Matters will not be correct and sound except with the presence of tawheed.


*In the Name of Allaah, the Extremely Merciful, the Bestower of Mercy…

Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzaan:

…This is what is obligatory for the du`aat (callers) to precede upon in their call, that they should focus upon warning against shirk and calling to tawheed before everything, otherwise their call will not be upon the manhaj (methodology) of the Messenger (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam).

Allaah sent the Messenger (sallallaahu `alayhi wa sallam) with warning against shirk and calling to tawheed, so it is essential to lay this foundation down first of all. After that, the person can direct his attention to the rest of the matters, since matters will not be correct and sound except with the presence of tawheed.

If all of the people were to abandon zinaa (fornication), intoxicants, stealing, and they took on every virtuous quality from deeds and behavior, but did not abandon shirk, there would be no benefit in these matters and it will not benefit them. Whereas, if the people were to remain free of shirk, but had major sins less than shirk, then there is hope for such a person that Allaah will either forgive him or punish him in accordance with the level of his sins. But his final destination will be to Paradise because he is a person of tawheed.

Tawheed is the fundamental basis and foundation. There is no salvation except with the presence of tawheed firstly. Therefore, it is obligatory to concentrate and always give attention to it and to call the people to it and to teach it to the people and to explain it to them, what is the meaning of tawheed and what is the meaning of shirk. The Muslim must be aware of this matter and attain certainty concerning it. He should check himself so that he does not fall into anything from shirk or infringe tawheed. This matter is essential and the da`wah must precede upon this basis.(1)


(1) Sharh Usool-ith-Thalaathah, Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzaan. Translated by Aboo Talhah Dawud Burbank -rahimahullaah.

Al-Imaam, Al-Haafidh Al-Mubarakfuri:

We need to constantly follow and stick to the Sunnah; especially this Sunnah from the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him). We need it now more than ever, in this time where Fitnah is knocking on everybody’s door. Just look around and reflect. How many people were praised from Ahlus Sunnah, and are now dispraised by Ahlus Sunnah?! How many scholars were recommended to be learnt from, but now are being warned against?! How many people were Muslims have now left Islam?!. Reflect, Reflect O Ahlus-Sunnah,

O’ Changer of the hearts make my heart stick to Your religion.


Explanation of Kitaab at-Tawheed || Abu ‘Iyaad Amjad Rafiq

“As for the second type, it is something that can occur from a believer. This is when Ar-Riyaa occurs in some of the actions. For example, a believer does an action in which he has intent for Allaah, but at the same time, it is also intended for other than Allaah. So it contains a mixture; it is partly for Allaah and it is partly for other than Allaah. And when we speak of a believer mixing his action which is for Allaah with something of Ar-Riyaa, then there are three situations or conditions that his action can fall into…”

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Ibn Shawdhab said:

Verily, it is from the bounty of Allaah upon a youth that when he devotes himself to worship, he befriends a person of the Sunnah who carries him upon it.”

Al-Laalikaa’ee in Sharh Usool ul-I’tiqaad (no.30)

Abdullaah ibn Mas’uud said:

“O people, verily you will invent new things and new things will be invented for you, so when you see an innovation, then you must return to the first affair.”

Ad-Daarimee (no. 174)

Imaam Al-Barbahaaree (rahimahullaah) said:

“And whenever you hear a man vilify the Aathaar or rejects the Aathaar or desire other than the Aathaar, then accuse him (of his Islaam) and do not have (any) doubt that he is a person of Hawaa (desires) and a mubtadee’ (innovator).”

Sharhus-Sunnah, p51

Sayings of the Imaams regarding following the Sunnah and ignoring their views contradictory to it124

Allaah, Mighty and Sublime, says:

“Follow (O men!) the revelation given to you from your Lord, and follow not, as friends and protectors, other than Him. Little is it you remember of admonition.”

Imaam Abu Haneefah (rahimahullaahu ta’aala)

The first of them is Abu Haneefah Nu’maan ibn Thaabit, whose companions have narrated from him various sayings and diverse warnings, all of them leading to one thing: The obligation to accept the Hadeeth, and to give up following the opinions of the imaams which contradict it:

  1. “When a hadeeth is found to be saheeh, then that is my madhhaab.”
  2. “It is not permitted for anyone to accept our views if they do not know from where we got them.”3

In one narration, “It is prohibited for someone who does not know any evidence to give verdicts on the basis of my words.”

Another narration adds, “…for we are morals: We say one thing one day, and take it back the next day.

In another narration, “Woe to you, O Ya’qoob! Do not write down everything you hear from me, for it happens that I hold one opinion today and reject it tomorrow, or hold one opinion tomorrow and reject it the day after tomorrow.”

2. “When I say something contradicting the Book of Allaah, the Exalted, or what is narrated from the Messenger (salallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam), then ignore my saying.”

Imaam Maalik ibn Anas (rahimahullaahu ta’aala)

As for Imaam Maalik ibn Anas, he said:

  1. “Truly I am only a mortal: I make mistakes (sometimes) and I am correct (sometimes). Therefore, look into my opinions: All that agrees with the Book and the Sunnah, accept it; and all that does not agree with the Book and the Sunnah, ignore it.”

2. “Everyone after the Prophet (salallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) will have his sayings accepted and rejected – not so the Prophet (salallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam).

