Taqi ud-Din Abu-l-'Abbas Ahmad Ibn 'Abd al-Halim Ibn 'Abd as-Salam Ibn
Taimiyah al-Harrani al-Hanbali, was born on Monday the 10th of Rabi'
al-Awwal 66l H./22nd of January 1263 C.E. at Harran. His father fled with
his family from
He completed his studies when he was a teenager and at age 19 he became a
professor of Islamic studies. Well versed in Qur'anic studies, Hadith, fiqh,
theology, Arabic grammar and scholastic theology, etc., he started giving fatwas
on religious legal matters without following any of the traditional legal
schools, the Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi'i and Hanbali. He defended
the sound prophetic traditions by arguments which, although taken from the Qur'an
and the Sunnah, had hitherto been unfamiliar to people of his time.
The freedom of his polemics made him many enemies among the scholars of the
traditional Orthodox Schools, who falsely accused him, of all kinds of
heretical beliefs. Among them was the famous Muslim medieval traveler, Ibn
Batutah, who visited
He fought heretical innovations in religion which were wide spread during his time all over the Muslim world, especially certain acts and beliefs of some Sufi orders, like saint worship and visiting saints' tombs, and throwing themselves in the fire. His attack on the sufis caused him a lot of trouble with the authorities whose leaders were under the influence of certain sufi leaders.
Ibn Taimiyah's fight was not limited to the sufis and the
people who followed the heretical innovations; in addition, he fought against
the Tatars who attacked the Muslim world and almost reached
All this jihad against the enemies of Islam did not help Ibn Taimiyah with the 'ulama'. The authorities put him in jail many times until he died in jail because of his daring and free progressive opinions on many legal and social issues which angered his opponents, the followers of the Orthodox Schools of law.
However when Ibn Taimiyah had the chance to punish his opponents among the 'ulama' who caused him all kinds of trouble and put him in jail many times, he showed the utmost of magnanimity and forgave them when the Sultan an-Nasir Qalawun gave him the chance to do so. He said: "If you kill them you will never find 'ulama' like them." The Sultan said: "They harmed you many times and wanted to kill you!" Ibn Taimiyah said: "Whoever harmed me is absolved, and who harmed the cause of Allah and His Messenger, Allah will punish him."4
The Muslim historians, like adh-Dhahabi, Ibn Kathir, Ibn al-'Imad al-Hanbali and many others praised Ibn Taimiyah and considered him one of the greatest scholars of Islam of all time.
Ibn Taimiyah died in jail in
The people of
In spite of all the turbulence in his life, as discussed earlier, Ibn Taimiyah was able to write many books and pamphlets on all branches of Islamic knowledge. His pupil; Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyah, compiled a list of the works of Ibn Taimiyah which contains 350 works. Here are some of them:
A: Qur'anic Studies and Tafsir:
1. al-Tabyan fi nuzul al-Qur'an.
3. Tafsir al-Mu'awidhatain (chapter 113 and 114).
4. Tafsir Surat al-Ikhlas (chapter 112)
5. Muqaddimah fi 'Usul al-Tafsir.
B: Fiqh (Islamic Law):
1. Majmu'at al-Fatawa al-Kubra. 5 volumes.
2. Majmu' Fatawa Ibn Taimiyah. 37 volumes.
3. al-Qawa'id al-Nuraniyah al-Fiqhiyah.
4. Kitab Manasik al-Hajj.
5. Risalah fi al-'Uqud al-Muharramah.
6. Kitab al-Farq al-Mubin baina al-Talaq wal-Yamin.
7. Kitab fi 'Usul al-Fiqh.
8. Risalah fi Raf al-Hanafi Yadaihi fi al-Salah.
9. Risalah fi Sujud al-Sahwu.
10. Mas'alat al-Half bil-Talaq.
C: Tasawwuf (Sufism):
1. al-Furqan baina Awliya' al-Rahman wa-Awliya' al- Shaitan.
