The difference between sincere advising and shaming: Ibn Rajab

al-Haafidh Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali, in his monograph al-Farq bain al-Naseehah w’al-Ta’eer, devotes one section to the topic of “On the Difference between advising about one’s short-comings in order to return from that, and rebuking and scolding for one’s sins.” It reads as follows:

ومن هذا الباب أن يقال للرجل في وجهه ما يكرهه فإن كان هذا على وجه النصح فهو حسن وقد قال بعض السلف لبعض إخوانه: لا تنصحني حتى تقول في وجهي ما أكره.

And from this is that one would tell a man something that he disliked to his face, and if that was with the purpose of sincerely advising him, then that is good. And one of the Salaf said to his brother, “Do not advise me until you can say something to my face which I dislike.”

فإذا أخبر أحد أخاه بعيب ليجتنبه كان ذلك حسناً لمن أُخبر بعيب من عيوبه أن يعتذر منها إن كان له منها عذر وإن كان ذلك على وجه التوبيخ بالذنب فهو قبح مذموم.

Then if one of his brothers informs him of a short-coming in order for him to avoid it, then that is good for the one who was informed of one of his short-comings so that he can be wary of it, if it served as a warning for him. And if that [advising] was with the purpose of rebuking him for his sin, then that is distasteful and blameworthy.

وقيل لبعض السلف: أتحبُّ أن يخبرك أحد بعيوبك؟ فقال: إن كان يريد أن يوبخني فلا.

And it was said to one of the salaf, “Would you like for someone to inform you of your short-comings?” So he replied, “If he wanted to reprimand me, then no.” Continue reading

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“People whose hearts are like the hearts of birds”: Sharh al-Nawawi

Abu Hurayrah narrated that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said:

يَدْخُلُ الْجَنَّةَ أَقْوَامٌ أَفْئِدَتُهُمْ مِثْلُ أَفْئِدَةِ الطَّيْرِ

“There would enter Paradise people whose hearts are like the hearts of birds.”

[Saheeh Muslim #2840]

Imam al-Nawawi, in his explanation of Saheeh Muslim, wrote the following concerning this hadeeth:

قوله صلى الله عليه وسلم : ( يدخل الجنة أقوام أفئدتهم مثل أفئدة الطير ) قيل : مثلها في رقتها وضعفها ، كالحديث الآخر : أهل اليمن أرق قلوبا وأضعف أفئدة وقيل : في الخوف والهيبة ، والطير أكثر الحيوان خوفا وفزعا ، كما قال الله تعالى : إنما يخشى الله من عباده العلماء وكأن المراد قوم غلب عليهم الخوف كما جاء عن جماعات من السلف في شدة خوفهم ، وقيل : المراد متوكلون . والله أعلم .

His statement (ﷺ), “There would enter Paradise people whose hearts are like the hearts of birds“.

It is said: the likeness of them in tenderness and softness, like another hadeeth, “The people of Yemen are the most soft-hearted and the most tender-hearted

And it is said: in fear and reverence. And birds are the most frightful and alarm-prone of animals, just as Allah said, “It is only those who have knowledge among His slaves that fear Allah” [35:28], as if the meaning was a people who were overcome by fear, as has been narrated about large numbers of the salaf concerning the severity of their fear.

And it is said: the meaning is al-mutawakkiloon (those who place their reliance and trust upon Allah). And Allah knows best

[Sharh al-Nawai ‘alaa Muslim #2840]

See also: Those who come to Allah with a Pure Heart: Tafsir al-Qurtubi

See also: Birds of a feather flock together

See also: The Importance of Pure Intention: Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali

“Indeed, prayer prohibits immorality and wrongdoing”: Tafsir al-Sa’di

Allah, Subhanahu wa ta’ala, says in His Book in surah al-‘Ankaboot:

اتْلُ مَا أُوحِيَ إِلَيْكَ مِنَ الْكِتَابِ وَأَقِمِ الصَّلَاةَ ۖ إِنَّ الصَّلَاةَ تَنْهَىٰ عَنِ الْفَحْشَاءِ وَالْمُنكَرِ‌ ۗ وَلَذِكْرُ‌ اللَّـهِ أَكْبَرُ‌ ۗ وَاللَّـهُ يَعْلَمُ مَا تَصْنَعُونَ

“Recite what has been revealed to you of the Book, and establish the prayer. Indeed, prayer prohibits immorality and wrongdoing, and the remembrance of Allah is greater. And Allah knows that which you do.” [29:45]

Sheikh ‘Abd al-Rahman ibn Naasir al-Sa’di, in his tafsir, wrote:

يأمر تعالى بتلاوة وحيه وتنزيله، وهو هذا الكتاب العظيم، ومعنى تلاوته اتباعه، بامتثال ما يأمر به، واجتناب ما ينهى عنه، والاهتداء بهداه، وتصديق أخباره، وتدبر معانيه، وتلاوة ألفاظه، فصار تلاوة لفظه جزء المعنى وبعضه، وإذا كان هذا معنى تلاوة الكتاب، علم أن إقامة الدين كله، داخلة في تلاوة الكتاب‏.‏ فيكون قوله‏:‏ ‏(‏وَأَقِمِ الصَّلَاةَ)‏ من باب عطف الخاص على العام، لفضل الصلاة وشرفها، وآثارها الجميلة، وهي ‏(‏إِنَّ الصَّلَاةَ تَنْهَى عَنِ الْفَحْشَاءِ وَالْمُنْكَرِ‏)‏

Allah commands the recitation of His revelation, and that is this Great Book [the Qur’an]. And the meaning of reciting it is adhering to it, complying with what it commands, avoiding what it prohibits, being guided by its guidance, affirming its contents, pondering over its meanings, as well as reciting its words. So reciting its word is just one part of this meaning. So then if this is the meaning of “reciting the Qur’an”, then one should know that the establishment and enactment on the entire deen falls within the meaning of “reciting the Qur’an”.

