The Categories of People in the Fitna of Halabi Al-Mubtadi -A Question to Masjid Ibn Taymiyyah (Brixton)
In The Name of Allaah, The Most Merciful, The Bestower of Mercy.
All praise is due to Allaah—The Lord of Mankind, Jinn and all that exists. And may the Salaah and Salaam be upon the Messenger of Allaah, his family and companions. To proceed:
Allaah (The Most High) stated:
يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا كُونُوا قَوَّامِينَ بِالْقِسْطِ شُهَدَاءَ لِلَّهِ وَلَوْ عَلَىٰ أَنْفُسِكُمْ أَوِ الْوَالِدَيْنِ وَالْأَقْرَبِينَ ۚ إِنْ يَكُنْ غَنِيًّا أَوْ فَقِيرًا فَاللَّهُ أَوْلَىٰ بِهِمَا ۖ فَلَا تَتَّبِعُوا الْهَوَىٰ أَنْ تَعْدِلُوا ۚ وَإِنْ تَلْوُوا أَوْ تُعْرِضُوا فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ كَانَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ خَبِيرًا
‘’O you who believe! Stand out firmly for justice, as witnesses to Allah, even though it be against yourselves, or your parents, or your kin, be he rich or poor, Allah is a Better Protector to both (than you). So follow not the lusts (of your hearts), lest you may avoid justice, and if you distort your witness or refuse to give it, verily, Allah is Ever Well-Acquainted with what you do. [4:135]
We ask Allaah (The Most High) to grant us Tawfeeq to be from those mentioned in the above Aayah.
Ustaadh Abu Muadh Raa-id Aala Taahir (may Allaah preserve him and keep him firm upon the Sunnah) stated in his criticism of Ali Halabi Al-Mubtadi, which was read and checked by Al-Allaamah Rabee Bin Haadee Al-Madkhali (may Allaah preserve him and prolong his life upon goodness) that the people are of three categories within the fitna of Halabi:
- Those who display a bigoted partisanship for him and aid him in falsehood.
- Those who warn against him and refute him with knowledge and proofs.
- Those who keep quiet about his affair and there are two types of people in this third group.
- In this third group, there are those who keep quiet about the affair of Ali Halabi Al-Mubtadi because they have not come across affairs showing them that Halabi’s state of affairs has changed and that he is upon deviation. They have neither come across his books and statements nor have they come across the refutation of the people of knowledge against him. Therefore, they consider him to be the same as he was in the past before he announced his newly innovated principles.
- On the other hand there are others in this third group who have come across Halabi’s books and statements and the refutation of the scholars against him; but they are still in a state of confusion. They have not been granted guidance towards the precise actualisation of the truth in these issues due to its subtleness, as opposed to those who are busy with the study of the science of hadeeth and are well aware of the difference between the sound fundamental principles of Ahlus Sunnah and the principles of ahlul bidah. This is because Halabi utilises beautified speech to confound truth with falsehood; he transmits statements from the people of knowledge upon other than their intended meanings and in affairs they do not hold differences of opinion. So he employs deliberate carelessness with the statements of the scholars when quoting them in some places/affairs, even though he was one who refuted the people of innovation such as the takfeeris and qutbis.
This action of Halabi portrays him as one who wages war against haddaadiyyah, ghuluww etc; but this was not except for his extremism in tamyee (i.e. his blameworthy and extreme softening towards the people of innovation) which further led him to describing the treatise titled ‘’Risaalah Amaan’’ as the treatise upon the balanced path. However, this book advocates closeness between the sects (i.e. co-operation between the deviant, astray and destructive sects), so what can be above this excess in falsehood and tamyee?!
So this group within the third group think that the affair of Halabi is differing that has occurred between the Mashaayikh of Ahlus Sunnah and that it is neither befitting to get involved nor speak against anyone among them. We remind these people that refraining from entering into fitna is something employed when truth is hidden and affairs are obscure, and when one is unable to grasp the true reality of the affairs. However, when truth is manifested and the state of affairs is clarified it now becomes impermissible for a person to refrain; rather he is required to aid the truth and its people; and he is required to reject falsehood and the mistakes of its people.
