The Importance of Knowing Different Opinions Before Giving Fatwa

Saʿīd b. Abī ʿArūbah – Allāh have mercy on him – said:

Whoever has not heard the differences of opinion, then do not consider him a scholar.

Ibn ʿAbd Al-Barr, Jāmiʿ Bayān Al-ʿIlm wa Faḍlihī no. 1521.

It is reported that Sufyān b. ʿUyainah – Allāh have mercy on him – said:

The most audacious people in giving verdicts (fatwā) are those who know the least about the differences of opinion amongst the scholars.

Op. cit. 1527.

It is reported that Imām Mālik – Allāh have mercy on him – was asked:

“Which kind of person is allowed to give verdicts (fatwā)?” He replied, “It is not allowed to give verdicts except for the person who knows what people have differed over.” He was asked, “Do you mean the differences of the people of (mere) opinions?” He replied, “No, the different opinions of the Companions of Muḥammad ﷺ, and the one who also knows the abrogating from the abrogated [texts] in the Qurān and in the ḥadīth of the Messenger of Allāh ﷺ – such a person can give fatwā.”

Op. cit. 1529.

It is reported that Yaḥyā b. Sallām – Allāh have mercy on him – said:

It is not right for the one who does not know differences of opinion to give verdicts, and it is not allowed for the one who does not know about the various statements [of the scholars] to say: I prefer such-and-such opinion.

Op. cit. 1534.

Umar on Trustworthiness

It is reported that ʿUmar b. Al-Khaṭṭāb – Allāh be pleased with him – said:

Do not expose yourself to what does not concern you, stay away from your enemy, beware of [taking as] your friend anyone except the trustworthy amongst people – and there is no one who is trustworthy except one who fears Allāh; and do not accompany the sinner in case you learn his sinfulness, and do not let him know your secrets, and consult those who fear Allāh for your affairs.

Ibn Abī Shaybah, Al-Muṣannaf 34476.

Two Qualities of the Noble

It is reported that Ayyūb Al-Sakhtiyānī – Allāh have mercy on him – said:

A man does not become noble until he has two qualities: he is undesirous of what other people possess, and he pardons and overlooks them.

Ibn Ḥibbān, Rawḍatu Al-ʿUqalāʾ p167.

Knowing what Spoils Your Deeds

It is reported that Al-Ḥasan Al-Baṣrī – Allāh have mercy on him – said:

A man remains upon good as long as he knows what things spoil his deeds.

Aḥmad b. Ḥanbal, Al-Zuhd p339.

Qualities of Those Who Fuel Fitnah

ʿAlī b. Abī Ṭālib – Allāh be pleased with him – said:

Do not be from those who are hasty, who broadcast (what should not be broadcast), who plant trouble by divulging what should be secret, for you will face severe, prolonged and heavy tribulations.

Al-Bukhārī, Al-Adab Al-Mufrad no. 327. Its chain of transmission was graded ṣaḥīḥ by Al-Albānī in Ṣaḥīḥ Al-Adab Al-Mufrad no.250.