Sheikh Jassim was famous for his great love for knowledge and scholars. He printed books at his own expense that would stand for Dawah “proselytizing of Islam” and would refute its opponents. He also bought a number of other books in the same area and distributed them free of charge to learning students in various Islamic countries.
In the area of defending Dawah, he requested Sheikh Issa bin Akkas in 1298 AH (1881 AD) to respond to Mohammed bin Abdullah Al-Farisi in re three issues related to the attributes of Almighty God, life of the Prophet (peace be upon him) and seeking help from prophets and saints.
One of the books he printed were entitled ( Fathul Mannan: Completion of Laying the Foundation and Response to Brothers Reconciliation), authored by Sheikh Mahmoud Shukri al-Alusi, at his own expense in Bombay, India, in the year 1309 AH/1892 AD, then he donated versions thereof (as Waqf) and distributed to scholars and students of Islamic sciences. This book is the completion of the book (Method of Laying the Foundation) by Sheikh Abdul Latif Bin Abdulrahman Al-Sheikh (deied on 1293 AH /1876 AD) who passed away before he would finalize it. Sheikh Jassim sent a hundred copies of the book to Sheikh al-Alusi attached with a letter dated 10/11/1310 H/04/28/1893 AD.
Sheikh Jassim also bought a set of copies of the book (Clarification of Creator Monotheism in Response to the people of Iraq) then he donated them (under Waqf) and distributed to scholars and students of Islamic sciences. This book clarifies the genuine aspects of Dawah of Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdul Wahab and revises suspicions raised thereon. Among his efforts in this area was the printing and distribution of such books demonstrating Salafi ideology such as the book of (The Faith) written by Sheikh al-Islam Ahmad ibn Taymiyyah, and (The Proper Answer to Those Who Altered The Religion of Jesus Christ), in addition to other book including (The Pure Religion) by Sideeq Hassan Khan. The founder, God’s mercy may upon him, would attract Sunni scholars and students of Islamic sciences from Najd and other areas to deliver Islamic teachings on Sharia (Islamic Laws) in mosques, would make them responsible for calling for Allah (Dawah) and providing instruction to people. Among those was Sheikh Issa bin Abdullah bin Akkas (died 1338 AH/1920 AD) who was the judge of Ahsa, Sheikh Yaqub ibn Yusuf (died 1375 AH/1955 AD) and a number of scholars whom he appointed in the judiciary such as Sheikh Mohammed bin Hamdan, who was made responsible for the judiciary during the years from 1285 AH/1868 to 1310 AH/1893 AD, whom was succeeded by Sheikh Abdullah bin Ahmed bin Darhim, a descendant of Hawtat Bani Tamim. In this regard, judges played a significant role at that time by teaching Sharia and providing guidance to people.
In addition, Sheikh Jassim also sent Qatari students to study Dawa and Sharia under the supervision of Najdi scholars and imams. From amongst those was Sheikh Abdulrahman bin Abdullah bin Darhim whom Sheikh Jassim sent in the year 1313 AH/1895 AD to be educated by the outstanding Sheikh Abdullah bin Abdullatif Al-Sheikh for a full year.
The efforts exerted by Sheikh Jassim borne fruits and resulted in strengthening Qataris adherence to Islam and Sunnis doctrine, whereby manifestations of deviation from true monotheism have been eliminated up to date. The historian and writer Suleiman bin Saleh al-Dakhil (died in 1364 AH/1945 AD) stated about Qatar describing its people before the death of Sheikh Jassim: “Thanks to Sheikh Jassim Bin Thani, this is a city destined to progress and that all people of Qatar are worshipers under Salafi doctrine and adopting true Sharia laws free from any things harmful to religion or in violation of its noble teachings”. He also said: “The people of Qatar today are the best among Arab countries in terms of adherence to true religion and teachings thereof, as there is no any existence of false myths of graves worshippers, fads, or indecent things violating the religious values”. Based on the above, it has been made very clear that Sheikh Jassim was one of Dawa imams, who devoted himself and wealth to see to its dissemination and supporting. To which effect he raised his sons and grandsons, therefore they adopted his approach of attracting scholars, printing books and serving knowledge and scholars.
Waqfs and printing of books for students Sheikh Jassim realized the importance of endowments in Islam (Waqfs) and their social and cultural role in providing care for the poor and students of science as well as maintenance of religious facilities and supporting their functions. Therefore, he donated several deeds of assets as charity for a number of public utilities, and by doing so he was only seeking Allah blessings. The historian, Sulaiman bin Saleh al-Dakhil, said about Sheikh Jassim: (He made several endowments to all Arab countries. For, he came to establish four endowments in Najd, another four ones in Al-Mouzanab and similar four Waqfs in Al-Ahsa, as well as in Qassim, Bahrain, Qatar and other places, and all these were well spent pursuant to Sharia law).
