|12-03-2004, 08:52 AM||#2|
Re: Glimpses of Light: Sahih Al Bukhari
Been away for a long time, anyway, i would advise all to listen to this if ur able to Bi'idhnillah, cos Alhumdulillah i recently started study of Sahih Bukhari, in my final year of Aalimah (theology) and i only have one word "AWESOME Alhumdulillah", anybody askes me hows ur year study going i cant come up with any better word.
Bint Edris aka Al-Hadyatu noor
|12-03-2004, 10:08 AM||#3|
Re: Glimpses of Light: Sahih Al Bukhari
mashaAllaah... hope to see you there then inshaAllaah.
The quote below is from the instructor, and I think it will be beneficial to post it up for all to see: ).
Before Ramadan, I was asked to do a regular weekly class. In sha Allah, we'll be reading the hadiths of Imam al-Bukhari's Sahih in Arabic with explanation and commentary in English. The first two or three classes, in sha Allah, will be a brief overview of some important principles from the sciences of Hadith and a brief overview of the efforts of the scholars to preserve and pass on the Sunnah from the time of the Sahaba until now. Then after a brief discussion of Imam al Bukhari himself and an overview of his book, we will begin reading the book insha Allah.
|12-12-2004, 09:42 AM||#6|
Re: Glimpses of Light: Sahih Al Bukhari
These are the notes from the First Week's Bukhari Class... Hope to see you all there for the second inshaAllaah.
بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
A Brief Overview of the History of Hadith Literature from the Age of the Companions until the Present Day
Sunday Dec. 5th 2004
The Scholars of the Ummah, from the time of the Companions until the present day, have taken great care to preserve and convey the Sunnah of Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم). And in every age, as new challenges appeared, sincere scholars arose who met those challenges. It is not possible to do justice to this broad topic in a short amount of time and this is by no means to be taken as a thorough discussion of the topic, but rather, it should be regarded merely as what it is: a brief overview.
The Great Effort of the Companions (رضوان الله عليهم) to Learn the Sunnah
The Companions used to give great concern to sitting with the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) to hear his hadiths and learning from him as much as possible. Of course, while some of them were independently wealthy and were able to devote themselves entirely to learning from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم), others had to work in order to meet their needs. However, they would not let this prevent them from learning from Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم). For this reason we find, for example, that ‘Umar made an arrangement with an Ansari neighbor of his. Each of them would take turns sitting with the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) on alternating days, and then he would return and relate to the other all that he had missed that day as has been mentioned in a long hadith in Sahih al-Bukhari. Still, other Companions were young and unmarried, having few worldy obligations, allowing them to devote their time to learning from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم), at the head of them Abu Hurayrah.
Writing of Hadith During the Lifetime of Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم)
Muslim reports in his Sahih through the route of Hammam from Zayd ibn Aslam from Ata’ ibn Yasar Abu Sa’id al-Khudri that Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said, “Do not write from me, and whoever has written from me other than the Qur’an, then let him erase it.”
Although this hadith is in Sahih Muslim, it is one of the few hadiths of Sahih Muslim which was criticized by some of the scholars of hadith. While it has come from this particular route from Abu Sa’id from the statement of Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم), however Abu Nadhrah and Abul-Mutawakkil have narrated it from Abu Sa’id in mawquf form from the words of Abu Sa’id himself. Al-Bukhari and Abu Dawud both chose the opinion that this is the correct version of this hadith. And al-Khatib al-Baghdadi mentioned this opinion without making a decisive conclusion as to which is correct. And the opinion chosen by al-Bukhari and Abu Dawud is what is correct, and Allah knows best.
However, even if this hadith is authentic, then it should be regarded as abrogated. A number of scholars have stated that the wisdom behind this prohibition was so that the Qur’an would not get confused with other than it when the revelation was still new and the Companions were still new to Islam. However, later, when that was no longer feared, the prohibition was lifted.
And there are a number of authentic hadiths that show the permission of writing.
Al-Bukhari and Abu Dawud report that on the day of the Conquest of Makkah, the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) delivered a sermon. A man from Yemen called Abu Shah asked the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) to have that sermon written for him so the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) ordered that a copy of that sermon be written for Abu Shah.
And Abu Dawud reports with a sahih isnad that ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr ibn al-‘As used to write down everything he would hear from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) that he desired to preserve or to memorize, so some of the Companions prohibited him saying, “He is a human being, he speaks when he is pleased and when he is angry.” So ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr refrained from writing until he mentioned this to Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم), so Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم) pointed to his mouth and said, “Write, for by the one in whose hand is my soul, nothing comes forth from it except for the truth.”
And it is for this reason that Abu Hurayrah said, “There is no one from the Companions of Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم) with more hadiths from Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم) than me, except for ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr, for he used to write, and I did not write.” [Al-Bukhari and Abu Dawud]
This statement may seem problematic as there is no doubt that many more hadiths have been recorded in the books of hadith from Abu Hurayrah than from ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr. However, this is due to a number of causes. Abu Hurayrah devoted himself to teaching, giving fatawa, and narrating hadith, while ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr used to perform a great deal of worship by day and night – prayer, recitation of Qur’an, and fasting – which would have occupied most of his time. Furthermore, Abu Hurayrah lived in al-Madinah and, while ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr accompanied the armies that conquered Syria and Egypt and eventually took Egypt as his place of residence. In that time period, many of the Tabi’in would travel to Madinah to hear hadiths while that was not really the case with other cities. In fact, according to al-Bukhari in at-Tarikh al-Kabir, over 800 of the Tabi’in heard hadiths from Abu Hurayrah, and there was no one else from the Companions who had anywhere near that number of students.
The Concern of the Companions for Conveying the Hadith
A number of Companions who were young in the lifetime of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) devoted themselves to attaining knowledge and then passed it on to the following generations.
And there is no doubt that this is from the tarbiyyah that they received from Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم), the greatest of teachers and guides. “And the best guidance is the guidance of Muhammad.”
From amongst the many statements of Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم) encouraging attainment of knowledge is the hadith “Whoever takes a path seeking knowledge, Allah makes easy for him a path to Paradise.” [Muslim]
And he did not just encourage them to learn the Sunnah, but to pass it on as well, as he said, “May Allah brighten the face of the person who hears what I say and retains it, then convey it to others.” [Ahmad, Abu Dawud, ibn Majah, and at-Tirmidhi who said, “Hasan Sahih.”]
And he also warned against lying upon him, saying “Whoever lies against me intentionally, then let him take his seat in the Hell-Fire.” [Al-Bukhari, Muslim, and many others]
This hadith has been narrated from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) by over fifty Companions, which is an indication of the great effect that this severe warning had on this great generation as there are few hadiths that were narrated by as many Companions as this hadith.
And so after Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم), the Companions used to take great caution in narrating hadiths. When ‘Umar was the Khalifah, he would threaten those who who narrated hadiths that he did not recognize to bring a witness for their hadith, otherwise he would have them beaten. And this was not because he doubted their trustworthiness, but by taking great caution to verify every aspect of the Sunnah, it was protected from error entering into it.
From the narrators who lived long after the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and were able to narrate many hadiths are Abu Hurayrah, ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab, Anas ibn Malik, and ‘A’isha bint Abi Bakr, may Allah be pleased with all of them.
There were others among the wives of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) who narrated hadiths from him such as Umm Salamah, but ‘A’isha, may Allah be pleased with her, narrated the most out of any female Companions. This is perhaps part of the wisdom in making ‘A’isha the wife of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم). She was shown to him as his wife in a dream, and so it was that Allah showed him that he should marry her. He married her when she was six years old and she came to his house at the age of nine – and we know that memory is good at young age and can retain better. She was exceptionally bright and lived for over 40 years after the death of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and she had many students. Being in the house of Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم), she saw what others did not see and heard that which others did not hear. And thus, she was able to preserve and convey very important aspects from the Sunnah. And this is a sufficient sign that Allah is the one ensuring the preservation of the Sunnah as it was by His Revelation to Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم) that ‘A’isha was in a position to play this essential role in the preservation of our religion.
And some other Companions who narrate a great number of hadiths are ibn ‘Abbas, Jarir ibn ‘Abdillah, and Abu Sa’id al-Khudri. And this is not intended as a comprehensive list.
Then, in the generation of the Tabi’in, a number of important developments were made. The writing of hadith increased, and whoever desires to know more concerning this should refer to Shaykh Azami’s book, Studies in Early Hadith Literature, which he wrote as his doctoral thesis.
The Beginnings of Criticism of the Narrators
In the time of the Companions, there was no question of the trustworthiness and precision of the narrators of hadiths as the Companions heard directly from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and then took great caution in conveying what they heard. However, in the time of the Tabi’in, the issue of narrators making errors or not being trustworthy began to appear for the first time.
And so it was that the scholars of hadith developed what has come to be known as the science of al-Jarh wat-Ta’dil. This is the science of examining the narrations of different narrators to make a determination about their reliability. This science developed gradually and expanded as the need grew.
Perhaps the first scholar to truly devote himself to this - critique of the narrators - was a scholar from the senior Atba’ at-Tabi’in, Shu’bah ibn al-Hajjaj (died in 160 H). Amongst his students who took this knowledge from him were ‘Abdur-Rahman ibn Mahdi (135-198 H) and Yahya ibn Sa’id al-Qattan (120-198 H).
Then this knowledge passed to their students from the generation after the Atba’ at-Tabi’in, at the head of them Ahmad ibn Hanbal (164-241 H), Yahya ibn Ma’in (158-233 H), and ‘Ali ibn al-Madini (161-235 H). Then their students took it from them.
The students of these scholars would write their statements about narrators and gather them together, however, there were no scholars who authored books on this subject until the coming of Imam Muhammad ibn Isma’il al-Bukhari (194-256 H). He was a student of ‘Ali ibn al-Madini. He wrote his tremendous book, at-Tarikh al-Kabir. Had he not written any other work, this one would have been sufficient to secure his position as an Imam in the field of hadith, and he was just twenty years old when he wrote it! All the works written in this field after it are dependant upon it. And then after him, the scholars followed this sunnah hasanah, devoting many books to the biography and critique of the narrators of hadith, and all of them were dependant in great part on the word ok al-Bukhari.
Travelling to Gather Hadith
It has already been mentioned that many of the scholars from the Tabi’in travelled to Madinah to hear hadith. In fact, this practice started with the Companions themselves. Some of them would travel to other cities to meet other Companions just for the purpose of confirming hadiths they had heard from Allah’s Messenger. However, it was in the time of the Atba’ at-Tabi’in that the scholars started to do a great deal of traveling for the purpose of seeking hadith. And the most important of the scholars who set this example was Ma’mar ibn Rashid al-Azdi (96-154 H). Imam Ahmad said concerning him that he sought knowledge more than anyone else in his time and he also said concerning him that he was the first one to journey – meaning: he was the first to travel to many lands and spend years in travel through various lands to hear hadiths.
The reason for this travelling to different lands was in order to hear more hadith, because the Companions had spread to the various Islamic lands after the Conquests that took place in their time in order to teach the people Islam, so you would find some hadiths were known in one land but not in another or vice versa. So travelling for the purpose of gathering hadith gradually increased until the time of the Imam Ahmad and his generation came and it was the established practice. Imam Ahmad did not marry until he was forty years old because all of his time and effort was devoted to travelling to seek hadith. And this was the case with many of the scholars.
The Writing of Hadith Books
The practice of writing books of hadith concerning certain topics started all the way in the first century of the Hijrah, but these books were usually small books about various topics. As was mentioned before, writing of hadiths started in the time of the Companions but in the beginning, their writings were more like personal notebooks than books that are authored for people to read and study. Their purpose was to serve as records of the hadiths a person had learned and wished to preserve and memorize.
As time progressed, more comprehensive books were written. We will only discuss certain select important books. Those who want to know more about the books of hadith should see Studies in Early Hadith Literature as well as Studies in Hadith Methodology and Literature, both by Dr. Azami.
