Sep 21, 2012

Istawa and Nazul of Allah الله

  Istawa (Establishment) 
and Nazul (Descent) of 
Allah الله

Existence of God is a widely discussed reality amongst people around the world (Muslims and non-muslims alike), some deny it without proper investigation (i.e. atheists), many make co-sharers with Him (like Christians, Hindus, etc...), and many believe in His unity (oneness). However there are some who strictly but falsely claim to be protectors and right advocators of His Oneness (tawhid) like Jews and the so called “reformers of Islam” but if we take a close look at their beliefs we will find many similarities, for example seating the Lord literally upon on throne [Ibn Taymiyya said in his Fatawa: "The establishment of Allah over the Throne is real, and the servant's establishment over the ship is real (وللّه ـ تعالى ـ استواء على عرشه حقيقة، وللعبد استواء على الفلك حقيقة،) [Majmu` al-Fatawa, (5/199)], believing Him to have literal hands, shins, legs, eyes, etc… [Refer to Wahabi Published English translation of Qur'an by Muhsin Khan/Hilali under 3:73 or Page # 81] This is something which is main belief of Literalists and they propagate that Istawa al'al Arsh mentioned in Qur'an is to be taken literally, and the descent of Lord (ينزل ربنا) mentioned in hadith along with him being in the sky (fi al Sam'a) is also to be taken apparently.

They declare Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama'h as people of Bidah because we give figurative explanation which suits Allah’s Majesty. Amongst the fundamental proofs which literalists cite are:

1)  Hadith of the Slave girl

The Hadith of Muawiya ibn al-Hakam: He (the Holy Prophet) said: Bring her to me. So I brought her to him. He said to her: Where is Allah? She said: He is in the heaven(fi al sama') He said: Who am I? She said: Thou art the Messenger of Allah. He said: Grant her freedom, she is a believing woman. (Muslim: Book 4, Hadith# 1094)

From this hadith they conclusively derive that ALLAH is literally in the sky as it is approved by Prophet (Peace be upon him) himself thus they make it part of their aqida and whosoever differs to them becomes a bidati/Jahimi etc… However their reasoning is not only false but also idiotic. Let’s see how

a) First of all the hadith is only ahad (singular and cannot be used for aqida) with this chain of narrators
b) Secondly there are overwhelming Quranic ayahs and ahadith with multiple chains of narrators which if taken literally prove their understanding false therefore even if the classification of hadith as ahad is not accepted still the hadith cannot be taken literally at any cost. [Note: This rule will also apply to other verses and ahadith which salafis take literally too]
c) Third In Sharah of this hadith Imam an Nawawi (rah) the leading commentator of Sahih Muslim has given figurative explanation (according to Literalists the Ash'aris are Ahlul Bidah for giving figurative explanation, so this false fatwa of them applies on Imam Nawawi too, let alone Ibn Hajr al Asqalani and many other great scholars)

**Proof for (a) i.e. Hadith is ahad**

This version (where is Allah, in the sky) only comes from Muwaiya ibn al Hakam (ra) via the route of At'a bin Yassar thus is therefore ahad, It is fundamental principle that “AHAD NARRATIONS” cannot be taken as conclusive proof over “Aqida issues”

**Proof for (b) i.e. Ayahs and sahih ahadith which if taken literally will prove the above wording of hadith completely false**

Quran states:
It was We Who created man, and We know what dark suggestions his soul makes to him: for We are nearer to him than (his) jugular vein.(50:16)

Our dear Salafis turn towards figurative explanation of ALLAH's closeness and say He is close "By his knowledge only" and they run towards aqwaal of different ulama on this (i.e. hypocrisy in simple words)

Quran states: He is Allah in(fi) the heavens and "IN THE EARTH  (وَفِى الارْضِ )" He knoweth both your secret and your utterance, and He knoweth what ye earn.(6:3)

“Fi” in Arabic literally means ''In'' and is used for both Heaven and Earth, The Literalists will die but never believe ALLAH to be literally in earth

Hadith in Sahih Bukhari states: Volume 1, Book 12, Number 720:

