Role Of Common Muslims When There Is Difference In Opinions Of Scholar

by Allama Hafiz Ibtisam Elahi Zaheer

Islam is the religion chosen by Allah swt and it has been mentioned in Holy book of Allah swt :

And whoever seeks a religion other than Islâm, it will never be accepted of him, and in the Hereafter he will be one of the losers. (Aali Imran 3:85) .

Similarly it has been also mentioned in Holy Quran :

This day, I have perfected your religion for you, completed My Favour upon you, and have chosen for you Islâm as your religion. But as for him who is forced by severe hunger, with no inclination to sin (such can eat these above-mentioned meats), then surely, Allâh is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. (Al-Ma'idah 5:3)

So it is obvious that deen was completed during time period of Holy prophet salal laho aliehi wasalam and no one after him has got authority to add or subtract any thing in deen .The duty of Ulemas is to preach deen of Allah swt without adding and subtracting any thing to it.Similarly ulemas are not allowed to conceal any thing found in Quran and sunnah and who soever does so is indeed accountable before Allah swt.Allah swt has issued serious warning against those who conceal the truth after what has been revealed in Holy Quran Allah says:

Verily, those who conceal the clear proofs, evidences and the guidance, which We have sent down, after We have made it clear for the people in the Book, they are the ones cursed by Allâh and cursed by the cursers. (Al-Baqarah 2:159)

So we cannot even think that any righteous or pious scholar had ever tried to twist deen intentionally .All the great scholars were stars of knowledge and wisdom and we should consult them when we need guidance .Allah swt says:

So ask the people of the Reminder if you do not know. (Al-Anbiya 21:7)

Although scholars of Islam are people of high status but we have to believe that no one is perfect and innocent after Rasool salal laho aliehi wasalam .There are chances of forgetfulness or unintentional mistake.So Muslims should not be prejudiced and should ready to resolve conflicts in light of sayings of Allah swt and His Rasool sala laho aliehi wasalam.Allah swt has clearly stated in Holy Quran:

If you differ in anything amongst yourselves, refer it to Allâh and His Messenger (SAW), if you believe in Allâh and in the Last Day. That is better and more suitable for final determination. (An-Nisa 4:59)

Allah swt has also clearly mentioned in Holy Quran that Rasool salal laho aliehi wasalam is final authority in matters of disputes and conflicts.Allah swt says:

But no, by your Lord, they can have no Faith, until they make you (O Muhammad SAW) judge in all disputes between them, and find in themselves no resistance against your decisions, and accept (them) with full submission. (An-Nisa 4:65)

So it is very much clear from above discussion that the real Muslim is the one who follows Quran and sunnah without any condition and tampering.A Muslim knows that real authority in matters of deen is the saying and act of Rasool salal laho aliehi wasalam.He respects all ulemas but never takes any one as innocent.He is ready to accept or reject sayings of Ulemas in light of Quran and Sunnah.Moreover it is not necessary that opinion of every alim on every issue is right.One can be right on some issues and similarly he can be wrong on some other issues.It is our duty that when ever we listen to the saying of an alim or come across any extract written by him we should check daleel /evidence of that alim quoted by him in favour of his opinion.The real daleel/evidence in matters related to deen is either verse from book of Allah or saying of Rasool salal laho aliehi wasalam. If his daleel(proof/evidence) is valid we should accept his sayings but if his daleel(evidence /proof) is weak than we should prefer saying of some one who is having authentic daleel(evidence/proof) from Quran and Sunnah.Personality of any scholar is not degraded if some of his opinions are weak .His contributions must be acknowledged but sayings supported by evidence from Quran and sunnah of Rasool salal laho aliehi wasalam should be given preference in every matter related to deen. May Allah guide us to right path ameen