Jahmite Intellectual Fraudsters Abu Bilal Maliki, Faqir, and Muhammad Fahmi on the Authorship of al-Ibanah by Abu al-Hasan al-Ash'ari - Part 4: Proof of Ashari Tamperings of al-Ibanah
Posted by Abu.Iyaad on Sunday, September, 19 2010 and filed under Articles
Key topics: Abu Bilal Maliki Faqir Muhammad Fahmi Al-Ibanah

The Various Manuscript of al-Ibanah

Dr. Fawqiyyah Mahmud points out four manuscripts in her 1397H (1973CE) print edition of al-Ibanah and labels them as (س), (ك), (ز), (د).

First lets list brief details of each one (refer to pages 187-192 in her introduction):

  1. The Alexandrian Manuscript (س)
    This does not have any date (!), and nor the name of who made the mansucript copy (!), it is in much better condition than the rest. Strangely, Dr. Fawqiyyah decided to use this as the foundation, even after admitting its been tampered with and has had insertions from people with Mu'tazili (read As'hari) orientations.

  2. Maktabah al-Azhar Manuscript (ز)
    It is dated 1307H, and it is written at the end of it, "And it has been written by the slave to his Lord, making tawassul to the Prophet, al-Udnani Muhammad, Muhammad al-Hameedaani..." This is a strong indication that this copy is by an Ash'ari Sufi. This mansucript has clear legible writing and is missing some things not which Dr. Fawqiyyah explains as either omitted them, or the copy he used was itself damaged in certain places.

  3. The Maktabah Koshak Manuscript (ك)
    It is written at the front of this manuscript "From the books of the needy, Isma'il Uthman Pasha in the year 1154, the month of Shawwal" showing it' posession, and at the end of the manuscript it indicates that the manuscript copy was written in 1084H.

  4. The Dar al-Kutub al-Misriyyah Manuscript (د)
    This is dated 1307H, on the first page it has the seal for the waqf of Ahmad bin Isma'il bin Muhammad Taymur in the year 1321H. This manuscript is preceded by al-Risalah Fi al-Dhabb anil-Ash'ari by Abul-Qasim Abd al-Malik bin Isa bin Darbaas (d. 659H) - which is a book written to defend al-Ibanah from the claims of the Jahmiyyah and those who claim al-Ashari wrote it out of deception, without believing its contents.

After providing these details, Dr. Fawqiyyah explains:

... it has become clear to me that the manuscript of Maktabah al-Azhar al-Sharif which I have indicated with (ز), and the manuscript of Rayfan Koshak (ك) and the manuscript of Dar al-Kutub al-Misriyyah (د) are approximate to each other from the angle ofo the order of the text, and the differences between them are little. And that is in opposition to the Alexandrian city manuscript, which I have designated with (س) , and which is free of many of the impairments (damage, gaps) which are found in the other three manuscripts, with complete passages in some instances.

This indicates that the manuscript which does not have any date(!) or any name(!) is different to the rest all of which are similar in their sequence and order of events. Now we need to pay attention what Dr. Fawqiyyah has said about this mansucript (س)!

Ash'ari Tamperings of the Alexandrian Manuscript (س)

Dr. Fawqiyah said on p. 188 of the introduction:

And I have considered it (س) to be the main, root manuscript because it is absent taqdim (advancement) and ta'khir (delay) that is devoid of meaning, and it does not have impairments (damage, gaps. etc.) which are of substance as opposed to the other manuscripts and also because its manuscript copier was precise in the words to a great extent ...

First of all this is a very poor reason for considering this manuscript to be the base and foundation, especially considering it has no date(!) and its manuscript copier is unnamed and unknown (!) and it appears to be much more recent than the other three because it is in much better condition. However, pay very close attention to what she reveals straight afterwards:

Except that it is necessary to be noted what it contains of additional [insertions] which require close scrutiny, in order to disqualify what has been attached to it of fabricated expressions (ibaaraat madsoosah).

She admits that this manuscript has fabricated additions, and then states:

For it has become apparent [in this manuscript] - even though these [fabricated] additions generally support the orientation of the Salaf - [such] statement(s) that opposes this general orientation ...

After admitting fabrications in this manuscript, she states that the nature and orientation of these fabrications are in line with the orientation of the Salaf (!) even if in their details they they oppose the way of the Salaf - it does not really make sense to even say this, it is redundant and meaningless, as we shall see from the examples that Dr. Fawqiyah herself brings. In essence, she is using this manuscript as the root and basis and is forced to reveal that it has been tampered with, and is trying to downplay this fact, however it is very hard to do this, and she maintains her academic integrity by indicating documenting such tamperings, so straight after she gives examples:

An example of that is what is found in page 81 (of the manuscript) in explanation of al-Istiwa in that it is a with al-qahr (domination, subduing) and al-qudrah (power). So this statement, definitely, by all means it is in the hand of one of the readers of the manuscript who is inclined towards I'tizaal and from those who at the same time are ignorant of the reality of the affairs and what confirms, supports this ...

