Ash'ari Competition Corner: 2nd Quiz - Did Allaah Speak With Anything That Negates His Truthfulness? Test Your Understanding of 'Kalaam Nafsee' and Take Your Ash'ariyyah For A Challenging Test Drive
Posted by Abu.Iyaad on Thursday, October, 08 2009 and filed under Articles
Key topics: Competition Corner Competition Corner

The Ash'ari Competition Corner at Asharis.Com, is intended to foster better understanding about the Ash'arite creed and its underlying foundations. This is our second quiz question. If you feel really confident about your Ash'ariyyah and want to give it a test, or you are looking to "polish up", why not participate? Details of how to do so are after the quiz question.

Competition Corner - Did Allaah Speak With Anything That Negates His Truthfulness?

Take a look at the following verse:

لَقَدْ سَمِعَ اللّهُ قَوْلَ الَّذِينَ قَالُواْ إِنَّ اللّهَ فَقِيرٌ وَنَحْنُ أَغْنِيَاء

Allaah has indeed heard the saying of those who said, "Indeed Allaah is poor and we are rich"! (Aali Imraan 3:181)

And also the following verse:

قَدْ سَمِعَ اللَّهُ قَوْلَ الَّتِي تُجَادِلُكَ فِي زَوْجِهَا وَتَشْتَكِي إِلَى اللَّهِ وَاللَّهُ يَسْمَعُ تَحَاوُرَكُمَا إِنَّ اللَّهَ سَمِيعٌ بَصِيرٌ

Indeed Allaah has heard the statement of she (Khawlah bint Tha'labah) that disputes with you (O Muhammad) concerning her husband (Aus bin As-Saamit), and complains to Allaah. And Allaah hears the argument between you both. Verily, Allaah is All-Hearer, All-Seer. (Al-Mujadilah 58:1)

From these verses Allaah has affirmed, in the past tense, and with the particles "qad" (denoting completion of an act) and "laqad" (denoting completion of an act with emphasis) - that He heard (sami'a) the saying of she who disputes and of the saying of the Jews, and also affirmed in the present tense that He hears (yasma'u) the discussion (of she who disputes).

Background Context to The Question

Now recall that the Ash'ari creed is that the Qur'an is eternal (qadeem) - and this is not the saying of Ahl us-Sunnah, it is the saying of Ibn Kullaab whom al-Ash'ari followed and there is no one who said this before Ibn Kullaab (d. 240H), the saying of Ahl us-Sunnah is that the Qur'an is from Allaah's knowledge and Allaah's knowledge is eternal and the Qur'an, whilst from His knowledge, is something that Allaah spoke as and when He willed. But the Kullaabiyyah Ash'ariyyah said that "the Qur'an is eternal" and that Allaah spoke it in eternity, once, without succession sequence (of its letters and words), and that Allaah does not have actions tied to His will and power which means it is not possible for Allaah to have instances of speech that can be said to be other than each other. As an Ash'ari you should be clear on these issues, and you should know them like the back of your hand. And you should also know that the reason why actions for Allaah tied to His will and power have to be rejected because it conflicts with and opposes that intellectual proof of "hudooth ul-ajsaam" which was used first against the Indian Atheists by Jahm bin Safwan (ex. 128H) and later refined by Abu al-Hudhayl al-Allaaf (d. 235H) and then taken up by al-Baqillani (d. 403H) and the rest of the Ash'aris in general in their books.

And because this argument uses the presence of qualities (sifaat) incidental attributes (a'raad) and actions (to the Mutakallimoon, hawaadith, meaning events, occurrences) to argue that they are bodies (ajsaam) that are "haadith", meaning to the Mutakallimoon, created (makhlooq), and therefore the universe is created - then when the Atheists said to them in return, "Fine, now described your Lord to us", the likes of Jahm and the Jahmiyyah had to deny everything for Allah in the revealed texts otherwise it would falsify their proof. So from those things were that Allaah never spoke to Moses (an event, occurrence that would mean Allaah is a jism, body) and that the Qur'an is not Allaah's speech, that Allaah does not have speech and that the Qur'an is something created. So the Mu'tazilah took up the saying of the Jahmiyyah and said that the Qur'an is created, it was created in the Preserved Tablet or Jibreel, and likewise Allaah created His speech in the tree when He spoke to Moses, and that this can be said to be "Allaah's Speech" (Kalaamullaah), just like it is said, "Baytullah", regarding the Ka'bah and "Rasoolullaah", regarding the Messenger, and "Naaqatullaah" regarding the She-camel and so on.