Narrated Ibn 'Umar: The Prophet saw expectoration in the direction of the Qibla of the mosque while he was leading the prayer, and scratched it off. After finishing the prayer, he said, "Whenever any of you is in prayer he should know that Allah is in front of him.So none should spit in front of him in the prayer."
Note: Ibn Taymiyyah is known to have compared existance of Allah to that of "moon and sun" while explaining this hadith i.e Allah azza Wajjal is infront of us just like Sun and Moon come in-front of us (Audhobillah Min Dhalik)

Proof for (c) i.e. Sharah of Imam Nawawi (rah) on the same hadith

هذا الحديث من أحاديث الصفات , وفيها مذهبان تقدم ذكرهما مرات في كتاب الإيمان . أحدهما : الإيمان به من غير خوض في معناه , مع اعتقاد أن الله تعالى ليس كمثله شيء وتنزيهه عن سمات المخلوقات . والثاني تأويله بما يليق به , فمن قال بهذا قال : كان المراد امتحانها , هل هي موحدة تقر بأن الخالق المدبر الفعال هو الله وحده , وهو الذي إذا دعاه الداعي استقبل السماء كما إذا صلى المصلي استقبل الكعبة ؟ وليس ذلك ; لأنه منحصر في السماء كما أنه ليس منحصرا في جهة الكعبة , بل ذلك لأن السماء قبلة الداعين , كما أن الكعبة قبلة المصلين , أو هي من عبدة الأوثان العابدين للأوثان التي بين أيديهم , فلما قالت : في السماء , علم أنها موحدة وليست عابدة للأوثان.‏

Translation: This is one of the "hadiths of attributes" and there are two positions about it as it was mentioned in the book of faith, First: is to have faith in it "Without discussing its meaning, while believing of Allah Most High that "there is nothing whatsoever like unto Him"and that He is exalted above having any of the attributes of His creatures. ''The second is to FIGURATIVELY EXPLAIN IT" in a fitting way, scholars who hold this position adduce that the point of the hadith was to ''test the slave girl : Was she a monotheist"who affirmed that the Creator, the Disposer, the Doer, is Allah alone and that He is the one called upon when a person making supplication (du'a) faces the sky--just as those performing the prayer (salat) face the Kaaba, since the sky is the qibla of those who supplicate, as the Kaaba is the qibla of those who perform the prayer. or was she a worshipper of the idols which they placed in front of themselves? So when she said, In the sky, it was plain that she was not an idol worshipper(Sahih Muslim bi Sharh al-Nawawi, Volume No.5, Page Nos. 19-20, Published by Dar ul Fikr, Beirut, Lebanon)

Imam Nawawi (rah) continues and gives conclusive answer over this issue, he quotes Imam Qadhi Iyad (rah) [Also Quoted by Imam Jalal ud din Suyuti rah in his Sharah of Sunnan Nasa'i]

قال القاضي عياض : لا خلاف بين المسلمين قاطبة فقيههم ومحدثهم ومتكلمهم ونظارهم ومقلدهم أن الظواهر الواردة بذكر الله تعالى في السماء كقوله تعالى : { أأمنتم من في السماء أن يخسف بكم الأرض } ونحوه ليست على ظاهرها , بل متأولة عند جميعهم

Qadhi Iyaad (rah) said: There is no disagreement amongst Muslims whether between Fuqaha, or hadith scholars, the theologians, polemicists and ordinary Muslims who do taqlid, they all say that outward meaning of texts such as Allah is in the sky is not meant, for example the words of the Exalted: “Are you assured that He who is in the sky will not cause the earth to swallow you up?"THESE AND SIMILAR TEXTS CANNOT BE TAKEN LITERALLY, RATHER THEY ARE TO BE EXPLAINED WITH INTERPRETATION (I.E. TAWEEL) [ibid]

The same great Imam also says in his ''Majmu' sharh al Muhadhab''

The most well-known of the school of the theologians (mutakallimin) say that the divine attributes are interpreted figuratively according to what befits them.(Volume No. 1, Page No. 25)

Note: This is the same great Imam who is author of Kitaab al Adhkar which has been grossly tampered by salafis, I wonder which Islamic text have they spared.

