Poisoned Meat - Sacred Text Messages Podcast - S2-E05

Transcript Details

Event Name: Poisoned Meat - Sacred Text Messages Podcast - S2-E05
Transcription Date:Transcription Modified Date: 4/25/2022
Transcript Version: 1

Transcript Text

rst of all i want to thank people for coming back to this i apologize for

being absent the last few weeks i was going to try to get some out but i was became really intensely

engaged in some work at zaituna college so today i wanted to

look at a sacred text message allah mentions

that those who have hashia or this awe of god are the the ulama

and allah reminds us to ask the people of knowledge if we don't know

uh and [Applause] are they equal those who know and those

who don't know and so it's central in our faith this idea of knowledge and and we were

commanded by our prophet alaihi wasallam to seek knowledge

to seek knowledge uh in weak narrations it mentions from the cradle

to the grave mentions a report that the prophet saw is im said

seek knowledge even unto china which irrespective of the senate the meaning

is certainly true the prophet saws encouraged seeking knowledge he mentioned that the indo-europeans if there was

knowledge on pleiades that they would attempt to get that knowledge

through space travel even so there's the the idea of seeking knowledge is

very important and ibn umaji and imam rabe and others relate

hadith about seeking knowledge and one of them one of the most famous ones is

that seeking knowledge is an obligation on every muslim and then in the raja of the hadith which

is mudraj hadith is something that the raoi adds the person that's narrating it

ads for clarification and so the rawi added on the narrator added on

to that muslima just so that people would not interpret that to mean the males only that

knowledge is incumbent on the male and the female but one of the most important things in

our tradition also is this idea of honoring the people of knowledge of honoring

scholars and scholarship and recognizing because as human beings what

what distinguishes us from all of the rest of creation is knowledge that we are distinguished

by knowledge it's it's what makes us different animals have all of the other aspects

of our nature so animals eat they can eat more than we can animals

procreate they can procreate more than we can animals can lift things they can build things beavers build dams

bees builds hot build hives ants build ant hills that are actually

called arya in arabic the city of the ants so and they're

they're quite intricate in that so animals do all of these different things but

what can't what can't they do that we can do they they can't reason and they can't

abstract as far as we know there is no other creature outside of the gin on this planet that

abstracts and so because of that the highest knowledges are the most abstract knowledge

and the most abstract of all knowledges is knowledge of god of metaphysics so

honoring scholars is really important in our tradition so i wanted to just look at this

aspect of our tradition one of the things that ibn mubarak said was and he's one of the great

scholars of the third generation he was a student of imamatic and a teacher in his own rights but he

said whoever makes light of the scholars

loses his afterlife

and those who make light of the rulers will lose their their worldly affairs their dunya

and then he said woman

and those who make light of their brothers they lose their dignity so this is

something that [Music] i think traditionally muslims really

understood this that you that there's a hierarchy in the world and that hierarchy is meant to be

respected and without it the world cannot exist as as as as the divine intended it and just to

give you an example we're born into hierarchy we're born into families that that

our parents are over us even we're born into a birth order that will really dictate

certain aspects of our life so we have older brothers and sisters and they have different rights

than we have being in that position being in the elderly position and in some cultures like in this

south asian culture they actually distinguish these things with titles that they give so the big sister

is is actually the word it's not just my sister it's my big sister and so when she's addressed

she's addressed as the big sister out of show a display of respect but also a recognition

of hierarchy in the world there's a wonderful moment in the the the great novelist

dostoevsky's work which is called the the demons one translation is the demons

another translation is the possessed and dostoevsky wrote this novel to really

highlight the fact that russian society was breaking down with all these new

materialistic atheistic ideas and was eroding the traditional religious culture

which which he loved um the slavophilic culture but there's there's a scene in in the

novel where they're they're debating the existence of god and there's an officer who's in this

debate and dostoevsky just makes this mention that he gets up in the middle of the

debate and shouts out as if speaking to himself dostoevsky says he shouts out if there's no god

then how can i be a captain which is an incredibly profound question

because what he was saying if if there is no hierarchy of being then

how can i how can i be in a position that of authority above anyone else if there's no one above me if there's no

god then then because once you remove god all authority

dissipates and this is this is why atheism ultimately breeds communism

which says there's no hierarchy and and yet because it's such a false doctrine it invariably

