THE DANGER OF RUSHING TO PERFORM TAKFEER
Taken from the book “Al-‘Udhr bil-Jahl” (The Excuse of Ignorance) by Shaykh Ahmed Fareed of Egypt. It was translated by Abu Talha Dawud ibn Ronald Burbank and adapted by Abu Muntasir ibn Mohar ‘Ali
The Messenger (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said: “He who says to his brother ‘O Disbeliever’, then it returns upon one of them.”1 He also said: “And he who accuses a believer of Kufr (disbelief) then it is like killing him.”2
Imaam An-Nawawee said, “They differ as regards interpretation of this “returning”, so it is said, “Kufr returns upon him if he is making that lawful”, and this is far from the context of the narration, and it is said, “it is taken to refer to the Khawaarij”, since they declare believers to be Kaafiroon (disbelievers).”3
Imaam Al-Haafidh (Ibn Hajr) says, “And what is correct is that the hadeeth (narration from the Messenger (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) was said as a warning against a Muslim saying that to his brother. It is said, “What returns upon him is his speaking ill of his brother and the sin of declaring him a kaafir (disbeliever)”, and this is reasonable. It is also said, “It is to be feared that this will lead him into kufr”, just as it is said, “sins leads towards kufr”. Thus it is feared that if he continues in that and persists in it then he will have a bad end. I prefer from these sayings that it refers to the one who says it to someone from whom nothing is known except Islaam and there is no justification or reason for him to claim that he is a kaafir. So in such a case he becomes a kaafir himself because of that, and this will be explained. So the meaning of the hadeeth is that his judgement of takfeer (making someone a kaafir) returns upon himself, so what is meant is takfeer not kufr. So it is as if he passed judgement of kuft upon himself since he passed this judgement on one who is like him (ie. a muslim)”4
Imaam Ash-Shawkaanee said, “Judging that a Muslim has left Islaam and entered into Kufr is something that is not fitting for a Muslim who believes in Allaah and the Last Day except with a proof (Burhaan) which is clearer than the daytime sun, since it is established in the authentic hadeeth reported by a group of Companions that he who says to his brother “O Kaafir!” Then it returns back to one of them.” In another wording, “Whoever addresses a man with Kufr, or says ‘Enemy of Allaah’ and he is not that, then it returns back upon him”5
So in these ahadeeth (plural of hadeeth) and others similar to them, there is the severest reprimand and the greatest warning against hurrying to perform takfeer. Allaah, The Mighty and Majestic says: “…and such as open their breasts to disbelief…” [Surah an-Nahl 16:106]
So what has to be the case is that the heart embraces kufr and is at peace with it, and the soul is satisfied with it. So the appearance of wicked beliefs only is not to be taken into account here, especially if one is ignorant of the fact that they are contrary to Islaam.
Likewise account will not be taken of the appearance of an action of kufr for the one who did not intend to leave Islaam by it and enter into kufr, and likewise account will not be taken of a word spoken by a Muslim which is a saying of kufr, when he does not believe what it means.”6
So where do they stand those who hasten to perform takfeer of the Muslims in relation to the saying of the Messenger (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam): “Abusing a Muslim is open sin and killing him is kufr”7 And in relation to his saying: “The Muslim is the Brother of a Muslim, he does not oppress or forsake him.”8 Also in relation to his saying: “All of the Muslim to the Muslim is inviolable; his blood, his wealth and his honour.”9 ?
Imaam Al-Qurtubee says in his tafseer (exegesis/explanation) of Sooratul Hujuraat: “…and His (Allah) saying: “lest your deeds be rendered fruitless while you perceive it not” [Surah al-Hujuraat 49:2] does not mean that a person becomes a kaafir without knowing since just as a person does not become a believer except through choosing eemaan (faith) over kufr, then likewise a believer does not become a kaafir without intending kufr and choosing it, and there is consensus (ijma’) regarding this.”10
- 1. Reported by al-Bukhaaree, Muslim, Maalik, at-Tirmidhee and Abu Danwood.
- 2. Reported by al-Bukhaaree.
