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Yusuf Estes on Hamza Yusuf

Printed From: IslamiCity.com
Category: Culture & Community
Forum Name: Islamic Personalties
Forum Discription: Shahabah, Scholars, Leaders
URL: http://www.IslamiCity.com/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=9761
Printed Date: 25 October 2014 at 6:39am


Topic: Yusuf Estes on Hamza Yusuf
Posted By: herjihad
Subject: Yusuf Estes on Hamza Yusuf
Date Posted: 10 July 2007 at 2:13pm

Salaamu Alaykum,

I see a lot of posts praising Brother Hamza Yusuf.  Here is another view by Brother Yusuf Estes. 

I don't feel one way or the other, but since this is a discussion board, I thought I'd bring it up for discussion and maybe get a chance to hear what others have to say about Brother Yusuf Este's comments.

I have listened to some of Brother Estes cds and met his fine family.  I have also seen a couple of the lectures by Brother Hamza Yusuf.  Certainly they are both fine Muslim brothers. 

 

http://www.allaahuakbar.net/individual_callers/hamza_yusuf/hamza_yusuf_where_did_he_go_wrong.htm - http://www.allaahuakbar.net/individual_callers/hamza_yusuf/h amza_yusuf_where_did_he_go_wrong.htm

By Yusuf Estes

Yusuf Estes was a Christian priest who entered Islam and has since worked to promote it. He has studied and spread the message of Islam all over the US and in many foreign countries. He is currently a Muslim chaplain for federal Institutions and prisons. He is also a Muslim delegate to the UN Interfaith conference for religious leaders. We are very grateful for his comments regarding our struggle to promote the true Islam.

He like Hamza Yusuf entered into Islam after being introduced to it. He has sat with Hamza Yusuf on many occasions and has visited his institute as well. Below are some emails he sent out after reading emails from other Brothers.

Message: 1

Subject: Hamza Yusuf - Where did he go wrong? (And why   didn't I say something sooner?)
From: Sheikh Yusuf Estes ( sheikyusuf@aol.com )
Date: Mon, 15 Oct 2001 01:19:39 EDT

Bismillah Rahman Raheem
As-Salam Alaykum:
Re: Hamza Yusuf and his new teachings

I ask Allah to Forgive me and protect me from the evil one and from the evil within myself. I ask all of the brothers and sisters to pray for me that I be rightly guided in the future and forgive me for keeping silent so long on a very serious issue. For more than one year I have wrestled with the notion of whether or not to expose one of our scholars in Islam here in America for some very serious deviation in his teachings. In my defence, I thought perhaps he would come to his senses or that possibly myself or someone could have the opportunity to sit with him and correct him in these areas. I was wrong. Recently it has escalated to the extent that he is misquoting the Quran, denying certain verses, presenting wrong hadeeth and in general showing Islam in the wrong light. And to make matters worse, he is doing it on prime time television. Due to his fame and access to the media, this now presents a great problem for all of us.

This letter is in regard to the teachings and understandings of Hamza Yusuf. It is very difficult to write due to the sensitivity of the subject and the respect for all our scholars in Islam today. We are forced to mention certain things about the beliefs of one of our leaders in the USA and his teachings. In the process however, we must do so in the most delicate manner so as not to cause further separation and division in the Muslim community when this is definitely not the time to divide ourselves up. Even so, it is all the more important to say what I have to say about our brother Hamza's understandings and teachings and the way that he is misrepresenting us as Muslims to the media and to the non-Muslims in general. The hard part is to do so with the most consideration for him and for all those who have been following him.

First of all, I am not the first one to offer this information regarding some of the beliefs held or at least promoted by Hamza Yusuf. In fact, I may be guilty of holding back information all too long, for the sake of trying to keep the ummah together on the issue of the our brother Hamza Yusuf in California. If you have not heard of him, you should. He is a good speaker and knows how to hold the attention of a crowd. He has been promoted heavily in the past by well known Muslim organizations like: ISNA; ICNA; Sound Vision and others. He is an American who chose to come to Islam and then went to study in another country to learn more about Arabic and Islam. He has worked hard and produced a large following.

For several years people have been asking me about the rumors regarding Hamza Yusuf and his "Zaytunna Institute." I have tried to avoid saying anything in a way that would be considered backbiting or slanderous. Yet, I have had complaints from some of those who actually were in his community studying under his tutelage. I took the opportunity over a year ago to go out to California and visit him, at the request of those who were commenting on the "strange" things that bothered them. After my visit I was convinced that there was a problem, but I did not feel that the best way to handle the situation was to publicly "blow the whistle" on him. I know that the Muslims today have a tendency to overreact and often they will turn against the one trying to help in the matter, out of their ignorance of Islam's teachings on these types of issues.

It is all too easy to point the finger at someone who has said or done something that appears against the principles of Islam and call them misguided. And worse, these days anyone can be called a "kafar" (disbeliever) just for saying the someone else is not following Islam correctly.

