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The Difference Between Advising and Condemning

Written by: by Rajab Al-Hanbalee :: (View All Articles by: Rajab Al-Hanbalee)

All praise is for Allaah, Lord of the universe. And may His peace and blessings be upon the foremost of those who fear Allaah and the seal of the prophets (Muhammad), as well as upon his family, his companions and (all) those who follow them in righteousness, until the Day of Recompense:

As for what follows, then:

These are some brief, yet comprehensive words concerning the difference between advising (against someone) and condemning (him), for indeed they are counterparts in the sense that they both consist of mentioning something about a people that they hate to have mentioned. However, the distinction between the two is something that is not understood by many people. Thus, Allaah is the One who grants correctness.

Know that mentioning something about a people that they hate having mentioned is forbidden if the objective behind that is for nothing else but to dispraise and declare (ones) faults and defects.

However, if there is found in this mentioning, a beneficial good for the general masses of people specifically for some of them and the objective behind it is to accomplish this beneficial good, then it is not forbidden, but rather, recommended.

The scholars of hadeeth have agreed with this (principle) in their books concerning the subject of Al-Jarh wat-Ta'deel.(1) And they stated the difference between declaring hadeeth reporters unreliable and between backbiting them. And they further refuted those who placed these two (categories) at the same level, such as those constantly engulfed in worship (all the time) as well as others who do not possess sufficient knowledge. (2)

Furthermore, there is no difference between 1) discrediting narrators of one of the hadeeth scholars (huffaadh) and distinguishing whose reports are to be accepted from them and whose reports are not. And between 2) clarifying the mistake of one who has erred with regard to understanding the meanings of the Book and the Sunnah and who has interpreted some aspect of it incorrectly, and who has adhered to something that he should not be adhering to. This (clarifying) was done so that this individual would not be followed in that which he erred in. And the scholars have also unanimously agreed upon the permissibility of (enforcing) that clarification.

Due to this, we find that the books they authored concerning the various sciences of the religion, such as tafseer, explanation of hadeeth, Fiqh, the difference of opinions amongst the scholars and what is related to that, are filled with arguments (3) and refutations of the statements of those who voiced weak sayings from the scholars of the past and present, such as the Sahaabah, the Taabi'een and those after them.

Not one of the people of knowledge abandoned (doing) this (clarification). Nor would he claim in his (refutation) to disparage, dispraise or defame the individual whose saying he was refuting, unless the author (he was refuting) was from those who speech consisted of pure evil and displayed corrupted manners when explaining (the Religion). In this circumstance, his evil action and corrupted state were forsaken apart from the original status of refuting and opposing him. And this (refutation) was based upon sound arguments and stable proofs. The reason for this was due to the unanimous agreement of the scholars of this Religion upon seeking to expose the truth which Allaah sent His Messenger (saw) with. And so that all of the Religion can become purely for Allaah (alone) and so that His word (the Shahaadah) can be the highest.

Furthermore, all of them acknowledge that grasping the entirety of the knowledge, without neglecting any part of it, is not a level that has been attained by anyone among them. Nor has anyone from the scholars of the past or those of the present claimed to have reached it. For this reason, the Imaams of the Salaf those whose knowledge and merits are widely and unanimously agreed upon used to accept the truth from anyone that disclosed it to them, regardless if he was young.(4) And they used to advise their companions and followers to accept the truth, even if it appeared in another person's sayings.

An example of this is found in 'Umar's (r) opinion concerning the dowry of women. So a woman responded to him by reciting Allaah's statement:

"But if you intend to replace a wife with another, and you have given one of them a qintar (large amount of gold in dowry), take not the least bit of it back."

Upon this, 'Umar went back on his opinion and said: "A woman has spoken the truth and a man has erred." (6) And it has also been reported that he said: "Everyone is more knowledgeable than 'Umar." (7)

Some of the famous (scholars) used to say, upon having formulated an opinion concerning a matter: "This is the opinion that we have derived. So anyone that brings an opinion better than it, we shall accept it (from him)."