So then His statement, “and establish the prayer” – is an example of mentioning something specific alongside something general. And this is due to the virtue and honor of the prayer, as well as its wonderful effects, which is that “Indeed, prayer prohibits immorality and wrongdoing“.

والفحشاء‏:‏ كل ما استعظم واستفحش من المعاصي التي تشتهيها النفوس‏.‏

And immorality (fahshah) is every excessive and indecent act of disobedience which the lower self desires.

والمنكر‏:‏ كل معصية تنكرها العقول والفطر‏.‏

And wrongdoing (munkar) is every act of disobedience which the (functioning) intellect and natural inclination (fitrah) would prevent.

ووجه كون الصلاة تنهى عن الفحشاء والمنكر، أن العبد المقيم لها، المتمم لأركانها وشروطها وخشوعها، يستنير قلبه، ويتطهر فؤاده، ويزداد إيمانه، وتقوى رغبته في الخير، وتقل أو تعدم رغبته في الشر، فبالضرورة، مداومتها والمحافظة عليها على هذا الوجه، تنهى عن الفحشاء والمنكر، فهذا من أعظم مقاصدها وثمراتها‏.‏ وثَمَّ في الصلاة مقصود أعظم من هذا وأكبر، وهو ما اشتملت عليه من ذكر اللّه، بالقلب واللسان والبدن‏.‏ فإن اللّه تعالى، إنما خلق الخلق لعبادته، وأفضل عبادة تقع منهم الصلاة، وفيها من عبوديات الجوارح كلها، ما ليس في غيرها، ولهذا قال‏:‏ (وَلَذِكْرُ اللَّهِ أَكْبَرُ‏)‏

And the way that the prayer prevents one from immorality and wrongdoing is that he slave who establishes it – the one who fulfills its pillars and conditions and establishes it with khushoo’ – then it illuminates and purifies his heart, and increases his eemaan, and increases his taqwa and his desire to do good, as well as decreasing or even eliminating his desire to do evil. And it necessarily follows that it also increases his persistence and regularity of these good qualities -which prohibit him from immorality and wrongdoing- and this is one of the greatest objectives and fruits of the prayer.

But there is an even greater objectives of the prayer, which is what it involves of the remembrance of Allah, with the heart, tongue and body. For Allah only created the creation for the purpose of His worship, and the best form of worship is the prayer, for therein all the limbs are engaged in worship, and this is not found in other forms of worship, and on this subject He said, “and the remembrance of Allah is greater“.

ويحتمل أنه لما أمر بالصلاة ومدحها، أخبر أن ذكره تعالى خارج الصلاة أكبر من الصلاة، كما هو قول جمهور المفسرين، لكن الأول أولى، لأن الصلاة أفضل من الذكر خارجها، ولأنها – كما تقدم – بنفسها من أكبر الذكر‏.‏

But this ayah could also be interpreted to mean that when Allah commanded the performance of the prayer and lauded it, He also informed us that the remembrance of Him outside of the prayer is greater than the prayer itself, as is the position of the majority of the mufassiroon. However, what I mentioned first is more correct, because the prayer is more virtuous than remembrance outside of the prayer. And that is because, as we have mentioned elsewhere, the prayer itself is one of the greatest forms of remembrance.

‏(‏وَاللَّهُ يَعْلَمُ مَا تَصْنَعُونَ)‏ من خير وشر، فيجازيكم على ذلك أكمل الجزاء وأوفاه‏.‏

And Allah knows that which you do” of good and evil. And He will reward you for that with the most complete fulfillment and recompense.

[Taysir al-Kareem al-Rahmanp. 632]

For more on the importance and benefits of al-salaah, see also: The first deed to be reckoned

See also: “Call upon your Lord in humility and privately; indeed, He does not like transgressors.”: Imam al-Qurtubi’s tafsir of 7:55

See also: The outcomes of Taqwa and truthful speech: Tafsir al-Sa’di

See also: “Indeed the patient will be given their reward without measure”

See also: Performing the Prayers in their Proper Times: Tafsir al-Sa’di

See also: Du’a or Dhikr after the Salaah?: Ibn Taymiyah

If Adam was expelled from Jannah for a single sin, then what about you?

Abu’l-Faraj Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali, the famous muhaddith, haafidh and Faqeeh, wrote the following moving words in his book Lataa’if al-Ma’aarif concerning the great seriousness of one’s sins. He wrote:

قال بعض السلف : آدم أُخرج من الجنة بذنب واحدٍ, وأنتم تعملون الذنوب وتُكثرون منها, وتُريدون أن تدخلوا بها الجنة

Some of the salaf said, “Adam was expelled from Jannah for a single sin, and you perform many sins and outstrip that in number, and (yet) you want to be entered into Jannah with that?!”

تصـل الذنـوب إلى الذنــوب وترتجي     درج الجـنـــان بـهــا وفوز العــــابــد
ونــــســـيـــت أنّ الله أخــــرج آدمــاً      منهـــا إلــى الــدنيــا بـــذنـب واحــدِ

Moving from sin to sin and still you hope
for a rank in Paradise and the success like that of a devoted worshiper.

But you forgot that Allah expelled Adam
from there to the dunya for a single sin.

بــفــرد خــطيئــةٍ وبــفــرد ذنــب     من الجنـــات أُخـــرجت البــرايـا
فقـل لي كيف تــرجــو في ذخـول     إليهـــا بــالألــوف من الخــطايــا

With a single sin and with a single mistake
the creature was expelled from Paradise.

