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Hisham Kabbani
  Exposing Kabbani 8 : The Creed of Abu Hanifah and Mulla Ali al-Qari's Statement
Author: Abu Hudhayfah
Article ID : NDV070008  [19146]  
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"… the explanation of the Attributes whose reality Allaah is alone in knowing is the knowledge of the ‘howness’ which is something unknown to us. So Istawaa is known, its meaning is understood and explained and translated in other languages, and this is the explanation that those firmly grounded in knowledge have an understanding of. But as for the ‘howness’ of the Istawaa, this is the explanation that none but Allaah, the Exalted, knows."

If Istawaa had been from the Mutashaabihaat then Imaam Maalik (by virtue of his affirmation that the meaning of Istawaa is known) would have been guilty of seeking its meaning in opposition to the verse: " As for those in whose hearts is perversity, they follow the Mutashaabihaat thereof, seeking discord and searching for its meanings." and it is not permissible to think that an Imaam the likes of Maalik ibn Anas would contradict the verse in such a blatant fashion. This shows that he did not consider this Attribute (and other Attributes for that matter) to be from the Mutashaabihaat texts.

Even if we were to concede that the texts regarding the Attributes of Allaah were from the Mutashaabihaat, then their meaning would still be known by the People of Knowledge since it is perfectly permissible to read the above verse as:

"But none knows its meanings except for Allaah as well as those firmly grounded in knowledge, who also say: ‘We believe in it all as being from our Lord.’"

As opposed to the more familiar reading:

"But none knows its meanings except for Allaah. And those firmly grounded in knowledge say: ‘We believe in it all as being from our Lord.’"

Ibn Katheer explains in his commentary of this verse:

"From them are those who stop (the verse) at the end of: "… as well as those firmly grounded in knowledge." and many of the commentators of the Qur’aan and people of ‘Usool have followed them in that… ibn Abee Najeeh reports on the authority of Mujaahid on the authority of ibn Abbaas that he said: ‘I am from those well grounded in knowledge who know its explanation.’ And ibn Abee Najeeh said on the authority of Mujaahid (that) those well grounded in knowledge are aware of its explanation and they say that they believe in it."

But it must be said that there is a difference of opinion on the possible readings of this verse with a number of commentators of the Qur’aan preferring the reading: "But none knows its meanings except for Allaah. And those firmly grounded in knowledge say: ‘We believe in it all as being from our Lord.’" And Allaah knows best.


(ii) Mullah 'Alee al-Qaaree al-Hanafee says: "Because the understanding of 'how' is branched onto the knowledge of the 'howness' of the Dhaat (of Allaah) and its reality. Therefore, if this (knowledge of the 'howness' of the Dhaat of Allaah) is unknown, how can the 'howness' of the Attributes be understood."

This is what the Salafis say and believe: Speaking about the Attributes of Allaah is like speaking about the Essence of Allaah.

(iii) Mullah 'Alee al-Qaaree al-Hanafee says: "The safe and beneficial conclusion in this regards is that Allaah be described with what He has described Himself and with what His Messenger has described Him without tahreef (distortion), ta'teel (divesting Allaah of the Attribute), without takyeef (asking 'how') and tamtheel (resemblance)."

Just as ibn Taymiyyah, whilst likewise propagating the way of the Salaf, had said some three hundred years prior to ‘Alee al-Qaaree: "From belief in Allaah is to believe in whatever He has described Himself with in His Book, and with whatever His Messenger sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam has described Him with, without tahreef, without ta’teel, without takyeef and without tamtheel."

(ibn Taymiyyah, al-’Aqeedah al-Waasitiyyah, pp. 72 and 82, with the commentary of ibn al-Uthaymeen)

A brief definition of these terms:

Tahreef (distortion): To alter the wording of the Names and Attributes or change their meanings. Such as the saying that Istawaa means istawlaa / isteelaa and the saying that Hand means power and bounty. Kabbani has fallen into both of these examples of distortion.

Ta’teel (divesting Allaah of the Attribute): Removal of the Attributes and to deny them for Allaah. There is a subtle form of denial which like tahreef is camouflaged as ta’weel. Such as the view of Kabbani that Hand means power or bounty which contains both a distortion of the word Hand as well a denial of Allaah’s Attribute of Hand.

Takyeef (asking ‘how’): Asking or explaining how the Attributes are. For example, to ask: ‘How did He ascend?’ or ‘How is His Hand?’

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