Preface by Shaykh `Abd Allah ibn `Abd al-Rahman al-Sa`d Part 2

Authors Preface
January 21, 2016
Preface By Shaykh `Abd Allah ibn `Abd al-Rahman al-Sa`d Part 1
January 21, 2016

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Regarding the Authentic Hadith, “The Rebellious Party Will Kill ‘Ammar,” and Relating it to Other Texts

 

Al Bukhari narrates in his Sahih (2657) with his chain to ‘Ikrimah who said that Ibn ‘Abbas radiya Llahu ‘anhu instructed him and ‘Ali ibn ‘Abdullah to go to Abu Sa’id and listen to some of his narrations; so they both went (and saw) Abu Sa’id and his brother were irrigating a garden belonging to them. When he saw them, he came up to them and sat down with his legs drawn up and wrapped in his garment and said:

 

(During the construction of the Prophet’s Masjid) we carried the bricks of the masjid, one brick at a time while ‘Ammar used to carry two at a time. The Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam passed by ‘Ammar and removed the dust off his head and said, “may Allah be merciful to ‘Ammar. He will be killed by a rebellious aggressive group. ‘Ammar will call them to (obey) Allah and they will invite him to the Fire.”

 

Muslim also narrates (2915) via Abu Nadrah, from Abu Sa’id al Khudri radiya Llahu ‘anhu who said:

 

Someone who is better than I informed me, that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said to ‘Ammar as he was wiping over his head: “O son of Sumayyah, you will be involved in trouble and a group of the rebels would kill you.”

 

Muslim also narrates it from Umm Salamah radiya Llahu ‘anha (2916) that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said to ‘Ammar radiya Llahu ‘anhu:

 

The rebellious party will kill you.

 

I say: this narration is authentic; rather it is Mutawatir [widely narrated], as some of the scholars have said.[1] And the meaning of this report is evidently clear; it does not require much explanation; and that is that ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu was the closest to the truth and that ‘Ammar would be killed by the rebellious party as is the purport of the hadith. This is from the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam foretelling events which he had been privy to, from the realm of the unseen, and a sign of prophethood. Things happened exactly as he foretold as is known by all. However, it is imperative to add to the existing texts those texts which indicate the Islam of Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu as well as his status as a Sahabi in addition to his merits; and some of that has been mentioned in the pages before this.

 

Allah says:

If two parties from the believers fight each other; then bring about reconciliation between them…[2]

 

Al Bukhari narrates (2924) by way of ‘Umair ibn al Aswad that he came to ‘Ubadah ibn al Samit radiya Llahu ‘anhu when he was descending upon Hims in a structure of his and with him was Umm Haram – ‘Umair says – she narrated to us that she heard the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, saying: “The first army to fight in the sea; [Paradise] will be incumbent for them.” So she asked the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam if she would be one of them and he said, “You are among them.”

 

Al Bukhari (2799-2800) narrates it by way of al Layth, through Anas ibn Malik, from his aunt Umm Haram bint Malhan and he mentioned the narration; and at the end he says:

 

The first naval expedition by the Muslims was by Muawiyah.

 

Ibn Hajar says ibn Fath al Bari (6/90):

… and Muawiyah was the first to undertake a naval expedition and that was during the era of ‘Uthman. Muawiyah was the leader of that navy. [3]

 

He also states (6/77):

Ibn Wahb has narrated in his Muwatta from Ibn Lahi’ah, from those whom he has heard from, who said: “Muawiyah was the first to undertake a naval expedition during the time of ‘Uthman.”

 

‘Abdur Razzaq narrates in his Musannaf (9629) from Ma’mar, from Zaid ibn Aslam, From ‘Ata’ ibn Yasar that the wife of Hudhayfah radiya Llahu ‘anhu said:

 

The Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was once sleeping and he awoke smiling [almost laughing], so I said, “is it at me that you laugh, O Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam?” He responded, “no, but there will be a group from my ummah who will be riding on the sea – in a naval expedition – it is as if they are seated on thrones like kings.” He slept again and when he awoke he awoke smiling [almost laughing] and again I asked if it was me who he was laughing and he said, “no, it is for that group of my ummah who will undertake this naval expedition. They will return with little booty, but they will be forgiven.” She said, “ask Allah to make me from them,” so he prayed for her.

 

‘Ata’ says:

 

I had seen her during one of the military campaigns let by Mundhir ibn al Zubair to the Roman territories and she was with us; and she passed away in those Roman lands.

 

I say: this narration, its chain is sound. However, there is no doubt that the narrations in the Sahih collections are even more authentic even though the meaning is similar. Ibn Hajar has authenticated this narration according to the standards of al Bukhari, however he treated these as two separate incidents and he discussed this at length (6/83) and the more plausible case is that it was a single incident. I say further that if one combines the texts and looks at them jointly, the matter becomes clearer and some of the scholars have mentioned this matter and also explained some of what has been explained. [4]

 

Yaqub ibn Shaibah in his Musnad, under the Musnad of ‘Ammar has mentioned the reports of ‘Ammar and said:

 

I heard Ahmed ibn Hanbal being asked about the hadith of the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam with regards to ‘Ammar, “the rebellious party will kill you,” so Ahmed said, ‘the rebellious party did kill him as mentioned by the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and said, “this narration is not authentic from the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, “and he disliked to speak further on this.[5]

 

Ibn Hazm says in al Fisal (4/124):

 

… as for the matter of Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu, it is contrary to that and ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu did not fight him due to his withholding his pledge as there was latitude in that for him as there was for Ibn ‘Umar radiya Llahu ‘anhu, instead he fought him for the sake of not carrying out his instructions in all the regions of al Sham; and he was the Imam whose obedience was necessary so ‘Ali was in the right in this matter. Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu, on the other hand, never ever denied the virtue of ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu or his legitimacy to the leadership. However, his ijtihad led him to the view of giving precedence to seeking retribution for the murder of ‘Uthman above pledging his allegiance to ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu; and he saw himself in a better position for seeking retribution and speaking on his behalf; a position above the sons of ‘Uthman and the sons of Hakam ibn Abi al ‘As, on account of his age and his ability to enact revenge. Just as the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam instructed ‘Abdur Rahman ibn Sahl, the brother of ‘Abdullah ibn Sahl who was murdered at Khaybar, to remain silent even though he was the brother of the victim; instead he said, “the elders, the elders,” so ‘Abdur Rahman remained silent and Muhayyisah and Huwayyisah ibn Mas’ud spoke instead, and they were the paternal cousins of the deceased; since they were older than the brother of the deceased. So Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu did not demand this matter except that he felt he had a right to do so; especially if one considers the narration we have just mentioned. All that he erred in was giving preference to this above the pledge, that is all. So, he received a single reward for his juristic effort and no sin even though he was deprived of being correct just as all others who err in their ijtihad of whom the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam reported that they receive a single reward and the one whose ijtihad is correct receives two rewards.

 

There is nothing more astonishing than those who permit ijtihad which results in the shedding of blood, or permitting conjugal relations, or in matters of wealth, or other matters of the shari’ah where some prohibit and others permit, and others obligate; yet they excuse those who err in these matters. They allow this for al Layth, Abu Hanifah, al Thowri, Malik, al Shafi’i, Ahmed, Dawood, Ishaq, Abu Thowr and others like Zufar, Abu Yusuf, Muhammad ibn Hassan, Hassan ibn Ziyad, Ibn al Qasim, Ashhab, Ibn al Majishun, al Muzani and others besides them.

So one of these will permit the blood of a person and the other will prohibit it; like bandits or homosexuals and other matters besides this, which are many. Some of them would allow relations with a particular woman and others would prohibit; like a virgin who has been married off by her father without her permission, even though she is sane and mature. There are many other examples besides this one. Likewise, this is the case in many other matters of the shari’ah.

This is what the Mu’tazilah have done with their scholars like Wasil, ‘Amr, and their other scholars and jurists; as did the Khawarij with their jurists and muftis. Then they become restrictive on this matter with those who combine companionship with the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, and merit, knowledge and ijtihad like Muawiyah and ‘Amr and others besides them from the Sahabah. All they have done was do ijtihad in matters where the shedding of blood was the consequence just as the muftis do. Some muftis consider it necessary to execute the sorcerer and others do not share this view; some of them allow the capital punishment to be enacted on a free person over the murder of a slave, and others disagree; some of them consider it valid that a believer be executed over a disbeliever and others disagree. So what is different between this ijtihad and the ijtihad of Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu; besides the blind ignorance of some and confusing matters of which they have no knowledge!

We are well aware that if someone has an obligatory duty and he resists fulfilling it and is prepared to fight on account of it; then it is the duty of the Imam to fight such a person, even if the person’s actions are on account of Ta’wil [justified interpretation]. And that does not affect a person’s moral integrity and virtue; neither does it necessitate a form of major sin. Instead he is rewarded for his ijtihad and intention in seeking out what he considered best. Based on this we say without hesitation that the right was with ‘Ali and he was correct, we also acknowledge the legitimacy of his leadership and that he will receive two rewards; one for his ijtihad and the other for arriving at the correct solution. Likewise, we say with absolute conviction that Muawiyah and those who sided with him had erred, and they shall receive a single reward.

Also, the authentic hadith of the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam has that he described a party of dissidents, who will defact from within one of two parties and the party, from the two parties, which is closest to the truth will fight these dissidents. And such a defecting party came about, they were known as the Khawarij and it was the party of ‘Ali who fought them. The authentic narration from the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam is “the rebellious party shall kill ‘Ammar”.

The Mujtahid who errs, if he fights on account of what he believes to be the truth, seeking the grace of Allah with a sincere intention, not knowing that he is in the wrong, then he will be a rebellious party and he will be rewarded [for his ijtihad]. There is to be no implementation of the Hadd [legal punishment]. As for one who fights, knowing that he is in the wrong, then this is an enemy combatant upon whom the Hadd ought to be applied as well as retaliation. Such a person is attributed to sin and going against the leader, not a Mujtahid in error. The explanation for that can be found in the verse: “If two groups of the believers fight each other, seek reconciliation between them. And if one of them commits aggression against the other, fight the one that commits aggression until it comes back to Allah’s command. So if it comes back, seek reconciliation between them with fairness, and maintain justice. Surely Allah loves those who maintain justice,” – and this is exactly what we are saying, without a farfetched interpretation, nor deviation from the apparent meaning of the verse.

