Taqleed Of The Four Imaams.

Taqleed Of The Four Imaams

QUESTION : Did Rasulullaah (sallAllaahu alaihi wasallam) give an order to follow any of the four Imaams of Mazhab?

What an erroneous question! The question should be phrased thus Which proof from amongst the four valid proofs in the Shariah indicates making Taqleed of any of the four Imaams? From where did the leader of the  Mas`oodi sect concoct such an silly and ignorant question?

Firstly, one should understand the following: the basis of the Rawaafidh (Shia) sect’s Aqeedah (beliefs) is that their chosen Imaams are from Allaah Ta`ala, just as the Ambiyaa (alaihi salaam) are chosen by Allaah Ta`ala.

The question put to them from the Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat, is Just as the names and mantles of prophethood of the Ambiyaa are clearly given in the Qur`an Shareef and Ahadith,

similarly, you should prove from the Qur`aan Shareef and Ahadith the mantle of Imaamat of your twelve Imaams, which you claim to have been given by Allaah Ta`ala.

This question of the Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat is completely correct and appropriate, because it is in conformity to their claim. However, the Rawaafidhis are 100% helpless in presenting an answer to this question, and they will remain helpless until the day of Qiyaamah, Insha-Allaahul Azeez.

Now, to hide their inability in presenting an answer to the question, they present such silly counter-questions, such as You show us your proof of making Taqleed of the four Imaams! This question is completely inappropriate, because the Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat does not hold belief in the four Imaam Imaams as do the Shias of their twelve Imaams.

Nevertheless, the Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat says to them: Your question is based on lies. Firstly, you should prove from our reliable Kitaabs that we believe that the four Imaams are also chosen by Allaah Ta`ala. However, they cannot substantiate their false claim. Their question has no relevance to our claim.

The founder of the Mas`oodi sect  also held similar beliefs as the Rawaafidhis, that the Imaams are chosen by Allaah Ta`ala, hence he seeks from us proof for the four Imaams from Qur`aan Shareef and Ahadith. Our reply to him is the same as it is to the Rawaafidhis:

Firstly you should prove, from our reliable Kitaabs, that we hold the same beliefs regarding our Imaams as you hold regarding your twelve Imaams. Since your belief is that the twelve Imaams are specially chosen by Allaah Ta`ala, it follows that, you must be able to present reliable proof from the Qur`aan Shareef and Ahadith that they are as such and that an order has been given for us to follow them and accept them.

Also, those whom you (Ghair Muqalliddeen) accept as being (valid) Imaams, like Imaams Abdullaah bin Mubarak, Shafi, Daar Qutni, Baihaqi, Ahmed bin Hambal, Yahya bin Adam, Abu Haatim and Haakim (rahmatullahi alaihim), in which Hadith has Nabi (sallAllaahu alaihi wasallam) given an order to follow them?

If rejection of Taqleed is based on this premise, that Nabi (sallAllaahu alaihi wasallam) has not expressly sanctioned the Imaams, then tell us, the seven different types of Qiraat of the Qur`aan Shareef, which is accepted throughout the Islaamic world; in which authentic Hadith are all these different types and their correct recitals stated?

If anyone from your sect has an eighth Qiraat, then present an authentic Hadith, which has an unbroken chain of narrators to substantiate it. Or are you going to reject the recital of the Qur`aan Shareef also upon this principle of yours?

If rejection of Taqleed is based on this premise, that the names of the four Imaams are not stated in any Hadith, then tell us, does the names of Imaams Bukhari, Muslim, Tirmidhi, Abu Dawood, Nisai and Ibn Maajah (rahmatullahi alaihim), appear in any of these six Authentic Kitaabs of Hadith?

If not, then according to your logic, these personalities and their Kitaabs should also be rejected.

Show us from an authentic Hadith, that Rasulullaah (sallAllaahu alaihi wasallam) has forbidden the following of the four Imaams of Fiqh.

Taqleed Part 1. (In the Quraan and Hadith)

The Ghair Muqallids raise many questions so forcefully that the lay man becomes bewildered and confused.These are :-

1. Show me Taqleed in the Quraan ?

Taqleed in the Quraan

1. Allah says : “ Ask the people who know, if (when) you do not know.” (Nahl – 43/ambiyaa).

This is the general rule in every walk of life.

Moreover, when one is sick then one does not go to the mechanic, also when the car requires repairs one does not go to the doctor to have it attended to. There is a broad division of separation of responsibility.

These days we know that heart patients go to the cardiologist, whilst the orthopaedic surgeon attends to bone problems, while the paediatrician cares for the ailments of children. So in one field of medicine, there is also further specialisation.

Thus the cardiologist will not do the work of the orthopaedic surgeon and so on.

Similarly in the field of Deen one cannot go to anyone or every one. One cannot place reliance on the ignorant and blind to lead the way. Deen is more important, for it means either success or disaster in this world and the Aakhiraat.

The piety, righteousness, reliability, authoritive nature and Ilm of the Imams of Jurisprudence is acclaimed and proven beyond a shadow of doubt. We, Muqaleeds, have placed our confidence in the fields of Ilm, as per instruction of the Quraan ask the people of knowledge (who know), if you do not (know), i.e. the Imams of Jurisprudence.

2. Allah says :  follow and obey Allaah and obey the Rasul, and those in authority amongst you. (Nisaa – 59)

The commentators of the Quraan state concerning Aand those in authority amongst you that:-

1. In the best of times the rulers of the Muslim empire were also the supreme authority in Deeni affairs also, like the rule of Hadhrat Abu Bakr (R.A), Hadhrat Umar (R.A), Hadhrat Uthmaan (R.A), Hadhrat Ali (R.A), Hadhrat Muawiya (R.A).

They ruled as political administrators of the empire and their decisions concerning Islaamic Deeni matters were decisive and conclusive.

2. However due to the rulers becoming less knowledgeable in Deen, two separate departments arose :-

a.) one for the rulers who controlled the political infra structure;

b.) one for Ulema who gave direction in every aspect of the empire and provided religious guidelines to the ruled and rulers.

3. Nevertheless, the authorities in Deen were held higher in status and position than the rulers. The decision of the Ulema will be final to all, the ruled and the rulers. (Vol. 2 p. 210 – Akaam ul Quraan Abu Bakr Jassass)

Allaah is ordering us to obey the authorities in Deen. In both ayats, Allaah is not ordering us to commit kufr, shirk and bidat. So the concept to follow anyone other than Allaah and His Rasul (S.A.W) is kufr, etc is definitely false.

2. Show me Taqleed in the Hadith ?

Taqleed in the Ahaadith

1. Nabi (S.A.W) when mentioning the group on Salvation stated Athat which I am upon and that which my Sahaabah (companions) are upon

(Maktubat -e- Imam-e- Rabbani vol.1 p. 102 ; Tirmidhi Vol2. P89 ; Mustadrak Vol1 P 129; Mishkaat Vol 1 P 20).

Here Nabi (S.A.W) is classifying the Acriterions for salvation in all the worlds as the Sahaabah (R.A). They should be followed. By following them no kufr, shirk, bidat is committed. Besides following only Allaah and His Rasul, adherence to others is proven.

2. Nabi (S.A.W) said to a woman who enquired that on his demise who should she follow. The blessed reply was Abu Bakr. (Mishkhat vol.2. p.555, Muslim vol.2 p. 273, Bhukhari vol. 1. p. 516) On further enquiry she was told to follow Umar after Abu Bakr.

3. A Follow Abu Bakr and Umar after me. said Rasulullaah (S.A.W) –

(Tirmidhi vol.2 p. 207, Ibn Maja p.10 , Mustadrak vol.3 p.75, Mishkaat Vol 2 p 50, Musnad Ahmed Vol 5 P 38)

4. I am pleased for you concerning that thing which Abdullaah bin Masood is pleased with  stated Nabi (S.A.W). (Mustadrakh. Vol.2 p.319)

The Taqleed of Abdullaah bin Masood (R.A) is called for by Nabi (S.A.W). –

The basis of Hanafi Fiqh is Hadhrat Abdullaah bin Masood (R.A)

Is Nabi (S.A.W) ordering his Ummat towards kufr, shirk, bidat.

(Allah forbid and save us from the ignorant ones….Ameen)

20 Rakaat Taraveh aur Imam Nawawi Shafii Rh. ki Shaadat.

Muhaddis E Kabeer Shaarih E Saheeh Muslim Allama Nawawi Rah Farmate Hain:

“JAAN LO, Ke TARAWEEH BA ITTEFAQE ULAMA SUNNAT HAI , AUR WO 20 RAKAT HAI.

جان لو، تراویح با اتفاق علماء سنت ہے اور وہ بیس (20) رکعات ہے۔

Be Aware That The Prayer Of Taraweeh Is Sunnah According To Scholarly Consensus, Which Is Twenty Rak’ahs.
[AL AZKAAR, SAFHA 242]

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20 Rakaat Taraveh and Imam Bukhari Rh.

Imam Bukhari reported in his book al-Kuna:

عن ابي الخصيب قال كان سويد بن غفلۃ يؤمنا في رمضان عشرين ركعۃ
( الکنی، از امام بخاری، حدیث 234)

Abu al-Khusaib (ra) narrated that Suwaid bin Ghafalah (ra) always led us in offering “twenty raka’at Salat (al-Taraweeh)” in the month of Ramadan. [al-Kuna Volume 002, Hadith Number 234]

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Jarah Upon Abu Shaybah Ibrahim Ibn ‘Uthman Rh. Answered (Raavi of Hadith of Ibn Abbas Rdh.)