As Sheikh Jassim had close links with the people of Najd whom he loved very much, he made several endowments over there, such as in Diriyah, Riyadh, Harimlae, Dalam, Hawtat Bani Tamim, Shaqra, Otithih, Al-Mouzanab and Al-Iqullah, thanks to God, the proceeds of which are been attained until the present day and used to cover expenses of the utilities specified by him under supervision of a number of judges or agents.
Sheikh Jassim would spend the proceeds received from his Waqfs to mosques, preachers, imams, Muezzins (callers for prayers), teachers, Sunni students, poor and fasters breakfasts.
He also provided students with rare books on traditions and heritage printed in India and elsewhere, the distribution of which was focused on students from Najd. Therefore, these books were sent to the prominent scholars in Najd, but more particularly to outstanding seats of knowledge by then such as Riyadh and Hail, etc. As a result of this, students over there were able to develop their own libraries, especially when we take into account that the books provided under Waqf by Sheikh Jassim included various branches of religion, such as doctrine, Hadith, Figh, etc. The researcher observes that the referred list of books indicates the special attention given by Sheikh Jassim to selection of such books in terms of specialization and the importance of the book within each specialty, where he was more keen in providing books of doctrine and Hadith more than other Sharia books. The efforts exerted by Sheikh Jassim in printing and distribution of books were a success despite the strict control and censorship exercised by both the Britain and the Ottoman Empire over trends of publication and distribution of books related to Salafi doctrine in Gulf countries and the Islamic world by the time. Therefore, we could hardly find during that period a library in Najd that would not contain books donated by Sheikh Jassim. Actually, we came to examine some of these books on the covers of which were printed Waqf of Sheikh Jassim by their Najdi owners, including Interpretation of Quran, Hadith and Fiqh.
Najd Scholars Praise Sheikh Jassim Najd’s Scholars, poets and historians came to acknowledge the outstanding status of Sheikh Jassim and his struggle and sacrifice to realize the values advocated by the Islamic religion, as well as his persistence on following righteousness despite the intellectual and political conflicts that took place in the region by then, therefore they praised him in prose and poetry that were too many to be entirely included herein. Hence, we may just name underneath a few examples thereof. The historian and writer, Sulieman bin Saleh al-Dakhil stated about Sheikh Jassim that: (He was of great piety and fear of God. In one word, he was one of Arab geniuses who was entirely involved in pursuing happiness of religion and homeland). He further said: (He was the Amir of the country, the Imam on Fridays, the judge, Mufti and the Governor.
He was famous for such characteristics as delivering stunning speeches that would attract audience hearts to him, and for unlimited generosity. In one word, he was one of the Arab pillars and supporters and a man entirely devoted to serving Islam, whom had an influential say among Arabs and whom was well feared by presidents and princes, and he was a great seeker of reform and that God would accomplish in his hands anything he would interfere in).
Sheikh Suleiman bin Sahman commended Sheikh Jassim in a poem he sent congratulating him on his victory over the Turks in the year 1310 AH/1893 AD, in which he described him as been compassionate, trustworthy and a great supporter of Islam. He also praised him in another poem congratulating him on his victory in one of the battles as been a defender of Islam.
Furthermore, another poet and writer, Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdullah bin Uthaymeen, who was linked with Sheikh Jassim by a close friendship, expressed his condolences in two poems in which he described some of Sheikh Jassim qualities, such as his generosity, courage, protection of help-seeker and his sympathy with orphans, poor and needy, as well as emphasizing the huge calamity of his death. Sheikh Hussein bin Ali bin Nafisa also lamented Sheikh Jassim by begining his poem with a short introduction in which he praised him and gave a full description of his spectacular characteristics and values.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulaziz bin Manee stated that: (On the 20th of Sha’ban 1331 we heard in Bahrain of death of Sheikh Jassim bin Thani of Qatar, who passed away on Thursday the 13th of Sha’ban 133. Sheikh Jassim was one of the greatest benefactors who stated in his will to have a lot of money dispersed after his death; including ten thousand rupees to be given to Sheikh Abdullah bin Abdullatif. May Almighty God’s mercy and forgive him).
The historian, Sheikh Abdul Rahman bin Mohammed Nasser, stated that: (He was devout, pious, honest, generous, of a good biography, of good belief under the revered Imam Abu Abdullah Ahmad ibn Hanbal, and who loved Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdul Wahab and his sons).
This material is quoted from a joint research entitled “The Religious Values of Sheikh Jassim bin Mohammed Al Thani as viewed through his Relationship with Najd Scholars” prepared by Dr. Khalid bin Ali bin Ahmed Al-Wazzan, a professor and consultant at the Faculty of Dentistry, King Saud University, a member of its Scientific Council, and researcher of Najdi history, and Mr. Abdullah bin Bassam bin Abdullah Albesimi, for the Founder Symposium on the occasion of the National Day Celebrations 2008.