26-06-2004, 07:04 PM
since i started practising about 3 years ago now, i have been reciting behind the imam (except when he's reciting loudly) and i did this beleiving that it was the position of Imam Mohammed bin Hasan al-Shaybaani, and many other hanafi ulema including Abd al-Hayy al-Lukhawi and Mulla Ali Al-Qari. This was all based on the book "The Salah of the Beleiver in the Qur'an and Sunnah" by Shaykh Riyadh ul Haq (p103).
Now the thing is that according to sunnipath and fiqh-al-iman, this is not a valid position to follow, because the narration to Imam Mohammed is not authentic and the others who allowed it were not mujtahids and so cannot change the position of the madhab. The position of the madhab they say is that it is makruh tahrime.
So then, does that mean that i have to repeat all those prayers? Is it in fact invalid to follow the opinions expressed in Shaykh Riyadh ul Haqs book? And also, what am i supposed to be doing in the salah then when the imam is reciting quietly?
What i decided to do was to become a hanbali when its time for congrgational salah, solely for the purpose of reciting behind the imam. (I learnt all the hanbali rules of purity, wudu and ghusl, and their detailed method of prayer aswell). I have read that it is permissible to follow a different madhab as long as its not based on nafs or done so invalidly. So is it ok for me to do this? because i find it almost impossible not to recite behind the imam. And lastly, if i prayed Isha in jamaat as a hanbali, would i then also have to pray the witr as a hanbali or could i go back to the hanafi school for that?
(Note i asked this at sunnipath and got no answer).
26-06-2004, 09:29 PM
Assalam o Alaikum WarahmatAllah Wabarakatoh
Each Imaam has based his Madhab on certain principles and on the basis of these principles were the rulings issued. By picking and choosing from these rulings, one would inevitably end up contradicting himself in the principles. An example to illustrate it to you in our daily lives would be, American pronounce the last letter of the alphabet as 'zee', while the British pronounce it as 'Zead'. This is a principle and pronounciation of words is based on this principle, this zebra is pronounced 'Zeebra' by Americans and Zebra by the British. If a person pronounced the letter as Zead but Zebra as Zeebra, it would be pointed out to him that what you are doing is unacceptable. Similar is the case with regard to picking and choosing between Madhabs. Secondly, while all the Imaam are right, if you pick rulings, your desires will lead you astray by causing you to pick those rulings that suit your whims and fancies and no sooner does a person do that, than he goes astray.
What is the proof for the unlawfulness of talfiq? And what is its exact definition?
Answered by Shaykh Amjad Rasheed
What is the proof for the unlawfulness of talfiq? And what is its exact definition?
Talfiq is when a person joins between the sayings of two mujtahid imams in his worship or business whereby he produces a composed ruling which neither of the two imams agree with. The erudite scholar, Ibn Ziyad al-Yamani has restricted the impermissibility of talfiq to a single issue, such as the wudu. This is in contrast to the Shaykh Ibn Hajar who said that impermissible talfiq can occur in a single issue or even two issues, such as wudu and the prayer. It is therefore not permissible according to Ibn Hajar to follow the Shafi‘i school in prayer when one’s wudu is not valid according to the Shafi‘i school, such as when one touches a non-mahram (unmarriageable person of the opposite sex) [h: and does not repeat one’s wudu] and follows the the Hanafi school in wudu. Rather, one must pray as a Hanafi in this case, as well, just as one followed their school for the wudu. As for Ibn Ziyad, according to him, that is permissible because they [s. wudu and prayer] are two separate issues.
The proof for the unlawfulness of talfiq is clear. The person who is piecing together two sayings is either a mujtahid whose ijtihad led him to this position, or he is not a mujtahid, but only a follower. In the terminology of the scholars of usul (principles of jurisprudence), a follower is anyone who is not a mujtahid in rulings [s. of Islamic law] even if he reaches a high level of knowledge and fiqh. The mujtahid is not obligated to follow anyone; whatever conclusion he reaches with his ijtihad, he must follow it. As for a follower, he must follow a mujtahid imam. So when he performs worship or conducts business while combining between two schools or more, he has invented for himself a new school of thought and he is not even of the people of ijtihad. Thus, he is not acting by a school that is relied upon, because if he were to ask each mufti whose position he followed [h: when piecing together the act] about the entire [h: pieced together] act of worship, or business, [s. the mufti] would not be able to give a fatwa that his action was valid because he violated something that was a condition of validity according to him. And this is playing around with the religion as the erudite scholar, Abd al Ghani al Nabulsi said in his book, “Khulasa al-Tahqiq fi bayan hukm al-taqlid wa al-talfiq” (p. 56).
