Sunday, 13 November 2011

Ibn Qudamah al-Maqdasi (d.620AH)

Imam Ibn Qudamah
and the Asha'ris

Salafi theologian Muhammad ibn Ibrahim said about al-lum'ah:

(128- قول صاحب اللمعة ( ) وجب الايمان به لفظًا)
واما كلام صاحب اللمعة فهذه الكلمة مما لوحظ في هذه العقيدة، وقد لوحظ فيها عدة
كلمات أخذت على المصنف، إذ لا يخفى ان مذهب أَهل السنة والجماعة هو الايمان بما ثبت
في الكتاب والسنة من أَسماء الله وصفاته لفظًا ومعنى، واعتقاد أَن هذه الأَسماءَ
والصفات على الحقيقة لا على المجاز، وأَن لها معاني حقيقة تليق بجلال الله وعظمته.
وادلة ذلك أَكثر من أَن تحصر. ومعاني هذه الأَسماء ظاهرة معروفة من القرآن كغيرها
لا لبس فيها ولا اشكال ولا غموض، فقد أخذ أَصحاب رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم عنه
القرآن ونقلوا عنه الأَحاديث لم يستشكلوا شيئًا من معاني هذه الآيات والأَحاديث
لأَنها واضحة صريحة، وكذلك من بعدهم من القرون الفاضلة، كما يروى عن مالك لما سئل
عن قوله سبحانه: (الرَّحْمَنُ عَلَى الْعَرْشِ اسْتَوَى) ( ) قال: الاستواءُ معلوم،
والكيف مجهول والايمان به واجب، والسؤال عنه بدعة. وكذلك يروى معنى ذلك عن ربيعة
شيخ مالك، ويروى عن أُم سلمة مرفوعًا وموقوفًا.
أما كنه الصفة وكيفيتها فلا يعلمه إلا الله سبحانه، إذ الكلام في الصفة فرع عن
الكلام في الموصوف، فكما لا يعلم كيف هو -إلا هو- فكذلك صفاته. وهو معنى قول مالك:
والكيف مجهول.
أَما ما ذكره في ((اللعمة)) فانه ينطبق على مذهب المفوضة وهو من شر المذاهب
واخبثها. والمصنف رحمه الله إمام في السنة ومن أَبعد الناس عن مذهب المفوضة وغيرهم
من المبتدعة. والله أَعلم. وصلى الله على محمد وآله وصحبه وسلم.
ص-ف 328 في 28-7-85هـ).
The shaykh ended the answer by saying:

"As for that which is mentioned in ((Al-Lum'ah)) then it is in accordance with the way of the mufawwidah which is the worst and most disgusting of ways. The author, may Allah have mercy upon him is an Imam of the Sunnah and from the furthest people away from the mufawwidah and other than them from the people of innovation. Allah knows best and may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon Muhammad, his Family and his Companions."
The following is also an interesting scan from:
page 57 of "Fundamentals of the Salafee Methodology: An Islaamic Manual for Reform" ascribed to the late Nasir al-Albani with numerous footnotes (which was provided elsewhere by Shaykh Abul Hasan):

[page 57 of "Fundamentals of the Salafee Methodology: An Islaamic Manual for Reform" ascribed to the late Nasir al-Albani]

One of the quotes mentioned therein is from the Salafi theologian Abdar Razzaq Afifi who mentioned in a fatwa that Imam ibn Qudama was a Mufawwid based on what is in his Luma al-I'tiqad:
عبد الرزاق عفيفي - -
عن بعض عبارات الامام ابن قدامة في لمعة الاعتقاد التي يفهم منها التفويض ؟
مذهب السلف هو التفويض في كيفية الصفات لا في المعنى ، وقد غلط ابن قدامة في لمعة
الاعتقاد ، وقال : بالتفويض ولكن الحنابلة يتعصبون للحنابلة ، ولذلك يتعصب بعض
المشايخ في الدفاع عن ابن قدامة ، ولكن الصحيح ان ابن قدامة مفوض
فتاوى ورسائل عبد الرزاق عفيفي
الطبعة الثانية - ص 347 - فتاوى العقيدة سؤال رقم 4

Salafi theologian
answer to a question in the book Sharh Lum'atul Itiqad follows:

Q: Is it true that Ibn Qudama in Rawdatun Nadhir say that the Ayat of Sifat are from the Mutashabih? And his words over there (in that book) the same over here?

