Deconstructing the Micro Madrasa (Of Ilm Al-Kalaam and Tajahhum) of Ibrahim Osi-Efa (Liverpool, UK): Part 1
Posted by Abu.Iyaad on Wednesday, September, 11 2013 and filed under Articles
Key topics: Ibrahim Osi-Efa Micro Madrasa

Definition of Theology

In Introducing Theology, the Ten Principles (Year 1, Session 1), Ibrahim Osi-Efa introduces theology with a definition:

Notes and Comments

01. Just as a person will not achieve the desired goal by worshipping Allaah through other than what He legislated and just like a person will not achieve the worldly pursuits through other than the ways and means that lead to their acquisition, then likewise the theology of Ahl al-Kalaam does not lead to the desired end, which is rationally proving Allaah's existence, the Prophethood of Muhammad (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) and the Resurrection. The theology of Ahl al-Kalaam aims to establish these three affairs. However, the tools and goods being offered are flawed and defective and do not lead to the desired outcome, despite appearing to do so on the surface. This is why many of those who delved into it (al-Ghazali, al-Razi) for a lifetime only ended up utterly confused and bewildered at the end of their lives, and went through many different (often contradictory) phases or viewpoints. These tools and goods are the refuse of previous nations, the Hellenized Jews, Christians and Sabeans, and the theology of Ahl al-Kalaam from the Muslim nation is simply plagiarized from their theology (in terms of the underlying language). A quick survey of the language used by the Sabeans, Philo Judeas of Alexandria and Augustine of Hippo (read this series) will soon take you out of the cloud cuckoo land of today's Jahmites posing as Ash'aris and put you squarely into reality. In this first slide Ibrahim Osi-Efa aims to define this "theology" with a view to legitimizing it.

02. What the Jahmites refer to as "the science of theology" and the ambiguous misleading terms such as "Usul al-Din" or "Aqidah" or "Tawhid" (misleading from the point of view of what they intend by them) are built upon a corrupt, false foundation which is demolished by the Qur'an, Sunnah, and Ijmaa'. This foundation is that a person must be able to rationally prove the existence of a creator through long-winded philosophical kalam arguments, otherwise the very basis of his creed is in doubt. The claim of this being the first obligation is written textually by the heads of the Mu'tazilah such as al-Qaadee Abd al-Jabbaar, Ibrahim al-Nadhaam, al-Zamakhsharee, and the Asha'ris such as al-Baqillani, al-Baghdaadee, al-Juwaynee, al-Aamidee, and likewise the Maturidis, Abu Mansur al-Maturidi, and Abu al-Mu'een al-Nasafi and others. Some of them such as al-Juwaynee (d. 478H) went as far as to negate the Islam of a person who did not enter into this Kalaam to rationally prove his faith (see this article). This is false and rejected in the Qur'an because belief in the creator is fitriyy, dhurooriyy (innate, necessary, every soul is born disposed to it, acknowledging it). All the Messengers that were sent appealed primarly to the fitrah (and not primary to aql, reason, even though appeal to reason is also made in the Qur'an but in a way other than that of the Kalaam of the mutakallimeen). Refer to (14:10) and (30:30) and relevant exegesis. It is rejected in the Sunnah because the Messenger (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) said, "Every child is born upon the fitrah..." It is rejected by Ijmaa (consensus) because there is consensus on the fact that the first obligation upon a mukallaf (legally bound person) is to affirm the shahaadatayn. Even those scholars - such as al-Nawawi, al-Qurtubi and Ibn Hajar who were attached to Hadeeth and Sunnah but who were influenced to one degree or another by approach of ta'weel or tafweed (because they lived and acquired knowledge in a time where Ash'arism had spread and become dominant), even they did not leave alone this false principle of the people of Kalaam (despite being affected by them in the matter of ta'weel and tafweed). In this article you will see al-Nawawi and al-Qurtubi refuting the Mutakallimeen (despite being affected by them) on this particular matter, and Ibn Hajar likewise (see this article) demolishes this foundation by saying within his explanation of Kitab al-Eemaan in al-Fath (whilst refuting al-Ash'ari and the Mutakallimeen):

And alongside this, then the saying of Allaah, the Most High, "So set your face towards the upright religion, Allaah's fitrah (meaning Tawheed) to which He has made mankind to be inclined..." (ar-Rum 30:30) and the hadeeth, "Each child is born upon the fitrah (i.e. inclination to Allah's recognition and Tawheed)..." are very clear in rebutting this matter from its very foundation.

Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullaah) explains what is correct, in Dar' ut-Ta'aarud (8/6-10):

And the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) did not call anyone to contemplation (over the creation for deduction of proof for Allah's existence) and nor to the mere affirmation of a creator. Rather, the first thing he called them to was the two testimonials (of faith) and this is what he commanded the Companions.

03. To understand and put Scholars like al-Nawawi, al-Qurtubi and Ibn Hajr into perspective and grasp how they are deceptively used and placed into the first layer of the cake of deception of the Jahmiyyah in order to call people to their theology based upon the heretical (philosophical) Kalaam they made to be the foundation of Islaam, read the following articles: "The Levels and Ranks of Ash'arism or Those To Whom It is Ascribed" (read here), and the relevant paragraph in "Destroying the Slander of tajsim (Anthropomorphism) Against Ahl al-Sunnah wal-Jamaa'ah: Part 1" (read here).

04. Upon the false premise that the first obligation is al-nadhr wal-istidlaal (investigative study into proof of the universe being originated), the Theologians (of the ilm al-Kalaam condemned by the Salaf) elaborated upon a proof known as "huduth al-ajsaam" that has flawed, corrupt principles underlying it. These flawed corrupt principles allowed the Philosophers who believed in the eternity of matter to assault the theology of the Mutakallimeen (Ash'aris, Maturidis) when they saw the weakness in them, and this led to centuries of battle and debate and also saw utter confusion and bewilderment amongst the greatest of their scholars, such as al-Ghazali (d. 505H) and al-Razi (d. 606H). When Ibrahim Osi-Efa is defining "theology" for you here in this first slide, this is what he is drawing you into. A worn-out, outdated, flawed kalam theology that does not attain the objective. Rather, it was and continues to be pounded by the atheists and Philosophers today and it only causes those who delve into it to inherit doubt. Be sure that eventually, it leads only to one of two things: a) the admission that the Kalaam argument proves the opposite, that the universe is eternal and there was no actual act of creation that took place which can be ascribed to Allah the Exalted as His act, ascribed to His essence (since the very nature of the proof requires this negation), or b) insist on the validity of this proof and affirm the universe was originated by a cause which you must then define only in terms of the philosophical, metaphysical, conceptual terminology you used to argue for it in the first place, in which case you will be gravitating towards an Aristotelian deity (immaterial, changeless, timeless, unembodied "mind" or "intellect") and then you will start assualting the reveled texts to make them agree with this language, veiling that assault under the deceptive slogans of "ta'weel", "tafweed" and "tanzeeh."

05. F. E. Peters writes in his essay The Origins of Islamic Platonism: The School Tradition:

There were many varieties of Platonism in Islam. One of the earliest of the Muslim Theologians, Jahm ibn Ṣafwān (d. 746), was promulgating a view of God remarkably different from that of his contemporaries and yet remarkably like the negative theology current in later Greek Neo-Platonism. Islamic Philosophical Theology (ed. Parviz Morewedge, State University of New York Press, 1979), p. 14.

