Thoughtful Muslims need to understand that everything attributed to our beloved Prophet (pbuh) may not necessarily be correct. There were some characters in early Islamic history that attributed to the noble Messenger (pbuh) statements that he could not have said because they contradicted the Qur’an.
In his continuing series on Hadith compilation, Abu Dharr calls upon Muslim from both sides of the sectarian divide to set aside their preconceived ideas and begin to see the other’s point of view with an open mind.
In his ongoing examination of the compilation of hadith literature, Abu Dharr continues to provide insights that should enlighten sincere Muslims to look at this crucial issue with greater clarity.
The Prophet (pbuh) had expressly forbidden his companions from writing his hadiths. That explains why there are few hadiths narrated by his close companions yet there are others that have taken much liberty with them. It is a serious matter that needs close attention.
In his ongoing series on hadith, Abu Dharr reminds us that while appointed by Allah and protected from sin, Prophets were still human beings. And in mundane worldly affairs, they need not be experts. That, however, does not diminish their stature as Prophets.
In this series of articles, Abu Dharr aims to separate the sound hadith from the forged ones. For the thoughtful enlightened Muslims, this is a welcome contribution; for the literalists and stuck in cultural traditions, this would cause heart-burn.
There is a difference between what the noble Messenger (pbuh) said and what was reported that he said. Since Hadith literature was compiled many centuries after our beloved Prophet (pbuh) left this world, it is important to sift through the copious volumes of Hadith literature.
Muslims must sharpen their critical thinking and look very carefully at what passes for hadith. Not everything attributed to the noble messenger (pbuh) may be correct because some vested interests in early Islamic history needed to furbish their credentials through forgeries.
Tackling on the sensitive issue of hadith compilation, Abu Dharr posits that any hadith that contradicts the Qur’an must be rejected. The noble Messenger (pbuh) who taught us the Qur’an could never go against its teachings. There is need to sift such hadiths.
Some Muslims have elevated hadiths to the same level as the Qur’an and even more than the Qur’an (nastaghfirullah). It is time to sift the hadith literature to distinguish the genuine hadith from those that cannot be fully verified. Abu Dharr embarks on this arduous task.
If Muslims want to learn how hadith literature has been distorted, these two books will help them in this quest.2
We’ve been trying to do justice to the issue of hadith. This is an area that has not been approached by those who qualify to approach it. In the previous khutbahs we spoke about how the Umawi dynasty contrived hadiths to serve its own purposes and to try to convince people of its legitimacy which it did not have; but this did not stop there. We go from the contrived hadiths of Bani Umayyah to the contrived hadiths of Bani Al Abbas.1
Allah says to us concerning His beloved Prophet: When Allah's Prophet speaks, he doesn't speak because he's expressing a personal desire or his own preference for things or because he has a tendency towards himself rather his speech his words are a matter of a revelation revealed to him. (Surah An Najm verse 3-4)
One of the issues is very difficult for us to come to terms with is the fact that we are different. You can’t expect from us, doing our best, to be the exact copies of each other. This is something very difficult to accept. This is a fact that, for some people, is a physical difficulty. Alhamdulillah it’s not present amongst the Muslims but in the context of human society some people don’t accept other people because they are physically different.
To take the previous khutbahs a step forward and to surround this mentality of degrading or debasing all the way to kufr the other Muslim- this is not a character and it’s not a manner of those who understand Allah and His Prophet correctly; so on our way to Allah we are going to shed light on these characters who verbally denounce other Muslims as a first step in eliminating other Muslims. All of us are readers of Allah’s book, the faultless Qur’an, and there are too many ayaat in the Qur’an, (more than we can quote here in khutbah even though we will quote some of them by necessity; it’s not our way of delivering a khutbah to quote at length the ayaat of the Qur’an but in this case it is necessary to do so), to relay to you, the listeners, how the positive and the optimistic attitude in the Qur’an is towards Alladheena Aamanu.