Bismillāh-ir-Rahmān-ir-Rahīm, Wal-Hamdu lillaāhi Rabb-il-‘Ālamīn. Was-Salātu Was-Salāmu ‘alā Sayyidinā Muhammadin Khātimin-Nabiyyīna wa Imām-il-Mursalīn.
One thing I will mention here, since a lot of Ash’arīs (associated with AICP and others influenced by them) are under the impression that Imām Abul Hasan al-Ash’arī called Sayyidinā Mu’āwiyah Radiallāhu ‘Anhu and Sayyidatinā ‘Āishah Radiallāhu ‘Anhā a rebel and a fāsiq (Major Sinner). That is not true, Shaykh ‘Abdullāh al-Hararī attributes that position to Imām al-Ash’arī, but that is a fabrication.
The AICP and Ninowites (Some of the followers of Muhammad ibn Yahyā an-Ninowy, however, I haven’t heard Shaykh Yahyā promote any such views himself) are only causing more fitnah by giving opinions contrary to the Jumhūr of Ahlus Sunnah. Imām at-Taftazānī mentions in his Sharh that he doesn’t know of any Sunni scholar in the entire history of Islām who cursed or allowed cursing Mu’āwiyah (Radiallāhu ‘Anhu).
Imām Abū al-Hasan al-Ash’arī said in his Maqālāt:
“The position of Ahlus Sunnah is that ‘Alī (May Allāh be pleased with Him) was correct in the differences that existed between him and Mu’āwiyah (May Allāh be pleased with Him), and that these differences did not occur due to selfish desires or caprice but rather through each excercising their Ijtihād. Mu’āwiyah (MayAllāh be pleased with Him) erred, and thus has the reward of his Ijtihād, and he was not sinful for his error.”
The belief of Ahlus Sunnah is clear and has been codified. We don’t need to turn to AICP or Ninowites for it, as Ahlus Sunnah are complete without them.
“We love the companions of God’s Messenger ﷺ. We are not, however, extreme in our love for any one of them. Nor do we disassociate from any of them. We loathe those who loathe them, and we only mention their merits. Loving them is essential to religion, faith, and spiritual excellence, and hating them amounts to infidelity, hypocrisy and extremism.” It further says, “Whoever speaks well of the companions of the Messenger of God ﷺ, his chaste wives, and his purified progeny is absolved of hypocrisy.”
Imām Ibn Daqīq al-‘Īd said:
“What has been related regarding the conflicts between the Companions and their disagreement, some of it is fabricated and lies and should not be given any notice. That which is true is to be interpreted in the best possible way because the praise of Allāh for them has been revealed. The doubtful or imagined cannot invalidate the firmly established and well-known.”
Imām Mālik ibn Anas said:
“Whoever reviles any of the Companions of the Prophet ﷺ – Abū Bakr, ‘Umar, ‘Uthmān, Mu’āwiyah or ‘Amr ibn al-‘Ās – is killed if he says that they were subject to misguidance or disbelief. If he reviles them in another way as people curse each other, he is given a severe punishment.”
Note: It is not Imām Mālik’s position that the ones who curse the Sahābah are to be executed. They are to be punished by the Ijtihād of the Qādhī.
Lastly, the last chapter of Qādhī Iyādh’s ash-Shifā mentions the ruling against those who curse the Companions (any single companion): “they are to be disciplined”.