Friday, November 04, 2005

Adam[as] Seeks Intercession With the Prophet's [saw] Name

What follows now is the dicussion of another related Hadith narrated through Maysarat al-Fajr [RA] cited below in Arabic with its chain of narrators.


ADAM [alayhi salaam] SEEKS INTERCESSION WITH THE PROPHET'S [salallahu alayhi wa sallam] NAME

I asked: "O Messenger of Allah, when were you [first] a Prophet?" He replied: "When Allah created the earth ‘Then turned He to the heaven, and fashioned it as seven heavens’(2:29), and created the Throne, He wrote on the leg of the Throne: "Muhammad the Messenger of Allah is the Seal of Prophets" (Muhammadun Rasûlullâhi Khâtamu al-Anbiyâ'). Then Allah created the Garden in which He made Adam and Hawwa' dwell, and He wrote my name on the gates, its tree-leaves, its domes and tents, at a time when Adam was still between the spirit and the body. When Allah Most High instilled life into him he looked at the Throne and saw my name, whereupon Allah informed him that 'He [Muhammad SAWS] is the liege-lord of all your descendants.' When Satan deceived them both, they repented and sought intercession to Allah with my name."

قد أخرج الحافظ أبو الحسن بن بشران قال : حدثنا أو جعفر محمد ابن عمرو، حدثنا أحمد بن سحاق بن صالح، ثنا محمد بن صالح، ثنا محمد ابن سنان العوقي، ثنا إبراهيم بن طهمان، عن بديل بن ميسرة، عن عبد الله بن شقيق، عن ميسرة قال: قلت: يا رسول الله، متى كنت نبياً ؟ قال: (( لما خلق الله الأرض واستوى إلى السماء فسواهن سبع سماوات ، وخلق العرش،كتب على ساق العرش: محمد رسول الله خاتم الأنبياء، وخلق الله الجنة التي أسكنها آدم وحواء، فكتب اسمي على الأبواب، والأوراق والقباب، والخيام،وآدم بين الروح والجسد،فلما أحياه الله تعالى: نظر إلى العرش فرأى اسمي فأخبره الله أنه سيد ولدك، فلما غرهما الشيطان ، تابا واستشفعا باسمي إليه ) .
وأخرجه ابن الجوزي في الوفا بفضائل المصطفى من طريق ابن بشران

Sh. GF Haddad discusses it briefly in the article The Prophetic Title "Best of Creation" :

In the chapter concerning the Prophet's superiority over all other Prophets in his great book titled al-Wafa bi Ahwal al-Mustafa', Ibn al-Jawzi states: "Part of the demonstration of his superiority to other Prophets is the fact that Adam (AS) asked his Lord through the sanctity (hurma) of Muhammad (SAWS) that He relent towards him."

The most authentic chain for this report is not that of al-Hakim's narration from `Umar through `Abd al-Rahman ibn Zayd ibn Aslam who is weak (da`îf), but that of the Companion Maysarat al-Fajr who narrates it as [above]

Shaykh `Abd Allah al-Ghumari cited it in Murshid al-Ha'ir li Bayan Wad` Hadith Jabir and said, "its chain is good and strong" while in al-Radd al-Muhkam al-Matin (p. 138-139) he adds: "It is the strongest Companion-corroboration (shâhid) I saw for the hadith of `Abd al-Rahman ibn Zayd" as quoted also by Shaykh Mahmud Mamduh in Raf` al-Minara (p. 248).

Elsewhere Maulana Muhammad ibn Moulana Haroon Abasoomar states:

"The chain of narrators for this Hadith is totally different from the previous one. And in fact, Hafiz ibn Hajar [ra] has stated concerning a completely different narration which has the very same chain of narrators, that this chain of narrators is strong. (al-Raddul Muhkamul Mateen pgs.138-139; al-Ahaadeethul Muntaqaa pg.14, both of Shaykh Abdullah Siddique al-Ghumarie)"

Sidi Abul Hasan also mentioned the following on Sunniforum:

The student of Imam al-Suyuti: Imam Muhammad ibn Yusuf al-Salihi of Damascus, who died in the year 942 AH, has mentioned in his multi-volume Sira work known as: Subul al-Hadi wal Rashhad, this very narration from Maysara (ra) as follows (vol. 1/p. 86, Darul Kutub Ilmiyya edn, Beirut) from Imam ibn al Jawzi:

وروى ابن الجوزي بسند جيد لا بأس به ، عن ميسرة رضي الله تعالى عنه قال : قلت يا رسول الله ، متى كنت نبيا ؟ قال : لما خلق الله الأرض واستوى إلى السماء فسواهن سبع سماوات وخلق العرش كتب على ساق العرش : محمد رسول الله خاتم الأنبياء . وخلق الله تعالى الجنة التي أسكنها آدم وحواء ، فكتب اسمي على الأوراق والأبواب والقباب والخيام ، وآدم بين الروح والجسد ، فلما أحياه الله تعالى نظر إلى العرش فرأى اسمي ، فأخبره الله تعالى أنه سيد ولدك . فلما غرهما الشيطان تابا واستشفعا باسمي إليه

The crucial point is highlighted in blue above, where Imam al-Salihi declared the chain of transmission to be: "Jayyid La Ba'sa bihi",

Meaning: "Good and there is no harm in it."

This earlier ruling gives credibility to Shaykh Abdullah al-Ghumari and his student: Shaykh Mahmud Mamduh's declarations on its authenticity. Note also, that Shaykh Abdullah al-Ghumari has also declared in his Al-Ahadith al-Muntaqa fi-Fada'il Rasul Allah (sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) that the narration from Maysara (ra) is "Qawi" - "Strong"

Sidi Abul Hasan went on to add a new point of benefit with regard to the narration from Maysara al-Fajr (ra):

فقد أخرج الحافظ أبو الحسن بن بشران قال : حدثنا أو جعفر محمد ابن عمرو، حدثنا أحمد بن سحاق بن صالح، ثنا محمد بن صالح، ثنا محمد ابن سنان العوقي، ثنا إبراهيم بن طهمان، عن بديل بن ميسرة، عن عبد الله بن شقيق(1)، عن ميسرة قال: قلت: يا رسول الله، متى كنت نبياً ؟ قال: (( لما خلق الله الأرض واستوى إلى السماء فسواهن سبع سماوات ، وخلق العرش،كتب على ساق العرش: محمد رسول الله خاتم الأنبياء، وخلق الله الجنة التي أسكنها آدم وحواء، فكتب اسمي على الأبواب، والأوراق والقباب، والخيام،وآدم بين الروح والجسد،فلما أحياه الله تعالى: نظر إلى العرش فرأى اسمي فأخبره الله أنه سيد ولدك، فلما غرهما الشيطان ، تابا واستشفعا باسمي إليه ) .وأخرجه ابن الجوزي في الوفا بفضائل المصطفى من طريق ابن بشران، نقله عن ابن تيمية في الفتاوي (2/159) مستشهداً به

Some contemporaries have objected of late that in the sanad to the narration from Ibn Bushran there is a narrator by the name of Muhammad ibn Salih - and it is not precisely known which of the numerous Muhammad ibn Salih's is this exact one in the Isnad given above.

Shaykh Mamduh has named two that could possibly be the exact narrator in the above sanad. He said:

ومحمد بن صالح هو أبو بكر الأنماطي المعروف بكيلجة ، ثقة حافظ من رجال التهذيب ، ويمكن أن يكون هو محمد بن صالح الواسطي كعب الذراع، ثقة أيضاً، ومترجم في تاريخ الخطيب (5/360)، والاختلاف في تعيين الثقة لا يضر .

Basically it may be the Muhammad ibn Salih known as Abu Bakr al-Anmati who he said was a trustworthy Hafiz (Thiqa Hafiz, as In Taqreeb al-Tahdhib of Ibn Hajar, no. 5962) or it may be Muhammad ibn Salih al-Wasiti Ka'b al-Zaari who was declared Thiqa by Khatib al-Baghdadi in his Ta'rikh (5/360).

The objection stems from not having direct evidence if any of these narrators commonly known as Muhammad ibn Salih did actually meet and narrate from the next narrator in the Isnad known as: Muhammad ibn Sinan.

The answer Insha'allah:Most of our contemporaries, like the late Shaykh Abdullah al-Ghumari and his students like Shaykh Mamduh seem to have missed or not known of another alternative route which was also related by Imam Ibn Bushran, with the crucial point of Muhammad ibn Salih not being in an alternative route containing the same text!

The Imam: Shamsud-Din Abdullah ibn Muhammad ibn Nu'man al-Marakashi, who died in the year 683 AH, hence before Ibn Taymiyya has related in his book known as:

مصباح الظلام في المستغيثين بخير الأنام

The following Isnad on p. 23, without the narrator Muhammad ibn Salih in the sanad:

أخبرنا أبو الحسين محمد بن عبد الله السلامي قال أخبرنا محمد بن ناصر السلامي عن أبيطاهر محمد بن أحمد بن قيداس عن أبي الحسين بن بشران قال حدثنا أبو جعفر محمد بن عمرو قال ثنا أحمد بن إسحاق بن صالح قال حدثنا محمد بن سنان العوقي إلإلى آخر السند والمتن

The chain from Ibn Bushran is thus from his Shaykh Abu Ja'far Muhammad ibn Amr from Ahmad ibn Ishaq ibn Salih from Muhammad ibn Sinan al-Awqi from Ibrahim ibn Tahman from Budayl ibn Maysara from Abdullah ibn Shaqiq from Maysara al-Fajr with the same text as Ibn Taymiyya mentioned from Hafiz ibn al-Jawzi.A similar chain to this was recorded by Imam al-Bayhaqi in his Dala'il al-Nubuwwa (no. 18) as follows with a different text:

وأخبرنا أبو الحسين بن بشران ببغداد قال : حدثنا أبو جعفر محمد بن عمرو الرزاز قال : حدثنا أحمد بن إسحاق بن صالح قال : حدثنا محمد بن سنان العوقي قال : حدثنا إبراهيم بن طهمان عن بديل بن ميسرة عن عبد الله بن شقيق عن ميسرة الفجر قال : قلت : يا رسول الله متى كتبت نبيا ؟ قال : " وآدم بين الروح والجسد "

Insha'allah, this should give strength to the route containing Muhammad ibn Salih in the initial part of the discussion above. If anyone has an objection to the sanad given by Imam al-Marakashi then they need to show why using Ilm al-Jarh wa Ta'dil of the narrators.

Adam [as] Seeks Intercession with the Prophet [saw]

Next, inshaAllah, two Hadith. The first Hadith was declared sound by many of the scholars of Hadith despite their knowledge of the presence of a problematic narrator in its chain by the name of Abd al-Rahman ibn Zayd ibn Aslam. Now, even if we accept the grading given to this Hadith by the "salafis" [something which many of the reliable scholars of the past have disagreed with them upon as demonstrated below] then still, as explained by Sh. GF Haddad the narration through Abd al-Rahman ibn Zayd is not actually the most authentic chain for this report! Rather, the Hadith narrated by Maysarat al-Fajr RA [see Hadith Number 9] is the most authentic chain for this report [declared by Sh. Abdullah al-Ghumari as "good and strong"].


ADAM [alayhi salaam] SEEKS INTERCESSION WITH THE PROPHET [salallahu alayhi wa sallam]

The Prophet said on the authority of `Umar:

"When Adam committed his mistake he said: O my Lord, I am asking you to forgive me for the sake of Muhammad. Allah said: O Adam, and how do you know about Muhammad whom I have not yet created? Adam replied, O my Lord, after You created me with your hand and breathed into me of Your Spirit, I raised my head and saw written on the heights of the Throne:


I understood that You would not place next to Your Name but the Most Beloved One of Your creation. Allah said: O Adam, I have forgiven you, and were it not for Muhammad I would not have created you."

A discussion regarding this Hadith was found HERE

It was transmitted through many chains and was cited by Bayhaqi (in Dala'il al-nubuwwa), Abu Nu`aym (in Dala'il al-nubuwwa), al-Hakim in al-Mustadrak (2:615), al-Tabarani in his Saghir (2:82, 207) with another chain containing sub-narrators unknown to Haythami as he stated in Majma` al-zawa'id (8:253), and Ibn `Asakir on the authority of `Umar ibn al-Khattab, and most of these narrations were copied in Qastallani's al-Mawahib al-laduniyya (and al-Zarqani's Commentary 2:62).

1. This hadith is declared sound (sahih) by al-Hakim in al-Mustadrak (2:651), although he acknowledges Abd al-Rahman ibn Zayd ibn Aslam, one of its sub-narrators, as weak. However, when he mentions this hadith he says: "Its chain is sound, and it is the first hadith of Abd al-Rahman ibn Zayd ibn Aslam which I mention in this book"; al-Hakim also declares sound another version through Ibn `Abbas.

2. al-Bulqini declares this hadith sound in his Fatawa.

3. al-Subki confirms al-Hakim's authentication (in Shifa' al-siqam fi ziyarat khayr al-anam p. 134-135) although Ibn Taymiyya's rejection and criticism of this hadith was known to him and he rejects it, as well as saying that Ibn Taymiyya's extreme weakening of Ibn Zayd is exaggerated.