Amongst those books is:
Muwatta’ of Imam Malik (93-179 H)
n It is the first important book of hadith that has been passed down to our time.
n His student ash-Shafi'ee said that his is the most authentic book after the book of Allah (this was before al-Bukhari and Muslim's books were compiled)
n Along with Sahih al-Bukhari, it is the book which has the most commentaries, which is an indication of the great importance that scholars have given this book.
n It is organized by chapters devoted to fiqh. It is a reference point for the fiqh of Imam Malik, which is one of the reasons it has been given so much importance.
n It contains mostly hadiths from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم), but there are also many narrations of statements of scholars from the Companions and the Tabi’in of Madinah. Imam Malik was from al-Madinah and did not travel much to learn the hadiths of the scholars of other lands.
n His book is typical of the books that were written by the scholars of his time, in that they covered a number of fiqh topics while still being brief.
Al-Musannaf of Abdur-Razzaq as-San’ani (126-211 H)
n He was a student of Ma’mar ibn Rashid.
n His is a very large and comprehensive book devoted to gathering together hadiths from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) as well as narrations from the scholars of the Companions and the Tabi’in.
n It is also devoted mostly to fiqh topics
Al-Musnad of Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal (154 – 241 H)
n His book is one of the greatest if not the greatest hadith book ever written!
n It contains about 28,000 hadiths.
n He said to his son Abdullah, describing the purpose of this book, “I wrote this book to be an Imam (i.e. a guide and a reference point) for the Muslims, so whenever they disagree about the hadiths of Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه وسلم) they can refer to it...
n Not everything in al-Musnad is authentic. Many of the hadiths in it were criticized by Ahmad himself. It was his wish to put in it all the hadiths that were mash-hoor (i.e. popular/well known, not necessarily sahih), because sometimes the opinions of the scholars may vary about what is authentic.
n It is a tremendous reference. His statement about the purpose of the book indicates that he wanted to encompass all of the sunnah. This does not mean that every hadith that is authentic is in his Musnad. However, you will not find an authentic hadith the basis of which is not related in the hadiths of al-Musnad.
n Many scholars from his contemporaries wrote Musnads. The purpose was to encompass all that had been narrated from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) and preserve it.
n The Musnad books were organized by the Companion who was narrating hadiths.
Al-Jami’ as-Sahih of al-Imam al-Bukhari (194-256 H)
n We will inshaaAllah be discussing his book in great detail next week
n His book was the first book that was complied with intention to bring together sahih hadith only.
n It was not his intent to encompass all the authentic hadiths.
n He wrote it at the suggestion of his shaykh, Ishaq ibn Ibrahim al-Handhali, more popularly known as Ishaq ibn Rahuyah or Ishaq ibn Rahawayh.
As-Sahih of Imam Abul Husayn Muslim ibn Hajjaaj (204-262 H)
n He was the student of al-Bukhari
n He followed his example in writing a book devoted to authentic hadiths
n Both his book and the book of Imam al-Bukhari are organized by chapters. The gather together the chapters of fiqh as well as other topics such as Zuhd.
Al-Jami’ of at-Tirmidhi (279 H)
n His book is more popularly known as Sunan at-Tirmidhi.
n The organization of his book is similar to the previous two books.
n He was perhaps the most devoted of all of Imam al-Bukhari’s students.
n In terms of topics covered, his book is similar to the previous book.
n In addition to gathering together hadiths, he also brings the fiqh of the Salaf – the scholars of ahl al-hadith – concerning the topics touched upon in his book.
n Furthermore, he grades the hadiths.
n Some later scholars have said that he's mutasahil(i.e. he was lax in authenticating hadiths that are not authentic. This is based on misunderstandings of his terminology on the part of those who made these claims. Later scholars use the term hasan to mean that hadiths is from the second level of authentic hadiths. However, one who studies the terminology of at-Tirmidhi will find that he uses the term hasan sahih for hadiths he regards as authentic, and that he uses the term hasan to indicate other factors related to science of the hadith, and this is not the place to clarify that.
n He discusses his methodology that he used in writing his book in al-‘Ilal as-Saghir which is included at the end of his al-Jami’.
As-Sunan of Imam Abu Dawud (died 275)
n He was one of the closest students of Imam Ahmad
n He wrote a letter describing the methodology he used in writing his Sunan which I have translated and it should be referred to for more information about his Sunan.
As-Sunan of An-Nasa'i (215 – 303 H)
n He has two books: As-Sunan Al-Kubraa and As-Sunan Al-Mujtabaa. The second is summarized from the first and it is half its size. It is the one that is popularly referred to as Sunan an-Nasa’i or as-Sunan as-Sughraa.
n Imam an-Nasa’I devotes a great deal of effort to mentioning various routes of certain hadiths to clarify the mistakes of narrators and it is a tremendous reference for that.
n Some scholars even said he was more knowledgeable than Imam Muslim (concerning sciences of hadith).
The third century (200’s H) was the Golden Age for the Sciences of Hadith. After that, decline began. There were many scholars who came in the 300’s such as Ibn Khuzaymah, ibn Hibban, al-Haakim. Each of them wrote books for the purpose of gathering authentic hadiths only. However, they were lax in grading hadiths Sahih.
In this period of decline, the understanding of the sciences of Ahl al-Hadith declined as people began entering more and more into ‘Ilm al-Kalam and turning away from the beneficial knowledge of the Salaf.
As a result scholars eventually became forced to write books about ulum al-hadith because the students of hadith themselves were starting to get mixed up concerning matters that were important for them to know. Some important books written in this time were Ma’rifah ‘Ulum al-Hadith by al-Hakim and al-Muhaddith al-Fasil of ar-Ramahurmuzi.
Also, Imam al-Khattabi (388 H) wrote the first commentaries on hadith books in this time period, Ma’alim as-Sunan, which is a commentary on summarized Sunan Abi Dawud, and then he A’lam al-Hadith, popularly known as A’lam as-Sunan, a commentary on Sahih al-Bukhari.
He mentioned in his introduction to Ma’alim as-Sunan the reason for writing his book. The reason was that he found in his time that the people of hadith devoted their time to gather hadith for the purpose of competing in one another so they focused on gathering gharib (strange) hadiths that no one ever heard of - because they're weak narrations coming from the mistakes of narrators. They became so occupied with this that they started to neglect that which was most important – being able to distinguish between sahih and dha'if. This also lead them to neglect the importance of understanding the hadiths and applying their knowledge. On the other hand, there were the people of fiqh who were not concerned with gathering hadiths to begin with, so they knew only a few hadiths and their effort was devoted to debating issues of fiqh based on argumentation, not based on knowledge of the sunnah.
So he saw for the first time there was a need for commentaries explaining the Prophetic Hadiths whereas the previous generations learned the hadiths and their fiqh directly from their shaykhs as they travelled seeking hadiths. However, due to the decline of knowledge, he saw a need for a book to aid the students in learning the fiqh of hadiths due to their ignorance concerning it.
In this time period, ‘ilm al-kalam – which has its origins in the philosophy of the Greeks such as Aristotle – started to spread and influence people's knowledge and understanding. The Mu'tazilah had started spreading their ‘aqidah which was based on logic and argumentation not Qur'an and Sunnah (i.e. ‘ilm al-kalam).
In the previous generation, the generation of Imam ash-Shafi’i and Ahmad and the followers of scholars like them, the scholars of Ahl al-Hadith did not enter into ‘ilm al-kalam at all.
However, in this century, when the knowledge of Ahl al-Hadith concerning their own field became weak, they started to turn to ‘ilm al-kalam to respond to the Mu’tazilah. So you find in this time the Ash’ari and Maturidi madh-habs started to spread amongst Ahl al-Hadith. The basis of both these madh-habs was in the writings of ibn Kullab. He was a contemporary of Imam Ahmad who declared him an innovator because of his involvement in ‘ilm al-kalam. Yet, in the century following that of Imam Ahmad, the majority of the scholars were following the way of ibn Kullab! And so ‘ilm al-kalam began to effect all the Islamic sciences, including, ‘ulum al-hadith.
There was another way in which ‘ilm al-kalam influenced ‘ulum al-hadith: through usul al-fiqh. The people of kalam started to enter things into the field of usul al-fiqh that were not from the way of the Salaf. And some of those alien concepts were entered into the sciences of hadith.
Al-Hafidh ad-Daraqutni (385 H)
n He was the last of the great early scholars of hadith.
n He was from the few people of his time who stayed away from ‘ilm al-kalam, but as al-Hafidh adh-Dhahabi said, “But rather, he was a Salafi.” Meaning: he followed the way of the Salaf. This is true not just of his ‘aqidah but his approach to the sciences of hadith.
After him there came many other great hadith scholars such as al-Bayhaqi, but none of them were of the same level as the likes of an-Nasa’i, al-Bukhari, and Ibn al-Madini and other early scholars!
For that reason, those early scholars of hadith must be taken as the point of reference.
Imam ibn as-Salah (643 H)
n He wrote a book concerning ‘ulum al-hadith which became the foundation for all such books written after him.
n While it is an excellent and influential book, it contains certain fundamental methodological errors as ibn as-Salah ws influenced indirectly by ‘ilm al-kalam through the influence of usul al-fiqh.
n So this influenced all the scholars who came after him, and subsequent generations were not as knowledgably as generations of the Salaf.
There were still tremendous scholars such as In Kathir, adh-Dhahabi, ibn ‘Abdil Hadi, ibn Rajab, and ibn Hajar but gradually over time, the knowledge of hadith started to die and be neglected although there were still some notable scholars.
In our age, Shaykh al-Albani came and he really revived interest in the sciences of hadith. His many works devoted to the sciences of hadith lead to a renaissance in the study of hadith and a level of interest that has rarely been seen. Islamic universities from Morocco to Indonesia all devoted separate colleges for specialization in the sciences of hadith. And in general, the Colleges of Hadith have seen more students than any of the other colleges because of the profound level of interest in this area.
Despite that, Shaykh al-Albani is not at the level of knowledge as Abu Hatim, Abu Zur’ah, al-Bukhari or the other Imams of the Salaf. There are still some mistakes in regards to methodology that is used by later scholars of hadith.
To illustrate the difference:
There is a hadith reported by Ibn Umar, may Allah be pleased with him, that his father, ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab, asked the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) if a person can sleep while in a state of janabah, the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) said “Yes, if he makes wudu.” [Al-Bukhari]
Many scholars have derived from this hadith that it is wajib to perform wudhu’ before sleeping if in a state of janabah.
And so it is that it has been reported from ‘A’isha, may Allah be pleased with her, that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) used to make wudhu’ before sleeping while he was junub. This was narrated from A'isha by a number of narrators, among them: Abu Salamah ibn ‘Abdir-Rahman ibn ‘Awf, ‘Urwah ibn az-Zubayr ibn al-‘Awwam, and al-Aswad.
As for the narrations of Abu Salamah and ‘Urwah, they have been reported by Muslim and al-Bukhari, and the narration of al-Aswad has been reported by Muslim.
There is another narration concerning this issue that some scholars have relied upon to say that the order is merely recommended to fulfill and that it is permissible to sleep without performing wudhu’ when junub. It is narrated by Abu Ishaq from al-Aswad that ‘A’isha, may Allah be pleased with her, said that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) used to sleep while junub without touching water.
This hadith is reported by Ahmad, Abu Dawud, an-Nasa’i, ibn Majah, and at-Tirmidhi.
After relating this hadith, at-Tirmidhi states, “And more than one has narrated from al-Aswad from ‘A’isha that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه وسلم) used to make wudhu’ before sleeping – meaning: - when he was junub.”
Imam at-Tirmidhi then states, “And this is more sahih than the narration of Abu Ishaq from al-Aswad. And they regard this as a mistake from Abu Ishaq”
And an-Nasa’i has clarified this contradicition in the narrations as well in as-Sunan al-Kubraa.
In discussing this hadith, ibn Rajab states in Fath al-Bari (1/362):
“And this hadith is amongst those that the Imams of Hadith from the Salaf agreed in rejecting from Abu Ishaq; from them: Isma’il ibn Abi Khalid, Shu’bah, Yazid ibn Harun, Ahmad ibn Hanbal, Abu Bakr ibn Abi Shaybah, Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj, Abu Bakr al-Athram, al-Jawzajani, at-Tirmidhi, and ad-Daruqutni.
And ibn ‘Abdil-Barr quotes from Sufyan that he said, ‘It is a mistake.’