So tell me how can you hope for entrance to it,
while you have thousands of sins?

[Lataa’if al-Ma’aarif pg 118]

For those are able to read the Arabic language, this translator would strongly advise you to download this great work from Ibn Rajab in it’s entirety. Specifically, the entire section of Ibn Rajab’s discussion of Adam (‘alaihis salaam) runs from pages 113 to 123, and is full of great benefit. The free PDF is available for download here.

The Jews used to hope for the supplication of the Prophet

Imam Abu ‘Eesaa al-Tirmidhi narrates the following hadeeth in his collection:

عَنْ أَبِي مُوسَى، قَالَ كَانَ الْيَهُودُ يَتَعَاطَسُونَ عِنْدَ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَرْجُونَ أَنْ يَقُولَ لَهُمْ يَرْحَمُكُمُ اللَّهُ ‏.‏ فَيَقُولُ :‏ يَهْدِيكُمُ اللَّهُ وَيُصْلِحُ بَالَكُمْ ‏‏

Abu Moosaa narrated that the Jews used to sneeze in the presence of the Prophet (ﷺ) hoping that he would say: ‘Yarhamukumullah (May Allah have mercy upon you).’ So he said: ‘Yahdikumullahu Wa Yuslihu Baalakum (May Allah guide you and rectify your affairs).'”

[al-Tirmidhi #2739]

Imam al-Mubaarakfoori, in his commentary on Jaami’ al-Tirmidhi, wrote the following:

قوله : ( كان اليهود يتعاطسون ) أي يطلبون العطسة من أنفسهم ( يرجون ) أي يتمنون بهذا السبب ( فيقول ) أي النبي ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ عند عطاسهم وحمدهم ( يهديكم الله ويصلح بالكم ) ولا يقول لهم يرحمكم الله ; لأن الرحمة مختصة بالمؤمنين ، بل يدعو لهم بما يصلح بالهم من الهداية والتوفيق والإيمان .

His statement, “the Jews used to sneeze” – meaning: trying to make themselves sneeze – “hoping” – meaning: wishing for this reason – “that he would say” – meaning: the Prophet (ﷺ), when they would sneeze and then say al-Hamdulillah. [But he instead said] “Yahdikumullahu Wa Yuslihu Baalakum (May Allah guide you and rectify your affairs)” and he did not say Yarhamukumullah (May Allah have mercy upon you) to them, because the Mercy (of Allah) is exclusive to the believers. So instead he supplicated for them that their affairs would be rectified through guidance and success and al-eemaan.

قوله : ( وفي الباب عن علي وأبي أيوب وسالم بن عبيد وعبد الله بن جعفر وأبي هريرة ) أما حديث علي فأخرجه الطبراني ، وأما حديث أبي أيوب وحديث سالم بن عبيد فأخرجهما الترمذي في هذا الباب ، وأما حديث عبد الله بن جعفر فأخرجه البيهقي في الشعب ، وأما حديث أبي هريرة فأخرجه البخاري عنه مرفوعا : إذا عطس أحدكم فليقل الحمد لله وليقل له أخوه أو صاحبه يرحمك الله ، فإذا قال له يرحمك الله فليقل يهديكم الله ويصلح بالكم .

His [i.e. Imam al-Tirmidhi] said, “the hadeeth also comes from ‘Ali, Abu Ayyoob, Saalim ibn ‘Ubayd, ‘Abdullaah ibn Ja’far, and Abu Hurayrah” and as for the hadeeth of ‘Ali, it it collected by al-Tabaraani. And as for the hadeeth of Abu Ayyoob and the hadeeth of Saalim ibn ‘Ubayd, they are collected by al-Tirmidhi in this chapter. And as for the hadeeth of ‘Abdullaah ibn Ja’far, it is collected by al-Bayhaqi in al-Sha’b al-Eemaan. And as for the hadeeth of Abu Hurayrah, it is collected from him in al-Bukhari raised to a statement of the Prophet:

If anyone of you sneezes, he should say ‘Al-Hamdulillah‘ (Praise be to Allah), and his (Muslim) brother or companion should say to him, ‘Yarhamukallah‘ (May Allah bestow his Mercy on you). When the latter says ‘Yarhamukallah“, the former should say, ‘Yahdikumullah wa Yuslih baalakum‘ (May Allah give you guidance and improve your condition). [al-Bukhari #6224]

قوله : ( هذا حديث حسن صحيح ) ، وأخرجه أبو داود والنسائي والحكم وصححه .

And his [i.e. Imam al-Tirmidhi] statement, “This is a hasan saheeh hadeeth“, and it was collected by Abu Dawood, al-Nasaa’i, and al-Haakim who also declared it as saheeh.

[Tuhfat al-Ahwadhi #2739]

See also: Giving the greeting of salam to a mixed group: ibn Hajar

See also: Overlooking the foolishness of those upon falsehood: Sharh al-Nawawi

Is the reward for good anything except good?: Tafsir al-Qurtubi

In surah al-Rahman, Allah سبحانه وتعالى says:

هَلْ جَزَاءُ الْإِحْسَانِ إِلَّا الْإِحْسَانُ

Is the reward for good anything except good?