And then Ibn Kullaab came along and said that this Qur'an is created, but it is not the speech (Kalaam) of Allaah that is uncreated. That Kalaam is the "Kalaam Nafsee", and he was the first to innovate this saying and also the saying that the Qur'an itself is "qadeem". So the Kullaabiyyah said the speech of Allaah which is uncreated is the singular, indivisible meaning that is present with His self from eternity, and as for the Qur'an we have it is a quotation (hikaayah) of that meaning. So Abu al-Hasan al-Ash'ari used to sit in the circles of the Kullaabites and he heard this saying of "Kalaam Nafsee" and he adopted it, except that he said it is an expression (ibaarah) and not a quotation (hikaayah). And so this Kullaabi doctrine became the deen of the Ash'arites in this issue - and the origins of it all lie in the creed of the Jahmites who were first to say that this Qur'an we have, which is recited, memorized and heard is created - and this is saying of all of the Mutakallimoon - except that those who became known as the Ash'arites of the later times are the greatest in their deception in trying to cover up the reality of their saying - and that is the subject of another article. So their intent in all of this is to avoid falsifying their "intellectual proof" of "hudooth ul-ajsaam" - and thus they had to deny that Allaah has actions tied to His will, and as it relates to Allaah's speech, that Allaah speaks when He wills, however He wills, whenever He wills - as this would mean, according to their metaphysical proof, that Allaah is a body (jism) subject to events (hawaadith).

The Question

Now dear Ash'ari, if you are still with us, then here is the question of our quiz:

Did Allaah speak untruthfully in those two verses? Meaning, that since Ash'aris believe that the Qur'an is eternal (qadeem), it is from Allaah's eternal speech which is the Kalaam Nafsee, are there things in the Qur'an that amount to untruths? Because if the Qur'an existed eternally with Allaah, yet Allaah says, "Allaah has indeed heard the saying of those who said ..." and "Allaah has indeed heard the saying of she that disputes ..." and neither she that disputes or those who said what they said existed from eternity alongside this speech which existed with Allaah's self and later expressed (according to the Ash'aris) in the words we now have with us in the Qur'an that is memorized, recited and heard, and as quoted in the two verses above. In short, are their lies in the Qur'an? Considering (upon the Ash'ari creed) that this Qur'an is an expression of a meaning present with Allaah's Self from eternity. What is the answer to this? And how can this matter be resolved? And what is the solution?

The answer must come from an Ash'ari perspective. In other words what would be the response to this from the Ash'ari madhab and its textbooks?

How to Participate

Please send us your answers and explanations through our contact page. This competition will last for one week starting today.

Updates and Responses

Thursday, 8 October 2009 No takers.

Friday, 9 October 2009 No takers.

Saturday, 10 October 2009 No takers. Disappointing.

Let's Increase the Stakes

We haven't had any participation from budding Ash'ari Kalam Atomists and highly-powered Ash'ari defenders of the intellectual realm of "hudooth ul-ajsaam". So we are going to raise the stakes a little.

If we don't see any effort on behalf of the Ash'aris to defend their "Ash'ariyyah" in the form of responses with satisfactory answers to the above question, then the following presumption will be regarded as the standing truth, until it is rebutted:

Every Ash'ari who holds on to the doctrine of Kalam Nafsee (that Allaah's Speech is only the "singular meaning" that resides within Himself from eternity) is claiming, by necessity of this belief, that Allaah spoke lies and that there remains what amounts to lies in the expression (ibaarah) of the Kalaam Nafsee, this "expression" being the "created" Qur'an to the Ash'aris. And we seek refuge in Allaah from such an enormity, lofty and exalted is Allaah from what the oppressors presume, with a great and lofty exaltation.

This statement stands and remains as truth until a satisfactory answer is given to the quiz question above. Hint: Start looking for the cell phone numbers of your Kellers and Foudahs and the other big Jahmee guns.

Saturday, 10 October 2009 17:21:00 No takers. Disappointed.