What is considered is what's written here, however he divided the Sifat into two kinds, one is Wadih (clear) other Mushkil (difficult/ambigious), and this is wrong, All of the Sifat of Allah ta'ala are clear, there's no difficulty/ambiguity found in it. As for what's in the Rawdat, indeed he divided it according to the method of the later scholastic theologans such as the 'Asharis and others. And it's said (Yuqal) that Rawdah is taken from the book of al-Ghazali, and Ghazali is 'Ashari. And sometimes he (ibn Qudamah) missed this point.
(Page 296-297 of Sharh Luma'at)


Ibn Qudama al-Hanbali

A Mufawwid
A – ‘Allama Ibn Qudama considers the Ayat of Attributes to be from the Mutashabihat, as is stated in Rawdatun Nadhir. After stating this position, he says the correct stoppage in the ayah that talks about Muhkamat and Mutashabihat is “No one knows it’s interpretation except Allah ta’ala. Those grounded in knowledge say we believe in it…
The point where Ibn Qudama considers the correct stopping point is after except Allah ta’ala, meaning He’s the only one that knows the Mutashabihat, and no one else. And Ibn Qudama has stated that from the Mutashabihat is the Ayat on Sifat, thus concluding that the knowledge of Sifat is only known to Allah ta’ala, just like the Huruf al-Muqat’at.
It’s clear from his statement his position on it.
This is the position of Tafwid al-Ma’ana, as propounded by the Ash’irah and Maturidiya and in opposition to todays salafi scholars whom I will quote regarding their statements on the Mutashabihat.
B – Another indication of tafwid al-Ma’ana is Ibn Qudama’s statement in Lum’atul Itiqad, wherein he states, “What is difficult from those (ayat of Sifat) affirmation of it’s wording is necessary, and to leave delving into it’s meaning, and we leave it’s knowledge to the one who Spoke it (Allah ta’ala), we place it’s responsibiltiy on the one who transmited it, following the path of those grounded in knowledge, about whom Allah ta’ala praised in His Clear Book by His statement, “and Those firmly grounded in knowledge say we believe in it, all of it is from our Lord.”

C – It’s clear from his statement where he says we affirm the wording, yet we relegate the meaning to Allah ta’ala. Ibn Qudama goes on to say Allah ta’ala censures those who seek the interpretation of the Mutashabih (the ayat of sifat amongst them), “He said regarding the censure of those who seek interpretation of the Mutashabih of Quran, “As for those who have deviancy in thier hearts because of which they go after the Mutashabih, intending to spread fitnah and seeking it’s interpreation, and no one knows it’s interpretation except Allah ta’ala. Ayah”
Clearly the intent of Ibn Qudama is to drive home the point that only Allah alone knows the Mutashabihat, and the Ayat of Sifat are from the Mutashabihat according to Ibn Qudama. And thus we don’t know it’s interpreations.
D – Another passage he states after the hadith “Allah ta’ala will be seen on the day of judgement”, “and similar to these ahadith, we believe in them, and affirm them, without modality and meaning, and we don’t reject any of it…’ Again Ibn Qudama is driving home the point that the meaning as well as the modality is unknown.
The rules of arabic grammar state that when Waw is used, as it’s used in Ibn Qudama’s words, the default meaning of it is dissimilarity between the thing before and after the particle waw. So, Kayf and Ma’ana are two different things, not same, as some of tried to distort.
In response to these passages, it’s interesting to note what salafi scholars have said, and their criticism of Ibn Qudama.
Shaykh Salih’s criticism of Ibn Qudama:
Shaykh Salih Fawzan says regarding point B mentioned above, “this sentence isn’t accepted from the Shaykh (ibn Qudama), Allah ta’ala have mercy on him, it’s as if he’s dividing the texts of the Attributes into two kinds, one kind the meaning and interpreation is apparent, and this we believe in, as well as it’s meaning and interpretation, and the second kind, the meaning isn’t apparent to us, and this we relegate to Allah ta’ala, and this is wrong. Because meaning is known of all of the text of the Names and Attributes. Nothing from them is obscure or from the Mutashabihat, so the text of Names and Attributes aren’t from the Mutashabih nor do they enter into the category of Mutashabih, as Ibn Taymiyya explained…”

On Page 75 Shaykh Muni’ says, “What is correct is that the Ayat of Sifat aren’t from the Mutashabihat.”
Disparity regarding Ibn Qudama’s quote of Imam Ahmed’s words: “Without Modality and Meaning”:

Shaykh Fawzan says regarding “without Meaning”: “the meaning that the innovators have given, and that is ta’wil”, while Shaykh Muni’ says, “it means the essence, we don’t delve into the essence of the attribute.”

