Translated by Raha ibn Donald Batts حفظه الله Video Courtesy: Bilal Nahim
In the Name of Allaah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful.
The Permanent Committee (for Research and Verdicts) was asked: “What is Salafiyyah, and what is your opinion concerning it?”
So they replied: “Salafiyyah is an ascription to the Salaf. The word ‘Salaf’ refers to the Companions of Allaah’s Messenger (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) and the Imaams of guidance from the first three generations of whom the Messenger of Allaah (sallAllaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) testified for as to their superiority when he said: ‘The best of mankind is my generation, then those who come after them, then those who come after them. Then there will come a people who will bear witness before taking an oath, and take an oath before bearing witness.’ [Reported by Imaam Ahmad in his Musnad, Al-Bukharee and Muslim]
The word Salafiyoon is the plural of Salafee, and it is an ascription to the Salaf. The meaning of the word Salaf has already been mentioned. Furthermore, it also refers to those who follow the methodology of the Salaf, which entails following the Book and the Sunnah, calling the people to them and acting upon them. So as a result of this, they become the adherents of the Sunnah and the unified body (Ahlus-Sunnah wal-Jamaa’ah).”
[Al-Lajnat-ud-Daa’imah Lil-Buhooth-il-‘Ilmiyyah (no. 1361) (2/165-166), Translated by Al- Ibaanah Publishing]
The Prophet (ﷺ) has forbidden exaggeration in praising him, and thus exaggeration in praising others with greater reason. This is because such an act may lead to associating others in worship with Allah. The Prophet (ﷺ) says:
“Do not exaggerate in praising me as the Christians praised the son of Mary,for I am only a slave. So, call me the slave of Allah and His Messenger.”
(Related by Al-Bukhari and Muslim)
Exaggerating in praise mentioned in the above-mentioned Hadith refers to exceeding the limits in praising the Prophet (ﷺ). Put differently, the Prophet (ﷺ) here instructs us not to exaggerate in praising him in the same way the Christians excessively praised Jesus (ﷺ), the son of Mary, to the extent that they claimed his godhood. The Prophet’s words, “..for I am only a slave. So. call me the slave of Allah and His Messenger.” mean, “Since I am Allah’s Servant and Messenger, you should not describe me with any other titles:’ So, we should call him Allah’s Servant and Messenger, as these are the titles given to him by Allah.
For instance, Allah says in the Qur’an:
(All praise is [due] to Allah, Who has sent down upon His Servant [Muhammad] the Book .” (Qur’an: Al-Kahf: 1).
Allah says also in the Qur’an, “O Messenger” (Qur’an: Al-Maidah: 67).
Moreover, He says, “O Prophet” (Qur’an: At -Talaq: 1).
However, those who have committed shirk through glorifying the graves have insisted on acting against the Prophet’s commands and committed the things he has prohibited, so they have gravely contradicted his commands by glorifying him in the way he has forbidden. In this way they have resembled the Christians in committing shirk through exaggeration in praise. In addition, some of them have exaggerated in praising the Prophet (ﷺ) in their poetry and prose in a way that shows obvious shirk. For example, Al-Busayri says in his poem (Qasidah) named Al-Burdah (The Garment):
I have none at the time of affliction
To seek refuge with except you
O you most honorable creature.
These poetic lines and the following ones involve directing supplication to Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) and seeking refuge with him as well as asking him to relieve one’s griefs when one is constrained and afflicted by disasters, thus forgetting Allah, exalted and Glorified be He.
Hence Satan has made pleasing to this poet and others their bad deeds, showing them that exaggeration in praising the Prophet (ﷺ) – however a grave shirk – a kind of showing glorification and love for him. Further, Satan has misled those people showing them that abiding by the Sunnah through not exaggerating in praising the Prophet (ﷺ) as a kind of hate and deprecation to him. On the contrary, committing the acts forbidden by the Prophet including excessiveness in praising him (ﷺ) and refraining from acting upon his sayings, deeds and dissatisfaction with his judgment are, in fact, a real deprecation to the Prophet (ﷺ). Therefore, glorifying the Prophet (ﷺ) and loving him are not attained except through following his footsteps and exerting the utmost effort to make his religion and Sunnah established and applied.