creates a hierarchy and then they have to kill each other and they have to kill everybody who disagrees with them

so this is something really important so when you lose scholars when you lose this understanding of that there are

people who know and and there's people that don't know and ignorance is real and we're all ignorant every there's many things i

mean there's far more things we're ignorant about than that we have knowledge of about but certainly though those who know

something if for instance if i get into a discussion with a physicist about physics i'm a fool

what i should do is simply if i'm interested in physics is learn from him but this idea that i can have a real

conversation with him even though i've actually read a few

books on physics and i'm interested in physics but i am by no stretch of physicist and

so for me to debate a physicist about physics is is absolutely absurd

and the same is true for instance i was a cardiac nurse but i'm not going to debate a cardiac

physician or a professor of cardiology about whether or not striated muscle is is

real or just simply a name that we're giving to something we don't really understand or

you know is the all-or-nothing frank stark law of the heart is that really is that really accurate who am i to do

that to discuss those things i would be a complete fool if i did that and yet we live in it in

an age where people seem to feel compelled to have an opinion about

everything and i think the worst thing about it is for the muslims who should know

better because allah subhanahu clearly says

and do not go what you have follow what you have no knowledge about don't don't go there

so if you don't know allah says ask the people who know if you don't

know ask the people who know if you do not

know but the problem with that is that it demands humility

and this is the crux of the matter is that a lot of people especially semi-educated

people i heard a christian once he was asked why are all the educated people atheists

and and the real simple people believers like the africans they're all believers

and he literally said the africans you know they're believers and yet the level of education africa is much lower

than europe whereas in europe they're they're much higher levels of education but

the majority of them don't believe anymore and this christian man he said that's very easy because

knowledge tends to puff people up and and they become arrogant and they

actually think they know much more than they actually do know and whereas with with simple people

there's a type of humility that that allows their hearts to be open

to truths that only the heart can comprehend and i just thought that was a really

good answer because my experience for a lot of people that are highly educated

is that they do slip into a type of puffery

and and and it's really sad so just recognizing who that scholarship

if somebody spent their life studying for 40 50 60 70 years i mean we have

scholars that literally have been studying for 70 years like sheikh abdullah and and then

for for me to be like a 30 year old writing articles against him i just

it i mean the goal of it just to make it really amazes me and and now and people obviously oh well so

are you saying they're above criticism nobody's above criticism but who

who is the critic who is the critic the only one above

criticism is the prophet sallallahu isaac and but but who is the critic

because the word in arabic for critic is naked which means the one who can

determine what's gold and what's not so it's the person that can actually

determine whether something is pure or impure so who can do that well that has to be

somebody who really knows something but when when you're young you think you

know everything and as you get older you're you know they say that uh fruit a

heavily laden uh tree with lots of fruit

it it the branches are low because there's so much weight from the fruit and this is the reality people are

humble so one of the things that imam


to attack the people of knowledge especially the greats among them

is from the enormities from the the major sins like just like the kebab so attacking

people that have immense knowledge is actually it's a kibera and what's amazing too it's quite

stunning is that people write things you know they say blessed is the man who dies and his sins

die with him people don't realize that when you write something on the internet and you're dead that's still on the

internet so your backbiting will go on forever as long as people are reading the

internet your backbiting is on there or or if you write an article if you write a book

against somebody and the thing is people can write books we have a great

scholars who attacked other scholars but they were great scholars so imam

razari can attack evan cena and then even russia could come along and attack

imam razali because they're they're they're critics they can determine

what's gold and what's not gold and they can be wrong just like any critic can be wrong but they're at that level where

they can do that and so it's always interesting to me that the people that tend to attack the

scholars tend to be nobody's ever heard of them they haven't written anything

they haven't really established themselves as great intellects i mean i'll be the first to admit that

i just i don't like i don't know who i could really criticize amongst the great scholars

because i would feel like such an idiot just like to write a book against i love ibn

rushid he disagreed with imam al-ghazali and i love imam

but i'm not going to write a book about why even russia was wrong in his criticism of imam al-ghazali i

just wouldn't do that even though the ulamas say generally our olympus say that he was wrong in certain