Al-Allaamah Muhammad Bin Haadee Al-Madkhali (may Allaah preserve him and prolong his life upon goodness) was asked about the affair of refraining from fitna when it occurs and the ruling of the Islamic legislation in that regard; so the Shaikh (may Allaah preserve him and prolong his life upon goodness) stated that refraining from entering into a fitna is with regards to a fitna in which truth is not distinguished from falsehood—the fitan that is bewildering about which the Prophet (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) has clarified and in which a mujtahid is not left with any room to perform Ijtihaad. So in such a case a person sticks to the Jamaa-ah (i.e. the main body of Muslims upon the correct methodology) and their Imaam (i.e. the Muslim Ruler). And if there is neither the Jamaa-ah (i.e. a group of Muslims upon the correct methodology) nor an Imaam (i.e. a Muslim Ruler), the Prophet (sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) commanded a person to abandon all the groups and sects. But all praise be to Allaah the Jamaa-ah is present, the Imaam is present and the scholars are present and widespread among us.
As for refraining from clarifying the affairs to the people, then this is not what is intended by the hadeeth of the Prophet—refrainment is only employed when none listens to you; rather everyone seeks to aid his own opinions and is amazed with themselves, and there is no one to guide the people to the truth. As for the affair of clarifying the truth to the people this is something sought after, but this clarification is of two types:
- Specific Clarification: This is what is carried out by a student of knowledge when there is a need in doing so in accordance with his ability, knowledge and awareness.
- General Clarification Given To Everyone: This is given to the general public in affairs of universal public safety and well-being which may result in trials. This clarification is to be given by a person whose speech carries an impact and what he says will draw the attention of the people, and will carry an effect and benefit by the permission of Allaah.
And this does not mean that we have now become scholars when we do this; No! No! No! Rather we clarify what we know in accordance with our ability and when it becomes obligatory to do so.
Therefore with this clarification of Shaikh Muhammad Bin Haadee (may Allaah preserve him and prolong his life upon goodness) we come to realise the mistake of those who think that the differing between the group of scholars [i.e. Shaikh Ahmad An-Najmi, Shaikh Ubaid Al-Jaabiriy, Shaikh Zaid Al-Madkhali and others] and the maintainers of Markaz Albaanee [in Jordan (i.e. Halabi, Mash-hoor Hasan and others)] is a differing between the people of knowledge, or that it is a differing similar to that which took place between the scholars of the earlier generations, or that it is a differing between contemporaries. This view is erroneous.
And among the strange affairs of those confused ones is that they think that this differing is similar to the differing that took place between Ali and Mu-aawiyyah (radiyallaahu-anhumaa). So they see themselves as being in a situation similar to that of Sa’d Bin Abee Waqqaas and the other Sahaabah (radiyallaahu-anhum) during the fitna between Ali and Mu-aawiyyah (radiyallaahu-anhumaa). Indeed, this stance of theirs is a mistake because there were unclear affairs in that fitna, and it was not a fitnah that occurred due to ignorance in the religion; rather it was a dispute that was specific to them and has nothing to do with our affairs. This is why we have been commanded to refrain from speaking about it, because there is no benefit for us in speaking about it; rather it may cause the hearts to harbour rancour towards those pure souls (i.e. the Sahaabah). And even though Ali (radiyallaahu-anahu) was closer to the truth than Mu-aawiyyah (radiyallaahu-anhu), however the fighting that took place between them was incorrect and this is the view of Ahlus Sunnah Wal-Jamaa-ah.
As for the contemporary differing, they are issues specifically related to us in the fundamental affairs of our Religion and not the issues of the worldly life. Likewise, the differing between us is a differing between those traversing the straight path and aiding the sound fundamental principles of Ahlus Sunnah in opposition to those upon desires, and those in opposition to the truth and aiding ahlul bidah. Also the truth has already been manifested, so it is not befitting to keep quiet or refrain from taking a stance.
