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Khariji Excuse: Ibn Umar (radiallah ta'ala anhu) Contradicts The Messenger (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was'sallam), Is Against The Jammah, And Is Not Caliph Therefore We Are Under No Obligation To Follow Him On Good Innovations.

Introduction:


Muslims believe Islam permits good innovations and has provisions via which a good innovation can be deemed part of Islam. In opposition to Islamic teaching the Khawarij believe based on absolute literalism of Ahadith; Islam completely and absolutely prohibits every type of innovation. Muslims believe the Prophetic words do not mean every innovation in absolute sense but every innovation has been contextualized to every innovation which is not composed of what Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) has taught. Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) has said; one who invents a matter which is not ours is rejected, and this Hadith is explained by another; one who [invents an] actions which is not ours is rejected. And in Ahadith of Ibn Majah and Tirmadhi such innovations are termed as erroneous innovations. In other words, every erroneous innovation is misguidance and every innovation which is not composed of Prophetic Sunnahs but invented ways of worship, charity, is misguidance. Muslims negate the absolute literalism of Prophetic words by interpreting his words by other Ahadith. Where as the opponents of Islam hold to literalism of some Ahadith while ignoring, or distorting understanding of those words of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) which refute their understanding.

0.0 - Background To Discussion Which Resulted This Article:

In an attempt to discredit Islamic teaching a Khariji student of knowledge contacted me and sought evidence which establishes Islamic position. In response I quoted him Hadith of Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) where he is reported to have said; Salat ad-Duha is good/fine innovation with related Ahadith. With it presented following argument which now has been published as an article, here. He attempted to disregard the meaning of statement by arguing; Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) intended good innovation in linguistic sense. Note the material he quoted was written by members AhlalHdeeth forum. His claim was rebutted with sound arguments and the rebuttal lead me to use the material to write following two articles, here and here. Then he invented a novel argument; Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) believed Salat ad-Duha was Prophetic Sunnah hence his statement is to be interpreted linguistic sense. This argument was soundly responded to and later was published as following article, here. Instead of responding to material in these articles he made excuse that content is excessively long and he would prefer something brief. And I am of opinion this was just a ploy because he could not reason against the arguments presented. But anyway to accommodate his request, material reproduced in following section was sent emailed to him. In response to which he presented four arguments.

0.1 - Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) On Salat ad-Duha:

Hadith establishes Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) did not perform Salat ad-Duha because he believed Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) and first two Caliphs did not perform Salat ad-Duha: “Narrated Muwarriq: I asked Ibn `Umar "Do you offer the Duha prayer?" He replied in the negative. I further asked, "Did `Umar use to pray it?" He (Ibn `Umar) replied in the negative. I again asked, "Did Abu Bakr use to pray it?" He replied in the negative. I again asked, "Did the Prophet use to pray it?" Ibn `Umar replied, "I don't think he did." [Ref: Bukhari, B21, H27] In other words he deemed Salat ad-Duha to be an innovation hence he did not perform it. And this is apparent from following Ahadith: “… and found 'Abdullah b. 'Umar sitting near the apartment of A'ishah and the people were observing the forenoon prayer. We asked him about their prayer, and he said: It is an innovation.” [Ref: Muslim, B7, H2883] “…and some people were offering the Duha prayer. We asked him about their prayer and he replied that it was an innovation." [Ref: Bukhari, B27, H4] He deemed it innovation but the type of innovation is established from following Hadith: “Ibn Ulayyah narrated to us, Jarir narrated, al-Hakim bin A'raj narrated; I asked Muhammad about Salat ad-Duha, while he was sitting near the house of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). He said: It is an innovation and what a fine innovation it is!" [Ref: Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah, Kitab Of Prayer – Salat ad-Duha, H3] In addition he also is reported to have said:  "Narrated Muamar, narrated al-Zuhri, narrated [by Ibn Umar’s son] Sa'lim, [that his father] Ibn Umar said: At the time Uthman was killed no-one considered it desirable and the people did not innovate anything that is dearer to me than that prayer." [Ref: Musannaf Abd ar-Razzaq, Book Of Salat (No.2), Chapter al-Duha, H4868] This establishes he deemed Salat ad-Duha as a good innovation in Islam. And Ahadith of good innovation also establishes that Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) believed the following words of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) are not to be understood in literal sense: “And the most evil affairs are the innovations; and every innovation is misguidance." [Ref: Muslim, B4, H1885] In light of his statement of holding an innovation dear and terming it good/fine innovation it would be safe to conclude he believed only some innovations are misguidance, or every innovation composed of specific type of actions is misguidance.

0.2 - Summarized Version Of Four Arguments:

i) Abdullah Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) is reported to have said: Every innovation is misguidance even if people deem it to be good. In context of this statement the Hadith, Salat ad-Duha is good/fine innovation, cannot lead to conclusion that he believed Islam allows good innovations. And this leads to natural conclusion that he believed Salat ad-Duha being good/fine innovation in linguistic sense. ii) Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) said Salat ad-Duha is good innovation yet Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is reported to have said, every innovation is misguidance and every innovation takes to fire. And where a companion contradicts to words of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) he is not to be obeyed. iii) Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) instructed the Muslims to follow the Jammah. Ibn Umar’s (radiallah ta’ala anhu) had a opinion which did not agree with the Jammah of companions and therefore he is not to be followed in his understanding. iv) Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) instructed the Muslims to follow his Sunnah and Sunnah of rightly guided Caliphs. Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) was not a rightly guided Khalifah of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) hence we have no obligation to follow him.[1]

0.3 - Some Information Regarding Islamic Response To Khariji:

Third argument is connected about what the Jammah of Sahabah believed about innovation and fourth is connected with rightly guided Caliphs. To properly respond to third argument evidence has to be quoted and most of it is connected with fourth argument. Hence third will be addressed first then fourth. Argument two is based on Prophetic words and meaning of these words needs to be explained. This explanation would help better understand, every innovation is misguidance even if people deem them to be good, and this explanation will further be employed to respond first argument. The response could also have been structured, second followed by first argument, and third followed by fourth argument. But it was felt better structuring would be to end with explanation of Ibn Umar’s (radiallah ta’ala anhu) statement so it freshest in memory of readers. There is no ulterior motive nor this structuring was adopted to serve any nefarious objective.


1.0 - Third Argument: Ibn Umar Is Against The Jammah:

Third argument is as follows: ‘Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) instructed the Muslims to follow the Jammah. Ibn Umar’s (radiallah ta’ala anhu) had a opinion which did not agree with the Jammah of companions and therefore he is not to be followed in his understanding.’ For the benefit of the uninitiated the key part of third argument needs to be explained. Please rectify me if I have made mistake in presenting your position and if you do not I will continue as I understood your content.[2] By saying Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) had opinion which did not agree with the Jammah of companions. You meant Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) believed and held to opinion; innovations in Islam are good. And according to you Ibn Umar’s this belief/opinion did not agree with the Jammah of companions. And teaching of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is to follow the Jammah therefore Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) is not to be followed.

1.1 - Prophet Of Allah Said Follow Majority Of The Jammah:

Firstly, Indeed Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) instructed the Muslims to follow the Jammah. It is reported that Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) has said: “Abu Dhār (Allah be pleased with him) reported from the Prophet (Peace be upon him) that, “Two are better than one, and three better than two; so stick to the Jama'ah for verily Allah, Most Great and Glorious, will only unite my Ummah on guidance." [Ref: M.I.Ahmad, Al-Ansar, Abu Zar Al Ghaffari, H20776] Hadith denotes that Jammah is of majority and this meaning is established from the following Hadith: “Anas bin Malik said: “I heard the Messenger of Allah say: ‘My Ummah will not unite on misguidance, so if you see them differing,  follow the great majority.’” [Ref: Ibn Majah, B36, H3950] So following the majority (i.e. the Jammah) on matters which the Muslims have differed is teaching of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam).

1.2 - The Burden Of Evidence Is Upon The Claimant:

You stated Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) went against the understanding of the Jammah for believing in good/fine innovation concept. Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is reported to have said: “’On the authority of Ibn Abbas; the Messenger of Allah said: Were people to be given everything that they claimed, men would (unjustly) claim the wealth and lives of (other) people. But the onus of proof is upon the claimant and the taking of an oath is upon him who denies. A Hassan hadith narrated by al-Baihaqee and others in this form, and part of it is in the two Sahih.” [Ref: Forty Ahadith – Nawavi, Hadith 33] According to all rational beings and words of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) you’re under the burden to substantiate your claim. And to do this you must provide evidence which establishes the position of majority of companions and then explain how Ibn Umar’s (radiallah ta’ala anhu) belief contradicts the belief and teaching of majority of companions.

1.3 - Priority Of Prophetic Sunnah And Understanding Of Jammah:

It is beyond capacity of my research to compile account of what the Jammah of companions believed regarding innovation and it may not even be possible to manage such a feet due to lack of recorded evidence. There is little evidence to establish that the companions believed in Islamic understanding of innovation and not of Khawarij but this evidence is connected with your fourth argument and its response hence it will be properly discussed there, see sections 2.1 to 2.3. It should be clear; Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) instructed the Muslims to follow his Sunnah and Sunnah of rightly guided Caliphs and evidence of it as follows: “After I am gone, you will see great conflict. I urge you to adhere to my Sunnah and the path of the Rightly-Guided Caliphs, and cling stubbornly to it.” [Ref: Ibn Majah, B1, H44] “Whoever among you lives will see great conflict. I urge you to adhere to what you know of my Sunnah and the path of the Rightly-Guided Caliphs, and cling stubbornly to it.” [Ref: Ibn Majah, B1, H43] This establishes adhering to his Sunnah is priority and then Sunnahs of rightly guided Caliphs and similarly Prophetic teachings supersede. And if there was absence of Prophetic teaching on subject of innovation then we are obliged to look into what Sahabah, Tabi’een, … taught and this is not the case. Also note Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) instructed the Sahabah/Muslims to adhere to Jammah and the majority of Jammah. Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) did not instruct; the later generations are to adhere to majority teaching of companions. Nor we were instructed to find out what the majority of Sahabah taught. The majority referred in the Ahadith is of era in which Muslim finds himself. In other words in time of Sahabah if a Muslims disputed they were to find majority opinion of Sahabah of RasoolAllah (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). During the time of Tabi’een the majority was of Tabi’een. In other words if a dispute originated the Tabi’een were instructed to adhere to majority understanding of Tabi’een. In each era the majority of scholarship is to be followed hence there is no obligation upon me to find the verdict of majority of companions. And we both know the what the majority of Islamic scholarship believed in past about the subject of innovation and continues to believe. The area where Khawarij compose majority is of Najd. Apart from Najd in all Arabia especially Hijaz the Khawarij of Shaykh Muhammad Bin Abdul Wahhab are a minority. And this context even to contemplate a majority outside Arabia would be insult to an intelligent mans intellect. The Muslims were instructed to adhere to majority by Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) because majority would be upon Minhaj of the Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). The majority Minhaj of Sahabah by Allah has been transmitted to Muslims and majority is upon their Minhaj. And the Minhaj of majority of Sahabah was and is established upon earth because their religion was to succeed. The burden of proof is upon me. Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) promised the companions succession: “Allah has promised those who have believed among you and done righteous deeds that He will surely grant them succession [to authority] upon the earth just as He granted it to those before them …” Then Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) states, the religion of Islam in which they have believed will be established on earth as part of succession of their Islam: ”… and that He will surely establish for them [therein] their religion which He has preferred for them and that He will surely substitute for them, after their fear, security …” [Ref: 24:55] And surely Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) established their religion and their beliefs upon earth just as he promised them but you choose to disbelieve.

1.4 - Ibn Umar’s Words Are Founded On Prophetic Teaching:

Ibn Umar’s (radiallah ta’ala anhu) words have backing of Prophetic teaching. Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) has stated, whosoever introduces good Sunnah in and those who adhere to his good/righteous Sunnah will be equally rewarded: “Messenger of Allah said: "Whoever starts a سُنَّةَ خَيْرٍ  (i.e. good Sunnah) which is followed, then for him is a reward, and the likes of their rewards of whoever follows him, there being nothing diminished from their rewards." [Ref: Tirmadhi, B39, H2675] "Jarir b. 'Abdullah reported Allah's Messenger as saying: The servant does not introduce سُنَّةً صَالِحَةً  (i.e. righteous Sunnah) which is followed after him. The rest of the hadith is the same." [Ref: Muslim, B34, H6468] In Sahih of Imam Muslim it is explicitly that introducing good Sunnahs in Islam will be rewarded: “He who introduces a فِي الإِسْلاَمِ سُنَّةً حَسَنَةً  (i.e. good Sunnah in Islam), there is a reward for him for this and reward of that also who acted according to it subsequently, without any deduction from their rewards …” [Ref: Muslim, B34, H6466] Something which is already part of Islam cannot be re-introduced into Islam by an Ummati of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). In Hadith Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) tells of reward for introducing a good Sunnah into Islam. Indicating the reward is for a Sunnah which is not already part of Islam. Innovation is something which not part of Islam but is made part of Islam and that is precisely the established meaning of Ahadith of good/righteous Sunnah. Due to this we Muslims believe Hadith establishes permissibility and reward for introducing innovated good Sunnahs into Islam. And once again I quote his statement: “… while he was sitting near the house of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). He said: It is an innovation and what a fine innovation it is!" [Ref: Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah, Kitab Of Prayer – Salat ad-Duha, H3] This establishes Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) believed Islam allows good innovations to be made part of it. Ibn Umar’s (radiallah ta’ala anhu) understanding that Salat ad-Duha is good/fine innovation is obviously incorrect but on basis of which he judged it to be an good/fine innovation is correct and it is corroborated by words of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam).

