Sh. Abdallah bin Bayyah – “I call upon the Muslims to revive the science of Tasawwuf”

Shaykh Abdullah Bin Bayyah Addresses Global Sufi Gathering

“I call upon the Muslims to revive the science of Tasawwuf”

On the day of Friday July 10th, 2009, during the second international conference in honor of Sidi Shiker (a well-known Moroccan Wali), Shaykh Abdullah Bin Bayyah invited the Muslims to revive the science of Tasawwuf and to return it to its proper place, by which the sciences of the Din itself may be revived.

Bin Bayyah, who is one of the top scholars of Mauritania (West Africa), also stated in his speech entitled “The Foundations of Tasawwuf in the Book and the Sunnah”, that Tasawwuf (Sufism) is not a separate religion, but rather that it derives from the Qur’an and Sunnah, and that the scholars have developed its principles just as they have developed and derived the principles of Fiqh (Islamic Sacred Law) from those two sources as well.

The Shaykh also addressed in some detail the meaning of Tasawwuf, saying: “This word has become widespread and famous to the point that the meaning it points to has become obscured”, adding that Tasawwuf – like the other Islamic madhahib – was cognizant of the rifts that appeared in the Islamic Ummah, and confirmed that “Tasawwuf is a proof against the Sufi, the Sufi is not a proof against Tasawwuf”. In his definition of Tasawwuf, Bin Bayyah stressed that it is “Ihsan” (spiritual excellence), deriving this from the famous hadith Jibril, and adding that this means to seek perfection, and to have love for and longing towards meeting Allah Most High.

The Shaykh also mentioned that Tasawwuf is one (legitimate) science among the sciences of Islam, and stated that an Islamic science can either focus on the outward aspect, namely the actions of the limbs, which is termed “fiqh”, or it can focus on the inward aspect, namely the purification of the soul, softening of the heart, being inwardly detached from the dunya, and so on, and this is termed “tasawwuf”.

In terms of its Islamic origins, the Mauritanian scholar affirmed that its origins lie in the Qur’an and Sunnah, and quoting numerous verses and hadiths to support this, as well as some of the statements of the early founders of Tasawwuf, such as Imam Junayd who said: “This way of ours is confined within the principles of the Qur’an and Sunnah”.

The Shaykh also depended heavily on many occasions during his speech on the book “Qawa’id at-Tasawwuf” (Principles of Sufism) by Shaykh Ahmad Zarruq (d. 846 H), adding that this Moroccan scholar is indeed the “police” of the Sufis in the entire world.

At the end of his speech, Shaykh Bin Bayyah addressed some of the criticisms against Tasawwuf over history, such as the question of the Shuyukh specifying the dhikrs (and their numbers) for their followers, the use of dhikr beads, the question of Tawassul (using the righteous as a means to gain Allah’s blessings) and Tabarruk (deriving blessings from the relics of the righteous), and visiting the graves of the righteous Awliya, confirming in each point that they have a solid basis in Islam.

Translated from Arabic for ISRA News by: Ibrahim Hakim al-Shaghouri blog

لعلامة ابن بيه : أدعو المسلمين إلى تجديد علم التصوف ووضعه في صحيح إطاره

10 يوليو 2009

دعا الشيخ عبد الله بن بيه، يوم الجمعة 10 يوليوز 2009 بمناسبة انعقاد الملتقى العالمي الثاني لسيدي شيكر، المسلمين إلى “تجديد علم التصوف ووضعه في صحيح إطاره لأنه إحياء لعلوم الدين”.
وقال العلامة ابن بيه، في عرض تحت عنوان “تأصيل التصوف من الكتاب والسنة”، إن التصوف ليس دينا خاصا وإن مرجعيته هي الكتاب والسنة، وإن العلماء أصلوا له كما أصلوا للفقه.
وناقش الشيخ، خلال عرضه، بإسهاب معنى التصوف قائلا: إن “هذه الكلمة شاعت وانتشرت حتى أصبح مدلولها مجهولا لكثرة ما عرف”، معتبرا أن التصوف كغيره من المذاهب الإسلامية الأخرى، عرف الخصومة التي انتشرت في الأمة الإسلامية، ونبه أهل الطائفة إلى أن “التصوف حجة على الصوفي، والصوفي ليس حجة على التصوف”.

وفي تعريفه للتصوف، قال الشيخ “بن بية” إنه هو الإحسان، استنادا إلى حديث جبريل، وهو البحث عن الكمال والحب والتشوق إلى لقاء الله.
وذكر الشيخ في عرضه أن التصوف هو علم من العلوم الإسلامية، على أساس أن العلم إما أن يكون موضوعه الظاهر، وهو أعمال الجوارح وهو ما يسمى بالفقه، وإما أن يكون موضوعه الباطن، وهو ما يخص جانب تزكية النفوس، والرقائق، والزهد، وهو ما يسمى بالتصوف.
وبالنسبة لمرجعية التصوف، أكد العالم الموريتاني، أن أصله هو الكتاب والسنة، مستدلا ببعض الآيات القرآنية والأحاديث النبوية الشريفة، ومسترشدا ببعض أقوال المتصوفة الأوائل مثل الجنيد الذي قال: “مذهبنا هذا مقيد بأصول الكتاب والسنة”.
واعتمد المحاضر في أكثر من موطن في عرضه على كتاب “قواعد التصوف لـ “أحمد زروق” (مزداد سنة 846 هـ)، قائلا في حق هذا الشيخ المغربي، إنه بحق محتسب الصوفية في العالم.
وأشار “بن بية”، في ختام عرضه، إلى بعض الشبهات التي أثيرت حول التصوف عبر مر التاريخ، مثل مسألة تحديد الأوراد والأذكار، واستعمال السبحة، ومسألة التوسل والتبرك، وزيارة قبور الصالحين، مؤكدا أن هذه المسائل لها
أصل في الإسلام.

