Knowledge International University Final Assignment
Course Name: Hadeeth 1 Course Code: HAD 1 Instructor: Shaykh Sajid Umar & Shaykh Salmaan Awan
Student Details Name: Hassan Basarally Student ID: 1120020 Batch: Semester: 3 (Spring 2013)
Assignment Question: Submit an assignment on the following (Max 1200 Words): In order to be authentic, a Hadith must meet five conditions, among them Dabt and Adalah. Define Dabt and Adalah and explain their categories and conditions. What function do they play in the Hadith scholars’ work of ensuring the authenticity of a Hadith? What are the other three conditions and what is their relationship to the conditions of Dabt and Adalah? What role do they play in ensuring the authenticity of a Hadith and what is their relationship to Dabt and Adalah?
بسم ال والحمد ل و ا لصل ة و ا لسل م على ر صو ل ل The Ahadeeth provide legal rulings, codes of conduct and aspects of Islamic creed. Due to the important information that it provides, great effort is placed into verifying the authenticity of Hadeeth. This is done through Hadeeth classification (Mustalah al Hadeeth) and a validation test of the narrators of Hadeeth (Ilmul Jahr wat Ta’deel). The highest level of Hadeeth classification is Saheeh. Linguistically, it means sound or healthy. Technically, it means that a Hadeeth has a connected chain of narrators (Ittisaal as Sanad) from beginning to end, each of the narrators (Rawee) possess uprightness (Adaalah), accuracy (Dabt), lacks contradictions with other reliable narrators (Ghayr Shaadh) and lacks obscure defects (La Illah). Ittisasl as Sanad deals with the chain of narrators itself, Adaalah and Dabt deal with the Rawee and Ghayr Shaadh and La Illah deals with both the Isnaad and Matn. These five characteristics must all be present for a Hadeeth to be Saheeh, different scholars use different terminologies in Mustalah al Hadeeth, Saheeh here refers to what some may term Saheeh li Dhaatih. The characteristics have categories and conditions and are essential in maintaining the authenticity of Hadeeth. To ensure the accuracy of information received is following the command of Allah, سبحانه و تعلى: (٦) ن َ مني ِد ني ِندا ني َ م ْ ت ن ُل ْم ْ ع ن َ ف َ مدا َ ل ى َ ع َ حاوا ُب ْم ِص ني ْ ت ن ُف ْم َ ة ٍ ل ف َ هدا َ ج َ ب ِمدا ني ًاو ا ْ ق ن َ باوا ُصني ْم ِت ني ُن ْم ْ أ ن َ ناوا ُني ْم َّبن َ ت َ ف َ إ ٍ ب ف َ ن َ ب ِق ني ٌ س ب ِفدا ني َ م ْ ك ن ُء ْم َ جدا َ ن ْ إ ن ِناوا ني ُم ْم َ ن آ َ ذني ِل ني َّهدا ان َ ني ُّأه َ نيدا َ 6. O You who believe! If a rebellious evil person comes to you with news, verify it, lest you harm people in ignorance, and afterwards you become regretful to what you have done. Form the apparent meaning of this verse; one sees the need to verify information, especially by looking at the condition of the one who brings it. Also, there is a warning that failure to do so will result in actions based on ignorance and the possibility of doing harm.
Adaalah is the moral integrity of the narrator. The conditions for a Rawee are two: Uprightness in Religion (Istiqaamatud Deen) and Uprightness in Etiquette (Istiqaamuatul Maru’ah)1. Istiqaamatud Deen would include being a practicing Muslim, not being a major sinner, a sane person, reaching the age of maturity, not being an innovator in Islam and not being a liar. Istiqaamuatul Maru’ah means that the Rawee does not have qualities that besmirch a person’s honour (Khawarim al Maru’ah or Makhroomal al Maru’ah). Khawarim al Maru’ah is governed by both custom and Adaab of Islaam, some of the examples given in an explanation of Nukbatul Fiqar by Imaam Ibn Hajar Asqalani are urinating in public places, shouting and screaming, keeping company with low-lifes.2 A person who meets the conditions of Adaalah is called Adil or Thiqah. If this criterion is not met, a Hadeeth moves from being Saheeh to Daeef. By utilising Kutub ar Rijaal, which is a study of the biographies of the narrators, a Hadeeth Scholar (Muhaddith) determines if there are present aspects that affect the Adaalah of a narrator. Aspects that will cause a Muhaddith to doubt the Adaalah of a Rawi include, lying, fabricating Hadeeth, accusations of lying and fabrication. The conditions for Adaalah ensure that narrations only come from the most reliable of sources. These conditions ensure that those who may have motives to propagate foreign ideas in Islam are not given the opportunity to falsely ascribe things to the Prophet, صلى ال عليه و سلم. By looking at the biography of a Rawee, a statement about his Adaalah is not hearsay but based on solid research and testimony of his contemporaries. This prevents a person from attacking the character of a Rawee to discredit a Hadeeth
Muhaamd Saalih Al Uthaymeen, Mustalah al Hadeeth, p. 9 Saeed Ahmed Palanpuri, Tuhfatud Durar Sharah Nukhbatul Fikar Fee Mustalahi Ahlil Athar, Translated by A. H. Elias, p. 30
Dabt refers to the ability of the Rawee to accurately report a narration. It is divided into two categories: Dabt as Sadr and Dabt al Kitaabah. Dabt as Sadr is concerned with the memory of the narrator, its condition is that the Rawee narrates the same Hadeeth consistently the same way without major variation, the narrator should be able do this at any time without delay without difficulty, if called upon. Dabt al Kitaabah refers to when a narrator records Ahadeeth in books, the condition is that the Rawee narrates them exactly from his books as he recorded them and ensures that unfamiliar words are clear. If the narrator is inconsistent with recall he is termed as confused (Mudtarib) and the Hadeeth cannot be considered Saheeh. This is done by comparing the narrations of a Rawee to other narrations by those known for Dabt. If it is found that a Rawee is narrating a Hadeeth that is unique to one person (Afrad), then it is a sign of weakness no one else heard such a Hadeeth unless there are any exception circumstances e.g. a Rawee sepend much time with his Shaykh so he will hear Hadeeth that other may not. This criterion ensures only narrations that can be verified from the Messenger, صلى ال عليه و سلم, reaches the Muslims. If closes the door of human errors as a narrator may have Adaalah but his mental accuracy may falter, which is a natural human weakness. So if a narrator is excessive in errors, weak in memory, negligent when it comes to the accuracy of his narrations, misinterprets narrations or contradicts in his narration more reliable sources, he does not have the quality of Dabt. So Dabt ensures the authenticity of Hadeeth by ensuring its accuracy, not only in meaning but wording as well.
