“I Don’t Have to Hate Anybody to be a Muslim…” (Scholars Respond)

Yusuf Estes, the controversial American preacher, explains his unique understanding of the system of love and hatred in Islam, saying:

When people have to hate something, that’s the beginning of the problem.  I don’t have to hate anybody to be a Muslim.  If somebody needs me to hate Christians, I don’t need that.  If you need me to hate the Jewish, I don’t need that.

Source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y4evdPukt0Q&t=8m00s

Shaykh ‘Abdur-Rahman Muhyiud-Deen, Former Professor at the Islamic University of al-Madeenah and Mufti at the Prophet’s Masjid (may Allaah preserve him), recently responded to this false teaching with the following detailed answer:

This poor, misguided person does not know about Islam. Someone who says that Islam does not include any hatred, and (this includes) that it does not include love either, since love and hatred [are inseparable]… This is Liberalist philosophy. The Shaytan (Devil) has spoken upon this person’s tongue when he said there is no hatred, since there would be no love either, as a logical result. Impossible. You must hate disbelief and its people. You detest disbelief and its people. Could you watch the cross being worshipped and say: Be happy, there’s nothing (wrong) with that, or it’s nothing?! He would either be happy, or say there is nothing wrong. There is absolutely something wrong here, why is that? Because everything that is worshipped besides Allah is an enemy to Allah! All of mankind are required to worship Allah, ( O Mankind! ) What? [Students reply, ( Worship your Lord ).] [2:21]

It is a must to love Allah: ( You do not find any people who believe in Allah and the Last Day having mutual love for those who have opposed Allah [and His Messenger] ) [58:22]

( There are some people who take (things) less than Allah… ) As what? ( As partners, loving them as they love Allah. However, the people who believe have stronger [love for Allah] ) [2:165]

Love and hatred are found in the heart, however they appear outwardly, just as eemaan (faith) is found in the heart and appears on the limbs as well. Eemaan is in the heart, love is in the heart, and hatred is in the heart. They (all) become manifest on the limbs, as Allah, the Mighty and Exalted, has said. This is similar to how a tree contains water, right? When a tree receives enough water it becomes green. When it receives less water, it turns yellow. When the water is scarce, what happens? It dies! Similar to this is eemaan – when it is alive in the heart, it has righteous deeds that extend and increase it, since it may increase or decrease. How? By righteous actions. It increases with good deeds and decreases with bad deeds.

It is not possible for the tree of eemaan to be green in such a bankrupt person’s heart. Rather it is dead! He does not hate disbelief and its people?! Think about the idols, huh? What did Ibraaheem do to them? What did he do to them? Maa shaa’ Allah, playing games… Relics (of art or ancient civilizations)! Leave them as relics, what do you think? Their idols! What did Ibraaheem do? ( He then broke them into pieces, except for a large one they had ) [21:58] He challenged their faith! Allah made Ibraaheem a patron ally! Did he hate for Allah’s sake or not? Did he break their idols or not?

Ah, the Messenger, what did he do with the idols of Quraysh when he came to Makkah? Did he leave them (as relics)? Huh? Did he leave them – O people! – or what did he do? He broke them, how many of them? ( The truth has come… ) [17:81], and what? ( And falsehood has perished ) … Did he break them or not? Allahu akbar.

As for him saying, “There is no hatred (in Islam),” why is there no hatred? How is there no hatred? This poor person does not know about Islam! He is astray, leading others astray, he and those who follow him!

[Someone reminds the shaykh of a hadeeth…]

Well done! He has reminded us with (the hadeeth): “The strongest handhold of eemaan is to love for Allah’s sake and to hate for Allah’s sake.” [Ahmad, 4/286, authentic]

Source: The shaykh’s recorded answer given after the Jumu’ah prayer on the 16th of Jumaadaa al-Aakhirah, 1434, in Jeddah. (Corresponding to: April 26, 2013 on the Christians’ calendar) [On Youtube]  You may also review the complete Arabic and English transcript here.

Important note: Love and hatred are natural human emotions.  Islam does not require Muslims to pretend not to have emotions, as the Christians believe they are required to do in their religion.  Instead, Islam guides us to balance and moderation in our emotions, and thus we love those who deserve to be loved, and hate those who deserve to be hated, in a balanced way that does not interfere with our obligation to be fair and just to everyone:

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ كُونُواْ قَوَّامِينَ للهِ شُهَدَاءَ بِالقِسْطِ وَلَا يَجْرِمَنَّكُمْ شَنَئَانُ قَوْمٍ عَلَى أَلَّا تَعْدِلُواْ اعْدِلُواْ هُوَ أَقْرَبُ لِلتَّقْوَى وَاتَّقُواْ اللهَ إِنَّ اللهَ خَبِيرٌ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ

( O you who believe!  Stand devoutly for Allah as witnesses of justice, and do not let your animosity for some people prevent you from being fair.  Be fair, as it is closer to piety, and observe your duty to Allah.  Verily, Allah is all-informed of what you do! ) [Soorah al-Maa’idah, 5:8]

Yusuf Estes needs to be reminded that Allah’s Messenger (may Allah raise his rank and grant him peace) identified “hating” as an essential part of faith in Islam.  Hopefully, Yusuf Estes would not dare respond by saying:

I don’t need that!

These kinds of blatant contradictions to true Islamic teachings coming from Yusuf Estes are nothing new.  In fact, the following free e-book outlines many of the most dangerous of his beliefs, so that you and your family can educate yourselves and be on guard against them:

The Teachings of Yusuf Estes About the Quran (PDF)

Also, be sure to read this explanation by the great scholar, Shaykh ‘Abdul-‘Azeez ibn Baaz (may Allah have Mercy on him):

Shaykh Ibn Baaz on Love and Hatred in Islam

Be clear on your Religion so you do not fall for the calls to misguidance, like those found in the teachings of Yusuf Estes.

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