Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Ask Pro ahlul bait

Welcome to the first edition of "Ask Pro ahlul bait", where Sunnis who are Pro ahlul bait can get advice from other Pro-ahlul bait Sunnis.

Pro ahlul bait's criticisms of Zaidism

Pro Ahlul bait writes:

Let me post some views that are extreme from the Zaydis.
1) Their works indirectly say those who reject waliyah are kaffir.
2) They refuse to pray behind those who wipe their feet instead of washing.
3) They compare the prayer method of the Sunnis schools to be similar to the Jews and Christains
4) Also from a 12rs point of view the Zaydi Imam Hadi attacks the 10th imam on the area of khumms.
5) They also see all shias of Ali to be indirectly infallible. If their a problem in history that person all of sudden becomes a non-shia.

I personally find these views extreme.

Also the material I see online, is too general. Its not really sufficient enough to refute the Sunnis or the 12rs.
So far what's presented online, Zaydism to me see like an idea, instead of a madhab.
November 21, 2010 9:30 AM
ProAhlulBayt1 said...
Oh yah sister Zaida that book on Imam Zayd ibn Ali (as) I gave you it states Musnad Zayd is a direct book of Imam Zayd ibn Ali (as) himself. Yet the reality is, there is no direct works by Imam Zayd ibn Ali (as). What survives today are the works presented by the students of students.
November 21, 2010 9:32 AM
HusseinY said...
Yes, but ProAhlulBayt, not everyone feels the need to go out and have a debate just for the sake of it. Many just want to practice an Islam that makes sense to them.

As for their not being enough info online, all you need to do is look at the sister site of this blog which has all you need to get started. It also gives you answers to refute the Ithna Ashari, if one so wished.

November 21, 2010 11:02 AM
ProAhlulBayt1 said...
I've seen the refutation material, its just one of those aql vs aql challenges. One side says they make more sense and the other side say no we make more sense. Its a never ending process.
Also, I listed 6 points above, and I didn't hear your reply on them. To me these opinions are extreme and don't make sense at all. That's why I suggested an authority in Zaydism to take charge. A 12r told me that Sunnis never cared about the Imams and therefore they are Nasibi. However, I did my research, and prove him wrong using his own sources.
The reality is the whole ummah is at the mercy of the two powers; wahhabi's and radical shi'as. they keep playing with the muslims, and prevent any meaningful intellectual discourse to self improve ourselves.
Now the Muslims believe they are only two options to pick from which is wrong.
Since the brother posted that the Sunni fiqh has contradictions, let me add something about the fiqh of Imam Zayd bin Ali (as). The Fiqh comes from Musnad Zayd and al Majumu. If you refer to the Zaydi rijal book ra'b al-sada' it sheds light upon musnad and majmu, and how it disagrees and has differences with the other zaidi books.
November 21, 2010 3:36 PM
zabarah said...
Brother ProAhlul bayt.

I think in your case you need to study under mujtahed. I have noticed that you do misinterpret texts.

let me try to let you see it more properly:

) Their works indirectly say those who reject waliyah are kaffir. (HOw can you assume that? then with this mentality you can say every sect makes takfir to the other. And most mke a direct claim of such.)
2) They refuse to pray behind those who wipe their feet instead of washing. ( its a jurispudence issue. Zaidies believe you have to wash your feet for your wudhu to be right. If you dont have a right wudhu can your prayer be right? Also if your imams prayer is not right how ccan your salah be right if his isnt? this is something that all sect do)
3) They compare the prayer method of the Sunnis schools to be similar to the Jews and Christains ( brother these are scholarly debates. they are just researching methods and actions and their sources. which is somethng that all sects do)
4) Also from a 12rs point of view the Zaydi Imam Hadi attacks the 10th imam on the area of khumms. (Again scholarly debate and advise)
5) They also see all shias of Ali to be indirectly infallible. If their a problem in history that person all of sudden becomes a non-shia. (brother we dont say our Imams to be infallible let alone their shia)

Brother you are in need of learning usul alfigh which is important for you to understand what is ijtihad and who can become mujtaheed.

