Alawite Creeds

The accusation of being Hyperbole (Ghulat)

The accusation of being Hyperbole (Ghulat)

By Dr. Ahmed Adeeb Ahmed

We must understand the meaning of the word “Hyperbole” to respond to the charge. It is excessiveness and negligence and it means the belief that the divine essence is composite and has a body. A believer isn’t excessive nor negligent.

Our faith, as Alawites, isn’t extremism “Hyperbole” but rather it is in compliance with the sayings of Imam Jafar Al-Sadiq (AS): “the young believers must be aware of extremists (Al- Ghulat) in order not to be let down them. The extremists are the evilest humans. They belittle God Almighty”.

We, as Alawites, believe that Amir al-mu’minin Imam Ali (peace be from him) is the Guardian (has the absolute Guardianship). We don’t underestimate him to a degree lesser than guardianship; We also do not raise the Prophets and Messengers to the degree of divinity. The charge came because the authors don’t understand the meaning when we say that “The guardianship is higher than the Message”. The person, who equates between the guardianship and the Message, he equates God to the Prophets. This is the “hyperbole” that we were warned by Alawites theologians, led by Master Abu Shuaib Muhammed Bin Nusayer and Master Al-Hussein bin Hamdan Al-Khasibi.

Shiites are the origin of hyperbole while Alawites are very far from it. It can be asserted that the cause of all slander of the opponents of Master Abu Shuaib Mohammed bin Naseer is due to his response to them when he warned against extremists saying “God has associated these names with himself and has not associated them with others;   when‏ Almighty says : Say not: Trinity, abstain: it will be better, for Allah has no partner” (4:171).

So Master Abu Shuaib was one of the fiercest militants against the extremists, whom the Amir of the Faithful Ali warned us and insulted them by saying:” Beware of hyperbole. I am innocent of the exaggerators”.

Master Abu Shuaib Mohammed Bin Nusair proved also that Imams (PBUH) are exalted above mistakes, forgetfulness, weaknesses and incapacity, which made his opponents accuse him as an extremist. If his opponents accepted and believed that the imams had been killed, Abu Shuaib does not accept this, because it is contrary to reason and religion.

He does not accept from his opponents their crying!! Or their regrets on the Imam!! Because he depended on the verse: “But they killed him not nor crucified him, but so it was made to appear to them” (4:157), and the saying of Imam Jafar Al-Sadiq (AS) when he was asked: Does the Imam die? He said: “The believer does not die and faith does not die, how can the Imam!!”.

In this statement and the principle of truth, there is an adequate answer to those who defied us.

Master Abu Shuaib proved to his opponents that God had raised Imam Al-Hussein as he did with Jesus, both of whom were not killed. But his opponents, like their predecessors, denied these facts.

Those opponents‏’ belief is based on extremism “Hyperbole” and negligence. Because Hyperbole isn’t, as many claimed, about giving the creature the attribute of the creator, the proof is that, for example, if the believer is called merciful and God merciful (Rahim), this isn’t hyperbole.

The correct definition of Hyperbole is to raise the creature and make him the essence of the Creator, and that the creator and the creature are one.

Hyperbole i.e. extremism from one hand is the exaggeration, as the deification of the imams (for example Al-Hussein), and on the other hand, it is negligence by making him less worthy, by what was said in Karbala: “Imam Al-Hussein was killed and slaughtered as a human”.

By their Hyperbole and their negligence, they made Master Abu Shuaib as an enemy and started hostility.

Explanation of terms used:

  • Hyperbole: exaggerated statements or claims not meant to be taken literally = extremism = Ghulat.
  • Exaggeration: a statement that represents something as better or worse than it really is.
  • Immoderation: the quality of being excessive and lacking in restraint; overindulgence.
  • Negligence: failure to take proper care in doing something.
  • Guardianship: Responsibilities of the guardian who is a defender, protector, or keeper.


The Alawite religious scholar Dr. Ahmed Adeeb Ahmed

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The accusation of being Hyperbole (Ghulat)

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