- 3. Abbreviated from An-Nawawee’s “sharh” (explanation) of Saheeh Muslim (2/50)
- 4. Abbreviated from “Fathul Baaree” (10/466)
- 5. Hadeeth reported by Muslim (2/49 – Book of Eemaan).
- 6. Taken from “As-Sailul-Jarraar” (4/578) and adapted.
- 7. Reported by al-Bukhaaree and Muslim.
- 8. Reported by Muslim.
- 9. Reported by Muslim, Abu Daawood and at-Tirmidhee.
- 10. Tafseer of al-Qurtubee (7/6128).
TAKFEER IS A LEGISLATIVE SENTENCE AND IS NOT DEPENDENT UPON ONE’S REASONING, OPINION, OR EMOTIONS
Taken from the book “al-Hukmu bi ghayri ma Anzal-Allaah wa Usool ut-Takfeer” (Ruling by other that what Allah revealed and the Fundamentals of Takfeer) by Shaikh Khalid ibn Muhammed al-‘Anbari. It is translated by Brother Abu Khaleel
Takfeer is solely the right of the Lord. It is not the domain of a particular class or group, nor is it dependent upon one’s reasoning or opinions. Fervent tyranny and open hostility does not enter into the question, nor is it charged upon an oppressor because his oppression and errant ways are extreme, or a violent unrelenting tyrant as a means of ending his reign of terror. No one is declared a kafir except those who have been declared such by Allah and His Messenger (S).
Shaykh ul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah said: “This is the opposite of what some people say, like Abu Ishaq al-Isfaraaynee and those who follow him; they say, ‘We do not make takfeer of anyone except for those who make takfeer of us’ But labelling one with disbelief is not their right, it is Allah’s right. People do not have the right to lie about those who lie about them, nor to commit fornication with the women of those who have committed fornication with their women. Even if a man is raped by another man he doesn’t have the right to rape him in retaliation… because these are offenses against Allah (T). Even if a Christian slanders our Prophet (S), it is not allowed for us to slander al-Masih, and if the Rawafid make takfeer of Abu Bakr and ‘Umar, it is not right for us to make takfeer of ‘Ali …”1
In another place he said: “Similarly, the people of knowledge and the Sunnah do not make takfeer of those who oppose them even if their opposition comes in the form of takfeer of them, for one’s disbelief is determined by the shari’ah. People do not have the right to punish with it as revenge. Just like if someone lies about you or fornicates with your women, it is not your right to lie about him and fornicate with his wife, because lying and fornication is among the forbidden things, due to Allah’s right to determine them as such, and similarly takfeer is Allah’s right, so takfeer is not applied to one unless it was applied to him by Allah or His Messenger (S)”2
Al-Qurafi said: “A matter is not determined to be kufr by reason, rather it is a legislated matter of the shari’ah. So if the shari’ah says about a matter, ‘It is kufr’ then it is kufr, and it is the same whether it is a thing written or stated.”3
AI-Ghazali said: “Kufr is a shari’ah ruling like enslavement and freedom etc. It makes blood lawful and warrants eternity in the Fire. It is determined by the shari’ah so its realization is either by a text, or by qiyaas concluding from what occurred in the texts.”4
Ibn al-Wazir said: “Takfeer is based purely upon what has been revealed, there is no room for the use of reason in determining it, and the evidences for kufr can be established only by revelation alone, and there is no dispute over this.”5
In his Qaseedatun-Nuniyah Imaam Ibn Qayim al-Jawziyah wrote: “Declaring kufr is Allah’s right, then His Messenger. It is with the confirmed text, not the saying of so and so. Anyone who the Lord of the Worlds and His Servant (S) declared a disbeliever, then that is the possessor of the disbelief.”
Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymin, may Allah preserve him, answered the following question:
Are the people of ta’weel (misleading interpretation) considered disbelievers or just fasiqs6 ?
“To apply the judgement of disbelief and fusuq is not for us, rather it is for Allah (T) and His Messenger (S). It is a judgement of the shari’ah based upon the Book and the Sunnah. So it is necessary that its application is affirmed. None is considered a disbeliever or a fasiq without proof from the Book and the Sunnah for his disbelief or fisq.