1.5 - Establishing The Evidence And Delivering The Warning:

My brother you could not respond to the potent arguments establishing Islamic understanding therefore you schemed you will absolve your self from responsibility of answering to evidence by claiming my articles are excessive in length. Remember you will be answerable to my Lord and your Lord if message has been understood by you and you disbelieved in it. Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) states: “Indeed, those who disbelieved and averted [people] from the path of Allah and opposed the Messenger after guidance had become clear to them - never will they harm Allah at all, and He will render worthless their deeds.” [Ref: 47:32] Now when it has become evident to you that Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) has taught there is reward for innovated good Sunnahs for the one who inovates it and those who engage in the practice. Then one who claims to be a Muslim should also take note of what Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) has stated in following verse: O you who have believed, obey Allah and obey the Messenger and those in authority among you. And if you disagree over anything, refer it to Allah and the Messenger ...” [Ref: 4:59] In another verse Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) states: And whatever the Messenger has given you - take; and what he has forbidden you - refrain from. And fear Allah; indeed, Allah is severe in penalty." [Ref: 59:7] And here invite you to refer to the Messenger (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) who gave us following teaching: “He who introduces a فِي الإِسْلاَمِ سُنَّةً حَسَنَةً  (i.e. good Sunnah in Islam), there is a reward for him for this and reward of that also who acted according to it subsequently, without any deduction from their rewards …” [Ref: Muslim, B34, H6466] It is evident good innovated Sunnahs by a Muslim will bring reward to him and those who follow his example. Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) has stated: “But no, by your Lord, they will not [truly] believe until they make you [O Muhammad] judge concerning that over which they dispute among themselves and then find within themselves no discomfort from what you have judged and completely submit [to your decision].” [Ref: 4:65] And if you truly believed in the Messenger of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala), and obey him as he is to be obeyed, and not prefer over him the friends of Shaytan you will come to believe like Muslims believe. And know those who obey Allah’s Messenger (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) truly they are successful in here and hereafter and among the companions of Paradise: “And whoever obeys Allah and the Messenger - those will be with the ones upon whom Allah has bestowed favor of the prophets, the steadfast affirmers of truth, the martyrs and the righteous. And excellent are those as companions.” [Ref: 4:69] Regarding the Munafiqeen Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) has stated: “And when it is said to them, "Come to what Allah has revealed and to the Messenger," you see the hypocrites turning away from you in aversion.” [Ref: 4:61] Do not turn away from guidance of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). If you claim to be a Muslim then make no excuses but believe Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). And believe he made provision in Islam for innovated good Sunnahs to be made part of Islam. Otherwise take note of what Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) has stated regarding those who oppose Allah’s Messenger (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam): And whoever opposes the Messenger after guidance has become clear to him and follows other than the way of the believers - We will give him what he has taken and drive him into Hell, and evil it is as a destination.“ [Ref: 4:115]

2.0 - Fourth Argument: Ibn Umar Is Not Rightly Guided Caliph:

“Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) instructed the Muslims to follow his Sunnah and Sunnah of rightly guided Caliphs. Ibn Umar was not a rightly guided Khalifah of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) hence we have no obligation to follow him.”

2.1 - Prophetic Command To Adhere To Rightly Guided Caliphs:

Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is reported to have said: “After I am gone, you will see great conflict. I urge you to adhere to my Sunnah and the Sunnah of the Rightly-Guided Caliphs, and cling stubbornly to it. And beware of newly-invented matters, for every innovation is a going astray.'" [Ref: Ibn Majah, B1, H42] “I enjoin you to fear Allah, and to hear and obey even if it be an Abyssinian slave, for those of you who live after me will see great disagreement. You must then follow my Sunnah and Sunnah of the rightly-guided caliphs. [Ref: Abu Dawud, B41, H4590] Hadith states a Muslim is to follow Sunnah of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) and the Sunnah of rightly guided caliphs. This indicates there are two sources of Sunnah according to this Hadith - Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) and the rightly guided Caliphs. Some argue Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) intended to say; follow my Sunnahs and my Sunnahs which my Caliphs follow. We Muslims say, if Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) intended this he would have expressed it clearly. The words clearly indicate what he intended. First Sunnah is Sunnah of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) and the Sunnah of rightly guided Caliphs is innovated good Sunnah evidence of which is in the following Ahadith: He who sets a good Sunnah in Islam, there is a reward for him for this and reward of that also who acted according to it subsequently, without any deduction from their rewards ...” [Ref: Muslim, B5, H2219] “The Messenger of Allah said: 'Whoever sets a سُنَّةً حَسَنَةً (i.e. good precedent) in Islam, he will have the reward for that, and the reward of those who acted in accordance with it, without that detracting from their reward in the slightest.” [Ref: Nisa’i, B23, H2555] Establishing that Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) sanctioned the Muslims to follow good Sunnahs which the rightly guided Caliphs would innovate after him.