Additionally, a factor came into play that I really did not want to upset. That is that so many people (including our own family) love the audios and videos that Shaikh Hamza has produced. If you realize that this is the kind of thing which helps keep Muslims together, then you must also realize that any criticism could hurt feelings and cause ruffled feathers amongst the ummah. There certain video and audio producers and distributors who are making a lot of money from the sale of Hamza's tapes and they have been notified on no uncertain terms that there are problems with Hamza's Manhaj (methodology) to say the least. They refused to do anything about it or even suggest anything was wrong. Why? Some have accused them of turning a blind eye to truth in favor of the money they make on Hamza's tapes. They couple this with the fact that these same distributors also offer tapes with music on them. I don't think that is fair, however.

Let me now come to the main point. While investigating charges leveled at Shaikh Hamza, I personally stood in his Zaytunna Institute in California and watched as Shaikh Muhammad Yaqubi from Syria was conducting a class in Sufi Dhikr. For hours his students sat there on the floor rocking back and forth saying only: "Allah. Allah. Allah." Over and over again. One of the complaints from a student was that a Shaikh at Zaytunna Institute was forcing them to do hundreds of different Dhikrs everyday. So much so, that they were not able to complete their daily chores, but if they tried to stop a shaytan would start beating them. I advised them to stop immediately and get away from anything dealing with the shaytan. Keep in mind this is not Hamza, but rather someone working in his "institute."

My other experiences with Hamza have shown me that he has a tendency toward exaggerating the meanings of words, especially when it comes to discussing issues of any type. I have heard him time and again give the wrong meanings to words and then go off on tangents trying to prove up some point that just is not there. I recall one instance when I offered him some scented oil and he pulled away and then said he needed to smell it first. After smelling it, he began to tell those gathering around that actually from the Sunnah he was able to understand that smells provided cures for diseases. He then mistranslated the word for fragrance (at-teeb) to be related to the word for doctor and then derived from that the meaning of prescription and then cure. From there he took off on a non-Muslim expert on scents and fragrances used for cures and began explaining that the plants have to be grown organically for them to still have the affect that they once had in the past. 

The relevance of the whole situation is that many people in the West have come to regard Hamza as a scholar of Islam. I don't think that he is trying to promote himself so much as a scholar but it is possible that he may just be trying to promote his understandings of different words. But in view of the recent increased attention and focus on all Muslims and especially our leaders, we are forced to come forward and clarify what is the true Islam and who are the true scholars.. We have to be up front and say what needs to be said, without fear of criticism from others.
-----------------------------------------------------------
Message: 2

From: Sheikh Yusuf Estes ( sheikyusuf@aol.com )
To: (ADDRESS REMOVED) Someone who had complained about his first email
Sent: Tuesday, October 23, 2001 3:09 AM
Subject: May Allah forgive our mistakes, ameen. re: Article on Hamza Yousef

Bismillah Rahman Raheem
Salam Alaykum dear brother in Islam:

First, I begin by saying thank you for taking the time to write to me directly. I am amazed that someone criticized me to another person behind my back, for having criticized someone else, even though it was according to the teachings of Islam.

Also, up front we must say that no one is calling anyone else a nonbeliever (kafr). This all came about as an effort to clarify the correct teachings of Islam to many, including Muslims, who are very confused and concerned about what Islam does actually teach.

Before I begin, there is something that I should mention in all candidness. The organizations that I represent are not behind me in making these statements, at least they are not going to admit it publicly.

Additionally, the critique that was emailed out did not originate with me. Someone else with more knowledge and courage did a very through job on it and then forwarded it out and put in on the Internet. I did not take permission to reveal their identity, nor do I feel that it is necessary to disclose that information. If people want to be angry with me, so be it. At least it will not tear down years of work of a hard working scholar of Islam. By showing the identity what would be the benefit? Then the two scholars [Hamza & the other] may start to be against each other and divide the people up even further. If the whole matter stops at me, then there is actually very little loss. Right?

After all, who am I? I am just a brother who came to Islam some years ago, that goes around trying to bring others to Islam. I am merely a concerned Muslim who wants to do what Allah has ordered and what has been established by our righteous predecessors in Islam. If I am wrong, then I need to be shown proof from Quran and Sunnah regarding the matter in order to correct my mistakes and also to be able to go back to Allah in humility and beg for His Forgiveness.

Now to begin, inshallah. I love you for the sake of Allah. I pray that Allah Guide us both to truth and forgive any mistakes, ameen. I have been criticized for the way the brother treated the subject of Hamza Yusuf's comments on television as being "fitnah." But there is a lot of truth in what he said. He definitely used the right word: "fitnah." -- This word is particularly used in Islam to mean the things which could take someone out of Islam. It is the same word that Allah used when He told us that our wives, children, property and so on would all be "fitnah" [hard trials] for us.

The predictions of our beloved prophet, peace be upon him, are coming true faster than pearls fallen from a broken neckless.

Consider that he told us in the Last Days that the true scholars would be taken away and ignorance would be everywhere and the people without knowledge would be perceived as people with knowledge.

All of this is of course a test for all of us. Consider the recent events and how Muslims around the world are responding:

  • Afghanis blew up Buddhist statues -- what was our response?

