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Loud Dhikr / Zikr and the Deobandis

Posted 31 August 2004 - 08:49 PM (#1) User is offline   faqir 

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By Shaykh Abd al-Hafiz Makki, translated by Mufti Zubair Bhayat

AN ANALYSIS OF THE EVIDENCE SUPPORTING THE PERMISSIBILITY OF MAJALIS (GATHERINGS) OF ZIKR IN THE MASAJID

Submitted by Shaykh Ashraf Dockrat

The subject of this paper, which analyses the permissibility of loud Zikr gatherings in Masajid, is a subject that has become a matter of substantial interest and discussion in the recent past. The visit of Mashaikh (Sufi Shaikhs) and their disciples to this country in the recent years, particularly the visit of Maulana Shaikh-al-Hadith Muhammad Zakariyya Saharanpuri ®, has given a great impetus to the establishment of Majalis-Zikr in various Masajid throughout the country. These Sufi Shaikhs have placed great emphasis on the importance and need for the establishment of Zikr gatherings in every Muslim locality and Masjid. The sources of the Qur’an and Sunnah, as well as the writings of the scholars of Islam, past and present, will be studied to understand their position on this issue. As many of the relevant texts of Qur’an, Ahadith and the practice of Sahabah (RA) and the Salaf-as-Saliheen (pious elders) as possible would be presented on this subject. Whilst it is conceded that some scholars have raised objections against the Majalis-Zikr, this paper sets out to review the subject of loud Zikr Majalis (gatherings) in the Masajid in the light of Shari’ah-based evidence.

????? ??? ???? ??????? ??????? ??? ?? ?? ??? ???? ???? ??? ? ? ????? ?????? - ??? ???

All praises belong solely to Allah Ta’ala and salutations and peace be upon the final Messenger and upon all his family and companions. Amma-b’adu:

VERSES OF THE HOLY QUR’AN RELATING TO ZIKR

Many verses in the Qur’an exhort towards the Zikr of Allah, and they are Mutlaq (unrestricted). They encompass all types and forms of Zikr; whether individual or collective, loud or silent, in the Masjid or elsewhere. Some of these verses are quoted below:

Verse 1:

???????? ?????? ? ?????? ?? ??? ??????

"So remember Me (with Zikr) and I will remember you and be grateful unto Me and do not be ungrateful." 2:152

Verse 2:

????? ?????? ???? ????? ? ????? ???? ?????? ???????? ?? ??? ??????? ? ?????

"(The intelligent ones are) Those who remember Allah standing and sitting and reclining and they ponder in the creation of the skies and the earth." 3:191

Verse 3:

????? ????? ?????? ?????? ???? ???? ??? ???? ???? ????? ??????

"Those who believe (in Allah) and their hearts acquire tranquility with the remembrance of Allah. Hear well! It is only through the remembrance of Allah that hearts acquire tranquility." 13:28

Verse 4:

???? ?? ?????? ????? ??? ??? ?? ??? ????

"(People of perfect Iman are those) Men whom trade or business does not distract from the remembrance of Allah." 24:37

Verse 5:

?? ???? ????? ????? ?????? ???? ???? ????? ?????? ???? ??????

"O Believers remember Allah in great abundance and glorify Him morning and evening." 33:41/42

Verse 6:

? ?? ??? ?? ??? ?????? ???? ?? ?????? ??? ?? ????

"And as for him who (purposely) ignores the remembrance of Rahman, We assign a devil for him who is his (constant) companion." 43:36

Verse 7:

??? ??? ????? ????? ?? ???? ?????? ???? ????

"Has the time not dawned for the people of faith that their hearts should submit to the remembrance of Allah?" 57:16

Verse 8:

?? ???? ????? ????? ?? ????? ??????? ??? ??????? ?? ??? ???? ? ?? ???? ??? ?????? ?? ????????

"O Believers let not your wealth and your children distract you from the remembrance of Allah. Those who do so, they are certainly great losers." 63:9

Verse 9:

?????? ????? ??????? ?????? ??? ???? ????? ??? ??????? ??? ?? ??? ??????? ?? ???????

"Shaitaan has overpowered them (the hypocrites) and hence made them forget the remembrance of Allah. They are the gang of Shaitaan and know well! The gang of Shaitaan are the (real) losers." 58:19

Verse 10:

???? ????? ??? ?????? ????? ????? ?????? ????? ??? ?????? ???? ??? ?????

"And when they (hypocrites) stand up to offer Salah, they stand up with lethargy. They put up a show before the people (of offering Salah) and do not remember Allah but very little." 4:142

These and other verses regarding Zikr have been enumerated by many scholars on their works on the virtues and meritoriousness of Zikr, especially Shaikh Zakariyya ® has accumulated many such verses in his work Fadhail-al-Zikr. A study of this work will present many other verses on this subject.

ZIKR IN THE LIGHT OF PROPHETIC TRADITIONS ( AHADITH)

After having enumerating certain verses of the Holy Qur’an, mention is now made of certain Ahadith relating to the subject of Zikr some of which are of a general nature (whether loud/soft, masjid/home, etc.) and some are quite specific i.e. Zikr in the Masjid or loud Zikr, which will be alluded to under the explanation of the said Ahadith. Ten Ahadith have been selected for this section.

Hadith 1:

Abu Hurairah (RA) narrates from Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م that there is a group of angels who patrol the earth and wherever they find any gathering of Zikr they call out to each other and form a circle around this gathering that reaches to the sky. When this gathering disperses, they return to the sky where they are questioned by Allah Ta’ala, although He is All-knowing: Where have you come from? They reply: We come from a gathering of Your servants who are engaged in Tasbeeh, Takbeer and Tahmeed. Allah Ta’ala asks them: Have they seen Me? The angels reply: No. Allah Ta’ala asks: And what if they had seen Me? They reply: Then they would have engaged even more excessively in Your Ibadah and in Tasbeeh (glorifying of) You. Allah Ta’ala says: What are they asking for? They reply: They ask of You Jannah. Allah Ta’ala then asks: Have they seen Jannah? The angels reply: No. Allah Ta’ala asks: And what if they had seen Jannah? They reply: Then they would have been even more desirous, eager and keen for it. Allah Ta’ala says: What are they seeking refuge from? They reply: They ask refuge from the Fire (of Hell). Allah Ta’ala asks: Have they seen the Fire? The angels reply: No. Allah Ta’ala asks: And what if they had seen it? They reply: Then they would have tried harder to escape from it and they would have been more fearful of it. Allah Ta’ala says: I make you witness that I have pardoned them. One angel exclaims: A certain person was not from them. He came (coincidentally) for some work. Allah Ta’ala says: They are such a people that even those who sit with them (for other work) will not be deprived.

– Narrated by Bukhari, Muslim, Baihaqi

Shaikh Zakariyya’s ® commentary on this Hadith:

This subject has also been narrated in numerous other traditions that the angels look for, listen to and sit with the ’gatherings‘ of Zikr.

Hadith 2:

Mu’awiyah (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م once came forth to meet a group of the Sahabah (RA). He said: What has caused you to congregate here? They replied: We have congregated here to remember Allah Ta’ala and to praise Him for guiding us to Islam and blessing us with it. He said: By Allah! Is this the only reason for your gathering? They replied: By Allah! This is the only reason for our gathering. He said: I had not made you swear an oath because I disbelieved you but Jibraeel came to me and informed me that Allah Ta’ala is boasting about you before the angels.

- Narrated by Muslim, Tirmizi, Nasai, Ibn-Abi-Shaibah, Ahmad

Shaikh Zakariyya’s ® commentary:

Mulla Ali Qari ® explains that Allah boasts about these people because despite having worldly engagements, natural desires, temptations and the shaitaan trying to misleadthem, they do not neglect and turn away from My remembrance; then the Zikr of the angels who are faced with none of these obstacles is no comparison to their Zikr.

Hadith 3:

Abu Hurairah (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م said that Allah Ta’ala says: I treat my servant according to his opinion of Me and I am with him when he remembers Me; if he remembers Me privately, I remember him privately and if he remembers Me in public, I remember him in a gathering (of the angels which is) better than his gathering

- Narrated by Bukhari, Muslim, Tirmizi, Nasai, Ibn-Majah, Ahmad

Hadith 4:

Abu Hurairah and Hazrat Abu Sa’eed (RA) testify (upon oath) that Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م said:

Any group of people who engage in the Zikr of Allah, the angels envelop them and mercy cascades upon them, tranquillity descends upon them and Allah remembers them in the presence of those who are by Him.

- Narrated by Muslim, Tirmizi, Ibn-Abi-Shaibah

It should be noted that this Hadith applies to Zikr in the Masjid and elsewhere

Hadith 5:

Anas (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م said: When you pass the gardens of paradise then graze well. They asked: What are the gardens of paradise? He replied: The gatherings of Zikr

Shaikh Zakariyya’s ® commentary:

It means that the fortunate one who has an opportunity of reaching such a gathering must feel privileged that he had an opportunity of going into a ‘garden of Paradise’ in this world. ‘Graze well’ means that just as an animal enjoys grazing in a pasture and cannot be moved away easily even if it is beaten by the owner, so too the person ‘grazing’ in the ‘gardens of paradise’ must not be quickly distracted by worldly concerns or fears but should try to remain there as long as possible. Just as Jannah is a place that is free from all sorts of calamities, so too the gatherings of Zikr are ‘safe-havens’; free from all worldly calamities. This Hadith is general and applies to a Masjid or any where else

Hadith 6:

Abdur Rahman bin Sahl bin Haneef (RA) reports that Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م was in one of his homes when the following verse of the Qur’an was revealed:

????? ???? ?? ????? ????? ???? ??????? ??????

"and attach yourself with those who call out to their Rabb morning and evening" 18:28

Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م came forth in search of the people mentioned in this verse. He found a group of engaged in the remembrance of Allah; among them were those with disheveled hair and parched skin and dressed only with a single garment. He came close to them and sat down among them exclaiming: All praise belongs to Allah for having made in my Ummah such people whom (even) I have been instructed to sit with.

- Narrated by Tabrani, Ibn-Jareer

Shaikh Zakariyya’s ® commentary:

In one Hadith it has been narrated that he searched for them and found them at the back of the Masjid, engaged in the remembrance of Allah. He stated similar words to the above Hadith and said: You (really) are my companions in life and after death. Shaikh Ibrahim Nakhai ® says: ????? ????? refers to those who are engaged in Zikr.

Hadith 7:

Abu Darda (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م said: On the Day of Qiyamah certain people will be raised by Allah Ta’ala in such a manner that their faces will be illuminated and they will be seated upon thrones of pearls, envied by the people; they will neither be Messengers or Martyrs. A bedouin exclaimed: Describe them to us so that we may recognise them. He replied: Those who love each other for Allah's sake, coming from diverse tribes and different places, they gather for the remembrance of Allah.

- Narrated by Tabrani (as reported in Targheeb and Durr)

Shaikh Zakariyya’s ® commentary:

These days, lots of criticisms are hurled against people who spend time in the Khanqah (centers for Zikr and spiritual training). Let the critics condemn as much as they wish, but tomorrow when people’s eyes will open, will they realise the value of the people of the Khanqahs who will be sitting on thrones made of pearls.

In one Hadith it has been narrated that the building wherein the Zikr of Allah is done, begins to shine for the inhabitants of the sky just as the stars shine for the people on earth. Abu Razeen (RA) a companion narrates that Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م said: I will show you such a thing which will strengthen you in your Deen thereby causing you to succeed in both worlds; hold fast to the gatherings of Zikr and when you are in privacy, continue to engage in Zikr.

The virtues of the gatherings of Zikr have been mentioned in numerous Ahadith. In one Hadith it has been narrated that the best safeguard is Salaah and Majalis-Zikr. All of these Ahadith are mutlaq (non-specific); they could refer to Zikr gatherings in the Masjid and elsewhere.

Hadith 8:

Abu Sa’eed Khudri (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م said: Engage so excessively in Zikr until they (wicked people) say He is mad!

- Narrated by Ahmad, Abu Ya’la, Haakim, Ibn-Hibban

Shaikh Zakariyya’s ® commentary:

In another Hadith it has been narrated that engage so excessively in Zikr that the hypocrites call you an ostentatious person. From this Hadith it is clear that the hypocrites or foolish people may refer to you as a madman but this should not stop you from this wealth of Zikr. In fact, it is only loud and excessive Zikr that it will cause ignorant persons to regard him as a ‘madman’. Silent Zikr will not lead to this situation.

Hazrat Abdullah bin Abbas (RA) narrates that Allah did not make anything compulsory without setting a limit for it or accepting an excuse for it except Zikr. As for Zikr, there are no limits and no excuses are acceptable until a person is sane; hence Allah Ta’ala mentions that engage excessively in the ‘ Zikr of Allah’ this is under all possible circumstances.

Hadith 9:

Anas (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م said: To sit with a group of people who engage in Zikr after Fajr until sunrise is more beloved to me than all that upon which the sun rises (i.e. all the things of this world) and from after Asr to sun set is more beloved to me than the whole world and whatever it contains.

- Narrated by Baihaqi, Isbahani

Hadith 10:

Abu Sa’eed Khudri (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م said: Allah Ta’ala will say on the Day of Judgment: Today the multitudes shall know who are the people of esteem and honour. It was asked: Who are the people of honour O Messenger of Allah? He replied: The Majalis (gatherings) of Zikr in the Masjid - reported by Imam Suyuti in Natijatul-Fikr and Allamah Lucknowi in Sabahatul-Fikr on the authority of Ahmad, Abu-Ya’la and Ibn-Hibban

LOUD ZIKR IN THE MASJID FROM THE HADITH

After enumerating the above Ahadith on the subject of Majalis-Zikr, one Hadith that is specific to the subject of loud Zikr in the Masjid follows:

Zaid bin Aslam reports from a Sahabi (RA) that one night I walked with Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م when he passed by a person in the Masjid who was engaged in loud Zikr. I said: O Messenger of Allah perhaps he is showing-off! He replied: No but in fact he is an Awwaah.

- Narrated by Baihaqi

Allamah Hafni ® explains: Awwaah is that person who experiences pangs of pain in the heart due to overwhelming and ardent love for Allah. The name of that Sahabi was Abdullah Zul-Bujadain (RA)

Shaikh Zakariyya ® comments on the incident narrated in this Hadith in greater detail. He states: Abdullah Zul-Bujadain (RA) was a Sahabi who became orphaned and was brought up by his uncle when he surreptitiously accepted Islam. When the uncle gained knowledge of this, he drove his nephew out of the house without a stitch of clothing on. His mother was equally angry at him but she was after all his mother so she spared him a coarse sheet to cover himself. Cutting the sheet into two pieces, he tied one around his waist and the other he draped around his shoulders and migrated to Madinah. Here he spent his days lying at the doorstep of Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م engaging in excessive Zikr in a loud voice. Umar (RA) remarked that he was insincere. Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م replied in the negative saying he was from the Awwaheen (check explanation above). He passed away at the occasion of Tabuk. Sahabah (RA) saw a light burning close to the grave and Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م inside the grave, instructing Abu Bakr and Umar to pass the body of the deceased companion over to him. Thereafter, he prayed to Allah: "O Allah! I am pleased with him, You too be pleased with him." Observing this honour Ibn-Mas’ud (RA) exclaimed: I wish I was in his place.

Some people opine that loud Zikr is an innovation and forbidden in Islam. This is due to unawareness of the Hadith corpus. Maulana Abdul Hayy Lucknowi ® has enumerated close onto fifty Ahadith on this subject in his work Sabahatul-Fikr which establishes the permissibility of loud Zikr. However, it is necessary to uphold the conditions and limits of the Shari’ah so that a person may not cause inconvenience to anyone ( Faza’il-Zikr)

VIEWS OF LEADING FUQAHA (JURISTS) ON THE SUBJECT OF LOUD ZIKR

VIEW OF MAULANA ABDUL HAYY ®

The Ahadith cited in the previous pages have been recorded by Maulana Abdul Hayy in his Sabahatul-Fikr whereby he proves the permissibility of loud Zikr. He writes: "These are authentic Ahadith from which it is established that there is no karahat (aversion or abhorrence) in Islam for loud Zikr. On the contrary, the jawaz or istihbaab (approval) of it is manifest and why would it not be so when loud Zikr has the capacity to soften the heart in a way which soft Zikr cannot do."

Writing further on, he quotes extensively the statements of Shaikh Abdul Haqq Muhaddith Dehlawi ® from his work Tawseel-al-Mureed-ilal-Murad:

????? ???????? ?????? ???????? ????????? ????? ?? ??????? ???????? ???? ??????

"It is permissible and allowed to engage in loud Zikr and Tilawah and to congregate for Zikr in Majalis (gatherings) and the Masjids"

VIEW OF ALLAMAH DIMYAATI ®

Writing at the beginning of his work, he quotes Allamah Abdul Mawla Dimyaati ® from his work Ta’aleequl-Anwaar from the chapter on Ahkaam-al-Masajid in Durrul-Mukhtar where it is stated that loud Zikr is forbidden in the Masjid because of the incident of Hazrat Ibn-Mas’ud (RA) who drove out some persons engaged in loud Zikr from the Masjid stating that they were bidatis (innovators). Allamah Dimyaati clarifies this matter in the following words: "But Allamah Hafni states in his work Fadhl-Tasbeeh-wat-Tahleel that what is reported from Ibn-Mas’ud (the incident of loud Zikr) in the Masjid is not authentic, the proof of which is an authentic narration of Abu Wa’il (student of Ibn-Mas’ud) in Kitabuz-Zuhd as follows:

"This what people have attributed to Ibn-Mas’ud that he prevented loud Zikr (is incorrect) because whenever I sat with him in any gathering, he always engaged in loud Zikr". Further on he states: The evidence of the desirability of loud Zikr can also be inferred from the narration of Imam Baihaqi ® from the incident of the person (Abdullah Zul-Bujadain) who was making loud Zikr in the Masjid when Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م passed by him, referring to him as being an Awwah. From this it is clearly established that loud Zikr is allowed.

VIEW OF ALLAMAH RAMALI ®

Similarly, Maulana Abdul Hayy quotes in Sabahatul-Fikr from Allamah Khairuddin Ramali Hanafi’s ® Fatawa-Khairiyya:

"Shaikh Ibrahim from Damascus questioned with regard to the practice of the Sufis making circles of loud Zikr in the Masjid and the loud rendering of gnostic poems. Some people regard this age-old practice of the Sufis as illegal, is this true?"

Allamah Ramali ® responded:

"The circles of Zikr and the loud Zikr and the rendering of gnostic poems is established from the Hadith such as:

??? ????? ?? ??? ????? ?? ??? ??? ???

- an authentic tradition of Bukhari, Muslim, Tirmizi, Nasai, Ibn-Majah, Ahmad.

Loud Zikr in a gathering is permitted. Similarly, the circles of Zikr and the surrounding of the angels of these gatherings are all established from the Hadith. Yes the practice of silent Zikr is also established from some traditions. These traditions which support silent or loud Zikr can easily be reconciled in this way that they apply to different persons under different circumstances and states, as is the case of the traditions that support loud or silent Tilawah of the Holy Qur’an. As for the Hadith that states: ??? ????? ????? (The best Zikr is silent Zikr) this tradition is also not contradictory of the practice of loud Zikr as it refers to the situation when ostentation or disturbance to musallis or sleeping persons is feared. Some scholars opine that loud Zikr is preferable as it benefits not only the one engaged in Zikr but also serves as encouragement for those around him, thus it is superior"

VIEW OF IMAM SUYUTI ®

Hafiz Suyuti ® writes in his work Natijatul-Fikr on the authority of Imam Nawawi ® that just as the traditions of loud and silent Tilawah maybe combined according to varying circumstances, so too is the case of loud and silent Zikr. In case of fear of riya (show) or disturbance to musallis or sleeping persons, silent Zikr will be preferable; but where such situations to do not exist, loud Zikr will be more estimable and meritorious as loud Zikr arouses others as much as it enlivens the heart of the Zakir, focuses his thoughts, drives away sleepiness and reinvigorates him. Hence it has been recounted from the Sufis that loud Zikr has a very powerful effect in eliminating vile thoughts and evil whisperings from the mind and heart.

Hafiz Suyuti ® commences his work Natijatul-Fikr with the following lines:

"May Allah honour you! Your question on the practice of the Sufis forming circles of Zikr in the Masjids and reciting the Kalimah in a loud voice refers; is this permitted or not?"

Reply: There is nothing objectionable in this at all; in fact the istihbaab (approval) of loud Zikr can be established from many Ahadith … Thereafter, Imam Suyuti ® recounts 25 Ahadith with detailed commentary regarding the subject of loud Zikr.

Imam Suyuti has further narrated a tradition from Kitabuz-Zuhd of Imam Ahmad bin Hambal ® on the authority of Hazrat Thabit al-Bunani ® that the Zakir sits down (in a gathering of Zikr) with heaps of sins upon his head and leaves the gathering without a single sin (as he is forgiven due to the Zikr -Majlis).

VIEWS OF ALLAMAH IBN ABIDEEN SHAMI ®

Maulana Nisar Ahmad al-Husaini quotes Allamah Ibn-Abideen Shami ® from his work Raddul-Muhtar in his important article on Majalis-Zikr as follows:

? ?? ????? ?????? ?? ?????? ???????? ???? ??????? ???? ? ???? ??? ??????? ??? ??????? ?? ??????? ? ????? ??? ?? ???? ????? ??? ???? ?? ??? ?? ????

