Answered by Shaykh Abdul-Rahim Reasat
I just had a new masjid open in our community. They are from the brothers in our community who belong to the South Asian Barelwi school of thought.
Can you please provide some information as to what are their creedal differences? If it is a widely accepted position in the Ahl al-Sunnah wa al-jamaʻa
I had the opportunity to visit the mosque and had a language barrier in understanding.
The differences I noticed was: First, the crowd kissed their thumbs and applied them to their eyes when Prophet Muhammad’s (Allah bless him and give him peace) name was mentioned. Second, a brief Salam on the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) before the Adhan was given. Can you please comment on these practices?
I pray you are well.
The school you mentioned falls into the broad scope of Sunni Orthodoxy (Ahl al-Sunnah wa al-jamaʻa), namely the Ash’ari and Maturidi schools.
Kissing the Thumbs
The kissing of the thumbs during the Adhan is a practice that is differed upon. Some scholars consider the hadiths supporting it extremely weak (Shadid al daʻif), rendering the practice impermissible. Others believe the narrations are merely weak (daʻif), which would make it permissible.
The fuqaha have cited the latter as a followable position. In any case, it should not be a cause of difference or looking down on anyone. [Tahtawi, Hashiya Maraqi al-Falah; Ibn Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]
Salam Before the Adhan
This is also a practice that has a basis. There are rigorously authenticated [Sahih] hadiths about sending blessings on the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) after the Adhan [Muslim]. Doing so before it is not something disliked, let alone impermissible.
It’s best to focus on drawing closer to Allah Most High. Suppose the environment is conducive to that, great. Otherwise, go somewhere where you can draw closer to Allah Most High more easily.
May Allah grant you the best of both worlds.
[Shaykh] Abdul-Rahim Reasat
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani