Archive | May 2009

Al-Khaafid

Q)  Can you give me an explanation of the beautiful name of Allah Al Khafid ?

 

A) Praise be to Allaah.  

 

Before discussing the meaning of this name, we should understand some important issues that have to do with the names of Allaah. 

 

Firstly: The names and attributes of Allaah should be based on evidence from the Book of Allaah (the Qur’aan) and the Sunnah of His Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him); there is no other source for knowing the names and attributes of Allaah apart from these two sources. 

 

Based on this, whatever names of Allaah are affirmed in the Qur’aan and Sunnah are what we must accept and affirm. 

 

Whatever is denied in the Qur’aan and Sunnah, we must also deny, whilst affirming its opposite. 

 

What is neither affirmed nor denied in the Qur’aan and Sunnah, we must refrain from uttering it and neither affirm it nor deny it, because it has not been narrated in the sense of either affirming or denying.  

 

With regard to the meaning of the name al-Khaafid, it should be noted that if what is meant by it is something that is befitting to Allaah, then it is acceptable, and if what is meant is something that is not befitting to Allaah, then we must reject it. 

 

From al-Qawaa’id al-Mathla fi Sifaat Allaah wa Asmaa’ihi il-Husna by Ibn ‘Uthaymeen. 

 

Secondly: An action is broader in meaning than a name. Hence Allaah has attributed to Himself actions for which He is not called by the active participle of the verb in question, such as wanting (araada), willing (shaa’a) and causing to happen (ahdatha); He is not called al-mureed (the wanter or seeker) or al-shaa’i (the willer) or al-muhdith (the causer). Similarly He did not call Himself al-saani’ (the maker), al-faa’il (the doer), or al-mutqin (the one who does things perfectly), or other names derived from actions that He attributes to Himself. The scope of actions is broader than the scope of words. 

 

Those who derive a name for Allaah from every action made a serious mistake and made the number of His names reach more than one thousand. They called Him al-maakir (the plotter), al-mukhaadi’ (the deceiver), al-faatin (the causer of tribulation), al-kaa’id (the schemer), etc. 

 

Similarly He has told us about Himself in words that are broader in scope and are not names by which He has called Himself. We may refer to Him as shay’ (a thing), mawjood (one who exists), madhkoor (one who is mentioned or remembered), ma’loom (one who is known), muraad (one who is sought), and so on, but He is not to be named in these terms. 

 

The word al-Waajid (the one who is independent of means) is not mentioned as a name of Allaah except in the hadeeth which lists the beautiful names (of Allaah). But the correct view is that this is not the Prophet’s words, although the meaning is sound. For Allaah is indeed the One Who has the means (dhu’l-wajd) and is independent of all others, so it would be more apt to call Him al-Waajid than al-Mawjood (the one who exists) or al-Moojid (the initiator). The word al-mawjood (one who exists) may refer to something that is perfect or imperfect, good or evil (so the thing referred to by this name may be perfect or imperfect). If a name may refer to either of these, then it cannot be a name of Allaah, so we cannot call Him al-Shay’ (the thing) or al-Ma’loom (the one who is known). Hence Allaah is not called al-Mureed (the seeker) or al-Mutakallim (the speaker) or al-Moojid (the initiator). He has called Himself by names that carry the most perfect meanings in that regard viz. al-Khaaliq (the Creator), al-Baari’ (the Creator), and al-Musawwir (the Shaper). Al-Moojid (the initiator) is like al-Muhdith (the one who causes things to happen), al-Faa’il (the doer) and al-Saani’ (the maker). This is a very subtle and deep understanding of the beautiful names of Allaah, so give some thought to it. And Allaah is the Source of strength, 

 

From Madaarij al-Saalikeen by Ibn al-Qayyim, 3/383-385 

 

Thirdly:  The names that are given to Allaah must be taken from the sound texts; this is not a matter that is subject to ijtihaad or individual reasoning. But what is said in the context of speaking about Him is not subject to the same restrictions, so for example it may be said that He is al-qadeem (the Ancient), al-shay’ (the thing [i.e., as opposed to nothing]), al-mawjood (the one who exists), al-qaa’im bi nafsihi (the self sufficient). This is the bottom line with regard to the issue of whether His names are tawqeefi (i.e., not subject to ijtihaad) or it is permissible to call Him by some names that are not reported in the texts. 

