hamza hanson, a.k.a. hamza yusuf in a speech said that he must 'defend' dante. he later said that by 'defend' he meant, 'explain'. dante is on his recommended reading list for years now. and dante is notorious for his insulting the Nabiy SallAllahu alayhi wa sallam. muhammad danyal, a student of shaykh asrar, the young scholar from UK started the blog adoptingorthdoxy, where he analysed hamza's positions and his political manoeuvres until finally, hamza was forced to retract. instead of being humble, his retraction was more of a tip of the hat without getting off his high horse. hamza's apology can be found here. danyal responded to the insinuations in hamza's post: a just response to an unjust critic. shaykh asrar responded with a statement – bleak house [PDF link].


it was discussed on our forum here. below is my response to hamza's sticks and drones:


fitna is not when an apostate group is legitimised – whether deliberately or in error; fitna is when one points it out.

fitna is not when an obscure blasphemer (obscure in the islamic world at any rate) is raked up and mentioned and 'defended' (whatever meaning he intended; defence as in 'explain' or whatever.) fitna is when young men who care more for principles than sham adab and hypocrisy point out his error.

“To deem a thousand disbelievers Muslim is safer with God than to deem one Muslim a disbeliever.”

and to offend the whole world is safer than siding with a person offending the Habeeb sallAllahu alayhi wa sallam.

while hamza works hard on a pity-generator, he conveniently missed this neutraliser. in addition to other eloquent critical articles. the young scholar is indeed more wiser, upright and knowledgeable than many celebrities today.

instead of humbly saying: i was wrong, i should have done my research – he vents his spleen on 'young men' and lectures them on takfir. and brimming with chutzpah compares his situation with sayyiduna umar raDiyallahu anhu! which in an undertone translates to: 'hey, i am upright and righteous and immensely knowledgeable and all that. but still i have stumbled on a silly thing.' and great people are so humble, y'know. 'everybody is more afqah than me.' if not, what was the purpose of quoting the anecdote?

sayyiduna umar said it in all humility and he did not criticise the lady or lament that she didn't tell him in private or that she should have known that he was the amir who was one of the most knowledgeable companions or the like. he simply acknowledged the error and corrected himself.

if hamzah has retracted from his error, he did not do us any service or a favour. he has cleared his own self from blame (and saved his fanboys embarrasment). i am deeply annoyed by the insinuation that the young scholars from UK are doing this for fame by attacking hamza. abdalqadir (on our forum) pointed out that here husn-zann goes on a hike. hamza's error was unintentional but those who called him out are malcontents and have committed a grave sin deliberately.

there is a saying in an indian regional language that: 'even when the wrestler fell down, he stood up pointing that his moustache was not soiled'.

hamza so poignantly says that he is not a perennialist. but he is on the board of perennialist publishing house fons vitae and hobnobs with perennialists, praising them, writing forewords etc. if he had an ounce of gheerah (the same thing arabs stole it from our language) he would withdraw from it and announce his bara'ah from it. actually, if i remember well, that is where i think people began to dig more on hamzah and that is when i began considering him a pariah (and i assume others among our friends did).

fame is not difficult to achieve in our times. all you need is know how to talk – facts be damned. it is not knowledge that matters, just speech. just as the master SallAllahu alayhi wa sallam foretold about our times: 'many speechmakers and fewer scholars'. he sallAllahu alayhi wa sallam foretold about talking-heads: "people who will 'eat' with their tongues and cattle eat with their tongues" that is, they make their tongues – or speech – a source of their livelihood.

'fitna is sleeping..' indeed, it was sleeping until dante was invoked. typical american amnesia. they howl that the world is against them – but don't want to address american meddling in other people's businesses. why would the young man criticise him if hamza hadn't bothered about dante or qadianis in the first place?

if qaDi iyaD (remember that he was a maliki) was among us today, the fanboys would probably howl at him as a fitna-monger and hamza would probably pen a fallacy-laced post sneering at the provincial qaDi and teach him the basics of takfir.

the sixth possibility: when someone recounts [the blasphemy] narrating from someone and repeats it as another person's speech. in this case, we shall examine the manner in which it was repeated [Hikayah] and context of his recounting. accordingly the ruling differs and is in four categories: obligatory, preferred, disliked and prohibited [wajib, nadb, karahah and taHrim]

if he narates this as testimony [shahadah] and to identify the utterer so as to refute him and to make it known that such a person has blasphemed and to make people abhor [hence keep away] from such a saying [or the person who utters] and to criticise it, then it is necessary to do so and a person doing so is commendable. regardless of where the person mentions it: in a book [or writing] or in a gathering in the course of refuting and repudiating such an utterer and informing about the ruling [futya] that entails such blasphemy. this is obligatory.

