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Neo-Jahmi Distortions of Medieval Ash’ari and Salafi Affirmation in Denying that Allah is Contained

 

As of lately, we have encountered yet another ripple among the weak ripples of nuclear Jahmi fallout in the blogosphere that forms the neo-jahmi propaganda whereby blending apples and oranges becomes a central and underlying theme with such ideologues and propagandist. This sunnism.wordpress.com is just yet another ripple effect in the pond. The very first article that I decided to click on I landed on an atrocious corruption of even the classical Ash’ari forms of kalaam speech. The title of the article is “Imam Abu Mansur al-Baghdadi narrates the Consensus of the Muslims on the fact that God exists without a place”.  

So let us quote the entire post under this title as it is quite short.  

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In his book al-Farq bayna l-Firaq, Imam Abu Mansur al-Baghdadi said (p.333 of the edition used on the left-hand side and  page 321 of the edition on the right-hand side):

 

[The people of  Ahlu s-Sunnah] have unanimously agreed on the fact that Allah is not contained in a place and that He is not subject to time, contrary to what the Hishamiyya and the Karramiyya claim when they say that Allah is touching His Throne. The Amir al-Mu’munineen  ‘Ali [Ibn Abi Talib, the fourth caliph and cousin of the Prophet sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam] said : ‘Allah created the Throne as a sign of His Power, and He did not take it as a place for Himself‘. He also said: ‘Allah existed and there was nothing else, and He is now as He has always been, i.e. without a place.

 

Points to remember:

Imam Abu Mansur al-Baghdadi died in 429 after the Hijrah, i.e. 1000 years ago.

His book al-Farq bayna l-Firaq is dedicated to the study of the 73 sects mentioned by the Prophet sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam.  After having studied all the different misguided groups (firaq), he wrote a long chapter where he explains the belief of Ahlu s-Sunnah wa l-Jama’ah, the only saved group. The quote presented here is from that chapter. He lists 15 unanimous points of belief among the Sunnis, and the belief that God exists without a place is the third of these points. Here is the REAL Sunni belief.

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1. Firstly, we do not affirm any type of formal orthodoxy for Abu Mansoor al-Baghdaadi rahmatullahi alayh, particularly the path he has chosen to follow the Ash’ari invented theories and his attempt to codify them as “Sunnism”. He chose the path of Kalaam over Sunnism and this alone warrants caution to everything he has to say on the subject for which Ash’arism is known to impute their theological corruptions of Allah’s religion. However, in spite of this fact, we also understand that the Ash’arism espoused by Abu Mansoor, has absolutely nothing to do with current neo-jahmism and the outright atheism of its doctrine. Because of this divergence, we can see how this divergence is manifested just in this very topic as we will explore below bi ithnillah.

2. The author of this piece demonstrates an astounding mixing of apples and oranges whereby he uses the statement “not contained in a place” to signify “Allah exist without a place”. Look at the wording utilized by Abu Mansoor al-Baghdaadi. Abu Mansoor mentioned absolutely NOTHING about Allah existing without a place, he only mentions that Allah is “not confined to a location/place”, and this with Ahlu-Sunnah, that is the Salafis, is an acceptable saying because this is the same statement and intent used by Imaam Abu J’afar at-Tahaawi rahmatullahi alayh in point 38. The intent of both of these Imaams was to express that Allah is not confined to a particular location and thereby surrounded by other entities as is the creatures. So while the proponents to the Athari madhaab that form the whole of sunnism object to the expression precisely because of its lack of expression among the pillars of the religion among the salaf, the meaning itself is acceptable considering the intent of at-Tahawi on this point, and it seems that Abu Mansoor conceded to this as well. It is a whole world to say that “Allah is not confined to a place” which gives off an apparent meaning that Allah is not “quarantined” and held captive versus saying “Allah exist without a place” which gives off the apparent meaning that Allah does not exist. 

3. The narration attributed to Ali radhiyallahu anhu is weak and is typical of Ash’ari ideologues to put to use these forms of troubling narrations for the service of Ash’ari dogma. However in spite of its weakness, we can accept the meaning because it has nothing to do with the jahmism that is being touted on this website. Allah was as He has always been, true. 

4. The grand shaytanic deception employed by this Jahmi is his own addition of the clause “without a place”. This phrase is NOT even in this weak report of Ali, rather the author here intended to impugn his corrupted atheist point of view into the meaning of what Ali allegedly said.

5. The main underlying theme of this subject is the neo-jahmi convolution whereby they try to synchronize the concept of “containment” and “existence” and present the discussion as one and the same and they are not. The speech of Abu Mansoor in this quote here is obviously stating that Allah is not contained in a location/place whereas the shaytanic predilections of this neo-Jahmi who posted this is trying to insinuate that this is talking about the idea that Allah exist with a place.