Category Archives: Taqlid

Taqlid of Imam Bukhari (Rahimahullah)???

By Abu Usmah Ayyub Ibn Moulana Muhammad

Question: If a man claims to be following the Fiqh of Imam Bukhari, will he not be on the straight path?

Answer: Before we commence with the answer to this question, it should be known that the scholars have differed with regards to the Fiqh of many of the famous Muhadditheen, and more specifically with regards to Imam Bukhari and Imam Muslim. Whilst some Shafi’ scholars list them amongst the Shafi’s, apparently they were Mujtahidin,  who performed Ijtihad within the framework of the madhahib of the Imams.

Moulana Sarfaraz, on Page 129 of ‘Al-Kalam al-Mufid’, quotes ‘Allamah ‘Al-Al-Subki as stating in Tabaqat Ash-Shafi’iyyah, Vol. 2 p. 83 about Imam Abu Dawud (rahimahullah): “Our Shaikh, Imam Dhahabi (rahimahullah) used to say: Imam Abu Dawud learnt Fiqh from Imam Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, and remained with him for a period of time.” Moulana Sarfaraz also quotes with reference to its original sources, that Imam Ibnul Qayyim, ‘Allamah Isma’il Basha Baghdadi and Hafiz Ibn Taymiyyah have mentioned that Imam Abu Dawud (rahimahullah) was a Hanbali.  

This kind of Ijtihad is Ijtihad of the second category.

Degrees and Categories of the Fuqaha
The scholars have differed in as far as categorizing the Fuqaha. The following is an example: `Allamah Shamsuddin Mujammar Ibn Sulaiman, better known as Ibn Kamal Basha writes in one of his booklets:  

It is essential for a Mufti who is a Muqallid (i.e. not a Mujtahid) to know the condition of the one whose opinion he uses to pass judgement. We do not mean that he should know his name, lineage and where he comes from, as that is of no avail to him. Rather, we mean his calibre of knowledge in “Riwayah” (i.e. Hadith, etc.),  his status in “Dirayah” (i.e. expertise in Fiqh), and his category amongst the Fuqaha, so that he (i.e. the Muqallid) may have enough insight into distinguishing between the various scholars who may differ, and he may also have sufficient ability to recognize the preponderant view (i.e. the one declared stronger in proof by the Fuqaha) amongst two conflicting views. We therefore state: 

“Verily the Fuqaha are divided into seven categories (in the following order):  

1) The category of the Mujtahidin – i.e. those who perform Ijtihad in the Shari`ah, such as the four Imams in Fiqh, and those who treaded their path in building the fundamental principles for extracting subsidiary laws from the four main sources (of  viz. the Qur’n, , Ijma` and Qiyas). They do not make Taqlid of anyone, neither in subsidiary laws, nor in principles. 

2) The category of those who perform Ijtihad within the madhhab (of a Mujtahid), such as Abu Yusuf and Muhammad (rahimahullah) the two students of Imam Abu Hanifah. They had the ability to extract laws from the basic sources (of Shar`ah) in accordance with the principles laid down by their teacher (Imam Abu Hanifah). They differed with him in subsidiary laws, but made Taqlid of him in the fundamental principles. 

3) The category of those who perform Ijtihad in laws regarding which there exists no narration (statement) from the authority of the madh-hab, such as Al-Khassaf (d. 261 A.H.), Abu Ja’far at-Tahawi (d. 321 A.H.), Abul Hasan Al-Karkhi (d. 340 A.H.), Shamsuddin Al-Hulwani (d. 456 A.H.), Shamsul A-immah As-Sarakhsi (d.  500 A.H.), Fakhrul Islam Al-Bazdawi (d. 482 A.H.), Fakhrul Islam Qadi Khan (d. 593 A.H.) and others who do not have the capacity to differ with the Imam, not as far as principles, and nor as far as subsidiary laws. However, they extract laws regarding which there is no narration from him, in accordance with the principles that he (the Imam) had laid, and fundamentals that he had expounded. 

4) The category of the ‘Abut-Takhrij’ from amongst the Muqallidin, such as Imam Ar-Razi Al-Jassas (d. 370 A.H) and his like. They do not have the ability to perform Ijtihad at all. They however, possess extensive knowledge about the principles, and have accurately mastered the sources. Thus they have the power to elaborate/specify the meanings of such ambiguous statements and laws, narrated from the authority of the madh-hab or one of his disciples, that may be understood in two different ways or may have two differing possible meanings …  

5) The category of the ‘Ashabut-Tarjih’ of the Muqallidin, such as Abul Hasan Al-Quduri (d. 428 A.H), the author of ‘Al-Hidayah’ (d. 593 A.H) and their like. Their task is to preponderate one opinion (within the madh-hab) over others by (the following examples of categorical) statements like: this (view) is preferred, this one is more correct as far as narration, this is clearer, this is more analogical, this is easier for the people, etc.

6)  The category of those  Muqallidin who have the ability to  differentiate between the  stronger, the strong, the weak,  the Zahir-ur-riwayah,  the Zahirul-Madh-hab, and the rare  narrations; such as the authors of the authorized texts (of Fiqh)  such as: ‘Kanz’,  ‘Al-Mukhtar’,  ‘Al-Wiqayah’,  ‘Al-Majma`’,  etc. Their task is to abstain from quoting rejected opinions and weak  narrations in their books.

7)  The category of those  Muqallidin who do not possess the ability of any of the above-mentioned. They cannot distinguish the  incorrect from the correct, neither the left from the right. They only gather facts that they come across. They are similar to the person gathering wood during the (darkness of the) night,  (as he cannot see what he  picks up,  whether it is a stick or a snake). Woe unto those who follow them.”

Note: Studying the above  categories brings to light that the madhahib were not the work of mere individuals, but the joint effort of numerous experts in their respective fields of expertise. This is precisely what preserved these madhahib.

Some contend that they may have even been qualified to be of the first category of Ijtihad like that of the four Imams.  

`Allamah Yusuf Al-Binnori says: “I said in the past, and say again: “These illustrious Imams, the compilers of the “Sihah” (Books of authentic Ahadtih), such as the Imams: Bukhari, Muslim and others had specific inclinations within the intricacies of Fiqh, Ijtihad and other complex masa’il, either on the basis of Fiqh and Ijtihad or because of following their respective Imams. In this way they selected one view in issues wherein the Fuqaha differed. Thereafter, when they compiled (their respective books of Hadith), they gathered in it whatever conformed to their own madhahib of Fiqh; whereby (the effect of) their Fiqh extended to Hadith; and they omitted the rest that did not conform to their practice. (This applies to all the compilers) except those who took upon themselves the task of presenting the Ahadith that conformed to the practices of both views, such as Imam Tirmidhi in most instances, Ibn Abi Shaibah and Imam `Abdur-razzaq in their Musannafs, Imam Ahmad in his Musnad, and others…””  [Ma’arif al-Sunan]

Thus, the selection of Ahadith generally made by a Muhaddith in chapters pertaining to the laws of (which are minimal in comparison to the major part of their books), were those that conformed to his madh-hab of Fiqh. Therefore, it will be correct to say that the Ahadith mentioned in his book conformed to his practice, while it will be equally incorrect to say that these Ahadith – as presented by the Muhaddith without any further details – constitute the basis of his practice.  

After having insight into the above, we return to the question under discussion, the gist of which is: Can I make Taqlid of Imam Bukhari (or any of the illustrious compilers of the books of Hadith)? (We discuss this question under the assumption that they were Mujtahidin of the first degree).

The answer is in the negative for the following reasons:  

Firstly, amongst the conditions for making of a particular Imam, is that: 
a) his entire madh-hab must have been compiled and available, 
b) his principles of extracting laws from the original sources of  (Usul-al-Fiqh) must also be available, 
c) he should have left behind someone, who had studied “Fiqh” at his hands and understood his complete concept of extracting Masaa-il from the sources, etc.  

None of the above-mentioned conditions are found with these illustrious scholars of Hadith. How would it ever be possible for any one of these conditions to be found when these illustrious Muhaddith specialized and spent their entire lives in the field of “protecting the Hadtih (i.e. the words thereof) of our beloved Rasulullah ﷺ ” (known as the science of hadith), and not in the field of extracting masaa-il (laws) there-from (known as the science of Fiqh). They were known by their students and by all the scholars that followed, as Muhaddithins and not as Fuqaha.

Difference Between a Muhaddith and a Faqih
A Muhaddith is one whose life is devoted to preserving the sacred Hadith of Rasulullah. For this, he exerts himself in gathering the Ahadth – whether by memory as in the case of the Mutaqaddimin (i.e. early scholars), or by script as in the case of the latter scholars. He also gathers their chains of narration, and is meticulous about every vowel, letter, and dot in the words of the Hadith. He also studies and scrutinizes the chains of narration and the life-story of each narrator. Basically, he engages himself in the study of the various sciences relating to the preservation and recording of the Noble Ahadith of Raslullah. Each one of the above sciences is an independent field of study. Some of them may further be subdivided into numerous other branches. The Muhaddith should have a basic understanding of the principles relating to all of the above sciences as well as a comprehensive grasp of the field he specializes in. The Muhaddith have thus been categorized into numerous groups, with some having super-specialized in one or two branches of the field of Hadith. 

A Faqih (jurist) on the other hand is one whose life is devoted to understanding the purport of the sacred words of Rasulullah ﷺ, and acquiring proficiency in it. In order to achieve this, he should possess a basic understanding of the various sciences of Hadith as well. He also gathers Ahadtih and extracts common meanings from them. He has the ability to explain the apparent contradictions that are found in the Ahadith and untie their knots. He has a deep understanding of the Qur’an and is well-versed in the various sciences of the Arabic language as well. He also possesses knowledge of the statements of the Sahabah (radhiyallahu anhum), and has a comprehensive understanding of the principles of analogy. 

The Muhaddith were always in larger numbers than the Fuqaha. And those who managed to excel in both were even less. Shaikh `Abdul Fattah Abu Ghuddah (rahimahullah)  writes: “And those who gathered between “Riwayah” (i.e. the science of Hadith) and “Dirayah” (i.e. the science of Fiqh) were very few. Hafiz Ar- Ramahurmuzi narrates in his book ‘Al-Muhaddithul Fasilu Bainar-Rawi wal Wa’i on page 60, from Anas Ibn Sirin (rahimahullahl  who stated: “I came to Kufah and saw four thousand people seeking Hadith, and four hundred who were studying Fiqh.”   

This is because of the complexity of Fiqh which is based on (vast) knowledge and deep understanding of the book of Allah, the Sunnah and the statements of Sahabah (radhiyallahu anhum), etc. It also requires one to have the capacity to gather the various proofs, and preponderate between them; and to possess a deep insight into the different purports within the Arabic language as regards “Balghah”, “Majaz”, “Haqiqah” “Kinayah”, etc.  

There is no doubt about the ease in mere narrating for that person whose mind is focused on memorizing, absorbing and narrating only. It is for this reason that more people devoted themselves to specializing in “Riwayah.”  Whilst the Mujtahid is one who has comprehensive knowledge of both the above fields and others as well, the term Fuqaha is also utilized with reference to the Mujtahidin.

A few examples are given hereunder, to elucidate the difference between a Muhaddith and a Faqih: 

1) Muhammad Ibn `Abdullah Ibnul-Hakam was asked. Who is a Faqih? He replied. “The person who extracts one principle from the Qur’an or Sunnah in which he was not preceded by anyone, then divides that principle into one hundred branches.”  The person asked. Who is it that has such power? In reply he said: “Muhammad bin Idris Ash-Shafi’i” (this was the name of Imam Shafi’i rahimahullah). 

2) At times, Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) would be asked about a mas’alah (ruling) whilst in the presence of his teacher, Imam A`mash (rahimahullah) – the famous and renowned Tabi’i (one who learnt from Sahabah) and scholar of Hadith and Qira’at – in the following manner: “What do you state about the following …”. He would give a reply according to his deductions concerning the mas’alah (ruling). Imam A`mash would then enquire from him the substantiation for his answer. The following is an example of how he used to reply: “You narrated to us from Abu Salih who narrated from Abu Hurairah, and from Abu Wa’il who narrated from `Abdullah Ibn Mas’ud from Abu Iyas from Abu Mas’ud Al-Ansari that Rasulullah ﷺ said:

He who indicates towards a good deed, shall receive the like reward as the one who carried it out. 

and you narrated to us from Abu Salih from Abu Hurairah that a man said to Raslullah: O Rasul of Allah! I was performing Salah in my home when a man came to me, so I felt pleasure in that. Raslullah ﷺ replied to him:

For you are two rewards, the reward of secrecy, and the reward of publicity… 

And you narrated to us from Hakam from Abul Hakam, from  Hudhaifah from Raslullah ﷺ …; and you narrated to us from Abuz-Zubair from Jabir from Rasulullah; and you narrated Yazid ar-Raqqashi from Anas  from Raslullah ﷺ…”. 

Imam A`mash  would then exclaim: “Enough! You wish to narrate to me in one moment what I narrated to you in 100 days. I was not aware that you have practical application to all these Ahadith. O Fuqaha! You are the physicians and we (the Muhaddithin) are the dispensers. And you, O man (speaking to Imam Abu Hanifah) have gathered both sides. 

3) Muhammad Ibn Samm`ah  narrates; ‘Isa Ibn Aban (a famous Muhaddith and well-known  scholar) used to perform Salah with us (in the masjid where Imam Muhammad Ibnul Hasan rahimahullah  – the student of Imam Abu Hanifa and the third highest authority of the Hanafi madh-hab – used to perform Salah and thereafter have discussions on  Fiqh).  I used to invite him to come to Muhammad Ibnul Hasan rahimahullah (to learn from him). He would say in reply: “These are people who contradict Hadith.” ‘Isa (rahimahullah) was a scholar who had memorized a substantial amount of Hadith. 

“One morning he performed Fajr Salah with us, and it happened to be the very same day Imam Muhammad (rahimahullah) was going to conduct his discourse. I did not allow him to leave until he (also) sat in the gathering. At the close (of the discussion), I took him to Imam Muhammad (rahimahullah)  and said: “This is the son of your brother (in Islam) Aban Ibn Sadaqah, the scribe. He is brilliant, and has the knowledge of Hadith. I invited him to you but he refused saying that we contradict Hadith.” Imam Muhammad addressed him and said: “O my son! What do you see us contradicting in Hadith? Do not bear witness against us until you hear from us”. So Imam ‘Isa (rahimahullah) asked him questions relating to twenty-five chapters of Hadith, and in each chapter, Imam Mummad  answered (narrating to him the Ahadith of these subjects) and would inform him of all those Ahadith that have been abrogated, with proof and evidence.   

Ibn Aban turned to me and said: “There was a barrier between myself and (divine light), which has now been lifted! I was not aware that there existed a man in Allah’s kingdom like this, who He has disclosed for the people.”   ‘Isa (rahimahullah) then accompanied Imam Muhammad  and did not separate from him, until he became a faqih by him.” 

The above examples draw a vivid picture of the difference between a Faqih and a Muhaddith. A Muaddith preserves the Ahadith of Rasulullah, and a Faqih extracts the Deen of Allah Ta`ala from them. Thus, in practice, the Faqih ought to be followed. It is for this reason that Sufyan Ibn `Uyaynah (rahimahullah), an illustrious scholar of Hadith, used to say:

“Submitting to the Fuqaha is safety in Deen”

Imam `Ali Ibn Al-Ja`d relates about the famous Muhaddith among the Tabi’in, Zuhair Ibn Mu`wiyah that a man came to him (to learn). He asked him: “Where do you come from (i.e. where have you been learning previously)?” The man replied: “…from Abu Hanifa.” Imam Zuhair remarked: “Your going to Abu Hanifa for one day is more beneficial for you than staying with me for one month.” 

It has also been narrated about `Abdullah Ibn Wahb (rahimahullah), one of the most eminent students of Imam Malik  and an outstanding scholar of , that he said: “I met (i.e. studied under) three hundred and sixty `Ulama’. Had it not been for Imam Malik and Imam Laith Ibn Sa`d, I would have gone astray in knowledge.”  

He is also reported to have stated: “Every student of Hadith who does not have an Imam (guide/leader) in Fiqh is astray. Had it not been for Imam Malik and Laith, we would have been astray.”  

He once said: In `Ilm, we followed four: two in Egypt and two in Madinah: Laith Ibn Sa`d and `Amr Ibn Al-Harith in Egypt, and Malik and Al-Majishun in Madinah. Had it not been for them, we would have been astray.”

It is probably for this reason that  Ibn `Abdil Barr  (d: 423 A.H.) wrote: “As for studying Hadith in the manner that students of today study it, without obtaining some knowledge of Fiqh and contemplating its meanings (properly), this is Makruh according to a group of the `Ulama.’”

Secondly, only a fraction of the Ahadith mentioned in their books pertain to “Ahkam” (laws). Most of them relate to other subjects that are generally dealt with in the books of Hadith (such as history, the signs of Qiyamah, the lifestyle and noble conduct of Rasulullah, virtues of various deeds, warnings and punishments for bad deeds, etc). If we compare this to the innumerable laws that were extracted by the Fuqaha, it becomes clear that each fraternity served the cause of `Ilm in their respective fields of expertise, and each of them is an authority within his own field only.  

Finally, Shaikh Muhammad ‘Awwamah states: “Thus to make  and to follow them (the scholars of Hadith) in their Fiqh is not preferred to the Taqlid of the Fuqaha: Abu Hanifah, Malik, Ash-Shafi and Ahmad. Instead the Taqlid of these (scholars of Fiqh) is preferred to the Taqlid of those (Muhaddithin). The statement of Imam Tirmidhi, a great Muhaddith himself and the compiler of one of the canonical collections, who said:

The Fuqaha are more knowledgeable about the meanings of Hadith.

“This is a clear matter in which there lies no obscurity.” It thus becomes clear that the claim of following the Fiqh of Imam Bukhari (rahimahullah) is based on ignorance.

[Taken from the book Who are the Blind Followers?]

The Compulsory Nature Of Taqleed Shakhsi

[By Maulana Muhammad Maseehullah Khan Sherwani (rahmatullah alayh)]

There are two classes of Wujub (compulsory nature), viz,

(I) Wujub biz-zát

(ii) Wujub bil-ghair

Commission and omission of acts emphasised by the Qur’án and Hadith are classified in the first category of Wujub, viz.Wujub biz-zát which means compulsory in itself. The very nature of the commission or omission brings about the compulsion. Salát,. Saum, etc. are of this kind.

Then there are such acts which by themselves are not commanded practices. However, these acts constitute the basis for practices commanded in the Qur’án and Hadith. Normally it is not possible to execute the commanded practices without their basis which is termed Mauquf alayhi. Such acts constituting the essential basis for commanded practices are of the second class of Wujub, viz. Wujub bil-ghair which means compulsory by virtue of an external factor. The compulsion is established for the sake, and preservation of practices categorically commanded (Umur Mansus). The universally accepted principle, viz., the basis of a Wajib is Wajib, governs the compulsory nature of Taqleed Shakhsi. Such an example is the writing of the Qur’án and Hadith. Reducing the Qur’án and Hadith to writing has been negated in the Hadith. In this regard appears the following Hadith:

lbn Umar narrates that Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said:

“We are a nation which neither writes nor calculates.” [Mishkát-Mut-tafaq alayh]

In this hadith writing has been unconditionally negated by way of implication. However, it has been found necessary to reduce the Qurán and Hadith to writing in order to preserve their authenticity and prevent them from destruction. Hence, such writing is not considered as conflicting with the hadith. No one has questioned the Wujub of such writing nor has anyone demanded daleel (proof) for this Wujub. The preservation of the Qur’án and Hadithis an act categorically commanded and emphasised. Experience shows that such preservation is not a normal possibility without reducing the Qur’an and Hadith to writing. For this reason has the writing of the Qur’an and Hadith been decreed Wajib. Consensus of the entire Ummat on this need has been reported down the ages in an unbroken chain of transmission. Such a need is classified as Wujub bil-ghair. In exactly the same way is Taqleed Shakhsi decreed essential and Wájib, falling within the classification of Wujubbil-ghair.

In view of this explanation the need does not arise for the presentation of Sareeh Nass (clear and categoric Qur’anic verses and Ahádith) in substantiation of the compulsion of Taqleed Shakhsi. For this purpose Dalálatun Nass (Indication of Nass) is ample evidence — a fact which is not hidden from men of knowledge. In our age, in view of the dominant condition of people, it is indisputable that without Taqleed Shakhsi protection and Preservation of Mansus Alayh affairs (clear and categoric commands of the Shariat) are not possible. Taqleed Shakhsi is therefore both essential and compulsory.

The 4 Paths of Guidance

Translation of the Introduction to “Radiant Benefits of the Biographies of the Hanafis” (Fawaid Bahiyya fi Tarajim Hanafiyyah) by Imam ‘Abdul Hayy Lucknowi (rahmatullah alayh).

Know that the essence of our Prophet Muhammad (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) is like the source of fountain springs from which rivers of knowledge flow. The first of those who channelled and set in motion this knowledge were the rightly guided Companions, in particular the caliphs. In knowledge, they are all like the stars; if you were to follow any one of them you will be guided. They are the true inheritors of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam), and his representatives in spreading the religion. From them, the knowledge then flowed to those who benefited from them, and then to their followers. Amongst them, according to the most correct and established position, are our greatest Imam and the foremost of those who are followed, Abu Hanifa, N’uman ibn Thabit. This knowledge then passed to their followers, and then to their successors who include in their ranks mujtahid Imams. From them, it passed on to their followers, amongst whom were Fuqaha and Muhaddithun. This system will remain until the Day of Judgement. Every one of them endeavoured their utmost to spread knowledge and to pass it on to intellectual masters, through reminders, writings, orally and by facilitating understanding. May Allah shower His vast mercy upon them and shade them with clouds of His perfect favours. Had it not been for them, we would never have been guided and would have remained upon what we were upon.

Know that the affair is not, as is imagined by corrupt, ignorant people with dull minds, that the differences between the Companions and mujtahidun of this Community has complicated matters and made the task more difficult. The truth is that these differences are a mercy for this Community, having made the religion easy and removed any difficulty from it. Equally, it should not be imagined that if everything had sprung from the source of one river, the matter would have been easier than it is, having sprung from a variety of sources. These various schools of the Imams and mujtahidun of this Community all connect back to the rivers of the Companions. These, in turn, are connected to the source; the recipient of the Divine message, (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam). Thus, every one of the schools is on guidance and whoever follows anyone of them is guided. However, whomsoever imagines that only one of them is on guidance, whilst the remainder are misguided, has fallen into the pit of misguidance.

Know that many mujtahidun, with groups of scholars following them, have appeared in this Community. Every one of them spent their time channelling the rivers of Sacred Law and expended their efforts in determining the upright path. In fact, no century has passed without the appearance of reformers mujaddidun, with their followers, nor does an age pass by without the appearance of a group of mujtahidun across the lands, even if they themselves may seem to be mere followers. This process is from the complete favour of Allah to his slaves, which requires constant gratitude towards Him. By them, we are guided, provided with sustenance, blessed with rain and remain on the straight path. However, from all of these, only four schools have become universally accepted with their understanding having been archived, their methods having been identified and their proofs having been clarified. With the passage of time they have received acceptance from intellectual masters across the lands. They are Abu Hanifa, Malik, Ahmad and Shafi’i. The first of these was the first. The second was his contemporary. It is said that the first related a little from the second. It is also said that, in fact, the second was a student of the first. The third was a student of the fourth. The fourth was a student of the second and some of the students of the first. Amongst the remaining mujtahidun, who either preceded or came after the aforementioned four, some never had any followers and thus complete benefit was never gained from them. Others did have groups of followers and their schools spread through their documented books. However, after a short period of time these schools disappeared, and no narrations remained from them.

