Special Address (to Zaytuna College)

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Event Name: Special Address (to Zaytuna College)
Transcription Date:Transcription Modified Date: 5/30/2019
Transcript Version: 1

Transcript Text

bismillah r-rahman

I'm doing that but the last panel to

understand it was not mr. Fuhrer who

when I would have let him ensure Orion

Ficino and say yeah yeah Medina I mean

yeah he laughs at our model a woman yoga

inferred I had the other hello MA

suddenly was said in my Odyssey in

Mohammed wine and he was happy was an

empty seaman kathira without how would I

run after water in every land ally


hamdullah welcome everybody the the

topic I wanted to talk about today

revolves around what occurred in

Marrakesh and I think some of you are

aware of it but for those of you who

aren't shelepin baya who I think in many

ways represents a type of intelligence

that has been lacking in in our

community in a lot of different areas

he's somebody who doesn't study for

instance all sort of fill as a

historical artifact which a lot of

scholars today do they they study all

sorted fit as a historical artifact

trying to understand how the art

tradition emerged and evolved he studies

all sorted fit and I think he's he's

arguably one of the greatest if not the

greatest Sunni master of the of the the

tool of also in in modern times he

studies it as as an actual manual really

of operation operating manual that

enables us to use our religious

tradition in a way to make it compatible

with the circumstances that we find

ourselves in not compromising it but

recognizing that circumstances have

their realities he calls it fickle waka


the jurisprudence of reality that that

the reality of Dorrit the hakama ha like

the AHA say necessities have their own

categories their own rulings and and we

have many many examples of this

historically throughout history of the

Muslims dealing with their circumstances

I'll just give you an example in

historically when Muslims conquered

lands there were two types of ways that

they came into a land one was what was

called an unlit in' and that it was

sullen so uh newellton is where a people

refused they refused the the muslim

demands and so they fought it out and

then the muslims one that had a whole

set of rules that went with it and then

if they conquered them under a treaty

like a celeb then that also they were

able to stipulate things so one was like

a conditional surrender the other was

like an unconditional surrender and you

see this in earliest long one of the

things in unconditional situations that

they would that they would not allow

them to build new churches and so you

will find for instance that there are

periods where a ruler will come and

he'll actually order the churches to be

torn down that were built in the

previous administration so you'll find

that in our history books and these are

things that a lot of people that are

very anti-muslim are pulling out because

they're going into our sources and

looking at our history books and what's

interesting about their methodology is

that they will cherry-pick all the

things that blacken Islamic history and

and just they will look at them as

simply fact this is fact and anything

that puts the religion in a good light

they will say oh this is clearly a

contrived story it's a nice story told

by Muslims to make their religion look

nice and this is a very

and when you get into Orientalist

tradition it's a very common motif for

me it really bothers me a lot because

they don't challenge a lot of these

narratives that I personally would

challenge because the Prophet never

destroyed a place of worship and so if

and he prohibited destroying places of

worship so if I Muslim ruler destroys a

place of worship that was already built

even if it was built against certain

codes or legal restrictions if it's

being used by a religious community I

don't believe the Prophet would have

done that and so to say that this

somehow is normative Islam because a

ruler did it another aspect that we have

to remember as Muslims is that Islam was

a religious tradition that our prophet

told us would only have a polity for

thirty years and then after that he said

it wouldn't be Islam it would be

something else and so after 30 years and

it ends with Hassan vanadis Kedavra

which lasted for six months almost to

the date thirty years after the Prophet

SAW lied to them his death it aligned

with Empire and and Islam becomes now a

vehicle for Empire with all the the

aspects that that entails just like

Christianity in the fourth century

aligned with Empire

so the first 300 years the Christians

had a certain tradition but after that

when they aligned with Empire it became

very different

one of the fundamental debates in early

Christianity was about wealth this was

actually a more significant debate than

a lot of the theological debates that

that will enter into the religion later

on could a Christian be rich that that

was a major discussion many of the

Church Fathers really felt and the

Desert Fathers certainly felt that the

only way that you could truly express

your true Christian faith was in

to completely remove yourself from the

world and but once Christianity became

the religion of an empire it it changed