 

From Badaa’i’ al-Fawaa’id by Ibn al-Qayyim, 1/162 

 

Fourthly: Among the names of Allaah there are some which cannot be used in isolation unless their opposite is also mentioned; if such a name is used on its own, it may give an impression of imperfection – exalted be Allaah far above that. These names include al-Mu’ti, al-Maani’ (the Giver, the Withholder); al-Daarr, al-Naafi’ (the One who harms, the One Who benefits); al-Qaabid, al-Baasit  (the Constrictor, the Expander); al-Mu’izz, al-Mudhill (the Honourer, the Humiliator); al-Khaafid al-Raafi’ (the Abaser, the Exalter). Allaah cannot be called al-Maani’ (the Withholder), al-Daarr (the One who harms), al-Qaabid (the Constrictor), al-Mudhill (the Humiliator) and al-Khaafid (the Abaser) using these names on their own; rather they must be accompanied by their opposites, because they only appear as such (in pairs) in the Revelation. 

 

From Ma’aarij al-Qubool by al-Hakami, 1/64. 

 

Once the following is understood, the name al-Khaafid is only narrated in the hadeeth which lists the beautiful names of Allaah. The correct view is that this is not the words of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), as stated above in the words of Ibn al-Qayyim. This is what has been confirmed by more than one scholar such as Imam Ibn Taymiyah (as stated in al-Fataawa, 6/379-380, 8/96, 22/482); al-Haafiz ibn Katheer in his Tafseer (3/515); al-Haafiz ibn Hajar in al-Fath (11/221) and al-Buloogh (1395), and others. 

 

But the meaning of this name is correct, so long as it is accompanied by the name al-Raafi’ (the Exalter). It was proven in Saheeh Muslim (179) from the hadeeth of Abu Moosa al-Ash’ari that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Allaah does not sleep and it is not befitting that He should sleep. He lowers justice and raises it. The deeds of the night are taken up to Him before the deeds of the day, and the deeds of the day before the night…”  There are also some reports from the salaf concerning that, and the mu’allaq report which al-Bukhaari narrated in his Saheeh (al-Fath, 8/487) from Abu’l-Darda’, which says that he said concerning the verse “Every day He is (engaged) in some affair (such as giving honour or disgrace to some, life or death to some)” [al-Rahmaan 55:29 – interpretation of the meaning]: “He forgives sins, relieves distress, raises some people in status and humiliates others.” This was also narrated in a marfoo’ report (i.e., attributed to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him)). 

 

Once this is understood, the scholars have also discussed the meaning of the name al-Khaafid, such as the following: 

 

1 – al-Khattaabi said in Sha’n al-Du’a’(58):  

 

Al-Khaafid, al-Raafi’ (the Abaser, the Exalter): similarly when it comes to these two names, it is better to mention them together. Al-Khaafid is the one who brings down tyrants and humiliates the arrogant Pharaohs, and al-Raafi’ is the one who raises His close friends (awliya’) in status through their acts of obedience; He raises them in status, supports them against their enemies and grants them the ultimate victory. No one can prevail except the one whom Allaah raises and no one can be lowered except the one whom He humiliates. 

 

2 – al-Haleemi said, according to al-Asma’ wa’l-Sifaat by al-Bayhaqi (1/193): 

 

The name al-Khaafid should not be used on its own in du’aa’ without the name al-Raafi’. Al-Khaafid is the one who puts people in a lower position, and al-Raafi’ is the one who puts them in a higher position. 

