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Muhammad ibn Abd al Wahhab
Muhammad ibn Abd al-Wahhab (b. 1703 'Uyyainah العوينة, Najd, Arabia - d. 1792 al-Dir'yah ) is the most famous scholar of the fundamentalist movement within Islam known as the Wahhabi movement and after whom the movement is named. He considered this movement an effort to purify Islam by returning all Muslims to what he believed were the original principles of Islam, as typified by the as-salaf as-saliheen, the earliest converts to Islam, by rejecting what he regarded as corruptions introduced by Bida (innovation,reformation) and Shirk (idolatry).
Ibn Abd Al-Wahhab was educated in Medina (part of modern Saudi Arabia), and travelled in Iraq and later, Iran. It was in Iran that he began preaching against the Sufi Muslims then predominant in the region.
After his return to Medina he wrote his Kitab at-tawhid (Arabic, "Book of Monotheism", 1736), which became a reference text for the Wahhabi sect of Islam. His teachings led to a controversy which resulted in him being expelled; he moved onto the city of Ad-Dir'iyah.
Alliance with Ibn Saud
An alliance between Ibn Abd al-Wahhab and Muhammad bin Saud caused Wahhabbism to spread in areas that Ibn Saud conquered.
Beliefs and Practices
See Wahhabism for details.
Influence and Legacy
Ibn Abd al-Wahhab is viewed as a reformer by those who follow the Wahhabi sect of Islam. Saudi Arabia's official religion is Islam according to Ibn Abd al-Wahhab's interpretation. Ibn Abd al-Wahhab's writings have also influenced the fundamentalist ideology of Takfir wal-Hijra.
He is referred to as a Hadith-Rejector by most scholars of the four main maddhabs, and his teachings denouncing all other forms of Islam as Shirk and Bidat have led to a violent and intolerant stream of Islam streaming, in particular, out of Saudi Arabia.
Some Critics, such as Ibn Dawud, have referred to him as "The Father of Islamic terrorism".
- THE DOCTRINE OF AHL AL-SUNNA VERSUS THE "SALAFI" MOVEMENT -- Especially beginning at the section "The Origin of the Wahabi Sect"
- Britannica Concise Encyclopedia
- Ibn Abdul Wahhab, his life and mission - by Abdul Aziz Ibn Baz
- The Movement of Muhammad Ibn Abdul Wahhab
- Relationship between Ibn Taymiyyah and Ibn Abdul Wahhab - from a sympathetic site
- Wahhabi article in 1911 Encyclopedia
- Full Text of Kitab Al Tawhid by Ibn Abdul Wahhab
- Information by Saudi American Forum
- By Liberal Islam Network
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