Muhammad Alawi al-Maliki

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Muhammad Alawi al-Maliki
Died2004 (aged 59-60)
Resting placeMecca, Saudi Arabia
NationalitySaudi Arabian
RegionArabian Peninsula
DenominationSunni (Sufism)
Alma materAl-Azhar University
OccupationIslamic scholar, Imam
Senior posting

Muhammad Alawi al-Maliki (1944–2004) was a Sunni (Sufi) Islamic scholar from Saudi Arabia.


Family background[edit]

Muhammad Alawi al-Maliki was born in Mecca to a family of well known scholars who, like himself, taught in the Sacred Mosque.[1]


With his father’s instruction, he also studied and mastered the various traditional Islamic sciences of Aqidah (Islamic theology), Tafsir (Qur'anic exegesis), Hadith (Prophetic tradition), Seerah (Prophetic biography), Fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence), Usul (origins and fundamentals), Mustalah (hadith terminology), Nahw (Arabic grammar), etc. Scholars of Mecca, as well as Medina, all of whom granted him full Ijazah (certification) to teach these sciences to others. Some of the scholars from whom he obtained ijazahs and chains of transmission from include: His father, Shaykh al-Sayyid 'Alawi ibn 'Abbas al-Maliki al-Hasani, Shaykh as-Sayyid al-Habib Ahmad Mashhur TaHa al-Haddad, Shaikh Hasanain Makhlouf, Shaykh Muhammad Hafidh al-Tijani, Shaykh Amin Kutbi, and numerous others.[2]

After finishing his traditional education in his hometown of Makkah, he was sent by his father to study at Al-Azhar University of Egypt. He received his Ph.D. from the Al-Azhar University at the age of 25, making him the first and youngest Saudi to earn a Ph.D. from there.[citation needed] His thesis on Hadith was rated excellent and highly praised by the eminent Ulama (Islamic scholar) of the university at that time, such as Muhammad Abu Zahra.[citation needed]


By the age of 15, al-Maliki started teaching Hadith and Fiqh in the Masjid al-Haram of Makkah to fellow students, by the orders of his teachers.[citation needed]

He taught a number of students at his own residence, providing them with food, shelter, and learning material free of cost.[citation needed] These students usually stayed with him for many years, learning the various branches of Islamic knowledge, then return to their lands. Hundreds of his students have become savants of Islamic knowledge and spirituality in their own countries, particularly Indonesia, Malaysia, Egypt, and Yemen. After returning from the Al-Azhar University he was an appointed professor of Sharia at the Umm al-Qura University in Mecca, where he taught from 1970. In 1971, after his father’s death, the scholars of Mecca asked him to accept his father’s position as a teacher in the Masjid al-Haram, which he did. Thus, he sat on the Chair from which his family had taught for more than century. He also taught in the Al-Masjid al-Nabawi in Medina occasionally. His lessons were the largest attended lessons in the Two Masjids. The entire family of Al-Maliki follows Shadhiliyah Sufi order and particularly Fassiya branch of it through Qutbul Ujood Imam Fassi who was leading the Sufi order from Makkah. Muhammad alawi al-Maliki took vow from Sheikh Dr. Muhammad bin Ibrahim al Fassi who was the Sheikh-us-Sujjadah and the international leader of the Fassiyatush Shadhiliya sufi order at his times.

In the early 1980s, he relinquished his teaching position in the Umm al-Qura University as well as his ancestral chair of teaching in the Masjid al-Haram, due to the Fatwās of the Council of the Senior Scholars of Saudi Arabia headed by Mufti Ibn Baaz, who considered his beliefs to be in violation of the purity of the Monotheistic belief (Tawhid). Shaykh Saalih Aal-Shaykh, the incumbent Minister of Islamic affairs authored a book entitled "Haazihi Mafaahimuna" [these are our views] in which he attacked the beliefs of the Sayyid, pronouncing him to be deviant and misguided. The book was in fact a rebuttal of Sayyid Al-Maliki's book: "Mafaahim yajib An Tusahhah" [Views that must be corrected].

Regardless of criticisms against him, Maliki retained prominence. In an attempt to counter the Islamic revival in the early 1990s, the Government of Saudi Arabia began supporting practitioners of Sufism in the Hijaz region as a way to bolster religious support of the state; Maliki became the self-imposed leader of Hijazi Sufism under state sponsorship, with several thousand supporters.[3]

From that time until his death in 2004, he taught Hadith, Fiqh, Tafsir and Tasawwuf at his home and mosque on al-Maliki street in the Rusayfah district of Mecca, and his public lessons, between Maghrib and Isha', were attended by no less than 500 people daily. Many students from the University used to attend his lessons in the evenings. Even the night before he died, his lesson was well attended. Hundreds of students from all over the Islamic world benefited from his lessons in the Masjid al-Haram Makkah and many hold key religious positions in their lands today.

He was also nominated as the head judge at the international Qira'at (Qur'anic reading) competition in Mecca for three consecutive years.


He died in 2004 and was buried in Mecca. After his death, Saudi dignitaries made condolence visits to his family.[4] Crown Prince 'Abd Allah (the future king) was quoted as stating that al-Maliki "was faithful both to his religion and country"[5] as one western journalist noted, "the rehabilitation of his legacy was almost complete." [6]


Al-Maliki has written on a variety of religious, legal, social and historical topics.

