IradhiAllahanhut was the fourth year after the Hijrah. The city of the Prophet was still under threat from within and without. From within the influential Jewish tribe, the Banu an-Nadir, broke their agreement with the Prophet and made plans to kill him. For this, they were banished from the city. This was in the month of Safar.

Two months of uneasy quiet passed. Then the Prophet received news that tribes from distant Najd were planning an attack. To pre-empt them, the Prophet gathered a force of over four hundred men and leaving one of his companions Uthman ibn Affan in charge of the city, set out eastwards.

Among this force was the young Madinan, Abbad ibn Bishr.

Arriving at Najd, the Prophet found the habitations of the hostile tribes strangely deserted of men. Only women were present as the men had taken to the hills. Some of them regrouped and prepared to fight. The time of Salat al-Asr (the afternoon prayer) came. The Prophet feared that the hostile tribesmen would attack them during prayer. He arranged the Muslims in ranks and divided them into two groups and performed the prayer as the Salat al-Khawf (the Prayer of Fear). With one group he performed one rakah while the other group stood on guard. For the second rak'ah (unit of prayer) the groups changed places. Each group completed its prayer with one rak'ah after the Prophet had finished...

On beholding the disciplined ranks of the Muslims the hostile tribesmen became uneasy and afraid. The Prophet had made his presence felt and something of his mission was now known at first hand in the central highlands of Arabia whence he departed peacefully.

On the way back, the Prophet pitched camp in a valley for a night. As soon as the Muslims had settled their camel mounts, the Prophet peace be on him, asked, "Who will be our guard tonight?"

"We, O Messenger of God,"

said Abbad ibn Bishr and Ammar ibn Yasir both of whom had been paired off as 'brothers' by the Prophet when he arrived in Madinah after the Hijrah.

Abbad and Ammar left for the mouth of the valley to take up duty. Abbad saw that his "brother" was tired and asked him,

"What part of the night do you wish to sleep, the first or the second?"

"I shall sleep during the first part," said Ammar who was soon fast asleep quite close to Abbad.

The night was clear, calm and peaceful. The stars, the trees, and the rocks all appeared to celebrate in silence the praises of their Lord. Abbad felt serene. There was no movement, no threatening sign. Why not spend the time in 'Ibadah (worship) and reciting the Quran? How delightful it would be to combine the performance of Salat with the measured recitation of the Quran which he so much enjoyed.

quran-beautiful-islamic-picturesIn fact Abbad was enthralled by the Quran from the moment he first heard it being recited by the mellow and beautiful voice of Musab ibn Umayr. That was before the Hijrah when Abbad was just about fifteen years old. The Quran had found a special place in his heart; day and night thereafter he would be heard repeating the glorious words of God so much so that he became known among the Prophet's companions as the, "Friend of the Quran".

Late at night, the Prophet once stood up to perform the Tahajjud Prayer in Aishah's house which adjoined the masjid. He heard a voice reciting the Quran, pure and sweet and as fresh as when the angel Jibril revealed the words to him. He asked, "Aishah, is that the voice of Abbad ibn Bishr?" "Yes, O Messenger of God," replied Aishah. "O Lord, forgive him," prayed the Prophet out of love for him.

And so in the stillness of the night, at the mouth of the valley in Najd, Abbad stood up and faced the Qiblah. Raising his hand in surrender to God, he entered into the state of Prayer. Finishing the compulsory opening chapter of the Quran, he began reciting Surah al-Kahf in his sweet, captivating voice. Surah al-Kahf is a long Surah of one hundred and ten verses which deals in part with the virtues of faith, truth and patience and with the relativity of time.

While he was thus absorbed in reciting and reflecting upon the divine words, eternal words of illumination and wisdom, a stranger stalked the outskirts of the valley in search of Muhammad and his followers. He was one of those who had planned to attack the Prophet but who had fled into the mountains at the approach of the Muslims. His wife whom he had left in the village had been taken as a hostage by one of the Muslims. When he eventually found that his wife was gone, he swore by al-Lat and al-Uzzah (which were false gods) that he would pursue Muhammad and his companions and that he would not return unless he had drawn blood.

From a distance, the man saw the figure of Abbad silhouetted at the mouth of the valley and he knew that the Prophet and his followers must be inside the valley. Silently he drew his bow and let fly an arrow. Unerringly it embedded itself in Abbad's flesh.