Therefore, we should not have a bigoted partisanship towards personalities, rather we should be amongst those who exalt the truth even if that goes against someone we love and hold in high esteem; because if we merely look at the status of personalities and their efforts in knowledge, we will not be able to distinguish between truth and falsehood. Therefore, it is incumbent upon a Salafi to exalt the truth, clarify it and aid its people; and he has to reject falsehood, warn against it and forsake its people. A salafi should not remain like one who sways here and there and not knowing which group is upon guidance. Allaah (The Most High) said:
مُذَبْذَبِينَ بَيْنَ ذَٰلِكَ لَا إِلَىٰ هَٰؤُلَاءِ وَلَا إِلَىٰ هَٰؤُلَاءِ ۚ وَمَنْ يُضْلِلِ اللَّهُ فَلَنْ تَجِدَ لَهُ سَبِيلًا
“(They are) swaying between this and that, belonging neither to these nor to those, and he whom Allah sends astray, you will not find for him a way (to the truth).’’ [Soorah An-Nisaa: Ayah: 143]
Rather it is obligatory upon a Salafi to be upon clear-sightedness in his religious affairs and to be alert during times in which falsehood is made to appear as truth. He should have one face and one tongue in all his gatherings. He should aid the truth and reject falsehood, and he does not fear the blame of the blamers. He should be careful of becoming one who wishes to mix truth with falsehood, guidance and misguidance and light and darkness. A man came to Imaam al-Awzaa-ee (rahimahullaah) and said: “A man says: “I sit with Ahlus Sunnah and I sit with ahlul bidah’’; so Imaam Awzaa-ee (rahimahullaah) said: “This man wishes to equate truth with falsehood.’’ Imaam ibn Battah (rahimahullaah) commented on this statement saying: ‘’Indeed, Al-Awzaa-ee spoke the truth; this man neither knows the difference between truth and falsehood nor between Eemaan and Kufr etc.’’
And if it is the case that these type of people were numerous during the time Imaam Ibn Battah (rahimahullaah), then what about this era. We ask Allaah to aid us with the truth and keep us away from falsehood. We ask Him to protect us from the hypocrisy of the hypocrites and from being unstable in our religion. We seek His protection from being amongst those who are confused or those who have two faces or two tongues.
[Paraphrased and Abridged: Source: Al-Baraaheen Al-Ateedah Fee Kashfi Ahwaal Wa-Taseelaat Ali Al-Halabi Al-Jadeedah: page 54-65]
So a Question to Masjid Ibn Taymiyyah (Brixton)… Which of the above groups do you place yourself within the fitna of Ali al-Halabi al-Mubtadi?
Allaah (The Most High) said:
لَيْسَ بِأَمَانِيِّكُمْ وَلَا أَمَانِيِّ أَهْلِ الْكِتَابِ ۗ مَنْ يَعْمَلْ سُوءًا يُجْزَ بِهِ وَلَا يَجِدْ لَهُ مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ وَلِيًّا وَلَا نَصِيرًا
“It will not be in accordance with your desires (Muslims), nor those of the People of the Scripture (Jews and Christians), whosoever works evil, will have the recompense thereof).”
When one refers to the explanation of this great Ayah, we find the likes of Imaam Ibn Katheer saying: The meaning of this is that the religion is not based on wishful thinking or mere hopes; rather it is based on what is in the hearts and it is testified to truthfully by way of actions. It is neither that when one makes a claim to something he receives it based on nothing more than his claim, nor is it that everyone who claims to be the rightful claimant/one upon the truth is regarded as such based on nothing more than his claim and his speech is considered, unless he has a proof from Allaah.
And because of this He (The Most High) said: “It will not be in accordance with your desires, nor those of the People of the Scripture, whosoever works evil, will have the recompense thereof”, meaning: There will neither be safety for you (Muslims) nor for them (i.e. Jews and Christians) merely through wishful thinking; rather what is given consideration is obedience to Allaah and following what He has legislated through the statements of His noble Messengers. This is why Allah stated after this: [مَنْ يَعْمَلْ سُوءًا يُجْزَ بِهِ] [whosoever works evil, will have the recompense thereof]’…
[For further details see: Al-Misbaah Al-Muneer Fee Tahdeeb Tafseer Ibn katheer]
Likewise Imaam as-Saa’di stated words to this effect that a person merely ascribing himself to any religion is not of any benefit if he fails to produce evidence to support the soundness of his claims, for actions are that which will either testify to the truthfulness of a claim or it is what will belie it.
