Answered by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Walaikum assalam wa rahmatullah,
I pray that this finds you well, and in the best of health and spirits. May Allah grant you all good and success in this life and the next.
Jazakum Allah khayr for your nasiha, Sidi. Indeed, wisdom and knowledge are two things I sorely lack. But please make dua for me, I am continuing my studies and continue to seek the company of righteous scholars, in hope that I increase in beneficial knowledge and gain something of the Prophetic wisdom these noble inheritors of our Beloved Messenger (Allah bless him and give him peace) possess.
I have nothing but love for the hadith of the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him), and its people--whether the great imams of the past, or its contemporary bearers, transmitters, and interpreters. The people of hadith (Ahl al-Hadith) are the best of people, for they transmit and explain the guidance of the Best of Creation, the Beloved Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him).
As for the Salaf, they are the foremost of the Ummah by the witness of Allah and His Messenger (Allah bless him and give him peace). Those who follow their footsteps are of most beloved of Allah's creation to Him. As Imam Ibrahim Laqani says, "All good is in following the way of those who came before us." The claim of any group to ascribe to their methodology is weighed against the evidence backing their claim. The way of Ahl al-Sunna is clear in matters of belief, practice, and spirituality--it was the way of the scholars of this Umma, early and late.
As for our dear brethren who name themselves "Salafiyya," I have nothing against them--like any other Muslims, it is our duty to love them for the sake of Allah and to fulfill their duties of brotherhood one owes them, completely. As for their way and methodology, it is our position that it is at variance with the way of the imams of Islam, early and late--and the witness of history is against them. Disagreement is not enmity, however.
In closing, Jazakum Allah khayr for your beneficial counsel. Please keep me in your duas.
And Allah alone gives success.
MMVIII © Faraz Rabbani and Qibla.
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