he would have abandoned contradicting them. And he would not hold unique stances in certain matters due to personal desires and nor would he give a fatwa based upon something that was agreed upon[11], rather he would bring proof from the Qur'aan, the hadeeth or qiyaas (analogy) for all of his unique stances and he would prove them and argue in their favour. He would also narrate all the different opinions held in the issue and would lengthen his investigation of it, following in the footsteps of the imaams before him. If he erred then he has the reward of the one who strives to arrive at the truth amongst the scholars, and if he was correct then he acquires two rewards.

Certainly, reproach and hatred is only justified for one of two types of men; the one who gives a verdict in a matter based upon his desires and does not show any evidence, and the one who speaks in a matter without having the slightest amount of knowledge and nor the capacity to quote the narrations. So we seek refuge in Allaah from the desires and ignorance. There is also no doubt that consideration is not to be given to the praise given to him by the leading personalities (accompanying him) and nor those who exaggerate in his affair, for their love of him led them to cover up his errors and they would often count them as good deeds for him. However, consideration is only given (to the testimony) of the people of piety and fear from among the two groups, those who speak with justice and who raise (only) for the sake of Allaah, even if it was against their own souls or against their fathers. And as for this man, I do not desire the world, nor any wealth or status by what I have said concerning him from any aspect whatsoever and this is despite my perfect and complete knowledge regarding him. And it is not permitted for me in my deen and nor for my intellect that I conceal his good deeds, hide his excellencies, expose his sins which are forgiven due to the vastness of Allaah's generosity and highlight an individual page (of his writings) which would become obscure when compared to the ocean of his knowledge and generosity. Allaah will forgive him and be pleased with him. He will also show mercy to us if we were to adopt and follow that which he (Shaikh ul-Islaam) followed, despite the fact that I differed with him in both fundamental and subsidiary issues. I have just made it plain and clear that his mistakes in these matters are forgiven, in fact Allaah will reward him for them to the extent of his good intention and sacrifice of his time and effort and Allaah is the One whom we shall meet at the appointed time. And I have also been harmed by his companions due to my words concerning him, so Allaah is sufficient for me as a reckoner." Then he said, "And I have followed in between the two groups. To the one who loves him, I am considered as one who falls short and to the one who hates him, I am considered immoderate and excessive. Never, by Allaah (is this the case)". End of quote from adh-Dhahabee.

And if it is said, 'Perhaps this biography is tarnished and has been tampered with!', then we say that we have compared the individual sections that make up this biography with the aforementioned words of Imaam adh-Dhahabee from his other books and behold, they are the very same![12]

For this reason we say that the treatise entitled 'an-Naseehah adh-Dhahabiyyah', that which the Mareesee of this era, al-Kawtharee has spread along with his work 'Bayaan Zaghal al-'Ilm' is a forgery against adh-Dhahabee[13] and the evidences against it are in the work itself, yet this is not the place to detail them." End of quote from Shaikh Saleem al-Hilaalee.[14]

Finally, Dr Sa'eed Ramadaan al-Bootee, known for His Ash'aree and Soofee beliefs and his attack against the way of the Salaf states, "And we are amazed when we see the extremists declaring Ibn Taymiyyah, may Allaah have mercy upon him, of being a disbeliever. And also at their saying that he was one who held Allaah to be a body (jism). I have studied hard and long in order to to see where I could find a statement or a word from Ibn Taymiyyah that he wrote or said which would indicate that he held Allaah to be a body, as has been quoted from him by as-Subkee and others, and I have not found anything from him like this. All I found was his statements in his fataawaa, 'Indeed, Allaah has a Hand as He said and has arisen over the Throne as He said, and He has an eye as He said." And he (al-Bootee) also said, " I referred to the final work written by Abu Hasan al-'Ash'aree, 'al-Ibaanah' and I found him saying exactly what Ibn Taymiyyah said (i.e. on the issue of Allaah's Attributes)."[15]

So from this, you will have been made aware of the sophistry of the neo-Jahmites[16], if Allaah wills. And regarding the issues[17] for which Ibn Taymiyyah is repeatedly and knowingly attacked then such attacks do not arise except from one in whose knowledge or mind there is deficiency and in Allaah is the refuge.