Jarah Upon Abu Shaybah Ibrahim Ibn ‘Uthman Answered :

صَلَّی اللہُ عَلَیْہِ وَسَلَّمَ کَانَ یُصَلِّیْ فِیْ رَمْضَانَ عِشْرِیْنَ رَکْعَۃً وَالْوِتْرَ۔
(مصنف ابن ابی شیبۃ ج2ص286؛معجم کبیرطبرانی ج5 ص433 )

ترجمہ: حضرت عبداللہ بن عباس رضی اللہ عنہما فرماتے ہیں کہ رسول اللہ صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم رمضان شریف میں بیس رکعات نماز(تراویح)اور وتر پڑھاتے تھے۔

Amongst All The Jarh Found Against Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra), Only One Scholar[Imam Sho’bah Bin Alhajjaj (R.A)] Was Present During The Same Period As Him. Rest Of The Scholars Who Made Jarh Upon Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) Came Post His Death.

Thus, From This We Can Deduce That All The Scholars Who Established The Jarh Upon Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) Was In Taqleed Of Imam Sho’bah (Ra).

On The Contrary We Find Ta’deel For Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) From Imam Sho’bah (Ra).

Thus, If We Could Prove That The Jarh Upon Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) By Imam Sho’bah (Ra) [Which Happens To Be The Birth Jarh Upon Him And The Base Reason Which Led Other Scholars To Copy This Jarh] Is Actually Not Established Or Gets Nullified Due To Reasoning Then All The Jarh Upon Him By Anyone Would Not Be Established.

Toseeq # 1):

Imam Yazeed Bin Haroon (R.A) [Birth 117 A.H.] Who Was In The Same Period As Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) And He Took Hadith With Sanad From Imam Azam Abu Hanifa R.H.

In His Courses The Gathering Of Students Would Expand Upto More Than 70,000 With The Likes Of Imam Ahmed Bin Hanbal, Imam Ali Bin Almadeeni, Imam Yahiya Bin Mueen Alhanafi, Ibne Abi Sheba (Raa)

He Had Memorized More Than 20,000 Hadith And Was The Teacher Of The Teachers Of Imam Bukhari (R.A). Imam Ali Bin Almadeeni Who’s Teacher Of Imam Bukhari (R.A) Says That He Did Not Know Anyone Memorising More Hadith Than Imam Yazeed Bin Haroon (R.A)
[Tehzeebul Isma Wal Lughaat Lil Nuwi, Bahawala Seeratun Noman]

Imam Yazeed Bin Haroon (R.A) Says “There Has Never Been A Qazi Who Upheld Justice As Qazi Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) Did”. [Tehzeebul Kamal, V#1 P#392].

Note: The Condition For Someone To Be “Qazi” Is More Stringent Than That Of A “Narrator”. Thus, A Person Who Is Does Best Justice To Common Masses, How “Just” Would He In Matters Of Prophet S.A.W And Narrating His Hadees.

Toseeq # 2):

Imam Sho’bah Bin Alhajjaj (R.A) Has Taken Hadees From Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra). [Tehzeebul Kamal, V#1 P#390, Tehzeebut Tehzeeb, V#1 P#144]…

It Is Established Amongst The Salafi Circles That Imam Sho’bah Strictly Takes Narrations Of / From Thiqah Narrators.

A) Molana Abdurrauf Sindhu Ghermuqallid Writes: “Sheikh Ahmed Shakir States That Imam Sho’bah Has Taken Narrations From Mohemmed Bin Mehran And He Takes Narrations From Thiqah Narrators Only. [Alqaul Ul Maqbul Sharah Salatur Rasul, P#386]

B) Allama Qazi Shokani Ghermuqallid Writes: “Imam Sho’bah Narrates Only Sahi Hadees, From His Mashayk”. [Neelul Autar, V#1 P#16].

C) Abdurrehman Mubarak Puri Writes: “Imam Sho’bah Narrates Only Sahi Hadees, From His Mashayk”.

Toseeq # 3):

Imam Ibne ‘Adi (Ra) States: “The Hadees Of Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah Are Saleh[Good]” [Tehzeebul Kamal, V#1 P#393]. Imam Ibne ‘Adi (Ra) Came After The Era Of Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) And The Reason We Present Him Is To Let The Readers Know That Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) Was Supported By Later Scholars As Well.

Point To Be Noted: Imam Ibne ‘Adi (Ra) Has Categorised The Hadith From Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah(Ra) For 20 Rakat Taraweeh From Prophet S.A.W Amongst “Munkirat”.

Answer: Imam Nawawi As-Shafaye(Ra) States: ” Sometimes Muhaddiseen Call A Hadees “Munkir” Which Is Narrated Only By A Single “Thiqah” Narrator” And No One Else.[Sharah Sahi Muslim, V#1 P#5].

Imam Ibne ‘Adi (Ra) Also States On The Similar Lines As Imam Nawawi As-Shafaye(Ra). [Tadreebue Rawi, P#85]. 

The Reason Why Rest Other Muhaddiseen Did Not Term This Hadith As “Hasan” As Deobandi Scholars Have Claimed Is Because There Was No Categorization As “Hasan” During His Period.

Imam Ibne Temiya Hanbali(Ra) States: “The Categorization Of Hasan Was Derived By Imam Tirmidhi And Before Him Muhaddiseen Would Just Classify Hadith As Sahi And Da’eef[Which Is Anything Below Sahi Be It Hasan]”. [Tohfatul Murziyah, P#270].

Hafiz Ibne Hujar(Ra) States: “Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) **Al-Hafiz**”. [Fatahulbari Sharah Sahi Bukhari – Para#17, Page#68].By This We Understand That He Had Strong Memory.

Now, Lets Look At The Jirh Upon Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra)

Jaarh 1)

Imam Dhahabi (Ra) Explains And Nullifies The Jarh Of Imam Sho’bah. He Writes: Ibn E Abi Laila -> Huk’am -> Ibraheem [Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah] Narrates That There Were 70 Sahab R.Z Of Battle Of Badr That Participated In The Battle Of Siffin.”

Imam Sho’bah States: “This Is “Kazab”[Lie, Mistake] From Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah Because When I Had A Dialog [Discussion] With Huk’am We Came To A Conclusion That Apart From Khuzaima R.Z There Were No Other Sahaba Of Battle Of Badr In The Battle Of Siffin.

After Narrating The Above Imam Dhahabi(Ra) Exclaims “Subhanallah !! It Is Very Obvious That Ali R.Z And Ammar R.Z Participated In The Battle Of Siffin And They Both Are From The Battle Of Badr.”

Ibne Hubban(Ra) States: “Sometimes An Hafiz [Strong Narrator] Narrates A Hadees And Later Forgets It. If That Hadees Reaches Sometime Later, He Forgets Recalling [Narrating It Earlier] His Own Narrated Hadees And This Does Not Weaken The Hadees Itself.[Zele’yi, V#3 P#185].

This In Acedemic Circles Is Commonly Known As “Inkar E Shaykh”. This Could Very Well May Have Been The Case With Huk’am (Ra) Based Upon Imam Dhahabi’s (Ra) Explanation.

Thus, Huk’am May Have Narrted About 70 Sahaba From Battle Of Badr To Be Present In The Battle Of Siffin Which Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) Narrated To Imam Sho’bah Bin Alhajjaj (R.A). However, When Imam Sho’bah Asked Huk’am, Huk’am May Have Forgotten To Have Narrated It To Anyone.
Considering It As A Strong Possibility[Because Of The Facts Bought By Imam Dhahabi] , It Does Not Leave Any Jarh Upon Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra).

Also, Had Huk’am Been Very Sure That He Never Narrated About 70 Sahaba To Anyone He Would Not Have Entered A Dialog & Discussion With Imam Sho’bah, Futher Indicating That There Was No Clear Or Obvious Need For The Jarh Upon Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra).

Jarah 2)

Ghair Mukkalideens Claims That Imam Sho’bah Using The “Kazab” Upon Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) Is A Very Strong Jarh And It Makes Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) Ver Weak.

Muhaddiseen Have Made Categories Of Scholars Who Make Jarh Depending Upon Thier Strictness And Promptness In Making Jarh.

Allama Abdulhayi Lukhnowi Alhanafi(Ra) States These Categories From Hafiz Ibne Hajar Ash Shafa’yi(Ra) And Imam Sho’bah Tops The List In Being Mutashadid[Least Stringent And Most Prompt In Making Jarh Upon Others]. [Al Rafa’ Wal Takmeel, P#19]

Nobody Supported This Jarh Of Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) From Imam Sho’bah (Ra) During His[Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra)] Lifetime.

There Is A Possibility That Imam Sho’bah (Ra) Did Not Make Jarh Upon Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra) Because He Used The Word Kazab.

The Word Kazab In Arabic Is Also Used For “Mistake” As Below.

Allama Ibne Hujar(Ra) States: ” Ahle Hizaj Upon Commiting A Mistake Make Use Of The Word “Kazab”. Ibne Abdul Bar Maliki(Ra) Has Also Stated This And We Find Abundant Examples Of This In The Books Of “Ismaa ‘O’ Rijaal”.[Muqadimah Fatahul Bari, P# 426]. 

This Also Is A Stronger Possibility Because As Was Stated Above Imam Sho’bah (Ra) Narrates From Thiqah Narrators And Has Narrated From Ibraheem Bin Usman Abu Shaybah (Ra). Thus, He May Have Meant “Mistake” And Not “Lie” With The Word “Kazab”.

Question Answer Between a Muqallid aur Ghair Muqallid.

Question by the Ghair Muqallid :

“Tell me, why are you called Hanafi and not Muhammedi? So, are you a Hanafi or a Muhammedi?

Answer by the Hanafi:

“Today you have mimicked the wahaabis and said good-bye to your brain!

 

Question by the Ghair Muqallid:

“How is that?”

Answer by the Hanafi :

“Your question is like my asking you whether it is Saturday or January; or is it Wednesday or February? Any intelligent person would be astounded, for if there were any conflict (in meaning) between January and Saturday, only then would this question be sensible.

When today can be the Saturday and also be January then there is no difference between the two. Rather, the question should be, is today Saturday or Sunday? Is it the month of January or that of February? A day will oppose another day, and a month would oppose another month.

I can also ask you questions like yours. Are you a ghair muqallid or a human? Are you an AhleHadith or a human? Are you Pakistani or Panjaabi? Just as these questions are incorrect in your opinion, the question of being a Muhammedi orHanafi is incorrect.

Should your question be correct, would you kindly answer the above three questions of mine? The answer to such questions would just be swearing.

Now listen, if someone asks as to why you are referred to as Panjaabi or Laahori and not Pakistani, you would say we are referred to as Pakistanis when compared to those living in countries outside Pakistan and as Panjaabis when compared to those living in Sindh or Baluchistan. In the same way when a non-Muslim asks who you are, you would say youre a Muslim and Muhammedi. This means that the words Muslim and Muhammedi are used when compared to non-Muslims, and Hanafi is used when compared with Shafis, Maalikis, etc.

You do accept that being called a Panjaabi does not negate being a Pakistani, nor does being an Ahle Hadith negate being a human, why would being a Hanafi negate being a Muhammedi?”

 

Question by the Ghair Muqallid:

“Should we accept that which the Nabi (S.A.W) says, or that which an Ummati says?”

Answer by the Hanafi:

“When that which the Ummati says is contrary to that which theNabi says, then, only that which the Nabi says would be accepted.

When that which the Ummati says does not contradict what theNabi says, but only appears to be contrary, then, you yourself may specify the cure for that.

The explanation of this has been given by Shah Waliullah (R.A) in the following words;

We do not follow the Imams except for the fact that they are more knowledgeable than us as regards the book of Allaah and the teachings of His Rasul. (Hujjatullahil-baaligah)

The munkireen-e-Hadith also ask if one should accept that which the Creator says or that which the creation says? The person answering will definitely say that one should accept that which the Creator says. As soon as he says this, the munkir-e-Hadith will say, Bukhari, Muslim, Abu-Dawud, Tirmizi, ibn-Majah, Nasai are all the works of the slave and the only book of the master is the Quraan, one has to accept it only and practice on it, not on the books of the slaves.

My brother, you have now adopted the way and manner of the munkireen-e- Hadith. They confused matters by saying Creator and creation and made the people discard the Hadith of Rasulullaah (S.A.W). You are confusing matters by sayingNabi and Ummati in an effort to make people discard the Fiqh of the fuqaha. This is also a question you have stolen from them. You call yourself Ahle Hadith and they call themselves Ahle Quraan.”

 

Question by the Ghair Muqallid :

“One should follow only and only Nabi (S.A.W), not an Ummati, whereas you accept the Fiqh of Imam Abu Hanifa (R.A).”

Answer by the Hanafi :

“We follow and obey only Nabi (S.A.W), but with guidance of Imam A’zamAbu Hanifa (R.A)”

Following A Madhab.

Very often the following question is posed to many people: “Do you follow the Deen of Imam Abu Hanifa (R.A.) or the Deen of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam)?”

 

“Obviously the Deen of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam),” comes the instant reply. The second question is then posed: “Why then do you call yourself aHanafi?” The person not well versed is perplexed by this question. Doubts are then created in his mind. He soon starts gradually drifting towards the abandoning of taqleed i.e. following one of the four illustrious Imams viz. Imam Abu Hanifa (R.A.), Imam Shafiee (R.A.), Imam Malik (R.A.) and Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal (R.A.).

 

By means of the type of questions that have been mentioned above, a deliberate attempt is made to create a misconception in the minds of the unwary — that if you are a Hanafi, you are following the Deen of Imam Abu Hanifa (R.A.), NOT the Deen of Muhammad (sallallahu alaihi wasallam).

 

This is an absolute fallacy. Imam Abu Hanifa (R.A.), Imam Shafi’i (R.A.) and the other Imams did not invent any Deen of their own. They strictly followed the one and only Deen — the Deen of Islam brought by Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam). Their followers are hence also following the same Deen — the Deen of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam).

 

Why Follow an Imam?

 

The question that arises here is that why then should one follow any of the four Imams? This can be answered by posing a counter-question: “Do you know all the various laws of Deen? Are you capable of extracting and deriving the laws pertaining to wudu, salah, zakah, etc. directly from the Qur’an and Hadith?

 

Do you know whichHadith has abrogated another? Do you have the ability to reconcile between the various Ahadith which apparently contradict each other? Do you know which verses of the Qur’an are general in their application and which verses are qualified by other texts? etc., etc.”

 

If one does not have the knowledge of these aspects, then one definitely does not have the ability to derive the laws directly from the Qur’an and Hadith. In that case the following aayah applies directly to oneself:

 

“Ask those of knowledge if you do not know.”  Hence when we do not have the enormous amount of knowledge and expertise that is necessary to derive the laws directly from the Qur’an and Hadith, we have opted to follow one of those great people who had attained that distinguished mastery in this field, among whom is Imam Abu Hanifa (R.A.). Imam Abu Hanifa (R.A.) is a Tabi’i (one who has seen a Sahabi).

 

He attained the knowledge of Hadith from approximately 4000 teachers. His piety was such that for 40 years he performed fajr salah with the wudu of Isha salah (i.e. he did not sleep the entire night) [Tareekhul Baghdad]. His knowledge, brilliance and righteousness was such that all the great scholars of his time attested to his mastery. Thus one can be well assured that such a person is absolutely capable of deriving the laws directly from the Qur’an and Hadith.