4. The hadith is also included by Qadi `Iyad among the "sound and famous narrations" in al-Shifa, and he says that Abu Muhammad al-Makki and Abu al-Layth al-Samarqandi mention it; Qadi `Iyad says: "It is said that this hadith explains the verse: 'And Adam received words from his Lord and He relented towards him' (2:37)"; he continues to cite another very similar version through al-Ajurri (d. 360), about whom al-Qari said: "al-Halabi said: This seems to be the imam and guide Abu Bakr Muhammad ibn al-Husayn ibn `Abd Allah al-Baghdadi, the compiler of the books al-Shari`a devoted to the Sunna, al-Arba`un, and others.'" This is confirmed by Ibn Taymiyya in his Qa`ida fi al-tawassul: "It is related by Shaykh Abu Bakr al-Ajurri, in his book al-Shari`a."

5. Ibn al-Jawzi also considers it sound (sahih) as he cites it in the first chapter of al-Wafa bi ahwal al-mustafa, in the introduction of which he says: "(In this book) I do not mix the sound hadith with the false," although he knew of `Abd al-Rahman ibn Zayd's weakness as a narrator; he also mentions the version of Maysarat al-Fajr whereby the Prophet says: "When satan deceived Adam and Eve, they repented and sought intercession to Allah with my name"; Ibn al-Jawzi also says in the chapter concerning the Prophet's superiority over the other Prophets in the same book: "Part of the exposition of his superiority to other Prophets is the fact that Adam asked his Lord through the sanctity (hurmat) of Muhammad that He relent towards him, as we have already mentioned."

6. Suyuti cites it in his Qur'anic commentary al-Durr al-manthur (2:37) and in al-Khasa'is al-kubra (1:12) and in al-Riyad al-aniqa fi sharh asma' khayr al-khaliqa (p. 49), where he says that Bayhaqi considers it sound; this is due to the fact that Bayhaqi said in the introduction to the Dala'il that he only included sound narrations in his book, although he also knew and explicitly mentions `Abd al-Rahman ibn Zayd's weakness;

7. Ibn Kathir mentions it after Bayhaqi in al-Bidayat wa al-Nihaya (1:75, 1:180).

8. al-Haythami in Majma` al-zawa'id (8:253 #28870), al-Bayhaqi himself, and al-Qari in Sharh al- shifa' show that its chains have weakness in them. However, the weakness of Abd al-Rahman ibn Zayd was known by Ibn al-Jawzi, Subki, Bayhaqi, Hakim, and Abu Nu`aym, yet all these scholars retained this hadith for consideration in their books.

9. Three scholars reject it, such as Ibn Taymiyya (Qa`ida jalila fi al-tawassul p. 89, 168-170) and his two students Ibn `Abd al-Hadi (al-Sarim al-munki p. 61-63) and al-Dhahabi (Mizan al-i`tidal 2:504 and Talkhis al-mustadrak), while `Asqalani reports Ibn Hibban's saying that `Abd al-Rahman ibn Zayd was a forger(Lisan al-mizan 3:360, 3:442).

10. At the same time, Ibn Taymiyya elsewhere quotes it and the version through Maysara [Faqir: see below] and says:

"These two are like the elucidation (tafsir) of the authentic ahadith (concerning the same topic)" (Fatawa 2:150). The contemporary Meccan hadith scholar Ibn `Alawi al-Maliki said: "This indicates that Ibn Taymiyya found the hadith sound enough to be considered a witness for other narrations (salih li al-istishhad wa al-i`tibar), because the forged (al-mawdu`) and the false (al-batil) are not taken as witness by the people of hadith"; al-Maliki also quotes (without reference) Dhahabi's unrestrained endorsement of the ahadith in Bayhaqi's Dala'il al-nubuwwa with his words: "You must take what is in it (the Dala'il), for it consists entirely of guidance and light." (Mafahim yajib an tusahhah p. 47).

11. It is furthermore evident that Ibn Taymiyya considers the meaning of the creation of everything for the sake of the Prophet as true and correct, as he declares in his Majmu`at al-fatawa in the volume on tasawwuf (11:95-97):

Muhammad is the Chief of the Children of Adam, the Best of Creation, the noblest of them in the sight of Allah. This is why some have said that "Allah created the Universe due to him," or that "Were it not for him, He would have neither created a Throne, nor a Footstool, nor a heaven, earth, sun or moon." However, this is not a hadith on the authority of the Prophet... but it may be explained from a correct aspect...

Since the best of the righteous of the children of Adam is Muhammad, creating him was a desirable end of deep-seated purposeful wisdom, more than for anyone else, and hence the completion of creation and the fulfilment of perfection was attained with Muhammad, may Allah Exalted bless him and grant him peace... The Chief of the Children of Adam is Muhammad, may Allah Exalted bless him and grant him peace, Adam and his children being under his banner. He, may Allah Exalted bless him and grant him peace, said: "Truly, I was written as the Seal of the Prophets with Allah, when Adam was going to-and-fro in his clay," i.e. that my prophethood was decreed and manifested when Adam was created but before the breathing of the Spirit into him, just as Allah decrees the livelihood, lifespan, deeds and misery or happiness of the slave when He creates the embryo but before the breathing of the Spirit into it.

Since man is the seal and last of all creation, and its microcosm, and since the best of man is thus the best of all creation absolutely, then Muhammad, being the Pupil of the Eye, the Axis of the Mill, and the Distributor to the Collective, is as it were the Ultimate Purpose from amongst all the purposes of creation. Thus it cannot be denied to say that "Due to him all of this was created", or that "Were it not for him, all this would not have been created," so if statements like this are thus explained according to what the Book and the Sunna indicate, it is acceptable.

12. Its latter part is mentioned as a separate hadith in the wording: "Were it not for Muhammad, I would not have created the spheres (al-aflak)." al-`Ajluni said in Kashf al-khafa' (#2123): "al-Saghani (d.650) said it is forged. I say: but its meaning is correct." Similarly `Ali al-Qari said in al-Asrar al-marfu`a (#754-755): "al-Saghani (in al-Ahadith al-mawdu`a p. 7) said: "It is forged," however, its meaning is sound (mi`nahu sahih), as Daylami has narrated on the authority of Ibn `Abbas that the Prophet said: "Gabriel came to me and said: O Muhammad! Were it not for you, Paradise would not have been created, and were it not for you, the Fire would not have been created." And Ibn `Asakir's narration has: And were it not for you, the world would not have been created."

As for Albani's rejection of Qari's use of Daylami in support of the hadith with the words: "I do not hesitate to declare it weak on the basis that Daylami is alone in citing it" (Silsila da`ifa #282), it shows exaggeration and deviation from the practice of the scholars concerning Daylami and his book. Ibn Taymiyya said in Minhaj al-sunna (4:38): "The fact that Daylami alone narrates a hadith does not indicate that the hadith is sound." Note that he never said: "The fact that Daylami alone narrates a hadith indicates that it is forged," yet this is what Albani concludes! The reader may compare Albani's method of apriori rejection in lieu of a discussion of the hadith itself, to Ibn Hajar al-`Asqalani's reliance on a hadith narrated by Daylami, as is shown by hadith #33 of his Arba`un fi rad` al-mujrim `an sabb al-muslim, although Daylami is alone in citing it. Further in Minhaj al-sunna (4:78) Ibn Taymiyya declared of him and his book: "al-Daylami in his book al-Firdaws mentioned many sound (sahih) hadiths, and also fair (hasan) narrations and forged ones.... He was one of the people of knowledge and religion and he was not a liar."

13. Ibn al-Qayyim in his Bada'i` al-fawa'id went so far as to represent Allah saying to humankind that everything was created for the sake of human beings:

hal `arifat qimata nafsik? innama khalaqtu al-akwana kullaha laka... kullu al-ashiya'i shajaratun wa anta al-thamara

Have you realized your value? I only created all the universes for your sake... All things are trees whose fruit you are.[18]

If Allah created all the universes for the sake of human beings, then how could all humanity be given what the Prophet is grudged, who is better than mankind and jinn put together?

Deeds Presented to the Prophet After His Death



"My life is a great good for you, you will relate about me and it will be related to you, and my death is a great good for you, your actions will be exhibited to me, and if I see goodness I will praise Allah, and if I see evil I will ask forgiveness of Him for you."

(Hayâtî khayrun lakum tuhaddithûna wa yuhaddathu lakum wa wafâtî khayrun lakum tu`radu a`malukum `alayya famâ ra'aytu min khayrin hamidtu Allâha wa mâ ra'aytu min sharrin istaghfartu Allâha lakum.)

This Hadith was dealt with in the following fascinating article [click on link]:

The Prophet in Barzakh

Shaykh Muhammad ibn Alawi al-Maliki RH mentioned regarding this hadith:

The hadith master al-`Iraqi said in the book of Jana'iz of his work Tarh al-Tathrib fi Sharh al-Taqrib: "Its chain is good" (isnâduhu jayyid).5 The hadith master al-Haythami said: "Al-Bazzar narrated it and its sub-narrators are the men of the Sahih."6 The hadith master al-Suyuti declared it sound (sahîh) in al-Mu`jizat and al-Khasa'is. So did al-Qastallani the commentator of al-Bukhari. Al-Munawi also declared, in Fayd al-Qadir, that it is sahîh.7 So did al-Zurqani in his commentary on al-Qastallani's al-Mawahib al-Laduniyya. So did Shihab al-Din al-Khafaji in his commentary on [al-Qadi `Iyad's] al-Shifa'.8 So did al-Mulla `Ali al-Qari in his, adding: "Al-Harith ibn Usama narrated it in his Musnad with a sound chain."9 Ibn Hajar also mentioned it in al-Matalib al-`Alya.10 This hadith also came to us through another, mursal way from [the Tabi`î] Bakr ibn `Abd Allah al-Muzani. The hadith master Isma`il al-Qadi narrated it in his monograph on the invocation of blessings on the Prophet , and Shaykh al-Albani said about it: "Mursal sahîh."11 The hadith master Ibn `Abd al-Hadi declared it sound (sahîh) despite his excessive rigor and harshness in his book al-Sarim al-Munki. After all this evidence, does any meddler have anything left to say? The hadith is undoubtedly sound, and no-one questions its authenticity.

[NOTES to the above are as follows:

5. Al-`Iraqi, Tarh al-Tathrib (3:297).
6. Al-Haythami, Majma` al-Zawa'id (9:24 #91).
7. Al-Munawi in Fayd al-Qadir (3:401) only reported al-`Iraqi's words "Its narrators are the men of the Sahih except for `Abd al-Majid ibn Abi Rawwad who, despite being retained by Muslim as a narrator and being declared trustworthy (thiqa) by Ibn Ma`in and al-Nasa'i, was declared weak by some." Al-Munawi then went on to criticize al-Suyuti's unmitigated authentication of the narration in Manahil al-Safa although al-Suyuti is correct.
8. Al-Khafaji, Sharh al-Shifa' (1:102).
9. Al-Qari, Sharh al-Shifa' (1:102), referring to the mursal hadith of Bakr al-Muzani.
10Ibn Hajar, al-Matalib al-`Alya (4:22).
11In his edition of Isma`il al-Qadi's Fadl al-Salat `ala al-Nabi - Allah bless and greet him - (p. 37), after which he goes on to say that the hadith is weak, as in his Silsila Da`ifa (#979). ]

Shaykh GF Haddad adds to the above in his footnote to the above Hadith:

Narrated from Ibn Mas`ud by al-Bazzar in his Musnad (1:397) with a sound chain as stated by al-Suyuti in Manahil al-Safa (p. 31 #8) and al-Khasa'is al-Kubra (2:281), al-Haythami (9:24 #91), and al-`Iraqi in Tarh al-Tathrib (3:297) - his last book, as opposed to al-Mughni`an Haml al-Asfar (4:148) where he questions the trustworthy rank of one of the narrators in al-Bazzar's chain. Shaykh `Abd Allah al-Talidi said in his Tahdhib al-Khasa'is al-Kubra (p. 458-459 #694) that this chain is sound according to Muslim's criterion, and Shaykh Mahmud Mamduh in Raf`al-Minara (p. 156-169) discusses it at length and declares it sound. Their shaykh, al-Sayyid `Abd Allah ibn al-Siddiq al-Ghumari (d. 1413/1993) declared it sound in his monograph Nihaya al-Amal fi Sharh wa Tashih Hadith `Ard al-A`mal.

Opposing these six judgments al-Albani declares it weak in his notes on al-Qadi Isma`il's Fadl al-Salat (p. 37 n. 1).

It is also narrated with weak chains from Anas and - with two sound mursal chains missing the Companion-link - from the Successor Bakr ibn `Abd Allah al-Muzani by Isma`il al-Qadi (d. 282) in his Fadl al-Salat `ala al-Nabi (p. 36-39 #25-26). The latter chain was declared sound by al-Qari in Sharh al-Shifa' (1:102), Shaykh al-Islam al-Taqi al-Subki in Shifa' al-Siqam, his critic Ibn `Abd al-Hadi in al-Sarim al-Munki (p. 217), and al-Albani in his Silsila Da`ifa (2:405). A third, weak chain is related from Bakr al-Muzani by al-Harith ibn Abi Usama (d. 282) in his Musnad (2:884) as per Ibn Hajar in al-Matalib al-`Aliya (4:23).

Al-Albani declared the hadith weak on the grounds that some authorities questioned the memorization of the Murji' hadith master `Abd al-Majid ibn `Abd al-`Aziz ibn Abi Rawwad.

However, he was retained by Muslim in his Sahih and declared thiqa by Yahya ibn Ma`in, Ahmad, Abu Dawud, al-Nasa'i, Ibn Shahin, al-Khalili, and al-Daraqutni, while al-Dhahabi listed him in Man Tukullima Fihi Wa Huwa Muwaththaq (p. 124) as stated by Mamduh in Raf` al- Minara (p. 163, 167). Al-Arna'ut and Ma`ruf declare him thiqa in Tahrir al-Taqrib (2:379 #4160) as well as Dr. Nur al-Din `Itr in his edition of al-Dhahabi's Mughni (1:571 #3793) and Dr. Khaldun al-Ahdab in Zawa'id Tarikh Baghdad (10:464).

Even if al-Albani's grading were hypothetically accepted, then the weak musnad narration in conjunction with the sound mursal one - graded sahîh by al-Albani - would yield a final grading of hasan or sahîh, not da`îf.

In addition to this, Mamduh quoted al-Albani's own words in the latter's attempted refutation of Shaykh Isma`il al-Ansari entitled Kitab al-Shaybani (1:134-135) whereby "The sound mursal hadith is a proof in all Four Schools and other than them among the Imams of the principles of hadith and fiqh, therefore it is apparent to every fair-minded person that the position whereby such a hadith does not form a proof only because it is mursal, is untenable."

This is one of many examples in which al-Albani not only contradicts, but soundly refutes himself.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Hadith 6: Response to the Salafis

On the authority of Abu Sa`id al-Khudri, may Allah be pleased with him: He relates that the Messenger of Allah said:

"The one who leaves his house for prayer and then says: O Allah, I ask you by the right of those who ask you and I beseech you by the right of those who walk this path unto you that my going forth bespeak not of levity, pride nor vainglory nor done for the sake of repute. I have gone forth in the warding off your anger and for the seeking of your pleasure. I ask you, therefore, to grant me refuge from Hellfire and to forgive me my sins, for no one forgives sins but yourself. Allah will accept for his sake and seventy thousand angels will seek his forgiveness."

The Salafis have tried to deem this narration weak due to the presence of the narrator Atiyyah al-Awfi.

Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani RH said about Atiyyah in al-Taqreeb [no. 4616] -
Saduq Yukhti kathiran wa kana Shi'ian mudallisan

Truthful, made many mistakes and he was a Shi'ite Mudallis.

Despite that, Ibn Hajar still graded the Abu Sa'id [ra] narration to be Hasan in his public dictation of this Hadith in his Amali, as did his teacher: al-Iraqi in the Takhrij of Ihya lil-Ghazali!

Shaykh Mahmud Mamduh has discussed the allegations in his Raf al-Minara.

In summary:

Atiyyah al-`Awfi is criticised for three matters:

- Tadlees (leaving the name of an intermediatery narrator when narrating ahadith

- inclination towards Shi'ism

- narration of things whose authenticity was contested

The Accusation of Tadlees:

The accusation is that `Atiyyah heard ahadeeth from Abu Sa'eed al-Khudri Radi Allahu `anhu for some time, then he used to go to the Sabai liar al-Kalbi and heard his narrations and (in order to strengthen al-Kalbi's narrations) he nicknamed him Abu Sa'eed, so when `Atiyyah said, "Narrated to me Abu Sa'eed" people thought he was narrating the ahadith of Hadhrat Abu Sa'eed al-khudri Radhi Allahu `anhu whereas in reality he was transmitting reports from the liar al-kalbi.

This accusation depends on a narration of Imam Sufyan ath-Thawri who heard from al-Kalbi (Sabai, forger of ahadeeth) that he said, "Atiyyah has given me the kuniyah 'Abu Sa'eed". And the narration of Abu khalid al-Ahmar who heard al-Kalbi say, "`Atiyyah said I have given you the kuniyah Abu Sa'eed, and he said So i say narrated to me Abu Sa'eed..."

Shaykh Mamduh says that since al-Kalbi is a known liar his accusation cannot be accepted and Imam Ahmad et el relied on Sufyan ath-Thawri for pronouncing `Atiyyah a mudallis and since Imam Sufyan relied on al-Kalbi's statement, which is inacceptable, the end result is the attribution of this fault to `Atiyyah cannot be accepted.

Inclination towards Shi'ism

al-Juzjani in Ahwal ur Rijal has called him mail (inclined). Shaykh Mamduh says that al-Juzjani is a Nasibi and his statement proves that `Atiyyah was not a Shi'a because if there were even a hint of shi'ism in him al-juzjani would have labelled him a shi'a, since he has only referred to him as inclined towards shi'ism, out of his hatred for Kufi people, this shows that there is no such thing in `Atiyyah.

And what al-`Uqayli has quoted from Salim al-Muradi (?) in Kitab al-Dhu`afa' and what adh-Dhahabi has quoted from him in al-Meezan regarding `Atiyyah being inclined towards shi'ism is not of benefit in this reard because Salim al-Muradi (?) is not one of the Huffaz or of those opinions are referred to in matters of jarh. And he is himself Shi'i like `Atiyyah al-`Awfi and `Atiyyah is one of his mashaikh so he is far removed from being able to condemn `Atiyyah.

Narrating things that were denied

He narrated from Abu Sa'eed al-Khudri Radhi Allahu `Anhu that Rasoolullah Sallallahu `alyhi wa Sallam said

"The people of `iliyyeen will be seen by those below them like you see the brilliant star on the horizon, and verily Abu bakr and `Umar will be in them and being rewarded."

The main part of this hadeeth is in the two Sahihs from Abu Sa'eed al-khudri Radhi Allahu `anhu

"The people of Jannah will see the people in special abodes above them as you see a glittering star remaining in the eastern horizon and the western horizon.due to differences in their stations. They said, "Oh Messenger of Allah these are the stations of the Prophets and those other than them will not be able to reach them? He said, "Why not! men who believe in Allah and affirm the Messengers"

What was contested by Ibn `Adi was the addition, "and verily Abu bakr and `Umar will be in them and being rewarded.". But this part is also proven and `Atiyyah al-`awfi is not the only person to have narrated this, Imam Ahmad has narrated this in his Musnad vol 3 page 26 and in his Fadhail u Sahabah vol 1 page 69 and Abu Y`ala in his Musnad vol 2 page 416, from Mujalid from Abu Alawdak (?) from Abu Sa'eed al-khudri Radhi Allahu `anhu.


Now, something else which is extremely interesting was brought to light by Sidi Abul Hasan [of Sunniforum] which appears to have been overlooked by contemporary scholars of Hadith! Let me quote him below [with slight editing]:

"Basically, the argument that Atiyya did not clarify if he actually heard from the Sahabi Abu Sa'eed - since in all the routes that people have presented to us these days - Atiyya always used the word: "An" - meaning - FROM - which is a vague form of transmitting - Hence he was also accused of Tadlees!

We can dismiss this allegation of Tadlees now at last! Because: I [Abul Hasan] have located a narration from the Amali of ibn Bushran - where Atiyya used the phrase: Haddathani - which is a very clear way of transmitting the narration and discredits any claim of Tadlees now for this route in the Amali and hence applicable to all the other simlar versions, bi-idhnillah.

Here is the text from the Amali

أَمَالِي ابْنِ بِشْرَانَ مَجْلِسُ يَوْمِ الْجُمُعَةِ الْعِشْرِينَ مِنْ شَهْرِ رَبِيعٍ الْأَوَّلِ سَنَةَ أَرْبَعٍ وَعِشْرِينَ مَا مِنْ رَجُلٍ يَخْرُجُ مِنْ بَيْتِهِ إِلَى الصَّلَاةِ ، فَقَالَ753 وأخبرنا دعلج ثنا جعفر بن أحمد الساقاني ، ثنا محمد بن يحيى بن ضريس ، ثنا ابن فضيل ، ثنا أبي ، عن عطية ، حدثني أبو سعيد الخدري ، قال : قال النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم : " ما من رجل يخرج من بيته إلى الصلاة ، فقال : اللهم إني أسألك بحق السائلين عليك ، وبحق ممشاي هذا ، لم أخرج أشرا ، ولا بطرا ، ولا رياء ، ولا سمعة ، خرجت اتقاء سخطك ، وابتغاء مرضاتك ، أسألك أن تعيذني من النار ، وتغفر لي ذنوبي ، إنه لا يغفر الذنوب إلا أنت ، إلا وكل به سبعون ألف ملك يستغفرون له ، وأقبل الله عز وجل عليه بوجهه حتى يقضي صلاته

No doubt, Shaykh al-Islam ibn Hajar al-Asqalani declared the above narration from Hadrat Abu Sa'eed al-Khudri (ra), via the route of his student: Atiyya al-Awfi to be HASAN in his Nata'ij al-Afkar (1/272), but let me add that just as in the riwaya above from Ibn Bushran, Imam Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani also mentioned in the above named work (Nata'ij al-Afkar, 1/273) that he has also seen in the work known as Kitab al-Salah of Abu Nu'aym (Fadl ibn Dukayn) the fact that Atiyya also used the phrase: Haddathani when relating from Abu Sa'eed al-Khudri (ra), though this was a Mawquf narration and not Marfu hence lifting further the accusation of Tadlees against Atiyya on this specific narration under discussion.

May Allah swt reward Sidi Abul Hasan's efforts. Ameen.

There should be no doubt now in any "salafi's" mind that the grading of this hadith is as the scholars of Hadith like Ibn Hajar RH mentioned - it is hasan!

Whoever Goes Out of His Home to Pray



‏حدثنا ‏ ‏محمد بن سعيد بن يزيد بن إبراهيم التستري ‏ ‏حدثنا ‏ ‏الفضل بن الموفق أبو الجهم ‏ ‏حدثنا ‏ ‏فضيل بن مرزوق ‏ ‏عن ‏ ‏عطية ‏ ‏عن ‏ ‏أبي سعيد الخدري ‏ ‏قال ‏ ‏قال رسول الله ‏ ‏صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ ‏من خرج من بيته إلى الصلاة فقال اللهم إني أسألك بحق السائلين عليك وأسألك بحق ممشاي هذا فإني لم أخرج ‏ ‏أشرا ‏ ‏ولا ‏ ‏بطرا ‏ ‏ولا ‏ ‏رياء ‏ ‏ولا سمعة وخرجت اتقاء سخطك وابتغاء مرضاتك فأسألك أن تعيذني من النار وأن تغفر لي ذنوبي إنه لا يغفر الذنوب إلا أنت أقبل الله عليه بوجهه واستغفر له سبعون ألف ملك

On the authority of Abu Sa`id al-Khudri, may Allah be pleased with him, who relates that the Messenger of Allah said:

"The one who leaves his house for prayer and then says:

O Allah, I ask you by the right of those who ask you and I beseech you by the right of those who walk this path unto you that my going forth bespeak not of levity, pride nor vainglory nor done for the sake of repute. I have gone forth in the warding off your anger and for the seeking of your pleasure. I ask you, therefore, to grant me refuge from Hellfire and to forgive me my sins, for no one forgives sins but yourself.

Allah will accept for his sake and seventy thousand angels will seek his forgiveness."

Regarding this Hadith Sh. GF Haddad states:

A hasan hadïth of the Prophet according to Shaykh Mahmod Mamdoh who showed in his monograph Mubàhathat al-Sà’irïn bi Hadïth Allàhumma Innï As’aluka bi-Haqqi al-Sà’ilïn, narrated from Abu Sa‘ïd al-Khudrï by Ahmad in his Musnad with a fair chain according to Hamza al-Zayn (10:68 #11099) –a weak chain according to al-Arna’ut(17:247-248 #11156) who considers it, like Abu Hàtim in al-‘Ilal (2:184), more likely a mawquf saying of Abu Sa‘ïd himself; Ibn Màjah with a chain he declared weak, Ibn al-Sunni in ‘Amal al-Yawm wa al-Layla (p. 40 #83-84), al-Bayhaqï in al-Da‘awàt al-Kabïr (p. 47= 1:47 #65), Ibn Khuzayma in al-Tawhïd (p. 17-18) [and his Sahïh (2:458?) as indicated by al-Busïrï in his Zawà’id (1:98-99)], al-Tabarànï in al-Du‘a (p. 149=2:990), Ibn Ja‘d in his Musnad (p. 299), al-Baghawï in al-Ja‘diyyat (#2118-2119) and – mawquf – by Ibn Abï Shayba (6:25=10:211-212) and Ibn Abï Hàtim in ‘Ilal al-Hadïth (2:184). Al-‘Iràqï in Takhrïj Ahàdïth al- Ihyà’ (1:291) graded it hasan as a marfu‘ Prophetic hadïth, as did the hadïth Masters al-Dimyàtï in al-Muttajir al-Ràbihfï Thawàb al-‘Amal al-Sàlih (p. 471-472), Ibn Hajar in Amàlï al-Adhkàr (1:272) and al-Mundhirï’s shaykh the hadïth Master Abu al-Hasan al-Maqdisï in al-Targhïb (1994 ed. 2:367 #2422=1997 ed. 2:304-305) and as indicated by Ibn Qudàma in al-Mughnï (1985 Dàr al-Fikr ed. 1:271).

