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    Questioning the Hadith?

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    Originally published in July 2008.


    I was wondering if you can talk about how we should deal with Hadith (Prophetic traditions) that seem unfair to women; for example, that hellfire is full of women, women have a lack of intelligence, etc. How should we understand and accept such statements when they seem to contradict the equality of Islam? Could it be that some masochistic ideas on the part of the narrators influenced the books Hadith like Bukhari, etc.?


    Bismillah. In the name of the Lord.

    Dear user,

    How salaamu alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhMay the peace and blessings of God be upon you

    First of all, I want to thank you for raising a very important question. I ask Allah to make this exchange a means for us to get a fuller and deeper understanding of our faith, because our prophet Muhammad said: "Whenever Allah wants good for man, he gives him a deep understanding of religion."1

    <img class = "align-size-medium wp-image-9913"” width=”240″ height=”179″ />Going through Hadith what may seem alarming or incompatible with the general principles of Islam is not unusual and is not limited to women's issues. There are a number of texts that, at first glance, can cause discomfort, disappointment or other negative feelings in a person. What about Hadith that it says: "I am ordered to fight with the people until they say"la ilaha illa allah""? Or that "999 out of 1000 people will enter the fire"?

    There are certain steps that a person must take in order to interact with these types and understand them. Hadith properly. I would say that there are three key elements, for example, three pieces of the puzzle, which must be firmly installed together so that you can see the “complete, complete and accurate picture HadithThese three components are:

    1. Prophetic words

    First, we must determine the accuracy of what we read and make sure that they really are the words of the Prophet ﷺ. You have assumed that misogynist feelings on the part of Hadith storytellers could affect authenticated books HadithI believe that even a superficial study of the area Hadith criticism would completely devalue this idea. Please note that in saying this, I do not reject the idea that there are jesuistic views in the Muslim world (and so far); but that such an attitude could not penetrate the authentication process Hadith because it was such a nuanced and carefully crafted science. In addition, women played an important role in Hadith narration from its very beginning.2

    Honestly, it is sometimes easier to believe such ideas than to deal with texts that make us uncomfortable. Sometimes we use our own version of the authentication process in our mind: if this is what I consider acceptable, then it is authentic; and if not, then this is definitely a weak text! I would say that to begin this journey, we must temporarily put off our feelings and objections in order to arrive at an impartial conclusion about the authenticity of the text through reliable sources. If he is fabricated or doubtful, then we obviously should not bother him. If, however, Hadith is genuine, then we need to continue in this process to learn more about it, and to understand how it fits into the framework of Islamic teachings.

    Thus, the first part of the puzzle ensures that we are dealing with true prophetic words, and not with anything else. Once this is fixed in place, we can proceed to the next step, which distinguishes the meaning of these words.

    2. Context and meaning

    We have to take into account a number of things in order to understand the meanings and consequences Hadith properly. First, it is a particular situational context in which Hadith it was said. Just like the science of Asbab en Nuzul3 It is extremely important for those who want to understand the Quran, understanding when, why and to whom the Prophet ﷺ made a specific statement can give us a great idea about Hadith,

    Then we must try to understand the text in the light of other Hadith on the same issue. Scholars who specialize in defining the fundamental principles of Islamic law[[the[[theusuliyun]use a process called istiqraa: Instead of focusing on one specific text, they inspect all texts on a particular topic and draw conclusions, seeing how they relate to each other, and their general topics and lessons. We need to use a similar method when studying Hadith before extrapolation or generalization. We should also pay attention to the fact that faqihs [jurisprudential scholars] let's say about the correct application of the text and about the decisions that flow from it.

    <img class = "size-medium-wp-image-9917 alignleft"” width=”240″ height=”152″ />Finally, we must consider Hadith from point of view Sunna generally. I heard one of my teachers compare Hadith to the photo: something said or done at a specific time in a certain place, while Sunna is a more comprehensive, holistic understanding of what the Prophet Muhammad taught, and his message. Another analogy would be like taking a four-hundred-page novel, copying a random page and reading it, as well as finding the plot line or characters from this part. Obviously, the one who does this can very easily come to the wrong conclusions. It is for this reason that we must Hadith which we are discussing in a wider framework Sunna,

    We can see that the correct analysis and study Hadith has some complexity and requires some experience for proper implementation. Here people sit with knowledge, ask about and learn from them, play an important role in guiding and improving our understanding.

