A Brief Overview of the Asha’aree Sect
Compiled & Translated
Abbas Abu Yahya
1 – Shaykh AbdulMuhsin bin Hamd al-Abbaad al-Badr said:
‘All praise belongs to Allaah the Lord of all the Worlds, and the praise, peace and blessings of Allaah be upon His Messenger and upon his Family and his Companions.
In response to the question about the Asha’irah: Are they from the Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal-Jammah or not?
I say: ‘The Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal-Jammah are the Noble Companions –Radi Allaahu anhum, and those who followed their path, just as the Prophet -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- said in explaining the ‘Firqat an-Najeeyah’ (the Saved Sect): ‘They are those who are upon what I am upon and my Companions.’
Their belief in the Names of Allaah – the All-Mighty and the Magnificent – and His Characteristics (Sifaat) is that they affirm for Allaah –Azza wa Jal- what is affirmed in the Book and the Sunnah from the Names and Characteristics in the way which they befit Allaah -Subhanahu Ta’ala- without explaining how they are, or resembling them with anything else, or with Tamtheel (to liken Allaah or His Characteristics to that of the creation), or Tahreef (alteration and distortion of wording or meaning), or Ta’weel (metaphorical interpretation) of them or cancelling them. Just as Allaah -Azza wa Jal- said:
<< لَيۡسَ كَمِثۡلِهِۦ شَيۡءٞۖ وَهُوَ ٱلسَّمِيعُ ٱلۡبَصِيرُ >>
<< there is nothing like unto Him and He is the All-Hearing the All-Seeing>> [Shura : 11]
In this Ayaah there is the affirmation that Allaah Ta’ala has the two Sifaat (Characteristics) of Hearing and Seeing, which is in His statement: << and He is the All-Hearer, the All-Seer.>>, and not likening Allaah to resembling anyone with Him as is in His statement: <<There is nothing like unto Him>>
The Asha’irah are those who ascribe to the Madhab (School of Thought) of Abul-Hasan al-Asha’ari -Rahimullaah- who was born in the year 270 A.H. and died in the year 330 A.H. That Madhab on which he was before he came back to the Madhab of Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal Jammah. That Madhab which was on Ta’weel (metaphorical interpretation) of most of the Sifaat (Characteristics of Allaah), which is opposite to the Madhab of Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal Jammah.
Therefore, the Asha’irah are from the deviated Islaamic sects, they are deviated from what Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal Jammah are upon. It is not perceivable to the intellect that the truth was hidden from the Companions, and the Successors but then after that the truth had occurred in following a belief which was born after their time.
Al-Hafidh Ibn Hajr in his book ‘Fath al-Bari’ (13/407) quoted many statements from the Salaf about the authentic Aqeedah which is established upon the Book and the Sunnah and the understanding of the Salaf of the Ummah, he summed it up by saying:
‘Many quotes have preceded from the people of the third period of time and they are the Fuqaha (scholars) of the different lands, like Thawri, al-Awzaiee, Malik, al-Layth and those who lived at their time, and likewise those who took from them, from the other Imams. So how can a person not trust what the people of the first three generations agreed upon, and they are the best generations, with the testification of the owner of the Sharia?’
Ibn Hajr also quotes from al-Hasan al-Basari that he said:
‘If what al-Ja’ad is saying is true, then the Prophet -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- would have conveyed it.’
Al-Ja’ad is Ibn Dirham the founder of the Madhab al-Jahmeeyah.
I will say the like of what al-Hasan al-Basari -Rahimullaah- said:
‘If what the al-Asha’irah and other than them from the philosophers say is true, then the Messenger -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- would have conveyed it.’
[Taken from: ‘Takeed al-Musalamaat as-Salafeeyah’ p. 5]
2- Shaykh Ahmad Yahya an-Najami said:
‘The truth of which there is no contention about, is that the Asha’irah and Matroodeeyah are from the groups of the Ahl-ul-Bida’. It is not allowed for anyone to say that they are from the Ahl-ul-Sunnah and whoever claims that these two groups are from the Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal Jammah then he has squeezed himself between a grave and serious mistake, and a humiliating danger, and he will be questioned on the Day of Judgement about his statement before he is freed to go on his path.
Shaykh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymeeyah said in Majmoo’ al-Fatawa in (3/347) after speaking about this issue:
‘With that it becomes clear that the people with the most right to be the Firqat Najeeyah (the saved sect) are the Ahl-ul-Hadeeth and Sunnah those who do not have someone they biasedly follow except the Messenger of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- and they are the most knowledgeable of the people regarding his statements, his situations, and they are the greatest in distinguishing between the authentic and weak of those statements and situations. Their Imams are scholars regarding those statements and situations and they are the people of knowledge of its meanings, and they follow them, with truth, action, love, with loyalty to the one who is loyal to it and have enmity to the one who has hatred to it. . . . [until he said]… and whatever the people differed over in regards to the issues of Sifaat (Characteristics of Allaah), al-Qadr (pre-destiny), al-Waeed (threat of punishment), Names of Allaah, enjoining the good, forbidding evil and other issues, then here they would return those issues to Allaah and His Messenger. They would refer to the Tafseer (explanation) of those general wordings of which the people of sects and differences differed over and whatever was in agreement with the Book and the Sunnah they would affirm that, and whatever was in opposition to the Book and the Sunnah they would regard that as false. They would not follow speculation or what their souls inclined and desired, because following speculation is ignorance, and following one’s desires without guidance from Allaah is oppression, and together that is evil: ignorance and oppression.’