Shaykh Mamdoh in his monograph refuted the reasoning of Nàsir Albànï and Hammàd al-Ansàrï in declaring this hadïth weak.

After the Death of Fatima



عن أنس بن مالك قال‏:‏ لما ماتت فاطمة بنت أسد بن هاشم أم علي رضي الله عنهما دخل عليها رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم فجلس عند رأسها فقال‏:‏ ‏"‏رحمك الله يا أمي، كنت أمي بعد أمي، تجوعين وتشبعيني، وتعرين وتكسيني، وتمنعين نفسك طيباً وتطعميني، تريدين بذلك وجه الله والدار الآخرة‏"‏‏.‏ ثم أمر أن تغسل ثلاثاً فلما بلغ الماء الذي فيه الكافور سكبه رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم بيده، ثم خلع رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم قميصه فألبسها إياه، وكفنها ببرد فوقه، ثم دعا رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم أسامة بن زيد وأبا أيوب الأنصاري وعمر بن الخطاب وغلاماً أسود يحفرون، فحفروا قبرها، فلما بلغوا اللحد حفره رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم بيده وأخرج ترابه بيده، فلما فرغ دخل رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم فاضطجع فيه فقال‏:‏ ‏"‏الله الذي يحيي ويميت، وهو حي لا يموت، اغفر لأمي فاطمة بنت أسد، ولقنها حجتها، ووسِّع عليها مدخلها بحق نبيك والأنبياء الذين من قبلي فإنك أرحم الراحمين‏"‏‏.‏ وكبر عليها أربعاً، وأدخلوها اللحد هو والعباس وأبو بكر الصديق رضي الله عنهم‏

Anas Ibn Malik Ibn Al-Nadr (radiallahu anhu) reported that when Fatimah the daughter of Assad died, who took care of the Messenger of Allah during the years he spent at his Uncle's home, and she was the mother of Ali bin Abi Talib, he entered her home and sat close to her head and said: May Allah have mercy on you O mother after my mother, and he praised her, and offered his garment to cover her body with it in the grave and ordered to dig a tomb for her. He also dug the tomb and took out the soil by his own hands and then laid down in it and then said: Allah who gives life and takes it and He lives and dies not. Forgive my mother Fatimah the daughter of Asad and grant her ease at her entryway through the right of Your Prophet and the Prophets before me for You are the most compassionate.

[Ref: Tabarani in Mu'jam Al-Kabir, Tabarani in Mu'jam Al-Ausat Vol 1 Hadith 189, Hilyatul Auliya]

Maulana Muhammad ibn Moulana Haroon Abasoomar states regarding this Hadith in his article
Islamic Ruling on Tawassul :

This narration is classified as authentic according to the standards of Imaam ibn Hibbaan and Haakim. [Raf'ul Manaarah pg.147; Maqaalaatul Kawthari]. Haafiz Ibn Hajar Al-Haytami [RA] (states) that its chain of narrators is good [Refer to his footnotes on Al-Manaasik of Imaam Nawawi [RA] pg.500…]

Sidi Abul Hasan also mentioned that although he had not directly checked the original sources himself, al-Hafiz Ibn Hajar al-Haytami is also reported to have said that this narration has a Jayyid Sanad (a good chain of transmission) in his al-Jawhar al-Munazzam. In addition, Imam al-Samhudi in his Khulasatul Wafa bi-Akhbar Dar al-Mustafa has apparently mentioned that this hadith has a Jayyid Sanad.

Sh. GF Haddad responded to some of the objections raised by the "salafis" to this hadith in his article
Abu Hanifa & Tawassul :

The first hadïth is narrated from Anas by al-Tabarànï in al-Kabïr (24:351) and al-Awsat. (1:152) and Abu Nu‘aym in his Hilya (1985 ed. 3:121) with a chain containing Rawh ibn Salàh concerning whom there is difference of opinion among the authorities.

He is unknown according to Ibn al-Jawzï in al-‘Ilal al-Mutanàhiya (1:260-270), Ibn ‘Adï in al-Kàmil (3:146 #667), and al-Dàraqutnï in al-Mu’talif wal-Mukhtalif (3:1377);

Ibn MàkUlà in al-Ikmàl (5:15) declared him weak while al-Hàkim asserted was trustworthy and highly dependable (thiqa ma’mun) –as mentioned by Ibn Hajar in Lisàn al-Mïzàn (2:465 #1876), Ibn Hibbàn included him in al-Thiqàt (8:244), and al-Fasawï considered him trustworthy (cf. Mamdoh, Raf‘ [p. 148]).

Al-Haythamï (9:257) said: “Al-Tabarànï narrated it in al-Kabïr and al-Awsat and its chain contains Rawh ibn Salàh whom Ibn Hibbàn and al-Hàkim declared trustworthy although there is some weakness in him, and the rest of its sub-narrators are the men of sound hadïth.”

I was unable to find Abu Hàtim’s declaration of Rawh as trustworthy reported by Shaykh Muhammad ibn ‘Alawï in his Mafàhïm (10th ed. p. 145 n. 1). Nor does Shaykh Mahmod Mamdoh in his discussion of this hadïth in Raf‘ al-Minàra (p. 147-155) mention such a grading on the part of Abu Hàtim although he considers Rawh “truthful” (sadaq) and not “weak” (da‘ïf), according to the rules of hadïth science when no reason is given with regard to a narrator’s purported discreditation (jarhmubham ghayr mufassar).

Mamdoh (p. 149-150) noted that although Albànï in his Silsila Da‘ïfa (1:32-33) claims it is a case of explicated discreditation (jarh mufassar) yet he himself declares identically-formulated discreditation cases as unexplicated and therefore unacceptable in two different contexts! Ibn ‘Alawï adds that the hadïth is also narrated from Ibn ‘Abbàs by Ibn ‘Abd al-Barr –without specifying where –and from Jàbir by Ibn Abï Shayba, but without the du‘à.

Imàm al-Kawtharï said of this hadïth in his Maqàlàt (p. 410): “It provides textual evidence whereby there is no difference between the living and the dead in the context of using a means (tawassul), and this is explicit tawassul through the Prophets, while the hadïth of the Prophet from Abu Sa‘ïd al-Khudrï ‘O Allàh, I ask You by the right of [the promise made to] those who ask You (bihaqqi al-sà’ilïna ‘alayk)’* constitutes tawassul through the generality of Muslims, both the living and the dead.”


Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Hadith 4: Dr. Tahir ul-Qadri's Reply

More on HADITH NUMBER 4 from Dr. Tahir ul-Qadri's book: Islamic Concept of Intermediation

Descension of rain through the Prophet’s means

Imam Dārimī relates from Abū al-Jawzā’ Aws bin ‘Abdullāh:

The people of Medina were in the grip of a severe famine. They complained to ‘Ā’ishah (about their terrible condition). She told them to go towards the Prophet’s grave and open a window in the direction of the sky so that there is no curtain between the sky and the grave. The narrator says they did so. Then it started raining heavily; even the lush green grass sprang up (everywhere) and the camels had grown so fat (it seemed) they would burst out due to the over piling of blubber. So the year was named as the year of greenery and plenty.[7]

The famine gripping the people of Medina ended through the mediation of the Prophet’s grave. Heavy rains created a spring scenario all around. Men found their food and the animals found their fodder. And the rain that came about as a result of the Prophet’s mediation made the lands of Medina greener and more fertile and on account of over-harvesting, they named the year as the year of greenery and plenty.

Those who deny the conceptual relevance of intermediation have raised some objections against this tradition. One of the objections is that its chain of transmission is weak and so it cannot be offered as an argument.

The chain of transmission of this tradition is as follows:

Abū an-Nu‘mān heard it from Sa‘īd bin Zayd, he from ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī and he from Abū al-Jawzā’ Aws bin ‘Abdullāh who has reported it.”

Below are given the allegations levelled against these narrators and a rebuttal of these baseless charges:

1. The name of Abū an-Nu‘mān ‘Ārim was Muhammad bin al-Fadl Sadūsī. They agree that he was a reliable reporter of traditions as is confirmed by Dhahabī in Mīzān-ul-i‘tidāl (4:7): “He was Imam Bukhārī’s teacher, memorizer of traditions and an extremely truthful person.” But their objection is that he had lost his marbles in the declining years of his age. Burhān-ud-Dīn Halabī, who possessed great knowledge of traditions, comments in his book al-Muqaddimah on this reporter along with others who had lost their memory in the closing years of their lives: “The ruling on these narrators is that the traditions reported by them before their loss of memory are acceptable, while the traditions after their deranged conditions are unacceptable. And if we do not know whether these traditions were received from them before or after their memory lapse, we should not accept these traditions from them either.” The objectors say that since we do not know whether Abū an-Nu‘mān has narrated this tradition before or after his loss of memory, we cannot adduce the tradition as evidence.

This objection not only lacks significance but also lacks credibility. Their objection is logically inconsistent. While they discard this tradition as weak, because it is the product of his loss of memory, they ignore other traditions though they are also the products of the same state of mind. Dhahabī says: ‘Imam Dāraqutnī comments, “Though he had lost his memory towards the end of his life, he never reported any tradition in this condition that could affect his veracity, therefore, he remains a truthful narrator.’ I insist that it is a report by that contemporary memorizer of traditions who is only matched by Imam Nasā’ī.” Ibn Hibbān is of the opinion that there are many incompatibilities in Abū an-Nu‘mān’s narrations after his loss of memory but Dhahabī rejects this opinion by asserting that Ibn Hibbān has failed to produce a single fact that establishes him as a misreporter of traditions. And the real position is the one that has been endorsed by Imam Dāraqutnī.[8]

‘Irāqī has admitted in at-Taqyīd wal-īdāh that Imam Dhahabī has convincingly rebutted Ibn Hibbān’s statement. Dhahabī has explained it in al-Kāshif (3:79) that the change took place before death, but after the change he had not related any tradition.

Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī writes in Taqrīb-ut-tahdhīb (2:200) that Abū an-Nu‘mān was a sound narrator and the change came about in his last years.

Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī writes, “Abū an-Nu‘mān’s mental debility is neither damaging for him nor does it affect his credibility as a narrator because Imam Bukhārī in his as-Sahīh has taken more than one hundred traditions from him and has not taken a single tradition from him after his loss of memory as is stated by Imam Dāraqutnī.”[9]

Besides Imam Bukhārī, Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal, Ibn Abū Hātim Rāzī and Abū ‘Alī Muhammad bin Khālid Zarīqī have also heard traditions from Abū an-Nu‘mān before his mental confusion set in.[10]

Imam Dārimī is one of the well-reputed teachers of Imam Bukhārī and other famous memorizers of traditions. Therefore, it was impossible for him to accept any tradition from Abū an-Nu‘mān after he had suffered a loss of memory.

2. An objection is raised against Sa‘īd bin Zayd Abū al-Hasan Basrī, brother of Hammād bin Zayd, that he is somewhat weak because Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī has written about him in Taqrīb-ut-tahdhīb (1:296), “That is, he is extremely truthful but sometimes he commits an error.” Dhahabī writes in Mīzān-ul-i‘tidāl (2:138), “Yahyā bin Sa‘īd has called him weak, Sa‘dī says that he is not an argument and his traditions are weak and Nasā’ī etc., are of the opinion that he is not sound.”

The objections of those, who deny the validity of intermediation, are not only partial as they base them exclusively on these statements and references, but they are also based on prejudice as their arguments are not logical because they are tailored to their preconceptions. A detailed refutation of their groundless objections is presented as follows:

Dhahabī negates it in al-Kāshif (1:286). He says that the decrepitude attributed to Sa‘īd bin Zayd is incorrect because Imam Muslim accepted traditions from him and Ibn Ma‘īn has called him authentic and trustworthy.

Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī has described it in detail in Tahdhīb-ut-tahdhīb (4:32-3):

“Imam Bukhārī said that Muslim bin Ibrāhīm reported to us that Sa‘īd bin Zayd Abū al-Hasan is extremely truthful and knows the traditions by heart.[11]

“Dūrī has reported it from Ibn Ma‘īn that Sa‘īd bin Zayd is a trustworthy narrator.

“Ibn Sa‘d has also called him a reliable narrator.[12]

“‘Ujlī comments that he belongs to Basrah and he is a dependable relater of traditions.

“Abū Zur‘ah said he heard it from Sulaymān bin Harb that Sa‘īd bin Zayd is trustworthy.“

Abū Ja‘far Dārimī said: Hibbān bin Hilāl reported to us that Sa‘īd bin Zayd has related to us that tradition and he is truthful and a preserver of traditions.

“Ibn ‘Adī has stated in al-Kāmil (3:1212-5) that Sa‘īd bin Zayd is truthful and he knows the traditions by heart. He has not related any inauthentic tradition except that someone else relates it and to me he happens to be among the (truthful) narrators.”