2.2 - Umar, Abu Bakr, And Zaid On Sunnah Khayr:

Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is reported to have said:  "Jarir b. 'Abdullah reported Allah's Messenger as saying: The servant does not introduce سُنَّةً صَالِحَةً  (i.e. righteous Sunnah) which is followed after him. The rest of the hadith is the same." [Ref: Muslim, B34, H6468] Another version of same hadith has words: “The Messenger of Allah said: 'Whoever sets a سُنَّةً حَسَنَةً (i.e. good precedent) in Islam, he will have the reward for that, and the reward of those who acted in accordance with it, without that detracting from their reward in the slightest.” [Ref: Nisa’i, B23, H2555] Yet another version of same Hadith words Sunnah Khayr are used: “Messenger of Allah said: "Whoever starts a سُنَّةَ خَيْرٍ (i.e. good Sunnah) which is followed, then for him is a reward, and the likes of their rewards of whoever follows him, there being nothing diminished from their rewards." [Ref: Tirmadhi, B39, H2675] Same word was used by Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) when he attempted to convince the first Caliph Abu Bakr (radiallah ta’ala anhu) to compile the Quran in book format: “I said to `Umar, "How can you do something which Allah's Apostle did not do?" `Umar said: هُوَ وَاللَّهِ خَيْرٌ. (i.e. By Allah, this is good.) Umar kept on urging me to accept his proposal till Allah opened my chest for it and I began to realize the good in the idea which `Umar had realized." And Abu Bakr called Zaid to ask him to compile Quran and he like Abu Bakr (radiallah ta’ala anhu) refused but it was said to him: “Zaid further said: By Allah, if Abu Bakr had ordered me to shift a mountain among the mountains from one place to another it would not have been heavier for me than this ordering me to collect the Qur'an. Then I said (to `Umar and Abu Bakr), "How can you do something which Allah's Messenger did not do?" Abu Bakr said, هُوَ وَاللَّهِ خَيْرٌ (i.e. By Allah, it is beneficial.)”[3] [Ref: Bukhari, B61, H509] Note they said, by Allah it is beneficial/good [Sunnah]. They did not explicitly use the word Sunnah because when something is already known to a person then it is common to hint toward it to direct attention what is known to person.[4] This leads to conclusion at the very minimum two Caliphs and companion believed there is reward for innovated good (i.e. Khayr) Sunnahs. And on basis of following Hadith and its explanation in section 4.1 Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud also can be included into list of companions who believed good innovated Sunnahs have room in Islam: “Thus He made them into the ministers of His Prophet, fighting for the sake of His religion. And whatever the Muslims view as good is good in the sight of Allah, and whatever they view as evil is evil in the sight of Allah. And the Companions unanimously chose to take Abû Bakr – Allah be pleased with him – as the successor (to lead the Muslims after the Prophet).”[5] [Ref: Musnad Ahmad, Mukthireen, Ibn Mas’ud, H3589]

2.3 - Abdullah The Son Of Umar Bin al-Khattab, The Rightly Guided Caliph:

You stated you’re under no obligation to follow the Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) because he is not from rightly guided Caliphs. Please note, Abdullah the son of Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) is actually upon the Minhaj of his father, who happens to be the second rightly guided Caliph. Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) is reported to have said regarding performing of Salat at-Taraweeh: “On that, 'Umar remarked نِعْمَتِ الْبِدْعَةُ هَذِهِ  (i.e. what an excellent innovation this is) but the prayer which they do not perform, but sleep at its time is better than the one they are offering.” [Ref: Bukhari, B32, H227] And if same understanding is applied on statement of Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) which was applied upon the statement of Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) it would be equally valid. And importantly from following statement we can deduce Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) based his belief about good Biddahs/Sunnahs based on understanding of his father: “… while he was sitting near the house of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). He said: فقال بدعة ونعمت البدعة  (i.e. It is an innovation and what a fine innovation it is!)" [Ref: Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah, Kitab Of Prayer – Salat ad-Duha, H3] Therefore you’re under the strict command of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) to follow the teaching of Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) and of Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) because he merely is reflecting understanding of his father with regards to Islam recognising good innovations. In addition, the companions mentioned in previous section and Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) are upon teaching of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) because he established permissibility and reward for those one who innovates good Sunnahs: “The Messenger of Allah said: 'Whoever sets a سُنَّةً حَسَنَةً (i.e. good precedent) in Islam, he will have the reward for that, and the reward of those who acted in accordance with it, without that detracting from their reward in the slightest.” [Ref: Nisa’i, B23, H2555] To believe Islam permits innovating good Sunnahs and there is reward for them is the Sunnah of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam), and at minimum Sunnah of two rightly guided Caliphs and two prominent companions. And if you reject this you have rejected guidance for deviation of the disbelievers of East.

3.0 - Second Argument: Ibn Umar Against Prophetic Teaching, Not To Be Obeyed:

“Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) said Salat ad-Duha is good innovation yet Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is reported to have said, every innovation is misguidance and every innovation takes to fire. And where a companion contradicts to words of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) he is not to be obeyed.”

3.1 - Contradicting The Absolute Literalism Of Said Hadith:

Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is reported to have said: “And the most evil affairs are the innovations; and every innovation is misguidance." [Ref: Muslim, B4, H1885] Absolute literalism of Hadith is contradicted by Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) in following Hadith: “… while he was sitting near the house of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). He said: فقال بدعة ونعمت البدعة  (i.e. It is an innovation and what a fine innovation it is!)" [Ref: Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah, Kitab Of Prayer – Salat ad-Duha, H3] Do note Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) is merely repeating teaching of his father. And Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) is rightly guided Caliph whose Sunnah is to be followed as per instruction of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) would only give instruction to adhere to Sunnah of rightly guided Caliphs when he was confident that they not deviate or believe contrary to his teachings. In this context we have clear statement of rightly guided Caliph which indicates he believed innovations can be good: “On that, 'Umar remarked نِعْمَتِ الْبِدْعَةُ هَذِهِ  (i.e. what an excellent innovation this is) but the prayer which they do not perform, but sleep at its time is better than the one they are offering.” [Ref: Bukhari, B32, H227] This indicates Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) and his son did not believe word every/qullu used in Hadith is encompassing absolutely every type of innovation. They both believed every/qullu is inclusive of some types and exclusive of other innovations.

3.2 - Every Erroneous Innovation Is Misguidance:

Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is reported to have said: “And whoever sets an evil Sunnah in Islam, he will have a burden of sin for that, and the burden of those who acted in accordance with it, without that detracting from their burden in the slightest.” [Ref: Nisa’i, B23, H2555] Meaning of introducing evil Sunnah in Islam is best understood from Hadith of son of Adam (alayhis salam). Son of Prophet Adam (alayhis salam) was first person to start the innovated evil Sunnah of murder: “Narrated Abdullah: Allah's Messenger said, "Whenever a person is murdered unjustly, there is a share from the burden of the crime on the first son of Adam for he was the first to start the Sunnah (i.e. Tradition) of murdering." [Ref: Bukhari, B55, H552] Innovation is something which is without precedent. Son of Prophet Adam (alayhis salam) was the first person to start evil Sunnah of murder and this indicates he innovated an evil Sunnah. Note meaning of Hadith of evil Sunnah is in agreement with the following Hadith: “Whoever starts an innovation with which Allah and his Messenger are not pleased, he will have a (burden of) sin equivalent to that of …” [Ref: Ibn Majah, B1, H210] And this establishes meaning of Hadith 2555 and Hadith 210 is same. And evil Sunnah is in meaning of evil innovation/precedent and this meaning is also in agreement with following Hadith: "And whoever introduces a بِدْعَةَ ضَلاَلَةٍ  (i.e. erroneous innovation) 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] Alhasil Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) regarding evil/misguiding innovated Sunnahs, or in other words evil/misguiding innovations said: “Avoid novelties, every novelty is an innovation, and every innovation is misguidance." [Ref: Abu Dawood, B40, H4590]

3.3 - Content Of Which Evil Innovation Is Composed Of:


It has been determined that absolutely every innovation is not intended meaning of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) but every innovation which is erroneous/misguiding innovation is to be avoided. This evil innovation is composed of actions which are not in accordance with Prophetic Sunnah: “Narrated Aisha: “Allah's Messenger said: "One who innovates something in this matter of ours that is not of it, will have it rejected.” [Ref: Bukhari, B49, H861] All of them could be combined in one house; and then said: 'A'isha informed me that Allah's Messenger said: He who acted any action not from our affair that is rejected. [Ref: Muslim, B18, H4267] In other words, evil innovation is; an innovation which is not composed of Prophetic Sunnahs but it is composed of those acts of worship and charity etc … which Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) has not taught nor they are in agreement with spirit of Islam. Alhasil evil/misguiding innovation is; an innovation which is composed of such rejected actions.

3.4 - Umar and Ibn Umar To Be Obeyed Or Disobeyed:

Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) and his son Abdullah Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) have made their statements on basis that they believed Islam allows introduction of good innovation/precedents to be made part of it. And evidence establishes that Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) indeed told of reward for introducing good innovations/precedents into Islam. And his telling of reward is proof for permissibility of introducing innovated good Sunnahs in Islam. Hence both these companions are to be obeyed because they reflect in their own words Prophetic teachings. And there remains no objection to obeying them because it has become evident every/qullu innovation is not encompassing absolutely every innovation but erroneous/misguiding innovation. And qullu/every is inclusive of that which is composed of innovated forms of worships, charity etc … and not of those forms of worship, charity etc which are established from Prophetic Sunnah. And after this any who holds grudge against them or deems them upon misguidance is surely enemy of best of Ummah raised from mankind.

4.0 - First Argument: All Innovation Misguidance, Fine Innovation, Was In Linguistic Sense:

“Abdullah Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) is reported to have said: Every innovation is misguidance even if people deem it to be good. In context of this statement the Hadith, Salat ad-Duha is good/fine innovation, cannot lead to conclusion that he believed Islam allows good innovations. And this leads to natural conclusion that he believed Salat ad-Duha being good/fine innovation in linguistic sense.”

4.1 - Ibn Umar Commenting On Ibn Mas’ud’s Statement:

Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud is reported to have said: “Thus He made them into the ministers of His Prophet, fighting for the sake of His religion. And whatever the Muslims view as good is good in the sight of Allah, and whatever they view as evil is evil in the sight of Allah. And the Companions unanimously chose to take Abû Bakr – Allâh be pleased with him – as the successor (to lead the Muslims after the Prophet).” [Ref: Musnad Ahmad, Mukthireen, Ibn Mas’ud, H3589] Ibn Mas’ud (radiallah ta’ala anhu) was in no position to have this information without Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) informing the companions. So it must be that he heard this from Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam), or at the very least derived from Prophetic teachings. Note in Prophet Muhammad’s (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) the good and bad have been defined and no Muslim has right to say that Prophetic Sunnah is good/bad. Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud’s (radiallah ta’ala anhu) statement is referring to innovated matters/practices which are innovated and require a judgment of Muslim [scholars qualified to judge and give verdict of good/bad]. And Ibn Umar’s (radiallah ta’ala anhu) considered Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud’s statement and said: “Abdullah 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] And Ibn Umar’s (radiallah ta’ala anhu) objective was to educate if rejected/erroneous innovations – as explained in section 3.1, 3.2, 3.3 and 3.4 - are deemed good they cannot be deemed good from perspective of Shari’ah.

4.2 - Ibn Umar’s Statement In Perspective Of Facts:

Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) is reported to have said: Salat ad-Duha is fine innovation. The basis of this statement is on two facts and these are, i) he believed Salat ad-Duha was an innovation, ii) he believed Islam allows creation and introduction of good innovations into itself.

4.3 - Ibn Umar’s Statement Is Corroborated:

His belief i) is established from the following Ahadith: “… and found 'Abdullah b. 'Umar sitting near the apartment of A'ishah and the people were observing the forenoon prayer. We asked him about their prayer, and he said: It is an innovation.” [Ref: Muslim, B7, H2883] “Ibn Ulayyah narrated to us, Jarir narrated, al-Hakim bin A'raj narrated; I asked Muhammad about Salat ad-Duha, while he was sitting near the house of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). He said: It is an innovation and what a fine innovation it is!" [Ref: Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah, Kitab Of Prayer – Salat ad-Duha, H3] Statement; what a fine innovation it is, its basis was explained and established in section 1.4, please also refer to it, or at the very least refer to it before reading section 4.6. We also know his belief stated indicated in ii) is corroborated by the words of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). He did indeed believe good innovated Sunnahs can be made part of Islam as following Hadith establishes: “He who introduces a فِي الإِسْلاَمِ سُنَّةً حَسَنَةً  (i.e. good Sunnah in Islam), there is a reward for him for this and reward of that also who acted according to it subsequently, without any deduction from their rewards …” [Ref: Muslim, B34, H6466] Due to this there is no reason to declare his statement to be linguistic innovation. Instead his both statements; what a fine innovation it is, and statement; every innovation is misguidance, should be interpreted in light of Prophetic teaching. Note following sections will explain the meaning of both statements.

4.4 - The Foundation Of Ibn Umar’s Statement And Its Implication:

Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) is reported to have said: “Abdullah 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] This statement is based on following Prophetic statements: “Avoid novelties, every novelty is an innovation, and every innovation is misguidance." [Ref: Abu Dawood, B40, H4590] “And the most evil affairs are the innovations; and every innovation is misguidance." [Ref: Muslim, B4, H1885] Ibn Umar’s (radiallah ta’ala anhu) employed Prophetic words in same meanings in which Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) used them. Therefore Ibn Umar’s (radiallah ta’ala anhu) statement, every innovation is misguidance, is to be interpreted in light of Prophet’s (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) teaching.

