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Guide to Understanding Wahhabis, Salafis & Wahhabism

Academic Write-ups & Articles

No. Title Quotes Author Rating Download Link
1 200 Years of New Kharijism: the Ongoing Revision of Islam The chief brand of New Kharijism, or Wahhabism, distinguishes itself from traditional Islam by three main principles (1) Anthropomorphism of the Deity; (2) Disrespect of Prophet; (3) Disregard for the schools and methods of the Sunni Imams.

The Neo-Kharijis ... are mounting a worldwide offensive to convince Muslims ... that theirs is the only way. To this end, a vast publishing campaign to revise Islam has been under way... This campaign is waged on five fronts...

Shaykh Muhammad Hisham Kabbani ***** click here
2 Muhammad ibn Abdul Wahhab and the origin of the Wahhabite movement During the last 300 years one of the most controversial figures to emerge on the landscape of Islam is Muhammad ibn Abdul Wahhab.

What is known about him too, is that he invoked the ire of two of his prominent Shaikhs in Madina, Shaikh Muhammad ibn Sulaiman al-Kurdi and Shaikh Muhammad Hayat al-Sindi. Moreover, his father, Abdul Wahhab and his brother, Sulaiman ibn Abdul Wahhab
vigorously expressed their opposition to his views.

"...Wahhabite fundamentalism puts forward a model whose task is to subject local societies with their customs, authorities, devotions, and other particularities to a general process of acculturation which prepares them for membership in the
commonwealth whose linchpin and exclusive raison d'etre is the absolute dominance of the house of Sa’ud."

Shaykh Seraj Hendricks **** click here
3 The "Salafi" Movement Unveiled The most definitive proof that the "Salafis" are the most distant of people to the pious Salaf lies in ... five fundamental aspects of Salafi ideology.

...the "Salafis" are essentially Westernized modernists striving to distance themselves from their own authentic but "messy" Islamic past in favor of an inauthentic but "hygienic" past which they identify, in youthful, revisionist fashion, with the pious Salaf.

Unfortunately we see that the principal activity of these unbarnacled, revisionist "Salafis" has been, since their Wahhabi forerunners, to declare other Muslims kafir for not thinking along the same terms as they. The

Shaykh Muhammad Hisham Kabbani ***** click here
4 The New Global Threat: Transnational Salafis and Jihad Salafis believe that over centuries of religious practice, errant Muslims introduced new practices and innovations that corrupted the pure message of Islam. To rectify ... they advocate a strict return to the fundamentals of the religion... The radicals responsible for the “jihad” against the United States are inextricably linked to this worldview...

Salafi thought has influenced the ideological orientation of many practicing Muslims and.. well-known Islamic organizations in the Muslim world, including the Gamiyya Islamiyya in Egypt, various branches of Islamic Jihad, the Armed Islamic Group in Algeria, and mainstream movements such as the Muslim Brotherhood.

The Saudi state ... are major producers and exporters of Salafi publications, missionary operations and humanitarian assistance; and the transnational organization of the movement, which incorporates a myriad of nationalities, renders it an effective and influential force in the Muslim world.

Quintan Wiktorowicz ***** click here
5 Radicalism: Its Wahhabi Roots and Current Representation Radicalism, in various forms, has made significant inroads in several countries of Central Asia and in the Caucasus.... Known as
fundamentalism or “Wahhabism,” it poses a direct challenge to the ideal vision of a state that the newly founded nations of the region have embraced.

The Wahhabi ideology is antagonistic to non-
Muslims and to traditional practices including
seeking intercession by means of the pious saints in Islam, accepted by traditional Sunni Islam for over 1400 years.

Wahhabi belief provides the religious and
ideological underpinnings to enable militant
movements to take up arms against existing governments if they deem the need arises.

Islamic extremists have ruled permissible ... the production of drugs and their sale on the streets .... With such illicit monies, these extremist groups finance the development of their global network, purchase weapons and supplies, and build their front organizations, which represent them under the guise of Islamic activism.

Islamic Supreme Council of America ***** click here
6 The Doctrine of Ahl al-Sunna versus the Wahhabi Movement Excerpts of an excellent book by the Iraqi scholar Jamil Effendi al-Zahawi (1863-1936).

