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From the Adab (Manners) of the Salaf Regarding the Status of Hadeeth

From the Adab (Manners) of the Salaf Regarding the Status of Hadeeth

Compiled & Translated by Abbas Abu Yahya

1 – Respect for Ahadeeth of the Prophet

Atta bin Abi Rabaah – Rahimullaah – said:

إن الرجل ليحدثني الحديث فأنصت له كأني ما سمعته و قد سمعته قبل ان يولد.

‘Indeed a person would narrate to me a Hadeeth,  so I would remain silent for the reading of the Hadeeth, as if I had not heard it before, and I had heard it before that person was even born.’

 [From ‘Meezan al – I’tidaal’ by Dhahabi 3/70]

2 – How the Ahl-ul-Bida’ Wish to Reject Ahadeeth

‘Ahmad bin Hanbal said:

‘A man from the companions of Hadeeth said that Yahya bin Salih said:

‘If only the companions of Hadeeth left off these ten Hadeeth.’ – meaning these regarding seeing Allaah in the Hereafter, then Ahmad said: ‘It is as if this person preferred the opinion of Jahm.’

I (Dhahabi) say:

‘And the Muta’zilah say: ‘If only the Muhaditheen left off a thousand Hadeeth regarding the Sifaat and Asmaa and seeing Allaah and Allaah Descending, then they would have been correct.

The Qadareeyah say: ‘If only they had left off seventy Hadeeth about the affirmation of Qadr.’

The Rafidha say: ‘If only the majority of the scholars had left off the Ahadeeth which they claim are authentic a thousand Hadeeth, then they would have been correct.’

Many of the people who follow opinions reject the Ahadeeth which al-Hafidh, al-Muftee, al–Mujahid Abu Hurairah narrated from the Messenger of Allaah sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam. They claim that he was not a Faqeeh and they present false Ahadeeth to us, or narrations for which there are no known chains which could be used as evidence.

We say: that everyone will stand in front of Allaah Ta’ala, SubhanAllaah the Ahadeeth about seeing Allaah in the Hereafter are Mutawaatir and the Qur’aan affirms this but they reject it, where is the justice?’

[Taken from Seerah Alam 10/455]

3 – Opposing the Hadeeth of the Messenger of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam

Ibn al-Qayyim – Rahimullaah – said :

‘Indeed the fine Salaf would become severely critical and very angry against the person who opposed the Hadeeth of the Messenger of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- by opinions, or analogies, or regarding something as good just by its virtue, or for the saying of a person no matter who he was!

The Salaf would make Hajr (boycott) the person who opposed the Hadeeth, they would criticize the one who would bring proverbs and parables in the place of Hadeeth, they would not permit  other than having obedience to the Messenger -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- with submission, acceptance with  hearing and obeying!

It would not cross their hearts to have any hindrance in accepting the Hadeeth so much so that they would need a testimony for that Hadeeth or an action or analogy or that it would have to agree with so and so’s statement, but rather they used to act upon the saying of Allaah – Ta’ala:

وَمَا كَانَ لِمُؤْمِنٍ وَلَا مُؤْمِنَةٍ إِذَا قَضَى اللَّهُ وَرَسُولُهُ أَمْرًا أَنْ يَكُونَ لَهُمُ الْخِيَرَةُ مِنْ أَمْرِهِمْ وَمَنْ يَعْصِ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ فَقَدْ ضَلَّ ضَلَالًا مُبِينًا

<< It is not for a believer, man or woman, when Allaah and His Messenger have decreed a matter that they should have any option in their decision. And whoever disobeys Allaah and His Messenger, he has indeed strayed in a plain error.> [Ahzab:36]

Allaah Ta’ala said:

فَلَا وَرَبِّكَ لَا يُؤْمِنُونَ حَتَّى يُحَكِّمُوكَ فِيمَا شَجَرَ بَيْنَهُمْ ثُمَّ لَا يَجِدُوا فِي أَنْفُسِهِمْ حَرَجًا مِمَّا قَضَيْتَ وَيُسَلِّمُوا تَسْلِيمًا

