Don’t Believe First and Then Look for Proof

Shaykh Muhammad Ibn Saalih al-‘Uthaymeen (may Allah have mercy upon him) stated:

It is obligatory upon everyone who has read an evidence to keep away from desires and fanaticism so he can judge by that which the evidence has indicated. So for this it is said: Establish the proof (first), then believe, then afterwards implement. Don’t believe (first) and then look for proof. That’s because if you believe and then seek the proof, you may lean towards your belief and distort the texts of the Book and the Sunnah (in order) to agree with it.

Source: Sharh al-Kaafiyah ash-Shaafiyah V.3 p.557

Translated by Abu Yusuf Khaleefah
24th of Jumaada ath-Thaani, 1436 H (04-13-2015)
Masjid Nur Allah, Queens, NYC

Original Arabic

قال الشيخ ابن عثيمين رحمه الله: يجب على كل من قرأ دليلا أن يتجرد من الهوى والتعصب؛ ليحكم بما دل عليه الدليل، ولهذا يقال: “استدل ثم اعتقد ثم اعمل”، ولا تعتقد ثم تستدل؛ لأنك إن اعتقدت ثم استدللت فربما تميل إلى اعتقادك وتصرف نصوص الكتاب والسنة إليه

(شرح الكافية الشافية / ج3 / ص557)