Mushkil al-Athar

Isnad of al-Baghawi
October 1, 2015
Musnad Abi `Awanah
October 1, 2015

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Mushkil al Athar


حدثنا ابراهيم بن مرزوق ثنا ابو عامر العقدى ثنا يزيد بن كثيرعن محمد بن عمر بن على عن ابيه عن علي ابى طالب قال ان النبى صلى الله عليه و سلم حضر الشجرة بخم فخرج اخذا بيد على فقال يا ايها الناس الستم تشهدون ان الله ربكم قالوا بلى قال الستم تشهدون ان الله و رسوله اولى بكم من انفسكم و ان الله و رسوله مولاكم قالوا بلى من كنت مولاه فعلى مولاه انى قد تركت فيكم ما ان اخذتم لن تضلو بعدى كتاب الله بايديكم واهل بيتى

Ibrahim ibn Marzuq — Abu Amir al ‘Aqdi — Yazid ibn Kathir — Muhammad ibn ‘Umar ibn ‘Ali — (his father) ‘Umar — from (his father) ‘Ali Abi Talib who said:

When Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam reached the tree at Khumm, he emerged holding the hand of ‘Ali and said, “O people, do you not testify that Allah is your Rabb?” They replied, “Definitely!” He then asked, “Do you not testify that Allah and his Rasul have a greater right over you than yourselves and that Allah and his Rasul are your mawla?” They replied, “Definitely!” He then said, “‘Ali is the mawla of all those who take me as a mawla. Indeed I have left amongst you that which, if you hold onto it, you will never go astray after me, the Book of Allah which is in your hands, and my Ahlul Bayt.”[1]


The following information regarding the isnad is of importance:

1. None of our ‘friends’, neither the author of Fulk al Najat and ‘Abaqat, nor anyone else have mentioned this chain. We found it through our own research and we have presented it. If it is worthy of acceptance then it should be taken, otherwise it will be rejected.


2. This isnad has been studied through the writings of the scholars of rijal. This isnad includes Yazid ibn Kathir who is unknown as far as both, his person as well as his character is concerned. Despite extensive research, we could not find his details in the following books which have been authored regarding narrators:

  1. Taqrib al Tahdhib
  2. Tahdhib al Tahdhib
  3. Lisan al Mizan
  4. Tarikh Saghir of Imam al Bukhari
  5. Tarikh Kabir of Imam al Bukhari
  6. Kitab al Jarh wa al Ta’dil of Ibn Abi Hatim al Razi
  7. Tabaqat ibn Sa’d
  8. Hilyat al Auliya’ of Asfahani
  9. Akhbar Isfahan of Abu Nuaim
  10. Tarikh Jurjahan of Sahmi
  11. Tarikh Baghdad of Khatib al Baghdadi
  12. Tadhkirat al Huffaz of al Dhahabi
  13. Mizan al I’tidal of al Dhahabi
  14. Tahdhib al Kamal of Khazraji
  15. Ta’jil al Manfa’ah of Ibn Hajar
  16. Tarikh ibn Khallikan, etc.

Many pages have been turned, but this individual still remains unknown.


3. For the benefit of the scholars, we bring to your attention that Yazid ibn Kathir is untraceable even in Shia sources. He was searched for in the following books, but again, he was nowhere to be found:

  1. Rijal al Kashshi
  2. Rijal al Najjashi
  3. Rijal Tafrishi
  4. Tanqih al Maqal of al Mamaqani
  5. Rijal ibn ‘Ali (Muntaha al Maqal)
  6. Rijal al Hilli
  7.  Jami’ al Ruwat of al Ardabili
  8. Mulakhas al Maqal fi Tahqiq Ahwal al Rijal
  9. Rawdat al Jannat by al Khuwansari
  10. Qasas al ‘Ulama’
  11. Tuhfat al Ahbab by Sheikh ‘Abbas al Qummi
  12. Tatimmat al Muntaha by Sheikh ‘Abbas al Qummi
  13. Ahsan al Wadi’ah fi Tarajim al Shia
  14. Majalis al Muminin by Shustari

We did not have the good-fortune of finding him in any of the above-mentioned fourteen sources. Keeping the above-mentioned information in mind, we ask the honest ones, can a narration like this—where the narrator cannot be traced in any of the well-known books—be accepted?


4. Lastly, we wish to present an opinion regarding this chain. If it appeals to the reader, he may accept it. Otherwise, he may reject it. We feel that the name, Yazid ibn Kathir was changed around by one of the narrators. The correct name would have been Kathir ibn Zaid. This opinion is supported by some indications. The first one being that the same narration appears in Musnad Ishaq ibn Rahawayh, and that chain has the name of Kathir ibn Zaid as the first narrator from Muhammad ibn ‘Umar (The remainder of the chains as well as the texts are identical). The second indication is that wherever a list of the students of Muhammad ibn ‘Umar is to be found, the name of Kathir ibn Zaid is mentioned. None of the lists have Yazid ibn Kathir. As far as this Kathir ibn Zaid is concerned, a lengthy discussion has already passed regarding him under the narration of Ishaq ibn Rahawayh. Refer to it for all the details. He has been criticised and he commits many errors in his narrations, therefore this narration cannot be called authentic.


NEXT⇒ Isnad of al-Baghawi

[1]  Mushkil al Athar vol. 2 pg. 307

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