 

3 – Qiwaam al-Sunnah al-Asbahaani said in al-Hujjah fi Bayaan al-Mahajjah (1/140): 

 

Among His names are al-Khaafid, al-Raafi’ (the Abaser, the Exalter). It was said that al-Khaafid is the one who brings down tyrants and humiliates the arrogant Pharaohs, and al-Raafi’ is the one who raises His close friends (awliya’) in status and supports them against their enemies. He humiliates whomsoever He will among His slaves, lowering him in status and making him unknown and insignificant. And He elevates whomsoever He will among His slaves, raising him in status and position. No one can rise except those whom He raises in status and no one can be humiliated except those whom He lowers in status. And it was said that

 

He raises justice and lowers it. 

 

Then he narrated the hadeeth of Abu Moosa that was narrated by Muslim (293): “Allaah does not sleep and it is not befitting that He should sleep. He lowers justice and raises it. The deeds of the night are taken up to Him before the deeds of the day, and the deeds of the day before the night…” 

 

Then he said: The scholars said: what is meant by “He lowers justice and raises it” is: He lowers justice by causing oppressors to prevail, and He raises justice by causing justice to prevail. He lowers justice by means of the unjust and he raises justice by means of just leaders. By alternately lowering and raising the level of justice He tests His slaves to see how they will be patient in the face of adversity and thankful for times of ease. 

 

4 – Shaykh Ibn Sa’di said in al-Haqq al-Waadih al-Mubeen (258):  

 

He is al-Raafi’ for people who are righteous and knowledgeable and have faith, and He is al-Khaafid for His enemies. 

 

It says in Tawdeeh al-Kaafiyah al-Shaafiyah (390): Know that the divine attributes that have to do with deeds are all connected to or based on these three attributes: absolute power, ever-executed will and perfect wisdom. All of these are attributes of Allaah. The effects of these attributes prevail everywhere in the universe, giving precedence to some and putting others behind, benefiting some and harming others, giving to some and withholding from others, abasing some and exalting others. There is no difference in this between physical and moral, religious or worldly.  

 

Shaykh Muhammad Khaleel Harraas said in Sharh al-Qaseedah al-Nooniyyah, 2/114: 

 

Allaah is al-Khaafid, al-Raafi’ (the Abaser the Exalter). He abases the kuffaar by making their lives miserable and keeping them away from Him, and He raises His close friends by drawing them close to Him and making them happy. He alternates things amongst His slaves, so He humiliates some people and makes them insignificant and takes away their pride, and He raises others by causing them to inherit the authority and land of the former. 

 

All of these words are true, and they are included in the meaning of al-Khaafid, al-Raafi’ (the Abaser, the Exalter). 

 

And Allaah knows best.

 

 

Shaykh Muhammad Saalih al-Munajjid

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He cut off his relationship with his wife a while ago. Does he have to divorce her?

Q)  I am a man who is married to 2 wives, and I have children aged 20 and above from my first wife, but I married the second wife on the basis that I have no relationship with the first wife. Since I married the second one and before I married her, I had no relationship with the first wife. What I mean is that I did not stay overnight with her because I did not get along with her, but I did not divorce her. That was in accordance with my children’s wishes, because they asked me not to divorce their mother out of concern for their reputation for their friends, and I respected these wishes. I want to know whether I have committed any sin thereby, and what is the solution? Can I keep her as a wife even though I do not have any intimacy with her, or do I have to divorce her?

 

A)  Praise be to Allaah.

 

The wife has the right to have her husband stay overnight with her, and she is entitled to kind treatment and intimacy. She has the right to ask for divorce if her husband fails to give her these rights. But if she agrees to stay and give up her rights, then she may do that and you do not have to divorce her in that case. 

 

Muslim narrated (1463) from ‘Aa’ishah (may Allaah be pleased with her) that when Sawdah bint Zam’ah grew old, she said: O Messenger of Allaah, I have given my day with you to ‘Aa’ishah. The Messenger of Allaah (blessings and peace of Allaah be upon him) used to give ‘Aa’ishah two days: her day and Sawdah’s. 

