Mufti, Know Thyself – a response to Suhaib Webb

It’s sad to see this repetitive pattern from Imam Suhaib over the years, who, as I have said before, has so much to offer our youth but is hell-bent on getting caught up in rants, squabbles and arguments. Sad indeed as by his own definition he claims to be an Azhari and such behaviour is unbecoming of one who claims affinity to this institution.

From Andalus blog:

“For the past few years Suhaib [Webb] has regularly gotten into internet squabbles, wasted time and energy, gossiped, backbit, associated himself with people who slander Muslims and Muslim scholars, lost his temper, retracted statements made in fits of anger and then returned to those statements (presumably when he’s lost control again). He’s been corrected publicly regarding public mistakes and has been advised privately. And he’s lost the respect of many of the good people who once respected him.”

The article has since been removed by the blogger but has these comments on a new post which echo the sentiments expressed in the original:

I understand that it is often better to abstain from these polemics. And I want to be clear that my issue here is not that people disagree with a legal ruling or a theological position. There are a number of scholars who disagree with istighatha, tawassul etc. and who I respect greatly and believe are true scholars.

Sh. Yasir Qadhi is the one name that comes to mind and there are numerous others, including many of the Ulema of Deoband.

An advanced student of knowledge is free to add his voice to ages old debates as much as he wants. It’s unlikely that anything new will be said, but it’s his time to do with as he wishes.

The problem, rather, is that a new crop of internet gossipers seem to have a personal grudge against Sheikh Nuh (and a few others) which comes up from time to time on their blogs and in emails which they send out to different lists and individuals. I’ve addressed this issue with at least three of them privately, and when that failed, I have tried to hint at it in public comments, again to no avail.

Now, Im no one give advice, but at some point, someone has to be willing to say that this is ridiculous, unseemly behavior and needs to stop.

So, to all those who’ve been involved in this latest round of web-beef- You think Sunnipath are like Christians? You really don’t like Sh. Nuh?

Alhamdulillah. You’ve said it (repeatedly). Drop it already and stick to what works.

These posts will be gone soon. I pray the underlying problems will too.

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11 thoughts on “Mufti, Know Thyself – a response to Suhaib Webb”

  1. Wa Salam,

    “And he?s lost the respect of many of the good people who once respected him.?

    Very true!

  2. Shaykh SDW, should be given the benefit of the doubt and sidi Masud, you need to remove this post as well. Its going to encourage more fitnah and hate.

    Please, remove it. We need to keep our community together. Posting this and giving it attention will cause us more harm than good.

    So please, sidi, give your brother husnud-dhan.

  3. Asalamu Alaikum

    He is human, as we all are. What he said in his post was true, and if he is warning others against something its perfectly fine.

  4. It seems that Mr. Webb is spending time taking advise from the fitna blogs namely salafi burn out and umar lee. The disgusting allegations on those websites say it all, they have also descended into abuse of people. Someone went on the comments section on those blogs and made up a lie, it was taken up as fact by the blogger and then spread to the second blog.
    There appears to be a coordinated campaign with these two fitna blogs and the latest addition being Mr. Webbs blog.
    The later being the most shocking, since the author is studying at an Islamic University of historical repute and has made very public statements about Muslim Unity and the pitness of Muslims who attack unity.
    It seems the author of the blog and those lectures are two different people.
    Its one thing for bloggers to spew nonsense its another for such a person, who only adds fuel to the fire.
    Whats so amazing is that it seems glaringly obvious he hasnt bothered to check the facts.

  5. Here is a defense of Imam Suhaib from the vitriol of Mas’ud Khan:

    The above article is erroneous and poorly written, here is my email to the person who sent the link:

    As-salamu ‘alaykum

    Your comment on my blog post is confused. You seem to be mixing up what I have written with what Ilyas Lahoz (of Andalus Blog) and one or two other people. Just the first bit is mine “It’s sad to see” upto “squabbles and arguments.” It quite clearly says “From Andalus Blog”.

    Additionally, you are erroneously attributing to me comments that are not mine, You also accused me of saying that “Imam Suhaib Webb just goes on blog rants and looks for squabbles and argument” again you are falsely attributing this to me. I never said this, I will say that he does get caught up in them when he shouldn’t.

    Also, the comment you quote from the Andalus blog is by a “Masood” (not me) in fact this is also incorrect since he just posted a video only with the comment “LOL”, the comment you refer to is by “student” and not me. You refer to me as “the Opponent” when it is clear from my blog post that I am quoting from the Andalus Blog which is run by Ilyas Lahoz and not me. So my brother, perhaps you should be a bit more meticulous in your research before throwing accusations. I always refer to Imam Suhaib with his title. I disagree with him and his opinions and positions on the deen but I try and remain as respectful of him as a person as best I can. When I deal with sectarian issues it is usually about the issues and not the person, I have no hatred for anyone. Perhaps your own hatred is veiling you.

    Please revise your PDF accordingly, in fact judging by the poor research, erroneous assumptions and lack of attention to detail, I suggest you take a bit more time and care in what you say and write.

    May Allah forgive our mistakes and accept from us what is good, may He keep us on the Truth.


