Thursday, 25 July 2024   

Never see Ash'ariyyah in the same light, ever again! Aristotle of Stageira, Philo of Alexandria, Augustine of Hippo, the Sabeans of Harraan, the Mu'tazilites of Basrah and Baghdad and the Jahmite Ash'ari Heretics of Today Claiming Orthodoxy. Read the first article, the second article, the third article, the fourth article, the fifth article.
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Undercover Ash'aris: Understanding The Intellectual Fraud Needed by Today's Ash'aris To Prop Up and Defend their (Neo-Jahmite) Creed: Analysis of a Sample of Marifah Apologeticism Regarding Distinction Between the Attributes - Part 1
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Topics: Undercover Ash'aris Undercover Ash'aris

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Today we are going to put on those gray sneakers and the white hat to do a bit of undercover work. We are going deep into the neo-Jahmite machinery to see exactly what types of intellectual frauds are being perpetrated in order to prop up that Mu'tazili-Jahmee creed that is fraudulently labeled with "Ash'ariyyah" - an affront and insult to the person and character of Abu al-Hasan al-Ash'ari (d. 324H) who, after abandoning the Mu'tazilah, adopted the creed of Ibn Kullaab (d. 240H) and his followers, the Kullaabiyyah. From this Kullaabi creed was to affirm Allaah being above His Throne, with His Essence, as well as to affirm the sifaat dhaatiyyah, such as Face, Hands, Eyes, without ta'weel and tafweed - whilst rebutting the false charges of Tajseem (Anthropomorphism) that the Jahmiyyah and Mu'tazilah were throwing against them for affirming these attributes. The Kullaabi creed was to affirm most of what Ahl us-Sunnah affirmed with the exception of the Sifaat Fi'liyyah (attributes tied to Allaah's will and power) - because these attributes could not be reconciled with the [flawed, corrupt] intellectual proof that was adopted by all of the Mutakallimoon (Jahmiyyah, Mu'tazilah, Kullaabiyyah, Ash'ariyyah, Maturidiyyah) and which they wrongly made to be the foundation of the entire religion.

The Later Ash'aris however, reverted back to much of the creed of the Jahmiyyah and Mu'tazilah and from the clearest of evidences for that is - by way of example - their adoption of the saying "Allaah is not within the creation nor outside of it", taking this from the Jahmiyyah, Mu'tazilah and Ibn Sina (d. 429H) - see here - and abandoning what the Kullaabiyyah were upon - see here and here - of affirming Allaah Himself to be above the Throne - alongside their qualifications "without touch, contact" and the likes which they made as a refutation of the Karraamiyyah Mujassimah.

Bringing Facts Together

The first thing we need to do in order to grasp the nature of the intellectual fraud is to bring together certain sets of facts and use them as a basis to look at the true and real nature of the attempted defence today's Ash'aris make for their neo-Jahmite creed.

Facts Set 1: The Early Ash'aris - al-Ash'ari (d. 324H), al-Qalanisi (contemporary of al-Ash'ari, not a student), Ibn Mahdi at-Tabari (d. 380H), al-Baqillani (d. 403H) - were Kullaabis, they were upon the creed of Ibn Kullaab which al-Ash'ari adopted after abandoning the Mu'tazilah, and this creed is summarized as accepting all the Names of Allaah, the Attributes of Allaah, inclusive of the sifaat Dhaatiyyah such as Hands, Face, Eyes, affirming Allaah's uluww (with His Essence), but negating the Sifaat Fi'liyyah (actions tied to Allaah's will) - which include Nuzool, istiwaa, love, pleasure, anger, and that Allaah speaks when He wills, however He wills. Whilst they affirmed Allaah has "speech", they claimed that Allaah's speech is "Kalaam Nafsee", a meaning present with Allaah from eternity but they denied that Allaah speaks by His will and power, in accordance with their principle of rejecting any such attributes because they imply "occurrences" (hawaadith) and this would falsify the intellectual proof of "hudooth ul-ajsaam" they were using to argue against the atheists.

Facts Set 2: Today's Ash'arites make many grand claims regarding certain scholars. From them, their claim that al-Khatib al-Baghdadi was an Ash'ari, and they mean by this that al-Khatib agrees with them in their Jahmi-Mu'tazili creed, and that he was upon then, what they are upon now. So you need to keep this in mind too, we will focus particularly on al-Khatib for the purposes of this operation, and we will quote from him a little later in the article inshaa'Allaah, as well as at-Tirmidhi, Abu Bakr al-Bayhaqi, and Abu Uthmaan as-Saaboonee.

Facts Set 3: Today's Ash'arites make the charge of Tajseem (Anthropomorphism) against those who affirm the attributes of Face, Hands, Eyes for Allaah without tashbeeh, takyeef, ta'weel and tafweed. Whilst noting that those who affirmed these attributes in the same manner were the early Kullaabi Ash'aris, as has preceded.

Now, when we bear these sets of facts in mind, we can take a look at some of the polemical writings of today's Ash'aris and evaluate them accordingly to see what kind of intellectual dishonesty is lurking around.

Question Regarding Distinguishing Between the Attributes

So we have here an attempted defense by the Ash'arites as to why they distinguish:

  • Between the attributes of "Life, Knowledge, Power, Will, Hearing, Seeing, Speech"

  • And the attributes of "Face, Hands, Eyes, Nuzool, istiwaa, Love, Pleasure, Anger" and so on.

Meaning, why do they affirm the former and not affirm the latter? And this is a very valid and strong objection against them - and is something that they must reply to. So we will be looking at this reply, in light of the facts we have brought earlier on.

So here is an apologetic article compiled by them, apparently based upon writings of Taqiyy ud-Din as-Subki (d. 756H), who is a well-known Ash'ari partisan of the later times.

This is the question and we will start looking at the answer piecemeal inshaa'Allaah. But you have to really keep in mind those things we mentioned earlier on.

