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Indeed this son of mine is a Sayed and I anticipate that Allah will bring about reconciliation, through him, between two great groups of the Muslims.
This narration has many points of benefit:
Ibn Taymiyyah, in Majmu’ al Fatawa (4/466), said:
This which Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu has done is that which has been praised by the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam as is established in Sahih al Bukhari and others, from the narration of Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu that the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “This son of mine is a sayed and I anticipate that Allah will bring about reconciliation, through him, between two great groups of the Muslims.” So the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam made that which he praised his grandson with, the fact that Allah reconciled at his hands between the two major factions among the Muslims. That occurred when he handed over the khilafah to Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu; whilst — prior to that — each party had approached the other with huge armies. Since the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam praised the reconciliation and abandoning the fighting; it indicated that the reconciliation between both parties was more beloved to Allah than their fighting. Hence, it indicates that the fighting between these two parties was not that with which Allah commanded. Furthermore, if Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu was a disbeliever, then nominating him and abdicating in favour of him would not have been pleasing to Allah and His Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Instead, this narration proves that Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu and his party were believers; and that which had been done by Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu was praiseworthy in the sight of Allah, pleasing to Him and His Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Likewise it has been established from the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam in the Sahihayn, from the narration of Abu Sa’id al Khudri radiya Llahu ‘anhu, that the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam said: “A faction will renegade at a time when there is division among the Muslims; and the party, among two parties, which is closer to the truth, will fight them.” Therefore, this authentic narration is a proof that both fighting parties — ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu and his party as well as Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu and his party — were upon the truth; and that ‘Ali radiya Llahu ‘anhu and his party were the closest to the truth than Muawiyah radiya Llahu ‘anhu and his party.
He states further in Minhaj al Sunnah al Nabawiyyah (4/529):
… and this clearly indicates that the reconciliation between both parties was beloved to Allah and His Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam and was considered praiseworthy. Further, it indicates that which Hassan radiya Llahu ‘anhu did (i.e. reconciling), is from his greatest virtues and merits which bore praise from the Messenger salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam. Were fighting obligatory, or even recommended, the Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam would not have praised anyone for abandoning an obligation or omitting a recommended practise.
Ibn Kathir said in Ikhtisar ‘Ulum al Hadith (2/499):
The fulfilment of that came to the fore when Hassan abdicated in favour of Muawiyah after the demise of his father, ‘Ali. So the community was united behind Muawiyah and that year was called the year of unity; and that was in the year 40 A.H. The Prophet salla Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam called both parties “Muslims”; and (Allah) said: “If two parties from the believers fight each other; then bring about reconciliation between them…” describing both parties as believers despite the internal fighting.
The principle according to the scholars of hadith is that Hassan (al Basri) did not hear from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu… and the explicit mention of hearing the narration is an error on the part of Sufyan ibn ‘Uyaynah.
There are a number of responses to this allegation:
Al Daraqutni, in al Ilzamat, considers weak the narrations of Hassan — having heard — from Abu Bakrah, and included in that is this narration, “indeed this son of mine is a sayed…” Al Daraqutni says: “Hassan only narrates it by way of al Ahnaf — from Abu Bakrah.” I consider the view of al Daraqutni to be clear in rendering weak in general all the narrations of Hassan where he narrates directly from Abu Bakrah (having heard from him).
This will be rebutted with the following points:
I continue to be amazed at assertiveness in his view that Hassan al Basri did not hear from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu despite the narration appearing in al Bukhari… As for al Daraqutni’s argument that al Bukhari narrates this particular hadith with an alternative chain — from Hassan — from al Ahnaf — from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu then there is no contradiction since in the narration that goes via al Ahnaf there is a clear addition which is not found in the hadith which he narrates directly from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu.
The opinion of rejecting the narration of Sufyan ibn ‘Uyaynah, from Abu Musa, from Hassan — having heard — from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu due to numerous considerations:
His contradiction of the other reliable narrators, who all narrate it with a Mursal chain:-
In response to this I say: the narration of Nuaim ibn Hammad narrated in al Fitan (417) from Hushaim ibn Bashir — from Yunus — from ‘Ubaid — from Hassan with a Mursal chain is problematic on account of Nuaim ibn Hammad al Khuza’i. He was firm on the Sunnah but weak in narration. Al Nasa’i considers him weak as well as Ibn Ma’in.
Hushaim ibn Bashir narrates with ‘an’anah and does not expressly state that he heard. Furthermore, in al Tabarani’s al Mu’jam al Saghir (766) and al Mu’jam al Kabir (2592) this narration appears by way of Hushaim —from Yunus ibn ‘Ubaid and Mansur — from Zadhan — from Hassan — from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu, with a Marfu’ chain.
The narration of Al Nasa’i in ‘Amal al Yowm wa l-Laylah (256) by way of Hisham ibn Hassan — from Hassan with a Mursal chain is problematic since Hisham ibn Hassan, even though he is reliable in general, is weak in what he narrates from Hassan. Isma’il ibn ‘Ulayyah said: “We did not consider the narration of Hisham ibn Hassan from Hassan worth anything.”
As for the narration Ishaq ibn Rahuyah in his Musnad (1899) by way of Sahl ibn Abi al Salt — from Hassan with a Mursal chain; this chain is narrated via Sahl ibn Abi al Salt who was overall honest, but he had solitary narrations. Yahya ibn Sa’id al Qattan was not pleased with him.