Allah refers to them as rebellious believers; they are brothers to each other even while they are fighting each other. And the other party is the one upon the right stance, upon justice, those who have been rebelled against and who have been commanded with seeking out reconciliation between themselves and the rebellious party. Allah did not describe them with fisq on account of the fighting; neither did He describe them with any deficiency in faith. All that they are is that they are rebels who have erred, they were not seeking the blood of the other party. ‘Ammar was killed by Abu al Ghadiyah al Juhani, who is said to be a Sahabi. So, Abu al Ghadiyah is a person who did ta’wil, and ijtihad, in which he erred and he rebelled, yet he receives a single reward for his ijtihad. He is not like the murderers of ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu since there was no scope for ijtihad in his murder radiya Llahu ‘anhu; since he did not kill anyone, nor did he ambush or rob, nor did he defend himself, nor did he commit fornication, nor did he renegade on the faith any of which would give reason for ta’wil. As a matter of fact, those who murdered him are described with open sin, they are armed attackers, spillers of innocent blood with no just cause or juristic interpretation that justifies it. They are accured sinners.

So if this affair is rendered baseless and it is proven correct that ‘Ali is in the right, then the narrations of remaining in one’s home and not getting involved in the fighting they apply without a doubt to those who were uncertain about which party was in the right. And that is what we say. So when the truth becomes apparent it becomes mandatory to fight the rebelling party by the text of the Qur’an. And if both parties are rebellious then it is necessary to fight them both since the words of Allah do not contradict what His Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam says as both are essentially from Allah, as He says: “He does not speak of his own desire. It is only divine revelation being revealed to him,”[6] and He says, “…and if it were from others beside Allah they would have found much contradiction in it.”[7] Therefore we know with certainty that all that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam says is from Allah; if that is so then there is nothing from Allah which is contradictory, All praise is due to Allah.

All that remains is to speak about the objections on why ‘Ali fought, so we say – and with Allah is our towfiq:

As for what they say about avenging the murder of ‘Uthman, and the duty of taking his murderers to task is mandatory; those who bear arms against Allah and His Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, and who spread evil and corruption on earth and those who have desecrated the sanctity of the religion, the sacred sanctuary of Madinah, the vestige of leadership, and the sanctity of those who are Sahabah, then yes it is mandatory.

‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu did not oppose them in this matter ever, nor in distancing himself from those who were involved. However, they were a very large number and he had no means against them. Since he was not in a position to take action, the obligation of doing so was lifted from him; just as it is lifted from every Muslim who does not have the capacity to fulfil his religious duties such as prayer, fasting, hajj etc., there is no difference. Allah says in the Qur’an:

Allah does not burden any soul with more than it can bear…[8]

 

The Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said:

 

If I have instructed you with anything, then perform it to the extent of your capacity.

 

And had Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu given the pledge to ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu he would have given him the necessary support to take the murderers of ‘Uthman radiya Llahu ‘anhu to task. So it is correct to say that the division is one of the major factors that kept ‘Ali from enacting justice and were it not for that he would have been in a position to deal with the murderers of ‘Uthman as he did with the murderers of ‘Abdullah ibn Khabbab since he was in a position to deal with them.

As for Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu following the example of ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu with delaying in given his pledge with Abu Bakr radiya Llahu ‘anhu; then there is no example in what is wrong. And ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu reassessed his position and soon afterwards he gave his pledge to Abu Bakr. So, if Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu followed him in that he would have been correct and all the Sahabah would have given their pledge without doubt since many of them withheld giving the pledge on account of the division. Even if the status of others besides ‘Ali were close to his, like Talhah, Zubair and Sa’d; his pledge was given first and he was nominated as the legitimate Imam whose obedience is obligatory in what he instructs of the religion and there is little consideration for the fact that others of a similar status were present; since the pledge was previously given to ‘Uthman and even though they were all close in status, ‘Uthman was the leader and it was mandatory to obey him. And if at the time of consultation, someone other than ‘Uthman, like ‘Ali or Talhah or Zubair or ‘Abdur Rahman, were to have been elected then that individual would have been the Imam and it would have been binding on ‘Uthman to obey that Imam. If that was the case before ‘Uthman, it ought to apply after his murder as well.

So, Ali sought his own right and he fought him; although he was at liberty not to enforce his right and he could have let them be so that Muslim unity would prevail; as his son Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu had done. As the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said of him:

 

This son of mine is a Sayed; and perhaps Allah will bring about reconciliation at his hands between two great groups from my ummah.

 

And the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was very delighted with him on account of this. Whoever forgoes his right to prevent the shedding of innocent blood has indeed achieved merit and virtue beyond which cannot be achieved. As for one who chooses to fight then that is his right, and there is no blame on such a person and he is correct in such a stance; and with Allah is all towfiq.

 

Ibn al ‘Arabi has stated in al ‘Awasim min al Qawasim (1/171-174):

 

That which will bring coolness to your chest is that the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam mentioned the communal strife and gave indications and warned about the Khawarij when he said, “the closest of the two groups to the truth…” so he explained that each of these two groups has an attachment with the truth; however the group of ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu was closer to it. Allah says: “If two groups of the believers fight each other, seek reconciliation between them. And if one of them commits aggression against the other, fight the one that commits aggression until it comes back to Allah’s command. So if it comes back, seek reconciliation between them with fairness, and maintain justice. Surely Allah loves those who maintain justice,”[9] and He did not exclude the rebellious party from the faith because their insubordination was on account of juristic interpretation; neither did He strip them of the description of brotherhood since He says after that, “indeed the believers are brothers; so reconcile between your two brothers…”[10] The Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said of ‘Ammar, “the rebellious party will kill him,” and he said with regards to Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu, “this son of mine is a sayed; and perhaps Allah will bring about reconciliation at his hands between two major groups from the Muslims.” So Hassan’s radiya Llahu ‘anhu part in all of this was that he abdicated and brought about reconciliation.

 

Ibn Taymiyyah has stated in Minhaj al Sunnah (4/467-468):

 

… even though what is in the narration regarding ‘Ammar is that the rebellious group will kill him could refer to those individuals who physically did the terrible deed of killing him, they are the rebels because they fought for a reason other than that; and it is possible that they were not rebels before the fighting… and ‘Ali and Muawiyah were the most desirous of preventing bloodshed; more than the fighters themselves. However, they were overcome by what really happened and such fitnah, when it spreads, even the most wise people are incapable of extinguishing such a fire. And in both camps there were individuals like al Ashtar al Nakha’i, Hashim ibn ‘Utbah al Mirqal, ‘Abdur Rahman ibn Khalid ibn al Walid, Abu al A’war al Sulami and the likes of them who encouraged the fighting. These are people who; some of them will stand up in defence of ‘Uthman to the extent of fanaticism and others who would flee from him; and some who would stand up in defence of ‘Ali who were extreme and others who would flee him.

Thereafter, those who fought on the side of Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu did not do so merely for the sake of Muawiyah, but for other reasons. And such fighting which resembles the fighting of the period of Jahiliyyah it is very difficult for those involved in it that their objectives and beliefs regarding it be aligned; as al Zuhri said: “The fitnah occurred and the Sahabah of the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam were present; and they were unanimous that any blood, or wealth, or private part that had been violated on account of misinterpretation of the Qur’an then that ought to be dealt with as one deals with the incidents of Jahiliyyah [i.e. do not consider it part of the religion].

He states further (4/498-499):

… also Allah says in His Book, “if two groups among the believers fight each other then seek to reconcile…” so He has made them believers and brothers despite the fighting and rebelling. It has also been established in the authentic narrations that the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “a group will defect which will be fought by the party which is closest to the truth,” and Nabi salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, also said: “Indeed this son of mine is a sayed…” and he said to ‘Ammar, “the rebellious party will kill you,” note that he did not say disbelievers. And these narrations are authentic according to the scholars, and have been narrated by variant chains; none of them taking from the other, and this is what indicates absolute certainty in these narrations. The Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said that the two divided parties are both Muslims, and he praised the one who brought about reconciliation among them. He further predicted that a group would dissent and that the closes of the two parties would fight them.

 

Al Dhahabi states in al Muntaqa (1/249-252):

 

The objector says, “he fought ‘Ali who was the fourth khalifah and the legitimate leader; and whoever fights the leader is a rebel and tyrant.” We say: Yes, but the rebel could be a person who has done ta’wil; believing that he is upon the truth. And his rebellion could be a combination of ta’wil, seeking fame, as well as a misunderstanding, and this is most common. And out of every possibility this one does not apply. We do not declare him, nor those superior to him, free from sin and error. The famous incident with Miswar ibn Makhramah testifies to this. Miswar said: “I did not leave anything with which I could fault him except that I told him about it.” Then he said, “I do not absolve myself from sins. Do you have sins that you fear destruction for yourself if Allah does not forgive you? Miswar said, “Yes.” and he said, “what makes you more deserving of hope in Allah’s forgiveness than me? I swear by Allah, that which I take responsibility for with regards to resolving peoples disputes, upholding the penalties, engaging in jihad in the path of Allah, and the great matters which you cannot count, is much more than you have taken up on yourself. And I am upon a religion in which Allah accepts the good deeds and pardons the errors. And I swear by Allah, that whenever presented with a choice between Allah and others besides him I have always chosen Allah over anyone besides Him!” Miswar said, “I reflected upon what he said and realised that he had proven his point to me in this discussion.” And whenever Miswar thought of him he would pray for him.

