Shaykh Dr. Youssef al Qaradawi
Channel: Yasir Qadhi
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The Life, Legacy, and Thought
Episode Transcript ©
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Today, we have a topic I think of extreme relevance and importance. In light of the fact that yesterday we lost someone who is arguably the most iconic scholar of not just our era, but frankly of our century, somebody whose lifespan literally spent an entire Hijiri century 100 years he was beginning is 100 year history years 96 Gregorian years. And of course, the scholar is none other than Cher Halima Yusuf al Qaradawi. And he was without a doubt, the most beloved scholar to the largest group of the OMA, it is factually correct to state factually correct a state that no one of our era rivaled his popularity and respect. And yet still, as with all such figures, he was also the
subject of controversy and even rejection by some segments of the OMA. So in today's lecture, I will insha Allah to either try my best to be analytical and factual, I will try my best to summarize the positive and what others claim is the negative and contextualize that and summarize the key points not just of his biography, but of his legacy, what did he really try to do? How and why did he rise to such popularity and fame? And of course, in the process as well, what did he do that irritated so many large groups of people as well, such that he was banned from many countries, he was on the quote unquote, terrorist list of not just our country, but even some Muslim countries and whatnot.
So today's lecture, inshallah hope to summarize in 45 minutes or so, as much as possible, but I would also like to state for the record, you should be aware, even, I'm going to try to be neutral, I'm going to try to be historical, you should be aware that I am biased, of course, I'm biased, we're all biased, and I have my own position towards this person. And I have said many times, many times, and I'm not making a secret of this, that I am somebody who considers myself to be inspired by his writings, and who views him with the utmost respect. And I will be, again, I'm trying to be unbiased, but you must know my biases. Because no matter how unbiased you try to be, still, your
biases are going to be known and shown. So I will confess, and I have no problems in this confession that I view, share Qaradawi to be, if not the Mujaddid of our era, definitely amongst the Mujaddid of our era. And I have been fortunate and blessed to benefit from and be inspired by many of his fatawa. And I quote, a lot of times, I will say, Oh, this is the position of shift Qaradawi meaning it's my opinion, but I'm going to quote Qaradawi and use him to backup my opinion. Many times, if you ask me a question, I will say this, and I'm also somebody who has read many of his books, and I was very blessed and fortunate to have a one on one audience with him a few years ago, where asked
him a series of questions, if we have time. We'll talk a little bit about that as well. So I met him in Doha, and I interacted with him for a few hours. So with that, bias, put aside very clearly, let us begin summarizing his life, his times his activism, his methodology, some of his most significant touch was and some of the controversial photos that raised some some eyebrows and maybe even more than just some eyebrows. Shell crucible for doorway was born in a small village in western Egypt outside of Cairo on September 9 1926 1926. His father passed away when he was two years old. And so his uncle was put in charge of raising him at a very young age, shall fusible Qaradawi was taken to
Cairo with his family, and he was enrolled in as hoodoo University's Primary School Al Azhar University. As you know, the Bastion are one of the main bastions of academic Islam, and it has as well a high school and an intermediate school and a primary school. Not a lot of people know this. It has a primary tutor in high school, shall who was a little boy who was enrolled in the primary and then intermediate and then high school, and he graduated the top of his high school class. Then he went on to do it wasn't called a bachelor's at the time, but the equivalent of a bachelor's degree graduating in 1953. The top of the entire
Higher University. Then he went on to do again it wasn't called that but the equivalent of a diploma and two masters, so a diploma and then two masters. The first master's was in Arabic literature and Adam and the second master's from was from the College of the Quran and Sunnah in 1960. Both of them he was the top of the entire batch of his college. And eventually, he finished a PhD in 1973, with the highest distinctions possible. And his dissertation was about the role of Zika and the contemporary issues of Zika. And this was eventually converted into a two volume book called filled with Zika, which has been translated to English and it remains one of the most scholarly treatises
ever written about Zika, from classical and from a contemporary point of view. So share Yusuf al Qaradawi is an S hurry through and through, you cannot get more as hurry than him from primary all the way to PhD. Along the way, a diploma and two masters at every single level, topping his class or topping the entire university. Even in his high school. By the way, he didn't just talk to the university, he was the second highest in the entire country of Egypt. So in those days, he I think even in other countries, they had the list of all the students of the country taking the high school Shaka Zulu Carlisle became number two in the entire country. And then number one it has heard
throughout his entire time over there throughout these formative years, the 50s and 60s, he himself remarks that he was influenced by a number of people. And these are people that were previous to him or slightly older than him. As for previous to him two people shall crush you through law. And we'll start Hassan Al Banna. As for Chef Rashid Rida, he deserves an entire lecture maybe one day I will give a lecture here or in my home at the library chance that I do. He is a figure that again, I respect and admire immensely, and somebody who has had a profound impact. One can truly say that. Chef Qaradawi is the modern version of Sheikh Rashid Rito 100 years ago, Chef Rashid riba status was
the only and the first global mufti, whether you like him or you don't, factually speaking Shankara Sharia law was a household name across the Muslim world. 100 years ago, there was nobody similar to him in that realm. A lot of people loved him, a lot of people did not like him at all. The same can be said of Chef Qaradawi. And in many ways chef Qaradawi is really the intellectual heir to Sheikh Rashid thriller, again, who started was here the other deserves an entire lecture on his own. For those who know his biography, his story, very, very quickly, shall crashy robot
was somebody who considered himself to be a revivalist. He wanted to revive the Ummah and he publicly said So from an intellectual stagnation to take on the challenges of colonization, the challenges of the collapse of the Ottoman Empire. And he felt that Islamic knowledge was more than just reading classical books. You had to become active in the modern world, engage with the people around you engage with the colonizers, you couldn't just sit in the masjid and do drusen Halaqaat Islam meant more than just this. So chakra see there was a very interesting dynamic figure. Chef Yusuf al Qaradawi did not meet Rashid Rida, even though he was born
