With regard to Shaikh Ahmed Deedat, some people say, and we asked about his methodology, and, inshaa Allaah naturally it will be from the good methodologies, so some people say, the methodology is not important, the important thing is that he is a Muslim … so if you could clarify this for us O Shaikh, and may Allaah reward you with good.
Shaikh al-Albaani: We truly hope that Shaikh Ahmed is on the Salafi methodology of old, who believe in Allaah and worship Him as He truly ought to be worshipped.
But we need to always remember [generally] that just because a person believes in the presence of a creator of this universe this does not mean that he has become a believer. Two fundamental conditions must be met:
The first: that he bear witness that none has the right to be worshipped except Allaah.
The second: that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah.
The first condition, that none has the right to be worshipped except Allaah does not only mean that the Creator of the universe is One, because it is possible that faith and disbelief come together in one person, faith and disbelief may come together in one person. The one who says, ‘None has the right to be worshipped except Allaah and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah,’ [then] naturally this saying has prerequisites, these prerequisites being connected to these two testimonies.
So if we were to picture a person who bears witness that, ‘None has the right to be worshipped except Allaah and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah,’ but [at the same time] he says that the Quraan is deficient … if we were to picture a person who bears witness that, ‘None has the right to be worshipped except Allaah and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah,’ but [at the same time] he says that the Quraan is deficient, then the testimony of Laa ilaaha illallaah has not benefitted this person, because it is like honey poured on to something bitter, ruining it.
And in the same way belief and disbelief gathers in a person, for this reason He, the Most High, said about the early polytheists, “And most of them believe not in Allah except that they attribute partners unto Him.” [Yusuf 12:106]. This aayah shows us that these people are believers but that at the same time they are polytheists, and most of them believe not in Allaah except that their condition is this, that they are polytheists.
So, faith and disbelief can be present in a person, I gave you an example of a person who testifies that none has the right to be worshipped except Allaah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah but [he says], “The Quraan is deficient,” this is shirk, but [the person who said this] believes in Allaah and believes in the Messenger of Allaah, so His Saying, the Most High, applies to him, “And most of them believe not in Allah except that they attribute partners unto Him.”
To be precise in this topic, i.e., that it is possible that faith and disbelief be present in a person, faith and tawheed and shirk, the Saying of our Lord, “And most of them believe not in Allah except that they attribute partners unto Him,” applies to most of the people even in this time [of ours].
Let us take a look at the reality, those Muslims who pray, fast, perform Hajj and give charity, they go to a certain place, or to a grave of the Allies of Allaah [Awliyaa], to seek intercession from them, to seek well-being from them, these people [are from those to whom the Saying of Allaah applies], “And most of them believe not in Allah except that they attribute partners unto Him.”
They know that Allaah exists, but they worshipped others along with Him, whereas Allaah had said [in the Quraan], “You (Alone) we worship, and You (Alone) we ask for help (for each and everything),” [Al-Faatihah 1:5], so they sought the aid of other than Him, the Most High.
For this reason, the verifying scholars categorised tawhid into three types:
1 Tawhid ar-Ruboobiyyah (Maintaining the Unity of Lordship)
2 Tawhid al-Uluhiyyah (Singling out Allaah with worship)
3 Tawhid al-Asmaa was-Sifaat (Maintaining the Unity of Allaah’s Names and Attributes)
Namely that Allaah is One in His Essence, One in the fact that He is the only One who deserves to be worshipped, none other than Him is to be worshipped, and that He is One in His Attributes, “There is nothing like unto Him,” [Ash-Shuraa 42:11]. This does not mean that Allaah exists and that’s it! No, [but rather that] Allaah exists and nothing from His Creation resembles Him.
So for example, in their celebrations the Christians spread these pictures, you will see pictures of their lord, an old Shaikh, with a long white beard, is that the Lord of all Creation whom nothing resembles?
The Jews and the Christians believe that this universe has a creator, so they believe in the first type of tawhid, what is it called? Tawhid ar-Ruboobiyyah (Maintaining the Unity of Lordship), i.e., that this universe has a creator.
Questioner: Is the one who says this an atheist?
Shaikh al-Albaani: They differ from the atheists or naturalists, those who say there is no creator and no creation, the Jews and the Christians say that Allaah is the One who created the universe so they are monotheists in Tawhid ar-Ruboobiyyah, but when it comes to tawhid al-uluhiyyah, the tawhid of worship, then the Jews worshipped Uzair and the Christians worshipped Jesus.
These people disbelieved in the tawhid of worship, so they do not say, ‘None has the right to be worshipped except Allaah,’ and if they have said it, then it is either out of hypocrisy or ignorance as to its true meaning, for if not, if they said it believing in it, they would not have worshipped Jesus, nor would they have submitted to him, or prostrated to him and so on, nor would they have placed his image and that of his mother Maryam in the churches.