    3. Spiritual openness

    The last piece of the puzzle – and I would say, in some way, the most important thing – has less to do with the actual content. Hadith in question and do more with you and me, as with the reader. If we compare Hadith the sharpened arrow itself and its correct concept for the bow, then the spiritual and intellectual relationship with which we approach Hadith will be the fineness of the archer's eye. Even if the bow and arrow sound, without the correct vision and clarity of vision, the sign will never be reached. Similarly, our thinking when we study Hadith it is very important and can change whether we have reached our “mark” (the right understanding) or not.

    A critical part of this thinking is considering Hadith and pondered over him with the spirit of introspection, honesty with himself and the search for the soul. Instead of immediately thinking about how others might perceive Hadith, misinterpret it or use it to promote it (which is certainly an actual problem), we should start by looking at how Hadith relates to me as a person, to my actions and to my way of thinking. In other words, my concern must be turned inward before it manifests itself outwardly.

    <img class = ”size-medium wp-image-9916″ width=”240″ height=”166″ />Another aspect of the correct spiritual approach is caution in refusal. Sometimes charges that Hadith and Hadith the narrators are based on the inner state and feelings of the individual, and not on any research or obvious evidence. I am by no means saying that it is necessary to eradicate the sincere feelings and natural problems that may arise when reading such Hadith; but that our attitude should be aimed at finding out more, clarifying and understanding, instead of immediately looking for a way to reject Hadith which often involves the dismantling of the whole science of Hadith research. We live in an era when we are encouraged to quickly formulate opinions and draw conclusions, whereas I would say that there is nothing wrong with just saying when it comes to genuine Hadith that may worry us: “I don't know” or “I'm still learning.” Some of the old scientists said: “To say“ I do not know ”is half the knowledge,” and this is certainly a safer and more secure position.

    As a final piece of advice, we should always strive to have a good opinion of our Lord, as the Most High, Wiser and Love and Good His creatures, who never do injustice to anyone and who reward those who do good and believe, men and women , according to the best of their actions.4 Islam is His religion, and it is a religion of justice, balance, mercy and justice — its teachings are a reflection of His noble attributes. And it was Allah the Most High who chose the Prophet Muhammad for His message. As Muslims, we know that Muhammad was educated, developed and decorated in the Divine School of Prophecy, guided by the Divine in all aspects of his life, while he was not, as the Quran testifies, "certainly at the highest level of character."5 He воплощ was the embodiment of the most beautiful qualities in his manner with people, his personality and in his true and faithful translation of the teachings of our religion. The spiritual openness that I talked about also means that when we ask about these Hadithwe do this with full recognition of who the Prophet Muhammad was that he taught, and not allow this study to become an obstacle in the loving and respectful relationship that we should have with him and with the Divine.

    I also urge anyone who has such concerns. Hadith make a commitment to read and study Syrah,6 The Prophet was the one who, especially since the men and women around him recognized him, the more they fell in love and awe for him and for his teachings. Like a poet7 said in his praise:

    (He) is like the sun, which seems to eyes from afar

    Apparently, small and insignificant – but a blinding eye when studying.

    We are obliged to this our beloved Messenger ﷺ to strive to find beauty and meaning in his words, which may not be perceived from afar, but only when studying at hand.

    May Allah the Almighty make us people who sincerely strive to make our fragmented understanding whole and complete, piece by piece, through His guidance and help, until our eyesight is healthy and our goal is sure, and we are among those who know Him and know Him. religion. May He make us people of deep knowledge, insight, and wisdom, and who, thanks to our spiritual and intellectual efforts, will reach His intimacy and intimacy. Amine.

    For further study

    On Hadith:

    • Al-Muhadditat: "Women-scholars of Islam" by Dr. Akram Nadwi
    • Research on the Hadith methodology and literature M. M. Azami
    • Hadith Study Textbook: Authenticity, Compilation, Classification, and Critique of Hadith by Mohammad Hashim Kamali
    • On the science of Hadith Criticism (CD Set) by Dr. Mokhtar Magarui

    On Syrah:

    • Muhammad: The Man and the Prophet Adil Salah
    • In the footsteps of the Prophet Dr. Tariq Ramadan
    • Muhammad: Messenger of Allah (Ash-Shifa Kadi Iyad) translated by Aisha Bewley

    1. Sahih Bukhari.
    2. See the book of Dr. Akram Nadvi, al-Muhadditat: "Women-scholars of Islam", which discusses stories about hadiths and their key role in science.
    3. Asbab en Nuzul: A study of events and circumstances related to the revelation of certain places in the Quran.
    4. Quran, 16:97,
    5. Quran68: 4,
    6. Syrah: study of the life of the Prophet (Sal allahu alayhi wa salam), which includes events preceding both during his prophecy and the description of his physical and inner qualities.
    7. Imam al-Busiri in his Qasida al-Burda

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