 

Another reason for adopting one of the Imams as a guide is the following aayah of the Qur’an: Allah Ta’ala says:“And follow the path of those who turn to me” (31:15). In order to “turn” to Allah Ta’ala, two aspects are basic requisites — knowledge and practicing according to that knowledge. In this regard the four Imams were in an extremely high category. Imam Abu Hanifa (R.A.) was regarded by various Ulama of his time as being the most knowledgeable of the people of that era (footnotes of Tahdheebut Tahdheeb vol. 1 pg. 451). Makki bin Ibrahim, who was one of the renowned teachers of Imam Bukhari (R.A.), was a student of Imam Abu Hanifa (R.A.). Imam Abu Hanifa (R.A.) compiled a book of Hadith entitled “Kitabul Aathaar” from among 40,000Ahadith. Thus those who follow such a guide can be satisfied that they are strictly following the commands of Allah Ta’ala and His Rasul (sallallahu alaihi wasallam).

 

Difference of Opinion

 

At this point somebody may ask: “If all the Imams deduced the laws directly from the Qur’an and Hadith, how is it possible for them to differ on various aspects?” In order to understand the reality of these differences, we will have to go back in history right upto the time of the Sahaaba (radhiallahu anhum).

 

Once Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) had just returned from a battle when he ordered the Sahaaba (radhiallahu anhum) to immediately proceed to the place of Banu Quraizah — a clan of Jews who lived on the outskirts of Madina Munawwarah. The purpose was to lay a siege upon them for having broken the pact that they had made with the Muslims. In order to impress the urgency of the matter upon the Sahaaba (R.A.), Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) said to them: “None of you should perform your salah al-Asr except in Banu Quraizah.”

 

While the Sahaaba (R.A.) were still en-route, the time of Asr arrived. Some Sahaaba (radhiallahu anhum) felt that they should perform their Asr immediately. They regarded the instruction of Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) as actually being a command to proceed very swiftly to their destination. It did not imply that the Asr salah could not be performed en-route. They thus performed their salah there. Another group of Sahaaba (radhiallahu anhum.) viewed the instruction literally. They therefore continued and only performed their Asr salah after having reached Banu Quraizah. Later when Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) was informed about this, he did not rebuke either group. [Sahih Bukhaari]

 

Thus we find that the difference arose from a point of interpretation. However, this difference of interpretation is only entertained when it comes from a person who has in-depth knowledge of Deen and has attained a mastery in the Qur’an and Hadith and the other related aspects. At times a difference of opinion occurs due to the different narrations that are found with regards to a particular aspect. One Imam gives preference to one narration on the basis of various criteria while the other Imam, in the light of his knowledge, prefers the other narration. This is basically the manner in which these differences occur.

 

However, just as Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) did not rebuke either of the two groups in the incident mentioned above, similarly since the Imams have attained the status of a mujtahid (one who is capable of deriving the laws directly from the Qur’an and Hadith), they will not be blame worthy even if they have erred. Rasulullah (sallallahu alaihi wasallam) is reported to have said: “When a haakim (ruler) passes judgement, and after having exerted his utmost effort he arrives at the correct solution, he gets a double reward. And if he errs after having exerted his utmost ability, he gets one reward.” (Bukhari vol. 2 pg. 1092).

 

Ibn al-Munzir (R.A.) while commenting on this Hadith writes that a ruler will only get this reward if he has thorough knowledge and in the light of his knowledge he passed judgement. (see footnotes of Sahih Bukhari; ibid). The four Imams had the ability and necessary knowledge to practice ijtihaad. Thus they fall under the ambit of this Hadith.

 

Following One Imam Only

 

Another point that often comes up is the following: Why is it necessary to follow one Imam only? Why can one not follow a certain Imam in one aspect and another Imam in another aspect? The simple answer to this is: On what basis will one pick and choose, especially since one does not have the knowledge required to derive the laws. Thus one will not be in a position to evaluate the deductions of each Imam. Hence it will obviously be on the basis of what suits one. This is nothing but following one’s desires — regarding which Allah Ta’ala has issued severe warnings in the Qur’an. Following one’s desires sometimes even leads a person to kufr. Thus great jurists of latter times, among them Shah Waliullah (R.A.), have reaffirmed that it is wajib for the masses to follow one Imam only.

Muhadditheen are the Followers of the Jurists(Fuqaha).

Muhadditheen are the Followers of the Jurists(Fuqaha).

The Ghayr Muqallideen fool people into believing that the Muhadditheen never followed any of the Imaams of jurisprudence. This is wrong because all the Muhadditheen apart from very few did adopt Taqleed.

Imaam Bukhaari Rh. who was himself a Mujtahid opted to follow the Madh’hab of Imaam Shaafi’ee Rh. The leader of the Ghayr Muqallideen group Janaab Nawaab Siddique Hasan Khan of Bopal states in his book Al Hitta fi Dhikri Sihaahis Sitta that Imaam Abu Aasim has recorded the name of Imaam Bukhaari Rh. in the list of those following the Shaafi’ee Madh’hab. Further in the same book, he says the following about Imaam Nasa’ee Rh , “He was one of the landmarks of the Deen and one of the pillars of the science of Hadith. He led the scholars and Muhadditheen of his time and his critical assessment of narrators was highly rated amongst the Ulema. He followed the Shaafi’ee Madh’hab.” Pg.127.