And he attributed it to the book of Abu Dawud, and what is present in his book is that this statement is from Yazid ibn Harun, not from Sufyan.
And Ahmad ibn Salih al-Misri al-Hafidh stated, ‘It is not permissible for this hadith to be narrated.’
Meaning: It is certainly a mistake, so it is not permissible to narrate it without clarifying its ‘illah.
As for the later fuqaha’, than many of them looked at the trustworthiness of its narrators, so they thought it authentic, and these ones think that every hadith that is narrated by a trustworthy narrator is sahih. And these ones do not comprehend the fine points of ‘ilm ‘ilal al-hadith.”
It should be noted that the presentation of this hadith given by Abu Dawud and an-Nasa’i in their books is indicative that they consider this hadith a mistake as well, although they did not explicitly say that.
Many of the great scholars from the later scholars of hadith have graded this hadith sahih. And this is due to the influence of the scholars of usul al-fiqh on the books of ‘Ulum al-Hadith that have been written and studied by the later scholars.
The Usuliyyin developed their principles based on “logical arguments” without having practical knowledge of hadith and the realities that existed in the era of narrating hadiths that would lead to mistakes. So they would say, “It is possible that these are two different hadiths that al-Aswad narrated from ‘A’isha. And Abu Ishaq is a reliable narrator from the greatest of narrators, whose narrations are relied upon by al-Bukhari and Muslim in as-Sahihayn. So his hadith must be accepted.”
However, one who studies the narrations of this hadith from Abu Ishaq, it becomes clear he was narrating it relying on his memory by its meaning and then distorted the meaning.
These early scholars of hadith LIVED the narration of hadiths. So they developed their approach to critique of hadiths based on the realities that existed that influenced the narration of hadiths. Since they had experience with the reality of how hadiths were narrated, they knew the causes that lead narrators, even reliable ones, to make mistakes. And based on this knowledge, they could identify the signs that a narrator had made a mistake in narrating a hadith.
Grading this hadith sahih is problematic from another perspective as well. The basis upon which these scholars graded this hadith sahih was that the books of al-Jarh wat-Ta’dil have recorded that these early scholars of hadith critiqued the narrators of this hadith and said that they were reliable narrators, including Abu Ishaq. It is not logical to accept the judgments of these scholars concerning the narrators of hadiths and at the same time reject their judgments on the hadiths themselves!
This is because the judgments of these scholars was based on their judgments on the hadiths themselves. After studying the hadiths of a narrator and identifying his authentic narrations and his mistakes, they would make a judgment concerning the narrator based on their study of his narrations. So if one were to reject their judgments on the hadiths and say that they are not reliable, he would have to reject their statements concerning the narrators.
And the methodology of the later scholars in grading hadith is to examine the judgments of the early scholars on the narrators and then to pass a judgment on their narrations. So to use the results that these scholars reached to reject the basis of those results is not logical.
The important lesson that can be taken from this example is that we must accept and submit to the judgments of the early scholars of hadith, as they are the experts in this field, and no one else reaches their level of knowledge concerning hadith. And this is why al-Hafidh ‘Abdur-Rahman ibn Abi Hatim said, “When the people of hadith agree upon something, then their consensus is a hujjah (proof).”
As for us coming all these centuries after them, then it is necessary for us to study their works and understand their methodology for grading hadiths. Then when we come to hadiths they may have disagreed about or concerning which we cannot find a judgment from them, we can reach a proper conclusion.
And certainly, we love all of the great scholars of this Ummah that came in the later centuries, however, they are not as knowledgeable as Ahmad, al-Bukhari, an-Nasa’i, ad-Daraqutni and the other Imams of Hadith from the Salaf, so we return to their words and rely on their judgments in these matters.
And there are a few scholars from the later generations that have brought light to the importance of referring to the scholars of the Salaf. One of them is al-Hafidh ibn Rajab al-Hanbali, who was a student of Imam ibn al-Qayyim and many other scholars of his time. And from our own era, there is al-‘Allamah ash-Shaykh ‘Abdur-Rahman ibn Yahya al-Mu’allimi.
 This was delivered as an introductory lecture to the class Glimpses of Light from Sahih al-Bukhari and is by no means comprehensive concerning this topic. And it is not possible to do this tremendous topic justice in a short article or lecture. Hence, many important developments in the history of the hadith literature and the role of many important scholars has been left out. And this is not due to its lack of importance, but because this topic is deserving of far greater effort than that which someone the likes of me is able. Wallahul Musta’an.
This article was compiled from the notes of some of those who attended the lecture, may Allah reward them for their efforts.
 As stated by ibn Hajar in Fath al-Bari.
 Cited by ibn Kathir in al-Bidayah wan-Nihayah.
 In Taqyid al-‘Ilm.
 See the biography of Ma’mar ibn Rashid in Tahdhib al-Kamal.
 Those who can read Arabic should refer to al-Mubarakpuri’s introduction to Tuhfah al-Ahwadhi and al-Hittah of al-‘Allamah Siddiq Hasan Khan, amongst many other rich references concerning this topic in the Arabic language.
 Its hidden weakness.
 From the contemporary scholars who rejected this hadith as dha’if, following the ruling of the early scholars is Shaikh Muqbil ibn Hadi al-Wadi’i.
 For example, see all the narrations of this hadith in as-Sunan al-Kubraa of an-Nasa’i and Musnad of Imam Ahmad.
|12-19-2004, 09:21 PM||#7|
Re: Glimpses of Light: Sahih Al Bukhari
Sunday Dec. 12th 2004
>> Question from last week:
If Abu Ishaq made this mistake, and he is considered reliable and many hadiths in Bukhari are by him...Does that create a "weakness" in hadiths in the sahih? (because of the mistake of the narrator)?
There are several factors that must be considered before judging the authenticity of a hadith. Some of the factors include:
1. The hadith must come thru a connected chain (know all intermediaries)
2. The narrators must all be reliable - trust worthy in their character and precise in their narration
3. The hadith can't be shaath (strange/unusual) nor should it contain an illah (deficiency which causes the hadith to be weak).
Shaath means literally something strange/usual. This can be in two ways:
a) Contradicts what's well-known about this topic
b) Really strange that it doesn't have any support in shariah
Scholars don’t just look at the chain of narrators to see if a hadith is sahih. Sometimes a number of issues have to be considered in order to determine whether the narrator made a mistake or not. Also, hadiths that touch on the basis of religion and fundamental aspects of it are treated differently than other topics.
Take for example the Salah. A topic as important as Salah could not have a hadith about it
narrated from just one route! This is something from fiqh that all the sahabah learned and was passed from a whole generation to a whole other generation and so forth. It doesn’t make sense for it to be reported from one route.
Thus, to make a judgement about a hadith, we must know all that has been narrated about this topic, and know all that has been narrated from this particular narrator – is he precise? In spite of that, sometimes the weak narrator may be correct and the strong narrator may be in correct. For example:
There are two people: Bob and Bill. Bob is a person with a really bad memory, while Bill has a good one. In general, if something is told to them or something happens, and you asked them later on about it, you’d go with Bill because he has a good memory. A situation takes place where – say – Bob’s father dies and his funeral takes place, and Bill just happens present at it nor is he really affected by the event. If you ask both Bob and Bill about the date of the funeral later on, and Bill answers either the 10th or 11th of December, while Bob answers with certainty that it was the 7th, would you take what Bill says just because he has a good memory?
Of course not, the fact that Bob was directly affected personally by this event would lead him to remember it better than Bill. Furthermore, Bob witnessed it while Bill did not, and being informed is not the same as witnessing an event. And the last indication that Bob was correct is that he feels certain that is the 7th, while Bill is in doubt, indicating that he does not remember it well. All of these factors would lead us to accept Bob’s account over Bill’s, although it is still possible the funeral was actually the 10th or 11th.
Scholars of hadith understood this reality very well, and know that not all things narrated by a person with a bad memory are wrong, and not everything narrated by a person with a good memory are correct. So they do not make a ruling based merely on looking at the reliability of a particular narrator.
There’s a famous quote by Ali ibn Al-Madeeni:
“A particular topic, when its routes are not gathered together, the mistakes will not become clear.”
Until you have gathered all routes together concerning a particular topic, you cannot make a judgement that a mistake has been made.
The hadith we discussed last week that was narrated by Abu Ishaq was contrary to the hadiths from other chains of narrations (Urwah, Abu Salamah, Al Aswad) – so there were many routes with multiple reliable narrators that convey the correct hadith. And this is the case with much of the sunnah.
However, there will be some hadiths that come from only one route - such as the first hadith from Sahih al-Bukhari. This hadith has been classified as sahih by al-Bukhari, Muslim, and many other scholars, even though it has only one narrator. We will discuss this in more detail later.
The point that must be made here, when grading a hadith authentic or not, the scholars do not look merely at the one chain of narrators and make a decision based on that. They look at many factors, and for each particular hadith that is studied, there may be particular factors related to that hadith that must be looked at in order to determine whether this hadith is authentic or not.
>> Where did Imam al-Bukhari Study?
Al-Imam al-Bukhari studied first in his home town (Bukhara) at a young age. He then studied in Makkah after performing Hajj, and then travelled around the Muslim world in order to collect hadiths (went to Iraq, Syria etc.)
>> Why aren’t there many narrations of Ali ibn Abi Taalib in the books of sahih narration?
The companions who narrated the most hadith, in general, were the ones who lived the longest. There’s no doubt that the most knowledgeable of the Companions are Abu Bakr and Umar, but there are very few hadiths that have been transmitted to us through them. The reason for that is that Abu Bakr lived for only two years after the Prophet’s death, during which he was busy with the affairs of the khilaafah. If you look in the Musnad of al-Imam Ahmad, you will find less hadiths in Musnad Abu Bakr than in Umar’s, and in Umar’s less than in Uthman’s, and in Uthman’s less than Ali’s. Many of Ali’s sahih hadiths can be found in Sahih al-Bukhari.
Many Companions such as Abu Hurairah narrated much more hadiths than the 4 Companions mentioned above, as Abu Hurairah devoted himself the most to teaching, while other Companions were busy with other things (some of them were leading armies or governing provinces etc.) Ali radiyallahu anh spent many years managing the khilaafah and his rule was a time of fitan that kept him very busy.
>> Is the story of the 100 switched-up mutoon and asaaneed which were used to test al-Imam al-Bukhari’s knowledge true?
There is a well known storythat al-Bukhari went to Baghdad and that the scholars came up with a test to challenge him and to test if he’s indeed as great as they say. What they did is that they switched mutoon (texts) and asaaneed (chains of narrators) of 100 hadiths, then they picked 10 people and each picked 10 hadiths to memorize. They then took turns narrating them to Bukhari, and Bukhari answered to each of them that he doesn’t know all these hadiths, and he tells them the correct mutoon with asaaneed. This story has been reported by Imam ibn ‘Adi, he mentioned it saying that it has been narrated to him by a number of his shuyookh, and his shuyookh were in the time of Bukhari such that they could have been witnesses to this story. Although we do not know the identity of the shuyookh of ibn ‘Adi who narrated this to him…but we have no reason to reject it. We wouldn’t treat this narration as we would for hadith as narrations of each field are to be treated differently. It was not enough for the Salaf if you say to them “The Prophet said”, and not say where you got it from and who said it. However, for something like this story that took place with the 100 mixed up hadiths, it’s not the same. This is why ibn ‘Adi didn’t bother to mention his shaikhs. So this story is acceptable.
A Biography of al-Imam al-Bukhari, and Discussion of Some of His Important WorksSunday Dec. 12th 2004
He is Abu Abdillaah Muhammad ibn Isma'eel ibn Ibraheem ibn al-Mugheera ibn Bardizbah al-Ju'fi Mawlaahum.
His great grandfather al-Mugheerah was a Majoosi (fire worshipper - religion of people of Persia before advent of Islam). He was the first Muslim in the lineage of al-Imam al-Bukhari; he became Muslim at the hands of the governor of Bukhara, al-Yaman al-Ju'fi. This is why al-Imam al-Bukhari is attributed to al-Ju'fi tribe, not because of linage but because his great grandfather was converted at the hands of a member of that tribe.