The rule for one who appears to be a true Muslim is that his Islam and its fidelity remains until it has been determined by proof from the shari’ah that this has ceased. It is not allowed to indulge in declaring him a disbeliever or a fasiq because this may result in one of the two following grave dangers:
1. Forging a lie against Allah (T) by judging and sentencing another with the description (kaafir) that he labelled him with.
2. What he accused his brother with may return to him if his brother was in fact innocent of it. In Sahih Muslim it is reported that ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar (R) said that the Prophet (S) said: “When a man calls his brother a kafir it surely comes back to one of them”
So accordingly, before judging a Muslim to be a kafir or a fasiq, it is necessary to be sure of two matters:
1. The Book and the Sunnah prove that these statements or actions necessitate a declaration of kufr or fisq.
2. The judgement is applied to the individual who said or did the act, only when the conditions of takfeer and declaring one a faasiq truly apply to him, and all obstacles are removed.
One of the most important conditions is that the offender is aware of the violation which made him a kafir or fasiq, as Allah (T) said: “Whoever contends with the Messenger (S) after the guidance has been made clear to him and he follows other than the way of the believers, We shall leave him in the path he has chosen and land him in Hell. What an evil refuge” [An-Nisa’ 4:115]
And: “And Allah does not allow a people to stray, after He has guided them, until He makes what they should avoid clear to them” [At-Tawbah 9:115]
For this reason the people of knowledge say; ‘One is not considered a kafir for rejecting an obligation, if he is new to Islam, until it is made clear for him.'”7
- 1. Manhaj as-Sunnah 5:244.
- 2. Ar-Radd ‘alal aI-Bakri p.257
- 3. Tahtheeb al-Furuuq 4:158.
- 4. Faysal at-Tafriqah bayn ul- Islam wa-Zinadiqah 128.
- 5. A1-Awasim wal-Qawasim 4:178.
- 6. Meaning deviants in this context.
- 7. Al- Qawaa’id al-Muthlaa fee Sifa at Allaah wa Asmaa’hil-Husna 88-89.
RULING BY OTHER THAN WHAT ALLAH HAS REVEALED
Imaam al-Albani and His Argument Against Ahl ut-Takfir
Compiled by Shaikh Ali Hasan
Source: Fitnah of Takfir
Article ID : MNJ050008 [www.salafipublications.com]
Amongst those matters whose mention and quotation will bring benefit is that I met with some of those who used to be with Jamaa’at ut-Takfir and Allaah the Mighty and Majestic guided them. So I said to them: “You declared some of the rulers to be disbelievers but what led you, for example, to declare as disbelievers [also] the imaams of the masjids the khateebs of the masjids, the mu’addhins of the masjids and also those looking after the masjids? And what led you to declare as disbelievers the teachers of the Shari’ah knowledge in the schools and elsewhere?”
They replied: “Because they were content and happy with the rule of the rulers, those who ruled by other than what Allaah has revealed!!”
So I say: If this contentment with the rule of other than that which Allaah revealed was a contentment of the heart, then in this case the kufr in action would have turned into the kufr in belief! Therefore, whichever ruler judges by other than what Allaah has revealed and he considers and holds it as his belief that this rule is a rule that befits and is suitable for this era and that the rule of the Shari’ah whose source is the texts of the Book and the Sunnah is not suitable, then there is no doubt that the kufr of this ruler is the kufr in belief and is not just the kufr in action alone!! Then I said to them: “And you, first of all, will not be able to make judgment over every ruler who judges by the western laws of disbelief, or by a fair number of them, such that if he was to be questioned about ruling by other than what Allaah has revealed, that he would reply: “Because ruling by these [foreign] laws is the truth and is correct for this particular era! And that it is not permissible to rule by [the laws of] Islaam!!” Because if they were to say that, then they would become disbelievers in truth, without doubt or hesitation. “And when we look at the subjects of the ruler – and amongst them are scholars and righteous people and others – how can you make the judgment of kufr upon them [as well] purely because they live under a rule which encompasses them just like it encompasses you! But you announce that they are disbelievers and apostates, and that ruling by other than what Allaah has revealed is obligatory! And then, seeking to make an excuse for yourselves, you say: Opposing the Shari’ah law in one’s actions alone does not necessitate the ruling upon a person that he is an apostate?! “And this is the exact same thing that people besides you say, save that you go a bit further, without any justification or due right, and make the judgment of disbelief and apostasy [over them]!!!
