Sunday, March 15, 2009

Allama Niyaz Fatehpuri and his Faith - 26


Books and Documents 03 Mar 2009, NewAgeIslam.Com

The War Within Islam: Niyaz Fatehpuri’s Struggle Against The Fundamentalists by JUHI SHAHIN

Excerpts from a newly published book in Pakistan: The War Within Islam: Niyaz Fatehpuri’s Struggle Against The Fundamentalists


Late. Allama Niyaz Fatehpuri [1884-1966]

And religion because I was educated in a religious atmosphere and I got the opportunity to study the religious ulama. However, the whole colonial discourse of Islam being backward and medieval, was familiar to him and he kept trying to dispel this notion by saying that what the Ulama were saying and doing was not the only way to look at Islam. Fatehpuri was very clear about who was responsible for a state of affairs in which asking questions is tantamount to unbelief; it was the Ulama. Regarding the reluctance of the Ulama in particular, he stated: “There are many ways of avoiding Zakat in the books of fiqh, and many of our Ulama-i-Karam use them.”He ridiculed the artificial division that had been created between them by the Ulama, if one is religious, it should automatically mean that one is a good person, lives in harmony with others, and helps those in need. Arrogance is the antithesis of having Akhlaq – an attitude he observed in the Ulama, since they believed they knew best about the religion and its practices, and aggressively condemned any re-thinking. The Ulama-i-Karam who consider Muslims with bad Akhlaq to be Naji (free of sin). Most people would just find it easier to follow the ready-made solutions offered by the Ulama, rather than think for themselves. [New Age Islam]

Part - 2

Religious Scholars - Ulama-i-Karam - Mullah - Mufti - Qazi - Muttawwa - Ayatullah - Mujtahids:

For your kind perusal. The signs of those who are not genuine Scholars are as:

O ye who believe! Lo! many of the rabbis and the monks devour the wealth of mankind wantonly and debar (men) from the way of Allah. They who hoard up gold and silver and spend it not in the way of Allah, unto them give tidings (O Muhammad) of a painful doom,[Repentence - IX (Sorra Al-Tauba) Verse 34].

Prophet Mohammad [PBUH] through many Companions has said: What I am afraid of after me is an astrayed Scholar, Hypocrites who debate in Quran without knowledge and astrayed Imaams {Yaani Mein Tum par sab say ziyada jis cheese say darta hun woh Alim ki thokar hai, Quran ko lay kar Munafiq ka Jadal Hai aur Gumrah Peshwah hain} [Sunan Al Darimi and Jamiul Ilm Ibn-e-Barr]

Crux of several Authentic Traditions [Hadiths] in Bukhari, Muslim, Mauta Imam Malik, Tirmidhi, Abu Dawood, Nisa'i and Ibn-e-Maja on False Scholars:

"The very first group who would be thrown in hell in the life hereafter would be scholars"

"There will be a time amongst you when people will choose imam amongst ignorants and there will be no genuine Scholar in those days and Knowledge will be taken back so people will look towards these Ignorant {in literal "JAHIL"} Scholar who would astray people from the right path by issuing Fatwas without any proper knowledge of Islam"

Near the establishment of the Hour there will be days during which (religious) knowledge will be taken away (vanish) and general ignorance will spread... (Bukhari)

There will come a time for my people when there will remain nothing of the Qur'an except its outward form and nothing of Islam except its name and they will call themselves by this name even though they are the people furthest from it. (Agreed upon)

There will come a time upon the Ummat when people will recite the Qur’an, but it will not go further than their throats, (into their hearts). (Bukhari)

A time will come when a man will not care about how he gets things, whether lawful or unlawful. (Bukhari)

Wolves will give readings in the End Times. Let those who come to see those times seek shelter from their evil in Allah. They will be very corrupt people. Hypocrisy will prevail, and nobody will be ashamed of it and its manifestations. (Tirmidhi, Nawadir al-'usul)

There will appear in latter times a people who will gain this world with the help of religion. (Tirmidhi)

Allah's Messenger (saas) said, “In the End Times men will come forth who will fraudulently use religion for worldly ends and wear sheepskins in public to display meekness. Their tongues will be sweeter than sugar, but their hearts will be the hearts of wolves.” (Tirmidhi)

In the End Times of the community of the faithful, people, those who adorn the mosques but leave their own hearts in ruins, who fail to look after their religion as much as they do their clothes, who forsake their religious obligations for the sake of their activities in this world, will increase in number. (Agreed upon).

The Hour will come when voices are raised in the mosques. (Tirmidhi).

The Hour will come when leaders are oppressors. (Al-Haythami, Kitab al-Fitan).

There will come a time for my people when… the mosques will be full of people but they will be empty of right guidance. (Agreed upon).

