Kashf and Ilham of Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah

Foreword: Many of the current day Salafiyyah viciously oppose karamat (miracles) of the awliya’ mentioned in books and narrated by people, etc. The following article is taken from a biography on Shaykh al-Islam Taqi al-Din Ibn Taymiyyah (Allah have mercy on him) by his contemporary, Imam Hafidh Abu Hafs ‘Umar bin ‘Ali al-Bazzar which he entitled al-A’lam al-‘Aliyyah fi Manaqib Ibn Taymiyyah. It has been translated into English as The Lofty Virtues of Ibn Taymiyyah Abu Sabaaya. The article expounds on some of the miracles of Shaykh al-Islam. The stories related concern the true quality given by Allah to his chosen ones and that is of kashf and ilham. Shaykh al-Islam possessed these qualities as is evident in the stories mentioned. This is not only a slap on the face of the current day Salafiyyah who deem kashf and ilham of the awliya’ as shirk but also re-affirms the position of Ibn Taymiyyah as a Shaykh al-Islam of the Ahl ‘l-Sunnah.

Imam Hafiz Abu Hafs ‘Umar bin ‘Ali al-Bazzar writes:

Many trustworthy individuals narrated to me various miracles that they witnessed from him, and I will mention some of them here, beginning with two that I personally witnessed.

There was once an argument between some of the noble scholars and myself in some issues that we were debating at length over. So, we decided to stop our discussion and go to the Shaykh to give us the decisive word. We found that the Shaykh himself had come to us, and when we were going to ask him about what we were discussing, he delved into each issue before we could even speak. He laid out each of our positions regarding what we were discussing, mentioned the opinions of the scholars on them, and then clarified which opinions were most supported by the evidence, until he got to the final issue we wanted to ask him about and told us what we ourselves were hoping to learn from asking him. So, my companions and I were speechless and shocked at what he had just learned from him, as well as what Allah had made him privy to regarding what we had been thinking of. And during the days I spent with him, if I wanted to research a particular issue, I would barely have just thought of it only to find him proceeding to explaining it to me, and providing an answer from numerous angles.

The righteous, knowledgeable Shaykh Ahmad bin al-Harimi told me that he once traveled to Damascus. He said: “So, it happened that when I arrived, I had no provision or money with me, and I knew nobody in the city. So, I began to walk through its streets like a lost person. Suddenly, I saw the Shaykh walking swiftly towards me. He greeted me, smiled in my face, put in my hand a small pouch filled with some dirhams, and said to me: “Spend these now and stop worrying about what you are thinking about, as Allah will never abandon you.” He then walked away as if he had only come to say this to me. So, I supplicated for him, and I was very happy with this. I then asked some of the people: “Who is this man?” They said: “You don’t know him?! He is Ibn Taymiyyah! It has been a very long time since we’ve seen him walk this road.”

The best part of my visit to Damascus was this instance where I met him, as Allah was the One who caused us to cross paths. I did not need anyone else for anything during the remainder of my stay in Damascus, as Allah had provided for me from where I did not expect. Later on, I decided to visit him again, and he would honor me and ask how I was doing, and I would praise Allah in response to him.”

And I was told by Shaykh Taqi ad-Din ‘Abdullah bin Ahmad bin Sa’id: “I traveled to Egypt when the Shaykh was living there, and I became very sick the night I arrived. So, I spent the night in some region of the country, and was shocked to suddenly hear someone calling me by my name and nickname. So, I answered him in a weak voice, and I sat up to see a group of the Shaykh’s companions entering upon me, some of whom I had met previously in Damascus. I said: “How did you know I was coming to Egypt when I have just arrived?” They said: “The Shaykh informed us that you were coming and that you are sick, and he told us to hurry to move you somewhere more comfortable, and we saw nobody else arriving or telling us anything.” So, I know that this was from the miracles of the Shaykh (may Allah be Pleased with him).

He also told me: “I became extremely sick in Damascus, such that I could not even sit up. I suddenly felt the Shaykh sitting next to my head, and I was very weak with fever and sickness. He supplicated for me and said: “You are now relieved.” As soon as he left me, I was immediately relieved of all the pain and sickness I had been experiencing.”

He also said: “I had come across some poetry written by one who had strayed from the truth that attacked the Shaykh. The reason he had written this poem was that someone had ascribed to him poetry and words that indicated he was a Rafidi, and took these words to a judge, and it was decided to publicize his condition to the people. The man falsely thought that it was the Shaykh who had written these words and taken them to the judge, and this is why he wrote this poetry attacking the Shaykh.

So, I kept this poem with me, and I would sometimes recite some of it. I came across many things in it that didn’t sit well, and I was constantly afraid and anxious because of what I was reading, and were it not for Allah’s blessing on me, I would have been overtaken by it. I asked myself why I was so affected by this poem, and I could find nothing more than that I liked some of its words. So, I promised Allah that I would not waste anymore time reading it, and I became a bit relieved and relaxed. However, I still had the poem. So, I took it and burned it up and washed away the ashes so that nothing would be left of it. I asked Allah’s Forgiveness, and suddenly was completely relieved of all the anxiety I had been feeling when reading the poem, and Allah replaced it with relaxation. I have since been in a state of good and relaxation, and I see that this was one of the miracles of the Shaykh granted to him by Allah.”

He also said to me that Shaykh Ibn ‘Imad ad-Din al-Muqri’ al-Mutriz said: “I visited the Shaykh once when I had some money with me. I greeted him, and he replied and welcomed me, and then left me without asking if I had any money with me. After a few days, I had spent all of my money. When the class was over and we had prayed behind him, he wouldn’t let me leave. He sat me down, and after everyone had left, he put a small pouch of money in my hand, saying: “Now, you have no money. Support yourself with this.” I was amazed at this, and knew that Allah had somehow made him privy to my situation – both when I had some money and when I had run out of it.”

I was also informed by a trustworthy individual: “When the Mongol invasion was approaching Damascus, its people became extremely afraid, and some of them came to him and asked him to supplicate for the Muslims. So, he turned to Allah and then said: “Rejoice, for Allah will grant you victory in three days, to the point that you will see their heads piled on top of each other.” By the One in Whose Hand my soul is, as soon as three days had passed, we saw their heads piled on top of each other in the center of Damascus, just as he said.”

And I was told by the righteous Shaykh ‘Uthman bin Ahmad bin ‘Isa an-Nassakh (may Allah be Pleased with him) that he would visit the sick in the hospital in Damascus every week, and this was a constant habit of his. He once came to a young man and supplicated for him, and he was quickly cured. He came to the Shaykh wanting to greet him, and when he saw him, he smiled to him, pulled him close, gave him some money, and said: “Allah has healed you. So, promise Him that you will quickly return to your homeland. Is it right for you to abandon your wife and four daughters without a provider while you sit here?” The man kissed his hand and said: “Sir, I repent to Allah on your hand,” and he later said: “I was amazed at what he knew about me, as I did leave them without any provision, and nobody in Damascus had known of my situation.”

And I was told by someone I trust that some judges were on their way to Egypt to assume positions there, and that one of them said: “As soon as I arrive in Egypt, I will rule that such and such of the noble scholars should be killed.” Everyone had agreed that this scholar was righteous and pious. However, this man’s heart contained such hatred and enmity to him that it drove him to want him dead. Everyone who heard him say this became worried that he would actually carry out his threat to kill this righteous man, and they were afraid that this man who wanted to be a judge would be led by Satan and by his own desires, causing him to spill sacred Muslim blood – they feared the great evil that would result from such an action.

So, they went to Ibn Taymiyyah and told him of exactly what had taken place. He said: “Allah will not allow him to carry out what he wants, and he will not even get to Egypt alive.” The judge had a very short distance to travel until he would arrive in Egypt when he was suddenly stricken with death. So, he died before arriving in Egypt, just as Allah had revealed on the tongue of the Shaykh (may Allah be Pleased with him).

And the miracles of the Shaykh (may Allah be Pleased with him) are many, and this is not the place to mention more of them. But, from the most obvious and well-known of his miracles is that nobody was ever known to hate or attack him except that he was then stricken with numerous disasters, mostly in his religion, and this is something well-known that does not require much elaboration.


1. The occurrence of miracles (karamat) to the awliya’ is a reality that is agreed upon between the scholars of Ahl as-Sunnah, and is proven in the Qur’an and authentic Sunnah. For example, the Qur’an contains the story of the People of the Cave, while the Sunnah contains stories of the Angels greeting ‘Imran bin Husayn, to name a few. For many more examples, see Ibn Taymiyyah’s al-Furqan Bayn Awliya’ ar-Rahman wa Awliya’ ash-Shaytan.

The Lofty Virtues of Ibn Taymiyyah, p. 22-25


4 thoughts on “Kashf and Ilham of Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah

  1. please reccommend me some prayer to secure a full understanding of knowledge, have not been able to grasp what we were being thought in school.

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