Of the matters that makes apparent their error and uncovers their misguidance is that it is said to them: “When can it be judged against a Muslim who testifies that there is none which has the right to be worshipped except Allaah and that Muhammad is His Messenger and who prays that he has apostatized from his religion? Is one instance [of ruling by other than what Allaah has revealed] enough? Or is it necessary for him to announce that he has become an apostate? Indeed, they do not know an answer to this! And will never reach what is correct!! We are compelled then to strike the following example for them.
So we say: A ruler (qaadee) judges by the Shari’ah, this is his habit and part of his system. However in a particular ruling he erred and made a judgment in opposition to the Shari’ah, meaning that he judged in favour of the oppressor and did not give the favourable ruling to the one who had been oppressed. This ruler has definitely judged by other than what Allaah has revealed! So would you say that he has disbelieved with the kufr of apostasy?
They will say in reply: No, because this only occurred from him once.
We then say: If this same ruling occurred from him a second time, or another ruling in which he opposed the Shari’ah, has he disbelieved? Then we repeat this to them: Three times! Four times! When is it that you will say that he has disbelieved (apostatized)? They will not be able to place a limit to the number of his rulings in which he opposed the Shar’iah, then they cannot be able to declare him a disbeliever on account of them!! Whereas they could perfectly do the opposite of that when it is known from this ruler that in the very first ruling he made, he preferred ruling by other than what Allaah has revealed, holding that to be lawful, whilst disapproving of the Shari’ah. At that moment the ruling of apostasy can be applied to him, correctly, at the very first time (he opposed the Shari’ah).
And again, in the situation opposite to this: If we observed from this ruler many rulings in a variety of different issues in which he opposed the Sharee’ah and we were to ask him, “Why have you ruled by other than what Allaah the Mighty and Majestic, has revealed?” Then if he were to reply, “I feared for myself!” or “I was bribed”, for example, then this is one is much more evil than the first (i.e. the first example of the ruler given above). But despite this we are not able to declare him a disbeliever until he makes known what is in his heart that he does not deem ruling by what Allaah the Mighty and Majestic has revealed to be correct or suitable. In such a situation we would be able to say that he is a disbeliever with the kufr of apostasy.
INTERVIEW WITH THE JUDICIARY CONSULTANT AT THE SAUDI MINISTRY OF JUSTICE SHAYKH ABDUL MOHSEN AL-OBEIKAN
By Asharq Alawsat
(Q) How does one evaluate ideological modification of wanted suspects, some of whom are imprisoned, and how is this process of thought-purification conducted?
(A) The counseling is conducted through discussions in appropriate settings during which the prisoner talks about his beliefs and the evidence verifying them, which we in turn discuss and modify, explaining the true meaning of the evidence he provides as proof for his beliefs. Many, thank God, change their viewpoints in one session. Afterwards, a report is written stating that counseling and discussion has been conducted. In the report, we include what this person”s former ideas were and how they have changed and we then recommend his release. Some have been released and even come to visit me at the mosque every now and then.
(Q) What are the most prominent of principles that these men adhere to, and what conclusions do you come to through counseling them?
