Noteworthy Speech From Ibn Taymiyyah On The Harms Throughout History in Rebelling Against the Rulers

 الحمد لله رب العالمين، والصلاة والسلام على أشرف الأنبياء والمرسلين نبينا محمد، وعلى آله وصحبه أجمعين. أما بعد


Shaikh ul Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullaah) said:

So in general, Ahul us Sunnah (the people of the Sunnah) expend their efforts in obedience to Allaah and His Messenger in accordance to ability. This is just as Allah The Most High has said:

 {فَاتَّقُوا اللَّهَ مَا اسْتَطَعْتُمْ}

((So fear Allaah as much as you are able)) (At-Taghaabun: 16)


Likewise the Prophet (Sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) said:

((If I command you with an affair, then perform it as much as you are able))[1]


They know that Allaah, The Most High sent Muhammad (Sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) with the harmonious welfare of the servants in means of subsistence as well as for The Hereafter. He ordered enjoining rectification and prohibited corruption, thus if an action contains in it rectification as well as corruption then they give precedence to the favourable of the two. Yet if the rectification of it is more than the corruption of it, then they give precedence of carrying it out. Whilst if the corruption within it is greater than the rectification then they give precedence to its abandonment.

Indeed Allaah, The Most High sent His Messenger (Sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) with the attainment of harmonious welfare as well as its accomplishment. Along with suspension of corruptions and limiting them, accordingly, if a Khaleefah from the Khulafaa comes to rule such as Yazeed and ‘Abdul-Malik and Mansoor and other than them, then either it is said:

That it is obligatory to prevent him from taking power and he must be fought against until other than him is put in place – as is done by those that perceive the sword – then this opinion is corrupt. For the harms of this are greater than their benefits, and scarce are the examples of those that rebelled against a ruler in authority except that they begot from their action an evil greater by far than any good they produced. Such as the like of those that rebelled against Yazeed in Al-Madeenah, and the like of Ibn Al-Ash’ath who rebelled against ‘Abdul-Maalik in ‘Iraq and the likes of these.[2]

The goal of such a people is either to become dominated or to dominate, and then their dominance disappears – in consequence they have no real outcome.

For ‘Abdullaah bin ‘Ali and Aboo Muslim were two individuals who committed killings in great numbers, and both of them were killed by Aboo Ja’far Al-Mansoor.

As for the people of Al-Harrah and Ibn Al-Ash’ath and Ibn Al-Mahlab and other than them, then they were defeated as were their associates. Therefore they never instituted religion nor did they leave behind anything of worldly effect – and Allaah, The Most High does not command with a command through which the harmonious welfare of the religion and worldliness are not attained.

Al-Hasan Al-Basree used to say: ‘Indeed Al-Hajjaaj is a punishment from Allaah, so do not attempt to repel the punishment of Allaah with your hands. However, upon you be humbleness and imploring (i.e. supplication), for indeed Allaah The Most High says:

 {وَلَقَدْ أَخَذْنَاهُم بِالْعَذَابِ فَمَا اسْتَكَانُوا لِرَبِّهِمْ وَمَا يَتَضَرَّعُونَ}

((And indeed We seized them with punishment, but they did not humble themselves to their Lord, nor did they invoke [Allaah]))’ (Al-Mu’minoon: 76)


The virtuous of the Muslims used to prohibit rebellions and killing at times of fitnah (tribulation). Just as ‘Abdullaah bin ‘Umar and Sa’eed bin Al-Mussayyib and ‘Ali bin Al-Hussain and other than them used to prohibit the masses of Al-Harrah from rebelling against Yazeed. Just as Al-Hasan Al-Basree and Mujaahid and other than them would prohibit rebellion in the fitnah of Ibn Al-Ash’ath. For this reason the affair of the people of the Sunnah prevailed upon abandoning fighting in times of fitnah due to the authentic ahaadeeth which are established from the Prophet (Sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) and they would cite this in their beliefs and command with exercising patience upon the tyranny of the rulers and to abandon fighting them. Even though a great number of the people of religion and knowledge fought during times of tribulation.

For whosoever is attentive to the authentically established ahaadeeth of the Prophet (Sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam), in this aspect, and takes into consideration the view point of those possessing insight, then he comes to know that what the Prophetic texts present is the best ordinance.

All of this is from that which makes clear that what the Prophet (Sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) commanded by way of patience upon the tyranny of the rulers and to refrain from fighting and rebelling against them is the most correct and beneficial of affairs for the servants by means of their subsistence as well as for The Hereafter. In addition, whosoever contradicts that – whether deliberately or mistakenly will not achieve by his action any rectitude, rather it attains corruption and it is due to this that the Prophet (Sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) bestowed praise upon Al-Hasan with his statement:

((Indeed this son of mine is noble, and Allaah will bring about reconciliation by way of him between two mighty groups of the Muslims))[3]


He did not praise anyone else, not in fighting during fitnah (in times of tribulation) and nor in rebelling against the rulers and nor in withdrawing ones hand from obedience, and not in separating from the Jamaa’ah (the main body of the Muslims).[4]


(Abridged from: Minhaaj us-Sunnah An-Nabawiyyah vol 4 p.527-531)


[1] Part of a hadeeth reported by Al-Bukhaaree (no.7288). It is also reported by Muslim (no.3244) despite there being a difference in the overall wording of the hadeeth, this portion of the hadeeth is similar in wording to that which is found in Al-Bukhaaree.

[2] Al-‘Allaamah ‘Abdur-Rahmaan Al-Mu’allimee (rahimahullaah) said: “The Muslims have indeed tried their hand at rebellions – in consequence they saw nothing from it except evil. The people rebelled against ‘Uthmaan seeing that they desired the truth, then the people of Al-Jamal set out, their heads and notables saw that they were seeking the truth. Consequently the fruits of that after much ado – was the subsequent cessation of the Khilaafah An-Nubuwwah; and so Ummayad administration was established. Then Al-Hussain bin ‘Ali was compelled into that which he was coerced to, thus transpired that tragedy. Then the people of Al-Madeenah rose-up  and thus occurred Al-Harrah, then the reciters rose-up along with Ibn Al-Ash‘ath – then what happened?!” (See: At-Tankeel vol 1 p.94)

[3] Reported by Al-Bukhaaree (no.2704) and Aboo Dawood (no.4662) and others. The wording as is found in Al-Bukhaaree is:

((Indeed this son of mine is noble, and perhaps Allaah will bring about reconciliation by way of him between two mighty groups of the Muslims))


[4] Point of benefit: Shaikh ul Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah mentioned as is found in Majmu’ Fatawa vol 4 p.467: “So the Prophet (Sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) made the commendation upon his son Al-Hasan as well as praising him over the fact that Allaah, The Most High reconciled by way of him two mighty groups from the Muslims. That was when he surrendered the affair to Mu’aawiyah; and both of them had traversed to the other with mighty armies. Since the Prophet (Sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) praised Al-Hasan for reconciliation and the abandonment of fighting; this is proof that the reconciliation between those two groups was more beloved to Allaah, The Most High than his action. It is proof also that fighting/killing is not what he was commanded with ; and had Mu’aawiyah been a disbeliever; then the Rulership could not have been given to a disbeliever as well the subsequent surrender of authority to him having been from that which Allaah and His Messenger love. Rather the hadeeth is proof that Mu’aawiyah and his companions were believers, just as Al-Hasan and his companions were believers; and that which Al-Hasan carried out was praiseworthy with Allaah, The Most High – beloved and pleasing to Him as well as to His Messenger.”

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