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Newsletter for December 2011


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Ibn Abbas's admonition to the Khawarij

The story of Ibn Abbas’s (ra) debate against them is in the Mustadrik of al-Hakim (2/150-152) in an authentic chain and upon the conditions of acceptance of Imam Muslim.

In it is the statement of Ibn Abbas: “I come to you from the Companions of the Prophet (s) from amongst the Muhajirin and Ansar to inform you of what they say. They were present when the Qur’an was revealed, and they are more knowledgeable about the revelation than you are and were present at its descending, and not a single one of you is from them.

So some of them said: Do not dispute with a person from the Quraish because Allah says: "But they are a quarrelsome people"

Ibn Abbas (ra) said:

“I never saw a people striving harder in doing deeds. Their faces were marked with lines from abstaining from sleep. It was as if their hands and knees praised them.

So those who were present proceeded, and some of them said, “By Allah we will speak to him and debate what he says”
I asked: “Why do you have resentment against the cousin of the Messenger of Allah (S) his in-laws, the Muhajirin and Ansar? They said:” (because of) Three things”

I asked: “What are they?”

They said: “As for the first one it is that he made men arbitrators in the matters of Allah. And Allah said: Verily! The decision rests only with Allah [Yusuf: 67]

I said: "This is one”

And they said: “As for the other, it is that he fought and did not take captives or booty of war. If the ones being fought are disbelievers, then indeed it is permissible to take them captive and take the booty of war, and if they were believers it would not be permissible to fight them.

I said: “That’s two, so what is the third one?”

They said: “He wiped out the title of ‘Amir al-Mu’minin’ for himself, so he is the Amir of the disbelievers.”

I said: "Do you have anything others than these?

They said: “This suffices us”

So I said to them: “If I read of the Qur’an and Sunnah that which refutes these claims, will you be pleased?

They said: “Yes”

So I said: As for your statement: ‘A man has arbitrated in the matter of Allah’, I will read to you what has given the power of arbitration to men concerning a killed rabbit and the likes of that which is hunted which price is worth a quarter of a dirham. Allah says:

O you who believe! Kill not game while you are in a state of Ihram (for Hajj or 'Umrah), and whosoever of you kills it intentionally, the penalty is an offering, brought to the Ka'bah, of an eatable animal (i.e. sheep, goat, cow, etc.) equivalent to the one he killed, as adjudged by two just men among you; [Maidah: 95]

I ask you by Allah, is the arbitration of men concerning a rabbit and its like of hunted animals better than their arbitration regarding bloodshed and reconciliation between themselves? And you are aware that if Allah wished he would have decided the matters himself and not left it to men.

And concerning a woman and her husband Allah says:

"If you fear separation between them, appoint an arbitrator from his family and from her family; if they both wish for peace, Allah will cause their reconciliation" [Nisa:35]

So Allah has made the judgement of men a reliable Sunnah. Have I convinced you on this?”

They replied: : “Yes” (I said to them):

Regarding your saying ‘You fought them, but did not seize their booty nor capture them,’ Can you capture your Mother 'Aisha then make permissible concerning her what is permissibility concerning other female slaves.
If you say that she can be captured and treated like any of the other female slaves, you have surely committed disbelief, because she is your mother. If you say that ‘she is not our mother’ than you have also committed disbelief, for Allah says:

The Prophet is closer to the believers than their ownselves, and his wives are their (believers') mothers (as regards respect and marriage). [Ahzab: 6]

You are thus hovering between two deviations. Whichever one you go towards, you go towards misguidance.”
So some of them began to look at each other. I asked: “Have I convinced you?”

They replied: “Yes”

(I said to them): And as for your statement that he wiped out the title of ‘Amir al- Mu’minin’ for himself, I will show and bring you proof by one whom you are pleased with. I heard on the Day of Hudaybiyyah, when the treaty was being drafted by Suhail bin Amr and Abu Sufyan bin Harb, the Messenger of Allah (S) say to the Amir ul Mu’minin: "Write O’ 'Ali: ‘This is what has been agreed upon by Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah’."

The Mushrikin objected to this saying: "No, By Allah, if we believed that you were the Messenger of Allah, we would not have fought you." Upon this, the Messenger of Allah (S) said: O’ Allah you know that I am the Messenger of Allah. Write O’ Ali ‘This is what has been agreed upon by Muhammad bin Abdullah. ’For I swear by Allah that the Messenger of Allah (S) is better than Ali, and erasing his title did not remove his Prophethood.

Ibn Abbas (ra) said: So (after this), two-thousand of them (the Khawarij) returned to the truth and the rest of them were killed upon falsehood.

courtesy: Ali Abbas Qureshi









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