Calmly, Abbad pulled out the arrow from his body and went on with his recitation, still absorbed in his Salat. The attacker shot a second and a third arrow both of which also found their mark. Abbad pulled out one and then the other. He finished his recitation, made rukoo' (bowing) and then Sujood (prostration). Weak and in pain, he stretched out his right hand while still in prostration and shook his sleeping companion. Ammar awoke. Silently, Abbad continued the Salat to its end and then said,

"Get up and stand guard in my place. I have been wounded."

Ammar jumped up and began to yell. Seeing them both the attacker fled into the darkness. Ammar turned to Abbad as he lay on the ground, blood flowing from his wounds.

"Ya Subhanallah (Glory be to God)! Why didn't you wake me when you were hit by the first arrow?"

"I was in the midst of reciting verses of the Quran which filled my soul with awe and I did not want to cut short the recitation. The Prophet had commanded me to commit this surah to memory. Death would have been dearer to me than that the recitation of this surah should be interrupted."

Abbad's devotion to the Quran was a sign of his intense devotion to and love for God, His Prophet and His religion. The qualities he was known for were his constant immersion in 'Ibadah, his heroic courage and his generosity in the path of God. At times of sacrifice and death, he would always be in the front line. When it was time for receiving his share of rewards, he would only be found after much effort and difficulty. He was always trustworthy in his dealings with the wealth of Muslims. All this was recognized. Aishah, the wife of the Prophet, once said,

"There are three persons among the Ansar whom no one could excel in virtue: Sad ibn Muadh, Usayd ibn Khudayr and Abbad ibn Bishr."

Abbad died the death of a Shaheed (Martyr) at the battle of Yamamah. Just before the battle he had a strong feeling of death and martyrdom. He noticed that there was a lack of mutual confidence among the Muhaajireen (Migrants) and Ansaar (Residents). He was grieved and upset. He realized that there would be no success for the Muslims in these terrible battles unless the Muhaajireen and Ansaar were grouped in separate regiments so that it could be clearly seen who really bore their responsibility and who were truly steadfast in combat.

At the break of day when the battle commenced, Abbad ibn Bishr stood on a mound and shouted,

"O Ansaar, distinguish yourselves among men. Destroy your scabbards and do not forsake Islam!"

Abbad harangued the Ansar until about four hundred men gathered around him at the head of whom were Thabit ibn Qays, al-Baraa ibn Malik and Abu Dujaanah, the keeper of the Prophet's sword. With this force, Abbad unleashed an offensive into the enemy's ranks which blunted their thrust and drove them back to the "garden of death".

At the walls of this garden, Abbad ibn Bishr fell. So numerous were his wounds, he was hardly recognizable.

He had lived, fought and died as a believer.


radhiAllahanhuHe was from the chief of the Qur’ân recitors.


Ubay ibn Ka’b ibn Ubayd ibn Zayd ibn Mua’wiyyah ibn Amr ibn Maalik ibn Najjar.


Abu Mundhir, aswell as Abu at-Tufayl.

He had two sons:

at-Tufayl, and Muhammad and a daughter: Umm Amr.[1]

Date of Birth:

He was born during the time of the Prophet (sallahAllaahu 'alayhi wasallam).


  • He is recognized as the greatest reciter (Qaari) of the Qur’ân after the Prophet (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam).
  • He was a man of average height; not tall nor short. He had white hair and beard.
  • He witnessed and participated in: the battle of Badr, Uhud, the pledge of Aqabah, and all other expeditions with the Prophet (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam).
  • He memorized / collected the whole Qur’ân during the time of the Prophet (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam), and recited it to him (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam).

Those He Took Knowledge From:

  • The Prophet (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam).

Those Who Took Knowledge From Him:

  • Abu Moosa (radhiyaAllaahu anhu)
  • Anas bin Maalik (radhiyaAllaahu anhu)
  • Ibn ‘Abbaas (radhiyaAllaahu anhuma)
  • Ubaada ibn Saamit (radhiyaAllaahu anhu)
  • His sons: Muhammad and at-Tufayl.
  • Ubayd bin Umayr
  • Sa’eed bin al-Musayyib
  • Abu Uthmaan al-Hindee
  • Zur bin Hubaysh
  • Abdurrahman bin Abee Laylah

From Among the Sahaaba who recited to him, and learnt recitation from him:[2]

  • Aboo Hurayrah (radhiyaAllaahu anhu)
  • Ibn ‘Abbaas (radhiyaAllaahu anhuma)
  • Abdullaah ibn Saaib (radhiyaAllaahu anhu)

From Among the Taabi’een who recited and learnt recitation from him:

  • Abu Abdurrahman as-Sulamee
  • Abdullaah ibn Iyaash
  • Abdullaah ibn Habeeb
  • Sa’eed bin al-Musayyib

His Praise :

  • holyQuranHe is a man mentioned by Allaah:

Anas (radhiyaAllaahu anhu) said, "The Prophet (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam) said to Ubay bin Ka’b, ‘Indeed Allaah has commanded me to recite the Qur'an to you.’