I understand your point that there are no zaidies book therefor brother IRS and a group of us are translating zaidi books. if anyone thinks he/she is up to the task. they are welcome to join us.
November 21, 2010 6:54 PM
zaida said...
To Pro ahlul bait:
1. I am not concerned about things that are "indirectly" said. If you find it said directly I might be concerned about it.
2. Personally, I sometimes wipe my feet because the Qur'an says wipe. I only wash them if they are unclean and wiping would therefore not suffice. I agree with you that Musnad Zaid may have been written down by his students, (same goes for Abu Hanifa’s books), hence the possibility they are both not 100% authentic. That’s why I use the Qur’an to check what their narrations say, and if there’s a contradiction I go with the Qur’an. I say, study Qur’an first and then go to narrations, not the other way around. I believe I can still call the Zaidi math-hab home while holding this position. I think other schools of thought have more contradictions with the Qur’an than the Zaidi school. You keep criticizing Zaidism but if you applied the same standards to a critique of Sunnism and 12erism, Zaidism would come out on top.
3. It's true that Christians say "Amin", just go into any church. And Imam Malik (sunni) agrees (with Shi-ites) that arms should not be folded because that wasn’t the practice of the people of Madinah. I therefore find the Zaidi position (that Sunnis prayer has outside influences) convincing.
4. I don't know what Imam Hadi said about khums but verse 8:41 in the Qur'an is sufficient for me to know what khums is (one fifth of war booty to the baitul maal) and its application is only relevant to victorious Muslim army chiefs. I don’t think you will ever be one so don’t stress about it.
5. I disagree with you, Zaidism does not claim that the Hashemite Imams are infallible; this is one of the features that sets it apart from 12 Imamerism. IRS has already stressed this point elsewhere in this blog.

To Zabarah: Thanks for answering pro ahlul bait! But I think what Pro ahlul bait needs is, not more scholars, but to use the reason he has been endowed with, and be a reasonable person. When faced with two opposing viewpoints, reasonable people will seek out a middle view. Any well read Muslim (like Pro ahlul bait) who knows what Sunnism is, and knows what 12 Imamerism is, should be capable of recognizing that the truth lies somewhere in between.
The two reverts who joined our blog recently, like me, listened to the arguments of both the Sunnis and the 12ers, and then decided to seek a middle way. They kept searching until they made contact with Zaidis, who do represent a middle way. Whether or not they decide to follow a particular Zaidi scholar in the future, they are now Zaidis. Bot Pro ahlul bait, while criticizing both the Sunnis and 12ers, refuses to seek a middle way; he prefers to criticize everyone!
I don’t agree that, in order to access religion (or deen) one needs to learn from a scholar. This may have been the case in the days when very few Muslims knew how to read and write, but it is no longer the case. Nowadays anyone can read the Holy Qur’an in their own language, and anyone can enrol in classical Arabic lessons to improve their understanding. I think it is pure laziness to neglect the study of classical Arabic and then expect scholars to explain everything to you. Pro ahlul bait hasn’t bothered to learn Arabic yet. By studying Arabic, he would be able to appreciate the Holy Qur’an at a much higher level and read the narrations of the ahlul bait with an enhanced understanding. When I embraced Islam I set about learning the Arabic alphabet the very next day! So I suggest he takes some Arabic lessons instead of sitting in the company of scholars and debating with them.
To Pro ahlul bait: we now have ZOAP converts in USA, UK and Australia but we need a rep for Canada! Hope you will get on board soon in sha Allah.
November 21, 2010 8:19 PM
ProAhlulBayt1 said...
To Sister Zaida and Brother Zabarah!
Isn't there a famous ahadith which states that whoever fails to recognize the imam of the time dies from Jahiliyah ? By just saying that we know the imam of the time is no different than the 12rs saying their imam of the time is the Mahdi. In fact, I should give credit to the 12rs because their imam of the time is infallible, but your is not.

What I trying to do is implement hadith. Otherwise, if a person learns deen without the company of a scholar then they are jahils as stated by the ahadith itself.

By the way, Zaida as much as you admire the Mutazillah, I think you failed to understand what the Mutazilla were all about. It seems like you found your middle path, and when you find controversies you will just sweep them under the carpet. Well this is not the way of the Mutazilla. If a person is a Mutazillah even if they find the middle path they will
question their beliefs and find a better solution. This is what made them so powerful. Of course they will never go the extreme to make opinions such as cutting the hand for theft is wrong.