"On the commentary notes of Hamawi it is reported on the authority of Imam Sha’rani ®: The Ulama’, past and present are unanimous upon the Istihbaab (meritoriousness) of Zikr gatherings in the Masajid and elsewhere, except if their loud Zikr disturbs the rest of a person, a Musalli or a Qari (Reciter of Qur’an)"

VIEW OF SHAH WALIULLAH ®

Hazrat Shah Waliullah ® writes in his renowned Hujjatullah-al-Balighah:

?? ?? ?? ?????? ???????? ?????? ?????? ???? ?????? ???????? ? ???? ?? ???????? - ?.2 - ?.70

"There is no doubt that the gathering of Muslims for the purpose of Zikr is a source of blessing, tranquility and proximity of the angels" (v.2/p.70)

VIEWS OF THE LEADING ULAMA (SCHOLARS) OF DEOBAND ON THE SUBJECT OF LOUD ZIKR

In this section, the incidents and viewpoints of the leading scholars of the renowned institution of Deoband are recounted:

ZIKR OF HAZRAT MAULANA RASHID AHMAD GANGOHI ®

Maulana Aashiq-Ilahi Meeruti ® writes in Tadhkiratur-Rasheed (p.48) regarding the initial meeting of Maulana Gangohi with his spiritual guide, Hajee Imdadullah Makki Farouqi ®. Describing the first evening, he writes:

"Finally, he awoken, performed wudhu and entered the Masjid where Hajee Sahib was already engaged in his spiritual occupations in one corner of the Masjid. Maulana Gangohi went to the other corner, offered his Tahajjud (night prayers) and engaged in loud Zikr of the Kalimah ( Nafi-Ithbaat)"

Maulana Gangohi ® explaining the above incident in his account states: "Finally, I commenced the loud Zikr. My voice was clear and good, my body healthy and strong. That morning Hajee Sahib retorted: Your Zikr was very much like that of an accomplished, old-time Zakir. From that day on, I developed a deep attachment for loud Zikr that I never felt inclined to discarding, nor is there any Shari’ reason of prohibition that I came to know of for leaving it. When an attendant asked Maulana what happened then? He replied with an amazing reply: "After that I was annihilated."

This incident is clear evidence of Maulana Gangohi’s love for loud Zikr from the very inception, his lifelong devotion to it and the effect it had upon him. This love for loud Zikr is a common heritage of all his followers, disciples and admirers.

In one of his discourses, Qari Tayyib ® stated that outside the Khanqah of Maulana Gangohi ® there was a large pond. On the opposite side of this pond was a little Masjid where Maulana Yahya (father of Shaikhul-Hadith) used to live with a few associates. In the latter part of the night, loud Zikr used to start-up in the Khanqah as well as the Masjid of Maulana Yahya ®. The entire environs and surroundings of the pond area used to reverberate with the sound of loud Zikr.Such was the effect of this Zikr that the washer men around the lake also used to join in and it became their lifelong practice to make loud Zikr while occupied in their work of washing clothes.

A similar version has been written Maulana Zakariyya ® in his impressive work Shariat-wa-Tariqat-ka-talazum (p.4):

"Even the most unlettered persons among the disciples of Maulana Gangohi adhered strictly to the Sunnah. They were so steadfast on the practice of Tahajjud that such firmness I did not encounter even among great men. Even the fifty to sixty washer men around the pond of the Khanqah would engage in loud Zikr in the latter part of the night instead of making other noises or sounds."

ZIKR AT BANGLA-WALI MASJID, TABLIGH JAMAAT HEAD-QUARTERS AT NIZAMUDDIN, NEW DELHI

There numerous accounts from many persons who had met Hazrat Maulana Ilyas ® that it was the standing practice at Bangla-Wali Masjid in Nizamuddin for the people to awaken in the latter part of the night to offer their Tahajjud Salaah and then engage in loud Zikr in the Masjid and the courtyard, right until the time of Fajr Jamaat.

In 1959 and 1960, in the era of Maulana Yusuf ®, I personally witnessed many people engaging in loud Zikr before the Fajr Jamaat inside and outside the Masjid. The entire Masjid area would reverberate with the sound of their loud Zikr.

ZIKR AT KHANQAH IMDADIYYAH ASHRAFIYYA IN THANABHAWAN

In his article entitled Khanqah Ashrafiyyah Imdadiyyah Mufti Abdur-Rauf Sukkarwi describes the details of the Khanqah under different headings. He writes under the sub-heading ‘Practices of the people of the Khanqah’:

"The people would recite their Wazaif in the Masjid after Fajr and some would recite the Holy Qur’an, while others would engage in loud Zikr until sunrise. Then lessons would commence."

Hajee Farouq ® writes in his Majalis-Zikr (p.3): "When Maulana Thanwi would engage in his Zikr after Tahajjud, Khwaja Sahib and others would join him in his Zikr; Maulana would not prevent them from doing so."

Mufti Shafi ® writes in his work Aadabul-Masajid: "It is impermissible to make loud Zikr in the Masjid and to recite the Qur’an loudly.. "

At the time of the second edition, Mufti Shafi ® requested Maulana Thanwi ® to review certain sections ear-marked for this purpose. Maulana Thanwi undertook the reviewing and wrote an addendum to this entitled Da’bul-Masajid-fi-Aadabil-Masajid. In this section he comments on this mas’ala: "It is impermissible to make loud Zikr in the Masjid and to recite the Qur’an loudly…" There are numerous views on this issue. The summation of all of these views is what has been mentioned by Allamah Ibn-Abideen Shami ® as follows:

? ?? ????? ?????? ?? ?????? ???????? ???? ??????? ???? ? ???? ??? ??????? ??? ??????? ?? ??????? ? ????? ??? ?? ???? ????? ??? ???? ?? ??? ?? ????

"On the commentary notes of Hamawi it is reported on the authority of Imam Sha’rani ®: The Ulama’, past and present are unanimous upon the Istihbaab (meritoriousness) of Zikr gatherings in Masajid and elsewhere, except if their loud Zikr disturbs the rest of a person, a Musalli or a Qari (Reciter of Qur’an)."

In the above synopsis, all views are covered and those who have prohibited it, have most probably done so on the basis of saddan-lil-baab (as a preventative measure) - this prohibition applies to the Masjid particularly. As for loud Zikr by itself, the preferable view is it is allowed if it is not excessively loud. And Allah knows best.

ZIKR OF MAULANA FAQEER MUHAMMAD ® AT KHANQAH ASHRAFIYYAH IN PESHAWAR

Maulana Thanwi’s ® senior Khalifa, Maulana Faqeer Muhammad ®, like Shaikh Zakariyya ® was greatly concerned in the latter years about the revitalisation of the Khanqah system. Hence in his Khanqah-Ashrafiyya in Peshawar, the Majalis of loud Zikr were commenced in his lifetime and continue even after his demise. Maulana used to participate himself and used to encourage others also. Maulana Azizur-Rahman Hazarwi, Khalifah of Shaikh Zakariyya ® narrates: "Mufti Mukhtar, Prof. Masarrat Hussain and myself would go together to visit Maulana at his Khanqah. He would inquire if we had completed our Zikr and we would reply in the affirmative. He would urge us to make more Zikr and he would also join us in Zikr. At times he would call upon the students to join in and at times he would get the students and Musallis to join him in loud Zikr after Fajr Salaah. Once Maulana ® went to Rawalpindi to visit Maulana Najmul-Hasan ®. Prof. Masarrat Shah was with him. He called for me and in that one day, loud Zikr-Majlis was held in three Masajid. After Fajr at Masjid-Siddiq, after Zuhr at Saddar Masjid and after Asr at Wah Cantt. After Zuhr there was a huge gathering and Hazrat had the entire congregation join him in Barah-Tasbeeh Zikr. Maulana then emphasised upon me and Maulana Najmul-Hasan to continue this practice here and called upon the gathering to continue inviting us to conduct such Zikr-Majlis programs."

Once Maulana was engaged in loud Zikr in the Haram of Makkah, when some person tried to prevent him from doing so, he recited the verse:

??? ???? ??? ??? ????? ???? ?? ???? ???? ???? ???? ?? ??????

"Who can be a greater oppressor than the person who prevents the Zikr of Allah’s name in the Houses of Allah" 2:114

VIEWOF MAULANA MADANI ®

An article appeared in the monthly journal Anwar-Madinah entitled: The Shari’ position of Zikr Majalis in the light of a letter of Maulana Madani ® from Maktoobat v.2/p.11. We reproduce this letter here due to its general benefit:

Question: A narration of Abdullah bin Abbas (RA) in Musnad Darimi (p.38) states:

"We used to sit at the door of Ibn-Mas’ud (RA) before Fajr to accompany him to the Masjid for Fajr Salaah. One day, Abu Musa Ash’ari (RA) suddenly arrived appearing disconcerted and perturbed, enquiring if Ibn-Mas’ud had already left for the Masjid or not? We said he had not left as yet. When Ibn-Mas’ud appeared, Abu Musa explained: I have just come from the Masjid-Nabawi and I observed an innovated practice there, though superficially it appeared to be good. I saw a number of people seated in circles, awaiting Salaah, with pebbles in their hands (for Zikr); one person in each circle would call out: Read a hundred Takbeers and they would do so. Then he would call out: Read a hundred Tahleel and they would do so and he would say: Read a hundred Tasbeehs and they would follow. Ibn-Mas’ud asked what he said to them. He replied that he said nothing as he was awaiting Ibn-Mas’ud to address them. When they arrived at the Masjid, they found the group engaged in their Zikr as described by Abu Musa. Ibn-Mas’ud asked them what they were doing. They replied that they were counting their Zikr on the pebbles. He said to them: Instead of counting Zikr rather count your sins on these pebbles. Lamentable is your situation, O Ummah of Muhammad (??? ???? ???? ???م! How quickly have you deviated! The companions of Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م are still in your midst in large numbers! The utensils of Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م have not as yet broken! Have you gone on a way that is better and more rightly-guided than that of Muhammad (??? ???? ???? ???م? The people apologised profusely for their action, saying: By Allah! We had not intended anything but good! Ibn-Mas’ud retorted: How many desire good but are unable to attain good!"

(The purpose of posing this question to Maulana Madani ® was to get clarification regarding the many practices of the Sufis which appear to be innovations in the light of the above Hadith. Maulana responded in a manner that dispels all misgivings surrounding the practices of the Sufis)

Answer: Maulana Madani quotes three narrations; Hadith 1 & 3 of this booklet and a third narration of Darimi as follows:

?? ??? ???? ?? ???? ?? ???? ???? ??? ???? ???? ?????? ??????? ?? ????? ??? ?????? ??? ??? ??????? ???? ?? ????? ??? ?????? ?????? ???? ??????? ?? ??? ??? ?????? ?? ??? ????? ???? ?????? ???????? ????? ?????? ? ?????? ?????? ??? ???? ???? ???? ????? ?? ??? ????

Abdullah bin Amr (RA) narrates that Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م passed by two groups of people in his Holy Masjid and stated: Both of them are meritorious but one group is superior to the other. This group is engaged heart and soul in Dua (supplication) to Allah Ta’ala; if He wishes, He may grant them and if He wishes, He may withhold from them. As for the other group, they are engaged in learning and understanding (of Islam) and teaching the ignorant, they are superior, and I have only been sent as a teacher. Saying so, he sat down with them (the group engaged in teaching and learning). Thereafter, Maulana Madani ® writes:

"These (three) and numerous other traditions of this nature are narrated by Shaikhain (Imams Bukhari & Muslim) and others. In the light of these authentic Marfu’ (prophetic) traditions, what is the merit of the Mua’quf traditions of Darimi cited by you, more so when the narrators are not even unanimously accepted? Even if the narrators are considered authentic, on a comparative basis, the above narrations will certainly be given preference, moreover when these traditions are endorsed by verses of the Holy Qur’an such as the verse:

????? ?????? ???? ????? ? ????? ???? ?????? ???????? ?? ??? ??????? ? ?????

"(The intelligent ones are) Those who remember Allah standing and sitting and reclining and they ponder in the creation of the skies and the earth" 3:191; and the verse:

?? ???? ????? ????? ?????? ???? ???? ????? ?????? ???? ??????

"O Believers! remember Allah in great abundance and glorify Him morning and evening" 33:41/42 from which the individual and collective and all other forms of Zikr are established. If an attempt is made to reconcile this narration (of Daarimi) with the Qur’anic verses and authentic Ahadith, then it could be surmised that these leading companions noticed some abnormality or deviation from the norm which prompted their censure of this group, not the fact that collective Zikr itself was the action worthy of censure. If it is not understood in this light (above explanation) then would it not lead to a situation where verses of the Holy Qur’an and confirmed Ahadith will have to be rejected and renounced? This prohibition (of the two Sahabah) will thus be taken on the basis of some unusual misdoing of these people that they observed. And Allah knows best." - Hussain Ahmad, 22/11/1370

ZIKR OF MAULANA GHULAM MUHAMMAD DEENPURI ®

Hafiz Nisar Ahmad, Khalifa of Qazi Zahid al-Hussaini ® writes in his article Majalis-Zikr regarding Maulana Deenpuri ®:

He was rated among the senior Awliya (saints). He played an invaluable role in the Reshmi Rumal movement of Shaikhul-Hind ®. He was the spiritual mentor of Maulana Ubaidullah Sindhi ®. Maulana Madani ® was honoured with Khilafah (spiritual vicegerency) by him. Maulana Ahmad Ali Lahori ® was his Khalifah. In his Khanqah at Deenpur, a Zikr-Majlis used to be held daily. Haami Ubaidi writes in his biography:

"After Maghrib Maulana Deenpuri used to conduct the loud Zikr-Majlis on the Qadiriyyah method which is referred to as Halqa-Zikr. Maulana used to participate in this gathering himself, at home and on journey. The duration was between twenty to twenty-five minutes. In Ramadhan, after every four Rak’ats of Taraweeh Salaah, one Tasbeeh (count of hundred) used to be completed. Upon the completion of the Zikr-Halqa, Muraqabah (contemplation) and Dua used to take place" - Yade-Baidhaa

ZIKR OF MAULANA AHMAD ALI LAHORI ®

Maulana Lahori ® is regarded among the senior saints of this era. In the Deeni, political and other fronts, he was an acclaimed guide of the Ummah. He was the Khalifah of Maulana Deenpuri ®. Thousands of Ulama and laymen were spiritually linked to him. On the pattern of his Shaikh he held a loud Zikr-Majlis every Thursday evening after Maghrib Salah. This was his lifelong practice. He established numerous such Zikr-Majalis on his authority, and even to this day, besides Indo-Pak, his silsilah (spiritual following) is found in the Middle-East and Europe.

After his demise, his spiritual successor (and his son), Maulana Ubaidullah Anwar ® continued with the Zikr-Majlis every Thursday in the Sherawala-Masjid and this humble one also had on several occasions joined his Zikr gathering in which about two hundred people participated.

ZIKR OF MAULANA QAZI MUHAMMAD ZAHID AL-HUSAINI ®

Hafiz Nisar Ahmed writes: Maulana Qazi Muhammad Zahid al-Husaini Sahib ® is regarded among the leading scholars of this era. He was the student of Maulana Madani ® and the Khalifah of Maulana Lahori ®. He combined in himself the sciences of Shari’ah and Tariqah and was equally adept at writing and oratory, in which his services will always be remembered. Excessive Zikr was ingrained in his life and he always impressed this upon his disciplines as well. He considered Zikr and Majalis-Zikr as the panacea of all evils in this era and was very active in establishing the Zikr-Majlis. The Madinah Masjid, Attock is witness to his engrossment with Zikr. He used to regard the Zikr-Majlis as the cure for all spiritual and social maladies. Towards the latter part of his life, he was very active in the propagation of Zikr-Majalis.

THE DAILY ZIKR-MAJALIS OF SHAIKH MAULANA ZAKARIYYA ®

Maulana Zakariyya ®, in the years of his teaching, used to engage in writing from seven to eleven in the morning, in his upstairs room. In the courtyard, outside his room, floor mats were laid out, on which various persons used to come and complete their stipulated Zikr.

Then every Friday, between Asr and Maghrib, Shaikh Zakariyya’s practice was to sit for I’itikaaf (seclusion) in the Masjid. At this time, many of his associates and disciples used to join him. Most of them used to engage in loud Zikr at this time as a result of which the Masjid used to reverberate with the sound of their Zikr. It was common knowledge that Shaikh Zakariyya used to dedicate this time in the Masjid every week and as such many people from all over used to join him. Lecturers and students from Deoband used to come and Mufti Mahmood Gangohi ® used to attend with utmost punctuality. This after Asr gathering of loud Zikr in the Masjid on Fridays continued all year round. The leading Ulama and Muftiyan of India (and elsewhere) used to occasionally attend these gatherings and none is reported to have objected to it at any time.

The time fixed for loud Zikr during the period of I’itikaaf of Shaikh Zakariyya’s ® Ramadhan Khanqah Program used to be between Zuhr and Asr. Leading Ulama, Muftis, Mashaikh and luminaries used to participate in this gathering of loud Zikr in the Masjid. The Ramadhan of 1400 was spent at the Masjid of Mufti Zainul-Aabideen in Faisalabad, Pakistan. On this occasion, besides the multitudes of common people, great personalities such as Mufti Mahmood Gangohi, Mufti Wali Hasan ® and other great persons were not only present but actively participated in the loud Zikr-Majalis.

In 1968, Shaikh Zakariyya ® gave up teaching and commenced his travels the year after this, right until his demise on 1 Shabaan 1403 (1982). In this entire duration, it was his heart-felt desire and burning concern that somehow, the gatherings of Zikr must become established everywhere so that people could move away from materialism and carnality towards the Zikr and obedience of Allah.

Not only did Shaikh Zakariyya ® consider this practice to be extremely beneficial for the Awaam (general public), but he also considered it important for the Khawaas (the elite) and the Madaris (Institutes of higher learning). The Shaikh was not only a great Alim and Mudarris (teacher), but he was a patron and benefactor of innumerable Madaris, he therefore, drew the attention of the leading authorities of his time towards this.

SHAIKH ZAKARIYYA ® MEETS MUFTI SHAFI ® IN PRIVACY TO EXPRESS HIS CONCERNS

In this respect, he once met privately with Mufti Shafi ® and expressed his concerns in this regard which was recorded by the son of Mufti Shafi, Mufti Rafi Usmani, present Rector of Darul-Uloom, Karachi under the heading An important advice of Hazrat Shaikh. He writes: "It was the norm with Shaikh ® that whenever he came to Karachi, there would be huge multitudes of people around him at all times. He however, emphasised to his attendants to set aside some time for a visit to Darul-Uloom Karachi. On his last visit to Karachi, he requested a private meeting with my father (Mufti Shafi). The room was cleared and they held their private meeting. After he left, my respected father told me: Shaikh ® mentioned to me that the practice of Zikr and Shagl (spiritual exercises) was almost extinct in the Madaris resulting in Fitnahs, power-struggles and in-fighting. It is my humble appeal that just as you have arranged for the board and lodge of students here, also make similar arrangements for your spiritual disciples to come and stay over here so that they could engage in Zikr and Shagl and for a short period daily, even the Asaatiza (lecturers) and students should participate in the Zikr program" - Akabir-ka-Ikhlas p.33

Similarly, Shaikh’s ® letters to Maulana Binnori in this respect have been printed in al-Bayyinat and in his Aap-Beti. It appears as though it was Shaikh’s mission now to re-establish the decrepit Khanqahs, to establish new ones and in the interim period, to at least establish daily or weekly Zikr-Majalis in Masjids or homes even. Shaikh used to weep sorrowfully upon the opposition or disinterest shown to the importance of Khanqah and Zikr-Majalis from opponents, but more so, even from certain associates and friends. He used to engage in lots of Dua upon this. This matter has been covered in captivating detail by Sufi Iqbal Muhajir-Madani ® in his Majalis-Zikr-aur-Hazrat-Shaikh.

THE VIEW OF SHAIKH ZAKARIYYA ® ON THE IMPORTANCE OF THE MAJALIS-ZIKR

The views of Shaikh Zakariyya ® and his untiring efforts for the establishment of the Zikr-Majalis is known and was witnessed by hundreds of his disciples and servants. Shaikh Zakariyya ® was eager and desirous for the chronicles of his journeys ( Safarnamah) should be published for this very reason (that the main purpose of his journeys must become known). In the introduction of his Safarnamah, his letter to the compiler, Mufti Muhammad Shahid of Karachi is included. An extract of his letter is quoted here:

"It is a source of happiness that the Safarnamah is being published. May Allah allow it to reach completion. Innumerable requests for me to spend the coming Ramadhan are being received by me in Madinah from many people. My dear ones! For how long are you people going to drag this old man along all over? Now all of you should start the work off in your own centres, establish the gatherings of Zikr, and get down to work. After all, it is you people who now have to take over this work."

SHAIKH ZAKARIYYA’S LETTER TO MAULANA ABUL HASAN ALI NADWI ®

"It is my firm conviction that the remedy for all evils is the Zikr of Allah. For this very aim I am wandering from country to country, because the Khanqahs have become extinct all over the world." These types of letters were written in large numbers to many persons in different countries of the world. When ever a reply came that Majalis-Zikr was established in a certain place, Shaikh Zakariyya ® would write a letter to the people there, expressing his immense joy and blessing them with Duas. There are several hundred such letters.