Imam al-Bukhari's father Isma'eel ibn Ibraheem ibn al-Mugheera was himself a person of hadith and a student of hadith. Al-Bukhari said about his father that he has heard from Malik ibn Anas (Imam of Madinah/Maaliki madhab), saw Hammad ibn Zayd (Imam of al-Basrah), and shook hands with Abdullah ibn al-Mubarak with both of his hands. So al-Bukhari was from a family that gave great concern to knowledge.
Imam al-Bukhari was an orphan; his father died when he was young and his mother raised him. He was from a wealthy family as his father engaged in business. His father said, "There is not a single dirham that I have that is from haraam or from something doubtful." He had righteous parents who had the quality of wara', so Allah blessed them in their wealth. When Imam al-Bukhari's father died, he left behind a tremendous amount of wealth such that al-Bukhari never had to work for a living.
Imam al-Bukhari began seeking knowledge at a very young age. He began by memorizing the Qur'an then started memorizing hadith when he was in al-Kuttaab (elementary grade) while still 10 years old. He's from the city of al-Bukhara (in what's known today as Uzbekistan). He used to go to the scholars of Bukhara and sit with them. At a young age he memorized the books of Abdullaah ibn al-Mubarak and Wakee' ibnul Jarrah, and he learned the fiqh of the scholars of ra'ee (opinion). In his mid teens, Imam al-Bukhari went with his mother and brother Ahmad to Makkah for Hajj. His mother and brother returned home after Hajj and he remained in Makkah to study hadith, at which time he was not older than 16.
His Care in Collection and Preservation of Hadith
His scribe, al-Warraaq Muhammad ibn Abee Haatim heard him saying:
“My writing of hadith was not in the same manner of these people (other students who write hadith). Whenever I would write from a person I'd ask him for his name, kunyaa, lineage, and I would ask him about the defeciency of hadith if he was a person of understanding.”
He realized that at that time there were some scholars of hadith who were very profiecient in the sciences of hadith so they were able to identify when narrators would make mistakes. He would ask them about these matters, and wouldn't just suffice with reading the hadith, hearting the hadith etc. Unlike today, people will read many of the major hadith books and they will not give a great importance to learning which hadiths are authentic and which are weak! Whenever we study the sunnah of the Prophet, we must give great importance to what's really authentic and what's not.
Al-Bukhari goes on to say:
“If he wasn't (a person of understanding – because those who would gather hadiths and narrate them to get the reward of those who help pass on the sunnah were necessarily l of a high level of knowledge concerning hadith) - then I would ask him to pull out his asl (actual book where the narrator had written the hadith) and I would write or copy the hadith from there.”
The reason for that is that a person may make a mistake in their narration, because not everything they had written down was organized by topic, so if they want to narrate certain hadiths in their gathering they would often just go ahead and narrate from memory (instead of digging into their notebooks), and would only use their asl as a reference point to which they could go back if they need to check something.
Also, it was common that before actually listening to the hadith from the narrator, a student would copy the hadith from his book and then listen to it being narrated, in order to observe the correct pronunciation and reading of the hadith. As many of the alphabets in Arabic are similar in appearance except for the presence of dots, it is easy to fall into mistakes while copying or reading a hadith. So it was important to hear the hadith from the shaykh directly.
And it was also important for scholars of hadith to examine the books of the narrators in order to see whether the narrator took great care in preserving his book or was careless in doing so, as some narrators would make mistakes even if reading out of their books because they were careless in the writing down of the hadiths. And therefore, there was a great relationship between the precision of a narrator in his narrating and the precision of his book. Many times, errors would occur in narration because the narrator had made an error in writing the hadith, and not because he was relying merely on memory. Imam al-Bukhari understood the importance of this and therefore would examine the books of narrators.
He goes on to say:
“As for the others (other students) they don’t care what they write down (they’d just write what they heard) or how they write down hadiths,” where as al-Bukhari had a particular methodology he would employ in writing down hadith as we have discussed above.
And this is very important for every student. Many people today – even many who are regarded by average people as “scholars” – will read books of hadith and not care to verify what is authentic and what is not.
Praised by Scholars of His Time
Imam al-Bukhari was praised greatly by the scholars of hadith – the scholars of ahl as-Sunnah wal-Jamaa’ah, many of them being from the generation of his teachers.
Al-Imam Ishaq ibn Rahuyah, who was one of the great scholars of hadith and fiqh, and a companion of Imam Ahmad, said:
“Write (hadiths) from this young man, for even if he was present in the time of al-Hasan (al-Basree) the people would still have been in need of him (al-Bukhari) due to his great knowledge of hadith and his understanding of it.”
Al-Imam Ahmad, the Imam of ahl as-Sunnah wal-Jamaa’ah, said:
“Khurasan has not brought forth anyone like Muhammad ibn Ismaeel (i.e. Imam al-Bukhari).”
The praise of the scholars of al-Imam al-Bukhari’s time proves how highly he was regarded.
He was also a righteous person and a great 'abid (worshipper). He used to recite the Qur’an a great deal and pray a lot during the night, and especially in Ramadan when he used to recite the whole Qur’an everyday.
A story has been related that shows his great khushoo' (concentration). While in salah one day, a scorpion stung him 17 times. Al-Bukhari remained in salah until he finished it. Upon being asked why he did not leave the salah when he first got stung, he answered,
“I was in the middle of reciting a surah so I wanted to finish it.”
This shows you the great concern that these scholars from the Salaf had for worshipping Allah. This is what made them reach this level of knowledge, as Allah says:
Verily it is ONLY the scholars from among the slaves of Allah who truly fear Him.”
This is why these great imams weren't just busy with writing books or giving fataawa; their hearts were connected to Allah ta’aalaa and they used to worship Him by day and night. This is what caused them to reach that level of understanding of the deen and the level of Imamah that they reached.
The person who truly gets knowledge and benefits from it is the one whose knowledge causes him to fear Allah ta’aalaa.
There is a long story concerning the fitnah that Imam al-Bukhari fell into at the end of his life where he was accused of some things and was driven from city to city until finally he had nowhere left to go. He made the du’aa:
“O Allah, the Earth has become constricted for me even though it is spacious, so take me up to you. Within a month of making that du’aa he died and Allah ta’aalaa took him.”
There's a long story surrounding this, which we will not get into in shaa’ Allah.
After his death, al-Imam al-Bukhari left behind several important works (some of his works were lost).
1. Al-Jami’ as-Sahih (commonly known as Sahih al-Bukhari)
Before we understand why al-Jami’ as-Sahih was written, we have to examine the situation in his time in terms of the books of hadith that have been written before.
A) The Gathering of the Sunnah by the Generations of al-Imam al-Bukari’s Teachers
The shuyookh of al-Imam al-Bukhari’s generation wrote what is known as a “Musnad”. A Musnad is a book of hadith that is organized by the Companion that narrated the hadith (e.g. Musnad of al-Imam Ahmad starts with the musnad of Abu Bakr, then Umar, then Uthman, then Ali (رضوان الله عليهم) all the way till the very end, including virtually all the hadiths that have been recorded from the Companions). The Musnad of al-Imam Ahmad is the greatest of all Musnads of that time. There were others such as:
al-Musnad of Abul-Waleed at-Tayalisi (الطيالسي)
al-Musnad of Ishaq ibn Ibrahim al-Handhali (aka. Ishaq ibn Rahuyah)
al-Musnad of Abu Bakr ibn Abee Shaybah
al-Musnad of Uthman ibn Abee Shaybah
Most of these are people from whom al-Imam al-Bukhari has heard hadiths. The scholars of hadith wrote their books when they had reasons and objectives to write their books; whenever a new challenge would arise facing the hadith literature and threaten the preservation of the Sunnah, the scholars would address it accordingly. At the time of Imam Ahmad, this type of book (Musnad) developed because the scholars wanted to gather together ALL of the Sunnah (anything that was narrated from the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم)). This was their objective.
From the contemporaries of Imam Ahmad, there’s hardly a great scholar of hadith except that he wrote a Musnad – even al-Imam al-Bukhari himself and Imam Muslim and others did as well. However these Musnads came later and weren’t passed down to us, as there were already many Musnads.
At that time, the reason Musnads were ‘popular’ is that it was the first age in which it was really possible for a person to claim that he has gathered together all of the Sunnah. We have discussed in the previous class that the scholars of the Companions scattered throughout the Muslim land due to the expansion of the Muslim State, and so they took their knowledge with them and narrated hadiths there. In the later generations, scholars started travelling around to collect hadiths from different places. In the age of Imam Ahmad and his contemporaries, it got to a point where al-Imam Ahmad and other great scholars of his time had spent years and years travelling to Muslim lands and gathering hadiths, so much so that none of the Sunnah has missed them. Take the case of Abul-Waleed at-Tayalisi: he offered a cash reward to anyone who would narrate to him an authentic hadith that he had never heard of, in order to see if he has missed any authentic hadiths. Many narrators came to him, among them was Abu Hatim ar-Razi; however, no one was able to narrate an authentic hadith that Abul-Waleed hadn’t heard of. This is indicative of the state of hadith literature and the scholars of hadith, and that it was possible for one to challenge others to bring authentic hadiths that one hasn’t heard of. If most of the Sunnah and the hadiths of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) were not gathered already, it would not possible to say that statement as many people could come forth with authentic hadiths that are new. So Abul-Waleed’s statement is indicative of that fact that – at the time, most of the Sunnah had been already gathered by the scholars.
If that was the case with Abul-Waleed at-Tayalisi, then there were scholars who had even greater knowledge in Hadith than him such as Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbali, Yahya ibn Ma'een, and Abu Hatim ar-Razi. If one were to sit with Abu Hatim and learn all his hadiths and then to sit with at-Tayalisi and learn all his hadiths, then one could safely say that he has gathered all of the Sunnah.
So by the time of al-Imam al-Bukhari, the Sunnah had been gathered as the scholars of hadith had written down and gathered hadiths in their Musnads.
It was under these circumstances that al-Imam al-Bukhari wrote his book al-Jami’ as-Sahih.
B) Why No Books Devoted to Authentic Hadiths Were Written Before
The reason why no one had written a book like that before was the fact that one must know all the routes before one can be certain if the hadith is authentic or not. It is not enough to know all of the hadiths of that sahaabi. Let’s say you go to a Musnad, and pick a hadith of Abdullah ibn ‘Umar that appears to be authentic; then you look through all of the hadiths in the musnad of Abdullah ibn ‘Umar and find no contradictory narrations. This is NOT enough to judge the authenticity of the hadith. It may be that the hadith appears to be authentic from Abdullah ibn Umar with a sound chain of narration, whereas the real chain of narration might be a weak chain from Abdullah ibn ‘Amr or from someone else.
So only after that generation that came and took on the task of gathering together all the Sunnah and making records it could someone come along to make a book that’s devoted only to authentic hadiths.
C) The Inspiration of al-Jami’ as-Sahih and Qualifications of al-Bukhari
Considering who it was that suggested the writing of a book devoted to sahih hadiths, it was none other than al-Bukhari’s shaikh al-Imam Ishaq ibn Rahuyah. Ishaq ibn Rahuyah had worked on writing his musnad – thus fulfilling his task in terms of challenges to scholars of hadith in his time. In one of his gatherings of knowledge where Imam al-Bukhari was present he said:
“If only you would gather a concise book for the authentic Sunnah of Allah’s messenger."
And so Imam al-Bukhari said:
that idea came into my heart (I liked it), so then I began to compile together al-Jami’ as-Sahih”
So we can see that this was the next logical stage in writing a book of hadith: that someone writes a book on authentic hadiths after the Sunnah had been gathered, and certainly al-Imam al-Bukhari was one of the scholars who were qualified to do that.
There are two quotes from Imam al-Bukhari himself that indicated that he was qualified to do that:
1. al-Imam al-Bukhari said:
Al-Imam al-Bukhari said that he engaged in a discussion of hadiths with the companions of ‘Amr ibn Ali al-Fallaas - one of the great scholars of hadith – where they mentioned a hadith to him so he said “I don’t know it (this hadith)”. They got excited that they had a hadith that al-Bukhari didn't know of, and they went to ‘Amr to tell him that, so he replied: “A hadith that is not known to Muhammad ibn Isma’il (i.e. Imam al-Bukhari) is not a Hadith!”