it transformed and is Lomb is the same

they can't you can't divorce the the the

scholars that worked with Empire and

their decisions and their reasoning from

the environments that they were in you

can't separate those two and then you

will find historically the vast majority

of the scholars that are honoured in our

tradition the vast majority not all of

them but the vast majority of them had

very tenuous relationships with Empire

many of them would not visit rulers they

simply would not go and sit with them if

the ruler wanted to see them they would

say he has to come and see me I'm not

going to him imam at a Posada who in his

early part of his life was was very much

aligned with Empire he worked with nizam

al-mulk he was in his coterie but when

he had his transformation he went on his

pilgrimage at the at the tomb of El

Halil he sworn oath that he would never

visit a ruler that's an oath another

that he actually swore he vowed that he

would never visit a ruler and when he

was called to the court of sun-ja he

went not believing it was breaking the

valley because he was forced to because

he was accused of he was accused you

know of religious heterodoxy and he had

to go defend himself but he did not

after that engage with rulers and so

there are many many examples of that

historically matica panis is a clear

example of somebody who and abu hanifa

and ahmed mohammed all of them if you

look at the four imams all of them were

simply not tied to Empire they would not

allow themselves to be compromised in

that way because they understood that

once you ally with Empire you

compromised yourself and one of the

interesting things about

our legal system is that judges

traditionally were independent so even

the the rulers could not control the

what we would call the judicial branch

in our separation of powers because we

separate legislative the judicial and

the executive branch is based on

Montesquieu's demarcations in in the in

the traditional Muslim world the

legislative was largely an independent

body the Faja and and you had the the

executive branch which would always also

legislate things very often against the

the foot bhai the independent

legislative branch so they would

legislate taxes that the folk considered

unacceptable or unjust so the

legislative branch in Islamic history

was actually an independent branch

generally but it was also co-opted by

Empire and so there was a tenuous

relationship between the Fulco ha what

they called the Ummah of soul bond and

the Ummah of Quran

right this is this so as you know as we

look at also landfill as a as a tool to

deal and grapple with the real

contingencies of time that's something

that I think chef abdullah takes very

seriously and this is why he has he's

come up with certain conclusions about

about things that and and they're very

troubling to some of the ummah which is

interesting also because one of the

things that he does is whenever he

whenever he comes up with something he

always writes his argument from a Sunni

perspective he puts it out there and

then it's like if you have criticisms

write them and then I'll address them

and this was our traditional edible PDF

like you put forward your argument

because one of the things Van Doren said

and and and I think it applies equally

to our tradition as it does to Western

civilization is

that inheriting a tradition is

inheriting a lawsuit so when you inherit

a tradition you're you're grappling with

different lawyers of the past making

arguments and just to give you one

example in the verse which is in Toba

where it says that they're supposed to

pay jizya at its value jizya tenanted

then home sovereign right so there's the

joomla Holly as a home saw her own that

they should pay this tribute in a

humbled manner for whom sahi room if you

read the books of fit you will you'll

see amazing things some of them said oh

we have to humiliate them and so this is

not from prophetic practice this is

their interpretations of a verse in the

Quran so they would say they should pay

it at 12 p.m. 12 noon the hottest part

of the day they should pay it without

their head cover they should always put

their hand offer the money like this so

the Muslim takes the money from above

because yet the earlier hey Romania the

sulla right and and the hand over is

better than the hand under meaning the

one giving is better than one taking so

in this case you know that to offer the

money like that instead of like that

that's one view and the Fuuka ha you'll

find that in the books and these are the

things that these Islamophobes pull out

of our books and say over there look at

this tolerant religion and then you have

people like I borrow bathing tapenade

one of the great folk AHA Islamic

tradition who argues that just paying

tribute is humbling enough so honor them

and treat them well and don't humiliate

them in paying their tribute so there's

another who comes up with a

completely different approach and so

what is it which one is it

they're both from the quote-unquote

tradition and this is the lawsuit that

we inherit and then we have to ask

ourselves what is closest to our

prophets behavior how was he with people

when the Christians of Ned

Ron came to Medina in in according to

