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 A Correction Of Misunderstandings Part 4

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Registration date : 2006-10-07

PostSubject: A Correction Of Misunderstandings Part 4   Tue Oct 02, 2007 2:44 pm

A Correction Of Misunderstandings Found In Non-Arabic Sources About
The Movement Of Sheikh Muhammad Bin Abdul Wahhab

ii) The Khawarij declared it halal to fight other factions if they had

The Sheikh said,

‘As far as fighting is concerned, we do not fight anyone except to defend our
lives and honour. These people have invaded us in our own lands, and so have
left no possible alternative. We may fight some of them for what they have
done for us. The Qur’an advises us, ‘The recompense for an evil is a similar
evil.’ And we can fight those who openly abuse the deen of our Prophet (SAS)
after recognising it.’ [27]

iii) The Khawarij were known for their rebellion against Muslim leaders.

They killed Syyedina Ali, May Allah be pleased with him, one of the Rightly
Guided Caliphs. In ‘The Salafi beliefs of Sheikh Muhammad bin Abdul Wahhab’,
the author says,

‘He believes in the obligation to listen to and obey the Imams of the Muslims,
whether they are sinful or pious, as long as they do not ask the people to
disobey Allah. If a man takes the Caliphate and the people gather round him,
or he dominates them with a sword until he becomes a Caliph, then obedience to
him is incumbent and rebellion against him is haram.’ [28]

iv) One of the distinctive characteristics of the Azariqa is their belief that
all the children of Kuffar are also Kuffar. For the belief of the Ahl us
Sunnah wal Jama’ah and the followers of Sheikh Ibn Abdul Wahhab, we will
record the religious verdict of the most prominent worker in da’wah of our
times, Allamah Sheikh Ibn Abdul Aziz bin Baz, may Allah have.18 Mercy upon

‘According to one saying of the scholars, The man to whom da’wah did not
reach, either because he was away from Islam and the Muslims, or because he
attained majority when he was mad, or the children of Kuffar who die in
childhood, all these people will be put to a trial on the Day of Judgement.
Those who respond correctly to the trial will enter Al Jannah. Those who
disobey will enter the Fire. And we seek safety from Allah, the Almighty.’

Because of the many authentic ahadith on this issue, the correct opinion
regarding the children of Kuffar who die before coming of age is that they
will be in paradise. [29]

v) Ameer Ali admits the revolt of Wahhabis against anthropomorphism.

He registers his displeasure with their displeasure with their rule, but does
not explain why this is so. The Saudi Kingdom took upon its shoulders the duty
of implementing the religion of Allah and Islamic Shariah. Among the blessings
of this rule are the comfort, safety, security, peace and stability enjoyed in
all areas under its rule. It has modernised and advanced in technology
rapidly. Had Ameer Ali lived longer, he would have witnessed himself the
falseness of his predictions for the end of the last century. And Allah is the

Humphrey’s ‘Memoirs’

This book 30 was translated
into Urdu in India and it was claimed by its publishers that Humphrey was an
English spy whose duty was to spy on the Ottoman caliphate in the 18 th
Century. He went through training in adopting an Islamic identity and learning
Arabic, and then travelled to Basra where he met Sheikh Muhammad bin Abdul
Wahhab, and a strong friendship developed between the two. The Publishers
claim that these memoirs remained hidden until they fell into the hands of the
Germans during World War II, who published it as a way of slandering the
British government. It was translated into French, Arabic and Urdu. A perusal
of this book makes it abundantly clear that it is an imaginary fictional
narrative, coined deliberately to discredit Sheikh ibn Abdul Wahhab and his
followers by the British. Our evidence to prove the book is a concoction is
twofold: historical evidence from its contents, and our fruitless search to
find the original English version.

1) We began with a trip to the British Library’s Rare Books Section, which
contains books printed prior to 1975. There were 72 entries under Humphrey,
but none related to our subject. We found one entry under Humphrey’s Memoirs
(printed 1734), but these were the memoirs of the Duke of Gloucester who
recorded his relations with the ruling family of the time.

