THE BASIS OF RIGHT GUIDANCE
Shaykhul-lslaam Ibn Taymiyyah (d.728H) - rahimahallaah - said:
"The Religion of the Muslims is built upon following the Book of Allaah, the Sunnah of His Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam, and that which the Ummah has agreed upon. So these are the three infallible usool (fundamentals). So whatever the Ummah differs in, then it is referred back to Allaah and His Messenger. Thus, it is not for anyone to set-up a person for the Ummah, and to call to his way, and form walaa (love, loyalty and allegiance) and 'adaa (enmity and hatred) based upon that, except for the Prophet sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam. Nor is any speech set-up for them based upon which they form walaa and 'adaa, except for the speech of Allaah, and that of His Messenger, and that which the Ummah has agreed upon. Rather, this is the practice of the people of Innovation, who set-up a person, or a saying, with which they cause splits in the Ummah; forming walaa or 'adaa based upon that saying or ascription."1
Imaam Ibn Taymiyyah - rahimahullaah - also said:
"It is not for anyone to ascribe himself to a particular Shaykh and to have walaa with those who follow him, or to have 'adaa based upon that. Rather, he should have walaa for everyone who is from the people of eemaan (i.e. is a Muslim) and is known to have taqwaa (piety and obedience to Allaah in that which He has ordered and prohibited), from the Shaykhs, or from others. No one should be particularised with an increase in walaa except if he sees from him greater eemaan and taqwaa. So precedence and excellence is given to whomsoever Allaah and His Messenger have given them to. Allaah - the Most High - said: "O mankind! Indeed We created you from a man and a woman, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Indeed the most noblest of you with Allaah are those that have the most taqwaa (piety)." [Soorah al-Hujuraat 49:13]."2
SECTARIANISM AND MISPLACED LOYALTIES
Shaykhul-lslaam Ibn Taymiyyah said:
"Indeed the people of the truth and the Sunnah do not follow anyone (unconditionally) other than Allaah's Messenger sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam; who does not speak from his desires, rather it is nothing less than Revelation sent down to him. So it is obligatory to affirm all that he informs, and to obey all that he commands. This status is not given to anyone else from this Ummah. Rather, every person's saying can be taken or left, except that of Allaah's Messenger sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam. So whoever sets up an individual other than Allaah's Messenger sallallaahu 'alayhi wa sallam, such that the one who loves and agrees with him is reckoned to be from Ahlus-Sunnah wal-Jamaa'ah, and the one that differs with him is reckoned to be from the people of innovations and sectarianism - as happens with those groups who follow certain Imaams of kalaam (theology and rhetorical speech) - then the person doing so is from the people of innovation, deviation and sectarianism."3
He - rahimahullaah - further said:
"Indeed many - from the people who say such sayings - follow their desires in this, in order to elevate their egos, or to gain leadership; or whatever is connected to it. Their intention is not to make the word of Allaah uppermost, nor is it to make the Religion purely for Allaah. Indeed, they have hatred for those who oppose them - even if it is a mujtahid (a Scholar striving his utmost to arrive at the truth) who is excused, and whom Allaah is not angry with. Likewise, they are pleased with those who agree with them - even if it is an ignorant person with evil intentions, who neither has any knowledge, nor good intent. This leads them to praise those whom Allaah and His Messenger have not praised, and to censure those whom Allaah and His Messenger have not censured. It also causes them to have walaa (love and allegiance) and 'adaa (enmity and hatred) based upon their own self-desires, not upon the Religion of Allaah and His Messenger ... So whosoever does this will only bring about fitan (trials and discord) between the people."4
PRESERVING THE LOVE AND UNITY
Shaykh 'Abdul-'Azeez bin Baaz - hafidhahullaah - said:
"The Religion of Allaah orders to judge (with justice) in all matters, and not to have walaa (love, loyalty and allegiance) with your brother merely because he agrees with you, or to have 'adaa (enmity and being distant) from him merely because he disagrees with you on a certain opinion or issue. This is not from justice at all! The Companions - radiallaahu 'anhum - differed in various issues, yet this did not affect the happiness and sincerity between them, nor their walaa and love for each other - may Allaah be pleased with them all. So the Believer acts upon the Sharee'ah (Prescribed and Divine Islaamic Law) of Allaah, follows the truth, gives priority to the evidences before anyone - yet in doing so, he does not oppress his brother, nor negate doing justice to him when he differs regarding any issue of ijtihaad in which the evidences are not so apparent. Likewise is the case for those issues in which differences occur due to a different interpretation of the text. So, in such instances he is excused, and it is upon you to sincerely advice him, and to love only the good for him, and not to split-up, nor to have enmity and hatred between you and your brother - and there is no might, nor any power, except with Allaah. "5
1. Majmoo' Fataawaa (20/164) of Ibn Taymiyyah.
2. Majmoo' Fataawaa (11/512).
3. Majmoo' Fataawaa (3/346-347).
4. Minhaajus-Sunnah an-Nabawiyyah (5/255).
5. Majmoo' Fataawaa wa Magaaalaat Mutanawwi'ah (11346).