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Imam Abu Hanifa (r), Muhaddith or not?

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Imam Abu Hanifa (r), Muhaddith or not?

Post  al-'Abd on Tue Nov 09, 2010 9:59 pm

A common objection which is nothing short of ignorance is that Imam Abu Hanifa (r) was not a muhaddith (hadith expert), and hence many hadiths did not reach him. Therefore, it is unwise to follow an Imam whose knowledge of the Sunna of Allah’s Messenger (s) was deficient.

Answer:
It is totally incorrect to claim that Imam Abu Hanifa (r) was not a muhaddith or that he lacked knowledge of the hadith. It is established through many sources that Imam Abu Hanifa (r) spent many years travelling across the Muslim world to acquire hadiths, until he became a hadith master (hafiz al-Hadith). He remained a student in the circle of the muhaddith Ata ibn Abi Rabah (r) in Makka for several years, with Ata (r) recognising him from amongst his distinguished students. Similarly, he obtained narrations from muhaddiths all across the Muslim world.

Kufa, the Imam’s birthplace and where he spent most of his life, was a hub of learning and hadith circles. Major Companions such as Ibn Mas’ud (r) and Ali (r) had migrated to Kufa and transmitted their wealth of narrations to their students who held their circles throughout the city. Allama Zahid al-Kawthari (r), in his Fiqh Ahl al-Iraq – printed as an introduction to Allama Zaila’ee (r)’s Nasb al-Raya, vol:1, pg:16-18 – has recorded a number of their students who taught hadiths in Kufa, making the city a focal point for hadith students from around the world. These narrations include: Ubayda Sulaymani (d. 72 AH), Amr bin Maymun (d. 74 AH), Zarr bin Hubaysh (d. 82 AH), Abu Abd al-Rahman al-Sulami (d. 74 AH), Suwayd bin Ghafala (d. 82 AH), Alqama bin Qays (d. 82 AH), Masruq (d. 63 AH) and others. Thus, the hadiths which were prevalent in Makka, Madina, Syria and Iraq were undoubtedly in the knowledge of the Imam. Consequently, the Imam’s biographies testify to his abundance of narrations, his many teachers and students.

Another interesting fact is that Imam Abu Hanifa (r) narrates many hadiths with chains that are termed thuna’iyyat (narrations consisting of two narrators) and thulathiyyat (narrations consisting of three narrators). This means that between the Imam and Allah’s Messenger (s), there only exist three narrators and often only two. In a book entitled Al-Imam al-A’zam Abu Hanifa Wal-Thunaiyyat fi Masanidihi, by Sheikh Abd al-Aziz al-Sadi, it is stated that just the thuna’iyyat (narrations consisting of two narrators) of the Imam are approximately two hundred and nineteen narrations. This makes his narrations, according to the standards of the classical hadith scholars (muhaddithun), stronger than the narrations found in the Sahihs of Bukhari and Muslim, as one will find that the number of narrators between them and the Messenger (s) are in most cases not less than four (in fact, the thulathiyyat of Imam Bukhari (r) only number twenty-one narrations). This proves beyond doubt that Imam Abu Hanifa (r) was not only a reputable muhaddith, moreover he was among authorities and experts of hadith.

Derived from ‘Understanding Taqlid’ pg:35-37 by ‘Mufti Muhammad Sajjad’ (Birmingham)

al-'abd
09-11-10
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Re: Imam Abu Hanifa (r), Muhaddith or not?

Post  khalillaher on Mon Nov 15, 2010 8:48 pm

If anyone want's the above book quoted‘Understanding Taqlid’ by ‘Mufti Muhammad Sajjad(Birmingham)
in pdf format please e-mail me.

Mufti Muhammad Sajjad completed the Ifta at Darul Uloom Blackburn for the guys who have a faint recollection
http://as-suffa.org/About/Scholars/mufti-mohammed-sajaad.html

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Re: Imam Abu Hanifa (r), Muhaddith or not?

Post  IbnMuhammad on Wed Nov 17, 2010 6:58 pm

This is indeed a very thought-provoking topic. I was discussing the same topic with a student of Shaykh Akram Nadwi. He quoted the Shakyk as saying 'Although Imam Abu Hanifah was very well-versed in Hadith, others like Imam Malik & Imam Auwzai are more skilled in the science of Hadith. For those who have the time to listen to exhaustive detail, I would recommend watching Dr Tahirul Qadri's 19 part speech on the topic; http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2_mu-07C5I

Any comments are welcome.

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Re: Imam Abu Hanifa (r), Muhaddith or not?

Post  khalillaher on Sat Jan 22, 2011 9:14 pm


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