Archive for December, 2014

Palestine is not Holy Land

Posted: December 31, 2014 by millatibraheem in Arabic, Bid'ah, Current Affairs, History

It has become a popular trend these days to call Palestine the “Holy Land,” even though there is nothing specific virtuous about it as a whole through revelation.  There is only one verse in the Qur’aan that refers to a particular area within what came to be known as Palestine.  Yet, even that area was in reference to Masjid al-Aqsa, which literally means “furthest place of prostration,” and its surrounding platform.  A “masjid” is a ‘place of sojood or prostration’ and “aqsa” means ‘farthest’ in the sense of distance.  So, it’s clearly pertaining to an area that is far away from Makkah.

Allaah aza wajal says:

سُبْحَانَ الَّذِي أَسْرَىٰ بِعَبْدِهِ لَيْلًا مِّنَ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ إِلَى الْمَسْجِدِ الْأَقْصَى الَّذِي بَارَكْنَا حَوْلَهُ لِنُرِيَهُ مِنْ آيَاتِنَا ۚ إِنَّهُ هُوَ السَّمِيعُ الْبَصِيرُ

Exalted is He who took His Servant by night from al-Masjid al-Haram to al-Masjid al- Aqsa, whose surroundings We have blessed, to show him of Our signs. Indeed, He is the Hearing, the Seeing.

(Surah al-Israa’ 17:1)

And Muhammad Rasoolullaah also mentions Masjid al-Aqsa in several narrations, such as:

لاَ تُشَدُّ الرِّحَالُ إِلاَّ إِلَى ثَلاَثَةِ مَسَاجِدَ مَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ وَمَسْجِدِي هَذَا وَالْمَسْجِدِ الأَقْصَى

“No one should prepare a mount to visit any masaajid except three: the Sacred masjid, this masjid of mine, and the masjid al-aqsa.” 

*In this narration, it shows us that it is forbidden to prepare a mount [to travel] for a  masjid, except the three that were mentioned.

A question comes to mind, what/where exactly is masjid al-aqsa and its surroundings?  For sure, the surroundings is limited and not absolute, otherwise, more than half of the world would be considered blessed since there are other lands connected to Palestine.

So when Allaah aza wajal says “whose surroundings we have blessed,” it is referring to the mount that it is built upon, and not the entire mass of landscape we call Palestine.  This mount is pictured here:

Masjid al-Aqsa and the Temple Mount

Masjid al-Aqsa and the Temple Mount

As you can see, Masjid al-Aqsa is at the bottom and the Dome of the Rock is at top, with several other masaajid surrounding these two on the perimeter of the mount.  Please make sure you do not confuse the Golden Dome to be al-Aqsa.  They are two totally separate buildings. Masjid al-Aqsa has a greenish dome.

Hence, what we call as Palestine, contains a city called ‘Jerusalem,’ which contains the actual mount that is blessed.  Not the entire country or region.

Ulema Does Not Mean Scholars

Posted: December 17, 2014 by millatibraheem in Arabic, Rebuttals

The term ‘Ulemaa (عُلَمَاءُ) is a plural correspondent of the singular ‘Aalim (عالم), that means “to know” or “have knowledge” about something.  It has nothing to do with becoming an expert in a particular field as the word has evolved.  What will be discussed is its usage in the religious sense.

Allaah aza wajal says,

وَمِنَ النَّاسِ وَالدَّوَابِّ وَالْأَنْعَامِ مُخْتَلِفٌ أَلْوَانُهُ كَذَٰلِكَ ۗ إِنَّمَا يَخْشَى اللَّهَ مِنْ عِبَادِهِ الْعُلَمَاءُ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَزِيزٌ غَفُورٌ

And among people and moving creatures and grazing livestock are various colors similarly. Only those fear Allaah , from among His servants, who have the knowledge [al-Ulema]. Indeed, Allaah is Exalted in Might and Forgiving.