(A) The most prominent suspicion they have is the takfir (denouncing others as infidels) suspicion . They always consider (that it applies to) the government”s aid — as they think — to the infidels in their war on the Muslims. Naturally this aid has not happened. Anyway, aid is not absolutely banned; there are three cases: The first case is to have complete and absolute alliance with them. This would be an infidelity that excludes the person from Islam, and this is the aim of those who use takfir. The evidence is that God Almighty said: “O you who believe! Do not take the Jews and the Christians for allies; they are allies for each other. And whoever amongst you takes them for allies, then surely he is one of them, indeed God does not guide the evil doers,” Al-Maidah, verse 51. God Almighty also said: “O you who believe! Do not take my enemy and yours for friends, offering them friendship, while they have rejected the Truth that has come to you, and expelling the Messenger and you only because you believe in God your Lord. If you go forth to strive in My cause and seeking My good pleasure, take them not as friends holding secret converse of friendship with them, while I am best aware of what you hide and what you reveal, and whoever of you does that, has truly gone astray from the Right Path,” Al-Mumtahanah, Verse 1. Interpreting these verses, Ibn-Kathir, God have mercy on his soul, said: “God Almighty has prohibited the believing worshipers from allying themselves with the infidels, or taking them as allies with whom to converse in friendship and not to do so with the believers. Then He threatened whoever does this, ”And whoever does this has deprived himself of God”s blessings,” Al Imran, verse 28. This means that whoever does what God forbade, then God will not bless him. God Almighty said, ”O you who believe! Do not take My enemy and yours for friends, offering them friendship,” until He said, ”And whoever of you does that, has truly gone astray from the Right Path.”” God Almighty said, “O you who believe! Do not take the unbelievers as allies, nor other than the believers, is it that you wish to furnish God with clear proof against yourselves,” Al-Nisa, Verse 144. God Almighty also said: “O you who believe! Do not take the Jews and the Christians for allies; they are allies of each other. And whoever amongst you takes them for allies, then surely he is one of them,” Al-Ma”idah, Verse 51. God Almighty said after mentioning the alliance with the believers from Al-Muhajirun, Al-Ansar (those who immigrated with the Prophet from Mecca to Medina, and the people of Medina who received them) and the Arabs: “And the unbelievers are allies of each other. Unless you do this, there would be tumult and oppression on earth and great corruption,” Al-Anfal, Verse 73. Imam Ibn-Jarir al-Tabari, God have mercy on his soul, said: “Whoever allies himself to them, and supports them against the believers would be one of their religion and creed. No one allies himself to someone else unless he is satisfied with the other, the other”s religion, and the other”s situation. If someone were satisfied with another, and with the other”s religion, then he would be hostile to whatever contradicts with or angers the other, and hence becomes similar to him.” Shaykh Abd-al-Latif Bin-Abd-al-Rahman Bin-Hasan Al al-Sheikh, God have mercy on his soul, said: “Sunaa interpreted, restricted, and specified it as general and absolute alliance.” Sheikh Abd-al-Rahman al-Sa”di, God have mercy on his sol, said: “If it were complete alliance, then it would be infidelity; there are other levels below this, some of them severe, and others are less severe.” The second case is if there is an alliance to achieve personal interests for the ally and the pursuer, without fear, or something similar to compel such alliance. This is not allowed, but it is not infidelity. The evidence is the story of Hatib Bin-Abi-Balta”ah, God be satisfied with him, which was told by Al-Bukhari and Muslim, God have mercy on their souls, and others. Hatib wrote a message to Quraysh telling them that the Prophet, God”s prayers and peace be upon him, was preparing to march on Mecca; the prophet was preparing for the conquest of Mecca, but was hiding the news to surprise them, and hence the infidels would be forced to agree to peace because the Prophet did not want war; Hatib sent his message with his slave, and she hid it in her hair; God told His Prophet about that, and the prophet sent Ali, Al-Zubayr, and Al-Miqdad, God be satisfied with them, and said: “Go to the Khakh Park, you will find a slave with a letter, take it from her;” when they brought the letter, the Prophet said: “What is this Hatib?” Hatib said: O God”s Messenger, do not be angry with me; I was an ally of Quraysh, but I was not one of the important ones; those who immigrated with you have relatives there to protect their families and friends; since I do not have such links, I wanted to do them a favor so that they would protect my family; I did not do it because I relinquished my faith or accepted infidelity after Islam. The Prophet, God”s prayers and peace be upon him, said: “He is telling the truth.” Umar Bin-al-Khattab asked the Prophet, God”s prayers and peace be upon him, to give him permission to kill Hatib, but the Prophet did not allow him. They say that