Muhammad Naswir ad-Din al-Albani’s Takfir of Ash’aris & Maturidis
بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
Like the rest of Wahhabi innovators, Muhammad Naswir ad-Din al-Albani declared Ash’aris, Maturidis, and Sufis to be outside the fold of the Ahl as-Sunnah wa al-Jama’ah and even outside the fold of Islam, although Allah (s.w.t.) and His Prophet (s.a.w.) Praised them:
يَـٰٓأَيُّہَا ٱلَّذِينَ ءَامَنُواْ مَن يَرۡتَدَّ مِنكُمۡ عَن دِينِهِۦ فَسَوۡفَ يَأۡتِى ٱللَّهُ بِقَوۡمٍ۬ يُحِبُّہُمۡ وَيُحِبُّونَهُ ۥۤ أَذِلَّةٍ عَلَى ٱلۡمُؤۡمِنِينَ أَعِزَّةٍ عَلَى ٱلۡكَـٰفِرِينَ يُجَـٰهِدُونَ فِى سَبِيلِ ٱللَّهِ وَلَا يَخَافُونَ لَوۡمَةَ لَآٮِٕمٍ۬ۚ ذَٲلِكَ فَضۡلُ ٱللَّهِ يُؤۡتِيهِ مَن يَشَآءُۚ وَٱللَّهُ وَٲسِعٌ عَلِيمٌ (٥٤)
O you who believe! If any from among you turn back from his faith, soon will Allah Produce a people whom He will Love as they will love Him, ― lowly with the believers, mighty against the rejecters, fighting in the Way of Allah, and never afraid of the reproaches of such as find fault. That is the Grace of Allah, which He will Bestow on whom He Pleases: and Allah Encompasses all and He Knows all things. (Surah al-Ma’idah:54)
Upon Revelation of the verse, the Prophet (s.a.w.) pointed to Sayyidina Abu Musa ‘Abdullah ibn Qays al-Ash’ari (r.a.) and said, “They are that man’s people.” This is narrated from Qadhi Abu al-Fadhl ‘Iyadh ibn ‘Amr al-Yahsubi (r.a.) by Imam Abu Bakr ‘Abdullah ibn Muhammad ibn Abu Shaybah (r.a.) and Imam Abu ‘Abdullah Muhammad ibn ‘Abdullah al-Hakim an-Nishaburi (r.a.), who said it is swahih by Imam ‘Asakir ad-Din Abu al-Husayn Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj’s (r.a.) criterion, and by Imam Abu al-Qasim Sulayman ibn Ayyub ath-Thabarani (r.a.) with a sound chain as stated by Imam Shibab ad-Din Abu al-‘Abbas Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn Hajr al-Haytsami (r.a.).
Imam Abu al-Qasim ‘Abd al-Karim ibn Huzan al-Qushayri (r.a.), Imam Tsiqat ad-Din Abu al-Qasim ‘Ali ibn al-Hasan ibn ‘Asakir (r.a.), Imam Abu Bakr Ahmad ibn Husayn al-Bayhaqi (r.a.), Imam Taqi’ ad-Din Abu al-Hasan ‘Ali ibn ‘Abd al-Kafi’ as-Subki (r.a.), and others said that the followers of Imam Abu al-Hasan ‘Ali ibn Isma’il al-Ash’ari (r.a.), who were mostly Sufis, are included among Sayyidina Abu Musa’s (r.a.) people for in every place that a people are affiliated to a Prophet (s.a.w.), what is meant is the followers of that Prophet (s.a.w.).
As for Maturidis, they are referred to in the narration of the Prophet (s.a.w.) from Shaykh Bishr al-Khats’ami (r.a.) or Shaykh Martsad ibn Abu Martsad al-Ghanawi (r.a.) with a swahih chain according to Imam al-Hakim (r.a.), Imam Shams ad-Din Abu ‘Abdullah Muhammad ibn Ahmad adz-Dzahabi (r.a.), Imam Abu al-Fadhl ‘Abd ar-Rahman ibn Abu Bakr ibn Muhammad Jalal ad-Din as-Suyuthi (q.s.), and Imam al-Haytsami (r.a.): “Truly you shall conquer Constantinople and truly what a wonderful leader will her leader be, and truly what a wonderful army will that army be!” Both the leader and his army were classic Hanafi Maturidis and it is known that Sulthan Muhammad al-Fatih (r.a.) loved and respected Sufis, practiced tawaswswul and followed a shaykh. Moreover, enmity against Ash’aris, Maturidis, and Sufis, is nifaq and enmity against the ummah of Islam as most of the ‘ulama of Islam are thus described.