(Faatir 35:28)

This ayah has been translated in different ways, including:

…Only those who fear Allaah, from among his servants/slaves, are knowledgeable ones…”

However, in Arabic it means only one thing, the second translation is the nearest to its correct meaning.  It gives us two main characteristics of the real true Ulema:

1) They fear (خَشِي) Allaah aza wajal

2) They are from the servants of Allaah aza wajal.

That a person who fears Allaah, from the servants, are the ‘Ulema.  Not the one who goes through universities, or a person who is given titles and studies under other so-called ‘Ulema.  The true fear is in the heart and this is only known to Allaah aza wajal.

So the idea of calling people ‘Ulema just because they may have a mouthful of knowledge, or have memorized books, does not make them actual ‘Ulema with Allaah aza wajal.  The ‘Aalim is a matter of the heart and it is unreasonable to give titles to people based on something that only Allaah knows about.

And realistically, many of the people who are looked as ‘Ulema, are the worst of human beings.  They lie on Allaah aza wajal, they break up his Deen into sects, they innovated divisions disguised as schools of thought and made haraam into halaal and likewise, they fabricated reports to the Prophet, especially the fake ahadith about the virtues of scholars, self praise and amusement…and so many other things.  They are also the ones to call each other Ulema, hiding behind the term with their bogus beliefs.

The proper term for a scholar is habr (حَبْر).  It is usually used for a Jewish Rabbi, yet, it literally means “a scribe” or a “learned person.”  The state of the heart is irrelevant and has no connection with fear or being a servant.  Hence, it is more proper to call a scholar – habr, then it is to call them ‘Aalim, since the former is apparent and the later is hidden.

“The books of ahbar and their fatawa

Just because someone may have studied for years and looks like a pious person, does not mean that they are fearing Allaah, or that they are saved from the fire.  One major example are the hypocrites.  Allaah aza wajal says regarding them:

وَإِذَا رَأَيْتَهُمْ تُعْجِبُكَ أَجْسَامُهُمْ ۖ وَإِن يَقُولُوا تَسْمَعْ لِقَوْلِهِمْ ۖ كَأَنَّهُمْ خُشُبٌ مُّسَنَّدَةٌ ۖ يَحْسَبُونَ كُلَّ صَيْحَةٍ عَلَيْهِمْ ۚ هُمُ الْعَدُوُّ فَاحْذَرْهُمْ ۚ قَاتَلَهُمُ اللَّهُ ۖ أَنَّىٰ يُؤْفَكُونَ

And when you see them, their bodies please you, and if they speak, you listen to their speech. [They are] as if they were pieces of wood propped up – they think that every shout is against them. They are the enemy, so beware of them. May Allaah destroy them; how are they deluded?

(Surah al-Munaafiqoon 63:4)

Allaah aza wajal tells us that the hypocrites bodies – or forms- may please us when we look at them, and we listen to them when they speak.  They may be good looking, clean, and wear nice clothes.  Their speech may be eloquent and full of poetry.  Yet, Allaah calls them the enemies and warns us against them.  So we must be careful not to be fooled by the “outer shell” of a person.  Islaam is not people, it is only Qur’aan and authentically proven sayings of Allaah’s Messenger.  Nothing else beyond these two sources is Deen.

A narration (with weakness in it) in Saheeh Muslim, Book of Governance, describes a questioning of several people, including a man who was called an ‘Aalim BY THE PEOPLE and praised for his knowledge and recitation of the Qur’aan.  Yet, he was thrown into the Hell-fire.  Please read the hadeeth carefully here.