19 Replies to “Sh. Abdallah bin Bayyah – “I call upon the Muslims to revive the science of Tasawwuf””

  1. “Shaykh Bin Bayyah addressed some of the criticisms against Tasawwuf over history”

    Can someone who attended this please list his responses to the criticisms?

  2. I don’t particularly recall, but Sh. Bin Bayyah does not follow one of the tariqas, right? And this is the approach Sh. Hamza takes as well with regards to Tasawwuf. Or do both have spiritual teachers they’ve taken bayth with?

  3. Which actions are you seeking clarification?
    Tabarruk… The hadith of Asma’ bin Abi Bakr narrated in Muslim:
    “Here is the cloak of Allah’s Messenger,” and she brought out to me [`Abd Allah her Mawla] that cloak made of Persian cloth with a hem of brocade, and its sleeves bordered with brocade, and said: “This was Allah’s Messenger’s cloak with `A’isha until she died, then I got possession of it. The Apostle of Allah upon him peace used to wear it, and we washed it for the sick so that they could seek cure thereby.”
    Tawassul… Imam Al-Suyuti narrates the year Hazrat Umar (RA) expanded Masjid An-Nabawi and there was a drought in Hijaz, known as the Year of Cinders. Hazrat Umar made dua for rain for the people by means of Hazrat al-Abbas. Ibn `Awn narrated that `Umar took al-`Abbas’s hand and raised it up, saying, ‘O Allah, we seek a means to You with the uncle of Your Prophet to ask that You drive away from us the drought and water us with rain’….”
    As our beloved teacher, Shaykh Abdullah bin Bayyah states, this is all centered on the Quran and Sunnah which our ulema of Ihsaan have been teaching for centuries. Alhamdulillah, we’re blessed with this ocean of Islam, with its many rivers and seas leading to Allah SWT’s mercy and shade.

  4. @ Munawar: You are partially correct. Tariqa does not equal Tassawuf in “all” cases, but in some cases, w/out a doubt. However, one does not “need” to be in a tariqa to get closer to Allah inwardly. Amazing article, Alhamdullilah.

  5. Jazak’Allah for sharing.

    Tasawuf is the most misunderstood Islamic science both to Muslims and non-Muslims. It takes a towering scholar like Shaykh Abdallah bin Bayyah to truly guide us back to the way of orthodoxy.

    I would recommend people to check out an audio CD by Ustadh Yahya Rhodus entitled “Spiritual Struggle” in which he details the science of tasawuf, I believe he was a student of Shaykh bin Bayyah but I might be wrong.

  6. how can tawassul be allowed? The quraish effectively practiced it and Allah admonished them for that. Allah says in the Quran, that if the quraish were to be asked who created everything, they would say Allah. But they were mushriks for directing their worship to others that Allah.

    And the Prophet sallallahu alayhi wa salam said in a hadith that du’a is worship.

    And that’s what the Quraish did, they invoked others as “intercessors” between them and Allah, and that’s exactly what tawassul is. Making dua to a dead sheikh to get needs fulfilled! Shirk.

  7. Tawassul is not making dua to a person, it is making d’ua to Allah through an intercessor, whether through His names, or asking someone to make d’ua for you, or asking through the rank of a dead or living person. It comes in many different forms.

    The following is an excellent rebuttal on those who hold the opinion it is forbidden:

  8. Salam aleikum,

    This is always a hot topic, and one muslims don’t know much about. Below are some beneficial reads to clarify.

    Ibn Taymiyyah’s (rahimullah) Defense of Sufism (as well as a basic introduction to Sufism as an Islamic science) .

    How Sufism came from the Sahabas:

    I can’t say much more, because I don’t know very much on this and I don’t know where I am going in my Akhirah, so I ask for your duas and forgiveness for any mistakes.

    I will say whether you are in a tariqa or not, you should try your best to do as much reading on tazkiya and purification of the soul and really work on yourself NOW, so you can enter Jannah directly, instead of being purified in the Hellfire. Tazkiya cannot be overlooked, its always mentioned in the Quran right after the Quran and Hikmah (Sunnah), over and over again (wa yuzakihim…). Pray on time, fast and from time to time make tahajjud. Speak the truth and trust in Allah and in sha Allah He will help you.

    May Allah bless us all and help us shed the animals in ourselves, ameen. Jazaka Allahu khayra

  9. Salaamu aleykum,

    I have time and time again heard sheikh bin bayyah being referred to as a wali, an ‘alim etc.. I would like to know what it is exactly that makes him all these things. May Allah guide us all.

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