Imam al-Qurtubi, in his book of tafsir, writes:

قوله تعالى‏ {‏هل جزاء الإحسان إلا الإحسان‏}‏ ‏{‏هل‏}‏ في الكلام على أربعة أوجه‏:‏ تكون بمعنى قد كقوله تعالى ‏{‏هل أتى على الإنسان حين من الدهر‏}‏، وبمعنى الاستفهام كقوله تعالى‏{‏فهل وجدتم ما وعد ربكم حقا‏} ، وبمعنى الأمر كقوله تعالى ‏{‏فهل أنتم منتهون‏} ‏، وبمعنى ما في الجحد كقوله تعالى‏ {‏فهل على الرسل إلا البلاغ‏}‏ ‏، و‏{‏هل جزاء الإحسان إلا الإحسان‏}‏‏.‏

His statement – Exalted is He – “Is the reward for good anything except good?“, “Is” can be interpreted in four ways: (1) With a meaning like the statement of Allah, “Has there not been over man a period of time…?” [76:1], and (2) with a meaning of comprehension such as His statement, “Have you found what your Lord promised to be true?” [7:44], and (3) with a meaning of command such as His statement, “So will you not desist?” [5:91], and (4) with a meaning of repudiation such as His statement, “Then are the Messengers charged with anything but to convey clearly the Message?” [16:35], and “Is the reward for good anything except good?“.

قال عكرمة‏:‏ أي هل جزاء من قال لا إله إلا الله إلا الجنة‏.‏ ابن عباس‏:‏ ما جزاء من قال لا إله إلا اله وعمل بما جاء به محمد صلى الله عليه وسلم إلا الجنة‏.‏ وقيل‏:‏ هل جزاء من أحسن في الدنيا إلا أن يحسن إليه في الآخرة، قال ابن زيد‏.‏

‘Ikrimah said, “Meaning, is the reward for whoever says la ilaaha illallaah anything except Jannah?” Ibn ‘Abbaas said, “What is the reward for whoever says la ilaaha illallaah and works according to what Muhammad (ﷺ) came with except for Jannah?” And it is said, “Is the reward for whoever does good in the dunya anything other than to be better than that in the aakhirah,” and ibn Zaid said that.

وروى أنس أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم قرأ ‏{‏هل جزاء الإحسان إلا الإحسان‏}‏ ثم قال‏{‏هل تدرون ماذا قال ربكم‏}‏ قالوا الله ورسوله أعلم، قال‏{‏يقول ما جزاء من أنعمت عليه بالتوحيد إلا الجنة‏}‏‏.‏

And it is narrated from Anas that the Prophet (ﷺ) recited, “Is the reward for good anything except good?“, then he said, “Do you know what your Lord has said?” He replied, “Allah and His messenger know best.” He said, “He said, ‘there is no reward bestowed upon him for Tawheed except Jannah.'”

وروى ابن عباس أن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم قرأ هذه الآية فقال‏{‏يقول الله هل جزاء من أنعمت عليه بمعرفتي وتوحيدي إلا أن أسكنه جنتي وحظيرة قدسي برحمتي‏}‏

And Ibn ‘Abbaas narrated that the Prophet (ﷺ) recited this ayah and then said, “Allah said, ‘is the reward which I bestow upon him for his knowing Me and singling Me out for worship anything other than that I cause him to dwell in My Jannah and My Holy realm by My Mercy?”

وقال الصادق‏:‏ هل جزاء من أحسنت عليه في الأزل إلا حفظ الإحسان عليه في الأبد‏.‏ وقال محمد ابن الحنيفة والحسن‏:‏ هي مسجلة للبر والفاجر، أي مرسلة على الفاجر في الدنيا والبر في الآخرة‏.‏

And al-Saadiq said, “Is the reward in eternity for the one who did good anything other than preserving his goodness eternally?” And Muhammad ibn al-Haneefiyyah and al-Hasan said, “It [i.e. the good recompense] is registered for the righteous and for the wicked – meaning it is conferred upon the wicked one in the dunya and upon the righteous one in the aakhirah.

[Jaami’a li-Ahkaam al-Qur’an]

See also: “Indeed the patient will be given their reward without measure”: Tafsir al-Qurtubi

“Allah has distributed people’s actions just as he has distributed their sustenance”

Imam al-Dhahabi mentions in great biographical encyclopedia of the salaf, Siyaar ‘Alaam al-Nubala‘, when discussing Imam Maalik ibn Anas:

إن عبد الله العمري العابد كتب إلى مالك يحضه على الانفراد والعمل فكتب إليه مالك: إن الله قسم الأعمال كما قسم الأرزاق فرب رجل فتح له في الصلاة ولم يفتح له في الصوم وآخر فتح له في الصدقة ولم يفتح له في الصوم وآخر فتح له في الجهاد.
فنشر العلم من أفضل أعمال البر وقد رضيت بما فتح لي فيه وما أظن ما أنا فيه بدون ما أنت فيه وأرجو أن يكون كلانا على خير وبر.

Abdullah al-‘Umari the ‘aabid (devoted worshiper) once wrote to Maalik urging him to focus his efforts solely on performing acts of worship [i.e. that he ought to cut back on his efforts in teaching and spreading knowledge in order to focus more on ‘ibaadah]. So Maalik wrote back to him:

“Indeed Allah has distributed people’s actions (talents) just as He has distributed their sustenance. So perhaps He made salaat easy for someone whereas He did not make fasting easy for him. And for another He made giving sadaqah easy for them, and did not make fasting easy for them. And for another he made jihaad easy for them.
Thus spreading knowledge is one of the most virtuous righteous actions, and I am pleased with what Allah has made easy for me. And I do not think that what I am doing is of lesser value than what you are doing, and I hope that both of us are upon good and righteousness.”

[Siyaar ‘Alaam al-Nubala8/114]

See also: Ibn al-Qayyim on Patience

A Clarification on Kissing the Black Stone

Imam al-Bukhari, in his Saheeh, brings the following narration in the chapter on Hajj:

عُمَرَ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ أَنَّهُ جَاءَ إِلَى الْحَجَرِ الأَسْوَدِ فَقَبَّلَهُ، فَقَالَ إِنِّي أَعْلَمُ أَنَّكَ حَجَرٌ لاَ تَضُرُّ وَلاَ تَنْفَعُ، وَلَوْلاَ أَنِّي رَأَيْتُ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم يُقَبِّلُكَ مَا قَبَّلْتُكَ

`Umar came near the Black Stone and kissed it and said “No doubt, I know that you are a stone and can neither harm anyone nor benefit anyone. And had I not seen Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) kissing you I would not have kissed you.”