4.5 - Explanation Of Ibn Umar’s Statement In Light Of Prophetic Teaching:

Ahadith of Bukhari establish an innovated matter/action if it is not from or conform to Prophetic teaching then it is to be rejected as established from following Ahadith: “Narrated Aisha: “Allah's Messenger said: "One who innovates something in this matter of ours that is not of it, will have it rejected.” [Ref: Bukhari, B49, H861] All of them could be combined in one house; and then said: 'A'isha informed me that Allah's Messenger said: He who acted any action not from our affair that is rejected. [Ref: Muslim, B18, H4267] And such rejected innovated action/matter according to Hadith of Tirmadhi is erroneous innovation and Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) told of sin for the one who introduces erroneous innovation and for its actor: "And whoever introduces erroneous innovation (i.e. بِدْعَةَ) 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] In the context of rejected type of innovated action/matter and sinful erroneous innovation Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is reported to have said: “And the most evil affairs are the innovations; and every innovation is misguidance." [Ref: Muslim, B4, H1885] In other words the statement, every innovation is misguidance, is regarding those innovations which are composed of non-Prophetic Sunnahs/actions. Therefore Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) intended every innovation composed of actions/matters which are not sanctioned by Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is misguidance even if common people see them to be good: “Abdullah 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]

4.6 – Linguistic Innovation Or Shar’ri Innovation:

Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is reported to have said: “He who introduces a فِي الإِسْلاَمِ سُنَّةً حَسَنَةً  (i.e. good Sunnah in Islam), there is a reward for him for this and reward of that also who acted according to it subsequently, without any deduction from their rewards …” [Ref: Muslim, B34, H6466] And to introduces a good Sunnah into Islam is to introduce into Shari’ah which is not already part of it. Therefore good innovated Sunnah would be Shar’ri innovation because it is an innovation but is made part of Islam. When it is clearly established Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) legalised initiation of good innovated Sunnahs into Islam then we know following statement of Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) was not made in linguistic sense: “… while he was sitting near the house of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). He said: It is an innovation and what a fine innovation it is!" [Ref: Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah, Kitab Of Prayer – Salat ad-Duha, H3] But he judged Salat ad-Duha as fine/good innovation in Islamic/Shar’ri sense with belief it is good innovated Sunnah introduced into Islam in light of Shari’ah. Hence he believed Salat ad-Duha to be Shar’ri innovation, but a good Shar’ri innovated Sunnah.

Conclusion:

Ibn Umar’s (radiallah ta’ala anhu) statement; every innovation is misguidance even if people deem it to be good, is to be understood in light of Prophetic statement; every novelty is innovation every innovation is misguidance. And meaning of Prophetic statement in light of Ahadith is; every innovation not composed of sanctioned Prophetic actions/matters is evil/rejected innovation. Meaning of Ibn Umar’s (radiallah ta’ala anhu) statement; it is an innovation and what a fine innovation it is, is also to be understood in context of Prophetic statement; anyone who initiates a good Sunnah in Islam and one who acts upon it both will be equally rewarded. Implication of which is Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) based his statement on Prophetic teachings and judged Salad ad-Duha to be a innovated good Sunnah in light of Shari’ah. And therefore Salat ad-Duha is good Shar’ri innovation/Sunnah in his belief.

Wama alayna ilal balaghul mubeen.
Muhammed Ali Razavi

Footnotes:

- [1] The first argument was separate, three remaining were connected. He said, Muslims are instructed to obey Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala), the Messenger (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam), the rightly guided Caliphs, and the Jammah. Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) is neither of these. Then he expanded this basis into last three arguments and I have presented summarized account of each.

- [2] He did not object to how I understood his statement indicating that I have conveyed the intended meaning of his statement.

- [3] “Narrated Zaid bin Thabit: Abu Bakr sent for me owing to the large number of casualties in the battle of Al-Yamama, while `Umar was sitting with him. Abu Bakr said: `Umar has come to me and said, 'A great number of Qaris of the Holy Qur'an were killed on the day of the battle of Al-Yamama, and I am afraid that the casualties among the Qaris of the Qur'an may increase on other battle-fields whereby a large part of the Qur'an may be lost. Therefore I consider it advisable that you should have the Qur'an collected.' I said, 'How dare I do something which Allah's Messenger did not do?’ Umar said: هُوَ وَاللَّهِ خَيْرٌ (i.e. By Allah, it is good). `Umar kept on pressing me for that till Allah opened my chest for that for which He had opened the chest of `Umar and I had in that matter, the same opinion as `Umar had." Abu Bakr then said to me (Zaid), "You are a wise young man and we do not have any suspicion about you, and you used to write the divine inspiration for Allah's Messenger. So you should search for the fragmentary scripts of the Qur'an and collect it (in one Book)." Zaid further said: By Allah, if Abu Bakr had ordered me to shift a mountain among the mountains from one place to another it would not have been heavier for me than this ordering me to collect the Qur'an. Then I said (to `Umar and Abu Bakr), "How can you do something which Allah's Messenger did not do?" Abu Bakr said, هُوَ وَاللَّهِ خَيْرٌ (i.e. By Allah, it is beneficial.) Zaid added: So he (Abu Bakr) kept on pressing me for that until Allah opened my chest for that for which He had opened the chests of Abu Bakr and `Umar, and I had in that matter, the same opinion as theirs. So I started compiling the Qur'an by collecting it from the leafless stalks of the date-palm tree and from the pieces of leather and hides and from the stones, and from the chests of men (who had memorized the Qur'an). I found the last verses of Sirat-at-Tauba: "Verily there has come unto you an Apostle (Muhammad) from amongst yourselves--' (9.128/129) from Khuza`ima or Abi Khuza`ima and I added to it the rest of the Surah. The manuscripts of the Qur'an remained with Abu Bakr till Allah took him unto Him. Then it remained with `Umar till Allah took him unto Him, and then with Hafsa bint `Umar.” [Ref: Bukhari, B89, H301]