If it is said that they are rebels since the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam told ‘Ammar that the rebellious party will kill him; then we say: the narration is sound; although some have questioned it and others have said that the wording refers to seeking – and this view amounts to nothing. As for the earlier generation, like Abu Hanifah, Malik, Ahmed and others like them; they say that the prerequisite for fighting the rebellious party is not present since Allah had not commanded with fighting to begin with. Rather, He instructed that if fighting does occur there is to be reconciliation between them. Then, if one party transgresses against the other it is necessary to fight the transgressing party. Therefore, Malik and Ahmed considered this fighting a fitnah. And Abu Hanifah used to say that it is not permitted to fight the transgressing party until they begin fighting with the Imam, as did these.

Thereafter, the Ahlus Sunnah say that the legitimate Imam is not infallible and it is not imperative on a person to fight alongside him against everyone who opposes him; nor to obey him in what the person knows to be wrong and to leave it would be better. It is on this basis that a group of the Sahabah abandoned fighting on the side of ‘Ali against the army from al Sham. As for those who fought against him, they are one of the following. They are either sinners, or Mujtahids who were either correct or erred in their ijtihad. And on every possibility it does not cast an allegation on their faith; neither does it bar them from Paradise on account of what Allah says: “If two groups of the believers fight each other, seek reconciliation between them. And if one of them commits aggression against the other, fight the one that commits aggression until it comes back to Allah’s command. So if it comes back, seek reconciliation between them with fairness, and maintain justice. Surely Allah loves those who maintain justice. Indeed the believers are brother; so reconcile between your two brothers…” so he called them brothers.

 

Ibn Kathir says in al Bidayah wa al Nihayah (3/218):

 

This narration is from the signs of prophethood since the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam predicted that ‘Ammar would be killed by the rebellious group, and he was killed by the army from al Sham on the occasion of Siffin and ‘Ammar was on the side of ‘Ali in the army of the people of ‘Iraq. And ‘Ali was more deserving in the matter than Muawiyah. It is not necessary that the naming of the party of Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu as rebels that they become disbelievers as the ignorant, deviant Shia and others attempt to infer; since Muawiyah and those with him, even though they were rebels they were people who had done ta’wil at the same time. And every Mujtahid is not necessarily correct, actually the one who is correct receives double reward and the one who errs gets a single reward. As for those who have added to the narration regarding ‘Ammar, “may Allah not allow them my intercession on the Day of Judgement,” then this addition is a lie and fabrication against the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam since he did not say that; neither has it been transmitted from a reliable source, and Allah knows best.

As for the phrase, “he calls them to Paradise and they call him to the Fire,” it is because ‘Ammar and those with him were calling to unity and the people of al Sham were monopolising the affair and not those who were more deserving of it, in addition to their being a leader for every region. This will only lead to further division and differences within the ummah; as that is what their stance necessitates even though that is not what they intended, and Allah knows best.

 

How beautiful is what al Dhahabi said in his Siyar (3/128):

 

So we praise Allah for our well-being that He brought us into existence in a time when the truth has become clear and unambiguous from both sides. We know where both sides are taking their opinion from; and we have become well-informed and aware and we have excused and sought forgiveness for and love within moderation. We have asked for mercy for the rebellious party by a broad interpretation in general; or on account of error –with Allah’s permission – which may be forgiven. And we say, as Allah has taught us, “O our Rabb, forgive us and our brothers who have preceded us in faith; and place not in our hearts enmity towards those who believe.”

We also pray for the pleasure of Allah to be upon those who avoided both parties like Sa’d ibn Abi Waqqas and Ibn ‘Umar and Muhammad ibn Maslamah and Sa’id ibn Zaid among others.

We also absolve ourselves from the dissident Khawarij who fought ‘Ali and declared both parties disbelievers. So the Khawarij are the dogs of the Fire, they have defected from the religion; and with all that we do not say with conviction that they are permanently in the Fire as we say for the worshipers of idols and crosses.

 

Referencing the Hadith of Abu Bakrah, “Indeed This Son of Mine is a Sayed.”

 

Al Bukhari narrates in his Sahih (2704) from ‘Abdullah ibn Muhammad – who said – Sufyan narrated to me from Abu Musa who heard from Hassan (al Basri)saying:

 

By Allah, Hassan bin ‘Ali led large battalions like mountains against Muawiyah. ‘Amr bin al ‘As said (to Muawiyah), “I surely see battalions which will not turn back before killing their opponents.” Muawiyah who was really the best of the two men said to him, “O ‘Amr! If these killed those and those killed these, who would be left with me for the jobs of the public, who would be left with me for their women, who would be left with me for their children?” Then Muawiyah sent two men from Quraysh from the tribe of ‘Abdul Shams called ‘Abdur Rahmanbin Samurah and ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amir bin Kurayz to Hassan saying to them, “go to this man (i.e. Hassan) and negotiate peace with him and talk and appeal to him.” So, they went to Hassan and talked and appealed to him to accept peace. Hassan said, “we, the offspring of ‘Abdul Muttalib, have got no wealth and people have indulged in killing and corruption (and money only will appease them).” They said to Hassan, “Muawiyah offers you so and so, and appeals to you and entreats you to accept peace.” Hassan said to them, “but who will be responsible for what you have said?” They said, “we will be responsible for it.” So, whatever Hassan asked they said, “we will be responsible for it for you.” So, Hassan concluded a peace treaty with Muawiyah.

 

Hassan (al Basri) said:

 

I heard Abu Bakrah saying, “I saw the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam on the mimbar and Hassan ibn ‘Ali was by his side. The Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was looking at the people and then at Hassan bin ‘Ali saying, “This son of mine is a sayed; and may Allah make peace between two big groups of Muslims through him.”

 

Al Bukhari said:

 

‘Ali ibn ‘Abdullah [ibn al Madini] said: “It is only through this narration that we have established that Hassan [al Basri] heard from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu.”

 

I say: This narration has been narrated by Hassan al Basri and there is a difference in its narration from him. Some have narrated it from him from Abu Bakrah, some from Anas, and some from Umm Salamah and some have narrated it from him Mursal.

 

As for those who narrate it from him, from Abu Bakrah it has various chains.

 

The First Chain

Narrated by Isra’il — from Abu Musa — from al Basri — from him, that he said I heard Abu Bakrah. This is how it has been narrated by Ibn al Madini in al Bukhari (7109)[11], and by ‘Abdullah ibn Muhammad in al Bukhari as well (2704), and by Sadaqah ibn al Fadl al Marwazi in al Bukhari (3746) as well as Ahmed in the Musnad (5/37-38) and (1354) in Fada’il al Sahabah; and by Muhammad ibn Mansur as in al Nasa’i al Kubra (1718,10081) and al Sughra (3/107); and Muhammad ibn ‘Abbad in the Sunan of al Bayhaqi (6/165); and al Humaidi in his Musnad (2/348); and Sa’id ibn Mansur in al Bayhaqi (8/173) and Ibrahim ibn Bashshar ibn al Kabir of al Tabarani (3/33) – all of them from Sufyan ibn ‘Uyaynah — from Isra’il [Abu Musa] — who said — I heard Hassan saying, “I heard Abu Bakrah…”[12]

It has also been narrated by ‘Abdullah ibn Sa’id in al Nasa’i’s al Kubra (8156); and Khalaf ibn Khalifah by al Bazzar (9/109) and from Abu Khaythamah by al Bayhaqi (7/63); all of them from Ibn ‘Uyaynah — from Abu Musa — from Hassan, — from Abu Bakrah; however there is not explicit mention of Hassan hearing it. Al Bazzar says after his narration:

 

The narration of Isra’il Abu Musa, we do not know of anyone narrating it from him besides Ibn ‘Uyaynah.

 

After mentioning what al Bazzar has said, Ibn Hajar, in his Fath (13/63) says:

 

Mughlatay has corrected him on the basis of narrating in the chapter ‘Alamat al Nubuwwah by way of Hussain ibn ‘Ali al Ju’fi, from Abu Musa — who is Isra’il — and it is a good correction. However, I have not seen the entire incident and he merely mentions the prophetic narration on its own.

 

‘Abdullah ibn Muhammad also narrates it as in al Bukhari (3629) from Yahya ibn Adam, from Hussain al Ju’fi from Abu Musa, from Hassan, from Abu Bakrah — without express mention of hearing it from Abu Bakrah.

Ibn Abi Shaibah narrates it from Hussain al Ju’fi, from Abu Musa, from Hassan — Mursal

 

The Second Chain

This has been narrated by Mubarak ibn Fadalah, from Hassan — who said — Abu Bakrah told me… this has been narrated by Ahmed in his Musnad (5/44):

Hashim narrated to us — who said — al Mubarak narrated to us — who said — Hassan narrated to us — who said — Abu Bakrah narrated to me.

 

It has also been narrated by al Bazzar (9/109) from Ahmed ibn Mansur al Ramadi, from Abu Dawood, from Abu Fadalah — who is Mubarak ibn Fadalah — from Hassan who said:

Abu Bakrah narrated to me…

 

Al Bazzar said after this narration:

 

This narration is narrated from Jabir and Abu Bakrah, and the narration of Abu Bakrah is more famous and has a better chain; whereas the narration of Jabir is rarer. Therefore we have narrated the version of this from Abu Bakrah.

 

Thereafter he narrates it (9/111) from Ahmed ibn Mansur, and Ibn Hibban (6964) from Abu Khalifah, al Fadl ibn al Hubab, both of them from Abul Walid al Tayalisi from him, but without expressly saying he heard it.

 

After which al Bazzar says:

This narration has also been narrated from Abu Sa’id[13] and Abu Bakrah; as for Mubarak ibn Fadalah; there is no harm in him, and many of the scholars have narrated from him.

 

The Third Chain

It has been narrated from Ash’ath ibn ‘Abdul Malik[14] — from him — from Abu Bakrah.

Muhammad ibn ‘Abdullah al Ansari narrates it from him as in Abu Dawood (4629) and al Tirmidhi (3773) and al Tabarani in al Kabir (3/34) as well as al Hakim (3/174). Al Tirmidhi said:

This Hadith is Hassan Sahih

 

The Fourth Chain

‘Ali ibn Zaid ibn Jud’an narrates it from him, from Abu Bakrah.