[Saheeh al-Bukhari #1597]

al-Haafidh ibn Hajar, in his famous commentary on Saheeh al-Bukhari, writes the following in his explanation:

قوله : ( لا تضر ولا تنفع ) أي إلا بإذن الله ، وقد روى الحاكم من حديث أبي سعيد أن عمر لما قال هذا قال له علي بن أبي طالب : إنه يضر وينفع ، وذكر أن الله لما أخذ المواثيق على ولد آدم كتب ذلك في رق ، وألقمه الحجر ، قال : وقد سمعت رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم يقول : يؤتى يوم القيامة بالحجر الأسود وله لسان ذلق يشهد لمن استلمه بالتوحيد ، وفي إسناده أبو هارون العبدي وهو ضعيف جدا ،

His statement, “You can neither harm nor benefit” – meaning, except by the permission of Allah.

And al-Haakim has narrated a hadeeth from Abu Sa’eed that when ‘Umar said this, ‘Ali ibn Abi Taalib said to him,

“Verily it does harm and benefit,” and he mentioned that when Allah took the covenants from the children of Adam (i.e. mankind), He wrote that out of compassion, so the Stone is fed bit by bit by them (i.e. their sins). He said, “I heard the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) say, ‘On the Day of Resurrection, the Black Stone will be brought with an eloquent tongue, bearing witness for those who touched it while having al-Tawheed.'”

But in the isnaad there is Abu Haaroon al-‘Abdi, and he is da’eef jaddan (i.e. very weak).

وقد روى النسائي من وجه آخر ما يشعر بأن عمر رفع قوله ذلك إلى النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم ، أخرجه من طريق طاوس ، عن ابن عباس قال : رأيت عمر قبل الحجر ثلاثا ، ثم قال : إنك حجر لا تضر ولا تنفع ، ولولا أني رأيت رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قبلك ما قبلتك . ثم قال : ” رأيت رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم فعل مثل ذلك ” .

And al-Nasaa’i has narrated it by another route by which it is known that the statement of ‘Umar is taken from the Prophet (ﷺ). It comes by way of Taawoos, that ibn ‘Abbaas said,

I saw Umar bin Al-Khattab doing that, then he said: You are just a stone that can neither cause harm or bring benefit; were it not that I saw the Messenger of Allah kissing you I would not have kissed you.’ Then Umar said, ‘I saw the Messenger of Allah doing that.'” [al-Nasaa’i #2938, Saheeh]

قال الطبري : إنما قال ذلك عمر لأن الناس كانوا حديثي عهد بعبادة الأصنام ، فخشي عمر أن يظن الجهال أن استلام الحجر من باب تعظيم بعض الأحجار كما كانت العرب تفعل في الجاهلية ، فأراد عمر أن يعلم الناس أن استلامه اتباع لفعل رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم ، لا لأن الحجر ينفع ويضر بذاته كما كانت الجاهلية تعتقده في الأوثان ،

al-Tabari said: ‘Umar only said that because the people had recently come from the era of worshiping idols, so ‘Umar feared that the ignorant ones that his touching the Stone fell under into the magnification of certain stones as the Arabs had done in the era of al-Jaahiliyyah (pre-Islamic ignorance). So ‘Umar wanted to teach the people that touching the Stone is following the actions of the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), not because the Black Stone can bring benefit or harm in and of itself as it had been believed about idols during al-Jaahiliyyah. 

وقال المهلب : حديث عمر هذا يرد على من قال : إن الحجر يمين الله في الأرض يصافح بها عباده ، ومعاذ الله أن يكون لله جارحة ، وإنما شرع تقبيله اختيارا ليعلم بالمشاهدة طاعة من يطيع ، وذلك شبيه بقصة إبليس حيث أمر بالسجود لآدم .

And al-Muhallib said: the hadeeth of ‘Umar is a refutation of those who say, ‘Verily the Stone is the right hand of Allah on the earth and ‘shaking hands with it’ [i.e. touching it] is ‘ibaadah,” and refuge is sought with Allah from that. And kissing it was only legislated as a choice in order that the obedience of those who obey may be known and witnessed, and that resembles the story of Iblees when he was commanded to prostrate to Adam.

وقال الخطابي : معنى أنه يمين الله في الأرض أن من صافحه في الأرض كان له عند الله عهد ، وجرت العادة بأن العهد يعقده الملك بالمصافحة لمن يريد موالاته والاختصاص به ، فخاطبهم بما يعهدونه .

And al-Khattaabi said: it means that it is the right hand of Allah on the earth, that whoever touches (lit. ‘shakes hands with’) it on the earth, then there is a pact for him with Allah. And traditionally, a pact was made with a ruler by shaking hands for the one who desires his patronage, and doing that exclusively with him, so they agreed to the pact they had made.

وقال المحب الطبري : معناه أن كل ملك إذا قدم عليه الوافد قبل يمينه ، فلما كان الحاج أول ما يقدم يسن له تقبيله نزل منزلة يمين الملك ، ولله المثل الأعلى

And al-Muhibb al-Tabari said: its meaning is that whenever a guest comes before any ruler, he kisses his hand. So when the pilgrim comes, it is more befitting for him to kiss what has been sent down in place of the hand of the ruler, and Allah is above such comparisons.