THE VIEW OF MAULANA YUSUF LUDHIANWI ON THE REASONS FOR SHAIKH ZAKARIYYA’S ® ZEAL FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF ZIKR-MAJALIS

Maulana Yusuf Ludhianwi writes in the Safarnamah that in the modern times, due to the preponderance of materialism, Beliefs have become shaky, the value of righteous deeds have dwindled and the attributes of Yaqeen, Ikhlas, Ihsaan and Zikrullah have all but departed from the hearts of people. The Khanqahs are vacant and forsaken, as a result of which the Ummah is deprived not only of the wealth of Ta’alluq-ma’allah (attachment with Allah) but even in the external forms of dress, appearance, mannerism, social customs, practices, ideology and thoughts; it has become difficult to distinguish between a Muslim and non-Muslim. This pitiable and miserable condition of the Ummah is sufficient to fill the heart of every sensitive person with worry and concern for the Ummah. What could then be said about the extent of grief and worry for the Ummah of that person who was the carrier of the combined spiritual force of the Akaabireen (spiritual elders) and their spokesperson, Shaikh Zakariyya ®? Like an expert specialist doctor, he was able to diagnose the spiritual diseases and disorders of the Ummah and prescribe its effective treatment and cure. Therefore, in the latter part of his life, he was passionately consumed by the mission of reviving the system of Zikrullah and to join the broken ties of the creation with the Creator. This was the actual panacea of this spiritual sickness. It was for this purpose that Shaikh Zakariyya ® undertook his arduous journeys; this was the main topic of discussion in his gatherings, the primary subject of all his letters and correspondences; all of this was to enliven the Majalis of Zikr and to get maximum participation of people for these gatherings of Zikr.

THE ESTABLISHMENT OF MAJALIS-ZIKR IN SOUTH AFRICA

At one instance he writes regarding the establishment of Zikr Majalis in South Africa as follows: "A substantial amount of time was spent in South Africa (by Shaikh Zakariyya). Even Ramadhan was spent in the Masjid of Stanger. In Ramadhan and especially during I’itikaaf, Shaikh Zakariyya used to intensely dislike any unnecessary talk; announcements were regularly made that ‘eat as much as you wish, sleep as you like, read as much as you want, but do not speak at all. I have only one restriction - Do not talk!’ Despite this, in the last ten days of I’itikaaf, Shaikh Zakariyya instructed all of his South African Khulafa to be gathered (for consultation) to set up the system of Majalis-Zikr in the country; where will these be held, who will attend, how these gatherings will be established and strengthened, etc. These consultation gatherings continued for four nights and up to two hours per session were spent for these. Shaikh Zakariyya used to be informed regularly about the outcome of these consultations, which he listened to very attentively and used to express happiness and give lots of Dua for it. The following six noteworthy gatherings were setup out of these consultations:
  1. Stanger Jami Masjid - Maulana Yusuf Tootla
  2. Isipingo, Durban - Mufti Basheer
  3. Newtown Masjid Jhb - Maulana Sulaiman Pandor
  4. Lenasia Jami Masjid - Maulana Ibrahim Mia
  5. Mafikeng & White River - Maulana Muhammad Gardee
  6. Germiston - Maulana Moosa Pandor
At these places, daily Majalis-Zikr were decided and besides these, another seven places also indicated similar intentions.

ZIKR-MAJALIS OF MUFTI MAHMOOD GANGOHI ®

Despite the extensive journeys of Shaikh Zakariyya ® and his concern and personal involvement in establishing the Zikr-Majalis in various countries of the world, no word of protest or objection was ever raised against this mission of his, though senior Muftis and ‘Ulama’ always accompanied him and were part of his entourage. A steady stream of these learned scholars were always coming to meet him, yet never was any objection raised before him about the Zikr-Majalis in the Masajid, but in fact approval and praises were heaped upon him from all sides for the benefit that was being witnessed from these Majalis.

From the senior and accomplished ‘Ulama’ who were associated with him, the name of Mufti Mahmood Hasan Gangohi ® tops the list. Previously it was mentioned (p.41-42) that Mufti Mahmood, accompanied by a group of lecturers and students of Darul-Uloom Deoband, used to regularly visit Shaikh Zakariyya ® every Friday in Saharanpur and participate in the loud Zikr-Majlis that used to take place in the Masjid of the old Madrasah from Asr till Maghrib.

After the demise of Shaikh Zakariyya ®, Mufti Mahmood’s practice remained the same as that of Shaikh Zakariyya ® in his Ramadhan I’itikaaf programs. In this program, after Zuhr, all the Mu’takifeen and other persons used to engage in loud Zikr in the Masjid with intense engrossment.

During the rest of the year, this loud Zikr-Majlis used to be held daily in the Chattha Masjid in Darul-Uloom Deoband. Upon enquiry from the Khadime-Khaas (Personal attendant) of Mufti Mahmood, Maulana Ibrahim Pandor, it was learnt that in the beginning the Zaakireen were not that many, so the Zikr-Majlis used to be held in Mufti Mahmood’s chambers (adjacent to the Masjid), but as the number of persons grew towards the last three years of his life, the crowd could not be accommodated in his quarters so all the Zaakireen used to congregate in the Masjid for the daily loud Zikr-Majlis. During Mufti Mahmood’s extensive journeys, Zikr-Majalis were held daily where ever he used to go, at times in Masajid and at times elsewhere.

Locally and abroad, Zikr-Majlis was the constant practice of Mufti Mahmood. In Darul-Uloom, he would be based at the Chattha Masjid where daily after Fajr, the Zikr-Majlis would be held with utmost regularity. His very being and personage was ‘a mobile Khanqah’.

The editor of Darul-Uloom Monthly Journal writes: "Even towards the latter part of his life, lengthy ilmi (academic) and islahi (reformatory) Majlis-sessions were conducted by Mufti Mahmood. Wa’z (Discourses) and Majlis-Zikr were a regular feature. Long and short journeys would also be undertaken during which the administrators and management of numerous Madaris and spiritual associates and disciples would be met. Huge Ijtimas (gatherings) would also be addressed. It has been the outstanding feature of Darul-Uloom that from its very inception, effort was expended on both the branches of Ilm and Zikr. Until the era of Maulana Madani ®, without any type of interruption or deficiency, this blessed arrangement and system continued at the Darul-Uloom. Upon the arrival of Mufti Mahmood in Darul-Uloom, this system has once more been revived and Chattha Masjid, Mufti Mahmood’s residence at Darul-Uloom has become transformed into a Khanqah. In the last ten to fifteen years, such has been the attraction of people towards Mufti Mahmood that Chattha Masjid virtually echoes continuously with the Zikr of Allah." (p.10-12)

From these instances, it is understood without doubt that it was the consensus of the senior scholars that they regarded the loud Zikr-Majalis in the Masajid as not only permissible but in fact, Mustahab (meritorious).

Furthermore, it is to be noted that the actual objective is the establishment and setting-up of Majalis-Zikr which has been emphasised in Qur’an and Sunnah. As has been stated previously, it is better to establish these in homes or private venues due to certain factors, but if this is not possible due to space restrictions or other reasons, as is commonly the case, then there is absolutely no prohibition of holding loud Zikr sessions ( Majalis) in the Masjid, but is in fact deemed to be Mustahab (preferable) as has been substantiated from the research and findings of the experts and authorities of Ifta. However, it is necessary to uphold all the conditions stipulated for loud Zikr in the Masjid at all times, which however are easy and simple, and to the best of our knowledge are being complied with. An appeal is also being directed towards them to further ensure that all the conditions are complied with greater regularity, as the objective is to acquire the pleasure of Allah and may it not be that due to contravention of the etiquette of the Masjid the reward of this act is diminished in anyway or in fact, total deprivation of rewards occur.

THE ZIKR-MAJALIS OF KHANQAH OF RAIPUR

Regarding the nights and days of this Khanqah and the resonance of Zikrullah here, Maulana Abul Hasan Ali Nadwi ® writes under the chapter, "The Khanqah of Raipur Shareef" in the biography of Maulana Raipuri ®: "In the silent atmosphere of the jungles of Raipur, the sounds of the Zikr of Allah would permeate the air and according to their abilities and propensities, people would derive great benefit from this. A general sense and feeling of spiritual joy would prevail. At such a time, everyone would be free to be occupied in his own world, none would intervene with another at this time."

Writing further on, Maulana Nadwi ® states:

"The first, foremost and most conspicuous thing that would assail the first time or frequent visitor to Raipur would be the abundance of Zikr. It would appear as if the sound of Allah’s Zikr was emanating from every leaf and twig of every tree. Hardly any time of day or night would pass when the sound of Zikrullah could not be heard." (p.121)

Maulana Nadwi records an important advice of Maulana Raipuri ® on the account of Maulana Abdul Waheed: "I advise you with just one advice; Hold fast onto the Zikr of Allah with utmost firmness, do not listen to anyone in this regard no matter how much proof they may present to you (to the contrary). Take my personal experience to be your guide in this matter." (p.338)

THE BENEFITS OF MAJALIS-ZIKR ACCORDING TO OTHER ‘ ULAMA’

Maulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi ® writes in at-Takashshuf (p.329): Imam Abu Da’ud records from Abu Hurairah (RA) that Rasulullah (??? ???? ???? ???م said: Never do a people gather in a house of Allah (Masjid) to recite the Book of Allah (Qur’an) and to learn and teach each other but that peace of heart, special mercies and Angels envelop them and Allah Ta’ala speaks of them before the angels.

N.B. The ‘gatherings of Zikr’ where numerous Zaakireen are gathered, increases the keenness for Zikr, the Anwaar (effulgence) of hearts are reflected upon each other and enthusiasm, punctuality and determination grows; while lethargy is removed and other benefits are achieved. These gatherings are referred to as ‘ Zikr-Halqa’ which is mentioned in this and other Ahadith.

Shaikh Zakariyya ® writes in Fadhail-Zikr that the accumulation of hearts has a special effect in drawing the help and mercy of Allah just as Salaah with Jama’ah (congregation) and the gathering of Hajees in Arafah does. This theme has been expounded in numerous places by Shah Waliyullah ® in his Hujjatullah-al-Baalighah.

No special place is required for the gatherings of Zikr. The objective is simply to establish the Zikr-Majlis (gathering) whether it be in a home or Masjid. In some senses, a home is a better place, but there is no prohibition if it is established in a Masjid; in fact it is proven to be Mustahab as established by the findings of the great scholars in the light of Qur’an and Sunnah. Sufi Iqbal also throws some light on this matter as we will now quote from his work.

MAJALIS-ZIKR IN THE MASJID

The establishment of Masajid for the purpose of Allah’s remembrance and obedience is evident; which includes actions such as Salaah, Tilawah, Azkaar, Wa’z, Dars, etc. Congregational Salaah is offered on fixed times, but the rest of the time, the Masjid is free for the performance of any Nafl Ibadah (voluntary acts). However, since the Masjid is a public place, it is regulated by certain etiquette in order to ensure that no person is disturbed by another in anyway. The Hadith clearly states that a true Muslim is one who does not cause inconvenience to the next Muslim by way of his tongue or hand.

The desirability of Zikr, whether individually or collectively has been established from the Ahadith. If the Majlis-Zikr is arranged in such a way so as not to cause inconvenience to those performing I’itikaaf or Salaah, there is no harm in it. This is documented by Maulana Khalil Ahmad ® in his Fatawa-Khaliliyyah. In the annexture of Aadaabul-Masajid Maulana Thanwi ® relates the famous view of Imam Sha’rani ®:

?? ?????? ???????? ???? ??????? ???? ? ???? ??? ??????? ??? ??????? ?? ??????? ? ????? ??? ?? ???? ????? ??? ???? ?? ??? ?? ????

"It is reported on the authority of Imam Sha’rani ®: The Ulama’, past and present are unanimous upon the Istihbaab (meritoriousness) of Zikr gatherings in Masjids and elsewhere, except if their loud Zikr disturbs the rest of a person, a Musalli or a Qari (Reciter of Qur’an)."

In summation, if a suitable room or building or even a private home is not available for the establishment of Zikr-Majalis then any Masjid of the locality where the conditions are fulfilled (of not disturbing the Musallis, etc.) is suitable for this purpose. If it is not possible to arrange for this in the Masjid of one’s own locality it should be arranged in the Masjid of another locality respecting the rules of the other Masjid.

SUMMARY

Sufi Iqbal ® summarises at the end of his work the importance of Majalis-Zikr:

1. The primary objective is to develop a special Ta’alluq (relationship) with Allah Ta’ala which requires purity and sincerity of intention which is not easily attainable without special training, as a person is easily mistaken in these matters; sincerity and purity of intention is not merely attained by wishful thinking or mere words, but it is a great spiritual deed which is not possible to achieve without rectifying the heart.

2. The way of reforming the heart is the companionship of saintly, pious persons and great abundance of Zikr

3. During these times, certain forms of service to Deen and certain movements for reformation of the Ummah, this important aspect (of spiritual reformation) is being entirely neglected. In fact Zikrullah is being opposed, resulting in a variety of fitnah and fasaad (corruption and degeneration) assailing these efforts.

4. Just as Madaris are essential for the acquisition of Ilm (knowledge), similarly, Khanqahs are essential for the establishment of Zikr, which have been generally neglected. For the establishment of Khanqahs, the first step is the establishment of Zikr-Majalis (gatherings) in homes and Masajid and these can in a sense serve as a substitute or proxy for the Khanqah.

5. In conclusion it can be stated that observing the total decimation of the spirit of Islam, Shaikh Zakariyya ® strongly emphasized the system of Majalis-Zikr and understanding the burning need of the Ummah at this time, emphatically advised the Ummah in the correct direction and even commenced the practical implementation of this during his lifetime
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Posted 01 September 2004 - 09:14 AM (#2) User is offline   mficain 

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  Alhamdulillah, I am proud to say that Mufti Abdun Nabi Hamidi is a close friend of mine.
May Allah give him long life and keep him steadfast in the services of the Deen. <ameen>

Rabbi asshrahli sadri
wa yassirli amri
wah lul u'qdatam millisaani
yafqahu qawli
(20:25-28)


THE PERMISSIBLITY OF LOUD ZIKR IN THE MASJID AND ELSEWHERE & 
"REPLY TO  MUFTI ELIAS"


by Moulana Abdun Nabi Hamidi

 "Who is more unjust than he who prevents the Name of Allah from being mentioned in the Mosques of Allah?" (Surah Baqarah:114)
 

FOREWORD

On the 12th of May 1999 a friend brought me a leaflet written by Mufti A.H. Elias. In this leaflet, an attempt was made to suggest that loud Zikr is Haraam and an evil Bid’at. In a polite manner, I removed all doubts and misunderstandings which were made by Mufti Elias by writing a pamphlet. About five months later, an organisation called "International Islamic Research Institute" published a book entitled "Impermissibility of Loud Zikr in the Masjid" in reply to my pamphlet. To my surprise, the book did not display the name of the author and, furthermore nobody seemed to have heard about this "Institute". Upon reading this book, I concluded that the writer of this book was a Deobandi Aalim. In fact, the compilation of this book was through the collective effort of Deobandi Ulama as the name of the organisation suggests. Its quite clear that the authors are not sure about the authenticity of their proofs and understanding as the names of the Deobandi Ulama are ommitted. The resultant is that the entire Deobandi Ulama has to be addressed. The reader will notice that the Deobandi Ulama have showered me with abusive languages on several times in their book, which is evident of their level of politeness.

Mujaahid-e-Ahle Sunnat, Hazrat Sheikh Sa’eed Ali Chobdat, has shown great devotion to the Maslak (teachings) of the Ahlus Sunnah, and is always prepared to serve the Maslak of the Ahlus Sunnah for the sake of Allah with complete sincerity. May Allah Ta’ala bless every Sunni Aalim and Murshid (Peer) with the Imaan of serving the Deen, which Allah Ta’ala has kept in the Sheikh’s heart. With the Sheikh’s encouragement and support, I will proceed with my reply and for this onus, I am very grateful to him.May Allah Ta’ala, in His Infinite Mercy, grant him the best reward that is befitting for his efforts.

The learned Hazrat Mufti Naseem Ashraf Habibi (Habibi Darul Ifta), Hazrat Moulana Ismail Peerbhai (of Estcourt) and Br. M. Y. Abdul Karrim from the Imam Ahmed Raza Academy (Durban) have provided me with the Islamic literature that was required for compiling my treatise. I am grateful to them and pray that Allah Ta’ala grant them success in both the worlds. Aameen. Br. Yunus Abdul Karrim has offered a very significant service to the Deen by doing the typesetting of this book. My dear Shaheed Patel, Omar Patel and Shafee Shaikh have assisted me in correcting the grammatical errors and proof reading of the book. May Allah Ta’ala reward them in abundance and increase their enthusiasm in Deen-e-Islam.

I appeal to the reader to make Du’a for me that I must remain in the service of the Deen at all times, Insha-Allah, and may Allah Ta’ala assist me to do good deeds and make me steadfast and consistent in the service of the Deen. Aameen.

Faqir Abdun Nabi Hamidi

Imam of Sultan Bahu Jumma Masjid, Mayfair. Johannesburg

9 Sha’baan 1420, 18/11/1999

PREFACE

Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds, Peace and Blessings upon His Prophet and Messenger Muhammad (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam), his Family and Companions. This treatise is a vindication of the permissibility of loud Zikr. This is an answer to the booklet entitled "Impermissibility of Loud Zikr in the Masjid" written by a certain organisation named "International Islamic Research Institute". That the booklet is written or authored by those who affiliate themselves with the Deobandi School of Thought is made certain as it is a reply to the writings of Moulana Abdun Nabi Hamidi against a pamphlet by Mufti A.H. Elias in which an attempt was made to suggest that loud Zikr is Haraam and an evil Bid’ah. Brief mention is also made against the celebration of Maulud-un Nabi, in response to a booklet written by Moulana Abdun Nabi Hamidi titled, "Yes Meelad Celebration is commendable".

Dhikr of Allah is the most excellent act of Allah’s servants and is stressed over and over again in the Holy Quran. Dhikr is the most praiseworthy act to earn the Pleasure of Allah, the most effective weapon to overcome the enemy and the most deserving of deeds in reward. It is the flag of Islam, the polish of the heart, the essence of the science of faith, the immunization against hypocrisy, the head of worship and the key of all success. Dhikr is something of tremendous importance. There is no restriction of the modality, frequency or timing of Dhikr whatsoever. The restriction on modality pertain to certain obligatory facts which are not the issue here, such as Salaah. The Shari’ah is clear and everyone knows what they have to do. Indeed, the Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said that the people of Paradise will only regret one thing, not having made enough Dhikr in the world. Are those who are making up reasons to discourage others from making Dhikr, whether loud or silent, not afraid of Allah in this tremendous matter?

We have come to a time in which we hear of too much complaining about the remembrance of the Prophet’s (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) birthday, loud Dhikr being Haraam and a deviation and many other matters. We are living in a time when the enemies of Islam are destroying the Ummah of the Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) from within and without, without showing any mercy. Almighty Allah is ordering the Believers: "Hold fast to the Rope of Allah and do not separate". (Al-Imraan:103) Yet, in this time, more than any other time, we are finding that the attacks of our enemies are not the only cause of our suffering. Within our own home, the Ummah is being attacked and harmed deeply by the people. They are not happy to fight the enemies of Islam, but instead find it necessary to fight Muslims and the community of Believers throughout the Muslim world. They have nothing to do except to find alleged faults with the beliefs of other Muslims. They take great pains to find anything that their scholars might consider doubtful as an excuse to deride and denigrate the faith of Muslims, calling them names like "Bidati", "Mushriks", "Qabar Pujaris", etc.

In the book, "Impermissibility of Loud Zikr in the Masjid", the author(s) accuse those who recite loud Zikr individually or collectively as a deviation and an act of Bid’ah. They object because it is loud and they claim that it should be silent. Finally, they accuse those who perform loud Dhikr of innovation and misguidance. In it they have not even spared their own Ulama who perform loud Dhikr, especially those who are running Sufi Khanqahs under the direction of their Sheikhs. It is regrettable, nay even tragic, that not one of their Ulama attached to these Sufi Khanqahs (affiliated to the Deobandi School of Thought) have picked up the pen in defence of loud Dhikr which perform in their Khanqahs. Perhaps, they feel it is not worth their energy being wasted to reply to such views from amongst their own school of thought. Not writing in defense will result in a direct assault on the concept of Dhikr as a whole and the consequent impact that these types of books will have on the general public.

But we should have no doubt that these types of publications have a significance which goes beyond the immediate author(s) of this booklet and that these types of publications are nothing less than the crystallization of a general hostility which cannot be ignored. Since most people are apt to be irritated by what they do not understand, any critic of this type, however crude and unintelligent his arguments may be, can be almost certain today that his writings will awaken a chorus of agreement from a large portion of the unsuspecting community, not only those who are anti-religious, but also and perhaps above all, from a certain class of Believers. This is the inherent danger to the mainstream thought of the Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat.

What is the position of the Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat on these points of objection (regarding loud Dhikr)? It is with this thought in mind that this treatise has been written - to protect the teachings of the Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat regarding this issue. We would like to add that this treatise was not written to cause division and discord, but rather to end the arguments revolving around this topic. Let everyone follow his heart and let us unify ourselves and keep Allah’s Order in the Holy Quran to "Hold fast to the Rope of Allah and do not separate".

Moulana Abdun Nabi Hamidi should be congratulated for taking up this challenge and responsibility in writing this treatise. In it, he has left no doubt as the permissibility of loud Dhikr in the Masjid and elsewhere.

Let us pray for Heavenly support for a better Islamic world in which everyone can find a place for himself or herself, based on the accepted schools of thought and the Ijtihad of scholars.

