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Advice regarding the Charlie Hebdo Incident -al-‘allaamah Shaykh Mashhoor Hasan حفظه الله

A Question about the [Charlie Hebdo] Incident in Paris

Shaykh Mashhoor Hasan aal Salmaan

Taken from his Fataawa from 30/1/15


I would like your guidance about what happened in Paris and what are stance should be regarding incidents of this type. And the youth should take from the book as Saarim al-Maslool and implement it at this time.


Know, may Allaah increase me and you in knowledge, that Allaah has more concern over preserving His religion than we do. He has more sense of honour over His prophet than we do. He loves His prophet more than we do.

Know, may Allaah bless you, a fundamental principal of our belief that Ibn Abil ‘Izz spoke of and he erred in it – he was accused due to it and the scholars wrote works due to the trials and tribulations that arose as a result. From these tribulations were eight matters – from which there was the issue of offending and harming – is the defamation of the messenger of Allaah like the defamation of Allaah?

The belief of the people of the Sunnah is that the non-Muslims defame Allaah but do not harm Him and that they defame the messenger of Allaah but do not harm him. And the evidence for this is the statement of Allaah, {Verily, those who annoy Allah and His Messenger,  Allah has cursed them in this world, and in the Hereafter, and has prepared for them a humiliating torment} [33: 57].

So from them are those who defame the prophet, but do they harm him? Do the non-Muslims harm Allaah? They do not harm Allaah nor do they harm the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. They harm themselves.

The salaf us-saalih, as Shaykh al-Islaam mentions in as-Saarim al-Maslool, used to say that if they surrounded a place and they resisted us and we heard the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi was sallam being cursed by them, we felt the glad tidings of the impending victory.

Which is greater in the sight of Allaah – the cursing of Allaah or the cursing of the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam? Cursing the prophet is greater – as the scholars say that repentance is accepted from the one who cursed Allaah but not from the one who cursed the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Rather, Imaam Ibn Taymiyyah established his book as-Saarim al-Maslool upon the foundation that the one who curses the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam is an imaam of misguidance from whom repentance is not accepted, as the one who curses Allaah may do so out of anger or while they have lost their temper but the one who does so to the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam does so intending to harm the prophet.

Actually harming Allaah cannot happen, nor can actually harming the prophet. This is Allaah’s Will in His creation – Allaah protects the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. The non-believers, males and females, used to abuse the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam through poetry but it is poetry that we haven’t heard, nor are interested in hearing. The wife of Abu Lahab used to do this, but we do not hear of the wording. Historians have not transmitted the wording. So the details of how the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was defamed – to expose yourself to it and listen to it is something I do not see as correct. The Muslims establishing demonstrations is something I do not deem correct.

Combating those who do this, we adhere to our religion and the guidance of our prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.

{And Allah would not punish them while you (Muhammad ) are amongst them, nor will He punish them while they seek (Allah’s) Forgiveness} [8:33] Ask yourselves why Allaah said in this ayah {while you are amongst them} and did not say ‘and you are from them’. These two reasons for safety, are they reasons that are ongoing or specific to a particular time? They are ongoing and continuous until the Day of Recompense. Had this safety been time-specific, Allaah would have said ‘and you are from them’. Is it possible for the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam to be amongst us now? Yes. Can he be from us now? No. How could he be after his departure to the Rafeeq al-A’laa? Can he be amongst us now? Yes – if we follow his Sunnah. And some of the Salaf said that they were amazed – how can the Ummah be destroyed if there are two guarantees of their protection until the Day of Recompense? The first guarantee of safety is for the prophet to be amongst us and the second, that we seek forgiveness for our sins. As much as we err, we seek forgiveness. So as long as these two guarantees are present, Allaah will not destroy us.

So when the likes of these people do as they do, we counter them by adhering to the guidance of our prophet. This is what they hate. As for cursing and abusing them, and making demonstrations against what they have done, this is not as our prophet taught us. The prohet solved a problem by using few, blessed, beautiful words. When he heard that he was being defamed, he used to say, “They are cursing one deserving blame. As for me, I am Muhammad [the one deserving praise]. My lord named me Muhammad and Ahmad.” Muhammad is the one who has all praiseworthy characteristics and Ahmad is the one whose praiseworthiness has reached the uppermost [completion] of these praiseworthy traits. Allaah created him to be a prophet and an example to mankind in its entirety.

