3. He mentioned that differences in creed are narrow and that the people who claim that the Madh-hab (School of Jurisprudence) of Al-Asha`irah is false should be asked to refer to the Fatwas of Ibn Taymiyyah and read what Ibn Taymiyyah wrote about ‘Aboo Al-Hasan Al-Ash’aree so that we could perceive how ignorant those people are. (End of quote)
Answer: It should be said that many sects undoubtedly went astray due to the difference in creed, such as Al-Mu`tazilah (a deviant Islamic sect claiming that those who commit major sins are in a state between belief and disbelief), Al-Jahmiyyah (a deviant Islaamic sect denying some Attributes of Allaah, claiming they are ascribed to people and cannot be ascribed to Allaah), Al-Raafidah (a Shee`ah group denying the caliphates of ‘Aboo Bakr Al-Siddeeq and `Umar ibn Al-Khattaab and making accusations against them and many other Companions of the Prophet), Al-Qaadariyyah, and others. Likewise, Al-Asha`irah went astray regarding the issues in which they disagreed with the Qur’aan, the Sunnah, and the eminent scholars of this Ummah and the Imams of guidance, i.e. the Companions (may Allaah be pleased with them), the Taabi`oon (the generation after the Companions and the Prophet) and those who righteously followed them, and the guided Imaams. They (Al-Asha`irah) interpreted Allaah’s Names and Attributes wrongly. However, ‘Aboo Al-Hasan Al-Ash’aree (may Allaah be merciful to him) was not one of Al-Asha`irah, even if they associated themselves with him. He gave up their Madh-hab and embraced the Madh-hab of Ahl-ul-Sunnah (adherents to the Sunnah and the Muslim mainstream). Thus, the praise of Imams to him is not praise to the Madh-hab of Al-Asha`irah
Moreover, it is incorrect to charge whoever objects to Al-Asha`irah, regarding what they opposed of the creed of Ahl-ul-Sunnah, with ignorance, since the reality of ignorance is to speak about Allah (Exalted be He) without knowledge. Yet, the one who derives rules from the Qur'an and the Sunnah and from the established rules of the Shari`ah, following the path of the Salaf (righteous predecessors), and denouncing those who allegorically interpret the Names and Attributes of Allah in a mistaken way, should not be charged with ignorance.
“Make things easy and do not make things difficult. Give glad tidings and do not repel people..”
Imam Ibn al-Qayyim mentions in his masterpiece, al-Sawa'iq al-Mursalah:
"When the most expert among them traversed reflective thought to the end, they realised it is filled with harm and evil. They realised this (path) does not lead to the correct end point. Therefore, they returned to the way of revelation (Quran) and Prophetic narrations, as clarified by al-Razi, Ibn Abil Hadid, Abu Hamid (al-Ghazzali) and Abu'l Ma'ali (al-Juwayni) And others. They admitted the last affair (or methodology) was that all paths are directed to revelation (ie Qur'an) and the Prophetic reports."
(al-Sawa'iq al-Mursalah, 3:1166)
Imam Ibn al-Qayyim clearly mentions, the early Ash'arites retracted and denounced the way of Kalam, which was essentially the framework of Ash'arism. Ibn al-Qayyim's era was closer to these early Ash'aris, it also consolidates the view of retraction which was also mentioned by other scholars.
**Ibn Abi Haddid was a Sh'ite, who leaned between Ash'arism & Mu'tazilizm
Al-Ghazali wrote 5 books, 2 on Mantiq (logic) 2 on Refuting Philosophy and 1 on nominal Ash'arite creed (iqtisad) based on Kalam, all before and until 488H.
What happened after?
Well just 6 months later al-Ghazali suffered a huge nervous breakdown, a crisis of faith which lasted 6 months, he wasn't able to eat or even talk. He left his position as professor of Shafi'i Fiqh and LIED to get away from Baghdad. He travelled for 2 years (ibadah and writing) He then returned to his native land and went into semi retirement until 499H when he wrote his منقذ من الضلال (Deliverance from Deviation) so, for almost 11-12 years al-Ghazali was AWOL. On top of that he came out REFUTING & LAMBASTING Kalam and philosophy.
And the most Interesting part of all of this is,
AL-GHAZALI HIMSELF SAID ALL OF THIS, in his Munqidh Min al-Dalal.
This was just one point.
So, you have the novice Sufi Ash'ari, who hasn't even got the badge yet, telling the Sunni world that we MUST use logic, philosophy and kalam To approach, understand and derive Aqidah. The same neophyte of yesterday saying the tools of Ash'arism are well equipped to deal with atheism!
My friends, wake up! Your biggest champion, al-Ghazzali had a wobbler and a crisis of faith from the same tools, until Allah Guided him to the Madhhab of the Salaf as he says, again, himself in his last tract he wrote 2 weeks before he died, Iljam al-Awam Ann Ilm al-Kalam, warning from kalam.
If your al-Ghazali was confused and upon deviation, then who are you?
sincere advice - follow the Salaf.
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