This goes to show that al-Fallaas recognized that great knowledge and level of Imamah that Imam al-Bukhari had reached in the ‘ilm of hadith.
2. Imam al-Bukhari also said:
There's nothing that I know of that is needed except that it can be found in the Qur’an and Sunnah. Someone said to him, “Is it possible to know all of that?” He said, “Yes.”
So here, al-Imam al-Bukhari testifies that it's possible to know ALL of the Qur’an and the Sunnah. This is an indicator that he had reached that level himself, otherwise he would not have been able to make a judgement that it's possible to know all of the Sunnah.
Other books include:
2. at-Tareekh al-Kabeer, at-Tareekh al-Awsat, and at-Tareekh as-Sagheer
3. al-Adab al-Mufrad (the Book of Islamic Morals and Manners)
4. Raf’ul Yadayn fis-Salaah (Raising the Hands in the Salah)
This book was written as a refutation of those who say that the hands are only to be raised in the salah in the first takbeerah. This is opinion of Hanafis and some of people of Kufah. So al-Imam al-Bukhari gathered together all of the authentic hadiths from the Prophet, and authentic narrations from the Companions (about them raising the hands in salah not only in the first takbeerah); he then brought together the hadiths that are used to support the other opinions and clarified their weakness. This book is a great testimony to the knowledge of al-Imam al-Bukhari; he explained the fiqh of this issue with the most scholarly manner possible.
5. Al-Qiraa'ah Khalf al-Imam – (Reciting Behind the Imam)
In particular, this book discusses reciting al-Faatiha behind the Imam. There are three opinions among the scholars with regards to this issue:
1. It is obligatory to recite al-Faatiha whether the Imam is reciting outloud or silently.
2. It is obligatory only if the Imam is reciting silently during the salah.
3. It is not obligatory to recite al-Faatiha at all behind the Imam.
In his books, al-Imam al-Bukhari shows firstly that the opinion of Companions was divided between the first and second views, and that none of them held the third view. Al-Bukhari goes on to explain why he holds the first opinion to be the strongest opinion. This book is another testimony to the level of his fiqh and knowledge of hadith. It also shows his methodology of referring everything back to the Qur’an and Sunnah, based upon the understanding of the Salaf (the Companions in particular), as they had taken their religion directly from the Prophet and thus their understanding is the strongest.
Note: It is not possible to say that they misunderstand a matter and that we come along and figure it out and “realize” that they were all wrong! Their teacher was the Prophet himself and he took care to teach them the religion properly. Whoever disregards the understanding of the Companions insinuates that the Prophet did not teach them their religion properly.
6. Qadaayaa as-Companions wat-Taabi'een (The Rulings of the Companions and Taabi’een)
This book was written by al-Imam al-Bukhari when he was in his early twenties. In it, he gathered together the fiqh rulings and judgements of Companions and taabi'een in order to show their importance and for us to have a reference point to see what was their judgement with regards to certain issues.
Could you please re-explain the part about Abdullah ibn ‘Amr and Abdullah ibn ‘Umar that was used to illustrate how knowing the authenticity of hadith is not as simple as looking at one sahaabi’s narration?
|01-04-2005, 11:41 PM||#8|
Re: Glimpses of Light: Sahih Al Bukhari
Sunday Dec. 19th 2004
Question from last week:
Could you please re-explain the part about Abdullah ibn ‘Amr and Abdullah ibn ‘Umar that was used to illustrate how knowing the authenticity of hadith is not as simple as looking at one sahaabi’s narration?
We mentioned last time a quote from Ali ibn Al-Madeeni:
“A particular topic, when its routes are not gathered together, the mistakes will not become clear.”
Until you have gathered all routes together concerning a particular topic, you cannot make a judgement whether a narration is correct or not.
So for example, you pick a hadith of Abdullah ibn ‘Umar which seems to have an authentic chain, and you want to know whether or not the hadith itself is authentic. You then take the Musnad of Imam Ahmad, and look in the Musnad of Abdullah ibn ‘Umar (i.e. the section where his hadiths are gathered), and don’t find any narration which is contradictory to the one you picked. This is not enough to say that this hadith is authentic. It may be that this hadith has been narrated by someone from Abdullah ibn ‘Umar – with a chain that appears authentic, while in fact, the correct narration is really with a disconnected chain from Abdullah ibn ‘Amr. Both the names of Abdullah ibn ‘Umar and Abdullah ibn ‘Amr sound similar and are written similarly, and one could easily mistake them for each other. And as a result, a narrator could fall into the error of narrating the hadith from ibn ‘Umar instead of ibn ‘Amr. So if one was not aware that the real narration of this hadith is from ibn ‘Amr, he would fall in the error of thinking the narration from ibn ‘Umar is authentic.
So looking at the hadith is not enough for one to be able to make hukm (judgement) on the hadith, as one should know all of or most of the hadiths that have been narrated before making a judgement. For this reason, precedence should be given to the judgment (on hadiths) of the early scholars who had knowledge of all the different narrations over the opinions of later scholars, for none of the later scholars had the vast command of the different hadith narrations that the early ones did.
Discussion of the Beginning of Sahih al-Bukhari
Sunday Dec. 19th 2004
Beginning the Sahih in the Name of Allah
Imam al-Bukhari begins his Sahih with:
In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful
The first issue that comes up is that al-Bukhari begins his sahih with only without mentioning any praise of Allah ta’aalaa (i.e. not saying alhamdulillaahi rabbil alameen or similar words) which it is typical for scholars to begin their books with.
In his commentary on Sahih al-Bukhari titled ‘Umdatul Qari’ al-Allamah Badr ad-Deen al-‘Ayni critisizes al-Imam al-Bukhari for not beginning with the praise of Allah. This critisim is based on a number of evidences, the strongest of them being the hadith:
“Every matter of importance/consideration that is not begun with praise (of Allah) then it is cut off (i.e. devoid of blessing).”
This hadith has been reported by Ibn Majah, Ibn Hibban, and Abu Dawud from the route of Qurrah ibn Abdir-Rahman from az-Zuhri from Abu Salamah from Abu Hurayrah from the Prophet pbuh.
Abu Dawud said after narrating this hadith that Yunus, ‘Uqayl, and Sa’id ibn Abdul Aziz all narrated this hadith from az-Zuhri directly from the Prohpet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam in mursal form. So he has indicated that the correct version of the hadith is what these narrators narrated because they are extremely reliable (thiqah) narrators, while Qurrah ibn Abdir-Rahman who is narrating it with a connected chain is weak and thus his narration is munkar. And thus it is that Imam ad-Daraqutni and Shaykh al-Albani in al-Irwaa’ said that the mursal form is the correct version of the hadith. Some later scholars like Ibn as-Salah and al-‘Ayni graded this hadith hasan, this is not correct.
The other evidences of al-‘Allamah al-‘Ayni are argumentative at best, so we will not go into them, however one might say that the following hadith of Ibn Mas’ud:
Allah’s Messenger taught us at-tashahhud in salah and at-tashahhud in matters of need.
It was reported by at-Tirmidhi – who graded it hasan sahih – as well as others.
This is a reference to what is known as khubtatul haajah which the Prophet used to begin many of his talks with. One might say that this shows it is obligatory or at least legislated to begin with praise in every matter.
However, the statements of the Prophet are best explained by his own actions. Even though the Prophet used to start all of his talks with khutbatul haajah, it was not his practice to begin his writing with praise – rather he would simply begin with Bismillahir Rahman Ar Raheem.
For example Abu Sufyan relates in his hadith concerning his meeting with Heraclius the Emperor of Rome (the Byzantine Empire) that the Prophet had written a letter to Heraclius which stated:
In the name of Allah, Most Beneficent, Most Merciful. From the Muhammad the Salve of Allah and His Messenger to Heracles the Emperor of Rome. [Reported by al-Bukhari and Muslim. It will come up as hadith no. 7 of Sahih al-Bukhari.]
So we see that the practice of the Prophet is that when he began some writing, he would begin it with Bismillah ar-Rahman ar-Rahim and would suffice with that. Likewise when he made the truce with Quraish in the year of Hudaybiyah, he simply began with Bismillah ar-Rahman ar-Rahim and did not mention praise of Allah. This has been reported through various routes by Bukhari and Muslim.
Another hadith that is commonly quoted concerning the issue of mentioning Bismillah ar-Rahman ar-Rahim:
Every matter of importance that is not begun with Bismillah ar-Rahman ar-Rahim is cut off (devoid of blessing).
This is reported by Al-Khatib and ar-Rahawi, and it is extremely weak as clarified by Shaykh al-Albani in Irwaa’ al Ghaleel (إرواء الغليل). It contains Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn Imraan in its chain of narrators and he is weak. And as-Subki has mentioned it from another route containing Kharijah ibn Mus’ab who is extremely weak. So this is an extremely weak hadith.
This is not a proof that one must being everything with Bismillah ar-Rahman ar-Rahim as some scholars have said; however, it was the practice of the Prophet to being his writings with Bismillah ar-Rahman ar-Rahim, and thus Imam al-Bukhari begins his sahih with it.
Most Popular Commentaries on Sahih al-Bukhari
1.) ‘Umdatul Qaree – Badr ad-Deen al-‘Ayni
The reason the al-‘Ayni’s criticism was mentioned above is that his commentary is one of the most popular and most extensive commentaries on Sahih al-Bukhari.
2.) Fath al Bari – Ibn Rajab al-Hanbali
Al-Hafidh ibn Rajab died before completing it. He only reached the Book of Jana’iz (funerals) – covering about 1200 hadiths. So his commentary only covers about 1/6 of the 7500 hadiths of Sahih al-Bukhari, and even then there are portions that are missing. Whatever portions that are available, however, have been printed.
3.) Fath al-Bari -- Ibn Hajar al-‘Asqalani
Ibn Hajar wrote a full commentary on Sahih al-Bukhari, and it’s the best complete commentary that is available.
Ibn Rajab’s Fath al-Bari vs. Ibn Hajar’s
One of the points that make Fath al-Bari of Ibn Rajab better that that of Ibn Hajar is that Ibn Rajab follows the aqeedah of the Salaf.
When the issues of Allah’s Names and Attributes come up, you will find that many times Ibn Hajar falls into making ta’wil of Allah’s Attributes, may Allah pardon us and him. Also, you will find that Ibn Hajar slipped in the issue of tabarruk from as-Saaliheen (i.e. seeking blessing through the relics of righteous people ). The Companions used to do that with the Prophet, but this is not correct to do with anybody after the Prophet. Were it so, there would be reports of them doing that with the more senior Companions such as Abu Bakr and ‘Umar – who were the best people after the death of the Prophet, and the Tabi’in would have done it with the Companions. The fact that they did not do this is sufficient proof that this is an act of bid’ah and that it was only allowed to be done with the Prophet, but after his death it was not done.
Ibn Hajar therefore has some mistakes in aqeedah; however, his book is an excellent book and contains much benefit as Ibn Hajar is a great scholar of hadith, but you should be aware of some of the slips in aqeedah. Ibn Rajab’s book is free of this.
b) Grading of Hadith
Ibn Rajab’s book is full of quotes from the early scholars about the grades of hadiths. This is something that makes Ibn Rajab’s book an extremely valuable book.
c.) Narrations from the Salaf
Ibn Rajab’s book is full of narrations from the Salaf about every issue that comes up, and this is extremely beneficial as it is always important to return to their understanding of the matters of the religion as they were closest to the time of the Prophet and to his guidance
The First Chapter
The chapter of the manner of the beginning of the revelation to Allah’s Messenger Prophet, and the statement of Allah – exalted in His mention – “Verily, We have sent wahy to you (O Muhammad) as We sent wahy to Nuh and the Prophets after him.”
The Connection Between the Ayah and the Chapter Title
The ayah above shows that the beginning of revelation to the Prophet was in the same manner as the other Prophets. As will come up in the third hadith of this chapter, A’isha said:
“The first of revelation that Allah’s messenger received is true dreams in his sleep.”
So the Prophet would see dreams in his sleep that would come true shortly after; this is how revelation began to Allah’s Messenger. It is as if Imam al-Bukhari is indicating that since the beginning of revelation for the Prophet was in this manner, then this must have been the manner in which revelation began to all Prophets as Allah said, “We have sent wahy to you (O Muhammad) as We sent wahy to Nuh and the Prophets after him.”