Faqir Saeed Ally Sarwari Qaderi

17 January 2000

All Praises are due to Allah Ta’ala, Choicest blessings and Salutations upon Allah’s beloved Prophet Hazrat Muhammad Mustafa (Salallaho Alaihi Wasallam), his noble family and illustrious companions (Radhi Allahu Anhum)

PROOFS FROM THE HOLY QURAN ABOUT LOUD ZIKR

The permissibility of the recitation of both loud and soft Zikr is proven with Shar’i proofs. Certainly, the recitation of soft Zikr is recommended in some conditions, and similarly, the recitation of loud Zikr is recommended in others. The discussions in this book on Zikr are based on Jahr Motawassat (medium loudness). The quotations which state that loud Zikr is Makrooh or Haraam in fact refers to Jahr Mufrat (excessive loudness), or it is attributed to Zikr which is performed to "show off". This type of Zikr (to "show off") is not part of our discussion. The recitation of the loud Zikr, which we are defending, is that Zikr which is read with a medium tone of voice.

Allah Ta’ala says in the Holy Quran: "Then when you have completed the acts of Hajj, remember Allah as you used to remember your fathers". (Surah al-Baqarah: 200)

Mufassireen (Commentators of the Holy Quran) say that in the era of ignorance, it was the practice of the Kufaar, that when they completed their Hajj, they would stand in front of the Ka’bah and praise their forefathers. In this Ayah, Allah Ta’ala says that they should mention Allah Ta’ala instead of mentioning their forefathers. Therefore, it is understandable that this Zikr, which is performed has to be loud so that people will be able to listen to it.

Sheikh Abdul Haq Muhaddith Dehlawi (radi Allahu anhu) says: "Undoubtedly, loud Zikr is permissible. One of its proofs is the saying of Allah Ta’ala, ‘Remember Allah as you used to remember your forefathers’". (Ash’atul Lam’aat, Vol. 2, pg. 278)

Allah Ta’ala says in the Holy Quran: "Then, when you have finished your prayer, remember Allah standing, sitting and lying on your sides". (Surah an-Nisa: 103)

Hazrat Abdullah Ibn Abbas (radi Allahu anhu) says in the commentary of this Ayah: "One should make Allah’s Zikr during the day and at night, in water and in the dry, when travelling and when at home, in poverty and in prosperity, in sickness and in health, with softness and with loudness". (Tafseeraat-e-Ahmedia by Mullah Jeewan, pg. 207; Durre Mansoor by Imam Suyutwi Ash Shafi’I, Vol. 2, pg. 214; Ihya ul Uloom by Imam Ghazzali, Vol. 1, pg. 301)

Allah Ta’ala says in the Holy Quran: "Remember Me, I shall remember you". (Surah al-Baqarah: 152)

In this Ayah, Allah Ta’ala has commanded the performance of Zikr. Allah Ta’ala did not mention any conditions with regard to the loudness or softness in the recitation of Zikr. According to the principles of Fiqh Hanafi, unconditional statements should be left as general statements and should not be made conditional. Therefore, scholars like Imam Jalalluddin Suyutwi, Sulaimaan Jumal, Khazin, and Hafiz Ibn Kaseer (radi Allahu anhum) have quoted the following Hadith-e-Qudsi in the commentary of this Ayah: "When he (My servant) remembers Me in his heart, I remember him personally; and when he remembers Me in an assembly, I remember him in an assembly better than his".

This Hadith-e-Qudsi endorses the recitation of both loud and soft Zikrs. Allama Sulaimaan Jumal (radi Allahu anhu) says under the commentary of the very same Ayah that, "When he remembers Me in his heart" it means that one should remember Allah alone even if the Zikr is loud.

PROOFS FROM HADITH SHAREEF ON LOUD ZIKR

Hadith 1: Bukhari and Muslim have reported from Abdullah Ibn Abbas. "Abdullah Ibn Abbas (radi Allahu anhu) said that he used to know that the beloved Rasool (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) has completed his Salaah when he heard the Takbeer". (Mishkaat, pg. 88)

Explaining this Hadith Shareef, Sheikh Abdul Haq Mohaddith Dehlawi (radi Allahu anhu) says: "The Ulama have said that the meaning of ‘Takbeer’ in the above Hadith is unconditional Zikr, as it is recorded in Bukhari and Muslim reported by Ibn Abbas that loud Zikr in the time of beloved Rasool (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) was well-known. Ibn Abbas (radi Allahu anhu) said that ‘I used to know that Salaah was completed when I used to hear the Zikr being recited aloud’". (Ash’atul Lam’aat; Vol. 1, pg. 418)

Question: Is this Hadith not Mansookh (cancelled)? Regarding this Hadith, Hazrat Imam Shafi’i (radi Allahu anhu) has said the following: "In my thinking, the narration of Ibn Abbas about loud Takbeer was for a short period of time to educate the people about Takbeer". (Kitaabul Umm, Vol. 1, pg. 110)

Answer: Hazrat Imam Shafi’i (radi Allahu anhu) did not say that this Hadith Shareef is Mansookh (cancelled). He said, "In my thinking ..." According to the Usul of Hadith, a Hadith cannot be regarded as Mansookh just because of someone’s thinking. Imam Shafi’i himself says that if one finds any of his sayings against the Hadith, then one should throw it on the wall. How then can we regard a practice of the period of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) as Mansookh just because of the thinking of Hazrat Imam Shafi’i (radi Allahu anhu)?

Hadith 2: In Sahih Muslim, it is reported from Abdullah Ibn Zubair (radi Allahu anhu): "When the beloved Rasool (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) uttered the Salutation at the end of his Salaah, he used to say ‘LA ILAHA ILLALLAHO WAHDA HU LA SHARIKA LAHU’ aloud" (Mishkaat, pg. 88)

Commenting on this Hadith Shareef, Sheikh Abdul Haq Mohaddith Dehlawi (radi Allahu anhu) says: "This Hadith is categorical proof that Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) used to perform loud Zikr". (Ash’atul Lam’aat, Vol. 1, pg. 419)

Hadith 3: Abu Hurairah (radi Allahu anhu) reports that Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said that Allah Ta’ala says: "I am close to the thoughts of My servant. When he remembers Me I am with him. When he remembers Me in his heart, I remember him personally, and when he remembers Me in an assembly, I remember him in an assembly better than his". (Bukhari; Muslim; Mishkaat, pg. 196)

Sheikh Abdul Haq Muhaddith Dehlawi (radi Allahu anhu) writes in the commentary of this Hadith: "There is proof in this Hadith for loud Zikr". (Ash’atul Lam’aat, Vol. 2, pg. 180)

Allama Qastalaani (radi Allahu anhu) writes under the commentary of "Zakrani fi Mala’in": "If My servant remembers me aloud in the assembly". (Irshaadus Saari, Vol. 10, pg. 310, India print)

Allama Khairuddin Ramli (radi Allahu anhu) writes: "Zikr, which is performed in an assembly, has to be loud Zikr". (Fatawa Khairia, Vol. 2, pg. 181)

Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi writes: "Allama Ramli writes in Fatawa Khairia that there are Ahadith which demand loud Zikr, for example, ‘If My servant remembers me in an assembly, I will remember him in an assembly better than his’". (Imdaadul Fatawa, Vol. 4, pg. 44)

Sheikh Anwar Shah Kashmiri Deobandi writes under the commentary of this Hadith: "In this Hadith, there is no proof of soft Zikr’s Afdaliyyat (excellence) over loud Zikr". (Faizul Baari, Vol. 4, pg. 518)

Hadith 4: Hazrat Abu Qatadah (radi Allahu anhu) reports that on one evening the beloved Rasool (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) went out. He passed by Hazrat Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) and found him reciting the Holy Quran in a very low tone and found Hazrat Umar’s (radi Allahu anhu) recital to be loud. The next morning, as they gathered in the company of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) the Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) questioned their practice. Hazrat Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) replied: "Ya Rasoolallah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam), I have attained my satisfaction. Whom I desired should hear my recitation, has Heard me". Hazrat Umar (radi Allahu anhu) said, "I was awakening those who were asleep and I was causing Shaytaan to flee". The beloved Rasool (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) told Hazrat Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) to recite louder and told Hazrat Umar (radi Allahu anhu) that he should lower his tone to some extent. (Mishkaat, pg. 107, reported by Abu Dawood and Tirmizi)

It is inherrant from this Hadith that Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) guided Hazrat Umar (radi Allahu anhu) from excessive loudness to medium loudness, and he guided Hazrat Abu Bakr (radi Allahu anhu) from softness to loudness.

To prevent excessiveness we have only mentioned four Ahadith. Proving the excellence of loud Zikr, Allama Suyutwi (radi Allahu anhu) has recorded 25 Ahadith in his book "Natijatul Fikr" and Moulana Abdul Hai Lakhnowi (radi Allahu anhu) has recorded 48 Ahadith in his book "Sabahatul Fikr". Those who are interested to broaden their knowledge on this topic should study the above mentioned books.

The Deobandi Ulama write:

Before we even come to a rebuttal of the academic arguments of Molvi Hamidi, we wish to bring to your attention a clear-cut statement of SHIRK made by him. In the conclusion of his pamphlet he states "Allah and His Rosool (sallollahu alaihi wasallam) know best" In the English language, the word "best" is the highest degree of comparison, for the words, "good', and "better". If we consider the Arabic language, the word "best" is equated to the Arabic word "A' lamu", which is also a word used as a degree of comparison. However, if the word "A' lamu" is used without the word "Min" or, if it does not show possession, then it denotes 'Superlative degree'. Hence, logically we conclude that the word "best" and its Arabic counterpart "A' lamu', are words used to show the highest form of excellence. In context of Molvi Hamidi's statement, he is 'attributing excellent and Perfect knowledge to Allah Ta'ala AND Nabi (salallahu alaihi wasallam). Even the very basic lessons in Aqaaid (Islamic Beliefs) teach us that Perfect and Absolute Knowledge is attributed to ALLAH TA'ALA ONLY. We wholeheartedly accept that Nabi Muhammed (salallahu alaihi wasallam) is the very best of Allah Ta'aala’s creations, however, his knowledge is limited to only that which Allah Ta'ala has taught him. Nabi (salallahu alaihi wasallam) himself said that on the day of Qiyaamah, he will be granted the honour by Allah Ta'ala, Most-High, to intercede on behalf of the creation, and that he (salallahu alaihi wasallam) will say such praises that he does not know of (in this life) - i.e. Allah Ta'ala will instil in him new words of praise. This proves that Nabi (salallahu alaihi wasallam)'s knowledge is limited. Regarding the "Huroofe Muqatta'at' in the Qur'aan Shareef, like "Alif Laam Meem", "Yaseen" etc. The meanings of these words are ONLY KNOWN TO ALLAH TA'ALA. This also proves that Nabi (salallahu alaihi wasallam)'s knowledge is limited.

How then can Molvi Hamidi (who proficies to be an Aalim) say that Rasool (salallahu alaihi wasallam) knows best? Is this not clear-cut Shirk (i.e. ascribing partnership to Allah Ta'ala in His Divine Qualities)? Were not the Christians led astray and cursed because they did the self-some thing of equating Hadhrat Isaa (alaihi salaam) to Allah Ta'ala?

One may refer to any authoritative and reliable Kitaab of Taf seer, Fiqh or Fatwa and one will note the words: "Wallaahu A' lamu" (And Allah Ta'ala knows best). In fact Shaami is replete with these words. Nowhere, will one find such words as mentioned by Molvi Hamidi in his pamphlet, except, of course from his cohorts of similar thinking. This explains the corrupt beliefs of this deviant sect - the 'Sunnis'.

After looking at the above quotation, one will see that the Deobandi Ulama have passed a Fatwa of Shirk upon me. Insha-Allah, I will, with reference to Prophetic Traditions, prove their Fatwa as incorrect. This would, therefore, mean that the Fatwa passed by the Deobandi Ulema would not only uniquely apply to me, but it would also apply to the Holy Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) and his illustrious Companions (radi Allahu anhum).

One will be astonished at the ignorance of the Deobandi Ulema that I have to present the following two Ahadith which will prove beyond a shadow of doubt that the Deobandi Ulama are wrong. The under-mentioned Ahadith (one of which is the first Hadith of Mishkaat and Muslim Shareef, respectively) will prove that it is indeed the Sunnah of the Sahabah Ikraam (radi Allahu anhum) to say: "Allah and his Rasool know best". Not only is it the Sunnah of the Sahabah Ikraam to utter the above phrase, Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) never refuted this statement when he heard it. Therefore, this means that Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) approved the statement. The Messenger’s (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) task is to establish good and forbid evil. Could it then be possible that Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) heard "Shirkia statements" and still remained silent? (Reader’s should note well that if a person passes a Fatwa of Kufr on someone else and if the accused is proven to be innocent, then the same Fatwa would apply to the accuser, that is, he becomes a Kaafir.)

First Hadith: Hazrat Umar Ibn Khattab (radi Allahu anhu) said: One day, as we were sitting in the company of Allah’s Messenger (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) there appeared before us, all of a sudden, a man (dressed) in extremely white clothes with extremely black hair. There seemed to be no sign of fatigue caused by journey on him and none amongst us ever knew him. At last, he sat near the Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). He placed his knees upon the Prophet’s (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) knees and placed his palms on his thighs and said: "O Muhammad, inform me about Islam". He (the Holy Prophet) said: "Islam requires that you testify that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is His Messenger and, that you establish prayer and pay Zakaah, observe fast during the month of Ramadaan and perform pilgrimage to the house (Ka’bah) if you have the means". He said: "You have told the truth". What was amazing about him was that he would ask a question and then he himself would testify it to be true. He said: "Inform me about Imaan". He (the Holy Prophet) said: "You must affirm your faith in Allah, His Angels, His Books, His Messengers, in the Hereafter, and in the Divine Decree to good and evil". He said: "You have told the truth". He asked again: "Inform me about Ihsaan". He (the Holy Prophet) said: "Ihsaan is that you worship Allah as if you are seeing Him, (perceive) that He is in fact Seeing you". He said: "Inform me about (the Last) Hour". He (the Holy Prophet) said: "The one who has been inquired about the Qiyamah does not know more than the one who is inquiring (it means you know just as myself)". He (the inquirer) said: "Tell me some of it’s indications". He (the Holy Prophet) said: "Slave-girls will give birth to their mistress, and you find bare-footed, destitute, shepherds exulting in buildings (palaces)". Then he (the inquirer) made his way, but I stayed with him (the Holy Prophet) for a long time. He then asked me: "Umar, do you know about this inquirer?" I said: "ALLAHO WA RASOOLO HU A’LAMU - Allah and His Messenger know best". He (the Holy Prophet) said: "He was Gabriel, he came to you to instruct you on your religion". (Sahih Muslim, Kitaabul Imaan, Hadith no. 1; Mishkaat, Kitaabul Imaan, Section 1, Hadith no. 1)

Second Hadith: Ibn Abbas (radi Allahu anhu) reported that a deputation of the tribe of Abdul Qais came to Allah’s Messenger (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). Allah’s Messenger (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: "Who are the people, or of whom is the deputation (constituted)". They said: "(The deputation) of Rabi’a". He (the Holy Prophet) said: "Welcome to the people or the deputation that you have come to us without feeling any shame or sense of disgrace". They said: "Allah’s Messenger, we do not find it possible for ourselves to come to you but in the sacred months - (for) between us and you there is a tribe of unbelievers called Mudar. Give us a decisive command which we may tell to those behind us and which may entitle us to get into Paradise", and they also asked him about drinks. He commanded them to observe four things and prohibited them (from four things). He commanded them to affirm faith in Allah, the One. He said: "Do you know what it means to have faith in Allah?" They said: "ALLAHO WA RASOOLO HU A’LAMU - Allah and his Messenger know best". (Sahih Bukhari, Vol. 1, Hadith No. 43; Mishkaat, Hadith No. 17)

Three points are derived from the above two Ahadith. They are:

1. It is indeed the Sunnah of the Sahabah Ikraam (radi Allahu anhum) to say, "Allah and his Rasool know best". Those who say "Allah and his Rasool know best" are following in the footsteps of the Sahabah Ikraam (radi Allahu anhum) and are the true and real Sunnis. Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: "Those who follow my footsteps and the footsteps of my Sahabah are the only Jama’at which will achieve salvation". Those who put on a façade and claim to be "Sunnis" in order to deceive the people have now been exposed and have also proven that they oppose the way of the illustrious Sahabah Ikraam (radi Allahu anhum) by saying that it is Shirk to say "Allah and his Rasool know best".

2. If it were Shirk to say "Allah and his Rasool know best" then the logic that follows would be that the whole Ummah of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam), including Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) himself, would become Mushriks (Allah forbid!). The reason for saying this is that Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) heard this sentence from the Sahabah (radi Allahu anhum) and did not show any disagreement with them. To agree with Shirk is in itself Shirk. It would imply that if the Sahabah Ikraam (radi Allahu anhum) uttered this "Shirkia sentence" then all those people who learnt, read, heard, and taught these Ahadith would have become Mushriks (Allah forbid!). It would also imply that even those who believed in the correctness of these Ahadith would also have become Mushriks. I question the Ulama of Deoband: "Do you believe in the correctness of these Ahadith of Bukhari and Muslim Shareef?" If the answer is "yes" then you would become Mushriks according to your own Fatwa. If your answer is "no" then we would know that your association with Hadith is merely Taqiyyah ("holy lie"). This, in fact, is part of the Shi’a Mazhab and not in any way a Sunni belief.

3. Deobandi Ulama have said the following in a very boasting fashion: "Nowhere, will one find such words as mentioned by Molvi Hamidi in his pamphlet, except, of course, from his cohorts of similar thinking". (pg. 3)

Alhamdulillah, we have proven, with reference to Prophetic Traditions, that the Fatwa passed by the Deobandi Ulema is nothing but an attempt to split the Ummah. We have now removed any doubt that may have existed in one’s. We are also honoured that our "cohorts of similar thinking" are the Sahabah Ikraam (radi Allahu anhum).

HUROOFE MUQATTE'AAT

Deobandi Ulama wrote the following with regard to Huroofe Muqatte'aat: "Regarding the 'Huroofe Muqatta'aat' in the Quran Shareef, like 'Alif Laam Meem''Yaseen' etc. the meaning of these words are only known to Allah Ta'ala. This also proves that Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam)'s knowledge is limited".

Readers, please note that this is not the opinion of any authentic scholar of Islam. No reference has been provided to support this belief. While the rest of the Ummah does not share this opinion, this is only the opinion of the Deobandi Ulama. This argument is based totally on ignorance.

In response to this, we are going to quote references from two very authentic books which the Deobandi Ulama have also quoted with pride in their booklet, "Impermissibility of Loud Zikr in the Masjid". These books are "Tafseer Roohul Ma'aani" and "Noorul Anwaar".

QUOTATIONS FROM "NOORUL ANWAAR"

Hazrat Hafiz Shaikh Ahmad (radi Allahu anhu) known as "Mulla Jeewan" (passed away in 1130 A.H) writes: "We do not know the meaning of Mutashaabehaat (words whose meaning is unclear), (Huroofe Muqatte'aat are also from the Mutashaabehaat) before Qiyamah, and after Qiyamah the meaning of these words will be unveiled to everyone Insha-Allah. This is what is said in regard to the Ummah. As far as Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) is concerned, he knows the meanings of these words, otherwise, the benefit of addressing will be null and void. Just as it would be meaningless addressing an Arab in the Zinji language (an African language)".

Hazrat Mulla Jeewan (radi Allahu anhu) writes further after a few lines, that: "Surely these (Mutashaabehaat) are the secrets between Allah and His Rasool. No one else knows these secrets besides Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam)". (Noorul Anwaar, pg. 93, H. M.Saeed Company, Karachi print)

QUOTATIONS FROM TAFSEER ROOHUL MA"AANI

Allama Abul Fazl Shahaabuddin As Sayyad Mahmood Al Aaloosi Al Baghdadi (radi Allahu anhu), who passed away in 1270 A.H, writes under the commentary of "Alif Laam Meem", the beginning letters of Surah Baqarah: "And the argument which is presented earlier 'that if the meaning of Muqatte'aat is unknown then this will be a meaningless addressing'. We say that if it means that all the people know the meaning of Huroofe Muqatte'aat, this we do not accept. If it means that the person addressed knows the meaning of Horoofe Muqatte'aat, in this case who is Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam), no Believer has any doubt in it". (Tafseer Roohul Ma'aani, Vol. 1, pg. 100, 101, Darul Fikr, Beirut print)

The Deobandi Ulama should now worry about their Imaan and see whether they fall in the category of Believers or not, because according to Allama Mahmood Aaloosi (radi Allahu anhu), a Believer cannot possess any doubt in this issue. The Deobandi Ulama not only have doubt but they openly refute that Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) knows the meaning of Houroofe Muqatte'aat.

Note: In some of the Tafseer books, with regards to Huroofe Muqatte'aat, it is written that Allah Ta'ala best knows its meaning. Some people use these commentary books and argue that Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) does not know its meaning. We say in response to the argument that "Allah knows best" does not mean that Allah Ta'ala did not teach it to his beloved Rasool (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). Insha-Allah, one will not find any authentic Tafseer book which states that Allah Ta'ala did not teach the meaning of Huroofe Muqatte'aat to his beloved Rasool (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam).

PRAISES OF ALLAH TA'ALA ON THE DAY OF QIYAMAH

The Deobandi Ulama argued against the knowledge of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) in the following word: "He (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) will say such praises that he does not know of (in this life) B i.e. Allah Ta'ala will instil in him new words of praise. This proves that Nabi (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam)'s knowledge is limited".

There are two answers to this statement:

1. This incident is not against the I'lme Ghaib of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) because the Attributes of Allah Ta'ala are not the incidents of this world, and the knowledge of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) circumferences the incidents of this world and not the Attributes of Allah Ta'ala. Therefore, this argument is not against what we believe.

