Archive for the ‘Abdullah ‘Azzam Category

Test Your Heart

Posted in 'Abdullah 'Azzam on June 23, 2008 by Tarek Mehanna

“…How heavy is the Qur’an upon the immoral fasiq, and how heavy is worship and prayer upon the immoral fasiq hypocrite! The prayer is so heavy upon these hypocrites! You see him sitting and writing in a diary for one, two, or three hours, or standing and talking for one, two, or three hours, and if he stands behind the imam for five minutes, it is as if a mountain has been placed on his chest and heart. The diseases of the hearts, we seek refuge with Allah from them…

Because of this, if you want to test your heart, inspect it and test it out when the Qur’an is being recited – is it heavy upon your heart or not? Test your heart out during worship. Test your heart out when you see the salihin. Test your heart out when you are making your adhkar during the morning hours. Test your heart out when you stand up to pray – do you love to pray? Or is it heavy upon you? If it is heavy upon you, and if worship is heavy upon you, then ask Allah to remove the hardness from your heart and replace it with softness, because this is proof that the jahiliyyah is still entrenched in your heart and soul.

The hardness of the heart…we seek refuge with Allah from the hardness of the hearts. The hardness of the hearts is increased by satisfying the desires – sexual desires, even if by permissible means, and the desire for food, even if by permissible means.

This is why they say that the softness of the heart is achieved in six occasions:

A Glimpse at an-Nawawi

Posted in 'Abdullah 'Azzam, an-Nawawi on June 5, 2008 by Tarek Mehanna

“…It is known that he is from the most knowledgeable of scholars in the history of Islam. I mean, if you were to take the ten most notable scholars of the Muslims throughout history, an-Nawawi would be one of them. He wrote a commentary on ‘Sahih Muslim,’ and he wrote his book ‘al-Majmu” in Fiqh, regarding which Ibn Kathir said: “Nothing was ever written to match its brilliance.” And yes, nothing was ever written like this book.

When you read anything by an-Nawawi, you feel as if you are a plant that is being watered, as he delves deeply into meanings and concepts. Add to this that he abstained from the worldly pleasures, he was a devout worshipper, he would enjoin what was good, and he would forbid what was wrong. He would stand up to the rulers in the peak of their power. One time, the lamp he was using went out, and he lit it with his hand – he continued writing using light that was emanating from his hand!

He came into conflict with Dhahir Baybras, the ruler of Sham and Egypt. Dhahir Baybras requested a fatwa from the scholars that money should be collected in order to prepare an army to fight the Tatars in 658 H. When the Tatars occupied Baghdad and advanced upon Palestine and turned towards Sham, he requested a fatwa while the Tatars were in Palestine that money should be collected to purchase weapons.

Every single scholar issued the fatwa except for an-Nawawi. He said: “I will not provide you with such a fatwa.”

Dhahir asked: “Why not? I want to purchase arms for this struggle, and you refuse to issue a fatwa for it? The entire Ummah and Religion will be exposed to loss.”

He replied: “Because you came to us as a slave who owned nothing, and I see that you now own gardens, servants, slave girls, silver, and gold. So, if you sell all of these things and still need money after that, I will issue the fatwa you seek.”

He said: “Leave Sham.”

And he left and went to a small village in Nawa (his hometown). The scholars came to Dhahir Baybras and said to him: “The scholars of Sham are nothing without Muhi ad-Din an-Nawawi.” He replied: “Bring him back.” They then went to an-Nawawi and said: “Come back, O Muhi ad-Din.” an-Nawawi said: “By Allah, I will not go back while Dhahir is in it,” and Allah fulfilled his oath: Dhahir died a month later, and an-Nawawi returned to Sham.

This is an-Nawawi, the devout worshipper, the scholar, the zahid, the scholar of Usul, Fiqh, and Hadith. Look at the blessing that is in his books…ya Salam! Look at the barakah: his book ‘al-Majmu” has provided much benefit, his book ‘Riyad as-Salihin,’ his book of forty Hadith, his book ‘al-Adhkar’ – you can feel the barakah in his books. No books have been so widely distributed as the books of an-Nawawi…”

[‘Fi Dhilal Surat at-Tawbah’; p. 67-68]

‘Abdullah ‘Azzam’s Immense Zuhd

Posted in 'Abdullah 'Azzam on April 18, 2008 by Tarek Mehanna

“…Believe me when I tell you that I hate buying new things, new clothes, etc.