- [4] “So We said, "Strike the slain man with part of it." Thus does Allah bring the dead to life, and He shows you His signs that you might reason. “ [Ref: 2:73] Take note of We, He, His, these words are referring to Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala). In this verse plural of majesty (i.e. We) and personal pronouns (i.e. He, His) they return to a being mentioned in the verse (i.e. Allah), or refer to being to be introduced to reader. Another example would be mentioning of Jibra’eel (alayhis salam) as Ruh ul Quds (i.e. pure spirit) in following verse: “(Recall  call the day) when Allah will say, "O Jesus, Son of Mary, remember My favour upon you and upon your mother when I supported you with the Pure spirit and you spoke to the people in the cradle and in maturity; and [remember] when I taught you writing and wisdom and the Torah and the Gospel; and when …” [Ref: 5:110] But in the following verse Jibra’eel (alayhis salam) is intended but is only mentioned as Ruh (i.e. spirit): “You will not find a people who believe in Allah and the Last Day having affection for those who oppose Allah and his Messenger, even if they were their fathers or their sons or their brothers or their kindred. Those - He has decreed within their hearts faith and supported them with spirit  from Him. And We will admit them to gardens beneath which rivers flow, wherein they abide eternally. Allah is pleased with them, and they are pleased with Him - those are the party of Allah. Unquestionably, the party of Allah - they are the successful.” [Ref: 58:22] One who is familiar with Quran will realise the spirit from Him is the pure spirit mentioned in another verse. Not everything is explicitly stated some times hints/pointers are used in sentences to identify the person or topic without explicitly saying it.

- [5] “Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud said, “Verily, Allah looked at the hearts of the servants and He found that the heart of Muhammad, was the best among them, so He choose him for Himself and He sent him with His message. Then He looked at the hearts of His servants after Muhammad, and He found that the hearts of his companions were the best among them. Thus He made them into the ministers of His Prophet, fighting for the sake of His religion. And whatever the Muslims view as good is good in the sight of Allah, and whatever they view as evil is evil in the sight of Allah. And the Companions unanimously chose to take Abû Bakr – Allâh be pleased with him – as the successor (to lead the Muslims after the Prophet).” [Ref: Musnad Ahmad, Mukthireen, Ibn Mas’ud, H3589]

Edited by MuhammedAli

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    • By MuhammedAli
      Introduction:

      Majority of Islamic scholarship holds to definition of innovation which recognises, good [Shar’ri] innovations and evil [Shar’ri] innovations. A minority holds to a definition which is simplistic. According to which everything termed as Shar’ri innovation is evil/sinful and misguiding. And all evidence in Ahadith which refutes this simple definition of innovation is glossed with Taweel: This statement was made in linguistic sense. Praise be to Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala), already an article was written refuting this poorly thought-out excuse, here. And it is a decisive argument against Khawarij. This article will address the linguistic innovation claim from different perspective. And also go on to establish the definition of innovation which Abdullah Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) held to. Simplistic, which is now championed by Khawarij of Najd, or comprehensive which is held by majority of Islamic scholarship.

      The Understanding Of Innovation By Majority Of Islamic Scholarship:

      Majority of Islamic scholarship believes in comprehensive definition of innovation according to which, any non-prophetic practice with Asal from Quran and Sunnah it is good innovation in sense of Shari’ah. And any non-prophetic practice which is without Asal from Quran and Sunnah is an evil innovation in sense of Shari’ah. And according to this majority an innovated practice with explicit or implicit Shar’ri evidence can be termed non-prophetic good Shar’ri Sunnah, or alternatively good Shar’ri innovation. And any innovated practice without explicit or implicit evidence from Quran and Sunnah, and composed of sinful activities can be termed non-prophetic evil Shar’ri Sunnah, or alternatively evil Shar’ri innovation. Note the words Shar’ri are dropped from usage when writing about Shar’ri innovations. Instead of good Shar’ri innovation words good innovation, or good Sunnah are used and same applies to evil Shar’ri innovation and evil Shar’ri Sunnah.

      Innovation According To Shaykh Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali (rahimullah alayhi ta’ala):

      Shaykh Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali (rahimullah) holds to simple definition of innovation. According to Shaykh Ibn Rajab (rahimullah alayhi ta’ala) innovation is; any practice, or activity, or custom, which without Asal (i.e. Foundation) of Shari’ah. In other words; any practice which is without Asal of Quran and Sunnah is [Shar’ri] innovation. In Shaykh Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali’s definition of innovation, anything which is termed/judged as ‘innovation’ or ‘Shar’ri innovation’ is unIslamic and sinful action or practice. And a ‘reprehensible innovation’ in definition of majority of Islamic scholarship. Also according to Shaykh Rajab’s definition any practice which is not Prophetic Sunnah but for it there is Asal (i.e. Foundation) in Shari’ah then it is not innovation but a Sunnah.

      Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) On Salat ad-Duha:

      In the following Hadith it is established; Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) was asked if Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was'sallam), Abu Bakr (radiallah ta’ala anhu), Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) performed Salat ad-Duha and he responded in negative: “I further asked, "Did `Umar use to pray it?" He (Ibn `Umar) replied in the negative. I again asked, "Did Abu Bakr use to pray it?" He replied in the negative. I again asked, "Did the Prophet use to pray it?" Ibn `Umar replied, "I don't think he did."  In the same Hadith Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) was asked if he performs Salat ad-Duha and he responded in negative: “Narrated Muwarriq: I asked Ibn `Umar "Do you offer the Duha prayer?" He replied in the negative.” [Ref: Bukhari, B21, H27] And this was because he deemed it innovation on the account, that he believed neither Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam), nor his first to Caliphs performed Salat ad-Duha. Of course this is implied from the Hadith but it is also established from clear text of following Hadith: “… and I entered the Mosque (of the Prophet) and saw Abdullah bin Umar sitting near the dwelling place of Aisha and some people were offering the Duha prayer. We asked him about their prayer and he replied that it was an innovation.” [Ref: Bukhari, B27, H4] About Salat ad-Duha he also said: "At the time Uthman was killed no-one considered it desirable and the people did not innovate anything that is dearer to me than that prayer." [Ref: Musannaf Abd Razzaq, Vol3, Pages 78/79] This establishes Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) considered Salat ad-Duha to be an innovation and a good innovation at that. And in following Hadith he deemed Salat ad-Duha to be a good innovation: "It is an innovation and what a fine innovation it is!" [Ref: Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaybah, Kitab Of Prayer – Salat ad-Duha, 3] This establishes the Islamic belief that companions accepted good innovations into Islam a belief which is challenged by proponents new brand of Kharijis. And they have attempted to protect their misguidance with innovative arguments and an example of which will follow.