These people are believers from one angle, and disbelievers from another since they are not like the atheists who say there is no god, no, they do say that Allaah exists, but look what is the benefit of that saying when they liken Allaah to His Creation?
Questioner: Or when they worship others alongside Him?
Shaikh al-Albaani: Or when they worship others alongside Him, ah, here is the [main] point from [all of] this talk–many of the Muslims, and I do not only mean their general masses, but many of their scholars or students of knowledge too, say, ‘None has the right to be worshipped except Allaah,’ but they worship other than Allaah, and they disbelieve in Him as regards His Attributes.
Now for example, we know that many of them other than those we just pointed to, [we know that] they call on the dead and the righteous, submitting to them, praying by them and so on, they say that Allaah exists in all places, [but indeed] Allaah is greater than all things, and He was in existence when there was nothing other than Him, so what/how is it that you went and put Him and the universe together [as one]? To such an extent that some of them said, “And Allaah in relation to these Shaikhs … is but as a snowflake in water.”
Can you differentiate between snow and water? This is Allaah in the eyes of these people, this is disbelief. In the Noble Quraan it says that Allaah is Self-sufficent and in no need whatsoever of His Creation, [but] these [people] have gathered Him [in the same category as] the creation like a silkworm which harms itself, it digs itself in and becomes strangulated and dies–[but the reality is that] Allaah is in no need of the worlds whatsoever, so these people have believed from one angle and disbelieved from the other.
For this reason, and in reality it matters to us that Shaikh Ahmed [Deedat], may Allaah reward him with good, has fulfilled a great obligatory action, but this undertaking and this exertion [jihaad] will only benefit him if he believes in Allaah as one Lord, as [the only] One who is worshipped, [i.e., fulfilling all requirements of tawhid like all Muslims should] and what is not meant by [this saying], ‘that He is the only One worshipped,’ [is to restrict it to only mean] that he prays just to Him, no, for if he called upon Khidr in a time of need then he would not have worshipped Allaah alone, since supplication is part of worship, he (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said, “Du’aa is worship.”
So we hope that he [i.e., Deedat] has studied the correct tawhid in his land so that he is a muwahhid [monotheist, who] singles Allaah out solely in His Essence, in His worship, a muwahhid of Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, in relation to His Attributes, [i.e., the] three [categories of tawhid], and then his jihaad would be something about which we could say that he has performed an obligatory duty that all of the [other] Shaikhs did not carry out.
Questioner: Allaahu Akbar.
Shaikh al-Albaani: Yes, by Allaah. May Allaah reward him with good.
Questioner: May Allaah bless you, our Shaikh, may Allaah bless us by [allowing us to benefit from] your life, inshaa Allaah.
Shaikh al-Albaani: May Allaah protect you.
Questioner: Please carry on, our Shaikh.
Shaikh al-Albaani: What is meant byTawheed ar-Rububiyyah is that the Muslim decisively believes that the Creator of this universe and all that it contains is one in His Essence, having no equal/opponent, no partner.
The Magians believe that there are two gods, a god of evil and a god of good, they committed shirk in [the first category] Tawhid ar-Rububiyyah, do you understand?
So if the Muslim, Allaah forbid, were to believe that there are Allies of Allaah [Awliyaa] and righteous people who can harm and benefit along with Allaah, and who can give life and death, and who can feed and give provisions, [then] he would have disbelieved in tawhid, tawhid ar-Rububiyyah, and would have associated partners with Him, because [through this belief of his] he would have held there to be two creators: [he would have held that] Allaah creates the good and evil and that likewise the Allies of Allaah [Awliyaa] and the righteous people give provisions, give life and death, and for this reason he [such a Muslim] goes to them, seeking blessings from them.
Question: There are many women who cannot get pregnant who take themselves and go to a tree under which there is the grave of a wali and so she will tie things above [the grave on the tree] and so on, yes.
Shaikh al-Albaani: Allaahu Akbar, this is shirk in rububiyyah. Shirk in Lordship [uluhiyyah] is shirk in worship, and it is that someone worships other than Allaah while believing that Allaah is One in His Essence but [at the same time] he slaughters for such and such wali, this is shirk in worship, he calls upon so and so the wali, [even though] that wali has become dust in his grave, a man from mankind, [but this Muslim] believes that he can hear and save him, and harm and benefit, this would then have become shirk in worship.”
Mawsoo’atul-Allaamah, al-Imaam, Mujaddidil-Asr, Muhammad Naasirid-Deen al-Albaani, of Shaikh Shady Noaman, vol.2, pp. 59-64.