As a consequence, some have said that there is no accepted path except for these four paths. However, this claim is disputed. Most people, then, began to follow these four schools, with very few taking from any other way. The school of Ahmad spread in areas within Baghdad. However, in other places its spread was less than the other schools. The school of Malik spread throughout North Africa and parts of Hijaz. The school of Shafi’i spread through most of Hijaz, Yemen, parts of India and the border regions of Bengal, parts of the border regions of Khurasan and Turan. The school of Abu Hanifa spread to distant lands and many cities. These include areas of Baghdad, Egypt, Eastern Europe, Balkh, Bukhara, Samarqand, Isfahan, Shiraz, Azerbaijan, Jurjan, Zinjan, Tus, Bistam, Istiribad, Marghaynan, Farghana, Damghan, Khawarizm, Ghazna, Karman, most of India, Sindh and Bengal, parts of Yemen and other areas. Each one of them spread the knowledge of their Imam through dictating, teaching and writing.

This system will remain until the appearance of the mujtahid mutlaq, the last of the true scholars, the rightly guided one, Muhammad ibn ‘Abdullah, the Mahdi. ‘Isa, peace and blessings be upon our Prophet and upon him, will also descend, and from that point on, following the schools will no longer remain valid. Their rules will be based on taking from the Qur’an, Sunnah and by extracting from the Prophetic example based on the correct opinion. This has been stated by leading scholars in their notes and books such as ibn Hajar ‘Asqalani, Jalal Suyuti, Muhammad ibn ‘Abd Rasul Barzanji, ‘Ali Qari and Shaykh Muhyiddin ibn ‘Arabi. As for the statement of some ignorant bigots that ‘Isa and the Mahdi will follow Abu Hanifa and will not, in any way, oppose his school: it is absurd, as has been stated by legal and spiritual masters. In fact, it is undoubtedly an attempt at guessing the unknown.

Know that the followers of the four Imams have become known by their being affiliated to these great Imams, from whence we have the titles Hanafi, Shafi’i, Maliki and Hanbali. This allows for each one to be clearly identified and known from the other. The reality is that each one of these schools is from the Prophet, upon him be peace and blessings, because, each one, by treading the path of their Imam is treading the Prophetic path, and drinking from that greatest of all sources. Whoever disdains affiliation to any one of these agreed upon schools, and regards them as being in opposition to Sacred Law, acts rashly and wanders blindly. Such a person is ignorant and will spread ignorance, is astray and will lead others astray.

Notes:

1. The mujtahid is a scholar qualified to issue expert legal opinion.

2. Fuqaha is the plural of faqih. Faqih is a scholar of Islamic law.

3. Muhaddithun is the plural of muhaddith. Muhaddith is a scholar whose expertise is in the Prophetic traditions.

4. Mujtahidun is the plural of mujtahid, the definition of which has preceded.

5. Mujaddidun is the plural of mujaddid who is the one who returns people back to the Prophetic way.

6. Mujtahid mutlaq is the absolute mujtahid who is not restricted in any way in law.

THE FUQAHA AND TODAYS SO-CALLED ‘MUJTAHIDS’

THE IMPERATIVE NEED TO REFER TO ONLY THE FUQAHA

“One Faqeeh is sterner on shaitaan than a thousand Aabids.” (Hadith)

(Aabid is a man of adequate knowledge who devotes the greater part of his life to only ibaadat. However, he lacks in the divinely bestowed attribute of faqaahat — a Noor of Understanding which Allah Ta’ala infuses into the heart of the Mu’min.)

The Chain of the Fuqaha commences with the Sahaabah who were the Students of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam). While all the Sahaabah were not Fuqaha, a great many were Fuqaha (Jurists of Islam) of the highest class. These Fuqaha among the Sahaabah spread out into the distant lands of the Islamic Empire after the demise of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam). They imparted and disseminated the Ilm of the Qur’aan to those who became the Aimmah-e-Mujtahideen and Fuqaha of the first and highest class in the era of the Taabieen.

The Taabieen duplicated the function and the activities of their Sahaabah-Ustaadhs. In this way, from one generation to the next, came into existence great and illustrious Fuqaha who raised the Edifice of the Divine Immutable Shariah on the Foundations of the Qur’aan and Sunnah.

THE MUJTAHID IMAMS

The vital and indispensable links  in the Chain of the Shariah  leading up to Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) are  the Aimmah-e-Mujtahideen such  as Imaam Abu Hanifah  (Rahmatullah alayh), Imaam Maalik (Rahmatullah alayh) and many other Mujtahid Imaams of  the Salafus Saaliheen era of the  first and second centuries of Islam.

The Aimmah Mujtahideen had structured the edifice of the  Shariah on the basis of the  Qur’aan and Ahaadith which  reached them authentically from  the Sahaabah. Numerous of the  Taabieen Ulama were among the Aimmah Mujtahideen. Minus the  Aimmah Mujtahideen, there is no  Islam. These Mujtahid Imaams are  a special group of the greatest Ulama created by Allah Ta’ala for the specific task of formulating  and codifying the Shariah. Hence, (Sallallahu  Rasulullah alayhi wasallam) ordered his Sahaabah to deliver to posterity every Hadith. He added that some of those to whom the Ahaadith would be delivered will understand it more than those who had delivered it. This was a reference to the Aimmah Mujtahideen. Numerous of them were the direct Students of the  Sahaabah. Nothing of Islam can be separated from the Aimmah  Mujtahideen.

This was that Jamaat of Men whom Allah Ta’ala had chosen to guard and defend the Deen of Islam. There is no comparison with them. They were unique in every aspect. They were Fuqaha, Muhadditheen, Mufassireen, etc. of the highest category. None of the later Muhadditheen such as Imaam Bukhaari (rahmatullah alayh) attained the rank of Ilm which was occupied by the Aimmah-e-Mujtahideen.

No one, neither Muhaddith nor Mufassir of any age, was independent of the Fuqaha. Every authority in Islam on any subject had to incumbently refer to and bow their heads in subservience to the Fuqaha. For the safety of Imaan the need to accept without scrutinization and with complete submission the rulings of the Fuqaha, is imperative. Whoever has attempted to set himself up as an adversary to the Fuqaha has miserably failed and ended up in the dregs of deception and deviation —far, very far from Siraatul Mustaqeem. Hakimul Ummat Maulana Ashraf Ali Thaanvi (rahmatullah alayh) explains the imperative nature of submission to the Fuqaha in the following answer to a question posed to him.

QUESTION

Whenever the Ahnaaf Ulama issue a fatwa on any mas’alah, they always refer to Durr-e-Mukhtaar, Raddul Muhtaar, Shaami, Aalamghiri, etc. They do not say: ‘Allah said so or Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said so…’ Why have they adopted this practice when Qur’aanic and Hadith references are more convincing to a Mu’min?

ANSWER by Hakimul Ummat

“In fact, you have not even seen the kutub of the Ahnaaf Ulama.  You will find for example Hidaaya replete with Aayaat and Ahaadith references. The same will be found in Badaai’ and Mabsoot. The same applies for Durr-e-Mukhtaar and Raddul Muhtaar. Why do present-day Muftis refrain from citing the Qur’aan and Hadith? Its answer is that today all Ulama are Muqallideen. They do not possess the ability to deduct ahkaam directly from the Qur’aan and Hadith. It is for this reason they cite the reference of such Ulama-e-Mujtahideen who had made use of ijtihad and had compiled the kutub.

If they do not do so, and of their own accord deduct masaail from the Qur’aan and Hadith, even the questioner will have no confidence. Furthermore, such a Mufti is the victim of thousands of errors. When he is not on the pedestal of Ijtihaad, how can he employ ijtihaad to formulate masaail from the Qur’aan and Hadith? Besides reading the superficial translation and deceiving people, he does nothing else. In the present age, there is a group of people who are trapped in the disease of self-deception imagining themselves to be among the Mujtahideen.

If their ‘ijtihaad’ is examined, the state of their error will be understood. In view of the condition of today’s claimants of ijtihaad, it is the Ruling of the Ulama that taqleed of the illustrious Predecessors (the Salf) is Waajib.  Hence, they issue Fataawa by reference to these kutub in which are compiled the Ahkaam which have been formulated on the basis of the Qur’aan and Hadith (by the Aimmah-e-Mujtahiddeen)”

(Imdaadul Ahkaam, Vol.1, page 228)

IJTIHAAD AND ITS CLAIMANTS

In this age of liberalism, the disease of pride has impelled many half-baked students of Deeni knowledge to lay claims to Ijtihaad and to imagine that they are Mujtahiddeen, Muhadditheen and Mufassireen. They consider themselves competent to deduct Shar’i ahkaam directly from the Qur’aan and Sunnah, and feel themselves independent of the Fuqaha.

In this regard, Shaikh Yusuf Bin Ismaaeel An-Nibhaani writes in his treatise, Hujjatullaahi Alal Aalameen:

     “Today it is only a man who is mentally deranged and whose Deen is corrupt, who will lay claim to Ijtihaad. This has been said by Shaikhul Akbar Muhayyuddin. Imaam Al-Munaawi said in his Sharhul Kabir alal Jaami’is Saghir that Allaamah Shihaab Ibn Hajar Al-Haitami said:

“When Al-Jalaal As-Suyuti claimed Ijtihaad (for himself), his contemporaries (among the Ulama) stood up and unanimously criticized him. They forwarded to him a questionnaire consisting of a number of questions (each one having) two views. They said that if he possessed the ability of the lowest category of Ijtihaad, namely, Ijtihaadul Fatwa, then he should comment on the Raajih (Preferred view) from the views presented, and he should expound the daleel for each view in terms of the principles of the Mujtahideen. Allaamah Suyuti returned the questionnaire without answering the questions and presented the excuse of the volume of work which prevents him from studying the questions.”

Ibn Hajar then adds: Now ponder the colossal difficulty of this category, namely Ijtihaadul Fatwa, which is the lowest category of Ijtihaad. It will then become manifest to you that the one who lays claim to even this lowest category of ijtihaad, leave alone Ijtihaad-e-Mutlaq, is trapped in bewildering confusion in his affairs and he languishes in mental corruption. He is among those who wander aimlessly in blindness”

Imaam Nawawi says in Ar-Raudhah:“Istimbaat (Deducting masaail) directly from the Kitaab (Qur’aan) and Sunnah is not permissible except for one who has attained the pedestal of Ijtihaad. This has been explicitly said (by the Fuqaha).”

Grievous errors are nowadays perpetrated by mediocre molvis who ludicrously seek to elevate themselves to the pedestal occupied by the illustrious Mujtahideen of the  early eras of Islam. The miscreant molvis, due to half-baked or quarter baked knowledge, awed by the methodology of the deviate Salafis of our time, commit the fatal blunder of digging in the Kutub of Ahaadith. They extract a Hadith, subject it to their opinion to formulate masaa-il to appease the Salafi Manhaaj (ideology).

We refute and oppose Salafis day & night for negating the rulings & usuls based by Aimmah-e-Mujtahideen and their clinging onto the isolated views of the seventh century Aalim, Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullah) & his student Ibn al-Qayyim (rahimahullah), but it has now become a norm that our very own Muqallid Molvis are making flawed-ijtihad to support their views, while they pick and choose from personal views of different scholars to suit their agenda resulting in negating the ruling made by Aimmah-e-Mujtahideen.

For example, some molvis cite the personal view of 8th century scholar Imam al-Suyuti (rahimahullah) to subtantiate Mawlid while negating the Aimmah-e-Mujtahideen who didn’t formulate a day for Mawlid nor they heeded the Salaf who never celebrated Mawlid.

If such personal opinions of scholars are made a daleel in the Shariah, then we would have never criticized the salafis for their deviance!. Therefore, personal opinions of the later day scholars which opposes the Ijmaa’i view of the Imam’s of  Math-hab’s cannot be identified as hujjah in the Shariah.

Then on the other hand, the modern-day Molvis are making flawed ‘ijtihad’ and labelling Riba (Interest) as ‘Profit’ and legalizing it while negating the unanimous view of Riba being haraam as per the rulings of the Imams from the Khairul-Khuroon epoch.

Nowadays, the modern scholars are legalizing Digital pictures, this too results in total rejection of the unanimous view of the 4 Madh-habs rulings on this issue who declared pictures as haraam irrespective of any modern-day techniques to produce it.

We have mentioned a few examples above, while there are many such instances where the modern-day scholars make their own personal opinions while rejecting the rulings of Aimmah-e-Mujtahideen.

The Consequences of such rulings based on personal ‘Ijtihaad’ is that the lay-person are deprived of the original rulings of Aimmah Mujtahideen and they fall into deviancy as similar to that of Salafis & Bidatis.

Formulating masaa-il on the  basis of the Hadith and Qur’aan  was the function of only the  Aimmah-e-Mujtahideen. That  methodology has ended during the era of Khairul Quroon. The  corrupt methodology of the  Salafis is haraam, and may not be  emulated. Masaa-il decided and  finalized by the Aimmah Mujtahideen are not open for interpretation/re-interpretation  and mutilation. Islam was finalized and perfected during  the very time of Rasulullah (Sallallahu alayhi wasallam) as    the Qur’aan confirms. Re-interpretation is explicit KUFR.

There is no need to comment further on those who have embarked on deviation on the basis of their misconceived ability of ‘ijtihaad’.

DOORS OF IJTIHAAD ARE CLOSED

Question: What is meant by the doors of Ijtihaad are closed? If  Ijthaad is no longer permissible,  how will the status of the many  new developing issues be  decided? Innumerable things did  not exist during the age of the  Sahaabah, Taabieen and Tab-e-Taabieen. Please explain.

Answer: The Doors of Ijtihaad being closed applies to the Usool  (Principles) and Furoo’ detailed  masaa-il) formulated by the  Aimmah Mujtahideen. The issues which the Aimmah Mujtahideen  had settled and finalized may not be subjected to ijtihaad. For  example, the Aimmah  Mujtahideen of all Math-habs have unanimously ruled that  three Talaaqs uttered in one  breath are three, not one as the  deviant Salafis opine on the  basis of their understanding of  certain Hadith narrations.

The Doors of Ijtihaad having  closed is not applicable to new  development e.g. preforming Salaat on the moon or using  scientific instruments/ calculations to determine the  Islamic months or to decide the  permissibility or impermissibility  of performing Salaat in the air or  for deciding the impermissibility  of digital picture, etc., etc.

The rulings for all new developments will be based on  the Principles evolved by the  Aimmah Muhtahideen and also  on similar particular mas’alahs  already existing in the Shariah. Re-interpreting existing Principles and Particulars is  haraam.

Prophetic sayings about the Imams of the Madh-habs

Imam Abu Hanifa (rahmatullah alayh)

The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) also said, according to an authentic narration “If the  Religion were at the Pleiades (in  Persia), even then a person (muslim) from Persia would have  taken hold of it, or one amongst  Persian descent would surely  have found it” [al-Ajluni, Kashfu’l-Khafa

Abu Hurayrah (radhiyallahu anhu)  narrated: “We were sitting in the  company of Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)  when Surat al-Jumu’ah was  revealed to him and when he  recited (it) amongst them, (those  who were sitting with the  prophet) said “Allah’s Messenger?” but Allah’s Apostle  (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) made  no reply, until he was questioned once, twice or thrice, and there  was amongst us Salman the  Persian. Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wasllam)  placed his hand on Salman and then said: “Even if faith were near  the Pleiades (in Persia), a man  from amongst these would surely  find it.”

When Muslim’s conquered Persia  it became a great centre for  knowledge and many of the  worlds greatest scholars came  from there like Imam al Ghazali, Imam Abu Dawud, Imam Bukhari, Ibn Sina, Ibn Haytham one could name well over 200 prominent  and well known Islamic figures, Scholars, Scientists, Philosophers, and Physicians in  world history that came from  Persia, but Imam as-Suyuti (rahimahullah) remarked: “It has been communicated unanimously that this hadith refers to Imam Abu Hanifah (who was a Persian) and founded the Hanafi Madhhab (School of Law)” which 45% of  muslims around the world follow  today.

Imam Abu Hanifa (rahmatullah alayh d.150) is the first in Islam to organize and categorize fiqh (Islamic Law), at a time when it was simply the Qur’an and the Narrations so information could be easily researched and found. This was a Sunnah (example) he began and as the prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) said regarding those who begin beneficial Sunnah’s they will have the reward of all  those who adopt it after them  and indeed the entire Ummah adopted this after Him.

He gave rulings on matters  relating to various topics, and organized the religion under sub-headings, categorizing everything  and embracing the whole of Law, beginning with purity (tahara)  followed by prayer (salah), an  order which was retained by all  subsequent scholars such as  Imam Malik, Shafi’i, Abu Dawud, Bukhari, Muslim, Tirmidhi, and others.

Imam Ash-Shafi’i (rahmatullah alayh)

The Prophet once made a dua’, “O  Allah! Guide (the tribe of)  Quraysh, for the science of the  scholar that comes from them  will encompass the earth. O  Allah! You have let the first of  them taste bitterness, so let the  latter of them taste reward.”

The Scholars agreed that this Dua’ was referring to Imam al Shafi’i (rahmatullah alayh) whose work “al Risal fi Usul al Fiqh” (The Treatise on the  Principles of Legal Jurisprudence) was the first work to define and develop the Legal science of Usul al Fiqh (Principles of Law). This legal science is at the heart of all  modern legal systems on earth today.

“In its comprehensive character, legal science developed among  Muslims very early. They  were  the first in the world to entertain  the thought of an abstract  (theoretical and conceptual)  science of law, distinct from the  codes of the general laws of the  country. The ancients had their  laws, more or less developed and even codified, yet a science which  should treat the philosophy and sources of law, and the method of  legislation, interpretation, application, etc, of the law was  wanting, and this never struck  the minds of the jurists before  Islam”. Since the second century of the Hijrah (800 C.E.) many  Islamic works of this kind began  to be produced, called Usul al-Fiqh (Principles of Law).
In addition, the prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) said, “A scholar from Quraysh will fill  all regions of the earth with  learning.”  [al-Ajluni]

The entire Ummah utilized and benefited from the work of Imam  Shafi’i, it systemized Law itself  for the other Schools of Law that  emulated it’s structure.

The Prophet also said: “Truly, Allah shall send forth for this  Community, at the onset of every  hundred years, someone who will  renew their Religion for them.”

The  scholars  agreed, among  them Imam Abu Qilaba (d. 276) and Imam Ahmad, that the first  narration above signified Imam  al-Shafi’i, and the second signified Umar ibn Abd al-Aziz, a  just Khalif who opposed the  tyrants around him, as the first person Allah sent for the Ummah  and then Imam al-Shafi’i after  him as the second person Allah  sent.

Imam Malik Ibn Anas (rahmatullah alayh)

The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) said: “Very soon will  people beat the flanks of camels  in search of knowledge, and they  shall find no-one more  knowledgeable than the knowledgeable scholar of  Madinah.” 

Imam Tirmidhi, al-Qadi ‘Iyad, Dhahabi and others relate from  Sufyan ibn Uyaynah, Abd al-Razzaq, Ibn Mahdi, Yahya Ibn Ma’in, Dhu’ayb ibn ‘Imama, Ibn al-Madini (rahimahumullah), and others that they considered that scholar to be Malik ibn Anas (rahimahullah) the founder of the  Maliki Madhhab.

Imam Malik (rahmatullah alayh) was responsible for preserving the Sunnah of Madinah for later generations, this was the way of life the people of Madinah lived shortly  after the prophets (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) death, it gave the clearest picture of life in  those times we have today and the Imam and his Madhhab (school of Law) are famous for  taking the actions of the people  of Madinah as a source of  legislation in Islamic law because  it was the prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) himself who established that community.

Thus in this way the Prophet  (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)  foretold the Madhhab’s (Islam’s  Schools of Law) and all the  scholars they would be named after, the Hanafi Madhhab, Shafii, Maliki and Hanbali, all of whom adopted the science of  Imam Shafi’i (rahmatullah alayh) that the prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) mentioned specifically and is the method by which they derive Laws from the Qur’an and Sunnah, this is in contrast to the Deviant sects who lie and say the  Madhhab’s are an evil innovation  that has no basis in Islam rather they seek to dismantle Islam as  the Yahud’s dismantled their own  faith. These sects are a product  of the “Ruwaibidah” a group of  people the prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) gave this name  to and said would come towards  the end of time. History has  occurred as the prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)  mentioned, the entire world adopting the methods of Imam  Shafi’i (rahmatullah alayh), which makes the authenticity of the narration’s self  evident.

He (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) said “My nation will be divided into seventy-three sects, and only  one among them will attain  salvation” He was asked, “Who are  they?” He replied, “Those who follow me and my Companions,” (Abu Dawud); thus, he mentioned the sects of innovation that  would emerge afterwards and stated that the muslims should stick to the main body of the  Ummah, it’s largest group. He  (sallallaahu alayhi wasllam)  described the reality after this  time clearly, He said “One who defected from obedience and separated from the main body of  the Muslims-if he died in that  state would die the death of one  belonging to the days of Jahiliyya  (before Islam)”  [Muslim]

He advised “My community will  not come together on  misguidance”;

”You have to follow  the congregation for verily Allah  will not make the largest group of Muhammad’s community agree  on error.”,

“Whoever among you wants  to be in the middle of Paradise, let  him cling to the congregation.”,

“Shaytan is a wolf like the wolf  that preys on sheep, taking the  isolated and the stray among  them; therefore, avoid factionalism and keep to the  congregation and the collective  and the masjid.”,

“Allah’s hand is over the group, and whoever dissents from them  departs to hell.”

Thus he (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) advised Muslim’s should stick to Islam’s four schools of Law and they would attain the middle of Paradise if they did so. Islam’s four schools of Law have  been the main Body of the Ummah from the beginning of  Islam until our time, almost 90% of Islam’s 1.7 billion Muslim’s around the world today follow them.

The Four Madh-habs are from the Qur’an and Sunnah

By Majlisul Ulama

Allah  Ta’ala  commands:

“And  follow  the  path  of  those  who  turn  (and  lead)  to Me.” [Qur’aan]

The  denigrators  of  the  sacred  concept  of  Taqleed  of  the Aimmah-e-Mujtahideen  usually  pose  the  ludicrous question:

“Did  the  four  Madh-habs  exist  during  the  time  of Rasulullah  (sallallahu  alayhi  wasallam)?”

This  is  tantamount  to  asking: “Did  Islam  exist  during  the  time  of  Rasulullah (sallallahu  alayhi  wasallam)?”

Denial  of  the  four  Madh-habs  (Hanafi,  Shaafi,  Maaliki  & Hambali)  is  denial  of  Islam  as  it  existed  during  the  time of  Rasulullah  (sallallahu  alayhi  wasallam)  and  as  it  had been  transmitted  to  the  Taabieen  by  the  Sahaabah  and thereafter  from  generation  to  generation  until  it  reached us  in  the  present  day.

The  attempt  to  convey  the  idea  of  the  non-existence of  the  Madh-habs  in  the  age  of  our  Nabi  (sallallahu  alayhi wasallam)  and  the  Sahaabah  is  a  devious  ploy  or  a  claim of  crass  ignorance  of  those  who  reject  the  four  Madh-habs of  the  Ahlus  Sunnah  Wal  Jama’ah.  The  only  basis  –  if  at all  could  be  termed  a  basis  –  for  the  denial  of  the  Madh- habs  is  the  non-existence  of  the  designations  of  the  Madh-habs,  viz.  Hanafi,  Shaafi,  Maaliki  and  Hambali.  But  it  is indeed  a  display  of  colossal  ignorance  to  refute  the validity  of  the  Madh-habs  simply  because  these  illustrious Fuqaha  and  Ustaadhs,  Imaam  Abu  Hanifah,  Imaam Shaafi,  Imaam  Maalik  and  Imaam  Hambal  (rahmatullah alayhim)  were  not  born  during  the  age  of  Rasulullah (sallallahu  alayhi  wasallam).

The  teachings  of  the  Four  Madh-habs  cannot  be intelligently  refuted  simply  because  the  names  /  titles  of the Madh-habs  did  not  exist  during  Rasulullah’s (sallallahu  alayhi  wasallam)  time. The  devious  attempt  to  show  that  the  four  Madh-habs are  alien  to  the  Qur’aan  and  the  Sunnah  is  utterly fallacious  because  in  actual  fact  the  Qur’aan  and  Sunnah are  encapsulated  within  the  framework  of  the  four  Madh-habs.  In  fact,  each  Madh-hab  in  it’s  own  right  is  the complete  and  perfect  Islam  as  expounded  in  the  Qur’aan and  Sunnah.