As for the narrations of Ibn Abi Shaibah in his Musannaf (32178, 37362) — from Hussain ibn ‘Ali al Ju’fi — from Abu Musa — from Hassan with a Mursal chain, and al Nasa’i in ‘Amal al Yowm wa l-Laylah (254) by way of ‘Awf — from Hassan with a Mursal chain, and ‘Amal al Yowm wa l-Laylah (255) by way of Dawood ibn Abi Hind — from Hassan with a Mursal chain; these Mursal narrations are contradicted by tens of uninterrupted chains; some of which are with ‘an’anah, and some with explicit mention of Hassan having heard from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu. For the sake of brevity I will limit myself to five uninterrupted narrations, three of which have ‘an’anah, and some have explicit mention of Hassan having heard from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu.
As for the response regarding the allegation that Sufyan contradicts the other reliable narrators, who all narrate it with ‘an’anah, I say: Sufyan ibn ‘Uyaynah is reliable and an Imam (of hadith). It is farfetched to think that he blundered in this narration since the great, reliable scholars of hadith narrate it from him, upholding the Sama’ between Hassan and Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu; their mention will follow later in this treatise.
As for the allegation that his memory lapsed and he would get confused in the chains; the lapse that occurred to Ibn ‘Uyaynah is of no major consequence since Ikhtilat (confusion) is divided into two categories:
Similar to this is the transition in the memory of Sufyan ibn ‘Uyaynah, since none have pointed this out besides Yahya ibn Sa’id al Qattan, al Bukhari and Muslim rely on his early and later narrations; although his earlier narrations are considered stronger than his later narrations; therefore he says to hold on to the older narrations.
Al Dhahabi states in al Siyar (10/84):
Every change that occurs in the terminal illness is not a basis for discredit in a reliable narrator since most people are subject to lapse in memory when enduring such a harsh illness. However, what is dangerous is that when a reliable narrator experiences such memory lapse and confusion that he does not narrate during that state such that it brings about discrepancies in the chain or text and there will be contradictions on account of that.
Assuming the altered memory of Sufyan, the teachers of the compilers of the six major collections all heard from him before this transition. Al Dhahabi says in al Mizan (2/171):
What seems most accurate in my judgment is that all the teachers of the six Imams have heard from him before the year 197 , i.e. before his transition in the year 197 AH.
As for the allegation that he became confused in this narration and the fact that he narrates it with ‘an’anah and Sama’ is an indication that he was confused. The response to this allegation is that — as previously established — Sufyan’s transition was one of no consequence. Secondly, those who narrate it from Sufyan — from Abu Musa — from Hassan with an uninterrupted chain explicitly mentioning that he heard from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu are greater in number and more knowledgeable about the intricacies of the science of hadith than those who narrate it with ‘an’anah, and their narrations are preferred. The one who proves is given preference over the one who denies; and they are as follows:
From this we can see the futility in the claim that Hassan did not hear from Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu in the uninterrupted chains.
The possibility of Idraj (addition to the text) in this narration.
The response to this is as follows:
Muhammad ibn Salih al Madani has been included by Ibn Hibban in al Thiqat (7/385), and in al Du’afa’. He said: “He narrates objectionable narrations.” Abu Hatim said: “He is a teacher.” Ibn Hajar says of him in al Taqrib (5964): “Acceptable.”
Assuming the reliability of this narration (i.e. narration of Abu Hurairah radiya Llahu ‘anhu), it does not necessarily mean that in the narration of Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu the words, “I anticipate that Allah will bring about reconciliation at his hands to two major groups among the Muslims,” is an addition that has been injected into the text.
 Surah al Hujurat: 9
 Al Bukhari (2/962), Kitab al Sulh, Bab al Sulh fi al Diyah, Hadith: 2557
 Al Du’afa wa al Matrukin (244)
 Su’alat al Ajurri of Abu Dawood (1/284)
 Al Tahdhib (4/268)
 See what al Maliki has written in al Suhbah wa al Sahabah (pg. 231), he has rejected this narration with the most strange, unprecedented excuses, based purely on speculation and conjecture. He rejects it due to an oversight on the side of al Bukhari, or the teacher of al Bukhari ‘Abdullah ibn Muhammad al Musnadi, or the intentional forgery of Yahya ibn Adam — who is reliable and a narrator in all six collections — on account of him being of the line of Khalid ibn ‘Uqbah ibn Abi Mu’it. Is this how narrations are to be criticised? All that one needs to do in rejecting a narration in al Bukhari is to say that he erred?
 There is also a narration from Anas (pg.259).
 And a group of narrators as will follow in the next few pages.
 Al Maliki did not indicate the Sama’ between Mubarak ibn Fadalah and Hassan; and between Hassan and Abu Bakrah radiya Llahu ‘anhu.
 Al Tahdhib (2/60), al Siyar (8/465) and al Mizan (2/171)
 For further reading on the subject of altered states of recollection one may refer to Sharh al ‘ilal (2/563) Hussain ibn ‘Abdur Rahman al Sulami, the biography of Hisham ibn ‘Urwah in Mizan al I’tidal (4/301) and the biography of Abu Ishaq al Sabi’i in Mizan al I’tidal (2/270).
 See al Suhbah wa al Sahabah (241) he states: “Abu Hurairah radiya Llahu ‘anhu narrates it only with the wording, “indeed he is a sayed,’” likewise it is narrated as such by Abu Juhayfah. So based on this the most dominant view — and Allah knows best — is that the addition, “I anticipate that Allah will bring about reconciliation at his hands between two major groups among the Muslims,” is an addition by Abu Bakrah that has been injected into the text; and this is a flaw that I have not found anyone pointing it out.
 Al Majruhin (2/260), he said: “It is not permissible to rely on his narrations if he is not corroborated.”
 Al Jarh wal Ta’dil (7/287)