of his critiques but i'm not going i might quote a scholar saying that but to to say that

is it seems like just an extraordinarily uh overarching uh thing to do

and i mean obviously to point out things that our scholars have said uh that are

that are wrong if it's agreed upon or if there's reasons to do it then

you know i would make an exception for that probably but again you have to know your place in the grand

scheme of things even the angels say each one of us has

a fixed station like not to go beyond your station and it's better to think you're below

your station than to think you're at your station or above your station

says that whoever is has a station

that he genuinely has and he claims it allah will take it away from him and if he claims the station over his

station allah will expose him with scandals and and if he claims a station less than

his station allah will elevate him to a station over he says that

and and he looks at that like a metaphysical um so it's it's really important not to

uh you know to not to know who you are and where your

place is in the grand scheme of things it's it's actually a very important thing to know that's why self-knowledge is so

important because how can you know anything else if you don't know yourself how really can you know anything when

yourself is the closest thing to you and yet so many people do not know themselves they don't know their limits

they don't know their intellectual limits like to recognize at a certain point which i had to do at a certain point

i just realized i have real intellectual limitations genuine intellectual limitations and and

largely because i i i read a lot and then i

see what really profound thinking is and i see what really original thought is

and i see what really illuminated thought is and then i look at my own thinking and i look at what my what i have

produced myself and i recognize what an immense gap is between

myself and my own understandings and that of the people i read and one of the things that i've noticed that a lot

of people do a lot of people read books you know there's a great line

by a poet laureate who he won the nobel prize for poetry that says you know

people read books and repeat quotations draw conclusions on the wall that

there's rooney said if you want to be considered a great scholar just say whatever you

want and then attribute it to somebody else and so there's so many people that

like they read tafsirs and then they they speak it as if it's their own

insights like they don't tell who they're quoting like i i heard one person giving a talk

and i knew exactly where he was getting everything because i'd read the same thing and yet never once did he say it's from

so and so it was as if he had all these amazing insights into the the book of allah

you know or something you make of the quran and like oh this is uh you know

or something how does he know it's he read in the tafsir that it was

he didn't produce that and this is the difference between a student of knowledge and real scholars

is that students in all we read what others have said but for us to think that we can produce something

that from our own quote unquote original thought hey hatsa like the arabs say so it's

just really important to know that and i think the older you get the more the more you you kind of you realize

that that that uh that we're just so limited in our understanding but attacking scholars is just really

really dangerous attacking anybody is dangerous unless there's a real reason to to to do that and obviously delusion

is an important part of human existence many people are deluded and so obviously they'll say oh i'm just protecting the

dean and and i mentioned that imam al-khazad's great quote in the book of knowledge but abdullah

bin maser said um

this is the sahabi a companion of the prophet him and he said that all of tribulation

is related to speech he said if i mocked a dog i would be

afraid that i would be turned into a dog that it's just it's something we have to

be really careful about just making fun of people uh or attacking people doing these

things i mean it seems to be the the zeitgeist now is all about attacking other people that

that's what there's so much of it there's so much uh negativity out there and

and i i think if you go online and and and look at this you're going to get sick i'll tell you

something that uh uh said he said something amazing

and and and this is uh mentioned in mustafi it's uh it's a very interesting

statement but so it's recorded that you imam ahmed himself in london said this the flesh of the scholars is poison

whoever smells it will get sick but whoever eats it will die

meaning the heart it's the death of the heart so whoever smells it that means that if you just read it if you're reading people making fun of

or attacking or and there's a lot of it and i'm not putting myself in here let me let me

make something perfectly clear i don't i am a student of knowledge i do not consider myself

one of the ulama by western standards people can consider somebody a scholar

that's fine but not by islamic standards i know what a real scholar is because i've actually

been blessed to study with them this is who they're talking about they're talking about these people who

allah has chosen because the prophet sam said in the hadith

sahih that illinois relates the prophet isaiah said

whoever allah wants good for he will give them understanding of the

religion that is called the joomla it's a conditional sentence

which means that if somebody has understanding of this deen allah wanted good for them so who are

you to want bad for them if allah wanted good for them woe unto you

woe unto you and and and so when you look at people who've been given great knowledge if you

say oh he's this or he's that or he's you don't know what his ishtihad is you

don't he's working with a whole other set of criteria that you don't have you don't