3. Ibn Wahb said: “I heard Maalik being asked about cleaning between the toes during ablution. He said, “The people do not have to do that.’ I did not approach him until the crowd had lessened, when I said to him, ‘We know of a sunnah about that.’ He said, ‘What is that?’ I said, ‘Layth ibn Sa’d, Ibn Lahee’ah and ‘Amr ibn al-Haarith narrated to us from Yazeed ibn ‘Amr al-Ma’aafiree from Abu ‘Abdur-Rahmaan al-Hubulee from Mustawarid ibn Shaddaad al-Qurashee who said, ‘I saw the Messenger of Allaah (salallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) rubbing between his toes with his little finger.’ He said, ‘This hadeeth is sound; I had not heard of it at all until now.’ Afterwards, I heard him being asked about the same thing, on which he ordered cleaning between the toes.”

Imaam Ash-Shaafi’ee (rahimahullaah)

As for Imaam as Shaafi’ee, the quotations from him are most numerous and beautiful, and his followers were the best in sticking to them:

1. “The sunnahs of the Messenger of Allaah (salallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) reach, as well as escape from, every one of us. So whenever I voice my opinion, or formulate a principle, where something contrary to my view exists on the authority of the Messenger of Allaah (salallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam), then the correct view is what the Messenger of Allaah (salallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) has said, and it is my view.”


Fifthly: Putting oneself forward before being suitably qualified.

From that which is obligatory for precaution to be taken against, is the student of knowledge putting himself forward before being suitably qualified, for if he was to do so, then this would indicate the following:

Firstly: His having a high opinion of himself, that he has put himself forward, thus regarding himself as something of an authority amongst the distinguished;

Secondly: This would be indicative of his lack of understanding and knowledge of issues. Because if he has put himself forward, it is possible he has fallen into something which is not possible for him to be free of, therefore when the people see such a person, they refute him in issues so as to highlight his faults;

Thirdly: Certainly, if he has put himself forward before being suitably qualified, then it is certain he is speaking about the Qur’aan and the Sunnah that which he does not know. In most cases, he whose intention is this does not care and therefore responds to all he is questioned about, and as a result he is hazardous with his speech at the expense of the Qur’aan and the Sunnaah.

Fourthly: Certainly, if a person has put himself forward, then in most cases he does not accept the truth. Because in his foolishness, he assumes that if he were to succumb to other than him, even though they were upon the truth, this would be evidence that he is not a scholar.

  • Transcribed from: The Book of Knowledge || Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (rahimahullaah)

From that which is known, is that if a person wanted to get to a place, then it is imperative he knows the way to reach it, and if there are many ways, then he will search for the shortest and easiest way. Because of this, it is important for the student of knowledge to base his search for knowledge on principles and not to beat around in the darkness (of ignorance), for he who is not well-versed in the principles is prevented from reaching his goal, as the poet says:

To proceed: Knowledge is a vast ocean,
(and) the seeker will never attain all of it.
However, in
(learning) the principles there is ease…
…in attaining it, so take care and you will find a way.
Learn the rules and principles,
since he who does not is prevented from arriving at the goal.

So the principles are the knowledge, and the issues are the branches, just like the foundation of the tree and its branches. If the branches are not upon a firm foundation, they will wither and ultimately perish. However, what are the principles? Are they the authentic proofs? Or are they rules? Or are they both?

The principles are the proofs from the Qur’aan and the Sunnah and the rules that are obtained by following and studying them. These are from amongst the most important for the student of knowledge. For example, “hardship gives way to ease,” and this is from the principles that are extracted from the Qur’aan and the Sunnah.

From the Qur’aan, Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aala) says:

…and He has not laid upon you in religion any hardship, 96

And from the Sunnah, the saying of the Messenger (salallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) to ‘Imraan ibn Husayn: “Perform your prayer standing, and if you are unable to do so, then sitting down, and if you are unable to do so, then lying down on your side.”97

And the Messenger of Allaah (salallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam) also said: “If I have ordered you to do something, then do that which you are able to do.”98

If a thousand different issues were put forward for you to pass judgement upon, then it is possible for you to do so based upon this principle. However, if you did not have knowledge of this principle, and a couple of issues were put forward to you, then they would both be a cause of difficulty for you.

So there are two ways to acquiring knowledge:


Fourthly: Accompanying the Scholars.

It is obligatory upon the student of knowledge to seek assistance from Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta’aala), then from the people of knowledge, and seeking assistance from that which they have written in their books because confining oneself to sheer reading alone requires a lot of time, which is contrary to sitting with a scholar who explains and sheds light upon matters for him.

I am not saying he will not attain knowledge except by taking from the scholars, since a person is able to attain knowledge by reading and researching, however, in most cases if he does not persevere day and night and is not blessed with understanding, then he is liable to make many mistakes, and because of this it is said: One whose guide is his book, then his mistakes are more than his accuracies;

Having said this, in reality this is not always the case.

However, the most exemplary way is to take knowledge from the scholars. I also advise the student of knowledge not to “grab” from every scholar knowledge of the same subject. For example, to study fiqh with more than one scholar, since the scholars differ in their techniques of inference from the Qur’aan and the Sunnah, and they also differ in their opinions. So assign yourself a scholar from whom you can take knowledge in fiqh or balaaghah (poetry) and the like, i.e. take knowledge in one subject from one scholar. If the scholar has more than one field of knowledge, then continue with him, for if you took knowledge of fiqh for example from such-and-such and then such-and-such, and they differed in their opinions, what would be your position since you are still a student!? Your position would be that of confusion and doubt! However, your continuance with one scholar in a particular subject will lead to a peace of mind, inshaaAllaah.

  • Transcribed from: The Book of Knowledge || Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (rahimahullaah)

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