The great Hanafi Imam, Mullah Ali Qari (rah) says in his magnificent Mirqaat Sharh al Mishqaat:

 فقال لها أي للجارية رسول الله أين الله وفي رواية أين ربك أي أين مكان حكمه وأمره وظهور ملكه وقدرته فقالت في السماء قال القاضي هو على معنى الذي جاء أمره ونهيه من قبل السماء لم يرد به السؤال عن المكان فإنه منزه عنه كما هو منزه عن الزمان بل مراده من سؤاله إياها أن يعلم أنها موحدة أو مشركة لأن كفار العرب كانوا يعبدون الأصنام وكان لكل قوم منهم صنم مخصوص يكون فيما بينهم يعبدونه ويعظمونه ولعل سفهاءهم وجهلتهم كانوا لا يعرفون معبودا غيره فأراد أن يتعرف أنها ما تعبد فلما قالت في السماء وفي رواية أشارت إلى السماء فهم أنها موحدة يريد بذلك نفي الآلهة الأرضية التي هي الأصنام لا إثبات السماء مكانا له تعالى الله عما يقول الظالمون علوا كبيرا ولأنه لما كان مأمورا بأن يكلم الناس على قدر عقولهم ويهديهم إلى الحق على حسب فهمهم ووجدها تعتقد أن المستحق للعبودية إله يدبر الأمر من السماء إلى الأرض لا الآلهة التي يعبدها المشركون قنع منها بذلك ولم يكلفها اعتقاد ما هو صرف التوحيد وحقيقة التنزيه وقيل معناه أن أمره ونهيه ورحمته ووحيه جاءت من السماء فهو كقوله تعالى أأمنتم من في السماء تبارك قيل وقد جاء في بعض الأحاديث أن هذه الجارية كانت خرساء ولهذا جوز الشافعي الأخرس في العتق فقوله فقالت في السماء بمعنى أشارت إلى السماء كما في رواية قال شارح الوقاية وجاز الأصم أي من يكون في أذنه وقرأ أما من لم يسمع أصلا فينبغي أن لا يجوز لأنه فائت جنس المنفعة فقال من أنا فقالت أنت رسول الله فقال رسول الله أعتقها أمر إجازة رواه مالك وفي رواية مسلم قال أي معاوية كانت لي جارية ترعى غنما قبل أحد بكسر القاف وفتح الباء أي جانبه وأحد بضمتين جبل معروف في المدينة والجوانية بتشديد الواو وموضع قريب أحد فأطلعت بتشديد الطاء أي أشرفت على الغنم ذات يوم أي يوما من الأيام أو نهارا وذات زائدة فإذا الذئب قد ذهب بشاة من غنمنا إذا للمفاجأة واللام في الذئب للعهدية الذهنية نحو قوله تعالى إذ هما في الغار التوبة وأنا رجل من بني آدم آسف بهمزة ممدودة وفتح سين أي أغضب كما يأسفون لكن أي وأردت أن أضربها ضربا شديدا على ما هو مقتضى الغضب لكن صككتها صكة أي لطمتها لطمة فأتيت رسول الله فعظم بالتشديد والفتح ذلك على أي كبر النبي ذلك الأمر أو الضرب علي وفي نسخة بالتخفيف والضم قلت وفي نسخة فقلت يا رسول الله أفلا أعتقها قال الطيبي رحمه الله فإن قلت كيف التوفيق بين الروايتين قلت الرواية الأولى متضم