Notes

1 Referring to 'al-Kashf al-Mathaalee' and 'Munaaqashat ul-Albaaniyyeen', authored to defame and revile the Noble Shaikh Naasir ud-Deen al-Albaanee and casting aspersions upon him and his students and distributed and spread by the Qutubiyyah, Surooriyyah.

2 'A Warning against and Refutation of the one who believed in the Precedence of the Universe and in a Limit (for Allaah)'.

3 'Al-Kawkab ad-Durree al-Mathaalee al-Munqid 'alaa Da'aawee ash-Shaanee al-Qaalee fee Kashfihi al-Baalee' (p. 26-27).

4 In al-Bazzaar's 'al-A'laam al-'Uliyyah' (p.82).

5 Ibn Naasir's 'ar-Radd al-Waafir' (p.95)

6 In 'ar-Radd al-Waafir' (p.245)

7 'al-Bidaayah wan-Nihaayah' (14/118-119)

8 As for what has been relied upon by the Innovators from the works of the two Subkees, Taqee ud-Deen and his son, Taaj ud-Deen, then as for Taqee ud-Deen, al-Haafidh adh-Dhahabee wrote to him, censuring him for what he had written and his false claims. As-Subkee replied to him saying, "As for what you say with regard to the Shaikh, Taqee ud-Deen (Ibn Taymiyyah), then I am convinced of the great scope, the ocean like vastness of his knowledge of the transmitted and intellectual sciences, his extreme intelligence, his ijtihaad and his achievements in that which surpasses description. I have always held this opinion. Personally, his status in my eyes is greater and more esteemed for his asceticism, piety, religiosity, his aiding of the truth and remaining firm upon it for the sake of Allaah, alone, his adherence to the path of the Salaf and his great dependence upon and use of it, and his strangeness in this time, in fact any time." Reported in 'ad-Durar al-Kaaminah' of Ibn Hajar under the biography of Ibn Taymiyyah (1/159) and also 'Dhail Tabaqaat al-Hanaabilah' (2/392) of Ibn Rajab al-Hanbalee.

Regarding Taaj ud-Deen, then he was an extremist and highly sectarian. As-Sakhawee, commenting on his statement, 'Did any of the Hanbalees raise their heads (meaning become well known)?' said, "This is from the strangest of affairs, and the most sectarian of attitudes and this is why the Qaadee of our time, and Shaikh of the madhhab, al-'Izz al-Kanaanee wrote under this statement, 'And likewise, Allaah did not raise the heads of the Mu'attilah', and then he said about Taaj ud-Deen as-Subkee, 'He is a man having few manners, lack of scholarly integrity and ignorant of Ahl us-Sunnah and their ranks." As-Sakhawee's 'al-I'laan bit-Tawbeekh liman Dhamma at-Taareekh' (p. 94-95).

9 In the aforementioned book 'al-Kawkab ad-Durree' (p.27).

10 Note here an indication of the fact that Ibn Taymiyyah was far superior to his opponents in soundness of argument and it was only due to the harsh nature of Shaikh ul-Islaam in defeating his opponents intellectually that they would not accept his stance. And what follows in the next few sentences strenghtens this.

11 i.e. by just quoting the agreement and not narrating the proofs.

12 And portions of this biography are quoted by Ibn Hajar, word for word, in his 'ad-Durar al-Kaaminah' in the biography of Shaikh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah. In the aforementioned work, Ibn Hajar quotes al-Haafidh Abu (Fath) al-Ya'maree (who is also quoted by adh-Dhahabee), saying, "The Shaikh of our shaikhs, al-Haafidh Abu al-Ya'maree (Ibn Sayyid an-Naas) said in the biography of Ibn Taymiyyah, 'Al-Mizzee encouraged me express my view about Shaikh ul-Islaam Taqee ud-Deen. I found him to be amongst those who had acquired a fortune of knowledge and he fully and completey memorise the Sunan and the Aathaar. If he spoke about tafseer then he would be the carrier of its flag or if the gave a legal ruling in fiqh, he would know its extreme depths. And if he was to recall a hadeeth he would possess all the knowledge related to it and would carry its flag (i.e. make the hadeeth take precedence over all else). And if he was to talk about the various religions and factions, no one who was more vast in knowledge or greater in meticulousness could be seen. He surpassed his contemporaries in every science and my eyes have not seen the likes of him and nor have his eyes seen the likes of himself. He used to speak about tafseer and a large number of people would attend with a substantial portion returning while having taken from his sweet, rich ocean (of knowledge). (And it continued thus), until the disease of envy crept into the hearts of the people of his city.