2. We do not say that the knowledge of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) is unlimited. Allah Ta'ala gave the knowledge of the entire creation to his beloved Rasool (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). The entire creation is limited, therefore, it is understood that the knowledge of creation is also limited. Hence, we agree that the Nabi's (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) knowledge is limited to the entire creation. Allah's Knowledge is unlimited, thus there is no comparison to the limited knowledge of Nabi (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) and the unlimited Knowledge of Allah. Therefore, to say that the Ahle Sunnah Wal Jama'at proves that the knowledge of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) is equal to the Knowledge of Allah Ta'ala, is a sheer lie and a baseless accusation.

The Deobandi Ulama, regarding the "challenge" at the end of their pamphlet, where they say: "Those who ask for proof regarding Meelad, Faatiha, Urs and Salaami etc. should try another approach. Can they prove which Fardh, Waajib or Sunnah has been violated by these practice?' This is an old trick, i.e. avoid the question and waylay the issue by asking another one. It stands to reason that if a person innovates something new in the Deen and claims it to be part of the Deen, which was unheard of from the predecessors, then he must produce proof to substantiate his claim. The kitaabs of Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence) are replete with proofs for every Mas'ala (ruling), further proving that any part of the Deen must be substantiated.

In the Shariah of Islam, there are four sources of proof: The Qur'aan Shareef, Sunnat, Ijma (consensus of the Sahabah, Tabi'een and the pious predecessors) and Qiyaas (Analogy based on sound principles). To date the Sunni sect has not yet been able to prove any of their evil Bid'as (innovations) from any source. Everyone still has the right to ask: "What is your proof regarding Meelad, Urs, etc.

Nevertheless, we say, at your Meelad and Urs functions, Salaat is discarded by many of the participants, because of their participation (those who attend can bear testimony to this). Shar'i Hijaab, which is Waajib, is openly violated. All these functions are not proven from the Sunnat of Nabi (salallahu alaihi wasallam) and his illustrious Sahabah (radi Allahu anhum). There you have it, a Fardh and Waajib duty is being discarded and an anti-Sunnah act is being perpetrated". (Page 3)

We say in response to this that, Alhamdulillah, we do not "beat around the bush" so to speak. We show the people the straight forward and correct way of finding the truth. It is the basic rule of Shari'ah that "every thing in its Asal (origin) is Mubah (permissible) until there is any Shar'i proof against it". (Tafseer Ahmadia, page13; Tafseer Kabeer, Vol. 4, pg. 201; Mosallamus Suboot, pg. 21; Mirqaat, Vol. 263; Ash'atul Lam'aat, Vol. 3, pg. 479; Talveeh, pg. 302)

The Deobandi Ulama regard Meelad, Urs, etc. as Haraam practices, so it is their responsibility to furnish categorical Shar'i proofs which prohibit Meelaad and Urs. They ask us: "What is your proof regarding Meelad, Urs etc?" Our reply to them is that our main proof for Meelad, Urs, etc. is that no proof exists against these practices in the Shari'ah. (N.B. Everything is Ja'iz or permissible unless proven otherwise with categorical Shar'i proofs).

"Can one find a single verse of the Quran or Hadith, which says that Meelad or Urs, etc. is prohibited?" On the same token, one has the right to question the Deobandi Ulama, "What is your proof for Ijtima, Gusht, Shabguzaari and the present form of 'Tableegh' etc.?" We suggest that whatever answers that you will give to defend yourself, you should take the same answer from our side and apply it for the basis Meelad, Urs, etc. being permissible.

When all else fails, use the word "Bid'ate Sai'yya" (an evil innovation)! This is an old trick used by the Deobandis. If something does not comply with their innovations (i.e. Ijtima, Gusht, Shabguzaari, etc.) then it is a Bid'ah to them and they attempt to make that which is Ja'iz or Mubah, Haraam. They use the excuse that it was not practiced in the time of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam), the Sahabah and the Tabi'een (radi Allahu anhum), etc. even though they themselves do many things which were not practiced in the time of Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam), the Sahabah and the Tabi'een (radi Allahu anhum). They themselves not only engage themselves in such activities, but they also regard such activities as being part of the Deen.

For the benefit of the readers we would like to present a detailed explanation of what "Bid'ate Sa'iyya" really is.

THE TRUE MEANING OF "BID'AT-E-SAI'YYA"

"Bid'at-e-Sai'yya" is that action which was not in practice in the blessed age of the Holy Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) and which contradicts the Holy Quran and the Sunnah. Bid'at-e-Sai'yya can be Makruh Tanzihi or Makruh Tahrimi or even Haraam.

The first volume of "Ashi'atul Lam'aat" (Babul I'tisaam) speaks about Bid'at Hasana and Bid'at Sai'yya under the Hadith: "Every Bid'ah is misleading". It says that any Bid'ah which is in accordance with the Quranic Law and the Sunnah and has been deduced by analogy (through Qiyas) from the Quran or Sunnah is Bid'at-e-Hasana and that which is in contrast to the above definition is Bid'at-e-Sai'yya.

A Hadith in "Miskhat" under Babul-I'lm says: "He who sets a good precedent in Islam, there is reward for him for this (act of goodness). There is also reward for him who acts according to it subsequently without any deduction from their rewards. He who sets in Islam an evil precedent there is upon him the burden of that, and there is also burden upon him who acts upon it subsequently without any deduction from their burdens."

From this Hadith we learn that to introduce a foundation for a good act in Islam which is in accordance with the Holy Quran and Sunnah will generate rewards and to do vice versa will incur punishment.

It is mentioned in the preface of "Fatawa Shaami" under Faza'il Imam Abu Hanifa (radi Allahu anhu): "The scholars say that these Ahadith are amongst the rules of Islam. That is, whoever introduces a bad way in Islam, he will be burdened for the sins of all those who act upon it and, whoever introduces a nice way, he will be rewarded for all those who act upon it till the Day of Judgement".

An offensive Bid'at is that which contradicts the Sunnah. "Mishkaat" (Babul I'tisaam) says: "Whoever introduces something in our religion, which is not of it (i.e. not in accordance with it) is rejected".

The book "Ashi'atul Lam'aat" (by Sheikh Abdul Haq Dehlawi) under the commentary of the same Hadith says, "It means, that thing which is not in accordance with Islam or which will change the religion".

A Hadith in "Miskhat" (Babul I'tisaam) in the third section says, "People do not introduce a Bid'ah unless a Sunnat of its kind is erased from amongst them, so to hold on to a Sunnat is better than introducing a Bid'at".

Under the commentary of this Hadith, the book "Ashi'atul Lam'aat" says, "So, if by introducing a Bid'ath, a Sunnat is removed from among the people, then surely holding fast to the Sunnat will lead to the annihilation of every Bid'at". (If a Sunnah is not affected by introducing a Bid'ah, then this kind of Bid'ah is not discouraged by Shari'ah)

NOTE: It is through this Hadith and it's commentary that we learn that an offensive Bid'ah is that which will eradicate a Sunnat. So to hold gatherings of Moulood Shareef wherein the Holy Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) is praised is not Bid'ah because no Sunnat has been erased because of it. Likewise, you may compare other things like Fatiha, Khatam Shareef, Isaale Sawaab, etc. with this principle, and see for yourself if they are Bid'ahs or not. The difference between an offensive Bid'ah and appreciable Bid'ah should be well understood because this is where many get confused.

The Deobandi Ulama wrote: "Nevertheless, we say, at your Meelaad and Urs functions, Salaat is discarded by many of the participants, because of their participation (those who attend can bear testimony to this). Shar'ee Hijaab, which is Wajib, is openly violated. All these functions are not proven from the Sunnat of Nabi (sallallaho alaihi wa sallam) and his illustrious Sahabah (radi Allahu anhum). There you have it, a Fardh and Waajib duty is being discarded and an anti-Sunnah act is being perpetrated".

Readers, if you carefully read our treatise at the end of this book, which was written in reply to Mufti A. H. Elias, you will find the following lines: "In fact, the Bid'ah which is condemned in Hadith is that Bid'ah which is opposing the Deen. Therefore, Shaikh Abdul Haq Muhaddis Dehlvi explains in the commentary of a Hadith: 'Whoever invents an opinion in the Deen, which is not from the Deen, that opinion is rejected', meaning that which opposes the Deen or changes the Deen". (Ashatul Lamaat, Babul I'tisaam).

From the above explanation, we understand that something that has not been mentioned has no basis for it to be considered Haraam or a bad Bid'ah! In fact, the ruling of it being Haraam or a bad Bid'ah will only be justified if it is opposes the Shari'ah or changes it, for example, if it removes any Fardh, Wajib or Sunnah and take its place.

This, which is mentioned above, is exactly what we mean when we ask: "Can they prove which Fardh, Wajib or Sunnat has been violated by these practices?" If people start believing that Meelad, Urs, etc. is the substitute for Salaah or any other Wajib or Sunnah practice, then we too believe that this is a violation and a change in the Deen. If people believe that they are no longer duty-bound for certain Fardh, Waajib or Sunnah actions because of their participation in Meelaad, Urs, etc, then this too is a violation and a change in the Deen. People who do not perform their Salaah or do not act on any other Fardh, Waajib or Sunnah actions know that they will be accountable for their actions. One cannot make a function Haraam because individuals are not practicing on that which is Fardh, Waajib or Sunnah. Do you really think that Muslims would believe that they are no longer duty-bound for certain Fard, Waajib or Sunnah practices? Can it really be possible for a Muslim to find a replacement for Salaah (one of the fundermentals of Islam)? Or is this just your attempt to discredit other Muslims because they are expressing their love for their Beloved Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam)!

This is an assumption and a false accusation that the Ahlus Sunnah Wal Jama'at do not read Salaah and ladies do not wear Shar'i Hijaab in Meelad functions. We have answered all these lies in our book "YES! MEELAD CELEBRATION IS COMMENDABLE". Readers are requested to refer to this book, and Insha-Allah, you will find satisfactory answers to all the false accusations.

Deobandi Ulama writes:

LOUD ZIKR IS HARAAM

The following is reported in "Shaami", which is an authoritative Hanafi Fiqh Kitaab: "It is recorded in Fataawa Qaadhi Khaan that to recite Zikr aloud is HARAAM, because Hadhrat Ibn Mas'ood (radi Allahu anhu) ejected a qroup of people from the Musjid as they were reciting La Ilaha Illallahu and Durood aloud. And he (Ibn Mas'ood) remarked: I conclude that you are only BID'ATEES". (pg. 4)

The Deobandi Ulama have quoted the statement of "Fatawa Bazazia" from "Fatawa Shaami" and they have conveniently digested the portion which was before and after it. Now, we present the original quotation of "Shaami". Please read the original quotation and pay compliments to the dishonesty of the Deobandi Ulama.

Allama Shaami (radi Allahu anhu) writes: "I say there is severe uneasiness in the statement of Bazazia. Firstly he quoted from Fatawa Qazi Khan that loud Zikr is Haraam, because it is proven from a correct narration that Hazrat Ibn Mas’ood (radi Allahu anhu) ejected a group of people from the Masjid as they were reciting Kalimah and Durood aloud. And he (Ibn Mas’ood) said that ‘I conclude you are only Bid’atees’.

"Then after that, Allama Bazazi said: ‘It is proven from a correct narration that Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) told those Sahabah (radi Allahu anhum) who were making loud Zikr, ‘Have mercy upon yourselves; you are not calling upon that Being Who is deaf or absent. You are calling upon that Being Who is All- Hearing and close by, and He is with you". There is a possibility in this Hadith that maybe Rasoolullah stopped them in such a time when there was no Maslihat (expedience) in loudness, because it is proven that this was said at the occasion of war. Maybe loudness of the voice could have caused harm, and war is a deception. For this reason it is stopped to ring the bell during war. To make loud Zikr is permissible in any case, as it happens in Azaan, Juma Khutbah and Haj". (Quotation of Bazazia ended) Allama Khairuddin Ramli has discussed this issue in Fatawa Kharia and hhas said: ‘Whatever is mentioned in Fatawa Qazi Khan, implies harmful loudness’. And he (Allama Ramli) said: ‘There are several Ahadith which demand loudness, and there are several other Ahadith which demand softness, and the Tatbeeq (likening) in these Ahadith will be in this way, that the loudness and softness changes according to the state of the people and the time. When there is fear of showing off and fear of interference in someone’s Salaah or sleep, then softness is preferable. When this fear is not there then loudness is preferable, because listeners benefit from it, it awakens the heart of the Zaakir (one who makes Zikr), it directs his brain toward thinking, it directs his listening towards Zikr, and it takes the sleep away and increases his pleasure’" (Fatawa Shaami, Vol. 5, pg. 350)

Dear readers, this is the complete quotation of "Fatawa Shaami", which the Deobandi Ulama presented as their proof for loud Zikr being Bid’ah and Haraam. By omitting parts of the quotation from beginning to end, they have made an unsuccessful attempt to achieve their objective. How could the Deobandi Ulama think that their distortion would not be unveiled? Do they think that no one has access to the pages of "Fatawa Shaami"? "Fatawa Shaami" is not a scarce book. It is readily available. A weak attempt to fool the people. Nevertheless, with the full quotation of "Fatawa Shaami" it is obvious that according to "Fatawa Bazazia", "Fatawa Kharia" and "Fatawa Shaami" loud Zikr is permissible unanimously. If there is no fear of show off and causing harm to the Musallies then loud Zikr is even better than soft Zikr.

Deobandi Ulama write:

MOLVI HAMIDI'S ONE-LEGGED EXPLANATION

In his pamphlet, Molvi Hamidi quotes from Tafseer Roohul Bayaan and Khazin, that the Aayaat quoted by Mufti Elias Saheb in substantiation of soft Zikr, actually refer to Qiraat in Salaat. The two Aayaat are: "And remember your Lord (make Zikr) in your heart with humility and fear, without raising your voices. " (Surah A’raaf)

"Call out to your Lord with humility and silently. Surely HE does not like the transgressors". (Surah A 'raaf)

In reply to this we quote from two Tafseer kitaabs which are not only completely accepted throughout the Muslim world, but they are amongst the most authentic Tafseer kitaabs. (Incidently, they are not even written by Deoband Ulama).

TAFSEER IBN KATHEER states: "Allah Ta'ala is guiding His servants regarding those Du'as that they make regarding their worldly and Aakhirah needs. Allah Ta'ala says: ‘Call unto your Rabb with humility and softly’. It is said that the meaning of these words are: ‘to be docile, humble, soft, silently and quietly’. NO MENTION IS MADE TO SALAAT, in the way Molvi Hamidi's Tafseers do. In fact, under the Tafseer of the Aayat 205 of Surah A'raaf, it is stated in Tafseer Ibn Katheer: "This (Aayat) refers to the era before the five times daily Salaat was ordained on the occasion of Israa' (Me'raaj), this is a Macci Aayat..

TAFSEER BAIDHAWI, which is also a widely accepted and authentic Tafseer kitaab, throughout the Muslim World, states with reference to the above Aayaat (55, Surah A’raaf):"That is with humility and softness, because ‘Surely, softness (in du’aa and Zikr) is a sign of sincerity".

Regarding Aayat 205, Surah A’raf, it is stated in Baidhawi: "The Aayat ‘And remember your Rabb in your hearts’ is general in so far as Zikr is concerned, in Qiraat, du’aa and others besides these, or it applies to the Muqtadi, that he should make soft Qiraat after the Imaam has completed his Qiraat as is the Mazhab of Imaam Shaafi (rahmatullahi alaihi)". [Refer Tafseer Baidhawi, pages 342 and 373, vol.1 B Printed by Daarul Kutubul Ilmia- Beirut, Lebanon]

Here also we see that Imaam Baidhawi (who passed away 791 A.H.), does not mention the specific reference to Salaat regarding these Aayaat. In fact he also proves from these Aayaat that general du’aa and Zikr are referred to in these Aayaat.

Deobandi Ulama quoted the commentary of the Ayah "WAZKUR RABBAKA FEE NAFSEKA TADARRO’AOW WA KHEEFATAOW WA DOONAL JAHRE MINAL QOWL". To make this commentary of the Ayah exclusive with the disputed issue of Zikr is far from the truth. Mufassireen of the Holy Quran have referred to Zikr here as general Zikr.

"Tafseer Baidhawi", which the Deobandi Ulama have so proudly presented, explains this Ayah as general in so far as Zikr, Qiraat, etc. is concerned. "Tafseer Baidhawi" does not make any specific mention of whether the recitation is in or out of Salaah or whether it is loud or soft. How can the Deobandi Ulama make it exclusive to loud Zikr? Some of the Mufassereen (eg. "Roohul Bayaan" and "Khaazin") have made it exclusive to Salaah. If according to you there is prohibition of Zikr here generally then this does not remain exclusive with the disputed Zikr (loud Zikr) only.

The demand of Taqwa and honesty is this that the Deobandi Ulama should give the Fatwa of Bid’ah and Haraam on loud recitation of the Holy Quran. Stop the assemblies of Wa’iz because those gatherings are not empty of Zikrullah. Stop the Jahri (with loudness) Salaah as well. If this commentary of the Ayah is not against Wa’iz, recitation of the Holy Quran and Jahri Salaahs, how could it then be against the disputed issue of Zikr (loud Zikr)? All these are members of general Zikr. Is it not the highest degree of hypocrisy that you have completely turned a blind eye to those members of Zikr, which are an assurance to protect your job of Imaamat and Khitabat? As Imams you get some type of remuneration for practicing certain types of loud Zikr (Wa’iz, loud recitation in Salaah, etc) and if the loud Zikr does not increase your income then you term it as Bid’ah and Haraam!

Two references of Tafseer books are given by the Deobandi Ulema, and none of the books give any indication that loud Zikr is Bid’ah or Haraam (as is the claim of the Deobandi Ulema). Neither of these books have refuted the sayings of other Mufassireen who said that Zikr, which is meant here, is the Qiraat of the Holy Quran in the Salaah. Alhamdulillah our claim that, according to some great Mufassireen, the Zikr in this Ayah refers to the recitation of the Holy Quran by the Muqtadi in the Salaah remains unchallenged.

The Tafseer of Hazrat Ibn Abbas (radi Allahu anhu)regarding this Ayah: "Allama Khazin writes the Tafseer of Ibn Abbas: ‘Ibn Abbas (radi Allahu anhu) says that in this Ayah Zikr means reciting the Quran in the Salaah".  (Tafseer Khazin, Vol. 2, pg. 160)

The Leader of the Wahabi sect, Nawab Siddiq Hasan Bhopaali, writes: "It is said that this Ayah is exclusive with the recital of the Quran". (Tafseer Fathul Bayaan, Vol. 3, pg. 420)

We ask the Deobandi Ulama: if this Ayah is against loudness in general, then why don’t they declare that to read the Holy Quran aloud in Salaah is also Bid’ah and Haraam? Why are they corrupting the Salaahs of the people by committing Bid’ahs in reading the Qiraat aloud, which is also a part of general Zikr?

Even if this Ayah is taken as a reference to the disputed issue of loud Zikr, it is still not against that Zikr which is recited with a middle tone of voice.

Imam Fakhruddin Raazi (radi Allahu anhu) writes: "The meaning of this Ayah is that Zikr should be done with a medium tone of voice. As Allah Ta’ala says ‘Don’t recite loud and soft in the Salaah and follow the middle way’". (Tafseer Kabeer, Vol. 4, pg. 344)

Hafiz Ibn Kaseer (radi Allahu anhu) writes: "The Mustahab (recommended) way of Zikr is that it should not be in the fashion of calling (shouting) nor should it be with excessive loudness". (Tafseer Ibn Kaseer, Vol. 4, pg. 284)

It is obvious from the Tafseer of Ibn Kaseer that the loudness itself is not prohibited in this Ayah, but excessive loudness is being prohibited here. If someone is performing Zikr with excessive loudness it will not be an evil Bid’ah or Haraam as the Deobandi Ulama claim, but it will be against the Mustahab (recommended way) only. Certainly the Mustahab way is to recite the Zikr with medium loudness.This is what we say and believe.

A MU’MIN’S CHALLENGE

I challenge the whole Deobandi fraternity to show us a single Ayah of the Holy Quran, which clearly states that to make loud Zikr collectively in the Masjid is Haraam. We say, Insha-Allah, they will never find a clear Ayah or Hadith in this regard till the Day of Qiyamah.

Deobandi Ulama write:

Imaam Abu Hanifah said that our discussion is not regarding normal Zikr, because this is, at all times a preferred and encouraged act. In fact our discussion is regarding loud Zikr, and loud Zikr is Bid'a, because Allah Ta'aala says that we should call unto Him with humility and softly, except on those occasions which the Shariah has allowed. Hence, regarding those exceptions, which have conflicting proofs, we use logical reasoning, and practice upon the original (i.e what has been conclusively proven). This is the precautionary course of action, as here the proofs are conclusive. This much also becomes clear (from this discussion), that there is no basis for those who prefer the opinion of the Saahibain (Imaams Abu Yusuf and Muhammed) (rahmatullahi alaihima) in this matter. [Ghani'atul Mustamli, page 531-2 printed by 'Rahirnia', Deoband].

Readers, please look at the sentence below that the Deobandi Ulama quote and note the Fatwa that follows written by Moulana Rashid Ahmad Gangohi.

"There is no basis for those who prefer the opinion of the Saahibain (Imam Abu Yousuf and Imam Muhammad) (rahmatullah alaihima) in this matter".