من هذه اللطمة إعتاقها أفيكفيني إعتاقها للأمرين جميعا والرواية الثانية مطلقة تحتمل الأمرين والمطلق محمول على المقيد ومما يدل على أن السؤال ليس عن مجرد اللطمة سؤال النبي الجارية عن إيمانها ا ه والظاهر أن الإعتاق عن اللطمة مستحب فيندرج في ضمن الإعتاق الواجب فليس من باب تداخل الكفارة كما توهم قال آتيني بها الباء للتعدية أي احضر بها إلي فأتيته بها فقال لها أين الله أي أين المعبود المستحق الموصوف بصفات الكمال قالت في السماء أي كما في الأرض والإقتصار من باب الإكتفاء قال تعالى جل جلاله وهو الذي في السماء إله وفي الأرض إله الزخرف وقال الله عز وجل وهو الله في السموات وفي الأرض الأنعام ويمكن أن يكون الاقتصار لدفع توهم الشركة في العبودية ردا على عبدة الأصنام الأرضية قال من أنا قالت أنت رسول الله قال اعتقها فإنها مؤمنة أي بالله وبرسوله وبما جاء من عندهما وهذا يدل على قبول الإيمان الإجمالي ونفي التكليف الإستدلالي باب اللعان في المغرب لعنه لعنا ولاعنه ملاعنة ولعانا وتلاعنوا لعن بعضهم بعضا وأصله الطرد قال النووي رحمه الله إنما سمى لعانا لأن كلا من الزوجين يبعد عن صاحبه ويحرم النكاح بينهما على التأبيد واللعان عند جمهور أصحابنا يمين وقيل شهادة وقيل يمين فيها شوب شهادة وينبغي أن يكون بحضرة الإمام أو القاضي جمع من المسلمين وهو أحد أنواع التغليظ فإنه يغلظ بالزمان والمكان والجمع قال المحقق ابن الهمام هو مصدر لاعن سماعي لا قياسي والقياس الملاعنة وكثيرا من النحاة يجعلون الفعال والمفاعلة مصدرين قياسيين لفاعل واللعن في اللغة الطرد والإبعاد وفي الفقه اسم يجري بين الزوجين من الشهادات بالألفاظ المعلومات سمى بذلك لوجود لفظ اللعن في الخامسة تسمية للكل باسم الجزء ولم يسم باسم من الغضب وهو أيضا موجود فيها لأنه في كلامها وذاك في كلامه وهو أسبق والسبق من أسباب الترجيح وشرطه قيام النكاح وسببه قذفه زوجته بما يوجب الحد في الأجنبية وحكمه حرمتها بعد التلاعن وأهله من كان أهلا للشهادة فإن اللعان شهادات مؤكدات بالإيمان عندنا وأما عند الشافعي فأيمان مؤكدات بالشهادات وهو الظاهر من قول مالك وأحمد وتمام تحقيقه في شرحه للهداية 

Translation: In another version of the same Ḥadīth there is the wording: “Where is your Lord?” It means that where is His place of decision, and His order, and the place where His dominion and power are manifested. {She said: “In the sky”} Imam al-Qadi [‘Iyad] said: “The meaning is that His command and His prohibition comes from the direction of the sky. The Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] did not mean to ask her about the whereabouts of Allāh, since He transcends such an attribute as place, just as He transcends the attribute of time. Rather, the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] intended to find out by his question to her whether she was a monotheist declaring the uniqueness of Allah (muwahhidah), or whether she was a polytheist (mushrikah) because the Arabs were worshipping idols. Each clan amongst them had its special idol, which it worshipped and revered. Perhaps some of their ignorant and stupid people did not recognize any god whatsoever; therefore, the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] wanted to ascertain what she worshipped. So when she said “in the sky,” or, as in another version, she pointed to the sky, he [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] understood that she was a monotheist declaring the uniqueness of Allāh. In other words , he wanted to preclude the gods on earth; that is, the idols. He did not mean to imply that He occupies a place in the sky, far-removed is Allāh from what the transgressors ascribe to Him in their insolence. Moreover, the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] had been ordered to speak to the people according to the extent of their intelligence, and to guide them to the truth in way which was appropriate to their understanding.

So when the Prophet [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] found that she believed that the one who deserves to be worshipped is the God who implements His purpose from the sky to the earth, not the gods which the pagans worshipped, he was satisfied with that much from her, and he [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam] did not charge her with sheer unity (Sirf al-tauḤīd )–the principle of transcendence (Ḥaqīqat al-tanzīh) Some [of the ulamā’] have said that the meaning is that His order and prohibition, His mercy and revelation comes from the sky. In that case, this hadīth is similar [in its implications] to His word [sallallahu alayhi wa sallam]: “Do you feel secure from Him who is in the sky…?” Furthermore, in some other [authentic] versions of this Ḥadīth it comes that this girl was dumb, and for that reason [Imām] al-Shafi‘ī [d. 204 / 820; Cairo] permitted the freeing of a slave even if he is dumb. In such case, the words in the Ḥadīth “She said, ‘In the sky.’” mean that she pointed to the sky [since she could not speak, obviously; and this is just what has come expressly in another version of the Ḥadīth: “She pointed to the sky.”] [Mullah Ali Qari in Mirqat Sharh al Mishqaat, Volume No. 6, Page nos. 452-453, Published by Dar ul Fikr, Beirut, Lebanon] 

Now let's turn towards the Second fundamental proof which Literalists use to justify their anthropomorphism and fool innocent Muslims in believing that Allah is an entity which literally comes down to lowest heaven in the last part of night (Naudhobillah), the hadith which they cite is this

2) The Hadith of Descent

Book 004, Number 1656: (Sahih Muslim)

Abu Huraira reported Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: Our Lord, the Blessed and the Exalted, descends every night to the lowest heaven when one-third of the latter part of the night is left, and says: Who supplicates Me so that I may answer him? Who asks Me so that I may give to him? Who asks Me forgiveness so that I may forgive him?