- Amjad Rasheed
(Translated by Shazia Ahmad)
السؤال: ما دليلُ حرمة التلفيق ؟ وما هو تعريفُه الدقيق ؟
الجواب : التلفيقُ هو أن يجمع الشخصُ بين قولين لمجتهدَين في عبادة أو معاملة بحيث يتولد منهما حقيقة مركبة لا يقول بها صاحباهما . وقد حصر العلامةُ ابنُ زياد اليمني صورةَ التلفيق الباطلة فيما لو وقعت في قضية واحدة كالوضوء ، بخلاف الشيخ ابن حجر فجعل صورة التلفيق الباطلة واقعة في قضية وقضيتين كالوضوء والصلاة فلا يجوز عند ابن حجر أن يخلّ المتوضئ في الوضوء على مذهب الشافعي كأن يمس أجنبية تقليداً للحنفية ويصلي على الشافعي أيضاً بل يلزمه عنده تقليدُ الحنفية في الصلاة أيضاً كما قلدهم في الوضوء ، أما عند ابن زياد فيجوز ذلك لأنهما قضيتين مختلفتين .
والدليلُ على حرمة التلفيق واضحٌ ؛ وذلك أن الملفقَ بين قولين إما أن يكون مجتهداً أداه اجتهاده إلى ذلك ، أو لا يكون مجتهداً بل هو عاميٌّ ، والعامي في مصطلح الأصوليين هو غير المجتهد في الأحكام وإن بلغ رتبةً من العلم والفقه . فالمجتهدُ لا يلزمه تقليدُ أحدٍ فما وصل إليه باجتهاده فعليه العملُ به ، أما العامي فيلزمه تقليدُ مجتهد ، فمتى عمل عبادة أو معاملة ملفقةً من مذهبين أو أكثر صار مخترعاً له مذهباً خاصاً وليس هو من أهل الاجتهاد ، فلا يكون عاملاً بمذهب معتمد ، لأنه لو سأل كلَّ مفتٍ ممن قلد قولَه عن جملة تلك العبادة أو المعاملة لما ساغ له الإفتاءُ بصحتها لفقد شروط صحتها عنده ، وهذا تلاعبٌ في الدين كما قال العلامةُ عبد الغني النابلسي في كتابه "خلاصة التحقيق في بيان حكم التقليد والتلفيق" (ص 56)
Mixing Madhhabs - Talfiq
Answered by Shaykh Gibril Haddad
If all four imams are correct in their rulings, then why can't we ' pick-n-mix' between the rulings in order to make the deen easy for us?
Even if we should suppose that all four Schools are equally correct on all things at all times, it remains that each of them reached each ruling through a precise, carefully tuned method which our picking and mixing would render incoherent and hence belong to none of the four but limp forth from some hybrid fifth, sixth... nth school of our own devising as can be seen in the behavior and beliefs of non-madhhabis and permissive syncretists ("perennialists") alike. However, if we avoid those heretical extremes and proceed out of sincerity and informed caution, we may follow rulings from more than one specific school, which is called talfiq, conditionally and according to whatever guidelines apply so as not to keep our fiqh coherent.
For example, talfiq would be:
(a) haram when mixing and matching leads to doing something invalid according to all schools;
(b) blameworthy or disliked when in a way that combines contradictory parts such that the final action would be offensive according to all schools.
Talfiq (invalidly Mixing Between Madhabs)
Answered by Sidi Hamza Karamali
I am having trouble understanding the concept of "action" in the idea that one must not combine different ideas from different madhabs in the context of one action, thus creating a hideous amalgam that would not be accepted by any madhab. I don't understand what an action is.
Salat seems to be one action: you cannot pray your first raka as a Hanafi and the second as a Maliki. But I have trouble seeing how wudu and salat are the same action. There is both temporal and geographic separation between the two. If we use a dictionary definition of "action" it would imply that a specific action of an individual might have some locality of time and place.
Could you also please explain why creating an amalgam is so objectionable?
