You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘History and Geography’ category.

There is no doubt that Imam Ibn Qayyim (may Allah have Mercy on him) was one of the greatest scholars who followed the way of the pious earliest scholars, and one of the revivers of their way in his time, following his teacher Imam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah have Mercy on him) in so doing.

The most important task these two Imams devoted themselves to was to refute the innovations in creed (belief) which had spread due to philosophical and rhetorical (kalaam) tendencies. A lot of such un-Islamic concepts had seeped into the Sufis and their books. They also sought to correct the practical manifestations of worshipping Allah and remove the innovations in actions and spirituality which has spread due to the innovated forms of Tasawwuf and the tariqahs (Sufi orders) which did not adhere to the Qur’an and Sunnah. Read the rest of this entry »

There is no clear evidence from the Qur’an or Sunnah to prove or disprove the marriage of the Prophet of Allah, Jesus (‘Eesa), the son of Mary (Marium), peace be upon them both.

As to what is narrated in the novel “Da Vinci Code” by Dan Brown, it only stirs up controversy about subjects which are sensitive for Western churches, for the sake of controversy and profit-making alone, not for any academic or historical research. Indeed, this novel created a great controversy and debate among the Christians, and many of them wrote refutations about the details which are contested by the Church.

Allah knows best.

___________________________________________________

Translated for IslamQA website

His name is Al-Hussain Bin ‘Ali, may Allah be pleased with him. Indeed he died a martyr (shaheed).

This happened since the people of Iraq (Kufa) wrote to him to come to them so that they may pledge allegiance to him as the ruler, and this happened after the death of Mu’awiyyah (may Allah be pleased with him) and his son, Yazid assuming power.

However, then the people of Kufa deserted Al-Hussain after Yazid Bin Mu’awiyah appointed ‘Abuaidullah Bin Ziyad as its governor who killed Muslim Bin ‘Aqeel, the envoy of Al-Hussain to the people of Iraq. Hence, the hearts of the people of Iraq were with Al-Hussain, but their swords were with ‘Abuaidullah Bin Ziyad.

Therefore, Al-Hussain set out towards Kufa, not knowing that Muslim Bin ‘Aqeelhad already been killed, nor that the people had become disloyal to him.

So, Al-Hussain set out towards Iraq and (when he) reached Karala, and got to know that the people of Iraqhave abandoned him. Thus, Al-Hussain asked the army sent to fight him one of three things: either they leave him so that he could return to Makkah, or that he be allowed to go to Yazid Bin Mu’awiyyah or that he be allowed to go to the frontier to participate in Jihad for Allah’s Sake.

However, they refused his wishes and demanded his surrender, with Al-Hussain refuses. So, they fought him and he was killed unjustly, as a martyr.

[Al-Bidayah wa Al-Nihayah 11/473-520]
_________________________________

for http://www.islamqa.com

Ibn Qayyim (1292-1350CE / 691 AH- 751 AH) said in I’laam Al-Muwaqqi’een:

وأما استحلال القتل باسم الإرهاب الذي تسميه وُلاة الجور سياسة
وهيبة وناموساً وحرمة للملك فهو أظهر من أن يذكر

“As far as making murder permissible in the name of terrorism is concerned, which the oppressive rulers and tyrants call state-policy, or establishing writ of the state, or upholding its awe and dignity, then this is quite obvious.”

The ordeals and hardships faced by the Prophet (peace be upon him) were due to the various types of obstacles the polytheists of Quraish erected in the way of his Da’wah (call to Islam). Read the rest of this entry »

Let’s go over this bit by bit:

1) The incident of Nooruddin Zanki rahmatullahi ‘alaihi’s dream : I found it in various books of history, though all of them are written very late. First of all, here is the chain of narration:
a) One book, “Tarikh Makkah Al-Musharrafah wa masjid al-haram wa al-qabr al-shareef” by Ibn Dhia. This was written in about 1100 H. Zengi’s dream should have about 500 years ago. He merely said:

وقصة الرؤيا على ما حكاه الطبري وغيره

i.e.this dream was recorded by Al-Tabari. We all know that Ibn Jarir Al-Tabari (if he is the one mentioned here, since Al-Tabari would generally refer to him) died more than a century before this supposed dream!

b) In one book by Al-Isnawi (died 765H) mentioned that the chain is like this:

سمعتها من الفقيه علم الدين يعقوب بن أبي بكر عمن حدثه من أكابر من أدرك ، أن السلطان محمودا

i.e. he heard this from Ya’qub who heard it from the big scholars he met that Mahmoud (i.e. Nooruddin Zengi) saw the dream….

Now the event is supposed to have occured in 557H and Al-Isnavi dies in 765. If let’s say Isnavi heard it at a young age say in 707, this means he heard it at least 150 years later. Yaqub heard it lets say 50 years prior to narrating it to Al-Isnavi, then it is again 100 years between yaqub and the event. He must thus need at least 2 levels (generations)between yaqub and zengi, but he presents only one! Not only is the chain broken (munqati’) but also those who narrated to Yaqub are unknown (majahil).

So, purely from a scientific point of view, this event probably didnot take place, at least not in the manner it is handed down to us. I must also note that Imam Al-Dhahabi did not mention this event at all in Al-Zengi’s biography. If u read his Siyar A’lam u will see he never misses out on such events! So is it possible the story had not become “popular” at Dhahabi’s time?