Imaam Ash-Shaafi'ee used to go to great extents in regards to this understanding. Thus, he used to advise his companions to follow the truth and to accept the Sunnah, even if it should appear to them in contradiction to his (own) opinions. And that they should, at that point, throw his opinion against the wall.(8) And he used to say in his books (9) "There is no doubt that you will find in them (my opinions) that which contradicts the Book and the Sunnah. This is because Allaah, the Most High, says:

'And if it (the Qur'aan) were from someone other than Allaah, you would find many contradictions in it.'(10)"

And what is more profound than this is his saying: "No one ever debated me except that I noticed: either the truth was manifested upon his tongue or upon my tongue."

This indicates that his intention was for nothing else but to expose the truth, even if it were found upon the tongue of someone other than him, such as the ones he debated or differed with.

And whosoever possesses this type of condition, then indeed he will not hate having his opinion rejected, nor having his contradiction of the Sunnah clarified, whether during his lifetime or after his death.

This was the way the scholars of Islaam from past and present those who are the protectors of it and who rise to support it used to think about others. And they did not used to detest the objection they received from anyone that opposed them with a proof that was presented to him. This was even if the proof that these individuals (who opposed them) used was not strong according to them, such that they would take hold of it and abandon their proof in place of it.

Due to this, Imaam Ahmad (ra) used to mention Ishaaq Ibn Raahawaih (ra) while praising and commending him. And he used to say: "Even if he does contradict (me with regard to the Sunnah) in some matters, then indeed, the people will never cease to differ with one another." Or it is as he said.

And many times he (ra) was presented with the words of Ishaaq and others and their sources from where they derived their opinions. But he would not agree with them in their opinion. Nor would he reject their views or their evidences for it, even though he would not agree with any of it. (11)

And Imaam Ahmad (ra) approved of what was related from Haatim Al-Asam, when it was said to him: "You are a non-Arab and do not speak eloquently, yet no one debates with you, except that you silence him. So with what do you gain victory over your opponents?" So he responded: "I become happy when my opponent speaks correctly (on a point). I become grieved when he errs. And I withhold my tongue from him, lest I should say something that would upset him." (or something with this meaning) So Ahmad (ra) said: "There is no one wiser than him"

Therefore, refuting weak (erroneous) teachings and clarifying the truth with regard to what opposes it, based upon sound evidences, is not from that which was detested by these scholars. Rather, it was from that which they loved and for which they commended and praised those who did it.

So it does not enter into the realm of backbiting at all.

Rather, what is incumbent upon each Muslim is that he love that the truth be made manifest and that the Muslims (in general) are aware of it, regardless if it is in conformity or in opposition to his view.

This is from the aspects of sincerity (naseehah) towards Allaah, His Messenger, His Religion, the leaders of the Muslims and the common folk. And this is, in fact, the Religion itself, as the Prophet (saw) has informed us. (12)

As for clarifying the mistake of one of the scholars who has erred before his time, then: If one observes good manners in his speech and does well in his refutation and response, then there is no harm upon him nor is there any blame that he can be accused of. And if there comes out from him, that he is misled by the (erroneous) opinion, then there is (also) no harm upon him.

When a statement would reach some of the Salaf that they rejected, they would say: 'This person has lied.' This example is taken from the statement of the Prophet (saw): 'Abu As-Sanaabil has lied', (13) when news reached him r that he issued a ruling that a woman whose husband passed away, while she was pregnant, was not permitted to relocate until fourteen months had passed by, due to her pregnancy.

And indeed the righteous scholars have gone to great lengths in forsaking the weak sayings (opinions) of some of the scholars. And they refuted them with the highest degree of refutation, as Imaam Ahmad (ra) used to censure Abu Thawr and others for weak opinions they had stated, apart from their other sayings. And he went to great extremes in refuting them.