Analyzing the Answer: Distinguishing Between the Attributes

Here is the beginning of the answer:

Let's quote this properly so we can read it a little better (the emphasis is ours):

We say that of istiwa, nuzul, maji', ityan, wajh, yad, saq, qadam, janb, 'ayn and relocation in (various) levels are not from the Attributes. The claim that they are Attributes is deception and this is shown by three things.

Mmm... deception. It is a slick answer (when you read the rest of it), but we've got our gray sneakers and white hat on so we are not going to be fooled easily and fall for this intellectual fraud. So lets start with earnest and pound this deception back into that ditch of Khurasaan from whence it came:

Qadi Abu Bakr al-Baqillani on the sifaat Dhaatiyyah

Recall that al-Baqillani (d. 403H) is the most instrumental figure in officially codifying and formalizing what became known as the Ash'ari madhhab. He is the man. His most famous book is "at-Tamheed", and we are going to quote from it here (tahqeeq Imaad ud-Deen Ahmad Haydar, 1st edition 1987, Beirut, Lebanon).

Here we have on page 295 (you can read the entire chapter here):

The main title is "Various Chapters Pertaining to the Sifaat", followed by the sub chapter heading, "Chapter: Concerning Allaah Having a Face and Two Hands" - and under this chapter heading al-Baqillani refutes the false ta'weels of the Jahmiyyah and Mu'tazilah as well as demolishing their accusations of Tajseem in this regard - read it all here.

Oh dear! Did you just read that? A mention of the "sifaat" (attributes) and then including Face and Two Hands from amongst them! Hang on! What is going on here?

We'll tell you. It's Liquorish Allsorts. In what has become known as "Ash'ariyyah" you can find a belief for everybody. Everyone can be happy and you can choose whatever you want. Want to prove that Face, Hands and Eyes are not from the attributes? Hey that's fine, just to go as-Subki. Want to prove they are from the Attributes? Hey that's fine as well, just to to al-Baqillani. Want to prove affirming Face, Hands and Eyes is Tajseem? That's fine just to go to the Later Ash'aris. Want to prove its not? Hey, that's fine as well, just to go al-Baqillani, or any of the early Kullaabi Ash'aris and you'll get your answer. Why, diversity is fun!

On a serious note, as we have said in many other articles, there are your Kullaabi Ash'arites (the early ones) and there are your Jahmite, Mu'tazili Ash'arites (the later ones) - and they are not the same thing. If you are an Ash'ari, at least try not to be so deluded as to be ignorant of this fact which should stare you in the face with even just a little bit of study.

And here we have on pages 298-299:

So here we have another chapter heading titled, "Detailing the Attributes of the Essence From the Attributes of Actions", and then under this al-Baqillani writes:

And if [someone] said: Distinguish [and detail] the Attributes of His Essence from the Attributes of His actions so that I may know that.

It is said to him: The Attributes of His Essence are those which He has never ceased, and will not cease to be described with and they are:

Life, knowledge, power, hearing, seeing, speech, iraadah, al-baqaa (remaining, everlasting), face, two eyes, two hands, and anger and pleasure which are [both] iraadah as we have described [previously] ...

Oh dear! Did we really just read that? [Slap on the head] ... we are awake, so it looks like we actually did just read that. Why Baqillani you spoilsport! Why spoil things for everybody?! Everyone could have just bought this intellectual fraud and have been on their way, no boats are rocked and everyone is happy. The Marifah guys can continue to defraud their naive readers who don't know any better and the sea remains calm and still and everyone gets on with their daily chores, in ignorant bliss. And now you've spoiled all that! Shame!

Actually there is more. Whilst refuting the ta'weels of the Mu'tazilah of "hand" being power or favor (qudrah, ni'mah), he says during that:

...because the saying "al-yad (hand)" (on its own) is not used except for the hand that is an attribute of the essence...

Go and read the full article here. So the question is: Who is doing the deception? And who is committing academic fraud? Is this permissible in the deen of Allaah? To lie in affairs that are connected to belief in Allaah and to deceive the people regarding the true realities and to hide knowledge from them?

Our 21st century Ash'arites continue in their apologeticism:

Let's quote it for easier reading:

1. Every possessor of intellect knows that these things mentioned such as istiwa with the meaning of sitting, nuzul, maji, and wajh and its likes are closer to the attributes of bodies (ajsam) than [the attributes of] Will, Power, and Knowledge.

While noting here their qualification in their saying above, "such as istiwa with the meaning of sitting..." and just leaving that to one side for now, to avoid complicating things and going off on a tangent, we say regarding the generality of their claim above:

O really? Now did this realization just pass by 300 years of scholarship from the time of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) to the end of the third century and did thousands of the scholars of the righteous Salaf remain heedless of this, and did all the compilers of the books of hadeeth (al-Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawud, at-Tirmidhi, an-Nasaa'ee, Ibn Maajah) remain ignorant of this by incorporating the verses and ahaadeeth pertaining to these attributes under chapter headings titled "Kitaab ut-Tawheed" and "ar-Radd alal-Jahmiyyah" and so on? For no one in all that time distinguished between any of these attributes except the Jahmiyyah and the Mu'tazilah.

Again, lets pound this falsehood back into that ditch of Khurasaan inshaa'Allaah. Al-Qadi Abu Bakr al-Baqillani (d. 403H), that early Kullaabi Ash'ari said, rebutting the charge of Tajseem made by the Mu'tazilah and Jahmiyyah in that time against those affirming these attributes as attributes of the essence (in the same book "at-Tamheed", p.298):

And if someone said: What has led you to deny that His Face and Hand is a limb when you do not understand hand as an attribute, and face as an attribute except [in the form of a] limb? It is said to him: That is not necessitated, just like it is not necessitated when we do not understand a living, knowing, able (being) except to be a body (jism) that we, us and you, should judge Allah with the same.

And just like it is not necessitated when He is established by His own Essence (qaa'iman bi dhaatihi) that He is substance and body just because we, and you, do not find anything established by itself (qaa'imun bi-nafsihi) in what we (outwardly) observe except that it is like that (i.e. Substance and body).