 

This indicates that it is permissible for a woman to give up her right to a share of her husband’s time, and to give her night to her co-wife. 

 

But if the wife does not accept this situation, and she also does not want divorce, then you have to review your case and try to resolve the problem, give her her rights, treat her kindly and show her some appreciation, because she is the mother of your children and she has lived with you all this time. 

 

We ask Allaah to set all our affairs straight. 

 

And Allaah knows best.

 

 

Islam Q&A

Ruling on eating meat and plants that have been genetically modified

Q)  What is the ruling on eating the meat of animals that have been fed with plants that have been genetically modified?

 

A)  Praise be to Allaah.

 

Firstly: 

 

Research is still ongoing into the effect of genetically modified plants on humans, plants, animals and the environment, and even on the economy. There are still specialists who advise not hastening to accept what appears to be the case with regard to genetically modified plants of abundant production and the ability to overcome defects and resist disease. 

 

There are two main points of view with regard to this issue: the first is that which is adopted by American companies and American government organisations, which is to allow the use of genetically modified plants and marketing of their products. The other view, which is the opposite view, is that which is adopted by the European Union, which bans cultivation (of genetically modified plants) in its territory and warns against its possible consequences. 

 

The matter is still not definitive with regard to its effects, because it needs years for the impact to materialise, according to specialists. The fact that we have some plants which are more resistant to pesticides means that they will be used a great deal, which will pose a danger to the environment and human health. The fact that the plant has this strength means that it will enter the body of the one that eats it. As is well known, the countries that import these plants will never be able to plant the seeds of these plants in their lands again. What this means is that they will remain under the control and domination of the companies that produce these seeds, and this is what will affect the quality of the plants produced and will affect the economy of the importing country, as it will continue importing and consuming, and not producing independently. 

 

The Arab Organisation for Agricultural Development held a conference in Sudan 15-17/6/2003 CE, the subject of which was: Evaluating the Environmental Impact of Introducing Various Kinds of Genetically Modified Plants and Animals. 

 

We will quote from that conference statements which will explain this issue, before ruling on what was mentioned in the question. 

 

1.

(on p. 45) Dr. ‘Awad-Allaah ibn ‘Abd-Allaah ‘Abd al-Mawla — Prof of Horticulture and Genetics in the College of Agriculture, Khartoum University — says:

 

What are genetically modified products?

 

This is a phrase which refers to the products of some crops which have been genetically engineered, which means introducing a foreign gene to the original genetic material. The foreign gene may come from different sources, and is introduced to increase the value and improve the genetic qualities of the genetically engineered plant. Usually plants are genetically altered for two purposes, namely:

 

(i)                To reduce the cost of producing these plants, by making the plant resistant to disease.

 

(ii)              To improve the quality of the product, by improving its appearance or nutritional components with regard to qualities that have to do with manufacturing and storage. 

 

Production of these genetically modified products is done using genetic engineering techniques. This involves first identifying the gene responsible for the desired quality and isolating it, then introducing it to the living being (the receiver). After this new gene has been mixed with the genetic material of the genetically engineered plant, it is possible to increase the number of cells in which the new gene is successfully mixed, then by means of tissue planting it becomes possible to produce complete plants from the cells, and these plants become genetically modified or engineered. Once this gene becomes well established in the genetically engineered plant, it becomes possible to transfer it to other types of the same crop by using traditional methods of raising plants, by means of hybridisation and crossbreeding. 

 

2.

 

In a paper entitled Genetic Modification: Justifications, Benefits and its Impact on the Environment and Society, by Dr. Lakhdar Khaleefi and Dr. Maajidah Khaleefi, it says (p. 15):

 

In the field of genetic modification in particular, there is a clear difference between American and European law. Whilst American law regards genetically modified foods as natural foods that do not pose any danger until proven otherwise, European law — especially French law — regards genetically modified foods as unnatural and a possible source of danger until proven otherwise. End quote. 