- How can those who apply the intellect in issues of al-Eemaan, which are well-established in the Book and the Sunnah be from the Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal Jammah, when they accept what they want from the Book and the Sunnah and reject what they want?!
This is why the Asha’irah and Matroodeeyah only affirm seven Sifaat of Allaah from His Sifaat, and they metaphorically interpret all the other Sifaat of Allaah, which in turn leads to cancelling out the Sifaat of Allaah.
How can that person be from the Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal Jammah when he metaphorically interprets the saying of Allaah Ta’ala: <<ar-Rahman ascended the Throne>> by saying [Isteewa means] Allaah conquered His Throne, so it is as if this person is saying that someone else had taken Allaah’s Throne and then after that Allaah had to conquer it?!
- How can that person be from the Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal Jammah when he metaphorically interprets the hadeeth that Allaah descends the last third of the night which is established in the Prophet -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- saying:
‘Allaah –Azza wa Jal- descends every night to the heavens of the Dunyaa, at the second half of the night, or at the third of the night and says: who is making Dua’ to Me so that I can respond to him; who is asking of Me so that I can give him it; who is seeking forgiveness from Me so that I can forgive him until Fajr comes in.’
[Collected by Ahmad, and it is originally in Bukhari and Muslim]
So the person who metaphorically interprets this, says it means: ‘Allaah’s command descends,’ [and not Allaah Himself] even though Allaah’s –Azza wa Jal- command descends at every time and moment.
- How can that person be from Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal Jammah who metaphorically interprets Allaah’s Two Hands to mean Allaah’s blessings, even though Allaah –Subhana wa Ta’ala- connected/linked/explained that thing which is specific for the hand, which is spending, Allaah –the Most Magnificent- said:
وَقَالَتِ ٱلۡيَهُودُ يَدُ ٱللَّهِ مَغۡلُولَةٌۚ غُلَّتۡ أَيۡدِيهِمۡ وَلُعِنُواْ بِمَا قَالُواْۘ بَلۡ يَدَاهُ مَبۡسُوطَتَانِ يُنفِقُ كَيۡفَ يَشَآءُۚ
<< The Jews say: ‘Allaah’s Hand is tied up (i.e. He does not give and spend of His Bounty).’ Be their hands tied up and be they accursed for what they uttered. Nay, both His Hands are widely outstretched. He spends (of His Bounty) as He wills. >> knowing that the blessings which the Noble (Jaleel) Lord confers upon His worshippers are so many they cannot be enumerated?!
Allaah the Magnificent said:
<< وَإِن تَعُدُّواْ نِعۡمَةَ ٱللَّهِ لَا تُحۡصُوهَآۗ >>
<< And if you would count the graces of Allaah, never could you be able to count them. >>
- How can that person be from Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal Jammah when he metaphorically interprets the Hadeeth: ‘Allaah does not look at the one who drags his garment below his ankles out of pride.’
[Agreed upon by Bukhari and Muslim] and other Hadeeth with this meaning; he metaphorically interprets ‘Allaah looking’ in this Hadeeth that the meaning of ‘looking’ is metaphorical for mercy, meaning that Allaah will not have mercy upon them?!
There are other deviated metaphorically interpretations, which transfer the texts present from Allaah –Azza wa Jal – in His Book or upon the tongue of His Messenger, which comprise of lofty meanings, which are befitting Allaah –Azza wa Jal- and they metaphorically interpret them with a false interpretation.
If we think about it, what has obligated them to metaphorically interpret the Sifaat like this, then we find that they claim that the condition and state of the intellect is that this is how Allaah should be characterized with those [distorted] characteristics; because they made and took the foundations of the people of Kalam (rationalistic theology & philosophy) as the foundation, and they used this foundation above that of the texts of the Sharia’, which came in the Book of Allaah, and in the Sunnah of the Messenger -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- which affirm for Allaah –Azza wa Jal- Names and Characteristics which befit His Majesty.
So the Asha’irah and Matroodeeyah made those foundations rationalistic theology (Kalam), which was taken from the philosophers, and the people of logic (Mantiq) those who were drowned in knowledge of rationalistic theology, and they spent their time in it, and wasted their lives in it, and their end result was confusion.’
[Taken from: ‘Takeed al-Musalamaat as-Salafeeyah’ p. 7]