Question 508: Is Al-Fard one of the Names of Allaah?
Answer: Allaah’s Names are Tawqeefiyyah (bound by a religious text and not amenable to personal opinion). The Name “Al-Fard” was not mentioned in the Qur’aan or in the Sunnah, so it is not considered one of Allaah’s Names; it is just used to refer to Him... read more here.
Question 507: The Messenger (peace be upon him) said: “Allaah has ninety-nine Names, i.e. one-hundred minus one…” What is the meaning of this Hadeeth? Does this mean we should just memorize Allaah’s Names or act according to them as well?
Answer: First, the mentioned number does not mean that Allaah (Exalted be He) does not have other than these ninety-nine Names, but the meaning is that anyone who memorizes these Names will enter Jannah (Paradise). Thus, the meaning is to inform people that memorizing them will cause admittance to Jannah and not to count all the Names... read more here.
Question 506: It is mentioned in the book of “Sameer Al-Mu’mineen fi Al-Mawaa`izh Wal-Hikam Wal-Qasas” by Muhammad Al-Hajjar, (fifth edition, published by Dar Al-Nafis in 1406 A.H./pp. 171-172): “… And that Allaah (Exalted be He) has twenty Attributes, which are all affirmed by the Qur’aan, Sunnah (whatever is reported from the Prophet), and Ijmaa` (consensus of scholars). Scholars of Tawheed (belief in the Oneness of Allaah) divided such Attributes into four categories:
1- Sifah Nafsiyyah (Attribute of Allaah’s Essence or Being): which is His Existence.
2- Sifah Salbiyyah (negating attributes of imperfection and asserting their opposites): Oneness, Eternity, Permanence without beginning, Absolute Independence, Dissimilarity to creation.
3- Sifah Al-Ma`anee (Abstract Attributes): Knowledge, Will, Power, Hearing, Seeing, Speech, and Life.
4- Sifah Ma`naawiyyah (Attributes derived from ideas): Allaah is Knowing, Willful, Powerful, Hearing, Seeing, Speaking, and Living.”
My question is whether is it true that Allaah’s Attributes are only twenty? Is such a division correct and proven by the Qur’aan, Sunnah, and Ijmaa`?
Answer: It is untrue to confine Allaah’s Attributes to a certain number; be it twenty or any other number. This is because Allaah has many Attributes that no one can count except Him (Exalted be He). All Allaah’s Attributes are Perfect and we have to believe in all the Attributes which are mentioned in the Qur’aan or Sunnah... read more here.
Question 235: I read in the book of Tawdeeh Al-`Aqeedah Al-Mufeedah Fee `Ilm Al-Tawheed Li Sharh Al-Mazeedah that was written by Ahmad Al-Dardir and was commented by Shaykh Husayn Abdul-Raheem. It is the second part of the course of the fourth year in the preparatory stage in Al-Azhar institutes. This fourth edition was verified by Moosaa Ahmad, V. 4, on 1363 A.H, 1963 A.D. In this book, I read that the Attributes of Allaah (Exalted be He) are twenty Attributes in the saying of a certain group as Al-Raziyyah. In another saying Imam Al-Ash`aree and those who adopted his views said that the Attributes of Allah are thirteen Attributes. What is agreed upon according to this book is seven Attributes that are the Attributes of Al-Ma’aanee (the meanings). We would like to know what is incumbent upon us with regard to the Attributes of Allaah and their number if they are seven, thirteen or twenty. If they are twenty Attributes, what is the meaning of His being Potent and Living. Are these books proper for studying the sound creed? I doubt such books, because the author of Al-Mazeedah is Ash’aree. I would like to follow the example of Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal-Jamaa`ah (adherents to the Sunnah and the Muslim mainstream). I do not like to imitate Al-Asha`irah or others. Guide me to a book that talks about the Attributes of Allaah according to the creed of Ahl-ul-Sunnah (adherents to the Sunnah)
Answer: `Aqeedah of Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal-Jamaa`ah is that Allaah is described with the Attributes of Perfection. Moreover, Allaah should be described with what He described Himself with in the Qur’aan and what His Messenger (peace be upon him) described Him without Tahreef (distortion of the meaning), Ta`teel (denial of Allaah’s Attributes), Takyeef (questioning Allah’s Attributes or Tamtheel (likening Allaah’s Attributes to those of His Creation) according to His saying: There is nothing like Him; and He is the All-Hearer, the All-Seer. Saying that they are twenty, seven or thirteen has no basis and contradicts the Qur’aan, Sunnah and consensus of Muslim Ummah (nation). The book you have mentioned is not reliable. You can read the book called Al-‘Aqeedah Al-Waasitiyyah by Ibn Taymiyyah with the commentary of Muhammad Khaleel Al-Harras. You can also read Al-Tadmooriyah and Al-Hamawiyyah both written by Shaykh Al-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah. These three books have pointed out the creed of Ahl-ul-Sunnah (adherents to the Sunnah) concerning the Names and Attributes of Allaah and refuted the allegations of their opponents... read more here.
