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Refutation of The Attempt of Kamal al-Mekki of al-Maghrib Institute to Distinguish Between The Meaning Entering Into the Term 'Magic' and and the Meaning of the Term 'Sorcery'
Filed under: Magic and the Occult
Wednesday, November 07 2012 - by Admin
Key topics: Kamal Al-Mekki Al-Maghrib Al-Maghrib Institute Green Lane Mosque

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This individual has a video interview done with Green Lane Mosque of Birmingham UK. This is an organization run upon an Ikhwani methodology from whose platform the callers to innovation, deviation and misguidance are defended and praised, where callers to belief in evolution for example, (alongside the weak apologetic criticisms made against them) are given excuses and their intentions purified, whereas those who follow the Scholars in their evidences against wilful opposers to the Sunnah are constantly attacked, belittled and ridiculed with their intentions constantly undermined and questioned. And thus when matters of kufr and eemaan are dicussed and clarified (whether it be in issues of magic, or the Qur'an being created), the intentions are immediately judged as intending intending corruption and dhulm (oppression) and downfall of people and the likes, whilst the actual issue of misguidance in question, is often downplayed and ignored or spoken of and clarified along with great resentment and venom towards those who raised awareness of its opposition to what the deen of Islaam came in the first place - all of which indicates an underlying corruption somewhere. Within the interview al-Mekki claims there is a distinction between "magic" and "sorcery" with the first not being unlawful and second being unlawful. This is part of his attempt to justify Muslim audiences entering into the world of entertainment through sleight-of-hand magic, or to at least making it something fashionable and not objected to. This video was propagated and distributed by Green Lane Mosque to thousands of people.

Here is a transcript of his words:

Interviewer: OK... talking about jokes... uh, there's this black magic joke that you mentioned? KM: Yea, I mean, I was warned that in Birmingham if I mentioned that I like magic, that there would be a riot and stuff. And I'll be blacklisted and all kind of things now. And it's very irritating because you try to explain to people when we say ma-, the word magic, in contemporary English, it doesn't mean sorcery, ya'nee, it doesn't mean sorcery and it doesn't mean Jinn. When you say the word magic now, we use that to mean, to refer to sleight of hand, things like that, you pick a card, any card, something like that, and there's nothing haraam about that. You can argue that it's a waste of time, that's no problem, like TV, like that's fine. But it's not haraam, ya'nee, it's just... sleight of hand, it's illusion, yeah? So, if you watch Dynamo, Criss Angel, or... Oh! Muslims talk about, "I don't watch them cause they use Jinn." And they don't use Jinn. I can show you every one of their tricks, how they do it, and every one of them has an explanation, yeah? So, but, and one talent show I was going to do some sleight of hand tricks, but someone already came up and objected, (deep mocking voice), "Oh, magic on stage!" So, khalaas. So, we tell people that what's haraam is sorcery, yeah? So, if you go to a magician's show, they're just doing illusions on stage, there's nothing haraam about that. Now, so what you're not allowed to go to - to a black magician, yeah? That's what's haraam...

Short Response

We have here lies, deception and attempts to trick the audience with the use of flowery, deceptive speech and as is reported about the Messenger (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam), that he said, (إن من البيان لسحرا), "Verily from speech is that which is magic," eloquent deceptive speech that makes truth falsehood and falsehood truth.

The answer is found by simply looking at actual contemporary usage of these words, we have were some screenshots from Wikipedia:

And then from Wiktionary:

And by this the "magical speech" of Kamal al-Mekki, propagated to thousands, has been invalidated and falsified - its lie and deception is made plain.

Magicians Doing Tricks Also Claim or Imply They Have Knowledge of the Unseen

Shaykh al-Sa'dee (rahimahullaah) stated (see here):

And for this reason, the legislator has tied it to shirk, for magic enters into Shirk from two angles:

From the angle that it comprises seeking the aid of the devils and attachment to them, and perhaps he (the magician) we seek closeness to them through what they love in order that they (the devils) serve him and his objective.

From the angle of what it comprises of the claim of the knowledge of the unseen, and claim of sharing with Allaah in His knowledge, and taking paths which lead to (such a claim), and this is from the branches of shirk and kufr.

Significance of The Above

Whoever studies Kitab al-Tawhid will see that Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Abdul-Wahhaab included two chapters relating to magic. The first on magic (sihr) itself, and the second is related to something from the types of magic - which include things such as tiyarah and iyaafah (two types of omens, superstitions) and also nameemah (tale-carrying) and also bayaan (powerful, influencing, beguiling speech) all of which come under the general category of magic (sihr) even though they do not all have the same ruling. But the intent here is that magic (sihr) in general is all a lie and underyling it all is secrecy and deception, and the wisdom in including these affairs in a separate chapter is to show that there are types of magic which though in themselves not major shirk, they are avenues and doorways to shirk, and resemble, in some respects, the magic which is shirk. It is for this reason that kahaanah (fortune-telling) is also connected to magic (sihr) and this is apparent and in Kitab al-Tawheed all of these matters are discussed in adjacent chapters.

Once we appreciate this, it is clear that al-Mekki is implying there is nothing wrong or unlawful with watching magicians such as Criss Angel and Dynamo, if not encouraging people to do so, by his general disdaining attitude towards those who do not agree with him. So here is the issue: Much of the claimed magic of these individuals is clear trickery and deception and sleight of hand whose ways and techniques are known and revealed, and it involves stooges and those who are in on the act, or it involves specialized or advanced knowledge and these types of acts do not amount to kufr - unless they connect to the devils and receive information from them regarding such matters. However, a large part of their magic also involves what essentially amounts to claiming knowledge of the unseen or implying that. And these are either mere tricks and calculated deceptions implemented with skill - as is the case in many of their card tricks - or they involve the devils when it comes to retreiving or accessing information that is not attainable through the normal ways and means. And when it is the case that these magicians also deny that they are involved with "spirits" - then their claim to have knowledge that is not otherwise attainable through normal ways and means is tantamount to claiming knowledge of the unseen, and here we start entering into the realm of shirk. So when these types of affairs form a significant part of this type of magic, then encouraging people to watch them, and especially the young children, then this is inviting to people to come closer to what is actual kufr and shirk and the risk of believing such people and the arena of kihaanah (telling of future and unseen events). And upon surveying comments made upon videos of these magicians, it is clear that there are disputes taking place between grown-up adults as to whether this is true and real magic, with some vehemently denying that these are tricks and deceptions and "actual true and real magic". So when this is the case with such people, then how about enticing children and the foolish and the ignorant into watching and witnessing these types of affairs?! This is opening up the doors to misguidance, and for this reason the Scholars prohibit from witnessing, watching or giving room for the likes of these people in Muslim societies. This can really only truly be understood by a heart that has been nurtured upon the Tawheed with which the Messengers were sent and by a heart that understands the maqaasid (intents, goals) of the Shariah in its rulings. the Shariah has come with rulings to safeguard the affair of Tawheed from every small and large matter that invalidates it, compromises it, diminishes it, makes it imperfect or erodes it. And these affairs are understood by turning to the true and real scholars, not ignorants like al-Mekki and those who promote him.

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