  • Suicide bombers went into gatherings of Jews in Palestine -- what did we say?

  • Attacks came against America -- the blame went to Muslims immediately -- what did we do?

  • America is now destroying Muslim property, Muslim lives and thousands are homeless and dying as a result -- what are we doing?

  • And certain individuals are promoting their distorted views of Islam, while raising themselves to be close to those who are doing these things. What would you like me to say?

I will not apologize for being a Muslim. Nor will I apologize for what Muslims have NOT DONE. Additionally I refuse to back down from the fact that Islam is the only valid answer to the problems facing our world today. We must stand up now before it is too late. Mark my words. This is not a time to play and think that things are going to go back to "normal" for the Muslims in this or any other country. Allah has made it clear for us. Now we must carry this message or suffer the real consequences.

I have fallen under criticism for more than one year because I have not spoken out about what I know on this issue. I was trying to use the time to do exactly what you have said. Many others have expressed concerns over these same matters. I delayed for more than one year saying anything publicly.

I regret only that we did not move earlier on this subject. You see this has been well known to a number of us here in the states as well as abroad. Hamza has totally disregarded our efforts to speak to him on these or any subjects. He immediately begins to give lectures in the middle of discussions and goes off on definitions of words that have no meaning whatsoever to the conversation. (and they are incorrect in meaning as well).

I met with him a year ago in July at his place in California. [he ignored me]

I sat next to him in a very important meeting of imams for America in Chicago last year at ISNA. [he talked over me - and everyone else]

And then again I spoke with him at the ISNA Conference in Chicago. [he had his own agenda -- which included publicly attacking the belief of the Salaf as Saleeh (The companions and rightly guided early generations of Muslims) in the form of saying something twisted about "Wahabees" in his main lecture to thousands.]

I have referred new Muslims to his "Zaytunna Institute" only to find that they were not being taught Islam at all, they were being forced into doing "Sufi Dhikr." One lady complained to me over the phone and then when I went out there she told me that the shaytan were punishing her for not obeying the head "Shaikh" at Zaytunna. (This was Muhammad Yaqubi from Syria - who happens to be one of the muftis of the Shadaleyah Tareeqah). I personally went in and found his followers sitting on the floor reciting the word "Allah" over and over again for hours without stopping. Their eyes were closed and they were swaying back and forth as in a trance. This is not the proper way to introduce people to Islam.

When people begin learning "Islam" from these types it is very difficult for them to simply break away. Some are afraid that the jinn will bother them. Others think that the dead shaikhs have some mystical powers. The list goes on.

We have only produced exactly what he has said on the most important occasion of trying to bring about a better understanding of what Islam is all about. I realize that all of us, especially me make mistakes in our presentations. Sometimes, like last Sunday, I put things in the wrong order and loose valuable time and even the attention of some of the listeners. I ask Allah to forgive me for that. But when it comes to the material that is presented, if it is not in conjunction with what the Quran and the Sunnah teach, what would you suggest?

Would you accept that someone says something to a non-Muslim about the Quran that can open doors to huge attacks against Islam for no reason?

Is it right to sit silent while someone is making our Deen appear to have mistakes in it?

In fact, that is why I have been criticized so heavily in the recent weeks. I had received admonition during the summer just before leaving for Egypt from some of our brothers who study at one of our Islamic institutes in Virginia. They insisted that we begin exposing Hamza's institute before he did his last big nationwide drive for enrollment. But I thought I should wait a little longer. Now look what has happened.

There are others involved in this "Sufi" movement as well. I have not sat with them personally nor have they corresponded with me. However, I can assure you that the teachings coming from their sources have serious errors in them and could even be considered leading out of Islam completely.

All this time, this groups such as "sufees" And "Shiites" and "Nation of Islam" and "Ahmadiyyans" and "Rastafarians" and "Moorish Science Temple" and "Ansar Allah" and "Five Percenters" and "Submitters International" are actually doing the thing that you are complaining against me: They are dividing up the Muslims through their various cults and tareeqahs. We ask everyone to come together and unify according to what Allah has ordered us in the first place, and that is to unify under the Quran and the Sunnah.

Thank you again for coming straight to me with this subject. If I chose to reveal the topic, I will conceal your identity, inshaallah.

Salam Alaykum wa Rahmatulah,
Your brother in Islam,
Yusuf



-------------
Al-Hamdulillah (From a Married Muslimah) La Howla Wa La Quwata Illa BiLLah - There is no Effort or Power except with Allah's Will.



Replies:
Posted By: rami
Date Posted: 15 August 2007 at 11:17am
Bi ismillahir rahmanir raheem

wa alaikum assalam

http://www.allaahuakbar.net/individual_callers/hamza_yusuf/hamza_yusuf_where_did_he_go_wrong.htm - http://www.allaahuakbar.net/individual_callers/hamza_yusuf/h amza_yusuf_where_did_he_go_wrong.htm

Regarding this site itself, I appeal to your common sense sister check who you take your deen from. If a work does not have an author how can you know that what you are reading is accurate and the truth.

Have you been able to differentiate between a reliable and a dubious reference, a half quote and a quote which considers context, a fact and an opinion, points of argument based upon gossip slander or truth.