12 years before she should do the passed away, but they never met together. But the impact he himself says obviously this is his era. You know the person you know his writings, and he absorbed that ethos that spirit asked for was that Hassan Al Banna Imam Hassan Al Banna, he is the founder of course of the Muslim Brotherhood. Hassan Al Banna directly met Yosef useable Qaradawi as a teenager and use of a promo he was in high school and has ever Nick came to give a lecture in Jeffrey's local Bobby's class. And so he was directly inspired by Imam Hassan Al Banna, and of course has been should be known to all of you. He is the founder of the whiner Muslimeen, or the Muslim Brotherhood
until he was assassinated in 1940 49. By the regime, so has an abunda had a direct impact and a one on one. I mean, not a strong relationship, but they met and they knew each other and he himself was inspired by Hassan Al Banna. As for those who are slightly older than him, two names should be mentioned. The first of them perhaps many of you wouldn't have heard of his name, but he is very famous in the Arab world. His name is the same as the famous scholar of Islam, Allah zali this is exactly Mohammed Al Ghazali. There's two Muhammad Allah Saudis. There was the classical, the one who wrote a Haroldo Medina, the one who lived you know, 900 years ago that others Ali, then you have a
modern contemporary thinker, well known he you have interviews of him many books he wrote, his name is Dr. Mohammed Al Ghazali. So if you say, Imam Al Ghazali, you mean the classical and if you say, Doc
So it looks like Saturday, you mean the modern guy? So, Mohammed Al Ghazali, the thinker, the allium, the chef, was slightly older than
chef Bowie and had an impact on him. And Mohammed Al Ghazali was also the same vicar or the same school as the doula and another person of the same school of Rashid Rudolph, and who lived a very long life and whose name most of you should be aware of is the famous chef an alum of Azhar, Sayed Saba, Sayed Samuel co wrote the famous book, feel kosuna feel kosuna That book for kosuna by say it's so ShareFile called Bowie considers him to be a mentor as well. So this is amongst the modern Malema. As for the classical ulama
it should have called Carla we would quote ignore him quite a lot. And he was influenced by all of the mainstream scholars of Sunni Islam. He was never sectarian minded. So you will find him quoting Imam Al Ghazali and shareholder Islam Ibn Taymiyyah, you will find him not to be sectarian, only one of the strands as advanced students are aware that within Sunni Islam there are multiple strands and generally speaking, but a shoe that law school which has an urban and use of Aqaba was a part of they don't want to exacerbate the tensions within mainstream Sunni Islam. They consider all of these scholars to be scholars to be looked up to. And so you find Shia Hutto. Qaradawi benefiting from the
writings of all of the spectrum of mainstream Islam, and in particular, one of the scholars whom she refused to Cordoba perhaps helped revive interest in is a famous and Lucien scholar by the name of a shout to be Mr. Michel Tibi, Mr. Michel. Toby was from underdose, classical, you know, under Lucien heritage, and the man was shot to be was an expert in a particular field. Some say he was the founder, but that's not quite accurate, but he's definitely one of the ones who popularized the field this field share useful COBOL we utilized it in his field. What is this field? This field is called the field of McCall pseudo Shetty up the goals of the Sharia Imam was shouted at 600 years
ago, 700 years ago, he wrote the most famous encyclopedia and compendium of the goals of the Shetty is called Anwar forgot its six volumes. It is one of the most interesting and out of the box books in which the purpose is not to go over every single law. The purpose is to discuss the psychology of the law, the philosophy of the law, what are the goals of the Sharia? Why did Allah legislate not what is legislated? But what is the goal of legislation? So this is a science that is a very intricate, very deep, you can understand very philosophical science. Few people really master it, and the mama Shelby is considered to be its main figure. And shall Roosevelt called Bowie was a huge
fan of Imam Shafi. And this is reflected in his film that we're going to come to this point, he's utilizing the notion of mocassin of looking at the goals of the Sharia, and not just looking at specific texts out of context. He's looking at the text within the context that we find ourselves in. So these are some of his main figures of inspiration. shokudo Qaradawi, given the political climate of his time, because he was involved in formerly with the Brotherhood, the Muslim Brotherhood in the late 50s and early 60s, there was a huge crackdown against the Huanan Muslimeen by the Egyptian President Gamal Abdul Nasir and Gamal Abdel Nasser imprisoned 1000s Not not hundreds
1000s of Rula literally 1000s of scholars were imprisoned, and even those that were very minor in that time. So at the time use of Aqaba, he is a master student. He's not like a big shot chair, still, he was caught up. And again, if you study that era, this was a repressive tyrant who really had an axe to grind with the religious folks. He really had an issue with religiosity because he realized these were a threat to his regime. So he imprisoned 1000s of Rhoda Ma, you are well aware that he eventually executed say it Otto, and he tortured Xena Bella Sally, you know very vicious and you have the the memoirs of Xena because Ali, which is a must read you should read the memoirs of
Xena because Ali how she describes the torture in those Egyptian prisons. And it was an era of great persecution for religious people use avacado he was caught up and jailed not once three times in the late 50s, early 60s by Gamal Abdel Nasser, and he was imprisoned and in all likelihood, tortured, because that was the default when you go into those prisons, for a total of one and a half years, three different prisons since one and a half years. And he realized, as did many of the scholars there was a mass exodus of Egyptian intelligencia in the late 60s early 70s a mass exodus lots of smart people into
years doctors, lawyers and religious clergy they fled. And this led to many things in different lands, use of Bowie did not flee. He visited author for a visiting job in 1961. And he realized that it is better for him to then permanently leave Egypt because of the persecution and whatnot and to settle in Qatar. And so in 1961, he moved to Qatar and eventually live the rest of his life. They're getting citizenship. The royal family and Qatar, the the founder, the founder of the Qatar dynasty, in the 70s really loved Shere Khan Dawie and basically gifted him a gifted him a citizenship, and Shere Khan Bobby was then instrumental in founding men of many of the key institutions in Qatar, he
founded the Islamic Studies Department in Qatar University, he became the dean of the Shediac College of auto in 1977. And he remained the Dean all the way until he retired 1990. And he continued to live in Qatar until he passed away yesterday 26th of September 2022. And in fact, his his impact on the country of Qatar, you can quite literally say that it has been felt in the country's domestic and foreign policy. And that's all I will say you do your own research and figure that out that his his impact has been so great that the entire country frankly, has a different trajectory than other countries right around that particular country. Let's just leave it at that.
