Our Beacon Forum

Muhammad Bin Abdul Wahab
By:Teepu Siddique, UAE
Date: Monday, 2 April 2018, 4:01 pm

The British have and had their own interests in mind through history. They were certainly against the movement of Muhammad Bin Abdul Wahab. They sent an Egyptian army to destroy it.

The Saudis were defacto rulers of Najd. There have been three Saudi kingdoms. The origin goes back to the 15th century, predating Muhammad Abdul Wahab. The Saudi empire has expanded and contracted over the centuries. They expanded the empire whenever they got an opportunity. They were in conflict with the British and the Ottomans. The Ottomans were regarded as the extension of European powers in the 18th and 19th centuries. The Mahdi of Sudan’s revolt was based on such a perception. The Ottomans aligned themselves with the British and other European powers once their power was degraded and their religion became ritualized to Sufi practices and mawlud.

The movement of Muhammad ibn Wahab had severely damaged the dome on top of the Karbala tomb of Hussein (ra) in 1802. This prompted the Ottomans to send troops , it frightened the British immensely on account of their designs on the middle east and Mughal India. From their point of view any Islamic movement was dubbed as Wahabbi. Given the ‘love of the tomb’ in South Asia, it was remarkably successful. Given the fact that Karbala and Najaf have been groomed and developed to compete with Makkah, the Shias were indeed upset and that’s the real reason for their animosity against the Muhawwid movement. The Shias have little models of these grave supra structures in their prayer houses and after prayers they ‘visit’ these models as Hindus visit their idols.


At the advent of World War I the Ottomans were allied with Germany against the British. It was preceded by a century of Ottoman retreat from the Balkans and Eastern Europe and genocide of five million Ottoman Muslims. In the meantime the Shia governments of Iran had been stabbing them in the back since the 16th century.
It is probably truer to say that the UAE and other emirates were planted by the British, just as the evil Nussairis in Syria were given power by the French . The rulers of Iraq and Afghanistan are also appointed by foreign powers. In case of Iraq, the US and Iran and the US in the case of Afghanistan.
The final defeat of the Ottomans in the Middle East was at the hands of the British (Lawrence and regular armies) in alliance with the Sharif (‘Sayeds’) of Makkah.

Kya khoob Ameer-e-Faisal ko Sannosi ne paighaam diyaa
Tu naam-o-nasb ka Hijaazi hai, par dil ka Hijaazi ban na sakaa

It provided the opportunity to the Saudi tribes to expand. They eventually allied themselves with the Americans under Roosevelt, this was on account of the discovery of oil and replacement of the British by America as the imperial power. The Ottoman empire in early 20th century was no longer a mammoth, rather the ‘Sick man of Europe’

In 1928 Iqbal gave six lectures on the invitation of the Madras Muslim Association in Madras, Hyderabad and Aligarh. A seventh was added and they were published in 1934 by Oxford University Press. OUP never reissued the book. It was reprinted in Pakistan and India and a well annotated edition by M. Saeed Sheikh has become standard. The Preface of the book was written by Iqbal himself, so he takes authorship. I would like to know the source of ‘ different people having collected different versions of the lectures’.

You can obtain the first American edition with the original lectures published by Stanford University Press in 2012. Turn to page 120-121 and learn about Iqbal’s opinion of Imam Ibn e Taimiya and how he develops it to Muhammad Ibn Abduln Wahab. Knowingly or unknowingly, the Iranian revolution adopted some of the same precepts.
Ahle Bayt primarily refers to the immediate inhabitants of a man’s house.

So it refers to wives and other dependents living under that roof. This is as you ask politely about ahle khana or ghar wale. Ali (ra) lived separately and had his isn household. It makes little practical sense that the Prophet (saww) was talking about Ali (ra) and his household. Ali ((ra) was a respected member of the community and a warrior of great merit not needing any protection. The widows of the Prophet (saww) had a special position. Mothers of the believers , could not marry, advised to stay in their homes. Who would take care of them ? Very vulnerable. Hence the directive. Some have expanded ahle bayt to Ali(ra) and others and even to Bani Hashem. That is fine, but the context in the Qur’an is to the wives.

So what relevance does that have today?
If you ask I will give you mu opinion.

Best Wishes