Islamic Studies

Advice Of Shaikh Abdullah Bin Bayyah On Unity

Furthermore, the Quran says, “Do not disagree:” do not “tanaaza`u” that is a strong word in Arabic. It is different from “ikhtilaaf: disagreement.” Tanaaza`u ” is saying, do not have conflict with one another-not disagreement-but conflict. Do not have conflict with one another, and if you do that, the wind that gives you strength to move forward will dissipate, and you will fail in your task. You will fail in what you want to achieve. Allah subhaana wa ta’aala said, “Rectify what is of between you.” That is, Allah says to rectify the differences that you have. Rectify the hearts, so that you come together. The Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam,said, “Al-muslimu akh ul-muslim: The Muslim is a brother of his fellow Muslim.” He does not oppress him nor does he give him up to the enemy. Thus, all of these are indications that we should be together in spite of our differences if those differences are based on valid fiqhi differences; and this is why we must look into the jurisprudence related to differences of opinion.

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Suhaib Webb

Suhaib Webb

Suhaib Webb is a contemporary American-Muslim educator, activist, and lecturer. His work bridges classical and contemporary Islamic thought, addressing issues of cultural, social and political relevance to Muslims in the West. After converting to Islam in 1992, Webb left his career in the music industry to pursue his passion in education. He earned a Bachelor’s in Education from the University of Central Oklahoma and received intensive private training in the Islamic Sciences under a renowned Muslim Scholar of Senegalese descent. Webb was hired as the Imam at the Islamic Society of Greater Oklahoma City, where he gave khutbas (sermons), taught religious classes, and provided counselling to families and young people; he also served as an Imam and resident scholar in communities across the U.S.

From 2004-2010, Suhaib Webb studied at the world’s preeminent Islamic institution of learning, Al-Azhar University, in the College of Shari`ah. During this time, after several years of studying the Arabic Language and the Islamic legal tradition, he also served as the head of the English Translation Department at Dar al-Ifta al-Misriyyah.

Outside of his studies at Al-Azhar, Suhaib Webb completed the memorization of the Quran in the city of Makkah, Saudi Arabia. He has been granted numerous traditional teaching licenses (ijazat), adhering to centuries-old Islamic scholarly practice of ensuring the highest standards of scholarship. Webb was named one of the 500 Most Influential Muslims in the World by the Royal Islamic Strategic Studies Center in 2010.

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  • Do you think that by now most Muslims – or most who are quite informed about the religion’s basics – share the understanding that differences (ikhtilaf) is not necessarily a bad thing, but rather requires us to deal with each other with intelligence and etiquette?

    I’m glad of the clarification above, since I heard a khutbah a while ago where the khateeb tried to prove that ikhtilaf is inherently bad. He cited the verse above, without pointing out that the word in it is not IKHTILAF, but TANAZU’. The same applied to the other evidences he cited, such as the verse dispraising TAFARRUQ.

  • Sheikh, i am having a hard time these days. I feel that i have run up against a group of people, Muslims, who have this computerized “a+b=c” mentality. Its sad because, I run into some of the younger kids and they talk about this group in such a negative light. I love this group and admire them for their strength of deen, and tr to change the minds of the younger muslims to not portray them or any other muslims in such negative ways.

    But they (the programed? Muslims) are turning people away from Islam and the masjid, when approached they dont take criticism well. Somehow, it always ends up turning into how I might not be doing the naseeha giving properly, or how I might be not strong enough in my faith. Maybe I am weak, however, the fact remains their behavior is turning young Muslims away.

    How do you suggest we deal with unity when some one like me who sees this situation and am left helpless to do anything about it? Unity seems to be a difficult task when Muslims who are trying to come back are turning away when faced with this circumstance. What good is unity if everyone left thinks the same way and those that want to be Muslim experience this negative situation and doesn’t get an opportunity to learn islam?

  • Short and sweet. We must come to a level where when we look at another Muslim we see Laa Ilaaha illallah Muhammar-rasool Allah. Those who would like to do away with the labels inside of that most blessed paradigm i.e. salafi, sufi, hanafi, shafi’ee, traditionist, reformer etc..
    When we see a fatwa by a scholar who has spent many years seeking the most noble inheritance of the Prophet (saws). We must look at that person and their opinion with great respect. It would be a great injustice to accuse such as following desires or impose our understanding therefore accusing them of the wrong understanding in cases of ikhtilaaf.
    Sadly this concept is polluted amongst zealous Muslims and even in many cases their teachers and scholars. We pray Allah guide us and our leadership to become a united Ummah!

  • Unity amongst the Muslims will materialise Insha’Allah once the scholars and leaders of da’wa are consistent in their rhetoric and da’wa. If one has admitted himself to a coalition of understanding and cooperation, one should not speak against or use rhetoric that may seem to jeopardise his position.

    JazzakAllah khair Imam Suhaib for the reminder


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