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abdrahman11
08-15-2008, 07:18 AM
As-Salamu Alaikum,
I once heard a lecture by Shaykh Waleed where he said that anyone who does not believe that Allah (swt) is above the seven heavens that person is a kafir.

At the same time in Shaykh Yasir's class I remember him saying that such people are not kufar but rather they are only people of bida, Shaykh Yasir pressed the fact that they were still our brothers and we should try to work with them where we can.

So which of these two positions is correct? Are they kufar or people of bidah? This is a big diffeence because the latter are still our brothers but the former are not.

If you want to listen to the lecture where Shaykh Waleed said this you can find it here...

http://www.halaltube.com/prophet-muhammad-pbuh-described

Jazak Allah khair for any help.

AkheeAB
08-15-2008, 09:10 AM
The people of Sunnah and Jamaa’ah (Ahl al-Sunnah) believe that Allaah is exalted above His creation because of the evidence of the Qur’aan, Sunnah, consensus of the scholars, common sense and man’s innate instinct (fitrah).

(1) The Qur’aan describes the "exaltedness" or "highness" of Allaah in different ways, as His being High and Above, and by describing how things come down from Him, and go up to Him, and by stating that He is above heaven. For example (interpretations of the meaning):

(Highness):
". . .and He is the Most High, the Most Great." [al-Baqarah 2:255]

"Glorify the Name of your Lord, the Most High." [al-A’la 87:1]

(Above):
"And He is the Irresistible, above His slaves . . ." [al-An’aam 6:18]

"They fear their Lord above them, and they do what they are commanded." [al-Nahl 16:50]

(Things coming down from Him):

"He arranges (every) affair from the heavens to the earth . . ." [al-Sajdah 32:5]

"Verily We: it is We Who have sent down the Dhikr (i.e., the Qur’aan). . ." [al-Hijr 15:9]

(Things going up to Him):

". . . To Him ascend (all) the goodly words, and the righteous deeds exalt it . . ." [Faatir 35:10]

"The angels and the Rooh (Jibreel) ascend to Him . . ." [al-Ma’aarij 70:4]

(Allaah is above heaven):

"Do you feel secure that He, Who is over the heaven, will not cause the earth to sink with you . . .?" [al-Mulk 67:16]

(2) The Sunnah: many reports were narrated "mutawaatir" (i.e. with a large number of narrators at every stage of the isnaad, such that it is impossible for them all to have agreed on a lie) from the Prophet (Peace & Blessings of Allaah be upon Him), describing his words and deeds and things of which he approved. For example, he used to say "Subhaana Rabbi al-A’laa (Glory be to my Lord Most High)" in sujood, and in some ahaadeeth he is reported to have said "By Allaah Who is above the Throne."

Among his deeds is the gesture of pointing up with his finger, when addressing the people in the greatest gathering, on the Day of ‘Arafaah during his Farewell Pilgrimage. He asked the people, "Have I not conveyed the message?" and they said, "Yes!" He asked again, "Have I not conveyed the message?" and they said, "yes!". He asked a third time, have I not conveyed the message?" and they said "Yes!" Each time, he said: "O Allaah, bear witness!" - pointing up to the sky and then at the people. He also used to raise his hands towards heaven when he made du’aa’, as it reported in tens of ahaadeeth. This is proof via his actions that Allaah is exalted and high.

An example of an approval of the Prophet (Peace & Blessings of Allaah be upon Him) which indicates that Allaah is exalted and high is the hadeeth concerning the young slave girl, to whom the Prophet (Peace & Blessings of Allaah be upon Him) said: "Where is Allaah?" She said: "In heaven" He asked, "Who am I?" She said, "The Messenger of Allaah." So he said to her master: "Set her free, for she is a believer."

This young girl was uneducated, as many are, and she was a slave, but she knew that her Lord is above heaven. Some misguided people deny that Allaah is above heaven, and say, "He is neither above nor below; neither to the right nor to the left. He is everywhere!"

(3) The consensus of the scholars: the salaf agreed that Allaah is above heaven, as is reported by scholars such as al-Dhahabi, may Allaah have mercy on him, in his book Al-‘Aluw li’l-‘Aliy al-Ghaffaar.

(4) Common sense: highness is a quality which is associated in people’s minds with perfection. If this is the case, then it should be attributed to Allaah because every absolute perfection should be attributed to Him.

(5) The innate instinct of man (fitrah). There should be no dispute that man instinctively knows that Allaah is above heaven. Whenever something overwhelming befalls a person, and he turns to Allaah for help, he looks towards heaven, not in any other direction. But it is strange that those who deny that Allaah is above His creation still raise their hands in supplication to no other direction than towards heaven.

Even Pharaoh, the enemy of Allaah who disputed with Moosaa about his Lord, told his minister Haamaan (interpretation of the meaning): "O Haamaan! Build me a tower that I may arrive at the ways, - the ways of the heavens, and I may look upon the god of Moosaa . . ." [Ghaafir 40:36-37]

He knew in his heart of hearts that Allaah is real, as He says (interpretation of the meaning): "And they belied them (those aayaat) wrongfully and arrogantly, though their own selves were convinced thereof . . ." [al-Naml 27:14]

These are a few of the indications that Allaah is above the heavens; this proof comes from the Qur’aan, the Sunnah, the consensus of the scholars, common sense, man’s own instincts and even the words of the kuffaar.

We ask Allaah to guide us towards the Truth.

Atif
08-15-2008, 10:51 AM
Sh. Yasir did say on the "2 Shahadas" CD set (available at ilmquest) that to say Allah is everywhere is not just a bid'ah but kufr (and he presented a few proofs). He added that someone who says this has been spoon-fed this idea.

As we learned in LOG, if someone says statements of kufr, but they don't know any better, it doesn't necessarily make them a kafir.

This is how I reconcile Sh. Waleed's and Sh. Yasir's statements. Sh. Waleed means that a person who has the proof established against them is a kafir.
Sh. Yasir says that the muslims who deny that Allah is above the Heavens are most probably doing taqleed to their scholars, and have a cursory understanding of their group's aqeedah.
So we assume they don't know any better, and work with them on projects, especially those projects that have nothing to do with Allah's Names and Attributes (MSA, outreach, etc.). However, they are still ahl-al-bid'ah, right? Correct me if I'm wrong.

professor_z
08-15-2008, 04:30 PM
- abdrahman11: Which lecture has Shaykh Waleed saying that?
- Which of the parts(1-6)?

abdrahman11
08-15-2008, 08:41 PM
No one here has yet answered my question. My question is that if someone does not believe that Allah (swt) is above the seven heavens then is that person a kafir or not?

This is an issue in which someone does not simply blindly follow scholars. If someone is convinced that Allah (swt) cannot be restricted by space and time and they are convinced of this fact, then what is the ruling on this person?

Also note to my knowledge they never said that Allah (swt) was "everwhere", I believe they say that we do not know where Allah (swt) IS but He (swt) is not above the heavens because such would be restricted Him (swt) by time and space. Allah (swt) Knows best.

Like I said, I am just looking for a yes or no answer on what is the ruling of these people.

As for the lecture series, I am not certain which one Shaykh Waleed said it in. Overall it is a good lecture about the Prophet (saw) and I think it is worth your time to listen to all of it.

Jazak Allah khair.

tawheed79
08-16-2008, 01:24 AM
Assalamu alaykum, I think Sh. Baysouni and Sh. Y. Birjas are drawing the same conclusion, at the end. Of course it will be best if they themselves clarify the point, and if Sh. Qadhi can also comment, it will be a super bonus...

In fact, Sh. Qadhi started a series on muslimmatters(dot)org, entitled
"Salvific Exclusivity intro" and part 1, but it is not finished...
muslimmatters(dot)org/2008/01/22/new-series-on-salvific-exclusivity/
(may not be totally what your looking for, but I think it helps us all, keep things in perspective)

some references that are a good start:
1) "On the Boundaries of Theological Tolerance in Islam"
by Abu Hamid al Ghazali, translated by Sherman Jackson (aka, Abdul Hakim Jackson)
(this book is highly relevant)
2) A good site that you may ask questions is the following:
amjaonline(dot)com
Sh. Baysouni is part of this fatwa site...

3)1) "Abraham's Children: Jews, Christians, and Muslims in Converstaion"
the Muslim part is edited by Tim Winter (aka, Abdal Hakim Murad)
His section on "Pluralism from a Muslim perspective" is worth reading. (again, may not be exactly what your looking for, b/c it discusses people clearly out of Islam, but it is discussing idea of disbelief)

insha'allah, I hope this helps somewhat...