Ubay asked, ‘Allaah mentioned me to you?’ He (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam) replied, ‘Yes.’ He said, ‘And I have been mentioned by the Lord of The Worlds?’ He (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam) replied, ‘Yes.’ (Then) his (Ubay’s) eyes were filled with tears.”[3]

  • He is one of the greatest Scholars of this Ummah:

The Prophet (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam) asked Ubay bin Ka’b, ‘Which is The greatest verse in the Qur’ân?’ So Ubay replied: “Allah! La ilaha illa Huwa (none has the right to be worshipped but He), the Ever Living, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists.” [Al-Baqarah:255] Then The Prophet (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam) hit his (Ubay’s) chest and said to him, ‘knowledge will be made easy for you, O Abaa Mundhir.’ [4]

Umar ibn al-khattab said, during the time when he was the Leader of the Muslim nation:

“Whoever wishes to ask about the Qur’ân then let him approach Ubay bin Ka’b, and whoever wants to ask about laws of inheritance then let him approach Zayd, and whoever wishes to ask about Fiqh; then let him approach Mu'aadh, and whoever wants to ask about wealth; then let him come to me, for Allaah has made me a safe-keeper and a distributor.”[5]
  • The Best reciter (Qaari) of the Qur'an from among the whole Islamic Nation:

Anas bin Maalik said, “The Prophet (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam) said,  “The Best reciter from my Ummah is  Ubay…”[6]

Ibn Umar said that the Prophet (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam) said, “Take [learn] the Qiraat [knowledge of recitation] from four: Ibn Mas’oud, and from Ubay, and from Muadh, and from Saalim the slave of Abu Hudhayfah.”[7]

Ibn Abbaas said that Umar said,

“The Best judge amongst us is 'Alee, and the best reciter amongst us is Ubay…” [8]

Anas bin Maalik also said,

“During the time of The Prophet (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam), the Quran was collected by four, and all of them were from the Ansaar: Ubay ibn Ka’b, Muadh ibn Jabal, Zayd bin Yhabit, and Abu Zayd.” [9]

Umar ibn al-Khattab used to refer to him as,

'The Chief of the Muslims.’[10]

From His Sayings:

Ubayd ibn Umayr narrated from Ubay ibn K’ab (radhiyaAllaahu anhu) who said,

‘None will leave something for the sake of Allaah, except that Allaah will substitute from him that which is better than that in a way that he does not recognize….’ [11]

‘Indeed we recite it (the complete Quran every) eight nights.’

‘Verily Allaah has made the food of the children of Adam a parable of what this world is: even if he puts spices in it [to make it better and delicious], it is well known what its end result is.’ [12]

Abu Al-'Âliyah reports that a man once asked 'Ubay b. Ka'b (Allah be pleased with him) for advice. He said,

“Take the Book of Allah as your leader (Imaam) and be pleased with it as a judge and ruler. It is what your Messenger left among you. It will be an intercessor for you. It is to be obeyed; It is a witness never doubted. In it is a mention of you and those before you, and judgment for whatever happens amongst you. And in it is news about you and whatever will come after you.” [13]

He Wrote Revelation

He was a writer during the pre-Islamic days; in those days, those who knew how to write among the Arabs were very few.
Consequently In Islam he was one of those who used to scribe the revelation.

Al Waaqidee said,

‘He was the first one to write for The Prophet (sallahAllaahu alayhi wasallam).’[14]

Masruq said, ‘I asked Ubay regarding some matter, so he said to me,

‘O son of my brother, has this (i.e. your question) occurred?’

So I said: 'No.’ Thus he said,

‘Then lets leave it until if it happens, then we can do Ijtihaad and apply our reason/opinion.’

Narrations from the Prophet (peace be upon him):

In the six books of hadeeth, he has around sixty hadeeths narrated from him.


Dhumrah said, “I saw the people of Madinah flocking their streets in groups. So I asked, 'What is the matter with them [people]?' Some of them replied,

‘Aren’t you one of the residents of the Land [Madinah]?’

I said: 'No.’ So they said,

‘Indeed today the chief of the Muslims – Ubay ibn Ka’b -  has passed away.’’

There has been long discussion between the scholars regarding the exact date of his death. Imam ad-Dhahabee says regarding his death –after bringing many different narrations- says about the narration which mentions that he died in year 22 A.H,

‘..the soul is drawn to this narration.’
May Allaah have mercy on him, and all the Pious Predecessors.
We ask Him the Most Mighty, the Most Praiseworthy to grant us beneficial knowledge
and guide us to His straight path, while imitating the best of the people in all affairs. Aameen.



Main Sources: Siyar a’lamuu an-Nubalaa and Tabaqaat al-Kubra , Al-Iswaabah fi ma’rifati as-Sahaabah.

[1] Swafat Swafwaa of Ibn Jawzee : 1/84
[2] Taken from Ghaayati an-Nihaaya fi Tabaqaatil-Qurraa of Al-Imaam ibn Jazareey
[3] Saheeh al-Bukhaaree
[4] Narrated by Ahmad 5/142, Muslim:810.
[5] Siyar aa’laam an-Nubalaa : 1/389
[6] Jami’ Tirmidhee : 3793
[7] Narrated by Bukhaaree : 3758, 4999
[8] Saheeh al-Bukhaaree : 4481
[9] Saheeh al-Bukhaaree : 5003
[10] Al-Iswaabah : 1/5
[11] Az-Zuhd Kabeer of Imaam Bayhaqee: 2/427
[12] Az-Zuhd of Imaam Abee Daawood: 1/202
[13] Al-hilyah of Aboo Nua’ym : 1/253 , translation taken from sayings of the Salaf blog.
[14] Al-Iswaabah : 1/5


AyubaThey say we civilised Africa, as if there was no education in that continent.

This is Ayuba Suleiman Diallo (aka Job ben Solomon). He came from a very educated family in the Senegal region.

His grandfather converted to Islam and for that reason Job had received education in Arabic and Islamic sciences. He was a scholar par excellence.

He was abducted by European slavers in 1731 and was duly taken across the Atlantic. He attempted to escape from slavery and was caught by his "master". He wrote a letter to his in father in Arabic but instead of making its way to west Africa, the letter ended up in London in the hands of some English gentlemen.

He was bought and subsequently brought to London in 1733 to translate Arabic books. He wrote the Quran from memory, as one can be seen hanging in his neck in the portrait. He returned to his native land, having been freed, to find his father dead in a battle and his wife married to someone else.

Ayub bin Suleiman was one of the very few slaves to return home after slavery and was indeed one of the even fewer who were educated enough to free themselves.

Islam had enabled Ayub to be firm and never loose hope, as he never lost his faith. The Oxford University Press published a biography of Ayub authored by Douglas Grant.

Islam gives hope to the Africans today just like it did to Ayub then.

مــحـــــــمـــــد بـــــن جـــــریـــــر الطـــــبـــــری

The Imaam of Quran Interpreters and the Grand Historian

He is one of the greatest most renowned, prominent and influential early Persian Muslim scholars of the third Hijri century, historian and exegete of the Qur'an from Tabaristan, modern Mazandaran in Persia/Iran.

He was known for his deep knowledge. He was an outstanding jurist, the Imaam of Quran interpreters, and a historian who wrote one of the most famous books on Islamic history that was ever written. He is the great scholar, Abu Ja'far Muhammad ibn Jarir al-Tabari (Arabic: أبو جعفر محمد بن جرير بن يزيد الطبري‎)

Birth and Early Years

Abu Ja'far Muhammad Ibn Jareer At-Tabari (rahimahullaah) was born in a town called Aamol, Tuberstan, Iran in 224 A.H. 839 A.C. He was brought up in a well-off family and his father was keen to teach him. He memorized the Glorious Quran when he was seven years old and started to write down Prophetic Hadeeths when he was only nine.

A picture of a mountain in Tabaristan, modern Mazandaran in Persia/Iran:

Iran   Mazandaran

Ibn Jareer At-Tabari (rahimahullaah) had an ardent desire for knowledge ever since he was a child. In his early years, he realized that he could not achieve his scientific ambitions in his hometown so he left his town seeking knowledge when he was only twelve years old. He traveled to Rey, modern day Iran, and visited some of its cities where he met scholars and acquired religious knowledge from Ahmad Ibn Hammaad Ad-Dulaabi and Ibn Humayd Ar-Raazi, who were great Hadeeth scholars.


Travel to Cultural Centers

At-Tabari (rahimahullaah) was not satisfied with what he learnt in Rey.

He traveled to Kufa which had numerous mosques wherein all types of religious and linguistic knowledge were taught.

