Shaykh 'Ubayd: It is vital to mention certain matters so that the answer to this statement, or to this behaviour which the question alludes to, is very clear.
The First: Reminding with the saying of the Lofty and Majestic, "When there comes to them some matter touching (public) safety or fear, they make it known (among the people), if only they had referred it to the Messenger or to those charged with authority among them, the proper investigators would have understood it from them (directly). Had it not been for the Grace and Mercy of Allưh upon you, you would have followed Shaitưn (Satan), save a few of you." (An-Nisa 4:83).
So this verse teaches and nurtures the Muslims upon a Sharee'ah principle that is obligatory for them to proceed upon during occurrences, problems and difficult situations. And this principle is to referr the difficulties and the great affairs (that arise and affect the Muslims), those that would even make the gentle, patient person to become bewildered, to refer them to those who are worthy of speaking about them, and in treating these matters. And they are two types of people:
- The Messenger (sallallaahu alaihi wasallam), and what is desired now (in our times) is to return to his Sunnah
- Those in authority. And the one in authority, with those who are around him, such as those from the Shooraa from the Scholars, and those who are well informed, and also those who well-informed ones are in charge over the affairs of the Muslims with respect to the affairs of legislation and the arrangement of affairs, then they are the ones who can treat these matters that arise
And it is not for the common people. This will be increased in clarity by what has been reported by Muslim in his Saheeh, "That it was rumoured and spread that the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu alaihi wasallam) divorced his wives. 'Umar said, "So I came to the Messenger (sallallaahu alaihi wasallam) and said, "O Messenger of Allaah, have you divorced your wives?" He said, "No". 'Umar (radiallaahu anhu) (later) said, when the verse was revealed (4:83), "I am of the proper investigators"."
The Second: His saying, "We are not obliged to follow anyone", or as he said. We say that you are not obliged to follow so and so, yes. However, this saying of yours is general (mujmal), and thus, it may contain that which is error and that which is correct. It comprises both truth and falsehood. And it was more fitting for you to explain and be clear. This is because consideration is not given merely to the saying of fulaan or 'allaan (i.e. so and so person), but consideration is given to the evidence. So when the people contend in an affair amongst the affairs, then it is obligatory to refer whatever they contended in, to Allaah and to His Messenger (sallallaahu alaihi wasallam), just as He the Most High, said, "O you who believe! Obey Allah and obey the Messenger (Muhammad), and those of you (Muslims) who are in authority. (And) if you differ in anything amongst yourselves, refer it to Allah and His Messenger, if you believe in Allah and in the Last Day." (An-Nisa 4:59).
The people of knowledge said, "Returning to Allaah, meanings referring to His Book and returning to His Messenger, is referring to him during his life, and referring to his Sunnah after his death (sallallaahu alaihi wasallam).
So this saying of yours is the extreme of corruption and falsehood, and no one understands anything from it except that you want to attach the people with yourself, and with whoever is like you, from amongst those who put themselves forward in knowledge or present themselves (to others) in the field of da'wah. And it was obligatory upon you to attach the people to the Imaams of Guidance and the Scholars known for a sound belief and a straight and safe manhaj, and those known with deep-rooted knowledge, and giving of advice to the Ummah. This is because they are the inheritors of the Prophets, so when they make their statement concerning an affair amongst the affairs that has arisen, or in warning against a man amongst the men, and explained the corruption of his manhaj, and his evil approach with evidence, then it is obligatory to accept what they say, because it is the truth, so long as it is based upon evidence, and upon clear proof and evidence.
So by this, it becomes clear that this statement is corrupt and false.