Monthly Archives: November 2011

The Science of Hadith (Ahadith 656-657)


Volume 1, Book 11, Number 656:

Narrated Aisha:

the mother of the believers: Allah’s Apostle during his illness prayed at his house while sitting whereas some people prayed behind him standing. The Prophet beckoned them to sit down. On completion of the prayer, he said, ‘The Imam is to be followed: bow when he bows, raise up your heads (stand erect) when he raises his head and when he says, ‘Sami a-l-lahu liman-hamida ‘ (Allah heard those who sent praises to Him) say then ‘Rabbana wa laka-l-hamd’ (O our Lord! All the praises are for You), and if he prays sitting then pray sitting.”

The provision of this Hadith has been abrogated by the last action of the Prophet (SAW). See next Hadith.

According to some other scholars, this Hadith is not abrogated. Some say this action (as in the Hadith above) can still be followed. Others say we can’t do so. And yet another group of scholars say we can follow both.

Volume 1, Book 11, Number 657:

Narrated Anas bin Malik:

Once Allah’s Apostle rode a horse and fell down and the right side (of his body) was injured. He offered one of the prayers while sitting and we also prayed behind him sitting. When he completed the prayer, he said, “The Imam is to be followed. Pray standing if he prays standing and bow when he bows; rise when he rises; and if he says, ‘Sami a-l-lahu-liman hamida, say then, ‘Rabbana wa Lakal-hamd’ and pray standing if he prays standing, and pray sitting (all of you) if he prays sitting.”

Humaid said: The saying of the Prophet “Pray sitting, if he (Imam) prays sitting” was said in his former illness (during his early life) but the Prophet prayed sitting afterwards (in the last illness) and the people were praying standing behind him and the Prophet did not order them to sit. We should follow the latest actions of the Prophet.

Similar Hadith has been covered before. Read here.

Here’s when we realize how important knowledge of Hadith is. The sciences of Hadith. It’s quite a vast subject, I must say. Just to give you an example from `Ilm-ur-Rijaal: a Hadith has two parts: the chain of narrators (sanad) and the text (matn). Chain of narrators in Imaam Bukhari’s time usually had 3-6 narrators. In order for a Hadith to be claimed Saheeh (authentic), it’s important to check each narrator’s `aqeedah, character, scholars’ opinion about them, memory etc. Imaam Bukhari used to check each narrator for each Hadith, and when he was sure that each narrator was an honest, reliable person having a good memory etc., only then would he include the Hadith in his book. Imagine! He did the same check for more than 7000 Ahadith! O_O

This is just a tiny bit. There’s a LOT more to what we call `Ulum-ul-Hadith.

More on Hadith Sciences here.


Your Basic Necessity (Hadith No. 655)


Hadith no. 653 is a repeat. Read it here. Hadith no. 654 is also a repeat. Read it here.

Volume 1, Book 11, Number 655:

Narrated ‘Ubaid-Ullah Ibn ‘Abdullah bin ‘Utba:

I went to ‘Aisha and asked her to describe to me the illness of Allah’s Apostle. ‘Aisha said, “Yes. The Prophet became seriously ill and asked whether the people had prayed. We replied, ‘No. O Allah’s Apostle! They are waiting for you.’ He added, ‘Put water for me in a trough.” ‘Aisha added, “We did so. He took a bath and tried to get up but fainted. When he recovered, he again asked whether the people had prayed. We said, ‘No, they are waiting for you. O Allah’s Apostle,’ He again said, ‘Put water in a trough for me.’ He sat down and took a bath and tried to get up but fainted again. Then he recovered and said, ‘Have the people prayed?’ We replied, ‘No, they are waiting for you. O Allah’s Apostle.’ He said, ‘Put water for me in the trough.’ Then he sat down and washed himself and tried to get up but he fainted. When he recovered, he asked, ‘Have the people prayed?’ We said, ‘No, they are waiting for you. O Allah’s Apostle! The people were in the mosque waiting for the Prophet for the ‘Isha prayer. The Prophet sent for Abu Bakr to lead the people in the prayer. The messenger went to Abu Bakr and said, ‘Allah’s Apostle orders you to lead the people in the prayer.’ Abu Bakr was a soft-hearted man, so he asked ‘Umar to lead the prayer but ‘Umar replied, ‘You are more rightful.’ So Abu Bakr led the prayer in those days. When the Prophet felt a bit better, he came out for the Zuhr prayer with the help of two persons one of whom was Al-‘Abbas. while Abu Bakr was leading the people in the prayer. When Abu Bakr saw him he wanted to retreat but the Prophet beckoned him not to do so and asked them to make him sit beside Abu Bakr and they did so. Abu Bakr was following the Prophet (in the prayer) and the people were following Abu Bakr. The Prophet (prayed) sitting.”