 وفي قول عمر هذا التسليم للشارع في أمور الدين ، وحسن الاتباع فيما لم يكشف عن معانيها ، وهو قاعدة عظيمة في اتباع النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم فيما يفعله ولو لم يعلم الحكمة فيه ، وفيه دفع ما وقع لبعض الجهال من أن في الحجر الأسود خاصة ترجع إلى ذاته ، وفيه بيان السنن بالقول والفعل ، وأن الإمام إذا خشي على أحد من فعله فساد اعتقاد أن يبادر إلى بيان الأمر ويوضح ذلك ، وسيأتي بقية الكلام على التقبيل والاستلام بعد تسعة أبواب . .

And in the statement of ‘Umar is submission to the source of Divine Legislation in the affairs of the deen, and beautiful following (al-ittiba’) in those things which did not disclose their meanings. And this is a great foundational point in following the Prophet (ﷺ) in what he does, even if one does not know the wisdom underlying it.

And in this is a refutation of some of the ignorant ones who claim that the Black Stone has a nature  of its own. And in this is a clarification that the sunnah is by both speech and action (i.e. on the part of ‘Umar), and that if the imam fears that one of his actions would corrupt the beliefs, that he would take the steps to explain the affair and clarify that. And the rest of the statements concerning kissing and touching the Black Stone will come after nine chapters.

قال شيخنا في ” شرح الترمذي ” : فيه كراهة تقبيل ما لم يرد الشرع بتقبيله ، وأما قول الشافعي : ومهما قبل من البيت فحسن ، فلم يرد به الاستحباب ، لأن المباح من جملة الحسن عند الأصوليين

And our sheikh said in Sharh al-Tirmidhi : In this is the dislike of kissing that which the sharee’ah does not prescribe to kiss. And as for the statement of al-Shaafi’: and whomever one kisses from his household, then that is fine, rather it is recommended, because it is value-neutral (mubaah) from good things with those who study usool al-Fiqh.

  تكميل  : اعترض بعض الملحدين على الحديث الماضي ، فقال : كيف سودته خطايا المشركين ، ولم تبيضه طاعات أهل التوحيد ؟ وأجيب بما قال ابن قتيبة : لو شاء الله لكان ذلك ، وإنما أجرى الله العادة بأن السواد يصبغ ، ولا ينصبغ على العكس من البياض . وقال المحب الطبري : في بقائه أسود عبرة لمن له بصيرة ، فإن الخطايا إذا أثرت في الحجر الصلد فتأثيرها في القلب أشد . قال : وروي عن ابن عباس : إنما غيره بالسواد لئلا ينظر أهل الدنيا إلى زينة الجنة ، فإن ثبت ، فهذا هو الجواب . قلت : أخرجه الحميدي في فضائل مكة بإسناد ضعيف ، والله أعلم .

A supplement: some of the heretics have objected to the previous hadeeth [which states that the Black Stone was blackened by the sins of the sons of Adam], they say, “How can the sins of the mushrikoon blacken it, while the obedience of the people of al-Tawheed do not whiten it?” And Ibn Qutaybah responded to this by saying, “If Allah has wished for that, then it would be so, But Allah has caused it to be the case that black usually changes other colors and its not changed itself, which is the opposite to what happens with white.”

And al-Muhibb al-Tabari said, “In its remaining black is a lesson for those who have insight, for verily if the sins are able to leave a mark on a hard rock, then its marks marks on the heart are more severe.”

He said: narrated from Ibn ‘Abbaas: It was only changed to black in order that the people of this world might look forward to the beauty of al-Jannah. And if this is true, then this is the answer. I [Ibn Hajar] say: this has come from al-Humaidi concerning the virtues of Mecca through a weak isnaad. And Allah knows best.

[Fath al-Baari #1520]

And Imam al-Nawawi, after mentioning some of the various fiqhi positions on the issues, commented on the same hadeeth by writing:

 وأما قول عمر – رضي الله عنه – : ( لقد علمت أنك حجر وإني لأعلم أنك حجر وأنك لا تضر ولا تنفع ) فأراد به بيان الحث على الاقتداء برسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم في تقبيله ، ونبه على أنه لولا الاقتداء به لما فعله ، وإنما قال : وإنك لا تضر ولا تنفع ؛ لئلا يغتر بعض قريبي العهد بالإسلام الذين كانوا ألفوا عبادة الأحجار وتعظيمها ورجاء نفعها ، وخوف الضرر بالتقصير في تعظيمها ، وكان العهد قريبا بذلك ، فخاف عمر – رضي الله عنه – أن يراه بعضهم يقبله ، ويعتني به ، فيشتبه عليه فبين أنه لا يضر ولا ينفع بذاته ، وإن كان امتثال ما شرع فيه ينفع بالجزاء والثواب فمعناه أنه لا قدرة له على نفع ولا ضر ، وأنه حجر مخلوق كباقي المخلوقات التي لا تضر ولا تنفع وأشاع عمر هذا في الموسم ؛ ليشهد في البلدان ، ويحفظه عنه أهل الموسم المختلفو الأوطان . والله أعلم .

And as for the statement of ‘Umar (raadiAllaahu ‘anhu), “I knew that you are only a stone and verily I know that you are a stone and that you are not able to harm nor benefit anyone“, then the intention by that is to clarify the eagerness to emulate the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) in kissing it, and to point out that he would not have emulated that if the Prophet (ﷺ) had not done it. And he said, “And verily you cannot harm not benefit” lest it mislead some of those who were new to Islam who were used to worshiping and magnifying stones, hoping for their benefit and fearing harm in falling short in their magnification. And is was still close to that era, so ‘Umar feared that some of them would see him kissing it, and they would be concerned about it and imitate him in it (i.e. without the correct intention), so he clarified that the stone is not able to harm nor benefit anyone in and of itself. And if one complies with what has been divinely legislated concerning it, then he it will benefit him with rewards, so the meaning is that is does not have any power over benefit or harm, and that it is a created stone like the rest of the created things which can neither harm nor benefit anyone, and ‘Umar propogated this message during the Hajj season, in order that it would be known throughout the lands, and so the people of the season would protect the various lands from that (shirk). And Allah knows best.

