A Befitting Response to Every Critic & Maligner of the Companions of the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam)

الحمد لله رب العالمين، وصلى الله وسلم على نبينا محمد وعلى آله وأصحابه أجمعين،  أما بعد

 

Imaam Ash-Shawkaanee (rahimahullaah) (d.1250H) in his Tafseer work wrote some statements in defence of the companion ‘Abdullaah bin ‘Amr bin Al-‘Aas (radhiyallaahu ‘anhu)[1] against the critical disparagement made by Mahmood bin ‘Umar; better known as: Az-Zamakhsharee[2] – who made such disparagement due to his (i.e. the companion’s) transmission of a hadeeth; which Az-Zamakhsharee did not agree with.

Regarding Ash-Shawkaanee’s response; Shaikh Al-Albaanee (rahimahullaah) said: “and indeed; Imaam Ash-Shawkaanee (rahimahullaahu ta’aalaa) gave an outstanding rebuttal upon him, he said in Fath ul Qadeer:

 

‘As for the disparagement of the companion of the Messenger of Allaah; and the guardian of his Sunnah, and the worshipper from amongst the companions – ‘Abdullaah bin ‘Amr (radhiyallaahu ‘anhu);

Then to where O Mahmood?

Do you know what you have done?

And in which valley you have descended?

And upon which side you have fallen?!

And who are you – such that you should ascend to this position?

And reach out to the stars of the heavens with your short arms and your limp legs?

Was it not sufficient for you in your fractured quest of knowledge amongst the people of Grammar and language – that which should have turned you back from entering into that which you are unacquainted of? And to speak with that which you are unenlightened concerning?!

O Allaah – what a calamity; amazement then at what inadequacy does in the knowledge of transmission[3] (i.e. of the Prophetic Sunnah); and being distant from acquaintance with it – to a point further than ignominy itself – it is for he who does not know the level of his own soul, nor does he bring it to a halt where Allaah, The Glorified brought it to a halt.’”[4]

 

Highlighting the dangers of speaking ill of the companions of the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam); Imaam Ash-Shawkaanee (rahimahullaah) said likewise:

 

“The realm of companionship is a tremendous affair. Consequently; whosoever violates the good repute of some of them; then he has indeed fallen into an abyss – one which he cannot be delivered from safe and sound.”[5]

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[1] He was the virtuous companion: ‘Abdullaah bin ‘Amr bin Al-‘Aas bin Waa-il bin Haashim Al-Qurashee (radhiyallaahu ‘anhu) – The Imaam and the great worshipper, the companion – and the son of a companion; and one of the four well known companions who were termed as the ‘Abaadilah. He acquired a great deal of knowledge and had firm standpoints in knowledge as well as in action; and he was diligent in worshipping. He narrated a vast number of ahaadeeth from the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) and a number of companions narrated from him as did a vast number of Taabi’een. He had many outstanding traits and excellent virtues; and he conveyed an immense amount of knowledge from the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam). He wrote down many ahaadeeth with the permission of the Prophet (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam); the hadeeth which he narrated number seven hundred ahaadeeth. Aboo Hurairah (radhiyallaahu ‘anhu) said: “there were none from the companions of the Messenger of Allaah (sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam) who had more hadeeth than me – except that which came from ‘Abdullaah bin ‘Amr, for indeed he used to write down; and I did not write down.” – reported by Al-Bukhaaree (no.113). He died in the year 63H and it has been said in the year 65H. (See: Al-Isaabah vol 2 p.351-352 & Usdul Ghaabah vol 3 p.349-351 & Siyar A’laam an-Nubalaa vol 3 p.79-94 & Mawsoo’ah ‘Uloom al-Hadeeth ash-Shareef p.512.)

[2] Shaikh Al-Albaanee (rahimahullaah) said in his footnotes to Raf’ al-Astaar p.83: “He was the Imaam, the well known Mu’tazilee Mufassir: Mahmood bin ‘Umar Al-Khawaarazmi who died in the year 538H. His book (i.e. Tafseer): ‘Al-Kashaaf ‘an Haqaa-iq at-Tanzeel’ is more well-known than needs to be mentioned, some of the scholars after him attended to its explanation and abridgement, as well as in critical review and analytical disparagement – as you see manifest in ‘Kashf ad-Dhunoon’. It is filled with innovation and is upon the way of the Mu’tazilah in terms of the rejection of The Attributes (of Allaah) and of the visualization (i.e. seeing Allaah, The Most High in the Hereafter) as well as the saying that the Qur’aan is created and other than that from the principles of the Mu’tazilah.”

[3] Shaikh ul Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah (rahimahullaah) said: “the like of this one does not transmit it except from one of two types of men: a man that does not distinguish between the saheeh (authentic) and the da’eef (weak); and the meager and the stout (i.e. good and bad). They are the majority of the authors of biographic accounts and the reports and the stories of the Prophets – such as Ath-Tha’aalabee and Al-Waahidee and Al-Mahdawee and Az-Zamakhsharee….” He (rahimahullaah) went on to say:

“And the like of them from the authors of Tafseer, for these people do not know of the healthy (authentic) from the unhealthy (inauthentic) nor do they have any experienced skill with that which is transmitted and that which is conveyed, nor do they have any experienced skill with regard to the transmitters of the reports. Rather they gather amongst that which they relay between that which is authentic and weak and do not distinguish between the two.” (See: Tal-khees Kitaab al-Istighaathah vol 1 p.73)

Shaikh ul Islaam mentioned likewise when speaking about those that cite fabricated ahaadeeth in their works: “And the likes of Az-Zamakhsharee and other than them from the Mufassireen (scholars of Tafseer) that cite ahaadeeth which the people of Hadeeth know are fabricated.” (See: Minhaaj us Sunnah an-Nabawiyyah vol 7 p.91)

[4] Raf’ al-Astaar le-Ibtaal al-Qaa-ileen be-Fanaa an-Naar of Al-Ameer As-San’aanee p.84 (footnotes) – original reference can be found in: Fathul Qadeer vol 2 p.527-528.

[5] Irshaad al-Fuhool vol 1 p.340.

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