The publishers of the offending book had also given a number of alternative
titles such as ‘Colonisation Ideal’ and ‘The English spy in Islamic
countries’. Needless to say we found no such book, and neither did our search
under ‘spy’ reveal anything useful. The advent of computers has made access to
rare and remote books very easy, and we have been forced to conclude after an
intensive search that no such book exists and that we have a fabricated
translation published by the enemies of the Sheikh ibn Abdul Wahhab.

2) Humphrey claims he traveled to Istanbul in 1710 at the age of 20. He
returned to London and then travelled to Basrah in 1712 after a long sea
journey lasting six months. This claim is irrational as sea travel between
England and Gulf was not that long. He also claims to have met Shaikh At Taee,
one of the Sheikhs of Basrah. He then met a carpenter of Iranian origins
called Abdul Riza with whom he began working, and there he met a. young man
who spoke Turkish, Persian and Arabic. He wore the garb of students and was
known as Muhammad bin Abdul Wahhab. [31] The claim of this acquaintance is
clearly false. Sheikh ibn Abdul Wahhab was born in 1703, attaining majority at
the age of twelve when his father arranged his marriage. After travelling to
the Hijaz for the Hajj, he returned to Najd and stayed with his father to
study. He did not travel to seek knowledge until 1722 when he travelled to
Makkah, Madina and Basrah. There is thus no possibility of the Sheikh and the
fictional Humphrey meeting in Basrah as the dates do not correspond. And all
the scholars who have researched the biography of the Sheikh have rejected
claims that the Sheikh travelled to Turkey and Persia. [32]

3) The book claims that the Sheikh expressed a desire to travel to Istanbul,
but was advised against it by Humphrey for fear of persecution from the
Ottomans. He advised the Sheikh to travel to Isfahan instead, and the Sheikh
did so. This too is a lie. Syyed Abdul Haleem al Jundi quotes in

‘Al Imam Muhammad ibn Abdul Wahhab ‘ the victory of the Salafi method’, ‘I
discussed this with Sheikh ibn Baz, who denied the journey to Kurdistan and
Iran. Sheikh Ibn Baz told me he took this information from his Sheikhs,
including the grandchildren of Sheikh Ibn Abdul Wahhab, and especially his own
Sheikh, Muhammad ibn Ibrahim’. [33]

4) Humphrey claims that the Sheikh declared his da’wah in 1143 AH. This is the
only time he uses the hijrah calendar in his book. It also reveals his
ignorance of historical facts, as the Sheikh returned to Huraymilah three
years before the death of his father in 1153, and declared his da’wah after
the death of his father.

5) There is yet more evidence that Humphrey was devoid of historical
knowledge. Humphrey travelled to Istanbul in 1710, giving the ostensible
reason that the British Empire was assigning great importance to its
established colonies. The Empire was so vast it was said that the sun did not
set within its boundaries. Although the British Isles were themselves
relatively small, the extended territories including India, China and the
Middle East were extensive and required careful governance. The Ministry for
Colonies decided to recruit spies to gather information from the territories,
and so Humphrey became involved. 34 It is historically inaccurate to place
these events at the beginning of the 18 th Century. India at the time was not
a colony; the East India Company began trading in the 17 th Century but had no
political hold until.

1757 when Bengal was captured. It began expanding until the rule of the
Company was transferred to direct rule from England in 1857. Therefore, there
was no Indian colony in 1710. There was also no British colonial involvement
in China at the time; Hong Kong did not fall to the British until the Treaty
of 1898.

It is therefore clear that the inventor of the Memoirs has let his imagination
run riot and abandon historical accuracy. He has set his story at the end of
the 19 th Century in the heyday of the British Empire, when the sun truly did
not set on its colonies. But in doing so, he has exposed himself to be a
writer of fiction, not fact.

6) The author attributes many actions and words to the Sheikh which are at
clear odds with the beliefs, teachings and distinctly Islamic character of the
Sheikh. There is no need to discuss these filthy slanders in any detail, as
the authenticity of the facts in the book has been proven to be false.