This ruling is further supported by the hadith narrated on the authority of Anas Ibn Malik (may Allah be pleased with him) that reads:
”A group of men once said, ‘O Muhammad! You are our most righteous person, and the son of our most righteous person, our ‘sayyid’ (great Master) and the son of our ‘sayyid.’ The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) thereupon said, ‘O people! Say what you have to say, but do not allow Satan to deceive you. I am Muhammad Ibn ‘Abdullah, Allah’s Servant and Messenger. I do not like that you elevate me above the rank that Allah, Almighty and Ever-Majestic be He, has granted me.’ “
(Related by An-Nasa`i with a good chain of transmitters)
This hadith states that the Prophet (ﷺ) forbade Muslims to call him ‘our sayyid’ for fear that they might, in this way, praise him excessively.
Thus, the Prophet (ﷺ) blocked the way that might have led Muslims to fall into minor shirk (polytheism). He (ﷺ), instead, guided them to describe him with two attributes, Allah’s Servant and Messenger, which are considered the highest degrees of slavery to Allah.
Another Hadith which indicates a similar meaning found in the Musnad of Imam Ahmad:
“No one must call for my help, but it is Allah, Exalted be He, Whose help is to be asked for.”
[Summarised from the book: Guide to a Sound Creed – P. 49-53]
Summarised by Abu Sarah Imraan Mollagee, Student at the Islamic University of Madinah, Faculty of Shari’ah.
“If Allah wants to favor someone, He grants him comprehension (understanding) of this religion.”
[Sahih Bukhari vol.1 # 71, Tirmidhi and Musnad Ahmad]
The example of guidance and knowledge with which, Allah has sent me is like abundant rain falling on the earth, some of which was fertile soil, absorbed rain water and brought forth vegetation and grass in abundance. (And) another portion of it was hard and held the rainwater and Allah benefited the people with it and they utilized it for drinking, making their animals drink from it and for irrigation of the land for cultivation. (And) a portion of it was barren which, could neither hold the water nor bring forth vegetation (then that land gave no benefits). The first is the example of the person who comprehends Allah’s religion and gets benefit (from the knowledge), which Allah has revealed through me (the Prophet) and learns and then teaches others. The last example is that of a person who does not care for it and does not take Allah’s guidance revealed through me (He is like that barren land.)” [Sahih Al-Bukhari v.1 no.79. Narrated by Abu Musa]
“It is only those who have knowledge amongst His slaves that fear Allah.” [Soorah Al-Fatir (35): 28]
“Seek knowledge, because seeking it for the sake of Allah is a worship. And knowing it makes you more God-fearing; and searching for it is jihad, teaching it to those who do not know is charity, reviewing and learning it more is like tasbeeh. Through knowledge Allah will be known and worshipped. With the knowledge Allah will elevate people and make them leaders and imams, who will in turn guide other people.”[Fatawa Ibn Taymiyya vol.10, p.39]
“Whoever treads on a path in search of Islamic knowledge, Allah will ease the way to Paradise for him. The angels will lower their wings, pleased with this seeker of knowledge, and everyone in the heavens and on earth will ask forgiveness for the knowledgeable person, even the fish in the deepest of waters will ask for his forgiveness” [Abu Dawud, Ibn Majah, Tirmidhi # 2835-sahih hadith]
“He whom death overtakes while he is engaged in acquiring knowledge with a view to reviving Islam with the help of it, there will be one degree between him and the Prophets in Paradise .” [Al-Tirmidhi Hadith no. 249. Narrated by Al-Hasan al-Basri].
Post courtesy of http://salaf-us-saalih.com/