About Imaam Abu Dawood Rh._, he says: “He was a Haafidh of Ahadeeth and all the remarks and comments made about them. He was also of the highest calibre in as far as Taqwa, piety, abstinence, knowledge and understanding of Deen are concerned. The only difference of opinion exits about whether which Madh’hab he followed. While some are of the opinion that he was a Hanbali, others opine that he was a Shaafi’ee.” Al Hitta fi Dhikri Sihaahis Sitta Pg. 135.

Apart from then Muhadditheen mentioned above, the most authentic reports verify that Imaam Muslim Rh., Imaam Tirmidhi Rh.  Imaam Bayhaqi Rh.  Imaam Daar Qutni Rh. and Imaam Ibn Maajah Rh. all followed the Shaafi’ee school of jurisprudence. The Muhaddith Imaam Yahya bin Ma’een Rh.  the Muhaddith Imaam Yahya bin Sa’eed Qataan Rh.  the Muhaddith Imaam Yahya bin Abi Zaa’idah Rh.  Imaam Tahaawi Rh. and Imaam Zayla’ee Rh. also all followed a Madha’hab and all happened to be Hanafi.

Allaama Dhahabi Rh.  Ibn Taymiyyah Rh.  Ibn Qayyim bin Jowzi Rh. and Hadhrat Abdul Qaadir Jaylaani Rh. were all Hanbali.

Did these eminent scholars not realise that Taqleed is Shirk, Haraam and a Bid’ah as the Ghayr Muqallideen claim? Were there only a few who realised this, such as Dawood Zaahiri Rh. and Ibn Hazam  Rh.? Muhadditheen, Ulema and Mashaa’ikh throughout the ages adopted Taqleed. If one looks at the Ulema and Awliyaa of the Indian subcontinent, one will notice that they were all particular about Taqleed and were almost all followers of Imaam Abu Haneefah Rh. , Some of the senior

Muhadditheen were:

1. Sheikh Ali Muttaqi Rh.  author of Kanzul Ummaal (passed away 975 A.H.)

2. Sheikh Abdul Wahhaab Buhaanpuri Rh. (passed away 1001 A.H.)

3. Sheikh Muhammad Taahir Patni Gujarati Rh. , author of Majma’ul Bihaar (passed away 987 A.H.)

4. Muhaddith Mulla Jeewan Siddeeqi Rh. (passed away 1130 A.H.)

5. Sheikh Abdul Haqq Muhaddith Dehlawi Rh. author of Ashi’attul Lam’aat (passed away 1152 A.H.) and his son Muhaddith Nurul Haqq Rh. author of Tayseerul Qaari, commentary of Bukhaari (passed away 1073 A.H.)

6. Muhaddith Sheikh Fakhrud Deen Rh. commentator of Bukhaari and Hisnul Haseen

7. Muhaddith Sheikh Salaamullaah Rh.  commentator of Mu’atta (passed away 1229 A.H.)

8. Shah Abdur Raheem Muhaddith Dehlawi Rh.

9. Shah Wali’ullaah Muhaddith Dehlawi Rh. (passed away 1176 A.H.)

10. Shah Abdul Azeez Muhaddith Dehlawi Rh. (passed away 1239 A.H.)

11. Shah Abdul Qaadir Muhaddith and Mufassir Dehlawi Rh. (passed away 1232 A.H.)

12. Shah Abdul Ghani Muhaddith Dehlawi Rh. (passed away 1296A.H.)

13. Shah Is’haaq Muhaddith Dehlawi Rh. (passed away 1262 A.H.)

14. Shah Ismaa’eel Shaheed Rh. (passed away 1246 A.H.)

15. Shah Qutbud Deen Rh. author of Mazaahire Haqq (passed away 1289 A.H.)

16. Shah Rafee’ud Deen Muhaddith Dehlawi Rh. (passed away 1233 A.H.)

17. Shah Muhammad Ya’qoob Muhaddith Dehlawi Rh.  (passed away 1282 A.H.)

18. Qaadhi Muhibbud Deen Bihari Rh. (passed away 1119 A.H.), who wrote the famous book of principles of Fiqh Musallamuth Thuboot in the year 1109 A.H.

19. Muhaddith Kabeer Qaadhi Thanaa’ullaah Paanipati Rh.  (passed away 1225 A.H.)

20. Sheikhul Islaam Allaama Nurud Deen Ahmadabaadi Gujarati Rh. author of Nurul Qaari, commentary of Bukhaari (passed away 1155 A.H.)