INDISPENSABLE

While  the  rejectors  of  the  Madh-habs  denounce  the taqleed  of  Imaam  Abu  Hanifah  (rahmatullah  alayh)  for example,  they  unhesitatingly  cite  Imaam  Bukhari  and Imaam  Muslim  (rahmatullah  alayhim)  in  substantiation of  their  personal  opinions  for  which  they  produce  the basis  of  ahaadith  taken  from  Bukhari  and  Muslim.  Yet Imaam  Bukhari  and  Imaam  Muslim  (rahmatullah alayhima)  did  not  even  exist  during  the  time  of Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) and the Sahaabah,  but  appeared  on  the  scene  about  two  centuries thereafter  –  long  after  even  the  age  of  Imaam  Abu Hanifah,  Imaam  Shaafi,  Imaam  Maalik  (rahmatullah alayhim)  and  the  numerous  great  Fuqaha  who  were  the Students  of  the  Sahaabah.  The  deniers  of  Shar’i  Taqleed commit  a  greater  act  of  intellectual  vulgarity  than  this  by degenerating  to  the  level  of  making  taqleed  (following blindly)  Ibn  Taymiyyah  who  appeared  seven  centuries after  Rasulullah  (sallallahu  alayhi  wasallam).

REFUTATION

In  refutation  of  the  deniers  of  the  Madh-habs,  the  Ahlus Sunnah  can  justifiably  retort:  “Did  Imaam  Bukhari  and Imaam  Muslim  (rahmatullah  alayhima)  exist  during  the time  of  Rasulullah  (sallallahu  alayhi  wasallam)  and  the Sahaabah??  Did  their  system  of  Hadith  classification  and codification  exist  during  the  time  of  Nabi  (sallallahu alayhi  wasallam)  and  the  Sahaabah?  Where  in  the Qur’aan  and  Sunnah  does  it  appear  that  a  Hadith classified  as  Dhaeef  (Weak),  Maudhu’  (Fabricated),  etc., etc., in terms of  the  rules  formulated  by  the Muhadditheen  two  centuries  after  the  age  of  Risaalat, should  necessarily  and  summarily  be  rejected?  In claiming  that  a  particular  Hadith  cannot  be  used  as  a basis  for  a  Shar’i  decree,  we  should  ask:  “Whose  taqleed are  the  denigrators  of  the  Madh-habs  making?  Whom  are they  blindly  following  in  this  respect?”  The  charge  of blind  following  rebounds  with  great  force  on  the  deniers of  the  Madh-habs.  Their  taqleed  of  personalities  which appeared  centuries  after  the  initiation  of  Islam,  and  even of  persons  14  centuries  later,  such  as  Al-AlBani  and  even complete  non-entities  like  Mr.  Bilal  Phillips,  is  indeed the  blindest  taqleed  ever  known  in  the  annals  of  Islam.

On  the  contrary,  the  Taqleed  of  the  Ahlus  Sunnah  is  a sacred,  intelligent  and  rational  Taqleed  having  its  basis  in the  Qur’aan  and  Sunnah  since  understanding  of  Islam without  following  blindly  the  Sahaabah  and  their students (the illustrious Aimmah-e-Mujtahideen  and Fuqaha)  is  a  total  impossibility.

This  sacred  Taqleed  is  a  superior  and  a  rational Taqleed  since  it  is  to  follow  the  original  authorities  of  the Shariah,  not  those  who  present  the  figments  of  their opinion  and  personal  understanding  of  the  Qur’aan  and Sunnah. The  Taqleed  of  the  Ahlus  Sunnah  is  not  a  new concept  like  the  Taqleed  of  Al-Albani  which  sprang  up 13  centuries  after  Islam. 

The  Taqleed  of  the  Ahlus Sunnah  is  the  continuation  of  the  Taqleed  which  the Taabieen  made  of  the  Sahaabah.  While  the  flimsy  basis of  ‘proofs’  of  the  ghair  muqallideen  is  primarily  the views  of  Ibn  Taimiyyah  which  Al-Albani  and  his  ilk propagated,  the  bases  of  the  Ahlus  Sunnah  is  the Teaching  of  the  Sahaabah  which  their  students  passed  on to  the  Ummah.  Thus,  the  Chain  of  Authority  of  the  Ahlus Sunnah  is  securely  attached  to  Rasulullah  (sallallahu alayhi  wasallam).

The  Ahlus  Sunnah  does  not  pick  out  of  the  blue, views  which  are  the  opinion  of  persons  like  Ibn Taimiyyah  and  Al-Albani  –  views  which  conflict  with the  interpretation  of  the  Salf-e-Saaliheen  (the  Taabieen and  the  Sahaabah).

If  the  Imaam  of  the  four  Madh-habs  propagated  their personal  views  and  opinions  or  presented  interpretations in  conflict  with  the  teachings  of  the  Sahaabah  and  their Students,  the  claim  of  the  non-existence  of  the  Madh-habs during the time of  Rasulullah  (sallallahu  alayhi wasallam)  would  have  been  valid.  But,  the  Fuqaha  of  the Madh-habs present  the  interpretations  of  the  Sahaabah. Their  Chain  (Sanad)  of  transmission  is  Golden  –  in closest  proximity  to  the  Sahaabah  while  the  Asaaneed (chains  of  transmission)  of  the  Muhadditheen  are  lengthy and  more  distant.  Thus,  when  the  Fuqaha  cite  a  Hadith  as basis  for  their  ruling,  it  in  fact  is  evidence  for  the authenticity  of  the  Hadith  regardless  of  the  classification accorded  to  it  a  century  later  by  the  Muhaaditheen.  The prominence  of  a  Hadith  in  the  ranks  of  the  Mujtahideen is  testification  for  its  authenticity.

When  Imaam  Abu  Hanifah  (rahmatullah  alayh),  for example,  issued  a  ruling,  he  presented  the  Qur’aanic  and /  or  Hadith  daleel (evidence)  for  his  ruling.  The  chain  of his  Asaatizah  (teachers)  linking  him  to  Rasulullah (sallallahu  alayhi  wasallam)  is  well-known.  He  spoke  on the  bedrock  of  the  Ilm  (knowledge)  of  the  most  senior Sahaabah.  The  following  assertion  of  Imaam  Abu Hanifah  (rahmatullah  alayh)  throws  much  light  on  this fact.  The  following  narration  of  Imaam  Abu  Hanifah (rahmatullah  alayh)  appears  in  Taareekh-e-Baghdaad:

“I obtain  my  evidence  from  Kitaabullah  (the Qur’aan).  If  this  is  not  found  in  the  Qur’aan,  then  I refer  to  the  Hadith  of  Rasulullah  (sallallahu  alayhi wasallam).  If  I  do  not  find  it  in  Kitaabullah  and  the Sunnah,  then  I  extract  it  from  the  statements  of  the Sahaabah.”

Thus,  the  accusation  that  Imaam  Abu  Hanifah (rahmatullah  alayh)  gave  preference  to  his  personal opinion  over  the  Ahadith  is  false.  The  following  dialogue between  Imaam  Abu  Hanifah  and  Hadhrat  Baqir (rahmatullah  alayhim)  will  confirm  the  falsity  of  the charge.

When  Hadhrat  Muhammad  Baqir  (rahmatullah  alayh) first  met  Imaam  Abu  Hanifah  (rahmatullah  alayh)  about whom  false  rumours  had  been  fabricated,  he  (Hadhrat Baqir)  said:

“You  have  changed  the  Deen  of  my  grandfather  (i.e. Rasulullah  –  sallallahu  alayhi  wasallam)  and  his  ahaadith with  Qiyaas  (logic)”
Imaam  Abu  Hanifah:  “Allah  forbid!”
Hadhrat  Baqir:  “You  have  done  this!”

Imaam  Abu  Hanifah:  “Be  seated  so  that  I  may  sit respectfully  in  your  presence.  I  believe  you  deserve  to  be honoured  like  the  Sahaabah  had  honoured  your grandfather.”

Hadhrat  Baqir  (rahmatullah  alayh)  sat  down  and  Imaam Abu  Hanifah  (rahmatullah  alayh)  also  sat  down  in  front of  him  like  a  student  sits  in  the  presence  of  his  Ustaadh.

Imaam  Abu  Hanifah:  “I  wish  to  ask  you  three questions.  Please  answer.  Who  is  weaker  –  man  or woman?”
Hadhrat  Baqir:  “Woman!” Imaam  Abu  Hanifah:  “What  is  a  woman’s  share  in inheritance?” Hadhrat  Baqir: “The  man  gets  two  shares  and  the woman  one.”
Imaam  Abu Hanifah:  “This  is  the  order  of  your grandfather.  If  I  had  changed  his  Deen,  I  would  have given  the  man  one  share  and  the  woman  two  in  terms  of logic  because  the  woman  is  the  weaker.

Imaam  Abu Hanifah:  “Is  Salaat  better  or  Saum (fasting)?” Hadhrat  Baqir:  “Salaat!”
Imaam  Abu Hanifah:  “This  is  the  order  of  your grandfather.  If  I  had  changed  his  Order,  I  would  have ordered  women  to  make  qadha  of  the  Salaat  they  missed during  haidh  instead  of  making  qadha  of  fasts.”

Imaam  Abu  Hanifah:  “Is  urine  more  impure  or  sperm?” Hadhrat  Baqir: “Urine  is  more  impure.”
Imaam  Abu  Hanifah: “If  I  had  altered  the  Deen  of  your grandfather,  I  would  have  ruled  that  ghusl  becomes incumbent  by  urine  and  wudhu  by  discharge  of  sperm.”

Rising  up,  Hadhrat  Baqir  (rahmatullah  alayh)  embraced Imaam  Abu  Hanifah  (rahmatullah  alayh),  kissed  him  and honoured  him.

One may read this article which clarifies many such doubts about Imam Abu Hanifah (rahmatullah alayh): In Defense of Imam E Azam Abu Hanifah [rahmatullah alayh]

Which Imam did The Sahabah’s follow??

[By Brother Abu Muhammad]

On many occasions people are confronted by those who are trying to confuse Muslims. (A satanic deception).

They ask certain questions about Schools of thought and try to create confusion amongst the Muslims. I have personally been asked this question many times. to which I had given a lengthy reply. I have since used the same reply for this blog. (with a little addition)

Firstly I would like to add a Hadith here.

Imam Bukhari has taken proofs from the Qur’an and Hadith. He has quoted Hadith under the following headings:

Hold on fast to the Jamaat of Muslims and their Imam” [page 059, Vol 1]

One who separates oneself from the Jamaat ( of Muslims ) even a hand span, will die a death of ignorance” [page 1045, Vol 2]

There is also an order even execute those who separate themselves from the Jamaat of Muslims and their Imam.

“…they will leave Islam in the way an arrow leaves its bow…wherever you see them, you should kill them. Their killing will be rewardable on the day of Qiyaamah” [page 75, Vol 2]

A group of people will emerge from amongst you, who will belittle your Salah over theirs , and your Fasts over teirs, and your actions over theirs, they will recite the Quran, which will not pass their throats (have no effect upon them), the will leave the Deen like an arrow leaves its bow” [page 756, Vol2].

These people will emerge before Qiyaamah. Only those who are deficient in age and knowledge will join them.

Imams Muslim, Tirmidhi, Abu Dawud, Nasai also quote the same.

Before the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) came to us, there was great Jahiliyyah in the World. There was a need for a Prophet to come set things in order. Thus came Our Final Prophet Muhammad (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam). The Prophet was given help by Allah in the form of Sahabah. The World had a new PERFECT teacher to learn from and to follow. The sahabah were the best of the best students to learn from for the people to come later. Islam started to spread far & wide. Many wars were taking place and many Huffaaz of the Qur’an were made Shaheed, due to the number of Huffaaz lost, The Muslims (Sahabah) saw the need of compiling the the Qur’an together in a form of a book so that the Qur’an may be preserved. This was the will of Allah and for this reason we have the Qur’an with us today. Later many opinions were being given as to how one should practice their Deen. Some quoted from what they saw the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) do in his early days and some quoted from what they saw in the middle days of his life and some quoted from the last few days of his life. Hence, there were many many opinions going around every where. Later by the will of Allah came the time for the Great Imams. These great Imams realized the problems that could arise with all these differences in the Ummah, so again by the will of Allah rules were deduced and formulas were set up in order to have a correct codified interpretation of the teachings of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) with all the corect references and hadith. The Imams would also comment that if something that they have decided upon and a stronger evidence is found, then this would become their way. This comment was not set out for laymen of the last 1000 years, infact it was set out for the other great Faqih amongst them. Now by the will of Allah, Islam was codified and recorded for the people of the future. With all four schools of thoughts having slightly different understanding of the rulings set out by them on a few aspects, Allah has in this way kept the Sunnah alive for the entire life of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam). Now comes the time, by the Will of Allah that all the Hadith get noted and written down and preserved for the future, the great Imams who had such vast knowledge of Hadith still followed a school of thought by the will of Allah.

So as you can see, Allah sent the Prophet, The Qur’an, The Sahaba, The Imams and then the Hadith collectors in this particular order. There is Great Hikmah in this. Allah is the best of planners. Why try to change the plan or go another way.

The Imams of The Sahabah

The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) sent Hadhrat Musayb bin Umayr (radhiyallahu anhu) as the first teacher to Madinah at the request of the people of Madinah, after the pledge of Aqba.

Whilst Hadhrat Musayb (radhiyallahu anhu) was in Madinah, who did the people follow?? Did he call the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) up and ask him? Did The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam ) send Hadhrat Musayb (radhiyallahu anhu) to teach or to be followed or just to teach?

[all this was whilst the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) was alive]

When the answers could not be found in Qur’an & Hadith, what did the Sahaba do??

Hadhrat Abu Bakr (radhiyallahu anhu) gave Fatwa and made it clear that it was his Ijtihad and view. The people followed the school of Abu Bakr (radhiyallahu anhu).

Hadhrat Umar (radhiyallahu anhu) gave fatwa from his Ijtihad and view. On one occasion he sent a message to his judges that they also make Ijtihad when passing a ruling if it was not clear from Qur’an & Sunnah or amongst the senior Sahabah.

Hadhrat Uthmaan (radhiyallahu anhu) took pledge of Khilafat on the condition that he follow the previous Khalifas.

Hadhrat ‘Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) used to say “I am making Ijtihad on my view

Many of the Fatawa of the Khulafa-e-Rashideen appear in “Musannaf ibn Abi Shaybah

The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) sent Hadhrat Mua’dh (radhiyallahu anhu) to Yemen where he applied Ijtihad to solve many Issues. The entire population of Yemen followed the school of Mua’dh (radhiyallahu anhu). He was the Imam for Yemen.

Hadhrat ‘Adbullah ibn ‘Abbas (radhiyallahu anhu) resided in Makkah, many of his fatwas are listed in “Musannaf Abdur Razzaq” & “Musannaf ibn Abi Shaybah“. The School of thought for Hadhrat ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbas (radhiyallahu anhu) was dominant in Makkah.

Hadhrat Zaid ibn Thabit (radhiyallahu anhu) resided in Madinah. He passed his fatwas there from his understanding of the Qur’an & Sunnah and from the teachings of the Senior Sahaba (radhiyallahu anhum).

Hadhrat Anas (radhiyallahu anhu) was followed in Basra.

Hadhrat Abdullah ibn Mas’ud (radhiyallahu anhu) was sent to Kufa by Hadhrat Umar (radhiyallahu anhu) to be the teacher of Kufa. He was followed in Kufa.

On many occasions, proof was not given as they did not give their opinions from their desires, but they gave their rulings from the understanding of the Deen they had learnt from the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam).

During the era of the Tabi’een, many people used to go to Makkah for Hajj. The Khalifa of the time would make the following announcement: “No one is to pass a Fatwa except these two Imams, Hadhrat Ata ibn Abi Rabaah and Hadhrat Mujahid.” Thousands of the Fatawa passed by these two appear with no proofs mentioned with these rulings. All the Tabi’een and the Tabe Tabi’een used to practice upon these rulings without any objection or question.

During the era of the Tabi’een, different areas were following different schools.

In Makkah, it was the school Hadhrat Ata bin Abi Rabaah

In Madinah, it was the school of Nafi Mawla of ibn Umar

In Basra, it was the school of Hassan al Basri

In Kufa, it was the school of Ibrahim an-Nakha’i

In Yemen, it was the school of Tawus

In Yamamah, it was the school of Yahya ibn Abi Katheer

In Sham, it was the school of Makhool

In Iraq, it was the school of Maymoon bin Mehran

In Khurasaan, it was the school of Dahaak

In every city, the people would follow that particular school and on many occasions without any proof.

All this was before the four Imams.

This does not mean the Hadith was not there or the information was not gathered.

So to put it all together and answer the query of who the Companions followed:

The Sahabah followed the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) and took from the Qur’an & Sunnah Directly and so too did the four Mujtahid Imams.

….Allah says in the Quran “In the Sight of Allah only Islam is accepted [Sura 13/ Verse 9].

The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) left behind the Qur’an and the Sunnah, and the Sahabah, who were living examples of Islam, with whom Allah is happy with. The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) said: “hold fast to my Sunnat and the Sunnat of the Khulafa e Rashideen” [Tirmidhi, Abu Dawud, ibn Majah etc]. He also said “My Sahaba are like Stars, whomsoever you follow, you will be rightly guided” [Mishkat].

Islam Began to Spread far & wide, thus 2 periods past, the period of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) and the period of the Sahabah. During the latter time of the Sahabah, Imam Abu Hanifa (rahimahullah) grew up and met some Sahabah also. In this era, the complitaion of jurisprudence, the systematic settings of laws, rules, regulations on every subject of Deen, the arguments of jurisprudic principles were codified (later completed by his Students & other Imams of Fiqh). The delibration of every aspect of life, be it, political, social, economical took place. All this was done in the light of Qur’an and Sunnah (Because the Sahabah and Tabi’een were daily narrating Hadith & reading the Qur’an. This was not done from heresay or from the air, or by following whims and desires like they are accused of doing). In the time of Imam Abu Hanifa, a group of 40 Chosen, top ranking Ulama would discuss, delibrate and contemplate each law, rule and regulation before it was noted in registers. Delibration from every angle would take place before it was noted. Hence approximately 1.3 million masa’il were listed. (1,300,000) (we are not in the position to take out the strongest opinion, no matter which scholar tries, they are not of the calibre)

The other great Imams of fiqh followed, then the Imams of Hadith began their tremendous and marvellous task of complitaion and codification of the Hadith.

We have now completed 4 periods:

1. The era of The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam),
2. The era of the Sahabah,
3. The era of the Imams of Fiqh,
4. The Imams of Hadith.

Thus, The Quran & Sunnat came first followed by the schools of thought which explained the Sunnah in detail, then the compilation of the Hadith.

There were many Imams of Fiqh but only four survived. These four reached us because, they were codified properly and they had students prepared to continue the transmission of the four schools and finally because Allah desired so. The four schools contain the entire life of our Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam).

Muslims are supposed to seek the truth, you name me one scholar in the last 1000 years that was capable of making his own Ijtihad after observing and studying all the schools with all the evidence they have provided do you even think they can pull out the strongest opinion to fit around the other rulings they had passed. Some of them differed in their opinions, but they all had valid reasons. Each ruling they had passed was in conjunction with another rule for that subject, for each school, every thing fits in perfectly. The Greatest Scholars of Islam have already done all this work for us. There are no new Hadith that will come. There is no need to reinvent the wheel. The deen is perfect. There is no need for people to start giving absurd views and start misleading people. It is unbelievable that sometimes even something that is commen sense, others would like to prove them wrong.

The Imams had eye-witnessed the actions of the Senior Tabi’een (Imam Abu Hanifa saw some of the Sahaba), these Tabi’een were not fools to follow their own desires, they followed the Sahabah who followed The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam).

Why Follow 1 Imam?

This Fatwa by Shaykh Uthaymeen was posted on a forum from which I have cut & pasted it.

Important advice for the student of knowledge from Imam Ibn al-‘Uthaymeen

Praise be to Allah.
It is good if a person focuses on one shaikh and makes him his main source, especially if he is a young beginner, for if the young beginner seeks knowledge from a number of people he will be confused. For people are not all of one opinion, especially nowadays. In the past, here in the Kingdom (Saudi Arabia) people never deviated from [the books] al-Iqna’ [Book of Hanbali Fiqh by Al-Buhuti] and al-Muntaha [Book of Hanbali fiqh by Mar’i bin Yusuf], so their fatawa were all the same and the bases of their fatawa were all the same; no one differed from another, except in his delivery and style. But now, everyone who has memorized a hadith or two says, “I am the Imam to be followed. Imam Ahmad was a man and we are men.” So now there is chaos. Everyone is issuing fatawa and sometimes you hear fatawa from these people which make you weep and laugh at the same time. I was thinking of recording these fatawa, but I was afraid that this might make me one of those who seek out their faults of their brothers, so I did not do it lest we transmit things that are as far from the truth as the earth is from the Pleiades.

I say: adhering to one scholar is very important when the seeker of knowledge is just starting out, so that he will not be confused. Hence our scholars forbade us to read al-Mughni and Sharh al-Muhadhdhab and other books which contain numerous opinions when we were starting out. One of our scholars told us that Shaykh ‘Abd Allah ibn ‘Abd Rahman Babiteen (May Allah have mercy on him), who was one of the great scholars of Najd, only read al-Rawd al-Murabba’ [Book of Hanbali Fiqh by Al-Buhuti] and never read anything else. He read it repeatedly but he discussed it in great detail and in great depth.

