Shaykh Uthaymeen said, “…The solution to this problem (of differing in ijtihad issues*) is that we traverse the way of the Companions, may Allah be pleased with them, and that we know that this differing which is a result of ijtihad (scholarly reasersch on newly arisen matters, matters that there is no clear authentic text on or matters in which clear authentic text can be understood in different ways) in an issue in which ijthad is permitted (in aqidah ijtihad is not permissible and in issues of fiqh in which there is a clear authentic text like the texts stating alcohol or gambling are haraam) (and) is differing which does not have a (harmful) effect…
(What each person or group should say to each other when differing over an issue of ijtihad), I disagree with you in a particular issue because what the proof that I have, calls for me to disagree with what you are saying and you differ with me in this issue because what the proof that you have calls for you to disagree with what I say.
So in reality we are not at odds because our statements are taken based upon what we hold to be (correct Islamic evidence) and what the proof demands.
So what the proof requires is in front of all of our eyes and each of us only takes that opinion (he is upon) because it is based upon the requirement of the proof (he knows and holds to be correct).
So I commend and give credit to you because you had the courage to oppose me in defence of the proof (you hold to be correct), and I am your brother and friend, because this objection is according to the proof in your eyes (which is correct and authentic and back scholars understanding you hold is correct on this particular matter).
Thus it is obligatory on me not to hold anything against you but rather that I should thank you for taking the stance you did and you should do the same.
And if each of us were to force his opinion on the other, my forcing of my stance on you, would not be more binding than his forcing of his stance on me, for this reason I say that it is obligatory that we make this differing which is due to ijtihad not to be a cause of splitting but (a cause of) harmony.
Therefore are words can be united and good can come about (through are differing in this matter of ijtihad)…
During Hajj one year an issue came before me and some brothers. Two groups were brought before me, three to four men in each, each group accusing the other of disbelief and cursing (the other), and they were pilgrims on Hajj!
What had happened was that one of the groups said that when the other stood up to pray, they placed their right hand over the left on the chest and that this was disbelief in the sunnah (the way of the prophet in prayer) since according to this group the sunnah (the way of the prophet in prayer) was to leave the arms by the sides.
The other group said that leaving the arms by the side without putting the right hand over the left is disbelief which allows the one who does so to be cursed, and the dissension between the two was severe.
But with Allah’s grace and then the efforts of the brothers and with a clarification of the unity that it is obligatory for the Islamic ummah to practise, each one of them left while being pleased with the other.
So look at how the devil toyed with them in this issue in which they differed to the extent that each of them ended up declaring the other to be a disbeliever, whilst (bearing in mind that) the issue was about a sunnah (a recommend act in prayer (where to place the arms in prayer)) not one of the pillars of Islam, not even about something obligatory.
The most that can be said about it is that some scholars hold that placing the right hand over the left above the chest is the sunnah (the way of the prophet in prayer) and that others say that the sunnah (the way of the prophet in prayer was) to leave them (the arms) by the side.
Even though the correct answer which the sunnah (authentic hadeeth) proves is to place the right hand over the left arm as Sahl ibn Sa’d, may Allaah be pleased with him, according to what is reported in al-Bukhari, “The people were ordered that a man is to place his right hand over his left arm in prayer.”
So I hope that Allah blesses our brothers…, I hope that He blesses them with unity and love and goodness of heart.
(Lastly) When the intention is correct the cure becomes easy, as for when it is not good and when each one is amazed with his own opinion and nothing except it matters, then success will be far off.”
Majmoo’ Fataawaa wa Rasaa’il Fadilatish-Shaikh Muhammad ibn Saalih al-’Uthaimeen, vol. 27
* Is Jarh Wa Tadeel From Ijtihad Or Not?
Shaykh Aboo ’Abdul Mu’iz Muhammad ’Ali Farkoos al-Jazaa’iree said, “All praise is due to Allaah and may peace and blessings be upon the one who he sent as a mercy to the believers, upon his family, companions till the Last Day, to proceed:
I say: The scholars in jarh wa ta’deel, or in the speech of some of them about others, IS AN ISSUE OF IJTIHAD which can be either correct or incorrect. The mujtahid is rewarded for his ijtihaad and if he errs then he has one reward.
So he is rewarded in any case and the sin (of his incorrect jarh or tadeel) is raised from him based on what was stated by the Prophet: “If a judge makes a ruling and strives and turns out to be correct then he has two rewards but if he errs then he has one reward.” Reported by al-Bukhaaree…” Ref: Salafi manhaj.Com
Posted by Abdul Kareem Ibn Ozzie