Shaykh Fawzan answering question regarding Sifat from Mutashabih, pg 296;
Q: “Is it true that Ibn Qudama in Rawdatun Nadhir mentioned the Ayat of Sifat in the Mutashabih, and are his words there the same as here (in Luma’)?
Answer: The correct and considered opinion is his words here, however he divided the Sifat into two categories, clear and obscure/difficult, and this wrong. All of the Attributes are clear, nothing from it is difficult. As for what’ in the Rawdah, he agreed with the later Usulis such as the Asharis and others, and it’s said that rawdah is taken from Mustasfah of Imam Ghazali, and Imam Ghazzali is Ashari’, it’s possible that he missed this note (him being an Ashari’?).
Shaykh Muhammed bin Ibrahim Aal as-Shaykh says regarding Ibn Qudama:
As for what he mentioned in al-Luma’, it’s in agreement with the Madhab of Mufawwidah (relegating it’s meaning to Allah ta’ala), and this is from the worst of Madhahib, and the author is an Imam in regards to the Sunnah, and he’s the most distant of people from the Mufawwidah madhab and other innovative groups. And Allah ta’ala knows best.”
Shaykh ‘Afifi affirming Ibn Qudama to be a Mufawwid –
An objection is raised regarding Ibn Qudama’s statements above and his other statements regarding leaving it upon the dhahir (the apparent). The only way to reconcile this contradition, as it’s well known Ibn Qudama considers the Ayat of Sifat to be from the Mutashabih and only Allah knows their meaning, is that the position of Ibn Qudama is to leave the words alone. Not to give explantion of it (it’s meaning) nor it’s interpreation that would take away the apparent meaning, such as Qudrah for Yad.
So ibn Qudama’s position is we leave Yad alone without saying it means such as such, and also we leave it’s interpreation being Qudrah, as that would nullify the Sifah.
As for those who say, we know the meaning of Yad for humans, as well as for Allah ta’ala. I ask, the meaning for yad for humans is a limb consisting of flesh and bone, what is the meaning, if you say you know it, of Yadullah?
Another posting will be done regarding Salafis opinion on the Mutashabih and the Hanbali scholars, as well as the argument why would Allah ta’ala reveal something of which we don’t understand, InshAllah.
Works cited:
Sharh Luma’atul Itiqad by Shaykh Salih Fawzan
Sharh Luma’tul Itiqad by Muhammed bin Ahmed al-Muni’
Sharh Luma’tul Itiqad by Shaykh Uthaymin

(Posted by muhammedm on July 5, 2010)
"The Imaam of Al-Hanabilah"
Ibn an-Najjaar describes him as: "The Imaam of Al-Hanabilah (Hanbalis) in Damascus Mosque, he was a trust worthy, noble figure, extremely generous, of a clean character, a cautious worshipper, follower of the Salaf in methodology, emitting light (of knowledge and piety) and respectful. One may benefit from his sighting before even hearing his speech! [Sharh Lum`atul-I`tiqaad]
Ibn Taymiyyah said about him, "No one possessing more understanding of the religion entered Shaam, after Al-Awzaa'ee, other than Shaykh al Muwaffaq (Ibn Qudamah)" [ Siyar A'laam An-Nubalaa']
Ibn Kathir said about him , "He was the Shaikh ul Islam, an Imaam, a Scholar, outstandingly proficient. there was not found in his time nor before it by a long span of time, anyone possessing more Fiqh than him." [al-Bidaayah wan-Nihaayah]
Ibn Rajab said about his books "He generated benefit to all the Muslims on a general level, and to the scholars of the (Hanbali) Madhab on a specific level. These books spread widely and grew very popular, according to the nobility of his intention and sincerity when writing them." [ Dhayl Tabaqaatil-Hanabilah’ Volume # 2 Page # 133]


Imam Muwaffaq ad-Din Ibn Qudamah al-Maqdisi, the mujtahid of the Hanbali madhab, in his book “Al Wasiyyah”, writes under the subheading “Talab al Haja (request of need)”:
وإذا كانت لك حاجة إلى الله تعالى تريد طلبها منه فتوضأ ، فأحسن وضوءك ، واركع ركعتين ، وأثن على الله عز وجل ، وصلَ على النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم ، ثم قل : لا إِلَهَ إِلاَّ الله الحَلِيمُ الكَريمُ، سُبحَانَ رَبِّ العَرشِ العَظيمِ الحَمْدُ للهِ رَبِّ العَالمِينِ، أَسأَلُكَ مُوجِبَاتِ رَحمَتِكَ وَعَزَائمَ مَغفِرَتِكَ وَالغَنيمَةَ مِنْ كُلِّ بِرٍّ، وَالسَّلامَةَ مِنْ كُلِّ إِثْمٍ، لا تَدَعْ لي ذَنباً إِلاَّ غَفَرْتَهْ وَلا هَمَّاً إِلاَّ فَرَّجْتَهْ، وَلا حَاجةً هِيَ لَكَ رِضاً إِلاَّ قَضَيتَهَا يَا أَرحَمَ الرَّاحمين وإن قلتاللهم إني أسألك وأتوجه إليك بنبيك محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم نبي الرحمة يا محمد إني أتوجه بك إلى ربي فيقضي لي حاجتي،وتذكر حاجتك وروي عن السلف أنهم كانوا يستنجحون حوائجهم بركعتين يصليهما ثم يقول : اللهم بك أستفتح وبك أستنجح ، وإليك بنبيك محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم أتوجه ، اللهم ذلل لي صعوبة أمري ، وسهل من الخير أكثر مما أرجو ، واصرف عني من الشر أكثر مما أخاف .
“When seeking for a need to be fulfilled from Allah ta’ala then perform the ablution and two units of nawafil prayer, relying on Allah ta’alaa and sending salutations on the Prophet (s) and say the following …“O Allah, I ask you and turn to you by Your Prophet Muhammad (s), the Prophet of Mercy. Ya Muhammed!!! I turn by you to my Lord and your Lord aza wajjal for Him to settle my need for me. The early Muslims [i.e. the Salaf] had their needs fulfilled by saying this” Scans :Here

Edited by ADHM