If a person has gained a great deal of knowledge, then he should look at the views of the scholars so as to benefit from them in both academic and practical terms. But when one is just starting out, my advice is to focus on one particular scholar and not go to anyone else.
[From Fatawa al-Shaikh Muhammad ibn Salih al-‘Uthaymeen, Kitab al-‘Ilm, page # 107]

ﺍﻟﺤﻤﺪ ﻟﻠﻪ
ﻫﺬﺍ ﺟﻴﺪ ﻛﻮﻥ ﺍﻹﻧﺴﺎﻥ ﻳﺮﻛﺰ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺷﻴﺦ ﻣﻦ ﺍﻟﻤﺸﺎﺋﺦ ﻳﺠﻌﻠﻪ ﻫﻮ ﺍﻷﺻﻞ ﻻ ﺳﻴﻤﺎ ﺍﻟﻤﺒﺘﺪﺉ ﺍﻟﺼﻐﻴﺮ , ﺍﻟﻤﺒﺘﺪﺉ ﺍﻟﺼﻐﻴﺮ ﺇﺫﺍ ﻃﻠﺐ ﺍﻟﻌﻠﻢ ﻋﻠﻰ ﻋﺪﺓ ﺃﻧﺎﺱ ﺗﺬﺑﺬﺏ , ﻷﻥ ﺍﻟﻨﺎﺱ ﻟﻴﺴﻮﺍ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺭﺃﻱ ﻭﺍﺣﺪ ﺧﺼﻮﺻﺎً ﻓﻲ ﻋﺼﺮﻧﺎ ﺍﻵﻥ , ﻛﺎﻥ ﻓﻴﻤﺎ ﺳﺒﻖ ﺃﻱ ﻗﺒﻞ ﻣﺪﺓ ﻛﺎﻥ ﺍﻟﻨﺎﺱ ﻫﻨﺎ ﻓﻲ ﺍﻟﻤﻤﻠﻜﺔ ﻻ ﻳﺨﺮﺟﻮﻥ ﺃﺑﺪﺍً ﻋﻦ ﺍﻹﻗﻨﺎﻉ ﻭﺍﻟﻤﻨﺘﻬﻰ ؛ ﻓﺘﺠﺪ ﻓﺘﺎﻭﺍﻫﻢ ﻭﺍﺣﺪﺓ , ﻭﺷﺮﻭﺣﻬﻢ ﻭﺍﺣﺪﺓ , ﻻ ﻳﺨﺘﻠﻒ ﻭﺍﺣﺪ ﻋﻦ ﺁﺧﺮ ﺇﻻ ﻓﻲ ﺍﻹﻟﻘﺎﺀ ﻭﺣﺴﻦ ﺍﻷﺳﻠﻮﺏ , ﻟﻜﻦ ﺍﻵﻥ ﻟﻤﺎ ﻛﺎﻥ ﻛﻞ ﻭﺍﺣﺪ ﺣﺎﻓﻈﺎً ﺣﺪﻳﺜﺎً ﺃﻭ ﺣﺪﻳﺜﻴﻦ ﻗﺎﻝ : ﺃﻧﺎ ﺍﻹﻣﺎﻡ ﺍﻟﻤﻘﺘﺪﻯ ﺑﻪ ﻭﺍﻹﻣﺎﻡ ﺃﺣﻤﺪ ﺭﺟﻞ ﻭﻧﺤﻦ ﺭﺟﺎﻝ , ﻓﺼﺎﺭﺕ ﺍﻟﻤﺴﺄﻟﺔ ﻓﻮﺿﻰ , ﺻﺎﺭ ﺍﻹﻧﺴﺎﻥ ﻳﻔﺘﻲ , ﺃﺣﻴﺎﻧﺎً ﺗﺄﺗﻲ ﺍﻟﻔﺘﻮﻯ ﺗﺒﻜﻲ ﻭﺗﻀﺤﻚ ﻭﻛﻨﺖ ﺃﻫﻢَّ ﺃﻥ ﺃﺩﻭَّﻥ ﻣﺜﻞ ﻫﺬﻩ ﺍﻟﻔﺘﺎﻭﻯ ﻟﻜﻦ ﻛﻨﺖ ﺃﺧﺸﻰ ﺃﻥ ﺃﻛﻮﻥ ﻣﻤﻦ ﺗﺘﺒﻊ ﻋﻮﺭﺍﺕ ﺇﺧﻮﺍﻧﻪ ﻓﺘﺮﻛﺘﻪ ﺗﺤﺎﺷﻴﻨﺎً ﻣﻨﻲ ﺇﻻ ﻧﻘﻠﻨﺎ ﺃﺷﻴﺎﺀ ﺑﻌﻴﺪﺓ ﻋﻦ ﺍﻟﺼﻮﺍﺏ ﺑُﻌﺪ ﺍﻟﺜﺮﻳﺎ ﻋﻦ ﺍﻟﺜﺮﻯ .
ﻓﺄﻗﻮﻝ : ﻣﻼﺯﻣﺔ ﻋﺎﻟﻢ ﻭﺍﺣﺪ ﻣﻬﻤﺔ ﺟﺪﺍً ﻣﺎ ﺩﺍﻡ ﺍﻟﻄﺎﻟﺐ ﻓﻲ ﺃﻭﻝ ﺍﻟﻄﺮﻳﻖ ﻟﻜﻲ ﻻ ﻳﺘﺬﺑﺬﺏ , ﻭﻟﻬﺬﺍ ﻛﺎﻥ ﻣﺸﺎﺋﺨﻨﺎ ﻳﻨﻬﻮﻧﻨﺎ ﻋﻦ ﻣﻄﺎﻟﻌﺔ ﺍﻟﻤﻐﻨﻲ ﻭﺷﺮﺡ ﺍﻟﻤﻬﺬﺏ ﻭﺍﻟﻜﺘﺐ ﺍﻟﺘﻲ ﻓﻴﻬﺎ ﺃﻗﻮﺍﻝ ﻣﺘﻌﺪﺩﺓ ﻋﻨﺪﻣﺎ ﻛﻨﺎ ﻓﻲ ﺯﻣﻦ ﺍﻟﻄﻠﺒﺔ , ﻭﺫﻛﺮ ﻟﻨﺎ ﺑﻌﺾ ﻣﺸﺎﺋﺨﻨﺎ ﺃﻥ ﺍﻟﺸﻴﺦ ﻋﺒﺪ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ﺑﻦ ﻋﺒﺪ ﺍﻟﺮﺣﻤﻦ ﺑﺎﺑﻄﻴﻦ ـ ﺭﺣﻤﻪ ﺍﻟﻠﻪ ـ ﻭﻫﻮ ﻣﻦ ﻛﺒﺎﺭ ﻣﺸﺎﺋﺦ ﻧﺠﺪ ﺫﻛﺮﻭﺍ ﺃﻧﻪ ﻛﺎﻥ ﻣﻜﺒَّﺎً ﻋﻠﻰ ﺍﻟﺮﻭﺽ ﺍﻟﻤﺮﺑﻊ ﻻ ﻳﻄﺎﻟﻊ ﺇﻻ ﺇﻳﺎﻩ ﻭﻳﻜﺮﺭﻩ , ﻛﻞ ﻣﺎ ﺧﻠﺺ ﻣﻨﻪ ﻛﺮﺭﻩ ﻟﻜﻦ ﻳﺄﺧﺬﻩ ﺑﺎﻟﻤﻔﻬﻮﻡ ﻭﺍﻟﻤﻨﻄﻮﻕ ﻭﺍﻹﺷﺎﺭﺓ ﻭﺍﻟﻌﺒﺎﺭﺓ ﻓﺤﺼﻞ ﺧﻴﺮ ﻛﺜﻴﺮ .
ﺃﻣﺎ ﺇﻥ ﺗﻮﺳﻌﺖ ﻣﺪﺍﺭﻙ ﺍﻹﻧﺴﺎﻥ ﻓﻬﺬﺍ ﻳﻨﺒﻐﻲ ﻟﻪ ﺃﻥ ﻳﻨﻈﺮ ﺃﻗﻮﺍﻝ ﺍﻟﻌﻠﻤﺎﺀ ﻳﺴﺘﻔﻴﺪ ﻣﻨﻬﺎ ﻓﺎﺋﺪﺓ ﻋﻠﻤﻴﺔ ﻭﻓﺎﺋﺪﺓ ﺗﻄﺒﻴﻘﻴﺔ , ﻟﻜﻦ ﻓﻲ ﺃﻭﻝ ﺍﻟﻄﻠﺐ ﺃﻧﺎ ﺃﻧﺼﺢ ﺍﻟﻄﺎﻟﺐ ﺃﻥ ﻳﺮﻛﺰ ﻋﻠﻰ ﺷﻴﺦ ﻣﻌﻴﻦ ﻻ ﻳﺘﻌﺪﺍﻩ .
ﻣﻦ ﻓﺘﺎﻭﻯ ﺍﻟﺸﻴﺦ ﻣﺤﻤﺪ ﺑﻦ ﺻﺎﻟﺢ ﺍﻟﻌﺜﻴﻤﻴﻦ , ﻛﺘﺎﺏ ﺍﻟﻌﻠﻢ , ﺍﻟﺼﻔﺤﺔ # 107
[END OF FATWAA]

So There you have it. The Sahaba followed the Imams of their own time and this continued until all the rules were deduced and recorded for all to follow one codified Islam. This gave birth to the four great Imams.

Even the Great Hadith Scholars followed a codified Islam as layed out by the four schools of thoughts. If they followed a school, then what chance have we got in trying to find the strongest opinion. No Chance….

These people think they are very clever with their stupid questions and think they are capable of seeking out the truth for themselves. Well good luck to them as they will going round in circles only to find that their own scholars and their scholars’ scholars were following a school of thought.

Shaytan works in strange ways and some times his job becomes so easy he just has to sit back and relax.

Stick to one of the schools, you can’t go wrong, In sha Allah. Don’t pick & chose the Masa’il from different schools, you will end up living a life of Sin.

The Authority of Hadeeth, Ijma’, Qiyaas etc and their rejection by the Deviant Sects [Part 2]

For Part 1, click here➡The Authority of Hadeeth, Ijma’, Qiyaas etc and their rejection by the Deviant Sects

The Difference between Hadeeth and Sunnah

The meaning of and 4 things that constitute Hadeeth

4 things make up Hadeeth

1. The Aqwaal (sayings) of Rasulullaah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)

2. The Af’aal (actions) of Rasulullaah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)

3. The Taqreer i.e if a Sahaabi did something in the presence of Nabi υ and he did not express displeasure or prevent him. (consent) of Rasulullaah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)

4. The physical traits and habits of Rasulullaah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)

The meaning of Sunnah

And  Sunnat  means:  At-Tareeqatul  Maslookah  fid  Deen  –  The followed path in Deen.

The  Nisbat  (link)  between  Hadeeth  and  Sunnah  is  Aam-Khaas  min Wajhin.

i.e.  they  are  similar  (Muttafiq)  in  one  way  and  different  (Muftariq) in two ways:

Maaddatul  Iftiraaq  (differences)  are  two:

1.  Those  Ahaadeeth  which  deal  with  the  Khaasiyaat (specialities)  of  the  Nabi  e.g.  marrying  more  than  4  wives. This  is  Hadeeth  but  not  Sunnah.

2.  Those  things  which  were  implemented  by  the  4  Khaleefahs. These  will  be  Sunnah  even  if  there  is  no  Hadeeth  in  support of  it  e.g.  the  2nd  Azaan  for  Jumu’ah  which  was  implemented by  Uthmaan (radhiyallahu anhu)

The Sunnats of Ali (radhiyallahu anhu):

Like  this,  there  are  3  Masaa’il  which  came  about  in  the  time  of  Ali  (radhiyallahu anhu) when  two  groups  of  Muslims  fight  against  each  other:

1. Regarding  those  who  are  killed:  will  they  go  to  Jannat  or Jahannum;

2. Will  the  goods  of  the  defeated  party  be  treated  as  Ghaneemat (spoils  of  war);

3. Will  the  captives  be  treated  as  slaves;

4.  The  answers  to  these  3  Masaa’il  were  stipulated  by  Ali  (radhiyallahu anhu). This is Sunnah even though there is no ‘Hadeeth’.

The  Battle  of  Jamal  was  fought  between  Ali  and  Aa’ishah’s (radhiyallahu anhuma) parties. Ali’s (radhiyallahu anhi)  group  was  victorious.  Questions  2  and  3  came  up.  Some Muslims  wanted  to  take  the  spoils  as  theirs.  Ali (radhiyallahu amhu) said:  “Which wretched  person  will  take  Aa’ishah (radhiyallahu anha)  as  a  slave?  There  is  no  booty, nor  any  slavery!”  So  all  the  prisoners  were  set  free  and  all  the  goods of the Shuhadaa (martyrs) was returned to their families.

Then  the  Battle  of  Siffeen  came  along  between  Ali  and Mu’aawaiyah (radhiyallahu anhuma).  Some  people  raised  the  first  question.  Ali  said: “ours and theirs are in Jannah

This  is  such  a  Mas’alah  that  no  one  could  have  solved  since  no Hadeeth  was  present,  nor  anything  similar  by  which  a  Shari’  analogy could have been extracted (Qiyaas).

Ignorant  people  (the noisy ‘La Madh-habi’s)  generally  make  a  huge  noise  about the  2nd  Azaan  and  the  Rak’ats  of  Taraweeh.  We  have  presented  the Sunnah  of  Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) here  because  their  knowledge  has  not  yet  reached this  level.  When  they  come  to  know  about  this,  they  will  have  an extra Mas’alah to shout about.

The  basic  point  is  that  the  decrees  (Fatwahs)  and  rulings  of  the Khulafaa e Raashideen  are  accepted  as  Sunnah  by  the  Muslims  even if  perchance  there  is  no  Hadeeth  in  support  thereof.  This  has  always been  the  standpoint  of  the  Ahlus  Sunnah  till  the  emergence  of  this group. 

We  will  discuss  the  name  ‘Ahlus  Sunnah  wal  Jama’ah’  shortly In shaa’Allaah  –  suffice  for  now  that  we  are  Ahlus  Sunnah  not  Ahle Hadeeth.        

The  Similarity  between  Hadeeth  and  Sunnah (Maaddatul Ijtimaa’):

Those  Ahaadeeth  which  are  accepted  as  Ma’mool  Bihaa  (practiced upon)  and  are  not  Mansookh  (abrogated)  or  Khaas  (special)  are  also Sunnah.

We  accept  all  the  Ahaadeeth  in  this  category  and  we  practice  upon them. We also follow the Sunnah of the Sahaabah

Being  ‘Ahle  Hadeeth’  is  not  good  enough  for  two  reasons:

1.  Hadeeth  includes  Mansookh  and  Khaas  matters.  It  is  not correct  to  practice  on  this  even  though  it  is  Hadeeth.  e.g. Marrying  more  than  four  and  temporary  Nikaah  –  both  these are  Baatil.

2.  Hadeeth  does  not  cover  the  Sunnah  of  the  Khulafaa.  For  this reason  the  Salafis  are  in  Dhalaalat  (error).  We  have  been clearly  commanded  to  follow  the  Sunnat  of  the  Khulafaa  in Hadeeth  just  as  we  have  been  ordered  to  follow  the  Sunnah in the Qur’aan!   

The  ‘Ahle  Quraan’  rejects  Sunnah.  The  ‘Ahle  Hadeeth’  also  reject  it in practice yet when confronted, neither of them will admit to it. 

This  is  the  deception  of  the  Ghair  Muqallid/  Salafi/  Ahle  Hadeeth sect.

A Challenge:

We  place  a  challenge  to  all  the  self-styled  ‘Ahle  Hadeeth  –  present a  single  Hadeeth  where  we  have  been  commanded  to  follow  the Hadeeth. Hadeeth is a technical term, an academic classification.

In  the  Hadeeth,  we  have  been  ordered  to  follow  the  Sunnah:  The Sunnah  of  the  Rasul  everyone  accepts  –  we  have  been  clearly ordered  by  the  Rasul  himself,  in  a  Saheeh  Hadeeth  to  follow  the Sunnah of the Khulafa as well and this too, with no distinction!

In  our  discussion,  this  is  the  matter  that  separates  the  truth  from falsehood.  We  follow  Hadeeth  –  they  claim  to  follow  Hadeeth.  A claim  that  is  

a)  false  and  

b)  deceptive.

Rasulullaah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)  said: “You  must  follow  my  Sunnah and  the  Sunnah of  the  rightly guided  Khulafaa!  Hold  firmly  onto  it  and  grip  it  with  your teeth!”

In  another  Hadeeth  He  said:

Whoever  holds  on  to  my  Sunnah  during the time of evil…

And:

I  am  leaving  behind  two  things.  You  will  never  go  astray  so long  as  you  hold  on  to  them:  The  Kitaab  of  Allaah  and  my Sunnah

There  are  great  virtues  for  memorizing  Hadeeth  and  passing  it  on  to others  –  But  we  have  been  ordered  to  follow  Sunnah.

The Sunnats of Abu Bakr (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam):

So  we  have  touched  on  the  Sunnah  of  the  other  Khulafaa. Sayyidinaa  Abu  Bakr (radhiyallahu anhu) has  also  given  us  certain  Sunnahs.  In  fact  He was  the  first  to  present  certain  Sunnahs  (since  he  was  the  first Khaleefah). 

If  any  townspeople  collectively  leave  out  any  important  command of  Islaam  (e.g.  Zakaat),  the  Ameer  can  wage  Jihaad  against  them. When  one  group  refused  to  pay  Zakaat,  He  said:  “If  they  with  hold even  one  piece  of  string  which  they  used  to  pay  in  the  time  of Rasulullaah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam),  I  will  fight  them!”  Umar (radhiyallahu anhu)  did  not  understand  this verdict.  He  felt  that  there  were  more  pressing  matters  like  dealing with the renegades and the threat against Madinah itself. 

This  was  a  very  important  decision  taken  by  Abu  Bakr (radhiyallahu anhu).  The  entire stability of the Muslim nation depends on it. 

He  named  a  successor  (i.e.  Umar radhiyallahu anhu)  He  wrote  an  order  to  this  effect, and  then  told  Uthmaan (radhiyallahu anhu)  to  gather  the  Muslims  in  the  Masjid  and take Bay’at on Umar’s (radhiyallahu anhu) hand. The Sahaabah accepted this. 

These  were  two  Masaa’il  which  only  Abu  Bakr (radhiyallahu anhu) could  have  enacted, because  this  was  the  era  of  the  Sahaabah.  They  were  people  of understanding  and  Ita’at  (obedience).  The  very  next  generation  was one  of  turmoil.  That  is  why  we  see  that  in  the  period  of  Uthmaan (radhiyallahu anhu) and  Ali (radhiyallahu anhu),  non-Sahaabah  created  great  anarchy.  They  were  not prepared to accept the decisions of the Khaleefah

A  person  once  asked  Ali (radhiyallahu anhu)  why  the  first  2  eras  were  of  unity  and peace  while  the  2nd  two  were  of  turmoil  and  strife.  He  said: “Because  of  the  change  in  Ra’iyyat  (the  general  public)”  Abu  Bakr (radhiyallahu anhu) led  people  like  Ali,  Uthmaan,  Abu  Ubaidah  and  the  others (radhiyallahu anhum).  The latter  period  saw  a  death  of  men.        
The name: Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama’ah:

Rasulullaah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)  said  that  the  Yahood  and  Nasaara  were  split  into  71 and  72  sects…  and  that  this  Ummat  will  be  split  into  73  –  all  of them  but  one  will  enter  Hell.  On  being  asked  who  they  were,  he said:  

Maa  Ana Alaihi  wa  Ashaabee” “Those who follow the path that I am on and my Sahaabah

My Path: this is the Sunnah

My  Sahaabah:  this  is  Al-Jamaa’ah.  From  this  comes  the  Ijmaa’ (consensus of the Mu’mineen)

Ibn Taymiyyah has supported this in “Minhaajus Sunnah” 

The  ‘Ahle  Hadeeth’  scholar  Nawaab  Waheeduz  Zamaan  in  “Nazlul Abraar”  has  also  affirmed  it.

The  group  who  are  on  Haqq  (truth)  and  that  will  gain  Najaat (salvation)  are  those  who  follow  the  Sunnah  and  accept  the  Ijmaa’ of  the  Ummat.

The 3 Usools of Deen:

The  3  principle  sources  of  Sharee’at  are:  The  Kitaab  of  Allaah;  the Sunnah; Ijmaa’.

The  fourth  Usool  is:  Qiyaas  (analogical  reasoning)  based  on  these three Usools.

The  Masaadirul  Asliyyah  (principle  sources)  are  3.  Qiyaas  is  the  4th (source) but it is not in the category of the first 3.

Qiyaas  is  Muzhir  (makes  apparent  the  hidden)  of  Sharee’at  not Muthbit  (proof  of  itself)  of  Sharee’at  i.e.  Qiyaas  is  a  means  of understanding  the  laws  of  Sharee’at  from  Qur’aan,  Sunnah  and Ijmaa’.  Qiyaas  is  not  used  to  create  laws  of  its  own  type  in  conflict of  the  3  UsoolsQiyaas  is  not  contradictory  to  them.  

Ijmaa’ is also linked to Qur’aan and Hadeeth 

These  are  now  the  4  Usools  of  Deen.  The  first  3  are  on  a  higher level.  Qiyaas  is  of  a  ‘lower’  level.  But  all  4  are  interlinked.  Deen  is the  command  of  Allaah  –  Allaah  is  the  Shaari’  (The  one  who revealed  Sharee’at).  This  Sharee’at  is  manifested  through  these Usools.  Rasulullaah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) expounded  the  commands  of  Allah.  He conveyed  and  taught  them  to  us  in  full.  He  did  not  alter  them  in  any way  or  present  anything  on  his  own  account  [Na’oodhu  Billah].  The Sahaabah then conveyed this to us. 

Their  Ijmaa’  strengthened  the  foundation  of  Islaam  and  protected  it from  being  tampered.  They  did  not  alter  anything.  This  is  how  Deen was  established  on  a  firm  –  watertight  –  tamper-proof  foundation. The  A’immah  then  codified  it  to  its  finest  detail  through  Ijtihaad and  Qiyaas.  They  did  not  alter  Deen  or  present  anything  of  their own. This completed the matter. 

The  Shee’ahs  tried  to  alter  Deen.  The  Khawaarij  tried  to  alter  Deen. The Mu’tazilah tried.

Many  groups  have  come  and  gone.  ‘Kulluhum  fin  Naar’  –  All  are  in Hell. They are not part of us. 

Then  the  ‘Ahle  Qur’aan’;  ‘Ahle  Hadeeth’;  ‘Ghair  Muqallid’; ‘Salafi’;  ‘Maudoodi’  etc.  sprang  up.  They  changed  things.  They created  confusion.  Some  of  them  went  very  far  –  right  out  of  the fold  of  Islaam;  others  will  be  classed  as  Muslim  but  not  part  of  the Ahlus  Sunnah.  Some  on  something,  others  on  something  else… All of this is nothing but Dhalaalat (waywardness) and confusion.

We  have  a  straight,  clear  road.  Our  Deen  has  come  to  us  generation by  generation  from  the  best  of  people  from  every  age.  May  Allaah keep  us  on  this  and  raise  us  on  this.

All Ahaadeeth are linked to Qur’aan:

Hadhrat  Abdullaah  ibn  Mas’ood  (radhiyallahu anhu) once,  while  delivering  a  sermon, mentioned  a  Hadeeth  that  Rasulullaah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)  cursed  the  person  who lengthens  her  hair  by  joining  other  hair  to  hers  as  well  as  the  person who  carries  this  out.  He  also  cursed  the  tattooer  and  the  person  who gets  himself  tattooed…

After  the  sermon,  a  woman  said  to  him:  “You  narrate  Ahaadeeth about such matters that we find no mention of in the Qur’aan.” 

He  said  to  her:  “If  you  recited  the  Qur’aan,  you  would  have  foundTake  that  which  the  Rasul  gives  you  and  abstain  from  all  that  he has  prohibited  you’”  [Surah  Hashr].      

Ijmaa’  (consensus  of  opinion)  is  also  linked  to Hadeeth and Qur’aan

Ijmaa’  has  to  be  Mustanad  (based  on  something  in  Qur’aan  or Hadeeth).  The  question  then  arises  that  what  is  the  need  for  Ijmaa’ then, when the Qur’aan and Hadeeth are there??

The  answer  is  that  sometimes  the  Aayat  or  Hadeeth  only  makes Ishaarah  (an  indication)  to  the  matter.  Ijmaa’  makes  it  clear.  Ijmaa’ is a Hujjate Qat’i (a definite proof) in Deen.

Rasulullaah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)  did  not  nominate  a  successor.  In  his  last  days,  He appointed  Abu  Bakr (radhiyallahu anhu)  as  the  Imaam  for  14  days!  After  his  demise, the  Ansaar  met  at  Saqeefah  Bani  Saa’idah.  They  proposed  two Ameers  –  one  from  the  Ansaar  and  one  from  the  Muhaajireen.  Umar (radhiyallahu anhu)  said  that  this  is  the  person  who  the  Rasul  of  Allaah  appointed  as Imaam  in  his  lifetime.  All  the  Sahaabah  then  took  Bay’at  to  him. This is the 1st Ijmaa’ of this Ummat.

Abu  Bakr’s (radhiyallahu anhi)  appointment  as  Imaam  was  an  Ishaarah  (indication). Umar’s (radhiyallahu anhu) understanding  this  as  appointment  as  Khaleefah  was Istidlaal  or  Qiyaas  (extracting  a  proof/  deeper  reasoning). Sahaabah’s unanimously accepting it was Ijmaa’.

Ijmaa’  is  a  Hujjate  Qat’i.  An  absolute  proof.  To  oppose  it  is Dhalaalat  (misguidance).  If  anyone  rejects  the  Khilaafat  of  Abu Bakr (radhiyallahu anhu),  one  will  be  in  the  wrong.

Similar  is  the  case  with  20  Rak’ats  of  Taraweeh.

How Qiyaas is linked to the 3 Usools

The  example  of  Qiyaas  is  like  3  huge  pots  of  steaming  food.  A person cannot take this food out by hand. He needs a big spoon. 

Like  this,  you  have  Qur’aan,  Hadeeth  and  Ijmaa’.  To  extract  the Masaa’il  (laws)  of  Deen,  the  Imaams  use  Qiyaas.  Call  it  Qiyaas  or Ijtihaad,  it  is  the  same  thing.  The  Qiyaas  of  the  Imaams,  contrary  to the  propaganda  of  the  ‘Ahle  Hadeeth’  is  not  personal  opinion  or reasoning  in  the  matters  of  Deen.  The  Imaams  were  people  of Allaah and were far beyond such evil.

So  now  we  have  proven  these  four  Usools  of  Deen.  The  Madh-hab of the Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama’ah is based on this.