The inhabitants of Nadhr gathered together and picked out anything from his beliefs that could be rejected, and for this end they memorised certain of his statements. Then they undermined him by this ploy, and laid traps for him by (which to catch) him and declare him an innovator. They thought that he had strayed from their way and split from their sect. So they argued with him and he with them and some of them cut relations with him and he with them. Then he debated another group who amongst the Fuqaraa, those who thought they had the minute details of the inner reality and its bare truth (i.e. the Soofees). However, he exposed these orders. Then this reached the first group and they sought help from those who cut relations with him and harboured malice towards him. So they took the matter to the rulers, each of them having decided that he was an disbeliever. They prepared a meeting and inspired the ignorant masses to spread this word amongst the great scholars. They (also) took steps to take the matter to the king of Egypt. And he (Ibn Taymiyyah) was arrested and thrown in prison. (Secret) gatherings were held to conspire in the spilling of his blood, and for this purpose the people and students from the small mosques were called, along with those who would argue only for the sake of the people (to make them happy), those who would argue only to display their wit, and those that would pronounce takfeer and call for disassociation. But your Lord knows best what is (concealed) in their hearts and what they (openly) proclaim. The one who announced his disbelief was not better than than the one who merely argued to make the people happy. The harm of their plots caught up with him, but Allaah made futile each of their plots and rescued him at the hands of those that He chose... Then he continuously moved from one trial to another. In all of his life he did move except from trouble to trouble. Then their occurred what occurred in the matter of his arrest (and imprisonment). He remained in prison until he died and to Allaah do all affairs return. On the day of his funeral, the streets were crowded and the Muslims came from every roadway.'"

13 'An-Naseehah adh-Dhahabiyyah' which contains a severe attack against Shaikh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah is falsely ascribed to adh-Dhahabee for numerous reasons; the first, none of those who are familiar with the works of Imaam adh-Dhahabee describe it as one of his works, the second, adh-Dhahabee remained the student of Ibn Taymiyyah till the latter passed away, the third, every single quote of adh-Dhahabee to be found in his books contain praise, venerance and respect for Ibn Taymiyyah, the fourth, this treatise was written in the handwriting of Qaadee ash-Shuhbah, an arch-enemy of Ibn Taymiyyah, the fifth, no one has ascribed this work to adh-Dhahabee except as-Sakhawee who merely followed Qaadee ash-Shuhbah in doing so. Refer to the book 'at-Tawdeeh al-Jallee fee ar-Radd 'alaa Nasheehah adh-Dhahabiyyah al-Manhula 'alal-Imaam adh-Dhahabee' (p.85-86)

14 'Al-Kawkab ad-Durree' (p.29-32).

15 'Nadwah Ittihaahaat al-Fikr al-Islaamee' (pp. 264-265) An important benefit: Since the hallmark of the Innovators is the use of Kalaam (theological rhetoric), one of their persistent habits is to read into the affirmations of the Salaf those meanings and understandings which the Salafees themselves verbally and textually negate. An example of such imposed meanings being Allaah's being confined and limited. The Salaf verbally and textually deny that Allaah is confined and limited, along with their affirmation that He is above the seven heavens above His Throne, and this is an uncontested unanimous agreement as proven by Imaam adh-Dhahabee in his 'Mukhtasir ul-'Uluww'. The Innovators only arise with this conclusion (of confinement and limitation) from the texts due to their intellectual assumptions and inferences, it arose from their souls and intellects and the Salaf and the textual evidences of the Book, the Sunnah and the concensus of the Ummah are free from it.

16 An important benefit: the methodology of the neo-Jahmites (the Ash'ariyyah, Kawthariyyah and Kabbaaniyyah) is to falsely accuse the Salafees that which they are free of and then proceed to give textual evidences of its refutation, thereby confusing the affair. And four examples of this have been discussed in the section on the Creed of Shaikh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah and there are many more, but this is not the place to lenghten the issue.

17 And a clarification of them has preceded in the creed of Shaikh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah


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