Are you so wide read that you can pick out where they are lying, have misunderstood or simply lack knowledge and intelligence to understand what a scholar has actually said rather than what they [the people behind the website] perceived he said.

These are all problems I have found with this site and there articles.

The article you quote though is different since we know the author but please sister if you care who is teaching you Islam check the sources.

I see a lot of posts praising Brother Hamza Yusuf.

Please point me towards one post.

Alhamdulillah Yusuf estes has taken care not to simply slander the shaykh and limited his opinion to what he himself has experienced. Having said that i am amazed at the length he goes to, to point out there is something wrong with shaykh Hamzah's minhaj but then only raise a few points to base this enormous warning on.

First of all, I am not the first one to offer this information regarding some of the beliefs held or at least promoted by Hamza Yusuf.

Has he established that shaykh hamzah yusuf is teaching something other than the Maliki madhhab?

After my visit I was convinced that there was a problem,

What are these problems that warrant such a long introduction and warning?

they have been notified on no uncertain terms that there are problems with Hamza's Manhaj (methodology) to say the least.

His minhaj is that of the maliki madhhab does he find anything wrong with this madhhab?

did they point out what these issues are so we can judge for our selfs or simple say there is a problem and expect people to listen.

They refused to do anything about it or even suggest anything was wrong. Why? Some have accused them of turning a blind eye to truth in favor of the money they make on Hamza's tapes.

What problems according to who, the only issue i see here is that he is relying on what someone else has said to them and then accusing them of what exactly....disagreeing?

is that Islamicly wrong or something to warrant such a strong slander.

They couple this with the fact that these same distributors also offer tapes with music on them. I don't think that is fair, however.

A distributors job is to distribute.

Let me now come to the main point.

his introductory warning is larger than "his main point" i think that says a lot about the entire article and the strength of the case he is making.

I personally stood in his Zaytunna Institute in California and watched as Shaikh Muhammad Yaqubi from Syria was conducting a class in Sufi Dhikr. For hours his students sat there on the floor rocking back and forth saying only: "Allah. Allah. Allah."Over and over again.

I want to see a fatwah with explicit quotes from the Quran or rasul allah [sallah llahu alaihi wa sallam] himself stating doing dhikr with the name allah is harram!!

Dhikr "ALLAH, ALLAH"

http://www.livingislam.org/naw/daa_e.html - http://www.livingislam.org/naw/daa_e.html

The Prophet MHMD upon him peace - said as narrated from Anas:

"The Hour will not rise until ALLAH, ALLAH is no longer said on the earth."

Through another chain from Anas, Allah be well-pleased with him:

"The Hour will not rise on anyone saying: ALLAH, ALLAH."

Muslim narrated both in his "Sahih," Book of Iman (belief), chapter 66 titled (by al-Nawawi): "The Disappearance of Belief at the End of Times."

Imam al-Nawawi said in his commentary on this chapter:

"Know that the narrations of this hadith are unanimous in the repetition of the name of Allah the Exalted for both versions and that is the way it is found in all the authoritative books." (Sharh Sahih Muslim, Dar al-Qalam, Beirut ed. vol. 1/2 p. 537)..............

Note that al-Nawawi highlights the authenticity of the repetition of the form to establish that the words "ALLAH, ALLAH" are a Sunna ma'thura (invocation inherited from the Prophet MHMD and the Companions) as it stands.

regarding his issue with how long they where doing dhikr for

'Remember thy Lord much, and praise Him in the early hours of he night and morning' (3:41)

'After you have performed the act of worship (salaat), remember Allah (swt) standing, sitting and lying down.' (4: 103)

'But verily, remembrance of Allah (swt) is more important' (29: 45)

'O ye who believe! Remember Allah (swt) with much remembrance' (37:75).

One of the complaints from a student was that a Shaikh at Zaytunna Institute was forcing them to do hundreds of different Dhikrs everyday. So much so, that they were not able to complete their daily chores,

There are two ways i can understand this statement, different types of dhikr meaning, dhikr with allah, then another with "la illaha illah llah" and so on or repeating one "type" of dhikr hundreds of times.

If it is the former than i have to say the person who told him this has  clearly exaggerated his claims becouse no shaykh would A) force someone to do dhikr and B) do Hundreds of different types of dhikr you simply cant teach anyone in this manner even if it was somehow true.

If it is the latter then I am sorry but he has clearly been lied to
, any person who has done dhikr will know that it takes no more than 10 minutes to do 1000 repititions of la illaha illah llah, try it your self sister and see how long it takes you.

If the person missed his daily chores then that is there sole responsability and i dont see how anyone can force you to do anything at home when you are alone. The following claim explains how they could have persieved they where being forced,

but if they tried to stop a shaytan would start beating them.

I completely understand this becouse this has happened to me [not outright bashing though], my friend took me to a shaykh he trusted and i told him about this he gave me some of the best advice i have heard as it caused my distress to ease. He told me this is a very common thing with people who are heading towards allah, shaytan will first try to get them to stop doing there supererogatory acts but if he fails at this he will begin to force them to do more and more acts of worship until eventually they cant handle it and they turn away that way. Shaytan will tell you to worship Allah sister but his intention behind it is nothing good, this is all part of waswassa of the shaytan he will come at you from places that you have not seen or even imagined.