Praise belongs to Allah Who in every century inspires a group of scholarly people to defend the Way of the Prophet, Peace be upon him, from the distortions of the ignorant -- those who call the majority of Muslims mushrik (idolaters) and mubtadi` (innovators) and kafir (disbelievers), falsely claiming that they alone are saved.

In our time, however, the name Salaf has been usurped by a movement which seeks to impose its own narrow interpretation of Religion towards a re- fashioning of the teachings of Islam.

Jamil Effendi al-Zahawi **** click here
7 Rise of the Wahhabi Movement An objective historical and political account of the development of the Wahhabi movement. It also includes a discussion on the precepts of the Wahhabism. Unknown *** click here
8 On the Status, Method and Fallout of the Global Spread of Wahhabism
An intellectual exchange with Professor Sulayman Nyang
Now, what has happened really is the royal
family may not care about Wahhabism any more. Because ... if you go to Riyadh or Jeddah ... they still listen to music. Whereas Wahhabis used to say, "no music."... you can see that even among the royal family, this old idea of Wahhabism, rigid Wahhabism, is fading away.

The great irony in Saudi Arabia is that Wahhabism is more important as a tool of foreign policy than as an instrument of internal government policy.

If you are an imam in Mombasa, for example, and the Rabita sends you a check - in Africa it's a lot of money. They send them about $800 a month. It's a lot of money over there... So, you are on the payroll of makes you live a middleclass lifestyle in Kenya. ... you know every month you get a check and then you may even be member of the Global Islamic Council of Imams.

Interview of Prof Sulayman Nyang by Mateen Siddiqui *** click here
9 Deception of the Devious Salafi Sect When a man wishes to unfetter himself from the restrictions of the Shari'ah and the Sunnah in the
present day, the solution for him is to become a so-called Salafi. In order to draw unwary and ignorant Muslims into its fold of dhalaal and baatil, the modernists Salafis employ deception on a large scale. A salient feature of this sect of baatil is their rejection of the mathhabs of the Salf-e-Saalihoon.

It should not be difficult for an unbiased Muslim to understand that it is not possible for thousands and thousands of "Ulama and Fuqaha to submit to the Aimmah of the four mathhabs for the past 1250 years if they were in error. *** click here
10 Wahhabis & Wahhabism The biggest threat to Islam from within these days is from the Wahhabi sect also known
as “Salafis” and “al-Muwahhidun”.

Although the number of Wahhabis are mainly concentrated in the Middle East, specifically, Saudi Arabia, there are growing concerns that their teachings have gone to almost all corners of the globe...

Abu Nur (ed) ***  
11 Wahhabi Theology in Islam When Muhammad ibn Abd al Wahhab began to preach against these breaches of Islamic laws, he characterized customary practices as jahiliya, the same term used to describe the ignorance of Arabians before the Prophet. Initially, his preaching encountered opposition, but he eventually came under the protection of a local chieftain named Muhammad ibn Saud, with whom he formed an alliance.

The extensive condemnation of shirk is seen in the movement's iconoclasm ... in l802, Wahhabi fighters raided and damaged one of the most sacred Shia shrines, the tomb of Husayn, the son of Imam Ali and grandson of the Prophet, at Karbala in Iraq. In 1804 the Wahhabis destroyed tombs in the cemetery of the holy men in Medina, which was a locus for votive offerings and prayers to the saints.

The Wahhabi emphasis on conformity makes of external appearance and behavior a visible expression of inward faith. Therefore, whether one conforms in dress, in prayer, or in a host of other activities becomes a public statement of whether one is a true Muslim.

The Library of Congress - Federal Research Division *** click here
12 Wahhabis A brief summary of Wahhabism. Bilge Dogan ** click here
13 Memoirs of Hempher, The British Spy to the Middle East

Also available as "Confessions of a British Spy", published by Waqf Ikhlas

This document was published in a series (episodes) in the German paper Spiegel and later on in a prominent French paper. A Lebanese doctor translated the document to the Arabic language and from there on it was translated to English and other languages. This document reveals the true background of the Wahhabi movement and explains the numerous falsehood they spread in the name of Islam and exposes their role of enmity towards the religion of Islam and towards Prophet Mohammad (s) and towards Muslims at large. Waqf Ikhlas *** click here


click here

14 Abu Zahra on the Wahhabiya

Muhammad ibn 'Abd al-Wahhab ... had studied the books of Ibn Taymiyya ... until he brought them out from the realm of opinion into the realm of practice.