And the answer to them is likewise if they say: It becomes necessary that His knowledge, life and speech and all of His attributes belonging to His Essence (dhaat) are non-essential incidental attributes (a'raad), genuses, or occurrences (hawaadith), or changes, or coalesce (merge) in Him, or are in requirement of a heart, and they used the existence (wujood) [that they observe] as argument [in this regard].

Is there anything clear and more apparent than these words of al-Baqillani and this refutation of his against the Jahmiyyah, Mu'tazilah in their charge of Tajseem against the affirmers of such attributes?

Every possessor of intellect and justice knows this claimed distinction between the attributes to be an intellectual fraud of the highest order. These people just start inventing things up as they go along, century after century, in order to hide the contradictions that make up their creed - its a free for all. Just design and make your own liquorish allsort and throw it into the mix to keep all those "dumb commoners" happy who won't know any better.

And in reality, this answer of al-Baqillani actually demolishes the entirety of the rest of the article. We wouldn't even need to waste time on the rest of the article because it is dead and buried at this point.

But wait a minute! Exactly who is al-Baqillani addressing here? Its the Jahmites and Mu'tazilah of his time. And who today is making this same accusation? It's the Ash'aris Jahmites again, and they are accusing Ahl us-Sunnah of falling into Tajseem for affirming these attributes without tashbeeh!

Imaam at-Tirmidhee on the sifaat Dhaatiyyah and Fi'liyyah

At-Tirmidhee (d. 279H) said in his Sunan (1/128-129):

وقد قال غير واحد من أهل العلم في هذا الحديث وما يشبه هذا من الروايات من الصفات ونزول الرب تبارك وتعالى كل ليلة إلى السماء الدنيا قالوا قد تثبت الروايات في هذا ويؤمن بها ولا يُتَوَهَّم ولا يقال كيف. هكذا روي عن مالك و سفيان بن عيينة و عبد الله بن المبارك أنهم قالوا في هذه الأحاديث أمروها بلا كيف وهكذا قول أهل العلم من أهل السنة والجماعة وأما الجهمية فأنكرت هذه الروايات وقالوا هذا تشبيه وقد ذكر الله عز وجل في غير موضع من كتابه اليد والسمع والبصر فتأولت الجهمية هذه الآيات ففسروها على غير ما فسر أهل العلم وقالوا إن الله لم يخلق آدم بيده وقالوا إن معنى اليد ههنا القوة وقال إسحق بن إبراهيم [الراهويه] إنما يكون التشبيه إذا قال يد كيد أو مثل يد أو سمع كسمع أو مثل سمع فإذا قال سمع كسمع أو مثل سمع فهذا التشبيه وأما إذا قال كما قال الله تعالى يد وسمع وبصر ولا يقول كيف ولا يقول مثل سمع ولا كسمع فهذا لا يكون تشبيها وهو كما قال الله تعالى في كتابه : ليس كمثله شيء وهو السميع البصير

It has been stated by more than one person from the People of Knowledge about such ahaadeeth, that there is no tashbeeh (resemblance) to the Attributes of Allaah, and our Lord - the Blessed and Most High - descends to the lowest heaven every night. So they say: "Affirm these narrations, have eemaan (faith) in them, do not deny them, nor ask how." The likes of this has been related from Maalik ibn Anas, Sufyaan ath-Thawree, Ibn Uyainah and Abdullaah Ibn al-Mubaarak, who all said about such ahaadeeth: "Leave them as they are, without asking how." Such is the saying of the People of Knowledge from the Ahl us-Sunnah wal-Jamaa'ah. However, the Jahmiyyah oppose these narrations and say: This is tashbeeh! However, Allaah the Most High, has mentioned in various places in His Book, the Attribute of al-yad (Hand), as-Sama' (Hearing), and al-Basr (Seeing) - but the Jahmiyyah make ta'weel of these aayaat, explaining them in a way, other than how they are explained by the People of Knowledge. They say: Indeed, Allaah did not create Aadam with His own Hand - they say that Hand means the Power of Allaah. Ishaaq ibn Ibraheem [ar-Raahawaih] said:

Tashbeeh is if it is said: "Hand like my hand, or similar to my hand", or it is said: "Hearing like my Hearing,or similar to my hearing", then this is tashbeeh. But if what is being said is what Allah has said: Hand, Hearing, Seeing and it is not asked how, nor is it said: "Like my hearing, or similar to my hearing" - then it is not tashbeeh. Allaah, the Most Blessed, Most High, said in His Book (ash-Shooraa 42:11): "There is none like unto Him, and he is the all-Hearing, the all-Seeing"

From this saying of Imaam at-Tirmidhee we see the following:

  • Inclusion of Nuzool (descent), yad (hand) as being from "the Attributes", i.e. that which Allaah is described with, [alongside sam' (hearing), basr (seeing)] - whereas our contemporary Jahmite Ash'aris claim these attributes are not from the attributes.

  • That these attributes are to be passed on exactly as they came, without how (kayf) and without resemblance (tashbeeh) and without resorting to the ta'weels of the Jahmites - and this is the madhhab of the Salaf.

Whilst there are lots benefits to be extracted from the saying of at-Tirmidhi, this much suffices for our purpose here - the main point being that the Salaf treated the likes of Nuzool, istiwaa, face, hands, eyes to be from the Attributes (dhaatiyyah or fi'liyyah) and did not distinguish them from "hearing", "seeing", "speech", "knowledge", "will" and the likes because of any presumption of tashbeeh.

The Creed of al-Khateeb al-Baghdaadee (d. 463H)

And also worthy of mention is what has been said by al-Khateeb al-Baghdaadee, whom the Ash'arites fraudulently claim was upon their madhhab of tafweed. Adh-Dhahabi brought the saying of al-Khatib al-Baghdadi (Mukhtasar al-uluww, p. 273, no. 332) and creed of Khatib al-Baghdadi is also found in a single preserved manuscript in adh-Dhaahiriyyah Book House in Damascus, collection no. 16.