It has been narrated from him by Musaddad in Abu Dawood (4629), and Muslim ibn Ibrahim in Abu Dawood (4629) and al Tabarani in al Kabir (3/33), and ‘Arim in Tabarani’s al Kabir (3/33), and Yahya ibn Habib ibn ‘Arabi in al Bazzar (9/109), and ‘Affan ibn Muslim and Sulaiman ibn Harb in al Hakim (3/174) — all of them from Hammad ibn Zaid — from ‘Ali ibn Zaid…

 

Al Bazzar said after it:

 

The narration of ‘Ali ibn Zaid, from Hassan, from Abu Bakrah, we do not know of it being narrated from ‘Ali except from Hammad ibn Zaid.

 

The Fifth Chain

It has been narrated from Ismail ibn Muslim — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah.

As narrated by al Tabarani in al Kabir (3/34), from ‘Abdur Rahman ibn Salm, from Sahl ibn ‘Uthman, from Abu Muawiyah, from Ismail…

Ismail ibn Muslim al Makki, even though a scholar, is abandoned.

 

The Sixth Chain

Narrated by Abu al Ashhab Jafar ibn Hayyan — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah.

This has been narrated by al Tabarani in al Awsat (2/147) and al Kabir (3/34) — from Ahmed ibn Muhammad ibn Sadaqah — from ‘Ubaidullah ibn Yusuf al Jubayri — from Muhammad ibn ‘Abdullah al Ansari — from Abu al Ashhab…

 

The Seventh Chain

Narrated by Dawood ibn Abi Hind — from al Hassan — from Abu Bakrah.

This has been narrated by al Tabarani in al Awsat (3/245) — from Aslam ibn Sahl al Wasiti, ‘Abdur Rahman ibn ‘Ali al Shaybani — from ‘Abdul Hakam ibn Mansur — from Dawood with the above chain, he said:

 

No one has narrated this from Dawood except ‘Abdul Hakam ibn Mansur.

 

The Eighth Chain

Narrated by Yunus ibn ‘Ubaid and Mansur ibn Zadhan — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah.

This has been narrated by al Tabarani in al Saghir (766) and al Kabir (3/34) — from Rabi’ ibn Sualyman — from ‘Abdur Rahman ibn Shaibah al Jaddi — from Hushaym, with this chain — and he said none narrate it from Yunus except Hushaym, and none from Hushaym except Ibn Shaibah, and he narrates it in isolation.

 

‘Abdur Rahman ibn Shaibah, Abu Hatim says of him:

 

I do not know him, but his narrations are fine and al Nabati included him in Dhayl al Du’afa’. I say that perhaps his inclusion is on account of him not being known, and Allah knows best.

 

The Ninth Chain

Narrated by Ma’mar — who said — someone who heard Hassan narrating from Abu Bakrah narrated to me.

It can be found in his Jami’ (11/452), by way of ‘Abdur Razzaq; and from him (5/47).

This brings the total of the chains for the narration of Hassan, from Abu Bakrah, to nine. Express hearing has been found in the first two chains and the balance have not mentioned this [instead they are ‘an’anah, i.e. narrated with the word “from].

 

As for the Narrations from Anas

Al Nasa’i said in al Kubra (5/49):

 

Ismail ibn Mas’ud narrated to me — from Khalid ibn Harith — from Ash’ath — from Hassan — from some of the Sahabah of the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam – meaning Anas – who said: “I had seen the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam delivering a sermon and Hassan was on his thigh; and he spoke whatever he meant to say then he turned to Hassan and kissed him and said: ‘O Allah, I love him, so You love him as well,’ and he said: ‘anticipate that he will reconcile between two groups of my ummah.’

 

He narrates further (5/49) with his chain to Ash’ath — from Hassan — from some of the Sahabah of the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam – meaning Anas – who said:

 

I entered upon the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and Hassan and Hussain were crawling over his belly and he said, “my two flowers from my ummah.”

 

He also narrated this in Khasa’is ‘Ali (144).

 

And he narrates in ‘Amal al Yowm wa al Laylah (253) with his chain to Ash’ath — from Hassan — from some of the Sahabah of the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam – meaning Anas – who said:

 

I had seen the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam delivering a sermon and Hassan was on his thigh, then he said: “I anticipate this son of mine to be a sayed; and that Allah will bring about reconciliation at his hands between two parties of my ummah.”

 

Al Bazzar also narrates it — see Kashf al Astar — from Ash’ath — from Hassan… he said:

I think it is from Anas.

 

As for the Narration of Umm Salamah

I have not come across it except that al Mizzi, in al Tuhfa (9/39), said that it is narrated from her via Hassan.

 

As for the Mursal Narration

It has been narrated by Nuaim ibn Hammad al Fitan (423), Ibn Abi Shaibah in his Musannaf (6/376)— from Hussain ibn ‘Ali — from Abu Musa Isra’il — from Hassan, Mursal. Ishaq ibn Rahuyah (4/131) by way of Ibn Mahdi — from Sahl ibn Abi al Salt — from Hassan, Mursal. Abu ‘Abdur Rahman al Nasa’i said, after mentioning the hadith from ‘Ali ibn Zaid ibn Jud’an and Isra’il Abu Musa and Ash’ath, “‘Awf, Dawood and Hisham all narrate it Mursal,” and he gave his chain to each of those Mursal narrations.

 

Analysis of This Hadith

This hadith, there is no doubt of its correctness going up to Hassan [al Basri] since there is such a large number of narrators who narrate it from him. However, the difference of opinion arises from him onwards, as has been laid out in detail in the section on the referencing of this narration. There are four paths by which it is narrated:

  1. Hassan — from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu
  2. Hassan — from Anas radiya Llahu ‘anhu
  3. Hassan — from Umm Salamah radiya Llahu ‘anha
  4. the Mursal narration from Hassan
 

As for the second path, it seems to be a mistake and that Khalid ibn al Harith he is the one who said, “meaning Anas”. It appears as though the narration of Ash’ath, from Hassan only has “some the companions”, and it seems as though Khalid is the one who said, “meaning Anas”; on account of Muhammad ibn ‘Abdullah al Ansari narrating it from him [Ash’ath] — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu.[15]

The other possibility is that this statement is from the Ash’ath and it is based on his own judgement and discretion in identifying the Sahabi; and that he forgot that it has been narrated from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah; since the majority have narrated it like that.

Ibn Hajar has stated in Mukhtasar Zawa’id Musnad al Bazzar (1976):

 

Ash’ath has erred; it is actually from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah.

 

As for the third path, I have not come across its chain but it is possible that this was an oversight since Ibn Rahuyah — as previously quoted — has narrated this narration and included it under the Musnad of Umm Salamah. However he narrates by way of Hassan, in a Mursal version. And Allah knows best.

All that remains is the first and last possibilities. The dominant view is the first path; for two reasons:

 

1. A large group has narrated it from Hassan as such and they are:

Isra’il ibn Musa, Abu Musa al Basri; and he is one who has narrated from some of the great scholars fm the generation of the successors like Hassan al Basri, Abu Hazim al Ashja’i and Muhammad ibn Sirin. It has also been said the he narrates from Wahb ibn Munabbih, but this has been dismissed by al Azdi and he said it is someone other than him. As for those who narrate from him, they are also from the giants of their era like Ibn ‘Uyaynah, al Qattan, and he is not one to narrate much. He is considered reliable according to the most accurate opinion since Ibn Ma’in has ratified him, as has Abu Hatim who added, “no problem with him,” Ibn Hibban has included him in al Thiqat and it is only al Azdi who said of him, “there is some leniency in him.”

I say that no attention ought to be paid to what al Azdi says especially when the majority of scholars have differed with him — as is the case here — and that is on account of his severity and harsh criteria. As for al Azdi, some have spoken of him also.

What further shows the reliability of Isra’il is the fact that al Bukhari accepts him as a narrator, and that al Qattan narrates from him.

 

Mubarak ibn Fadalah, there is some difference regarding him but the most correct opinion is that there is no problem with him.

 

Ash’ath ibn ‘Abdul Malik al Humrani, and they have differed with regards to him as well. Yahya ibn Ma’in said:

 

Hafs ibn Ghiyath left to ‘Abadan and the Basris gathered with him and said to him: “Do not narrate to us from any of these three; Ash’ath ibn ‘Abdul Malik, ‘Amr ibn ‘Ubaid and Jafar ibn Muhammad.” So he said, “As for Ash’ath then his affair is with you and you decide with regards to him.”

 

Yahya al Qattan has said: “According to me he is reliable and trustworthy.” Al Bukhari said: “Yahya ibn Sa’id and Bishr ibn al Mufaddal used to ratify Ash’ath al Humrani.” Ahmed used to say:

 

He is more praiseworthy in narration than Ash’ath ibn Sawwar, Shu’bah narrates from him, and how pleased Yahya ibn Sa’id was of him. He was a well-versed with the rulings of Hassan. It was asked what Yunus narrates and it would be said that he takes it from Ash’ath ibn ‘Abdul Malik.

 

Ibn Ma’in and al Nasa’i said, “reliable”. Abu Zur’ah said: “sound.”Abu Hatim said:

 

No problem with him and he is more reliable than al Haddani and more correct than ibn Sawwar.”

 

Ibn ‘Adi said:

 

His narrations are generally above board and he is among those whose narrations may be recorded and relied on. He is from the bulk of those who are described with honesty and he is better than Ash’ath ibn Sawwar by a great margin.

 

What supports him is that Shu’bah and Ibn Qattan both narrate from him and this is the factor that tips the scale for me in considering him reliable. As for what Ibn Ma’in relates from Hafs ibn Ghiyath, then that can be responded to in three ways:

  • Those Basris, we have no idea who they are. Are they from the great memorisers or are they from the general narrators?
  • What they say is not in conformity to what the senior memorisers have said; especially Yahya ibn Sa’id who was the leading Basri scholar of his era.
  • Their disinterest in him is not explicitly on account of his narrations. It is possible that there are other factors like the fact that he is from their region and his narrations are well known and they are seeking the narrations of others who were not from their region.
 

