Response to the Readers’ Replies

Those in authority include the scholars of Islam. If anyone says “I don’t need these scholars,” it means that person is disobeying Allah’s order. The Prophet (s) said, “‘ulama ummatti ka anbiya’i Bani Isra’il” which means “the scholars of my Nation are like the prophets of the Bani Isra’il.” And the Propet (s) said in another hadith “al-‘ulama warithat ul-anbiya,” (Ibn Majah and Tirmidhi) which means “the scholars are the inheritors of the prophets.” Therefore it is difficult to see a way in Islam which allows one to discard scholars and scholarship.

I don’t think Shaykh Adly, having himself mentioned in his resume that he studied with many great shaykhs at al-Azhar and in Mecca, would care for an opinion which was against shaykhs or would like to ignore what shaykhs and Imams said. Because never did scholars try to bring their own judgment or opinion, without founding it in the essentials of Islam, its sources of which are The Qur’an and the Sunnah. This is an essential under- standing of Islamic scholarship which seems to be ignored by too many of today’s youth.

When this opinion comes from a student, we can attribute it to the flush of youth. However, when such an opinion comes from a shaykh, then it is surprising. We then begin to question, where did that shaykh get his knowledge? Didn’t he get it from reading Qur’an and hadith and the opinions of the great scholars? Let us say he just read Qur’an and hadith –presupposing that he is such a great scholar that he is qualified to make his own ijtihad (I don’t want to enumerate here the requirements to make that grade, but it is not easy). Even then he is depending on the scholarship of the early scholars who brought those hadith to them and classified them into appropriate grades. So no one can stand by himself in Islam and say “I am going to only follow Qur’an and Hadith, I have nothing to do with scholars.” Hadiths would not exist without the very great scholars whose efforts brought them to us and classified them by grades. This makes everyone a follower (muqallid)of those hadith scholars!!!

We believe in the Ahl as-Sunnah wal-Jama’at credo. And it is well-known that all Ahl as-Sunnah wal-Jama’at scholars accepted, approved of and practiced Tasawwuf. We quoted Ibn Taymiyya to counter the attack of Abu Mohammed. Because Abu Mohammed asked and accused us on the subjects of fana’ and ittihad, and accused us of bida’, and pushed us to speak on that subject. We didn’t want to answer from our own definitions, but to keep it cool and as moderate as possible and to avoid offending anyone we only presented what Ibn Taymiyya said, showing what a scholar acceptable to many of the readers had mentioned on that subject.

Now you want to “check” Shaykh Hisham on this subject. We are not saying Shaykh Adly is not an important person, yet you praise him very much with high credentials, at the same time denigrating Shaykh Hisham by calling Adly “shaykh” and calling Shaykh Hisham ‘brother Kabbani.’ You don’t even have the courtesy to say ‘Shaykh Kabbani.’ How do you expect us to feel at ease when you are arranging your answers in a way to attack, not to debate us in a scholarly way? This shows the hatred that is behind what you are planning. Shaykh Hisham will answer when he feels like it, that is freedom of opinion and action, something I believe Islam guarantees within the Shari’ah.

This is the 20th Century in the United States. You and we have freedom, which Allah granted us, while we are here. We are not in Middle eastern countries, where everyone is forced to keep to one line by being threatened. We are in a Western country where there are human rights, as there should be in every Muslim country. Here everyone respects one another and gives the other the opportunity to voice his opinion. This is a country where Muslims are enjoying human rights, and are also enjoying the freedom to express what they like about their own countries as well as the West, and no one is preventing them. Why are you discriminating by trying to enforce your opinion and not to accept our opinion? Even the freedom to exchange information and opinions on the Internet is a privilege almost unavailable in the Middle East.

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