This is the ruling for these matters, on the outward. As for the inner affairs, then if ones objective in doing that (criticizing) is to clarify the truth and so that the people will not be deceived by the works of those who
erred in their writings, then there is no doubt that this individual's aim will be rewarded. And his doing this, along with this intention, causes him to fall into the category of being from those who show sincerity to Allaah, His Messenger, the scholars of the ummah and its common folk. And it is the same whether the one who clarifies the mistake is young or old. Thus, he should take his example from those of the scholars who refuted the opinions of Ibn 'Abbaas (r), which have been declared irregular, as well as his (r) other weak opinions that have been rejected by thescholars, such as with regard to mut'ah (temporary divorce), sarf (bartering), 'umratain and other than that.(14)

And he should take his example from those who refuted the opinion of Sa'eed Ibn Al-Musayyib (ra) concerning his making permissible the divorcing of ones wife three times simply upon the contract (i.e. without having consummated the marriage) and other than that from that which contradicts the established Sunnah. And he should take from the example of those who refuted Al-Hasan Al-Basree with regard to his opinion about the abandonment of the wife's mourning for her deceased husband. And those who refuted 'Ataa for his opinion with regard to returning (some money back) for having entered into the (divorced wife's) private parts (after divorce). And those who refuted Taawoos in the issues in which he differed from the scholars. As well as all those (those other scholars) of whom the Muslims have agreed upon their guidance, knowledge, respect and reverence. And what each of them contradicted (of the Sunnah) from these (Fiqh) issues did not cause any of these scholars to be defamed or (that mistake) to be represented as a defect on their part.

The books of the Muslim scholars from past and present, such as the books of Ash-Shaafi'ee, Ishaaq, Abu 'Ubaid, Abu Thawr and those scholars of Hadeeth and Fiqh that came after them, are filled with the clarifications of these
opinions and their claims that these opinions do not have much benefit in them. And if we were to mention that in words, this discussion would be severely prolonged.

As for if the objective of the one refuting is to expose the faults of the one being refuted and to debase him and to manifest his ignorance and shortness of knowledge, then this is forbidden, regardless if his refutation of that is done in the face of the one being refuted or in his absence. And it is the same whether the refutation is done during that individual's lifetime or after his death. This type of action falls under the acts which Allaah repudiates in His Book and which He threatens the one committing it, concerning his slander and backbiting. Similarly, it falls into the statement of the Prophet (saw):

"O you group of people that believe with your tongues and not with your hearts! Do not abuse the Muslims nor seek after their faults. For indeed, he who seeks after their faults, Allaah will seek after his faults. And whomsoever has Allaah seek after his faults, He will expose them, even if he may have committed them in the privacy of his own home.
" (15)

All of this is in respect to the scholars that are followed in the Religion. As for the people of innovation and misguidance and those who imitate the scholars but are not from them, then it is permissible to expose their ignorance and to manifest their deficiencies, in order to warn others against following them. (16) However, our discussion now is not concerning this topic and Allaah knows best.



Forms of Advising

If it is understood from someone, that he intends with his refutation of the scholars, to advise sincerely towards Allaah and His Messenger, then indeed it is obligatory that he be treated with kindness, respect and veneration,
just as was done by all the Muslim scholars whose mention and examples were stated (previously), as well as those who followed them in righteousness.

And if it is understood from someone that he desires, with his refuting of them, to defame, slander and expose (their) faults, then it is necessary that he be confronted with punishment so that he and his equals will be prevented from these grotesque forbidden actions.

This intention can be recognized at times by the affirmation and acknowledgment of the one refuting and at times by hints that are given in his actions and statements. So whosoever is known for his knowledge, religious characteristics, respect and esteem for the Imaams of the Muslims, he will not state a refutation nor a clarification of an error except under the circumstance in which he sees other scholars doing it.

As for in regards to books and compilations of research, then it is obligatory to take ones words with respect to the first case mentioned. (17) And whoever takes his words to mean something other than that and his condition is similar to what has been mentioned (of good) then he is from those who think evil and suspicious thoughts about one who is innocent. And this is from the types of suspicion that Allaah and His Messenger (saw) have forbidden. So he falls into the saying of Allaah, the Most Perfect:

"And whoever earns a fault or a sin and then throws it onto someone innocent, he has indeed burdened himself with falsehood and a manifest sin."

This is because having suspicious thoughts about one who did not manifest any signs of evil is from that which Allaah and His Messenger have forbidden. Thus, this suspicion is combined between earning sin and transgression and between accusing the innocent one with it.

