The beauty of knowledge is its diverse technicalities whose ocean can never be exhaustively swum by any. And the unchangeable nature of scholarship is its technical diversities which naturally disallow the ordinary mind to have a say. But when issues which are to be pragmatically handled by custodians of knowledge are emotively, shallowly analysed by inexpert fellows, the after-effect is endless chaos which may ultimately degenerate into open enmity and abject ignominy.
Disagreement among the people of knowledge is inevitable. It is unavoidable, neither is it abnormal. It was like that, and it will forever remain as such. If the sahaabah could disagree on certain jurisprudential matters, it can never be a big deal, or an aberration that our present-day scholars are of diverse opinions on matters of the Deen. The salaf (their forebears) were like that, too.
Scholars may disagree on religious issues, they do not have problem with each other’s personalities. That is why they don’t do name-calling except on rare, peculiar occasions. They rather tackle issues based on convictions.
But what I see is that enthusiasts do compound issues for scholars. They tend to be overridden by emotion. People who are not fit to talk do shout, scream – cacophonously, for that matter, over issues that are beyond their layman minds. The situation is fast growing into a time-bomb. And if care isn’t taken and the omen quickly nipped in the bud, the scholars of sunnah in south-western Nigeria may have each other to unconsciously contend with – courtesy of their emotive students and enthusiasts. May Allah forbid such from rearing its ugly head. Aameeeeen
I think it is high time a meeting of scholars of sunnah was staged. Someone has to take up this task – the task of gathering them under a roof where issues blown out of proportion by the ordinary minds are scholastically, empirically thrashed out. Apparently, the only phenomenon that will play out as remedy at such a meeting will be knowledge – not emotiveness, not mediocrity – as it is lamentably displayed on social media. You never can tell, the scholars with unpopular opinions on certain issues may give up their stance and/or win the hearts of other scholars to their claims. Perhaps they may still not agree, but will be registered that both or all parties are acting on adillah (evidence) from Kitaab wa Sunnah. Such a gathering is sacrosanct at this trying time!
I stand challenged. Those I referred to as scholars of ‘sunnah’ aren’t people who suppress Qur’anic and Sunnatic laws for societal or organisational traditions and conventions. They aren’t those who prefer societal or organisational norms to Qur’anic and Sunnatic injunctions. No matter the high level of their knowledge, such persons, for me, are mere scholars of their societies or organisations, not of Islam. Isn’t it excruciating that a scholar (a supposed custodian of knowledge) does call to subjugating Allah and the Rasul’s laws for the whims and caprices of his society? Allah says:
“It is not for a believing man, neither is it for a believing woman that when Allah and His Messenger have decided a matter that they use their discretion (to decide otherwise). And whoever disobeys Allah and His Messenger has gone far astray.” Q33 V36
May Allah keep preserving our scholars (old and young) on goodness. May He forgive their shortcomings and grant them Jannatul Firdaus for their sacrifices.
SANNI KAY. YUSUF