know what you don't know what he's going to defend himself on the day of judgment how are you going to defend yourself if

you attack him and he has an ishti had that allah said

on the tongue of his prophetizing because all of what comes from the prophet saw he said is revelation the prophet saw isam said


whoever does he had and is correct in his ishtihad has doubled the reward and whoever makes

his jihad as an incorrect in his ishti had he in other words he's mistaken

so the scholar could be mistaken but he has the criteria that enable him to make that ishtihat

if he's mistaken allah is going to give him a reward anyway but who are you what what reward

are you getting other than the accrual of sins by attacking people you have no business

attacking no business attacking and so

people can and i know this is a democratic age and everybody says everybody's entitled to their opinion

and and people say um you know that they can say whatever they

want well that's that's true you can say whatever you want but you just have to know that like imamatic said


when a man realizes that his speech is from his deeds his speech will

diminish in other words he'll begin to speak less and less because he knows he's going to be taken to account for

every single thing that he says in this world and that includes what you write on the internet you will be

taken to account for it so you should just know that i mean this is just to myself

and to everyone else you should just know every comment you make just like it's preserved on the internet

it's preserved in your sahifa and it's going to be show you're going to see it all that mockery

those little emojis that you put all that making fun of people whatever you're doing and i know the

people listening to this aren't those people so a lot of you don't need to be hearing this but it's something for all of us to

think about and maybe just maybe there might be somebody listening to this who actually does participate

in these types of things and will say us they'll you know i i really need to change my

ways because in the end of the day in the final analysis

we're all moving towards the at such a rapidly increasing rate that we need to be getting ready and one

of the best ways to get ready is to guard your tongue to guard your pen which is just an extension of your

tongue to guard your keyboard which is just an extension of your pen this is life on earth

and this is what we all need to know one of the poets says

that the flesh of the people of knowledge is poison and whoever opposes them is quick to

perish so be a helper to the people of knowledge and should you one day attack them

right just be prepared to take what comes

so may allah purify our tongues make us people of purity and

righteousness elevate us make us people of tawbah of repentance of forgiveness

i mean you can be talking about somebody and they're in sajdah doing taubah and allah is accepting their tauba and

you're backbiting them and the hadith that said backfinding is worse than fornication in islam people say how could that be

that ultimately the thing about somebody who fornicates can make tawba and allah accepts the

toba but if you backbite you've attacked another person

and you you technically that can't be redressed until that person forgives you

so it's worse in that way in that it's more difficult to remove from your

sahih than even something as enorm and and it is an enormity so i'm not belittling and certainly the

hadith i'm just quoting the hadith at least in english so so i

you know i was thinking just about sheikh dala mimiya who who i've known

personally for many many years he was my teacher in the 90s and

can i continue to learn from him and benefit from him and increasingly he got involved in

a lot of forums to where he was attempting to mitigate a

lot of the attacks on muslims and and there's people that have clearly

disagreed with his approach and his views but one of the things that is remarkable to

me about people that attack people like sheikh abdullah is it's

the question is never about is is what he's actually doing haram or

like what's the of this and then are you somebody that can determine that

because you have to be at the level of some level of ishtihad to be able to determine that i once heard somebody was telling about

some criticism that he was getting and he said i haven't done anything haram and

i just that really struck me it's a very simple statement but it just really struck me as something

wow you know that's that's how he's looking at things halal and haram is is this permissible

what i'm doing or is it not and obviously he has a whole set of criteria

for why he would be doing what he's doing because he obviously thinks some greater good is going to come out of what he's doing

that's his ishtihad but what what really strikes me is that

the the people who attack him essentially i mean very often it's pure ideology

it's just because he's not an ideologue and they happen to be following some type of

ideology and so so they

somebody like that who is recognized as one of the greatest living scholars

of our tradition when in pakistan when the hanafi ulama

came to an impasse in dealing with certain questions in in in in some issues that had arisen in

pakistan uh chef takadin osmani who's one of the greatest scholars of the hanafi school

in in the subcontinent seven problems and that is actually part

of the hanafi ulsual according to uh told me

that in the future that they will go to the maliki opinions if they don't resolve the problem within the hanafi

school and so they actually sent him and he solved all seven of those problems

these are recorded as well but then if you look also at his service i mean first of all

he comes from one of the most notable mortanian families his father was

aldi his father was one probably the the greatest living scholar of the 20th century in muritania

um and that was recognized even by people like uh sheikh mohammed ramirez

who the great mulfair of quran recognized uh his his position his maqam so that

was his father and he spent his life there studying and then at the age of 20 went to tunisia

with some of the top scholars in muritania he was the youngest of them and he graduated first in his class

amongst these scholars he actually gave a interview on the voice of america in 1961 i think