And share Qaddafi would remark on this move from Egypt to Qatar and he would say he said in one of his lectures, nobody can accuse me of hypocrisy, because I was offered to stay in Egypt. Because again, he's an authority through and through, and he's going to make his way if he wanted to, I was offered to stay in Egypt. And if I gave the government what they wanted to hear, I would have risen all the way to the top he would have been, you know, the shareholders have been the Grand Mufti. He was literally at the top of the class. I mean, he had everything. He had all the boxes marked. If you really wanted to become the grand mufti, or the chief of another or the share cub, the machine
called Azhar, he had it all, he gave that all up, and he gave up his residence and family. And he went into his extended family. And he went into self imposed exile for 40 plus years, he wanted to self imposed exile away from his family, because he said, I chose to remain firm to my deen and leave my land in order to speak the truth. So he would say nobody can accuse me of wanting this dunya I gave everything up, and I gave my position up, in order to be able to speak the truth shall have called all we has written now How many books have you written if you read his biography? Some say 120 Some say 170. Some say over 200 facts of the matter is what do you mean by books? If you
mean actual printed books that are more than pamphlets, probably around 120 or so. But if you mean lengthy articles and whatnot, then yes, over 200 So it depends on how you want to define, you know, writings, but his writings span all of the genres of Islam, Fick aqidah Tez Kia, political science history, any field you have Quran Tafseer Sera, any genre you can think of, and you have writings of Scheffler, for Bowie in this, and there's no doubt that his most famous writing is Al Hallelu. While haram will fill Islam, the lawful and the prohibited in Islam, this book was written in the 60s, early 60s, it is one of his first books that he wrote. And this book encapsulates the thought, the
thicker the ideology, the methodology of sheer al Qaradawi. Because this book, no matter what you want to say about it, like it or don't like it, you must recognize that this is a book that is thinking outside of the box, what this book did was it quite literally redid how to teach to a modern audience, there is no book like it in any language and that is why it became and it remains a best seller. Even though 60 years have gone by, it remains a best seller because there is nothing like it to take the laws of physics and the books and to present them in a style and language and manner that a modern mind can comprehend. Get rid of the you know, chapters that are not relevant
and redo them that the rulings are there. They're not going to change the rulings. But how do you teach to a modern mind? I challenge you to go read any classical translated mutton, right and then compare it to halal and haram in Islam. And you will see for yourself what is the message and the methodology of Shia Qaradawi he wants to bring classical Trudeau
Should and make it accessible to the modern world. And in order to do so he has to rethink through many issues and the book of halal or haram is full Islam it has been printed over 35 times translated into a dozen languages including English in 1987 is known as a branch ATP translated into English and it is widely available you can purchase it and see it for yourself is divided into four chapters or four sections as you know, chapter four sections the first section.
The first section is about the concept of halal and haram and its role in Islam. With a comparison to other laws and other traditions and other civilizations ie we are Muslims. This is why we have halal and haram and other civilizations have their versions of lawful and prohibited the second section, personal laws of eating laws of drinking laws of working and earning money. The third section, family laws marrying divorce inheritance children and the fourth section communal and society laws, Islam stances towards other cultures, other civilizations, other ideologies, Islam stance towards source societal issues, even entertainment, culture and custom. So you look at this
book, and you don't need any training and to read it. And you can gain a lot of physical knowledge by reading this book. Whereas factually speaking, most books are fake. You need some training, you need a teacher, you need a guide, you have to unpack the complex, you know, literature and language and whatnot. So this is one of his you know, it is his most famous book on Halal haram for Islam. Another popular book of his was about modern Islamic political science and activism. And it was translated to English under the title, Islamic Awakening between rejection and extremism. islamic awakening the saya the movement to the Global Islamic revival between rejection and between
extremism. So you have rejection of Islam, secular minded people, progressives, and you have extremism, you have so many movements, they become completely bubble and isolated. They have visions and versions of Islam that are simply incompatible with the modern world. You have the ISIS you have others and other places, it seems as if they're disconnected from reality. So this was a book in which he critiques these two extremes and tries to find what he calls what's healthier. And this is a key word for Chef Qaradawi was so clear moderation, he would always say we have a religion that is moderate. We are not a bunch of fanatics on either side. We are an own mutton was sawed off. So this
is another book of his and you can find it in English as well triple it translated islamic awakening between rejection and extremism. And his latest book, and some would say his most
erudite and scholarly is his two volume book fickle jihad, which has not yet been translated. Phil called jihad, which was released just was an eight, nine years ago as a response to the rise of ISIS and Al Qaeda. And he wanted to reclaim what is real jihad, not what these people are doing. What is the actual meaning of jihad and the Quran and Sunnah and the books of fear in light of modernity? Because the problem come this is a very deep topic. This is not the time to I'm not shying away, but this is not the topic. These radical groups would quote you manuals of filter justifying their barbarism, they will say this is what even Kodama says this is what No, we says, and the average
Muslim if you remember what they were doing, the average Muslims like what do we do with this? And you needed somebody lecture called lobby to say, hey, you cannot take even Kodama in seventh century Damascus, cut and paste him and apply him in the modern world. There's a context there's a time there's a place even Kodama is not Allah and His Messenger Ibn Taymiyyah Mm hmm. No, we these are great Rolla Ma, but they have a context. And if you look at the goals of the Sharia, then we need to rethink through in light of modernity, in light of the modern world that we live in that what can and cannot be done and obviously using the Quran and Sunnah. So he wrote an entire book, actually
