Sa'eed Foudah on the Attributes
This is a translated excerpt from his written caper that is supposedly a refutation of al-Tadmuriyyah:
When the word 'attribute' [ ṣifa ] is mentioned, the first thing that comes to mind is not a hand, leg, shin, head, or any other body part. When the word 'attribute' is mentioned, the first thing that comes to mind is a quality which subsists in an entity, such as power, knowledge, will, and the like. As for hand and head and so on, these words do not indicate attributes. If we were asked about the attributes of man, we could not say: 'He has a head, hand, and leg.' Nay, these things are descriptions [ waṣf ] of man and not his attributes [ ṣifa ]. Man's attributes would be that he is a thinker [ mufakkir ], articulate [ nāṭiq ] and possesses will [ murīd ].
If someone asks about what is man composed of, the answer is that man is composed of hands, legs, a head, a stomach, a back, and so on. In answering this question, the physical parts of man are mentioned and not things like mercy, knowledge, will and other qualitative attributes. These things are attributes of man; not parts. There is a huge difference between parts and attributes.
In reality, this has been already addressed in a two part series previously, we refer you to these articles:
- 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 - (see here)
- 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 2 - (see here)
- Recommended Text of Repentance for the Marifah (Jahmite) Ash'aris From Their Academic and Intellectual Fraud in Which They Were Caught Red-Handed - (see here)
- Requesting Marifah Staff (And All Contemporary Jahmiyyah Posing as 'Ash'arites' in Every Corner of the World) To Announce Their Repentance For Lying Against Allaah and His Religion and For Reviling the Deen of the Early Kullaabi Ash'arites - (see here)
We can simply make some terse comments and notes here:
ONE: We have already established that Ibn Kullab, al-Muhaasibi, al-Qalaanisee (who are the true and real forerunners and founders of what became known as "Ash'ariyyah") all affirmed the attributes of hand, face, and eye as attributes (sifaat) of the essence (dhaat) of Allaah. Likewise al-Ash'ari himself (see this article and this one), and al-Baqillaani (see this article and this article), and al-Bayhaqi (see here and also here) and this is corroborated by the likes of Abu Mansur al-Baghdaadi, al-Juwayni, and al-Aamidee (see here).
TWO: These Early Ash'aris did not have a problem with affirmation here because these are permanent attributes, and the foundation of the Kullaabi Ash'ari school is to deny what they call hawaadith (events) for Allaah - since this was necessitated by the proof of huduth al-ajsaam and Ibn Kullaab submitted to some of its foundations when he was unable to rebut the Mu'tazilah. As for the attributes such as face, hands, eyes, they had no problem here as they are necessary, binding, permanent attributes that were not connected to the argument of Hudooth (recency, origination) - since that occurred in the context of Allaah's speech (Kalaam) and the Qur'aan, on account of which Ibn Kullaab invented the Kalam Nafsi doctrine.
THREE: In light of the above, the Early Ash'aris refuted the arguments of the Mu'tazilah and Jahmiyyah in their negation of these attributes, and their argument was founded upon the proof of tarkib (composition), which itself came from the atheist Philosophers. They used this proof to deny all attributes, including hearing, seeing, life, knowledge, speech, hand, face, eye and so on. But since the only issue with the early Kullaabi Ash'aris was their inability to refute the Mu'tazilah on the issue of Allaah's chosen actions (which they referred to as hawaadith, events) and not the issue of permanent attributes unconnected to this matter, they had powerful rebuttals of the Jahmiyyah, Mu'tazilah on this matter. You can read by way of example how al-Baqillani rebuts them in this article. This rebuttal is in fact taken directly from al-Ash'ari, who in turn took it from Ibn Kullab who was in agreement with the Salaf on this matter.
FOUR: It is clear that all of the Salaf and the early Kullaabi Ash'aris affirm the likes of hand, face, eye as attributes (sifaat) for Allaah. As for Foudah's argument pertaining to what is and what is not a sifah (attribute), then with respect to man as a species, it is from the sifaat of man as a species that he is hearing, seeing, thinking, with face, eyes, ears, hands and so on. And as for Allaah, He is unique with no likeness, and no equal, and thus whatever Allaah affirmed for Himself is said to be a sifah (attribute), and this is how the Salaf spoke of these matters and Foudah is not more pious and erudite than the Salaf and those Early Ash'aris such that he should defraud his ignorant followers into thinking he is better guided than them and trying to be flashy with the terms sifah and wasf. We already established how the Early Ash'aris wrote chapter headings for these specific attributes using the word "sifaat" (attributes) for them. And the word sifah can mean an attribute, quality or a property of a thing.