Before Sharah of this hadith is given, one has to understand that Allah is closest to believers not only in the last part of night but everytime! However He has stressed upon being very close at last part of the night so that Muslims strive to do more Ibadah and wake up for Him. Similar metaphorical example is also given in a sahih hadith al Qudsi that If we walk towards Him, He runs towards us! This however does not mean that Allah is actually/literally running towards us.
Mullah Ali Qari (rah) said of this hadith:

You know that Imam Malik and al-Awazai, who are among the greatest of the early Muslims, both gave detailed figurative interpretations to the hadith, Another of them was Jafar al-Sadiq. Indeed a whole group of them [the early Muslims], as well as later scholars, said that whoever believes Allah to be in a particular physical direction is an unbeliever, as al-Iraqi has explicitly stated, saying that this was the position of Abu Hanifa, Malik, al-Shafi'i, al-Ashari, and al- Baqillani (Mirqat al-mafatih: sharh Mishkat al-masabih. 5 vols. Cairo 1309/1892. Reprint. Beirut: Dar Ihya al-Turath al-Arabi, n.d., 2.137)

In Sharah of this hadith Imam Nawawi (rah) also quotes Imam Malik (rah) and Awazai (rah) the great Imams of our Islaaf who proved that such hadiths should be ''figuratively'' interpreted. Imam Nawawi (rah) said:

  تأويل مالك بن أنس وغيره معناه تنزل رحمته وأمره وملائكته، كما قال: فعل السلطان: كذا إذا فعله أتباعه بأمره. والثاني: أنه على إِلاستعارة ومعناه الإقبال على الداعين بالإجابة واللطف والله أعلم
Translation: Imam Malik bin Anas (rah) and others (including Imam Awzai) interpreted it by saying : ["your Lord descends"] means "His mercy, command, and angels descend," just as it is said, "The sultan did such-and-such," when his followers did it at his command.( تنزل رحمته وأمره وملائكته كما يقال : فعل السلطان كذا إذا فعله أتباعه بأمره) The second is that it is a ''METAPHOR (الاستعارة )" signifying [Allah's] concern for those making supplication, by answering them and kindness toward them (Sahih Muslim bi Sharh al-Nawawi, Volume No. 6, Page No.31, Published by Dar ul Fikr, Beirut, Lebanon).

No acceptance by Imam Nawawi that Allah literally comes down (Naudhobillah) to the lowest heaven as falsely asserted by salafis.

Imam Ibn Hajr al Asqalani (rah) says of this Hadith in his Fath al Bari

قوله : ( ينزل ربنا إلى السماء الدنيا ) ‏
استدل به من أثبت الجهة وقال : هي جهة العلو , وأنكر ذلك الجمهور لأن القول بذلك يفضي إلى التحيز تعالى الله عن ذلك .

Translation: Those who ''assert direction'' for Allah have used this hadith as proof that He is in the direction of above-ness(uluww). The vast majority of the scholars reject this, because saying such leads to establishing boundaries for Him and Allah is exalted above that.[Fath ul Bari Sharh Sahih ul Bukhari, Volume No.3, Page No. 338 - Dar ul Fikr]

Ibn Baz the famous Salafi scholar gave a weird explanation to Imam Ibn Hajr’s quote by saying:

ذلك الجمهور قال العلامة بن باز حفظه الله مراده بالجمهور أهل الكلام وأما أهل السنة وهم الصحابة رضي الله عنهم ومن تبعهم بإحسان فإنهم يثبتون لله الجهة وهي جهة العلو ويؤمنون بأنه سبحانه فوق العرش بلا
 تمثيلولاتكييف والأدلة على ذلك من الكتاب والسنة أكثر من أن تحصر فتنبه واحذر والله أعلم
Translation: Ibn Baz says: What he means by "the vast majority of the scholars" is the vast majority of the scholars of kalam. As for Ahl al-Sunna -- and these are the Companions and those who followed them in excellence – they assert a direction for Allah, and that is the direction of elevation, believing that the Exalted is above the Throne without giving an example and without entering into modality. The proofs from the Qur'an and the Sunna for this are innumerable, so take heed and beware. And Allah knows best. [Fath ul Bari with forgeries added by Bin Baaz, Published by Maktaba al Asriyyah, Beirut, Lebanon]
Audhobillah min Dhalik, However let's see forward in the same passage what Imam Ibn Hajr has actually said and who he has quoted to conclude this issue, he has given detailed figurative explanation in light of other ahadith that it refers to Allah “Sending down (yunzilu) mercy and angel rather than He descending himself (yanzilu) and nowhere has he said that Ahlus Sunnah, companions and Islaaf pointed direction towards Allah.
Imam Ibn Hajr writes:

فمنهم من حمله على ظاهره وحقيقته وهم المشبهة تعالى الله عن قولهم

Translation: Some say that the ''Literal meaning is meant in true sense'': these are the Mushabbiha and Allah is exalted above what they say.
Then he also wrote:

ومنهم من أجراه على ما ورد مؤمنا به على طريق الإجمال منزها الله تعالى عن الكيفية والتشبيه وهم جمهور السلف , ونقله البيهقي وغيره عن الأئمة الأربعة والسفيانين والحمادين والأوزاعي والليث وغيرهم
Translation: Some have taken them as they have come, believing in them without specificity, declaring Allah to be transcendent above modality(kayfiyya) and likeness to creation (tashbih): these are the vast majority of the Salaf. That position is reported by Bayhaqi and others from the Four Imams, Sufyan ibn `Uyayna, Sufyan al-Thawri, Hammad ibn Salama, Hammad ibn Zayd, al-Awza`i, al-Layth, and others.
Ibn Hajr al Asqalani (rah) continues

وقال ابن العربي : حكي عن المبتدعة رد هذه الأحاديث , وعن السلف إمرارها , وعن قوم تأويلها وبه أقول . فأما قوله ينزل فهو راجع إلى أفعاله لا إلى ذاته , بل ذلك عبارة عن ملكه الذي ينزل بأمره ونهيه , والنزول كما يكون في الأجسام يكون في المعاني , فإن حملته في الحديث على الحسي فتلك صفة الملك المبعوث بذلك , وإن حملته على المعنوي بمعنى أنه لم يفعل ثم فعل فيسمى ذلك نزولا عن مرتبة إلى مرتبة , فهي عربية صحيحة انتهى . والحاصل أنه تأوله بوجهين : إما بأن المعنى ينزل أمره أو الملك بأمره , وإما بأنه استعارة بمعنى التلطف بالداعين والإجابة لهم ونحوه
Translation: Imam(Abu Bakr) Ibn al-`Arabi(rah) said: "It is reported that the innovators have rejected these hadiths, the Salaf let them pass as they came, and others interpreted them, and my position is the last one. The saying: "He descends" refers to His acts not His essence, indeed it is an expression for His angels who descend with His command and His prohibition. And just as descent can concern bodies, it can also concern ideas or spiritual notions (ma`ani). If one takes the hadith to refer to a physical occurrence, then descent would be the attribute of the angel sent to carry out an order. If one takes it to refer to a spiritual occurrence, that is, first He did not act, then He acted: this would be called a descent from one rank to another, and this is a sound Arabic meaning." In sum it is interpreted in two ways: the first is: His command or His angel descends; the second is: it is a metaphor for His regard for supplicants, His answering them, and so forth. 