what shaykh asrar and shaykh danyal were doing is the above. they were warning muslims against dante, and hamza was collateral damage. it was his choice. he chose to stand in the firing line. "i am sorry, i was only trying to explain you that this guy who is firing at you has only rubber bullets, i think he does not want to kill you; i think he has a quarrel with his wife and that is why he is shooting at you." it is nonsense man. mind your business, and if you stand in the middle you get shot – your admiration of the guy's ornate holster won't help you. "you know i didn't like his bullets. only his holster.."

i am a nobody, and my opinion does not amount to anything; but still, i commend both shaykh asrar and shaykh danyal for their actions and may Allah ta'ala reward them for their zeal; may He increase them in knowledge and steadfastness.

as for what hamza did, qaDi iyaD explains other reasons where it is permissible to narrate blasphemies; thereafter he says:

except these two objectives, i do not see any other reason for narrating such things. it is not permissible to rake things concerning the honour of RasulAllah sallAllahu alayhi wa sallam and to rinse one's mouth with obscene mentions of RasulAllah SallAllahu alayhi wa sallam – neither for the person who mentions, nor who repeats it – it is not permissible for either of them to utter it except for a valid sharayi reason.

i ask, what valid sharayi reason did hanson have to mention dante except to hint at his own knowledge of teh 'ahhrts'? a million la'anat on such filthy arts and fie on the wretch who mentions dante with any consideration.

qaDi iyaD continues about the impermissibility of mentioning such words and in the course of refutation and says:

even though imam ahmed repudiated approach of mentioning such things, he himself did it when he refuted the jahamis and those who claimed that Qur'an was created. these are examples where such narration is permissible. other than these reasons, the mention or narration of such things which are blasphemies, insults and derogatory to his exalted station by way of stories and casual chatting [asmar] or just to be novel or eccentric or for gossip, between useless and useful [ghath wa'l samin] and jokes and mirth and tasteless and bizzare blathering and pointless arguments or idle talk – then in all such cases, it is prohibited to mention such blasphemies. and some cases are severe and worse than others.

a man came to imam malik and said: 'what do you say about a person who says qur'an is created [makhluq]. malik replied: 'this person is a kafir, execute him' the person [panicked and] said: i am quoting someone. imam malik said: 'but we have heard it from you.'

qaDi iyaD, may Allah ta'ala shower him with abundant blessings, was prescient when he said this, raHimahullah:

malik said so only to reproach the person and to harshly reprimand him, because that person was not executed.

if such a narrator [of blasphemies] is accused of fabricating such quotes and attributing it to others; or such is his habit or it is demonstrable that he says it in an approving tone, or is enthusiastic about it or trivialises it or [is eager] to memorise such things or seek out such things and recite poems which mock or insult the master SallAllahu alayhi wa sallam – in all such cases, this person takes the ruling of the blasphemer himself and his excuse that he is narrating from others will not benefit him. this person shall be put to the sword immediately and hastily dispatched to the pits of fire [ummuhu hawiyah].

abu ubayd ibn sallaam said about memorising a part of the verse which mocked the Prophet sallAllahu alayhi wa sallam and he said: 'it is kufr'.

those who wrote about ijma'a [unanimously agreed things among muslims] said that there is an ijmaa'a among muslims that it is Haram to narrate/quote things that mock the Prophet sallAllahu alayhi wa sallam or to write it or to READ IT or to leave it without erasing it* when chanced upon such writings.

may Allah ta'ala have mercy upon our elders, the pious righteous folk who were guarded and extremely careful about their religion that they dropped such things from annals and records of battles and biographies and abstained from narrating such things except very meagre and that too which is not abominable or disgusting.


i hope hamza can sleep soundly with the knowledge that thousands of people have now heard of dante because of him.

if i had more time, i would have attempted to satiate the thirst of one of his admirers who lamented that the hadith/quotes were not contexualised and demonstrated the rakakat of hamza's post. i still may…

wa billahi't tawfiq.
Allah ta'ala knows best.