Let  us  conclude  with  the  two  Aayats  that  we  began  with:

The  first  Aayah  (115  of  Surah  Nisaa)  has  been  discussed  in  detail in Part 1.

The  2nd  Aayah  is  from  (Surah  An-Nahl  Aayah  44) in Part 1

The proof of Qiyaas from Surah An-Nahl

The  Kuffaar  of  Makkah  objected  to  the  Risaalat  of  Rasulullaah (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam). They  reasoned  that  if  Allaah  really  wanted  to  send  a  message,  He would  have  sent  an  angel  or  some  other  supernatural  being.  In  reply, this Aayat was revealed. 

Throughout  history,  Allaah  had  sent  messengers.  All  of  them  were human  men.  No  Nabi  was  a  female  and  no  angel  was  ever  sent  for this purpose.

Allaah  Says:

“…and  We have revealed  the  Reminder  (Qur’aan)  to  you,  so that  you  may  explain  to  the  people  all  that  has  been  revealed  to them, and so that they may reflect.

The  Qur’aan  is  Allaah’s  message  to  mankind.  Allaah  has  the  power to  do  anything  He  wills.  Yet  Allaah,  by  His  wisdom,  takes  the temperament  of  man  into  account.  For  this  reason,  Allaah  did  not send  the  Qur’aan  directly.  He  sent  it  with  His  Rasul (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam)  so  that  the Rasul (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) can  explain  it  to  them.  He  can  guide  them  and  assist  them. They can relate to the Nabi since the Nabi is a human among them. 

A  human  cannot  relate  to  an  Angel  or  to  any  other  supernatural being.  Allaah  took  man’s  weakness  into  account  and  sent  a  Nabi.  The actions and commands of the Nabi are an exposition of the Qur’aan. 

This  is  Hadeeth.  So  in  this  Aayah,  the  Hujjiyyat  of  the  Qur’aan  and Hadeeth  has  been  established.  Ijma’  has  not  been  mentioned  here. Ijmaa’ has been mentioned in the other Aayah.

Then  Allaah  says:  “…so  that  they  may  reflect” i.e.  so  that  they  may  ponder  on  the  deep  meanings  of  the  Qur’aan and  as  and  when  the  need  or  situation  arises,  they  may  seek guidance  from  the  Qur’aan  and  Hadeeth.  In  their  respective  periods, the  Khulafaae  Raashideen  extracted  guidance  in  this  way.  Then  in every  age,  the  Fuqahaa  have  extracted  and  will  extract  guidance  like this. 

Whenever  any  new  Mas’alah  arises,  the  Ulamaa  will  show  the  right path through Qur’aan and Sunnah

Daily  we  are  faced  with  new  questions  –  in  the  business  field,  in  the field  of  commerce  and  medicine.  As  technology  advances,  the Muslim  is  faced  with  new  conditions.  Hidaayat  (guidance)  through all of this is in Deen. The Ulamaa will show the way. 

The  work  of  the  Ulamaa  in  these  instances  is  through  Ijtihaad  and Qiyaas. There is no avoiding it. 

Here  the  big  question  arises  as  to  who  has  the  right  of  Ijtihaad  and Qiyaas.  Every  common  layman  will  not  have  the  right  to  voice  his feeling.  This  is  ‘self-opinion’,  which  is  Haraam  in  Deen.  This  is  a topic of its own.

The  last  part  off  this  verse  is  the  proof  for  Qiyaas. One  cannot  avoid  Qiyaas.  The  ‘Ghair  Muqallids’  of  our  belated  age are  allergic  to  the  word  Qiyaas.  But  just  as  in  the  Mas’alah  of Taqleed,  here  too  they  are  even  more  ‘guilty’  of  Qiyaas  than  us.  We follow  set  rules  in  Qiyaas.  They  are  free  thinkers  –  without studying  the  Usools  of  Qiyaas,  they  go  about  it.  They  have  thrown the  flood  gates  open.  All  and  sundry  are  allowed  to  decide  for themselves  what  they  wish.  They  bring  loads  of  the  strangest  types of Istimbaat (deductions) and Qiyaas.

The  safest  route  for  all  today  is  that  of  the  pious  people  gone  by. Every  new  matter  in  Deen  is  as  dangerous  as  it  is  misleading.  May Allaah protect all of us in these trying times. 

Taqleed and Salafism

FOREWORD

Once,  Hazrat  Bahlool  (Rahmatullah  alaih)  passed  by  an  Aalim  who was  quarrelling  with  someone.  Hazrat  Bahlool  (Rahmatullahi  alaih) commented:

If  this  person  [the  Aalim]  had  ma’rifat  [real  perception]  of Allah,  he  would  not  have  squandered  his  time  by  quarrelling with an ignoramus.

Life  is  short  and  transitory.  The  goal  is  Divine  Pleasure  through obedience  to  Allah  Ta’ala  and  His  Beloved  Rasool,  Muhammad (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam).  In  view  of  the  extremely  short  stay  in  this temporary  abode,  people  who  have  come  to  realize  the  purpose  of  their creation  are  continuously  in  pursuit  of  proximity  unto  Allah  Ta’ala. They  shun  idle  talk  and  idle  pastimes.  As  much  as  an  Aalim  who  has ma’rifat  of  Allah  Ta’ala  detests  being  drawn  into  argumentation,  as  he rather  prefers  worship  of  his  True  Beloved,  Allah  Subhaanahu  wa Ta’ala,  circumstances  however  necessitate  that  he  comes  to  the  defence of  the  Deen e Haq  from  the  fabrications  and  falsities  of  the  people  of falsehood. 

Among  the  people  of  falsehood  in  these  times  are  the  modernist  Salafi Sect  who  has  nothing  to  do  in  life  other  than  to  castigate  the  Madhabs of  Haq  and  vilify  the  followers  of  the  Madhaahib  (plural  of  Madhab). They  have  set  their  whims  and  fancies  as  their  Imams  and  have  left  no stone  unturned  in  their  endeavour  to  waylay  the  Imaan  of  unknowing
and  innocent  followers  of  the  Hanafi  Madhab  in  particular,  and  other Madhabs  in  general.  In   fact,  the  modernist  Salafi  Scholars  with  their  shallow  understanding  of the  Qur’an  and  Sunnah  and  their  rigid  Taqleed  of  the  doctrine  of  Ibn Taimiyyah  are  currently  engaged  in  an  all  out  effort  to  rob  people  of their  practice  of  the  Qur’an  and  Hadeeth  in  the  beautiful  and  most elaborate  way  outlined  in  the  Madhaahib e Arba’ah—the  Hanafi, Shaafi’i,  Maaliki  and  Hambali  Schools  of  Thought.  It  has  thus  become obligatory  upon  the  Ulama e Haq  to  expose  the  baatil  of  these  peddlers of abandonment of Taqleed.

Ignorance  and  arrogance  have  become  major  hurdles  for  the  anti-Taqleed  protagonists.  In  consequence,  they  refuse  to  dump  their  oblique understanding  of  the  Shariah  and  rather  accept  the  Shariah  as understood  and  practised  by  the  four  Schools  of  Fiqh  over  the  past fourteen  centuries  of  Islam’s  existence. This  treatise  is,  therefore,  not directed  to  the  votaries  of  abandonment  of  Taqleed.  It  is  for  the  safety and  strength  of  those  who  have  this  wonderful  path  of  Taqleed  to follow. 

This  treatise  is,  for  the  major  part,  a  condensation  of  a  lengthy  treatise on  the  subject  of  Taqleed  and  Ijtihaad  written  by  the  venerable Mujaddid  of  his  time,  Hazrat  Hakeemul  Ummat  Moulana  Ashraf  Ali Thanwi  (Rahmatullah  alayh).  Hazrat  Moulana  Thanwi  (Rahmatullahi alayh)  entitled  his  treatise  ‘Al Iqtisaad  fit  Taqleedi  wal  Ijtihaad’.  In  view of  this  compilation  and  translation  being  in  principle  a  condensation  of Hazrat  Moulana  Thanwi’s  treatise,  we  have  omitted  the  references  to the  page  numbers  from  the  original  work.  Apart  from  the  work  of Hazrat  Moulana  Thanwi  (Rahmatullahi  alayh),  quotations  have  been included  from  other  reliable  and  authoritative  works.  The  references  of these works have been provided in the footnotes. 

This  treatise  is  almost  a  pure  naql,  i.e.  it  consists  of  almost  only quotations,  extracts  and  excerpts.  We  have  only  rarely  inserted  words  of our  own.  The  reason  for  this  is  twofold.  Firstly,  what  we  have  compiled here  is  not  our  personal  opinion.  It  is  the  view  of  the  Authorities  of DeenSecondly,  the  statements  of  our  elders  and  senior  Ulama  obviate the  need  for  our  statements.  Considering  their  Ilm  and  Taqwa,  their understanding  and  commentary  of  the  Teachings  of  the  Shariat  far outweighs  whatever  we  can  produce.  And,  after  all,  we  are  only muqallideen.

Although  we  have  relied  only  on  quotations,  we  have  however, amended some texts to facilitate comprehension and/or for brevity. 

Kitaabs  and  books  on  the  subject  of  Taqleed  are  numerous.  We  are confident,  however,  that  this  treatise  will  serve  as  a  textbook  on  the subject  of  Taqleed.  It  is  only  through  educating  ourselves  in  the rudiments  of  this  Shar’i  requirement  that  we  can  thwart  the  menace  of Salafism.  And  Allah  Ta’ala  is  the  Giver  of  Towfeeq  and  He  is  the  Best Aid.
 
Was-Salaam
Jamia  Maseehiyyah  Ashrafiyyah

CHAPTER  ONE:  TAQLEED,  IJTIHAAD  AND THE FUQAHA

1. What is Taqleed??

Taqleed  means  to  accept  someone’s  statement  simply  on  the  basis  of  a favourable  opinion  about  him,  that  is,  he  speaks  on  the  basis  of  proof.

Hence, there is no need to question him about his proof.

The  object  of  Taqleed  is  to  practise  on  the  Qur’an  and  Hadeeth  with ease. 

The  rejecters  of  Taqleed  whose  standard  is  held  precariously  in  these times  by  the  sect  styling  itself  ‘Salafiyyoon’ or  ‘Salafiyyah’  insolently  dub Taqleed ‘blind-following’. 

‘Blind’ bears the following connotations:

without  foresight,  discernment,  intellectual  perception,  or  adequate information not  governed  by  purpose  or  reason reckless 

The  very  nature  of  Taqleed  demands  discernment,  intellectual perception  and  adequate  information  as  a  favourable  opinion  of  an Imam  being  qualified  in  the  field  of  Shar’i  Uloom  (Islamic  Sciences) and  thus  being  worthy  of  being  followed  is  dependent  on  these  factors. Taqleed, therefore, can never be blind-following in this sense.  

The  object  and  purpose  of  Taqleed  has  been  clarified  in  1.2.  Thus  the accusation  of  Taqleed  being  blind-following  in  this  sense  is  palpably false.

When  the  muqallid  or  person  making  Taqleed  follows  an  Imam  or Madhab  he  understands  the  Imam  and  Madhab  to  be  a  trustworthy guide  and  the  safest  course  to  obedience  to  the  commands  of  Allah Ta’ala  and  the  teachings  or  Sunnah  of  Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alayhi  wa sallam).  He  (the  muqallid)  understands  his  lack  of  competency  in understanding  the  Qur’an  and  Hadeeth.  For  him  to  resort  to  a  self-study of  the  Qur’an  and  Hadeeth  and  thereby  form  his  own  opinion  is  akin  to bartering  away  his  Imaan.  He  thus  opts  for  the  safest  and  surest  path  to the  obedience  and  pleasure  of  Allah  and  His  Rasool  (Sallallahu  alayhi wa  sallam),  and  that  is  in  Taqleed.  Is  this  being  reckless?  Is  this  blind following?  May  Allah  Ta’ala  save  us  from  the  deception  of  Shaitaan and the evil schemes of the nafs, Aameen. 

When  none  of  the  senses  of  ‘blind’  portray  true  Taqleed,  the  usage  of this  word  in  relation  to  Taqleed  is  crass  ignorance  or  malicious obstinacy.  May  Allah  Ta’ala  save  us  from  the  evils  of  the  tongue  and nafs.

2. The Taqleed of the Rejecters of Taqleed 

2.1  In  so  far  the  rejecters  of  Taqleed  are  concerned,  it  should  be understood  that  according  to  their  very  own  principle  [of  Taqleed  being haraam]  it  is  not  possible  at  all  for  them  to  practise  on  the  Hadeeth.  The reason  for  this  is  that  practising  on  the  Hadeeth  is  only  possible  through Taqleed  of  the  Ulama  in  the  matter  of  the  Hadeeth  being  Saheeh, Dha’eefWaajibul  AmalMustahab  or  impermissible.  And  this,  as  is obvious  is  strict  Taqleed  in  the  Ahkaam  [Laws  of  the  Shariah/Fiqh]. There  is  no  doubt  to  the  fact  that  a  Hadeeth  being  incumbent  for practice,  or  vice  versa,  or  disallowed  for  practice  or  vice  versa  are issues  pertaining  to  the  Ahkaam.  It  is  precisely  for  this  reason  that  the Fuqaha  discuss  the  various  laws  governing  the  Sunnah—its  acceptance, its  rejection,  its  employment,  its  relaxation  and  the  laws  pertaining  to the  narrators—in  Fiqh  and  Usool e Fiqh;  these  issues  being  the elements of the Ahkaam.

Now when  these  people  reject  Taqleed  then  what  gives  them  the  right  to make  Taqleed  of  the  Muhadditheen  in  these  issues  and  on  what  basis  do they  declare  the  views  and  ijtihaad  of  the  Muhadditheen  in  the  field  of Hadeeth categorization to be hujjat [proof] in the Shariah

3.  Taqleed  during  the  Era  of  Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alayhi wa sallam)

3.1  It  is  reported  from  Aswad  Bin  Yazeed  who  says:  “Mu’aaz (Radhiyallahu  anhu)  came  to  teach  us  the  Ahkaam  of  the  Deen  and  to serve  as  governor.  We  asked  him  the  masalah  of  a  deceased  leaving behind  a  daughter  and  a  sister.  Hazrat  Mu’aaz  (Radhiyallahu  anhu) declared  half  [the  estate  of  the  deceased]  for  the  daughter  and  half  for the  sister.  This  was  in  the  lifetime  of  Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa sallam).” —Bukhari and Abu Dawood 

We  learn  from  this  Hadeeth  that  during  the  blessed  lifetime  of Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam)  Taqleed  was  in  vogue.  The one  posing  the  question  did  not  ask  for  proof.  He  accepted  the  fatwa  of Hazrat  Mu’aaz (radhiyallahu anhu) purely  on  the  basis  of  his  Deeni  integrity. This  is Taqleed.

Then,  there  is  no  evidence  of  Nabi  (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam) disagreeing  with  this  fatwa  and  the  implementation  of  this  fatwa  which transpired  in  his  lifetime.  Nor  for  that  matter  is  any  difference  or rejection recorded. Thus, permissibility of Taqleed and its open and freepractice  without  rebuke  in  the  lifetime  of  Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) is established.

3.2  It  is  reported  from  Sulaiman  Bin  Yasaar  that  Abu  Ayyoob  Ansaari (Radhiyallahu  anhu)  went  for  Hajj.  On  the  way  to  Makkah  he  lost  his camels.  On  Yaumun  Nahr  [the  10th  of  Zul  Hijjah]  when  Hajj  was  over he  came  to  Umar  (Radhiyallahu  anhu)  and  related  his  story.  Umar (Radhiyallahu  anhu)  said:  “Do  what  a  person  performing  Umrah  does and  you  will  be  released  from  your  ihraam.  Then  wait  for  the  Haj season  next  year  and  perform  Hajj.  For  now,  make  qurbaani  and slaughter  whatever  you  are  in  the  means  of.” —Maalik

From  this  Hadeeth  we  learn  that  those  Sahaabah  who  could  not  make ijtihaad  [i.e.  ascertain  the  ruling  of  a  mas’alah  directly  from  the  Qur’an or  Hadeeth],  they  would  make  Taqleed  of  the  Mujtahideen  Sahaabah. Hazrat  Abu  Ayyoob  Ansaari  (Radhiyallahu  anhu)  was  also  a  Sahaabi and  he  did  not  ask  Hazrat  Umar  (Radhiyallahu  anhu)  for  any  proof  for his fatwa.
3.3  Episodes  of  this  nature  among  the  Sahaabah,  and  even  during  the blessed  era  of  Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alayhi  wa  sallam)  reports  of istiftaas  [questions]  and  fatwas  without  references  and  proofs  among  the Sahaabah  or  among  the  Taabi’een  and  Sahaabah  have  been  documented with  such  abundance  that  it  is  an  awesome  task  to  compile  all.  Those versed in Hadeeth literature are well aware of this.   

4. Following a Particular Imam or Madhab 

4.1  It  is  reported  from  Hazrat  Huthaifah  (Radhiyallahu  anhu)  that Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alayhi  wa  sallam)  said:  “I  do  not  know  how  long I  will  be  with  you  people.  Therefore,  follow  these  two  who  will  be  after me.”  Nabi  (Sallallahu  alayhi  wa  sallam)  indicated  to  Hazrat  Abu  Bakr and  Hazrat  Umar  (Radhiyallahu  anhuma). —Tirmidhi  

The purport of  “who will be after me” is: during their reign of Khilaafat. Thus, the command is to follow them during their respective terms of Khilaafat. And, obviously, the Khaleefah is a single person. The conclusion thus is to follow Hazrat Abu Bakr (Radhiyallahu anhu) during his Khilaafat and Hazrat ‘Umar (Radhiyallahu anhu) during his Khilaafat.  

Thus, Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) instructed that one particular person should be followed for a specific time. And nowhere did he state that proof for the Ahkaam should also be enquired. Nor was it a standard practice of ascertaining the proof for each and every masalah. This is nothing but following a particular Imam or Madhab

4.2 It is reported from Aswad Bin Yazeed who says: “Mu’aaz (Radhiyallahu anhu) came to us to teach the Ahkaam of the Deen and to serve as governor. We asked him the mas’alah of a deceased leaving behind a daughter and sister. Hazrat Mu’aaz (Radhiyallahu anhu) declared half [the estate of the deceased] for the daughter and half for the sister. This was in the lifetime of Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam).” —Bukhari and Abu Dawood  

Just as Taqleed being Sunnat is proven from this Hadeeth, as mentioned in its appropriate place [see 3.1], similarly this Hadeeth confirms Taqleed of an Imam or Madhab. The reason for this is that when Nabi (Sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) sent Hazrat Mu’aaz (Radhiyallahu anhu) to Yemen to teach the Ahkaam of the Deen he most assuredly gave permission to the people of Yemen to refer to him [Hazrat Mu’aaz] in all their affairs. This is Taqleed of an Imam.  

4.3 It is reported from Hazrat Huzail Bin Shurahbil that a question was posed to Hazrat Abu Musa (Radhiyallahu anhu). Then the same question was posed to Hazrat Ibn Mas’ood (Radhiyallahu anhu) and he was furthermore informed of the fatwa of Hazrat Abu Musa (Radhiyallahu  anhu).  Hazrat  Ibn  Mas’ood  gave  another  ruling.  This  was brought  to  the  notice  of  Hazrat  Abu  Musa.  Upon  listening  to  Hazrat Ibn  Mas’ood’s (radhiyallahu anhu)  answer,  he  said:  “As  long  as  this  ‘Ocean  of  Knowledge’ is in your midst, do not refer to me.’ —Bukhari, Abu Dawood and Tirmidhi

Any  person  can  understand  from  the  words  of  Hazrat  Abu  Musa (radhiyallahu anhu):  “As long  as  he  is  in  your  midst,  do  not  refer  to  me,”  that  he  instructed  them to  take  all  their  questions  to  him  [Hazrat  Ibn  Mas’ood  Radhiyallahu anhu].  And  this  is  Taqleed  of  an  Imam,  that  is,  to  refer  all  one’s questions  to  one  Aalim  due  to  some  precept  and  act  according  to  his fatwa.

5.  Why  it  is  Incumbent  to  Follow  a  Particular Imam or Madhab

5.1  It  should  be  known  that  the  incumbency  and  obligation  of something  [in  the  Shariat]  is  established  in  any  of  the  following  ways:

•  The  Qur’an  or  Hadeeth  directs  special  emphasis  to  some  act, e.g.  SalaahSaum,  etc.

Such  incumbency  is  termed  wujoob biz  zaat.

The  act  itself  has  not  been  emphasized;  however,  practically  it  is  not possible  to  carry  out  those  acts  which  have  been  emphasized  in  the Qur’an  and  Hadeeth  without  resorting  to  this  act.  In  this  case,  this  act will  also  be  considered  necessary.  This  is  the  purport  of  the  Ulama’s words:  “The  foundation  of  a  Waajib  is  also  Waajib.”  Take  as  an example  the  writing  and  printing  of  the  Qur’an  and  Hadeeth  literature. Nowhere  in  the  Shariat  is  this  emphasized.  In  fact,  the  following Hadeeth  clearly  evinces  the  non-compulsion  of  writing.  It  is  reported from  Hazrat  Ibn  Umar  (Radhiyallahu  anhu)  that  the  Rasool  of  Allah (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam)  said:  “We  are  an  Ummi  Nation.  We neither write nor calculate.” —Bukhari  and  Muslim

The  Hadeeth  clearly  indicates  its  purport.  Now,  when  writing  in  general is not waajib, then how can writing something in particular be waajib?

However,  there  is  emphasis  on  the  preservation  of  the  Qur’an  and Hadeeth  and  their  protection  from  loss.  And,  it  is  proven  through experience  and  observation  that  it  is  not  practically  possible  to  preserve the  Qur’an  and  Hadeeth  without  resorting  to  writing  and  printing. Therefore,  the  writing  and  printing  of  the  Qur’an  and  Hadeeth  are regarded  to  be  necessary.  Accordingly,  there  is  an  implied  unanimity  of the  entire  Ummah  for  the  past  14  centuries  on  its  incumbency  in  this way. Such an incumbency is termed wujoob bil ghair

After  understanding  the  types  of  wujoob  and  their  nature,  now understand  that  when  it  is  said  that  the  Taqleed  of  a  particular  Imam  or Madhab  is  waajib,  then  it  means  wujoob  bil  ghair,  not  wujoob biz  zaat.  Thus,  there  is  no  need  to  produce  an  Aayat  or  Hadeeth which  emphasizes  this  type  of  Taqleed  in  name,  just  as  a  demand  of  an Aayat  or  Hadeeth  is  not  made  for  proof  of  the  incumbency  of  writing and  printing  the  Qur’an  and  Hadeeth  literature,  and  regardless  of  the clear  declaration  of  the  aforementioned  Hadeeth  of  writing  not  being incumbent,  then  too  it  is  considered  to  be  waajib  and  this  is  not  viewed to  be  antithetical  to  the  Hadeeth.  In  the  same  way,  there  is  no  need  to produce  any  Nass  [explicit  Quraanic  or  Hadeeth  text]  to  show  the wujoob of Taqleed of an Imam or Madhab.

Yes,  there  is  a  need  to  prove  two  premisses,  viz.:  
What  are  those  things  which  will  be  harmed  in  our  prevailing circumstances  if  we  do  not  follow  a  particular  Imam  or  Madhab? The wujoob of those factors.

The  following  injunctions  of  the  Shariah  will  be  harmed  in  the  absence of  Taqleed  of  a  Madhab:

1.  A  sincere  niyyat  of  only  Deen  in  Ilm  and  Amal.

2.  The  Deen  governing  one’s  desires,  i.e.  to  make  one’s  desires subservient  to  the  Deen,  not  the  other  way  round.
  