And his entrance into the severe threat found in this ayah becomes even more greater if there should become manifest in him I mean the one who holds suspicious thoughts signs of evil, such as much injustice, enmity, little piety, having a loose tongue, exceeding in backbiting and false accusations, being jealous of people for what Allaah has given them from His bounty (19) and blessing, and strictly guarding in competing to gain a position of
authority before his due time.

So if these attributes, of which the people of knowledge and faith are not pleased with, are recognized in someone, then indeed it (the advice) only carries a disease over to the scholars. And if his refutation of them is based according to the second case mentioned, (20) then at that point it is required that he be countered with contempt and degradation. And anyone that does not show any signs, in the total sense, that indicates a specific matter, then it is incumbent to take and accept his words according to the best manner (of understanding). And it is not permissible to take them in a bad way.

'Umar (ra) said: "Do not suspect evil thoughts due to a word that has come out of the mouth of your Muslim brother. Rather, you should find that it carries (only) good in it." (21)



How the advice is to be given

And from this discussion is: when it is said to a man in his face that which he hates to hear. So if this is done with the intention of advising him, then it is good. Some of the Salaf would say to their brothers: "Do not advise me until you tell me in my face that which I hate (to hear)."

So when an individual informs his brother about a defect (found in him) in order that he may avoid it, it is good for the one being informed about his defects to make an excuse for it, if an excuse for it exists. And if that advising is done with the intention of (only) blaming him due to a sin (he committed), then it is reprehensible and worthy of no praise.

It was said to some of the Salaf: "Would you love that someone inform you about your faults?" So they would say: "If he does it in order to blame me, then no"

Therefore, blaming and condemning are both detested. The Prophet (saw) forbade that the fornicating woman be condemned in spite of his command that she be lashed. (22) So she was whipped according to the limits (hudood) and she was not blamed for her sin, norwas she condemned for it.

It is reported in At-Tirmidhee (23) and other collections that: "Whosoever condemns his brother for a sin (he committed) will not die until he has committed it (i.e. the same sin) himself." This is in reference to the sin, of which the one who committed it, has repented from.

Al-Fudail (ra) said: "The believer conceals (the sin of his brother) and advises (him), while the evildoer disgraces and condemns (him)."

This is what Al-Fudail has mentioned is from the signs of advising and condemning. And it is that advising is linked to secrecy while condemning is linked to publicizing.

And it used to be said: "Whosoever commands his brother (towards doing good) at the head of a gathering, then he has condemned him." Or it is something with this meaning.

The Salaf used to hate commanding good and forbidding evil under these circumstances. Instead, they loved that it be done privately between the one commanding and the one being commanded. For indeed, this is from the signs of (true) advising. This is since it is not the objective of the one who is advising to spread and publicize the faults of the one being advised. Rather, his objective is only to put an end to the evil that he has fallen into.

As for spreading and exposing ones faults, then that is from what Allaah and His Messenger (saw) have forbidden. Allaah, may He be Exalted, says:

"Verily, those who like that the evil and indecent actions should be propagated amongst those who believe, they will have a painful torment in this world and in the Hereafter. And Allaah knows and you know not. And had it not been for the grace of Allaah and His mercy on you, (Allaah would have hastened the punishment on you) and that Allaah is full of kindness, Most Merciful."

And the ahaadeeth concerning the virtue of keeping the faults of others secret are many.(25)

Some of the scholars have said to one who commands towards good: "Strive hard to screen the faults of the
sinners. For indeed, exposing their faults shows a weakness in Islaam. The thing that deserves the most to be screened is ones faults."

It is for this reason that spreading someone's evil and indecent actions is linked to condemning. And they are both from the affairs of the evildoer. This is since it is not the objective of the evildoer to put an end to the fault nor that the believer avoids that fault ordefect. Rather his only objective is to simply spread and publicize the defects found in his believing brother and to destroy his honor. So he constantly repeats that again and again. And his goal is to find faults in his believing brother by exposing his defects and bad qualities to the people so that some harm can fall upon him in this world.