This shaykh he took me to lived in a small room at the back of a house that was converted to a masjid i sat in this room with him he had a n old mattress on the ground for a bed a matt and a cupboard where all his possessions where he was trying to emulate how the sahabah used to live.

This shaykh sister was a salafi shaykh.

Yusuf Estes should go to a scholar he trusts that has real knowledge about the tricks of shaytan and tell him what he has just said, for certain the shaykh will recognise this as one of the tricks of shaytan.

I advised them to stop immediately and get away from anything dealing with the shaytan. Keep in mind this is not Hamza, but rather someone working in his "institute."

If you dont have knowledge about something then you should stay silent, his concluding that this shaytan was there becouse of the shaykh from "syria" or the dhikr is ridiculous. there nothing strange about "syria" and if you like i can quote many ahadith of rasul allah praising syria and its people.

My other experiences with Hamza have shown me that he has a tendency toward exaggerating the meanings of words,

Subhana llah, this coming from a person whose warning about a shaykh is longer than the evidence he presents against him and is nothing more than petty in nature.

exaggerating the meanings of words,

is another way of saying he has a deep understanding about the meaning of the words and there roots in the language. Ibn kathir in his tafsir on the Quran, the original arabic version not the salafi "abridged" version, in some cases takes up about 20 pages explaining the meaning of a single word. So since when is it justifiable to complain about someone having a deep understanding of something.

especially when it comes to discussing issues of any type.

Shaykh hamzah has a deep understanding of matters and is widely read, the fact is all real scholars can talk for hours from memory about any topic that arises and quote at length about the issue. i have seen this first hand from a scholar who had committed to memory about 40,000 ahadith.

I have heard him time and again give the wrong meanings to words and then go off on tangents trying to prove up some point that just is not there.

I have seen many salafis say a word means one thing while in fact traditionally speaking it means something else, Taqlid is an obvious word that comes to mind, Bidah is another. So it is no suprise he may think he know the real meaning behind something. The second part of his comment is opinion and nothing to base so much warning on. It could also be he simply made a mistake, Is Yusuf Estes Infalible to be criticising others in such a way.

I recall one instance when I offered him some scented oil and he pulled away and then said he needed to smell it first. After smelling it, he began to tell those gathering around that actually from the Sunnah he was able to understand that smells provided cures for diseases. He then mistranslated the word for fragrance (at-teeb) to be related to the word for doctor and then derived from that the meaning of prescription and then cure.

Definitely Shaykh Hamzah is Evil and wrong and people shouldn't listen to him,how dare they sell his tapes. From the sound of things shaykh hamzah was talking about the root words and its meaning, many scholars do this especially in tafsirs for the quran. Any person who has read a calssic tafsir will see this. Every arabic word has at least three root words[from memory] which it is based upon and from there we get the intention behid why allah used certain words in the quran and a whole deep science opens up to us if we know this.

The relevance of the whole situation is that many people in the West have come to regard Hamza as a scholar of Islam.

How st**id, plain and simple. He is a Qualified Scholar with traditional Ijazah from traditional shaykhs in the Maliki madhhab. How many Ijazah does yusuf estes have to even challenge him in such a way.

I don't think that he is trying to promote himself so much as a scholar but it is possible that he may just be trying to promote his understandings of different words.

im sorry but anyone who even has a remote idea about classical arabic as apposed to modern arabic will know what light to take this statement in.

But in view of the recent increased attention and focus on all Muslims and especially our leaders, we are forced to come forward and clarify what is the true Islam and who are the true scholars.. We have to be up front and say what needs to be said, without fear of criticism from others.

so this important urgent warning is completely based upon, shaytan forcing someone to do dhikr, supposedly mistranslating words, and a bad vibe he got.

Insha allah i will reply to the second message at a later time.


-------------
Rasul Allah (sallah llahu alaihi wa sallam) said: "Whoever knows himself, knows his Lord" and whoever knows his Lord has been given His gnosis and nearness.


Posted By: rami
Date Posted: 16 August 2007 at 11:25am

Bi ismillahi rahmani raheem

This all came about as an effort to clarify the correct teachings of Islam to many, including Muslims, who are very confused and concerned about what Islam does actually teach.

the base assumption here is that his understanding of islam is the correct one while any and all people who differ from him are wrong. from 1400 years of scholarship one thing muslims are certain about is that differences of opinion on topics are inevitable.

Is Yusuf Estes versed in all differences of opinions in all the Islamic sciences to claim what shaykh hamzah is saying is not a "teaching of islam".

Additionally, the critique that was emailed out did not originate with me. Someone else with more knowledge and courage did a very through job on it and then forwarded it out and put in on the Internet.

Did he say the initial message was worked on and this is what resulted after actual research? does that mean his initial email contained less facts then this worked on version?