 

Secondly: 

 

The one who researches this issue cannot state that it is haraam to eat genetically modified crops and fruits unless it is proven for certain that they are harmful. This does not mean that we can be careless about this matter, because of what we have pointed out above of the possibility that they may pose a danger in many ways, and because people still prefer natural plants and crops, and people like them even if they are more expensive. 

 

The matter still needs more research and more time until the effects of these plants and the harm they may cause becomes clear. 

 

Until it is proven that they are harmful, the basic principle is that these plants are permissible and it is permissible to eat animals that have been fed on these plants, but it is also essential to be cautious about what these plants may cause in the future, and it is essential to follow up on research and information about these plants. 

 

And Allaah knows best.

 

 

Islam Q&A

 

Ruling on working in the tourism field as a booking agent

Q)  What is the ruling on working in a tourism company or an airline company booking airplane tickets or making reservations on ships? What is the ruling on working as a tourist guide? Please note that I am a graduate of the college of tourism and hotel management.

 

A)  Praise be to Allaah.

 

Firstly: 

 

There is nothing wrong with working in an office booking plane tickets or reservations on ships, if that does not involve helping in evildoing. Helping in evildoing includes selling tickets to one who it is known or thought most likely that he is travelling for haraam purposes, such as one who takes his family to a kaafir country for tourism and leisure, or one who goes to places of corruption such as resorts and tourist areas which are not free of all evils and corruption, such as mixing between men and women, consumption of intoxicants and haraam things, and so on, because Allaah says (interpretation meaning):

 

“Help you one another in Al‑Birr and At‑Taqwa (virtue, righteousness and piety); but do not help one another in sin and transgression. And fear Allaah. Verily, Allaah is Severe in punishment”

 

[al-Maa’idah 5:2] 

 

Secondly:

 

It is well-known that tourism, as it is known nowadays, it is not free of things that incur punishment and major sins, such as drinking alcohol, nakedness, promiscuity, spread of immorality, neglecting prayers … and all the other evils which have been seen and are known about by everyone who hears about tourism. But if we could say that tourism was free of such evils, then our words would be theoretical and we would be speaking about some other kind of tourism that is different to that which people know and see nowadays. 

 

There is no doubt that working in this field is cooperating in sin and transgression, and inclination towards immoral people and evildoers, and towards the people of sin. Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

 

“And incline not toward those who do wrong, lest the Fire should touch you, and you have no protectors other than Allaah, nor you would then be helped”

 

[Hood 11:113]. 

 

Shaykh al-Sa’di (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:

 

“And incline not toward those who do wrong” because, if you incline toward them and join them in their wrongdoing or approve of their wrongdoing, “the Fire [will] touch you”, if you do that, “and you [will] have no protectors other than Allaah” to protect you from the punishment of Allaah, and they will not bring you anything of the reward of Allaah. “nor [would you] then be helped” i.e., the punishment would not be warded off from you if it touched you. This verse is a warning against inclining towards any wrongdoer or joining him in his wrongdoing or approving of the wrong that he is doing. 

 

If this warning has to do with inclining towards wrongdoing, then what about the wrongdoers themselves? We ask Allaah to keep us safe and sound from wrongdoing. End quote. Tafseer al-Sa’di (290). 

 

Moreover, tourism is based on moving between archaeological places which attract tourists, such as the dwellings of Thamood and Pharaonic temples and tombs, but these are places of punishment and curses and it is not permissible to enter them or visit them. 

 

It was narrated from Ibn ‘Umar (may Allaah be pleased with him) that when the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allaah be upon him) passed by al-Hijr, he said: “Do not enter the dwellings of those who wronged themselves unless you are weeping, lest there befall you what befell them.” Then he covered his face with his upper garment (rida’) while he was on the camel saddle. Agreed upon. 

