MuhammedAli

Hadhir Nazir Objection: A Truthful Person Bearing Witness To Truth Can Bear Witness To It Even Without Being First Hand Witness.

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Introduction:

Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) has stated in Quran; Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) has been sent as a Shahid/Shaheed (i.e. witness). One sent as a witness is sent to witness with eyes/ears. And Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) has been sent to mankind hence natural conclusion is that he witnesses deeds of entire mankind. Deobandis/Salafis believe he indeed is sent as a witness to mankind but does not see/hear the actions of mankind. In other words they believe he is witness but ascribe no quality to him which establish that he is witness. Its like believing Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) is Rabb (i.e. Lord) without qualities of Rububiyah. Or believing Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) is Khaliq (i.e. Creator) without believing He creates. Affirmation of word but without believing the natural meaning. Muslims believe in the word and its implications. And as result we believe Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) fullfils the criteria which he needs to be a witness. To put it simply he sees and hears the actions of those whom he was sent as a witness – i.e. mankind.

Heretical Reasoning For Their Belief:

I had stated in a discussion:
“Prophet (sallalahu alayhi wa aalihi was'sallam) is Shahid (i.e. witness) and a witness must posess two qualties; Hadhir (i.e. present phisically) as well as Nadhir (hearing, seeing). And without these qualities one can not be a truthful witness. Our belief is that Prophet (sallalahu alayhi wa aalihi was'sallam) is Hadhir in his heavenly resting place in Madinah ash'shareef but soul is able to move as soul of Musa (alayhis salam) was able to move from place to place while keeping touch with the body of Musa (alayhis salam) and Nadhir upon his Ummah. Ability of Hadhir Nadhir is a mojzaati qudrat which …” With regards to underlined a Deobandi brother with the name of Mustafvi wrote the following while discussing with me on topic of Hadhir Nazir: “It is true that your above mentioned two qualities have some weight but these two are not compulsory in all the cases. One can be a witness without being present physically and can give witness on the basis of his knowledge provided to him by some truthful and trustworthy.” [Ref: Mustafvi, Private Discussion, Publicised, Post 1.] Mustafvi brother in context of my evidences is attempting to argue that Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) does not need to directly witness events as they happen rather he can/will bear witness upon being informed by truthful/reliable witnesses of his Ummah. This establishes hearing/seeing is not essential to be a witness rather receiving news of event is enough to bear witness. If Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) wills this position would be criticised within Shar’ri boundaries. Note arleady this quote was addressed in another response, here, and this response will focus another aspect.

The Baseless Deobandi/Salafi Position:

Neither Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) and nor the Messenger (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) has stated in Quran or Sunnah that a witness is one who has been informed by another nor said witness can bear witness upon being informed by another. This principle of heretics is based on elevating their self to status of gods beside Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala):
“Have you seen the one who takes as his god his own desire?[1] Then would you be responsible for him?” [Ref: 25:43] And are worshiping their own whims and desires instead of submitting to Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala). Making religion of Islam how they want it to be instead of making themselves into image of Islam. There is no evidence whatsoever which establishes or suggests - in Dunya or Aakhira - that if Zayd saw x y z happening and Zayd truthfully informs Amr of x y z then Amr would also become a witness of the event. Nor there is evidence which establishes or suggests - in Dunya or Aakhira - that Amr would be deemed as first hand witness due to receiving news from Zayd. Belief that Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) will qualify to be a witness upon being told by his Ummatis can only be valid if the mentioned rule can be established from Quran and Sunnah.

Witnessing Of No-Witness And Its Worth:

