Ibn Battuta1 is his book of journey Rihla Ibn Battuta2 writes: “In Damascus I saw great Hanbali faqih (jurisprudent) Taqi Al-Din Ibn Taymiyyah. He used to give lectures on different topics, however, he had something in his intellect.3 Mentioning further, he writes: “He was busy giving sermon in a mosque on Friday and I also attended the gathering.”
“He was speaking as:
‘God [from ‘Arsh] comes down from the first heaven in the same way as I come down from pulpit (mimber). After saying it, he came one step down from the pulpit. At that moment, a Maliki faqih by the name of ‘Ibn Zahra’ confronted him and rebutted his speech. People attending the sermon sided with Ibn Taymiyyah and started hitting that Maliki faqih with fists and their shoes.’”
This firsthand account of Ibn Taymiyyah’s views comes from a person who was totally unbiased.
- 1. Complete name: Abu Abdullah Muhammad Ibn Battuta (1304 – 1368 A.D.) was a Muslim Moroccan scholar, and explorer who widely travelled the medieval world. Over a period of thirty years, Ibn Battuta visited most of the Islamic world and many non-Muslim lands, including Central Asia, Southeast Asia, South Asia and China.
- 2. The Travels of Ibn Battuta (رحلة ابن بطوطة, or Rihla Ibn Battuta), p. 95-96, published 1384 S.H.
- 3. Translated word for word from Arabic to avoid confusion.