[Al-Minhaaj bi Sharh Saheeh Muslim #1270]

See also: The Black Stone was blackened by the sins of the children of Adam

See also: Two Qur’anic proofs that Ismaa’eel is the sacrificed son: Tafsir al-Shinqitee

A response to those who say “We are the children of Allah”: Tafsir al-Sa’di

Allah سبحانه وتعالى says His Book in surah al-Maa’idah:

وَقَالَتِ الْيَهُودُ وَالنَّصَارَ‌ىٰ نَحْنُ أَبْنَاءُ اللَّـهِ وَأَحِبَّاؤُهُ ۚ قُلْ فَلِمَ يُعَذِّبُكُم بِذُنُوبِكُم ۖ بَلْ أَنتُم بَشَرٌ‌ مِّمَّنْ خَلَقَ ۚ يَغْفِرُ‌ لِمَن يَشَاءُ وَيُعَذِّبُ مَن يَشَاءُ ۚ وَلِلَّـهِ مُلْكُ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْ‌ضِ وَمَا بَيْنَهُمَا ۖ وَإِلَيْهِ الْمَصِيرُ‌

And (both) the Jews and the Christians say: “We are the children of Allah and His loved ones.” Say: “Why then does He punish you for your sins?” Nay, you are but human beings, of those whom He has created, He forgives whom He wills and He punishes whom He wills. And to Allah belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them, and to Him is the return. [5:18]

Imam al-Sa’di, in his book of tafsir, writes:

ومن مقالات اليهود والنصارى أن كلا منهما ادعى دعوى باطلة، يزكون بها أنفسهم، بأن قال كل منهما‏:‏ ‏{‏نَحْنُ أَبْنَاءُ اللَّهِ وَأَحِبَّاؤُهُ‏}‏

And from the statements of the Jews and the Christians is that they both made false claims, lauding themselves as pure thereby, because they both said, “We are the children of Allah and His loved ones.

والابن في لغتهم هو الحبيب، ولم يريدوا البنوة الحقيقية، فإن هذا ليس من مذهبهم إلا مذهب النصارى في المسيح‏.‏

And ‘son’ in their language means ‘beloved’, and they do not mean actual son-ship, for this is not their way; it is only the way of the Christians concerning the Messiah.

قال الله ردا عليهم حيث ادعوا بلا برهان‏:‏ ‏{‏قُلْ فَلِمَ يُعَذِّبُكُمْ بِذُنُوبِكُمْ‏}‏‏؟‏

Allah refuted them and the assertion they brought without proof when He said, “Say: Why then does He punish you for your sins?

فلو كنتم أحبابه ما عذبكم ‏[‏لكون الله لا يحب إلا من قام بمراضيه‏]‏

For if you were His beloved, He would not punish you. But Allah does not love except those who establish His pleasure [by obedience to Him]

‏{‏بَلْ أَنتُم بَشَرٌ مِّمَّنْ خَلَقَ‏}‏ تجري عليكم أحكام العدل والفضل ‏{‏يَغْفِرُ لِمَن يَشَاءُ وَيُعَذِّبُ مَن يَشَاءُ‏}‏ إذا أتوا بأسباب المغفرة أو أسباب العذاب، ‏{‏وَلِلَّهِ مُلْكُ السموات وَالْأَرْضِ وَمَا بَيْنَهُمَا وَإِلَيْهِ الْمَصِيرُ‏}‏ أي‏:‏ فأي شيء خصكم بهذه الفضيلة، وأنتم من جملة المماليك ومن جملة من يرجع إلى الله في الدار الآخرة، فيجازيكم بأعمالكم‏.‏

Nay, you are but human beings, of those whom He has created” and upon you are the provisions of justice and beneficence (al-fadl) “He forgives whom He wills and He punishes whom He wills” when the causes of forgiveness or the causes of punishment are present. “And to Allah belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them, and to Him is the return” – meaning, that anything distinguishing you out of these this is an honor, and you all are owned [by Allah] and you all are going to return to Allah in the Hereafter, then you will be recompensed for your deeds.

[Taysir al-Kareem al-Rahman p. 248-249]

See also: A reply to those who say, “If God can do anything, why can He not have a son?”: Tafsir al-Sa’di

See also: The story of ‘Eesaa, his mother, Zakariyyah and Yahya – Imam al-Sa’di

“Had Allah willed to take a son…”: Tafsir al-Sa’di and Tafsir ibn Kathir

Allah سبحانه وتعالى says in surah al-Zumar:

لَّوْ أَرَ‌ادَ اللَّـهُ أَن يَتَّخِذَ وَلَدًا لَّاصْطَفَىٰ مِمَّا يَخْلُقُ مَا يَشَاءُ ۚ سُبْحَانَهُ ۖ هُوَ اللَّـهُ الْوَاحِدُ الْقَهَّارُ‌

Had Allah willed to take a son, He could have chosen whom He pleased out of those whom He created. Exalted is He! He is Allah, the One, the Subduer. [39:4]

Imam al-Sa’di, in his book of tafsir, writes:

أي‏:‏ ‏{‏لَوْ أَرَادَ اللَّهُ أَنْ يَتَّخِذَ وَلَدًا‏}‏ كما زعم ذلك من زعمه، من سفهاء الخلق‏.‏ ‏{‏لَاصْطَفَى مِمَّا يَخْلُقُ مَا يَشَاءُ‏}‏ أي‏:‏ لاصطفى بعض مخلوقاته التي يشاء اصطفاءه، واختصه لنفسه، وجعله بمنزلة الولد، ولم يكن حاجة إلى اتخاذ الصاحبة‏.‏

Had Allah willed to take a son” as is the assertion of those who assert this from the fools of creation. “He could have chosen whom He pleased out of those whom He created” – meaning He could have chosen whomever of His creatures which He willed to choose, and singled it out for Himself, and made it in the likeness of a son, and He did not need to take a consort.