He learnt the different ways of reciting the Glorious Quran at the hands of Sulaymaan Ibn Khallaad At-Talhi. His teacher in Prophetic Hadeeth was the well-known scholar, Abu Kurayb Muhammad Ibn Al-'Alaa' Al-Hamadaani. Noticing his early genius and ardent desire to seek knowledge, Al-Hamdaani paid extra attention to At-Tabari and made him one of his close students. From Al-Hamdaani, At-Tabari learnt more than one hundred thousand Hadeeths.

Later, At-Tabari left for Baghdad, the capital of the 'Abbasid caliphate and the center of Arabic culture at that time. He devoted himself to acquiring knowledge and he studied the Shafi'ee Juristic school. Again he moved to Syria and then to Egypt on 253 A.H. when he was thirty years old after a long and tedious trip acquiring knowledge.

In Egypt, he met great scholars and learnt from people like Abu Al-Hasan As-Sarraaj Al-Misri, Yoonus Ibn 'Abdul-A'laa As-Safadi who was the Imaam of the Quran Reciters, and Ar-Rabee' Ibn Sulaymaan who was the most outstanding jurist in Egypt at that time, and the student of Imaam Ash-Shafi'ee. All these scholars held examinations for At-Tabari (rahimahullaah) and they all testified to his deep knowledge and extensive background.

Back to Baghdad

After this hard journey in acquiring knowledge and learning at the hands of scholars, At-Tabari (rahimahullaah) returned to Baghdad and settled there. He built a house and completely dedicated himself to acquiring knowledge and teaching.

He divided his time between acts of worship, teaching, and writing. At-Tabari (rahimahullaah) was very active in writing to the extent that he used to write down forty pages a day.

He continued to do this for forty years without being distracted by earning a living because he was already rich. At-Tabari (rahimahullaah) added voluminous and significant books to Islamic literature. Until now, people still read his books and benefit from them.

Imaam At-Tabari (rahimahullaah) Searches For Knowledge:


His works:

Imaam At-Tabari (rahimahullaah) was well-versed in many branches of Islamic knowledge such as Tafseer (interpretation of the Glorious Quran), Hadeeth, history, jurisprudence, ways of Quranic recitation, language, and literature. Yet, he mastered and specialized in three branches: Tafseer, history, and jurisprudence. He wrote two of the most important and voluminous Islamic books in Arabic. They are:

- Jaami' Al-Bayaan fi Tafseer Al-Quran (The All-Comprehensive Book on the Interpretation of the Glorious Quran): It is known, in short, as Tafseer At-Tabari (تفسير الطبري). It is one of the most famous and voluminous Tafseer books; it is a reference for whoever wants to understand the meanings of the Glorious Quran. At-Tabari dictated it to his students and it took him eight years to finish it. He started in 283 A.H. and finished in 290 A.H. The book is printed in thirty volumes and is widespread among students of knowledge all over the world. It is available in academic institutions, public libraries, and universities. This Tafsir was used by famous scholars like Ibn Kathir (rahimahullaah), Imaam Suyuti (rahimahullaah) and others in their own Tafsirs.

Abu Haamid al-Isfaraayini (rahimahullaah) said in Tabaqaat al-Mufassireen by al-Dawoodi, 2/106.:

If a traveller were to travel to China in order to obtain it, that would not be too much.

Ibn Khuzaymah (rahimahullaah) said in Siyar A'laam al-Nubala', 14/273:

I have read it from beginning to end and I do not know of anyone on the face of the earth who is more knowledgeable than Ibn Jareer.

Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah (rahimahullaah) said in Majmoo' al-Fataawa, 13/358:

With regard to the Tafseers that are in circulation among the people, the most sound of them is the Tafseer of Muhammad ibn Jareer al-Tabari, for he mentions the views of the salaf with proven isnaads, and there is no bid'ah (innovation) in it, and he does not transmit reports from dubious sources such as Muqaatil ibn Bukayr and al-Kalbi.

He also said in Muqaddimah fi Usool al-Tafseer (p. 35), concerning the Tafseer of Ibn Jareer:

It is one of the best and greatest of Tafseers.

He relied on the views of three generations of mufassireen among the salaf, namely the Sahaabah, the Taabi'een, and the followers of the Taabi'een, and he quotes their opinions with isnaads going back to them. This is an important feature of his book which is not present in many of the books of Tafseer that are in circulation among us. But this feature does not matter to many ordinary Muslims who are not able to research isnaads and distinguish sound isnaads from weak ones; all they want is to know whether an isnaad is sound or weak by means of a clear and brief statement to that effect.

When he has finished quoting their opinions, he states which he thinks is most likely to be correct, then he describes how he reached that conclusion.