‘Ubaid-Ullah added “I went to ‘Abdullah bin ‘Abbas and asked him, Shall I tell you what Aisha has told me about the fatal illness of the Prophet?’ Ibn ‘Abbas said, ‘Go ahead. I told him her narration and he did not deny anything of it but asked whether ‘Aisha told me the name of the second person (who helped the Prophet ) along with Al-Abbas. I said. ‘No.’ He said, ‘He was ‘Ali (Ibn Abi Talib).

Similar Ahadith have been covered before. Like praying despite fatal illness and switching Imaams during Salah.

I was thinking about the initial part of this Hadith. Prophet (SAW) is so ill, he can’t even stay awake for long. He faints each time he wants to get up. Each time he recovers, he asks about the prayer. He worries about the people waiting for prayer. He is so weak, so close to death, yet he keeps Salah above everything else.

What is it about Salah? Why is it SO important? Why do Allah and His Messenger (SAW) emphasize on its establishment so much? Why does Prophet (SAW)’s face get lit up when he sees the Muslims praying during his last days? Why does he want to burn the houses of those men who do not turn up for congregational prayer in the masjid five times a day? Why are Muslims promised an ‘honorable’ place in Paradise for praying? Why is praying on time so important? Why so much reward on doing it properly and such severe punishment on ignoring it? Have you ever thought about it?

This is what I came across when I Googled ‘importance of Salah’:

“Then, there came after them a generation who gave up Salah and followed lusts; so they will be thrown in Hell.” (19: 59)

“Salah is the second pillar and one of the most important pillars of Islam. Salah is the key to Islam.” -Hamid Syed

“The first matter that the slave will be brought to account for on the Day of Judgment is the prayer. If it is sound, then the rest of his deeds will be sound. And if it is bad, then the rest of his deeds will be bad.” [Tabarani]

“Salat is a pillar of the religion (Islam). He who establishes it, establishes religion; and he who destroys it, destroys religion.” [Tabarani]

Interesting links:

After going through all this, I’m now thinking: Salah is one of the basic necessities of life. If water keeps your body alive, Salah keeps your soul nourished. We can go on about the physical, emotional, psychological, spiritual, personal, social and other benefits of Salah. But I can conclude early: Salah is a Muslim’s basic necessity.

Let your soul live. PRAY!


Switching Imaams During Salah (Hadith No. 652)


Hadith no. 650 and 651 are repeats. Read them here.

Volume 1, Book 11, Number 652:

Narrated Sahl bin Sa’d As-Sa’idi:

Allah’s Apostle went to establish peace among Bani ‘Amr bin ‘Auf. In the meantime the time of prayer was due and the Mu’adh-dhin went to Abu Bakr and said, “Will you lead the prayer, so that I may pronounce the Iqama?” Abu Bakr replied in the affirmative and led the prayer. Allah’s Apostle came while the people were still praying and he entered the rows of the praying people till he stood in the (first row). The people clapped their hands. Abu Bakr never glanced sideways in his prayer but when the people continued clapping, Abu Bakr looked and saw Allah’s Apostle. Allah’s Apostle beckoned him to stay at his place. Abu Bakr raised his hands and thanked Allah for that order of Allah’s Apostle and then he retreated till he reached the first row. Allah’s Apostle went forward and led the prayer. When Allah’s Apostle finished the prayer, he said, “O Abu Bakr! What prevented you from staying when I ordered you to do so?”