As for the one who is sincerely advising, then his objective in doing that (advising) is to eradicate the fault of his believing brother and to help him avoid it. This is what Allaah the Most High, has described His Messenger (saw) with, saying:

"Verily, there has come unto you a Messenger from amongst yourselves. It grieves him that you should receive any harm or difficulty. He is anxious over you (to rid you of faults and sin), for the believers he is full of pity, kind and merciful.
" (26)

He described his (saw) companions with that, saying:

"Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah. And those who are with him (i.e. his companions) are severe with the disbelievers and merciful towards one another."

And He has described the believers with the characteristics of patience and the advising of one another towards mercy and compassion. (28)

As for what drives the evildoer to propagate (his brother's) evil and to disgrace him, then it is force and harshness, his love for abusing his believing brother, and (his desire) to inflict some harm upon him. This is the description of the Devil the one who beautifies disbelief, sin and disobedience to the children of Aadam so that due to it they may become amongst the dwellers of the Hellfire. This is as Allaah says:

"Verily, the Devil is an enemy for you, so take him as an enemy.
Verily, he only calls his party (of followers) to be from amongst the dwellers of the Hellfire."

And He says after telling us his story when he was with the prophet of Allaah, Aadam, and the evil plot that he unleashed on him, such that it brought him to be cast out from Paradise:

" O Children of Aadam! Let not the Devil deceive you, as he got your parents out of Paradise, stripping them of their garments, to show them their private parts. Verily, He and his tribe (of soldiers) see you from where you cannot see them. Verily, we made the devils supporters for those who believe not."

So what a difference there is between he whose intention it is to advise (naseehah) and he whose intention it is to disgrace (fadeehah)! And no one confuses one of them with the other, except he who is not from those who possess sound intellect.


The Recompense

The recompense of one who spreads the evil deeds of his believing brother and seeks after his faults and exposes his defects, is that Allaah will seek after his faults and disgrace him (by exposing them) even if he may have committed them in the privacy of his own home. This is based on what has been reported on the Prophet (saw) in more than one place. Thus, Imaam Ahmad, Abu Dawood and At-Tirmidhee have transmitted it from numerous paths of narration. (31)

And At-Tirmidhee has transmitted from the hadeeth of Waa'ilah Ibn Al-Asqa' on the Prophet (saw) that he said: "Do not express joy at your brother's misfortune or else Allaah will pardon him for it and test you with it." (32)

He (At-Tirmidhee) said that it was a hasan ghareeb hadeeth.

And it has also been transmitted from the hadeeth of Muaadh (ra) in marfoo' form: "Whosoever condemns his brother because of a sin (he committed) will not die until he commits it (himself)" Its chain of narration is munqata (broken).

Al-Hasan said: "Whosoever condemns his brother because of a sin that he repented from will not die until Allaah tests him with it (i.e. the same sin)." (33)

And it has been reported from the hadeeth of Ibn Masood (ra) with a chain of narration that has weakness in it: "Affliction is charged by speech. So if a man condemns another man by saying that he breast-fed from a female dog, then that man (who said that) will indeed breast-feed from one." (34)

The meaning of this has been reported on a group amongst the Salaf.

And when Ibn Sireen failed to return a debt he owed and he was detained because of it, he said: "Indeed, I am aware of the sin (I committed) by which this befell me. I condemned a man forty years ago saying to him: "O
bankrupt one."


Concerning Condemning

From the apparent signs of condemning is: Exposing ones evil and propagating it under the pretense of advising, while claiming that it is only these defects that are making him do it. And it is regardless of whether the case is specific or general. Meanwhile, on the inside, his objective is only to condemn and revile.(35) Thus, he is from the brethren of the hypocrites, those whom Allaah has disparaged in His Book in many places. For indeed Allaah disparages he who makes manifest a good action or saying, while desiring by it to attain a mischievous and evil
objective, which he has intended inwardly. And He has counted that as one of the aspects of hypocrisy, as is stated in Surah Baraa, (36) in which He humiliates the hypocrites and disgraces them with despicable attributes:

"And as for those who set up a masjid in order to cause harm, (spread) disbelief, and to disunite the believers and to make it as an outpost for those who made war against Allaah and His Messenger since aforetime, they will indeed swear that their intention is nothing but good. Allaah bears witness that they are certainly liars."