one recension in the ninth year of hijra

how did he treat them according to our

books he let them pray in in the Masjid

when they debated with him about for

instance yeah after Harun they said

about Mary you've confused Mary the

sister of Moses with Mary the mother of

Jesus because in the Perron Mary the

Virgin is called

the sister of Haroon and the prophet

said wasn't she and erinite because the

arenites were the the shrine keepers and

Mary was from the offspring of Aaron the

brother of Moses so he was explaining

because the Arabs say yeah after doubt

oh boy yeah uh-huh now table when you're

from a people you call them the sister

of that people so she was an era night

so he was saying that's not a confusion

that's a thought that indicates her

lineage so he explained he didn't say

off with their heads how dare they

question the or on how dare they

question my prophecy no he treated them

with respect he debated with them and

and then when the debate was going

nowhere he he would he challenged them

to the mobile Allah which they decided

not to do after consulting with the Jews

in Medinah said will not do that and

they entered into an agreement with him

and they moved back and he sent an

arbiter with them so there's an example

so the point being is that you're going

to find this in our tradition you're

going to find all of these we've got

1400 years of tradition the same way the

Christians have 1400 years they have

2,000 years of tradition the Jews have

3,000 years it becomes cumbersome

tradition becomes cumbersome hence the

Protestant impulse let's just do away

with all this stuff let's go back to the

original sources and that's handset

a--they Dawa is so appealing to a lot of

people because it's just saying let's go

back to the book in the Sunnah forget

all this 1400 years of

bickering over the meanings of these

things the problem with that is that

there's a reason why the tradition is

there if you read a Gustin on Christian

doctrine he makes very similar arguments

to our scholars about the necessity of

mastering certain tools before you can

even interact with the tradition the

least of which being grammar and we have

very few people that have mastered the

grammar of the Courant we have people

giving commentary of the Quran that are

completely unqualified and in any other

previous time they would be in blocks

you know they used to have those blocks

they put people at their head and arm

they would be in blocks in our history

one of the intriguing aspects of our

tradition is there are actually very few

types years of Quran and if you look at

the men that made toughs here they were

literally the greatest scholars in the

history of Islam because nobody wanted

to touch the Quran it's like I'm not

going to say what I think God means by

that not me

and then when you read the tough seers

they become very tedious because they

just quote the previous tough seers it's

very interesting they all just quote

like you you'll read ten top seers and

they say the exact same thing because

they're all going back to poverty

because they just didn't want to mess

with the Quran move move near Labib I

even Hisham is one of the most important

books in our civilization is a book a

two-volume book just on the meanings of

the particles and prepositions in the

Quran in the Arabic language because

there are so many different types of fur

there's different types of lamb the

otaku who I do what in order for him to

take him as an enemy Moses Pharaoh took

him into the house to take him as an

enemy that lamb can beat a vegan but in

that case it's not because nobody in

their right mind would take somebody

into their house to be their enemy

so it's called lamellae Akiva it's the

Lamb of consequence in other words he

didn't know that was what was going to

happen but that's what he was doing

learning those nuances and then diction

and word choice takes years to master in

the Arabic language because these words

are very subtle and they have very

subtle meanings and there are words in

the Quran that you might think mean one

thing but then when you read the tafseer

you find out it's completely different

meaning from the one that you thought

and that's happened to me many many

times reading the photon where I thought

I clearly understood what it meant then

when I went into the tafseer I realized

my understanding was completely skewed

and so tradition we have to grapple with

tradition but we need the tools to

grapple with the tradition and that's

where we're in trouble because it's very

it takes many many years to master those

tools it takes an incredible amount of

intellectual gifts to master them and it

also demands a really type of divine

inspiration that that it's it's not

something you could just do on your own

there has to be a toe feel involved in

it and so that adds to the challenge but

Sheikh Abdullah has he mastered the

Arabic language

I mean he he is arguably one of the

great masters of the Arabic language in

this time and in fact I saw him in a

debate with one of the scholars from

from Pakistan who's a very very great

Hanafy jurist and he was arguing with

him about you know whom OMA to mademou

meaning and he said the man you know it

doesn't mean they're from the same OMA

it's saying he's with them and she