The famous compiler and exegete of traditions ‘Abdullāh bin Muhammad bin Siddīq al-Ghumārī from Morocco writes in his book Irghām-ul-mubtadī al-ghabī bi-jawāz-it-tawassul bi an-nabī writes: “Imam Ahmad bin Hambal has referred to Sa‘īd bin Zayd as laysa bihī ba’s. It means that there is no objection against him and he is absolutely truthful.[13] Imam Ahmad’s expression is semantically identical with trustworthiness, which is considered the highest virtue by all traditionists of integrity.

Ibn Ma‘īn also identifies the term laysa bihī ba’s with trustworthiness.[14]

The traditionist Ibn-us-Salāh in al-Muqaddimah, Sakhāwī in Fath-ul-mughīth, Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī in Hady-us-sārī muqaddimah Fath-ul-bārī and Nawawī in at-Taqrīb wat-taysīr have identified laysa bihī ba’s with veracity. Besides, a number of traditionists of the third century (ah), for instance, Ibn Ma‘īn, Ibn Madīnī, Abū Zur‘ah, Ibn Abū Hātim Rāzī, Ya‘qūb bin Sufyān Fasāwī, etc., have invested laysa bihī ba’s with the distinction of veracity.

3. Ibn Hibbān has called ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī as veracious as Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī writes in Tahdhīb-ut-tahdhīb (8:96), “Ibn Hibbān has mentioned him in his book Kitāb-ut-thiqāt. Therefore, Ibn Hibbān’s acknowledgement of his credibility is based on truth and it is beyond any iota of doubt that Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī, on the basis of his authenticity, has called ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī in Taqrīb-ut-tahdhīb (2:77), “Sadūq lahū awhām (he is truthful but there are doubts about him).”

The word sadūq (truthful) used by Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī attests to the veracity of ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī and he has given it precedence over others. Mahmūd Sa‘īd Mamdūh refers to it in his book Raf‘-ul-minārah (p.258) that ‘Abdullāh bin Ahmad, attributing it to his father, commented, “Annahū ka-annahū da“afahū (as if he weakened him).” I say that the word ka-anna (as if; as though) is doubt and suspicion; it cannot serve as an act of justification.

When ‘Abdullāh bin ‘Alī bin Madīnī referred to Hasan bin Mūsā Ashyab as wa ka-annahū da“afahū (and as if he weakened him), Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī endorsed him by saying: hādhā zann, la taqūmu bihī hujjah (it is suspicion, therefore, it cannot serve as a justification).[15]

So this statement makes the veracity of ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī unquestionable. Dhahabī has explained it further in Mīzān-ul-i‘tidāl (3:286) and al-Mughnī (2:488).

Mahmūd Sa‘īd Mamdūh writes:“Ibn ‘Adī has bracketed ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī with ‘Amr bin Mālik Rāsibī in al-Kāmil (5:1799) and has dubbed him as a recanter narrator. Dhahabī has explained it in Mīzān-ul-i‘tidāl (3:285) and al-Mughnī (2:488) while Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī has commented on it in Tahdhīb-ut-tahdhīb (8:95). Both these hadith-scholars have delinked ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī from ‘Amr bin Mālik Rāsibī and disproved the linkage forged by Ibn ‘Adī, which has driven some of the traditionists to label ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī as unreliable. These traditionists are not to blame as they have based their deductions on the conclusions drawn by Ibn ‘Adī without any conscious attempt at distortion as has been explained by Ibn-ul-Jawzī in Kitāb-ul-mawdū‘āt (2:145) and by Ibn Taymiyyah in Qā‘idah jalīlah fit-tawassul wal-wasīlah.”[16]

Albānī writes in Ta‘līq ‘alā Fadl-is-salāt ‘ala an-nabī (p.88): ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī is a reliable narrator as has been endorsed by Dhahabī. He has also confirmed this view in another book Silsilat-ul-ahādīth-is-sahīhah (5:608).

4. A large number of people have taken traditions from Abū al-Jawzā’ Aws bin ‘Abdullāh on the basis of his credibility and the direct transmission of this tradition from ‘Ā’ishah has also been established. In support of this contention it suffices to state that Imam Muslim has recorded Abū al-Jawzā’ Aws’s narration through ‘Ā’ishah.

Imam Bukhārī says:

It was related to us by Musaddad who had heard it from Ja‘far bin Sulaymān, who from ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī who had reported it from Abū al-Jawzā’. He said: I spent twelve years with Ibn ‘Abbās and ‘Ā’ishah and there was not a single verse of the Holy Qur'an about which I had not asked them.[17]

Ibn S‘ad has related another tradition on these lines:Abū al-Jawzā’ has related:

I lived as Ibn ‘Abbās’s neighbour for twelve years and there was not a single verse of the Holy Qur'an about which I had not asked him.[18]

Abu Na‘aym has added the following words to the tradition:

And my deputy visited the Mother of the Believers (‘Ā’ishah) every morning and evening. So I did not hear from any other quarter (except what I heard from her), nor did I hear from any other source (except from her) what Allah has enjoined about sin that I shall forgive him (the sinner) except the one who associates any partner with Me.[19]

According to Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī, it by no means implies that he never met ‘Ā’ishāh afterwards. So, the inference drawn by Imam Muslim from the frequency of visits clearly indicates that he had a face-to-face meeting with ‘Ā’ishah.

Thus when his meeting with ‘Ā’ishah has been established with irrefutable finality, the element of deceit and incredibility in his statement is automatically washed out and his tradition, therefore, acquires authenticity. To call him an impostor is, actually, to commit excess against his genuineness as a reporter, and to do him justice we have to acknowledge the obvious fact that his statement is based on sound transmission. This conclusion is compatible not only with the findings of Imam Muslim but also reflects the general drift of public opinion.

Abū Nu‘aym has confirmed the authenticity of a number of traditions by Abū al-Jawzā’ with the words ‘an ‘Ā’ishah (from ‘Ā’ishah) in Hilyat-ul-awliyā’ wa tabaqāt-ul-asfiyā’.

Ibn-ul-Qaysarānī has also reported a tradition from Abū al-Jawzā’ by using the words sami‘a ‘Ā’ishah (he listened to ‘Ā’ishah).[20]

This detailed discussion proves beyond doubt that these certificates of authenticity are not based on any forgery but on verifiable evidence, and this chain of transmission is sahīh (sound) or hasan (fair).

Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī says, “This tradition has a good chain of transmission; rather, in my opinion, it is sound. The scholars have also acknowledged its soundness and have established its genuineness on the basis of almost equally credible evidence.[21]

Therefore, this tradition may be relied upon as a viable argument because, according to Imam Nasā’ī’s contention, a narrator may be discarded only when all the traditionists have unanimously rejected him/her.[22]

Those who deny the relevance of intermediation object to the tradition as undependable as its range of reference is limited only to the Companion and does not extend up to the Prophet ( صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم ) himself. In their opinion, it is only one of ‘Ā’ishah’s statements and not a command to be indiscriminately followed. They add that, even if it carries the stamp of her certification, it cannot serve as cogent argument as it is based on personal opinion, which is generally characterized by fluctuation. Sometimes the personal opinion of a Companion may prove correct but at other occasions it may prove incorrect. Therefore, its application is not binding on the believers.

A simple answer to this baseless objection is that not only the tradition is properly certified, but no Companion has ever raised any objection against the mode of action prescribed by ‘Ā’ishah, nor has such an objection been ever reported, just as no objection has been raised against the person in the tradition reported by Mālik ad-Dār who prays for rain at the grave of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم ) .[23 ) These traditions reflect the collective opinion of the Companions and such a consensus is quite valid. An act, which enjoys the tacit support of the Companions, cannot be spelled out as invalid or a discredited form of innovation, and it is obligatory for us to follow the Companions. In this context, Imam Shāf‘ī says, “For us, their opinion about us is far more authentic than our own opinion.”[24]This tradition clearly establishes the fact that ‘Ā’ishah commanded the natives of Medina to rely on the Prophet ( صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم ) in his grave as a source of intermediation for divine blessings.

Ibn Taymiyyah has discarded the tradition as mere fabrication. According to him, during the entire life of ‘Ā’ishah, there was no such hole in the roof of the Prophet’s tomb. But this objection is weak as watered tea because Imam Dārimī and the religious leaders and scholars who followed him were more deeply aware of these details.

For example, a traditionist and historian from Medina, ‘Alī bin Ahmad Samhūdī has disconfirmed Ibn Taymiyyah and supported Imam Dārimī’s contention. According to him, Zayn-al-Mirāghī said, “Let it be known that it is a practice of the people of Medina to date that, during a period of drought, they open a window at the bottom of the dome in the Prophet’s tomb in the direction of prayer niche though the roof intervenes between the grave and the sky. I say that in our period, too, one of the gates in the boundary wall, enveloping the tomb, called al-mawājahah, that is, the door that opens towards the Prophet’s face, is flung open and people gather there (for prayer).[25]

The Ottoman Turks followed the practice of offering prayers through the mediation of the Prophet’s grave. The practice remained in vogue till the early years of the twentieth century. Whenever there was famine and scarcity of rain, the residents of Medina persuaded a six-or-seven-year-old child to climb the roof of the grave. (He performed the ablution before climbing over the roof.) The child tugged at the rope, which had been hung down the roof to close the hole in the grave, dug at the suggestion of the Mother of the Believers, ‘Ā’ishah. When there was no curtain between the sky and the grave, it started raining.


[7]. Dārimī related it in his Sunan (1:43#93); Ibn-ul-Jawzī in al-Wafā’ bi-ahwāl-il-mustafā (2:801); Subkī in Shifā’-us-siqām fī ziyārat khayr-il-anām (p.128); Qastallānī in al-Mawāhib-ul-laduniyyah (4:276); and Zurqānī in his Commentary (11:150).

[8]. Dhahabī, Mīzān-ul-i‘tidāl (4:8).

[9]. Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī, Shifā’-ul-fu’ād bi-ziyārat khayr-il-‘ibād (p.152).

[10]. ‘Irāqī, at-Taqyīd wal-īdāh (p.462).

[11]. Bukhārī, at-Tārīkh-ul-kabīr (3:472).

[12]. Ibn Sa‘d, at-Tabaqāt-ul-kubrā (7:287).

[13]. Imam Ahmad’s statement has been reproduced by Dhahabī in Mīzān-ul-i‘tidāl (2:138) and by Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī in Tahdhīb-ut-tahdhīb (4:32).

[14]. Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī, Lisān-ul-Mīzān (1:13).

[15]. Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī, Hady-us-sārī muqaddimah Fath-ul-bārī (p.397).

[16]. Mahmūd Sa‘īd Mamdūh, Raf‘-ul-minārah (pp.259-60).

[17]. Bukhārī, at-Tārīkh-ul-kabīr (2:16-7).

[18]. Ibn S‘ad, at-Tabaqāt-ul-kubrā (7:224).

[19]. Abū Na‘aym, Hilyat-ul-awliyā’ wa tabaqāt-ul-asfiyā’ (3:79).

[20]. Ibn-ul-Qaysarānī, al-Jam‘ bayn as-Sahīhayn (1:46) as quoted by Mahmūd Sa‘īd Mamdūh in Raf‘-ul-minārah (p.261).

[21]. Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī, Shifā’-ul-fu’ād bi-ziyārat khayr--il-‘ibād (p.153).

[22]. Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī, Nuzhat-un-nazr bi-sharh nukhbat-ul-fikr fī mustalah hadith ahl-ul-athr (p.89).

[23]. This tradition will be discussed later.

[24]. Ibn-ul-Qayyim, A‘lām-ul-muwaqqi‘īn ‘an rabb-il-‘ālamīn (2:186).

[25]. Samhūdī, Wafā’-ul-wafā (2:560).

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Hadith 4: A reply to the "Salafi" Objectors

I will include two refutations to the "salafi" objectors regarding the authenticity of this hadith.The first refutation enclosed was found in this article on the subject of TAWASSUL :

Al-Darimi in the Chapter 15 of the Muqaddima (Introduction) to his Sunan (1:43) entitled: "Allah's generosity to His Prophet after his death," relates from Aws ibn `Abd Allah with a good chain:

"The people of Madina complained to `A'isha of the severe drought that they were suffering. She said: "Go to the Prophet's grave and open a window towards the sky so that there will be no roof between him and the sky." They did so, after which they were watered with such rain that vegetation grew and the camels got fat. That year was named the Year of Plenty."

It is clear from the above narrations that the position of the Mother of the Believers `A'isha differs from that of modern-day "Salafis," since she recommended to the people of Madina to use the Prophet in his grave as a means of obtaining blessing and benefit and this remained in use until the Wahhabis took over the Hijaz, while "Salafis" declare this to be unacceptable. Either they know better than the fuqaha' of the Companions or, most certainly, they are peddling misguidance and innovation.

Shaykh Albani, in order to reject the hadith of Darimi, raised some objections which are so full of holes that one can not only see the sky through them, but also the sun, the moon, and the stars. He said in his little book translated under the name Tawassul: Its Types and Its Rulings (p. 130-131) about Darimi's chain of transmission for the report (Abu al-Nu`man from Sa`id ibn Zayd from `Amr ibn Malik al-Nukri from Abu al-Jawza' Aws ibn `Abd Allah from `A'isha):

This chain of narration is weak and cannot be used as a proof due to three reasons:

(i) Sa`id ibn Zayd who is the brother of Hammad ibn Zayd is somewhat weak. al-Hafiz [Ibn Hajar] said about him in al-Taqrib: "Generally acceptable, but he makes mistakes." Dhahabi said about him in al-Mizan: "Yahya ibn Sa`id said: Weak, and al-Sa`di said: He is not a proof, they declare his ahadith to be weak. Nasa'i and others said: He is not strong; and Ahmad said: He is all right. Yahya ibn Sa`id would not accept him."