Fatwa of Gangohi Sahib:

"According to Imam Abu Hanifa (rahmatullah Alai) loud Zikr is Makrooh (undesirable), unless the loudness of the Zikr is proven with Nass (categorical order of statement) in that occasion. The rest of the Jurists, Muhadditheen and Sahebain (Imam Abu Yousuf and Imam Muhammad) regard it as permissible. The way of our Mashaa’ikh (spiritual leaders) is the Mazhab of the Sahibain (rahmatullah alaihima)". (Fatawa Rashidia, pg. 252, published by Saeed Company, Karachi, Pakistan)

Two very important points are extracted from the Fatwa of Moulana Gangohi. These are:-

1. Moulana Rashid Ahmad Gangohi has based his Fatwa on the opinion of the Sahibain, and today’s Deobandi Ulama say that there is no basis for those who prefer the opinion of the Sahibain. This means that "Fatawa Rashidia" is based on unacceptable and unpopular opinions. Why then do the Deobandi Ulama not announce that "Fatawa Rashidia" is an unreliable book and should be discarded?

2. We ask the Deobandi Ulama: if it is Bid’ah to make loud Zikr according to Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu), are the Sahibain, Muahaddditheen, spiritual leaders of Deoband, Moulana Rashid Ahmed Gangoohi and the rest of the Jurists Bid’atis or not?

The Deobandi Ulama wrote what suited their desire and hid what did not suite them. They quoted one of the sayings of Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu) from the book of Allama Halbi Hanafi and ignored the other saying, which is explained by Allama Halbi Hanafi.

Allama Halbi Hanafi writes:

"On the day of Eid-ul-Adha it is unanimously (Imam Abu Hanifah and Sahibain have no dispute) permissible to say loud Takbeers on the way to Eid Gah. Imam Abu Hanifah said that on the day of Eid-ul-Fitr there should not be loudness in Takbeers, and the Sahibain said that there should be loudness. There is, however, another narration from Imam Abu Hanifah which agrees with the opinions of the Sahibain with reference to Jahr (loudness) on the day of Eid-ul-Fitr as well". (Kabeeri, pg. 566)

Since there are two narrations from Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu), why then do the Deobandi Ulama take only one narration and not the other, and make the entire Ummah, including their spiritual leaders, Bid’atis and sinners?

Allama Ibn Aabedeen Shaami (radi Allahu anhu) writes:

"According to Imam Abu Hanifah Takbeers will not be recited aloud on the day of Eid-ul-Fitr, and according to Sahibain Takbeers will be recited aloud. This difference is only in Afzaliyyat (excellence), that is, according to Imam Abu Hanifah it is better not to recite the Takbeers aloud on the day of Eid-ul-Fitr), and the Karahat (undesirability) is not reported from either side". (Fatawa Shaami, Vol. 1, pg. 778)

It is now clear that loudness in Takbeers is proven without Karahat (undesirability) and it is also proven that loudness is permissible. The Deobandi Ulama insist on calling this act Bid’ah and Haraam. Who has now deviated from the Hanafi Mazhab. Is it us or them?

We would like to present another reference from "Shaami". Allama Shaami Hanafi writes: "Qohstani has reported two narrations from Imam Abu Hanifah. One should make Zikr soft.One should make Zikr aloud as is the saying of the Sahibain. He (Qohstani) said that the second saying is correct as Abu Bakr Razi has said. The same thing (one should make Zikr aloud is the correct saying) is mentioned in "Nahr" (name of a book). It is mentioned in "Huliyah" (name of a book) that there is a difference in opinion on Eid-ul-Fitr. According to one narration, Imam Abu Hanifah said that there should be loudness in Takbeers. The Sahibain are of the same opinion, and it is also the choice of Tahaawi. There is another narration from Imam Abu Hanifah on soft Takbeers as well". (Shaami, Vol. 1, pg. 778)

From the above quotation of "Shaami" it is proven that according to the correct saying, Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu) believed in loud Zikr as it is mentioned with the reference of Qohstani. Sahibain, Imam Abu Ja’far Tahaawi, Abu Bakr Razi, author of "Nahr", author of "Hulyah" and Qohstaani all believed in loud Zikr. We now ask the Deobandi Ulama: Is your Fatwa of Haraam and Bid’ah upon us only or some share of it is aslo bestowed upon Imam Abu Hanifah and upon the rest of the above mentioned Jurists (radi Allahu anhum) as well? Please answer carefully.

QUESTION

We agree that it is permissible and proven that one can say Takbeers aloud on the day of Eid-ul-Adha and Eid-ul-Fitr, and this is the favourite opinion of the Jurists of the Hanafi Mazhab. What about the quotation of some of the Hanafi scholars who say that according to Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu), to say Takbeers aloud in Eid-ul-Fitr is Bid’ah?

ANSWER

Bid’ah has two meanings:

1. Technical meaning: anything which is not proven from Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) and opposes or changes the Shari’ah, and people have taken it as part of the Deen. This is an evil and offensive Bid’ah.

2. Literal meaning: some thing new or novel regardless of whether it has any origin in Shari’ah or not. In this occasion, Jurists do not mean evil Bid’ah by the use of the word Bid’ah, because evil Bid’ah is that which opposes the Shari’ah of the beloved Rasool (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) and loud Takbeer is proven from Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) himself. Therefore, it is proven that the use of the word Bid’ah here is in the literal meaning (new thing) and not in the technical meaning (evil innovation).

When we go for our daily Salaah,we do not recite the Takbeers, therefore it is regarded as a new thing. On Eid-ul-Adha, the recitation of Takbeers are proven with Sunnat, therefore Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu) ordered the loudness. For Eid-ul-Fitr there are two sayings of Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu). One is for loudness and other is for softness. Jurists have explained the reason for "INNAL JAHRA BIZZIKRE BIDATUN" or It is bid’ah to make loud Zikr. They say that to recite Takbeer aloud is a novel way and is not proven on this occasion, therefore softness is better here. This is the explanation given by the Jurists for Imam Abu Hanifah’s (radi Allahu anhu) saying that soft Zikr is Bid’ah.

So, for those who deny the recitation of loud Zikr, there is no proof in their argument. Qohstaani and Tahaawi have said that the correct saying in this issue is that Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu) is also in favour of loud Zikr on Eid-ul-Fitr, therefore it is proven that the word Bid’at here is used in its literal meaning and not in its technical meaning.

NOTE: There are several other quotations given by the Deobandi Ulama from the books of Hanafi scholars, which prove that loud Zikr is Bid’ah (in its literal meaning), and soft Zikr is better and preferred. There is a consensus of opinion of the Ulama that soft Zikr is preferred or the D’ua should be made softly, etc. We say that none of these quotations give any indication that loud Zikr is an evil Bid’ah or Haraam as the Deobandi Ulama claim. The claim made and the proofs that are provided by Deobandi Ulama do not correspond, and therefore all these arguments are not against our practices. Our belief in regard to Zikr is that both loud and soft Zikrs are permissible. To the Deobandi Ulama we say, you are responsible to give proofs against what we believe. If you cannot furnish any proof then do as the learned do and remain silent.

Deobandi Ulama write on page 12 in their booklet: "In those instances where the Fuqaha (Islamic jurists) have stated something as Bid’a, they intend Bid’a Sayyi’a (evil Bid’a)"..

The Deobandi Ulama have failed to provide any reference or proof for this claim. An evil Bid’ah is, no doubt, Haraam, But the Deobandi Ulama made an attempt to prove something as being Haraam without any proof. In fact, in Shari’ah even a Makrooh act (undesirable act) cannot be proven without categorical proofs let alone a Haraam act (unlawful act). Allama Shaami (radi Allahu anhu) writes: "No act can be regarded as Makrooh without a proper prohibition, because Karaahat (undesirability) is the Hukm (ruling) of Shari’ah, and a categorical proof is required for it". (Fatawa Shaami, Vol. 1, pg.684)

PROOF OF LOUD ZIKR FROM IMAM ABU HANIFAH ON OCCASIONS OTHER THAN THE PRESCRIBED ONES

In reality, Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu) himself has not clarified at any place that loud Zikr is Bid’ah unconditionally. Certainly, according to one saying he regarded loudness in Eid-ul-Fitr as Bid’ah, and he instructed that Takbeers of Tashreeq should be for two days instead of five days. Due to this some of the Jurists understood that Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu) only allows loud Zikr where the loudness is proven from Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam), and regards the loudness as Makrooh and Bid’ah on other occasions. The matter is not like that in reality. In fact, Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu) believes in the permissibility of loud Zikr generally. The maximum that can be said here is that where loudness is not proven from Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu) does not regard the loudness as Sunnah on that occasion. This is indeed correct, but something that is not being Sunnah does not necessarily mean that it is not permissible.

Our statement is backed with the following quotation of "Raddul Mukhtaar": "It is said in ‘Mujtaba’ (name of a book) that Imam Abu Hanifah was asked, ‘Should the people of Kufa and other places recite Takbeers in the Masjid and bazaars during the days of Tashreeq?’ He replied, ‘Yes’".(Raddul Mukhtaar, Vol. 1, pg. 787) (Remember: Takbeers are recited aloud during the days of Tashreeq)

It is obvious from the above statement that Imam Abu Hanifah regards loud Zikr as being permissible Alal Omoom (generally), otherwise he should have not given permission unconditionally.

In further support of our argument we present the Fatwa of Moulana Rashid Ahmad Gangohi:

Question: Is it that loud Zikr is proven from Quran and Sunnat or have the Sufis prescribed it on their own accord? Zaid says loud Zikr is Bid’ah according to Imam Abu Hanifah. Amar says that if loud Zikr is Bid’ah, then why do the many great Hanafi Ulama permit loud Zikr?

Answer: "Both loud and soft Zikrs are permissible according to Hadith. Imam Abu Hanifah has regarded loud Zikr as Bid’ah only in that condition where there is an occasion of Zikr and the loudness is not proven by the Holy Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam). For example, Zikr while going for Eid-ul-Fitr. He (Imam Abu Hanifah) did not stop loud Zikr unconditionally. Zikr is correct in whichever way it may be". (Fatawa Rashidia, pg. 251, M. H. Saeed Company Karachi, Pakistan)

The above Fatwa by Moulana Gangohi is very clear in its meaning. "Qotbe Aalam", as he is regarded by the Deobandi fraternity, has written with decisive words that, according to Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu), loud Zikr is not stopped unconditionally. He (Moulana Gangohi) said that Zikr is correct either way, that is loud or soft. If the Deobandi Ulama give any importance to this Fatwa of Gangohi Sahib then they must at least rule a line of cancellation through one-third of their booklet "Impermissibility of loud Zikr in the Musjid" because one-third of this booklet is based on the impermissibility of loud Zikr according to Imam Abu Hanifah.

IMAM ABU HANIFAH AND SALARY

Abadah Bin Saamit (radi Allahu anhu) reports that he taught the Holy Quran to some of the Ashaabe Suffah. One of them gave him a bow as a gift. Abadah Bin Saamit (radi Allahu anhu) thought that he would use this bow in the Path of Allah in the time of war. When he asked Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) about it. Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) replied, "If you want to wear the collar of Hell around your neck, then accept this bow". Abu Dawood and Ibn Majah have reported this Hadith. Hakim has recorded this Hadith in "Mustadrak". This Hadith is reported with correct narrations. (With the reference of Rasaile Ibn Aabedeen Shaami, Vol. 1, pg.154)

In another Hadith, Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: "Recite the Quran and do not make the Quran a business, do not oppress it, do not exaggerate (Ghluww) on it and do not earn in abundance because of it". (Rasail Ibn Aabedeen Shaami, Vol. 1, pg. 154)

After studying Ahadith, we see that Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu) has given the ruling that to take salary for teaching the Holy Quran, Darse Hadith, Imamat and Khitabat is Haraam. A person would have no refuge from the Sahebain here, because they are in agreement with Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu) on this issue.

Allamah Shaami writes: "To take a salary for teaching the Quran, Hadith, Azaan, and Imamat is permissible according to later Ulama, even though it is against the unanimous Maslak (way) of Imam Abu Hanifah, Imam Abu Yousuf and Imam Mohammad. They regard the accepting of salaries for the above mentioned jobs as Haraam". (Rasail Ibn Aabedeen Shaami, Vol. 2, pg. 126)

Dear readers, it is clear that according to correct Ahadith it is prohibited to take a salary for teaching the Holy Quran. Imam Abu Hanifah, Imam Abu Yousuf, Imam Mohammad and all the early Jurists (radi Allahu anhum) have regarded it as Haraam to take a salary for teaching the Holy Quran, making Imamat, etc.

If we talk about the general permissibility of loud Zikr according to the one saying of Imam Abu Hanifah (radi Allahu anhu) and according to the saying of Sahebain, we are "out of the Hanafi Mazhab and we are Bid’atis". In their enthusiasm of being paid a salary (for Imamat duties, etc.), The Deobandi Ulama are openly going against the Sahih Ahadith and all the early-recognised Hanafi Imams, and yet they still remain as Hanafi and non- Bid’atis. Subhan-Allah! What criteria do they use?

Despite the fact that Imam Abu Hanifah and the Sahebain (radi Allahu anhum) have prohibited taking salaries for certain Islamic duties, it is permissible to take salary according to the Fatwa of latter scholars. If we say that it is generally permissible to make Zikr aloud despite Imam Abu Hanifah’s prohibition (according to one saying), and if we practice upon the Fatwa of the rest of the Hanafi Imams and Sahebain in this regard, then "our ‘sin’ is unforgivable" (according to the Deobandi Ulama)..

Deobandi Ulama write: "Abu Ya’ala reports from Hadhrat Aisha (Radhiallahu anha), that she said, Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: ‘The best Zikr is (that) soft Zikr, which even the Angels of protection (i.e. Kiraamin and Kaatibeen) cannot hear, it will be multiplied seventy times, on the day of Qiyaamah’". [Tafseer-e-Mazhari, page 410, vol. 3]

This is the version of Qaadhi Thanaawullah or Abu Ya’la. Shah Abdul Aziz Muhaddith Dehlwi (radi Allahu anhum) reports this Hadith in different words. He writes: "The Zikr which the Angels of protection hear is multiplied seventy times compared to the Zikr they cannot hear". (Fatawa Azizia, Vol. 1, pg. 17)

This Hadith is another proof of loud Zikr. It is proven that even in this quotation of "Tafseer Mazhari" there is no proof to substantiate the claim of Deobandi Ulama that loud Zikr is Haraam.

Deobandi Ulama write:

Regarding the Fatwa presented by Molvi Hamidi, as mentioned earlier, is the trait of the "Sunni" bida’tees. He presented the Fatwa of Moulana Rashid Ahmed Gangohi (rahmatullahi alaihi) in an extremely misleading and incomplete fashion. The correct Fatwa of Hadhrat Moulana Gangohi (rahmatullahi alaihi) is presented in context hereunder:

Question: Is loud Zikr according to the Hanafi Mazhab permissible or impermissible?

Answer: "There is a difference in opinion with regard to loud Zikr in the books of Hanfi Fiqh. Some regard it as Makrooh, on such occasions where it is not warranted, while others regard it as Jaa’iz and this is the preferred option. It would not be beneficial to seek the proof for this, as there is a difference of opinion, so who can draw an opinion from here? However, the proof (for loud Zikr) is this, that Allah Ta’ala says: ‘Remember your Rabb in your heart, with humility and softly, and do not be loud.’ The words ‘do not be loud’ also refer to loud Zikr, but of a lower intensity. Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: ‘Have mercy upon your souls’".

In the above text, Moulana Rashid Ahmed Gangohi (rahmatullahi alaihi) refers to the difference of opinion amoungst the Hanafi Ulema, and he also clarifies this point that the loud Zikr which is proven (by some) from this Aayat is (not very loud nor medium pitch in loudness), in fact it is that loudness which is of the lowest intensity.

The renowned Imaam Abul Hasan Ubaidullah bin Hussein Karghi Hanafi (rahmatullahi alaihi) (passed away 340 A.H.) states: "The lowest (intensity of) Loud Zikr, is such that one can hear himself". [Hidaya, page 98, vol. 1]

N0TE: WHEREVER THERE APPEARS A PERMISSIBILITY OF LOUD ZIKR FROM THE TEXTS OF MOULANA RASHID AHMED GANG0HI (rahmatullahi alaihi), WE NOTE FROM HIS OWN CLARIFICATIONS THAT HE IS REFERRING TO THE LOWEST PITCH OF LOUDNESS. WHOEVER WISHES TO INTERPRET HIS FATWAS TO THE CONTRARY (I.E. GENERAL LOUDNESS), THEN THIS IS THE RESULT OF THEIR OWN IMPRUDENCE, AND IS DONE TO SUIT THEIR OWN WHIMS, WHICH IS NOT EVEN WORTH THE CONSIDERATION OF THE TRUE KNOWLEDGEABLE ONES. MUFTI GANG0HI (rahmatullahi alaihi) HAS ALSO, IN THIS WAY RECONCILED THE (SLIGHT) DIFFERENCE OF OPINION BETWEEN THE FUQAHA." [Page 15, Impermissibility of loud Zikr]

Deobandi Ulama have falsly accused me of being misleading by saying the following: "He has presented the Fatwa of Moulana Rashid Ahmad Gangohi in an extremely misleading and incomplete fashion".

They further write on page 4 of their booklet, "Impermissibility of loud Zikr in the Masjid": "It is surprising to note that an old and already worn-out trick of Bareilvis is used, that is to quote statement out of context and quote only portion of a text and leave out the rest".

In gentleman’s language, I will only say the following with regards to the accusation: If the Deobandi Ulama can prove that I have presented the Fatwa of Moulana Gangohi in a "misleading and incomplete fashion" in reply to Mufti Ilias’s pamphlet, I am prepared to apologise publicly. Now, the ball is in your court. If they cannot furnish proofs for their claim, then it would be clearly evident that they are the misleading ones.

A CLEAR EXAMPLE OF DISHONEST, DECEPTIVE AND COWARDLY BEHAVIOUR

The Deobandi Ulama have presented the Fatwa of Moulana Gangohi, and have again digested the last few sentences of the Fatwa. Those sentences are completely in our favour and are against their claim, therefore they have omitted them. By doing so they have proven how "honest" and "brave" they are.

Dear readers, we would like to present the complete Fatwa, which includes those sentences that the "honest" Ulama have deliberately omitted. To make it easy for the readers to understand I will underline those sentences.

Fatwa

"There is a difference in opinion with regard to loud Zikr in the books of Hanafi Fiqh. Some regard it as Makrooh, on such occasions where it is not warranted, while others regard it as Ja’iz, and this is the preferred option. It would not be beneficial to seek the proof for this as there is a difference of opinion, so who can draw an opinion from here? However, the proof (for loud Zikr) is this, that Allah Ta’ala says: ‘Remember your Rabb in your heart, with humility and softly, and do not be loud’. The words ‘do not be loud’ also refer to loud Zikr, but of a lower intensity. Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: ‘Have mercy upon your souls...’ This also includes loud Zikr where Rifq (mildness) is advised and Galo Phaarna (Shriek) is stopped. There are many Mutlaq (unconditional) verses of the Quran and the Hadithes, which denote the permissibility (of loudness)." (Fatawa Rashidia, pg. 252, H.M.Saeed Company, Karachi print)

Two very important points are proven from these underlined sentences of "Fatawa Rashidia". These are:

1. Shrieking is stopped in the Zikr, not general loudness. This is an undisputed issue. This was the point that the Deobandi Ulama wanted to hide, but they failed again, and

2. Moulana Gangohi means "medium loudness" by the word "lower intensity" because he has mentioned it in contrast to shrieking.

The Deobandi Ulema are guilty of the same crime that they have falsely accused me of comitting. A thief always regards everyone else as thieves!

DISCUSSION ON THE LOWEST INTENSITY OF LOUD ZIKR

The Deobandi Ulama wrote the following regarding the lowest intensity of loud Zikr:

"The renowned Imam Abul Hasan Ubaidullah Bin Hussain Karkhi Hanfi (rahmatullah Alai) (passed away 340 A.H) states: the lowest (intensity of) loud Zikr, is such that one can hear himself. (Hidaya, page 98, vol. 1)"

We checked page 98 of "Hidaya" but failed to find this quotation. The quotation which is presented by the Deobandi Ulama is on page 117 of "Hidaya" (Maktabah Shirkate Ilmiah, Multan print) in the section of Qiraat (recitation of the Quran in Salaah). Recitation of the Holy Quran in Salaah has got nothing to do with the disputed subject of loud Zikr. Once again, the Deobandi Ulama have failed to convince us that loud Zikr is Haraam.

Even if one has to understand the quotation of Imaam Karkhi as quoted by the Deobandi Ulama above, it becomes relatively clear that the lowest intensity refers to softest tone which is permissible. This would then mean that specific restriction is imposed upon softness, while none has been imposed on loud recitals. Therefore, in our opinion, the readers of this article can clearly identify that the Deobandi Ulama, who ascribe recognition to Moulana Gangohi, are poor students who intentionally interpret their leader’s teaching in order to satisfy their malicious agenda and not the Shariah..

We have proven above using strong Qrain (circumstantial evidence) that Gangohi Sahib means "medium pitch in loudness" by the word "Adna Jahr or lower intensity" because he uses lower intensity in contrast to shrieking. Therefore, the Deobandi Ulama have tried to deceive the readers by translating the word "Adna Jahr" as "softness".

PROOF OF MEDIUM LOUDNESS FROM GANGOHI SAHIB

Gangohi Sahib writes in "Fatawa Rashidia":

Question: What is the ruling according to Muhadditheen and the Four Jurists (Imams) about loud Zikr, loud Dua’ and loud Durood, whether the loudness is gentle or severe, is it permissible or not?