Referring here to the negation of being "material" and being subject to time and space and subject to events (hawaadith) and all the associated language and terminology that follows on from this, which was the hallmark of the Jahmites (and the Mu'tazilah, Ash'ariyyah and Maturidiyyah) who founded their theology upon this kalam, all of which actually originates from the definition of the "first cause" identified by Aristotle in his Metaphysics in the following language: "The unmoved mover is infinite, since it causes infinite motion. It follows that it is also without magnitude, since an infinite force cannot reside in a finite magnitude (and there can be no infinite magnitudes); having no magnitude means that the first mover is indivisible, having no parts", (now you know where the Mutakallimin get their statements such as "God does not occupy space, God does not have spatial extension" and so on). This unmoved mover is, "eternal, unmovable and separate from sensible things" (meaning cannot be perceived with the senses, and this is what al-Jahm bin Safwan brought into the Ummah), and he also says, "God is separate from sensible things because God has no magnitude (megethos), God is without a body or a spatial existence. The reason that God can have no magnitude is that God produces motion through infinite time, which means that God must be infinite, since an infinite effect requires an infinite cause; but there cannot be such a thing as an infinitude magnitude. As being a substance without magnitude, God is without parts and, therefore, indivisible (magnitudes are divisible)", and here in the next statement we see the Tawhid of the Jahmiyyah, Mu'tazilah and Ash'ariyyah, where in Metaphysics 12, we read "the primary essence has no matter, which means that there can only be one God, since it is matter that differentiates one form or definition into many manifestations of that one form or definition. Since God has no matter, then God is one not only formally or in definition, but also numerically" and here is something else which is a parallel to the theology of the Mutakallimin, straight from Aristotle, "It has been shown also that this primary essence cannot have any magnitude, but is without parts and indivisible. But it has also been shown that it is impassive and unalterable; for all the other changes are posterior to change of place." This last statement alludes to what the Mutakallimin are upon of denying what they call hawaadith for Allaah, the denial of those matters tied to Allaah's will and choice which they call "events" and "changes" but which to Ahl al-Sunnah are Allaah's chosen actions (Af'aal Ikhtiyaariyyah).

06. Now, once you have grasped the above, the rest of this series will make total sense to you when we deconstruct the theology of Ibrahim Osi-Efa. You will immediately recognize and see what is behind the claims of Ibrahim Osi-Efa with respect to theology and you will see that his creed is founded upon the Metaphysics of Aristotle and the "negative theology" that is fundamental to it (negating Aristotle's Ten Categories from Allaah), and you will see how this Aristotelian Tawhid clashes with the Tawhid of the Messengers, the affirmative theology in the Qur'an and in the Sunnah of Muhammad (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam). You will see the Metaphysics of Aristotle permeating the speech of Ibrahim Osi-Efa when he presents the Ash'ari, Maturidi views on Allaah's uluww, Allaah's ru'yah, Allaah's speech and the Qur'an. You will see the intoxicated mind of Ibrahim Osi-Efa, intoxicated with that Kalaam that leaves him and whoever is poisoned by him in a drunken stupor that is hardly recognized (by the uninformed and unaware) since Intoxication of the mind and intellect through false, corrupt conceptions and ideas is a hundred times more subtle than the Intoxication of the body through liquids, vapours and chemicals - please visit our support group, Aristotelians Anonymous (here) to learn more about this Intoxication.

07. When the Jahmiyyah and their offshoots (from whom Ibrahim Osi-Efa is descended) made this to be the foundation of their religion and they wrongly thought that merely affirming a creator and proving a creator on rational grounds enters one into the ranks of the Muwahhideen, and that this is the desired Tawheed, they had laid down the foundations of great misguidance in the Ummah and they opened the way for the shirk that the Messengers came to warn against and all the doubts associated with it to justify it. This is because their Tawhid does not go beyond the affirmation of creator - a matter which is fitriyy, dhurooriy, as has preceded. As a result, they erred in defining "ilaah" and they erred in defining the meaning of "laa ilaaha illallaah" and claimed it means "al-qaadiru ala al-ikhtiraa'", one who has power to invent, create. But this is not the Tawhid of the Messengers. So their Tawhid became a philosophical Tawhid, spoken of, debated and argued for on the basis of metaphysical language that originates with Aristotle, the languages of bodies (ajsaam, jawaahir) and accidents (a'raad) - and it is on the basis of this language they distorted the Qur'an in the name of ta'weel.

We shall take up Ibrahim Osi-Efa's definition of Tawhid in the next article inshaa'Allaah.