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f:197 -    Addressing Yazid as Amir Ul Momineen or Raziallahu anhu
Country : Saudi Arabia,
Name : Muhammad Ilyas
Question:     What do the Ulema say about addressing Yazid as "Raziallahu anhu" or as "Amir UI Momineen?"  What is ruling about this opinion and those who hold it?
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Answer:     The Truthful Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) has informed all of the trials which the Ummah will face until the Day of Judgment itself.  Thus, the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) has informed us of the trial of Yazid also.  There are many Hadith about this.  Some mention this indirectly and some explicitly.  That the person who will first start unrest in the Ummah, the person who will first break up the Sunnah and will cast cracks in the religion will be a person from Banu Ummaya named Yazid.  The great Hadith-expert of the 3rd century Hijri Hadhrat Abdullah bin Umar Ya'ala (May Allah shower His mercy on him) has recorded a Hadith in his Musnad along with its chain of authority:

Translation:  It is narrated on the authority of Hadhrat Abu 'Ubaidah bin Jarrah (May Allah be well pleased with him) that the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) said:  The affairs of my Ummah will continue with justice. The first person to disrupt it will be a person from Banu Ummayya, who will be called Yazid. (Musnad Abu Ya'ala, Musnad Abu 'Ubaidah Raziallahu anhu).

The famous exegete (Expert in interpretation of Holy Quran) Abul Fida Ismail bin 'Umar who is famously known as Ibn Kathir has recorded this Hadith in his book Al Bidayah Wan Nihayah in Vol. 6, Pg No. 256.

The great Hadith-expert Imam Shahabuddin Ahmed Bin Hajr Makki Haithami (May Allah shower His mercy on him) has also recorded this Hadith in As Sawaaiq Al Muhriqa, Pg No. 132.  He has also recorded another Hadith in this connection in the same book on Pg No. 132:

Translation:  It is narrated on the authority of Hadhrat Abu Darda (May Allah be well pleased with him), he said: I heard the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam): The first one to change my Sunnah will be a person from Banu Ummayya called Yazid.

This Hadith has also been narrated by Allama Ibn Kathir on the authority of Hadhrat Abuzar Ghifari (May Allah be well pleased with him).

There is a Hadith in Sahih Bukhari:

Translation:  'Amr bin Yahya Sa'eed bin 'Amr bin Sa'eed narrates on the authority of his paternal grandfather; that he said: I was sitting along with Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (May Allah be well pleased with him) in Masjid Nabawi in Madina and Marwan was along with us.  Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (May Allah be well pleased with him) said: I heard the truthful Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) say: My Ummah will be destroyed at the hands of a few lads of the Quraish.  Marwan said: May Allah curse such youngsters.  Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (May Allah be well pleased with him) said: I can say 'so and so, son of so and so and so and so, son of so and so, if I want to.  Hadhrat 'Amr bin Yahya says, I, along with my grandfather, went to Bani Marwan when they were ruling over Syria and found that he was a young lad and my grandfather said shortly they will also become one of them.  We said: You understand this better.  (Sahih Bukhari, Vol. 4, Pg No. 1046)

The interpreter of Sahih Bukhari and the author of Fath Ul Bari, Hafidh Ahmed bin Hajar 'Asqalani (May Allah shower His mercy on him), mentions another Hadith in the interpretation on the authority of Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaiba, and writes: The Hadith of Musannaf Ibn Abi Shaiba says that Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (May Allah be well pleased with him) even while passing through markets, used to pray: O Allah, let me not see 60 Hijri and the rule of lads.

The indication here is that the first lad to become the ruler will do so in 60 Hijri.  Thus, this is what happened.  Yazid bin Mu'awiyah occupied the throne in the same year and stayed there until 64 Hijri and then died.

Before the distressing incident of the martyrdom of Imam Hussain (May Allah be well pleased with him), the people of Madinah became opposed to Yazid and gave the pledge of allegiance to Hadhrat 'Abdullah bin Hanzlah (May Allah be well pleased with them).  Then Yazid sent an army to attack Madinah, which attacked the people of Madinah and violated the honor of that blessed city.  On this occasion, Hadhrat 'Abdullah bin Hanzlah (May Allah be well pleased with them) gave a stirring speech and described the Unislamic activities of Yazid, which the historian Hadhrat Islam bin Muhammad bin Sa'ad (May Allah shower His mercy on him) has mentioned in detail in his book Tabaqat Kubra, Vol. 5, Pg No. 66:

Then Hadhrat 'Abdullah Bin Hanzlah (May Allah be well pleased with them) said: O my community! Fear Allah, who has no equal.  By Allah! We stood up against Yazid, when we feared that stones would be rained on us from the sky.  He is such a person, who declares marriage with mothers, daughters and sisters as permissible, who drinks wine and abandons Salaat.  By Allah! If no one from the people supports me, even then I will use my courage and bravery in this matter for the sake of Allah.

Imam Ibn Atheer (May Allah shower His mercy on him) writes in Tarikh Kamil Vol. 3, Pg no. 33:

The great Successor Hadhrat Hasan Basri (May Allah be well pleased with him) says about Yazid: He was a drunkard of the last degree, he wore silk and played with tambourine.