two books, two volumes as massive as literally 1000 something pages each volume is massive volume filled jihad, what really is jihad? And how does one do jihad in the modern world, and why these groups are not correct and their interpretation of jihad. And obviously you can understand that this book gained him extreme antagonism and even death threats from those radical groups right from those groups they consider him to be then a sellout and whatnot. Obviously, those groups if you don't agree with them, they're considered to be monitored and the caffeine and stuff for a while but when he passed away, online, that those groups are rejoicing, the same fanatical groups are rejoicing at
a stop for Allah the single Hamdulillah this person I will do better is that this is their version of Islam. They rejoice when a scholar passes away. So this is some of his books and
And there are many many more asked for his activism and councils, then honestly, a lecture alone will not suffice. Along with his academic career and scholarly pursuits and writings, he excelled as a colleague and a preacher and a leading public intellectual with a very visible appearance in all forms of media. And in Qatar, he began doing Islamic radio shows when radios were just coming out in that region. He was one of the first voices to have a radio show. And then when Islamic satellite channels began, and again, this is one of the key points that Allah bless Chicago lobby to straddle, you know, technological advancements, right. So this is a new world coming out. And chef called
Bowie is an established figure. So he takes advantage of radio and then of television, and then have satellite television and then have internet so again, he is at the right time in place to utilize these things. And he was one of the first to have an Islamic, an Islamic television series, called a Shetty will hire Sharia and living life, even through the name. What is the name of the show Shetty and modern life, a Shetty I will hire you see the vision of Chef al Qaradawi. And he has a website, you can still log on to et al qaradawi.net, you can still log on to it, which summarizes all of his appearances fatawa and all of the articles that he has written as for international awards and
prizes. Subhanallah, literally a list of who's who like who has not awarded him a prize. He has won the top prizes of pretty much every single country in the world, the world Islamic bank in 1990, the King Faisal award of contribution to Islam in 1994, the top prizes of Malaysia, of the United Arab Emirates, Dubai and Abu Dhabi back in 2001. He was a good guy for them back then now, things have changed if you know, the top prices in Qatar, the top prices in Jordan, like literally the kings and the the government Oh cough not taking the old cough ministries of every country has handed him the top price of its country. And he has been a part of pretty much every single major global and of
that region. Councils have failed that are well known. And in some cases, he was the president. And in some cases, he was the founding member like he once again, who's who. So he was one of the senior members of a Robert on ultimate Islami, and of the Islamic field Council of the global Robert Albert Islami. And he is the founder of one of the most prestigious scholarly committees in the world today. And that is the lead to handle Allah may, Allah al Muslimeen, the International Union of Muslim scholars, he founded it, and he remained as president and chair until he resigned because of old age and health reasons, just three years ago, four years ago, until the his so he was the
founder of this Global Union of Allah ma, which is one of the largest union of scholars around the entire globe. And he also founded the European fifth Council, and he presided over it until he had to resign because of his health and an age. And he traveled to almost every country you can imagine in the world multiple times to minority lands, he would regularly come to America in the 70s and 80s, who would regularly attend the mass and the Internet conventions that will take place over here back in the day, from the 70s and he will go to South America and you will go to Europe and you go to Australia. Along with this he will go to the Muslim countries many times he visited India and
Pakistan, all of these countries well known, he would again during those phases, he would travel to pretty much every single country. And along with this he had good relationships with the scholars of many different strands and interpretations of Islam. The Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia bombas did respect him and there was friendship between them, Mufti Chocolat with money, I would have done it now that we're in the 90s. So all of these are Adama the global roadmap even in Tunisia, Russia, Lucia and others. All of these Aruna ma had good friendships and relationships with Chef Yusuf al Qaradawi. Of course, Jehovah, Yahweh has always had an informal relationship with the Muslim
Brotherhood. Of course, he was imprisoned because of this, as you know, eventually he decided to not have an official role. And so for the bulk of his life, he never had an official role within the Brotherhood. However, even though he didn't have an official role, it was known that he is considered to be the spiritual leader and the intellectual leader. And he himself would praise the brotherhood and he wrote a book, the history of the Muslim Brotherhood in over the last 70 years. So he has actually a book in Arabic about the history of the Muslim Brotherhood, and he did not make it a secret that he appreciated and admired the ethos and the spirit of the Ikhwan al Muslimeen. Now,
what is his methodology and Fick? Again, let's not get too technical, trying not to get too technical here.
His methodology and fix it
He was what he would call one of what's healthy was autism and in moderation in that he wanted the fuqaha to not blindly follow the books,
nor to discard the books of filth for modernity. He wanted a middle balance. And in this as I said, he is taking from Russia, the ruler, who is really the founder of this, this this type of revivalism. In fact, again to be a little bit academic, so please understand I'm being academic don't read into what I'm saying here. But he
was the one who used the term selfie. But what he meant by the term selfie is not what the later movement adopted or achieved through the by the term, he said, we're going to be selfie revivalists. Rashid didn't lament before they were the mud hubs. What were the tabby rune doing? Before the codification of the schools of law? What did the actual self do? They were dynamic. They were vibrant. They were not blindly following a book of faith. They were deriving faith based upon the context based upon the reality they were looking at the Quran and Sunnah in lens of reality, and they were deriving fix. So this was rushed through this version of Salafism. We're going to go back
to the dynamism. We're going to overcome the legalistic encyclopedias of Fick that were written 500 years ago, 600 years ago, 700 years ago, we cannot apply a book written 700 years ago to the modern nation state, we cannot take those rulings and simply cut and paste, we're going to have to go back to the original spirit of Islam. Now, this was Russia. The other one, you know, thinker shaycarl, Bernie took this notion, and he had his own interpretation. And for him going back to the self meant an understanding of, of Jehovah of jumping over the mud hubs, and of being strict with the literal text of the Hadith. So it wasn't the dynamism of Rashid River. It was a type of strict literalism.