And Allaah says:

"Think not that those who rejoice in what they have done, and love to be praised for what they have not done do not think that they are rescued from the torment. And for them is a painful punishment!"

This ayah was sent down concerning the Jews, when the Prophet (saw) asked them about something and they concealed knowledge of it informing him instead of something else. And they showed to him that they had indeed informed him about what he had asked them. And they sought praise from him r because of it and became overjoyed at what they were given because of their concealing of it and because of what they were asked of him.

This is what Ibn 'Abbaas (ra) stated and his hadeeth concerning that is transmitted in the two Saheeh collections.(39)

And Abu Sa'eed Al-Khudree t said: "There was a group of men among the hypocrites who when the Messenger of Allaah used to go out to fight in the (war expeditions, would oppose him (by staying behind). And they would be happy with their place opposite from that of the Messenger of Allaah (saw). So when the Messenger of Allaah (saw) would arrive, they would make excuses for themselves and swear to him. And they loved to be praised for that which they did not do. So this ayah was revealed."(40)

Therefore, these characteristics are the characteristics of the Jews and the hypocrites. And it is that someone manifests an action or a saying outwardly, while bearing an image in which he appears to be upon good. Yet his objective in that is to fulfill an evil goal. So he is praised for what good he has made manifest outwardly, while he has accomplished the evil goal he has kept hidden inwardly. And he basks in the praise he receives for that which he has exposed as being good, while there is something (evil) in his interior. And he enjoys the praise he receives for secretly accomplishing his evil goal. So his merit is perfected for him and his scheme is carried out effectively by this deception!!

Anyone that has this as his characteristic falls under the (threat) of this ayah, and there is no doubt about this. Thus, he is threatened with the painful torment. An example of this is: when an individual desires to defame a man, declare his faults and expose his defects in order that the people run away from him. This is done either because he loves to cause harm to him, because of his enmity towards him or because of his fear of him with regard to his rivalry with him in wealth, leadership and other than that from the blameworthy causes. So he does not find a way towards accomplishing that, except by manifesting his degrading of him due to a religious reason. Another example of this is: When someone (a scholar) has refuted a weak opinion from the many opinions of a well known and famous scholar. So this (evil) individual spreads that amongst those who esteem that scholar, saying: "This person (that did the refutation) hates this scholar, defames him and attacks him." So by this, he deceives all those that esteem him. And he makes them believe that it is hatred and insulting on the part of the one refuting, and that it is from the actions that contain audacity and arrogance in them. This is since he (the evil person) is defending this scholar and uplifting the abuse from him. And that is an act pleasing to Allaah and in obedience to Him. So he combines this outer facade of advising with two disgusting and forbidden things:

The First: That this scholar's refutation of the other opinion brings him to (emit) hatred, vile attacks and the following of desires. While (in reality) he is only desiring by it to advise the believers and to expose that which is not permissible to be kept concealed from knowledge.

The Second: That he (the evildoer) manifests his attacks against him so that he can fulfill his desires and achieve his evil goal under the pretense of advising and defending the scholars of the Religion.

What is similar to this type of evil plotting was the injustice displayed by the tribe of Marwaan and their followers, winning the peoples affection and at the same time, turning their hearts away from 'Alee Ibn Abee Taalib,
Al-Hasan, Al-Husain and their offspring, may Allaah be pleased with all of them.

When 'Uthmaan (ra) was killed, the Muslim nation did not see anyone possessing more right than 'Alee to succeed him, so they pledged allegiance to him. So those who sought to turn the people away from him set about their goal by manifesting the outrageous and scandalous murder of 'Uthmaan. And it was just as they said it was. But then they added to it that the one who conspired his murder and carried it out was none other than 'Alee (ra). And this was a lie and a slander against him!