3.  To  abstain  from  such  things  which  pose  a  real  danger  to  one’s  Deen.  

4.  Not  to  oppose  the  Ijma’  or  Consensus  of  the  Ahle-Haq
 
5. Not to transgress the perimeters of the Laws of the Shariah

These  being  waajib  biz  zaat  is  emphatically  proven  in  the Ahadeeth

In  so  far  as  the  harm  to  these  factors  in  the  case  of  not  following  a particular  Imam  or  Madhab  is  concerned,  it  is  connected  to  experience and  observation.  [In  other  words,  experience  teaches  and  it  can  openly be  observed  that  those  who  abandon  Taqleed  of  an  Imam  or  Madhab fall  into  the  pitfalls  of  insincerity,  Taqleed  of  their  nafs,  harm  to  their Deen,  opposition  to  the  Consensus  of  the  Ummah  and  transgression  of the  limits  of  the  Shariah.  Details  and  examples  are  too  numerous  to  cite in  this  short  treatise.  Only  someone  blind  to  reality  will  venture  to  claim the  contrary.]  And  the  reason  for  this  is  that  in  these  times  corruption and  personal  motives  have  settled  in  the  disposition  of  most  people. This  is  obvious  and  it  has  been  prophesised  in  the  Ahadeeth  on  Fitnah [trials,  mischief  and  evil  times].  Those  versed  in  Ilm  and  Hadeeth  are fully aware of this.

6.  Why  Confine  Taqleed  to  the  Four  Madhabs?

6.1  Previously  it  has  been  proven  that  Taqleed  of  a  particular  Imam  is necessary.  Furthermore,  taking  views  from  different  Imams  is  fraught with  harm.  Thus,  it  is  imperative  to  make  Taqleed  of  an  Imam  whose Madhab  has  been  compiled  and  codified  into  principles  and  detailed laws  to  such  an  extent  that  almost  all  answers  to  questions  are  found  in it  in  the  form  of  a  particular  or  a  universal  principal.  In  this  way  there remains  no  need  to  refer  to  other  views.

By  Divine  Intervention  this  attribute  is  found  only  in  the  Four  Madhabs  [Hanafi,  Shaafi’i,  Maaliki  and  Hambali].  No  other  Madhab enjoys  this  status.  Thus,  it  is  imperative  to  adopt  one  of  these  four Madhabs,  as  opting  for  a  fifth  Madhab  will  result  in  the  same problem  and  discrepancy  of  flirting  with  the  Madhabs  in  fulfilment  of the  nafs’  desire  to  remain  unfettered  from  the  Shariat.  The  corruption  of this has been clarified earlier. 

This  is  the  reason  for  confining  Taqleed  to  these  Four  Madhabs  and hence  for  centuries  this  has  been  the  standard  practice  of  the  Jumhoor Ulama  of  the  Ummat.  Some  Ulama  have  even  recorded  Ijma’  that  the Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama’ah is confined to these Four Madhabs.         

6.2  For  Taqleed  it  is  necessary  that  the  Mujtahid’s  Madhab  be compiled.  Taqleed  of  the  illustrious  Sahaabah  is  difficult,  because  none of  their  Madhabs  are  fully  compiled  and  codified.  However,  through the  medium  of  Taqleed  of  the  Aimmah e Arba’ah  [the  Four  Imams],  we follow  the  Sahaabah.  

7. Why the Hanafi Madhab?

7.1  We  reside  in  a  place  where  the  Madhab  of  Imam  Abu  Haneefah (Rahmatullahi  alaih)  is  prevalent  without  any  endeavour  on  our  part. Ulama  and  Kitaabs  on  this  Madhab  are  to  be  found  in  abundance.  Had we  adopted  another  Madhab,  then  it  would  have  been  difficult  for  us to  find  out  the  laws  applicable  to  day today  circumstances.  This  is  due to  the  fact  that  the  Ulama  do  not  possess  that  insight  and  deep understanding  of  another  Madhab  as  they  possess  in  their  own  Madhab.  In  view  of  their  occupation  and  excessive  study  and  teaching  the degree  of  expertise  and  understanding  they  have  of  their  own  Madhab cannot  be  achieved  with  another  Madhab,  although  study  of  the Kitaabs  of  another  Madhab  is  possible.  This  point  is  self-evident  and obvious  to  the  Ahle-Ilm.       

8.  The  Question  of  Taqleed  Being  Prohibited in the Qur’an

8.1  Question: The  Qur’an  censures  Taqleed  in  this  Aayat:  “When  it is  said  to  the  kuffaar:  ‘Follow  the  laws  which  Allah  Ta’ala  has revealed,’  then  they  answer:  ‘No!  In  fact,  we  will  follow  the  path  of  our forefathers.’  (Dismissing  their  response  Allah  Ta’ala  declares):  What! Will  they  keep  to  the  path  of  their  forefathers  regardless  of  their forefathers  lacking  understanding  of  Deen  and  them  being  astray?”   This  shows  that  it  is  evil  to  follow  the  way  of  one’s  predecessors  when we have the Qur’an and Hadeeth.

Similarly,  it  is  stated  in  another  Aayat  that  when  you  have  a  dispute, then  refer  the  matter  to  Allah  and  His  Rasool.  From  this  we  can understand that we should not refer to an Imam or Mujtahid.

Response:  The  mere  translation  of  the  former  Aayat  reveals  that  the Taqleed  of  the  kuffaar  has  no  affinity  with  the  Taqleed  under discussion.  The  Taqleed  of  the  kuffaar  has  been  denounced  for  two reasons. 

The  first  is  that  they  would  reject  the  Aayaat  and  Ahkaam  saying:  “We do not accept it. We would rather prefer to follow our elders.

Secondly,  their  elders  lacked  intelligence  in  the  Deen  and  they  lacked guidance. 

These  two  are  non-existent  in  the  Taqleed  we  are  discussing.  Neither does  any  muqallid  say  that  he  rejects  the  Aayaat  and  Ahadeeth.  In  fact, he  [the  muqallid]  says:  “Our  Deen  is  the  Quraan  and  Hadeeth. However,  I  am  ignorant”  or  “lacking  knowledge”  or  “am  totally incompetent  in  the  field  of  ijtihaad  and  istimbaat.  I  do,  however,  have  a favourable  opinion  and  faith  in  soandso  Aalim”  or  “Imam.  He  was thoroughly  versed  in  the  words  and  meanings  of  the  Aayaat  and Ahadeeth.  Thus,  I  consider  the  purport  which  he  understood  [from  the Qur’an  and  Hadeeth]  to  be  correct  and  the  stronger  view.  Therefore,  I am acting on the Hadeeth, albeit in accordance to his guidance.” 

In  short,  no  muqallid  rejects  the  Qur’an  and  Hadeeth.  And  the  Imam whom  he  follows  did  not  lack  knowledge  and  guidance,  as  is  proven through  reliable  transmission  from  generation  to  generation  (tawaatur) that they possessed intelligence and guidance. 

Thus,  in  view  of  both  reasons  [for  the  denouncement  of  the  Taqleed  of the  kuffaar]  being  nonexistent  here,  this  Taqleed  [of  the  Madhabs]  is beyond the ambit of the censure in the Qur’an. 

And  how  can  Taqleed  on  the  whole  be  the  purport  of  the  Aayat? Otherwise,  the  Aayat  will  be  in  clear  contradiction  to  all  those  Ahadeeth which  establish  the  validity  of  Taqleed.

9. The  Accusation  of  the  Muqallids Discarding Ahadeeth 

9.1  Just  as  it  is  permissible  to  deduce  a  law  through  ijtihaad,  similarly,  it is  also  permissible  to  regard  a  Hadeeth  to  be  subject  to  rationale  and  act in  accordance  to  the  rationale.  This  entails  specifying  the  sphere  of  the Ahkaam  or  placing  it  on  one  of  several  possibilities  or  restricting  a general  rule  or  acting  on  the  inner  meaning  rather  than  the  external meaning.  This  is  not  antithetical  to  or  discarding  of  the  Hadeeth. Therefore,  such  an  ijtihaad  is  permissible  and  furthermore  Taqleed  of such an ijtihaad is also perfectly permissible.

9.2  In  Bukhari  it  is  reported  from  Ibn  Umar  (Radhiyallahu  anhu)  that Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam)  said  to  the  Sahaabah  after  the Battle  of  Ahzaab:  “None  of  you  shall  read  Asr  Salaah  before  reaching the  Bani  Quraithah.”  ‘Asr  time  came  whilst  some  Sahaabah  were  still  on the  way.  They  were  split  on  what  to  do.  Some  said:  “No,  we  are  going to  read  our  Salaah.  That  was  not  the  purport  of  Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu alaihi  wa  sallam).  —His  purport,  rather,  was  to  emphasize  speed  and haste  in  reaching  there  before  Asr.”  —  This  incident  was  brought  to Rasoolullah’s  notice.  He  did  not  reprimand  or  mete  out  punishment  to anyone.           

In  the  above  episode  some  understood  the  actual  purport  by  virtue  of quwwat e ijtihaadiyyah  [power  of  ijtihaad].  The  purport  they understand  was  one  of  the  two  possibilities  and  they  performed  the Salaat.  Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam)  did  not  reprimand them  by  saying:  “Why  do  you  discard  the  apparent  meaning.”  And  nor did he declare them discarders of the Hadeeth

9.3  To  aver  in  relation  to  any  masalah  that  it  is  in  conflict  to  the Hadeeth depends on three things:

The  purport  of  the  masalah  is  correctly  understood.

Its  daleel  is  known.

The procedure of the inference is known.

If  any  of  these  three  factors  remain  obscure  to  the  opposing  party,  their judgement will be erroneous. 

For  instance,  Imam  Abu  Haneefah’s  (rahimahullah) statement  of  Salaatul  Istisqa  not being  Sunnat  is  well known.  The  apparent  meaning  of  this  statement seems  to  be  in  conflict  with  the  Hadeeth  because  it  is  mentioned  in  the Ahadeeth  that  Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam)  performed Istisqa  Salaat.  However,  the  purport  of  this  statement  [of  Imam  Abu Haneefah]  is  that  it  is  not  sunnat e mu’akkadah.  Accordingly, sometimes  Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam)  would  perform Salaah  and  make  du’a  for  rain,  and  occasionally  he  would  make  du’a without  performing  this  Salaah.  Thus,  we  find  the  following  Hadeeth  in Bukhari:  

“It  is  reported  from  Anas  (Radhiyallahu  anhu)  that Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam)  was  delivering  the Khutbah  on  Jumu’ah  day  when  a  person  stood  up  and  said: ‘Yaa  Rasoolallah!  Horses  and  goats  have  perished.  Make  du’a
unto  Allah  Ta’ala  for  rain.’  Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alayhi  wa sallam) stretched out both his hands and made du’a.”

The  above  purport  of  Imam  Abu  Haneefah  (Rahmatullah  alaih)  is furthermore  revealed  by  the  following  text  of  Hidaayah:  

“We [the  Ahnaaf]  say  that  he  [Rasoolullah  Sallallahu  alayhi  wa sallam]  did  it  on  one  occasion  and  omitted  it  on  another occasion. It, therefore, is not sunnat.” —Awwalain         

Thus,  once  the  correct  purport  surfaces  the  question  of  opposition  is dispelled. 

Similar  is  the  case  when  the  daleel  remains  obscure.  For  instance, varying  Ahadeeth  are  reported  in  regard  to  one  masalah.  Now  it  will  be incorrect  to  aver  that  a  Mujtahid  has  opposed  the  Hadeeth  merely  by looking  at  one  of  the  Hadeeths.  The  Mujtahid  has  drawn  a  ruling  for  the other  Hadeeth  and  he  presents  a  valid  interpretation  for  this  one.  An example  of  this  is  the  masalah  of  Qiraatul  Faatihah  khalfal  Imam [Reciting  Soorah  Faatihah  behind  the  Imam].  The  Ahadeeth  in  this regard differ.

Or  a  single  Hadeeth  holds  scope  for  several  varying  possibilities.  The Mujtahid  understands  a  certain  possibility,  on  the  basis  of  his  quwwat-e-ijtihaadiyyah,  to  be  stronger.  He  thus  infers  this.  This  too  is  not opposition  to  the  Hadeeth.  An  example  of  this  is  that  it  appears  in  the Hadeeth  that  if  a  person  passes  in  front  of  you  whilst  you  are  reading Salaah  then  you  should  ward  him  off.  The  one  possibility  is  that  the literal  meaning  applies.  The  other  possibility  taking  into  account  other principles  and  rules  is  that  this  Hadeeth  is  by  way  of  warning  and  a deterrent  from  passing  in  front  of  a  Musalli.  If  a  Mujtahid  takes  the second  possibility  then  it  cannot  be  averred  that  he  has  discarded  the Hadeeth. In fact, his practice is precisely on the Hadeeth.

And  similarly,  if  the  procedure  of  inference  is  obscure,  then  too  the judgement  of  conflict  will  be  erroneous.  For  instance,  Imam  Abu Haneefah  (Rahmatullah  alayh)  states  that  the  period  of  breastfeeding extends  to  2  ½  years.  The  daleel,  i.e.  the  Aayat:  “Its  carrying  and weaning…”  is  wellknown.  However,  the  popular  explanation  of  the inference  is  exceptionally  faulty.  In  Madaarik,  however,  the  tafseer  of ‘hamluhu’  [its  carrying]  is  reported  from  Imam  Abu  Haneefah  as  ‘bil akuf’  [with  hands].  By  virtue  of  this  tafseer,  all  objections  are  dispelled. In  this  case,  the  Aayat  means:  After  birth,  the  maximum  period  of  the baby  being  carried  around  in  arms  and  its  weaning  is  30  months.  There is  no  problem  in  this  tafseer  and  the  view  of  Imam  Abu  Haneefah (rahimahullah)  is easily substantiated. 

In  conclusion,  judging  a  masalah  to  be  in  conflict  with  the  Hadeeth  is the  prerogative  of  such  a  person  who  is  thoroughly  versed  in  the Traditions  and  he  possesses  keen  insight  and  strong  mental  perception. One  who  possesses  one  attribute  and  lacks  the  other  is  not  competent  to pass off a masalah to be in violation of the Hadeeth.

It  is  proven  in  the  Hadeeth  [refer  to  10.3]  that  merely  being  a  Hafiz  of the  Hadeeth  does  not  qualify  one  to  be  a  Mujtahid.  Any  unbiased  reader can  understand  from  this  that  when  a  Hafiz  of  Hadeeth  can  be  oblivious to  the  forms  and  procedure  of  inference  then  how  on  earth  can  the ignoramuses  of  today  fathom  all  the  various  ways  a  Mujtahid  employs in  his  deduction  of  the  Masaail?  Thus,  how  audacious  it  is  on  their  part to  stupidly  call  the  Muqallid  ‘discarder  of  Hadeeth’.  May  Allah  Ta’ala reform their condition.  In  this  regard,  whenever  experts  have  found  any  statement  in  conflict with  a  Daleel-e-Shar’i  they  omitted  the  statement  at  once.  Examples  of this  are  the  masalahs  of  the  prohibition  of  consuming  even  a  small quantity  of  an  intoxicant  and  muzaara’at  [farming  on  a  profit-share basis].  There  is  clarity  in  the  Kutub  of  the  Hanafiyyah  that  in  these  two issues  the  view  of  Imam  Abu  Haneefah (rahimahullah)  is  discarded.  However,  the number  of  such  [discarded]  views  probably  does  not  even  reach  ten. 

In this  regard  this  lowly  servant  [Hazrat  Moulana  Thanwi  Alaihir  Rahmah] investigated  and  besides  five  or  six  Masaail  in  which  I  had  some reservations  not  a  single  masalah  was  found  to  be  against  the  Hadeeth.

I  even  recorded  the  various  ways  the  Masaail  correspond  to  the Ahadeeth in a treatise. By coincidence, however, the treatise was lost. 

Nevertheless,  it  is  Haraam  to  revile  a  Mujtahid  because  the  Mujtahid’s error  is  not  intentional.  His  error  is  ijtihaadi  [i.e.  an  error  in  judgement]. In the light of the Hadeeth he is rewarded for this too. 

We  have  said  this  according  to  our  knowledge,  otherwise  it  is  possible that  Imam  Abu  Haneefah (rahimahullah)  had  access  to  a  Hadeeth  which  we  are unaware of.     

9.4  Ibn  Taymiyyah  states  that  the  forms  of  inferences  from  a  Hadeeth  or Aayat  are  so  many  that  no  Mujtahid  can  be  assailed  for  his  inference. This  he  stated  in  his  kitaab  ‘Raf’ul  Malaam  anil  Aimmatil  A’laam.  This kitaab is worthy of perusal.

9.5  Even  if  we  had  to  assume  that  some  Ahadeeth  did  not  come  to  the notice  of  Imam  Abu  Haneefah,  we  nevertheless  find  that  Imam Muhammad,  Abu  Yusuf  Bin  Huthail,  Ibnul  Mubaarak,  Hasan  Bin Ziyaad  and  other  eminent  students  of  Imam Abu Haneefah (rahimahumullah) living  to  the era of Hadeeth Compilation.

Following  them  came  Imam  Tahaawi,  Karkhi,  Haakim  the  author  of Kaafi,  Abdul  Baaqi  Bin  Qaani’,  Mustaghri,  Ibnush  Sharaqi,  Zaila’i  and other  Huffaaz  and  Nuqqaad  [Examiners]  of  Hadeeth  among  the  Ahnaaf  who  flourished  during  the  age  of  the  perfection  of  the  standards  in examining  the  Ahadeeth  from  Nabi  (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam).  They were  fully  cognizant  of  the  SaheehDha’eefMashhoor  and  Aahaad Ahadeeth

Thus,  they  omitted  any  qiyaas  [analogical  deduction]  of  Imam  Abu Haneefah they perceived to be in conflict with the Ahadeeth

Thus,  the  likes  of  Imam  Muhammad,  Imam  Abu  Yusuf,  Zufar  and Hasan  differed  [with  Imam  Abu  Haneefah]  in  a  significant  portion  of his  Madhab.  The  Hanafi  Madhab  again  is  the  collective  statements  of Imam  Abu  Haneefah (rahimahullah) and  these  students  and  associates  of  his. (Rahimahumullah  Ta’ala).

10.  The  Averment:  “The  Quraan  and  Hadeeth are  before  us.  We  can,  therefore,  refer directly to it.”
10.1  One  who  does  not  possess  quwwat-e-ijtihaadiyyah  [refer  to  no.  11] holds no right to resort to ijtihaad.  

10.2  It  is  reported  from  Hazrat  Adi  Bin  Haatim  (Radhiyallahu  anhu) that  when  the  Aayat:  “And  eat  and  drink  until  the  white  thread  becomes noticeable  from  the  black  thread,”  was  revealed,  he  took  a  white  thread and  a  black  thread  and  kept  it.  During  the  night  he  looked  at  it. However,  the  two  threads  were  not  distinguishable  from  each  other.  In the  morning  he  informed  Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam). Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam)  responded:  “Your  pillow  is exceptionally  huge  for  the  white  and  black  threads  (which  actually imply  the  dawn  light  and  darkness  of  the  night)  to  be  under  your pillow.”

Notwithstanding  the  fact  the  this  Sahaabi  was  a  native  who  spoke  the Arabic  language,  he  erred  in  understanding  the  purport  of  the  Qur’anic Aayat  in  view  of  him  not  possessing  quwwat e ijtihaadiyyah. Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alayhi  wa  sallam)  brought  his  mistake  to  his notice  in  a  humorous  way.  In  some  other  Ahadeeth  Nabi  (Sallallahu alaihi  wa  sallam)  did  not  voice  his  disapproval  of  ijtihaad  from  certain Sahaabah.  This  indicates  that  the  Sahaabi  here  did  not  possess  quwwat e ijtihaadiyyah  and  hence  Nabi  (Sallallahu  alayhi  wa  sallam)  did  not credit him for his opinion and perception.

10.3  It  is  reported  from  Hazrat  Ibn  Mas’ood  (Radhiyallahu  anhu)  that Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alayhi  wa  sallam)  said:  “May  Allah  Ta’ala  keep that  person  happy  and  prosperous  who  listens  to  my  Hadeeth,  retains  it, remembers  it  and  delivers  it  to  others.  Indeed,  many  of  those  who  pass on  knowledge  are  not  themselves  versed  in  knowledge,  and  often  a person  passes  on  knowledge  to  someone  who  understands  it  more  than the one who delivered to him.” —Shaafi’i,  Baihaqi  in  Madkhal,  Ahmad,  Tirmithi,  Abu Dawood,  Ibn  Maajah  and  Daarimi  who  reports  from  Hazrat  Zaid  Bin Thaabit (radhiyallahu anhu).

There  is  clarity  in  this  Hadeeth  that  some  Hafizes  of  Hadeeth  do  not understand  the  meanings  of  the  Hadeeth  or  possess  little  understanding of it.      

10.4  The  simple  and  straightforward  test  in  this  matter  is  to  take  a hundred  by-laws  from  a  Fiqhi  kitaab  in  which  the  dalaail  [proofs]  are not  mentioned,  at  random  from  various  chapters  and  trace  their  sources in  the  Qur’an  and  Hadeeth.  Furthermore,  the  principles  governing  the by laws  should  be  proven  from  the  text  or  indications  of  the  Qur’an  and Hadeeth  or  with  sound  rational  arguments.  Once  this  assignment  is complete  it  should  be  compared  to  the  answers  and  proofs  of  the Fuqaha.  Then  one  will  wake  up  to  the  limit  of  one’s  intelligence  and  the worth  of  the  Fuqaha’s  intelligence.  In sha  Allah,  this  will  become evident to one and in future one will not venture to make such a claim. 

10.5  Hazrat  Abdullah  Bin  Mubaarak  (Rahmatullahi  alaih)  furthermore said:   “Had  it  not  been  for  the  fact  that  Allah  Ta’ala  rescued  me through  the  medium  of  Abu  Haneefah  and  Sufyaan,  I would have been just like the others.”

In  other  words,  Allah  Ta’ala  saved  him  through  Imam  Abu  Haneefah and  Imam  Sufyaan  Thawri (rahimahumullah) from  the  perplexity  and  confusion  which  a raawi  [narrator  of  Hadeeth]  is  embroiled  in  when  seeing  the  conflicting Ahadeeth  and  opposing  narrations.  The  two  Imams  (Radhiyallahu anhuma)  would  show  him  how  the  two  [conflicting  Hadeeths]  are reconciled,  which  narration  enjoys  first  preference  and  they  would explain the meanings of the two to him. 

Indeed,  this  [perplexity  and  confusion]  was  the  case  with  not  one,  but many  ruwaat  [plural  of  raawi].  They  were  rescued  by  none  other  than the  Fuqaha-e-Muhadditheen;  those  who  were  experts  in  riwaayat  and diraayat [Traditions and reasoning powers].  Qazi  Iyaadh (rahimahullah)  related  the  following  in  Tadreebul  Madaarik  under  the biography  of  Abdullah  Bin  Wahb  Quraishi  Misri,  the  pupil  of  Imam Maalik  (Rahmatullahi  alaih)  —V.3  pp.  231/6:  

Yusuf  Bin  Adi  said:  ‘I  found  some  people  to  be  faqeehs, not  Muhadditheen  and  some  to  be  muhaddiths,  not faqeehs.  Only  Abdullah  Bin  Wahb  did  I  find  to  be  a Faqeeh, Muhaddith and a zaahid [Buzrug, saint, recluse].’

Ibn  Wahb  said:  ‘Had  it  not  been  that  Allah  Ta’ala  saved  me through  Maalik  and  Laith,  I  would  have  gone  astray.’  He was  asked:  ‘How  is  that?’  He  replied:  ‘I  immersed  myself in  Hadeeth  and  in  consequence  I  became  perplexed.  I would  then  present  my  doubts  to  Maalik  and  Laith  who would  tell  me  which  Hadeeth  to  take  and  which  to  discard [on  account  of  its  unreliability,  abrogation  or  other  factor warranting  its  nonapplication].”  The  end  of  Qazi  Iyaadh’s (rahimahullah) quote.

Hafiz  Ibn  Abdul  Barr (rahimahullah) documented  this  in  Intiqa  with  a  similar  text.  Our Shaikh,  Muhaqqiq  Kawthari  (Rahimahullahu)  annotated  it  with  the following  words:

Ibn  Asaakir’s  text  with  his  chain  to  Ibn  Wahb  is:  ‘Had  it  not been  for  Maalik  bin  Anas  and  Laith  bin  Sa’d,  I  would  have perished.  I  was  under  the  impression  that  everything  reported from  Nabi  (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam)  had  to  be  carried  out.’ In  one  narration  it  appears:  ‘…  I  would  have  gone  astray,’  i.e. in view of the conflict between the Ahadeeth, which happens to many ruwaat who are strangers to Fiqh; who cannot distinguish between a Hadeeth with which practice is associated from one unlike the previous.”