For a Hadeeth to be Saheeh, the Isnaad must not be broken, it must be traced back to the Prophet, صلى ال عليه و سلم. The conditions for Ittisaal as Sanad are that the Rawee has to have met the person he is narrating from (Mubasharah) or through Hukman, which means
that the wording of the Isnaad shows the possibility that the individuals met but it is not for certain, for example, using the phrase “on the authority of.” This refers to the issue of Tadlees which is of two types: Tadless as Sanad and Tadlees ash Shuyookh. Tadless as Sanad is when a Rawee claims that he heard from a person when, in fact he did not hear from a person, or he met that person and in fact did not actually meet that person. Tadlees ash Shuyookh is where Rawee purposely refers to his Sheikh in the Isnaad by a name which is not popularly known or that name perhaps is one of a person who is popularly known. Also the Rawee must be known, this means that his biography can be checked in Kutub ar Rijaal. If the person is unknown (Majhool), the Isnaad is not considered. In addition, a chain is broken if the Shaykh of the Rawee died before the Rawee reached puberty or the Rawee himself states that he never met the one he says he is narrating from. The chain can be broken in four ways. So Adaalah comes into play here as the identity of the Rawee is checked by utilising Kutub ar Rijaal. One way of the Isnaad being broken is when it is Mursal, a Tabieen narrates from the Prophet, صلى ال عليه و سلم, and the Sahabah is not mentioned. Another way is when the Hadeeth is Mu’allaq, when the collector of the Hadeeth does not mention the name of the Shaykh he is narrating from or just narrated directly from the Prophet, صلى ال عليه و سلم. The Hadeeth is Mu’dal when two or more consecutive narrators are missing and a Hadeeth is Munqata when one or more narrator is missing but at different parts of the Isnaad. This is a very clear way of ensuring the authenticity of Hadeeth as what is Saheeh is what was actually heard from the Messenger, صلى ال عليه و سلم. The Hadeeth are not unverified sayings that Christians and the Jews have regarding the prophets sent to them. In fact, by looking at Dabt and Adaalah, some scholars have stated some chains of narration which they believe to be strongest (Assahh Asaneed). For example, Imam Ahmad states the strongest chain to be Az Zuhree
from Saalim from Abdullah Ibn Umar Al Khattab while Imam Bukhari says it is Maalik from Nafi from Abdullah Ibn Umar Al Khattab.3
A Hadeeth being Ghayr Shaadh ensures that the message or meaning delivered in the Hadeeth is authentic. It compares a Hadeeth to those with stronger Isnaad on the same topic. The condition for a Hadeeth being Ghayr Shaadh would occur if one who is Thiqah narrated a Hadeeth, and it is not contrary to a narration by one who is more reliable (Awthaq). Adaalah and Dabt are also utilised here, for instance one needs to know who are the narrators who are Awthaq in the first place, so the Hadeeth can be correctly compared. While Adaalah and Dabt ensure that the Isnaad itself is Saheeh, this condition ensures that a narrator cannot change the intended meaning of a Hadeeth without it being noticed. This is extremely important as the Hadeeth is not protected from alteration by the promise of Allah, سبحانه و تعلى, like the Quran. It prevents people changing Islaam. La Illah means that there is an obscure or difficult to recognise error in the Isnaad or Matn. This is something that is only discovered after careful study of the Hadeeth. The types of Illah are that the Isnaad is missing a narrator, stops at a Sahabah or a Rawee has a poor memory or is a sinner. Again the Adaalh and Dabt of the Rawee is scrutinised to ensure that there is no overlooked weakness. Checking for Illah in a Hadeeth is like the final scrutiny to ensure it is Saheeh, there first for conditions can be identified more easily than Illah. That is why this is researched by the strongest of the Muhadditheen like Imam Bukhari or Imam Ahmad.
Imaad Ali Jumuah, Mustalah al Hadeeth: Silsilah Al Uloom Al Islaamiyyah Al Muyassarah, p. 14
The conditions of a Hadeeth being Saheeh are continuity of the chain of transmission, integrity and accuracy of the narrator, conformity of the text of the Hadeeth and the absence of hidden defects. All these conditions ensure that what is transmitted as Hadeeth is authentic because it places great emphasis on Hadeeth being directly attributed to the Messenger صلى ال عليه و سلم, the narrator being trustworthy and capable of transmitting narrations and the Hadeeth standing up to the scrutiny of the Muhadditheen.