60 or 61 representing the students there in the mauritanian students in tunisia

so even the elders put him forward as their spokesperson so he was recognized just for having a genius in

fact i was told by his son muhammad

who died recently he was one of my teachers in when i was in medina he's a beautiful man from the

clan of tejakanet in mauritania but he told me we were talking about sheikh abdullah

bin bay and he said you know my father used to say that he's one of the geniuses of muritania

and he said you know that he had a creative mind that that he wasn't he wasn't like a

run-of-the-mill i mean the muritanians are very it's very difficult to impress a mortalian scholar

because they you know they really do have a lot of knowledge so but the mortality and ulama all

recognize but even more importantly this idea somehow that

he would support you know anything that's unjust and people say oh well he's supporting this or he's supporting that again

he does his ishtihad and in the late 70s he was sent by

the president of of muritania [Music]

he sent him to libya when there were problems between mauritania and qaddafi who had

taken power in libya and he sent him there and

the only reason i know this story is because the mauritanian bastard at the time who was in in libya at the

time actually recently revealed this last year on uh on to arab television this story even

the children of sheikh abdullah bibi were unaware of the story so sheikh abdullah bibaya gave his

delivered his message in the presence of the ambassador because always when a visiting

politician visits another country the ambassador will accompany them to the palace or to whatever the

president's residency or his office and so the mortality ambassador said that sheikh

abdullah when he finished delivering with deda's message the president of

muritania he said look this was from my president but i have something personally to say to you

and qaddafi said qaddafi said he said you need to fear allah he said you

cannot attack the our our sahaba you

what you've said about abhorrent what you've said about sahih bukhari what you said about things in the quran

i want you to make tawba and badhafi the ambassador related all

this it's you can see it it's on youtube he said that when he said that but daffy was

taken aback and this is somebody who killed people like literally as far as we know dumped

scholars into the ocean uh in in in the mediterranean um

there's still nobody knows what happened to poor bakker the great shia scholar from iraq but

it's believed that he was dumped into the ocean so you know this is a mokaf like this is

speaking truth to an unjust ruler who amongst us has actually done that like really

like who amongst us has actually done that you know put their lives into jeopardy

for their belief and so the ambassador said qaddafi started arguing with him and he said i'm

not he said you're wrong and you need to make taubah and i will not leave here until i hear

you retract your statement

so the ambassador said that he didn't find that gaddafi relented and said no no you're right i stuff for the law

you're right and then he left so that's something to think about

you know and and that if that's a man who was

now he's 87 years old and he spent his life serving this

religion he's going to sell his religion at this late stage when when he knows

that just by being a mortal that he's looking at his own mortality

i mean that's just i don't know how what people how they reason it just doesn't make sense so

but i know who he is because i've spent years i've spent over two decades living with him traveling with him

translating for him i know who he is i have no doubts i have no doubts

you know we can't only allah knows the reality of people but i in myself personally i believe that he's

one of the olia of god because i've seen it like i've seen and many people

who have worked with him have felt the same thing only allah knows these things we can't

it's not our business to determine but that's my belief so when i look at

him i don't i don't judge him i i might disagree

i i can actually disagree with something and and think i would have done this

differently or something like that but the idea that i don't recognize the level of

scholarship and the sincerity and the valid authority that he has

to determine his own path i mean that seems to me to be something

just really obvious and clear and i just feel sorry for people that

the way that some people have talked about him it just to me i i would just not want to be

in their shoes on the day of judgment i really wouldn't um i mean there's always time for toba

but it just it's it's amazes me

so may allah subhanahu wa'ta'ala inshallah elevate all of you and increase you and keep you

going inshallah until jalal we meet again assalamualaikum