I have been criticized for the way the brother treated the subject of Hamza Yusuf's comments on television as being "fitnah." But there is a lot of truth in what he said.

What is the basis and according to who?

He definitely used the right word: "fitnah." -- This word is particularly used in Islam to mean the things which could take someone out of Islam. It is the same word that Allah used when He told us that our wives, children, property and so on would all be "fitnah" [hard trials] for us.


are we to simply take his word for it, how about being specific rather than simply labeling a shaykh a source of fitnah and expect us all to smile and simply swallow it.

Consider that he told us in the Last Days that the true scholars would be taken away and ignorance would be everywhere and the people without knowledge would be perceived as people with knowledge.


anyone familiar with logic and thinking will recognise this as a conclusion, anyone familiar with writing essays will know that conclusions are usually placed at the end of an essay after an argument for or against something has been made. i submit to any thinking person that yusuf estes has made no argument whatsoever.


I have fallen under criticism for more than one year because I have not spoken out about what I know on this issue.

What does he know? if he doesn't tell anyone else then no one else will know either.

Hamza has totally disregarded our efforts to speak to him on these or any subjects. He immediately begins to give lectures in the middle of discussions and goes off on definitions of words that have no meaning whatsoever to the conversation. (and they are incorrect in meaning as well).

is this the fitnah he speaks of?

I met with him a year ago in July at his place in California. [he ignored me]

Did he label him a source of fitnah or not?

I sat next to him in a very important meeting of imams for America in Chicago last year at ISNA. [he talked over me - and everyone else].

At least this establishes he wasnt targeting him specifically....could i suggest that he had an agenda to push and was pressed for time as it was a meeting of imams thus indicating he was there to work.

And then again I spoke with him at the ISNA Conference in Chicago. [he had his own agenda -- which included publicly attacking the belief of the Salaf as Saleeh (The companions and rightly guided early generations of Muslims) in the form of saying something twisted about "Wahabees" in his main lecture to thousands.]

what basis does he have in saying wahabis are connected to the salaf as salihiin, which of them has ijazzah going back to any sahabah thus guaranteeing that the way they interprate the Quran and sunnah is the exact same way the companions and tabiin interprate it.

If he cant establish this conection then he has no right to claim Hamzah Yusuf was attacking
"Salaf as Saleeh" directly. It is ignorant to even claim this connection and is far stretched.

By his logic i can now say Yusuf Estes has openly attacked "Salaf as Saleeh" when he decided to attack Hamzah Yusuf as the shaykh Has Ijazah from the Maliki madhhab going back to the time of the tabiin and sahabah.

I have referred new Muslims to his "Zaytunna Institute" only to find that they were not being taught Islam at all, they were being forced into doing "Sufi Dhikr."

Is Dhikr itself sufi? Dhikr is an important part of islam if he would like to claim it isnt he has argued himself out of Islam. Again he associates doing dhikr with compulsion how ignorant an asumption and an indication of the lengths he has to go to to even build a flimsy case.

If someone forced me to do anything i would CALL THE POLICE.

One lady complained to me over the phone and then when I went out there she told me that the shaytan were punishing her for not obeying the head "Shaikh" at Zaytunna.

What is the connection between the shaytan and the shaykh, is he seriously accusing him of using shaytan to force people to do something, is his common sense that weak.

(This was Muhammad Yaqubi from Syria - who happens to be one of the muftis of the Shadaleyah Tareeqah).

Imam Nawawi was a sufi, ibn taymiyah was a sufi were they also controlling shaytan becouse they where sufi.


I personally went in and found his followers sitting on the floor reciting the word "Allah" over and over again for hours without stopping.

i find it hard to believe he stood there for hours and hours watching them.

Their eyes were closed and they were swaying back and forth as in a trance. This is not the proper way to introduce people to Islam.

On what basis is he making this haram, his finding something strange? subhanallah the man has no understanding of what is needed in islam to declare something haram.

"The Prophet (pbuh) companions moved back and forth like swaying trees while doing dhikr" (Abu Na'eem, Al-Tarateeb Al-Idariya). Ibn Kathir mentioned in 'Al-Bidaya wal Nihaya" a athar of Ali (raa), in which he said that the Sahaba used to sway back and forth while doing dhikr, Abu Na'eem also mentioned this in "Al-Hilya".

if it was good enough for the sahabah it is good enough for us. Yet again this is a classic example of the salafi ideology and there so called backward legal principles, "unless something is specifically mentioned in the Quran or sunnah it is haram for us"....subhanahllah

When people begin learning "Islam" from these types it is very difficult for them to simply break away. Some are afraid that the jinn will bother them. Others think that the dead shaikhs have some mystical powers. The list goes on.

Jinn dont bother people shaytan does, but i guess his understand of jinn is limited considering his earlier statements. The list doesn't go on, the list only exist for people who are bigots and cant differentiate between one group and another and simply think "sufi's" are one large group of people which all believe the same thing.

But this what this whole thing is about realy, a veiled attack on tassawuf, the least he can do is state it openly but maybe he is afraid of someone shoving a long list of mujtahid imams he follows which also practiced tassawuf in his face forcing him to drop his bigotry and actually think before he speaks.

