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Hisham Kabbani
  Exposing Kabbani 14 : Where is Allaah and the Hadith of the Slave Girl
Author: Abu Hudhayfah
Article ID : NDV070014  [17578]  
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Kabbani says (p.149):

"Concerning the saying of the slave-girl when the Prophet asked her: 'Where is Allah?' (ayn Allah) And she said: 'In the heaven' (fi al-sama'): She belonged to a people who worshipped stones and denied the Maker. When she confirmed the existence of Allah, she became thereby a believer. If the Prophet had condemned her for this answer, it would have been established that she was disbelieving in the Maker. But as he said of her: 'She is a believer.' He understood from her gesture magnification of the Creator."

There are some important points that need to be made about the hadeeth referred to by Kabbani and his comments to it:

(i) The full text of the narration is: Mu’aawiyah ibn al-Hakam said: "I had a slave-girl who tended sheep for me in the direction of Uhud and Al-Jawaaniyaah and I came one day and found that a wolf had taken one of the sheep, and I am a man from the children of Aadam, I became angry as they do, but I hit her very hard. So I came to the Prophet sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and he made me aware of the seriousness of that, so I said: O Messenger of Allaah, shall I free her? He said: "Bring her." So I brought her and he said to her: "Where is Allaah?" She said: ‘Above the sky.’ He said: "Who am I?" She said: ‘You are Allaah’s Messenger.’ He said: "Free her for she is a Believer.""

(ii) The hadeeth establishes the unequivocal validity of asking the question: 'Where is Allaah?'

(iii) That the only acceptable answer from a Believer to the question 'Where is Allaah?' is to say 'In (above) the heaven' since the Prophet sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam himself accepted this answer and did not criticise it in any way. To give an answer other than this would be to venture into the realms of speculation.

(iv) The word fee (in) does not mean Allaah is surrounded or bounded by the sky or anything else of His creation, rather it means above and over the sky, something which can be found correctly explained in Kabbani’s book (pp. 147-148).

(v) Kabbani's statement: "She belonged to a people who worshipped stones and denied the Maker" signifies a lack of knowledge of the state of the people to whom the Prophet sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam was sent. They did, in fact, believe in the Maker (Allaah) but this did not deter them from directing a part of their worship to their stone idols. Allaah, the Most High, says about them:

"Say: Who is it that sustains you from the sky and from the earth? Who is it that has power over hearing and sight? Who is it that brings out the living from the dead and the dead from the living? And who is it that rules and regulates all affairs? They will soon say: 'Allaah'. Say: Will you not then show piety (to Him)?" (10:31)

"Indeed if you were to ask them who it is that sends down rain from the sky and gives life therewith to the earth after its death, they will certainly reply: 'Allaah'. Say: Praise be to Allaah. But most of them understand not." (29:63)

"If you were to ask them who created them, they will certainly say: 'Allaah'. How then are they deluded away (from the truth)?" (43:87)

(vi) Kabbani's statement: "When she confirmed the existence of Allah, she became thereby a believer." This unique definition of what causes someone to enter into belief completely disregards the verses mentioned above in which the idol worshippers from the era of the Prophet sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam confirmed their belief in the existence of Allaah but this certainly was not sufficient to render them Believers. Furthermore, his definition would also render Shaytaan a Believer merely because he affirms the existence of Allaah! Also, Allaah, the Most High, says: "The Jews and Christians say we are the children of Allaah and His loved ones." (5:18) so does this mere affirmation of His existence make them Believers?

The slave-girl, it must be remembered, also confirmed the Messengership of Muhammad; this together with her correct belief in Allaah warranted that she be declared a Believer. Merely affirming one without the other is disbelief in both Allaah and His Messenger.

Kabbani's lackadaisical approach to this issue of defining belief, it seems, is inherited from his teachers. Nazim al-Qubrusi says:

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