Category: Quotes

Ibn Hazm, Ploys of Satan (Quote)

“I have not seen any of Satan’s [ploys] a greater trap, nor uglier, nor more foolish, than two statements that he has cast upon the tongues of his proselytizers:

The first of the two: A person’s excusing his wrongdoing on the basis that such-and-such person has done wrong before him.

The second: A person’s dismissal of [the fact] that he is doing wrong today, on the basis that he [already] did wrong yesterday, or that [he may as well] do wrong in one thing because he has [already] done wrong is other things.”

— Ibn Hazm of Cordoba (d. 1064 CE / 456 H)

قال ابن حزم: لم أر لإبليس أصيد وَلَا أقبح وَلَا أَحمَق من كَلِمَتَيْنِ ألقاهما على أَلْسِنَة دعاته إِحْدَاهمَا اعتذار من أَسَاءَ بِأَن فلَانا أَسَاءَ قبله وَالثَّانيَِة استسهال الْإِنْسَان أَن يسيء
الْيَوْم لِأَنَّهُ قد أَسَاءَ أمس أَو أَن يسيء فِي وَجه مَا لِأَنَّهُ قد أَسَاءَ فِي غَيره

(من كتاب السيروالأخلاق)

Ibn al-Qayyim, Charitable Interpretation (Quote)

The famous Hanbali scholar Ibn al-Qayyim (d. 751H / 1350 CE) on the Principle of Charitable Interpretation:
“The great scholar is dear to us, but the truth is dearer to us than he. One does not unconditionally accept the words of anyone other than God’s Prophet. We look for the best possible meaning for their words, then clarify [the problematic aspects] in it.”
[Madarij al-Salikin, (Beirut: Dar al-Kutub al-`Ilmiyya, 1416/1996), 2/38]
The ‘great scholar’ (shaykh al-islam) he is referring to is the Hanbali Sufi Abu Isma`il al-Harawi (d.  481H / 1088CE).
شيخ الإسلام حبيب إلينا . والحق أحب إلينا منه . وكل من عدا المعصوم صلى الله عليه وسلم فمأخوذ من قوله ومتروك ، ونحن نحمل كلامه على أحسن محامله . ثم نبين ما فيه .”
(من كلام ابن القيم رحمه الله في الشيخ أبي إسماعيل الهروي)

Hamdun al-Qassar, Effective words (Quote)

Hamdun al-Qassar (d. 884 CE / 271 H) was asked, “Why are the words of the [pious] people of the past more effective than our words?”
He replied, “Because they spoke for the dignity of Islam, the salvation of souls, and the approval of the Merciful [God], whereas we speak for our own fame, acquiring worldly things, and the approval of people.”

قيل لحمدون القصار: ما بال كلام السَّلف أنفع مِن كلامنا؟ قال: لأنهم تكلموا لعِزّ الإسلام ونجاة النفوس ورِضا الرحمان، ونحن نتكلم لعِزّ النفس وطلب الدنيا وقبول الخَلْق
(ابن الجوزي، صفة الصفوة، ط. دار الحديث، 2/313)