Al-Asha`irah are not considered of Ahl-ul-Sunnah because they do not affirm Allaah’s Attributes:
17- Al-Saaboonee mentioned in his sixth article, which opens with his saying: “This is a plain statement for mankind. The Ta’weel (allegorical interpretation) of some Aayaahs and Hadeeths on Attributes does not rule the Muslim out of Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal-Jamaa`ah (adherents to the Sunnah and the Muslim mainstream), since some of them are wrong while some others are right. Moreover, there are explicit Aayaahs on Ta’weel that were allegorically interpreted by the Sahaabah (Companions of the Prophet), the Taabi`oon (Followers, the generation after the Companions of the Prophet), and the Salafee scholars. No one could dare accuse them of aberration or rule them out of Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal-Jama`ah.” Then he gave examples of this, including Allaah’s saying: They have forgotten Allaah, so He has forgotten them. The examples also include Aayaahs on Allaah mocking at the mockers, scoffing at the scoffers, and planning against the plotters, and also the authentic Hadeeth about Allaah’s saying: I was sick but you did not visit Me and I was hungry but you did not feed Me. He went on to say: “Thus, the case is not like what some people think, namely, that the Madh-hab of the Salaf (righteous predecessors) does not involve Ta’weel at all. Rather, the Madh-hab of the Salaf requires allegorical interpretation of what should inevitably be allegorically interpreted.”
Answer: This claim requires detail. It combines truth and falsehood, for his claim that applying Ta’weel to some of Allaah’s Attributes does not remove a Muslim from Ahl-ul-Sunnah is generally true, since the person who applies Ta’weel to some of Allah’s Attributes, such as Al-Asha`irah, is not consequently removed from the Muslims or Ahl-ul-Sunnah, as regards matters other than the Attributes. Yet, he is not included in Ahl-ul-Sunnah when it comes to affirmation of the Attributes and disaffirmation of Ta’weel. Al-Asha`irah and their like are not included in Ahl-ul-Sunnah as regards the affirmation of the Attributes, since they disagree with them in this matter and assume different approach. This, however, requires repudiating them, exposing their mistake as regards Ta’weel, and explaining that it contradicts the approach of Ahl-ul-Sunnah wal-Jamaa`ah, as is already stated in the first of the present notes. There is no problem in saying that Al-Asha`irah are not among Ahl-ul-Sunnah as regards Divine Names and Attributes, even though they are among them as regards other matters. In this way, anyone reviewing their Madh-hab would recognize that they make a mistake when they applied Ta’weel to some Attributes and thus disagreed with the Sahabah and those who righteously followed them in this matter. This, in turn, would imply confirmation of truth and setting Ahl-ul-Sunnah and Al-Asha`irah in the positions where they really are… read more here.