FIVE: However, what Foudah is really doing here, and which his dumb-witted and unsuspecting followers don't realise, is that he is incorporating the proof of tarkib of the Philosophers and Mu'tazilah in order to lay the argument for denying these attributes as attributes of the essence. And this, as we have said before, is intellectual fraud and we caught another deluded, forsaken, defunct in intellect Jahmite fraudster red-handed in this matter, the one and only glutton-for-the-sandal, Abu Adam Naruiji (see that episode here). As we have said before, the Later Ash'aris were a bit unscrupulous in that they saw no problem in using the very arguments of the Mu'tazilah and the Philosophers [used against them to deny all the attributes] against Ahl al-Sunnah who affirm for Allaah what He and His Messenger (alayhis salaam) affirmed for Him without takyif, tamthil, tahrif and ta'teel. And thus the argument is that these are parts and this necessitates composition (tarkeeb) which necessitates Jismiyyah.
SIX: So what we have here is two groups of people and two sides of the fence. On one side we have all of the Salaf, from the Companions, Tabi'een, their successor, the four Imaams, the Muhadditheen, the Mufassireen, the Fuquhaa all in the first three to four hundred years, and following their way in this particular matter are Ibn Kullaab, al-Muhasibi, al-Ash'aris and his earliest followers. Their consensus on affirming these attributes as attributes (sifaat) and that none of this entails tashbih is narrated through many Scholars, from them Imaam al-Tirmidhi (see here) and al-Khatib al-Baghdaadee and others. Then on the other side we have the Sabean star and idol-worshipping pagan disbelievers who first used the language and terminology of al-ajsaam and al-a'raad (bodies and their incidental attributes) to prove the universe is originated and their language of "negative theology", and al-Ja'd who took it from them, and al-Jahm bin Safwan and the Jahmiyyah, and then Amr bin Ubayd, Bishr al-Mareesee, the Jubaa'ees and others from the Mu'tazilah, and their tail ends from the contemporaries such as Nuh Keller, Hamza Yusuf, Sa'eed Foudah, the Habashites and others - and all of them argue that affirmation of these attributes is tajsim, tashbih and kufr, and they all concur with each other and share each others arguments (without scruples) in order to wage war against the followers and submitters to the revealed Books and sent Messengers.
SEVEN: By now, the realities are already clear, but we need to finish to point out the dunce that is Foudah. How can you devise an argument against your opponents given one of two situations: The first, and this is the truth, is that there is a contradiction in your madhhab, with the early Kullabi Ash'aris, opposing the later ones who took the way of the Jahmiyyah and Mu'tazilah regarding these attributes. The second, and this is if we are generous, that there are two legitimate and acceptable points of view in the madhhab, that of the early Kullabi Ash'aris and that of the later (Jahmite) ones. In either of these two situations it is from the greatest of stupidity to try and make this argument against Ahl al-Sunnah and it in fact reveals the great intellectual fraud that dunces like Foudah are able to dupe their uneducated, unsophisticated followers, who even if they see through this sophistry, are too plagued with bigotry to utter a word of truth even if it be against their ownselves.
If you are wondering what goads these dunces into presuming tashbih and tajsim for the revealed texts, it is because they are guilty of making three types of false analogy (qiyaas) for Allaah, the Most High,and you can learn all about that in this article.
We leave you with some texts:
Speaking about those ahaadeeth which mention the attributes of Allah, Imaam at-Tirmidhee (d.279H)- (rahimahullaah) said in his Sunan (1/128-129):
It has been stated by more than one person from the People of Knowledge about this hadeeth and what resembles it from the narrations, such as the Attributes, and the descent of our Lord - the Blessed and Most High - 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
Al-Baaqillani rebuts the Mu'tazilah in their accusation of tajsim, in his book al-Tamhid (see here), under a chapter heading "Various Chapters Pertaining to the Sifaat":
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 adduced the existence (wujood) [that they observe] as argument [in this regard] .
And Abu Uthman al-Sabuni wrote in his book Aqidat al-Salaf wa As.haab al-Hadith (pp. 161-162, Dar al-Aasimah), after mentioning the way of the Salaf on the attributes is affirmation (ithbaat) with negation of takyif, ta'wil, tashbih, and after giving the example of hand (al-yad) and refuting the distortions of the Jahmiyyah and Mu'tazilah:
And likewise do they say regarding all of the Attributes (sifaat) - 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 al-Bayhaqi included a chapter in his book, al-I'tiqaad, with the title, "Chapter: A Mention of the Verses and Narrations Reported Regarding the Affirmation of the Attribute of Face, [and of] Two Hands and Eye" and within it he rebuts the ta'wils of the Mu'tazilah and affirms them as attributes of the essence without likeness.
These are just a few quick samples, there is of course multitudes more that can be quoted, but as this Jahmite fraud is so apparent to see, the sincere reader will suffice with just indications.