As for Ash’ath, well he is from the seniors from those who narrate from Hassan and ibn Sirin. Al Qattan has stated the he has not come across anyone as thorough as him from those who narrate from Hassan. He is also known to have said that he does not know of anyone more precise in the narrations of Hassan than Ash’ath and that he has not met anyone after Ibn ‘Awn more reliable in the narrations of Ibn Sirin than him. Ahmed said: “He was very knowledgeable regarding the rulings of Hassan,” and he mentioned of him that when he would go to Hassan, he [Hassan] would say to him, “ask your questions.” And he used to say:

 

All that I narrate to you of Hassan is what I have heard from him except three narrations. The first is the narration of Ziyad al A’lam — from Hassan, from Abu Bakrah that he did ruku’ before joining the saff [row]. The second is the narration of ‘Uthman al Batti — from Hassan — from ‘Ali on al Malas, and thirdly the narration of Hamzah al Dabbi, from Hassan that a man asked the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam about carrion.

 

Abu al Ashhab, Jafar ibn Hayyan, he is a reliable narrator and the group has narrated from him. His narration appears in al Tabarani – as has been mentioned – by way of Ahmed ibn Muhammad ibn Sadaqah, from ‘Ubaidullah ibn Yusuf al Jubayri and ‘Abdullah ibn Yusuf al Jubayri al Basri, from the children of Jubayr ibn Hayyah. Ibn Hibban has included him in al Thiqat and said:

 

His son, Ahmed, has narrated to us from him.

 

I say, that which supports him is the fact that a large number of the great scholars have narrated from him like Ibn Majah, Ibn Khuzaimah, Ibn Abi Dawood, Abu ‘Arubah, Ibn Sa’id, Harb ibn Ismail and others. What also indicates that he narrates in abundance is that he narrates from a large group; and a large group narrates from him and it is for that reason that Ibn Hajar has said of him in al Taqribn “trustworthy.” I say that it appears that if he is not on the higher level of “reliable” then he is “trustworthy”.

 

‘Ali ibn Zaid ibn Jud’an, he is from the scholars but he is weak; although the chain to him is sound.

 

Ismail ibn Muslim, he is abandoned.

Then there are those who have heard from Hassan this narration but have not been named; as is in the narration of Ma’mar.

 

2. The second reason is that this is an addition; and additions are acceptable from a reliable narrator since he who knows is a proof against one who does not. this addition has been narrated by a large group, as mentioned earlier, and among them are those who are highly reliable, those who are trustworthy, those who are merely fine, and those who have in them weakness.

 

Establishing That Hassan Heard From Abu Bakrah

The is a difference among the scholars regarding Hassan al Basri’s hearing of hadith from Abu Bakrah al Thaqafi radiya Llahu ‘anhu; and this difference consists of two views:

  • The first view is that he did not hear from him; and this is the opinion of Ibn Ma’in, al Daraqutni[16] and others.
  • The second view is that he did indeed hear from him; and this is the view of Bahz ibn Asad al ‘Ammi al Basri, ‘Ali ibn al Madini, al Bukhari, al Bazzaz. It also appears to be the view of al Tirmidhi since he authenticated two such narrations from Abu Bakrah.
 

Thereafter, those who accept his hearing from Abu Bakrah are further divided into two groups:

  1. The first group considers it unrestricted direct narration;
  2. The second group restricts it to some narrations and not all his narrations from Abu Bakrah.
 

The correct view is the second view due to the following reasons:

It appears in a number of narrations where Hassan expressly states that he heard from Abu Bakrah as is in the narration of Isra’il ibn Musa al Basri, who is a reliable narrator, and this has been recorded by al Bukhari and others; and its referencing has previously been mentioned.

Also, the narration of Ziyad ibn Hassan al A’lam al Bahili al Basri; Ahmed said of him, “thiqah, thiqah [reliable, reliable],” and Abu Hatim said, “he is from the senior companions of Hassan,” and his narration appears in the Sunan of Abu Dawood (683) – via the narration of Ibn Dassah and al Ramli[17] — and al Nasa’i (2/118), both of them by way of Humaid ibn Mas’adah — from Yazid ibn Zuray’ — from Sa’id ibn Abi ‘Arubah — from Ziyad al A’lam — from Hassan that Abu Bakrah narrated to him that he entered the Masjid while the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was in ruku’, so he went into ruku’ before joining the row. So the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said to him, “may Allah increase you in determination; but do not repeat [what you have just done].”

This has also been narrated by al Bukhari (783), by way of Musa ibn Ismail — from Hammam — from al A’lam with the rest of the chain; however it does not state expressly that Hassan heard it from Abu Bakrah. Al Shafi’i has said — as in al Ma’rifah of al Bayhaqi (2/381):

 

I have heard with a sound chain that Abu Bakrah told the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam that he did ruku’ before reaching the row; and the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said to him: “May Allah increase you in determination, but do not repeat.”

 

Also, the narration of Mubarak ibn Fadalah al Basri[18] which appears in al Bukhari (1048) Mu’allaq [suspended — al Bukhari omits the chain] by way of Qutaybah – who said — Hammad ibn Zaid narrated to us — who said — Yunus narrated to us — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said:

 

Indeed the sun and the moon are two signs from the signs of Allah, they do not ecplipse on account of the demise of anyone. However Allah instils fear into the hearts of His slaves through them.

 

Ash’ath follows him up from Hassan; as does Musa, from Mubarak, from Hassan who said:

 

Abu Bakrah narrated to me that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “Indeed Allah uses them to instil fear into the hearts of His slaves.”

 

It was previously mentioned that he expressly stated hearing from Abu Bakrah, in the narration of Mubarak from him in the narration under analysis, “indeed this son of mine…” found in Ahmed and al Bazzar.

Ahmed also narrates (5/41-42) that Abu al Nadr and ‘Affan both narrated to us – saying – al Mubarak narrated to us — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah — ‘Affan said in his version: al Mubarak narrated to us saying the he heard Hassan saying that Abu Bakrah narrated to him that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam came to a group of people who were exchanging unsheathed swords with each other and said:

 

May Allah curse those who have done this! Have I not prohibited against this?” then he said, “If any one of you draws his sword to look at it and wishes to hand it over to his brother; let him sheath it and then hand it over.”

 

Add to that the narration of Hisham ibn Hassan al Basri. Abu Bakr ibn Abi Khaythamah says — as in Tahdhib al Kamal (30/7) — Howdhah ibn Khalifah narrated to us – who said – Hisham ibn Hassan narrated to us — from Hassan who said:

 

Anas ibn Malik passed by me when Ziyad had sent him to Abu Bakrah to admonish him, so I went with him so we entered upon the sheikh and he was ill. So Anas conveyed the message on behalf of Ziyad: “Have I not appointed ‘Ubaidullah over Faris? Have I not appointed Rawad over the treasury? Have I not appointed ‘Abdur Rahman over the stipends and the bayt al mal?” Abu Bakrah then said, “did he go on to say that he entered them into the Fire?” So Anas said, “I do not know him except to be a Mujtahid [exercising his better judgement],” so the sheikh said, “sit me up. Indeed I do not know him except to be a Mujtahid? What about the people of Harura, they did ijtihad. Were they correct or did they err?” Hassan said, “we left having been defeated [in argument].”

 

This report is also narrated by Salih ibn Ahmed in his Masa’il (1107) from his father, from Howdhah.

 

Secondly, this is the view of a large group of the scholars from Basrah. They were from the same city as Hassan so they would know him better than others. As for Abu Bakrah al Thaqafi radiya Llahu ‘anhu, he relocated to Basrah and passed away there. As was the case with Hassan al Basri as we will discuss later, with Allah’s permission. So their narrations are well known to the scholars of Basrah; and the narrations of Abu Bakrah and Hassan; and that which he did hear and that which he did not are best known to them. So, their opinion in this matter takes priority over others; taking their locality into consideration. I do not know of any of the scholars of Basrah — from the contemporaries of Ibn al Madini and their likes — who have contradicted these Basran scholars in establishing that Hassan heard from Abu Bakrah. As for those who differ with them, they are not from Basrah.

Thirdly, Bahz ibn Asad al Basri is a student of many of the companions of Hassan. So he narrates from some of the companions of Hassan and he has opined that Hassan heard from Abu Bakrah some narrations. So his view has a unique feature above the rest since he is — on account of that — the most knowledgeable with regards to Hassan, when compared to others who have come after him. And this

forms one of the factors which gives dominance to the view that Hassan heard from Abu Bakrah.

Bahz ibn Asad is from the famous reliable narrators to the extent that Ahmed said of him: “He is the pinnacle of accuracy.”

Fourthly, Hassan relocated to Basrah during the time of Siffin and he remained there until his demise. Abu Bakrah relocated to Basrah, and passed away there in the year 51 A.H or 52 A.H, so this means that they lived in the same city for a period extending about 15 years. It is well-known that in those days there was only one Friday prayer and one ‘Id prayer, so that, in addition to what has preceded, supports the view that Hassan heard from Abu Bakrah.

Fifthly, Hassan basis some of his views on the narrations which he narrates from Abu Bakrah; and his using them as evidence is an indication of their authenticity according to him. From these is his acceptance of the narration under analysis:

 

Ahmed narrates (5/44) from Hisham — who narrated from Mubarak — who narrated from Hassan – who said – Abu Bakrah narrated to us that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was praying with the people and Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu was climbing on his back whenever he prostrated, and this continued. So the people told him, “by Allah we have seen you do with this — little one — something we have never seen you do with anyone.” Mubarak said that he mentioned something — then said, “indeed this son of mine is a sayed; and Allah will bring about reconciliation through him between two great parties from the Muslims.” Hassan said, “by Allah, I swear again by Allah, that after he became the leader no blood was spilt, even to the extent that would fill a cup used for cupping.

 

Ishaq ibn Rahuyah says in his Musnad (4/131), ‘Abdur Rahman ibn Mahdi narrated to us – who said – Sahl ibn Abi al Salt narrated to us saying that he heard Hassan saying that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said:

 

Indeed this son of mine is a sayed; Allah will reconcile through him between two parties from the Muslims,” meaning Hassan ibn ‘Ali. Hassan [al Basri] said: “By Allah, I have witnessed that. Allah had reconciled, through him, between two parties from the Muslims.”