If an Old sufi women in india believes the shaykh in the grave can heal her does that mean the likes of Imam nawawi believed the same thing?

what else would you call his atitude but bigotry.

But when it comes to the material that is presented, if it is not in conjunction with what the Quran and the Sunnah teach, what would you suggest?

according to who's understanding of the Quran and sunnah, the Quran and sunnah require interpretation there is no such thing as a monolithic understanding of Islam.

Would you accept that someone says something to a non-Muslim about the Quran that can open doors to huge attacks against Islam for no reason?

On whos authority is he speaking who taught him his version of Islam?

Is it right to sit silent while someone is making our Deen appear to have mistakes in it?

The fact is he is a salafi and a salafi will always see orthodox and traditional Islam as somehow wrong.

There are others involved in this "Sufi" movement as well.

"movement" how about researching something first before speaking, out of adhab if nothing else.

I have not sat with them personally nor have they corresponded with me. However, I can assure you that the teachings coming from their sources have serious errors in them and could even be considered leading out of Islam completely.

His word means very little at this point.


They are dividing up the Muslims through their various cults and tareeqahs. We ask everyone to come together and unify according to what Allah has ordered us in the first place, and that is to unify under the Quran and the Sunnah.


he means according to what he understand islam to teach, well no thank you i choose to take my islam from Imam Abu Hanifah, Imam Shafii, Imam malik and Imam Ibn Hanbal.



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Rasul Allah (sallah llahu alaihi wa sallam) said: "Whoever knows himself, knows his Lord" and whoever knows his Lord has been given His gnosis and nearness.


Posted By: rami
Date Posted: 16 August 2007 at 11:32am
Bi ismillahi rahmani raheem

Do you know what the funniest thing is, Shaykh Hamzah Yusuf does not belong to any Tariqah.


-------------
Rasul Allah (sallah llahu alaihi wa sallam) said: "Whoever knows himself, knows his Lord" and whoever knows his Lord has been given His gnosis and nearness.


Posted By: tokek
Date Posted: 06 January 2009 at 1:45am
Assalamualaikum, 
 
Jazakullah khairan dear Rami for your good reply to yusuf estes criticism against Bro. Hamza yusuf.
I am not a member of zaituna institute but I want to take this oppurtunity to quote a saying from..Imam Ghazali (rahmatullaalaihi)biggest scholar ever lived!
He says .a (scholar)couldnt feel and understand what a student of tasawwuf *sufi*feels in his daily ibada!!
To be a sufi... is a deep journey to oneself!
These things which a sufi does, is considered under nafile acts!
No one can force u to make hours of dhzikir!
So my advise to brothers n sisters, dont condemned if u dont understand!
Read and be informed! So basically a so called *sufi* as negatively toned by people like  Estes and B.Philips is a muslim who is seeking the nearness to Allah swt. is that wrong?
Sheikh Hamza Yusuf is an honourable scholar trying to bring people closer to Allah...I see light in his face! whilst i didnt see by Yusuf Estes, he is surely a good muslim,and I feel sorry that he has fallen unknowingly to wahabism..( many people does!) 
 
May Allah guide us all in peace n understanding and steer us away from unbeneficial knowledge!..Ameen
Fee Iman Allah
 
A Naqshiband from Switzerland


Posted By: Talib_Asadullah
Date Posted: 17 January 2009 at 12:23pm
Assalamu Alaikum

In my short experience, I havent found anything deviant in Hamza Yusuf's talks,etc.

However, I do wonder why brothers with so much knowledge dont even have a full beard. That bothers me, Alhamduillah.

Assalamu Alaikum, totek.

Could you please do me a favor and enlighten me to what "wahabism" is???

From point of view, alot of knowledgable and good Muslims who adhere to the Sunna are called "extremist,wahhabi,salafi,"etc.

And to be honest, Muhammad(SAWS) never prescribed or taught to the Muslims the act of spinning around in circles as a way to get closer to Allah Ta Ala. What is this but a deviant innovation!


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Al-Qur'an was-Sunnah


Posted By: tokek
Date Posted: 18 January 2009 at 12:34am

wa,alaikumsalam Bro Talib.