10.6 Qazi Bishr Bin Waleed said: “We would be by Sufyaan Bin Uyainah. When a problematic masalah would come to us, he [Imam Sufyaan] would ask: ‘Is there anyone here from the Ashaab [students, associates] of Imam Abu Haneefah?’ My name would be taken. He [Imam Sufyaan] would say [to me]: ‘Answer.’ I would then answer. He would then remark: ‘Safety in Deen is to turn to the Fuqaha.’

11. What is Quwwat-e-Ijtihaadiyyah

11.1 Now listen to the Hadeeths from which the nature of quwwat-e-ijtihaadiyyah will become manifest.  

Hadeeth One: It is reported from Hazrat Abdullah Bin Mas’ood (Radhiyallahu anhu) that Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) stated: “The Qur’an was revealed in seven dialects. Every Aayat has an apparent meaning and an inner meaning. And for every horizon there is a view. (In other words: the external purport of the Aayaat can be understood through Arabic linguistics and the hidden purport through intellectual and reasoning powers.) —Mishkaat Shareef from Sharhus Sunnah 

Hadeeth Two: Urwah Bin Zubair reports: “I enquired from Aishah (Radhiyallahu anha) about this Aayat: ‘Verily Safa and Marwah are among the salient signs of [the Deen of] Allah Ta’ala. Thus, whoever performs Haj or Umrah there is no sin on him if he makes sa’ee between the two.’ I said: ‘This Aayat teaches that there is no sin  on a person who does not make sa’ee of Safa and Marwah (which is the apparent purport of the Aayat because when there is no sin in making sa’ee the apparent meaning is that sa’ee is permitted. If one does not make sa’ee then too it will be permissible.)’ Hazrat Aishah (Radhiyallahu anha) replied: ‘O Nephew! You have made a big mistake. If this Aayat meant what you have understood from it then it would have read: ‘There is no sin in not making sa’ee between the two.”—Maalik, Bukhari, Muslim, Abu Dawood, Tirmithi and Nasaai. 

Hadeeth Three: Speaking on the virtues of the Sahaabah Hazrat Ibn Mas’ood (Radhiyallahu anhu) said: “They are the most virtuous of the entire Ummah; their hearts are pure, they possessed the deepest knowledge and they were very open and informal.”—Razeen. 

Hadeeth Four: Hazrat Ibn Juhaifah reports: “I asked Ali (Radhiyallahu anhu): ‘Do you have some knowledge which is not found in the Qur’an?’ He responded: ‘I take an Oath in that Being Who split the seed and created life! We do not have any knowledge, except for a distinct perception which Allah Ta’ala grants to whomever He wishes in [understanding] the Quraan.” —Bukhari, Tirmidhi and Nasaai.
               
Hadeeth Five: Hazrat Zaid Bin Thaabit (Radhiyallahu anhu) reports: “During the occasion of the battle with the people of Yamaamah, Abu Bakr (Radhiyallahu anhu) sent someone to call me. When I came to him, I saw Umar (Radhiyallahu anhu) sitting by him. Abu Bakr (Radhiyallahu anhu) spoke to me and said: ‘Umar came to me and advised me that many Qurra of the Quraan fell. He said: ‘I fear that if this continues then a major portion of the Quraan will be lost to us. Therefore, my advice is that you instruct the compilation of the Quraan.’ I responded: ‘How can I do something which Rasoolullah (Sallallahu alaihi wa sallam) never did?’ Umar replied: ‘Wallah! There is  only  good  in  this.’  He  repeated  this  over  and  over  again  until  I  was contented and I understood what he had understood.” —Bukhari and Tirmidhi.

From  the  aforementioned  Five  Hadeeths  collectively,  the  following points  are  clear:

Some  meanings  of  the  Nusoos  [Qur’an  and  Hadeeth  texts]  are  apparent and  some  of  the  purports  are  hidden  and  subtle.  The  latter  are  mysteries, reasons  and  wisdom.  

The  level  of  understanding  the  Nusoos  vary  among  individuals.  Some only  understand  the  apparent  meanings,  whilst  others  penetrate  the hidden  meanings.

In  this  disparity  in  comprehension,  virtue  and  merit  is  not  due  to  mere difference  in  comprehension  as  this  is  the  case  with  any  two individuals.  Rather,  this  virtue  and  merit  is  exclusive  to  a  special  level of  depth  and  penetration  and,  this  is  the  level  of  knowledge  worth  of consideration.  

This  special  level  of  understanding  is  not  the  product  of  human  effort.  It is Allah given.
 
Thus,  the  summary  of  its  [quwwat e ijtihaadiyyah’s]  nature  as concluded  from  the  above  Ahadeeth  is  that  it  is  an  exclusive  Allah given  proficiency  and  power  of  comprehension  and  deduction  by  virtue of  which  those  who  possess  this  power  discover  the  hidden  purport  and subtle  meanings  of  the  Nusoos  and  the  mysteries  and  reasons  for  the Ahkaam  pertaining  to  practice  and  belief  in  such  a  matter  that  they  are contented. Others cannot penetrate where they have penetrated.

Sometimes,  however,  their  hearts  are  contented  with  another  view.  In such a case they retract their first view.

This  power  is  called  fehmfiqhraaiijtihaadistimbaat  and  other  terms also  are  used  to  refer  to  it  in  the  Aayaat  and  Ahadeeth.

12.  The  Question  of  the  Aimmah-e-Mujtahideen Prohibiting their Taqleed  

12.1  Question:  The  Aimmah e Mujtahideen  have  themselves  said that  it  is  not  lawful  to  practice  on  their  statements  until  the  proof  is know.  Thus,  those  whom  you  make  Taqleed  of,  prohibit  this  self same Taqleed.

Response:  The  audience  of  the  above  statement  of  the  Mujtahideen is  not  those  people  who  do  not  possess  quwwat e ijtihaadiyyah, otherwise,  this  statement  of  theirs  will  firstly  clash  with  those  Ahadeeth which  permit  Taqleed  which  we  have  mentioned  earlier,  and  secondly, it will clash with their practice and other statements of theirs. 

The  clash  with  their  practice  is  that  it  is  not  documented  anywhere  that the  Mujtahideen  would  furnish  proof  when  answering  each  and  every person’s  question.  Similarly,  there  was  no  strict  adherence  to  record dalaail  [proofs]  with  their  Fataawa  which  they  compiled,  as  is  evident  in the  Kitaabs  such  as:  Jaami’  Sagheer,  etc.  It  is  an  obvious  fact  that  an answer  is  given  for  the  sake  of  practice,  whether  the  answer  is  verbal  or recorded in a book. Thus, this practice of theirs is Taqleed per se. 

The  clash  [of  the abovementioned statement]  with  their  other  statements is  that  it  is  reported  in  Hidaayah  Awwalain,  etc.  from  Imam  Abu  Yusuf (Rahmatullah  alayh)  that  if  a  person  has  blood  removed  from  his  body in  the  state  of  fasting  and  thereafter  he  intentionally  eats  or  drinks thinking  that  his  fast  had  broken  on  the  basis  of  the  Hadeeth:  “The  fast of  both,  the  cupper  and  the  one  who  was  cupped  is  broken,’  then  such  a person  will  have  to  necessarily  keep  kaffaarah.  Presenting  the  argument for  this  masalah  Imam  Abu  Yusuf  says:  “It  is  obligatory  on  a  layman [i.e.  a  non-Aalim]  to  explicitly  follow  the  Fuqaha  as  he  has  no understanding of the Ahadeeth.”

This  statement  clearly  shows  that  the  former  statement  of  the Mujtahideen  is  addressed  to  those  who  possess  quwwat e ijtihaadiyyah, not to those who lack this power. Accordingly, reflecting on that statement reveals this restriction. This is due to the fact that the words: “until the proof is not known,” evinces that they were speaking to people who had the potential to comprehend the dalaail. One who lacks quwwat e ijtihaadiyyah may be able to listen to the proof; he cannot however comprehend the proof.  

It is takleefemaa laa yutaaq [imposing the unbearable] which is Shar’i wise baatil [null and void], for a person who lacks the power to comprehend the proofs to try to comprehend the proofs. Thus, it is evident that this address [i.e. the statement of the Mujtahideen in the question] is directed to a Saahib e Ijtihaad, not to a non-Mujtahid.  

12.2 Ibn Taymiyyah states: “The Aimmah barring Taqleed is only in relation to one who has the power to draw Ahkaam from the dalaail.”—Fataawa Ibn Taymiyyah.

13.  The  Error  of  Judging  the  Ahadeeth  of  the Fuqaha on the Criteria of the Muhadditheen 

13.1  In  so  far  as  those  Ahadeeth  are  concerned  which  are  dha’eef according  to  the  Muhadditheen,  firstly  all  those  rules  and  principles  are presumptive  on  which  the  Muhadditheen  have  based  the  strength  and weakness  of  the  Ahadeeth  and  in  which  the  major  factor  is  the credentials  of  the  raawi  [narrator].  Accordingly,  in  certain  principles, the Muhadditheen themselves are split. 

Similarly,  a  raawi  being  thiqah  [reliable]  or  ghair-thiqah  [unreliable]  is also  presumptive  [i.e.  speculative,  not  categorical].  Hence,  the Muhadditheen  differ  in  regard  to  many  narrators.  Furthermore, preference  for  declaring  a  narrator  unreliable  over  his  reliability  is conditional  to  many  restrictions  and  it  is  not  accepted  that  all  the conditions  are  found  everywhere.  The  books  on  this  subject  reveal  the veracity of this point.

When  these  rules  and  principles  are  presumptive  then  how  can  they  be binding  on  all?  When  the  Fuqaha  have  formulated  other  principles  to judge  the  strength  and  weakness  of  the  Ahadeeth  on  the  basis  of  dalaail, as  appears  in  the  Usool e Fiqh  Kitaabs,  there  is  no  reason  then  for objection.  Thus,  it  is  quite  possible  that  a  certain  Hadeeth  is  unreliable in  the  light  of  the  Muhadditheen’s  standards,  but  according  to  the standards  of  the  Fuqaha  the  same  Hadeeth  is  worthy  of  being  a  basis  for formulating Ahkaam

Secondly,  dhu’f  or  weakness  is  not  an  inherent  quality  of  a  Hadeeth. Dhu’f  is  due  to  the  raawi.  Thus,  it  is  quite  possible  that  a  Mujtahid received  a  Hadeeth  with  a  Saheeh  sanad  [authentic  chain]  and  later  on the  sanad  was  tarnished  by  the  addition  of  a  weak  narrator.  Therefore, the  later  dhu’f  does  not  harm  the  earlier  contention  and  proof  of  the Mujtahid

Once  the  Mujtahid  has  employed  a  Hadeeth  in  his  argument—bearing in  mind  that  employing  a  Hadeeth  for  this  purpose  is  dependent  on  the authenticity  of  the  Hadeeth—then  the  Mujtahid  has  actually authenticated  the  Hadeeth.  This  is  the  purport  of  the  Ulama’s  statement: “When  a  Mujtahid  advances  a  Hadeeth  in  his  argument  it  is  his authentication  of  the  Hadeeth.”  Thus,  regardless  of  its  sanad  being doubtful,  according  to  the  muqallid  the  Hadeeth  will  be  judged  to  be Saheeh,  as  is  the  case  with  the  Ta’leeqaat  of  Imam  Bukhari (Rahmatullahi  alayh).  Therefore,  there  is  no  disadvantage  to  the Mujtahid’s argument on account of such a Hadeeth.      

13.2  It  is  only  befitting  to  mention  here  that  the  Thulaathiyyaat [Ahadeeth  in  which  there  are  only  3  links  to  Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu alayhi  wa  sallam).  These  Ahadeeth  are  much  prized  by  the Muhadditheen]  by  Imam  Bukhari  and  other  Muhadditheen  are  very  few. You  can  judge  from  this  that,  in  the  entire  Bukhari  Shareef  there  are  not more  than  2022  Thulaathiyyaat.  Imam  Abu  Haneefah,  on  the  other hand,  by  virtue  of  him  being  earlier,  and  a  Taabi’i,  his  narrations  are predominantly  Thulaathiyyaat.  In  fact,  there  are  even  Thunaaiyyaat [Ahadeeth  with  only  2  links  to  Rasoolullah  (Sallallahu  alayhi  wa  sallam) to  his  credit].  Hence,  Imam  Shar’aani  Shaafi’i  has  written:  “I  have studied  authentic  copies  of  Imam  Abu  Haneefah’s  3  Masaaneed [Hadeeth  works  with  chains  that  are  linked  to  Rasoolullah  Sallallahu alaihi  wa  sallam]  endorsed  by  the  Huffaaz  of  Hadeeth.  I  found  every Hadeeth  to  be  the  report  of  excellent  and  righteous  Taabi’een,  the  likes of  Aswad,  Alqamah,  Ataa,  Ikrimah,  Mujaahid,  Makhool,  Hasan  Basri and others.

Thus,  between  Imam  Abu  Haneefah  and  the  Office  of  Risaalat (Sallallahu  alaihi  wa  sallam),  all  the  narrators  were  honest  and  up righteous  Aalims,  and  they  were  eminent  Buzrugs  [Saints].  None  of them  was  a  liar  or  one  accused  of  mendacity.  It  is  for  this  reason  that the  Aimmah e Hadeeth  and  the  Ulama  have  concluded  that  the Ahadeeth  with  which  the  Aimmah e Matboo’een e Mujtahideen  have formulated  Fiqh,  are  much  more  reliable  and  accredited  than  the  later Ahadeeth,  because  those  illustrious  Fuqaha  were  the  Asaatizah

The Schools of Islamic Fiqh (Jurisprudence): A Brief Introduction

[Translated and partly prepared by: Mufti Obaidullah Qasmi, Maulana Afzal Qasmi, Mufti Muhammadullah Khalili Qasmi]

Meaning of Fiqhi Schools

Fiqhi School is basically the name of different trends which have been adopted to derive solution of matters from the principal Shariah sources. The concept of Fiqhi schools was not prevalent in the period of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) and the companions as it is today, but the basis of these trends was found and they were known in the period of the companions. These trends turned in to the form of Fiqhi schoos in the last period of the Sahaba (companions) and their successors. These trends got more accurate and new building erected at the foundation of separate rules and regulations.

Background of Fiqhi Schools

In the previous lines, it has been mentioned that at the time of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) sometimes two different companions used to differ in understanding the saying of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam). In these examples, there was possibility of taking different meanings since these examples were related to non-principal and partial matters. There is no place for such difference of understanding in the basic principles of religion. Therefore, the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) held right two opposite meanings of a guidance. Even, in the Glorious Qur’an, at many places there was possibility of taking various meanings. This difference of understanding sometimes was based on the word having two opposite meanings. Sometimes, the word had two meanings; one real and the other metaphor.

Sometimes, the outer condition of the word gave a meaning and after contemplating the word or looking in to the context it gave another meaning. Some of the companions have adopted the first trend, so they used to stick to the outer meaning of the verses and Hadith. While some others tried to go in to the depth of the matter keeping the spirit of the Shariah and context in their view, and they used to issue orders accordingly. There is a famous account that once the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) ordered a group of the companions to offer the prayer of Asr in the locality of the Banu Quraizah. The companions went out and the time of ‘Asr approached in the mid way. A group of the companions said that the Prophet meant that we reach quickly, so they offered ‘Asr prayer in the mid way. While the rest, acting upon the outer meaning of the order, first reached to Banu Quraizah and they could only offer ‘Asr prayer after Isha. When the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) was apprised of the incident, he objected none of the two.
When the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) left for his heavenly abode, the companions faced new issues about which there were no clear orders in the Glorious Quran and Hadith. So, the companions contemplated in to those matters in the light of the Quran and Hadith. As before, this contemplation was of two kinds and their opinions differed because of the difference in trends. The Tab’een (those who followed the companions) learnt the knowledge of Islam from the companions and thus theses trends shifted to them. The new issues and matters came up in abundance and they solved them according to their trends. Basically, it was this difference of trends which was associated with some other reasons that caused the formation variant jurisprudential interpretations. These Fiqhi scholars were in different cities of the Muslim rule and each had a circle of students and followers around him. Thus, their interpretations got the shape of a Fiqhi Maslak.

Logic of the Prevalent Fiqhi Schools

In the beginning, there were many Fiqhi schools and their followers. But as the time passed by, the followers of some schools, under various reasons, got lesser and lesser. All of their Fiqhi opinions and interpretative judgments were not compiled, and they became a part of the history. Only some of their opinions are found in few books and writings of the early authors. The other Fiqhi schools succeeded to win such scholars and jurists who compiled all the opinions and findings the particular school. They set up the rules and regulations and propagated them. Later, these Fiqhi schools enjoyed such scholars of Fiqh who transferred this asset to their successors and rendered a marvelous service to safeguard this treasure. These schools survived. In Ahlus Sunnah, there are Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi’i and Hanbali Fiqhi schools, while in the Shiites there are Ja’fariyah and Zaidiyah Fiqhs.

HANAFI FIQH

Introduction of Hanafi School of Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence)

Fiqh Hanafi is the oldest of all four Sunni Fiqhi schools. The Fiqhi rules and matters were first compiled in this school. This school spread the most in the Islamic world and it is followed by a majority of the Muslims. This Fiqh is attributed to Imam Abu Hanifah and therefore is called Hanafi. It came in to being at Kufa and the compilation was carried out by collective research and interpretations. This Fiqh is originally based on the opinions, fatwas, judgments and thinking methods of the outstanding Companion Hadhrat Abdullah bin Mas’ood (radhiyallahu anhu) and fourth Caliph Hadhrat Ali bin Abu Talib (radhiyallahu anhu). These opinions, fatwas, judgments and thinking methods reached Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) by the channel of Hammad bin Abi Sulaiman, Hadhrat Ibrahim Nakh’ee and Hadhrat Alqamah. (Rahimahumullah) Imam Muhammad bin Hasan Shaibani (rahimahullah), the renowned disciple of Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah), recorded the thousands of mas’alas (issues or cases) in to form of a book which were derived and compiled by a panel of forty ablest students and friends of Imam Abu Hanifah. Imam Abu Yusuf Ya’qub bin Ibrahim Ansari, the other student of Imam Abu Hanifah, played a prominent role in compiling and spreading Fiqh Hanafi.

Imam Abu Hanifah (rahmatullah alayh)

The name of Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) is Nu’man bin Sabit. Abu Hanifah is his nickname. He was born in 80 Hijri in Kufa, a city of present day Iraq. As a profession, his family was cloth merchant and he also took in the same profession. A famous scholar of Kufa, Sha’bi apprehended his sharp-mindedness and sought him to achieve education. So, he joined the prominent circle of Hadhrat Hammad bin Abi Sulaiman (rahimahullah) and remained in his company till his demise. He benefited from all the scholars of Hadith in Kufa. He traveled Hijaz many a times and learned from the scholars and other educated ones. He benefited from Imam Malik (rahimahullah) in Madinah and Imam Malik (rahimahullah) also benefited from him. He had so many teachers; among them are senior Tab’een (the successor of the companions of Prophet) from Makkah, Madinah, Iraq and Syria. He himself was a Tab’ee, since he had the honour of visiting some companions of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam), though he did not narrate from them. After the demise of Hadhrat Hammad (rahimahullah) , all of his students agreed that Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) , the youngest of them, is ablest among them to succeed their Shaikh. So they forced him to take over his position. This circle had the grand collection of the derivation method of Hadhrat Umar Farooq (radhiyallahu anhu), traditions and fatwas of Hadhrat Abdullah bin Mas’ood (radhiyallahu anhu), rulings and thoughts of Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallahu anhu) and the Hadiths and traditions of scholars of Hadith in Kufa. Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) was bestowed matchless mind, power of understanding and derivation, expansion and depth in knowledge. He had good moral characters and held a high position in fearing Allah, piety, righteousness and nobility. He was prosperous, so he used to spend wealth wholeheartedly in the path of Allah. He was famous in honesty in dealings and business. Because of these virtues, his circle of teaching earned fame far and wide and prominent scholars started to attend his classes where this generous teacher encouraged them and discussed the academic matters openly. He observed the Umayyad sultanate and witnessed its decline. The Abbasid caliphate was established before his eyes. Some Alvis also made armed efforts to gain power. Realizing them as able for the position, he extended oral and financial support to them. When the Abbasid caliphate was established the Caliph Mansoor offered him the post of Qazi, most probably, in order to test his loyalty to his government. He denied it and as a punishment was whipped lashes at public place and was put in to prison. He was then about seventy years old. He continued teaching while he was in prison and the punishment of whips also continued. Ultimately, he died in prison in 150 H in the month of Rajab and was buried in the graveyard of Khaizuran.

Method & Characteristics

The Fiqh of Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) bears this characteristic that it was collectively formulated. Hadhrat Umar Farooq (radhiyallahu anhu) populated the city of Kufa with keen interest and sent Hadhrat Abdullah bin Mas’ood (radhiyallahu anhu) as teacher and Qazi with this letter: “O people of Kufa! I prefer you on myself by sending Ibn Mas’ood.” So much of the companions turned to Kufa that it accommodated more than one thousand companions. Hadhrat Ali Murtaza (radhiyallahu anhu), the fourth Caliph of Islam, made it his capital. Later, this city competed the cities of Makkah and Madinah in Hadith and Islamic sciences. This city was newly built, therefore the new coverts, who were from urban background and brought with them an asset of Greek and Persian sciences and philosophy, inhabited there in a big number. The mixing of Arabs with Iranian culture created countless many new problems and issues. On the other side, there came up so many sects due to political differences and amalgamation of religions and nations. Some of them were secretly involved in anti-Islamic efforts. One of these phenomena was to forge false Hadith. Every sect forged Hadith to support its view. The cities of Hijaz; Makkah and Madinah, were secure from such kinds of special cases to an extent.

Hadhrat Umar Farooq (radhiyallahu anhu) had a special relation with Iraq. He himself sent Hadhrat Abdullah bin Mas’ood (radhiyallahu anhu) to Kufa. Hadhrat Umar (radhiyallahu anhu) was given the title of Muhaddith from the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) i.e. ‘his tongue and heart spoke according to the revelation‘. There were several verses in the Glorious Quran which were revealed according to his opinion. Hadhrat Umar Farooq (radhiyallahu anhu) prevented the companions to go out of Madinah in his time of caliphate. He formed two groups among the companions. He used to consult smaller group of the elder companions in special cases. And, whenever there happened to occur any important matter he used to assemble all of the companions for consultations. His style of derivation was that he used to deliberate in the depth of the Qur’an and Hadith, used to keep the objectives of Shariah and the interest of the Muslims before his eyes, observed the circumstances and used to reach a conclusion by collective decision. His interpretative judgments and Awwaliyaat (pioneering judgments) are well known, and they not only played a key role to enliven the Islamic Shariah in the wide Islamic caliphate but also provided a firm basis for his successors. This style of derivation was circulated in Kufa by Hadhrat Ali and Abdullah bin Mas’ood (rashiyallahu anhum). Hadhrat Ibn Mas’ood (radhiyallahu anhu)and his disciples, Alqamah and Ibrahim Nakh’ee (rahimahumullah), on one hand applied strict laws in accepting narrations so that no false Hadith is accepted. On the other hand, they avoided attributing Hadith directly to the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) and liked to narrate attributing to companions and Tab’eens lest an incorrect meaning is associated to the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam). Thirdly, they applied their reasons and issued fatwas. These were the characteristics and styles that Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) inherited.

Collective Compilation of Fiqh

When Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) formed his penal to compile Fiqh he selected forty people from among his students. They were experts of Qur’anic exegesis, Hadith, Asma ur Rijal (complete record of the narrators), language, literature, logic, philosophy, analogy, history, mathematics and several other sciences. He himself had the experience of trade and marketing. He started this noble mission of compiling Fiqh. It was thus that a matter was presented before the panel and each member used to express his view, and he himself put his opinion. Sometimes, the discussion continued till a month on a single matter. When a decision was reached on he ordered to record it down. The matter was discussed in the light of Quran and Hadith. If they did not find any evidence in any of them, they turned to the sayings of the companions. Having failed they used to apply analogy. All the members also sometimes discussed analogy and some times discrete in legal matters. The conclusions of the discussion were written down in registers. Thus, the Mas’alas of Fiqh were compiled in a new order. This order was known as Fiqhi order; starting from chapter of prayers, dealings and ending at inheritance. It is said that thus 500,000 matters were compiled and 38000 matters of them were related to prayers.

Method of Derivation

Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) himself describes his method of derivation: “First of all I look in to the Noble Quran, then search the matter in the Hadith of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) and take the narrations of the Faqeeh (jurist) narrators. If the matter is not found in the Quran and Hadith, then I turn to the sayings of the companions. If their opinions differ then I prefer any of them. If the opinions of the companions contradict the opinions of others I never go against the opinions of the companions. And, when it come to the opinions of Ibrahim Nakh’ee, Hasan Basari, Ibn Seereen, Saeed bin Musayyib and others then I also apply mind and interpret as they do.

Principle Books

After the collective compilation of the Fiqh matters, some companions of Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) wrote books. There is no book recorded on Fiqh by Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) . But, the books of his disciple Imam Muhammad Shaibani (rahimahullah) are considered to the first and foremost source of Hanafi Fiqh. In Fiqh Hanafi there are three types of books:

(1) Books of ‘Zahir Al-Riwayah’
(2) Books of ‘Nawadir’
(3) Fatawa and Waqiaat.

The contents of Zahir Al-Riwayah are most trusted ones. Zahir Al-Riwayah is a collection of six books written by Imam Muhammad (rahimahullah).

1. Al-Jami’ Al-Sageer: Eesa bin Aban and Muhammad bin Sama’ah narrated this book from Imam Muhammad (rahimahullah). In this book, Imam Muhammad (rahimahullah) narrated from Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) through Imam Abu Yusuf (rahimahullah) . But, this book does not contain proofs.

2. Al-Jami’ Al-Kabeer: This book is like the previous one, but it deals with the subjects in details.

3. Ziyadaat: This is the complementary of Al-Jame’ Al-Kabeer.

4. Al-Mabsoot: This is also known as ‘Al-Asl’. In this book, Imam Muhammad (rahimahullah) has collected the thousands of Mas’alas that were derived by Imam Abu Hanifah (rahimahullah) . This book deals with Ahadith that is followed by Mas’alas and the variant opinions of the contemporary Ulama.

5. Al-Siyar Al-Sageer: This book deals with the subject of Jihad and international laws.

6. Al-Siyar Al-Kabeer: This is his last Fiqhi book that was narrated by Abu Sulaiman Jauzjani.

Muhammad bin Ahmad Marwazi, known as Hakim Shahid, amassed all of Imam Muhammad’s (rahimahullah) books with the name of ‘Al-Kafi’ after the deletion of repeated matters.
Imam Sarkhasi has written its detailed commentary named as ‘Al-Mabsoot’.

Nawadir comprises the matters that are found in books other than the books of Imam Muhammad (rahimahullah) or in the books of Imam Abu Yusuf (rahimahullah) or Imam Hasan bin Ziyad (rahimahullah) . The collection of Nawadir consists of:

1. Harooniyaat: Imam Muhammad (rahimahullah) dictated it in the reign of Caliph Haroon Al-Rashid, this book is attributed to the Caliph.

2. Kisaniyaat: The narrations of his student Shoaib bin Sulaiman Kisani.

3. Ruqyaat: These are the matters that he expressed while he was Qazi in Ruqa area.

4. Kitabul Mujarrad: It is written by Hasan bin Ziyad.

5. Kitabul Amali: It is attributed to Imam Abu Yusuf (rahimahullah).

Nawazil were the Mas’alas about which there was no mention in the aforementioned books and the succeeding scholars of Fiqh derived solutions keeping these books before them. Kitab Al-Nawazil of Abul Lais Samarqandi, Majmoo’un Nawazil wal Waqi’aat of Natifi and Al-Waqi’aat of Sadr Shahid are well known among scholars.

                     MALIKI FIQH

Introduction of Maliki School of Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence)

Fiqh Maliki came in to being after the Fiqh Hanafi in historical order. This was a good mixture of Hadith and reason. It was founded in the city of the Prophet Madinah and was called Maliki after the name of Imam Malik bin Anas (rahimahullah) . Madinah was the holy city where each and every house was enlightened with the rays of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam). The citizens of Madinah had the honour to accompany the Prophet for a long time and they were directly addressed in the revelations and the matters of Shariah. When the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) left for his heavenly abode, there were a many companions who stayed at Madinah. Specially, the environment of Madinah was resounding with the traditions, narrations and fatawa of Hadhrat Umar, Hadhrat Abdullah bin Umar, Hadhrat Aaishah, Hadhrat Zaid bin Sabit, Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (radhiyallahu anhum) and so on. The Fiqh Maliki is based on the traditions and opinions of these companions of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam).

Imam Malik (rahimahullah)

Imam Malik bin Anas bin Malik bin Abu Aamir Asbahi (rahimahullah) was born in Madinah in 93 Hijra. His father, uncle and grandfather were great scholars of Hadith. His great grandfather Abu Aamir (radhiyallahu anhu) was a companion of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) who embraced Islam in second year of Hijra and participated all the battles with the Messenger except Badr. The environment of Madinah was resonating with the voices of Hadith when Imam Malik (rahimahullah) was born. The elder Tab’een and their students were busy in teaching and learning Hadith. Imam Malik (rahimahullah) obtained the knowledge of Hadith from senior Tab’een and their successors. First of all, he attended Abdur Rahman bin Hurmuz and benefited from him for a long period. From among his prominent teachers is Hadhrat Nafe’ (rahimahullah) , (the freed slave of Hadhrat Abdullah bin Umar and his academic heir), Muhammad bin Shihab Zuhri, Imam Jaffar bin Sadiq, Muhammad bin Yahya Ansari (rahimahumullah) etc. He gained the knowledge of Fiqh exclusively by Rabi’ah bin Abdur Rahman (rahimahullah) who is known as Rabi’atur Rai. Apart from these scholars of Hijaz, selected Ulama, Scholars of Hadith and sheikhs would come from every nook and corner of the Islamic world to Madinah at the time of Hajj and there would hold circles and classes of learning and narration. Imam Malik (rahimahullah) benefited greatly from these occasions and attended the circles of great scholars. When he reached the scholarly position that, according to Sufyan bin Uyainah (rahimahullah) , the foretelling of the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) befitted him that ‘people will travel the world for knowledge and they will not find any scholar greater than that of Madinah’ and seventy other sheikhs certified that he became able to start his own circle, then he started his circle in the Mosque of the Prophet with a elegance that his circle was an ideal of staidness and sedateness. He would take bath and put on best of dresses, apply perfume and then would go to class. Scented woods and perfumes also were incensed occasionally. He used to give lectures with such an elegance that no noise was heard when the pages were turned. He would not tolerate even a petty improper movement or noise. When anyone posed him a question he used to answer him. Generally, his students used to read out and he would rectify the mistakes. His lectures were attended by many of his significant teachers as well.

Imam Malik (rahimahullah) was bestowed with special privileges. On one hand, he was a great Muhaddith and has a high and authentic chain of narration. Those who narrated from him were Rabi’atur Rai, Yahya bin Sa’eed and Musa bin Uqbah (from among his teachers), Imam Abu Hanifah, Sufyan Sauri, Lais bin Sa’d, Awza’ee, Imam Abu Yusuf etc (from among his coetaneous). Among his prominent students are Imam Shafi’i, Abdullah bin Mubarak, Imam Muhammad bin Hasan Shaibani (rahimahumullah) and so on. His second characteristic was that he was a great scholar of Islamic Jurisprudence and Mujtahid (authority to interpret in Islamic matters). Outstanding Ulama and Imams of Fiqh have benefited from his Fiqhi views. The Caliphs Haroon Al-Rasheed, Abu Jaffar Mansoor and Mahdi and Mamoon also attended his lectures. In the beginning of Abbasid period he also had to pass through troubled conditions. In the reign of Caliph Mansoor, when Nafs Zakiyyah raised the claim of caliphate, Imam Malik supported him. Mansoor disliked it and tried to look for a pretext to catch him. Imam Malik (rahimahullah) was of the opinion that forced Bay’ah (pledge of allegiance) conditioned with divorce is unacceptable. The Governor of Mansoor in Madinah asked him to avoid issuing such fatwas. When he did not stop he was so lashed at his naked arms that it was disjointed.

He stayed throughout of his life in Madinah. He was so conscious about the honour of Prophet’s city that he did not even like to ride at places where the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) set his steps. He died in Madinah in 179 Hijra and was buried in Jannat-ul Baqee, the famous graveyard of Madinah.

Characteristics & Salient Features

Fiqh Maliki has acquired this prominence that it is a beautiful composite of narration and reason. Imam Malik (rahimahullah) , on one hand, was a great Muhaddith and has absorbed the Ahadith of the companions of Madinah. He himself compiled the pioneering Hadith book named ‘Muwatta’. While, on the other hand, he is a torchbearer of Fiqh. He has recorded his Fiqhi views with the views and opinions of the companions and their successors. He derived Mas’alas keeping the commonweal and objective of Shariah in view. He gave commonwealth so importance that it is counted one of the characteristics of Fiqh Maliki.

The Style of Derivation

Imam Malik (rahimahullah) obtained knowledge staying in Madinah and there he started teaching. He benefited fully from the Ahadith and fatwas of companions in Madinah and get enlightenment from them. He was well aware of the Ahadith of the companions of Madinah and he used to trust them more. So this impression seems to overshadow Fiqh Maliki. The people of Medina witnessed the life of Prophet very closely and were directly trained by the Prophet. Hence, a general practice of people of Madinah was very important to him and he used to consider their practice as Ijma (consensus). He gave it such importance that if Khabr-e-Wahid (narration of single person) contradicted their practice he would not trust the Hadith of the single narrator.

The style of his derivation was that first of all he looked in to the Qur’an, then in the traditions of the Prophet. In traditions he used to rely more on the scholars of Hadith from Hijaz and practice of Madinite citizens. He preferred the fatwas and rulings of Hadhrat Umar and Hadhrat Abdullah bin Umar (radhiyallahu anhu), then the fatwas of the other companions of Madinah and then those of the seven Scholars of Fiqh in Madinah. When he did not find any proof in Hadith he would turn to analogy. Also, he tried his level best to shut the door of evil sources. Instead of looking in the incident he would look in to the cause of the matter and prevent the causes that may lead to Haram or evil.

Fundamental Books

The first and foremost of Fiqh Maliki books is Muwatta of Imam Malik (rahimahullah) in which he collected Hadith with Fiqhi views. The second book is ‘Al-Mudawwnatul Kubra’ that contains matters that were answered by Imam Malik (rahimahullah) . First, his pupil Asad bin Furat (rahimahullah) recorded it from Abdur Rahman bin Qasim (rahimahullah) . But, Abdus Salam Saeed Sahnoon (rahimahullah) prepared a copy of it and presented it to bin Qasim (rahimahullah) who made corrections. This manuscript was known as Mudawwanah. Among the early books of Fiqh Maliki are ‘Al-Waziha’ of Abdul Malik bin Habib, ‘Utaibah’ of Muhammad bin Abu Bakr and ‘Muwaziyah’ of Muhammad bin Muwazi Misri. Among his promninent pupils are Abdullah bin Wahab, Abdur Rahman bin Qasim, Ashhab bin Abdul Aziz and Abdul Malik bin Majishoon.

                    SHAFI’I FIQH

Introduction of Shafi’i School of Fiqh (Islamic Jurisprudence)

Fiqh Shafi’i is the third Fiqhi school of Islamic Jurisprudence attributed to Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah). Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah), on one hand, is a student of Imam Malik (rahimahullah) , he learnt the Fiqh Maliki and Hijazi thoughts from him. On the other hand, he attended Imam Muhammad bin Hasan Shaibani (rahimahullah) and learnt Fiqh Hanafi and Iraqi style of Fiqh. Apart from having acquired these two Fiqhs, he directly benefited from other Fiqhi trends and the Imams. So, he benefited from Umar bin Abu Salma (rahimahullah) , a disciple of Imam Awzai (rahimahullah) whose Fiqh was prevalent in Syria. In Egypt, the Fiqh of Imam Lais bin Sa’d (rahimahullah) was followed so he benefited from his disciple Yahya bin Hassaan (rahimahullah). Thus, the Fiqh Shafi’i accumulated all the virtues of all known Fiqhi schools and trends. Being a towering Islamic Jurist, Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah) was a great Muahaddith. He had aquired the narrations of the Muhaddith of Makkah Sufyan bin Unainah (rahimahullah) and the narrations of Muhaddith of Madinah, Imam Malik bin Anas (rahimahullah). The Fiqh of Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah) was founded at Makkah. Then, passing from Madinah, Iraq and Baghdad it arrived in Egypt. There it reached its peaks. As the Fiqh Hanafi is greatly impressed by the views of Hadhrat Abdullah bin Mas’ood and Hadhrat Ali (radhiyallah anhum)and the Fiqh Maliki has heavily benefited from the opinions of Hadhrat Umar and Hadhrat Abdullah bin Umar (radhiyallahu anhum), the Fiqh Shafi’i has drew inspiration from the views of Hadhrat Abdullah bin Abbas (radhiyallahu anhu).

Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah)

The name of Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah) is Abu Abdullah Muhammad bin Idrees. His family tree joins that of the Prophet at his ninth great-grandfather Muttalib bin Abd Munaf. He was a member of Quraish tribe. He was born in 150 Hijra in Gaza city of Palestine. This was not his native place but his father happened to visit that place and expired there. At the age of two, his mother took him to his ancestral home at Makkah. He learnt the eloquence and nuance of Arabic language in the tribe of Huzail and memorized the Holy Qur’an. Then, he associated himself with Muslim bin Khalid Zanji (rahimahullah), the Sheikh and Mufti of Haram, and completed his education. Then, he came in Madinah to Imam Malik (rahimahullah) to learn the Qur’an and Hadith. He had already memorized the Muwatta of Imam Malik. Imam Malik (rahimahullah) was very impressed by him. Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah) was not financially well so he looked for a source of income. Eventually he was given the governorship of Najran. He went to Najran and discharged his duties with much honesty and trustworthiness. Haroon Al Rashid was then Caliph and he was disturbed on the account of Alvis’ uprisings. Somebody complained him that Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah)  tends to the Alvis. As a result, he was summoned to Baghdad and later discharged after clarification and some recommendations. Utilizing his presence in Iraq, he joined the circle of Imam Muhammad (rahimahullah) and learnt Hanafi Fiqh. He held discussions with Imam Muhammad (rahimahullah) and studied the books of Hanafi Fiqh. Then, he returned to Hijaz and stayed there for nine more years. In this span of time, he busied himself in learning and teaching. He used to meet the selected scholars of Islamic world who visited Makkah at the time of Hajj. He would narrate from them as they narrate from him. Again, he visited Baghdad. Till this time his method of derivation and interpretation had been set up. So, many scholars joined him and he dictated some of his books to them. These opinions are called ‘Old Maslak’ or Iraqi Views. After about two years, he left Baghdad and till that time there came up a team of scholars who followed his Fiqh. Thrice, he returned to Baghdad and after a few months’ stay proceeded to Egypt. Here, he reviewed his previous opinions and in many matters he retracted and adopted new opinions. In Egypt, he authored his new books and with the power of his interpretations spread his school of Islamic Jurisprudence. Previously, the Maliki School of Fiqh was prevailing in Egypt, but with the advent of Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah) his Fiqhi School dominated there. The new books he compiled in Egypt and the new ideas which he expressed there are called ‘New Maslak’. He died in Egypt in 204 Hijri and was buried therein.

Characteristics & Distinguishing Qualities

Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah) was luckiest among all the Imams that he was bestowed ‘comprehensiveness’. Due to stay in Hijaz. He gathered a pile of Ahadith and traditions. Makkah was his native place; he attended Imam Malik (rahimahullah) in Madinah. Then, he explored Iraq and Egypt. Thus, he became a great scholar of Hadith in his age. In the field of Fiqh, he learnt the derivation style of Hadhrat Abdullah bin Abbas (radhiyallahu anhu) in Makkah and that of Hadhrat Umar and Abdullah bin Umar (radhiyallahu anhu) in Madinah from Imam Malik (rahimahullah) . Then, in Iraq he learnt Hanafi Fiqh from Imam Muhammad (rahimahullah) , in Syria he learnt the Fiqh of Imam Awza’ee (rahimahullah) and in Egypt the Fiqh of Imam Lais bin Sa’d (rahimahullah) . Besides, he was conferred with a tremendous power of imagination and accumulation and best of interpretative styles. So he absorbed the virtues of all the Fiqhi schools and avoided the positions that were not up to his standard. Till his age, the compilation of Hadith had begun and he himself had collected Ahadith exploring different cities. He observed that the other schools of Fiqh have applied analogy in matters about which Hadith is found so he extracted rulings according to Hadith. So, the tendency to support and defend Hadith overpowered him. The scholars of Fiqh in Iraq had conditioned that only the Ahadith will be accepted that are narrated by a number of people, and the scholars of Madinah were of the opinion that only the Ahadith will be accepted that match the practice of Madinite citizens. He opposed them and did not allow widening the area of analogy.

The Fiqh Shafi’i bear this characteristic that the founder of this Fiqh himself compiled a big part of his School. Thus, he recorded the rules and regulations and the derivation method of his Fiqhi School in the shape of a book. And, with his best power of interpretation he proved his methods and styles. The other distinct feature of this Fiqh is that the founder himself spread and publicized his Fiqh traveling in different cities. This was the reason that great Islamic scholars were among his followers and students. Great scholars of Hadith and compilers of Hadith books tended to this Fiqh and genius personalities of Islamic history followed it.

Principle Books

Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah) himself authored the principle books of his Fiqh. His master piece of work is “Al-Umm‘ which he wrote in Baghdad and made some modifications while his stay in Egypt. His second famous book is ‘Al-Risalah‘ that deals with the rules of derivation and inference. It is the first book on the subject. This book contains the complete compiled principles of Fiqh Shafi’i. There are some other books that are attributed to him but the aforementioned two books are well known. The other significant books on Fiqh Shafi’i are ‘Mukhtasar‘ of Imam Buwaiti (student of Imam Shafi’i) and the book of Imam Muzani (rahimahullah) . Among his distinguished students are Rabi bin Sulaiman Muradi (rahimahullah) who narrated and propagated his books, Ismail bin Yahya Muzani (rahimahullah) whose books are considered base for Fiqh Shafi’i and Yusuf bin Yahya Buwaiti (rahimahullah) . The trio benefited from him in Egypt. His students in Iraq were Ibrahim bin Khalid Kalbi, Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal, Hasan bin Muhammad bin Sabbah bin Zafrani and Ahmad bin Yahya bin Abdul Aziz Baghdadi (rahimahumullah).

Derivation Method

Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah) has described his derivation method in his book ‘Al-Umm‘ in detail. Concisely, it is that first of all he looked in to the Glorious Qur’an and took the outer meaning unless there is a proof that the outer meaning is not intended. Then, he would turn to Hadith. In Hadith, he used to take Khabr Wahid (traditions narrated by one to one person). Then, he would opt for Ijma (consensus) and finally he would go for analogy.

                  HANBALI FIQH

Introduction of Hanbali School of Fiqh

This is fourth Fiqhi school of Ahlus Sunnah attributed to Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal (rahimahullah) . Fiqh Hanbali falls in the last in historical order. The personality of Imam Ahmad (rahimahullah) is more Muhaddith than Faqeeh, therefore this aspect seems to dominate his Fiqh. Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah) who accumulated all the Fiqhi trends and interpretations, was his main teacher. He paid most of his attention to Hadith. So he became a genius Muahaddith and compiled the great encyclopedia of Hadith ‘Al-Musnad‘. Despite the fact that he was enjoying the virtues of Fiqh and Ijtehad, he did not like to compile his opinions and interpretations. But, it was destined that his Fiqhi School not only survived but also developed in the Islamic world as one of the dominant Fiqhi schools of Ahlus Sunnah. The Hanbali Fiqh was evolved and passed through all the stages of development in Iraq.

Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal (rahimahullah)

His name is Ahmad bin Hanbal bin Hilal Zuhli Shaibani (rahimahullah). He was born in 164 Hijri in Baghdad and grew up in orphan-hood. His father was a prominent soldier, but he died in Imam Ahmad’s (rahimahullah) childhood. He was not financially strong, so he inherited hard work, determination and firmness against troubles. To begin with, he memorized the Glorious Qur’an. Then, he busied himself in learning in Baghdad and paid special attention to Hadith. He attended the famous Muhaddith of Baghdad Hushaim bin Bashir (rahimahullah). Then, he started traveling from place to place in search of Hadith. He journeyed five times to Basra and five times to Hijaz. He learnt from Imam Shafi’i (rahimahullah) in Baghdad and acquired the knowledge of Fiqh and Hadith. When Imam Shafi’i was leaving Baghdad he said that Ahmad bin Hanbal (rahimahullah) has a leading position in seven things: Quran, Hadith, Fiqh, Linguistics, asceticism, dispense with the world and piety. Similarly, he learnt from Sufyan bn Uyainah, Abu Bakr bin Ayyash, Waki bin Jarrah, Abdur Rahman bin Mahdi and Saeed bin Qattan (rahimahumullah) .The historic incident of his life is the matter of ‘Khalq-e-Quran‘ which he faced with determination and courage. The Caliph, Mamoon asked him to believe that Qur’an is a creation of Allah’ with so strictness that the most valorous people were shaken. But, Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal (rahimahullah) demanded proof from the Qur’an and Hadith. He was given severest of punishments and put in trouble for a long period, but he stood firm. This incident was written with golden ink in the History of safeguarding the beliefs and faith of Muslims.

Characteristics & Important Features

Fiqh Hanbali owns some characteristics as other Fiqhi schools have special qualities. Though, Imam Ahmad (rahimahullah) was expert of Hadith and Fiqh, but Hadith was his favourite subject. Therefore, instead of compiling his Fiqhi views and fatwas he took interest in compiling Hadith. From his early age, he started compiling Hadith. His ‘Musnad‘ consists of more than forty thousand traditions. His interest in Sunnah was so established that it dominated his school of Fiqh. So, he regarded the Holy Qur’an and Hadith as basic source and benefited from the fatwas of the companions. Then, he would refer to Weak and Mursal Ahadith (that were not directly narrated by the Prophet). Finally, he resorted to analogy.

The main characteristic of Fiqh Hanbali is that they, unlike other Fiqhi Schools, have regarded wisdom (Hikmat) more important than reason (Illat). They have utilized the rule of ‘Isteshab‘ which means that the already proved matter will be maintained until there happens something contradictory. Then, they have the principles of ‘public interest’ and ‘shutting down the door of evils’.

Principle Books

As mentioned above, Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal (rahimahullah) did not like to compile his Fiqhi opinions and interpretative judgments. But, his able students, among whom are his two sons as well; Salih bin Ahmad and Abdullah bin Ahmad (rahimahumullah) , who recoded it. The most brilliant among his students are Abu Bakr Ahmad bin Muhammad bin Hani, Ahmad bin Hajjaj Marwazi and Ishaq bin Ibrahim known as Ibn Rahwaih (rahimahumullah) . The trio have authored ‘Kitabus Sunan‘ in Fiqh. But, the credit of recording and compiling all the fatwas and views of Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal goes to Abu Bak Khallal who compiled his fatwas in two hundred parts. This was later summarized by Abul Qasim Kahrqi and Abdul Aziz bin Jaffar Ghulam Khallal. The summary of Kharqi earned so popularity that three hundred commentaries were written on it, among which the ‘Al-Mughni‘ of Ibn Qudamah (rahimahullah) stands out as most distinguished one.

Style of Derivation

Imam Ahmad’s (rahimahullah) style of derivation was so that he used to put the Qur’an and Hadith foremost. Thereafter, he preferred the fatwas of the companions. Then, he would turn to Weak and Mursal Ahadith (that were not directly narrated by the Prophet). At last, he resorted to analogy. To him analogy was the last option in unavoidable circumstances. He used to state: I like Weak Hadith in comparison to applying reason.

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