2. Amrad al-Qulub wa-Shifa'uha.
3. al-Tuhfah al-'Iraqiyah fi A'mal al-Qulub.
5. al-Risalah al-Tadmuriyah.
6. Darajat al-Yaqin.
7. Bughyat al-Murtad (al-sab'iniyah).
8. Ibtal Wahdat al-Wujud.
9. al-Tawassul wal-Wasilah.
10. Risalah fi al-Sama' Wal-Raqs.
11. al-'Ibadat al-Shar'iyah.
D: 'Usul al-Din and 'Ilm al-Kalam:
1. Risalah fi 'Usul al-Din.
2. Risalah fi al-Ihtijaj bil-Qadar.
3. Jawab Ahl al-'Ilm wal-Iman.
4. al-Iklil fi al-Mutashabih wal-Ta'wil.
5. al-Risalah al-Madaniyah.
6. Minhaj al-Sunnah al-Nabawiyah fi Naqd Kalam al-Shi'ah al-Qadariyah.
7. al-Muntaqa min Akhbar al-Mustafa.
8. Sharh al-'Aqidah al-Asfahaniyah.
9. Ma'arij al-Wusul ila Ma'rifat anna Usula al-Din wa-Futu'ahu qadd bayyanaha al-Rasul.
10. Aqwamu ma qila fi al-Mashi'ati wal-Hikinati wal-Qada'i wal-Qadari wal-Ta'lili wa-Butlani al-Jabri wal- Ta'til.
11. Risalah fi al-Qada'i wal-Qadar.
12. Kitab al-Iman.
13. al-Furqan baina al-Haqqi wal-Batil.
14. al-Wasiyah al-Kubra.
15. Naqd Ta'sis al-Taqdis.
16. al-Radd 'ala al-Nusairiyah.
E: Al-Radd 'ala As-hab al-Milal: (Responding to other religion's followers):
1. al-Jawab al-Sahih li-man Baddala Dina al-Masih.
2. al-Radd 'ala al-Nasara.
3. Takhjil Ahl al-Injil.
4. al-Risalah al-Qubrusiyah.
5. Iqtida' al-Sirat al-Mustaqim Mukhalafat As-hab al-Jahim.
F: Al-Mantiq wal-Falsafah: (Logic and Philosophy):
1. al-Radd 'ala al-Mantiqiyyin.
2. al-Risalah al-Safadiyah.
3. Naqd al-Mantiq.
4. al-Risalah al-'Arshiyah.
G: Al-Akhlaq wal-Siyasah wal-Ijtima': (Manners, Administration and Sociology)
1. al-Hasanah wal-Sayyi'ah.
2. al-Wasiyah al-Jami'ah li-Khair al-Dunia wal-Akhirah.
3. Sharh Hadith "Innama al-A'malu bin-Niyyat".
4. al-Siyasah al-Shar'iyah fi Islah al-Ra'i wal-Ra'iyah.
5. al-Hisbah fi al-Islam.
6. al-Mazalim al-Mushtarakah.
1. Ahadith al-Qussas
Ibn Taimiyah said:
"A Shafi'ite judge from Wasit
He asked me to write him an 'Aqidah (creed) as a reference to him and his family. But I declined saying: Many creeds have been written. Refer to the scholars of the Sunnah. However, he persisted in his request, saying: I do not want any creed but one you write. So I wrote this one for him while I was sitting one afternoon.
Many copies of it are dispersed
1-Ibn Batutah - Rihiah, vol.1,p.110,fn.1.
2- See page 21 of this book.
3-Ibn Kathir, al-Bidayah wan-Nihayah, Vol.7, Part 14, pp.91-92
4-Ibn Kathir, al-Bidayah wan-Nihayah, vol.7, part 14, p.56.
5- For description of Ibn Taimiyah's funeral see Ibn Kathir; pp.141-145.
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