Thank You for your opinion of Bro Hamzah Yusuf.
I am not a knowledgeable scholar to answer your question regarding wahabism. But I try my best to explain inshAllah...wahabism is related to Imam wahab from Saudi Arabia....the imam which the muslims in saudi follows and export to everywhere.!!!So unknowingly one tends to follow this way because it comes from saudi and disregards the other 4 Imams unintentionally..namely Imam Hanafi,Maliki,Shafie and Hambali..rahmatullahalai ajmain...this is the way the majority muslims have been practising  till today except in Saudi. We are called Ahli sunna wal jamaat...well salafi is a branch from wahabi..and extremist is a name given by the WEST to bearded muslims.I am not saying that the Saudis are wrong NO, Astaghfirullah!!!I am just stating a point here! According to the majority muslim census, they dont fall in the ahli sunna.Only the 4 Imams is the Ahli sunna way!. Actually Wahabism is in fact new ..since 1800s!!it have something to do with the creation of Saudi Arabia..please find time to read about it very interesting!! With the advance of technology, instead of being united ,we are more separated in thoughts and way of ibada.....           The spinning round in circles...actually is the way sheikh Jallaluddin Rumi kadasallahusiruhu.....does unknowingly ,as he feels Allahs love enveloping him. Now it may sound to you strange!..but bro. Allahs mercy and way is vast......beyond our comprehension!! Unfortunately today, this spinning round has been a tourist attraction!! Of course there are wrong deviation in Religion....if a practise doesnt confirm with Quran and the sunna it is .definitely unexcepted.
As to swaying and movements in dhikir this is natural...theres report of the sahabah doing it...are we more knowledgeable than them??
As for brothers without beard, that is a private, taqwa and a sunna issue.lets not be too critical about appearance, Allah look at our hearts.
Dear bro.Talib I apologized for any mistakes I might have made.
I recommend you to read the life of Prophet saw. and his sahabah radiallahuanhum. And books pertaining to the 4 Imams, related issue on tasawuff by Sheikh Nazim Qubrisi?  or  http://www.sunnipath.com - www.sunnipath.com
 
May Allah open our hearts and grant us more understanding Ameen.
 
Fee Iman Allah.
Tokek


Posted By: Talib_Asadullah
Date Posted: 21 January 2009 at 1:13pm
Assalamu Alaikum

Alhamduillah

I have done a pretty good amount of reading about Muhammad ibn Abdul-Wahhab. Muslim and non-Muslim sources alike. Its interesting really. Either the source always denigrates and demonizes the brother, or he is praised for what he did fisabillah. Sometimes I dont know what to believe, but I do take the Muslim over non-Muslim sources, and I happen to be cautious of Muslims talking bad about other Muslim..if it cant really be substantiated.

I dont follow any mathhab, so I dont know if someone would put me in this category of being outside Ahl us Sunnah wal Jammah. May I ask what was the Mathhab of the Sahabah,Radiallahuanhum??

I wouldnt say that swaying and moving in Dhikr is something that I find deviant at all.

Muhammad(SAWS) commanded the man to have a beard and trim his mustache. So this is something that I dont take lightly..however, it all comes down to someone's decision.


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Al-Qur'an was-Sunnah


Posted By: tokek
Date Posted: 21 January 2009 at 11:04pm

Walaikumsalam.Bro Talib

MashAllah you are well informed thats good.This is exactly the cause of todays differences in Ibada , it all arises with our slowly discarding the 4 Imams. Bro Talib I am sure your intention in this forum is to achieve clarity and to further your deen inshAllah.

As to your question regarding what madhzab of  the sahaba..as you know in this time the prophet is with them!..so theres no need for some Imam. However, The 1st Imam  Abu  Hanifa rahmatullahaihi born 80 years after Hijra.had students that were  grandsons of the sahaba!

This issue needs time and room for discussion...allhamdullilah i,ve found a link that would be interesting for you to read!!
Bro.Talib I used to think like you before,but then i realised how could i not follow any Imam! there are thousands n thousands of Hadith,,and when I read about these Imams i was moved to tears...All of them are Hafiz and their knowledege of the Hadith,Adab.Piety and their deep love for the prophet saw...subhanallah,, Then the words of the quran came to me, Allah commanded *And, ask the people of knowledge if you do not know*
I consider myself amongst those who dont know!
 
Bro Talib, here is the link i mentioned pertaining to Madhzab/ http://www.ummah.net/Al_adaab/fiqh/taqlid.html - www.ummah.net/Al_adaab/fiqh/taqlid.html  inshAllah it,ll be beneficial for you.
 
Here is one more link for you to ponder!!
http://sunninews.wordpress.com/2008/04/14/wahabisaudi-goverment-destroying-islamic-heritage/ - http://sunninews.wordpress.com/2008/04/14/wahabisaudi-goverment-destroying-islamic-heritage/
If you desire,would be nice if we could correspond directly inshAllah.
 
writing to you from Saudi,
 
Maasalama
Tokek
 


Posted By: tokek
Date Posted: 23 January 2009 at 10:17pm
Assalamualaikum,
Bro Talib here is another link..which inshAllah share more light into your question about Mazab.
http://www.sunnipath.com/library/Articles/AR00000079.aspx - http://www.sunnipath.com/library/Articles/AR00000079.aspx
 
Maasalama
Tokek


Posted By: Nausheen
Date Posted: 27 January 2009 at 8:00pm
Auzubillahi Minash Shaitan ir Rajeem,
Bismillah ir Rahman ir Rahim
 
Shaykh Hamza Yusuf is an excellent contemporary scholar. There is nothing deviant in his teachings.
 
Anything that comes against him is from an anti-sufi camp, because they cannot see him enjoying all this popularity and fame - after all this in a way is promotion of sufism which is got to be bidah, so it should be silenced - that's the bottom line!


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Wanu nazzilu minal Qurani ma huwa
Shafaa un wa rahmatun lil mo'mineena
wa la yaziduzzalimeena illa khasara.



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