The Yemeni Youth: Okay, O Shaikh, there is an issue, a matter, which many of the youth fall into, especially those who go to Afghanistan, they say, for example, [if] you say to them that this person fell into a dangerous affair and you clarify [the matter] for them or [you tell them that] such and such a Shaikh spoke about this, he will say to you that that person/Shaikh has not been there and has not experienced the reality there, i.e., he has not been there. I say to him that Shaikh al-Albaani says such and such, [but] it is as though they assume that a person should be there, we said to them that people come to the Shaikhs and ask them questions and the Shaikhs give them answers, so some advice for these people, O Shaikh, because this understanding has become …
Al-Albaani Cutting Him Off and Addressing Those Around Him Concerning The Yemeni Youth: Relieve me of him! [i.e., ‘Get him off my back.’]
Interjector: I say, it was not fitting that I speak on behalf of the Shaikh but I advise our brother and all of the brothers … and I ask the brother [i.e., the Yemeni Youth] this question: how have you come to know the truth from falsehood? A mistake from that which is correct? Is it not through knowledge? Is it not through beautiful preaching?
So the best way for these people and you is that you lead them towards seeking knowledge through which Allaah the Mighty and Majestic will guide their steps. And such statements which you are requesting our noble Shaikh to make do not have the effect which knowledge, laying down principles and establishing foundations [of knowledge] have.
So you should explain the principle and establish the foundation that the truth is not connected to men, that the truth is not connected to place, that the truth is not connected to time.
As for those arguments and debates which go on between the brothers and Al-Albaani … [so and so] is good, not good, Sayyid Qutb is a kaafir, not a kaafir, and the same about so and so–there is no end to this whatsoever.
So the Shaikh’s statements … he will tell you to encourage them to seek knowledge, to call them with wisdom and beautiful preaching, not to create enmity between yourself and them.
If they were Jews, in the path of da’wah not jihaad … indeed, Allaah the Mighty and Majestic made it a condition upon us when calling the People of the Book [to Islaam] that it should be done with that which is best, “And do not argue with the People of the Scripture except in a way that is best …” [Ankabut 29:46] So what do you think the case is with your brothers, Muslims, but are those who have deviated, strayed, are mistaken and so on?
So the Shaikh’s answer is that you encourage them to seek knowledge and that you establish a brotherly, knowledge-based, connection between yourself and them so that they will become firm like you in recognizing the truth. And all of you are doing well, and we are with you in calling to Allaah.
Al-Albaani: May Allaah accept your advice from you.
Interjector: Wa iyyaak.
But the Shaikh’s praise or his compliments, or the praise or compliments of any scholar … like the Shaikh of Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah did concerning the Ash’aris indeed the Mu’tazilah … and if we praise al-Ma’moon for his jihaad and his conquering lands for the Muslims, [all of this] does not mean nor does it necessitate that we support their madhhabs, and at the same time it does not mean that criticizing, saying that so and so made a mistake in this issue and that issue, that we declare him to be misguided.
So these extremities, subhaanallaah, how the Muslims have been tried, as the Shaikh of Islaam said, ‘There is no statement except that it has two extremities and a middle way.’
Shouldn’t your disputes about a man be about seeking knowledge and be a scholarly discussion? Maybe Allaah, subhanahu wa ta’ala, will guide him.
And when the Shaikh encourages one to read the books of Zaid or Amr or Sayyid Qutb … he is only encouraging you to seek knowledge which is based upon the Book and Sunnah and the statements of the Salaf as-Saalih, and this encouragement is not … and I will enter this discussion myself [after the Shaikh’s permission and say], sometimes, like [earlier] a noble brother came to me and asked me the self-same questions [that you put to Shaikh al-Albaani] and with Allaah’s Bounty and His Decree what I said was the same as you [i.e., al-Albaani] before I knew what you said, and maybe it was the same almost word for word, and I directed this kind of advice to him: that he distance himself from such issues.
The point is when we say, or when the Shaikh, may Allaah reward him with good, says that these statements in [Qutb’s book] Milestones are good, it does not mean that he has equated Shaikh Qutb to Ibn Kathir, he makes clear that the man [i.e., Qutb] is not a scholar–this is a point we must grasp, and nor does it mean that when he makes one, two, three mistakes that we do not mention a single good deed of his as our Shaikh reminded us when he mentioned that Allaah the Mighty and Majestic praised the Christians in more than one place, “And among the People of the Scripture is he who, if you entrust him with a great amount [of wealth], he will return it to you.” [Aali-Imraan 3:75], so this is not unequivocal/to be taken absolutely.
And what is correct and the truth is that the brothers should not dedicate themselves to books which do not provide knowledge, [books] which they refer to as cultural/educational books, rather it is a must for them to go back to the books which lay down principles from the Book and the Sunnah of the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم and their explanations and the books of those scholars who laid down principles, scholars like the Shaikh of Islaam and his students and the books of Shaatibi and others.
Al-Albaani: You reminded me of …