And 'Alee (ra) would swear and make intense his swearing with regard to denying that accusation. And he was truthful and innocent in his oath, may Allaah be pleased with him. But they began to fight against him, claiming that it was for the Religion and that it waspleasing to Allaah. And then they began to fight with his children. And these individuals strove hard in exposing this (lie) and propagating it on the mimbars on the days of Jumu'ah as well as on other occasions in which there were large gatherings. This was to the point that it settled into the hearts of their followers that the matter was as these individuals said it was. And that the tribe of Marwaan had more right to the Khilaafah) than 'Alee and his children due to their closeness to 'Uthmaan. And that they had more right to avenge his (ra) death. So in doing this, they were able to unite the hearts of the people against 'Alee and his sons and to turn the people to fight against him t and his children after him. This asserted the reign for them and their control became established.

And some of them while in privacy would say to those who forced a saying out from them, something with the meaning: "No one from the Sahaabah was more restrained from (causing harm to) 'Uthmaan (ra) than 'Alee." So it would be said to him: "So why did the people revile him then?" So he would respond: "The reign would not be established if it weren't for that."

The meaning of this is that if it were not for these people's turning of their hearts away from 'Alee (ra) and his son and their attributing the injustice done to 'Uthmaan to them, the hearts of the people would not feel sympathy for them (later) once they learned of their beautiful attributes and their honorable qualities. So they then rushed to follow them and pledge allegiance to them. And by this the Umayyah dynasty came to an end. And the people ceased from obeying them.(41)



The Remedy

So if anyone is tested with this type of plotting,(42) then let him fear Allaah submissively, seek His aid and have patience. For verily, the final good end is for Taqwaa (i.e. those who fear and are obedient to Allaah).

This is as Allaah, the Most High, says after narrating the story of Yoosuf and what befell him from the different types of abuse he received from his brothers in their evil plotting and conspiracy (against him):

"Thus, did We establish Yoosuf in the land"

And Allaah says, reporting from him that he said to his brothers:

"I am Yoosuf and this is my brother (Benjamin). Allaah has indeed been gracious to us."

And He, the Most High, reported the story of Moosaa and what befell him and his people from the abuse they received at the hands of Pharaoh and his evil planning, and that he (Moosaa) said (to his followers):

"Seek help in Allaah and be patient.
Verily, the earth belongs to Allaah. He gives it to whom He wills of His slaves."

And Allaah informed us that the bad consequences of evil plotting fall back upon the one who plotted the evil (in the first place), as He says:

"But the evil plot encompasses only he who makes it."

And Allaah says:

"And thus We have set up in every town, great ones of its wicked people to plot therein.
But they plot not except against their own selves, yet they perceive not.

Furthermore, the actual facts bear witness to that, also. For indeed he who carefully examines and measures the information of people and the news of the world, will come upon the information of the one who is plotting evil for his brother, and so the evil plotting will backfire on that individual (at that point). And that will serve as a means for his salvation and deliverance, based upon the most immense of occurrences.

And if we were to mention some of the events that did occur with regard to that, this book would be severely prolonged and the talk would be lengthened. Thus, Allaah is the One who grants what is correct. And it is upon Him to explain the correct Way.

And He is sufficient for us and the best of Guardians. May the peace and blessings of Allaah be upon Muhammad, his family and his companions.




(1) See Al-Kifaayah (pg. 88) of Al-Khateeb, I'laan bit-Tawbeekh Liman dhamma At-Taareekh (pg. 461) of As-Sakhaawee, Sharh Saheeh Muslim (16/144) of An-Nawawee, Majmoo' Ar-Rasaa'il wal-Masaa'il (4/110) of Ibn Taimiyyah and Raf'a-ur-Raibah (pg. 24-27) of Ash-Shaukaanee. [Translator's Note: Al-Jarh wat-Ta'deel is the Islaamic science of determining whose reports and testimonies are to be accepted and whose are not. Those who fall under the category of Al-Jarh are the ones who are criticized and discredited, such as weak narrators, liars, etc. Those who fall under the category of At-Ta'deel are those whom the scholars have approved of and considered reliable in speech and trustworthy in narration.]

