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« on: February 03, 2016, 11:05:05 AM »

Question: If I am not wrong Imam Abu Hanifa is the eldest of all the four Imams & was born some 67 years after the death of Prophet peace be upon him.Why is then that we do not have any Hadith books written by him or for that matter any of the companions or tabieen or tabe tabieen,but have Sahih Bukhari,Sahih Muslim who came much after them.

Answer :

Dear brother in Islam....

Assalamualaikum Wa rahamatullahi Wa barakatuhu

Praise be to Allah

This Question  can't be answered in short, your question is touching  different periods of Islamic history of development of science of hadith, to understand your query we need to go back in history....

This is a very interesting and  important question, it is a question which bothered many of us.

Let me first clear some of the important points.

1) In the times of Imam Abu Hanifa, writing and compilation of ahadith in the form of book, under the heading of different topics like " Book of prayers " " book of purity " " book of zakah " etc etc. was not in practise, very few were keeping records but not in book form, it was done according to their ease randomly....

2) The science of Hadith was evoking and developing.
Of the four main Imams, Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal was the last one and during his time hadith only had three kinds of classification: Sahi, Daeef and Fabricated.

More time was needed for the  science of hadith to develop. Till the likes of ibn Mubarak and other giant scholars came. Who had reached to a high calibre in terms of knowledge of the sciences of Hadith.

3) Since the science of Hadith had not developed, many of the Hadith might have been presented to the four Imams but since they had the theoretical tools to scrutinise the Ahadith, they chose to leave it since they were in doubt if it was correct or not.

4) Imam Abu Hanifa was a Imam of Fiqh of his time. The Science of hadith, even to the level that was developed at his time, it really wasn't his strength. As many muhaddiths has shown this.

Essentially at the time of the four Imams the scholars were of two main schools of thoughts the Ahlul Hadith (people of Hadith) and the Ahlul Rai (people of opinions), the latter group was the strength of the Hanafi Madhab and prevalent in the land of Abu Hanifa....

5) People in the times of sahaba would  directly take knowledge from the noble sahaaba and their students, they never felt the necessity of books and writing down hadiths....

6) In the times of prophet Sallallahualaihi Wa sallam and sahaaba (radhi Allahhu anhum) there was no danger of fabrication towards the prophet of Allah Sallallahualaihi Wa sallam though  Munafiqin ( hypocrites ) and mushrikin ( polytheists ) were there, but they never tried to do so bcz of presence of prophet Sallallahualaihi Wa sallam and khulfa e Rashiduun ( rightly guided caliphs ) and the blessed sahaaba....

But

7) Later on, after the Rightly guided caliphs ( rise of fitna started in the times of Uthman RadiAllahu Anhu ) with the increase of islam, many countries and many people came under the flag of islam.  People who were coming to Islam, were also carrying their own practises. On the other hand enemies of Islam were accepting Islam with intention to harm it.
To dilute quran with their lies was not possible, so they took sunnah as their target, and started spreading lies, attributing it towards the noble sahaaba and the noble prophet Sallallahualaihi Wa sallam....

Cool In the times of caliphate of Umar Bin Abdul Aziz RahiMahullah, by the end of the first century, he feared the loss of the sunnah of the prophet Sallallahualaihi Wa sallam, so he ordered Muhammad Bin Abu Bakr Al Hazni in makkah to collect hadith with the help of scholars, he also ordered to collect, only, what is correct, thus beginning of the collection and compilation of hadith started openly....

Companions and tabaeen were never in need of the books to solve their daily religious matters, they would rely on their memory and knowledge and would ask their teachers, sahaaba would consult directly to the prophet Sallallahualaihi Wa sallam and tabaeen would consult companions and tabe tabaeen would consult tabaeen ( who were well learned and very well versed in islamic knowledge ) if they met any disturbing issue. But by the time with the death of sahaaba and tabaeen and well learned scholars, juristic differences were increasing with increase of false and fabricated reports.

Seeing this situations caliph Abū Ja‘far al-Mansūr , requested Imam Malik to produce a standard book that could be promulgated as law in the country. The Imam refused this in 148 Hijri, but when the Caliph again came to the Ḥijāz in 163 Hijri, he was more forceful, thus he prepared a book and showed it to almost 70 scholars of madina, all scholars approved his book.

After the book Muwatta imam Malik, the compilation of ahadith in a book form started speedily, later on great scholars came in this field, and science of hadith got more improved, there started the classification of ahadith according to the narrators, muhaddiths started to enquire about the narrators very strictly as to transfer only what is correct.

For example:
When Ibn Al madini was asked, O shaykh can we narrate from your father ? He replied, no, bcz sometimes he use to add from his own....

Later on scholars like Imam Bukhari and imam Muslim came in, they carried the practise of  what they learn from their teachers and started to analyse the narrators. They collected hadiths on the basis of analysis of narrators. These two scholars were very very strict while narrating ahadith and selecting ahadith and narrators. That's why all the scholars are in agreement that Bukhari and Muslim have all the authentic and sahi reports.

And Allah knows best.

hope it is clear now....

 Barak Allahu feek.
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