2) In the same vein is the ‘event’ of Huthaifah Bin Yaman’s (radhi allahu ‘anhu’s) grave in Baghdad. It is much more recent (1932 AD), and i think there is hardly any need to prove or disprove such dreams, particularly since we know how ‘pious’ recent rulers of Muslim countries have been.

3) In both of these dream, even if they were true, at leas one thing is very clear and paradoxical at the same time. In both events the occupants (may Allah be be pleased with them) of the graves asked the living people to help them. Those who use these dreams do the opposite: they ask these people of the graves for help and saving them. In fact the fabricated dream clearly says: “O mahmud , save me from these two blond men…” Subhanallah! This is what Allah said in the Qur’an:
“O mankind! A similitude has been coined, so listen to it (carefully): Verily! Those on whom you
call besides Allah, cannot create (even) a fly, even though they combine together for the purpose.
And if the fly snatched away a thing from them, they would have no power to release it from the fly.
So weak are (both) the seeker and the sought.” (Al-Hajj 22:73)

4) The important point, which Ibn Hajar in Fath Al-Bari  himself mentioned is that nothing new can be prescribed in the Shariah in such dreams.

5) Dreams: are they real occurences or ilham (a sort of revelation) from Allah? Allahu A’lam. I would not say something conclusively, but here is some food for thought: Ibrahim ‘alaihi salam slaughtered his son in a dream but in reality his son did not know about this untill he was told later. So clearly the incident was a revelation of things to come. ‘Umar radhi Allahu ‘anhu saw Sariyah near Isfahan fighting in the desert when the actual fight took place the next day, so this too was a signal (ilham) from Allah, if of course the incident is authentic. I have written in detail about this issue from Fathul Bari here .

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Recenty, when translating Islamic Conquests of Persia and Levant (Al-Shaam) I came across some cities and provinces which are not readily recognizable on modern maps. I will try to make a list:

Persia, Iraq and Lands East of Arabin Peninsula:

  1. Al-Namaraq:  A place near Kufa. The scene of the first battle between Persians and Muslims during ‘Umar’s reign.
  2. Kaskar: Two things a) A city between Basra and Kufa, and b) A province extending from Samarra to the place where the Tigris pours into the Arabian Sea. Basra is included in that province. It means “Land of Barley” in the language of people of Herat. Inhabitants are called Kaskaris.
  3. Suwad: These are the rural agricultural areas of Iraq. The travelling Arabs use to see them from the distant as black (green appears black from a distant), and hence named it Al-Suwad (i.e. the Black).
  4. Barosma: A rural suburb of Baghdad
  5. Ullais: A place on the Euphrates,  25 miles southeast of Najaf in Iraq.[ Wikipedia]
  6. Al-Buwaib: Two places a) The gateway of Hijaz to Egypt, and b) A river tributary of Euphrates near Kufa. It was the scene of one of the most important battles between Persians and Muslims after Qadisiyyah.
  7. Al-Seeb: Three places:  a) A rural suburb if Kufa (Ahmad b Muhammad Al-Seebi al-Shafa’ii belonged to this place), b) A river near Basra c) A place or island in Lower Kharezm.
  8. Al-Baab: Also called Baab Al-Abwaab (The gate of all gates). It is Derbent on the Caspian Sea [now in Dagestan, Russia]. A very strategic city. It is the only access between north and south Caspian on its west coast. It was conquered during ‘Umar Bin Al-Khattab’s (may Allah be pleased with him) reign.
  9. Bahr Tabaria [aka Bahr Qazwin]: This is the Capian Sea. The landlocked sea has had various names.
  10. Jayhun: The Oxus River a.k.a. Amu Darya.
  11. Sayhun: The Jaxartes River a.k.a. Syr Darya.
  12. Ma Wara Al-Nahr: (literally ‘what lies beyond the river’). This is Transoxania.
  13. Tastar: It is the present day Iranian city of Shustar, a 100 km north of Ahvaz.

To be continued…

The Levant (Al-Shaam):

  1. Al-Shaam: A large region comprising of today’s Palestine, Israel, Lebanon, Syria and Jordon. It is also called the Levant.
  2. Al-Balqa: It is the ancient name for Jordan
  3. Fihl: It is the battle directly after Yarmouk. It happens to be the Biblical city of Pella, midway between the Dead and Galilee Seas, in today’s Jordon. See [1], [2], [3] and [4].
  4. Tadmur: Its the ancient Syrian city of Palmyra.
  5. Maysanun Springs: The modern town of Maysalun, the site of the famous Frano-Syrian battle of 1920.
  6. Horan: A region straddling Southern Syria and Northern Jordan.
  7. Bisan: Historical city on R. Jordan, north of Jerusalem and Pella, now in Israel. [Wikipedia]
  8. Qanassarin: An ancient city 10 miles south west of Hims. Now a ruin. [1]
  9. Sur: The city of Tyre in Lebanon
  10. Al-Lathaqiya: Syrian city of Latakia
  11. ‘Aqqa: Israeli city of Acre
  12. ‘Arqa: A town 15 km from Jenin.
  13. Saida: Arabic name for Sidon in Lebanon.

To be continued…

Sources:

[1] Mu’jam Al-Buldan (Encyclopedia of Geographical Locations) by Yaqut Al-Hamawi

[2] Wikipedia

T. Seehe ancient city of Pella. It is midway between the Sea of Galilee and the Dead Sea on the Jordan River. It is now situated in modern day Jordan. http://whc.unesco.org/en/tentativelists/1554/