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Hadhrat Imam Abu Hanifah

Hadhrat Imam Abu Hanifah

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Published by Waris Husain

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Published by: Waris Husain on Aug 02, 2010
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Hadhrat Imam Abu Hanifah
 Imam Abu Hanifah (Rahmatullah alaih) is the name familiar to all Muslims of theSunni sect. His full name was Nauma'an bin Thaabit bin Zotae. He was aninhabitant of "Kufa". By occupation he was a draper (cloth seller) and traded insilken cloths. His grandfather Zota'e had migrated from Kabul. According toreports, Imam Abu Hanifah's (RA) father 'Sa'abith' during his young age presentedhimself before Hadhrat Ali (Radhiyallahu anhu) - the fourth and last Khalifah of Islam at Kufa.It is said that Hadhrat Ali (RA) gave his blessings to Hadhrat Sa'abith, and prayedfor his offspring that might be born.In this background Imam Abu Hanifah (RA) was born at Kufa in the year 80thHijri, i.e about 40 years after the death of the fourth Khalifah of Islam, and it wasthe period when the power of Banu Omaiyyah who had usurped the Khilafat fromthe House of Hadhrat Ali (RA) was also fast diminishing and the Abbasids weredeeply involved to overthrow the government of the weakened Banu Omayyah.Imam Abu Hanifah (RA) took his lessons in Islamic jurisprudence (Fiqah) from arenowned scholar of his time, Hammad bin Abee Suleiman and Aha'adith fromAta'a bin Abee Robah, Abu Ishque Saleeyi, Mohammad bin Mankadar, Nafa'aHussham bin Arwa Samak bin Harb and some other noted Mohaddatheen. Latersome noted Muhaddutheen like Abdullah bin Mubarak, Wakee bin Jurrah, Yesiedbin Haroo, Qaadhi Aboo Yousuf and Mohammad bin Hassan Shaybanee, narratedAhaadith quoting the authority of Imam Abu Hanifah (RA).Meanwhile, as stated above the "Khilafat" of the Omayyah which had nowdisappeared and a new dynasty known as the "Abbasids" had gained power.Khalifah Mansoor who was the second Khalifah of the "Abbasids" shifted hiscapital from Damascus in Syria to Baghdad in Iraq. Mansoor was a man of dubious character. He had suspicion in his to mind that the two great scholars andexperts in Islamic jurisprudence, viz. Hadhrat Ma'alik bin Anas (Rahmatullahalaih), who is popularly known to us as Hadhrat Imam Maalik - the proponent of the Maalik Madhab and compiler of the great book of Ahaadith which is called"Muwatta" and the other man whom we know as Imam Abu Hanifa (RA) thetopmost Islamic jurist of his time, were engaged in conspiracy against him.Mansoor, therefore on pretenses to honour them and install them on high posts,invited them to his new capital at Baghdad. On their refusal these two shining starsof their time were arrested and were lashed upon, and later thrown into jails.Mansoor, through the governor of Kufa, asked Imam Abu Hanifah (RA) tobecome the chief Qaadhi of Kufa, but Imam Abu Hanifa (RA) declined to accept
that post. As a result of this refusal he was caught by the administrative officialsand for ten consecutive days he was striped with ten lashes daily.The Imam, however, remained firm to his conviction and as a result he was freed.After wards the cunning Mansoor hit upon a new plan. He called Imam AbuHanifah (RA) on some other pretext to Baghdad and this time he wished to offerthe department of justice to him.The Khalifa Mansoor vowed that Imam Abu Hanifah (RA) would be compelled toaccept his offer, while the great Imam also vowed that come what may be hewould not accept Mansoor's offer at any cost. When Mansoor found that he hadbecome unable to budge the Imam slightly from his position, he threw him intoprison. In this very state of confinement the great Imam breathed his last in theyear 150 Hijri in Baghdad. He was buried in the precincts of the Mausoleum of 'Kheezra'. His tomb is still visited by a large number of people.Hakim bin Hushsham said that once while he was in Syria, a group of learnedpersons narrated to him that Imam Abu Hanifah (RA) topped the list of thosepersons in whom trust and confidence could be reposed. They cited hisdetermination when the ruler wanted to entrust the responsibility of his treasury tohim, but the Imam declined to accept it, and he preferred to bear the wrath of theruler that to ear the wrath of Allah. In another case at a gathering of scholarswhich was held at the house of great 'Muhaddith' Abdullah bin Mubarak, someonementioned Imam Abu Hanifah's (RA) name whereupon Abdullah bin Mubarak said, "You are talking about a man on whose feel the wealth of the whole countrywas brought at but he left everything which related to the world."According to narration Imam Abu Hanifah (RA) was a person of medium height,but his face was very beautiful, his conversation with others was very polite andcontained a high degree of humility. Imam Abu Hanifah (RA) always took care of his friends and companions. According to a narration of Hadhrat Imam Sha'af'ee(RA) one day someone asked Hadhrat Imam Ma'alik the reputed compiler of Ahaadith in his book Muwatta whether he had ever met Imam Abu Hanifah (RA).He replied 'Yes and what I fathomed about him is that if he says that this pillar ismade of gold, then you must rest assured that he can prove it with his strongarguments. He has that power of justification." One another occasion ImamSha'af'ee, speaking about Imam Abu Hanifah (RA) said that if anybody wished toget perfection in the knowledge of 'Fiqh' he could not attain it without theguidance of Imam Abu Hanifah (RA).It has been stated by the renowned philosopher, jurist and theologian HadhratImam Abu Haamid Ghazzali (RA) that Imam Abu Hanifah (RA) used to spendhalf portion of his night time in prayers offering Tahajjud; one day while he was

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