One day, I came home to find new sponge cushions with matching sheets. When I saw them, I lost my mind. I said: “By Allah, women have no religion. This must go…where did this come from?” They said: “It is a gift.” I said: “It must leave the house. It cannot remain in the house,” and I spoke such words to my wife that she was going to pass out. By Allah, she was going to pass out and lose consciousness, and she began to shake. I began to fear for her sanity, by Allah.

But, believe me, brothers, I did not enter the house. Really, I said: “Where did this gift come from?”

She said: “Why does it matter to you? Your guests are here day and night, coming in and out, and I wash the sheets of these mattresses and change them. I change them everyday because the cotton in these Pakistani sheets gets stuck in the creases of the cushions. I am tired, and I found some gold that I had, which I then spent on this to relieve myself a bit.”

I said to her: “While the Mujahidin are dying of hunger?”

She said: “I donated a third of the value to the Mujahidin.”

I said to her: “Even then, it cannot remain.”

From then until now, believe me when I tell you that I never enter the home and see these except that my chest becomes tight. Believe me, we tried removing them from the home in a way that would not result in her passing out again, and may Allah Forgive us all…”

A footnote to this story says that the Shaykh remained insistent upon this until he finally sold the cushions and sheets to a brother for less than their original price.

[‘Fi Dhilal Surat at-Tawbah’; p. 222]

Love for the People of Knowledge

Posted in 'Abdullah 'Azzam on April 10, 2008 by Tarek Mehanna

“…I admit that the gratitude is for Allah firstly and lastly. However, Shaykh Nasir ad-Din al-Albani had a great effect on my thinking, in my beliefs, in clarifying my beliefs, in my extracting the authentic texts, in researching. I cannot write a weak hadith in a single one of my books. So, I am Salafi in my belief and thought…”

[‘Fi Dhilal Surat at-Tawbah’; p. 51]

“…So, I presented the fatwa to Shaykh Ibn Baz, and he agreed with it. May Allah bless his life. Shaykh Ibn Baz, Allah has truly given him insight, if He Wills, and Allah Knows best. Allah has benefited Islam and the Muslims through him more than most people, and Allah Knows best. I do not think that anyone on Earth has benefited – other than the rulers, those who possess millions – has benefited the Afghan Jihad like Shaykh Ibn Baz has, yes.”

[‘Fi Dhilal Surat at-Tawbah’; p. 171]

“As for the noble Shaykh Ibn Baz and Ibn ‘Uthaymin, by Allah, I love them from the depths of my heart. I know their virtue in many of the affairs, especially Shaykh ‘Abd al-‘Aziz bin Baz. I mean, he had a long hand in many of the affairs of Islam…By Allah, the truth is that I love Shaykh ‘Abd al-‘Aziz bin Baz more than I love my own mother and father, and this is what I said to him…”

[‘al-As’ilah wal-Ajwibah al-Jihadiyyah’; p. 95]

Tawriyah Is Not Allowed When it Comes to Issues of ‘Aqidah

Posted in 'Abdullah 'Azzam on April 3, 2008 by Tarek Mehanna

“Some of Sayyid Qutb’s students asked him: “Why were you so bold and straightforward in front of the court despite the fact that your neck was between the noose?” He replied: “For two reasons. The first is that we are speaking about issues of belief, and it is not allowed to use deceptive double-talk (tawriyah) when it comes to issues of belief. Deceptive double-talk is not allowed! Deceptive double-talk is not allowed!”

This is when someone says to you: ‘What do you think about this ruling?’ and you reply: ‘By Allah, praise be to Allah, it is good,’ while you deceptively intend with your words to say ‘You are good,’ or ‘Some of the people are good’ – this type of deceptive double-talk is not allowed when it comes to issues of ‘Aqidah.

Because of this, there is a huge difference between the stand of Ahmad bin Hambal regarding the creation of the Qur’an and the stand of others. When they asked one of the scholars – and it is said to have been ash-Shafi’i – “What do you think of this Qur’an? Is it created?” He replied, counting on his fingers: “The Torah, the Psalms, the Gospel, the Qur’an – these four are created,” and he meant that his fingers were created. This is deceptive double-talk (tawriyah). What a difference between this stand and the stand of al-Imam Ahmad.

al-Maruzi said that he entered upon Ahmad when they had prepared him to be whipped, and said to him: “O Ahmad! Allah Said: {“…and do not kill yourselves…”}, and these people have prepared you to be killed!” He replied: “O Maruzi! Step outside this prison and tell me what you see.” So, he stepped outside to see thousands of people holding papers and pens. He asked them: “What do you want?” They replied: “We await the reply of Ahmad bin Hambal.” So, al-Maruzi returned and told Ahmad what he saw, and Ahmad said: “O Maruzi! That I die is more beloved to me than that I betray those people you saw.”

So, Sayyid Qutb would say that there is no tawriyah allowed when it came to issues of ‘Aqidah, and his second reason was that those whom the people look up to and follow are not allowed to speak a word of kufr. To legitimize jahiliyyah, Socialism, nationalism, etc. is only allowed for the follower {“…except if he is coerced while his heart is secure with faith…”}

As for the one who is followed, this is not allowed for him. The likes of ‘Ammar bin Yasir: ‘Ammar was a follower, not one who was followed. Would it have been allowed for the Messenger to do what ‘Ammar did?”

[‘Fi Dhilal Surat at-Tawbah’; p. 19]

The Scales of Allah

Posted in 'Abdullah 'Azzam, Books & PDFs on March 27, 2008 by Tarek Mehanna


“…This is the cream of the people. Search for it. Live with it. Travel with it as your guide and under its leadership. Worship Allāh by way of the light that you see and hear from them…”


The Battle Between Islam and Jahiliyyah

Posted in 'Abdullah 'Azzam on February 9, 2008 by Tarek Mehanna

“…And all of Islam in Makkah was manifested in this issue: the issue of the battle between Islam and jahiliyyah. There was no fasting, charity, pilgrimage, inheritance, or anything else of the Shar’i mannerisms, such as drinking with the right hand, the details of how to pray, or anything else. All of this was delayed by the Lord of Honor until this believing group was nurtured upon the belief that was settling in the depths of their hearts and running through their veins that there could be no meeting point between Islam and jahiliyyah, and that the fires of this conflict would never be put out so long as there was a truth to uphold, and so long as there was a falsehood that existed, and these two situations can never cease to exist.

This is a battle.

Whoever wishes to understand it clearly as it is, as if he is receiving the Qur’an as it was revealed, and to take part in the battle that it is fighting – the battle that it fought the first time around – he must read ‘Fi Dhilal al-Qur’an.’ Whoever does not read Sayyid Qutb’s tafsir in ‘Fi Dhilal al-Qur’an’ will not be able to grasp the depths of this battle, for many reasons. From them is the fact that the man who wrote this book was relaying to the people these events from the midst of the conflict, and from the depths of the battlefield. He wrote these words while he was watching the hangman’s noose being tightened in front of his very eyes. So, he wrote them while he was free of all fears, and free of all the burdens of the dunya – no job, no wife, no children, no connection to the burdens that pull one to this Earth. He wrote them while he was bidding the dunya farewell, and everyone who reads the tafsir of ‘al-Baqarah,’ ‘Al ‘Imran,’ ‘an-Nisa’,’ ‘al-Ma’idah,’ ‘al-A’raf,’ and walks with them – in the second printing onwards – will realize that the one who wrote these words is not from the people of this world. Rather, he is bidding this world farewell with these words, and is giving it a departing wave with these words.

Because of this, many people read books, read explanations of the Qur’an, read the words of Ibn Kathir, at-Tabari, and other than them, and they are never able – and I am saying this to you as a professor of Shari’ah, and I know more than you, and I understand this issue more than you do – they are unable to understand the Qur’an as it was revealed, nor are they able to partake in the battle for which Allah revealed it – not just in the era of the Messenger of Allah, but in every era, and in every place.

This Qur’an is the Book of Allah that was revealed to fight a battle against the enemies of Allah: {“…and strive against them with it a great struggle…”} [al-Furqan; 52]

And it is a must for the people to understand the Book of Allah, why it was revealed, and with whom these texts are dealing with. And some people think that these texts fought a battle, played their role, and that it is no longer possible to utilize this way of looking at things, or to move forward with these rules to fight the battle of today, which is as if it were the same battle that was fought by the Messenger of Allah.

So, I advise you and myself to read ‘Fi Dhilal al-Qur’an.’

[‘at-Tarbiyah al-Jihadiyyah wal-Bina”; 3/6-7]