And according to ibn Hajar, Abu Nu’aym reports with a hasan isnad that ‘Alqamah ibn Qays said that the first thing that the Prophets receive is in their sleep, to prepare their hearts, then the wahy comes down to them in a state of wakefulness. And it is as if this understanding of his was based upon this verse. And Allah knows best.
This is an opinion of some of the Salaf, so this is what Imam al-Bukhari is trying to prove through his chapter title. It’s important to note here that Imam al-Bukhari is proving his point without saying a great deal! You will find that Imam al-Bukhari, throughout his book, will bring a chapter title indicating certain points he is trying to prove, and then will mention hadiths under that chapter title that do not necessarily seem to be directly related to that chapter title. This is because he is trying to extract some point from that hadith that is related to the chapter titles and prove his point. This is something that should be noted, when you read Sahih al-Bukhari (and even al-Imam an-Nasa’i in his books as-Sunan al-Kubraa and as-Sunan as-Sughraa), sometimes it’s not clear what the relationship is between the hadith and the chapter title.
The First Hadith
Beginning with the first hadith:
It was reported to us by al-Humaydi he said, it was reported by Sufyan from Yahya ibn Sa’id al-Ansari, he said: Muhammad ibn Ibrahim at-Taymi informed me that he heard ‘Alqamah ibn Waqqas al-Laythi saying: I heard ‘Umar ibn al-Khatab (may Allah be pleased with him) on the minbar, he said: I heard Allah’s Messenger say:
“Indeed actions are but by their intentions and every man gets what he intends, so whoever’s hijrah is to attain some gain from the dunya or in order to marry some woman, then his hijrah is to whatever he has made hijrah to.”
Discussion of Chain
This hadith is reported from narrators who are all from the most reliable of narrators: almost all of them are imams.
Abdullah ibn az-Zubair al-Humaydi (Kunyah: Abu Bakr)
He is an imam and was one of the most knowledgeable concerning fiqh from among the teachers of al-Imam al-Bukhari. He was also a close companion of ash-Shafi’ee, and they both heard hadiths together from Sufyaan ibn ‘Uyaynah.
Imam Abu Hatim ar-Razi said about him:
“Al-Humaydi is the most reliable/firm narrator from ibn ‘Uyaynah, and he’s the leader of all of his companions, and he is a trustworthy Imam.”
Here al-Imam al-Bukhari is narrating this hadith from al-Humaydi from Ibn ‘Uyaynah; al-Bukhari brought this chain because it’s the best chain, as Al-Humaydi is the most realible narrator from among those who narrated hadiths from Ibn ‘Uyaynah.
Sufyaan ibn ‘Uyaynah ibn Abi Imraan al-Hilaalee (Kunyah: Abu Muhammad)
He is from Kufa originally, and then moved to Makkah. He and al-Humaydi are from the scholars of Makkah. Sufyaan Ibn ‘Uyaynah was from the most knowledgeable scholars of his time, and one of the most important narrators of his generation.
Yayha Ibn Sa’id al-Ansari
He is from the youngest generation of the taabi’een (i.e. the ones who heard hadiths mostly from other Tabi’in and only heard a little from Companions).
Muhammad ibn Ibrahim at-Taymi
He was from the middle generation of at-Tabi’in (i.e. ones who heard some hadiths from Companions and others from other Tabi’in).
‘Alqamah ibn Waqqas al-Laythi
He was from the senior tabi’in (i.e. ones who heard most narrations from Companions).
All the above narrators are from among the most reliable narrators of hadith.
Umar ibn al-Khattab
He is Ameerul Mu’mineen, and the second best of the companions of Allah’s Messenger.
This hadith has only been reported from Yahya Ibn Sa’id al-Ansari from Muhammad ibn Ibrahim at-Taymi from ‘Alqamah ibn Waqqas al-Laythi from Umar; there is no authentic route for this hadith except the route of Yahya Ibn Sa’id al-Ansari. Then many people narrated this hadith from Yahya Ibn Sa’id al-Ansari; it is said that over 200 people heard it from him – even said as many as 700 narrators. However, ONLY Yahya Ibn Sa’id al-Ansari heard it from Muhammad ibn Ibrahim at-Taymi, and only Muhammad ibn Ibrahim at-Taymi from ‘Alqamah, and only ‘Alqamah from ‘Umar, and only ‘Umar from Allah’s Messenger.
There is a narration of this hadith from Abu Sa’id al-Khurdree; however, Abu Hatim ar-Razi was asked about that narration and he said:
“This is a batil (false) hadith with no basis rather it is only Malik from Yahya ibn Sa’id from Muhammad ibn Ibrahim at-Taymi from ‘Alqamah ibn Waqqas from Umar from the Prophet."
And this is because someone narrated it from Malik with a chain going through Abu Sa’id al-Khudry. Abu Hatim said that this is false because the reliable narrators who narrated from Malik narrated through the same reliable chain (through Yahya ibn Sa’id all the way to Umar). According to Ibn Rajab, the scholars are in ijmaa’ (agreement) in accepting this hadith and grading it authentic.
Why this Hadith is Accepted Even Though it Comes from One Route Only?
One may say this hadith is a little bit doubtful because it’s only coming from Yahya ibn Sa’id from Muhammad ibn Ibrahim at-Taymi from ‘Alqamah ibn al-Waqqas al-Laythi from Umar ibn al-Khattaab; however, the scholars of hadith are unanimous in accepting this hadith. There are a number of reasons for this, and to understand it, one must understand how it is that the imams deal with these types of hadiths.
Imam al-Hakim says in his book Ma’rifah Ulum al-Hadith:
“The shadh (strange) hadith is the one that a thiqah (reliable) narrator is alone in narrating, no one follows him up in that, and there’s no asl for that hadith supporting it, and there’s no illah (deficiency) for it.”
His student, Abu Yahya al-Khalili, said:
“A shadh hadith is that which only has one isnad, that a thiqah shaykh is alone in narrating. Whatever is from other than a thiqah, then the hadith is matruk (abandoned) and not accepted at all; and whatever is from a thiqah, then we refrain from making a ruling and we do not rely on it.”
Ibn Rajab explains that when the hadith is not from a great Imam Hafidh, and so if you have a great Imam Hafidh then this hadith is accepted and agreed upon. If it’s not from a narrator who is like that, then we look at a number of factors.
In this hadith, for example, if we look at the meaning of this hadith we find that it is about the connection of niyyah (intention) to action. This is something that is supported by many texts and is not depending just on this hadith (i.e. it has an asl that follows it up). In the Qur’aan we find the verse:
“And they were not commanded with anything except that they should worship Allah, making the religion sincerely for him alone…” [Al-Bayyinah 98:5]
This meaning is also supported by a hadith Qudsi, as reported in Sahih Muslim:
“I am in no need of anyone associating anything with me; whoever associates something with me then I abandon him and his shirk.”
And there are numerous other texts that support the meanings derived from this hadith, so it is not shadh or gharib (strange). Rather, the meaning of this hadith is something that is well known from the shari’ah. If there was strangeness in the hadith such that it contradicted what is already known and had no basis in the shari’ah, it would be an indicator that the narrator has erred. However, the hadith at hand is coming from extremely reliable narrators and its meaning is supported by many texts, a few of which have been mentioned, so there is no cause to question this hadith.
Another point that should be made is that a hadith having only one chain or depending on one particular route is something that causes the scholars of hadith to look at it more carefully and they do not accept it until they have carefully examined it.
When looking at such hadiths, one must look at the cause of it being narrated only from one route. Recall the example about salah mentioned last week. It is not conceivable that someone would relate some important aspect of salah that was not heard of by anyone else because the salah was something that all of the Companions learned about, and all of the Tabi’in learned it from the Companions. So it is not conceivable that someone could say that the number of rak’ahs for the ‘Isha prayer was changed from four to five before the death of the Prophet. And if anyone were to relate that, even if he were a reliable narrator, and he was narrating from a chain of reliable narrators, we would know this is an incorrect, false narration because it contradicts the realities that existed. So at this point, the scholars of hadith would look to see what caused the narrator to make such a mistake.
A hadith like this one however (inna mal a'maalu bin niyyat) it was not necessary for all of the Companions to make sure to narrate this hadith because its point is already proven in the Qur’an and in many other hadiths. For this reason, most of the narrators of hadith focused on narrating the hadiths that were most essential to transmit, whereas something like this, there are many other texts that proved this point. Therefore, it is completely plausible that this hadith was only passed down to us through the route of ‘Umar, and even if others also narrated it, it is conceivable that not all the narrators from Tabi’in who heard this hadith from other Companions passed it down. The number of narrators in the generation of Tabi’in was not as great as subsequent generations and so it is conceivable that something like this could have come from just a single Tabi’i; however, for later generations this becomes a problem because in the generation of the Atba’ at-Tabi’in, the number of narrators multiplied. The Tabi’in - who were students of the Companions – had many students who would narrate from them (i.e. the number of narrators from the Atba’ at-Tabi’in was more than the Tabi’in); as we said, over 200 narrators narrated from Yahya ibn Sa’id. Ibn Hajar collected together many of the routes of this hadith and he found over 100 narrators narrating this hadith from Yahya ibn Sa’id al-Ansari. So this gives you an indication how the number of students who devoted themselves to narrating hadiths multiplied in the generations following the generation of the Tabi’in.
After examining the factors that surround this hadith, it becomes clear there is no reason to criticize or reject this hadith. There appears to be nothing wrong with text of hadith nor with chain so it is acceptable and thus the scholars of hadith were unanimous in accepting it.
Example of a Hadith Rejected Due to Its Only Being Related from One Route
On the other hand, there are some hadiths that were rejected by scholars because only one narrator narrated it, despite the narrator being a thiqah. One such hadith is the following:
When one of you makes sujud then let him not go down as the camel goes down, but rather let him place his hands before his knees.
This hadith is used by some scholars to prove that one must put his hands down before his knees when going into sujud. This is the hadith with the strongest chain that is narrated concerning this issue. There are a number of weak hadiths which indicate that one should place his knees first, and other weak hadiths which say one should put his hands first; however, the aforementioned hadith is the strongest hadith narrated with regards to this topic and all its narrators are reliable. Despite that, Imam al-Bukhari, Imam at-Tirmidhi and ad-Daraqutni classified this as weak; Hamza al-Kinani - the student of Imam an-Nasa’i – said it is munkar; and likewise al-Hafidh ibn Rajab and Shaykh Muqbil from our time graded this hadith as weak following the early imams.
This hadith has been reported by at-Tirmidhi, Abu Dawud and an-Nasa’i from the route of Muhammad ibn Abdillah ibn Hasan from Abuz-Zinad from al-A’raj from Abu Hurayrah; all of its narrators are reliable. In fact, the chain of Abuz-Zinad from al-A’raj from Abu Hurayrah is regarded as one of the most authentic of chains from the hadiths of Abu Hurayrah, and has been compared to the Golden Chain (Malik from Nafi’ from Ibn ‘Umar).
Why has the hadith been regarded weak by the scholars mentioned above?
Before that question can be addressed, we must understand the importance of this chain Abuz-Zinad from al-‘Araj from Abu Hurayrah.
This narrator, Abuz-Zinad, was one of the most important narrators in his generation and many narrators heard hadiths from him, so much so that he was one of the people that the scholars of hadith would say that all of the hadiths revolve around these narrators (Abuz Zinaad from al-‘Araj from Abu Hurayrah).
Abuz-Zinaad had many students who would narrate from him, just like Yahya ibn Sa’id al-Ansari’s hadith was narrated from him by hundreds of people.
Muhammad ibn Abdillah ibn Hasan was a reliable narrator (he’s a thiqah narrator), but he was not one of the most reliable of narrators from Abuz-Zinaad, as there were many great imams from that time who heard from Abuz Zinaad, yet none of them narrate this hadith. In contrast, it is not even known whether Muhammad ibn Abdillah ibn Hasan even sat with Abuz-Zinad in his gatherings of knowledge!
