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It is claimed by the followers of Muhammad Zaahid al-Kawtharee, the one who regarded Imaam adh-Dhahabee as a mujassim (anthropomorphist) and as one who understands hardly anything of the usool (foundations of the religion), that Imaam adh-Dhahabee wrote a risaalah that they have called "an-Naseehah adh-Dhahabiyyah" which Imaam adh-Dhahabee was supposed to have directed towards Shaykh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah.
The false ascription of this so called "naseehah" to adh-Dhahabee has been corroborated and we will cover this affair in this series of articles inshaa'Allaah.
Naseehah Is Given While a Person Is Alive. Comprehensive and Judgemental Biographical Accounts Are Written After A Person's Death
We can safely assume that the followers of Muhammad Zaahid al-Kawtharee, and the Ash'ariyyah in general, will agree that naseehah (advice) can only be given to a person while he is alive, if the intent is to offer that person in particular, advice that will benefit him.
We don't think this is in dispute.
On that basis, what then will the Ash'ariyyah and their likes say about the fact that this is what Imaam adh-Dhahabee (rahimahullaah) wrote about Shaykh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullaah) AFTER he died?
Imaam adh-Dhahabee said in 'Mu'jam al-Muhadditheen' (p.25),
Ahmad bin 'Abdul-Haleem... the Imaam, the Scholar, the Haafidh, the Hujjah (the decisive proof), the unique individual of the era, ocean of sciences, Taqee ud-Deen Abul-'Abbaas al-Harraanee, then Dimashqee.
And he said,
And he wrote, read and corrected (works) and also excelled in the sciences related to the narrations and the sunan. He studied, gave verdict, made tafseer and authored the most amazing of works. He was alone in holding certain opinions and as a result his honour was attacked, yet he is a man who has sins and mistakes. But despite this, and by Allaah, my eyes have not seen the likes of him and he has not seen the likes of himself. He was a skilled and erudite Imaam in the various sciences related to the religion, had a correct and sound mind, extremely quick in his perception, fluent in his understanding, overflowing with good deeds and was characterised by excessive braveness and generosity. He kept away from the desires of food, clothing and sexual relations.
And al-Haafidh adh-Dhahabee said in 'al-'Ibar fee Khibar min 'Ibar' (4/84),
And Shaikh ul-Islaam, Taqee ud-Deen, Ahmad bin 'Abdul-Haleem died in the prison of Damascus on the 22nd night of Dhul-Qa'dah... and he excelled in tafseer, hadeeth, ikhtilaaf (the issues in which there is difference of opinion) and the principle affairs (of the religion). He used to display (remarkable) intelligence and his works number more than two-hundred volumes. He also had some strange opinions on account of which his honour was attacked, and he was a leader in generosity, braveness, and was content with little. His disciples numbered more than 50,000 and he was at the forefront, may Allaah have mercy upon him.
While the "Naseehah Dhahabiyyah" is certainly falsely ascribed to adh-Dhahabee, as will be demonstrated in this series inshaa'Allaah, if we assume, for argument's sake that adh-Dhahabee did write it, then writing a detailed biographical account of one's opinion of a person after he has died certainly overrides any limited inferences that can be made from individual or isolated pieces of advice given to that person during his lifetime - since the biographical account represents the sum total of what is held by the biographer about the one being written about. This is if we assume that adh-Dhahabee did write this so called "Naseehah".
And given the fact that the Soofiyyah Ash'ariyyah of the breed of al-Kawtharee consider adh-Dhahabee to be a Mujassim and a Hashawee in any case (free is Imaam adh-Dhahabee from the slanders of the Soofees), we won't see them do justice and promote the various biographical accounts written by ad-Dhahabee.
Imaam adh-Dhahabee has numerous biographies of Shaykh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah, varying in length, in his numerous works and he greatly honours and praises Shaykh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah, and says about him, "...and his followers consisted of nations, (the like of) their number could not be found at the graves of the Soofees..." - let's repeat these words, "...and his followers consisted of nations, (the like of) their number could not be found at the graves of the Soofees..." and perhaps its the likes of this that infuriates the likes of Muhammad Zaahid al-Kawtharee, and consumes the likes of him with jealousy and hatred ...
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