In the Name of Allah, Most Merciful and Compassionate
Our purpose, as the Qur'an explains, is to worship Allah. Allah created us on earth and commanded us to do certain actions and refrain from others. In order to obey Him, we need to know what He demands of us. Hence the importance of sacred knowledge.
In terms of fiqh (knowledge of the rulings of sacred law), Muslims fall into one of two categories. They are either mujtahids (loosely meaning that they possess the stringent qualifications required to derive rulings directly from the Qur'an and Sunna) or muqallids (meaning that they do not possess these qualifications and hence must resort to a mujtahid to find out Allah's ruling on a particular matter). No Muslim will contest that we must follow the Qur'an and Sunna; the Question rather is: is one qualified to derive legal rulings oneself, or must one submit to those who are authorized to do so?
Mujtahids are of various kinds (one can refer to Kamali's "Principles of Islamic Jurisprudence" for a categorization of the different levels of ijtihad) . Only the highest level of mujtahid (the absolute (mutlaq) mujtahid) is not bound to a madhab, and Imam Nawawi mentions in the Majmu' that this mujtahid has not existed since the era of the mujtahid imams. The only ijtihad that is probably alive today is on new issues that were not addressed by the classical works of the madhabs.
Since a mujtahid can derive fiqh rulings directly from the primary sources (commonly enumerated as four: Qur'an, Sunna, Ijma', and Qiyas, although there are others as well), it is haram for him to make taqleed. For him to do so would be to turn away from the Qur'an and Sunna and follow the opinions of men. The verse is Surah al-Tawba where Allah condemns the Jews for taking their Rabbis as lords besides Allah would apply to a mujtahid in such a case.
The concept of authority is not a difficult one to understand. No society would allow someone to perform a surgical operation without first attending medical school; nor would it permit anyone to build a bridge without first graduating from a civil engineering program. Does it not make sense to define criteria for mujtahids to prevent ignoramuses from ruining the Muslims' afterlife?
It is haram for a muqallid to attempt ijtihad and he is sinful for doing so even if he ends up coming to the right conclusion.  Allah's laws are not something to be played with and only those qualified to perform ijtihad have permission to delve into the primary evidences and deduce that something is halal or haram. The unqualified must ask the qualified. A mujtahid is to a muqallid what the Qur'an and Sunna are to a mujtahid. To find out the ruling of Allah on a particular issue, we resort to the fiqh books of the four schools; not to Sahih al-Bukhari or Sahih Muslim (let alone the would-be mujtahids of our age). This is not because we don't want to follow the Qur'an and Sunna; rather, it's because the only way we can truly follow the Qur'an and Sunna is by going through someone who understands what they are saying.
If a mujtahid looks at the prayer of a muqallid and rules that his prayer is valid, the muqallid has absolved himself of his responsibility before Allah, regardless of any hadiths that Salafis or modernists might hit him on the head with. Allah has demanded that the muqallid ask the mujtahid, saying, "Ask those who know well if you know not." Those who obstinately shunt aside the madhabs and follow what they think is right risk falling under the purview of the Prophetic curse: "They killed him; may Allah kill them: why did they not ask when they did not know?" 
This is where talfiq comes into the picture. Talfiq is to join between the positions of more than one school so that the resulting amalgam would be unacceptable according to all mujtahids. For example, someone who bleeds and decides to follow the Shafi'i school on wudu cannot follow the Hanafi school in prayer by not reciting the fatiha behind the imam, since both schools would say that his prayer was invalid. A muqallid who does talfiq in this manner has not absolved himself of his responsibility before Allah because there is no mujtahid who would look at his action and say that he had done what Allah asked of him.
With this in mind, Imam Ibn Hajar al-Haytami's (whose word, along with Imam Muhammad al-Ramli's, constitutes the final word in terms of fatwa in the Shafi'i school) definition of talfiq makes perfect sense. He said: "Whoever makes taqleed of an Imam in an issue must follow the requirements of his madhab on that issue and everything else that is related to it." (I'atu'l-talibin, 4.219). Since wudu and salat are related (wudu is a condition for the prayer), one must follow the same school on both. Since zakat, fasting, pilgrimage and prayer are not related to each other, one can validly follow a different school in each one.