following this God sent the verses including, “O you who believe! Do not take My enemy and yours for friends, offering them friendship, while they have rejected the Truth that has come to you, and expelling the Messenger and you only because you believe in God your Lord.” Al-Hafidh Bin-Hajar: “When he said in the story of Hatib Bin-Abi-Balta”ah: ”Umar said: O God”s Messenger, let me cut off his head,” Umar only said that after the Prophet, God”s prayers and peace be upon him, believed the excuse of Hatib, because of his strong faith and hatred of hypocrisy; Umar thought that anyone who disobeyed the Prophet deserved to be killed, but he was not categorically sure, and that is why he asked for permission to kill him, and he called Hatib a hypocrite because he was hiding the opposite of what he was announcing. The excuse of Hatib which he mentioned was that he did what he did thinking that there was no harm in it.” With regard to this story, Al-Tabari attributed to Al-Harith, who attributed to Ali: “He said: Has he not witnessed the Badr conquest? He said: Yes, but he changed, and he supported your enemies against you.” Ibn-Hazm said: As for some Muslim who is taken by zeal, used military polytheists, and gave them a freehand to kill his Muslim opponents, take their money, or enslave them, if he were to be victorious, and the infidels were his subordinates, then he would perish as an extreme wanton, but he would not be an infidel, because he did not do anything that would make him an infidel according to the Quran or the unanimous opinion.” Sheikh Muhammad Rashid Rida, God have mercy on his soul, said: “Therefore, the street did not judge Hatib to be an infidel by allying himself to the polytheists, which was prohibited.” Therefore, the scholars did not mention alliance and support as a reason for infidelity when they talked about the rules of apostasy. This is clear to anyone who reads Al-Iqna wa Sharhuh, Al-Mughni, and other books. It is noteworthy that God Almighty addressed Hatib as a believer when He said: “O you who believe! Do not take…” which indicates that he did not become an infidel by his deed. This is despite the fact that God Almighty said: “offering them friendship;” and He said: “Holding secret converse of friendship with them.” As for the third case, the alliance is allowed only when there is a need and necessity. God Almighty said in the Surah of Al Imran: “The believers should not take the unbelievers, nor other than the believers, for allies, and whoever does this has deprived himself from God”s blessing, but you should guard yourselves against them in devotion to God;” therefore, God Almighty exempted the case when the Muslims are afraid and want to avoid the evil of the infidels, as in this case the Muslims are allowed to contract an alliance.
(Q) What about removing the disbelievers from the Arab peninsula?
(A) This is another issue prominent among the wanted men. We tell them that removing disbelievers from the Arab peninsula in context of the Hadith is not how they interpret it. That is that the area the Prophet (peace be upon him) was concerned about removing the non-believers from was that surrounding the two holy mosques and not other areas such as the Eastern Province or other regions in Saudi Arabia. Another point is that there were non-believers who lived in Saudi Arabia during the Caliphs” times. Muslim men married non-Muslim women and lived together in the region. I even found fatwas for Sheikh Mohammad Ibn Uthaimeen who supported this notion. A third point is that this issue is the business of the country”s guardians rather than the people. The Caliph Abu Bakr did not have the Jews removed from Medina during his time, nor did he ask Omar Ibn Al-Khattab to do so either. A fourth point is that even if non-believers are to leave the region, it does not mean violating their properties or permitting their bloodshed. Furthermore, having them leave the region is related to what is best and it is not an indefinite general predicament.
(Q) Through your discussions with these men, how do you think they were influenced and by whom?
(A) The influence was from both inside and outside the country but particularly from outside and especially from Al-Qaeda. The books of Abu-Qutada and Al-Maqdasi were most influential. They depend on their books that contain many errors and are misguiding. Their going astray is also due to the tapes and books that have spread all over Saudi Arabia.
(Q) Pardon me, but did those wanted by security, who were advised, go in the past to Afghanistan to fight within the ranks of Al-Qaeda there? Or are they a mixture of those who have been influenced at home and those who were marked by the Afghan experience?
(A) Some of them came from Afghanistan, and others, as you kindly pointed out, were influenced by these ideas at home through the smuggled books and tape recordings.
(Q) What are the aims pursued by those wanted by security?
(A) They think that they are performing jihad for the sake of God, and that they are supporting Islam; this is their mistaken belief.
(Q) What about the establishment of the Islamic state, which they keep repeating in their statements and audio recordings?
(A) Naturally, they aspire to do so; they aspire to establish a state that agrees with their opinions.
(Q) What are their opinions?