Al-Khatib al-Baghdadi said:

والأصل في هذا أن الكلام في الصفات فرع على الكلام في الذات ويحتذى في ذلك حذوه ومثاله. فإذا كان معلوماً أن إثبات رب العالمين عز وجل إنما هو إثبات وجود لا إثبات كيفية، فكذلك إثبات صفاته إنما هو إثبات وجود لا إثبات تحديد وتكييف.

فإذا قلنا: لله تعالى يد، وسمع، وبصر؛ فإنما هي صفات أثبتها الله تعالى لنفسه، ولا نقول: إن معنى اليد القدرة، ولا إن معنى السمع والبصر العلم، ولا نقول: إنها جوارح، ولا نشبهها بالأيدي والأسماع والأبصار التي هي جوارح وأدوات للفعل، ونقول: إنما وجب إثباتها لأن التوقيف ورد بها، ووجب نفي التشبيه عنها؛ لقوله تبارك وتعالى ليس كمثله شيء وهو السميع البصير وقوله عز وجل ولم يكن له كفواً أحد

Which translates as:

And the principle in this matter is: That speaking about the Attributes is a branch of speaking about the Essence (Dhaat) and thus follows it exactly and takes its example.

So when it is known that [making] affirmation of the Lord of all the Worlds - the Mighty and Majestic - that it is an affirmation of existence, not an affirmation of defining the reality [of His existence] (tahdeed) and how it is (takyeef) [in reality] , then it is the same for affirming His Attributes. Indeed, it is an affirmation of their existence, not an affirmation of defining their reality (tahdeed) and how they are (takyeef) [in reality].

So when we say: Allaah has a hand, hearing and seeing, then these are Attributes which Allaah the Exalted has affirmed for Himself and we do not say: The meaning of hand is 'power' and nor do we say: The meaning of hearing and seeing is 'knowledge'. And nor do we say: They are limbs and instruments for action. And we do not resemble them with [those] hands, [and faculties of] hearing and sight which are the limbs and the instruments of action [in created beings].

And we say: Affirming them is obligatory because at-Tawqeef (the texts of the Qur'aan and the Sunnah) have reported them and it is obligatory to negate tashbeeh (resemblance) from them, due to the saying of the Blessed and Exalted:

There is nothing like unto Him, and He is the All-Hearer, the All-Seer. (Shooraa 42:11)

and His saying - the Mighty and Majestic -:

And there is none co-equal or comparable unto Him. (Ikhlaas 112:4)

We have covered this saying of al-Khateeb in detail in this article here, so refer to it, for there are lots of benefits to be gained from this statement of his, but for our purposes in this article, we can extract the relevant points of benefit (taken from the previously linked article):

  • In the examples he has given from Allaah's attributes he mentioned "hand (yad)" alongside "hearing" and "seeing". This is a rebuttal of those Jahmites who attempt to distinguish between what they believe to give the presumption of a "limb" and what does not give the presumption of a "limb". So al-Khatib has closed the door for them and sealed their deception for good. These people have problems with these attributes because the sickness originated in their minds, and they were not able to distinguish, in their minds, between the meaning on the one hand and the takyeef and tahdeed on the other - and thus, they imposed the takyeef and tahdeed in their minds upon the revealed texts, then they accused Ahl us-Sunnah with their own sickness, which Ahl us-Sunnah are free of. So al-Khatib, walillaahil-hamd did not leave any doors for anyone - neither a Mu'attil nor a Mushabbih.

  • You need to really carefully reflect upon this part of what al-Khatib has said because it pulls out from the very roots, and demolishes, annihilates, pulverizes, turns to dust, and renders obsolete one of the major misconceptions of the later (Jahmite) Ash'aris (those who left the Kullaabi creed on the sifaat Dhaatiyyah and went towards the Mu'tazili Jahmee creed). Al-Khatib said (in relation to the attributes of Hand, Hearing and Seeing of Allaah):

    ولا نشبهها بالأيدي، والأسماع، والأبصار التي هي جوارح، وأدوات للفعل

    And we do not resemble them (i.e. Allaah's Attributes of Hand, Hearing and Seeing) with [those] hands, [and faculties of] hearing and sight which are the limbs and the instruments of action [in created beings]

    Recall that the Ash'aris affirm the attributes of hearing (as-sam') and seeing (al-basr) and recall that they attempt to make a distinction between these attributes and those others which they claim give the presumption of Tajseem and tashbeeh, such as Hand, Face, Eyes and so on. Here, al-Khatib has used the attributes of "hearing" and "seeing" as examples and put them alongside the attribute of "hands", and treated them all as "limbs" and "instruments of action" in the context of created beings and has stated that we don't resemble the same attributes which exist for Allaah with these attributes which are but the limbs and instruments of action in the created beings. So he has equated "hearing" and "seeing" with "hand" in the course of his discussion. What this means is that the Ash'aris must either affirm the attributes such as Face, Hands, Eyes and so on, alongside "hearing", "seeing" without ta'weel and tafweed, or just reject "hearing" amd "seeing" outright for the same reason that they reject "Face", "Hands" and so on. So take note of what the words of al-Khatib contain of completely subduing and encircling the Mu'attilah, closing all the doors and openings, and not giving even an inch of space to move - walillaahil-hamd. So he has demolished that false distinction the Ash'arites attempt to make between the attributes of hearing, seeing, speech and between face, hands, eyes and so on. And this is the same as the ijmaa' of the Salaf reported by at-Tirmidhi in his Sunan as has preceded earlier in the article.

  • Al-Khatib has refuted the Jahmiyyah, Mu'tazilah and Ash'ariyyah, and in particular the Ash'ariyyah by giving two examples of their ta'weels. The ta'weel of "hand" to mean "power" and the ta'weel of hearing and seeing to mean "knowledge" which is the view of some of the Ash'aris who say that Allaah being Samee' (hearing) and Baseer (seeing) actually goes back to Allaah being Aalim (knowing). Although the Ash'aris differ on this matter, their view amounts to the saying that "hearing" and "seeing" are both "knowledge" - refer to the book "Kitaab Lubaab ul-Uqool" (p. 213-318) of Yusuf bin Muhammad al-Mukalaatee (d. 626H). So they make ta'weel of not just "hand" - upon their false presumption of tashbeeh - but also of hearing and seeing to "knowledge", although in the latter case it is for a different reason to what al-Khatib has mentioned here - which is to avoid affirming "hawaadith" (events, occurrences) for Allaah and we can address this in a separate article. Nevertheless, they are rebutted by al-Khatib in no uncertain terms.