In truth, the Wahhabis have actualized the opinions of Ibn Taymiyya and are extremely zealous followers and supporters of those views.

... his brother Sulayman ibn 'Abd al-Wahhab declares him an heretic in his "The Divine Thunderbolts Concerning the Wahhabi School"... the earliest refutation of the Wahhabi sect in print, consisting in over forty-five concise chapters spanning 120 pages that show beyond doubt the fundamental divergence of the Wahhabi school, not only from the Consensus and Usul of Ahl al-Sunna wal-Jama'a and the fiqh of the Hanbali madhhab, but also from their putative Imams, Ibn Taymiyya and Ibn al-Qayyim on most or all the issues reviewed.

GF Haddad ***** click here
15 Britain and the Rise of Wahhabism and the House of Saud Dr. Abdullah Mohammad Sindi provides an analytical and historical review of Wahhabism, Britain’s role in its rise, and its relation to the Saudi ruling family.

One of the most rigid and reactionary sects in all of Islam today is Wahhabism.

Wahhabism is highly self-centered and extremely intolerant of progressive ideologies, other religions, and other Islamic sects such as Shiism and Sufism.

Dr. Abdullah Mohammad Sindi

Former professor at King Abdulaziz University in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

**** click here
16 Guide to Wahhabi Organisations in North America

The contemporary Wahhabi movement is the modern outgrowth of a 250-year-old schism within Islam that was sparked by a radical evangelist named Muhammad ibn Abdul Wahhab (1703-1792).

They declared most of the Islamic scholars, thinkers and clerics that preceded them heretics and rejected the classical schools of Islamic jurisprudence that were the guarantors of moderation in traditional Muslim society.

The tactics used by Salafis in America are the same ones employed throughout the world, in both Muslim and non-Muslim countries. They rely on the creation of a series of organizations and institutions, each with its own unique role, controlled by a complicated web of interlocking directorates. Some of the groups are fronts for illegal or subversive activities, while others conduct legal and legitimate operations.

Jamaluddin B. Hoffman ***** click here
17 New Kharijism & The Salafi Campaign of Publication

The practices of declaring the Muslims apostate (takfîr/tashrîk) and armed action (baghî) against the central Muslim authority - the Caliphate - became and continue to remain the hallmark of the Khawarij past and present.

The categorization of the Wahhabis as Kharijis has been a leitmotiv of Sunni heresiography for the past 200 years. Only now, has it become politically incorrect among the Ulema.

Similarly, the propagators of the "Salafi" and Wahhabi movement and their sponsors are mounting a worldwide offensive to convince Muslims and the world that theirs is the only way on pains of sin and damnation.

To this end a vast campaign of publication has been under way since the early thirties, but whose efforts have redoubled since the eighties.

GF Haddad **** click here
18 Some Reflections on the Wahhabiyah Movement

Excerpted from Hamdard Islamicus, Vol. XVIII No. 2 (1995)

Muhammad b. 'Abd al-Wahhab condemns the intercession, tawassul, which was applied and practised by a large number of Muslims during their prayer to God. He warns the believers against showing excessive devotion to saints and against the use of saints' graves as places of worship for tawassul. He considers these external elements polytheism, shirk.

Muhammad b. 'Abd al-Wahhab rejected all kinds of innovations, defined by him as any doctrine or action not based on the Qur'an, Sunnah or on the authority of the Companions. Among the innovations are practices such as celebrating the Prophet's birth, the use of rosary, adding minarets and ornaments to mosques, etc.

Muhammad b. 'Abd al-Wahhab distinguishes between dar al-Islam and dar al-harb extending the scope of dar al-harb to some other Muslim countries which he regards as having 'unlawful' societies.

Therefore those who live in dar al-harb where there is no freedom have to perform hijrah, emigrating from every country in which shirk and kufr are apparent.

Talip Kucukan *** click here
19 The Kharijites and Their Impact on Contemporary Islam

Much of the excesses and extremism that we observe today may be understood in terms of the origins and unfolding of Kharijism during the first few centuries of Islam.