Answer: "According to Imam Abu Hanifah (rahmatullah alai) loud Zikr is Makrooh (undesirable) unless the loudness of the Zikr is proven with the Nass (categorical order of statement) in this occasion. The rest of the jurists, Muhaddeseen and Sahebain (Imam Abu Yousuf and Imam Muhammad) regard it as permissible. The way of life of our spiritual leaders is the Mazhab of Sahebain (R.A)". (Fatawa Rashidia, pg. 252, H. M. Saeed Company, Karachi)

Gangohi Sahib has made this point very clear that loud Zikr is permissible, whether the loudness is light or severe. Leave alone the medium pitch in loudness, Gangohi Sahib has in fact also proven that severe loudness in Zikr is permissible. How can the Deobandi Ulama still think that the word Jahr (loudness) in the Fatwa of Gangohi Sahib is attributed to soft Zikr when he (Gangohi Sahib) answers a question on the permissibility of light or severe loudness with regard to Zikr?

Another Fatwa of Gangohi Sahib

Question: When reciting Zikr aloud, how hard can one strike on one’s heart with the word Allah? Can the strike be so severe that one loses his voice?

Answer: "Such Shiddat (severity) is unnecessary". (Fatawa Rashidia, pg. 252-3, H. M. Saeed Company, Karachi)

It means that Zikr should be recited with a loud tone of voice, but the loudness must not be so severe that the person loses his voice. In other words, there should not be excessive loudness, instead medium loudness.

Another Fatwa of Gangohi Sahib

Question: Through Zikr, the idea is created in the heart that everyone will regard me as a pious person. What is the remedy to remove this boastfulness? Nowadays, my voice is lost. If instructed, can I start reciting Zikr softly until such time that my voice returns, then I will recite Zikr aloud?

Answer: "If the Zikr is being recited for the purpose of public attention, then recite ‘La Howla’ to remedy that. However, it is not suitable to discard loudness for that reason. Certainly for the reason of sickness it is suitable to abandon loudness and adopt softness till the sickness is gone". (Fatawa Rashidia, pg. 251, H.M. Saeed Company, Karachi)

We learn from the above answer of Gangohi Sahib that he used to instruct his Mureeds to recite with such severe loudness that they used to lose their voice. Despite the fear of boastfulness, he still used to instruct them to recite loud Zikr. Is it still correct to say that wherever Moulana Gangohi used the word Jahr (loudness), it means softness of the Zikr?

THE FEAR OF SHOWING OFF CANNOT BE THE REASON FOR ABANDONING LOUDNESS

Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi writes with reference to Moulana Gangohi’s Malfoozaat (sayings): "Hazrat Moulana Gangohi instructed a person to recite Zikr aloud, he (the person) said: ‘There will be showing off in this (loud Zikr), should I recite Zikr softly?’ Moulana inquired: ‘In soft Zikr there will be no showing off?’ After asking the person to sit, Moulana answered,’That in fact in soft Zikr there will be more showing off. In loud Zikr people will know that you are reciting Allah Allah, but (in soft Zikr) when one sits putting his head down, people may think that he might be visiting the Arsh and Kursi, even though the person is sleeping.’

"Moulana (Gangohi) further related: ‘When we were in Thana Bhoon in the service of Haji Sahib, a Naqshbandi Shaikh was also living there. During the nights we used to make loud Zikr, and this Naqshabandi Shaikh used to make soft Zikr, but he used to complain in the morning that because sleep got the better of him, only half of his Zikr was recited. We all used to complete our practices.’

"Moulana Gangohi further educated the person: ‘In soft Zikr a person falls asleep, and people might think that this person is in meditation. This is a good prevention of show that the very object of Zikr is not even fulfilled? This is just a Waswasah (evil suggestion)’" (Irdaa ul Haq, Part 2, Page 67; Ma’arafe Gangohi, pg. 64-5)

Four issues are proven from the above statement of Gangohi Sahib: Moulana Gangohi does not take loudness in the meaning of Ismaa’e Nafs (hearing oneself only), but rather regards the meaning of loudness to be "People will know that you are reciting Allah Allah". From the above quotation, and an understanding of Gangohi Sahib’s words, one will see the Deobandi Ulama’s misleading interpretations of the Fatwa passed by Moulana Gangohi with regards to Ismaa’e Nafs - hearing oneself. This is yet another blunt tool of deception, and a trick used to safe-guard them from humiliation.

It is openly evident that fear of show is not sufficient grounds for substituting loudness. Therefore, to use the above quote as a reference would be a direct violation to give prominence to soft Zikr.

Further to this second point one can easily note that Moulana Gangohi himself regarded that there is a greater possibility of show in soft Zikr. In soft Zikr, a person sometimes falls asleep, thus the purpose of Zikr is lost completely.

From an educated understanding and interpretation, it is clear from the Fatawa and Malfoozat of Moulana Gangohi on the issue of loud Zikr that he gives the Fatwa on the saying of Sahebain like the other Hanafi scholars, and he believes in the Jahr Motawassat (medium pitched loudness).

Deobandi Ulama write:

"Regarding the claim made that this Hadith (quoted above) was said by Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) so that the loud Zikr made by the Sahabahs was not to alert the enemy. We concede, that this is mentioned in some of the kitaabs as a reason, however, to aver that this is the only reason, is far from the truth, if we keep the words of the Hadith in front of us.

Firstly, there are no clear and explicit words of Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) which indicate that this is the reason for his prohibiting them to recite the Takbeer loudly. In fact, to the contrary, there are definite reasons given in the Hadith by Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) which indicate the prohibition of loud Zikr, i.e they should have mercy on their souls, their Rabb is neither deaf nor absent, they are calling One who is All-Hearing and close-by, and that that Being (which they are calling to) is with them. Why then, are all these reasons ignored and one remote reason sought to bolster their nefarious purposes? Anyway, what good and need is there to even cite this reason?

Secondly, if there was any clear and explicit indication that this Hadith was said by Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) on or even near the battlefield, where the loud recitation of Takbeer would be heard or alert the enemy, then too we may accept and verify it. However, there is no such indication in the Hadith, in fact this much is proven from the Hadith that it was said whilst they were on the way. This Hadith is reported in Bukhari Shareef five (5) times. In one of the narrations it is stated that Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) was departing for or (the narrator has a doubt) he was on his way to Khaibar, and when they came to a particular field then the Sahabahs raised their voices in Takbeer [pcige 6051 vol.2].

In another narration, the Sahabah (radi Allahu anhum)s (radhiallahu anhum) mention that they were with Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) accompanying Him (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) on a journey, and when they ascended a high plain they recited Takbeer (loudly) [page 944 and 1099, vol.21.

In another narration, it is reported that Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) was entering a valley, and another person was also climbing the valley, and he (latter) raised his voice (in Takbeer) [page 948, vol.2].

In another narration it is reported, that we (Sahabahs) were with Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) on a journey, "Then we began, to recite Takbeer loudly whenever we ascended a high place or descended a low place or into a valley." [page 978, vol.2]

Firstly: In this Hadith, Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) did not prohibit loud Zikr unconditionally, neither did he prohibited the medium pitched loudness. In fact Mufrat (shriek) in loudness is prohibited here. Moulana Rashid Ahmad Gangohi explains the very same Hadith: "Shriek is prohibited in this Hadith". (Fatawa Rashidia, pg. 252, H.M. Saeed Company, Karachi).

Secondly: Medium loudness is supported with many other proofs. Therefore, the Hadith that one should not put one’s self into difficulty because of loudness. The sentence "IRBA’OO ALA ANFOSEKUM" or "Be kind upon yourselves" is evident on this.

Thirdly: Loudness must not be such a nature as if the person or listener is hard of hearing. The sentence "ANNAKUM LA TAD’OONA ASAMMA" or "You are not calling upon that being who is deaf" provides the necessary evidence.

Fourthly: One must not produce such loudness as in the manner of calling out for a lost person. The word "WA LA GHAAIBAN" or "Not calling an absent" supports this statement.

Fifthly: Loudness must not be maintained at such a level as if you want to invoke Allah’s attention, implying that He cannot Hear you if you do not shout. The sentence "ANNA KUM TAD’OONA SAMEE’AN" or "You are calling upon that Being Who is All-Hearing" is self-explanatory.

Sixthly: One must not incur such loudness that will conjure thoughts that Allah is far from one and that by shouting one’s voice will travel the distance. The sentence "WA HOWA MA’A KUM" or He is with you" explains this to us.

Seventhly: This Hadith is attributed to such conditions when harm may be incurred due to the loudness. Therefore, scholars of Islam said: "This Hadith is related to one of the journeys of Jihad". (Fatawa Shaami, Vol. 5, pg. 350). It was necessary that Muslim troops enter into Khaibar secretly so that the Kuffar be surprised and rendered incapable of quick retaliation.

Readers please think deeply! Even in the words of Hadith there are enough evidences to prove that this Hadith does not unconditionally prohibit the loud Zikr.

One will not understand anything if one displays hostility. Unfortunately, we do not have a remedy for hostility. Our task is to deliver the Truth and we have done so.

Let us see what the great scholars of Islam and the Deobandi elders say with regards to this Hadith. Allama Mahmood Aaloosi Baghdadi says: "The prohibition, which is understood from the commanding verb AIRBA’OO (be kind upon yourselves) means Mufrat (excessive) loudness". (Tafseer Roohul Ma’ani, Vol. 16, pg. 163)

Allama Khairuddin Ramli says: "If you say that it is clear in Fatawa Khania, that loud Zikr is Haraam because Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said those people who were making loud Zikr ‘you are not calling upon deaf or Absent One’ and he (the Holy Prophet) said soft ‘Zikr is the better Zikr’, because it is far from show off, I will say, this discussion is about that Zikr which is with excessive and harmful loudness". (Fatawa Kharia, Vol. 2, pg. 281-2)

Hazrat Shah Wali’ullah writes in description of "Ashghaale Qaadriah": "The first thing, which Qaadri Shaikhs advise, is the loud Zikr. Loudness, which is meant here, is that which is not Mufrat (excessive), therefore this loud Zikr is not contrary to that Hadith in which it is said, ‘be kind to yourselves’". (Al Qowlul Jameel, pg. 49-50)

Surely, without any need for further elaborations one can deduce from the statement of Shah Wali’ullah (radi Allahu anhu) that Zikr with a medium voice is permissible, and loudness, which is prohibited in Hadith, is Mufrat (excessive loudness).

Moulana Abdul Hai Lakhnawi writes: "The commanding verb in IRBA’OO (be kind to yourselves) is not for compulsion, so that the loudness can be regarded as Makrooh or Haraam, because the word kindness is in the meaning of ease. Therefore, Shaikh Abdul Haq Muhaddith Dehlwi has said in his commentary of Lam’aat that the loudness was stopped because of ease and not because loudness is impermissible. The maximum one can prove from this Hadith is that soft Zikr is Mustahab, and this is undisputed matter". (Sabahatul Fikr Fil Jahre Biz Zikr, page 57)

Moulana Abdul Hai farther writes: "A third answer is this, that if Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) did not stop the Sahabah (radi Allahu anhum), they would have thought that it is Sunnah to make loud Zikr with distinction when travelling or climbing on a high place. Sunnat, as it is proven from the sayings and actions, similarly it is proven from not stopping as well. For the reason of ease on the Ummah, Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) stopped them from loudness. Therefore unconditional prohibition of loud Zikr is not proven". (Sabahatul Fikr, pg. 57-8)

Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi writes: "Answer to this Hadith is given with these words ‘mildness and ease is commanded, loudness is not stopped unconditionally’". (Fatawa Imdadia, Vol. 4, pg. 45)

Moulana Shabbir Ahmad Usmani Deobandi writes: "According to me this Hadith is attributed to Mufrat (excessive) loudness". (Fathul Mulham, Vol. 2, pg. 172)

The references which we have quoted above prove that in this Hadith only Mufrat (excessive) loudness is being prohibited. Please take a look at these references again. Are these personalities incorrect - Allama Aaloosi, Allama Khairuddin Ramli, Shaikh Abdul Haq Mohaddith Dehlawi, Shah Wali’ullah Mohaddith Dehlawi, Moulana Abdul Hai Lakhnawi, Moulana Rashid Ahmad Gangohi, Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi and Moulana Shabbir Ahmad Usmani?

Deobandi Ulama write:

RAISING OF THE VOICE IN THE MUSJID

(1) Hadhrat Saa'ib bin Yazid (radi Allahu anhu) says that once he was sitting in Musjid-e-Nabawi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) when someone threw a few pebbles in his direction. When he looked up he saw that it was Hadhrat Umar (radi Allahu anhu), who told him to call a certain two persons to him. When the two were brought in front of him, they were asked from which tribe and family they belonged. (The narrator doubts, and says that they were probably) asked from where they came. They said that they were inhabitants of Taaif. Hadhrat Umar (radi Allahu anhu) told them that if they were from Madinah Tayyibah, then he would have punished them, because: "You raised your voices in the Musjid of Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam)".[Bukhari Shareef, page 67, vol.11

(2) Hadhrat Abu Huraira (radi Allahu anhu) narrates a Hadith where Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) stated 15 signs of Qiyaamah, and he (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said that they (these signs) will surely transpire. One of these signs are: "Voices will be raised in the Masaajid." [Mishkaat Shareef, page 470, vol.2 - from Tirmidhi, page 44, vol.2]

(3) Regarding this Hadith, Mullah Ali Qaari Hanafi (rahmatullahi alaihi) (passed away 1014A.H.), made the following commentary: "Some of our Ulama have clearly stated that to raise the voice in the Musjid is HARAAM, even if it is for Zikr." [Mirqaat, page 171, vol.1 B Multan print]

(4) Allaama Ala’ud Deen Muhammed bin Ali Hanafi (rahmatullahi alaihi) (passed away 1088 A.H.), writes the following under the Adaabs (etiquettes) of the Musjid: "To ask (for something) in the Musjid is HARAAM, and to give (something) is Makrooh. Similarly, to look for a lost item in the Musjid (is Makrooh). To recite poems in the Musjid is also Makrooh, unless they are for advice. Similarly, to recite loud Zikr in the Musjid is HARAAM, except for those who are seeking Ilm or Fiqh (i. e. for students of Deen, if they are learning in the Musjid)." [Durrul Mukhtaar with the Sharah Raddul Mukhtaar, page 617, vol.1, Misr print]

(5) Hadhrat Ma'az bin Jabal (radi Allahu anhu) reported that Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said: "Keep your children and your insane persons from the Masaajid, also (keep) your buying, selling, quarrels and RAISED VOICES (away from the Masaajid)". [AI-Kabeeri, page 566-7-Musannif Abdur Razzak, page 442, vol.1 - Beirut print]

(6) Alaama Sayyid Mahmood Aaloosi Hanafi (rahmatullahi alaihi) (passed away 1270 A.H.), mentioned the following regarding loud Zikr: "You see many persons, from amongst your era, who yell when they make du'aa, especially in gatherings (in the Masaajid), to such an extent that they make them (du'aas) poetic. They holler to such an extent that ears even get clogged. They are (blissfully) unaware that they have perpetrated two (2) Bid’as. One is to raise the voice in the Musjid". [Roohul Ma’aani, page 139, vol. 8]

In the 1st, 2nd and 5th points mentioned above, just the raising of the voice in the Masjid is being condemned. There are no indications of the loud Zikr being Haraam in the Masjid. The raising of the voice does not necessarily means it is the Zikr of Allah that is being conducted with a loud voice. It could mean the raising of the voice for anything other than the Zikr. The Deobandi Ulama claim that loud Zikr is Haraam, so they must present specific proof against loud Zikr. Their claim and proof do not correspond.

We do agree that the voice should not be raised in the Masjid other than for the Zikr of Allah Ta’ala. It is mentioned in "Fatawa Alamgiri": "No voice should be raised in the Masjid besides the Zikr of Allah Ta’ala". (Fatawa Alamgiri, Vol. 4, pg. 94)

In the 6th proof, Allama Aaloosi firstly talks about Du’a, therefore his discussion centres around the boundaries of Du’a and not the disputed issue of loud Zikr. Secondly, his discussion is directly refuting excessive loudness. Surely, anyone with some type of intellectual capacity can understand these words: "They holler to such an extent that ears even get clogged".

In the 3rd proof it is written, with the reference of Hazrat Mulla Ali Qari, "To raise the voice in the Masjid is Haraam, even if it is for Zikr". We will, Insha- Allah, explain what is meant by Mulla Ali Qari’s quotation, but first we would like to present what Mullah Ali Qari believes in regard to loud Zikr.

Mullah Ali Qari (radi Allahu anhu) writes: "Mazhar said that this Hadith denotes on the permissibility of loud Zikr, rather on the Istehbaab (desirability) of loud Zikr, when it is free from show, so that the Deen maybe proclaimed, listeners are educated, and those who are sleeping in carelessness are awaken. Blessing of Zikr could reach to the trees, stones, animals and humans". (Mirqaat, Vol. 3, pg. 172)

We have proved, with the reference of Mullah Ali Qari, that loud Zikr is permissible and even desirable. What else could be said about the statement of some Ulama, which Mulla Ali Qari has reported? That this statement is attributed to excessive loudness or the loudness, which is done for the purpose of show, and this is an undisputed issue.

In the 4th proof, it is written with the reference of "Raddul Mukhtaar" (Shaami): "To recite loud Zikr in the Masjid is Haraam".

In a strong effort to educate the Deobandi Ulama who fail to understand that loud Zikr refers to excessive loudness, we therefore conclude that this statement obviously refers to excessive loudness.

Allama Shaami writes: "The past and present Ulama reached a consensus that it is Mustahab (desirable) to make loud Zikr with congregation in the Masjid or elsewhere". (Fatawa Raddul Mukhtaar (Shaami), Vol. 1, pg. 618)

If the Deobandi Ulama have no respect for "Fatawa Shaami", allow me then to present Moulana Ashraf Ali Thanwi’s Fatwa. This Fatwa of Moulana Thanwi might be some respect among his followers. He said: "The past and the present Ulama reached a consensus that it is Mustahab to make loud Zikr with congregation in the Masjid or elsewhere. Except that, the loudness must not disturb any sleeping person, anybody performing Salaah and person reciting Quran. Similarly, is mentioned in the books of Fiqh. It is mentioned in ‘Halbi’ that if there is no fear of show then the loud recitation is better". (Fatawa Imdadia, Vol. 4, pg. 45 Matboo’a Mujtabai)

Deobandi Ulama write:

Imaam Haafizuddeen Muhammed bin Muharnmed Bazazi Hanafi (rahmatullahi alaihi) (passed away 827 A.H.) Writes: "It is stated in Fataawa Qaadhi Khaan, that to raise the voice in Zikr in the Musjid is HARAAM. The following incident is authentically reported from Hadhrat Abdullah ibn Mas'ood (radi Allahu anhu), that he heard some people who were gathered in the Musjid reciting Laa Ilaaha Illollahu and Durood Shareef loudly. Hadhrat Abdullah Ibn Mas'ood (radi Allahu anhu) went to them and said: 'We did not witness such an act during the time of Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam), and I regard you as Rid'atees. 'He repeated this again and again until he ejected them from the Musjid [Fataawa Bazazia, page 375, vol.3]

The reference has already been given with the quotation of "Fatawa Kharia". Hazrat Allama Khairuddin Ramli explains the quotation of "Fatawa Kharia" and says: "This whole discussion is about that Zikr, which is performed with excessive loudness and with harmful loudness". (Fatawa Kharia, Vol. 2, pg. 281-2)

Now let us have a look at what Imam Qazi Khan himself has to say about the loud Zikr: "(There is) nothing wrong in reciting Tasbeeh and Kalimah with the loud voice". (Fatawa Qazi Khan, Vol. 1, pg. 162).

This quotation of Imam Qazi Khan shows that he is not against loud Zikr unconditionally. The prohibition from loud Zikr is attributed to excessive loudness as Allama Khairuddin Ramli has explained.

Deobandi Ulama write:

Finally, Molvi Hamidi quotes from Mufti Mahmood Hassan Gangohi (rahmatullahi alaihi): "To invent anything against the truth which has been proven from the Holy Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) according to knowledge, practice or condition is called bidat."

Thereafter, Molvi Hamidi states:"According to this definition if something is not against what has been proven from the Holy Prophet (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) is not bidat, even though it did not exist in the first three periods of Islam".

A good play of words, but not convincing. Rather interpret Mufti Mahmood (rahmatullahi alaihi)'s words like this: "For an act NOT to be called a Bid'a, prove that it is according to the knowledge, practice and condition of Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam)".

The interpretation given by Molvi Hamidi, will apply to anything which is not part of or believed to be an integral part of Deen. For example, we cannot say that it is Sunnah to drive a car, because it did not exist during the time of Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam). On the other hand, we will not say that it is Haraam or a Bid'a to drive a car, because we do not regard driving a car as part of the Deen, nor do we claim any reward (Thawaab) for driving.

Yes, if an act is believed to be part of the Deen, as the 'Sunni' clique regard their Meelad, Urs, Faatiha etc., because they anticipate reward thereby, then we say this is HARAAM and a BID'A, because it neither existed during the time of Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam), nor the Sahabah (radhiallahu anhum), nor the Taabi'een (rahmatullahi alaihim). Because an act did not exist during these golden eras, notwithstanding that conditions for carrying out these acts were there, for example, the Sahabah (radi Allahu anhum)’s could have celebrated the anniversary of Nabi (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) - Meelad - if they wished, but this is NOT proven from any source, that such acts were in fact practised or sanctioned, explicitly or by implication, hence they are Bid'a.

