Whether Allah Almighty has shadow
Fatwa No: 367810

  • Fatwa Date:3-1-2018 - Rabee' Al-Aakhir 16, 1439
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Question

Assalaamu alaykum wa rahmatullaahi wa barakaatuhu. Does Allah have a shadow? Is there a contradiction between the fatwa of Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen and that of Shaykh Ibn Baaz, may Allah have mercy upon them? I have read a fatwa of Shaykh Ibn Baaz wherein he said, "Yes, as is reported in this narration and in some transmissions, 'in the shadow of His Throne.' However, in the Sahihayn, it is, 'in His shadow,' for He has a shadow that is befitting His Glory, and we do not know its form, just like with the rest of His Attributes." [Majmoo‘ Al-Fataawa Vol. 28 p. 402] And according to Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen, Allah does not has a shadow. Here is his fatwa:
"Here, a very important question arises, which I would like to bring to your attention, and that is, some people believe that the meaning of shade in the hadith is the shade of the Lord, the Most High, and that is a very wrong assumption, no one will assume such a thing but an ignorant person.This is because the people will be on the earth, and this shade is due to the sun, so if this shade was that of the Lord, Most High, then this would imply that the sun would be above Allah, and this is something impossible that will not happen, since Allah, the Exalted, is above His creation and encompasses everything." [Sharh Riyaad As-Saaliheen vol. 3 p. 347]
Is Sheikh Ibn Baz ignorant, according to Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen's fatwa? What is the correct view on this matter of creed? Is there any sayings of the Salaf (pious predecessors) on this issue? Please clarify. May Allah reward you.

Answer

All perfect praise be to Allah, the Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger. 

The scholars differed in opinion about what is meant by attributing the shade to Allah. A group of them held the view that the meaning is the shade of the Throne, and this is the view chosen by Al-Qurtubi, Ibn Rajab, Ibn Hajar, and held as preponderant by Ibn ‘Uthaymeen  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  them.

This view is supported by explicit narrations.

We have not come across any scholar who held the view that it is one of the Attributes of Allah, except for Shaykh Ibn Baaz, as in his Fataawa, and it is possible that he read a statement of former scholars in this regard. It is believed that he would not have said such a thing unless he had taken this from the predecessors.

It should also be noted that there is a fatwa of the Standing Committee on this subject, holding that the intended meaning is the shadow of the Throne. Shaykh Ibn Baaz was one of the scholars who signed this fatwa.

The Standing Committee was asked, "What is meant by the shadow mentioned in the hadeeth of the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) 'There are seven kinds of people who will be under the shadow of Allah on the Day there will be no shade except His?'"

Answer:

"What is meant by the shade in the hadeeth is the shadow of the Throne of the Most Beneficent, Blessed and Exalted be He, as explained in the hadeeth of Salmaan, may Allah be pleased with him, in Sunan Ibn Mansoor, which reads, 'There are seven kinds of people who will be shaded by Allah under the shade of His Throne…'

Al-Haafith ibn Hajar  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him classified its chain of narrators as Hasan (good) in Al-Fath (2/144).

Al-Haafith ibn Rajab  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him said at the end of his explanation of this hadeeth from Saheeh Al-Bukhaari, Imaam Ahmad and At-Tirmithi (who classified it as Saheeh [authentic]) reported on the authority of Abu Hurayrah, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Prophet  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) said, ‘Whoever grants respite to his debtor or forgives his debt will be under the shade of the Throne on the Day of Judgement.’ This indicates that what is meant by the shade of Allah is the shadow of His Throne.'

Ibn Al-Qayyim  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him pointed out this meaning in his book Al-Waabil As-Sayyib and at the end of his book Rawdhat Al-Muhibbeen. May Allah grant us success, and may He bless our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and his Companions.

The Permanent Committee for Scholarly Research and Iftaa’

Signed by:

Bakr Abu Zayd, Member;

Saalih Al-Fawzaan, Member;

Abdullah bin Ghudayyaan, Member;

Abdul Azeez Aal Ash-Shaykh, Vice President;

Abdul Azeez Bin Abdullah bin Baaz, President.

Allah knows best."

There are also some other explanations for the meaning of the shade mentioned by the interpreters of the hadeeth.

Allah knows best.

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