The Creed of Abu Uthmaan as-Saaboonee (d. 449H)

Abu Uthmaan as-Saaboonee said in the book titled, "Aqeedat us-Salaf wa Ashaabil-Hadeeth" (tahqeeq Nasir al-Juday', Dar ul-Aasimah, 1st edition, 1415H, pp. 161-162):

أصحاب الحديث، حفظ الله أحياءهم ورحم أمواتهم، يشهدون لله تعالى بالوحدانية، وللرسول صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم بالرسالة والنبوة، ويعرفون ربهم عز وجل بصفاته التي نطق بها وحيه وتنزيله، أو شهد له بها رسوله صلى الله عليه وسلم على ما وردت الأخبار الصحاح به، ونقلته العدول الثقات عنه، ويثبتون له جل جلاله ما أثبت لنفسه في كتابه، وعلى لسان رسوله صلى الله عليه وسم، ولا يعتقدون تشبيها لصفاته بصفات خلقه، فيقولون: إنه خلق آدم بيده، كما نص سبحانه عليه في قوله- عز من قائل: (يا إبليس ما منعك ان تسجد لما خلقت بيدي) ولا يحرفون الكلام عن مواضعه بحمل اليدين على النعمتين، أو القوتين، تحريف المعتزلة الجهمية، أهلكهم الله، ولا يكيفونهما بكيف أو تشبيههما بأيدي المخلوقين، تشبيه المشبهة، خذلهم الله، وقد أعاذ الله تعالى أهل السنة من التحريف والتكييف، ومن عليهم بالتعريف والتفهيم، حتى سلكوا سبل التوحيد والتنزيه، وتركوا القول بالتعطيل والتشبيه، واتبعوا قول الله عز وجل: ليس كمثله شيء وهو السميع البصير

Here Abu Uthmaan has broadly described the way of the People of Hadeeth, and has stated that:

...they afffirm for Allaah what Allaah affirms for Himself in His Book or upon the tongue of His Messenger (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam), and they do not believe in tashbeeh (resemblance) for His Attributes with the attributes of His creation.

Then he gave an example of the attribute of "Hand":

So they say: Indeed He (Allaah) created Adam with HIs Hand, as He has textually stated, the Sublime, in His saying, mighty is one saying (it): "O Iblees, what prevented you from prostrating to one whom I created with My own Two Hands". And they do not distort the words from their proper places (meanings) by interpreting Two Hands to mean "two favors", or "two powers" [with] the distortion (tahreef) of the Mu'tazilah and Jahmiyyah - may Allaah destroy them. And nor do they specify a how for them or resemble them with the hands of the creation [with] the tashbeeh (resemblance) of the Mushabbihah, may Allaah forsake them...

Then he says (p. 165):

وكذلك يقولون في جميع الصفات التي نزل بذكرها القرآن، ووردت بها الأخبار الصحاح من السمع والبصر والعين والوجه والعلم والقوة والقدرة، والعزة والعظمة والإرادة، والمشيئة والقول والكلام

Which translates as:

And likewise do they say regarding all of the Attributes - with whose mention the Qur'an was revealed, and with which the authentic narrations were narrated - of hearing, seeing, eye (al-ayn), face (al-wajh), knowledge, strength, power, might, greatness, wish, will, saying and speech ...

And this is clear from as-Sabuni, it is the same as what has been mentioned in the previous quotations - the Salaf considered all of these as Attributes (sifaat) and did not distinguish between them, and they had a single position towards the entirety of all of that which is to affirm them upon their apparent meanings, affirming that these attributes are true and have a real existence, without making ta'weel or tahreef, and without takyeef or tashbeeh - and in all of these quotes and in fact in the entirey of what has come from the Salaf, we see that they clearly distinguish between the ma'naa (meaning) of the attribute and its kayf and haqeeqah (reality) - and it is failing to distinguish between them that has caused today's Jahmite Ash'aris to be unable to understand the creed of the Salaf in this subject to slander Ahl us-Sunnah with the slander of the Jahmiyyah and the Mu'tazilah that they are "Mushabbihah" and "Mujassimah".

What Has Been Said By Abu Bakr al-Bayhaqi (d. 458H)

What further exposes this fraud - how shameful and disgraceful it is - is what we find in the book al-I'tiqaad of al-Bayhaqi (d. 458H) - who is upon the way of the Ash'aris. This is what is in his book (tahqeeq Ahmad bin Ibraaheem Abul-Aynayn - from five manuscripts - Dar ul-Fadeelah, 1st Edition, 1999):

Here al-Bayhaqi begins the section with, "Chapter: A Mention of the Verses and Narrations Reported Regarding the Affirmation of the Attribute of Face, Two Hands and Eye"

Then he brings the proofs from the Qur'an, and there is no need to translate it all, and within it he refutes the ta'weels of the Jahmiyyah and Mu'tazilah that "yad (hand)" is qudrah or ni'mah (power, or favor), and he refutes the claims that these three are not attributes of the essence. Then after this section he brings a number of ahaadeeth affirming Allaah's Face, Hands and Eye.

Then after all of this he says at the end of the chapter:

The Ustaadh, the Imaam, rahimahullaah said: And in this, there is a negation of the deficiency of being one-eyed from Allaah, the Sublime, and affirmation of Eye for Him as an attribute, and we know from His saying, the Mighty and Majestic, "There is nothing like unto Him..." and through the evidences of the intellect that it is not a pupil [like in the eye of the creation] and that the Two Hands are not limbs, and that the Face is not a soorah [figure, form, like that in the creation] - and that they are attributes of the essence (sifaat dhaat), we affirm them through the Book and the Sunnah without tashbeeh, and with Allaah is success.