حَدَّثَنَا يَحْيَى بْنُ حَبِيبٍ الْحَارِثِيُّ، حَدَّثَنَا خَالِدُ بْنُ الْحَارِثِ، حَدَّثَنَا ابْنُ جُرَيْجٍ، حَدَّثَنِي يُونُسُ بْنُ يُوسُفَ، عَنْ سُلَيْمَانَ بْنِ يَسَارٍ، قَالَ تَفَرَّقَ النَّاسُ عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ، فَقَالَ لَهُ نَاتِلُ أَهْلِ الشَّامِ أَيُّهَا الشَّيْخُ حَدِّثْنَا حَدِيثًا سَمِعْتَهُ مِنْ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم قَالَ نَعَمْ سَمِعْتُ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ ‏ “‏ إِنَّ أَوَّلَ النَّاسِ يُقْضَى يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ عَلَيْهِ رَجُلٌ اسْتُشْهِدَ فَأُتِيَ بِهِ فَعَرَّفَهُ نِعَمَهُ فَعَرَفَهَا قَالَ فَمَا عَمِلْتَ فِيهَا قَالَ قَاتَلْتُ فِيكَ حَتَّى اسْتُشْهِدْتُ ‏.‏ قَالَ كَذَبْتَ وَلَكِنَّكَ قَاتَلْتَ لأَنْ يُقَالَ جَرِيءٌ ‏.‏ فَقَدْ قِيلَ ‏.‏ ثُمَّ أُمِرَ بِهِ فَسُحِبَ عَلَى وَجْهِهِ حَتَّى أُلْقِيَ فِي النَّارِ وَرَجُلٌ تَعَلَّمَ الْعِلْمَ وَعَلَّمَهُ وَقَرَأَ الْقُرْآنَ فَأُتِيَ بِهِ فَعَرَّفَهُ نِعَمَهُ فَعَرَفَهَا قَالَ فَمَا عَمِلْتَ فِيهَا قَالَ تَعَلَّمْتُ الْعِلْمَ وَعَلَّمْتُهُ وَقَرَأْتُ فِيكَ الْقُرْآنَ ‏.‏ قَالَ كَذَبْتَ وَلَكِنَّكَ تَعَلَّمْتَ الْعِلْمَ لِيُقَالَ عَالِمٌ ‏.‏ وَقَرَأْتَ الْقُرْآنَ لِيُقَالَ هُوَ قَارِئٌ ‏.‏ فَقَدْ قِيلَ ثُمَّ أُمِرَ بِهِ فَسُحِبَ عَلَى وَجْهِهِ حَتَّى أُلْقِيَ فِي النَّارِ ‏.‏ وَرَجُلٌ وَسَّعَ اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَأَعْطَاهُ مِنْ أَصْنَافِ الْمَالِ كُلِّهِ فَأُتِيَ بِهِ فَعَرَّفَهُ نِعَمَهُ فَعَرَفَهَا قَالَ فَمَا عَمِلْتَ فِيهَا قَالَ مَا تَرَكْتُ مِنْ سَبِيلٍ تُحِبُّ أَنْ يُنْفَقَ فِيهَا إِلاَّ أَنْفَقْتُ فِيهَا لَكَ قَالَ كَذَبْتَ وَلَكِنَّكَ فَعَلْتَ لِيُقَالَ هُوَ جَوَادٌ ‏.‏ فَقَدْ قِيلَ ثُمَّ أُمِرَ بِهِ فَسُحِبَ عَلَى وَجْهِهِ ثُمَّ أُلْقِيَ فِي النَّارِ ‏”

It has been narrated on the authority of Sulaiman b. Yasar who said:

People dispersed from around Abu Huraira, and Natil, who was from the Syrians. said to him: O Shaikh, relate (to us) a tradition you have heard from the Messenger of Allaah. He said: Yes. I heard the Messenger of Allaah say: The first of men  will be decided on the Day of Judgment will be a man who died as a martyr. He shall be brought. Allaah will make him recount His blessings and he will recount them . (Then) will Allaah say: What did you do (to requite these blessings)? He will say: I fought for Thee until I died as a martyr. Allaah will say: You have told a lie. You fought that you might be called a” brave warrior”. And you were called so. (Then) orders will be passed against him and he will be dragged with his face downward and cast into Hell. Then will be brought forward a man who acquired knowledge and imparted it (to others) and recited the Qur’aan. He will be brought And Allaah will make him recount His blessings and he will recount them. Then will Allaah ask: What did you do (to requite these blessings)? He will say: I acquired knowledge and disseminated it and recited the Qur’aan seeking Thy pleasure. Allaah will say: You have told a lie. You acquired knowledge so that you might be called “a scholar,” and you recited the Qur’aan so that it might be said: “He is a Qari” and such has been said. Then orders will be passed against him and he shall be dragged with his face downward and cast into the Fire. Then will be brought a man whom Allaah had made abundantly rich and had granted every kind of wealth. He will be brought and Allaah will make him recount His blessings and he will recount them and (admit having enjoyed them in his lifetime). Allaah will (then) ask: What have you done (to requite these blessings)? He will say: I spent money in every cause in which Thou wished that it should be spent. Allah will say: You are lying. You did (so) that it might be said about (You):” He is a generous fellow” and so it was said. Then will Allaah pass orders and he will be dragged with his face downward and thrown into Hell.

Dogs are not impure in Islam

Posted: December 4, 2014 by millatibraheem in Bid'ah, Rebuttals

وَنَزَّلْنَا عَلَيْكَ الْكِتَابَ تِبْيَانًا لِّكُلِّ شَيْءٍ وَهُدًى وَرَحْمَةً وَبُشْرَىٰ لِلْمُسْلِمِينَ

And We have sent down to you the Book as clarification for all things and as guidance and mercy and good tidings for the Muslims. ( an-Nahl 16:89)

Many Muslims believe that dogs, either as a whole or partially, are an impure [najis] animals.  And upon coming in contact with one,  they mandate a person to cleanse themselves.  Contrary to its popularity, this belief has no clear-cut evidence from Islaam and is merely an extreme form of misrepresentation of what the holy Prophet of Allaah, Muhammad b. ‘Abdullaah, had taught.

Their main argument stems from an authentic Hadith reported from Abu Hurayrah, saying Rasoolullaah said:

إِذَا شَرِبَ الْكَلْبُ فِي إِنَاءِ أَحَدِكُمْ فَلْيَغْسِلْهُ سَبْعَ مَرَّاتٍ

If a dog drinks from your vessel, wash it seven times

And also with the following wording:

طُهُورُ إِنَاءِ أَحَدِكُمْ إِذَا وَلَغَ فِيهِ الْكَلْبُ أَنْ يَغْسِلَهُ سَبْعَ مَرَّاتٍ أُولاَهُنَّ بِالتُّرَابِ

Purify your vessel after it is licked by a dog, lies in washing it seven times, using sand for the first time.

This seems to be weaker of the two, Allaaho Alim, and has additions in its wording.  The first one is speaking about a dog drinking and the other one is about a dog directly licking the vessel itself and to purify it by using sand and washing.

There are several other similar reports, however none whatsoever mention the impurities of a dog.  What is important is to understand these narrations in accordance with the Qur’aan and other reports.

Allaah aza wajal said:

يَسْأَلُونَكَ مَاذَا أُحِلَّ لَهُمْ ۖ قُلْ أُحِلَّ لَكُمُ الطَّيِّبَاتُ ۙ وَمَا عَلَّمْتُم مِّنَ الْجَوَارِحِ مُكَلِّبِينَ تُعَلِّمُونَهُنَّ مِمَّا عَلَّمَكُمُ اللَّهُ ۖ فَكُلُوا مِمَّا أَمْسَكْنَ عَلَيْكُمْ وَاذْكُرُوا اسْمَ اللَّهِ عَلَيْهِ ۖ وَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ ۚ إِنَّ اللَّهَ سَرِيعُ الْحِسَابِ

They ask you what has been made lawful for them. Say, “Lawful for you are at-Tayyibaat and [game caught by] what you have trained of al-JawaariH which you train as Allaah has taught you. So eat of what they catch for you, and mention the name of Allaah upon it, and fear Allaah .” Indeed, Allaah is swift in account.