Nothing like the Tafseer of Ibn Jareer (al-Tabari) has been written since. It is essential for scholars and seekers of knowledge, but it is not appropriate for ordinary people because they are not qualified to understand it properly. The Tafseer of Ibn Katheer is more appropriate for the ordinary people, and there is much in it from which scholars and seekers of knowledge can benefit.

Many editions of this Tafsir are available. One of the editions presented below is by Mahmud Muhammad Shakir, an Egyptian Arabic literature famous for his research in early Islamic books. This is in Arabic:

By Mahmud Ahmed Shakir: 15 volumes - Download from

- Taareekh Al-Umam wa Al-Mulook (The History of Nations and Kings): It is also known as Taareekh At-Tabari. It covers history from the origin of creation and the descent of Aadam to the earth. It also covers the stories of the Prophets and Messengers and the previous nations. In addition, it features the history of Islaam from the mission of the Prophet, sallallaahu álayhi wa sallam, until the year 203 A.H. The book is printed in ten volumes and has been translated into several languages. It is one of the most important references for researchers and students of Islamic history in the first three Hijri centuries. All authors on Islamic history – until now - benefited and benefit from this book.

ladyofdeenThe Character of Imaam At-Tabari:

Imaam At-Tabari was known for his commitment, studiousness, and seriousness whether in acquiring knowledge or writing. He visited many countries for the purpose of acquiring knowledge although he was still young.

He used to write down forty pages a day, which explains the voluminous nature of the books he wrote.

Apart from being studious in acquiring knowledge, At-Tabari was kind, gentle, and friendly with his fellow Muslims, and he used to ask about their welfare. He used to pay attention to the way he looks and he was outstandingly clean and handsome. He also used to deal with his students in a tender and loving way and he was fair with them in the way he taught.

He is described as having a dark complexion, large eyes and a long beard. He was tall and slender and his hair and beard remained black until he was very old. He was attentive to his health, avoiding red meat, fats and other unhealthy foods. 

He had a sense of humour, though serious subjects he treated seriously. He had studied poetry when young and enjoyed writing, reciting and participating in poetic exchanges.

He was witty and urbane, clean and well mannered. He avoided coarse speech, instead displaying refined eloquence. He had a good grounding in grammar, lexicography and philology. Such were considered essential for Qur'anic commentary. He knew Persian and was acquainted with the origins of various foreign loan words in Arabic from a number of other languages.

There is a description of his normal day: rising early for prayer, studying until early afternoon, publicly praying the afternoon prayer, reciting Qur'an and teaching Qur'an, and then teaching law until late.

His death:

Ibn Jareer At-Tabari stayed in Baghdad concentrating on nothing except teaching and writing. He was highly appreciated by the caliphs and rulers of his time until he died in Shawwaal 310 A.H at the age of eighty-six, in the region of Tabaristan. A Large numbers of people were present for his funeral procession and they buried him while feelings of sadness and mourning overwhelmed them.

Ibn Jareer At-Tabari in Brief:

  • At-Tabari was born in Aamol, Tuberstan in 224 A.H.
  • At-Tabari had an ardent desire for knowledge ever since he was a child and he memorized the Quran and Prophetic Hadeeths.
  • When he was twelve years old, he started a long journey seeking knowledge and he traveled to Rey, Baghdad, Kufa, old Syria, and Egypt.
  • He settled in Baghdad and devoted himself to writing and teaching.
  • At-Tabari was well-versed in many branches of Islamic knowledge such as Tafseer, Hadeeth, and jurisprudence.
  • At-Tabari left many books on Tafseer, history, jurisprudence, and modes of reciting the Glorious Quran.
  • The most famous of his books are Tafseer At-Tabari and Taareekh At-Tabari.
  • He died in Baghdad in 310 AH.


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Mountain PathThe full name of Imaam Muslim is Abul-Hussain 'Asakiruddin Muslim bin Hajjaj AlQushairi An-Naisaburi. He belonged to the Qushair tribe of the Arab clan Rabi'ah. He was born in 202 or 206 H (819 or 821 CE) in Nishapur, a town of Iran. His parents were religious people and so he was brought up in a pious environment. Because of this he spent all of his life as a pious and righteous person. A distinguishing attribute of his excellent character is that he never indulged in backbiting, which is a common human shortcoming.