There are number of things in this statement of al-Bayhaqi:

Firstly: Though he affirms these as attributes of the essence (sifaat dhaatiyyah) in agreement with those who preceded, in his methodology however, he departs from the way of the Salaf in that he makes specific negations that are not reported in the Book and the Sunnah. And the way of Ahl us-Sunnah is to affirm what Allaah affirmed for Himself in the Book or upon the tongue of His Messenger and to negate what He negated from Himself in His Book or upon the tongue of His Messenger. And in the Book and the Sunnah we find that affirmation is very specific and that negation is done only generally. So the way of Ahl us-Sunnah - in corroborrating and affirming their creed - is to adhere to that methodology and not to depart from it, this being a means of safety in their creed and as a means of not speaking about Allaah with that which He did not speak about Himself, whether in affirmation or negation. Thus, it is not from the methodology of the Salaf to say, in negation, "His eye is not a pupil, and His hand is not a limb and His face is not a figure, or form". Rather they say, "We affirm the attributes of face, hands and eyes and they are unlike the face, hands and eyes found in the creation" - and between the two there is a clear difference. And we are speaking here as it relates to affirming and corroborating one's creed. And al-Bayhaqi, despite being affected by something of the Kalaam and the ta'weel of the Mutakallimoon, is much better than those who came later and who simply adopted much of what the Jahmiyyah and Mu'tazilah were upon in this topic.

Secondly: And this is the point we want to make, his exposition of the great fraud perpetrated by these later Jahmite Ash'aris in their claim that these attributes are not said to be attributes, whereas al-Bayhaqi - and he is upon the way of the Ash'aris himself - affirms they are attributes of the essence and refutes the false ta'weels of the Jahmiyyah and Mu'tazilah (as did al-Baqillani).

And this proves that there is a difference between the Early Ash'aris who were upon the creed of Ibn Kullaab, and they are what we call the Kullaabi Ash'aris, and they - in general - affirmed the Names, the sifaat Dhaatiyyah, inclusive of Face, Hands, Eyes, and they affirmed Allaah Himself to be above the Throne - but they denied the Sifaat Fi'liyyah (actions tied to Allaah's will and power). The later Ash'arites reverted to much of the creed of the Jahmiyyah and Mu'tazilah - and we have covered this extensively in other articles.

So here we have al-Baqillani (d. 403H), perhaps the most instrumental figure for the Ash'aris in the existence and formulation of their madhhab. And then we have at-Tirmidhi (d. 279H), and Abu Uthmaan as-Sabuni (d. 449H) and also al-Khatib al-Baghdadi (d. 463H) and Abu Bakr al-Bayhaqi (d. 458H) - and we've only just started! And all of them have spoken of face (al-wajh), hands (al-yadaan) and eyes (al-aynaan) as attributes, just like hearing and seeing (as-sam' and al-basr) without making any distinction. And there are many more statements that can be brought to expose this intellectual fraud being perpetrated here by these contemporary [Jahmite] Ash'ari apologeticists who do not show any fear of Allaah in defrauding people with the fabrications of their own minds.

Analyzing the Answer: What Is and Is Not From the Attributes of Bodies

Going back to their saying:

Let's quote it for easier reading:

1. Every possessor of intellect knows that these things mentioned such as istiwa with the meaning of sitting, nuzul, maji, and wajh and its likes are closer to the attributes of bodies (ajsam) than [the attributes of] Will, Power, and Knowledge.

We say: This is utter falsehood and vain speech for the following reason: There is not in observable existence, anything described with a will (iraadah), or power (qudrah), or knowledge (ilm) or hearing and seeing (sam', basr) for that matter except that it is a body (jism).

This is why in the above quote they chose their words carefully. They wrote:

1. Every possessor of intellect knows that these things mentioned such as istiwa with the meaning of sitting, nuzul, maji, and wajh and its likes are closer to the attributes of bodies (ajsam) than [the attributes of] Will, Power, and Knowledge.

Note the part underlined. This is because inside their own souls, they know that all these attributes are one and the same from the angle that none of them can be conceived of except as attributes of created bodies. You cannot distinguish between them full stop. It is futile. This is why they had to sneakily use the words, "are closer to" - which means they were not able to actually make the distinction in reality. That's bad intellectual fraud, and you get penalized for doing such a poor job, and we advise everyone to ring up their customer services and ask for a refund - this simply is not good enough. If you are going to intellectually defraud people, at least give them their money's worth and don't short-change them in anything.

So the answer here is that you will not find in observable existence anything described with the attributes you do affirm (life, will, power, knowledge, hearing, seeing, speech) except that it is a body. Look around for wherever you see the attribute of life. Is it in anything but a body, and can it exist without a body? And likewise the attribute of will (iraadah). And likewise hearing and seeing. Do you see anything in observable existence described with hearing and seeing except that it is a body (jism) and except that their hearing and seeing requires limbs?

You simply cannot run from this. So whatever objection you raise against those attributes you do not accept (face, hands, eyes) applies equally to those attributes you do accept. And just because you label such attributes as parts (ajzaa') or limbs (jawaarih) does not prevent us from labelling hearing and seeing and speech as necessitating parts (ajzaa') and limbs (jawaarih) as has preceded from al-Khatib al-Baghdadi (d. 463H) who has walhamdulillaah silenced these neo-Jahmite fraudsters, fraudulently ascribing themselves to Abu al-Hasan al-Ash'ari and the early Kullaabi Ash'aris. These intellectual fraudsters should come out clean, be honest and say:

"Hey, we do not follow the early Kullaabi Ash'aris, because they were upon Tajseem. We actually follow the later Jahmite Ash'aris (like al-Juwaynee, and ar-Raazee) who were more rightly guided than those Kullaabi Mujassims who affirmed Allaah is above the Throne (tajseem!), and that He has a Face, Hands and Eyes (tajseem!)."

This is what honesty and integrity demands from them, but you won't see the cowards being honest with themselves and doing that anytime soon.