 

Al-Nawawi (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: 

 

This shows that we are encouraged to be alert when passing by the dwellings of the wrongdoers and places where punishment came down. A similar example is hastening when passing through Wadi Muhassir, because the companions of the elephant were destroyed there. The person who passes through such places should be alert, feel a sense of fear, weep, and learn a lesson from them and the places where they met their doom, and he should seek refuge with Allaah from that. End quote. 

 

It says in Fataawa al-Lajnah al-Daa’imah: 

 

At the end of your letter, you say that you are a tourism manager in your city. If this tourism includes facilitating the committing of sin and evil actions, and promoting them, then it is not permissible for a Muslim who believes in Allaah and the Last Day to be a helper in disobedience to Allaah and going against His commands. The one who gives up something for the sake of Allaah, Allaah will compensate him with something better than it. End quote. 

 

Fataawa al-Lajnah (26/224). 

 

The committee was also asked: 

 

What is the ruling on travelling to Arab and Muslim countries for the purpose of tourism? Please note that we do not go to entertainment venues.  

 

They replied: It is not permissible to travel to corrupt places for the sake of tourism, because of the danger that that poses to religious commitment and morals, because sharee’ah seeks to block the means that lead to evil. End quote.  

 

Fataawa al-Lajnah (26/331). 

 

Conclusion: 

 

It is not permissible to work in tourism or any other field which facilitates the aims of sinful people, or to approve of their sins and help them to commit them, or to refrain from denouncing them when one is able to. Rather the one who is unable to change an evil or denounce it, must shun its people and not keep company with them or show them the way to do it. 

 

Please see also the answer to question number 82402 and 125799

 

And Allaah knows best.

 

 

Islam Q&A

Dividing Tawheed into categories

Q)  I hear from some knowledgable brothers concerning Tawheed and its categories that Shaykh ul Islaam Taqi`ud deen Ibn Taymiyyaah (Rahimahullaah) held 2 catergories of Tawheed (ie; Tawheed Ar-Ruboobiyyaah and Tawheed Al Asmaa Was Sifaat) How true are these statements? Did Shaykh Muhammad Ibn Ibraheem (rahimahullaah) hold 4 catergories? and finally does Shaykh Saleeh Al Fawzaan (may Allaah preserve him) hold 4 catergories of Tawheed?

 

A)   Praise be to Allaah.  

 

Firstly: 

 

We must understand the principle which says that there is nothing wrong with using new terminology. This principle is well-known among the fuqaha’ and scholars of usool. Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: 

 

There is nothing wrong with new concepts and new words, unless there is something bad about them. 

 

Madaarij al-Saalikeen, 3/306 

 

Secondly: 

 

From early times the scholars have categorized the rulings of sharee’ah. This has only been done to make it easier to understand the texts and rulings of sharee’ah, especially as time goes by and knowledge of Arabic language becomes weaker and the language gets mixed with foreign languages. 

 

The scholars thought it wise to set out principles, issues and categories to make it easier to understand. There is nothing wrong with this, in fact it is a good thing because it makes knowledge more accessible to the Muslims. Al-Shaafa’i set out the principles of fiqh and his categorization was well-received and was followed by the scholars of usool who wrote commentaries on what he said and added to it. This was done in all branches of Islamic knowledge such as tajweed (recitation of Qur’aan), Qur’aan and others, including Tawheed. 

 

Thirdly: 

 

With regard to what the questioner mentions, that Shaykh al-Islam [Ibn Taymiyah] divided Tawheed into two categories and Shaykh Muhammad ibn Ibraaheem divided it into four, as did Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzaan, there is nothing wrong with that. We will explain this to you. 

 

Some of the scholars said that Tawheed can be divided into two categories: 

 

Tawheed al-Ma’rifah wa’l-Ithbaat (Oneness of knowledge and affirmation): which includes believing in the existence of Allaah and in His Lordship and His names and attributes. 

 

Tawheed al-Qasd wa’l-Talab (Oneness of object and aim), which includes believing in the divine nature of Allaah. 