A time will come when the hypocrites will live secretly among you, and the faithful will try to live their religion in secret among others. (Agreed upon).

Let him who reads the Qur’an ask (his reward) from Allah. Because in the final times there will be many people who read the Qur’an and seek their reward from other people. (Tirmidhi)

When the Qur’an is read as if singing a song, and when a person is esteemed for reading in that way, even though he is not knowledged …(Al-Tabarani, Al-Kabir) .

At that time, people will sell their religion for a small amount of worldly goods. (Ahmad).

The Last Hour will not come before there come forth thirty Dajjals (imposters), each presenting himself as an apostle of Allah. (Abu Dawood).

During the days of Pious Companions [RA] of Holy Prophet Mohammad [PBUH], and even after the times of his [PBUH] people used to come to the Scholars for Fatwa but Scholars in those days strictly avoided Fatwa, even the Companions used to refer the problem to Quran and Hadith or they prefer silence but nowadays its no matter at all Mullah issue Fatwa at the drop of hat, failing to see that they are actually opposing the very religion which they follow by issuing wrong Fatwa [contrary to what is ordered in Quran and Hadith] as happened in the cases of Deobandi Fatwa on Imrana Rape Case and Pakistani Fatwa on Terrorism.

The Salaf used to exercise great caution in matters of Fatwa. Imaam Hanbal [R.A.] used to frequently say : "I don't know". Imaam Malik is reported to have said that the Mufti must be conscious of accountability to Allah before responding to any question. According to Ibn Masud and Ibn Abbas, a person who answers every question is mad. Unfortunately there are many persons who claim the mantle of issuing Fatwa without proper training and without having acquired the necessary expertise, thereby causing confusion and misunderstanding amongst the lay public.

Imam Malik was famous for his piety and integrity, and courageously stood up prepared to suffer for his conviction. For example, in 135 A.H., When the governor of Madina demanded and forced people to take the oath of allegiance in favour of Khalifa Al-Mansoor, the Imam issued a Fatwa that such an oath was not binding because it was given under duress.

Since this fatwa was not in the interest of the ruler, the governor arrested the Imam and had him publicly flogged for the "crime".

Al-Mansoor, learning of this outrage, apologized to the Imam and dismissed the errant governor.

Imam Malik, was offered 3,000 gold coins (dinars) by Mansoor, as travelling expenses to Baghdad and subsequent residence in the Capital, but the Imam politely refused the offer saying that he prefered to live in Madina near Prophet Mohammad [PBUH]'s Mosque.

Imam Malik never intended the formation of a school of thought bearing his name. It was his disciples & followers who later developed a Fiqah School based on Imam Malik's rulings.

Imam An-Nawawi said, “This Hadith explains what raising up the knowledge means in the previous Hadiths, that is, not by erasing it from people’s hearts, but by the death of the scholars who carry such knowledge. Then, people will seek some ignorant persons who will rule with their ignorance, thus becoming misguided themselves and will also misguide others.” Issuing Fatwas without knowledge is indeed a major sin and Bid’ah. Allah said, what translated means, Say (O Mohammad), “(But) the things that my Lord has forbidden are great evil sins whether committed openly or secretly, sins of all kinds, unrighteous oppression, joining partners in worship with Allah for which He has given no authority, and saying things about Allah of which you have no knowledge.” [7:33].

Imam ibn Al-Qayyim said, “The origin of Kufr and Shirk comes from saying about Allah without knowledge, which is one of the most prohibited acts in the Sight of Allah. It produces the most harmful effects, because it entails lying with regards to Allah and describing Him with what is not appropriate. This also entails changing and altering Allah’s religion, denying what He has approved while approving what He has denied, implementing what He has rejected while rejecting what He has commanded to be carried out, hating those who are His loyalists while taking His enemies as loyal friends, detesting what He loves while loving what He hates, and describing Him with what is not appropriate with regards to His Attributes, Speech and Actions.”

"Truly, Allah does not remove Sacred Knowedge by taking it out of servants, but rather by taking back the souls of Islamic scholars [in death], until, when He has not left a single scholar, the people take the ignorant as leaders, who are asked for and who give Islamic legal opinion without knowledge, misguided and misguiding" (Bukhari).

“ Holy Prophet Mohammad {PBUH} said: In the last days there would be people amongst you who will gain the knowledge of Islam just for seeking the world. They will be wearing sheep’s hide to impress people, they will be speaking very softly as if their tongues are made of sugar but their hearts will be worse than Wolves. Allah will say, are you trying to cross me then Allah will swear upon Himself and will say I will put those people in such an anarchy and confusion that even the brightest among them will be flabbergasted” . {Tirmidhi}.

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