The companions who were known for their bravery used to seek his protection when battle intensified; those known for their generosity could not equal his generosity; those known for their truthfulness and righteousness, and so on. So the prophet was not Muhammad alone, he was Muhammad and Ahmad. And this is Allaah’s will in the creation and in His legislation. So what they say has not affect. They curse someone blameworthy – a terrorist, a liar. They curse someone other than the prophet. The characteristics in their minds, those that lead them to this slander are not the characteristics of the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. And the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam rectified this problem when he said that they are cursing someone worthy of blame and that he is Muhammad. They slander based upon things that are not true [for me].

However, if we want to aid our prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, it is that we learn his guidance; that we, inwardly and outwardly and in our character and conduct are like his – his character, his outward and inward states. Take an example in your prophet; your religion. Distinguish yourself from those who disbelieve – when you eat, drink and sleep. If you see someone eating with their left hand, eat with your right.

How many non-Muslims have accepted Islaam due to a small act of guidance of the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam? Countries have accepted the religion as a result of such acts – due to the good conduct of the Muslims when they conduct themselves with the character of the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. The greatest number of Muslims in the world is in Indonesia, approximately 200 million Muslims. Not a single drop of blood was shed for this – it was due to the character of the traders who went over there. Where is the character of the business people [today]? Where is their kindness? Where is their following of the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam?

When we follow the example of the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and his guidance, we aid our religion and spread it. We progress, move forward and overtake others. As a result, in actuality, Allaah’s Word is then dominant. And Allaah will do nothing but complete His religion. Allaah says, {Whoever thinks that Allah will not help him (Muhammad ) in this world and in the Hereafter, let him stretch out a rope to the ceiling and let him strangle himself. Then let him see whether his plan will remove that whereat he rages!} [22: 15]

Our Lord, who does not fall short in His promises, has said that He will aid the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam in the world and the Hereafter. Whoever thinks that He will not help him, let them stretch out a rope from the ceiling and hang themselves. Die in your rage, for we are happy and content with our prophet; pleased with his guidance. Do not give life to falsehood by spreading it.

We saw in the last Hajj the Dutchman[1] who made a cartoon slandering the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam crying. Crying due to his sin. He did a number of interviews; freed himself from his wealth and had the biggest masjid in Denmark made.

Their war against Allaah is like the one who tries to deflect the sun’s heat by blowing. They are nonsensical. Some of the orientalists changed their viewpoint. Asking what was behind the strength of the Muslims. O Allaah, how strong is our religion! To the point that it withstands the deviation, ignorance and wrongdoing of its people. They [the orientalists] said to take the mus-hafs and burn them as their [the Muslims’] strength lies within adhering to the Qur’aan. [They suggest that] Cursing would result in them adhering to the guidance of their prophet more. They suggested, and it is a horrid suggestion, to take the scarves off the women’s heads and to put them on the mus-hafs, so that its barakah cannot reach the hearts of the Muslims. One of them used to say that through the Muslim girls’ schools they would ruin the Muslims – through the methodology of teaching and the teachers. If you can ruin the child in her upbringing, then it’s over – she’s been ruined. Fear of this deceptive war is what we fear for our ummah, for our children and daughters. As for that they curse our prophet, we are not scared. But woe unto us, they are not able to do this except due to us being in a state of disgrace. And we are not disgraced except due to the fact that we are far from [the guidance of] our prophet.

So I hope that this speech about our prophet incites us to revive his Sunnah and adhere to his guidance – and this would be the best response. A skilful, deep, eloquent response of the individual who considers the big picture.

As for to kill, or bomb [in response to these matters] the headquarters of a journal or newspaper, the results of these actions are not good and it is all the work of those who are overly hasty; the actions of those who have no proper thinking; and is a manhaj that is in opposition to the manhaj of the prophets when they were harmed. When the prophet was harmed, idols used to be on the Kabah but Allaah did not legislate that the Muslims harm them in any way. Rather, Allaah sent the angel of the mountains with Jibreel. Jibreel said to the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam that he had with him the angel of the mountain and that if he wanted he would crush them between the two mountains, to which the prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said no, perhaps Allaah would bring about from their future generations those who would say laa illaaha illallaah.

And we say to them, if you curse and slander, then perhaps Allaah will bring about from your future generations those who embrace Islaam. While they were carrying out their demonstrations, one of the main French directors, who is well-respected among them, embraced Islaam[2].

This religion is the religion of Allaah and we have pride over our prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.

I ask Allaah to grant us the success to adhere to the Sunnah of the messenger of Allaah and to call to it and to make our existence in spreading His religion and support His prophet sall Allaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, and our final prayer is that all praise is due to Allaah, Lord of the entire creation.

[1] Arnoud Van Doorn

[2] French Director Isabelle Matic

Translated by Aqeel Ahmed

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