(A) They want permanent fighting against the infidels, they want to kill all non-Muslims in the Arabian Peninsula, and they want a complete boycott of the non-Muslims so that we do not sell oil to them or buy goods from them. All this is based on wrong and superficial opinions. They do not have any depth or understanding of the shariah, the reality, the benefits, or the evils. Many of them have no knowledge. They are deceived youths.
(Q) How do you describe their financial and social situation?
(A) The situation of some of them is good. This means that they have not resorted to this path because of poverty or unemployment; on the contrary, most of them were either students or employees.
(Q) What about their age?
(A) They are mostly young, their ages range between 16 and 30 years old.
(Q) Those who are 16 years old, how were they advised?
(A) Naturally, convincing them was easy, because they are young and deceived, and if the evidence became clear to them, most probably, they would be convinced, express repentance, and retreat from their misguided thinking.
(Q) What is the most prominent situation you faced while advising some of those wanted by security?
(A) In fact, we did not receive anything from them except respect and appreciation. We engage in calm discussions. Very few of them show rigidity in their opinions; these are mostly not normal, mentally or psychologically, and their ages range between 25 and 30 years.
(Q) Those you referred to in your answer — those with rigid opinions — do they have jurisprudence knowledge to make your mission difficult when you engage in discussions with them?
(A) They rely on smuggled books, particularly the books of Abu-Qutada and Al-Maqdasi; they quote from them, and they quote from the Muslim Brotherhood books and rely on them.
(Q) What are the prisons you visited and in which you engaged in discussions with those wanted by security?
(A) I paid a number of visits to the Al-Haer prison in Riyadh, in addition to some of the prisons in Abha, Khamis Mushayt, and Al-Taif.
(Q) What is the percentage of response among those wanted by security to the advice sessions, and does the percentage vary from one region to another?
(A) It is more-or-less the same percentage.
(Q) In your opinion, what is the importance of the discussion sessions you carry out in rectifying the thinking of those wanted by security and restoring them to the right path?
(A) There is no doubt that they are mentally ill, because they adopt misguided ideas. They have to be treated by means of discussion, dialogue, and giving them evidence, because punishment alone does not work with such people. What benefits them is discussion. In my opinion, punishment alone is not sufficient; it is imperative to treat them by means of discussion and dialogue.
(Q) Frankly, if we go back in time a little, an important question will come to the fore: What motivated these people to adopt the misguided takfiri thinking? Did they not find anyone to advise them at that time?
(A) No doubt that there were those who sponsored this thinking. At home and abroad; there still are symbols that sponsor this takfiri thinking.
(Q) Pardon me, but where were our moderate ulema?
(A) They were talking and talking. However, you know, these deceived people were warned against listening to the moderate ulema. Some of those who listened retreated, but those who adhered to the instructions not to listen to the moderate ulema remained in the shadows of the takfiri thinking. I would say: Imprisoning the deceived is the equivalent of putting them in medical quarantine. Some people say that some of those deceived have completed their sentence, but have not been released and they ought to be released, and they also say that some of them have not been put on trial; this happens only to those who committed a crime, and the people are confusing the two situations. Those who follow an ideology and commit a crime should be punished for their crime, but they also should be quarantined until their minds recover from the infectious disease of misguided thinking. If they were released before they recover, they would harm themselves, harm others, and corrupt society. Perhaps those who advocate human rights, and those who criticize these measures have not understood this point. However, when the issue is explained to them, they retreat from their demands for trials and for releasing the individual after the end of his sentence.
(Q) Perhaps I should conclude the interview by asking you an important question: Despite the retreat of the Muslim Brotherhood from their fatwas, and after them the retreat of the symbols of the takfiri tendency in Saudi Arabia — Al-Khudayr, Al-Fahd, and Al-Khalidi — ending with the fatwa of Abu-Busayr al-Tartusi, the most prominent theoretician of the takfiri tendency, banning suicide operations, still some of the deceived insist on their takfiri stance. What is your explanation of this?
(A) This is misguidance itself. . God Almighty said: “And whoever God guides, none can lead him astray, and whoever God leaves astray, no guide has he.” Unfortunately, God left these people astray, and their guiding is very difficult, but guidance is in the hands of God Almighty and is not impossible.