One of the Maraji` of Sham
He is Muhammad Radi Taha `Abdur-Rahim an-Nabulsi al-Hanbali. Born into a family of judges and scholars with lineage back to the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, in the year 1325 AH in the city of Nablus (in the area of Sham), he memorised the Qur’an while still young and was then sent to the famous Al-Madrasat us-Salahiyyah and excelled. Upon completion there, he was already an advanced level scholar at twenty four years of age.
Still just 24 years of age, in the year 1349 AH, he went to Al-Azhar and completed an honorary program and then headed back to Nablus. He succeeded after examination to the post that his father had held as grand marja`. You should remember that Shaikh Taha `Abdur-Rahim al-Hanbali was the marja` and with his temporal (not only spiritual) authority was in charge of executions. The picture above shows Imam Muhammad Radi next to the outside door of the court where he used to sentence people. Mere hundreds of feet away from the door of this noble man, witnesses were able to view rapists, robbers and adulterers being executed.
As marja`, he became the head in Nablus as well as Imam and preacher at Al-Masjid al-Hanbali and was lauded for having established a school for adults in the year 1350/1 AH. Shaikh Radi taught continuously and even in the year 1361AH during the British takeover of the area and forced mandate, he preached against them, their system and what was being done.
British authorities found the Shaikh insolent in their view and jailed him in the year 1362/3 AH with chains on his hands and feet along with the other leaders and maraji` in the area. People knew that the State of Israel was in the building and that lands would be appropriated (tr. stolen) in order to fund and sustain the new visitors. After release from Sarfand, he found that much had changed and he assessed the damage.
Since the collapse of the khilafah, universal zakah had died with the Ottomans but the scholars in local areas around the Arabian Gulf and in Sham continued its’ collection and distribution using the masjids as gathering points. So in 1363 AH, they re-established the collection, gathering, collation and distribution of zakah.
(There are no other groups, sects, political groups or gangs in the world claiming to be Muslim reformers or revivers doing this in the world today. Indeed Allah will never give success to people who do not have the authority).
The Madrasah of the sheikh was reopened and as before was dedicated for the sake of Allah with the hope that some reward would go to the shaikhs: Muhammad al-Bistami, Ihsan an-Nimar, Sahbi Hijab, Hamdi Al-`Amad, Sirri al-Bistami and Mahmud `Isa al-Qaddumi.
Imam Muhammad Radi al-Hanbali wrote a number of works about Zakah (in fact the first of its’ kind to talk about the method for maraji` to re-instate it after its’ collapse), Inheritance, Exhortations and Rulings on Khutbahs, as well as maintaining numerous masjids and charitable projects in the area.
He died and was buried in Nablus in the year 1417 AH and was gathered to his people. He left behind six children, four boys and two girls.
The boys include:
- Muhammad Taha an-Nabulsi. He had sons: As-Sayyid Radi, Ahmad, Mahmud. His daughters are: Rashidah, Arwah, Tamadhir, Bayan, Anisah Ayah.
- `Abdur-Rahim an-Nabulsi. He had the following sons: `Umar, `Uthman, the martyred Muhammad al-Hanbali, `Abdullah, `Ali. His daughters are: Zainab, `A’ishah, Du`a, Asma’ and Najah.
- Al-Hajj `Ismah. He had three sons: Muhammad, Sa`d and `Ubadah. His daughters are: Iman and Huda
- Al-Hajj `Asim. He had sons by the name of `Ammar, Al-Hajj Farras, Islam, Baha’.
- Al-Hajjah Najah
- Al-Hajjah In`am. The had sons: Wa’il, Nasir and Mazin while Wajihah and Hana’ were her daughters.
And we ask Allah to continue to bless the noble Al-Hanbali family wherever they may be throughout the world as well as in this life and the Hereafter.