 

And from that, as well, is what Abu Dawood narrates in his Sunan (1242), ‘Ubaidullah ibn Muaz narrated to us – who said – my father narrated to us from Ash’ath — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah who said:

 

The Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam prayed Zuhr prayer as a prayer of fear, so some of them formed rows behind him and the others faced the enemy. So he performed two rak’ahs and then did salam. So those who prayed got up and stood in the position of their companions and they came to pray behind the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam; so he prayed two rak’ahs with them and then did salam. So, it was four rak’ahs for him and for them two rak’ahs each; and this was the opinion of Hassan.[19]

 

Sixthly, the narration of Hassan from Abu Bakrah is sound and there is nothing objectionable in it. And he has been partly corroborated in what he narrates from Abu Bakrah.

 

There appears in certain versions of his narrations, some wordings which might appear to be uncorroborated, but can be reconciled through explanation:

 
 

The First Narration

Ahmed narrates (5/41) from Yazid – who said – Hammad ibn Salamah narrated to us from Ziyad al A’lam — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam began the prayer and said the takbir, then gestured with his hand for them to remain in their places, then he entered [his home] and exited whilst his head was dripping. He performed the prayer and after completion, he said:

I am but a man; and I was Junub.

 

Ahmed narrates it (5/41) from Abu Kamil, with the same chain to Abu Bakrah that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam began the prayer of Fajr and then indicated with his hand…

He also narrates it (5/45) from ‘Affan with the same chain to Abu Bakrah that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam began the prayer of Fajr and then indicated with his hand to his companions…

Abu Dawood narrates this hadith (236) by way of Musa ibn Ismail and Yazid; as does Ibn Khuzaimah (1629) by way of ‘Affan, Yahya ibn ‘Abbad and Yazid, all of them from Hammad ibn Salamah with the rest of the chain.

This narration is authentic except that the statement, “he did takbir, then gestured,” this seems to be contrary to what has been narrated in the two Sahih collections by way of al Zuhri, from Abu Salamah, from Abu Hurairah that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam exited [his home] and the iqamah was called out, the rows straightened and when he stood at his position we waited for him to do takbir; he left saying, “remain in your positions,” and we remained where we were until he exited again; his head dripping with water after ghusl.

 

In the version of Muslim it appears:

 

So the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam arrived, and when he stood at his spot, before he could do takbir, he remembered so he left and said to us, “remain in your places.”

 

This can be responded to in two ways. The first method of responding is from the perspective of transmission; and that is that the narrations have variations and there are narrations that also support the version of the hadith of Abu Bakrah.

 

Ahmed (1/88) narrates from Ibn Lahi’ah, with his chain to ‘Ali ibn Abi Talib:

 

Whilst we were with the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam praying, he left whilst we were standing and when he returned water was dripping from his head…

 

Ahmed (2/448) narrates from Waki’, with his chain to Abu Hurairah that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam exited his home for prayer; and when he did the takbir he left and gestured for them to remain as they were. He went to perform ghusl and when he returned water was dripping from his head and he led the prayer…

 

This has also been narrated by Ibn Majah (1210).

 

Al Tahawi in Mushkil al Athar (3/88) and al Daraqutni (1/362) narrate by way of ‘Ubaidullah ibn Muaz al ‘Anbari — from his father — from Sa’id — from Qatadah — from Anas who said:

 

The Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam entered the prayer and did takbir, and we did takbir after him; then he indicated to the people to remain as they were and we remained standing until he returned after having performed ghusl, and the water was dripping from his head.

 

Al Daraqutni said after it, “‘Abdul Wahhab al Khaffaf has contradicted him,” then he narrated it by way of ‘Abdul Wahhab — from Sa’id — from Qatadah — from Bakr ibn ‘Abdullah al Muzani; Mursal. Thereafter he said, “‘Abdul Wahhab said, ‘and we accept this.’”

Malik has narrated in him Muwatta (1/48) from Ismail ibn Abi Hakim, that ‘Ata’ ibn Yasar told him that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam did takbir in one of his prayers, then indicated to them with his hand to remain, then went; and when he returned the effects of water could be seen on his skin.

Abu Dawood said in his Sunan (1/263), Ayub, ibn ‘Awn, and Hisham have all narrated it from Muhammad [ibn Sirin] — from the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam that he did takbir, then indicated for them to sit and he went to perform ghusl. Likewise it was been narrated by Malik — from Ismail ibn Abi Hakim — from ‘Ata’ ibn Yasar — from the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Abu Dawood says further:

Likewise, Muslim ibn Ibrahim has narrated to us — from Aban — from Yahya — from al Rabi’ ibn Muhammad — from the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam that he did takbir.

 

The second approach is interpretative and has two methods:

  1. The first method is one of considering it to be more than one incident; this was the method of Ibn Hibban and al Nawawi.
  2. The second method is to resolve the superficial contradiction through a plausible explanation and that is the intended meaning by, “entered the prayer” and “did the takbir” meant that it was very close to beginning the prayer; and al Tahawi is from those who preferred this method.
 

And with this, the problematic statement is resolved — even if there is a slight inaccuracy since what is in the two Sahih collections is more accurate; it is very close.

 
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The Second Narration

Al Nasa’i narrates in al Sughra (3/152) — from ‘Amr ibn ‘Ali — from Yazid [ibn Zuray’] — from Yunus — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah who said:

 

We were with the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam when the sun eclipsed so he hastened to the Masjid, dragging his shawl. The people gathered with him and he prayed two rak’ahs with them. When the sun emerged again he delivered a sermon saying, “the sun and moon are two signs…”

 

This has also been narrated by al Bazzar (3662), Ibn Khuzaimah (1374), al Tahawi (1/330), al Baghawi in al Ja’diyyat (1385), al Bayhaqi (3/331) and others, all of them by way of Yazid ibn Zuray’ with the same chain.

 

Ismail ibn ‘Ulayyah has also narrated it.

 

Ibn Hibban narrates (2853) from Abu Ya’la — from Abu Khaythamah — from Ismail ibn Ibrahim — from Yunus — from ‘Ubaid — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah saying:

 

We were with the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam when the sun eclipsed. He stood up and made his way to the Masjid hastily, dragging his lower garment, or his shawl, and the people followed him. He prayed with them two rak’ahs as you pray…

 

Al Baghawi also narrates the version of Ismail jointly, with the narration of Yazid ibn Zuray’ (1385).

 

Ash’ath ibn ‘Abdul Malik narrates it as well as mentioned by al Nasa’i (1492) by way of Ismail bn Mas’ud — from Khalid —from him; as does Ibn Hibban (2837) by way of Ishaq ibn Ibrahim al Tajir — from ‘Abdul Karim ibn ‘Abdullah — from al Nadr ibn Shumayl, from Ash’ath with the same chain; and it is narrated by al Hakim (1/334) by way of Ahmed ibn Yaqub, from Yusuf ibn Yaqub, from Muhammad ibn Abi Bakr, from Khalid ibn al Harith, from him with the same chain. Al Bayhaqi narrates it from al Hakim (3/337-338).

Al Nasa’i also narrates it (1464) by way of ‘Amr ibn ‘Ali and Muhammad ibn al ‘Abdul A’la — from Khalid — from Ash’ath – without this statement.

Al Bukhari mentions the narration of Ash’ath as Mu’allaq (1048) without mentioning this statement.

Al Baghawi narrates in al Ja’diyyat (1384) from Zaid ibn Akhzam and ‘Ali ibn Muslim both narrated to us – saying – Sa’id ibn ‘Amir narrated to us – who said – Shu’bah narrated to us from Yunus ibn ‘Ubaid — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah who said:

 

The sun eclipsed during the time of the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and he prayed two rak’ahs — this is the version of ‘Ali ibn Muslim.

 

In the version of Zaid ibn Akhzam it goes: “The Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam led us in prayer during the eclipse, the same as our regular prayer…” without mentioning the two rak’ahs; and this narration it was said of it that none narrated it from Shu’bah besides Sa’id ibn ‘Amir.

The statement in this narration, “… and he prayed two rak’ahs as you usually pray,” it could be understood to mean that the prayer at the time of eclipse has only one ruku’; and this contradicts the authentic narrations in describing the prayer at the time of eclipse.

 

This can be responded to through two approaches as well:

 

The first is on the basis of transmission; and that is Ibn ‘Ulayyah, Yazid ibn Zuray’ and Ash’ath have all been contradicted. It has been narrated by Khalid al Wasiti, ‘Abdul Warith ibn Sa’id, ‘Abdul A’la, Shu’bah — in the other version of this narration narrated by Sa’id ibn ‘Amir — Hammad ibn Zaid, Hammad ibn Salamah, Hushaym ibn Bashir, Nuh ibn Qais, all of them from Yunus ibn ‘Ubaid without mentioning this statement.

  1. The narration of Khalid al Wasiti is in al Bukhari (1040).
  2. The narration of ‘Abdul Warith ibn Sa’id is also in al Bukhari (1063).
  3. The narration of ‘Abdul A’la al Sami is also in al Bukhari (5785).
  4. The narration of Hammad ibn Zaid is in al Bukhari (1048) and al Nasa’i (1459).
  5. The narration of Hushaym is in al Nasa’i (1463) and al Tahawi (3/330).
  6. The narration of Hammad ibn Salamah is in al Bayhaqi (3/337).
  7. The narration of Nuh ibn Qais is in Ibn Hibban (2833 as in al Ihsan).
  8. The narration of Sa’id ibn ‘Amir, from Shu’bah in al Bukhari (1062) via Mahmud [ibn Ghaylan].
  9. Yahya ibn Sakan also narrates from Sa’id ibn ‘Amir, from Shu’bah — as in al Ja’diyyat (1386), by way of ‘Amr al Naqid.
 

