Need for Clarity in the Creed
It was (misleadingly) said in a book ascribed to one of the people on “The Circuit:”
“Within Sunnism, however, the Ash`arites, Maturidites, and ‘Traditionalists’* routinely excluded the Mu`tazilites from the designation Ahl al-Sunnah as a formal concrete theological marker, while neither categorically excommunicating them as unbelievers….”
*By ‘Traditionalists,’ the author means the corporealist/anthropomorphist quasi-Hanbalis. There were people who CLAIMED to be Sunnis following the school of Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, but they were “literalists,” who believed Allah to be some sort of giant object with organs and limbs. (Today, the Wahhabis or Quasi-Salafis promote this doctrine.) Such a belief is blasphemy and beyond the fold of Islam. Nonetheless, the author of this book claims that object worship is valid position amongst the Sunnis. To the contrary, the Sunnis mentioned explicitly that the one who claims that Allah is an object is NOT a Muslim. (After all, the one who prays to any kind of spatial entity would not be praying to Allah, and the one who prays to anything other than Allah CANNOT rightfully be regarded as a Muslim.)
As for the Mu`tazilah, they were a faction that claimed that Allah is not the Creator of everything (and the author is well aware of this deviance in their doctrine and mentions it repeatedly in his book). To believe that there are “Creators” other than Allah is to commit “shirk” (take partners with God). Muslims believe that there is no God–no Creator–other than Allah. Humans do not “create.” We can imagine, and we can manipulate (to a limited extent), but we do not bring things from non-existence into being. Our ability to imagine and our ability to manipulate (and what we imagine and manipulate) are all created by the One and Only Creator, Allah.
The Mu`tazilah were staunch enemies of the Sunnis, and Ahlus-Sunnah repudiated their claims with the Qur’an, Sunnah, and rational proofs and charged anyone who:
–denies that Allah knows everything
–denies that Allah has power over everything
–denies that Allah is the Creator of everything
with blatant blasphemy (kufr). It should be clear that anyone who believes that Allah is ignorant or weak has insulted Allah. And the one who believes that there are “Creators” along with Allah has committed “shirk.” All such beliefs must be deemed as blasphemy (kufr).
This is one of the grave dangers of the “Faux-Traditionalists” (these are people who have a background in Traditional Islamic knowledge, but they tend to be apologists, and they twist and distort matters of Doctrine). From other statements they make, it is clear that they are familiar with what Ahlus-Sunnah says, but the Faux Traditionalists will use confusing and ambiguous statements with their general audiences (audiences that typically are not well-trained in the matters of Sunni `Aqidah and the rules of apostasy). If ambiguity and obfuscation isn’t enough to confuse their audience, then they… then they just simply lie.
One area in particular that they lie about is the matter of takfeer. On the one hand, we have the likes of the so-called “ISIS” (and various other Wahhabi (quasi-Salafi) factions) which indiscriminately makes takfeer on Muslims (i.e., ascribe blasphemy to another person), and on the other hand, we have the Faux-Traditionalists, who pretend that the Sunni scholars did not write extensively about what constitutes blasphemy and how to avoid it.
The Faux Traditionalists do not want to discuss blasphemy/takfeer, because very often, they are guilty of various forms of blasphemy–or they are associating with others on panels and in lectures who are guilty of blatant blasphemy (yet, they remain silent about such blasphemy). To speak about blasphemy would affect their bottom line ($$$), and it does seem that some of them do not discuss the topic of takfeer in an honest and clear manner because their objective is simply to misguide people.
At a time when ignorance of Islam is rife, deviant factions numerous, and powerful opponents of Islam are scheming against Muslims, it would seem (if the Faux Traditionalists were sincere) that the details of Creed and warning against blasphemous factions, ideologies, and misconceptions would be a TOP PRIORITY amongst those who (allegedly) are suppose to be educating the public about Islam. It is evident that clarifying matters of Creed and warning people against the devastating consequences of kufr (in this world and the world beyond) is not an objective of these people. And this should make us all wonder: “What, then, is their ultimate objective?”
For more details on the position of Ahlus-Sunnah and the Mu`tazilah, please see the following: http://mentalpossibility.com/consensus-mutazilah-charged-blasphemy/