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On Eemaan, Ibaadah and Tawheed : Their Link and Interrelation.
  Lesson 2: How to Believe in the Attributes of Allaah
Author: Abu Iyaad as-Salafi
Article ID : SCL010002  [22135]  
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3. Qaadee Abu Ya'laa (d. 458H) said: "It is not permissible to repel these narrations - as is the way of the group from the Mu'tazilah. Nor to become preoccupied with ta'weel - as is the way of the Ash'ariyyah. It is obligatory to carry them upon their dhaahir (apparent) meaning; and that the Attributes of Allaah do not resemble any one of His creation, nor do we have an aqeedah (belief) that there is any tashbeeh (resemblance) to them. Rather [we believe] in what has been reported from our Shaikh and our Imaam, Abu Abdullaah, Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn Hanbal, and others from the Scholars of Ashaabul-Hadeeth."[7]

4. Al-Khateeb al-Baghdaadee (d. 463H) said: "As for speech about the Attributes of Allaah, that which is authentically related about them in the Sunnah, then the way of the Salaf - may Allaah be pleased with them all - was to affirm them as they are, alaa dhaahir (upon their apparent meaning); negating any tashbeeh (resemblance) to Allaah and not asking how they are. We do not say that al-Yad (the Hand of Allaah) means His Power nor that as-Sama' (Allaah's Hearing) and al-Basr (Allaah's Seeing) means His Knowledge, nor do we say that He has jawaarih (limbs)"[8]

5. Al-Khattaabee (d. 388H) said: "The madhhab of the Salaf (the Pious Predecessors) with regard to the Sifaat (Attributes of Allaah) is to affirm them as they are alaa dhaahir (with their apparent meaning), negating any tashbeeh (resemblance) to them, nor takyeef (asking how they are)."[9]

6. Imaam at-Tirmidhee (d. 279H) said: "It has been stated by more than one person from the People of Knowledge about such ahaadeeth, that there is no tashbeeh (resemblance) to the Attributes of Allaah, and our Lord - the Blessed and Most High - descends to the lowest heaven every night. So they say: "Affirm these narrations, have eemaan (faith) in them, do not deny them, nor ask how." The likes of this has been related from Maalik ibn Anas, Sufyaan ath-Thawree, Ibn Uyainah and Abdullaah ibn al-Mubaarak, who all said about such ahaadeeth: "Leave them as they are, without asking how." Such is the saying of the People of Knowledge from the Ahl us-Sunnah wal-Jamaa'ah. However, the Jahmiyyah oppose these narrations and say: This is tashbeeh! However, Allaah the Most High, has mentioned in various places in His Book, the Attribute of al-Yad (Hand), as-Sama' (Hearing), and al-Basr (Seeing) - but the Jahmiyyah make ta'weel of these aayaat, explaining them in a way, other than how they are explained by the People of Knowledge. They say: Indeed, Allaah did not create Aadam with His own Hand - they say that Hand means the Power of Allaah."[10]

7. Abu Hasan al-Ash'aree (d. 324H) said: "If it is said: Why do you deny that His saying: Do they not see that We have created for them what Our Own Hands have created." [Soorah Yaa Seen 36:71] And His saying: Whom I have created with My Own (Two) Hands [Soorah Sa'd 38:75] are majaaz (metaphorical)? To him it is said: The ruling concerning the speech of Allaah - the Mighty and Majestic - is that it is taken upon its dhaahir (apparent) and haqeeqah (real) meaning. Nothing is removed from its dhaahir (apparent) meaning to majaaz (metaphorical) one, except with a proof ... [Al-Ibaanah an
Usool id-Diyaanah (p.133)]

So all of these narrations prove that the way of the Salaf was to affirm whatever Allaah has mentioned about Himself without fooling and playing around, and without giving them meanings which are unclear.

And if you think about it a bit more , you will realise how this constitutes a big lie and mockery of Allaah. The one who does 'ta'weel' - it is as if he is saying, "well Allaah's words were unclear so I am making them clear by giving them meanings based upon what I think". He is also accusing the Prophet of not having sufficiently fulfilled his task. So he is placing himself at a level higher than Allaah and His Messenger (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)

So this is the second principle, that we do not change the meanings and this is known as Tahreef and it can also be called Ta'weel, because someone who gives words other than their obvious meanings and says that they have other unclear meanings - then he is in reality changing and distorting them. Note also that the one who does tahreef, he is also guilty of ta'teel, because the fact that he changes the original meaning of the word means that the actually denies it.

The Third Principle:

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