وقد حكى أبو بكر بن فورك أن بعض المشايخ ضبطه بضم أوله على حذف المفعول أي ينزل ملكا , ويقويه ما رواه النسائي من طريق الأغر عن أبي هريرة وأبي سعيد بلفظ " إن الله يمهل حتى يمضي شطر الليل , ثم يأمر مناديا يقول : هل من داع فيستجاب له " الحديث . وفي حديث عثمان بن أبي العاص " ينادي مناد هل من داع يستجاب له " الحديث . قال القرطبي : وبهذا يرتفع الإشكال , ولا يعكر عليه ما في رواية رفاعة الجهني " ينزل الله إلى السماء الدنيا فيقول : لا أسأل عن عبادي غيري " لأنه ليس في ذلك ما يدفع التأويل المذكور

Translation: Abu Bakr ibn Furak said: Some of the masters have read it yunzilu (He sends down) instead of yanzilu (He descends), that is: He sends down an angel. This is strengthened by Nisa'i's narration through al-Aghurr from Abu Hurayra and Abu Sa`id al-Khudri: "Allah waits until the first part of the night is over, then He orders a herald to say: Is there anyone supplicating so that he may be answered?..."There is also the hadith of `Uthman ibn Abi al-`As: "The gates of heaven are opened in the middle of the night and a herald calls out: Is there anyone supplicating so that he may be answered?..." Al-Qurtubi said: "This clears all ambiguity, and there is no interference by the narration of Rufa`at al-Jahni whereby "Allah descends to the nearest heaven and says: No-one other than I asks about My servants" for there is nothing in this which precludes the above-mentioned interpretation. [Fath ul Bari, 3:339 - Dar ul Fikr]

وقال البيضاوي : ولما ثبت بالقواطع أنه سبحانه منزه عن الجسمية والتحيز امتنع عليه النزول على معنى الانتقال من موضع إلى موضع أخفض منه , فالمراد نور رحمته , أي ينتقل من مقتضى صفة الجلال التي تقتضي الغضب والانتقام إلى مقتضى صفة الإكرام التي تقتضي الرأفة والرحمة

Translation: Al-Baydawi said:"Since it is established with decisive proofs that the Exalted is transcendent above having a body or being circumscribed by boundaries, it is forbidden to attribute to Him descent in the sense of displacement from one place to another place lower than it. What is meant is the light of His mercy: that is, He moves from what is pursuant to the attribute of Majesty entailing wrath and punishment, to what is pursuant to the attribute of Generosity entailing kindness and mercy.""[ibid]

Imam Ibn Hajr al Asqalani (rah) also states in his Fath al Bari that:

قال ابن المنير : جميع الأحاديث في هذه الترجمة مطابقة لها إلا حديث ابن عباس فليس فيه إلا قوله " رب العرش " ومطابقته والله أعلم من جهة أنه نبه على بطلان قول من أثبت الجهة أخذا من قوله ( ذي المعارج ) ففهم أن العلو الفوقي مضاف إلى الله تعالى , فبين المصنف أن الجهة التي يصدق عليها أنها سماء والجهة التي يصدق عليها أنها عرش كل منهما مخلوق مربوب محدث , وقد كان الله قبل ذلك وغيره , فحدثت هذه الأمكنة , وقدمه يحيل وصفه بالتحيز فيها والله أعلم

Translation: And by including the hadith of Ibn `Abbas containing the words: "Lord of the mighty Throne" into this chapter, Bukhari warned those that might predicate spatial elevation to Allah (`uluw fawqi) that both the direction in which the heaven is believed to be and that in which the Throne is believed to be are created, lorded over, and brought into existence by Allah Who existed before all that and before everything else. Thus these places were created, and his existence, being eternal without beginning, precludes reference to him as being bounded by them. And Allah knows best.

Imam Ibn Hajr al Asqalani (rah) explains in his Fath al Bari again

وقيل مناسبة التسبيح في الأماكن المنخفضة من جهة أن التسبيح هو التنزيه فناسب تنزيه الله عن صفات الانخفاض كما ناسب تكبيره عند الأماكن المرتفعة , ولا يلزم من كون جهتي العلو والسفل محال على الله أن لا يوصف بالعلو لأن وصفه بالعلو من جهة المعنى والمستحيل كون ذلك من جهة الحس

Translation: The reality that the two directions of "above" and "below" are impossible for Allah but it does not mean that he cannot be described with the attribute of elevation (`uluw), for such description is only to denote highness, not that of sensory perception (Ibn Hajar, Fath al-bari 6:240 - Kitab ul Jihad, Published by Dar ul Fikr)

3) The Book over the throne

Volume 9, Book 93, Number 643: (Sahih Bukhari)

Narrated Abu Huraira:

I heard Allah's Apostle saying, "Before Allah created the creations, He wrote a Book (wherein He has written): My Mercy has preceded my Anger." and that (Book) is written with Him over the Throne."

