Shaykh Saalih Al-Fawzaan was asked:


Eminent Shaikh, this questioner says: What are the most prominent characteristics of Ahlus-Sunnah wal-Jama’ah?


“In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions altogether:

The characteristics of Ahlus-Sunnah are many and all praise is due to Allah. The most prominent of them are acting upon the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), the soundness of their creed from ideological deviation and deviations which are presented by some deviant sects. So Ahlus-Sunnah wal-Jama’ah are steadfast upon the Book and Sunnah and act upon what the favored generations were upon from the Companions, Tabi’een, and those who follow them in good, acting upon the statement of the Prophet (ﷺ):

‎عَلَيْكُمْ بِسُنَّتِي وَسُنَّةِ الْخُلَفَاءِ الرَّاشِدِينَ الْمَهْدِيِّينَ تَمَسَّكُوا بِهَا وَعَضُّوا عَلَيْهَا بِالنَّوَاجِذِ وَإِيَّاكُمْ وَمُحْدَثَاتِ الْأُمُورِ فَإِنَّ كُلَّ مُحْدَثَةٍ بِدْعَةٌ وَكُلَّ بِدْعَةٍ ضَلَالَةٌ

Upon you is my Sunnah and the Sunnah of the rightly guided Caliphs. Hold fast to it and bite onto it with your molar teeth. Beware of every newly invented matter. For every newly invented matter is an innovation and every innovation is misguidance

[Saheeh Sunan Abi Dawood (no. 4607)]

So they act upon the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) and what the Salaf of the Ummah were upon. The avoid the innovated calls and the false interpretations of the Names and Attributes of Allah. They affirm what has come in the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of His Messenger (ﷺ). They do not distort [the Names and Attributes of Allah], nor resemble them, not give them examples, nor deny them staying within the boundary of the statement of the Exalted:

‎لَيْسَ كَمِثْلِهِ شَيْءٌ وَهُوَ السَّمِيعُ البَصِيرُ

There is nothing like unto Him, and He is the All-Hearer, the All-Seer



Translated by

Faisal Ibn Abdul Qaadir Ibn Hassan
Abu Sulaymaan