Take the following scenario into account: Zayd has been accused of murder. Amr and Bakr hear the news from Khalid that Zayd has murdered Akhtar. Amr and Bakr are truthful and upstanding members of community. Amr and Bakr testify in court Zayd has killed Akhtar. Note the two witnesses criteria has been met by witnessing of Amr and Bakr. In court of Shari’a will Zayd receive capital punishment or any punishment due to witnessing of Amr and Bakr? Well in light of following the head of Zayd would role like a football: “One can be a witness without being present physically and can give witness on the basis of his knowledge provided to him by some truthful and trustworthy.” A intelligent person even with basic understanding of Islamic judicial system will know; Zayd will not be charged or punished because of Amr and Bakr’s testimony unless Khalid bear witness and then takes an oath [to fulfill the criteria of two witnesses] that he saw Zayd committ the murder. Amr and Bakr’s testimony is nill and void in murder case. Same scenario but different dispute, with addition of Uthman: Khalid and Uthman both saw the murder taking place. Khalid wasn’t aware that Uthman witnessed the murder and saw Khalid at the crime scene. Khalid denies being at the crime scene in court. Uthman claims Khalid also witnessed the murder. In this case Amr and Bakr can truthfully testify that Khalid informed them of the murder. In other words Amr and Bakr would be coroborating the account of Uthman. Once truth of matter is established that Khalid was afraid of bearing witness but he was witness. Supportive evidence of Amr/Bakr will establish Khalid was also witness to murder then Zayd will receive punishment. But Amr’s and Bakr’s witnessing to murder on account of being informed by Khalid is nill and void. Their testimony will only become cause for Khalid to be summoned by court to give testimony but it will not serve basis for judgment of murder case. Apart from following Deobandi/Salafi rule being completely and absolutely against the established procedures of Islamic legal system: “One can be a witness without being present physically and can give witness on the basis of his knowledge provided to him by some truthful and trustworthy.” This rule opens door injustice: Truthful/Trustworthy members of community end up believing in town gossip [and without verifying it] report the incident to police and when incident is presented to Qadhi they testify Akhtar stole x y z. The result would be Akhtar getting his hand chopped off. Firstly in this judgment Islamic requirements of eye-witnesses werent met. Secondly being truthful/trustworthy is not sole requirement for witnessing rather the fundamental requirement is witnessing the events with eyes/ears. Islamic judicial systems first requirement is witnessing and then truthfulness trustworthiness would be considered. Thirdly the victim of crime has to exist and his complain has to be genuine. Mere testimony of truthfull and trustworthy bearded Arabic speaking Tasbih rolling Muslims is not enough against another believer/disbeliever.

Prophets Will Testify Against Their Own Nations:

Truthful Prophets will testify in court of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) that they delivered the message given to them but Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) will ask them to produce witness. It is recorded in Hadith that Prophet Nuh (alayhis salam) will testify in court of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) that he delivered the message given to him by Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) to his nation. And his Ummah will negate this and Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) will ask Nuh (alayhis salam) to bring forth witness in his own defence:
“Allah's Messenger said, "Noah will be brought (before Allah) on the Day of Resurrection, and will be asked: 'Did you convey the message of Allah?" He will reply: 'Yes, O Lord.' And then Noah's nation will be asked: 'Did he convey Allah's message to you?' They will reply: 'No warner came to us.' Then Noah will be asked: 'Who are your witnesses?' He will reply: 'Muhammad and his followers.' Thereupon you …” [Ref: Bukhari, B92, H448] The above Hadith only gives example of Prophet Nuh (alayhis salam) and his Ummah. In actuality Ummah f every Prophet will be questioned and every single one of them would deny reicieving the message from their Prophet and we the Muslims and Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) will testify they delivered the message:“So how (will it be) when We bring from every nation a witness and we bring you (O Muhammad) against these (people) as a witness?” [Ref: 4:41]“And thus we have made you a just community that you will be witnesses over the people and the Messenger will be a witness over you. And We did not make the qiblah which you used to face except that We might make evident who would follow the Messenger from who would turn back on his heels. And indeed, it is difficult except for those whom Allah has guided. And never would Allah have caused you to lose your faith. Indeed Allah is, to the people, Kind and Merciful.” [Ref: 2:143] Please note these truthful and trustworthy Prophets of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) are testifying in court of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) that they have delivered the message given to them by Him. If following rule was true then wouldn’t Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) accept the testimony of His trustworthy and truthful servants:“One can be a witness without being present physically and can give witness on the basis of his knowledge provided to him by some truthful and trustworthy.” Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) asking His truthful and trustworthy servants the Prophets to produce a witness in support of their claim is suffient evidence to refute the invented innovated principle. There are roughly hundered twenty-four thousand Prophets/Messengers and this amounts to roughly same numbers of reasons why this principle is wrong.

Conclusion:

Brother Mustafvi’s statement is completely without basis. There are no textual evidences which support bearing witness without seeing/hearing the event. Islamic legal system will not use the testimony of two truthful witnesses who haven’t seen the events to which they bear witness even if they claim they have been informed by two more first hand witnesses. And the greatest evidence against brother Mustafvi’s understanding is witnessing of Prophets against their own nations and Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) demanding witness from them. If truthful/trustworthy person bearing witness was legitimate concept then who would be more truthful/trustworthy then the Prophets? But despite their truthful/trustworthiness Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) will not accept their testimony and will demand witnesses to coroborate his testimony. Alhasil this concept of brother Mustafvi is invalid and against established teaching of Islam.


Wama alayna ilal balaghul mubeen.
Muhammed Ali Razavi

Footnotes:

- [1]
“Then Allah tells His Prophet that if Allah decrees that someone will be misguided and wretched, then no one can guide him except Allah, glory be to Him: “Have you seen him who has taken as his god his own vain desire?” Meaning whatever he admires and sees as good in his own desires becomes his religion and his way.” [Ref: Tafsir Ibn Kathir, 25:43]

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