      Shaykh Aymen And Salat ad-Duha Being Linguistic Innovation:

      Shaykh Aymen adheres to, and esteems Shaykh Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali’s (rahimullah alayhi ta’ala) definition of innovation, and judges the following statement of Abdullah Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) regarding Salat ad-Duha in its context: "It is an innovation and what a fine innovation it is!" Shaykh Aymen interpreted the statement of Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) and explained it as: “He did not know that the Prophet prayed it before. He approved it because it is a Nafliah like any other Nafila that is allowed to be prayed at anytime. He said it is Bida'a in its linguistisc meaning. Wallahu A'lam” [Ref: AhlalHdeeth, by Ayman Bin Khaled, post 5] Shaykh Aymen said, statement of Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) was made in linguistic usage of word innovation based on Ibn Rajab’s definition of innovation. Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) did not actually hold to Shaykh Ibn Rajab’ (rahimullah alayhi ta’ala) definition of innovation. If Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) had made the statement with the thought that Salat ad-Duha is from Nafliah worship he would not have declared it to be an innovation. Instead he would have said, it is a Prophetic Sunnah, and this verdict would have been in accordance with Shaykh Ibn Rajab’s definition of innovation. But the clear evidence establishes Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) believed Salat ad-Duha was an innovation because he had stated Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam), Abu Bakr (radiallah ta’ala anhu) and his father Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu), and he himself does not perform Salat ad-Duha. It is evident from Ahadith that Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) deemed Salat ad-Duha to be fine/good innovation. And if he had held to Shaykh Ibn Rajab’s (rahimullah) definitions of innovation he would have believed all innovations are evil as Shaykh Ibn Rajab’s (rahimullah) definition establishes. And therefore would not have remarked that Salat ad-Duha is fine innovation.

      Refuting Shaykh Aymen’s Claim Of Linguistic Innovation:

      To defend Shaykh Ibn Rajab’s  (rahimullah alayhi ta’ala) definition of innovation Khawarij can argue that he intended the usage of word innovation in linguistic sense and not in Shar’ri sense therefore he could have used Shaykh Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali’s understanding of innovation. In other words they could argue; Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) deemed Salat ad-Duha to be a form of Nafliah worship for which permissibility is generally granted except the forbidden times – sunrise and sunset -: "I do only what my companions used to do and I don't forbid anybody to pray at any time during the day or night except that one should not intend to pray at sunrise or sunset." [Ref: Bukhari, B21, H283] Alhasil, Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) judged it to be linguistic innovation, while believing that Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) did not perform it, but he deemed it permissible based on general permissibility for Nawafil. We the Muslims say, if Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) judged permissibility of Salat ad-Duha based on general permissibility of Nawafil then he made a Shar’ri judgment to deem it permissible -: Nawafil are permissible at all times except sun rising and sun setting times and Salat ad-Duha is performed during time of Duha (i.e. forenoon) therefore it is permissible. From this it is evident Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) did not judge Salat ad-Duha to be fine innovation in linguistic sense but good/fine innovation in Shar’ri sense because judgment he made is based on general permissibility of Nawafil. And Shar’ri judgement of permissibility about an innovative practice can only be made by him if believes there exits a provision within Islam permitting innovations. If it is proven there is Shar’ri acceptance of good innovations in Islam then it will establish; Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) did not hold to Shaykh Ibn Rajab’s definition of innovation but to definition of majority of Islamic scholarship. Also this would prove that Shaykh Aymen Bin Khaled would be incorrect in his saying that Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) made the following statement in linguistic sense: "It is an innovation and what a fine innovation it is!" Following section will establish that Islam recognises and permits good innovations and considers them reward worthy. And deems evil innovations to be sinful and hence prohibits them by default.

      Shari’ah The Islamic Law Derived From Islam:

      Innovation in linguistic sense is something new, something which already did not exist. And in Shar’ri sense it means something which already did not exist in Islam. In the following Ahadith Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) tells the Muslim about reward for introducing/innovating goods Sunnahs in Islam which were not already part of Islam: “He who introduced some good Sunnah in Islam which was followed after him (by people) he would be assured of reward like one who followed it, without their rewards being diminished in any respect.” [Ref: Muslim, B34, H6466]“The Messenger of Allah said: 'Whoever sets a good precedent in Islam, he will have the reward for that, and the reward of those who acted in accordance with it, without that detracting from their reward in the slightest.” [Ref: Nisa’i, B23, H2555] Note Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) has told; the one who introduces/sets a good Sunnah in Islam for him and those who emulate his innovated good Sunnah there is reward. If a good Sunnah is already is part of Islam and person acts on it then nothing is introduced into Islam. And the quoted Ahadith tell of reward for introducing good Sunnahs into Islam. In the following portion of Ahadith Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) informs the Muslim who introduces/innovates an evil Sunnah in Islam about the burden of sin and those who follow him: “And he who introduced some evil Sunnah in Islam which had been followed subsequently (by others), he would be required to bear the burden like that of one who followed this (evil practice) without theirs being diminished in any respect.” [Ref: Muslim, B34, H6466] “And whoever sets an evil precedent in Islam, he will have a burden of sin for that, and the burden of those who acted in accordance with it, without that detracting from their burden in the slightest."' [Ref: Nisa’i, B23, H2555] And meaning of this Hadith is same as the following: "And whoever starts an erroneous Biddah (i.e. ابْتَدَعَ بِدْعَةَ ضَلاَلَةٍ) 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] Alhasil meaning of introducing good Sunnah in Islam and evil Sunnah in Islam is good/evil innovations in Islam. And this establishes that Islam/Shari’ah recognises concept of good/evil innovation and tells of reward and sin for introducing each.

      Conclusion:

      Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) did not believe in Shaykh Ibn Rajab’s (rahimullah) definition of innovation. Had he believed in this definition of innovation or one remotely resembling it in detail then he would not have stated Salat ad-Duha is fine innovation. But in fact his statement reveals that it was based on the understanding of Hadith; one who introduces good Sunnah in Islam for him and the one who adheres to the Sunnah will equally be rewarded without reward being reduced. Ibn Umar (radiallah ta’ala anhu) believed Islam grants permission to Muslims to invent and incorporate good Sunnahs in Islam. Hence he could not have made the statement in linguistic sense but rather he judged it to be good/fine innovation in sense of Islamic canonical law (i.e. Shari’ah) whose source is Quran and teaching of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). Thus the Islamic definition of innovation – good/evil innovated Sunnahs - stands established and excuse if linguistic innovation refuted.

      Wama alayna ilal balaghul mubeen.
      Muhammed Ali Razavi
    • By MuhammedAli
      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