First of all ''With him'' refers to position of rank and definitely not location, because locations can never apply to him, if directed towards him then it contradicts the clear message in Surat al Ikhlaas and verses like "there is nothing whatsoever like unto Him" (Qur'an 42:11)

Imam Ibn Hajr al-Asqalani (rah) explains in his Fath al Bari

إذا حملوه , وإن كان حامل العرش وحامل حملته هو الله , وليس قولنا إن الله على العرش أي مماس له أو متمكن فيه أو متحيز في جهة من جهاته بل هو خبر جاء به التوقيف , فقلنا له به ونفينا عنه التكييف إذ ليس كمثله شيء وبالله التوفيق . وقوله " فوق عرشه " صفة الكتاب , وقيل إن فوق هنا بمعنى دون , كما جاء في قوله تعالى ( بعوضة فما فوقها ) وهو بعيد , وقال ابن أبي جمرة يؤخذ من كون الكتاب المذكور فوق العرش أن الحكمة اقتضت أن يكون العرش حاملا لما شاء الله من أثر حكمة الله وقدرته وغامض غيبه ليستأثر هو بذلك من طريق العلم والإحاطة , فيكون من أكبر الأدلة على انفراده بعلم الغيب , قال : وقد يكون ذلك تفسيرا لقوله ( الرحمن على العرش استوى ) أي ما شاءه من قدرته وهو كتابه الذي وضعه فوق العرش

Translation: When we say: "Allah is above the Throne" (Allah `ala al-`arsh), it does not mean that He is touching it or that He is located on it or bounded by a certain side of the Throne. Rather, it is a report which is transmitted as is, and so we repeat it while at the same time negating any modality for there is nothing like Him whatsoever, and from Him is all success.As for "over His throne" (in the hadith) it refers to the Book. Some have taken it in the sense of "upwards from His Throne," as in Allah's saying: "a gnat, or anything above it" (2:26), but this is far-fetched. Ibn Abu Jamra (d. 695) said: "It may be said from the fact that the Book is mentioned as being "above the Throne" that the divine wisdom has decreed for the Throne to carry whatever Allah wishes of the record of His judgment, power, and the absolute unseen known of Him alone, so as to signify the exclusivity of His encompassing knowledge regarding these matters, making the Throne one of the greatest signs of the exclusivity of His knowledge of the Unseen. This could explain the verse al-rahmanu `al al-`arshi istawa as referring to whatever Allah wills of His power, which is the Book He has placed above His Throne." [Fath ul Bari, 15:371 - Dar ul Fikr]

Now these were the proofs in light of leading Commentators of Bukhari and Muslim (i.e. Imam Ibn Hajr al Asqalani - Rahimuhullah and Imam Nawawi - Rahimuhullah), plus the greatest Seerah Author i.e. Imam Qadhi Iyaad (rah), The expert in theology/hadith i.e. Imam Abu Bakr Ibn Arabi (rah) and many others!
We would like to conclude with the explanation of Imam Bukhari (Rahimuhullah) himself on "WAJH (FACE)" of Allah, according to Salafis all such attributes are to be taken literally and giving Taweel on any of them makes the person as Jahimi, now let us see if Salafis are true to their words.
28 ـ سورة الْقَصَصِ 

 {‏كُلُّ شَىْءٍ هَالِكٌ إِلاَّ وَجْهَهُ‏}‏ إِلاَّ مُلْكَهُ، وَيُقَالُ إِلاَّ مَا أُرِيدَ بِهِ وَجْهُ اللَّهِ‏.‏ وَقَالَ مُجَاهِدٌ ‏{‏الأَنْبَاءُ‏}‏ الْحُجَجُ‏.

Imam Bukhari (rah) interpreted “Wajh (Face)” as "DOMINION OF ALLAH" [Sahih Bukhari, Kitab at-Tafseer]
So we ask Salafis whether Imam Bukhari (rah) was a Jahimi/Bidati? And remember we have not diverted from topic because Salafis put all attributes of Allah in the same basket and take them all literally, refutation of Salafis on false interpretation of one attribute is refutation of whole Salafi sect.

Literalism is a Fitnah which had to be confronted and these Imams did a perfect job.

Thanks for coming

Thanks for coming
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