If the Hadith says something, then we will extrapolate it to basically all times in places, whereas Rashid River was like, Okay, if the Hadith says something excellent. When should it be applied? What is the goal of it? What is the wisdom behind it? What are the exceptions to it? So there's a big difference between this strand and that strand, and she'll useful local law, we definitely represented the strand that rescue doula was trying to advocate for. And if you read Phil kosuna of say, it's our bill, you get this understanding as well. So what Chef Musa Qaddafi was trying to say was the following, we need to look at the religion of Islam, from the lens of that which cannot be
changed. And that which can be changed. The religion of Islam, Allah revealed it with certain things that are stable, these are called celibate belief in Allah belief in judgment date, the explicit halal and haram then over the course of the next few centuries, our scholars extrapolated a very detailed code, that code in and of itself is not revealed by Allah. So we have the right in fact, we have the duty to go back and see which aspects of the derived code can we change and which aspects can we and must we stick with this is a common term he would use a thriller, but Well, Motorola urogen, that which remains firm, and that which can be changed. And therefore, he said, we need to
look at the Sharia in light of modern times, and taking into account the McCall suit, or the goals of the Sharia. Look at the modern context. And don't just disconnect yourself from the world that we live in. And he was extremely concerned with minority situations. In fact, he was one of those who popularized the term Muslim minority. Kalia, he would argue that how Islam is practiced and the fact was given for Muslims in America can and should be different from Muslim majority lands. This is a key point that many people disagree with. Many people say what is done in Muslim majority lands should also be done in Muslim minority lands. And Bobby was very clear, no, because context plays a
role in deriving Islamic law and context should and must be looked at before you pronounce the verdict. So he would very boldly say there is something called fear of minorities, and he was one of the biggest advocates of the fear of minorities, so shackled and we're going to give some examples for this inshallah in a while. Also, one of the things I shuffled out of all we did from the 60s and 70s, which is again, what we expect from somebody of that stature, was that he was always a very politically savvy chef and had
him. He wasn't like many others who are cut off from what is happening in the world and only interested in teaching classical books know from day one, his whole buzz his gurus, his lectures, are talking about current affairs, he brings up what's going on in the world. And he's a strong advocate of Muslim power, Muslim independence. He's a strong advocate of other powers not interfering in our lands. He is a strong advocate of rejecting the tyranny and injustices of so many regimes in the Muslim world, which obviously made him very unpopular with those regimes. And he was one of the biggest voices of a modern democracy that he would call an Islamic should our democracy,
assure a version of democracy, he did not want dictatorships in the Muslim lands, he endorsed elections within the Sharia, he wanted the people to elect a ruler that was going to judge them in accordance with the Shetty. So he wanted to bring about a version of Islamic democracy, which you understand, of course, is going to be very, very problematic to the people in power. And this is one of the reasons why he was banned. And he is considered to be to this day, a terrorist by many of the countries in that in that region. He always tried to strike a balance between pragmatism and idealism. And a simple example of this is his stances towards the superpowers. He criticized the
invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan. And he was a big, you know, a very forceful critic of the invasions of American ionosonde and Iraq. And yet still, when a Muslim servicemen in the military asked him a fatwa that I'm in the military, I'm being forced by the American government to go and fight. What do I do? He said, You are matar, you are forced. So you should not pick up a weapon and kill, but go find a job in the back of the army basically, and basically peel potatoes type of stuff, right? Go do something there. And Allah will forgive you because you are multiple. Again, this raised a lot of controversy back then. But he's trying to find a middle ground. He criticizes
the invasion. But he still understands there's Muslims living here. What are you going to do if you're part of the Army, and now the army is going all the way there and you're a Muslim in the army. And by the way, for those who remember, this was a major issue, you have to realize our armed forces have 1000s of Muslims in them? What are they going to do? You know, are they going to go to jail? Are they going to get court martialed? Or what exactly or can they go and do something I mean, and again, I'm not giving my pathway here. I'm saying shellcode, always trying to give some type of middle ground over here. He was also a very, very staunch supporter of the Palestinian cause. Hardly
anybody was more vocal than him. And he was a fierce critic of Zionism, and of the apartheid regime, and of the modern state of Israel. But he would state many times. We don't have a problem with Judaism and the Jewish people, Judaism and the Jewish people lived with us for many centuries. Our problem is with Zionism, not with the Jewish people. So again, he's trying to find that middle ground over here. Now, some of the examples are the photos. He's famous for perhaps the one photo that everybody knows his his photo on mortgages, right? That's the one photo everybody's aware of. One thing that's really interesting, he talks about this fatwa, he was challenged in his lifetime.
And he explains that I would visit America and South America and Canada and Australia. And initially I would give the fatwa that it is haram. But when the Muslims kept on asking and asking and asking, it was the most common question, pause your footnote. To this day, it is the most common question. To this day, it is the most common question. And I have office hours people call me up. I tell you still, you're gonna be surprised. still the number one question? Sure. What is your opinion about financing a house even today? A few hours ago, somebody asked me the exact same question right. Now. This shows you you can find it and it is it's it shows you it is a pressing problem. It shows you it
is something that affects all of us. So Chicago, he said in the early 70s, I would follow the standard position, haram haram haram. Then when I realized this is a problem I'm being asked around the globe. Let me go back and into the books. Let me see what what is the room or not? Then he released a systematic photo. Now is not the time to get into the intricacies. I don't want to do that today. But if you read it, it's actually a very interesting argument. What I find interesting, he was the first to say it really amongst the global ruler, that for Muslim minorities living in the West, the house they live in, if they cannot find an Islamic alternative. It is
missable to take that house as a mortgage. Right? And he has a detailed explanation why, and he's quoting various principles and what not. And many times he was challenged about it. And he said, Listen, this is my opinion. If I am right, I ask Allah for a double reward. And even if I'm wrong, I hope Allah will give me one reward because I tried, which is a valid point. It's like it's an opinion I have I could be wrong, I admit. But if I'm wrong, I ask Allah to reward me once I sincerely try. And it is an interesting argument that what I find again, whether you like it or not, and I speak as somebody who has lived through that fatwa, since it came out in the 80s. And I was a
teenager, and throughout my 20s, when I was staunchly opposed to that photo during those phases of my life, and then 30s and 40s. I'm mellowing down. And then I see the majority of Islamic councils around the world are softening their stances and adopting the fatwa, even some of the more conservative fatwa councils. And again, I'll just be factual here such as Amager, recently released a fatwa, which was markedly different from its tone 1015 years ago, and it was far closer to Chicago. I always fun, I'm just being factual. And I'm just again, being historical over here. Even the very conservative scholars found themselves after 1015 years, closer towards always fatwah than
they were 1015 years ago. And to me, this speaks volumes, that speaks volumes about his his philosophy and where he is heading. Another interesting photo of his which again, unprecedented in the modern world, but now it is pretty much the default in most councils.
