Ar-Ru`ya (Seeing Of Allah)


Definition of Ru’yah In the Arabic language:

(The letter) Ra’, (The letter) Hemzah, (The letter) Ya’, make a root that indicates sight and vision with the eye or mind (baseerah).
And Ru’yah with the eye (seeing) has one object, while Ru’yah with knowledge has two objects (meaning in sentence structure).

The belief of the Pious Salaf (Predecessors), Ahl As-Sunnah and Jama’ah, in regards to Seeing Allah:

He is not seen in this worldly life because of Allah’s  (سبحانه و تعالى) saying, when Musa (Moses) alayhi assalam asked to see Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) : {You cannot see Me} [7:143], and for the saying of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) in the hadith about the Dajjal: ”You will not see your Lord until you die.” As for the believers seeing Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى) on the day of Judgement, then it is confirmed by the Quran, Sunnah, and consensus of the Pious Salaf, and this sight will be with the eyes, as it will be proven in this article insha Allah.

Evidence from the Quran:

Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى) said: translation of the meaning “Some faces that Day shall be radiant Looking at their Lord (Allâh)” (Surah Al-Qiyama75:22-23)
“For those who have done good is the best (reward) and even more” (Surah Younus 10:26)
The Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) explained the “even more” (ziyadah) to mean: looking at Allah (سبحانه و تعالى), the hadith is quoted under the evidence from the Sunnah. “Nay! Surely they will be veiled from their Lord that Day” (Surah Al-Mutaffafin 83:15). Meaning the kuffar (disbelievers) will be veiled from seeing Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى) , as the Salaf and Imams of Sunnah explained.

Evidence from the Sunnah (Ahadith)

The Prophet(صلى الله عليه وسلم) said:
”When those deserving of Paradise would enter Paradise, the Blessed and the Exalted would ask: Do you wish Me to give you anything more? They would say: Hast Thou not brightened our faces? Hast Thou not made us enter Paradise and saved us from Fire? He (the narrator) said: He (Allah) would lift the veil, and of things given to them nothing would be dearer to them than the sight of their Lord, the Mighty and the Glorious. He then recited the verse: {For those who do good is the best reward and even more} “ (Sahih Muslim)

He (صلى الله عليه وسلم) also said: ”You will see your Lord with your eyes.“ (Sahih Bukhari)

Jarir said: The Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه وسلم) came out to us on the night of the full moon and said: ”On the day of rising you will see your Lord as you see this(moon). You will not be harmed by seeing Him.“ (Sahih Bukhari)

Ibn Hurairah radhi-Allahu anhu- narrated that the people asked: “Messenger of Allah, will we see our Lord on the Day of Judgement?” The Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said, ”Do you dispute with one another about seeing the moon on the night of the full moon?“ They said: “No, Messenger of Allah.”He asked: ”Do you dispute with one another about seeing the sun when there are no clouds?“ They answered: “No, Messenger of Allah.” He said: ”You will see Him like that.“ (Sahih al Bukhari)

The Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) also said: ”There is none among you but that his Lord will speak to him without any interpreter between Him and him, or a veil to veil him.“ (Sahih al Bukhari)

Statements from the Pious Salaf:

1. Abdur-Rahman bin Abi Layla (3) (A Tabi`ee/d. 83 H.) said regarding Allah’s (سبحانه و تعالى)  saying: ” For those who have done good is the best (reward) and even more (ziyadah)” [10:26] : The “best reward” (Al-Husna) is the Jannah (Paradise), and the “even more” (ziyadah) is looking at the Face (wajh) of Allah Azza wa Jal, Neither darkness nor dust nor any humiliating disgrace shall happen to them after seeing Him (Allah).
2.`Amer bin Sa`d Al-Bajali (Tabi`ee/d. around 90 H.) said regarding ayah [10:26] : Ziyadah (even more) is looking at the Face (wajh) of their Lord  (سبحانه و تعالى)
3. Qatadah (Tabi`ee/d. 117 H.) said regarding the ayah [10: 26] : “As for the ziyadah, it is looking at the Face of the Most Gracious (Allah).”
4. Al-Awza`i (d. 157 H.) and Sufyan Ath-Thawri (d. 161 H.) : Al-Waleed bin Muslim said: “I asked Al-Awza`i, Sufyan Ath-Thawri, and Malik bin Anas about the hadeeths that mention the Ru’yah (seeing Allah)  (سبحانه و تعالى) , so they said: “Pass it as it came, without (asking) How.”
5. Abdul-Aziz bin Abdullah Al-Majishoon (d. 164 H.) said, when he was asked about what the Jahmiyyah innovated:
The Shaytan (devil) continued to busy them with their false hopes until they negated His saying “Some faces that Day shall be radiant * Looking at their Lord (Allâh)” [75:22-23], so they said: ‘No one sees Him on the day of Judgement.’ , By Allah they have negated the best honor that He honored his awliya’ with on the day of judgment, that is looking at
His  (سبحانه و تعالى) Face.
6. Imam Malik bin Anas (d. 179 H.) said: “The people look at Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى)  on the day of judgment with their eyes.” He also said about the reports on seeing Allah (سبحانه و تعالى): “pass them as they came without (asking) How.”
7. Imam Shafi`I (d. 204 H.) said:”In Allah’s saying (translation of the meaning) : “Nay! Surely they will be veiled from their Lord that Day” [83:15] is evidence that His awliya’ see
Him on the day of Judgement with the vision of their faces (i.e. eyes).” And in another report: evidence that the awliya’ of Allah see Allah (سبحانه و تعالى).
8. Hisham bin Ubaidellah Ar-Razi al-Hanafi (d. 221 H.) : It has reached us from the tafsir (explanation) of the Quran, and the muhkam Hadith, that Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى) is seen in the Hereafter. Then he mentioned the reports in tafsir of the Quran and hadiths of the Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه وسلم).
9. Ishaq bin Rahwaih (d. 238 H.) said: “And it has passed in the the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (صلى الله عليه وسلم) that the people of Jannah will see their Lord, and it is from the greatest favors for the people of Paradise.”
10. Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal (d. 241 H.) : It reached him that a man said: “Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى)  is not seen in the Hereafter.”, so he (Imam Ahmad) became extremely angry, and said: “Whoever says that Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى)  is not seen in the Hereafter then he has disbelieved, upon Him is the curse of Allah and His Anger, whoever it was; Hasn’t Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) said : “Some faces that Day shall be radiant  Looking at their Lord (Allâh)”[75:22-23], and he Ta`ala said: “Nay! Surely they will be veiled from their Lord that Day” [83:15], this is evidence that the believers see Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى). He also said: “The Jahmiyyah said: “Allah is not seen in the Hereafter.” And Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى)  said: “Nay! Surely they will be veiled from their Lord that Day” [83:15], this cannot be except that Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى)  is seen. And (He)  (سبحانه و تعالى)  said: “Some faces that Day shall be radiant  Looking at their Lord (Allâh)” [75:22-23], this is looking at Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى), and the Hadeeths reported from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم): ”You will see Your Lord“ with a sound narration … and the Quran is a witness that Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى)  is seen in the Hereafter.
11. Khushaish bin Asram (d. 253 H.) said in his book “Al-Istiqamah” :”And Jahm (founder of Jahmiyyah sect) denied (the belief in) looking at Allah (سبحانه و تعالى), and Allah said : “Some faces that Day shall be radiant  Looking at their Lord (Allâh)” [75:22-23], and said: {Their greeting on the Day they shall meet Him will be Salâm Peace} [Surah Al-Ahzab33:44]. Then he mentions a number of textual evidences. And he said: “If the believer is veiled from his Lord and does not see him, and the disbeliever is veiled from his Lord, then what then what favor does a believer have over the disbeliever? And the speech of Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى), His Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم), and the companions of His Messenger are more rightfully to be followed than the sayings of Jahm in the seeing of Allah (سبحانه و تعالى).
12. Muhammad bin Yahya Adh-Dhuhli (d. 258 H.) : Muhammd bin Yahya was asked about the hadith: “Did you see Allah?” He (صلى الله عليه وسلم) answered: ”It isn’t for anyone to see Allah (سبحانه و تعالى).” He (Adh-Dhuhli) said: “That is in this world, but in the Hereafter the people of Jannah will look at Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) with their sight.”
13. Abu Zur`ah Ar-Razi (d. 264 H.), and Abu Hatim Ar-Razi (d. 277 H.) said: “We have reached the Scholars in all the lands, The Hijaz, Iraq, Sham and Yemen, and from their Madhhab was:that Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) will be seen in the hereafter, the people of Jannah will see Him with their sight, and will hear His speech how and as He Wills.
14. Uthman Ad-Darimi (d. 280 H.) said: “When Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) put a restriction for seeing Him in the Hereafter with His saying: “Looking (ila) at their Lord (Allâh)” (i.e. with the preposition “ila” which means to/towards), we knew that it is the seeing of the eyes.”
15. Abu Bakr bin Abi `Asim (d. 287 H.) said:”and from the matters which the people of knowledge have agreed upon, and attributed it to the Sunnah is …. Affirmation of the seeing of Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) , His awliya’ see Him in the Hereafter, the seeing of the eye, as the reports have come.”
16. Abu Al-Abbas Tha`lab (d. 291 H.) said regarding the ayah “Their greeting on the Day they shall meet Him will be Salâm Peace” [33:44] :The scholars of the Arabic language are upon Agreement that the “meeting” here (i.e. in the ayah) is not but seeing with the eyes.