This is a factor that causes us to reject Muhammad ibn Abdillah ibn Hasan’s narration of this hadith from Abuz- Zinad, because if Abuz-Zinad had really narrated this hadith, his closest students would have narrated it from him.
Since no one else narrated this hadith from Abuz-Zinad, we are forced to reject it, for it is inconceivable that the students who sat with Abu Zinad for many years missed this hadith and Muhammad ibn Abdillah ibn Hasan – who doesn’t even narrate many hadiths, and is not even known as a student of Abuz Zinaad – heard this hadith from. This is why many scholars of hadith have rejected this hadith even though its chain appears to be authentic.
The reason why the first hadith in Sahih al-Bukhari was accepted is that it was conceivable given the factors discussed earlier that Yahya ibn Sa’id al-Ansari was alone in narrating that hadith from Muhammad ibn Ibrahim at-Taymi.
So this is why these scholars rejected the hadith from Muhammad ibn Abdillah ibn Hasan and accepted the one from Yahya ibn Sa’id al-Ansari.
Since there is no authentic hadith concerning this topic (whether to put down hands first or knees), a person can do whatever is easier for them. Scholars differed about this issue concerning which is better and why, but this is not the place to discuss that issue.
Why is Imam al-Bukhari Mentioning the Hadith on Intentions in the Chapter of Wahy?
Scholars have offered a number of different explanations as to why this hadith was motioned in this chapter. The strongest opinion is that al-Imam al-Bukhari wanted it to be a reminder to himself about ikhlas, and that he needs to write his book seeking the face of Allah Ta’ala because a person gets only whatever he intended.
Had he intended by writing his book to become famous or for people to think of him as a great scholar, then he would be falling under what has been mentioned in a hadith of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) that amongst the first people on the Day of Judgment to be thrown in the Hellfire will be a scholar who willl be brought before Allah who will ask him what he did with the knowledge that he was given and he will say “I taught people for your sake” and Allah will say “You have lied, you taught them so that it would be said that you are a scholar and they said it”, then he will be dragged on his face into the Hellfire.
This hadith was brought here to be a reminder of that point. One of the greatest proofs of this is the fact that he summarized the full wording of the hadith. The actual full wording of the hadith states:
“Whoever’s hijrah is to Allah and His Messenger, then his hijrah is to Allah and His Messenger, and whoever’s hijrah is to seek some worldly gain or marry some woman then his hijrah is to whatever it is he made hijrah for.”
So Imam al-Bukhari the dropped the first part of the hadith (about making hijrah to Allah and His Messenger), and what is meant by that is that whoever makes hijrah out of his desire to please Allah and his messenger to follow their commands then he will truly get what he intended – which is the pleasure of Allah and His Messenger, and following their word and being with the Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم) on Yawm al-Qiyaamah and Jannah etc. as a result of obedience to him. A person who does it for something else, he gets what he intended.
A person can do an action for an intention that is permissible, haram, recommended or obligatory, and gets whatever he has intended. If he intended to do something for a good reason then he’ll be rewarded for that. If he intended to do something that is obligatory and wished to fulfill this obligation of Allah, then he’ll be rewarded for that and there’s no sin on him. If he did something that was merely permissible, then there will be no sin on him and no reward. If his intention was haram then his action is haram.
So Imam al-Bukhari dropped that statement purposely, and he has reported this hadith in 7 places in his sahih using different chains (meaning he mentioned different narrators who narrated from Yahya ibn Sa’id, because as we mentioned that all routes of this hadith are from Yahya ibn Sa’id. So began for this reason, as there is no connection between this hadith and the chapter.
Some scholars say there’s a link between the hadith and chapter title and they argued greatly about what that might be. Some said that if it were a reminder it would have been brought before the chapter title, but it’s brought after because all of the men in the isnaad are from Makkah, and that is where the revelation began. However, it seems that the most likely reason is to remind himself of ikhlaas when writing the book and thus he summarized the hadith.
Scholars have said that the reason he dropped that statement, is so that he’d not be making “tazkiyah” of himself, and implying that his action was sincerely for the sake of Allah and following the Sunnah of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم). In order to avoid that, he summarized the hadith.
Some scholars have tried to say that maybe when Imam al-Humaydi narrated this hadith he narrated it with this statement missing. However, Imam al-Humaydi, in his Musnad, narrated this hadith through this chain from Sufyaan with the full wording of the hadith. So it is clear that Imam al-Humaydi really narrated this hadith in full version and not in deficient manner, and that Imam al-Bukhari intended to summarize it to avoid praising himself and remind himself of danger of not having ikhlaas in religious actions (such as spreading knowledge).
Sunday Dec. 19th 2004
>> Can you please repeat the Golden Chain? What is the Golden Chain, and is everyone in it reliable?
(Malik from Nafi’ from Ibn Umar) is the Golden Chain. Nafi’ is the most important student of the sahaabee of Ibn Umar. The reason it’s called the Golden Chain is because many scholars said that this is the most authentic chain (and scholars differ in this).
Other chains that are considered among the most authentic are (Abuz Zinaad from al-‘Araj from Abu Hurayrah) and (Az Zuhri from Salim from his father Abullah ibn ‘Umar).
Salim, the son of Abdullah ibn Umar, is one of the most important narrators from Abdullah ibn Umar after Nafi’ (who is more reliable than Salim). The reason they consider Az Zuhri from Salim from Ibn Umar is that any hadith Az Zuhri would hear from both Nafi’ and Salim from Ibn Umar, he’d narrate it from Salim rather than Nafi’ because he was the son of Abdullah ibn Umar. However, if there was a hadith from Nafi’ that wasn’t narrated by Salim, he’d take it from Nafi’.
There are other chains as well that have the same status among the different chains of narrations that exist.
Last edited by Bazigha; 01-05-2005 at 12:01 AM.
|01-04-2005, 11:47 PM||#9|
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Brooklyn New York--Former Ansari :)
Re: Glimpses of Light: Sahih Al Bukhari
mashaAllah I hope its not too late to tune in ?
|01-04-2005, 11:59 PM||#10|
Re: Glimpses of Light: Sahih Al Bukhari
Sahih al-Bukhari: Hadith 2
Abdullah ibn Yusuf related to us, saying Maalik reported to us from Hisham ibn ‘Urwah from his father from A’isha – the Mother of the Believers, may Allah be pleased with her – that Al-Harith bin Hisham asked Allah's Apostle "O Allah's Apostle! How is the Divine Inspiration revealed to you?" Allah's Apostle replied, "Sometimes it is (revealed) like the ringing of a bell, this form of Inspiration is the hardest of all and then this state passes ' off after I have grasped what is inspired. Sometimes the Angel comes in the form of a man and talks to me and I grasp whatever he says." 'Aisha added: Verily I saw the Prophet being inspired Divinely on a very cold day and noticed the Sweat dropping from his forehead (as the Inspiration was over).
Discussion of Chain:
Abdullah ibn Yusuf - is one of the Shaikhs of Imaam al-Bukhari, from whom he heard many of the hadiths of Imaam Maalik. You will find that throughout Sahih al-Bukhari, there are many times in which al-Bukhari narrates from Imaam Maalik through Abdullah ibn Yusuf, for he was a reliable narrator and one of the important students of Imaam Maalik.
Imaam Maalik ibn Anas – is the Imaam of Daarul Hijrah (Imaam of Madinah), and the author of the famous book al-Muwatta’. There’s no need to say more, as he is well known to all the Muslims.
Hisham ibn ‘Urwah – is the son of ‘Urwah bin Az Zubair and one of the important narrators from him. It is said that when Hisham ibn ‘Urwah moved to Iraq later on in his life, his narrations became weak as he began to mix things in his narrations and make mistakes. So when the people of Iraq narrate from him, the narrations are considered weaker. However, Imaam Maalik is from Madinah, and he heard from Hisham before he went to Iraq. They say the reason Hisham ibn ‘Urawah became mixed-up is his grief over his brother’s death. This caused him to fall into heedlessness and he was not as focused on the study of hadith as he was before; thus he fell into making mistakes in chains of narration or in precision.
‘Urwah ibn Az Zubair - is the son of Az Zubair ibn al-‘Awwaam and Asmaa bin Abi Bakr. ‘Urwah ibn Az Zubair is therefore the nephew of A’isha and was one of the most important narrators from her and one of her students who narrated the most ahadeeth from her. He is from the imams of the tabi’een and the fuqahaa’ of Madinah.
A’isha is referred to as Umm al-Mu’mineen (the Mother of the Believers), as have been the other wives of the Prophet due to the statement of Allah ta’aalaa in the verse in Surat Al-Ahzaab:
“The Prophet is closer to the believers than their ownselves, and his wives are their (believers') mothers (as regards respect and marriage)…" (Al-Ahzab 33:6)
Because the Prophet’s wives are like our mothers, it was prohibited for anyone to marry them after his death. This is also a refutation of the shia who curse A’isha , because if A’isha is the mother of the believers, and we know that it’s natural for every person to love and honour his mother unless there’s something wrong with that person! So whomsoever doesn’t love or honour A’isha then it’s a sign that they don’t consider her as their mother, and that since she is the mother of the believers then they are then not among the true believers.
Discussion of the Matn:
(1) Al-Haarith ibn Hishaam is the brother of ‘Amr bin Hishaam (who is better known to us as Abu Jahl whom the Prophet described as being the Fir’awn of this Ummah); al-Haarith accepted Islam and was one of the companions while his brother didn’t.
(2) Al-Haarith ibn Hishaam asked the Prophet how the wahy (revelation) comes to him. This relates back to the chapter title regarding the manner of the beginning of revelation to Allah’s Messenger as it touches upon the mode of revelation. The Prophet goes on to describe two ways in which he receives revelation:
(a) like the ringing of a bell
§ direct revelation
§ this is the most severe form upon him (i.e. hardest)
§ when this state passes/leave him, he would have understood whatever it is that was being revealed
(b) the angel (usually Jibreel -) comes in the form of a man
§ the angel comes in the form of a man, speaks to him, and he grasps whatever the angel has said
§ an example of that is the famous hadith concerning Islam, Imaan, Ihsaan and the signs of the Hour, in which Jibreel comes in the form of a man [it was said he resembeled the sahaabee Duhya al-Kalbe. This hadith was reported by Imaam Muslim from Ibn ‘Umar and Abu Hurayrah).
§ Note that this was the manner in which the revelation first came to Allah’s Messenger as shall be mentioned in the next hadith.
(3) A’isha says that she has indeed seen him (the Prophet after the revelation would come to pass – even on an extremely cold day – his forehead would be dripping sweat. This is an indication of how hard this form of revelation is upon the Prophet
(4) In Surat ash-Shura 42:51, Allah ta’aalaa says:
“It is not given to any human being that Allâh should speak to him unless (it be) by Inspiration, or from behind a veil, or (that) He sends a Messenger to reveal what He wills by His Leave. Verily, He is Most High, Most Wise.”
In this verse, there are 3 modes of revelation that are discussed (as opposed to two only given in the Prophet’s answer to al-Harith ibn Hishaam):
(a) by Inspiration/Wahy
§ e.g. the first way described by the Prophet as the ringing of a bell
(b) from behind a screen
§ e.g. how Allah ta’aalaa used to speak to Musa ; even though he couldn’t see Allah ta’aalaa, but Allah spoke to Musa directly from behind a screen – Surat an-Nisaa’, verse 164 “and to Mûsa (Moses) Allâh spoke directly”. Takleema – means speaking, and Allah repeats the masdar form (verbal noun form) to emphasize that Allah ta’aalaa actually did speak, so that no one can come and make ta’weel of this verse and say that Allah didn’t really speak to him, as the Ashaa’irah and Mu’tazilah try to do
§ e.g. how Allah ta’aalaa spoke direcly to the Prophet on the night of al-Israa’ wal Mi’raaj
(c) through a messenger
§ e.g. Jibreel coming with revelation to the Prophet or to other prophets before
§ e.g. other angels, such as those who came to inform Ibraheem about the people of Lut and give him glad tidings about the birth of Ishaaq
§ messengers – referring to angels
(5) To understand the severity of the direct revelation on the Prophet there are several hadiths (other than that of A’isha describing how sweat would drip from him) such as:
§ An instance where the Prophet was riding on a camel when the wahy came down, and it caused the camel to sit from the severity
§ Anas ibn Maalik was sitting next to the Prophet with the Prophet leg on top of his; after the wahy came down to the Prophet Anas said “I felt like my leg was going to break”
(6) In Surat al-Muzzammil – one of the very first surahs to be revealed – Allah ta’aalaa says:
O you wrapped in garments (i.e. Prophet Muhammad SAW)! * Stand (to pray) all night, except a little. * Half of it, or a little less than that, * Or a little more; and recite the Qur'ân (aloud) in a slow, (pleasant tone and) style. * Verily, We shall send down to you a weighty Word.* Verily, the rising by night (for Tahajjud prayer) is very hard and most potent and good for governing (the soul), and most suitable for (understanding) the Word (of Allâh). (Al-Muzzammil 73:1-6)
One of the things that they say about the tafseer of this aayah is that this directive was given by Allah at the very beginning of the Prophethood of the Messenger to prepare him for the receiving of this wahy. So, Allah ta’aalaa is directing the Messenger to worship Allah greatly – particularly at night, performing qiyaam al-layl – in preparation of the heavy task of receiving Allah’s revelation.
