Fiqh of the Hadeeth – Dr. Muhammad Deeya ar-Rahman al-Azamee

By Dr. Muhammad Deeya ar-Rahman al-Azamee
Translated By Abbas Abu Yahya

After knowing the authenticity of a hadeeth or its weakness, then it becomes obligatory to busy yourself with its understanding since that is the fruit of this knowledge.  Indeed a foundation without a building upon it is like a house which is demolished as Khateeb said in the introduction to his book ‘Muaalim’.

Al-Haakim said:

‘As for the Fuqaha (scholars of Sharia’) of Islaam, the people ofQiyaas (analogy), opinions, derivation, debate and reflection are well-known in every age and are people of every country.  However we will mention here, in this place by Allaah’s permission, the Fiqh of hadeeth according to its people as evidence so that the people who work in and study this science thoroughly (Muhadditheen) are not ignorant of the Fiqh of hadeeth as it is a portion from the categoriesof this knowledge.’[1]

Then he lists the names of these Muhadditheen al-Fuqaha with a brief mention of their Fiqh, so from them are:

Muhammad bin Sheehab az-Zuhri, Yahya bin Sa’eed al-Ansaari, AbdurRahman bin ‘Amr al-Awzaee, Sufyaan bin Uyaina al-Hilaalee, Abdullaah bin al-Mubarak, Yahya bin Sa’eed al-Qataan, AbdurRahman bin Mahdi, Yahya bin Yahya at-Tameemee.

Regarding Ahmad bin Hanbal, ash-Shafi’ee said:

‘I left Baghdad and I never left behind anyone who had more understanding of the Deen, was more abstinent from the Duniya, more pious or more knowledgeable than Ahmad bin Hanbal.’

(The list continues with:) ‘Alee bin Abdullaah bin Jafar al-Madeeni, Yahya bin Ma’een, Ishaaq bin Ibraheem al-Hanthaali, Muhammad bin Yahya ath-Thuaali, Muhammad bin Isma’eel al-Bukhari, Abu Zur’ah Ubaydillaah bin AbdulKareem, Abu Hatim Muhammad bin Idrees al-Hanthaali, Ibraheem ibn Ishaaq al-Hanthaali, Muslim bin al-Hajjaj al-Qushaayri, Abu Abdullaah Muhammad bin Ibraheem al-Abdi, ‘Uthmaan bin Sa’eed al-Darmi, Abu Abdullaah bin Muhammad bin Nasr al-Marwazi, Abu AbduRahman bin Shu’aib an-Nisaaee, Abu Bakr Muhammad bin Ishaaq bin Khuzaymah, Abu Daawood, Muhammad bin AbdulWahhab al-Abdi, Abu Bakr aj-Jaarudi, Ibraheem bin Abee Taalib, Abu ‘Isa at-Tirmidhi, Musa bin Haroon al-Bazaar, al-Hasan bin ‘Alee al-Ma’mari, ‘Alee bin al-Hussain bin al-Junaid, Muhammad bin Muslim bin Warah, Muhammad bin ‘Aqeel al-Balkhi and other than them.

From the Fuqaha of Ahl-ul-Hadeeth is Abu Bakr an-Neesaabooree of whom Shaykh ul-Islaam Ibn Taymeeyah – may Allaah have mercy on him –said:

‘Abu Bakr an-Neesaabooree was an Imaam in Fiqh and hadeeth, he was concerned with the Ahadeeth of Fiqh and with the variantwordings of the Ahadeeth.  He was close to the way and knowledgeof Ahl-ul-Hadeeth such that he was not biased towards the sayings of any of the Fuqaha, just as the famous Imaams of Hadeeth were not.’[2]

Then he continues:

‘As for Bukhari and Abu Daawood, then they are two Imaams inFiqh from the people of Ijtihaad.  As for Muslim, Tirmidhee, Nisaaee, Ibn Maja, Abu Ya’ala, al-Bazaar and those similar to them then they were upon the madh-hab of Ahl-ul-Hadeeth.  They were not blind-followers of any single individual from amongst the scholars, nor were they absolutely from the Imaams of Ijtihaad, but rather they were not inclined to take the sayings of the Imaams of hadeeth such as Shafi’ee, Ahmad, Ishaaq, Abu Ubayd and their likes.’

He continues:

‘As for al-Bayhaqi then he was on the Madh-hab of ash-Shafi’ee, supporting it with its general statements.  Daraqutnee also inclined towards the Madh-hab of Shafi’ee and the Imaams of the chains of narrations (asaaneed) and hadeeth, but he was not like al-Bayhaqi in blindly following Shafi’ee.  So, even though al-Bayhaqi carried outIjtihaad in many issues, the Ijtihaad of Daraqutnee was stronger than his as he was more knowledgeable and had a stronger comprehension than him (i.e. al-Bayhaqi).’[3]

He continues:

‘From them there were those who specialised with some of the scholars just as Abu Daawood specialised with Ahmad bin Hanbal so they are more inclined to the Madh-hab of Ahl-ul-Hijaaz – such as Maalik and his likes– than the Madh-hab of Ahl-ul-Iraq  – the likes of Abu Hanifah and Thawree.’  The end of Shaykh ul-Islaam’s saying.

‘Knowledge of the Fiqh of hadeeth cannot be achieved except if the different paths of the hadeeth are gathered just as Imaam Ahmad said: ‘If the different paths (narrations) are not gathered, the hadeeth cannot be understood.  The hadeeth are explained, some by others.’[4]

Yahya bin Ma’een said: ‘If a hadeeth was not written with 30 different chains, we would not have understood it.’[5]

Imaam Shafi’ee authored a booklet in ‘Ihktilaaf of hadeeth’, then Ibn Qutaybah followed him in that as did Abu Yahya Zakareeyah bin Yahya as-Saajee, Tahawee, Tabaree, Ibn Abdul Barr and Ibn al-Jawzi.  All of this shows the importance of Fiqh ul-Hadeeth to theMuhadditheen, researchers and those who extrapolate rulings.  This is what al-Khateeb indicated in his book ‘al-Kafaya’:

‘If it were not for the concern of As-haabul-Hadeeth (the companions of hadeeth) with the precision of the Sunnan, gathering them, extracting them from their sources and researching the different paths, the Sharia’ would have become void and its rulings would have been cancelled out because the rulings were extrapolated from preserved Athaar (narrations) and they took benefit from the transmitted Sunnan.’

* Taken from ‘Mu’jam Mustalah al-Hadeeth wa laataif al-Assaneed’ p. 296-300

[1] Ma’reefat ‘uloom al-hadeeth p.63

[2] Majmoo’al-Fatawa (24/146) & similarly Ibn Salah in ‘Mareefat az-Zeeyadat’ in al-Muqnaa’(1/191)

[3] Majmoo’al-Fatawa (20/40-41)

[4] Al-Jama’ by al-khateeb (2/212)

[5] Al-Jama’ by al-khateeb (2/212)

Ahl-ul-Hadeeth – Dr. Muhammad Deeya ar-Rahman al-Azamee

By  Dr. Muhammad Deeya ar-Rahman al-Azamee
Translated By Abbas Abu Yahya

Shaykh ul-Islaam said: ‘We do not mean to limit Ahl-ul-Hadeeth just to those who convey hadeeth, write them or narrate them but we mean by them: everyone who rightfully memorises the hadeeth, knowing them and understanding their apparent and hidden meanings and following them in what is apparent and hidden, and also the people of al-Qur’aan.’

He continues:

‘The least of their traits is: love of the Qur’aan and hadeeth, researching them, seeking their meanings and practising that which they know is binding upon them.  The Fuqaha of hadeeth are better informed about the Messenger sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam than Fuqaha other than them.’[1]

He mentions:

Ahl-ul-Hadeeth are those about whom the Messenger of Allaah sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam said: ‘What I am upon and my Companions.’  And in another narration: ‘It is the Jamaah, The Hand of Allaah is over the Jamaah.’[2]

Ahl-ul-Hadeeth are the best people of the Duniya, as Hafs bin Ghayaath said.[3]

Shafi’ee said: ‘If I see a companion of Hadeeth then it is as if I see a man from the Companions of the Prophet sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam he is of that status.’

He also said:

‘May Allaah reward them with goodness on our behalf, they preserved the foundation for us so they have an excellence over us.’[4]

‘Alee bin al-Madini said: ‘There are no people better than the companions of Hadeeth.  The rest of the people were in search of the Duniya while they were establishing the Deen.’[5] i.e. the Sunnah.

Hafidh Ibn Rajab said:

Ahl-ul-Hadeeth are an authority in knowing hadeeth and knowing the authentic from the weak hadeeth.’[6]

The Prophet sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam supplicated for illumination of the one who busies himself with the knowledge of hadeeth, memorizing it, conveying it and understanding it.  He sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam said: ‘May Allaah illuminate the person who hears a hadeeth from me and memorizes it until he conveys it.  Perhaps a person who carries Fiqhconveys it to someone with more Fiqh than that person and perhaps the carrier of this Fiqh is not a Faqihi.’[7]

Hafidh Abu Bakr Ahmad bin ‘Alee al-Khateeb al-Bagdadispecifically authored a book which he called ‘Sharf Ashaabul-hadeeth’ (the nobility of the companions of hadeeth).  In it mentions Ahadeeth and Athaar from the Companions, Ta’bieen, kings,ministers and others from those who followed them about the excellence of knowledge of hadeeth, being busy with it and the nobility of its people over those of Ahl-ul-Bida’ and those of misguidance from the Zinaadiqa (heretics) who concerned themselves with the knowledge of rhetoric and philosophy.  This book is a masterpiece in this subject.’

* Taken from ‘Mu’jam Mustalah al-Hadeeth wa laataif al-Assaneed’ p.61-63

[1] Majmoo’al-Fatawa (4/95)

[2] Majmoo’al-Fatawa (3/345-347)

[3] Al-Ilma’ p.27

[4] Masalat al-‘Uloo wal Nazool p.45

[5] Masalat al-‘Uloo wal Nazool p.45

[6] Jama’ al-Aloom wal Hikam (2/105)

[7] Narrated by Abu Dawood (4/69), Tirmidhee (5/33) by way of Umar bin Sulayman from the son of Umar bin al-Khattab, on the authority of Abdurrahman bin Abaan, on the authority of his father, on the authority of Zayd bin Thabit –RadhiAllaahu anhu – Marfoo’.  It was also narrated by Ibn Majah (1/84) a different way on the authority of Zayd bin Thabit.  Tirmidhee said it was Hasan and he also said: ‘and in this chapter it is also narrated on the authority of Abdullaah bin Mas’ood, Muadh bin Jabal, Jubayr bin Mut’im, Abu Darda and Anas – RadhiAllaahu anhum Jameean.’