However, the above documentation is partial and biased, and this is not surprising since "Salafis" only mention what advances their view while they cover up, rephrase, or declare weak whatever contradicts it. This is especially true of Albani, whose followers claim him as "the leading scholar of hadith of this age"(!) whereas he makes frequent mistakes, innovates in many of his rulings, and is generally unreliable except to those unschooled in the Islamic sciences. It would be more correct for "Salafis" to say: "He is our leading scholar," for in this we would agree with them completely. However, it is a fact that no one who has actual knowledge in hadith and fiqh uses Albani's books except that they check and verify anything they take from them against trustworthy scholars.

The present narration is a case in point, since Albani deliberately omits to mention the authentication of the narrators he seeks to declare weak, hiding basic evidence from his readers in order to mislead them, all because he is dead set against the issue at hand, even if it is authentically reported from the Mother of the Believers!

Following is a point-by-point refutation of Albani's claims by the Moroccan hadith scholar `Abd Allah ibn Muhammad ibn al-Siddiq al-Ghumari in his booklet entitled: Irgham al-mubtadi` al-ghabi bi jawaz al-tawassul bi al-nabi (The coercion of the unintelligent innovator to the effect that using the Prophet as a means is permissible p. 23-25):

Albani's weakening of Sa`id ibn Zayd is rejected, because Sa`id is one of Muslim's narrators, and Yahya ibn Ma`in declared him trustworthy (thiqa)!

The editor of Ghumari's text, Ghumari's student Hasan `Ali al-Saqqaf says on the same page as the above:

Albani has adduced worthless proofs as is his habit when embellishing falsehood.

He cited whatever fit his whim from Ibn Hajar's Taqrib, leaving out his mention that Sa`id ibn Zayd is one of Muslim's narrators in his Sahih. Beware, therefore, of this tadlis (concealment) on his part!... He added Dhahabi's notice on Sa`id ibn Zayd in the Mizan, and this is another deliberate cover-up, for he faithlessly omitted to mention what Ibn Hajar reported in Tahdhib al-tahdhib (4:29) from those who declared Sa`id ibn Zayd trustworthy, in addition to his being one of Muslim's narrators:

- Bukhari said: "Muslim ibn Ibrahim narrated to us: Sa`id ibn Zayd Abu al-Hasan narrated to us, and he is reliable and a memorizer of hadith (saduq hafiz)."

- al-Duri said on the authority of Ibn Ma`in: "Sa`id ibn Zayd is trustworthy (thiqa)."

- Ibn Sa`d said: "He was trustworthy."

- al-`Ujli said: "He is from Basra, and he is trustworthy."

- Abu Zur`a said: "I heard Sulayman ibn Harb say: Sa`id ibn Zayd narrated to us, and he was trustworthy."

- Abu Ja`far al-Darimi said: "Hibban ibn Hilal narrated to us: Sa`id ibn Zayd narrated to us, and he was a memorizer of hadith and he was reliable."

- Ibn `Adi said: "There is no denounced narration from him except someone else also narrates it, and I consider him one of those in the reliable category."

In addition to the above remarks it is noteworthy to mention that Albani cited Ahmad's grading of Sa`id ibn Zayd as la ba'sa bihi which his translator rendered as "he is all right," but neither the author nor the translator seems to know that in Imam Ahmad's terminology la ba'sa bihi is identical with thiqa, which means "trustworthy" and is among the highest gradings of authentication! Ibn Salah in his Muqaddima (p. 134), Dhahabi in Lisan al-mizan (1:13), Sakhawi in Fath al-mughith, Ibn Hajar in Hadi al-sari, Abu Ghudda in his commentary to Lucknawi's Raf` (p. 222 n. 3), as well as the editor of Nawawi's al-Taqrib wa al-taysir (p. 51) have indicated that the equivalency of saying "There is no harm in him" with the grade of trustworthy (thiqa) obtains for many early authorities of the third century such as Ibn Ma`in, Ibn al-Madini, Imam Ahmad, Duhaym, Abu Zur`a, Abu Hatim al-Razi, Ya`qub ibn Sufyan al-Fasawi, and others.

Albani continues in his list of reasons for weakening Darimi's narration:

(ii) It is mawquf (stopping at the Companion), coming only from `A'isha and not from the Prophet, and even if the chain of narration up to `A'isha were authentic then it would not be a proof since it is something open to personal judgment in which even the Companions are sometimes correct and sometimes incorrect, and we are not bound to act upon that (!).

To this claim it is easy to reply that not only is the narration sound and authentic, but also that there is no objection related from any of the Companions to the act recommended by the Mother of the Believers, just as there was no objection on their part to the istisqa' made by the man who came to the grave of the Prophet in the narration of Malik al-Dar cited below. This shows ijma` on the matter on the part of the Companions, and such ijma` is definitely binding in the sense that no one can declare unlawful or innovative something which they have tacitly declared lawful or desirable. As for the following the opinion of the Companions we say what Imam al-Shafi`i said as related by Ibn Qayyim in A`lam al-muwaqqi`in `an rabb al-`alamin (2:186-187): "Their opinion for us is better than our opinion to ourselves."

Albani listed the following as his last reason for weakening Darimi's narration:

(iii) Abu al-Nu`man... was originally a reliable narrator except that he deteriorated at the end of his life. The hadith master Burhan al-Din al-Halabi mentions him among those who deteriorated in later life in his book al-Muqaddima (p. 391) and he says: "The ruling about these people is that their narrations are accepted if reported from them by people who heard from them before they deteriorated. But narrations reported from them by those who heard from them after they deteriorated, or narrations reported from therm by people about whom we do not know whether they heard from them before they deteriorated or after, then these narrations are to be rejected."I say: We do not know whether this report was heard by Darimi from him before or after his memory deteriorated, it is therefore not acceptable and cannot be used as evidence. [Footnote:] Shaykh al-Ghumari missed this weakness in Misbah al-zujaj (p. 43), just as it was ignored by another in order to give the impression to the people that this report is authentic(!).

Ghumari said regarding these claims about Abu al-Nu`man:

His weakening of Abu al-Nu`man is invalid, because Abu al-Nu`man's deterioration did not affect what is narrated from him! al-Daraqutni said [as cited by Dhahabi in Mizan al-i`tidal (4:81)]: "He deteriorated at the end of his life, and no denounced hadith issued from him after his deterioration whatsoever, and he is trustworthy (thiqa)." As for what Ibn Hibban said, that "Many denounced things occurred in his narrations after his deterioration," then al-Dhahabi refuted it when he said (4:8): "Ibn Hibban was unable to cite a single denounced narration from him, and the truth is just as Daraqutni said."

Shaykh Muhammad ibn `Alawi al-Maliki said in his book Shifa' al-fu'ad bi ziyarat khayr al-`ibad (p. 152):

Abu al-Nu`man's deterioration neither harms nor is detrimental to his reliability, since Bukhari in his Sahih narrated over one hundred hadiths from him, and no narration was taken from him after his deterioration, as Daraqutni said.... The chain of transmission is all right, in fact I consider it good. The scholars have cited as evidence many chains that are like it or less strong than it.

Following are Saqqaf's further comments, beginning with Albani's charge against Shaykh al-Ghumari:

We know full well that it is Albani who betrays scholarly trust and deliberately misinforms the people, even if he accuses others of disinformation.... In weakening Abu al-Nu`man he has again acted faithlessly. His quotation from al-Burhan al-Halabi's book al-Ightibat bi man rumiya bi al-ikhtilat (p. 23) is designed to pull the wool over the eyes of his followers and those who only read his works! For it is necessary to also know that those who are branded as suffering from deterioration in the aforementioned book are divided among those whose narrations were unaffected by their deterioration and those whose narrations were affected. Abu al-Nu`man belongs to the first group, and al-Dhahabi made this clear in al-Mizan (4:8). Therefore our reply to Albani is: Shaykh al-Ghumari did not miss anything concerning this matter of deterioration, because he is a hadith scholar and a master memorizer (hafiz), however, it is you who have missed it, O slandering backbiter!

As for Albani's quotation of Ibn Taymiyya's claim in his al-Radd `ala al-Bakri (p. 68-74) whereby "a clear proof that it is a lie is the fact that no such opening existed above the house at all in the whole of the life of `A'isha"(!) then it is a weak objection which is no sooner brought up than cast out. Surely Imam al-Darimi and the scholars of the succeeding generations would know of such a detail better than latecomers. As for the authorities among the latter, then the hadith scholar and historian of Madina Imam `Ali al-Samhudi (d. 922) did not so much as look at Ibn Taymiyya's objection, rather he confirmed the truth of Darimi's narration by saying, after citing it in his Wafa' al-wafa' (2:549): al-Zayn al-Miraghi said: "Know that it is the Sunna of the people of Madina to this day to open a window at the bottom of the dome of the Prophet's room, that is, of the blessed green dome, on the side of the Qibla." I say: And in our time, they open the door facing the noble face (the grave) in the space surrounding the room and they gather there."

So much for the claims of naysayers regarding istisqa' through the Prophet.· The act of the Mother of the Believers `A'isha in the narration of Darimi is explicitly confirmed by Abu Talib's famous line of poetry concerning istisqa' through the Prophet as related in the book of istisqa' in Bukhari's Sahih:

`Abdullah ibn Dinar said: "I heard Ibn `Umar reciting the poetic verses of Abu Talib:

A fair-skinned one by whose face rainclouds are sought,

A caretaker for the orphans and protector of widows.

`Umar ibn Hamza said: Salim narrated from his father (Ibn `Umar) that the latter said:

"The poet's saying came to my mind as I was looking at the face of the Prophet while he was praying for rain -- and he did not get down till the rain water flowed profusely from every roof-gutter:

A fair-skinned one by whose face rainclouds are sought,

A caretaker for the orphans and protector of widows.

One sub-narrator added: "These were the words of Abu Talib."

Note that in his translation of Bukhari (2:65), Muhammad Muhsin Khan alters the wording of the hadith to read: "A white person who is requested to pray for rain" in place of "by whose face rain is sought," and Allah knows best the reason for this grave betrayal of the translator's trust in the most important Islamic source after the Qur'an.


Allah's Generosity to His Prophet After His Death



‏حدثنا ‏ ‏أبو النعمان ‏ ‏حدثنا ‏ ‏سعيد بن زيد ‏ ‏حدثنا ‏ ‏عمرو بن مالك النكري ‏ ‏حدثنا ‏ ‏أبو الجوزاء أوس بن عبد الله ‏ ‏قال ‏ ‏قحط ‏ ‏أهل ‏ ‏المدينة ‏ ‏قحطا ‏ ‏شديدا فشكوا إلى ‏ ‏عائشة ‏ ‏فقالت انظروا قبر النبي ‏ ‏صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ ‏فاجعلوا منه ‏ ‏كوى ‏ ‏إلى السماء حتى لا يكون بينه وبين السماء سقف قال ففعلوا فمطرنا مطرا حتى نبت العشب وسمنت الإبل حتى ‏ ‏تفتقت ‏ ‏من الشحم فسمي عام ‏ ‏الفتق

Imam Dārimī relates from Abū al-Jawzā’ Aws bin ‘Abdullāh:

The people of Medina were in the grip of a severe famine. They complained to ‘Ā’ishah (about their terrible condition). She told them to go towards the Prophet’s grave and open a window in the direction of the sky so that there is no curtain between the sky and the grave. The narrator says they did so. Then it started raining heavily; even the lush green grass sprang up (everywhere) and the camels had grown so fat (it seemed) they would burst out due to the over piling of blubber. So the year was named as the year of greenery and plenty.

Dārimī related it in his Sunan (1:43#93); Ibn-ul-Jawzī in al-Wafā’ bi-ahwāl-il-mustafā (2:801); Subkī in Shifā’-us-siqām fī ziyārat khayr-il-anām (p.128); Qastallānī in al-Mawāhib-ul-laduniyyah (4:276); and Zurqānī in his Commentary (11:150).

Shaykh Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī says: “This tradition has a good chain of transmission; rather, in my opinion, it is sound. The scholars have also acknowledged its soundness and have established its genuineness on the basis of almost equally credible evidence.