The Prophet says in a hadith reported by Imam al-Bukhari:
The people most severely tested are the Prophets, and then those who are most like them, and then those who are most like them.
Anyone who wishes to study the Qur’an and the words of the Prophet and his Sunnah, anyone who wants to gain knowledge, anyone who is going to devote himself to this then he is going to be tested because he’s trying to be like the Prophets, as the Prophet said:
Scholars are the inheritors of the Prophets.
So it’s inevitable that they’re going to be the most severely tested.
And it is critical that the student of knowledge be regular in the performing of worship of Allah, and remembrance of Allah, starting with the obligatory and then the optional, as this is a necessary step to prepare the heart to understand the words of Allah and the words of His Messenger.
Sahih al-Bukhari: Hadith 3
Narrated from Yahya ibn Bukayr, he said: al-Layth narrated to us from ‘Uqayl from Ibn Shihaab from ‘Urwah ibn Az-Zubair from 'Aisha – the mother of the believers – that she said:
The commencement of the Divine Inspiration to Allah's Apostle was in the form of good dreams which came true like bright day light, and then the love of seclusion was bestowed upon him. He used to go in seclusion in the cave of Hira where he used to worship (Allah alone) continuously for many days before his desire to see his family. He used to take with him the journey food for the stay and then come back to (his wife) Khadija to take his food like-wise again till suddenly the Truth descended upon him while he was in the cave of Hira. The angel came to him and asked him to read. The Prophet replied, "I do not know how to read.
The Prophet added, "The angel caught me (forcefully) and pressed me so hard that I could not bear it any more. He then released me and again asked me to read and I replied, 'I do not know how to read.' Thereupon he caught me again and pressed me a second time till I could not bear it any more. He then released me and again asked me to read but again I replied, 'I do not know how to read (or what shall I read)?' Thereupon he caught me for the third time and pressed me, and then released me and said, 'Read in the name of your Lord, who has created (all that exists) has created man from a clot. Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous." (96.1, 96.2, 96.3) Then Allah's Apostle returned with the Inspiration and with his heart beating severely. Then he went to Khadija bint Khuwailid and said, "Cover me! Cover me!" They covered him till his fear was over and after that he told her everything that had happened and said, "I fear that something may happen to me." Khadija replied, "Never! By Allah, Allah will never disgrace you. You keep good relations with your Kith and kin, help the poor and the destitute, serve your guests generously and assist the deserving calamity-afflicted ones."
Khadija then accompanied him to her cousin Waraqa bin Naufal bin Asad bin 'Abdul 'Uzza, who, during the PreIslamic Period became a Christian and used to write the writing with Hebrew letters. He would write from the Gospel in Hebrew as much as Allah wished him to write. He was an old man and had lost his eyesight. Khadija said to Waraqa, "Listen to the story of your nephew, O my cousin!" Waraqa asked, "O my nephew! What have you seen?" Allah's Apostle described whatever he had seen. Waraqa said, "This is the same one who keeps the secrets (angel Gabriel) whom Allah had sent to Moses. I wish I were young and could live up to the time when your people would turn you out." Allah's Apostle asked, "Will they drive me out?" Waraqa replied in the affirmative and said, "Anyone (man) who came with something similar to what you have brought was treated with hostility; and if I should remain alive till the day when you will be turned out then I would support you strongly." But after a few days Waraqa died and the Divine Inspiration was also paused for a while.
Narrated Jabir bin 'Abdullah Al-Ansari while talking about the period of pause in revelation reporting the speech of the Prophet "While I was walking, all of a sudden I heard a voice from the sky. I looked up and saw the same angel who had visited me at the cave of Hira' sitting on a chair between the sky and the earth. I got afraid of him and came back home and said, 'Wrap me (in blankets).' And then Allah revealed the following Holy Verses (of Quran):
'O you (i.e. Muhammad)! wrapped up in garments!' Arise and warn (the people against Allah's Punishment),... up to 'and desert the idols.' (74.1-5) After this the revelation started coming strongly, frequently and regularly."
Discussion of Chain:
Al-Layth – he is al-Layth ibn Sa’d, one of the Imaams of ahl al-Hadith and Imaams of the Fuqahaa’ from scholars of Egypt. When Imaam ash-Shaafi’ee came to Egypt, he studied fiqh of Imaam al-Layth and said that al-Layth was an even greater faqeeh than Imaam Maalik, but his students neglected him.
Ibn Shihaab – is Muhammad ibn Muslim, commonly known as Ibn Shihaab, in reference to a grandfather named Shihaab back in his lineage. He is also known as Az-Zhuri, also going back in his lineage to Zuhrah ibn Kilaab. He is also an Imaam of hadith and he is from the taabi’een.
Discussion of Matn:
(will include only points that are not obvious from the matn itself)
(1) at-Tahannuth – means at-Ta’abbud. At-Ta’abbud is to worship. If you look at different narrations of this hadith, you will find that is an explanatory statement added by al-Imaam az-Zuhri to explain the word at-Tahannuth, a word which is difficult and its meaning may be unknown to people. Some say that the root of the word at-Tahannuth was tahannuf (i.e. from haneefiyyah, a description of Islam and the millat Ibraaheem. Being “haneef” means to incline towards tawheed and away from shirk and falsehood. Others say at-Tahannuth comes from “hinth”, which means sin; however, the word tahannuth doesn’t mean trying to sin but rather trying to free oneself from sin. Thus al-Imaam az-Zuhri explains that at-Tahannauth means at-Ta’abbud (i.e. striving to do worship) in order to avoid misconceptions.
(2) The Prophet was illiterate.
(3) The first verses to be revealed to the Prophet re verses from Surat al-‘Alaq (verses mentioned in the hadith).
(4) In some of the manuscripts of Sahih al-Bukhari, Khadija says to the Prophet :- “No by Allah, Allah will never cause you to grieve”. However, in most manuscripts, she says" -- “No by Allah, Allah will never disgrace/humiliate you”. The latter is what you’ll find in most manuscripts, and the translation of Sahih al-Bukhari by Muhammad Muhsin Khan is in accordance with that. In the Dar-us-Salam Arabic/English publication, you will find that the Arabic text they use however is the other version even though the translation of Muhammad Mushin Khan is for…
(5) Waraqah ibn Nawfal ibn Asad ibn Abdil ‘Uzza accepted Christianity in the time of Jaahiliyyah, and was very knowledgeable about the Gospel. In the hadith it says he used to write the scripture in Hebrew; some say that he used to write it in Arabic. Al-Haafith Ibn Hajar says that the reason for the mix-up is that Waraqah would write the scripture in both Hebrew and Arabic, and Allah ta’aalaa knows best what’s correct concerning this matter.
(6) an-Naamoos – means one who keeps secrets; it is referring to angel Jibreel
(7) This hadith shows the relationship of the Prophet with Khadija and how she supported him from the very beginning and comforted him in times of trouble. She continued to be one of his most important supporters for the rest of her life – the first 10-11 years of Prophethood.
(8) This hadith also shows the insight Khadija had. She realized that someone who is of the high level of Allah’s Messenger will never be humiliated or abandoned by Allah. She accepted the message right away, because of what she knew about the Prophet and his high level of character. And she was the first person, man, woman, or child to accept his message. And they say Abu Bakr was the first man to accept the message and ‘Ali the first child.
(9) Waraqah ibn Nawfal - who was a very learned person in the scriptures of the people of the book, recognized Muhammad as being a messenger of Allah. This is an indication that Jews and Christians had knowledge to be able to recognize Muhammad as the Messenger of Allah if they were sincere and accept it. This has been mentioned in the Qur’an in a couple of places.
Those to whom We gave the Scripture (Jews and Christians) recognise him (Muhammad or the Ka'bah at Makkah) as they recongise their sons. But verily, a party of them conceal the truth while they know it - [i.e. the qualities of Muhammad which are written in the Taurât (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel)]. (Al-Baqarah 2:146)
Those to whom We have given the Scripture (Jews and Christians) recognize him (i.e. Muhammad as a Messenger of Allâh, and they also know that there is no Ilah (God) but Allâh and Islâm is Allâh's Religion), as they recognize their own sons. Those who destroy themselves will not believe. (Tafsir At-Tabarî) (Al-An'am 6:20)
If one looks at the life of Waraqah ibn Nawfal, he will realize that Waraqah had been in search for the truth throughout his life. There was a group from Quraish in Jaahiliyyah who didn’t like the religion of Quraish and that they had changed the Millah of Ibraheem, so they set out to search for the truth. Waraqah ibn Nawfal and Zaid ibn Amr ibn An-Nufayl were among that group of people. Some of them found Judaism and accepted it, Zaid ibn Amr ibn An-Nufayl chose to remain on the deen of Ibraheem , while Waraqah ibn Nawfal accepted Christianity.
Both Zayd and Waraqah have been praised in various hadiths. The fact that Waraqah ibn Nawfal travelled to all these places is an indication of his sincerity. He was a person who devoted his life to seeking truth, so when the truth came to him from Allah through the Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم) he had no vested interest in rejecting it like the monks and rabbis, and so he accepted it.
[Note: there is a dispute as to whether Waraqah is counted from the Ummah of Muhammad and whether therefore, he would be the first man to follow him or not. However, there is no doubt that he believed in the message of Muhammad
(10) Irsaal – to narrate something directly without mentioning the intermediary source they got it from.
In this hadith, A’isha is narrating what happened at the beginning of revelation even though she was not born at the time, and she didn’t witness it herself. Even though she is not telling us where she got this information from, the scholars say that in the case of Sahabah this is not a problem because the generation of the Sahabah was trust worthy as everyone took great care of being precise when narrating things from Allah’s Messenger and were hesitant to narrate unless they were sure. Likewise, they were praised by Allah in the Qur’an so their can be no question about their trustworthiness.
Therefore, the irsaal of the Sahabah is accepted.
For example, Ibn ‘Abbaas was a very young man when he came to Madinah after the conquest of Makkah; he spent only a few years with the Prophet and missed a lot of hadith, so many of the hadiths he narrates he got from other Sahabah and he didn’t always necessarily mention whom he heard it from. It wasn’t necessary for him, however, to say whether he narrated the hadith from – say – ‘Umar instead of Uthmaan , as all the Sahabah were trustworthy and weren’t careless in their narrations.
Now, considering that A’isha was the wife of the Messenger, it’s most likely that he himself told her the story (i.e. she’s taken the story directly from him); even if she didn’t, the disconnectedness in chain is not a problem because whichever of the Sahabah she got it from, it will be from a reliable source.
Note: the Sahabah didn’t narrate from the generation of the tab’ieen, and it’s only then that problems started to appear. Even in the time of the tabi’een, problems in narration were rare. However, with each subsequent generation, more people started to make mistakes and be less careful, and there were even more people who would dare to lie about the Prophet . When the problems started to appear, narrators were careful to mention their sources. Some scholars from the tabi’een, such as Az-Zuhri, reject mursal narrations because of the intermediary not being known. Again, this is only the case after the Sahabah, because with the Sahabah it doesn’t matter if they got it directly from the Prophet or from an intermediary, as they were all trustworthy unlike later generations.
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