Selected works on various subjects[edit]


  • Mafahim Yajib ‘an Tusahhah
  • Manhaj al-Salaf fi Fahm al-Nusus
  • Al-Tahzir min al-Takfir
  • Huwa Allah
  • Qul Hazihi Sabeeli
  • Sharh ‘Aqidat al-‘Awam


  • Zubdat al-Itqan fi ‘Ulum al-Qur’an
  • Wa Huwa bi al-Ufuq al-‘A’la
  • Al-Qawa‘id al-Asasiyyah fi ‘Ulum al-Quran
  • Hawl Khasa’is al-Quran


  • Al-Manhal al-Latif fi Usul al-Hadith al-Sharif
  • Al-Qawa‘id al-Asasiyyah fi ‘Ilm Mustalah al-Hadith Al-Sharif
  • Fadl al-Muwatta wa Inayat al-Ummah al-Islamiyyah bihi
  • Anwar al-Masalik fi al-Muqaranah bayn Riwayat al-Muwatta lil-Imam Malik


  • Muhammad al-Insan al-Kamil
  • ‘Urf al-T ‘arif bi al-Mawlid al-Sharif
  • Al-Anwar al-Bahiyyah fi Isra wa M’iraj Khayr al-Bariyyah
  • Al-Zakha’ir al-Muhammadiyyah [7]
  • Zikriyat wa Munasabat
  • Al-Bushra fi Manaqib al-Sayyidah Khadijah al-Kubra


  • Al-Risalah al-Islamiyyah Kamaluha wa Khuluduha wa `Alamiyyatuha
  • Labbayk Allahumma Labbayk
  • Al-Ziyarah al-Nabawiyyah bayn al-Shar`iyyah wa al-Bid`iyyah
  • Shifa' al-Fu'ad bi Ziyarat Khayr al-`Ibad
  • Hawl al-Ihtifal bi Zikra al-Mawlid al-Nabawi al-Sharif
  • Al-Madh al-Nabawi bayn al-Ghuluww wa al-Ijhaf


  • Al-Qawa‘id al-Asasiyyah fi Usul al-Fiqh
  • Sharh Manzumat al-Waraqat fi Usul al-Fiqh
  • Mafhum al-Tatawwur wa al-Tajdid fi al-Shari‘ah al-Islamiyyah


  • Shawariq al-Anwar min Ad‘iyat al-Sadah al-Akhyar
  • Al-Mukhtar min Kalam al-Akhyar
  • Al-Husun al-Mani‘ah
  • Mukhtasar Shawariq al-Anwar


  • Fi Rihab al-Bayt al-Haram (History of Mecca)
  • Al-Mustashriqun Bayn al-Insaf wa al-‘Asabiyyah (Study of Orientalism)
  • Nazrat al-Islam ila al-Riyadah (Sports in Islam)
  • Al-Qudwah al-Hasanah fi Manhaj al-Da‘wah ila Allah (Methods of Dawah)
  • Ma La ‘Aynun Ra’at (Description of Paradise)
  • Nizam al-Usrah fi al-Islam (Islam and Family)
  • Al-Muslimun Bayn al-Waqi‘ wa al-Tajribah (Contemporary Muslim world)
  • Kashf al-Ghumma (Virtues of helping fellow Muslims)
  • Al-Dawah al-Islahiyyah (Call for Reform)
  • Fi Sabil al-Huda wa al-Rashad (Collection of speeches)
  • Sharaf al-Ummah al-Islamiyyah (Superiority of the Muslim Ummah)
  • Usul al-Tarbiyah al-Nabawiyyah (Prophetic methods of education)
  • Nur al-Nibras fi Asanid al-Jadd al-Sayyid Abbas (Set of Grandfather’s Ijazahs)
  • Al-‘Uqud al-Lu’luiyyah fi al-Asanid al-Alawiyyah (Set of father’s Ijazahs)
  • Al-Tali‘ al-Sa‘id al-Muntakhab min al-Musalsalat wa al-Asanid (Set of Ijazahs)
  • Al-‘Iqd al-Farid al-Mukhtasar min al-Athbah wa al-Asanid (Set of Ijazahs)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Marion Holmes Katz, The Birth of the Prophet Muhammad: Devotional piety in Sunni Islam, p. 185. ISBN 0203962141. Publication Date: June 6, 2007
  2. ^ Obituary to al-Sayyid Muhammad bin Alawi al-Maliki Archived 2007-10-18 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Stephane Lacroix, Awakening Islam, pg. 220. Trns. George Holoch. Cambridge: President and Fellows of Harvard College, 2011.
  4. ^ Marion Holmes Katz, The Birth of the Prophet Muhammad: Devotional piety in Sunni Islam, p. 215. ISBN 0203962141. Publication Date: June 6, 2007. See Khalid ' Abd Allah, " al-Amlr Sultan yazuru usrat al-Duktur Muhammad 'Alawl al-Malikl mu'azziyan," Jaridat al-Riyad, 19 Ramadan 1425 (accessed at l-2004/Mainpage/LOCALl_24136.php on May 25, 2006).
  5. ^ See P.K. Abdul Ghafour, "Abdullah Lauds Noble Efforts of Al-Malki," Arab News, November 2, 2004.(
  6. ^ Marion Holmes Katz, The Birth of the Prophet Muhammad: Devotional piety in Sunni Islam, p. 215. ISBN 0203962141. Publication Date: June 6, 2007. Quoting Ambah, "In Saudi Arabia," p. A13.
  7. ^ Zakha'ir al-Muhammadiyyah Urdu Translation

External links[edit]