Notice also that in presenting this principle of theirs, they chose only to exemplify it with the three attributes of will (iraadah), power (qudrah) and knowledge (ilm) but they left out hearing (sam'), seeing (basr) and speech (Kalaam) and made no mention of them anywhere - because their fraud would not have been so easy with these three. So imagine if they tried to say:

Every possessor of intellect knows that these things mentioned such as istiwa with the meaning of sitting, nuzul, maji, and wajh and its likes are closer to the attributes of bodies (ajsam) than [the attributes of] hearing, seeing and speech.

It is for this reason that many of the Ash'arites make ta'weel of hearing and seeing to knowledge (ilm) - refer to the book "Kitaab Lubaab ul-Uqool" (p. 213-318) of Yusuf bin Muhammad al-Mukalaatee (d. 626H) - and likewise they distort the meaning of "kalaam (speech)" to mean just the "Kalaam Nafsee", the singular indivisible meaning present with Allaah's Self - which they themselves admit, is no different to what the Mu'tazilah call "ilm" (knowledge) and "iraadah" (will) - so in reality, their seven attributes are only four, with three of them being made ta'weel of to "ilm" (knowledge). This is because these three attributes are particularly problematic for them, and the end result of all of their fooling around is that they do not in reality affirm these three attributes - except through play with words.

We see therefore, that they chose not to exemplify their attempted distinction with the three attributes of hearing, seeing and speech, and were careful to use the words "...are closer to..." - hoping that the gullible audience would not see through their fraud, in having failed to establish an actual true and real distinction.

Confirmation and Self-Admission From The Mu'attil Ash'arites That They Are The Mujassimah and Mushabbihah in Reality And That It Is Their Own Tajseem and tashbeeh That They Impute to Ahl us-Sunnah

We have mentioned previously from Imaam at-Tirmidhi who is quoting the consensus of the Muslims against the Jahmiyyah, that the Jahmiyyah automatically made the presumption of Tajseem and tashbeeh for the revealed texts that make mention of what Allaah affirmed for Himself of Names, Attributes and Actions. And it was built upon this presumption that they negated such attributes for Allaah.

And it is for this reason that some of Ahl us-Sunnah said that every Mu'attil (one who denies something of Allaah's Attributes) is a Mushabbih (one who resembles Allaah's Attributes to those of the creation).

In their article, in continuing their fraud, they state:

Let's quote the text for easier reading:

These things that we mentioned are considered parts according to the people of the language and not adjectives (awsaf). So they are explicit in indicating composition (tarkib), and composition is for bodies. So your mentioning of the word awsaf (adjectives-attributes) is deception. All of the people of the language do not understand from wajh, 'ayn, janb, and qadam except that which are composed parts (ajza). They do not understand from istiwa that means sitting except that it is a manner of placing something solid on a place. They [do not understand] from maji', ityan, and nuzul except movement that is particular to bodies. As for Will, Power, Life and its likes, they are the attributes of the essence (sifat al-dhat).

Regarding this we make a couple of points, before commenting on this statement piecemeal:

Point 1: Confirmation that these later [Jahmite] Ash'aris consider the revealed texts to contain and to give the presumption of that which is manifest kufr - namely, Tajseem (Anthropomorphism) and tarkeeb (composition). And they do not really hide this, and you will find it littered throughout their textbooks and works and you can see this from al-Ghazali as an example of how this comes across in their writings - and this would be the subject of a separate article itself, quoting from their textbooks and works what proves they consider the revealed texts to amount to what is manifest kufr.

Point 2: These people are still struggling to distinguish between the man'naa (meaning) and the kayf, haqeeqah (true reality of how something is). And it is for this reason that they blatantly oppose the consensus of the Salaf and likewise of the early Kullaabis that these are indeed Attributes of the Essence of Allaah, as has preceded from al-Baqillani and al-Bayhaqi, by way of example.

To clarify, with respect to mankind as a species, we say that from the attributes of man (as a species) is that he is described with speech, face, hands, eyes, hearing, seeing, power, will and so on - and so as a species all of these are said to be attributes of man. Just like we can say that from the attributes of trees as a species is that they have roots, trunk, branches, twigs and leaves, even if at the same time we say that these are parts (ajzaa'). Once that is clear, we can then say that for mankind as a species, the kaifiyyah of these attributes such as face, hands, eyes, hearing and seeing is in the form of limbs, and their haqeeqah and tahdeed (true reality and definition of that reality in words) is that they are made of bones, flesh, blood vessels, tendons, ligaments and so on, and this is the form (kayfiyyah) that they take for mankind as a species. So they are attributes for man as a species, and their kaifiyyah is in the form of limbs whose reality we know and can define. And alongside all of this we can distinguish in our minds between the meanings of face, hand, eyes, seeing, hearing and so on. So we have meaning (ma'naa) and the true reality (kaifiyyah, haqeeqah). And to clarify this even further, the Ash'aris claim to affirm the attributes of hearing and seeing, and there is no hearing and seeing observed or known in the creation, ever, except that they are in the form of limbs. However, the Ash'aris still affirm these are "attributes" (at least on the surface, in reality they are forced to make ta'weel of hearing and seeing to knowledge, ilm - but that is the subject for another article). So they are able to affirm hearing and seeing as meanings devoid of the takyeef and tahdeed that is found in the creation for such meanings - so if they are able to do that for hearing and seeing, and the Salaf and the early Kullaabi Ash'aris never distinguished between hearing, seeing, face, hands and eyes, then surely they are able to do it for all of these attributes together. So their baatil (falsehood) is plain and clear walhamdulillaah.

Point 3: Confirmation that these later [Jahmite] Ash'aris did not give estimation for Allaah with a true estimation and that they made Tajseem and tashbeeh for what He has described Himself with. As you can see, they have explicitly stated that they are unable to understand the likes of these attributes face, hands, eyes and so on, except with the kaifiyyah and haqeeqah of how they are in the creation - and thus they denied that they can be "Attributes of the Essence (Sifaat Dhaatiyyah)" - opposing thereby, the early Kullaabi Ash'aris, who refuted this very same presumption that was coming from the Jahmiyyah and the Mu'tazilah, that such attributes are limbs (a'daa) and parts (ajzaa) - let alone the entirety of the Salaf.