[For further details see: Tayseer Al-Kareem Ar-Rahmaan Fee Tafseer Kalaam Al-Mannaan]
Indeed this is a tremendous reminder for us and Brixton, that mere claims of adherence to the Salafi Manhaj is not enough; rather it has to be manifested in our actions, in our love and hate, in aiding the Sunnah and its people and rejecting bidah and its advocates. It does not benefit a person when he shops around for statements of support for Halabi in order to remove the justified Tabdee label on him, whilst he knows that Halabi still persists upon his innovations and alliance with innovators like Muhammad Al-Maghraawi, Maribi and others. It will also not benefit a person who shops around for mere claims that are aimed at nullifying the clear and sound proofs produced by Shaikh Ahmad Baazmool in Siyaanatus Salafi, unless such a person brings clear proofs for that. So unless this is done, then let us be mindful of what is stated in the following statement. Ibn Abdul-Barr (rahimahullaah) said:
According to the scholars, Taqleed (i.e. blind adherence) is other than Ittibaa [i.e.adherence to an authentic affair narrated from the Messenger-sallal-laahu-alayhi-wasallam) and obviously with the correct understanding of the Salaf]; because ittibaa is to follow a person based on what is apparent to you of the superiority of his statement and soundness of his school of thought. And Taqleed is that you speak with his statement, whilst you neither know the angle of his speech nor its meaning and you reject speech besides it; Or his mistake is made manifest to you, but you follow him and venerate his opposition, whilst the corruptness of his speech is clear to you. This is what is forbidden to speak with in the religion of Allaah (The Most High).[Jaami Bayaan Al-Ilm Wa-Fadlihee: 2/787]
Shaikhul Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullaah) said:
They (i.e. the Jews) are described as those upon whom is the Anger of Allaah, because sometimes they concealed knowledge due to miserliness and sometimes not making it known in exchange for the worldly (possessions), and sometimes out of fear that some of what they reveal from it will be used as proof against them.
And indeed (some) groups ascribed to knowledge have been afflicted with this; because they sometimes conceal knowledge out of miserliness and out of dislike that others may receive the favour they have received; and sometimes (they conceal knowledge) in exchange for leadership or wealth, and fearing that revealing it would diminish his leadership or wealth. And sometimes it may be that someone else differed with him in an affair or is from another group that opposes (him) in an affair, so he conceals that which is a proof in that knowledge for the one in opposition to him, even though he is not certain that the one in opposition to him is a falsifier. And because of this Abdur-Rahmaan Ibn Mahdee and other than him stated “The people of knowledge write what is for and against them, but the people of desires do not write except what is for them”.
[Source: Siyaanatus Salafi Min Waswasati Wa-Talbeesaat Ali Al-Hababi: page: 144 Footnote: 1]
O Brixton! Indeed, Halabi Al-Mubtadi was refuted by Shaikh Ubaid Al-Jaabiri, Shaikh Ahmad Baazmool and others based on clear proofs; and he was finally declared an innovator by the Imaam of Jarh Wat-Tadeel of our Era Al-Allaamah Rabee Bin Haadee Al-Madkhali. However, we find you fishing in the murky waters—looking for statements that may distance Halabi from this judgement passed against him with clear proofs. So on what basis do you approve or disapprove, because shopping around for mere statements of leniency on behalf of Halabi Al-Mubtadi cannot nullify the reality of his innovations, his persistence upon innovation and defence of innovators.
So what do we call this action of Brixton, whilst they shop around for statements of support for Halabi Al-Mubtadi, and whilst knowing fully well that Halabi Al-Mubtadi has not recanted from his innovations?! Is this action of Brixton bigoted partisanship, following desires, compound ignorance, concealment or lack of truthfulness?! Perhaps we will suffice with the observations of Al-Allaamah Muhammad Bin Haadee Al-Madkhali as follows:
And we hope those errors that have occurred from them (i.e. the brothers at Masjid Ar-Rahmah) will not be repeated by our brothers. This is my advice, and if the errors are repeated, then then it will be hurtful and they will be considered to be blameworthy. And then the end result for these brothers at Masjid Rahmah will be like the end result of that which occurred with those of Brixton Masjid in London! That they ended up with Abul-Hasan, Ali Hasan and those types of people, that which occurred with Abdul-Haqq Baker and whoever was with him such as Abu Haajir and others. They came to me here many times, and I would advise them. And what became apparent is that they are not truthful (laysoo saadiqeen)! These people from Brixton Masjid would sit with me and listen and say “yes” and then go and do the opposite! But this in reality did not harm except themselves! So I advise you with the same that you are truthful, outwardly and inwardly. And in this world you will be treated based upon your outward deeds. So I advise you not to be like these people at the Brixton Markaz for they are NOT truthful people (ghayr saadiqeen), for indeed they would come to me many times and often. I would try to rectify the affairs between them and the brothers in Birmingham (UK) at Salafi Publications. So whatever they (Brixton Masjid) would agree to in these sittings to adhere to, they would exit and abandon all that they agreed to. So I advise you to be truthful upon the correctness and be earnest.
And Allaah knows best. We ask Allaah for sincerity, firmness upon truth, truthfulness and steadfastness upon truth.