Zaida its also funny how you ask me to learn Arabic, but at times you chose to wipe your feet. Let me ask you whose Qirat are you referring to ? The 12rs say the Qirat of Asim is the most authentic. Yet if we go to by that Qirat it actually tells you to wash your feet. So I really wonder which Qirat among the 10 you choose in terms of Wudhu. Since you know Arabic so well I will let you answer the question. Please help a brother who doesn't know any Arabic.

Also, I am well aware of the verse of Khumms, but you have to refer Imam Hadi (as) work on the Rafidah who actually puts the blame on the 10th imam. He says imam of the Rafidah makes this judgment. Now the Zaydis try to cover this up. However, I think Imam Hadi (as) made an error, in pointing fingers. Nevertheless, if Imam Abu Hanifa (ra) made a mistake he is condemned. But when a Zaydi imam does it its okay, because the number of mistakes are low ?

As for me I think the answer lies in between Sunni, Zaydi, Mutazilla and Sufis. They all have their high levels of truth. As for Zaydi works, tell your brothers to post lectures on youtube. I will promote it. When Zaydis used to write articles on their Zaydi imams, I used to post them on Sunni sites, and Sunnis were impressed by them.
November 21, 2010 8:55 PM
zaida said...
Speaking of mujtahids, I thought this may be an opportune time to remind readers of the words of Abdullah Hamidaddin (earlier in this blog) about ijtihad:
"The essence of ijtihad is the courage to review past tradition in accordance with new understandings … in the past zaidi ijtihad, as well as muatazilli meant just that…
When that courage started to falter, for different reasons, the spirit of ijtihad shriveled… and soon became what we see today a tool to manage small legislative issues but without the courage to review the whole religious paradigm…
The fact is that human consciousness and worldview has itself developed in the past 400 years, and this calls for a different kind of ijtidhad. One which seeks to create congruence between the different dimensions of a human; the religious being one of them. Today, the religious dimensions is alien to many other dimensions because it was formulated with a consciousness that doesn’t exist today… and I believe those with a zaidi tradition are better equipped for such an endeavor, because the tradition is extremely rich not only in its rational theologicial outlook, but also in the many cases of ijtihad courage, which can serve as an inspiration that fuels the future. But regretfully, most zaidis today are not practicing such an ijtihad. If you look at their fatwas singularly you may find here and there a more progressive one. But if you look at their fatwas collectively then you would find that its not unique anymore. The challenge for many zaidis today is to bring back that spirit buried in those traditions."
November 21, 2010 8:55 PM
zaida said...
Salaam pro-ahlul bait, I dislike debates about minor technicalities but just this once I will indulge, but I am not going to make a habit of it! The eradication of poverty and the disarmament of weapons are far more important!
Here goes:
The Noble Qur'an - Al-Mâ'idah 5:7
“O you who believe! When you intend to offer As-Salât (the prayer), wash (gh-s-l) your faces and your hands up to the elbows, and wipe (m-s-h) your heads and your feet up to ankles.”
The verb used to wipe the feet (m-s-h) is the same verb used to wipe the head (i.e. the verb is only mentioned once). We don’t wash our head, we wipe it. Those who argue that the feet belong with the faces and hands in this verse have put a vowel on the word “foot” so that it matches with the words “faces and hands” instead of matching with the word “heads”. Imam Rassi Society says in this respect:
“the word masha means "to wipe." Specifically, it means "to pass ones wet hand over something." However, the issue is not that the word m-s-h is used for feet. Rather it is because grammatically the noun "feet" is either connected to the washing (gh-s-l) mentioned earlier or wiping (m-s-h) mentioned later--depending upon where the diacritical vowels are placed.”
Zaidis seem to go with the unusual and highly irregular vowel placement, but I believe if the verse was intended to be understood this way the words “and your feet up to the ankles” would have followed immediately after the word “elbows”, not immediately after the word “heads”.
I’m not a scholar and I don’t expect anyone to agree with me and I don’t care if nobody agrees with me. I am going by my understanding of Arabic after studying it for 4 years at Melbourne University with a Pakistani Muslim scholar. In any case, how I do my wudhu is really my business; at least I am making an effort to pray.
November 21, 2010 9:38 PM
ProAhlulBayt1 said...
Walaikum Salaam Sister Zaida
If you are going to criticize Sunnis then you should be able to defend yourself, when they question you. Anyways, since you are learning Arabic, you should also look into different Qirats. In fact, there is a Qirat book attributed to Imam Zayd ibn Ali (as).