In the late 90s, I think he was asked a question as the head of the European field Council, and he was the founding member of the European Council, and our field Council North America is taken from that and we founded our field Council of America FCN a, he is the EFC na the European Council, EFCA. So the European field council was was asked
about a very common scenario in England in America and Europe, and that is a Christian couple Jewish couple majority Christian, the lady converts and the husband does not
the lady converts to Islam, and the husband does not convert to Islam. What should be done? This question was presented to the European Council, and chair Qaradawi wrote a very detailed fatwa, in which he admitted that the mainstream mazahub would say this marriage is null and void. But he went in to bring Macross it along with an understanding of modern times, along with explicit verdicts of Aikido the Allahu Allah and on top of the allawah in their philosophers, they found precedent that in their elaphus in the peripheral regions of Islam, not in not in Medina and Mecca, but in the lands of Iraq, which had just been conquered by Muslims. There were cases of a woman saying she
wants to embrace and the husband say no, I'm happy as I am. And I did or the Allahu Allah and also before him Ramadan hot tub, the both of them, they allowed the husband and wife to remain married, with the condition that the wife allowed be allowed to practice Islam. And Chicago we said, this is the fatwa we must be giving so that people embrace the faith. Otherwise, if you tell a lady who's interested in Islam, you have to leave your children, you have to leave your husband. It is better she embraces Islam. And again, a bit to be clear here. This is not a Muslim, I'm marrying a non Muslim. No, this is the marriage has taken place. They're both non Muslims. Now. The wife wants to
convert Chicago, he says, I'll be the first to say you're not going to find a photo in our era that allows this but I shall allow it and he wrote the detail and you find it online you find the book, a little booklet he's written and other odema after this photo, again, initially in complete rejection. I will also tell you, even I when I first heard this, and I was a student in the graduate school, I was like, no way he can prove this. And my mind the Quran is explicit. But again, that's the difference between a minor student and an intellectual genius. He shows us one does the Quran apply? He brought YBNL pm statement very good. I don't want to go into technicalities. Ignore him
did not did not explicitly mentioned this, but I don't want to get technical. Let me just say it's a very scholarly
explanation that convinced lots of people and this fatwa is now extremely common across the globe and minority situations in you know, Western and American situations, even though before shall Qaradawi
Nobody even knew of it. And it shows you the impact of again, forward thinking and looking at the reality of the of the world that we live in. Also, one thing she called up it was well known for and there's like 3040 50 fatawa. In this genre, Chef Qaradawi was somebody who was a big advocate of rethinking through gender roles in light of modernity. Now, again, you have to understand, most of you who are above the age of 50 4050, you know, this in the 70s, in the 70s, when Chicago we first became a household name, let's say, there was a mass rejection of the elite of Islamic values. You all know, this, the elites of Pakistan, of Cairo of all of these lands, rejected Islamic values of
gender, stomach hijab. Chef, Carla, we wanted to again, that was salty, wanted to find something where you still have religious folks at these elite institutions. And he began advocating so the predominant factor, which is still common to this day, amongst many circles, it is how long for a woman to do anything except almost exist, basically, right? That's all she can do. No, leaving the house no going to work, no Dutson that, you know, the standard things like that. Chef karma, we in the 70s began advocating saying, No, a lot of these rulings are cultural and not Quran and Sunnah.
And here's the key point, in my opinion, is very clear. He was not asking to rethink through the institution of marriage, he was very clear the primary role of a mother is for her children. Ricciardo Cova, Mona Lisa, men archiwum over women, he was very clear. But why can't a woman work? If she's wearing hijab and dressed properly? Why can't you be educated? Why cannot you have positions in places and as long as everybody's observe observing Islamic norms and decency, you cannot stop this tide of gender change. So make sure you follow the laws of Islam and embrace what is good and stop what is bad. That's a level of pragmatism. Again, I'm just being factual here.
You could oppose it as much as you want in the 70s. It didn't change the fact that the globe moved on. And essentially, the Muslim world adopted that type of understanding when it comes to women working across the Muslim world. There's not a single country except maybe one. Now, there's not a single country in which women can't get get an education in which women are not going to, you know, get a job in corporate life or whatnot in the Muslim world, you have to understand back in the 60s and 70s, you either left Islam didn't become religious, and you went and got a job in education, or you remained religious, and you stayed at home, uneducated,
sharecropper, we understood, you need a middle path. You need to be a good Muslim, and be allowed to have an education and be told, wear your hijab interact with modesty have as much you know, segregation, it's socially as possible. And after this, it is permissible for a lady to be educated in work and whatnot. So again, a whole bunch of, you know, factoids in this regard, in which he's trying his best to give women a sense of dignity in the modern world, while retaining their Islamic identity. And obviously, you understand this caused a huge backlash, it still causes a huge backlash.
I don't know what to say. Again, I get in trouble saying this, the very people who don't like these fatawa and who think it is wrong, their own families can't live up to it. I'm just being blunt here. Their own daughters can't live up to it. You can preach in a vacuum as much as you want. You have to live in the real world, and shackled always fatwas are the ones that have become the default. That's how we all live our lives, even those in the 70s when he started this, it was a big thing to say that what's wrong for women, you know, a housewife, she can become educated, she can have a job in corporation, but she must be told that you know, dress with dignity, avoid flirtation men should be
told us so again, you take ownership of the situation, right? Rather than retreat to a model of Islam. That might be very utopic but it is not practical. You cannot and you will not live this way. Shaka though is always that type of forward thinking So again, these are some of his well known fatawa let's move on to some of the more controversial before we conclude and again, I'm just telling you that you should be aware inshallah Allah and I'm not justifying, or critiquing or whatnot.
I'm just explaining, you know, what, what he would what he said and why it caused controversy. Without a doubt what caused the most controversy in
the west so much so that in the last was it 15 years or so? He was banned from America, England, Canada, Austria.
Earlier, every Western country banned him. And eventually even Interpol released a warrant for his arrest, until finally it was rescinded. It was a big political fiasco, whatnot. But the factor that caused the most controversy amongst the governments of the Western world was his fatwa that justified Palestinians to engage in military actions against the regime in which their death is almost guaranteed, if not fully guaranteed. Do you understand what I'm saying here?
Or do I need to spell it out?