 

With regard to those who divided Tawheed into three categories, they explained the previous categorization in more detail and made it easier to understand. So they said that Tawheed is divided into three categories: 

 

Tawheed al-Ruboobiyyah (Oneness of divine Lordship): which includes belief in the existence of Allaah. 

 

Tawheed al-Uloohiyyah (Oneness of the Divine nature) or Tawheed al-‘Ibaadah (Oneness of worship) – which mean the same thing. 

 

Tawheed al-Asma’ wa’l-Sifaat (Oneness of the Divine names and attributes) 

 

Then some of the scholars added to this categorization and said that Tawheed may be divided into four categories: 

 

Belief in the existence of Allaah. 

 

Belief in the Lordship of Allaah. 

 

Belief in the Divinity of Allaah. 

 

Belief in the names and attributes of Allaah. 

 

As we see, there is nothing wrong with this categorization as long as it does not point to anything false, and there is nothing wrong with the terminology. This categorization is only to make it easier to understand. The more time passes, the less people understand, and the scholars need to make things easier and simpler.  

 

To sum up, there is nothing wrong with what the questioner mentioned, because dividing Tawheed into two categories includes everything that is explained in detail by the others. Those who divided it into three or four categories explained in detail that which was mentioned in concise fashion by those who divided it into two. 

 

But all are agreed that Tawheed includes all the things that they mentioned.

 

There is nothing wrong with this categorization and this use of terminology, on condition that it does not lead to any problems, such as leaving out some of the concepts that are part of Tawheed, or introducing ideas that have nothing to do with it. 

 

There may come a time when it needs to be explained further, so the scholars will explain it with more categories in order to make it easier to understand. 

 

This is a brief explanation of what is meant by the three categories of Tawheed: 

 

Belief in Divine Lordship (ruboobiyyah): This means believing that Allaah is the only One Who creates, gives life and death, etc. 

 

Belief in the Divine nature (uloohiyyah): This means believing that Allaah is the only One Who to whom the people should devote their words and actions, both inward and outward. So none is to be worshipped but Him, may He be glorified and exalted. 

 

Belief in the names and attributes of Allaah (al-asma’ wa’l-sifaat): which means affirming what Allaah has affirmed for Himself of names and attributes, and denying any attributes that Allaah has said are not His, without denying any of His attributes or likening any of His attributes to the attributes of any of His creation. 

 

Fourthly: 

 

The scholars’ dividing Tawheed into these categories is nothing new, rather it was known in the third and fourth centuries AH, as was mentioned by Shaykh Bakr Abu Zayd, a member of the Council of Senior Scholars, in his book al-Radd ‘ala al-Mukhaalif.  This categorization was also narrated from Ibn Jareer al-Tabari and other scholars. 

 

Note: what the questioner mentioned, that Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah divided Tawheed into two categories – Tawheed al-Ruboobiyyah (Oneness of divine Lordship) and Tawheed al-Asmaa’ wa’l-Sifaat (Oneness of the divine names and attributes) – is not correct. Rather he divided it into two categories which were Tawheed al-Ma’rifah wa’l-Ithbaat (Oneness of knowledge and affirmation) and Tawheed al-Qasd wa’l-Talab (Oneness of object and aim), the first of which includes Tawheed al-Ruboobiyyah and Tawheed al-Asma’ wa’l-Sifaat. 

 

See Majmoo’ al-Fataawa, 15/164; al-Fataawa al-Kubra, 5/250 

 

And Allaah knows best.

 

 

Islam Q&A

Paying zakaah on a fund collected by a group of employees

Q)  What is the ruling on participating in a fund collected by a group of people, every person pays a fixed amount monthly, and in the end of every month a lot takes place and the chosen one takes all fund collected and so on, until everyone takes his share of it. Should a person pay Zakah when he gets his share?

 

A) Praise be to Allaah.

 

Firstly: 

 

This transaction which is known as an employees’ fund is the subject of a difference of scholarly opinion, but most of them are of the view that it is permissible. 