Mixing between Schools without Talfiq
Since a muqallid's responsibility is only to fulfill the requirements set out by any of the madhabs, one could conceivably follow the positions of mutliple schools in a manner that avoids talfiq, praying fajr as a Hanafi, zuhr as a Shafi'i, asr as a Hanbali, and maghrib as a Maliki, and one would have absolved oneself of one's responsibility to perform these four prayers. The option to follow an opinion from another school can be useful when following the position of one's own madhab would lead to undue hardship, which is why the scholars mention that differences of opinion are a mercy.
The 'ulama also mention, however, (among them Ibn Hajar in the same reference given above), that someone who follows positions in a different school without need and only to seek the easy way out is sinful and thereby becomes a fasiq (corrupt). This is not something to be taken lightly, and is particularly relevant these days because of the ease with which one can find out the opinion of another madhab on a certain issue. Many of us might be subscribed to the Hanafi list, the Shafi'i list and the Hanbali list and seeing easy rulings in another madhab might seem tempting at times. To seek out easy rulings from a madhab other than the one one usually follows without any pressing need would be sinful.
As a final note, those who haven't already done so should read the articles on madhabs, taqlid, and ijtihad on Mas'ud Khan's webpage (www.masud.co.uk) by Shaykh Hamza Yusuf, Shaykh 'Abd al-Hakim Murad, and Shaykh Nuh Keller. These and other articles on this website are essential reading for all Sunni Muslims in these troubled times.
And Allah knows best.
 Although Kamali's book is one of the best references on usul al-fiqh available in English, the author relies mainly on some modern Arabic works on the topic and many of these works have modernist inclinations that go against classical Islamic scholarship. This is particularly noticeable in some contentious positions taken by the author in the section on ijtihad. So the book needs to be read with a grain of salt.
 The Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) said, "Judges are of three types: one is in Paradise and two are in the Fire. As for the one who is in Paradise , he is the one who knows the truth and judges according to it. The one who knows the truth and wrongs others by ruling [against the truth] is in the Fire. The one who rules while being ignorant is [also] in the Fire." (Abu Dawud, Tirmidhi, Ibn Majah). 'Allamah al-Sindi (Allah have mercy on him) said in his commentary on Sunan Ibn Majah: "The generality of the wording ["The one who rules while being ignorant"] includes the case when he judges correctly. This is because he deserves the Fire by daring to take up such an action without knowledge."
 Modernists and reformists insist that this verse was revealed in a certain context. Such objections, however, are indicative of their lack of knowledge of usul al-fiqh: a science that must be mastered before attempting to interpret any of the primary texts. Texts of usul tell us that general statements made because of specific reasons are not confined to the specific reasons but rather remain generally applicable to all situations (al-'ibratu bi 'umum al-lafdh la bi khusus al-sabab). Someone who doesn't understand this point needs to study usul before raising any objections. Regardless, the point the ayah is making is obvious even without it.
 Abu Dawud, Ibn Majah, Ahmad, and Darimi relate a hadith about a man whose head was split by a rock while travelling. This man had a wet dream and then asked the companions around him if he could take the dispensation of tayammum instead of performing a full ghusl. The companions insisted that he should use water. He made ghusl with water and then died because of it. When the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) heard about this, he prayed against them by saying, "They killed him; may Allah kill them. Why didn't they ask if they didn't know? The only cure for ignorance is to ask. It would have sufficed him to make tayammum, wipe over his wound, and wash the rest of his body."
27-06-2004, 06:35 AM
Salam,(Note i asked this at sunnipath and got no answer).
assalamu alaikum wr wb
It was probably already answered so they didn't do further research on it, but if you did a quick search on it you could find it. However, it takes a while for them to get back to you as they check with their sheikhs, scholars to verify that the answers are not only authentic but also reliable and sound. They need to check for errors and make sure that its grammar and spelling corrected as it also has to make sense the answer so that you can understand it without asking what does such and such mean?
Try again and do give it a few weeks, as we're all trying our best to get the Q's to the sheikhs asap and they're frantically trying to respond as quick as they can, but we're all muslims here and we all are trying to help one another and being understanding and patient with one another is the key in gaining knowledge and increasing it to remembering Allah swt.
However if you do not hear anything from them within the next few weeks, do send another one and they'll try to send it as priority to get back to insha'Allah.
28-06-2004, 08:05 PM
So then, does that mean that i have to repeat all those prayers?
I discussed this question with Mufti Yusuf. He said that it is not required to repeat those prayers, because makruhe tahremee doesn't require that the prayer be repeated once its original praying time has passed.
Allah knows best.
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