He basically advocated that if certain conditions are met, suicide bombing is allowed for the Palestinians. Okay, now you understand the regime This is against is going to make this case and take it global, which is what they did you guys following me, right? And is going to pressure the governments of the world to declare him a terrorist, you understand this point, right. So this is what they did. And they were successful in this, that all of this terrorism, quote, unquote, in our land is because of him. And all the people doing is because of him. Now, regardless of whether you agree with it or not. And for the record, I always say publicly that I don't agree with suicide. And
that's what I always say. But I'm being philosophical here. So I'm going to take off the cleric cap, I'm going to put on a semi philosophical my PhD cap.
And I'm going to say that the fact of the matter is that every single civilization valorizes, a person in battle, who causes his own death, to save other people, or to bring damage to the enemy.
This is a fact, whether you liked the term or not removed the term, remove the S term, the concept of somebody sacrificing himself for a greater good for his people. In fact, I gave a clip about Ukraine invasion, in which a person who did the exact same thing against the Russians, BBC had a front page article about him, New York Times mentioned him, right, he blew up a bridge or whatever. And the process was, obviously he killed himself, right? They didn't choose the term. But what exactly did this person do? And fact if you go over the prizes and awards that this country posthumously awards, its people in Vietnam and whatnot, what is it the golden Award and the Medal of
Honor and the Medal of Freedom? And all of these, you know, the prizes that they give, because how else are they going to actually reward the dead, except by rewarding the living, you know that they cannot reward the dead only a god can reward the dead, which is again, why they're so scared of the religious fanatics because, anyway, let's not get into the philosophy of all of that.
Get into a lot of trouble, as you can imagine, is a very sensitive topic, but I'm being a philosopher here right now. Not being a chef now. In fact, forget forgetting Medal of Honor. What is that show? You guys watch the Star Wars Show? Right? The Star Wars franchise, right? What is it the one of them the last Jedi? That Commander holdo What exactly does she do? The commander holdo. What does she do? She takes exactly. She she takes her ship. Right. And she What does she do? I don't know where you guys are like, the Death Star? Yeah, exactly. That's something like that. Yeah, she goes and crushes it into that, that star and explodes herself. Right, explodes herself. And
everybody is clapping and an all and thinks she's a hero.
But nobody uses the S term in what she's done. Even though that is exactly what she has done. Even children are taught that this is glorious. What is done for the right cause? Do you understand this point, right? I'm just being philosophical. Now become Sharia. So we're gonna say suicide is haram. Okay? Now, suicide just head on is not even a joke. Suicide is haram. Okay. But anyway, you can disagree. shellcode always fatwah. But philosophically speaking, everybody valorizes a brave person who does something, even if it causes his own demise for the cause that they believe in. So again, I'm just being factually here. You can understand this fatwa has been used by the new Sarkozy,
Nicolas Sarkozy called Qaradawi global terrorists because of this and banned across the walls. So you get the point here, okay.
Yes, it is the concept of martyrdom. The concept of martyrdom is always valorized if you agree with the cause, the problem is if you don't agree with the cause, you're a terrorist. But if you agree with the cause, I mean how always mentioned this, you
This country was founded when the Founding Fathers attacked the British soldiers. Some of them killed themselves in the process, some of them killed anyway, you get the point here, if it's your cause it's justified. Go, look, I'm being dead serious here, go look at the medals of honor that have been awarded in Iraq, in in Vietnam and other places. The majority of them have gone to people who knowingly lost their lives in order to save other people or to harm the enemy. What is this other than the S word? What is it, but they don't call it that, because they agree with the cause. So understand this more purely philosophically, but still, suicide is haram. Now another factor that
caused a lot of controversy. And it was because of this fatwa that
many Muslim lands banned him. So the first one who got him banned in those lands, the fatwa that caused him to be persona non grata in many of the Middle Eastern countries, including the country of his own birth, recently, was, of course, his foot to up that
the Arab Spring revolts were justified.
And it is because of this and his role in the Arab Spring, that many of the countries that admired and respected him in the 90s and early 2000s, had a complete one ad. And to this day, even he's passed away. His name is on the top 10 terrorists of the World list by many countries of the region who are of an Islamic or Muslim heritage background. And there is no question that, again, I'm being factual here, I'm teaching here, there is no question that show called all we took ownership of the Arab Spring, there's no question you can't deny this. And he did.
Put his personality behind the Arab Spring. And he would encourage people from Libya and Tunisia and Morocco and Egypt and across all over the Middle East, when the Arab Spring was happening, to take on these tyrannical regimes and dictators. And in fact, he even said, when Qaddafi was almost about to fall, he even gave the infamous fatwa to the people you might execute him and take your land back. He said this on TV. Again, I'm just stating for the record what he what he said. And to show you how much of a spiritual figure he was, for the Arab spring, when the Arab Spring was initially successful, and
a sharp beauty this spot
actually took place. And Mubarak was taken out by the other powers. And Tahrir Square became fully free. In February of 2011. After a 45 plus year exile, chef called Bowie flew back to Egypt, and gave what I would call the most iconic cultiva of his life, perhaps the pinnacle of his political, accurate achievements. He gave the hotbar in a free Egypt, he was chosen to give the hotbar I mean, this shows you who this person was, the entire Arab Spring is they think that this, they think it's going to be successful. It's not all that things happen after that. But at the time, we were all there were all caught up in the Spirit. And Chef Qaradawi flies back and into heavier square, he
gives a whole book in front of hundreds of 1000s of people watched by millions of people, and you need to listen to that electrifying hotbar to get a sense of who he is, and his role in what is going on. And there's no doubt that that kind of represents the political acumen, if you like, of his the highlight of his life. And obviously, you understand that this fatwah and his role in the Arab Spring will be make him
not very popular in circles in which the regime's status is considered to be sacred.
And there are many, many scholars, for whatever reason, let's not get into their knee yet, who love to endorse the regime.
Some of them are semi sincere, and some have sold themselves for the highest bidder. I have no qualms saying that, but I know some of them are semi sincere. So now you have a clash. And this clash has translated in him becoming, according to this group of scholars, a leading terrorist figure.
