Shaykh Albani said, “There is no doubt that it is not allowed for a Muslim to show bigotry/fanatacism for any person in the world except our Prophet because he is the one who was sent as a mercy and guide for the worlds and he is the only one who we have been ordered to take as an excellent example to be followed.
All of the scholars whose knowledge we benefit from, we only do so not because of themselves or their persons but only because they are the guides who show us the light and guidance that our Prophet was upon.
So when a Muslim becomes bigoted for one of the Shaykhs, whether he is alive or dead, then the meaning of that is that he has forgotten the message of the Prophet and he has [instead] stuck/clung to this person who it is not allowed to couple with the Messenger in knowledge, manners or perfection–so there is nothing strange when I say that verily, a Muslim’s bigotry for one person or Shaykh is indeed a breach/violation on his part of his testimony that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah.
For this reason when I explain the testimony that Allaah is One having no partner and that Muhammad is His Slave and Messenger, I say that indeed the first [part of the] testimony necessitates that a Muslim not worship anything else with Allaah for if he does then it is pure shirk. regarding the second testimony, [i.e.,] that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah, His Slave and Messenger, [I say that] whoever in this life takes an example or model to follow other than Allaah’s Messenger as many of the bigots today do [then it is a breach/violation of this part of the testimony].
As is the madhhab of the Sufis who take their Shaykhs as examples and some of them have gone to extremes and laid out this major misguidance [I’m about to mention] for their followers: that they do not take another example to follow along with the Shaykh, so they said without any embarrassment or shame, ‘The example of the follower [mureed] who has two Shaykhs is like a woman who has two husbands.’ Therethey enslaved the followers, making them their slaves such that we used to hear from some of them that they would not carry out any of their worldly affairs except after consulting with his Shaykh.
They have taken [the] Shaykhs as examples to be followed more than the Messenger’s Companions –and that is [shown] because the Prophet’s Companions use to ask him about things connected to their religion relating to selling, buying, business transactions, [as for whether] they should go [here or there], should they travel or not, [then] no, they were free, because from the completion of the Prophet’s call and [the completion of] his conveyance of his Lord’s Sharee’ah was that he said to them, ‘Whatever I have ordered you to do concerning your religion then do as much of it as you can, and whatever I have ordered you with concerning your worldly affairs, then you know better about your worldly affairs. ’
The Prophet clarified to his Companions that he had not come to teach them about their worldly affairs, or about their striving and travel through the lands in search of sustenance, but on the contrary that he had come to teach them the acts of obedience and worship and avoidance of forbidden things which they could fear Allaah the Blessed and Most High with.
As for the Shaykhs of the Sufis, they have enslaved their followers [mureeds] completely and made them believe that they must consult with them in every issue related to their worldly affairs let alone their religious ones…
So look at how breaching/violating the [testimony] that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allaah, sincerity in following him alone and not associating partners with him in following him, [lead to] the people falling into shirk and misguidance because they committed shirk in following the Prophet of Allah by following someone else along with him.
For this reason, it is not allowed for someone in this world who believes in Allaah and the Last Day to take one Shaykh no matter how lofty and exalted he is, no matter how much of a scholar or how righteous and so on he thinks him to be, but rather he should be like a bee, which visits all the trees and flowers, taking from its stomach the honey which has been testified as being a cure for mankind.
This is how it is fitting for a Muslim to be, he takes from every scholar the knowledge that he has as the scholars of the Salaf, may Allaah be pleased with them, were, for in the biographies of many of the scholars they wrote that they had hundreds of Shaykhs…” Ref: Fataawaa Raabigh, 5
Posted by Abdul Kareem Ibn Ozzie