Abu Bakr replied, “How can Ibn Abi Quhafa (Abu Bakr) dare to lead the prayer in the presence of Allah’s Apostle?” Then Allah’s Apostle said, “Why did you clap so much? If something happens to anyone during his prayer he should say Subhan Allah. If he says so he will be attended to, for clapping is for women.”

  • If the Imaam has to be switched during Salah, the method is pretty clear in the Hadith. The Imaam who has to take over should enter the rows from the back and come to the front.
  • If anything happens during Salah, men are to say SubhanAllah. They will be attended to (as the Prophet (SAW) said). Clapping is for women.
  • When Prophet (SAW) beckoned Abu Bakr (RA) to stay at his place and keep leading the prayer, he thanked Allah right there for the honor. But he refused to do so, as he explains in the last part: “how can Abu Quhafa dare to lead the prayer in the presence of Allah’s Apostle (SAW)?”
    If you’re being offered a position/rank and you know someone who’s more worthy of it, don’t hesitate to step back.
  • If something unusual happens during Salah, the Imaam can inquire about it afterwards and make amendments accordingly, as the Prophet (SAW) did.


The Face of the Prophet [SAW] (Ahadith 648-649)


Hadith no. 646 and 647 are repeats. Read here.

Volume 1, Book 11, Number 648:

Narrated Az-Zuhri:

Anas bin Malik Al-Ansari, told me, “Abu Bakr used to lead the people in prayer during the fatal illness of the Prophet till it was Monday. When the people aligned (in rows) for the prayer the Prophet lifted the curtain of his house and started looking at us and was standing at that time. His face was (glittering) like a page of the Qur’an and he smiled cheerfully. We were about to be put to trial for the pleasure of seeing the Prophet, Abu Bakr retreated to join the row as he thought that the Prophet would lead the prayer. The Prophet beckoned us to complete the prayer and he let the curtain fall. On the same day he died.”

Volume 1, Book 11, Number 649:

Narrated Anas:

The Prophet did not come out for three days. The people stood for the prayer and Abu Bakr went ahead to lead the prayer. (In the meantime) the Prophet caught hold of the curtain and lifted it. When the face of the Prophet appeared we had never seen a scene more pleasing than the face of the Prophet as it appeared then. The Prophet beckoned to Abu Bakr to lead the people in the prayer and then let the curtain fall. We did not see him (again) till he died.

What lit the face of the Prophet (SAW) that day was seeing the Muslims praying together, all bowing down to the Almighty Allah. I wonder if he’d feel the same seeing the Muslims today: all of them not praying together, not bowing down to Allah. Sigh. May Allah bring back the days of glory.


Leading To Teach (Hadith No. 645)


Volume 1, Book 11, Number 645:

Narrated Aiyub:

Abu Qilaba said, “Malik bin Huwairith came to this Mosque of ours and said, ‘I pray in front of you and my aim is not to lead the prayer but to show you the way in which the Prophet used to pray.’ ” I asked Abu Qilaba,”How did he use to pray?’ ” He replied, “(The Prophet used to pray) like this Sheikh of ours and the Sheikh used to sit for a while after the prostration, before getting up after the first Rak’ah. “

Leadership, whether in Salah or otherwise, has many aspects to it. One of them is: teaching.
The most knowledgeable and wise is supposed to lead others, according to a Hadith of the Prophet (SAW). That knowledgeable person should impart his knowledge and wisdom to others as well, by showing them how things are done.

Lead you will, teach as well.


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