And that's what they've done. They have if you look at Twitter and whatnot, you find some groups of scholars saying, Oh, this was a person who's a terrorist, all of the blood of Syria and whatnot goes on his hands, all of the blood of this goes in his hand. So it doesn't go on the people who killed it goes on anyway. So you get the point right. So because of this, you have groups of scholars who are loyal to the regimes who are loyal.
To the royal families, considering, shall Bowie to be an instigator of fitna.
And they call him the leader of the hotter giants and the Mufti of the radicals. So these are the terms you find from this group. So you do your homework and see who is doing what. So this is another photo that got him a criticize one photo that I found extremely interesting. And it got him a lot of criticism from the academic class, nothing to the politics. And I just want to mention it, and I neither endorse nor criticize. I'm just saying it. For the record, I'm just telling you seeing it just telling it to, I just find it interesting, which is again, you had to be a curveball way to do this, whether you like it or not, nobody else could get away with this. Chef Qaradawi took on the
notion of stoning the adulterer to death.
And he said, For the longest time, I found this issue problematic. And I didn't know what to say or make of it, until finally I felt that my conscious had to be clear. And I had to preach what I think is the truth. He said, and this is a very, very minority opinion. He isn't the first before him, you had shows up and Dr. Muhammad Azad and others, but he was the most famous and he also was the most he proved it, I cannot prove it from his perspective if he wrote about it, and he spoke about it, his position. And interesting again, for the record, I'm not endorsing, and I'm not criticize, I'm just telling you, his position is that there is no stoning of the adulterer in Islam.
And he has a very interesting series of arguments very simplistically says what happened was, I'm being very simplistic. What happened was, the Jewish tribes of Medina came to the Prophet system. And they had an adulterer. And he asked them, What do your books say? And they said, our books say stoning. So he said, well, then you should follow your law. And they did that. According to Chef Qaradawi, that was not instituted for the ummah.
And he has Quranic evidence, he goes through his Abba Surah, nor is very clear what you do with the adulterer. The Quran is so explicit about the adulterer, how then can this ruling come, which seems to contradict the Quran, and so he has his argument, and he goes, I have no choice now, except to preach my conscious. And if I'm right to rewards if I'm wrong, one reward. And of course, this position goes against
everybody else, basically, right? Even though I don't personally, I don't understand why there's so much of a backlash when nobody actually applies this anymore, is just a theoretical law. But I think it's an emotional attachment that we have the people in any case, you should be aware of that. He he had this type of view as well. Now, to summarize and conclude, if you look at the reactions to his passing and demise, and again, being factual here, large groups of the OMA frankly, the vast majority of the OMA, even those who disagreed with some of his fatawa Express Rama, remorse, dua for him, the mainstream bulk of all movements of Islam have an admiration for him. The icons of
classical Salafism chef have been bars and Chef Holbein and others. Even if they disagreed, they respected him as an item,
moved to Tokyo with money and the deobandis respect him as an item. Even if they don't agree with every factor, you cannot deny his scholarship. If you look at those who deny him as a scholar, frankly, one of three people, one of three categories, number one, outright scientists and enemies of the dean who are happy at his death.
Number two, those groups of people who ascribe themselves to knowledge chores, complete stages of their regimes, complete switches, they are not actual or them and you know them from their reality whatnot. And number three, the actual fanatical fundamentalists, the hard cores to create and Jihad these, you know, who are living in their own bubble, an alternative and some very small pockets of the fundamentalist movements and whatnot. You find them whose their versions of Islam are so unreal, that except for them, and five people that follow them, the entire world is laden with the entire world is going wrong and mistaken and whatnot. And they're, as I said, I've been with them for so
many years, I know this reality. It's painful to say I'm not trying to make fun of them. But I'm being factual. Anytime you meet these people, do your own research their own families cannot live up to their version of Islam. I'm just being factual. Anytime you meet these types of people with their hard core understandings and what not their own children frankly, their own spouses cannot live up to that version. What type of Islam are you preaching? When you can't even enforce it in your own family? You think the rest of the world is going to follow it? You find though
These types of people, you know, as well saying, Oh, his views are so, so progressive and whatnot in any case, subhanAllah To conclude, shall Qaradawi in my humble opinion,
exemplified Islamic scholarship at every level, to master the theory, and the practice, to be an adamant every field of Islam, to understand that Islam has to be practical, and yet still traditional and Orthodox, and to make Islam more than just fatawa and books, to make Islam a force, a revival to be involved in making Muslims feel proud of their Islam, to be involved at the political level to be involved at Muslim minorities across the globe to be a global visionary. Frankly, there is no one that compares to him in this aspect. For the last 100 years since chakra, she'd read law, and he has left a vacuum, that Allahu Allah how and when it will be replaced. And I
finished with one aspect of his life that he did not mention. Along with all of this, he was also a poet. He was also a person of edit and literature. And this is, again, very common among such intellectuals. He would diversify Arabic poetry, and he has some poetry that he would sometimes say in the book, and there is a clip going viral that he's saying this poetry and he's crying as he says, It is beautiful in Arabic, I'll translate it to English, that will law he the Dawa will never be defeated by force. The Tao of Islam will never be defeated by force, burn my ribs with whips, put my hands in chains, place a knife at my throat, my ideas will never be besieged even for an hour,
and my faith will not be impacted. The light of Allah is in my heart, and my heart is in the hands of my Lord. And my Lord grants me victory and is my helper. My success shall be found by holding on to the rope of my Eman and I shall die smiling to give life to my faith. And he would say this in the face of tyrants. He would say this when his life is threatened. He himself was threatened multiple times. His own family members were unjustly arrested. His daughter and son in law were arrested for no reason other than the fact they lived in Egypt and they were related to him. They have nothing to do with Islamic activism thrown in jail for over a decade alone was done, even
though they had green cards and potential US citizenship. This is the reality of the world we live in. Still he stood firm, and he stood upon in sha Allah to Allah what he believed to be the truth. And now that he has gone we make sincere dua for him that Allah subhanho wa Taala forgives any mistakes he would have made that grandson for those who Allah Allah that Allah subhana wa Tada allows us to benefit from his legacy and allows us to keep that spirit of Islamic activism and dynamism alive which is aka Malachite on was set on why they come Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh
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