Extremism and integrity can never co-exist in a single heart - let alone the heart of Islam. Any Islamic tendency, movement, or grouping, founded on other than the compassionate foundations of Islam will necessarily come to experience a state of spiritual entropy. But it is in the nature of "energy" to find work to do. And if that "energy" finds itself without a compassionate basis then chaos - particularly in its worst form of demented violence - is a natural consequence.

Shaykh Seraj Hendricks **** click here (part 1)

click here (part 2)

click here (part 3)

20 Wahhabism and Wahhabi Muslims

Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab (d. 1792) could be considered the first modern Islamic fundamentalist. He made the central point of his reform movement the idea that absolutely every idea added to Islam after the third century of the Mulsim era (about 950 CE) was false and should be eliminated.

Today, Wahhabism is the dominant Islamic tradition on the Arabian penninsula, though its influence is greatly reduced in the rest of the Middle East. As Osama bin Laden comes from Saudi Arabia and is Wahhabi himself, Wahhabi extremism and radical ideas of purity have obviously influenced him considerably.

Unknown ** click here
21 The Challenge of Hizb ut-Tahrir: Deciphering and Combating Radical Islamist Ideology

Conference Report, 2004


Ironically, the Wahhabi movement, after which Hizb ut-Tahrir is modeled, abolished the very Caliphate that Hizb ut-Tahrir wants to reinstate. In fact, Hizb ut-Tahrir employs the Wahhabi model of how to depose a government and clings to many other heretical beliefs held by Wahhabis.

The cruelty of the Wahhabi revolt is well established. Perhaps not surprisingly, Hizb ut-Tahrir uses this in its justification of harming the innocent.

Hizb ut-Tahrir claims—like the Wahhabi movement—that the intercession of a prophet or saint is a form of idol worship that negates one’s faith (iman). They profess that it is permissible to kill anyone who seeks intercession, equating such persons with animals...

According to the doctrine of HT, anyone claiming to know the unseen (ghaib) is an idolator (mushrik). This is another assertion shared with the Wahhabis.

Zeyno Baran (editor)
The Nixon Center
***** click here

This is a Zip file. The PDF file is quite large. Thus, it has been zipped. You would need WINZIP to unpack the file.

22 Country Report: Saudi Arabia The rise of the Al Saud coincided with that of the Muslim scholar Muhammad ibn Abd al Wahhab (1703–87), who wrote and preached against leaders and traditions that he deemed contradictory to the idea of a unitary god.

By 1765, Muhammad ibn Saud’s forces had established Wahhabism and with it Al Saud political authority over most of Najd.

After Muhammad ibn Saud died in 1765, his son, Abd al Aziz, continued the Wahhabi advance. In 1802 the Al Saud-Wahhabi armies sacked Karbala, including the Shia shrine commemorating Husayn, the martyred grandson of the Prophet Muhammad whom Shia Muslims regard as their spiritual forefather. In 1803 Wahhabi forces moved on to Mecca and Medina. These holy cities were spared the destruction that met Karbala, but the Wahhabis did destroy monuments and markers established for prayer to Muslim saints, which Wahhabi theology deemed to be acts of polytheism.

Library of Congress, Federal Research Division (USA) *** click here
23 Civil, Democratic Islam - Partners, Resources and Strategies

The Islamic world is involved in a struggle to determine its own nature and values, with serious implications for the future. What role can the rest of the world, threatened and affected as it is by this struggle, play in bringing about a more peaceful and positive outcome?

The fundamentalists put forth an aggressive, expansionist version of Islam that does not shy away from violence. They want to gain political power and then to impose strict public observance of Islam, as they themselves define it, forcibly on as broad a population worldwide as possible. Their unit of reference is not the nation-state or the ethnic group, but the Muslim community, the ummah; gaining control of particular Islamic countries can be a step on this path but is not the main goal.

... it will be necessary to discriminate between different sectors of traditionalism. Encourage those with a greater affinity to modernism, such as the Hanafi law school, versus others. Encourage them to issue religious opinions and popularize these to weaken the authority of ... Wahhabi-inspired religious rulings.... Encourage the popularity and acceptance of Sufism.

Cheryl Bernard

Published by Rand Corporation, 2003

**** click here