Looks like we need to increase the stakes a bit more

In addition to the two "lies" above (according to the doctrine of "Kalaam Nafsee" of the Kullaabi Ash'aris), lets increase the stakes more to see if we can get a response. So we say:

Hey look, here's another "pack of "lies" - according to the Ash'arite doctrine of "Kalaam Nafsee":

Baqarah (2:67 onwards):

وَإِذْ قَالَ مُوسَى لِقَوْمِهِ إِنَّ اللّهَ يَأْمُرُكُمْ أَنْ تَذْبَحُواْ بَقَرَةً

[Remember] When Moses said to his people, "Indeed Allaah command you to slaughter a cow..."

Well, no Moses, no Jews, and no cow to slaughter in existence alongside the Kalaam Nafsee from eternity. And Allaah uses the particel "idh", along with a verb in the past tense "qaala" referring to Moses who said that Allaah "commands", so the command had obviously been communicated to ... yes ... a non-existent Moses, who was conveying it to the non-existent Jews. So then the non-existent Jews kept asking questions, being pedantic, what type of [non-existent] cow and how old and what color and so on. So Allaah says that the [non-existent] Jews said to [the non-existent] Moses, in the past tense:

قَالُواْ ادْعُ لَنَا رَبَّكَ يُبَيِّن لَّنَا مَا هِيَ

They said, "Call upon your Lord for us that He may make plain to us what it is!" (2:68)

And the [non-existent] Jews repeated this [non-existent] question three times, and [the non-existent] Moses responded three times with [what was from eternity the non-existent saying of a non-existent Moses]:

قَالَ إِنَّهُ يَقُولُ

He (Moses) said: "He (Allaah) says..."

So [upon the Kalaam Nafsee] no Moses, no Jews, no cow, the non-existent Moses had supplicated three times to Allaah and Allaah had responded three times to a non-existent Moses explaining the nature of the non-existent cow that ought to be slaughtered by the non-existent Jews. And Allaah said about the non-existent Moses, "qaala", meaning "He (the non-existent Moses) said..." - that's in the past tense, that "Innahu yaqoolu", referring to Allaah that "He (Allaah) is saying ...".

So to get this right, Allaah said in eternity in the past tense, that Moses had said (qaala, in the past tense) that Allaah is saying (yaqoolu in the present tense) regarding what the Jews had said (qaaloo) in the past tense ...

And after all of this to-ing and fro-ing in the past and present tense and between the non-existent Moses and the non-existent Jews, the Jews eventually did slaughter the non-existent cow:

قَالُواْ الآنَ جِئْتَ بِالْحَقِّ فَذَبَحُوهَا وَمَا كَادُواْ يَفْعَلُونَ

They said (to Moses), "Now you have brought the truth." So they slaughtered it though they were near to not doing it. (Al-Baqarah 2:71)

So Allaah says in the past tense, "fa dhabahoohaa", that these non-existent Jews, slaughtered the non-existent cow, and the final part of the verse, "though they were near to not doing it" establishes that the act had certainly been completed - i.e. in eternity (upon the creed of Kalaam Nafsee) - with non-existent Jews and a non-existent cow.

And this, O dear reader, is the type of fooling and playing around which is necessitated by the people of falsehood who speak with innovated sayings in belief that none of the Salaf ever spoke with - and we seek refuge in Allaah from what their sayings necessitate, and lofty and exalted is Allaah from all of that with a lofty exaltation!

As for Ahl us-Sunnah, they say: Allaah has never ceased to be one who speaks (mutakallim) and further, He speaks when He wills, however He wills, whenever He wills, and this conforms to the clear and manifest evidences and indications in the Book and the Sunnah.

Dear Ash'ari,as you can see now, the stakes are high, so you need to get on that cell-phone quick, start sending out those broadcasts to your email lists, get onto the forums and blogs of all those highly-charged Kalaam Atomists, and start finding an answer real soon ... and if saving the Ash'ari creed and defending the realm is not enough of an incentive, how about we throw in a free copy of Imaam Bukhaaree's "Khalq Af'aal il-Ibaad"?

Sunday, 11 October 2009 No takers.

Monday, 12 October 2009 No takers.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009 No takers.

Wednesday, 14 October 2009 No takers.

Competition closed.