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'arad21st century kalam atomista'raadabdul-qadir al-jeelaaneeabdul-qadir al-jilaniabdullaah ibn al-mubaarakabdullah ali al-aminabu abdullah bin hamidabu adam al-naruijiabu adam naruijiabu adam narujiabu al-abbas al-qalanisiabu al-hasan bin al-zaghuniabu al-hudhayl al-allaafabu ali al-ahwaziabu bakr al-baqillaniabu bakr al-isma'iliabu bakr al-ismaa'eeleeabu bilal malikiabu fadl al-tamimiabu hamid al-ghazaliabu hanifahabu hasan al-ash'ariabu isma'il al-harawiabu layth bin ataaabu mansur al-baghdadiabu ya'laaabul-hasan ibn mahdi at-tabariaccidentadh-dhahabeeadh-dhahabiaf'aal ikhtiyaariyyahahl al-kalaamahl al-kalamahmad bin sinan al-waasiteeahmed cobraakhbaar ul-aahaadal-'aradal-aamideeal-akhtalal-amidial-arshal-ash'areeal-ash'arial-asharial-baqillanial-bayhaqial-bukhaareeal-dhahabial-ghazalial-haddal-hawaadithal-ibanahal-istiwaaal-jahm bin safwanal-jawhar al-fardal-jihahal-jismal-juwayneeal-juwaynial-kawthareeal-khateeb al-baghdaadeeal-khatib al-baghdadial-milal wan-nihalal-muhasibial-naruijial-nawaweeal-nawawial-qadi abd al-wahhab al-malikial-qadi abu ya'laaal-qalanisial-qurtubeeal-qurtubial-qushayrial-razial-shahrastanial-tabyinal-taftazanial-tahawial-tarkibal-uluwwal-uluwwwal-wajhal-yadallaah's angerallaah's namesallaah's pleasurean-nadhr al-istidlaalan-nawawianthropomorphismanthropomorphistsar-raziaristotelian metaphysicsaristotelians anonymousaristotlearshas-sanusiasaas ut-taqdisash'areesash'ariash'ari burnoutash'ari scholarsash'ariteash'aritesash'ariyyahashareesashari scholarsasharisasmaaasrar rasheedasrar rashidat-tabariat-tirmidheeatabek shukrov nasafiatheismatomismaugustineaydinbaqillanibarelwibayaan talbees al-jahmiyyahbayjooribayjuribelief sciencebetter ash'aribi dhatihibishr al-mareesibucket theologycompetition cornercompositeday of arafahdemocritusdetoxdivisibleearly ash'arisearly ashariseesaaencompassmentfake hanbalisfakhr al-din al-razifakhr ud-din ar-razifalaasifahfalsafahfaqirfawqiyyahforty hadithgf haddadghadabgrave worshipgreek philosophershaadithhaashiyahhanbalisharfharranharwalahhellenismhishaamiyyahhizb ut-tahrirhudoothhudooth ul-ajsaamhuloolhulul al-hawadithibn abi zayd al-qayrawaniibn al-mutahhiribn asaakiribn asakiribn battahibn darbasibn fawrakibn hajribn hajr al-asqalaniibn jareer at-tabariibn jarir al-tabariibn khuzaymahibn kullaabibn kullabibn mahdi al-tabariibn seenaibn sinaibn taymiyyahibrahim osi-efaidol worshipihaatahilm al-kalaamilm al-kalamilm ul-kalamimaam adh-dhahabiimaam ahmadimaam ahmad bin hanbalimaam ash-shaafi'eeimam malikinqisaamintercessionintoxicationistidlaalistiwaaithbaatittihaadityaanjahm bin safwaanjahm bin safwanjahmee baleedjahmeespeakjahmi baleedjahmitejahmite ash'arisjahmitesjahmiyyahjahmiyyah mu'tazilahjawharjawharahjawharat ut-tawhidjihahjismjismiyyahkalaamkalaam nafseekalaam nafsikalam atomismkalam nafsikarraamiyyahkhabar ul-waahidkullaabi ash'ariskullaabiyyahkullabi asharislafdhiyyahlater ash'arisliquormarifahmetaphysicsmicro madrasamu'tazilahmuhammad abduhmuhammad anwar shah al-kashmirimuhammad fahmimuhammad sa'eed ramadan al-butimuhdathmujassimahmurakkabmushabbihahmutafalsifahmutakallimoonnadhrnaqd al-tadmuriyyahnaruijinaseehah dhahabiyyahneo-hanbalisneo-platonismnihaayat ul-iqdaamnizar hammadinuh ha mim kellernuh kellernur uz zamaan institutenuzoolpersonal developmentphiladelphian jahmite ash'arisphiladelphian jahmitesphilophilosophersplatopseudo-hanbalisqadi abdul-jabbarqu'ranqur'anqur'an creationistsquraanquranridhaariyadh al-saaliheenrizqullah al-tamimisaalimiyyahsabeanssaeed foudahsaeed foudah sa'id foudahsaint worshipsalafiyyahsawtsayyid qutbseeking ilmself awarenessself helpshafaa'ahshahrastaanishahrastanisifaatsifaat dhaatiyyahsifaat fi'liyyahsifat fi'liyyahsifat khabariyyahsubstancesumaniyyahta'teelta'weelta'wiltabyin kadhib al-muftaritafweedtaj al-din al-subkitajseemtajsimtakaafu' al-adillahtakyeeftamtheeltaqi ad-din an-nabahanitaqiuddin al-nabhanitarkeebtashbeehtawhidtawhid al-ibaadahtawhid al-ibadahtawhid al-uloohiyyahtawhid al-uluhiyyahthe clinicthe quranthe thronetheologiansthomas aquinasthronetop tipsuluwwundercover ash'arisvoicewahhabiwahhabisyahyaa bin ammaaryusuf al-qaradawiyusuf an-nabahani
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