 

Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) was asked about a group of teachers who, at the end of every month, collect a sum of money from their salaries and give it to one of them; the following month they give it to another person, and so on until all of them have taken their share. What is the Islamic ruling on that? 

 

He replied: 

 

There is nothing wrong with that. It is a laon in which there is no stipulation that anyone be given any additional benefit. The Council of Senior Scholars looked into that and determined by a majority that it is permissible, because it serves the interests of all without harming anyone. And Allaah is the source of strength. End quote from Fataawa Islamiyyah (2/413). 

 

With regard to zakaah on that, it is based on knowing the following: 

 

1.     Whoever possesses money that reaches the minimum threshold (nisaab) and one full year has passed, is obliged to pay zakaah on it. The nisaab is the equivalent of 85 g of gold or 595 g of silver. The year begins from the time that the money reached the minimum threshold.

 

2.     Whoever acquires wealth during the year which does not result from the original sum, such as if it comes to him by way of inheritance or a gift or a loan, should start a new year and pay zakaah on it when the year ends. Or he may add it to the year of what he has of previous wealth, so that he can pay the zakaah on all of it at one time, which is the end of the year for the first wealth, in which case he will have paid zakaah for the second sum in advance, before the year has passed, and this is permissible.

 

3.     If a person is owed money and the borrower is well off and acknowledges the debt and is willing to pay it at the agreed time, he has to pay zakaah when the year has passed, even if the debt lasts for several years.

 

4.     If a person is in debt and has money, he must pay zakaah on his wealth when the year has passed, without omitting the debt that he owes from the total sum, according to the more correct of the two scholarly opinions. 

 

Based on that, the view concerning the zakaah on the employees’ fund is as follows: 

 

(a)

 

The one who receives the collected money, if it reaches the minimum threshold, may either add it to the year of money that he has previously acquired, or start a new year with it, then pay zakaah on it at the end of that year, if the nisaab remains until the end of the year. But if he spends the money, and it is all gone or falls below the threshold, then he does not have to pay zakaah. For example, a man has money that reaches the minimum threshold in Ramadan, then he receives the money from this group in Shawwaal. He may either pay zakaah on the total amount in the following Ramadan, or he may pay zakaah on each amount when its year is complete, one in Ramadan and the other in Shawwaal. 

 

(b)

 

If the amount of the monthly installment reaches the minimum threshold (nisaab), or he has other money apart from this money which brings it up to the threshold, then one full Hijri year has passed since he joined this scheme. For example, the total amount that Zayd pays is 20,000, and he has not received any money from this scheme yet. He has to pay zakaah on this amount (20,000), because it comes under the ruling of a debt that is owed to him by his fellow participants. 

 

If the monthly amount does not reach the minimum threshold, and he does not have any other money that would bring it up to the threshold, then the year for zakaah begins when what he gave reaches the minimum threshold. 

 

And Allaah knows best.

 

 

Islam Q&A

 

A traveller wants to join two prayers but he thinks it most likely that he will reach his city before the end of the time for the second one

Q)  What is the ruling on someone who wants to join two prayers whilst travelling, offering the two prayers at the time of the first one, knowing that he thinks it most likely that he will reach his city before the time of the second prayer ends? What does he have to do if he arrives whilst the prayer is being offered in the mosque?

 

 

A)  Praise be to Allaah.

 

So long as a person is travelling, he may join prayers, even if he is going to arrive in his city before the time of the second obligatory prayer begins, but in this case it is better not to join the prayers, because joining prayers is only to be done when there is a need for it. This man who knows that he will arrive before the time of the second prayer begins does not need to join the prayers. Nevertheless, if he does that, there is nothing wrong with it. If he arrives when the time for the prayer has not yet begun, then he has discharged his obligation and he does not have to pray, because he offered the prayer by joining it with the first prayer. End quote. 

 

Shaykh Muhammad ibn ‘Uthaymeen (may Allaah have mercy on him) 

 

 

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