Imaam Muslim travelled far and wide to collect the Ahadith (traditions) in the countries of Arabia, Egypt, Iraq and Syria, and benefited from the prominent Hadith scholars of that time by attending the lectures and classes of those learned persons. His teachers included Ishaq bin Rawaih, Ahmad bin Hanbal, Ubaidullah Al-Qawariri, Qutaibah bin Said, Abdullah bin Maslamah, Harmalah bin Yahya and others.

Afterwards he settled down at Nishapur, where he came into contact with Imaam Bukhari. Seeing the vast knowledge and deep insight of him in the Ahadith of the Prophet, Imaam Muslim remained attached with him until the end of his life. He also attended the lectures of another scholar of Hadith, Muhammad bin Yahya Adh-Dhuhli, but when the difference of opinion arose between Imaam Bukhari and Muhammad bin Yahya on the issue of the creation of the Noble Qur'an, Imaam Muslim favored Imaam Bukhari and left the company of Muhammad bin Yahya.

Imaam Muslim compiled many books and treatises on Hadith, the most important of his works is the compilation of the Hadith collection Al-Jami' As-Sahih, which is famous by the name of Sahih Muslim. Some scholars of Hadith opine that in some respects it is the best and most authentic collection of Ahadith. Imaam Muslim laboriously collected 3,00,000 Ahadith, but after a critical study, he selected only 4,000 Ahadith for this collection. Other contributions of Imaam Muslim on the subject of Hadith are: Al-Kitab Al-Musnad Al-Kabir Alar-Rijkl, Al-Jami'Al-Kabir, Kitab-ul-Asma' wal-Kuna, Kitab-ul'Ilal, Kitab-ul-Wahdan, etc.

Many students learned the Science of Hadith from Imaam Muslim. Those who became famous and occupied a prominent position are: Abu Hatim Razi, Musa bin Harun, Ahmad bin Salamah, Abu `Isa Tirmidhi, Abu Bakr bin Khuzaimah, Abu `Awanah and Hafiz Dhahbi.

Imaam Muslim died at the age of fifty-seven years in 261 H (875 CE) and was buried in the suburbs of Nishapur.


My Three Years With Shk. 'Abdullah - by Brother Mustafa

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Shk. Muhammad al-Mukhtaar ash-Shanqeetee's Dream About Shk. 'Abdullah

Shaykh Muhammad Mukhtaar al-Shanqiti (hafidhahullah) in the following video relates his dream which he saw of the Shaykh. Below is the translation of his dream.

Download MP3 (Arabic)

First he begins by making du’a for him and praising his work for the ummah, as the shaykh had been in the Committee of Senior Scholars for nine years after it had started until his death, rahimahullah. He was also one of the last students of the great shaykh Muhammad ibn Ibrahim (the first Mufti of Saudi Arabia) rahimahumullah jami’an.

In this video he speaks of his piety, depth in knowledge, and being known for his asceticism. He then makes du’a for him and asks Allah to reward him and have mercy upon him and raise him amongst the ranks of the scholars of Islam and the Muslims, and to raise him amongst the pious, those who are amongst the company of the most high with Allah ‘azza wa jal, and for Allah ‘azza wa jal to replace what the Muslims have lost.

Then he relates his amazing dream:

From amongst the glad tidings – SubhanAllah, I slept last night, and Allah is my witness to what i’m saying, I slept last night and i saw in my dream, a group of scholars and (again) I didn’t know, I visited the shaykh one week prior when he was sick and sat with him. But i saw, a huge group of scholars in my dream, and i felt in my dream that they were the scholars of the past (those that have passed away). And i swear by Allah, that i saw him amongst them, and I didn’t know that he had passed away, this was the night. But I saw him rahimahullah, and I saw his face like a shining sun amongst them. And i was stunned, and said in amazement “Shaykh ‘Abdullah?” He was standing out from amongst all of them. And his face was shining like the sun, very bright and radiant. And he was sitting amongst them.” And I woke up and someone called me.. and let me know that he had passed away. May Allah have mercy upon him…”

Shk. 'Abdullah's Biography


'Abdullaah ibn `Abdir-Rahmaan ibn `Abdir-Razzaaq ibn Qaasim Aal Ghudayaan.

He is from the family of a muhaddith of Banul-`Anbar, from Banoo `Amr ibn Tameem, and his lineage goes back to `Amr (Taabikhah) ibn Ilyaas ibn Mudar, from the family of the descendants of `Adnaan; and through his mother his lineage goes back to the family of Raashid, from (the tribe of) `Utaybah which is from (the tribes of ) Hawaazin.

His Birth: He was born in the year 1345 [[c.1926 C.E.]] in the town of az-Zulfaa.

