March 10, 2009

Appendix D

Posted in Uncategorized at 12:30 pm by History of Al Andalus

Translation Of A Fatwa Of Muhammad Al-Mawwaq (End of 15th/9th Century)

BN Madrid MS. 5324 (fols. 135v-136r)

May Allah be pleased with you and grant the Muslims enjoyment for the length of your life. Your answer: If there is a man with two parents, or one of them, [living] in the Dar Al Harb, is it incumbent upon him, permitted, or recommended, to visit them or not, even if this results in neglecting them? If you say the first [viz., it is incumbent upon him to visit], should he visit them and return, or may he reside [there], [if] they request this of him? And does [this pertain] even if Christian authority and their laws apply to him, especially if he fears for his life? What is the judgment, may Allah be satisfied with you, regarding one who is living in the Dar Al Harb, with house and walls? Is it obligatory for him to leave? Even if this [would] lead to his begging for alms in the land of Muslims? Or it is preferable for him, or is it permissible? Explain to us the text [viz., that applies to it], and where it is found, if you can, or explain to us the authoritative basis [viz., from Allah] point by point, and what we have missed. May Allah reward you and guide you, and may Allah accept it as a good, sincere deed [for His sake]. Peace and mercy be upon you and Allah’s blessings. Praise be to Allah, blessings and peace upon Muhammad, the Prophet of Allah.

The answer: and in Allah [we seek] success: If the parents have the capacity to emigrate or leave from  Dar Al Harb or the land of the Shirk, without danger or fear, then it is not permitted to them to remain there, [even] if this leads to their impoverishment and their begging for alms. Indeed, the Companions of the Prophet-peace be upon Him-had emigrated and left behind what belonged to them. Some of the Ahl Al-Suffa[1] among them were supported by the alms of Muslims. The Prophet (SAWS) when he received alms, would send it to them. Under such circumstances it is not permitted to their son to travel to them for a visit and for any other thing which is not obligatory. If they do not have the capacity to emigrate, and he has the means to bring them out and rescue them from the ignominy of unbelief, then it is his obligation to do so; otherwise, it is also not permissible for him to visit them-even though [from another perspective] it is recommended on account of the fact that entry into [Dar Al Harb] results in [viz., his parents] contentment-because this also leads to entering under the ignominy of unbelief and that is a religious sin against Allah. No obedience is owed to a created [human being] if [it entails] disobeying the Creator. Peace be upon him in whose hands this [fatwa] falls from its writer, al-Faraj b. Ibrahim al-Basti, may Allah make him an avenue of blessings for them [frequently] in the Abode of War, so that he may fear Allah to his utmost extent [viz., effort] and offer his advice for others, so that perhaps his remaining there will lead to the strengthening of the faith of others and he may yet avail himself of the opportunity[ to leave], for nothing is impossible for Allah. Likewise, he who enters Dar al Harb is a faqih of himself. And one must compare the benefits [maslaha] which [bring him to Dar Al Harb] with the harm which he expects. It is agreed that if two harmful things occur, the lesser wards off the greater. And I issued a fatwa of the same substance but this is the essence of it. He who had no excuse for entering the Dar Al Harb or for staying there is worthy of blame [viz., it is objectionable.] As for one who has an excuse, he is excused on account of that excuse: For one whose effort is pious, Allah magnifies his reward. Allah the Almighty said:


﴿فَمَن يَعْمَلْ مِثْقَالَ ذَرَّةٍ خَيْراً يَرَهُ- وَمَن يَعْـمَلْ مِثْقَالَ ذَرَّةٍ شَرّاً يَرَهُ﴾

So, whosoever does good equal to the weight of a speck of dust shall see it. And whosoever does evil equal to the weight of a speck of dust shall see it[2]


One who repents of sin is like one without sin, since there is no sin greater than kufr. And Allah says:


﴿قُل لِلَّذِينَ كَفَرُواْ إِن يَنتَهُواْ يُغْفَرْ لَهُمْ مَّا قَدْ سَلَفَ﴾

Say to those who have disbelieved, if they cease, their past will be forgiven[3]


Written by Al-Mawwaq, Granada (May Allah Protect it).


[1] Among the Companions were some who dedicated themselves wholly to serving Islam. They spent all their time in learning Islam with all its subtleties, listening to the Prophet and communicating to others what they learnt and heard. They lived in the long, narrow chamber affixed to the Mosque and were therefore called Ashab al-Suffa, (the Companions of the Suffa). Since they spent their time in serving Islam by learning and teaching, they were poor and were provided by the Prophet and the rich among the Companions. They managed on very meager provisions indeed. The Prophet, upon Him be peace and blessings, was very careful about their livelihood. Once his daughter Fatima, may Allah be pleased with her, asked him for a servant. The Messenger answered: ‘How can you say that? I haven’t been able to assure the livelihood of the Ahl-Suffa yet.’ Abu Hurayrah (ض) was one of the Ahl Al-Suffa

[2] Surah Al Zalzalah, Verses 7-8

[3] Surah Anfaal, Verse 38

1 Comment »

  1. Mark said,

    Hi thanks for a great post. I’ll be back🙂


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