May Allah (Swt) helps us attain the knowledge that will benefit.
Salam

professor_z
08-17-2008, 09:39 PM
If you listen closely to Shaykh Waleed's lecture you'll notice what his exact statement was.

- He mentioned that Ibn Khuzaymah said that, All the muslim scholars agreed upon that whoever said Allah is not above his throne(above the heavens) he is a kaafir (he is not a muslim).

AbdArRahman
08-18-2008, 10:02 AM
No one here has yet answered my question. My question is that if someone does not believe that Allah (swt) is above the seven heavens then is that person a kafir or not?

This is an issue in which someone does not simply blindly follow scholars. If someone is convinced that Allah (swt) cannot be restricted by space and time and they are convinced of this fact, then what is the ruling on this person?

Also note to my knowledge they never said that Allah (swt) was "everwhere", I believe they say that we do not know where Allah (swt) IS but He (swt) is not above the heavens because such would be restricted Him (swt) by time and space. Allah (swt) Knows best.

Like I said, I am just looking for a yes or no answer on what is the ruling of these people.

As for the lecture series, I am not certain which one Shaykh Waleed said it in. Overall it is a good lecture about the Prophet (saw) and I think it is worth your time to listen to all of it.

Jazak Allah khair.

You would agree that one who disbelieves in the Quran is a kaafir, right? Well aren't the verses quoted by AkheeAB explicit enough to show that by clearly saying something contradictory to the Quran they are disbelieving?

mytemuslim
08-18-2008, 07:11 PM
As salaamu alaikum,
As far as I understand I think the confusion might be in the application of the ruling. Even if someone was to believe that Allah was NOT over the seven heavens (authobillah) then although this is kufr, the impediments must be removed(below). Not every act of disbelief takes you out of the fold of Islam. I quote (from the book ahlus sunnah wal jammah, one of the shuyook can inshaAllah give more clarification or adjust or add).
"Broadly speaking the prevention of takfeer encompass four aspects; 1. Jahl, Ignorance, 2. Error and Mistakes 3. Duress and 4. Ta'weel, Interpretation.

Waleed Basyouni
08-19-2008, 01:43 PM
No one here has yet answered my question. My question is that if someone does not believe that Allah (swt) is above the seven heavens then is that person a kafir or not?


Denying that Allaah is above His Throne, which is above the seven heavens, is generally a statement of Kufr. However, not everyone who says or believes this is a Kaafir. We must understand the difference between an act of Kufr and applying the title of Kaafir to an individual (Takfeer). Not everyone who believes, says, or does an act of Kufr becomes a Kaafir. There are conditions that must be met, and hinderences that must be removed before the label of 'Kaafir' could be applied to someone.

For instance, those who deny that Allaah is above His Throne under the false understanding that this entails that Allaah is contained by the Throne, or confined by space have denied what is clearly stated in the Qur'aan in their attempt to free Allaah from any negative description. In this example, if this interpretation is based on ignorance, or blind following of certain groups or individuals, etc. it would be an act of Fisq and innovation. But, if it is out of Ijtihaad and sincerity, it will be called a mistake. We hope that Allaah will forgive such a person, and even might reward him for His attempt. However, if the truth were to be explained to a person and he insists in denying after realizing that his interpretation is false, then he would be a Kaafir. But we must note that Takfeer is ONLY in the hands of the judges and muftis. They will be the ones that will establish the evidence in clearing any doubts and giving a person chances, etc. Thus, you will find a VERY small number of individuals in Islamic history that were ruled as Kuffaar despite the large number of statements, actions and beliefs that are mentioned to be statements/actions/beliefs of Kufr.

We will be studying this in Aqeedah 202 in detail, inshaa'Allaah.

mytemuslim
08-19-2008, 04:15 PM
Shaykh Waleed,
JazakaAllah khayr katheeran for clarifying the situation and explaining the limits of this issue.

Abdur Rahman Mirza
03-18-2009, 07:39 AM
Mytemuslim,

thank you for that good addition. Shaikh Waleed, thank you even more.

It is of good etiquettes when discussing an opinion with our shuyookh to say "we said" when speaking of their opinions and not "you said." And not to mention the names of the other shuyookh who disagree with them. We learned this etiquette from our shuyookh at almaghrib.

And if you quote other people and say "shaikh, you said," you are putting yourself beyond a student of knowledge to a shaikh level.


Allah knows best.