(2) [Translator's Note: This is not a spite against those who are constantly engulfed in worship. Rather it is a warning for those who may be deceived by the appearance of these individuals. For indeed it is common that many people when they see someone who exceeds in performing worship, they automatically assume that he is knowledgeable. But most of the times this is not the case. Rather the ones who possess the knowledge are the scholars and not the worshippers in our loca lmasjid, whose exceeding in worship has deprived him of the time to acquire knowledge.]

(3) So therefore, these matters are not from the fabrications of some "people" but rather they are nothing more than the actions of the scholars of old!

(4) See the story of Al-Haafidh Ad-Daaraqutnee who corrected the Haafidh, the Imaam Ibn Al-Anbaaree when he was young. And he (Ibn Al-Anbaaree) was an elder and respected Imaam. But yet he still accepted the correction from him. The story is found in Taareekh-ul-Baghdaad (3/183)

(5) Surat-un-Nisaa: 20

(6) Reported by Abu Ya'laa in his Musnad-ul-Kabeer from the path of Mujaalid Ibn Sa'eed and he is very weak. Al-Baihaqee also reported it and its chain or narration is broken. 'Abd-ur-Razzaaq reported it and in its chain is Abul-'Ujfaa As-Sulameeand he is weak also. See Al-Maqaasid-ul-Hasanah (pg. 320).

(7) It is found in the previous story itself.

(8) See I'laam-ul-Muwaqqi'een (2/363) and Iqaadh Himam Uleel-Absaar (pg. 100)

(9) See his book Ar-Risaalah (no. 598-599) and Al-Maqaasid-ul-Hasanah (pg. 15).

(10) Surat-un-Nisaa: 82

(11) This is not in the unrestricted sense. See the great scholar Ibn Al-Qayyim's refutation of those who say, "There is no rejection to be done in the issues in which there is difference of opinion" included in I'laam-ul-Muwaqqi'een (3/288), for it is very important.

12) More than one of the companions have reported it, among them Tameem Ad-Daaree. It is transmitted by Muslim (55), Abu Dawood (4944), An-Nasaa'ee (7/156), Ahmad (4/102), Abu 'Uwaanah (1/36-37), Al-Humaidee (837), Al-Baghawee (3514), At-Tabaraanee in Al-Kabeer (1260-1262), Ibn Hibbaan in Raudat-ul-'Uqalaa (194), Ibn An-Najaar in Dhail Taareekh Baghdaad (2/193 & 301) Ash-Shihaab Al-Qadaa'ee in his Musnad (17-18), Wakee' in Az-Zuhd (346 & 621), Abu 'Ubaid in Al-Amwaal (9) and Al-Bukhaaree in At-Tareekh-us-Sagheer (2/35)

(13) With this wording, the hadeeth has been reported by Ahmad (1/447), Al-Baghawee (2388) and Al-Haithamee in Al-Majma' (5/3) and he said that its narrators were of the standard of the Saheeh. The source of this story occurs in Saheeh Al-Bukhaaree (9/415) and in Saheeh Muslim (1484).

(14)These are well known Fiqh issues.

(15) Reported by Abu Ya'laa in his Musnad (1675) and Abu Nu'aim in Ad-Dalaa'il (356) on the authority of Al-Baraa' t. Al-Haithamee (ra) said in Al-Majma' (8/93): "Abu Lailaa reported it and its narrators are all reliable. It has also been reported from the hadeeth of Abu Barzah with a strong chain of narration in Ahmad (4/421 & 424) and Abu Dawood (4880)." And in this section occurs the hadeeth of Ibn 'Umar with a hasan chain of narration in At-Tirmidhee (2033), Al-Baghawee (3526) and Ibn Hibbaan (1494 of the Mawaarid). See also At-Targheeb wat-Tarheeb (3/177) of Al-Mundhiree.

(16) [Translator's Note: This is an important principle that the Shaikh mentions before continuing further in his book, since he does not want his readers to think that this discussion concerns innovators. Rather, as he states, their affair is to be publicized so that they may be abandoned and rejected. So the discussion here does not apply to them in the least nor can it be used in defense of one of them.]

(17) Meaning: That he desires to guide and bring about good

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Addition Date:Added on Oct,08,03 :: Last modified Apr,28,04
Title:The Difference Between Advising and Condemning  
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