ibn Rajab al-Hanbali Left Issuing Fatawa in Accordance to ibn Taymiyya and was Loathed by the Taymiyyun

The student of ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyya (who in turn was the student of ibn Taymiyya) – al-Imam al-Hafidh ibn Rajab al-Hanbali (d.795AH), stopped issuing fatawa in accordance to the views of ibn Taymiyya and was loathed by the Taymiyyun because of it:

al-Hafidh Zayn al-Din ‘Abd al-Rahman ibn Ahmad ibn Rajab al-Hanbali al-Baghdadi – then al-Dimashqi. The son of Rajab, born in Baghdad in the year 736 (AH).

In Egypt he heard from al-Maydumi, in Cairo from ibn al-Muluk, in Damascus from ibn al-Khubbaz, as well as the addition of numerous others. He kept the company of our Shaykh, Zayn al-Din al-‘Iraqi in hearing (from him) a great deal. He was proficient in the disciplines of hadith – the names (asma’), the narrators (rijal), hidden defects (‘ilal), the different routes/chains (turuq), and insight in explaining (itla’) their meanings.

He authored “Sharh al-Tirmidhi” in around twenty volumes, regarding which he achieved excellent results, (he also authored) a commentary of a major portion of (Sahih) “al-Bukhari”, as well as a commentary of “al-Arba’in li al-Nawawi” (Imam al-Nawawi’s collection of fourty ahadith) in one volume. He worked on “Wadha’if al-Ayyam” (the recommended actions of each specific day) which he named “al-Lata’if”, and also worked on “Tabaqat al-Hanabila” (the ranks of the Hanbali scholars) as a follow up of “Tabaqat Abi Ya’la”.

He was a man devoted to worship and tahajjud. He was resented because of his deliverance of religious legal edicts (ifta’) based on the sayings of ibn Taymiyya. He then proclaimed retraction from that and the Taymiyyun loathed him, so he was neither (aligned) with this group, not that group. In the end, he abandoned issuing religious legal edicts (ifta’).

Ibn Hajji said: “He mastered the science (of hadith and it’s branches) and became the most recognised of the people of his time in the field of hidden defects (‘ilal) and the pursuit of the different chains of transmission (tatabbu’ al-turuq). He would not intermingle with anyone and would also rarely visit anyone.”

He passed away during the month of Ramadhan, may Allah have mercy upon him. Most of our Hanbali companions were trained/educated by him in Damascus.

[ibn Hajar al-‘Asqalani, Inba al-Ghumr bi Anba al-‘Umr, ed. al-Majlis al-A’la li al-Shu’un al-Islamiyya 1969:1998, pt. 1, pg. 460-461]

عبد الرحمن بن أحمد بن رجب البغدادي ثم الدمشقي الحنبلي، الحافظ زين الدين بن رجب. وُلد ببغداد سنة ستٍ وثلاثين وسبعمائة، وسمع بمصر من الميدومي وبالقاهرة من ابن الملوك وبدمشق من ابن الخباز وجمع جمٍّ، ورافق شيخنا زين الدين العراقي في السماع كثيرًا، ومهر في فنون الحديث أَسماءً ورجالًا وعِللًا وطرقا واطلاعًا على معانيه.
صنَّف “شرح الترمذي” فأَجاد فيه في نحو عشرين مجلدة، وشرح قطعة كبيرة من “البخاري” وشرح “الأَربعين للنووي” في مجلدة، وعمل “وظائف الأَيام” سمَّاه “اللطائف” وعمل “طبقات الحنابلة” ذيلًا على “طبقات أبي يعلى”.
وكان صاحبَ عبادَةٍ وتهجد، ونُقِم عليه إِفتاؤه بمقالات ابن تيمية ثم أَظهر الرجوع عن ذلك فنافره التيميون فلم يكن مع هؤلاءِ ولا مع هؤلاءِ، وكان قد ترك الإِفتاءَ بآخره.
قال ابن حجي: “أَتْقَنَ الفنَّ وصار أَعرف أَهل عصره بالعلل وتتبُّع الطرق، وكان لا يخالط أَحدًا ولا يتردد إِلى أَحد”. مات في رمضان رحمه اللّٰه، [و]تخرج به غالب أَصحابنا الحنابلة بدمشق.

– ابن حجر العسقلاني في كتابه “إنباء الغمر بأنباء العمر”، المجلس الأعلى للشئون الإسلامية ١٩٩٨:١٩٦٩، الجزء الاول، ص. ٤٦٠-٤٦١

Taqi al-Din al-Subki – ibn Taymiyya and his Followers were from the Deviant Hashwiyya Sect, and they were a Minority Fringe Group who would Teach their Beliefs in Secret

Shaykh al-Islam Taqi al-Din al-Subki (D. 756AH) on ibn Taymiyya and his followers being from the deviant Hashwiyya sect, and that they were a minority fringe group who would teach their beliefs in secret

“As for the Hashwiyya, they are a despicable and ignorant lot who claim to belong to the school of (Imam) Ahmad (ibn Hanbal)… They have corrupted the creed of a few isolated Shafi’is, especially some of the Hadith scholars among them who are lacking in reason… They were held in utmost contempt, and then towards the end of the seventh century (AH) a man appeared who was diligent, intelligent and well-read and did not find a Shaykh to guide him, and he is of their creed and is brazen and dedicated to teaching his ideas… He said that non-eternal attributes can subsist in Allah, and that Allah is ever-acting, and that an infinite chain of events is not impossible either in the past or the future. He split the ranks and cast doubts on the creed of the Muslims and incited dissension amongst them. He did not confine himself to creedal matters of theology, but transgressed the bounds and said that travelling to visit the tomb of the Prophet (sallallahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) is a sin… The scholars agreed to imprison him for a long time, and the Sultan imprisoned him… and he died in prison. Then some of his followers started to promulgate his ideas and teach them to people in secret while keeping quiet in public, and great harm came from this.”