<< But no, by your Lord, they will not [truly] believe until they make you, [O Muhammad], judge concerning that over which they dispute among themselves and then find within themselves no discomfort from what you have judged and submit in [full, willing] submission. >>

 [Nisa’: 65]

Allaah – Ta’ala- said:

((اتَّبِعُوا مَا أُنزِلَ إِليكُم مِن رَّبِّكُم وَلا تَتَّبِعُوا مِن دُونِهِ أَولِياءَقليلاً مَا تَذَكَّرُون))

<<  Follow what has been sent down unto you from your Lord, and follow not any Auliyâ’ (protectors and helpers, etc. who order you to associate partners in worship with Allaah), besides Him (Allaah). Little do you remember! >>

[al-A’araaf: 3]

And other Ayaat similar to these.

We have been propelled in to a time that if it is said to one of them:
It is established from the Prophet -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- that he said such and such statement! A person would claim: ‘Who said this?!’ Rejection in the face of the Hadeeth and makes his ignorance of the one who said that statement (the Prophet) as an evidence to oppose the Prophet!! And leaving off acting upon the Hadeeth,  if he was sincere to himself he would know that his speech is the worst of falsehood and that it is not permissible for a person to reject the Sunnan of the Messenger of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- with the likes of this ignorance.

What is uglier than this is his excuse of his ignorance! Since he believes that there is a consensus contracted upon opposing that Sunnah. This is evil speculation regarding the Muslims collectively Since this person ascribes to them that they are united upon opposing the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam.

What is uglier than that is the excuse of claiming this consensus.
This is actually his ignorance, not having knowledge about the one who said this Hadeeth, so the issue returns to preceding his ignorance over that of the Sunnah.

Allaah’s aid is sought.’

[Ialaam al-Muwaqqa’een 3/464 – 465]

4 – The Authority will be for the People of Hadeeth

A valuable benefit from the saying of Allaah Ta’ala:

وَلَيُمَكِّنَنَّ لَهُمْ دِينَهُمُ الَّذِي ارْتَضَىٰ لَهُمْ

<< and that He will grant them the authority to practice their religion, that which He has chosen for them (i.e. Islaam) >>


Al-Imam al-Hafidh Abu Bakr Ahmad bin Ali bin Thaabit,  will known as al-Khateeb al-Baghdadi (d. 463 A.H.) -Rahimullaah Ta’ala- said in his book <<Sharaff As-Sahabul al-Hadeeth>> p.66:

Muhammad bin Abdullaah bin Salih al-Attaar from Asbahaan informed us that he said, Abu Muhammad bin Hayyaan informed us that he said, Muhammad bin al-Fadl narrated to us that he said,  Abu Hatim narrated to us that he said:

I heard Ishaaq bin Musa al-Khattmi (d. 297 A.H.) saying:

‘Allaah did not give authority and strength to anyone from this Ummah like He gave authority and strength to the As-Sahabul Hadeeth (companions of Hadeeth), because Allaah -Azza wa Jal- said in His Book:

وَلَيُمَكِّنَنَّ لَهُمْ دِينَهُمُ الَّذِي ارْتَضَىٰ لَهُمْ

<< and that He will grant them the authority to practice their religion, that which He has chosen for them (i.e. Islaam) >>


Therefore,  that which Allaah chose and was pleased with is what He gave authority and strength for His people with.

Allaah did not give the Companions of whims and desires authority in that not even one Hadeeth they narrate from the Companions of the Prophet -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- would be accepted from them.

As for the As-Sahabul hadeeth (companions of Hadeeth), then the Hadeeth of the Messenger of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam, and the Hadeeth of his Companions. If there was a person after them who introduced a Bida’ amongst them then his Hadeeth would be rejected even if he was the most truthful of people.’

[From: Sharf As-Sahabul hadeeth p.66]

All Praise belongs to Allaah, may His peace

and blessings be upon our final

Prophet Muhammad, his

family, his companions

and all those who

follow his