Hadith 3: Response to al-Albani's Objections

Shaykh al-Albani [RH]:

"Firstly: We do not accept that this story is authentic since the reliablity and precision of Maalik ad-Daar is not known, and these are two principle conditions necessary for the authenticity of any narration, as is affirmed in the science of hadeeth. Ibn Abee Haatim mentions him in al-Jarh wa-Ta'deel (4/1/213) and does not mention anyone who narrates from him except Abu Saalih. So this indicates that he is unknown, and this is further emphasized by the fact that Ibn Abee Haatim himself, who is well known for his memorization and wide knowledge, did not quote anyone who declared him reliable, so he remains unknown. Then this does not contradict the saying of al-Haafidh (Ibn Hajar): '...with an authentic chain of narration, from the narration of Abu Saalih as-Samaan...' since we say: It is not declaration that all of the chain of narration is authentic (saheeh), rather only that it is so up to Abu Saalih. If that were not the case then he would have begun: 'From Maalik ad-Daar ... and its chain of narration is authentic.' But he said it in the way that he did to draw attention to the fact that there was something requiring investigation in it. The scholars say this for various reasons. From these reasons is that they may not have been able to find a biography for some narrator(s) and therefore they would not permit themselves to pass a ruling of authenticity without certainity and cause others to think it authentic and to use it as a proof. So what they would rather do in such a case is to quote the part requiring further examination, which is what al-Haafidh (rahimahullah) did here. It is also as if he indicates the fact that Abu Saalih as-Samaan is alone in reporting from Maalik ad-Daar, or that he is unknown, and Allah knows best. So this is a very fine point of knowledge which will be realized only by those having experience in this field. What we have said is also aided by the fact that al-Haafidh al-Mundhiree reports another story from the narration of Maalik ad-Daar, from 'Umar in at-Targheeb (2/41-42) and says after it: 'at-Tabaraanee reports it in al-Kabeer. Its narrators up to Maalik ad-Daar are famous and reliable, but as for Maalik ad-Daar then I do not know him.' The same is said by al-Haythamee in Majma' az-Zawaa'id (3/125)."


Excerpted from Dr. Tahir ul-Qadri's book: Islamic Concept of Intermediation [slight editing by me]

Mālik ad-Dār has related:

The people were gripped by famine during the tenure of ‘Umar (bin al-Khattāb). Then a Companion walked up to the Prophet’s grave and said, “O Messenger of Allah, please ask for rain from Allah for your Community who is in dire straits.” Then the Companion saw the Prophet in a dream. The Prophet said to him, “Go over to ‘Umar, give him my regards and tell him that the rain will come to you. And tell ‘Umar that he should be on his toes, he should be on his toes, (he should remain alert).” Then the Companion went over to see ‘Umar and passed on to him the tidings. On hearing this, ‘Umar broke into a spurt of crying. He said, “O Allah, I exert myself to the full until I am completely exhausted.”[26]

Ibn Kathīr has confirmed the soundness of its transmission in al-Bidāyah wan-nihāyah (5:167). Ibn Abū Khaythamah narrated it with the same chain of transmission as quoted by Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī in al-Isābah fī tamyīz-is-sahābah (3:484), while the latter writes in Fath-ul-bārī (2:495-6): “Ibn Abū Shaybah transmitted it with a sound chain of transmission and Sayf bin ‘Umar Tamīmī has recorded it in al-Futūh-ul-kabīr that the dreamer was a Companion known as Bilāl bin Hārith Muzanī.” Qastallānī has remarked in al-Mawāhib-ul-laduniyyah (4:276) that Ibn Abū Shaybah has narrated it with a sound chain of transmission while Zurqānī has supported Qastallānī in his Commentary (11:150-1).

It is quite surprising that some people have tried to dub even this soundly transmitted tradition as weak and, therefore, lacking the sinews to face a rigorously probing analysis, though this is far from the truth. They have marshalled in their favour the following objections:

First objection:

One of its narrators is A‘mash who is a Mudallis.


Though A‘mash is a Mudallis, his tradition is popular for two reasons whether its soundness is proved or not:1. A‘mash is regarded as a second-grade Mudallis, and this is a class of Mudallis from whom our religious leaders recorded traditions in their authentic books. Therefore, it is proved that this tradition narrated by A‘mash is accepted.2. If we accept this tradition only on the basis of its transmission by A‘mash, as is the practice in the case of third-grade or even lower-grade Mudallis, even then the tradition by A‘mash is likely to retain its popularity as he has copied it from Abū Sālih Dhakawān Sammān. Imam Dhahabī comments: “When A‘mash begins a tradition with the word ‘an (from) there is a possibility of imposture and deception. But if he relates it from his elders like Ibrāhīm, Ibn Abū Wā’il, Abū Sālih Sammān, etc., then it is presumed to possess sound linkage (ittisāl).[27] In addition, Imam Dhahabī has also described him as trustworthy (thiqah). [comment: please see also the clarification from sidi Abul Hasan on the issue of al-A'mash posted below]

Second objection:

Albānī in his book at-Tawassul, ahkāmuhū wa anwa‘uhū observes, “I do not acknowledge it authentic because the credibility and memory of Mālik ad-Dār is not known and these are the two basic criteria for any authentic narrator of traditions. Ibn Abū Hātim Rāzī in Kitāb-ul-jarh wat-ta‘dīl [4/1/213(8:213)], while discussing Mālik ad-Dār, has not mentioned any narrator except Abū Sālih who has accepted any tradition from him, which shows that he is unknown. It is also supported by the fact that Ibn Abū Hātim Rāzī, who himself is a leading figure of Islam and a memorizer of traditions, has not mentioned anyone of them who has pronounced him trustworthy (thiqah). Similarly Mundhirī has remarked that he does not know him while Haythamī in his Majma‘-uz-zawā’id, has supported his observation…”


This objection is refuted by the biographical details which Ibn Sa‘d (d.230ah) has furnished while discussing him among the second-grade Medinan Successors:

Malik al-Dar: `Umar ibn al-Khattab's freedman. He narrated from Abu Bakr and `Umar. He was known. [28]

In addition, this objection is also cancelled by Khalīlī’s (d.445 ah) comment on Māik ad-Dār:

Malik al-Dar: muttafaq `alayh athna `alayhi al-tabi`un -- He is agreed upon (as trustworthy), the Successors have approved highly of him [29]

Besides, the biographical sketch provided by Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī also serves to neutralize this objection:

"Malik ibn `Iyad: `Umar's freedman. He is the one named Malik al-Dar. He has seen the Prophet and has heard narrations from Abu Bakr al-Siddiq. He has narrated from Abu Bakr and `Umar, Mu`adh, and Abu `Ubayda. From him narrated Abu Salih al-Saman and his (Malik's) two sons `Awn and `Abd Allah...Bukhari in his Tarikh narrated through Abu Salih Dhakwan from Malik al-Dar that `Umar said during the period of drought: "O my Lord, I spare no effort except in what escapes my power!" Ibn Abi Khaythama also narrated it in those words but in a longer hadith:The people suffered a drought during the time of `Umar, whereupon a man came to the grave of the Prophet and said: "O Messenger of Allah, ask Allah for rain for your Community." The Prophet appeared to him in a dream and told him: "Go, see `Umar and tell him: You will be watered, and: You must put your nose to the grindstone (`alayk al-kaffayn)!" (The man went and told `Umar.) Then `Umar wept and exclaimed: "O my Lord, I spare no effort except in what escapes my power!"We have also narrated in the Fawa'id of Dawud ibn `Amr and al-Dabbi compiled by al-Baghawi in the narration of `Abd al-Rahman ibn Sa`id ibn Yarbu` al-Makhzumi from Malik al-Dar: he said: "`Umar ibn al-Khattab summoned me one day. He had with him a purse of gold containing four hundred dinars. He said: "Take this to Abu `Ubayda," and he mentioned the rest of the story.Ibn Sa`d mentioned him (Malik al-Dar) in the first layer of the Successors among the people of Madina and said: "He narrated from Abu Bakr and `Umar, and he was known." Abu `Ubayda said of him: "`Umar put him in charge of the dependents in his household. When `Uthman succeeded him, he put him in charge of financial allotments and he was then named Malik of the House."Isma`il al-Qadi related from `Ali ibn al-Madini: "Malik al-Dar was `Umar's treasurer."" [30]

Ibn Hibbān has attested to the trustworthiness and credibility of Mālik ad-Dār in Kitāb-uth-thiqāt (5:384).[31]

Now if Mundhirī and Haythamī insist that they do not know Mālik ad-Dār, it means that they have not asserted anything about his credibility or lack of credibility. However there are traditionists of great repute like Imam Bukhārī, Ibn Sa‘d, ‘Alī bin Madīnī, Ibn Hibbān and Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī who know him. Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī has even mentioned him in Tahdhīb-ut-tahdhīb (7:226; 8:217).

It is shocking to learn that Albānī gives weight to the opinion of those who do not know Mālik ad-Dār and prefers them to those who know him. Albānī has discarded the traditions of Mālik bin ‘Iyād who is popularly known by the title “ad-Dār” while the great Companions appointed him as their minister because they relied on his trustworthiness. He was even given the portfolio of finance minister, an office that requires honesty, integrity and a huge sense of responsibility. On the contrary, Albānī gives credence to the traditions of those who enjoyed a much lower status than Mālik ad-Dār. The following examples support my contention:

1. He has pronounced Yahyā bin ‘Uryān Harawī as hasan (fair) in Silsīlat-ul-ahādīth-is-sahīhah (1:49). His argument is based on the statement made by Khatīb Baghdādī in Tārīkh Baghdad (14:161) in which he declares Yahyā bin ‘Uryān Harawī as a traditionist of Baghdad.

This statement is quite transparent. Khatīb Baghdādī has argued neither in favour of nor against Yahyā bin ‘Uryān Harawī. His stance is neutral, as he has not tried to establish the stature of his narrations. He has not labelled them as authentic or inauthentic. In spite of his posture of neutrality, it is quite surprising that Albānī has called him fair (hasan).

2. Abū Sa‘īd Ghifārī has also been pronounced a fair narrator in Silsilat-ul-ahādīth-is-sahīhah (2:298). After stating that he is no longer unknown because two narrators have acknowledged traditions from him, he writes, “So he is a Successor. A group of those who have committed the traditions to memory have verified the authenticity of his traditions. Therefore, ‘Irāqī has declared the traditions attributed to him as authentic (isnāduhū jayyid), and there is no harm in it. This gave me a sense of satisfaction and I felt deeply contented.”

The question is why has he tried to discriminate between Abū Sa‘īd Ghifārī and Mālik ad-Dār?

3. Sālih bin Khawwāt has also been pronounced credible in Silsilat-ul-ahādīth-is-sahīhah (2:436) because a group of people has relied on his traditions, and Ibn Hibbān has mentioned him in Kitāb-uth-thiqāt.

While, according to our research, Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī has described him as an acceptable narrator in Taqrīb-ut-tahdhīb (1:359) and has also stated that he belonged to the eighth category of Successors. If an eighth-grade narrator is being described as credible, what justification is there to pronounce a first-grade Successor as un-credible? The discrimination seems to be rooted more in prejudice than reason.

Therefore, the silence of Ibn Abū Hātim Rāzī is hardly an argument against the unknown stature of Mālik ad-Dār because his silence is based on lack of evidence about the narrator. Thus the absence of evidence and reasoning does not reflect the unknowingness of the narrator, which his silence neither explains nor indicates towards any definite interpretation. On the contrary, it opposes any attempt to establish the unknowingness of the narrator. There are a number of narrators about whom Ibn Abū Hātim Rāzī has remained silent though other scholars have argued about them and the books on tradition and related issues are riddled with similar examples.

Third objection:

There is a suspicion of discontinuance between Abū Sālih Dhakawān Sammān and Mālik ad-Dār.


This suspicion is a fallacy, as it has no basis in reality. In its rejection, it is sufficient to say that Abū Sālih like Mālik ad-Dār was a native of Medina and he has reported traditions from the Companions. Therefore, he is not an impostor and a fraud. It may also be noted that only contemporaneity is an adequate guarantee for the connection of transmission as Imam Muslim has mentioned the consensus in the Preamble (muqaddimah) of his as-Sahīh.

Fourth objection:

There is no justification for the soundness of this tradition because it entirely depends upon a person whose name has not been spelled out. Only in the tradition narrated by Sayf bin ‘Umar Tamīmī, he has been named Bilāl and Sayf has declared him as a weak narrator.


This objection is also groundless, because justification does not depend on Bilāl but on ‘Umar bin al-Khattāb’s act. He did not prevent Bilāl from performing his act; on the contrary, he acknowledged it. He rather himself cried and said: ‘my Creator, I do not shirk responsibility but I may be made more humble.’ Therefore the person visiting the grave, whether he is a Companion or a Successor, does not affect the soundness of the tradition.

The gist of the discussion is that the tradition related by Mālik ad-Dār is sound, as I have stated in the earlier part of my exposition. Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī writes: “All those people who have made reference to this tradition or narrated it or reproduced it in their books have never labelled it disbelief or infidelity. They have not questioned the substance of the tradition and it has been mentioned by a scholarly person of high level like Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī who has confirmed it as a soundly transmitted tradition. Therefore his confirmation needs no apology in view of his highly distinguished stature among the hadith-scholars.” [32]

This tradition establishes the following principles:

1. Visiting graves with the intention of mediation and seeking help.

2. It is valid to visit the grave of a pious dead person during the period of one’s trials and tribulations to seek help from him because if this act were invalid, ‘Umar would surely have forbidden that person to do so.

3. The Prophet’s appearance in the dream of the person who visited his grave and to give him good tidings, argues in favour of the fact that it is quite valid to seek help from non-Allah and the dead because if it were invalid, it would have been impossible for the Prophet not to have forbidden that person to do so.