[al-Zabidi, Ithaf al-Sada al-Muttaqin, 2:11. al-Zabidi is quoting from al-Subki’s al-Sayf al-Saqil fi al-Radd ‘ala ibn Zafil, see al-Rasa-il al-Subkiyya, 84-85]

Imam al-Dhahabi – ibn Taymiyya’s followers Weakened, and he was Forbidden from Issuing Fatawa Due to his Views on Talaq, Yet he Remained Stubborn on his Views

Imam al-Dhahabi mentions that ibn Taymiyya’s followers weakened, and that he was forbidden from issuing fatawa due to his views on talaq, yet he remained stubborn on his views:

“His followers weakened and he involved himself in weighty questions that neither the intellects of his contemporaries nor their learning could bear, such as: the question of the expiation of the oath of repudiation (talaq), the opinion that repudiation (talaq) uttered three times is valid only once, and the opinion that repudiation (talaq) during menstruation is not valid. He composed writings about these topics in the order of some forty quires. Because of this, he was forbidden to issue legal opinions (fatawa). He controlled himself in a strange way and held firm to his own opinion.”

[al-Dhahabi, Nubdha in Bori, “A New Source“, 336, (Arabic Text) – 342 (English Translation)]

Who was Shaykh al-Islam ibn Hajar al-Haytami? – A Harsh Reality Check for the Followers of ibn Taymiyya in This Age

Due to being one of ibn Taymiyya’s major critics, some modern-day followers of ibn Taymiyya do not hold much love for Shaykh al-Islam ibn Hajar al-Haytami (D. 974AH). They would like to believe that the Imam was not of great standing or knowledge, and that his beliefs were ‘deviant’. However, as a harsh reality check, Imam ‘Uthman ibn Sanad al-Basri (D. 1242AH) had the following to say in praise of Shaykh al-Islam ibn Hajar al-Haytami:

“He who looks at his works will be dazzled and say: Praise Allah who has allowed the minds of man to reach it’s subtle depths! He is the Shafi’i who mediated between the finer points of law and the subtleties of the discipline of tradition. He did not treat discipline without reaching depths that his contemporaries never hoped to reach. No one disputed with him without finding him an abounding sea of knowledge. He was firm in matters of religion while being high minded, composed and intelligent… Those who came after him have depended on what he has chosen, and thus his works are the standard reference for fatawa, and no Shafi’i will give a fatwa that is not in accordance with what he has considered. The prominent scholars esteem his works, and give it the foremost rating.”

[Basri, Matali’ al-Su’ud, 113]

Imam Najm al-Din al-Ghazzi on ibn Taymiyya’s View on Triple Talaq

Imam Najm al-Din al-Ghazzi al-Dimashqi al-Shafi’i (D. 1061AH) reprimanded al-Shuwayki for secretly returning women to their husbands after three divorces in a single declaration in accordance with ibn Taymiyya’s View on Triple Talaq. He mentioned that he wrote to him as follows (wherein he says ibn Taymiyya’s deviant view is not to be followed at all and does not even constitute a legal shade of doubt, and those who follow it should be punished with the severe capital punishment for adultery):

“It is not permissible for a man to take back his wife after three divorces according to the doctrine of the Muslims, except for ibn Taymiyya’s view, which it is not permissible to imitate due to it’s deviance (li-shudhudhihi). What has been established on this matter is that he who follows the view of ibn Taymiyya must be chastised, and the doubt (shubha) constituted by his (ibn Taymiyya’s) disagreement does not cancel the prescribed punishment (hadd) of the man who has intercourse with the woman after she is returned to him, nor (the punishment) of her.”

[Najm al-Din al-Ghazzi, Lutf al-Samar wa Qatf al-Thamar min Tarajim A’yan al-Tabaqa al-Ula min al-Qarn al-Hadi Ashar, Mahmud al-Shaykh ed. (Damascus: Manshurat Wizarat al-Thaqafa, 1981), 1:268]

ibn Hajar al-Haytami on ibn Taymiyya in his Own Time and the Reality of his Followers

Shaykh al-Islam ibn Hajar al-Haytami (D. 974AH) on ibn Taymiyya in his own time and the reality of his followers:

“The scholars of his age rose against him (ibn Taymiyya) and impelled the Sultan to either kill or imprison him, so he imprisoned him until he died and his innovations died out and his darkness disappeared. Then he was supported by followers whose heads Allah has not raised, nor has He granted them power or strength; rather they were afflicted with humiliation and remained under Allah’s wrath, due to their disobedience and their beliefs.”

[ibn Hajar al-Haytami, al-Jawhar al-Munazzam, 31]

Taqi al-Din al-Hisni on ibn Taymiyya’s Followers being a Fringe Minority who had to Keep their Beliefs Hidden

Imam Taqi al-Din al-Hisni (D. 829AH) on ibn Taymiyya’s anti-Ash’ari followers being a fringe minority group who had to keep their beliefs hidden due to fear of facing severe punishment:

“Discretionary punishment and floggings and imprisonment and beheadings have not ceased to be their lot, despite their concealing what they believe and their utmost secrecy in not expressing their foul beliefs except in hidden places after taking care, and locking the doors, and speaking softly, saying that the walls have ears.”

[Taqi al-Din al-Hisni, Daf’ Shubah man Shabbaha wa Tamarrada, 236-7]