As for wiping and washing it really depends on what Qirat you are relying on this.

For example Hafs from Asim and Warsh from Nafi say wash. This is while Hamzah says wipe.
Therefore, Zaydis are relying on a Qirat which says to Wash. On the contrary, the 12rs say only the Qirat of Asim is acceptable and there are no other Qirats. Yet Asim's Qirat says to wash if you recite it.
Remember Arabic grammar doesn't work like English. I mean go to google translate and try to translate an Arabic passage in English. Will it make sense ? No.
November 21, 2010 10:01 PM
zaida said...
Sorry, it was only 2 years I studied Arabic not 4, my mistake. I do know Arabic grammar quite well, my view is that in any language, when one wants to group 3 nouns with one verb and a fourth noun with a different verb, one would mention the 3 nouns together with the corresponding verb, and the 4th noun with its corresponding verb. I've studied several languages and I've never seen a sentence constructed in that way, (with a noun located so far away from its corresponding verb). I'm glad to hear that someone called Hamza agrees with me, but I do not have time to study different Qirats. Many Muslims do not have access to clean running water to do wudhu (e.g. Palestinians whose water is diverted to Israeli swimming pools). I am more interested in these issues than where people think vowels should go or not go.
November 21, 2010 10:37 PM
Imam Rassi said...
Salaamz to all!

We pray that eveyone had a blessed and fulfilling Eid!
At first, we decided not to respond to proAhlalBayt because everyone else is doing such a good job. However, since we believe that our translations and works are being referred to, we saw fit to respond ourselves.

1.) Nothing that we have translated or written says that those Muslims who do not believe in the Wilayat of Imam Ali (as) are kafirs--directly or indirectly! The first time you positied this absurd claim, we answered you and since you did not reply or revisit the issue, we thought that you understood. Apparently not! Please go back and reread what we said. To assume that one is making takfir is almost as bad as making takfir itself!

2. The refusal to pray behind someone who wipes is a fiqh issue not one of extremism! If you ask ANY Muslim who washes (all Sunnis and Ibadis), they will tell you that it is not allowed to pray behind one who wipes! Why do you only single out Zaydis for this issue?! Similarly, according to the maraaji of the 12ers, they are not allowed to pray behind non-12ers! Why are zaydis the only extremists in this regards?!

3. If you are referring to our article, "The Lizard Hole" in which we proved that the crossing of the hands in prayer is a characteristic of Jewish prayer that carried over to the Muslims, why did you not refute it?! You only criticised our stance without bringing proof otherwise! Why? Because it is alot easier to criticise and call views "extreme" than disproving the position! Our imams, the imams of Ahl alBayt (as), who you claim to be "Pro" of stated that crossing the arms was an action of the Jews! Not only in our texts, but also the texts of the 12ers and Isma'ilis! They have narrated statements of Imam as-Sadiq (as) in which he said this!

4. I dont know to what you are referring! It is Imam al-Qasim ar-Rassi (as) who stated this in his refutation of the Imami Shia. Even so, how is this extremism?!

5. Finally, the most absurd is the claim that Zaydis see the Shias as "indirectly" infallible! How can someone be "indirectly infallible"?! There are followers of Ahl al-Bayt (as) who made mistakes in history. The reason why we dont consider those who rebelled against Imam Ali (as) after the arbitration to be Shia is because a person who believes in the exclusive authority of Imam Ali (as) and the subsequent Prophet's Progeny (as) would not rebel against the same person that they consider Imam! This is contradictory and absurd!
November 22, 2010 2:35 AM
Imam Rassi said...
Regarding ProAhlalBayt's disturbing obsession at refuting the 12ers, we would like to sincerely advise you because you are are brother.
Please think about this:
On the Day of Judgment, when our deeds are presented before us to be weighed and determine our eternal fate, do you seriously believe that our meaningless debates and refutations on forums and blogs will hold any weight on the scales?! Do you think the unretreivable hours and minutes that we spent bickering in mosques and chat rooms would get us any closer to achieveing the Pleasure of our Lord?!