7) In order to lend credibility to his ‘memoirs’, the author sprinkles the
novel with stories of plots by the British government to disunite the Muslims;
to create ideological and religious upheaval among them; to spread evil among
their men and women; to distance them from Arabic, the language of the Qur’an;
to encourage the use of national and social languages; to establish missionary
schools; and to weaken the position of the Muslims politically and

I have attempted to prove the fabrication of this book through its historical
inaccuracy and doubtful authorship, as I believe that no one else has done so
yet. In fact, a book as insignificant as this does not deserve even a second
glance, let alone a serious critical study. But from a sense of duty and
Amanah, I decided to shed light on the lies contained within it. And Allah
knows best the intentions.


Let us end this paper with
the very perceptive remarks of Prof. Arnold about the Wahhabi movement in
‘Preaching of Islam’:

‘At the present day there are two chief factors that make for missionary
activity in the Muslim world. The first of these is the revival of religious
life which dates from the Wahhabi reformation at the end of the eighteenth
Century; though this new departure has long lost all political significance
outside the confines of Najd[35], as a religious revival its influence is felt
throughout Africa, India and the Malay Archipelago even to the present day,
and has given birth to numerous movements which take rank among the most
powerful influences in the Islamic world. In the preceding pages it has
already been shown how closely connected many of the modern Muslim missions
are with this widespread revival: the fervid zeal it has stirred up, the new
life it has infused into existing religious institutions, the impetus it has
given to theological study and to the organisation of devotional exercises,
have all served to awake and keep alive the innate proselytising spirit of
Islam.’ [36]

References and

1. Encyclopaedia of Religion and
Ethics, Ed. By James Hasting (Edinburgh), 12 : 660-661

2. Surah al-Shoora : 11

3. M. Abu Zahra: Tarikh al-Madhahib Al-Islamiyya, p.532

4. Ibid

5. Abdullah b. Abdul Rahman b. Salih al-Bassam: Ulama Najd Khilal Sitah Quroon,
1 : 51

6. Sheikh Muhammad b. Abdul Wahhab: Kitab al-Tawhid, Bab Al-Shafa’a

7. Majmoo Fatawa Sheikh al-Islam, 1 : 264

8. Kitab al-Tawhid, Bab, Qaul Allah Ta’ala: Fala Taj’alu Lillahi Andada

9. Ignaz Goldziher: Muslim Studies, p. 259

10. Ibid, p. 334-335

11. Salahuddin Yusuf: Qabar Parasti, p. 193

12. Sahih Muslim, 2 : 925

13. Goldziher, p. 34

14. Sahih Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawud, Ibn Maja as narrated by ‘Aisha (RA)

15. Musnad Ahmad, Sahih Muslim as narrated by ‘Aisha (RA)

16. A. J. Arberry: Religion in the Middle East, p. 281-282

17. Masud al-Nadawi: Muhammad b. Abdul Wahhab, p. 199

18. The New Encyclopaedia Britannica, 10 : 510-511

19. M. al-Nadawi, p.40-41, footnote no. 4

20. Ameer Ali: The Spirit of Islam, p. 125-126

21. Ibid, p. 356

22. Calwin (1509-1564), French Protestant theologian who said that the destiny
of the man is recorded before his birth

23. Ameer Ali, p. 357

24. M. al-Nadawi, p. 215

25. Ahmad b. Hajar Al-Butami: Seikh Muhammad b. Abdul Wahhab, p. 50

26. Dr. Salih bin Abdullah Al-Abood: Aqidah al-Shaikh Muhammad bin Abdul Wahab
al-Salafiyyah 1 : 348

27. Ibid, 1 : 348

28. Ibid, 1 : 465

29. Sheikh Abdul Aziz b. Baz: Majmoo Fatawa, 8 : 98

30. Humphrey’s Memoirs, Colonisation Ideal, The English Spy in Islamic

31. Ibid, p. 35

32. Dr. S. A. Al-Abood, 1 : 188

33. Ibid, 1 : 186

34. Humphrey, p. 6

35. It should be noted that this book was first published in 1896 and then
reprinted with some additions in 1913. Therefore, it speaks about the
conditions prevalent at the time

36. T. W. Arnold: Preaching of Islam, p. 430-431

There is no worthy of worship exept ALLAH and Mohammed is his messenger
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