‏{‏سُبْحَانَهُ‏}‏ عما ظنه به الكافرون، أو نسبه إليه الملحدون‏.‏

Exalted is He!” above what the kaafireen think of Him, or what the heretics attribute to Him.

‏{‏هُوَ اللَّهُ الْوَاحِدُ الْقَهَّارُ‏}‏ أي‏:‏ الواحد في ذاته، وفي أسمائه، وفي صفاته، وفي أفعاله، فلا شبيه له في شيء من ذلك، ولا مماثل، فلو كان له ولد، لاقتضى أن يكون شبيها له في وحدته، لأنه بعضه، وجزء منه‏.‏

He is Allah, the One, the Subduer” – meaning: al-Waahid (the One) in His essence, His names, His attributes, and His actions. So nothing resembles Him at all in any of those things, and there is no likeness to Him. So if there was a son for Him, then it would necessarily have to resemble Him in His Oneness, because that is part and parcel of Him.

القهار لجميع العالم العلوي والسفلي، فلو كان له ولد لم يكن مقهورا، ولكان له إدلال على أبيه ومناسبة منه‏.‏

The Subduer (Al-Qahhaar) over all the world, from top to bottom. So if there were a son for Him, the son could not subdued, and he would have some importance in relationship to his father.

ووحدته تعالى وقهره متلازمان، فالواحد لا يكون إلا قهارا، والقهار لا يكون إلا واحدا، وذلك ينفي الشركة له من كل وجه‏.‏

And His Oneness and His Irresistible Power go hand in hand, for He cannot truly be al-Waahid unless He is a irresistibly powerful, and He cannot truly be al-Qahhaar unless He is singular, and this negates the idea of partnership with Him from every angle.

[Taysir al-Kareem al-Rahman, p. 719]

Imam ibn Kathir also addresses this ayah in his tafsir where he writes:

ثم بين تعالى أنه لا ولد له كما يزعمه جهلة المشركين في الملائكة، والمعاندون من اليهود والنصارى في العزير، وعيسى فقال: {لَوْ أَرَادَ اللَّهُ أَنْ يَتَّخِذَ وَلَدًا لاصْطَفَى مِمَّا يَخْلُقُ مَا يَشَاءُ} أي: لكان الأمر على خلاف ما يزعمون. وهذا شرط لا يلزم وقوعه ولا جوازه، بل هو محال، وإنما قصد تجهيلهم فيما ادعوه وزعموه، كما قال: {لَوْ أَرَدْنَا أَنْ نَتَّخِذَ لَهْوًا لاتَّخَذْنَاهُ مِنْ لَدُنَّا إِنْ كُنَّا فَاعِلِينَ} [الأنبياء: 17] {قُلْ إِنْ كَانَ لِلرَّحْمَنِ وَلَدٌ فَأَنَا أَوَّلُ الْعَابِدِينَ} [الزخرف: 81]، كل هذا من باب الشرط، ويجوز تعليق الشرط على المستحيل لقصد المتكلم.

Allah clarifies that He does not have a son, contrary to what the mushrikoon claim about the angels in ignorance, and what the obstinate ones from the Jews and Christians claim about ‘Uzair and ‘Eesaa (respectively). So He said, “Had Allah willed to take a son, He could have chosen whom He pleased out of those whom He created” – meaning: However the matter is contrary to what they claim, and this hypothetical clause [that Allah has a son] is not a necessary occurrence, nor is it permissible. Rather it is impossible, and the only intent here is to demonstrate the ignorance in what they call to and assert. This is as He said, “Had We intended to take a diversion, We could have taken it from [what is] with Us – if [indeed] We were to do so”  [21:17], and “Say, “If the Most Merciful had a son, then I would be the first of [his] worshippers” [43:81], and all of this is from the category of hypothetical clauses, and it is permitted to predicate the clause on an impossibility for the sake of rhetorical argument.

وقوله: {سُبْحَانَهُ هُوَ اللَّهُ الْوَاحِدُ الْقَهَّارُ} أي: تعالى وتنزه وتقدس عن أن يكون له ولد، فإنه الواحد الأحد، الفرد الصمد، الذي كل شيء عبد لديه، فقير إليه، وهو الغني عما سواه الذي قد قهر الأشياء فدانت له وذلت وخضعت.

And His statement, “Exalted is He! He is Allah, the One, the Subduer” – meaning, Allah the Exalted purifies Himself from having an offspring. For He is the One, the Singular, and Unique, the One who is Perfect is all of His Attributes, to Whom everything comes to Him as a slave, in need of Him, and He is Free of Need from anything else, and He has exercised His Irresistible Power over all things.

[Tafsir ibn Kathir 7/85]

See also: A response to those who say “We are the children of Allah”: Tafsir al-Sa’di

See also: A reply to those who say, “If Allah can do anything, why can He not have a son?”: Tafsir al-Sa’di

See also: A Principle to Dispel Specious Arguments and Doubts: Imam al-Sa’di

See also: The Messiah was only a Messenger and his mother was a ṣiddīqah: Tafsir al-Sa’di

See also: The story of ‘Eesaa, his mother, Zakariyyah and Yahya – Imam al-Sa’di