21. Sheikh Wajeehud Deen Alawi Gujarati Rh. (passed away 998 A.H.)

22. Mufti Muhaddith Abdul Kareem Nahrwaani Rh. author of Nahrul Jaari, commentary of Bukhaari (passed away 1141 A.H.)

23. Allaama Muhiyyud Deen Ahmadabaadi Gujarati Rh.  (passed away 1038 A.H.)

24. Sheikh Muhaddith Khayrud Deen bin Muhammad Zaahid Surti (passed away 1206 A.H.)

25. Bahrul Uloom Sheikh Abdul Ali Lakhnawi Rh.  commentator of Musallamuth Thuboot and others

(passed away 1225 A.H.)

26. Abul Hasanaat Allaama Abdul Hayy Lakhnawi Rh.  author of numerous works (passed away 1304 A.H.)

27. Muhaddith Moulana Ahmad Ali Sahaaranpuri Rh.  author of marginal notes on Bukhaari (passed away 1297 A.H.)

28. Mutakallimul Islaam Moulana Qaasim Nanotwi Rh.  founder of Daarul Uloom Deoband (passed away 1298 A.H.)

29. Muhaddith Kabeer Moulana Rasheed Ahmad Gangohi  Rh. (passed away 1323 A.H.)

30. Moulana Muhammad Ya’qoob Nanotwi Mujaddidi Rh. (passed away 1302 A.H.)

31. Muhaddith Moulana Fakhrul Hasan Gangohi Rh. (passed away 1317 A.H.)

32. sheikhul Hind Hadhrat Moulana Mahmoodul Hasan Deobandi Rh. (passed away 1399 A.H.)

33. Muhaddith Kabeer Allaama Anwar Shah Kashmeeri Rh.  (passed away 1352 A.H.)

34. Muhaddith Moulana Khaleel Ahmad Ambetwi Rh.  author of Badhlul Majhood, commentary of Abu Dawood (passed away 1346 A.H.)

35. Moulana Shabbier Ahmad Uthmaani Rh. author of Fat’hul Mulhim, commentary of Saheeh Muslim (passed away 1369 A.H.).

Some of the prominent Ulema of Sindh include:

1. Sheikh Abul Hasan Sindhi (passed away 1187 A.H.)

2. Sheikh Haashim Sindhi

3. Sheikh Abu Tayyib Sindhi (passed away 1140 A.H.)

4. Sheikh Muhammad Mu’een Sindhi (passed away 1180 A.H.)

5. Sheikh Muhammad Aabid Sindhi (passed away 1257 A.H.)

6. Sheikh Hayaat Sindhi (passed away 1163 A.H.)

These Ulema wrote commentaries and marginal notes on the Sihaah Sitta and also lectured Hadeeth in Madinah Munawwarah.

Some of the eminent Awliyaa of the Indian subcontinent were:

1. Imaam Rabbaani Hadhrat Mujaddid Alf Thaani Rh. (passed away 971 A.H.)

2. Aarif Billaah Muhaddith Mirza Mazhar Jaanjaana Rh. (passed away 1195 A.H.)

3. The crown of the Awliyaa of Hind Khwaja Mu’eenud Deen Chishti Rh. (passed away 632, 633, 636 or 637 A.H.)

4. Khwaja Qutbud Deen Bakhtiyaar Kaaki Rh. (passed away 633/634 A.H.)

5. Khwaja Fareedud Deen Ganj Shakar Rh. (passed away 664/668 A.H.)

6. Khwaja Nizaamud Deen Awliyaa Rh. (passed away 735 A.H.)

7. Khwaja Alaa’ud Deen Saabir Kaleri Rh. (passed away 690 A.H.)

Other than the above, there were thousands of other Muhadditheen, Ulema, Mufassireen, Fuqahaa and Mashaa’ikh who were all followers of a Madh’hab.

The Similarities Between Shias and Ghair Muqallideens.

The Similarities Between Shias and Ghair Muqallideens.

It is a great favour of Allaah that we have the four Imaams to follow and that the Ahlus Sunnah wal Jamaa’ah has accepted the four. The Ulema of every era have emphasised that the person who rejects Taqleed will lead his life aimlessly and, following only is whims, will become a perpetrator of Bid’ah.

He will not be from the Ahlus Sunnah wal Jamaa’ah and will be just like the Shias who reject following the four Imaams, labelling this as an act of Bid’ah. In fact, the Ghayr Muqallideen emulate the Shias in several other matters. For example:

Just like the Rawaafidh (a group of the Shias), the Ghayr Muqallideen also do not regard the Sahabah Rdh. to be criteria for right and wrong.

Just like the Rawaafidh, the Ghayr Muqallideen also regard three divorces given in a single sitting as oneDivorce.

Just like the Rawaafidh, the Ghayr Muqallideen also regard the twenty Rakaahs of Taraaweeh to be a Bid’ah.

Just like the Rawaafidh, the Ghayr Muqallideen also regard the Adhaan given in front of the pulpit on the day of Jumu’ah to be a Bid’ah.

Just like the Rawaafidh and Shia, the Ghayr Muqallideen also do not accept the decision of Hadhrat Umar Rdh. to ban women from the Masaajid. This despite the fact that Hadhrat Aa’isha Rdh. said that had Rasulullaah r seen the condition of the women after his time, he would certainly have banned them himself.