It is only after we achieve maturation in this religion and in those things that really matter that we will really reach our goal!

Needless debates and refutations just feed egos and create disunity!

So, I advise myself and others, please grow up!

And Allah knows best!

November 22, 2010 2:48 AM
zabarah said...
Proahlulbayt. I have always agreed with you that you need mujtahed to study under and ask to guide you. Why dont you communicate with one instead of arguing with people about it.

All the other brothers and sisters are making the best of it by doing what they are capable of.

Sister Zaida: concerning wiping the feet brother Proahlulbayt is right you should of consulted with a mujtahed first. you cant just follow your thoughts with appropriate knowledge on such matters.
November 22, 2010 9:43 AM
ProAhlulBayt1 said...
To Brother IRS: The reference is from the 180 questions.
However, his adherence to the school of Ahl al-Bayt is evident by his insistence upon the imamate of Amīr al-Muminīn, „Ali bin Abi Ťālib, upon him be peace. That withstanding, he unabashedly stated in one of his replies:

Whoever doesn‟t believe that after the Prophet, the imamate was „Ali‟s;

Allah won‟t accept his/her prayer, fast, alms, pilgrimage, or any other deeds.

1) I've seen your explanation, but I don't accept it. What is apparent is apparent. Just like how shia reject ibn Hadid's interpretation of Sermon Of Shiqshiqiyyah, I reject your explanation in this area. I am aware Zaydis don't have this belief, but their explanations and views are illogical at times.

2) Yes, I am aware of the Sunni view, but I don't agree with them in this area. I refuse to pray behind 12rs not because the way they do wudhu, but because they believe all non-12rs are kaffir in the aqira. Refer to Al Khoei's fatwa. If they didn't have this filty belief I wouldn't mind praying behind them. I would have to say Ayatollah Fadhallah views was an exception.

3) I don't trust the 12rs. Shaykh Mufid called Imam Abu Hanifa the Shaiyataani leader of the Nawasib. Whereas Imam Abu Hanifa (ra) was on the opposite of that. As for the fiqh its the intention which counts in the end. Do want me show you ahadith from the 12r which says Zaydis are Nawasib ? Guess what they attribute this to Imam Sadiq (as).

4) Since he blames the 10th imam, it shows that the Ahlul Bayt (as) contradicted each other.

5) If you are a muhadith then you should be well aware that Ibn Abbas (ra) did believe in legality of Muta. I would like to challenge a current Zaydi muhadith on the issue. This opinion contradicts Imam Ali (as) view. However, you say the 2 sahabis never disagreed with each other.

As for your second message if you attack the Sunni fiqh then why can't I question the Zaydi madhab ? That's why I am suggesting you send a scholar to teach people about Zaydism. Otherwise, you will face consequences. If you think I am harsh, then visit 12r. They recently posted ahadith to declare you among the Al Nawasib. They recently told me to leave shiachat for defending the Zaydis.
November 22, 2010 4:57 PM
zaida said...
In the interests of Zaidi unity, I intend to wash my feet from now on, but my main point is that Revelation and Reason should take precedence over ahadith (this is a corner-stone of Mu'tazilism). To pro ahlul bait, I suggest you start your own blog promoting your own "Somewhere between Sunnism, Zaidsm, Mu'tazili and Sufism Math-hab" . Or, if you prefer, I can start it for you like I did with Ali the Ismaili's Ismailism blog. That way you can get some followers of your own instead of confusing our readers with your unique standpoint.
November 22, 2010 5:04 PM
ProAhlulBayt1 said...
Sister Zaida it you who initiated the debate by saying Zaydism is the middle path. I replied by pointing out areas where I believe it wasn't. As for your Aql on washing vs wiping please don't make this into a Mutazilla issue. Just because you are learning Arabic this doesn't mean you understand level of grammar used in the Quran. As I stated before the Zaydi Qirat when read does states the feet should be washed. Its as simple as that. Of course people who don't know Arabic on the level of the Quran say what do you mean there is more than one Qirat ?
I can be a native Christian Arab, but this still doesn't mean I will be an expert of the grammar of the Quran.