Imam Ibn Katheer (May Allah shower His mercy on him) writes in Bidayah Wan Nihayah, Vol 6, Pg No. 262:

Translation: The reason for this incident is that a delegation from Madina went to Damascus to meet Yazid.  When they returned, they related Yazid's habit of drinking and his other bad habits to their families.  The worst among his habit was that he missed Salaat because of wine.  For this reason, the people of Madina agreed to break their pledge of allegiance.  They declared this near the Prophet's Pulpit in Masjid Nabawi.  When Yazid came to know this, he sent an army to Madina.  The leader of the army was a person named Muslim bin 'Uqba.  The Pious Elders (Salaf Saliheen) have also addressed this person as Musrif bin 'Uqba.  When he entered Madina, he declared the lives of the Madinians and their property as "Mubah" for 3 days, which meant that for 3 days, the army could do whatever they liked with the lives and the property of the people of Madina.  Thus, in those 3 days, he martyred hundreds of people.

There is Tradition in Imam Baihaqi's Dalaail Un Nabuwwa:

Translation: It has been narrated on the authority of Hadhrat Mugheera (May Allah be well pleased with him) that Musrif bin 'Uqba looted Madina for 3 days and raped 1000, unwed, chaste daughters of Islam.  May Allah (Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala) protect us from this!

There are severe warnings in Hadith for those who just frighten the people of Madina.  There is a Hadith in Musnad Ahmed, "Musnad Madaniyyen" Hadith No. 15962.

Translation: It has been narrated on the authority of Hadhrat Saib bin Khalad (May Allah be well pleased with him) that the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) said: Whoever frightens the people of Madina by oppression, Allah will frighten him and on him rests the curse of Allah (Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala), of the angels and of all the people.  Allah (Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala) will not accept any obligatory (Fardh) or supererogatory(Nafl) act from such a person the Day of Judgment.

It can be imagined what will be the lot of the person who not only frightened the people of Madina but spilled blood and ravaged Madina and gave permission to the whole army for their animalistic deeds.

In the basic tract of beliefs (Aqaaid), which is taught in most Madrasas, Sharh Aqaaid Nasafi, Imam Sa'aduddin Taftazani (May Allah shower His mercy on him) writes:

Translation: Some Imams, because of ordering the martyrdom of Imam Hussain, declare him as a disbeliever (kafir) and defector (murtad), and hold cursing Yazid as permissible.  The scholars of this Ummah are in agreement on the permissibility of cursing those martyred Imam Hussain and those who ordered it or those consider it (the martyrdom) as permissible and those who became happy on it.  The fact is that Yazid's agreement on the martyrdom of Imam Hussain, his being happy with it and his insulting the Ahle Bait is well established by those traditions, which are in effect, equal to the "mutawatir" (recurrent) Traditions, even though its details may not be established by a first-hand report (Khabr Wahid).  Thus, we cannot exercise restraint on Yazid, but we will exercise restraint about the Iman of Yazid.  May Allah curse him and his helpers.

Hadhrat Shaykh Ul Islam Imam Muhammad Anwarullah Farooqui, the founder of Jamia Nizamia writes in Maqasid Ul Islam, Vol. 5, Pg No. 50:

Translation: "Don’t know in what pit this accursed is lying and in that world, what he is facing."

The words "Raziallahu Anhu" are used to signify Allah's pleasure.  They are used as a form of respect to praise somebody.  "Raziallahu anhu" is used specially for the Sahabah and for those pure souls, whose hearts are filled with fear and awe of Allah, as Allah himself says:

Allah well pleased with them, and they with Him:  Surah Bayyinah (98:08)

The aforementioned Hadith and the opinions of the great scholars of Islam show that Yazid was misguided, an innovator, one who changed the Sunnah and disrupted the religion.  He violated the honor of the 2 blessed sanctuaries and the honor of the Prophet's Family.  Using the word "Amir Ul Momineen" for such a person is like destroying the edifice of religion, which leads to Allah's wrath and misguidance.

The Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) has declared respecting an innovator as helping to destroy the edifice of Islam.  (Imam Tabarani's Mo'jam Ausat Hadith No: 6263)

There is a Hadith in Imam Baihaqi's Shu'abul Iman:

It has been narrated on the authority of Hadhrat Anas (May Allah be well pleased with him) that the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) said: When a innovator is respected, Allah expresses His anger and because of it, the 'Arsh trembles.  (Hadith No: 4692)

The just Caliph of Bani Ummayyah, Hadhrat 'Umar bin Abdul 'Aziz (May Allah SWT be well pleased with him) declared the person who addressed Yazid as "Raziallahu anhu" as liable to be punished.

This is written in "Tahdheeb ul Tahdheeb", the authoritative book on Rijal (the science of the classification of men, for the purpose of categorizing the Hadith), by Imam Ibn Hajar Asqalani, in Vol 11, the letter "ya", Pg No. 316.

Nouful bin Abu Aqrab states that, I was in the presence of Hadhrat Umar bin Abdul 'Aziz (May Allah shower His mercy on him), one person while talking about Yazid said, "Amir Ul Momineen Yazid said so and so and Amir Ul Momineen said so and so"  Hadhrat 'Umar bin 'Abdul 'Aziz (May Allah shower His mercy on him) said "You address Yazid as ‘Amir Ul Momineen’?" and ordered that he should be lashed 20 times.  Hence, he was lashed 20 times.

And Allah Most High knows best.

Mufti Syed Ziauddin Naqshbandi Qadri

[Professor, Islamic Law, Jamia Nizamia,
Founder-Director, Abul Hasanaat Islamic Research Center]
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