Al-Albaani: Who did you say is with you? I can hear him, tafaddal, … [doing dhikr] Lā ilāha illallāh, Lā ilāha illallāh …
Questioner: I was talking about how the problem in what a person is told is actually from the people telling him about it [a phrase taken from a line of poetry showing how people can relay things contrary to reality], so we’d heard about many scholars, many students of knowledge, but when we met them, and sat with them, they turned out to be less than what we’d heard—except for you, O Shaikh.
Al-Albaani: [trying to deny what he’s saying] ʿAfwan …
Questioner: When we met you, and Allaah is a witness to what I am saying …
Al-Albaani:Allaahu Akbar …
Questioner: … you turned out to be way above what we expected, and …
Al-Albaani: O Allaah forgive what they don’t know about me!
Questioner: … and that is Allaah’s Grace on you.
Al-Albaani: I swear an oath that you are mistaken!
Questioner:Allāhul-Mustaʿān. You taught us to say, O Shaikh, ‘O Allaah make me …
Questioner: … better than what they think of me, and forgive what they don’t know about me.’
Al-Albaani: … and forgive what they don’t know about me. That is what I always say. Lā ḥawla wa lā quwwata illā billāh. You know some of the narrations from some of the Salaf, maybe you know them better than me, but maybe I can relate the meaning to you—if you knew what I was really like you wouldn’t go along with me, Allāhul-Mustaʿān, Allāhul-Mustaʿān.
Al-Albaani: … so as you saw with me the reality is that the entire ḥadīth [we were talking about] is knowledge, from the start to the end, it is all fiqh, and this is what is meant by his ﷺ well-known saying, “Whoever Allaah wishes to grant good, He gives him understanding of the religion.” Understanding in the religion is understanding Allaah’s Book and His Messenger’s Sunnahﷺ. So he ﷺ said to Muʿāwiyah, “Bring her,” so when she came he ﷺ asked her, “Where is Allaah?”
Allaah’s Messenger ﷺ is the one who established this Sunnah for us to ask, “Where is Allaah?” We did not innovate this question of our own accord, we are following Allaah’s Messenger ﷺ when we ask someone, “Where is Allaah?”
“So the slave-girl replied, ‘Above the Heavens.’”
“Where is Allaah?” the Messenger of Allaah ﷺ is the questioner.
“Where is Allaah?” She replied, “Above the Heavens.” He ﷺ said to her, “Who am I?” She said, “You are Allaah’s Messenger.” So then he ﷺ said to her owner, “Free her for she is a believer,” “Free her for she is a believer.”
There ends the ḥadīth of Muʿāwiyah ibn al-Ḥakam as-Sulamī which the Imāms, the Imāms of ḥadīth reported: Imām Muslim in his Ṣaḥīḥ, Imām Mālik in his Muwaṭṭaʾ, Imām Aḥmad in his Musnad, Imām Abū Dāwūd, his student, in his Sunan—count whichever books of the Sunnah you want, all of them reported this story, this authentic ḥadīth, and Imām ash-Shāfiʿī may Allaah be pleased with him used it as proof as did others and all the Ummah accepted it, some rulings were derived from it which we alluded to earlier when commenting on this authentic ḥadīth …
Al-Albaani: I wanted to remind you of a ḥadīth in connection to what you said but then my mind went to another one connected to what my friend here said …
He ﷺ said, “… if you did not sin, Allaah would replace you with people who would sin and they would seek forgiveness from Allaah and He would forgive them,” what does this ḥadīth mean?
Its meaning is that Allaah the Mighty and Majestic said in the Noble Quraan that He created mankind in the best form, He didn’t make man like an infallible angel, “… who disobey Him not and do whatever Allaah has commanded them,” He made him a human being who has intellect, a soul, desires and volition, so he lives with these characteristics which Allaah gave him so that he can obey Allaah the Mighty and Majestic, not in an infallible manner, because there is no infallibility according to the hadith—yaʿnī, our Lord doesn’t intend for us to be infallible, and there is no-one who can repel His Decree and Will—but He wants them to repent when they sin, “… if you did not sin, Allaah would replace you with people who would sin and they would seek forgiveness from Allaah and He would forgive them.”
And naturally this hadith is not an encouragement to commit sins inasmuch as it is an encouragement to seek forgiveness when one does.
Questioner: Does this include all sins?
Al-Albaani: What’s that?
Questioner: Does this include all sins or just minor lapses?
Al-Albaani: Whatever sin it is, yes.
Questioner: Even the major sins, yaʿni?
Al-Albaani: Whatever sin it is, whatever sin it is. I’ve forgotten the hadith that had occurred to me about what you said, what did you say?
Questioner: Not praying and then committing … [unclear] … better that he prays …
Al-Albaani: Ah, the hadith that I was thinking about was when a man came to the Prophet ﷺ and said, “O Messenger of Allaah, I went in a garden,” yaʿnī an enclosed garden, “and found a woman there and did what a man would do with his wife except intercourse,” so he ﷺ said:
“Did you pray ṣalāh with us?”
He replied, “Yes.”
So he said, “Verily good deeds wipe out the bad.”
For this reason when you say to a man [trying to encourage him] that, “You’re drinking so pray ṣalāh along with it Yaa Akhi, good deeds wipe out the bad,” this is a Legislated method of giving daʿwah, and is not an innovated one as you indicated that some say [earlier].
In relation to this I’ll mention that hadith of the young man who came to the Prophet ﷺ and said, “O Messenger of Allaah, give me permission to fornicate.” So he ﷺ said, “Would you like that for your mother?” The man said, “No …” He said, “Neither would people like it for their mothers. Would you like that for your sister?” The man said, “No,” The Prophet ﷺ said, “Neither would people like it for their sisters.” Then he ﷺ placed his hand on his chest and said, “O Allaah guard his chastity and purify his heart.”
Questioner: Now, should a person supplicate to the Lord of the Worlds to totally protect him from mistakes and slip-ups, yaʿnī, it’s as though it’s not recommended?
Al-Albaani: He, yaʿnī, the hadith in Bukhaari, “And the one who is truly protected is the one who is protected by Allah,” so he does ask [Allaah].
Questioner: This is recommended?
Al-Albaani: Yes … …
Questioner: May Allah reward you with good, by Allaah there’s no doubt that what caused this spiritual state in you was the Mercy of the Lord of the Worlds in that how can this person who does such a huge thing …
Questioner: [and then] one ṣalāh …
Questioner: … and that thing is gone, this is from the Lord of the World’s Mercy on His Slaves, for if not people would despair …