Translated by Hamood Aleem (Translator’s note: The nuzul (descent) of Sayyiduna ‘Isa / Jesus (peace be upon…
Browsing: Prophets, Angels and Companions
A translation of an excerpt from Mawlana Khalil Ahmad’s landmark Al-Barahin al-Qati‘ah ‘ala Dhalam al-Anwar al-Sati‘ah (The Decisive Proofs on the Darkness of Al-Anwar al-Sati‘ah), which was written in 1887 in response to another polemical work, Mawlana ‘Abd al-Sami‘ Rampuri’s ((Also a khalifah of Haji Imdad Allah Muhajir Makki (translator). )) Anwar al-Sati‘ah Dur Bayan Mawlud Wa Fatiha. Anwar al-Sati‘ah was written in 1886 in refutation of Imam Rabbani Mawlana Rashid Ahmad Gangohi’s position on customary practices and bid‘ah.
Making an analogy of the master of graves, meaning the grave of the master of the inhabitants of graves – Allah bless him and grant him peace as long as the eastern and western winds alternate –, with other graves, is an invalid analogy. It is clearly stated in hadiths that his burial is commanded in the place of death, and [his] place of death was a house that comprised of walls and a roof. It is inferred from this that there is permission for the construction of walls and a roof over his grave. The prohibition which has been transmitted on building over graves is when the structure is for the grave, and here this is not so.
What remains is [the question of] its persistence and conservation. Since after the burial, none of the rightly-guided caliphs condemned the persistence of this structure, rather, on one occasion when there was an extreme need to seek rain only a hole was made in the roof, the legality of the persistence of this building is inferred. It is obvious that the persistence of these things without giving special attention to [their] conservation is not normally possible. Hence, the requirement of giving special attention to its conversation has also been established. And since strengthening the building is more effective for [the purpose of its] conservation, this being an objective [of the Shari‘ah] is also established.
The difference between tasarruf and karamah is that tasarruf comes about by the usage of natural means, like the imaginative or contemplative faculties, and it is from the commonly acquired skills. Acceptance from Allah Almighty and even being Muslim have no bearing on it, since many disbelievers like the Brahmans of India and the atheists of Europe called “Mesmerists” today perform it.
Yes, since the basis of this faculty is the collectiveness of the mind and the unity of thought, it often occurs to some of those engaged in the remembrance of Allah Almighty who shun the world and what is in it, for they are at a high degree of collectiveness of mind and unity of thought. Its performance has been reported from some of them on some occasions, although the gnostics from them would scorn this and consider it a deficiency of complete servitude. This is why tasarruf has not been reported from the Prophets (upon them peace) at all.
Know, firstly, that those who have become obsessed in this matter with figurative interpretation or denial, it is only the affirmation of knowledge of ghayb for the Chief of the Prophets and Messengers, the collector of the sciences of the earlier and later peoples, our master and our Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace), that drives them to this, due to their belief that its negation from him (Allah bless him and grant him peace) is a blemish within the sanctity of his prophethood and messengership, or a reduction in his rank. Hence, they got into [the dilemma] which they got into without determining the meaning of the ghayb that is exclusive to His (Exalted is He) essence, which is negated from him (Allah bless him and grant him peace) and the rest of creation; and they began to derive proof for their conclusion from all that is transmitted about his knowledge or his (Allah bless him and grant him peace) reports about the unknown, yet they do not know that what is established by these proofs is not negated from him (Allah bless him and grant him peace) in the Shari‘ah according to any of the Muslims, and what is negated from him is not established by these verses.
Question: Do you believe that the knowledge of the Prophet (Allah bless him and grant him peace) is equal to the knowledge of Zayd, Bakr and beasts or are you innocent of such [a belief]? Did Shaykh Ashraf ‘Ali al-Thanawi write such content in his treatise Hifz al-Iman or not? How do you judge one who believes this?
Answer: I say: this too is from the inventions and lies of the innovators. They distorted the meaning of the statement and, in their hatred, they produced the opposite of what the shaykh (Allah lengthen his shadow) intended (Allah confound them! How they are perverted!).
Shaykh ‘Allamah al-Thanawi in his treatise called Hifz al-Iman, which is a small treatise in which he answered three questions he was asked: the first is in regards to the prostration of respect (al-sajdat al-ta’zimiyyah) to graves, the second is in regards to circumambulation (tawaf) around graves and the third is in regards to the unqualified usage of the term ‘alim al-ghayb (Knower of the Unseen) for our master, the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and grant him peace).
Know that when Allah (Glorified and Exalted is He) intended to manifest the attribute of His grace (in’am) and vengeance (intiqam), He created the creation and put it into categories. Thus, he created the fountains of faith and guidance from a species other than man, and they are the Angels, and from the species of man, and they are the Prophets and Messengers (Allah’s blessings and His peace be on them all); and He created the mines of disbelief and deviance from a species other than man, and they are the devils, and from the species of man, and they are the lying imposters (al-dajjalun al-kadhdhabun) (the curse of Allah be upon them). Hence, the former are the masters of the felicitous, living in the abode of His bounty and grace, and the loci of the manifestation of His mercy and pleasure (Glorified and High is He); and the latter are the heads of the miserable, falling into the locus of His punishment and anger, and are the loci of the manifestation of His vengeance and wrath.
When stating the necessary fundamentals of Islamic belief, scholars of the ummah usually mention a few examples in their books. A misunderstanding that occurs in the minds of some readers is that they think the necessary fundamentals are limited to just these examples and there is nothing more. This is even though the intent of those scholars is to merely present a few examples, not to shorten, restrict or limit [the necessary fundamentals]. To remove this misunderstanding, we have compiled [a list of] some of the fundamentals of religion in one place which can be obtained by cursory effort. From this concise list it will become self-evident that the purpose [of the scholars] was to show examples. The purpose was not to compile a complete list.
The article below was published in Roshni, a religious supplement published each Friday with the Saudi-based Urdu News newspaper, in clarification of a column published a few weeks earlier, discussing a story about a man who was told on his death bed that he had been forgiven due to his devotion to sending Blessings and Peace (Salat wa Salam) to the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) each morning.