There are two answers to this:

The Deobandi Ulama said: that to drive a car is not Bid’ah. This statement is completely baseless, Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: "KULLO MOHDASIN BID’ATUN" or "Every new thing is Bid’ah" (Mishkaat, Babul I’tesaam). Therefore, to drive a car will be regarded as Bid’ah, but a permissible Bid’ah. Every Bid’ah is not a bad or evil Bid’ah. in fact, Bid’ah is of five types: Bid’at Waajib, Bid’at Haraam, Bid’at Mustahab, Bid’at Makrooh and Bid’at Mubah (Mirqaat, Babul I’tesaam Bil Kitaabe Was Sunnah; Shaami, Vol.1 Kitabus Salaah Babul Imamat)

The principle which the Deobandi Ulama use to make Meelad, Urs and Fatiha Haraam is also applicable to their Ijtema, Gusht, Shab Guzaari and ladies Ta’leem, etc. as well. If an act is believed to be part of the Deen, as the Deobandi/Tablighi Jamaat regard their formation of Tableeghi Jamat, Ijtima, Gasht, Shab Guzaari and ladies Ta’leem, etc. because they anticipate reward thereby, then we say that according to the very same principle of the Deobandi Ulama, this is Haraam and an evil Bid’ah, It neither existed during the time of Nabi (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam), nor the Sahabah and the Taabi’een (radi Allahu anhum).

A REPLY TO MUFTI A.H. ELIAS - IS LOUD ZIKR PERMISSIBLE?

All praises are due to Almighty Allah, Choicest blessings and Salutations upon Allah`s beloved Prophet Hadhrat Muhammad Mustafa (Sallal Laahu Alayhi Wa Sallam), his noble family and illustrious companions (Radi Allahu Anhum).

On the 12/05/99 a friend brought me a publication in which an attempt was made to suggest that loud Zikr is Haraam and Bidat. The author of this leaflet Mufti A.H. Elias has based his assumption on the book "Minhaj-ul-Wazaai" by Mowlvi Sarfraz Khan.

Browsing through, I found the argument to be very weak and put it aside. Then a thought came to my mind that this leaflet may spread some misguidance so I felt it my religious duty to correct the misconception. I pray to the Creator of all the worlds to make this humble effort beneficial to all Muslims and may the Almighty Allah remove all those doubts and whispers which some people are trying to spread (Ameen).

Mufti A.H. Elias argues against loud Zikr:

Hereunder follows a brief presentation of the dalaail (proofs). Reflect carefully. Allah Ta`aala has stated: "And remember your Rabb (make zikr) in your heart with humility and fear, without raising your voices." (Surah A`raaf) "Call out to your Rabb with humility and silently. Surely HE does not like the transgressors." (Surah A`raaf)

In these noble Aayaat (verses) of the Qur`aan Shareef there are two conditions for making Zikr and Du`aa. One is that Zikr and du`aa are to be made with utmost sincerity and humility, and the second condition is that it is to be recited softly and in a low voice, because Allah Ta`aala does not like those who transgress the bounds of the Shariah.

Once the Sahaba (radi Allahu anhum) were making Zikr in a loud voice and Rasulullah (sallallaahu alaihi wasallam) prevented them b saying : "Oh people! Have mercy upon yourselves, you are not calling upon that Being who is deaf or absent. You are calling upon that Being who is All-Hearing and close by, and HE is with you (all the time) ." (Bukhari 605 vol. 2, Muslim page 346, vol. 2)."

Above, two verses of the Qur`aan and one Hadith is presented whereby an attempt has been made to prove that loud Zikr has no legitimate place in Shari’ah and those who perform loud Zikr are Transgressors.

We will explain the true understanding of both the Verses and the Hadith separately and, Insha-Allah, intelligent people will have no difficulty in understanding the Truth.

EXPLANATION OF THE FIRST VERSE

In this verse Zikr in the state of Salaah is meant. It means that, in the Salaah of Ikhfa (those Salaah in which recitation of the Qur`aan is made softly). Recitation of the Qur`aan which is Zikr of Allah should be done softly, or it means that the Imam should not raise his voice more than what is necessary.

Allama Ismail Haqqi annotates the very same verse in Tafseer Roohul Bayaan: "A person who leads the congregation in Jahri Salaah (in which the recitation of the Qur`aan is made loudly) should not raise his voice very much. Rather he should keep his voice to the level which is easily heard by his followers".

The very same verse is explained in Tafseer Khazin:" Hadhrat Ibn Abbas (R.A.) says that the meaning of Zikr in this verse is recitation of the Qur`aan in Salaah"

Through the above explanation we learn that in this verse loud Zikr is not being prohibited unconditionally, instead the prohibition is for loud reciting in Salaah of Ikhfa.

Both loud and soft Zikr are permissible. No proof exists in Shariah against any Zikr. Yes, both loud and soft Zikr due to change of circumstances, can have degrees of excellence interchangeably over each other.

It is stated in Tafseer Roohul Bayaan under the commentary of this that : "Soft Zikr is better where there is fear of show or a possibility of disturbing those who are in prayer or asleep, except for this, loud Zikr is better, because there is more effect in it. Listeners also benefit from it, and it awakens the heart of the Zaakir (one who makes Zikr), causes concentration and draws the attention of the ears towards the Zaakir."

EXPLANATION OF THE SECOND VERSE

In this verse Dua is meant by the word Zikr. In reality making Du’a softly is better so that the sincerity can be achieved.

Tafseer Roohul Bayaan and Khazin have explained the very same meaning of the context of the word Zikr, as it is explained above. Tafseer of the second verse can also be seen in Roohul Bayaan and Khazin. To avoid redundancy we submit the above reference as conclusive. Through the explanation of learned commentators of the Qur`aan we have learnt that even in the second verse which was presented in the argument by Mufti A.H. Elias loud Zikr is not prohibited unconditionally.

EXPLANATION OF THE HADITH

This Hadith is related to one of the journey s during Jihad. It was necessary that the Muslim troops enter into Khaiber secretly so that the kuffaar could be surprised and rendered incapable of quick retaliation.

Some who said the Takbeer loudly were stopped for this reason alone. It was further, an advice to ease the difficulties of the Muslims who had already been through the difficulty of travelling. In this instance shouting aloud was undesirably inadvisable.

This Hadith is explained in Lam`aat in the following words. (Lam`aat is a commentary of Mishkat. Reference of Lam`aat is given here because this Hadith is in Mishkat as well)". In this Hadith there is indication that stopping from loud takbeer is only for the purpose of ease , not because loud Zikr is forbidden. " Sheikh Abdul Haq Muhaddith-e-Dhelvi explains this Hadith in Ash`atul -lam`aat ". In this Hadith there is indication that stopping from loud zikr is because of ease, not because loud Zikr is forbidden, and the truth is that loud Zikr is indeed permissible. We have proven it in Risala-e-Owraad (name of book)

Mufti A.H. Elias writes:

ALLAMA HALBI HANAFI (RAHMATULLAH ALAIHI) HAS WRITTEN: "HADHRAT IMAM ABU HANIFA (RAHMATULLAH ALAIHI) SAID THAT TO MAKE ZIKR LOUDLY IS BID`A, AND IT IS CONTRARY TO THE AAYAT OF ALLAH TA`AALA WHEREIN IT IS STATED: "CALL OUT TO YOUR RABB WITH HUMILITY AND IN A SOFT TONE." This text clearly proves that according to Imam Abu Hanifa (rahmatullah Alaihi) that to make Zikr in a loud voice is contrary to the ayat of the Qur`aan Shareef and it is also Bid`a. The irony of the matter is that the other group (i.e. those not practicing loud Zikr) are termed Wahabis and those practicing loud Zikr regard themselves tobe the Ahle-Sunnat. LAHOWLA WA LA QUWATA ILLA BILLA. Hadhrat Mullah Ali Qari (rahmatullah Alaihi) has written: " Some of our Ulama have very explicitly stated that to RAISE THE VOICE IN THE MASJID, EVEN IF IT BE FOR ZIKR, IS HARAAM." Not withstanding that Hadhrat Imam Abu Hanifa (rahmatullah Alaihi) has mentioned loud Zikr to be Bid`a and Hadhrat Mullah Ali Qari (rahmatullah Alaihi) has recorded it to be Haraam.

This argument is very weak for many reasons

1.) Whatever is written from Allama Halbi Hanafi and Mulla Ali Qari is without any reference. Any argument without reference is not worthy of consideration.

2.) Whatever is written with reference of Mulla Ali Qari, if we except it to be correct, we must accept it as somewhat blemished because Mulla Ali Qari has used the word "some of" which is the translation of the Arabic word Ba'd, and this is an understood fact amongst the Ulama that whenever a weak opinion has to be quoted the word Ba'd is used. In fact Hazrat Mulla Ali Qari's statement has proven that those who say loud zikr is haraam is set on the basis of a weak argument.

3.) As far as Hanafi Mazhab is concerned we would like to present a fatwa of an Aalim who is related to Darul-Uloom Deoband, who also claims to be a Hanafi and is the leader and spiritual guide of Ulama of Deoband. Moulana Rashid Ahmed Gangohi was forwarded a question . . .

QUESTION:

What is the ruling of loud Zikr and loud Durood, and if the loudness is light or severe as in the Salaah. According to Muhadditheen and four Jurist Imams - is it permissible or not?

ANSWER:

According to Imam Abu Hanifa (rahmatullahi alai) loud Zikr is makrooh (undesirable) unless the loudness of the zikr is proven with Nass (categorical order of statement) in that occasion. The rest of the jurists, Muhadditheen and Sahebain (Imam Abu Yusuf and Imam Muhammad) regard it as permissible. The way of life of our spiritual leaders is the mazhab of the Sahebain (R.A.) (Fatawa Rashidia page 252 published by Saeed Company Karachi)

Moulana Rashid Ahmed Gangohi has made it very clear in this Fatwa that besides Imam Abu Hanifa (rahmatullahi alai) (he also does not regard loud Zikr as makrooh unconditionally), all other jurists and Muhadditheen regard loud Zikr as Ja’iz (permissible) and he also made it clear that his spiritual leaders practice upon it. In Fatawa Rashidia there are eight questions with regard to loud Zikr and Moulana Gangohi replied to each one proving that loud Zikr is jaiz (permissible) .

A question still remained unanswered as to why Imam Abu Hanifa regarded loud Zikr as makrooh ?

Moulana Gangohi`s reply : " Both loud Zikr and soft Zikr are Jaiz according to Hadith. Imam Abu Hanifa has regarded loud Zikr as bidat only in that condition where there is an occasion of Zikr and the loudness is not proven by the Holy Prophet (sallallaahu alaihi wasallam) For example, Zikr while going for Eid-ul-Fitr. He did not stop loud Zikr unconditionally. Zikr is correct in whichever way it may be. (Fatawa Rashidia page 251)

We are surprised that the ulama who are proud to be linked with the ulama of Deoband are totally unaware of the teachings of their elders.

As far as labelling someone as Wahabi is concerned, I say that no one has ever branded a person Wahabi merely because of practicing soft Zikr. This is a false allegation. We believe that both loud and soft Zikr are correct. Yes we term somebody Wahabi only when we find him approving and appreciating the beliefs of the Wahabies, and showering the fatwas of shirk and bidat on every little thing, without acceptable proof.

It is not hidden from anybody that Ulama affiliated to Darul Uloom Deoband are very enthusiastic in giving the Fatwas of shirk and bidat on the common practices of Muslims just as the Wahabi Ulama do. The ulama-e-Deoband have approved and appreciated the teachings of Muhammad Bin Abdul Wahab Najdi. Moulana Rashid Ahmed Gangohi writes in praise of the Wahabies : " Muhammad Bin Abdul Wahab is called a Wahabi by the people. He was a good man. I have heard that he followed the Hambaly Mazhab. He used to practice upon Hadith and used to stop people from bidat and shirk. But he had strictness in his temperament. "

" Followers of Muhammad Bin Abdul Wahab are called Wahabies, their beliefs were excellent and they followed the Hambaly Mazhab" ( Fatawa Rashidia page 280 )

In the above two Fatwas the following good things are mentioned about Muhammad Bin Abdul Wahab :

1.) He was a good man.

2.) He was a follower of Imam Ahmed Bin Hambal

3.) He used to practice upon Hadith.

4.) He used to prevent from bidat and Shirk.

5.) His, and his followers beliefs were excellent.

After mentioning all these praises Moulana Rashid Ahmed Gangohi writes " In these times, in our surroundings, a follower of Sunnah and a believer is called Wahabi" (Fatawa Rashidia page 110)

Those Ulama who are affiliated with Darul Uloom Deoband should express joy and happiness when they are called Wahabies because according to their definition Wahabi means A follower of sunnat and a believer. Why should they get frustrated by the word wahabi ? Writing LA HOWLA WALA QUWATA ILLA BILLA in capital letters is making the frustration very obvious and clear .

Mufti A.H.Elias writes :

"There remains now the argument presented by Mufti Ahmed Yaar Khan that `Shaami` has stated :"The past and present Ulama reached a consensus that it is mustahab for a jamaat in a masjid to raise their voices in Zikr, but their loudness should not be such that it causes a disturbance to one who may be sleeping in a Masjid or to one reading Namaaz or to the Qaari. " ( Jaa-al-Haq pg 332)

This argument of his is not worth any consideration.

FIRSTLY , since the Qur`aan Shareef and Ahaadith have ordered Zikr to be made softly, can the practice of any person to the contrary be taken as proof ?

SECONDLY , the four Aaimma of Mazhab have stated loud Zikr as NOT being Mustahab and Imam Abu Hanifa (rahmatullahi alaihi) has branded it as Bid`a and he has pointed out that it is contrary to the Aayat of the Qur`aan Shareef. When the four Imams of Mazhab have reached a cocensus AGAINST the permissibility of loud Zikr, then how can there be any consensus granting its permissibility ? And are the four great Imams not from amongst the past Ulama (Mutaqaddimeem) ?

THIRDLY , there is most certainly not a consensus amongst the present Ulama (Muta`akhireen) that loud Zikr is Mustahab. All Ulama from all the Mazaahib have rejected it. Even the Sufia-e Kiraam have not reached a consensus on loud Zikr. Refer to the writings of Hadhrat Mujaddid Alf Thaani (rahmatullahi alaih) . Similarly, refer carefully to the kitaabs of other Ulama and Fuqaha. By merely freely stating the word `Ittifaaq` (consensus) this mas`ala cannot be solved.

In the above paragraph Mufti Ahmed Yaar Khan Naeemi`s one statement is mentioned and is refuted with three arguments. Here follows the reply to all three arguments.

RESPONSE TO THE FIRST ARGUMENT

We have already proved that establishing the meaning of ayat and Hadith (according to the commentators of Qur`aan and Hadith) is not m erely taking the outward meaning while ignoring other proofs and circumstances which are necessary for commentary, and thorough understanding.

RESPONSE TO THE SECOND ARGUMENT

If there is consensus of Imams of the Mazahib against the permissibility of loud Zikr show us the proof ! According to Moulana Rashid Ahmed Gangohi besides Imam Abu Hanifa (rahmatullahi alai) all other Imams of Mazahib believed that loud Zikr is permissible .Imam Abu Hanifa`s view that loud Zikr is Makrooh is also explained in detail. Was Moulana Gangohi unaware of the `consensus` of the Imams ? If there was such a "consensus` If he was aware then why did he give a Fatwa of different opinion to the `consensus"? Why did the other Ulama who followed the same school of thought not refute his Fatwa since it was supposedly against the Truth ?

RESPONSE TO THE THIRD ARGUMENT

If the Sufia-e-Kiraam have not reached a consensus in favour of loud Zikr it does not mean that they have reached a consensus on it being Haraam or, bidat. Wha t benefit could you derive out of this argument? We have already said that both loud Zikr and soft Zikr are correct. Whatever Mufti Ahmed Yaar Khan Naeemi has said, he has infact qouted FATAWA SHAAMI .So these are not his own words. We respectfully submit that you have not done justice in criticizing Mufti Ahmed Yaar Khan - rather you should have directed your criticism to ALLAMA IBN AABEDEEN SHAAMI, on the evidence of your argument.

Mufti A.H. Elias writes :

However Mufti Ahmed Yaar Khan says : "The opposition say it (loud Zikr) is Haraam, and they use different schemes in order to prevent it - one of their schemes is to brand loud Zikr Bid`a and contrary to the Usool (principle) of Imam Abu Hanifa (rahmatullahi alaihi)."(Jaa-al-Haq pg 329)In all fairness we ask :"Who has branded it (loud Zikr) Haraam and Bid`a ? Has Imam Abu Hanifa and Mullah Ali Qaari (rahmatullahi alaihima) also joined the ranks of the `opposition` ? Are they also amongst those who are plotting and planning schemes to prevent it ? Answer intelligently

Imam Abu Hanifa (rahmatullahi alai) has not regarded loud Zikr as Haraam or Bidat, a detailed explanation has already been mentioned. Mullah Ali Qaari explaining the Hadith of Muslim has only said that : "It is better to make soft Zikr"

We fail to understand conclusively from which source these people have derived that loud Zikr is Haraam and Bidat

Mufti A.H. Elias writes :

The subject regarding loud Zikr and Soft Zikr has been dealt with in detail in this book, `Hukmus-Zikr bil Jahr` authored by this writer (Abu Zahid Muhammed Sar Faraaz Safdar) - one may refer to it and study the same.

Allama Ghulaam Rasool Saeedi has given a crushing reply to Moulana Sarfaraaz Safdar`s book which remains unrivalled till today. Allama Saeedi`s book is titled `ZIKR BIL JAHR`, Fareedia Bookstall Lahore has published this book. Any person interested to know more about this topic must view Allama Saeedi`s book.

Mufti A.H. Elias writes :

The article to follow is from a book entitled "Minhaj-ul-Wazaai" or" Rai-e- Sunnat" by Allama Abu Zar Muhammed Sarfaras Khan and its validity, correctness and authentic nature has been testified by:

a) Qari Muhammed Tayob (R.A.)- rector of the Darul Uloom Deoband.

b) Moulana Mufti Sayed Mahdi Hassan (R.A.) -head Mufti of Darul Uloom Deoband.

c) Moulana Shamul-Haqq Afgani (R.A.)- Sheikul - Tafseer - Darul Uloom Deoband.

Mentioned above are some of the big names of Deoband who regard loud Zikr as Haraam and Bidat. We fail to understand how Moulana Gangohi says that loud Zikr is the way of life of our spiritual leaders, " and yet his followers say it is Haraam and Bidat.

Which one should we take as right or wrong? Who should we regard as Aalim and who as Jaahil? Who should we regard as guided and whoas misguided ? Please consider carefully !

Mufti A.H. Ellias writes:

A bidat is a bidat irrespective of who commits it. There is no concept of holy sin or holy bidat.

We are going to analyse one particular sentence of Mufti Elias " There is no concept of holy sin or holy bidat"

Hazrat Mulla Ali Qari writes in Mirkat Babul I'tisam bil kitaabe wassunnah: "Bidat sometimes is waajib ( compulsory) for example to learn Arabic grammar and rules of Fiqh and sometimes it is Haraam, for example Mazhab of Jabria ( or any other sect which is opposed to the beliefs of Ahlussunnah Wal Jama'h) sometimes bidat is Mustahab (recommended) for example to establish guest houses and madressahs and every other good thing which was not in previous times, and sometimes it is Makrooh (disliked) for example to decorate musjids with pride, and sometimes bidat is jaiz (permissible) for example shaking hands after fajr salaah, or increase in good food and drinks."

Allama Ibn Aabeedeen Shaami has stated similar types of Bidat in Fatawa Shaami first volume Kittab-us-Salaah Babul Imaamat. We wonder how great scholars like Allama Shaami and Mulla Qari regard some Bidat as Jaiz, Mustahab and even to the extent of Waajib and yet Mufti Elias argues that every Bidat is a bad Bidat.

Infact the bidat which is condemned in Hadith is that Bidat which is opposing the Deen. Therefore, Sheik Abdul Haq Muhaddis Dehlvi explains in the commentary of one Hadith: " Whoever invents an opinion in the Deen which is not from the Deen that opinion is rejected." Meant here is, that which opposed to Deen or changes the Deen. (Ashatul LamAat Babul I'tisam).

From the above explanation we understand that something which is not mentioned is no basis for it being considered Haraam or bad Bidat. In fact ruling of it being Haraam or bad Bidat will only be justified if it is opposed to Shariah or changes it, for example, if it removes any Fard, Waajib or Sunnah and takes its place.

Mufti Mahmood Hassan Gangohi defines bidat with reference of Shaami in the following words: "To invent anything against the truth which has been proven from the Holy Prophet (sallallaahu alaihi wasallam) according to knowledge, practice or condition is called Bidat." (Fatawa Mahmoodiya Vol. 1 Page 235).

According to this definition if something is not against what has been proven from the Holy Prophet (sallallaahu alaihi wasallam) is not Bidat, even though it did not exist in the first three periods of Islam.

Those people who ask for proof regarding Meelad, Fatiha, Urs and Salaami, etc. Should try another approach. Can they prove which Fard, Waajib or Sunnah has been violated by these practice?

Allah and His Rasool (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) know best.


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Posted 19 March 2005 - 10:58 AM (#3) User is offline   nawabzada 

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Here is an important fatwa by Aala Hadrat (ra) on loud dhikr.
Loud dhikr (single or in group) is permissible under the following conditions:
1. It should not be so loud that it hurts you.
2. It should not bother anyone else either.
3. Any action standing up, crying, etc. during dhirk if happens by itself is OK but out of Ria (showing off) is Haram.
"Ahkam e Sharait by Aala Hadrat (ra) question no 76"
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