Statements of Scholars after the era of the Salaf

17. Ibn Jarir At-Tabari (d. 310 H.) said: “And the believers see their Lord (سبحانه و تعالى)  on the day of Judgement with the sight, like they see the sun without any clouds, and like they see the moon when it is full (i.e. in its clarity), because of the hadith of the Prophet  (صلى الله عليه وسلم).”
18. Abu Ja`far Tahawi (d. 321 H.) said in his famous aqeedah: “Ru’yah is true for the people of Jannah, without encompassment and without kayfiyyah.”
19. Abu Bakr al-Ajurri (d. 360 H.) :As for the people of happiness: …. They believed in Allah  (سبحانه و تعالى) alone, did not associate any partners with Him, and affirmed their speech with actions, so He ended their lives upon that (i.e. Tawheed and truthfulness), so they are in their graves in bliss, on the day of resurrection they are given glad tidings, and looking towards Allah (سبحانه و تعالى)  with their eyes.
20. Ibn Shaheen (d. 385 H.) : And I bare witness that Allah (سبحانه و تعالى)  is seen on the day of judgment, and He appears to His creation so the people of Jannah would see Him,and He is veiled from the people of disbelief.
21. Ibn Abi Zamanin al-Maliki (d. 399 H.) : “And from the sayings of Ahl As sunnah: That the believers see their Lord in the Hereafter , and He is veiled from the disbelievers and polytheists, so they do not see Him.”
22. Abu Uthman As-Sabuni Ash-Shafi`I (d. 449 H.) : “And Ahl As Snnah bare witness that the believers see their Lord (سبحانه و تعالى) on the day of Judgement with their sight, and they look at him, as it has been reported by authentic narrations from the Messenger of Allah  (صلى الله عليه وسلم) who said: ”You see your Lord as you see the moon on the night it is full“. And the likening in this report is the likening of the seeing (i.e. the action of seeing the moon and seeing Allah) and not the likening of the seen. And he said in his will that he bares witness that the awliya’ of Allah: See Him with their eyes in the Hereafter.