As for the narration of Zaid ibn Akhzam, from Sa’id ibn ‘Amir, from Shu’bah it appears to be an error from Zaid — if the narration from him is correct[20] — for two reasons:

  • Firstly, ‘Ali ibn Muslim, Mahmud ibn Ghaylan and ibn Marzuq — whose narration is in Sharh Ma’ani al Athar (1/330) of al Tahawi and al Kubra of al Bayhaqi (3/331) — have all contradicted him and they have not mentioned this statement.
  • Secondly, a large number of scholars have narrated it from Shu’bah without mentioning this statement.
 

The second approach in response is on the basis of interpretation. Ibn Hibban (2835 as in al Ihsan) said:

 

The statement of Abu Bakrah, “he prayer two rak’ahs as you usually pray…” what is meant by it is how you usually pray when it eclipses, i.e. four ruku’ and sujud in two rak’ahs.

 

And this is a plausible response. And Allah knows best.

 
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The Third Narration

Ahmed (5/46) narrates from ‘Abdur Razzaq — who said — Ma’mar narrated to us from Qatadah and many others — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah who said:

 

I heard the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam saying: “Verily the fragrance of Jannat can be found from a distance of one hundred years [journey]; and no slave [of Allah] kills a person who was granted protection except that Allah will deprive him of Jannat and its frangrance.” Abu Bakrah said: “May Allah make my ears go deaf if I had not heard the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam saying that.”

 

This, on its apparent meaning, appears to be at odds with what is found in al-Bukhari (3166) by way of Mujahid — from ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said:

 

Whoever kills someone who has been granted protection shall not get the fragrance of Jannat; and its fragrance can be found from a distance of forty years.

 

This is also responded to from two perspectives:

  • Firstly, this particular chain has been described by some of the senior scholars as being flawed. Al Bukhari mentions this narration in al Tarikh al Kabir (1/428) from Sufyan — from Yunus — from al Hakam ibn al A’raj — from Ash’ath and then says:

And Hammad said from Yunus — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah. However, the first one is more correct.

Al Nasa’i said in al Kubra (8744) — after narrating it from Hammad — from Yunus — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah:

This is a mistake. And the correct narration is from Ibn ‘Ulayyah; and Ibn ‘Ulayyah is more reliable than Hammad ibn Salamah.

The narration of Ibn ‘Ulayyah is in al Nasa’i (4748) and Ahmed (5/38) from Yunus ibn ‘Ubaid — from al Hakam ibn al A’raj — from Ash’ath ibn Tharmalah — from Abu Bakrah who said:

The Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “Whoever kills a person who has been granted protection without rightful cause; Allah shall deprive him of the fragrance Jannat.”

  • The second approach is based on interpretation and that is assuming the correctness of the narration, yet reconciling the superficial contradiction. The mention of a lesser amount does not negate the greater amount. There are numerous example of this in the Sunnah.

Ibn al Qayyim states in Hadi al Arwah (119-120) — after pointing out the variances in the narrations that describe the distance from which the fragrance of Jannat is perceived:

 

There is no contradiction between these statements. They [al Bukhari and Muslim] have both narrated from Anas who said: “My uncle was not present with the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam at Badr and that bothered him and he used to say, ‘…the first battle of the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and I was not present with him? If Allah grants me repite to witness another encounter alongside the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam I will show Allah what I am prepared to do.’ He was present on the Day of Uhud with the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and he met Sa’d ibn Muaz, who asked him: ‘Where to?’ and he replied, ‘how wonderful is the fragrance of Jannat! I find it coming from Uhud!’ so he fought until he was martyred and his body had sustained over eighty wounds, slashes and stabs. His sister, the aunt of al Rabi’ ibn al Nadr said, ‘I did not recognise my brother except by the tips of his fingers; and it was on this that the verse was revealed: ‘From among the believers are men who have fulfilled their covenant with Allah…’[21] they considered it to have been revealed regarding him and his companions.

 

The fragrance of Jannat is of two kinds. One kind of fragrance can be perceived by the souls of some of the slaves of Allah in this world and others cannot perceive it. The other is the fragrance that is perceived by the senses of the body just as one smells fragrant flowers etc. So this type of fragrance the inmates of Jannat all perceive it in the next life, from a distance and from close-up; as for this world then only the selected ones from the Prophets and Messengers, and it is this type of fragrance that Anas ibn al Nadr possibly perceived. And Allah knows best.

 
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The Fourth Narration

Ibn Khuzaimah narrates in his Sahih (1368) from Muhammad ibn Ma’mar ibn Rib’i al Qaisi – who said – ‘Amr ibn Khalifah al Bakrawi narrated to us – who said – Ash’ath narrated to us from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam prayed Maghrib with the people, three rak’ahs then left. Another group came and he prayed with them three rak’ahs. So the prayer of the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam was six rak’ahs and the people prayed three rak’ahs each.

 

Al Hakim narrates it in al Mustadrak (1/337) by way of Muhammad ibn Ma’mar with the same chain. He said at the end of it:

 

I heard Abu ‘Ali al Hafiz saying: “This hadith is Gharib; Ash’ath al Humrani did not record it except with this chain.”

 

A large group of narrators have narrated this from Ash’ath and they have narrated contrary to what ‘Amr ibn Khalifah narrates; among them is Muaz ibn Muaz, Sa’id ibn ‘Amir, Abu ‘Asim and Abu Hurrah.

Abu Dawood narrates (1242) from ‘Ubaidullah ibn Muaz – who said – my father narrated to me from Ash’ath — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah who said:

 

The Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam prayed Zuhr at a time of fear and some of them formed a row behind him and the others faced the enemy. He prayed two rak’ahs, then made salam; and those who prayed with him left and stood in the poition of their companions and those came to pray behind him. He prayed two rak’ahs with them and then did salam; so the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam prayed four and his companions prayed two each. And Hassan used to give a verdict on this. Abu Dawood said: “Likewise in Maghrib, the Imam shall pray six and the people three each.”

 

Al Bayhaqi said in his Sunan (3/259-260) — after narrating it via Sa’id ibn ‘Amir — from Ash’ath — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam prayed with some of them two rak’ahs, then made salam. They went back and the others joined the prayer and he prayed two rak’ahs and then made salam; so it was four for the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, and two for the Muslims in the prayer during fear. Al Bayhaqi said:

 

That is how it has been narrated by Muaz ibn Muaz — from Ash’ath and he said, “in Zuhr” and he added, “that is what Hassan used to give verdict on. Likewise for Maghrib, the Imam will have six and the people three each.”

 

Abu ‘Ali al Rudhabari has narrated it to us from Abu Bakr ibn Dassah — who said — Abu Dawood narrated to us from ‘Ubaidullah ibn Muaz — who said — my father narrated to us from Ash’ath and he mentioned the narration with its meaning but a variant wording and mentioned this addition. As for the statement, “likewise in Maghrib,” I have found it in my book connected to the hadith but it seems to be the statement of Ash’ath; and it appears in some copies: Abu Dawood said: “Likewise in Maghrib.” Some people have narrated it from Ash’ath, a Marfu’ version. However, I consider it to be nothing but a lapse of concentration in this case.

 

He said in al Ma’rifah (3/17):

 

‘Amr ibn Khalifah narrates it from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah — from the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam regarding Maghrib, but it is an oversight. The correct version is the first one [i.e. that it was in Zuhr], and Allah knows best.

 

Al Tahawi says in Sharh Ma’ani al Athar (1/315):

 

Abu Bakrah and Ibn Marzuq narrate to us – saying – Abu ‘Asim narrated to us from Ash’ath, from Hassan, from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam prayed the prayer of fear with them and he prayed two rak’ahs with a group of them; then they went and the others came and he prayed with them two rak’ahs. So the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam prayed four; and each group prayed two. Abu Bakrah narrated to us — saying Abu Dawood narrated to us — saying Abu Hurrah narrated to us from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah — from the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam, a similar narration.

 

Commenting on the Authenticity of This Hadith

It has been previously established that there is no doubt in the authenticity of the narration up to Hassan al Basri. What has also been previously established is that the preferred view, in light of as the variant versions of this narration, is the version of the narration of those who narrate it from him — from Abu Bakrah. In addition to this it has been proven that the most accurate view is that Hassan heard from Abu Bakrah. Therefore, the preferred view would be the authenticity of this narration; and the senior scholars have authenticated this hadith as we will come to see in the sections that follow.

 

Dealing With the Corroboratary Narrations

This narration has both general and specific corroborations. As for the specific corroborations they will come later; and the general corroborations will be mentioned first.

Firstly, the texts of Noble Qur’an and prophetic Sunnah indicate the virtue of reconciliation, and encourage it. Allah says:

There is no good in much of their private counsel except one who encourages charity, or [doing] what is right, or reconciliation among people…”[22]

 

He also says:

and reconciliation is better…[23]

and

Fear Allah and set things right among yourselves…[24]

and

If two parties from the believers fight each other, reconcile between them…[25]

and

Verily the believers are but brothers; so reconcile between your brothers…[26]

 

In both Sahih collections it is narrated from Abu Hurairah radiya Llahu ‘anhu that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said:

 

Every bone of the body has a charity upon it; upon the rising of the sun. Observing justice between two people is a charity…

 

It is narrated in both collections as well, from Umm Kulthum bint ‘Uqbah who said:

 

I heard the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam saying: “He is not a liar; who makes peace between people by inventing good information or saying good things.”

 

Secondly, the actual occurrence of this narration testifies to the authenticity of the hadith; and reference was made to it from the statement of Hassan al Basri when he cited this narration as proof for the reconciliation between Hassan ibn ‘Ali and Mu’awiyah ibn Abi Sufyan radiya Llahu ‘anhuma.

Thirdly, Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu was given the pledge by the people of Iraq and a huge contigent from the believers were with him, but despite that he abdicated in favour of Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu; and that for a number of reasons which possibly include this hadith, and Allah knows best.

 

Dealing With the Narrations That Corroborate This Hadith Specifically

 

The Narration of Jabir

Al Khatib al Baghdadi narrates in his Tarikh (8/26-27) with his chain to Yahya ibn Ma’in – who said – Yahya ibn Sa’id al Umawi narrated to us from al A’mash — from Abu Sufyan — from Jabir who said that the Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said with regards to Hassan:

 

Verily this son of mine is a sayed; Allah will reconcile between two parties of the Muslims through him.