Allahu Akbar! When she says "inclined towards I'tizaal" this is none other than an Ash'ari who is following the approach of al-Baghdadi (d. 429H) and al-Juwayni (d. 478H) and al-Ghazali (d. 505H) and al-Razi (d. 606H) who took the way of I'tizal regarding these attributes of al-istiwaa, 'Uluww, Face, Hands, Eyes... and in any case, what would a Mu'tazili gain out of tampering with al-Ibanah? So this handiwork is certainly that of an later Jahmite As'hari. Then she gives another example:

...and what confirms, supports this is the comment on page 82 (of the manuscript), whose text is:

Pause over this chapter, for the author has taken liberties in bringing these expressions, they explicitly indicate directions (jihaat) and Jismiyyah (bodily form) by inclusion (dimniyyan), so reflect

This speech here indicates that its author inclines towards absolute tanzih which the Mu'tazilah speak of and which results in negation of the attributes, in the manner that we have explained previously, in particular. And that adhering to the orientation of the Salaf with respect to these [fabricated] additions is plain to every scrutinizing researcher.

This absolute tanzih is what the later As'arites tended towards in negating what the early Kullabi Ash'aris affirmed. So we have a second example of what is most certainly the attempt of an Ash'arite trying to tamper with the text and add his own explanation to it.

Examples of Ash'ari Tamperings in the Alexandrian Manuscript (س)

Let's take a look now at some of these fabricated additions occuring in this undated (!) manuscript copy with unnamed writer (!)

1st Example of Ash'ari Tampering of al-Ibaanah

Here on page 107:

In the three manuscripts (which are certainly the older ones which have had more wear and tear and which should have been considered the foundation) there occurs in:

Allah is ascended over the Throne, which is above the heavens, and if Allah, the Mighty and Majestic, had not been upon the Throne, they would not have raised their hands towards the Throne

And Dr. Fawqiyah points out in the footnote at the bottom:

What is in between the brackets in [manuscript] (س) is the following:

...with an istiwa' with the meaning of al-qahr (subduing) and al-ghalabah (domination), and if Allah had not made istiwa over the Throne with the meaning which He intended, the Most High, they would not have raised their hands towards the Throne

And this expression is confusing in meaning.

As you can see, this is a clear example of Ash'arite tampering and fabrication upon al-Ibaanah, and the explanation of al-istiwaa with al-qahr and al-ghalabah (over the Throne) is the interpretation of the later Ash'arites who took it from the Mu'tazilah. The verifier, Dr. Fawqiyyah DID NOT include this wording in the main text indicating that they are clear FABRICATIONS upon the text.

2nd Example of Ash'ari Tampering of al-Ibaanah

First of all notice that the large paragraph (point no. 27) is found only in the undated (!) manuscript copy (س) with an unnamed, unknown manuscript copy writer (!), and it is different to the other three manuscripts which Dr. Fawqiyah points out at the bottom. In the other three manuscripts there occcurs only the following:

And Allah is ascended over His Throne, just as He said, "the Most Merciful ascended over the Throne."

As for the lengthy paragraph, guess where it is taken from? Yes, lifted straight out of one of al-Ghazali's works (!!!!!) and then again (!!!!!).

Here is the book "Al-Arba'een Fi Usool al-Deen" of Abu Hamid al-Ghazali (d. 606H), and it is edited by Abdullah al-Urwaani and Muhammad al-Shaqafah, printed by Darl al-Qalam, their first edition (2003).

Have a look at what is on page 18-19 and read the entire thing, then go back and read what is in the undated, tampered with, manuscript copy (س) which Dr. Fawqiyah explicitly stated has fabricated insertions (madsoosah) from people with an I'tizaali (read bigoted later Ash'ari) orientation. The entire paragraph from beginning to end is actually identical to the letter to the fabricated insertion in manuscript copy (س).

This leaves absolutely no doubt whatsoever that manuscript copy (س) is tampered with, unreliable, undated copy which has been butchered by a bigoted Ash'ari, here is the quote from al-Ghazali:

Allaahu Akbar! This fraud that the Jahmiyyah have been peddling regarding the so-called tampering with al-Ibanah, trying to ascribe this to Ahl al-Sunnah has fallen back upon them and it is established that it was most certainly a Jahmite Ash'ari who has been tampering with the original al-Ibaanah.

3rd Example of Ash'ari Tampering of al-Ibaanah

And another example of Ash'ari tampering in manuscript copy (س):

In this example we see a clear example of attempted Ash'arite distortion in the unreliable, doctored manuscript (س) where they have poisoned the text with the insertion of the ta'wil of the Jahmiyyah and Mu'tazilah of yad (hand) to qudrah (power). After the mention that Allaah created Adam, and garden of 'Adan, and wrote the Torah with his Hand, the statement:

Meaning, through the hand of his power, the Sublime

is missing in all the other manuscript and is found only in the undated(!), manuscript (س) with unnamed and unknown manuscript writer(!). This is clearly an attempt to explain away the attribute upon the way of the Jahmiyyah and Mu'tazilah which all the early Kullabis and Asharis refuted, such as al-Baqillani, and al-Bayhaqi (see here and here).

And what proves this is a fabricated insertion into al-Ibaanah is that a few pages later al-Ash'arite refutes the ta'wil of hand to power (qudrah) in detail:

This is just part of much of what is found in refuting the Jahmee, Mu'tazili ta'wil of hand and it is refuted also by al-Baqillani and al-Bayhaqi.


It is very clear, by way of what Dr. Fawqiyyah revealed, who was very honest in pointing out what she did - despite showing an inclination to the Ash'arite way - that it is the Ash'arites who have tried to doctor the text of al-Ibanah, and even if she did not point to an Ash'ari culprit, but simply said that it is someone "inclined towards I'tizal." In reality, the Ash'arites from the time of al-Juwayni all inclined towards I'tizal, as is not hidden, and it is only they who have a clear operative motive for wanting to discredit al-Ibaanah or at least to doctor its contents, particularly in relation al-uluww, al-istiwaa and the Sifat Khabariyyah.