The Meaning of Allah’s  (سبحانه و تعالى) saying: {No vision can grasp Him, but He grasps all vision}(Surah Al-An’am 6:103)

A group from the Pious Salaf explained this ayah to mean: The seeing of Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) in this world (in dunya):

Rafee` Abu Al-`Aaliyah (d. around 93 H.) said in the interpretation of ayah {“Glory be to You, I turn to You in repentance and I am the first of the believers.”} (Al-Araf 7: 143):
And before him there were believers, but he (Musa) says –As Allah mentions in the Quran: {“I am the first of the believers”} I am the first who believes in this, that no one see You before the day of judgment. And He says: {No vision can grasp Him, but He grasps all vision} meaning that no vision can see Him in this world (dunya).”

Isma`il Ibn `Aliyyah (d. 193 H.) said in tafsir of the ayah:”This is in the dunya (this worldly life).”

Ibn Al-Mubarak (d. 181 H.) : Ibn Rahwaih said: “It was said to Ibn Al-Mubarak that someone interpreted the two ayat {No vision can grasp Him, but He grasps all vision} [6:103] and {Some faces that Day shall be radiant Looking at their Lord (Allâh)} [75:22-23] to be contradictory, so he makes waqf in the issue of Ru’yah (i.e. He doesn’t say that Allah will be seen nor that he won’t be seen).” So Ibn Al-Mubarak said:”The sheikh is ignorant of the meaning of the ayah, Allah’s saying {No vision can grasp Him, but He grasps all vision} does not contradict {Some faces that Day shall be radiant * Looking at their Lord (Allâh)}, because the first one is in this world, and the other one is in the Hereafter.”

Yahya bin Sallam (d. 200 H.) said: (No vision grasps Him) meaning in this world.

Hisham bin Ubaidellah Ar-Razi al Hanafi (d. 221 H.) : Ibn Abi Hatim reported that His father –rahimahullah- reported that Hisham bin Ubaidellah said something similar to that.” Meaning the interpretation of Isma`il Ibn `Aliyyah that was quoted previously.

Uthman Ad-Darimi (d. 280 H.) : So it is said to this Merrisi (the heretic) : “You read the book of Allah and your heart is inattentive in what is recited to you. Do you not see that the companions of Musa begged Musa to see Allah in this world (dunya) and said {“O Mûsâ (Moses)! We shall never believe in you until we see Allâh plainly.”} [Surah Al- Baqarah 2:55], and didn’t say “until we see Allah in the hereafter” but in this world, and Allah has said: {No vision grasps Him} meaning the vision of the people of this world. And if they had asked him (Musa) to see Him in the Hereafter, like the companions of Muhammad  (صلى الله عليه وسلم) asked Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم), they wouldn’t have been hit with a thunder-bolt, and he wouldn’t have told them except what Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said to his companions, when they asked him: “Do we see our Lord on the day of Judgement ?” so he said: ”yes, you will not be harmed in seeing Him“.

And a group of them interpreted the word “Al-Idrak” in the ayah [6:103] to mean: encompassment, meaning that the sight does not encompass Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) , though it sees Him on the day of judgment.

Qatadah (d. 117 H.) said regarding the interpretation of the ayah:”And He is too Great for the vision to encompass Him.”

Abu Bakr Al-Ajurri (d. 360 H.) : If someone said: ‘What is the interpretation of His (Allah) saying: {No vision grasps Him}?’, it is said to him: According to the people of knowledge, it means: Visions do not surround Him, nor encompass Him (سبحانه و تعالى) , and they see him without encompassment, and they do not doubt seeing Him, as a man would say: ‘I have seen the sky’, and he is truthful, and his sight did not encompass the whole sky.”

Ibn Hibban (d. 354 H.) said in his “sahih”: “He is seen on the day of Judgment, and the visions do not encompass Him when it sees Him, for Al-Idrak is encompassment, and Ru’yah is looking, and Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) is seen and not encompassed.”

Abu Muhammad al-Baghawi (d. 510 H.) said: “Know that Idrak is not the same as ru’yah, because al-Idrak is: to reach the end/extreme limit of something, and encompass it, and ru’yah is to see with the eye. And ru’yah can be without encompassement.”

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