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)]


Hafidh al-Sakhawi – ibn Taymiyya was Someone who People Avoided and Were Careful Not to Utilise his Knowledge

Hafidh al-Sakhawi (D. 902AH) on ibn Taymiyya:

وكذا ممن حصل من بعض الناس منهم نفره وتحامى عن الانتفاع بعلمهم مع جلالتهم علماً وورعاً وزهداً لإطلاق لسانهم وعدم مداراتهم بحيث يتكلمون ويجرحون بما فيه مبالغة كابن حزم وابن تيمية

“There are also those scholars of great learning, austerity, and asceticism whom people avoided and whose knowledge they were careful not to utilise, because of their loose tongue and lack of tact, which caused them to talk and criticise excessively. Such men were ibn Hazm and ibn Taymiyya.”

[al-Sakhawi, I’lan bi al-Tawbikh (pg. 163), (English translation in ‘A history of Muslim Historiography‘, pg. 284, by F. Rosenthal)]

Imam al-Suyuti – ‘ibn Taymiyya was Arrogant. He was Self Conceited…’

Imam Jalal al-Din al-Suyuti (D. 911AH) on ibn Taymiyya:

“ibn Taymiyya was arrogant. He was self-conceited. It was his habit to represent himself as superior to everybody, to slight the person whom he talked to, and to make fun of great Muslims”

[al-Suyuti, Kam’ al-Mu’arid]

ibn Taymiyya Overcome by Anger Throws Down Book of Religious Knowledge During Debate

Imam Salahud Deen As Safadi (D. 764AH): the student of ibn Taymiyya, said in his biography of Ibn Taymiyyah in his book, “Al Waafi bil Wafayaat”:

:وقال الصفدي أثناء ترجمة ابن تيمية في الوافي بالوفيات
وحكى لي عنه الشيخ شمس الدين ابن قيم الجوزية قال: كان صغيرا عند بني المنجا فبحث معهم فادعوا شيئا أنكره فأحضروا النقل فلما وقف عليه ألقى المجلد من يده غيظا، فقالوا له: ما أنت إلا جريء ترمي المجلد من يدك وهو كتاب علم، فقال سريعا: أيما خير أنا أو موسى? فقالوا موسى، فقال: أيما خير هذا الكتاب أو ألواح الجوهر التي كان فيها العشر كلمات? قالوا: الألواح، فقال: إن موسى لما غضب ألقى الألواح من يده، أو كما قال. أهـــ

“Ash Shaikh Shamsud Deen Ibnu Qayyim Al Jawziyyah told me about him saying: When he was young he was in the company of (the Hanbali family of Scholars) Banu Al Munajja, so he debated with them. So they claimed something he denied. Then they brought the quote. When he saw it, he threw the book down in anger. They said to him, “You sure are bold to throw down the book when it is a book of Religious Knowledge!” Whereupon he immediately said, “Who is better, me or Musa?” So they said, “Musa”. Then he said, “Which is better, this book or the Tablets containing the Ten Commandments?” They said, “The Tablets.” So Ibn Taymiyyah said, “Well, when Musa became angry he threw the Tablets down!” – or something to this effect”

This quote can also be found translated into English on page 110 and 111 of “Al Albani Unveiled”, a book definitely worth owning.

Courtesy of Shaykh Abdur Rahman Sondalaani:

ibn Taymiyya’s Harshness and Disrespectful Nature During Debates

The following 3 quotes are from page 244 of Imam Adh Dhahabi’s (D. 748AH) biography of Ibn Taymiyyah included in the compilation called, “From the Legacy of Shaikhul Islam Ibn Taymiyyah”, found here:

وله حدة قوية تعتريه في البحث حتى كأنه ليث حرب. أهـــ

“He had an acute harshness that would overcome him during debate, making him like a lion of war.”

وفيه قلة مداراة وعدم تؤدة غالبًا , والله يغفر له. أهـــ

He often lacked congeniality and prudence. May Allah forgive him.”

وَقَدْ يُعَظِّمُ جليسه مرة ويهينه في المحاورة مرات. أهـــ

“He may honor his company once, yet disrespect them during debate repeatedly.”

Courtesy of Shaykh Abdur Rahman Sondalaani:

ibn Taymiyya’s Harshness and Hot Temper During Debates

Regarding ibn Taymiyya’s conduct with his opponents during debate, on page 326 and 327 of his book Dhaylu Tareekhil Islam, Al Imam Adh Dhahabi (D. 748AH) said:

مع اننى لا اعتقد فيه العصمة كلا فانه مع سعة علمه و فرط شجاعته و سيلان ذهنه و تعظيمه لحرمات الدين بشر من البشر تعتريه حدة فى البحث و غضب وشظف للخصم يزرع له عداوة فى النفوس و نفورا عنه وإلا والله لو لاطف الخصوم و رفق بهم ولزم المجاملة و حسن المكالمة لكان كلمة اجماع

“…although I do not believe him to be infallible (ma’soom). Most definitely not! Because despite his vast knowledge, extreme courage, overflowing intellect, and reverence for the sanctities of the religion, he was but a man. During debates he would be overcome with harshness, hot temper, and toughness with his opponents which would plant in the souls the seeds of enmity, aversion, and dislike for him. Otherwise, had he been polite and kind with his opponents and observed etiquette and a graceful mode of speech, he would have been a word of consensus.”

Courtesy of Shaykh Abdur Rahman Sondalaani:

ibn Taymiyya Attributed with Arrogance, Self Admiration, and the Desire to be the ‘Head Shaykh’ by Imam al-Dhahabi

On page 38 of the book, Zaghlul ‘Ilm, Adh Dhahabi (D. 748AH) said about his teacher Ibn Taymiyyah:

وقد تعبت في وزنه وفتشته حتى مللت في سنين متطاولة ، فما وجدت قد أخره بين أهل مصر والشام ومقتته نفوسهم وازدروا به وكذبوه وكفروه إلا الكبر والعجب ، وفرط الغرام في رياسة المشيخة والازدراء بالكبار ، فانظر كيف وبال الدعاوي ومحبة الظهور ، نسأل الله تعالى المسامحة ، فقد قام عليه أناس ليسوا بأورع منه ولا أعلم منه ولا أزهد منه ، بل يتجاوزون عن ذنوب أصحابهم وآثام أصدقائهم ، وما سلطهم الله عليه بتقواهم وجلالتهم بل بذنوبه ، وما دفعه الله عنه وعن أتباعه أكثر ، وما جرى عليهم إلا بعض ما يستحقون ، فلا تكن فى ريب من ذلك. أهـــ

“And I have tired myself from weighing him and examining him, until over the long years I became exausted. At last, what I found to be holding him back among the scholars of Egypt and Syria (Shaam), caused their souls to loathe him, and them to disdain him, and call him a liar and accuse him of disbelief was nothing else but arrogance (kibr), self admiration (‘ujb), the ardent desire to be the “head shaikh”, and belittling the eminent (figures in Islam)! So look at the outcome of false claims and love of fame! We ask Allah, the Exalted, for pardon. For indeed, the people who confronted him were not more pious than he, or more knowledgeble or more ascetic. On the other hand, they would overlook the sins of their companions and the misdeeds of their friends. Allah did not afflict him with them due to their piety (taqwa) and their nobility, but because of his sins. And what Allah deflected from him and his followers was even greater. And nothing befell them except for some of what they deserved, so do not be in doubt concerning this.”

See page 38:

Courtesy of Shaykh Abdur Rahman Sondalaani: