‘Whoever hides his heresy from us cannot hide his companions from us’

The Messenger of Allaah (Salallaahu alahyi wa sallaam) said:
‘A person will follow the way of his companion, let everyone of you be wary of whom he is befriending.’ [As-Saheehah: 927].

A poet has also rightly said:

Never ask about a person just look at his companion
Indeed companions imitate one another
If [his] companion is evil shun him quickly
If he is upon goodness then befriend him you shall be guided

We ask Allaah for safety in the Deen.

Many people would start the Deen on a good note but finish it in a gorge of misguidance caused by the evil friends they later chose.

Let it be known that this Deen cannot be practiced in isolation; a Muslim will have to mix with people. A Muslim has to have friends among the human beings. But your friend ought to be a righteous person because he will tell who you are.

The Messenger of Allaah (Salallaahu alahyi wa sallaam) has also said: ‘Souls are like regimented forces, those who know one another would come together and those who do not know one another would stay apart.’ The hadith is recorded in Saheeh Al-Bukhaaree and Muslim.

Therefore birds of same feather fly together.

Our Salaf used to be wary of those whom they took as friends. There are a lot of good advices about this from them. We like to present some:

Abdullaah bn Mas’ood (RahimahuLlaah) said: ‘Measure people based on company they keep; a Muslim will follow a Muslim, a sinner will follow a sinner.’

He (RahimahuLlaah) also said: ‘A person will definitely walk with a person he likes or someone like him.’

He (RahimahuLlaah) also said: ‘If a Muslim were to enter a Masjid wherein there are about a hundred souls among whom there is just a believer, he would not rest until he sits with [that believer], and if a hypocrite were to enter a Masjid wherein there are about a hundred souls among whom there is another hypocrite, he will not rest until he sits with him.’

Aboo Ad-Dardaa (RahimahuLlaah) said: ‘A person’s intellect is judged from whom he walks, enters and sits with.’

Al-Fudayl bn Iyaad (RahimahuLlaah) said: ‘No person of Sunnah will move towards a person of Bid’ah except he is a hypocrite.’

Aboo Haatim (RahimahuLlaah) said: Moosa bn Uqbah as-Sooree arrived in Baghdad, his arrival was told [Al-Imaam] Ahmad bn Hanbal (RahimahuLlaah), he said: Watch whom he settles with and where he goes to.’

Shu’bah bn Al-Hajjaaj (RahimahuLlaah) said: ‘I found it written with me: A person will befriend a person he likes.’

Al-Imaam Al-Auzaa’ee (RahimahuLlaah) said: ‘Whoever hides his heresy from us cannot hide his companions from us.’

Al-‘Amash (RahimahuLlaah) said: 'They [the Salaf] would not ask about a person except after three things: whom he walks and sits with; and which people does he associate with.'

Muhammad bn ‘Ubaydillaah al-Ghallaabee (RahimahuLlaah) said: ‘People of desires would attempt to hide their heresies but not whom they associate with and whom they take as friends.’

Mu’aadh bn Mu’aadh (RahimahuLlaah) said to Yahyaa bn Sa’eed (RahimahuLlaah): ‘O Aboo Sa’eed, a man may hide his thought but that will never be hidden in his child, friend and sitting partner.’

‘Amr bn Qays (RahimahuLlaah) said: ‘When a youth grows up and chooses to sit with the people of knowledge, he will be saved, but if he tends towards others, he will be doomed.’

Yahyaa bn Sa’eed Al-Qattaan (RahimahuLlaah) said: When Sufyaan ath-Thauree (RahimahuLlaah) arrived in Basrah, he was pondering over the affair of Ar-Rabee’ bn Subayh and his worth with the people. He asked: What is his school? They said: ‘His school of thought is nothing but the Sunnah.’ He said: Who are his friends? They said: ‘People who deny the Qadar.’ He said: ‘Then he too is a Qadaree.’

Ibn ‘Aun (RahimahuLlaah) said: ‘The person who sits with the people of Bid’ah is worse than the people of Bid’ah themselves.’

Therefore, the guaranteed success lies in holding tenaciously to the Sunnah under the tutelage of authentic and pious scholars of the Sunnah.

Ayyub as-Sakhtiyaanee (RahimahuLlaah) said: ‘It is an indication of blissful start and being a non-Arab that one is guided to a scholar from among the people of Sunnah.’

The quotes from the Salaf had been generally adapted from Lam Ad-Durr al-Manthoor minal Qaul Al-Ma’thoor Fee al-Tiqaad wa As-Sunnah complied by Aboo Furayhaan al-Haarithee.

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