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Explanation of al-Barbahārī’s Statement: “When Turmoil (Fitnah) Occurs, Remain in Your House…”

Al-ʿAllāmah Ṣāliḥ ibn Fawzān al-Fawzān

The explanation of Imām al-Barbahārī’s statement: “When turmoil (fitnah) occurs, remain within your house and flee from the neighbourhood of tumult.”

Shaykh Ṣāliḥ Fawzān (may Allāh preserve him) said:

“His statement, ‘When turmoil (fitnah) occurs, remain within your house.’

If turmoil occurs and this is (referring) to fighting between the Muslims, then stay in your home and restrain your hand and your tongue so that you can be safe (and free of blame). This is if leaving your house is of no benefit and if nothing is accepted from you, then stay within your home. However, if going out with the people, mixing with them, calling them to Allāh and clarifying the truth is of benefit then go out. This is what is known as Mixing (Ikhtilāṭ) and seclusion (ʿUzlah).

Which is better, mixing (with the people) or seclusion?

We say that it depends. If mixing brings about benefit, calling to Allāh and a clarification of the truth, then mixing is better. On the other hand, if mixing with the people and calling them brings no benefit then seclusion is better. This is in relation to the person that has knowledge as for the one who lacks knowledge then he should practice ‘Uzlah no matter what so that he is not enticed and he does not know or understand.

Therefore, the ignorant person should stay in his house and as for the scholar then as we have explained in detail.”

When turmoil (fitnah) occurs, remain in your house and flee from the neighbourhood of tumult.

Al-ʿAllāmah Ṣāliḥ ibn Fawzān al-Fawzān


  1. Source: Itiḥāf al-Qārī, Vol. 2, p. 87, Maktabatah al-Rushd.
Published: April 11, 2011
Edited: January 6, 2022

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