 

The narrators of this narration are all reliable and well-known and the scholars have narrated from all of them [from Ibn Ma’in]. Yahya ibn Sa’id al Umawi, the most accurate opinion regarding him is that he is trustworthy, fine in hadith. The majority ratify him, like Ibn Ma’in — in most of the reports from him — and Ibn ‘Ammar, al Daraqutni, and Ibn Sa’d. Abu Dawood has said of him: “No problem with him, reliable.” However, Ahmed has said: “He has not had much movement in [seeking] hadith.” In another narration he said:

 

I do not think he had much hadith but they claim that he has many narrations from al A’mash and others; and we have written from him. He had a brother, who had status and knowledge, called ‘Abdullah. Yahya’s opinion on him was not clear it appears that he said, “he was truthful but not a person of hadith.”

 

I say that these statements indicate that he narrated a fair amount from al A’mash; however he was not very precise and accurate. Rather he was slightly shy of that [level] and it is with this that one can respond to the objections of al ‘Uqayli in al Du’afa’. Al Bukhari has recorded of his, four narrations, two of which have alternate chains in al Bukhari, one of them from al A’mash; and the other two have alternate chains in Muslim. Ibn Hajar described him as “al Hafiz,” and al Dhahabi included him in Tadhkirat al Huffaz.

I say that this description of memory is supplementary to what Ahmed said of him that he was famous for narrations in Maghazi. As for what Ibn Sa’d has regarding him being one of few hadith but reliable, is not completely accurate; taking into account all that has been mentioned previously.

Further, I say that al Dhahabi has said of him in al Tadhkirah that a large number have narrated from him.

As for the remainder of the narrators in the chain, they are well-known. Abu Sufyan and his having heard from Jabir; there is much said regarding that and the summary of it all is that he heard some of the narrations, whilst he had gotten some of them from his scroll. This scroll was known as the scroll of Jabir and is very famous. It has been established from him that he said:

 

I had resided in Makkah with Jabir for six months.

 

His narrations are in both Sahih collections; however the narrations in al-Bukhari are all supplementary [Mutaba’at][27].

 

The narration of al A’mash from him is famous, to the extent that he is described as being the main narrator from him, and Ibn ‘Adi has said:

 

No problem with him, al A’mash has narrated from him sound narrations.

 

I say: Yahya ibn Sa’id has been supported by the narration of ‘Abdur Rahman ibn Maghra’, al Tabarani narrates in al Kabir (3/35) with his chain to ‘Abdur Rahman ibn Maghra’ — from al A’mash — from Abu Sufyan — from Jabir who said:

 

The Messenger of Allah salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “Verily this son of mine — meaning Hassan — is a noble; and Allah will certainly bring about reconciliation through him, between two parties from the Muslims.

 
Al Bazzar has also narrated it — as in Kashf al Astar (2635) — by way of Yusuf ibn Musa — from Ibn Maghra’ with this chain. Al Bazzar said:
 

We do not know it being narrated from Jabir except by this chain.

 

I say that ‘Abdur Rahman ibn Maghra’, there is a difference regarding him. And they have singled out his narration from al A’mash. Ibn al Madini said:

 

Nothing; he used to narrate from al A’mash six hundred narrations which we have abandoned. He was not all that.

 

Ibn ‘Adi said:

 

It is as ‘Ali said. I have only criticised Abu Zuhayr on account of these narrations from al A’mash; which are not supported by the narrations of the reliable narrators.

 

So this narration does not lend strength to the narration of Yahya ibn Sa’id for the reasons above.

 

The summary is that this chain from Yahya ibn Sa’id is strong for the aforementioned reasons, but it is Gharib; and the solitary narrations of Yahya are not sufficient; but they are fine for lending support. So the practise is on the narration of Abu Bakrah, and the narration of Jabir serves only a supplementary capacity.

 

Al Bazzar said in his Musnad (9/110-111):

 

This narration is narrated from Jabir and Abu Bakrah. However, the narration of Abu Bakrah is better known and has a better chain; whereas the narration Jabir is rare.

 

Al Tabarani, in al Awsat (1810), said:

 

No one narrates this hadith from al A’mash except ‘Abdur Rahman, and Yahya ibn Sa’id al Umawi.

 

The Narration of Anas

Abu ‘Amr al Dani says in al Fitan (1/216-217):

 

‘Abdur Rahman ibn ‘Abdullah al Fara’idi narrated to us — by our reading to him — ‘Ali ibn Muhammad ibn Nusayr narrated to us — who said — Abu Bakr Muhammad ibn Ishaq ibn Ibrahim ibn Farrukh narrated to us — in al Rafiqah — saying — ‘Umar ibn Muhammad al Asdi [known better as Ibn al Talli] narrated to us from his father — who narrated from Ma’qil ibn Aban — from Anas that the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said to Hassan: “This son of mine is a sayed; Allah will reconcile at his hands between two groups from my ummah, he will spare their blood through it.”

 

I say that this chain has in it Aban al Raqqashi. He was from the people of piety; but he is abandoned. There is a difference regarding him whether he deliberately related false narrations or not?

Shu’bah described him with dishonesty; whereas the others have differed and said that he did not do so deliberately. It occurred to him on account of his negligence and poor memory. Abu Hatim said:

 

Abandoned in hadith, he was a righteous person however he was afflicted with a poor memory.

 

Abu Zur’ah was asked, “did he intentionally lie?” and he replied, “no. He would hear the narrations of Anas, Shahr, and from Hassan but did not distinguish between them.”

It appears that there was much carelessness in him. Yazid ibn Zuray’ said:

 

He narrated a narration to me from Anas so I said to him, “from the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam?” and he replied, “does Anas relate from anyone other than the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam?” so I abandoned him.

 

And this chain – even though it holds little value as has been mentioned — indicates the popularity of this narration. And Allah knows best.

 

Regarding Those Scholars Who Have Authenticated This Narration

 

A large group of the scholars have authenticated, and considered strong, this narration. Among them:

 
  1. Hassan al Basri as it has previously appeared that he used this narration as proof, which is an indication of its strength according to him.
  2. Ibn ‘Uyaynah, it has been previously mentioned of him that he said: “The statement, “… two groups from the Muslims” impresses us greatly.”
  3. Ibn al Madini
  4. Al Bukhari
  5. Al Tirmidhi
  6. Ibn Hibban
  7. Al Baghawi, as in Sharh al Sunnah (14/136)

And many others besides them who have expressly pointed out the authenticity of this hadith.

And with Allah is prosperity; and may the saluation and mercy of Allah be upon our Prophet, Muhammad, and his companions and followers.[28]

 

Signed

‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abdur Rahman al Sa’d

 
 

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[1]  See al Isti’ab (2/481) of Ibn ‘Abdul Barr, al Dhahabi Siyar A’lam al Nubala’ (1/421), and Ibn Hajar al Isabah (2/512).

[2] Surah al Hujurat: 9

[3]  See Tarikh Ibn Jarir (2/601), Ibn ‘Asakir , and Ibn Kathir (10/228)

[4]Al Tadhkirah by al Qurtubi (3/189)

[5]  See Minhaj al Sunnah (4/414)

[6]  Surah al Qamar: 3,4

[7]  Surah al Nisa’: 82

[8]  Surah al Baqarah: 286

[9]  Surah al Hujurat: 9

[10]  Surah al Hujurat: 10

[11]  Al Bukhari narrates it from Ibn al Madini in al Awsat (1/637) as well.

[12]  Ibn Hajar says in al Fath (13/62): “Al Ismaili has narrated it from seven people fron Sufyan and mentioned the variations in their wordings.”

[13]  See Kashf al Astar (2638)

[14]  He has been identified as such in al Kabir of al Tabarani.

[15] What further supports it is that the majority of them narrate it from Hassan like that.

[16]  In Su’alat al Hakim (320) he says: “Hassan did not hear from Abu Bakrah.” In al Tatabbu’ (323) he says: Al Bukhari narrates ahadith from Hassan, from Abu Bakrah. Among them are the narration of kusuf [eclipse], ‘may Allah increase your determination; but do not repeat,’ ‘that nation who entrusts its affairs to a woman shall not prosper,’ and, ‘this son of mine is a sayed;’ and Hassan does not narrate except from al Ahnaf, from Abu Bakrah.”

I say: I have only found one narration of his via al Ahnaf; based on what is in Tuhfat al Ashraf and Ithaf al Maharah and Hassan is known for plenty of teachers to the extent that he even narrates from some of his students. So his hearing from al Ahnaf does not negate his hearing from Abu Bakrah.

[17]  Al Bayhaqi narrates in his Sunan (3/106) by way of Ibn Dassah, from Abu Dawood.

[18]  Even though Ahmed said of him, “Mubarak ibn Fadalah used to raise many narrations [to the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam]; and he would say in many a narration, ‘from Hassan, from ‘Imran, from Ibn Mughaffal,’ but the other companions of Hassan did not say the same;” however, his narration gains support due to the other narrations.

[19] This statement seems to be from the comments of Ash’ath as will appear from what has been related by al Bayhaqi.

[20]Al Bazzar (3660) narrates it from Zaid ibn Akhzam — from Sa’id ibn ‘Amir, but does not include this statement. And Allah knows best.

[21] Surah al Ahzab: 23

[22]  Surah al Nisa’: 114

[23]  Surah al Nisa’: 128

[24]  Surah Anfal: 1

[25]  Surah al Hujurat: 9

[26]  Surah al Hujurat: 10

[27]  I have discussed this at length in the commentary of al Tirmidhi (275).

[28] I would like to thank my dear ‘sons’ ‘Abdul Majid ibn Ibrahim al Wuhaybi, Ayman ibn ‘Abdullah al ‘Ulayyan and Sami ibn Muhammad ibn Jad Allah; for assisting me in collecting the academic material for this research. May Allah reward them abundantly

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