Is there something you want to add concerning the qualities of the saved sect?
The truth of the matter is that there isn’t anything to add, since the four fundamental matters that we have mentioned are clear and sufficient. However, it might need some details with respect to the matter of manners. So, the most important aspect of manners is unity and agreement on the truth, the thing that Allaah (سبحانه وتعالى ) has enjoined on us:
And He (Allaah ) informed us that those who split their Religion into sects, Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم) is clear of them:
So agreement and unity of the hearts are from the most distinguished qualities of the saved group, ahlus-Sunnah wal Jamaa’ah. In case disagreement amongst them occurs due to Ijtihaad, 74 in matters where Ijtihaad is applicable, then they do not hold enmity, hatred or hostility against each other. Rather, they believe that they are brothers even if this kind of disagreement takes place amongst them. This is true to the extent that each of them would pray behind the Imaam believing that the latter is not in a state of Wudoo´ whilst the Imaam believes he does have his Wudoo’. An example for this is that each of them would pray behind someone who ate camel meat believing that it nullifies the prayer whilst this Imaam believes that it does not. Thus each of them consider that the prayer behind this Imaam is correct, even though if he would have prayed the same prayer [after eating camel meat] by himself, he would have consider it incorrect.
All of this is because they consider that the difference in opinion arising from Ijtihaad, in cases where Ijtihaad is permissible, is, in reality, not a disagreement. Since each one of the disputants follows what is incumbent upon both for them to follow from the evidence that is impermissible for either one to relinquish. They see that if their brother disagrees with them regarding a certain action and does this in compliance with the evidence, then in reality he is in agreement with them. This is because they themselves call for the following of the proof wherever it may be. So if he disagrees with them based upon his conformance with what he regards as valid proof, then in reality he is in agreement with them, since he is in conformity with that which they call for and aim to, from judging by the Book of Allaah and the Sunnah of His Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم ).
And it is well known to many scholars what took place between the companions with regard to similar matters of disagreement, even during the time of their Prophet (). He () did not harshly denounce anyone of them. When he () returned from the battle of al-Ahzaab, Jibreel came to him and directed him to set out for Banee Quraydhah who broke the covenant with the Muslims. The Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) then ordered his companions and said: “None of you should pray ‘Asr except at Banee Quraydhah.” 75 So, they left Madeenah for Banee Qurayadhah, and when the time for ‘Asr prayer arrived some of them delayed their prayer until they reached Banee Qurayadhah and therefore prayed it outside of its time. They did not pray until after sun set, since the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said: “None of you should pray ‘Asr except at Banee Quraydhah.” Others prayed on time and said that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) intention was for them to make haste in setting off. 76 Those were the ones who were correct in their understanding. In spite of this, the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) did not blame anyone of them, and none of them held any enmity or hatred against each other because of their disagreement in understanding this text. That is why I believe that it is a binding duty upon the Muslims who belong to the Sunnah that they should be one nation, and that factionalism should not occur amongst them–a person belongs to this group and another belongs to another group, and the third belongs to a third group and so on. In such a manner, they fight amongst each other with the spears of their tongues. They hate each
other and take enemies out of each other because of a disagreement whose ruling is permissible to deduce by way of Ijtihaad. There is no need for me to specifically mention each group. But the sensible person would understand and the matter would be clear to him. So, I believe that it is incumbent upon ahlus-Sunnah wal Jamaa’ah to unite even though they may dispute in that wherein they have been differing as a result of their understanding of what is necessitated by the texts. All praise is due to Allaah, for this is a matter in which there is ample scope for accommodation.
What is important is agreement and unity of the hearts. And there is no doubt that the enemies of Islaam love that the Muslims are divided, regardless whether they are enemies who openly express their hostility, or enemies who pretend to be friends of Muslims or Islaam, while in reality they are not. So, the obligatory thing is that we should be distinguished with this distinctive mark and that is we are from the saved sect that agrees to unity.
74 Ijtihaad: Deduction of reasoned decisions to suit particular circumstances based upon fundamental guidelines from the Qur’aan and/or authentic Sunnah.
75 Saheeh al-Bukhaaree, vol.2, p.34, and Saheeh Muslim, vol.3, no.4376. In the report by Muslim, it is Thuhr prayer instead of ‘Asr.
76 So that when the time for ‘Asr prayer arrived, they would already be at Banee Quraydhah.