Boycotting Another Muslim | 10 | Is it Correct that Innovators should not be Boycotted in this Day and Age?
Translated by Ahmed Abu Turaab
Questioner: Is what we hear correct that in this day and age boycotting the innovators should not be implemented?
Al-Albaani: He wants to say that it is not right that it should be implemented. Is it correct that it should not be implemented? It is not implemented, because the innovators and the disobedient Muslims sinners [faasiqs] and criminals [faajirs] are the majority today, but he is trying to say that it is not right that it is implemented, and it is as though the first person the questioner is referring to is me: so I say yes, it is as such, it is not right to implement it, and I have said this openly just now when I gave you that Syrian proverb, ‘You are closed and I have a day off,’ yes.
Questioner: But, for example, when an environment is found, and the majority in it are from Ahlus-Sunnah, for example, and thereafter some people who have deviated from the path of truth [nawaabidh] are found who innovated into the Religion of Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, in that situation is it implemented or not?
Al-Albaani: In the Jamaa’ah itself?
Questioner: In that environment which the people of truth dominate and then innovation became apparent in it, what do you say about this situation?
Al-Albaani: It is obligatory here to use wisdom. The strong, uppermost group, if it boycotts the group which has deviated from the Jamaa’ah–going back to what we already said–will that defend/aid the group which is clinging to the Truth or will it harm them? This is as regards them [i.e., the group on the truth].
Thereafter, will it benefit those being boycotted by the Aided Group or will it harm them, the answer to this has preceded, i.e., it is not right that we act upon these affairs based upon zealousness and emotions but rather with careful deliberation, tolerance and wisdom.
Because we, for example … [imagine] one of these people deviated [from the truth], he opposed the Jamaa’ah, … [and then the reaction from those who want to cut him off will be], ‘Boycott him! Don’t be kind to him!’ [Rather you should] advise him, guide him, and so on, accompany him for a while, then when you, firstly, despair of him and, secondly, think that his infection will spread to Zaid and Bakr [i.e., other people], then he is cut off when it is believed that boycotting will be the cure, and as is said, the last cure one resorts to is cauterization [i.e., boycotting is the last resort].
Generally, nowadays, I do not advise the use of boycotting whatsoever, because it harms more than it benefits.
And the greatest proof of that is the fitnah that is on-going now in the Hijaz. The call of tawheed and the call of the Book and the Sunnah unites all of them but some of them have specific activities, whether in politics or other views which are not known from any of the people of knowledge before, and it [i.e., what they say] may be correct and it may be wrong. [But] we cannot tolerate anything new that we hear especially if it appears to us to be something which, at first suggestion [i.e., without giving it any careful thought], we don’t recognize. We attack it straight away, this is a mistake, my brother:
You want a friend with no faults
And does aloes wood [Oud] give off its fragrance without smoke?
We [earnestly] hope that the Ikhwaan al-Muslimoon are with us on Tawheed alone [if nothing else], so that we can be with them, for they are not pleased with us even in aqidah and they say that rousing these differences splits the ranks and divides the people … and so on.
These brothers [in the Hijaaz] who a group have split away from or who split away from a group [themselves], and Allaah knows best … they are with us all the way regarding the Book, the Sunnah and the methodology of the Salaf as-Saalih, but they came with something new, some of it is wrong and some of it is correct.
So why do we spread dissension, partisanship and bigotry amongst ourselves, such that whereas once we were a single block we became two, three, they became … became Surooris … and so on, Allaahu Akbar.
And nothing divided them which deserved to be split over: there is no difference in the major issues which it cannot be imagined the Salafis would differ in. We all know that the Companions differed in some issues, but their methodology was one.
For this reason if you take it that some individuals from the Ahlus-Sunnah wal-Jamaa’ah and the Aided Sect have deviated, then we deal with them with kindness and tenderness, Yaa akhi, and we try to keep them with the Jamaa’ah and we don’t ostracise them nor boycott them except when we fear something from them–and this does not become apparent straight away, i.e., just because someone has an opinion in which he disagrees [with the Jamaa’ah] and has strayed from the Jamaa’ah it is not fitting that we immediately ostracise and boycott him.
But rather we should wait and be patient until maybe Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, guides his heart or it becomes clear to us that leaving him is better.
Al-Hudaa wan-Noor, 666.