4. Validation of the mode of address “O Messenger of Allah (yā rasūl Allah)” even after his death.

5. Call for help and the act of intermediation dates back to the early ages.

6. The holy personality of the Prophet is a fountain of guidance even after his death.

7. The head of the state is responsible for administrative matters. The Holy Prophet , in spite of being the chief of prophets, did not break the state channel and, as a visible demonstration of his sense of discipline, he commanded the man visiting his grave to see the head of the state.

8. The man visiting the grave implored his help through the instrumentality of the Ummah. This shows the Prophet’s immeasurable love for the Community of his followers.

9. Justification for making the Ummah as a source for seeking his help.

10. Justification for making non-prophet a means of help in the presence of the Prophet صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم

11. Anyone who strengthens his link with the Holy Prophet is rewarded by his sight and is showered with his blessings.

12. The Holy Prophet , even after his death, is aware of the weakness of his Ummah or anyone of its rulers and he issues different commands for removing these flaws.

13. To seek guidance from Allah’s favourites.

14. The acknowledgement of the Prophet’s commands by the Companions after his death as just and truthful.

15. Imposition of commands received in dreams on others.

16. When intermediation was discussed in the presence of ‘Umar bin al-Khattāb, he did not forbid it; rather he cried and responded to it acknowledging it as valid.

17. ‘Umar bin al-Khattāb’s love for the Holy Prophet that he incessantly cried as someone mentioned the Holy Prophet

[NOTES:[26]. Related by Ibn Abū Shaybah in al-Musannaf (12:31-2#12051); Bayhaqī, Dalā’il-un-nubuwwah (7:47); Ibn ‘Abd-ul-Barr, al-Istī‘āb fī ma‘rifat-il-ashāb (2:464); Subkī, Shifā’-us-siqām fī ziyārat khayr-il-anām (p.130); ‘Alā’-ud-Dīn ‘Alī, Kanz-ul-‘ummāl (8:431#23535); and Abū Ya‘lā Khalīl bin ‘Abdullāh Khalīlī Qazwīnī in Kitāb-ul-irshād fī ma‘rifat ‘ulamā’-il-hadith (1:313-4), as quoted by Mahmūd Sa‘īd Mamdūh in Raf‘-ul-minārah (p.262).[27]. Dhahabī, Mīzān-ul-i‘tidāl (2:224).[28]. Ibn Sā‘d, at-Tabaqāt-ul-kubrā (5:12).[29]. Abū Yā‘lā Khalīl bin ‘Abdullāh Khalīlī Qazwīnī, Kitāb-ul-irshād fī ma‘rifat ‘ulamā’-il-hadith, as quoted by ‘Abdullāh bin Muhammad bin Siddīq al-Ghumārī in Irghām-ul-mubtadī al-ghabī bi-jawāz-it-tawassul bi an-nabī (p.9).[30]. Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī, al-Isābah fī tamyīz-is-sahābah (3:484-5).[31]. Mahmūd Sa‘īd Mamdūh, Raf‘-ul-minārah (p.266). Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī also mentioned in his Tahdhīb-ut-tahdhīb (7:226; 8:217).[32]. Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī, Mafāhīm yajib an tusahhah (p.151). ]


Some further points to add, inshaAllah:

It has already been mentioned above that Ibn Hajar considered Malik al-Dar RA to be a sahabah when he stated:

"Malik ibn `Iyad: `Umar's freedman. He is the one named Malik al-Dar. He has seen the Prophet and has heard narrations from Abu Bakr al-Siddiq. He has narrated from Abu Bakr and `Umar, Mu`adh, and Abu `Ubayda. From him narrated Abu Salih al-Saman and his (Malik's) two sons `Awn and `Abd Allah...

Sidi Abul Hasan has also brought to light that the Hafiz of Hadith and famed Historian: Shamsud-Din al-Dhahabi (d. 748 AH) has listed Malik ibn Iyad as a Sahaba in his Tajrid Asma al-Sahaba, which was printed in Hyderabad, India, in the year 1315 AH - i.e. more than 100 years ago.

In addition, Malik al-Dar has been listed as being a Sahabi by Imam Ibn Hajar's student: Imam Taqiud-Din Ibn Fahd al-Makki (d. 871 AH) in his Mukhtasar Asma al-Sahaba. This has been found from the Al-Azhar manuscript.

[ Larger scans can be reviewed HERE ]

Malik ibn Iyad in Tajrid Asma al-Sahaba of al-Hafiz Shamsud-Din al-Dhahabi (d. 748 AH)

Title page:

Actual scanned page with Malik al-Dar being listed as a Sahabi:

Malik ibn Iyad in Mukhtasar Asma al-Sahaba of Imam Taqiud-Din Ibn Fahd al-Makki (d. 871 AH)

Sidi Abul Hasan goes on to mention:

The fact that these 3 well known scholars: al-Dhahabi, Ibn Hajar and Ibn Fahd listed Malik al-Dar in specific works mentioning those they considered to be noble Sahaba is a proof against those contemporaries who deem Malik al-Dar to be unknown! Such Imams must have surely possessed some definitive evidence to list Malik al-Dar as a Sahabi.

It may also be mentioned that since Ibn Kathir (the contemporary of al-Dhahabi) declared the Malik al-Dar narration to be authentic, then he too must have considered Malik to be at least Thiqa (trustworthy), if not a Sahabi.

Sidi Abul Hasan also mentioned HERE (slight editing by me) regarding the following statement of al-Albani :

"Thirdly: Even if the story were authentic there would still be no proof in it for them since the man (i.e. who came to the grave) in the story is himself not named, and therefore unknown. The fact that he is named as Bilaal ibn al-Haarith in the narration of Sayf is worthless since Sayf is Sayf ibn 'Umar at-Tameemee, and the scholars of hadeeth are agreed that he is weak. Indeed Ibn Hibbaan says about him: 'He reports fabricated things from reliable narrators, and they say that he used to fabricate hadeeth.'"

.....the narration has a Sahih Isnad as: Ibn Hajar and before him: Ibn Kathir explicitly declared in 2 different books.

Thirdly, the narration with Isnads back to Malik al-Dar are found in Bayhaqi's Dala'il al-Nubuwwa and collected before him by Ibn Abi Khaythama and Ibn Abi Shayba as we know. It was also collected with its Isnad by Abu Ya'la al-Khalili in his Irshad. Not one of these Imams of Hadith questioned the text or isnad for its authenticity or it being a route to shirk as the Wahhabi's think!

Without Isnad, it was mentioned in shorter forms by: Ibn Abdal Barr in his al-Isti'ab and al-Bukhari in his Ta'rikh al-Kabir (under Malik al-Dar) - these two Imams didn't attack his narration in any form.

Fourthly, Sayf ibn Umar - no doubt he was problematic - BUT, Imam ibn Hajar al-Asqalani in his Taqreeb al-Tahdhib (no. 2724) said that he was "Da'eef fil Hadith Umda fil Ta'rikh..." Meaning: "Weak in Hadith, a PILLAR in HISTORY.."

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Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Hence: Since the narration from Malik al-Dar is not a Hadith but an Athar (report) from a Tabi'i - this would be regarded as a Historical report from the time of Umar (ra) - This is why Ibn Hajar accepted it, and I have just been looking a little bit deeper into this and have noted that Sayf's narration - naming explicitly the fact that the Sahabi who went to the blessed Qabr - Bilal ibn Harith al-Muzani, was also mentioned by these famous Historians and well regarded Muhaddithin:

Ibn Kathir in his al-Bidaya
Ibn al-Athir al-Jazari in his al-Kamil fi al Ta'rikh
Abu Ja'far al-Tabari in his Ta'rikh(see under the year 18 AH)

Hence, since Sayf is reporting this as a Historical report - the likes of Imam ibn Hajar accepted his narration that it was Bilal al-Muzani (ra) - so this is just another ploy by the Wahhabiyya to reject his historical report. If it was a Hadith - then Sayf's narration would be rejected!

[comment: please read also the related answer to the Fourth Objection posted above]

faqir: regarding Sayf ibn Umar al-Tamimi Sh. GF Haddad also mentioned the following:

QUESTION: I was wondering what you could tell me about Sayf b. Umar. He is a primary source for Imam al-Tabari's material in his Tarikh. What is his reliability and all of the other necessary info.

Reply of Dr. GF Haddad:

Sayf ibn `Umar Al-Asadi al-Tamimi al-Dabbi al-Kufi (d. ca. 178) met the Tabi`in and was a "chronicler" (akhbari) as opposed to a muhaddith historian and the author of al-Ridda, Futuh al-Buldaan, al-Fitnatu wal Jamal and other historical works.

In hadith he was declared weak by Yahya ibn Ma`in, Ya`qub ibn Sufyan, al-Nasa'i, and Abu Dawud. Abu Hatim said he was "discarded, of the same type as al-Waqidi." Al-Daraqutni said he was discarded. Ibn Hibban even said he was accused of hidden heresy (zandaqa) and forgery, charges which Ibn Hajar rejected as outlandish in al-Taqrib where he merely grades him as da`if, while Dr. Nur al-Din `Itr in his notes on al-Dhahabi's Mughni says: "There is no proof of any zandaqa in him, rather, the narrations from him indicate the contrary."

Al-Tirmidhi narrates from him the hadith: "When you see those who insult my Companions, say: The curse of Allah be on the evil you do!" which al-Tirmidhi then grades "disclaimed" and he describes Sayf as unknown. Al-Dhahabi in al-Mughni fil-Du`afa' said he was "discarded by agreement" and, in Tarikh al-Islam, said "he narrated from Jabir al-Ju`fi, Hisham ibn `Urwa, Isma`il ibn Abi Khalid, `Ubayd Allah ibn `Umar, and many unknowns and chroniclers."

Yet, he is considered not only reliable but "eminently reliable" in history, as shown by Ibn Hajar's grading in the Taqrib: "Da`if fil-hadith, `umdatun fil-tarikh," notwithstanding the acrimonious dissent of Shu`ayb al-Arna'ut and Bashshar `Awwad Ma`ruf in their Tahrir al-Taqrib. Indeed, he a primary source for al-Tabari in his Tarikh, Ibn Hajar in his Isaba, and Ibn Kathir in his Bidaya while Ibn `Abd al-Barr cites him in al-Isti`ab as does al-Sakhawi in Fath al-Mughith. Even al-Dhahabi cites him often in his Tarikh al-Islam.

Follow up Questions:

[1] I was wondering, sidi, if you could explain the reasoning behind why and how a specific narrator who is discarded or weak in hadith can be considered "eminently reliable" when it comes to history? What were the reasons behind Sayf's weakness in narrating hadith as opposed to historical events?

[2] is the identification of the "unknown man" as hadhrat bilal ra by sayf ibn umar al-tamimi in the malik al-dar narration considered a historical report?

Reply of Dr. GF Haddad:

Those who questioned the `adl of al-Waqidi and Sayf were dismissed.The issue here is dabit vs. non-dabit. You know well we can have honest people who do not have a clue what dabt requires. Imam Malik mentioned that he met 70 extremely honest shuyukh in Madina but he did not narrate from a single one of them because they were nescient in hadith transmission. Now, take someone who does have a clue but given the abundance of things he transmits he makes so many mistakes that he becomes similarly discardable. Now make him so erudite, so researched, so full of gems that it is simply impossible to discard him altogether. This is the case with al-Waqidi and Sayf. These scholars would go to the actual sites of battles and look for descendents and interview them one by one for stories. Hence the large number of "unknowns" in their chains. Yet, when it comes to purely historical details such as whether a certain Sahabi was a Badri or not, they might even best al-Bukhari and Muslim.

And yes, the identification of the Sahabi in Malik al-Dar's report as Bilal ibn al-Harith al-Muzani [NOT Bilal ibn Rabah al-Habashi, in case that is whom the respondent meant by "Hadrat Bilal"] is definitely a historical clue. Allah Most High be well-pleased with them all.

[end of Dr. GF Haddad's words]

Sidi Abul Hasan also mentioned:

These people have also come off with claims that the narartor in the Isnad: al-A'mash may have made Tadlees - that is not clarifying how he received his report from: Abu Salih, since A'mash sometimes made Tadlees. He used the term: An (from) - which is not a very clear way to show how the narration was received by him.

The answer to this is the fact that A'mash using "An" - from Abu Salih is not considered as tadlees - because Imam al-Bukhari in his Sahih accepted this type of route, as did: Ibn Hajar and Ibn Kathir.

Some others have claimed that Abu Salih al-Samman may not have heard from Malik al-Dar - another mistake on their part- for al-Khalili and Ibn Sa'd clarified that he did!

Much of what I said has been answered by Shaykh Mamduh - for al-Albani and his colleagues like: Abu Bakr al-Jaza'iri and Hammad al-Ansari - showed fanaticism and weakness in the Science of Hadith - when they took on the correct grading of the likes of Ibn Kathir and Ibn Hajar. Also, al-Albani deliberately misinterpreted Ibn Hajar's words - when claiming that Ibn Hajar authenticated it only up to Abu Salih al-Samman!.....

For further details on this narration please consult

Shaykh Mahmud Mamduh's reply to al-Albani on his weakening a narration on Tawassul