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MuhammedAli

’Every Innovation Is Misguidance’ And Not ‘Every Reprehensible Innovation Is Misguidance’.

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Salam Alayqum

In your following article;
‘Refuting Heretical Argument - Innovated Practices Are Innovations …’, under the heading following heading: ‘1.3 - Reprehensible Innovations Are Misguidance.’, you presented following Ahadith - every newly invented matter/affair is innovation and every innovation is misguidance: “And the most evil affairs are the innovations; and every innovation is misguidance." [Ref: Muslim, B4, H1885] “Avoid novelties, every novelty is an innovation and every innovation is misguidance." [Ref: Abu Dawood, B40, H4590] Anyone who reads these two Ahadith would note; the content of these to Ahadith belies your heading. Also the following Hadith records clearly states every innovation is misguidance even if people see good in it: “Abdullaah Ibn 'Umar (radiallah ta'ala anhu) said, "Every innovation is misguidance, even if the people see it as something good." [Ref: Darimi, B1, H96, Urdu Version] Clearly these Ahadith mean to say ‘every innovation is misguidance’ and not ‘every reprehensible innovation is misguidance’. There is no proof for your Takhsees and you should fear Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala). You’re distorting the words of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) to misguide people.

Saeed Imtiaz

The Evidence For Takhsees and Explaining The Evidence Of Takhsees:

First of all the evidence on which Takhsees was made based was quoted in following section: 1.2 - Prophetic Criterion Of Determining A [Reprehensible] Innovation.’ Unfortunately you did not contemplate on the previous section or at least not deep enough hence you did not realize the evidence. Assuming you did read the following Hadith but ignored it: “Whoever introduces an evil Sunnah that is followed after him, will bear the burden of sin for that and the equivalent of their burden of sin, without that detracting from their burden in the slightest.” [Ref: Ibn Majah, B1, H207] In the quoted Hadith word Sunnah has been used to mean innovation. Also the following Hadith was quoted: "And whoever introduces an erroneous Biddah with which Allah is not pleased nor His Messenger then he shall receive sins similar to whoever acts upon it without that diminishing anything from the sins of the people.” [Ref: Tirmadhi, B29, H2677] This part of the Hadith: “…whoever introduces an erroneous Biddah …” is evidence for Takhsees of reprehensible innovation and the following part goes on to educate how to recognize a erroneous innovation: ”… with which Allah is not pleased nor His Messenger …” In other words the Hadith of Tirmadhi and the words of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) establish; concept of reprehensible innovation is valid and it was due to it Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) pointed how reprehensible innovation is to be recognized – i.e. which does not please Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) and Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) and Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) are pleased with acts which involve, worship, charity, encouraging good and forbidding wrong, hence anything composed of these cannot be reprehensible innovation. Coming back to the subject, the words: “… with which Allah is not pleased nor His Messenger …” are extra addition and are not fundamental part of Hadith. At the fundamental level the Hadith is stating: "And whoever introduces an erroneous Biddah then he shall receive sins similar to whoever acts upon it without that diminishing anything from the sins of the people.” This is in accordance with Hadith of Ibn Majah already quoted and in also with the following:  “And whoever introduces a bad Sunnah that is followed, he will receive its sin and a burden of sin equivalent to that of those who follow it, without that detracting from their burden in the slightest.'" [Ref: Ibn Majah, B1, H203] Hence it is correct to conclude; religiously the concept of reprehensible innovation is valid.

‘Every Innovation’ In Context Of ‘Whoever Introduces An Erroneous Innovation’:

It is narrated that Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) said: "And whoever introduces an erroneous Biddah … then he shall receive sins similar to whoever acts upon it without that diminishing anything from the sins of the people.” [Ref: Tirmadhi, B29, H2677] According to this Hadith it is clearly established; according to Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) erroneous/reprehensible innovation is sinful and not just any/every innovation and reprehensible innovation is one which does not please Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) and Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). Hence it is only correct to interpret the words of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) according to his own words and based on this correct understanding of Ahadith you quoted would be: “And the most evil affairs are the [erroneous] innovations; and every [erroneous] innovation is misguidance." [Ref: Muslim, B4, H1885] The Hadith of avoiding novelties is to be understood with similar insertion: “Avoid [erroneous] novelties, every [erroneous] novelty is an [erroneous] innovation and every [erroneous] innovation is misguidance." [Ref: Abu Dawood, B40, H4590] Coming to the Hadith of Abdullah Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) in which he is reported to have said, every innovation is misguidance even if the people see good in the innovation, this Hadith should be understood exactly the same way: “Abdullah Ibn Umar said, "Every [erroneous] innovation is misguidance, even if the people see it as something good ." [Ref: Darimi, B1, H96, Urdu Version]

Conclusion:

The Ahadith of every innovation are about reprehensible innovation and reprehensible innovation is innovation which does not please Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) and such innovation is misguidance and sinful and therefore it should be avoided and remains misguidance even if people see good in it. The position of Ahle Sunnat is established from Ahadith which has been explained in detail.

Wama alayna ilal balaghul mubeen.
Muhammed Ali Razavi

Edited by MuhammedAli

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