Imam Zayd ibn Ali (as) was the most knowledgeable person in the Quran in his era. Even Imam Jafar as Sadiq (as) says he is more knowledgeable then himself.
Refer to 4:55 mark on this clip below.
Imam Al Asi also talks about the Qirat.
November 22, 2010 6:07 PM
Imam Rassi said...
salaamz to all!

To ProAhlalbayt:

1. Whether you accept my explanation or not is immaterial. I have always held that the truth of our imams speak for themselves. If the Zaydis consider those who do not accept the wilayat of Amir al-Mumineen (as) as kuffar--implicitly or explicitly, then why do our imams and scholars permit Zaydis to pray behind Sunnis?! As you may or may not know, according to our fiqh, we are not even allowed to pray behind a fasiq! Which is worse: a fasiq or a kafir?! That withstanding, it would be nonsensical and slander to believe that Zaydis consider those who do not believe in the wilayat to be kuffar.
The only logical conclusion would be that our imam ar-Rassi (as) meant that those who reject the wilayat after being presented to them with clear and irrefutable proofs, this person will not have their deeds accepted. Even then, he does not say that they are kafir! He simply says that their deeds will not be accepted! This should not be difficult to accept because there are authentic narrations that say that those who hate Imam Ali and the Ahl al-Bayt will not have their deeds accepted. Please refer to our "Sublime Answers..." text.

2.) Your reasons for praying or refusing to pray behind a 12er is beside the point. We simply mentioned this point to disprove the view that refusing to pray behind a 12er is Zaydi extremism. Sunnis and Ibadis do not pray behind them either. We do not do so because of issues of tahaara.

3.) You artfully dodged our third point and did not disprove our thesis. Instead you mentioned what 12ers think about Imam Abu Hanifa (ra) and Zaydis! Once again your obsession to refute the 12ers has blinded your logic.

4.) Whether the members of Ahl al-Bayt (as) agreed or disagreed with each other is beside the point. No where in our translations or works do we say that they didnt disagree. If you refer to the "180 Issues" text of Imam ar-Rassi (as) you will see that he addresses the question as to what to do when the Ahl al-Bayt disagree.
We simply responded to you initial point that we do not see the followers of Ahl al-Bayt or Shia as infallible!
November 23, 2010 12:55 AM
Imam Rassi said...
5.) You avoided our fifth point as well by introducing Ibn Abbass and Mu'ta. Your statement falsely assumes that all muhaddithun are in agreement with what you claim concerning Ibn Abbass legitimizing mu'ta. You may find 12er and sunni narrations but that doesnt mean that Zaydi narrations are in agreement with them.
Furthermore, you arrogantly "challenge" Zaydi hadith scholars to dispute when you dont have knowledge of Arabic, access to Zaydi ahadith, nor knowledge of usul al-hadith! SubhanaAllah!
Then, you say that we said that Imam Ali (as) and Ibn Abbass never disagreed with each other! We never said this.

Brother, it seems as though you did not take heed to our sincere appeal to you in our second message! Your false assumptions, contrived dodging of issues, and desire to talk rather than listen has once again veiled your intellect. Please reread it with an open heart and mind!

And Allah knows best!

November 23, 2010 1:43 AM
ProAhlulBayt1 said...
Brother IRS:
I did not dodge the 3rd point, I said using the 12r books as proof for Imam Jafar as Sadiq (as) is not proof. As for Ismailis their fiqh is a copy and paste from the Zaydis.

As for the issue on muta, I didn't say I will try to prove the Zaydi muhadith wrong. I simply wish to see how he would dismisses the issue on muta for ibn Abbas (ra). Its seems like there are no English speaking Zaydi scholars yet.

Anyway, Jazakallah for your reply. I re-read what you wrote for point number 1. I am sorry if I offended you. Even though I don't agree with all your views, I still see you as a superior brother who is here to guide me.
November 23, 2010 3:58 PM