The word “al-JawaariH” is general in its application and not restricted to any particular animals that are used for hunting, even though many scholars have fabricated their own misinterpretations.  Allaah aza wajal does not speak about purifying what they [including dogs] have caught.

 A Hadith collected in Musnad Ahmed from ‘Adiy b. Haatim:

ِذَا أَرْسَلْتَ كَلْبَكَ، وَذَكَرْتَ اسْمَ اللَّهِ عَلَيْهِ، فَأَمْسَكَ عَلَيْكَ، فَكُلْ، وَإِنْ وَجَدْتَ مَعَهُ كَلْبًا غَيْرَ كَلْبِكَ، وَقَدْ قَتَلَهُ، وَخَشِيتَ أَنْ يَكُونَ قَدْ أَخَذَ مَعَهُ، فَلَا تَأْكُلْ، فَإِنَّكَ ذَكَرْتَ اسْمَ اللَّهِ عَلَى كَلْبِكَ، وَلَمْ تَذْكُرْهُ عَلَى غَيْرِهِ

“…I asked him [the Prophet] about hunting with the help of a dog, whereupon he said: If it catches it for you and does not eat out of that, then you eat, for slaughtering of that is its being caught by it [by the dog]. But if you find another dog besides it, and you fear that that dog [the second one] had caught it along with that [your dog] and killed it, then don’t eat; for you recited the name of Allaah on your dog and did not recite that on the other one [dog].”

This hadith is also in al-Bukhaari and Muslim’s collections, but with weaker isnaad due to the ambiguity of a narrator named Zakariya.

As you can read, the Prophet of Allaah did not tell us to purify what was caught by the dog.  So in comparison with a dog drinking from a vessel – or in weaker narrations about licking a vessel – with a dog catching a game puts, doubt on the claim that dogs are impure for several reasons:

1) There is no clear-cut evidence to support it.

2) There is evidence that counters it.

3) It contradicts reality of hunting and general rules of purification.

4) There is no command of purifying the animal that the dog had caught.

5) And to add in from the Qur’aan, the companions of al-Kahf had a dog with them and there is no hint of impurity mentioned [just saying].

Therefore, the belief of a dog being impure as a whole – or even its saliva – is Unislamic.  It is not from Allaah aza wajal and it is a abhorrent innovation by the scholars.

In Saheeh al-Bukhaari in ‘Book of Ablutions’ from ‘Abdullaah:

كَانَتِ الْكِلاَبُ تَبُولُ وَتُقْبِلُ وَتُدْبِرُ فِي الْمَسْجِدِ فِي زَمَانِ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ  فَلَمْ يَكُونُوا يَرُشُّونَ شَيْئًا مِنْ ذَلِكَ

“During the lifetime of Allaah’s Messenger, the dogs used to urinate, and pass through the masjid. They never used to sprinkle on it.”

If one decides to take this narration, then it tells us that people did not clean the masjid where dogs passed through and urinated.  But this report is not evidence since it is not revelation from Allaah aza wajal.  However, for those who take the Companions as rivals with Allaah, then this is for them.

Answering Some Doubts

Doubt 1: Angels do not enter a home with a dog.

That is not the actual narration.  If we looked at all of the reports -excluding the inauthentic ones- the angels in reference were of revelation to the Prophet.  It was not referring to all angels.

Doubt 2: Dogs are forbidden as pets because of impurity.

No that is not the reason why it is prohibited for us to have them as pets.  We do not know the actual reason except that deeds are deducted and there is no mention of impurity.

Doubt 3: Prophet ordered the killing of dogs.

Once again, this is not true and it is due to not looking at all of the reports.  It was a particular type of black dog that carried rabies.  That is it, it was never a general command.