Testing A Person By His Love For Ahlus-Sunnah Or His Dislike Of Them

Imaam Abu ‘Uthmaan Ismaa’eel as-Saaboonee (rahimahullaah died 449H) said:

“One of the distinguishing signs of ahlus-Sunnah is their love of the Imaams of the Sunnah, and its Scholars and its helpers and its allies – and likewise their hatred for the Imaams of bid’ah, those who invite to the Hellfire.” [1]

When innovations became widespread, and the adherents to the Sunnah became few in number, and ahlul-bid’ah claimed they were upon the truth, and would hide their deviation, ahlus-Sunnah would test those who caused them doubt.

Sufyaan ath-Thawree (rahimahullaah died 161H) said:

“Test the people of Mawsil (in Iraaq) with Mu’aafaa ibn ‘Imraan.” [2]

Abdur-Rahmaan ibn Mahdee (rahimahullaah) said:

“The people of Basrah with Ibn `Awn, so if you see a man loving him, then be at ease with him. For the people of Koofah, it is Maalik ibn Mighwal and Zaa’idah ibn Qudaamah, so if you find a man loving him, have hope in his goodness. As for the people of Shaam (Syria, Jordan, etc), it is al-Awzaa’ee (died 157H) and Abu Is-haaq al-Fazaaree. For the people of Hijaaz, it is Maalik ibn Anas (died 179H).” [3]

Ahmad ibn ‘Abdullaah ibn Yoonus (rahimahullaah) said:

“Test the people of Mawsil with Mu’aafah ibn ‘Imraan, and if they love him then they are ahlus-Sunnah, and if they hate him then they are ahlul-bid’ah – just as the people of Koofah should be tested with Yahyaa.” [4]

Ibn Mahdee (rahimahullaah) said:

“If you see a person of Basrah loving Hammaad ibn Zaid, then he is a person of Sunnah.” [5]

Qutaibah ibn Sa`eed (rahimahullaah) said:

“If you see a man loving the People of Hadeeth such as: Yahyaa Ibn Sa’eed, ‘Abdur-Rahmaan Ibn Mahdee, Ahmad Ibn Muhammad Ibn Hanbal, Ishaaq Ibn Raahawaih, then he is upon the Sunnah. And the one who opposes them, then know he is an innovator (mubtadi’).” [6]

Benefits from the book, Lammud-Durr al-Manthoor min al-Qawlil-Ma’thoor, of Jamaal al-Haarithee.

And in these times we say: If you find a person loving Ibn Baaz, al-Albaanee, Ibn Uthaimeen, the great scholars of this era (rahimahumullaah). And likewise, Saalih al-Fawzaan, Ahmad an-Najmee (rahimahullaah), Rabee’ ibn Haadee, Muhammad Amaan al-Jaamee (rahimahullaah), Muqbil bin Haadee (rahimahullaah), Zayd al-Madkhalee, Ubaid al-Jaabiree and their likes, then know he is a man of Sunnah, for loving them is a distinguishing  sign of ahlus-Sunnah. And having hatred and enmity for them is a distinguishing sign of ahlul-bid’ah. [7]

[1] ‘Aqeedatus-Salaf As-haab al-Hadeeth (171)

[2] Tahdheeb al-Kamaal (28/153), Siyar (9/82), at-Tahdheeb (10/181)

[3] al-Laalikaa’ee (41), Tareekh Dimashq (7/128)

[4] al-Laalikaa’ee (58)

[5] al-Jarh wat-Ta`deel of Ibn Abee Haatim (1/183), al-Laalikaa’ee (38)

[6] al-Laalikaa’ee (59), Sharaf As-haab al-Hadeeth (143)

[7] See Sharh ‘Aqeedat us-Salaf As-haab al-Hadeeth, (p.347) of Shaikh Rabee’ for the permissibility of such a comment.

 

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