    Mas’ud Ahmed Khan

  6. I participate in Imam Suhaib’s weekly online class in which he gives a discourse on Imam al-Muhasibi’s Risala al-Mustarshideen. What could be considered the world’s first “self-improvement” guidebook.

    What becomes clear when Imam Suhaib is teaching, is that he is at the same time learning from the lessons he is teaching. He speaks candidly and openly during his classes, and you see his true inner character, and for that I love him for the sake of Allah, because then I and his other students get that extra depth when he teaches us, that our teacher is one his living his lessons.

    We all make mistakes and sins, rather than making blog posts about them we should cover them up and ask forgiveness for them. Anytime Imam Suhaib has slipped he has always gone back, deleted the post/comments, made apologies and attempted to make right. We cannot say that all the scholars out in the world are ready to admit their mistakes everytime.

    May Allah guide all of us.

    I don’t doubt what you say about Imam Suhaib, but no one is uncovering his faults, what is being discussed is readily deducible and observable from him through his writings on the internet. If Imam Suhaib or those who follow him don’t want responses to what he writes then he should not write. If Imam Suhaib writes something that clearly is not acceptable or is clearly incorrect, or clearly he has misunderstood, then those who are in a position to respond have every right to respond. Fact is, if Imam Suhaib avoided controversy we wouldn’t be having this discussion right now and it is not the first time this has happened. May Allah protect Imam Suhaib and increase him in his learning, understanding and iman and may Allah give him the hikma to be a man for all the people.

  7. Assalamu alaikum
    Junaid>With all due to respect, I haven’t posted anything on there except the truth about my experience, whether people want to believe that or not is their problem. If people want to ignore the truth, even though evidence is right there in their face, that’s their problem, and if people want to help those people out, that’s better than to ignore and pretend it does not exist.
    You may think you know it’s not true, yet you were not there to say. And I really worry about the state of our Ummah, if our own people are denying the truth.
    Allahu Alim

  8. Masood Ahmad Khan —

    Nice try. I did not misquote you. I was very much aware that you did not write it, but you did post it and thereby endorse it. Never did I say “Masood Khan wrote” but rather “the opponent writes”, which refers to either you or the person you copied/pasted from al-andalus blog.

    The only thing that I did not properly attribute was the quote from the comments, which said “masood” and I had figured it was you. For that, I apologize, but it is largely inconsequential.

    You are an ill-mannered man. Don’t hide behind the fact that you didn’t write it. You posted it, promoted it, and propagated it.

    Fi Aman Allah

    as-salamu ‘alaykum

    Whatever. The fact of the matter is that the only ill manners and vitriol on display have been from you, that piece is slapdash and shoddy and poorly structured. Whether I endorse the original blog post or not, the fact remains it was not me who wrote the words you are objecting to and your bile should be directed elsewhere, you should be more careful (I agree with the gist of what was written by Ilyas). I have always maintained respect for Imam Suhaib despite his behaviour towards Shaykh Nuh and others but time and again over the last two or so years he has written stuff in anger, got it out into the public domain and then sheepishly retracted it. It is a shame to see this from a student of knowledge such as himself and is becoming almost a regular occurrence. There is no doubt that Imam Suhaib is someone who can benefit if only he remained focused on issues that are common to all Muslims and avoid controversy.

    Anyway, may Allah forgive us and guide us.


    Mas’ud (not Masood)

  9. Notice very clearly that when I said “opponent”, it was not you, but just what you posted and linked to. When it was you, then I took your name. I don’t know who the Al-Andalus blog guy is so I focused on you.

    You say “I don’t know who the Al-Andalus blog guy is” but you don’t know me either. The Shariah does not permit you to focus on a secondary person instead of the person who made the actual comments, whether the secondary person agrees with the comments or not.

  10. assalamu alaikum

    No doubt the article is poorly written and is in some senses dishonest. It ignores the fact that major scholars from Sunni Islam allowed istigatha by calling on the Prophet *directly*. This is why Imam Ramili, the great Shafi`i, explicitly allowed the act of istigatha in his collection of legal verdicts. The interesting thing about his verdict is that the question explicitly asked about the “actions of the laypeople” in calling out to such people.

    To the list one can add al-Haytami, al-Kawthari, Ibn al-Hajj, al-Subki, and many others. The reply to the verdicts of such individuals is either outright rejection or convenient redefining of the term istigatha.

    The tactic of allowing the readers to assume that the opinion of Sunnipath are somehow baseless and arise out of a vacuum is common, yet dishonest. It is dishonest because it deceives the reader into thinking that these scholars have based their verdicts on nothing, and that no scholarly precedence exists for this practice. The truth is the complete opposite. It also, conveniently, almost always fails to address the issue from a holistic perspective encompassing theology, fiqh, and tasawwuf, the latter being important as it is the domain of the ruh and its capacities in the realm of possibilities.

    Either way, the minute individuals who reject such a practice express “agreement” on it is the minute it is demonstrable that they have no solid reading in the issue. This is true for Mufti Desai as much as it is for Shaykh Dido – defined by Husain Kadodia as a “moderate Salafi”. Even Hajji Imdadullah, the great Sufi leader of the Deobandis, allowed doing the litany, “Ya `Abd al-Qadir give us something for Allah” repeatedly, if one intended by it intercession and blessings.

    wallahu a`lam
    wa’l salam

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