His Education: He studied the basics of reading and writing at a young age with `Abdullaah ibn `Abdil-`Azeez as-Suhaymee, and `Abdullaah ibn `Abdir-Rahmaan al-Ghayth, and Faalih ar-Roomee.

He studied the basics of Fiqh, Tawheed, Arabic Grammar, and the laws of Inheritance with Hamdaan ibn Ahmad al-Baatil.

Then he travelled to ar-Riyaad in the year 1363H and entered the Saudi Preparatory School [previously the School for Orphans] in the year 1366 approximately, and he qualified in the year 1368H.

He was appointed as a teacher in al-`Azeeziyyah School, and in the year 1371H he entered the Academic Institute (al-Ma`hadul-`Ilmee). During this period he took knowledge from the eminent Shaikh Muhammad ibn Ibraaheem Aalush -Shaikh.

He likewise took the knowledge of Fiqh from Shaikh Sa`ood ibn Rashood (the Qaadee of ar-Riyaad) and from Shaikh Ibraaheem ibn Sulaymaan he learned knowledge of Tawheed. With Shaikh `Abdul-Lateef ibn Ibraaheem he studied Arabic Grammar and the Laws of Inheritance.

Then he continued his studies until he qualified from the College of Sharee`ah in the year 1376H.

He was then appointed as head of the court of al-Khobar. Then he moved to teach in the Academic Institute in the year 1378H.

Then in the year 1380H he was appointed as a teacher in the College of Sharee`ah;

Then in 1386H he became a member of the Iftaa. (Verdicts) Committee in Daarul-Iftaa.Then he 1391H he was appointed a member of the permanent Committee for scholarly research and verdicts, and a member of the Committee of Major Scholars [1].

His Shaikhs: He studied under a group of the seekers of knowledge in the various fields, and the most prominent of them in addition to those already mentioned were:

1) The eminent Shaikh `Abdul-`Azeez ibn `Abdillaah ibn Baaz-under whom he studied Fiqh.

2) Shaikh `Abdullaah al-Khulayfee, with whom he studied Fiqh also;

3) Shaikh `Abdul-`Azeez ibn Rasheed, with whom he studied Fiqh, Tawheed, and the Laws of Inheritance;

4) Shaikh Muhammad al-Ameen ash-Shanqeetee, with whom he studied Usoolul-Fiqh, the Sciences of the Qur.aan, and Tafseer.

5) Shaikh `Abdur-Rahmaan al-Ifreeqee, with whom he studied the Sciences of Hadeeth, and Hadeeth.

6) Shaikh `Abdur-Razzaaq `Afeefee

7) `Abdul-Fattaah Qaaree al-Bukhaaree, from whom he learned the Qur.aan with the recitation of Hafs from `Aasim with his chain of narration back to the Messenger (peace be upon him); and from others.

His Works:

In addition to what has preceded, along with his other works, from the year 1389H to this day he has been teaching Fiqh; and its Usool and Principals; and Hadeeth and its Sciences; and Tafseer and its branches of knowledge; and `Aqeedah; and Fiqh; in organized lectures throughout most of the days of the week in accordance with circumstances: after Maghrib, and after `Ishaa., and sometimes after Fajr and after `Asr.

Also from 1395H in addition to his work in delivering verdicts he gave lectures to the studies of Higher Studies in Jaami`atul-Imaam (the University of the Imaam), and in the College of Shaaree`ah, teaching Fiqh, Usoolul-Fiqh, the Principals of Fiqh and its Fundamentals, in the lecture hall; and he used to supervise and take part in the debates concerning some of the research papers.

Likewise in this period a large number of students took knowledge from him. Also in the year 1381H he was nominated to take a position in the committee for giving guidance and verdicts during the Hajj which has continued to the present day. Then when the eminent Shaikh `Abdullaah ibn Humayd passed away in the year 1402H, he took over delivering verdicts on the radio-programme ‘Noor `alad-Darb’.”




Source: Taken from the introduction to ‘Fataawal-Lajnatid-Daa'imah lil-buhoothil-`Ilmiyyah wal-Iftaa.’ (1/10-12)

[1] The Committee of the Major Scholars (Hay.atu Kibaaril-`Ulamaa. was established in 1391H and consisted of Shaikh Ibraaheem ibn Muhammad ibn Ibraaheem Aalush-Shaikh, (head), Shaikh `Abdur-Razzaaq `Afeefee `Atiyyah ( deputy head), Shaikh `Abdullaah ibn `Abdir-Rahmaan al-Ghudayaan (member), Shaikh `Abdullaah ibn Sulaymaan ibn Manee` (member). Then at the end of 1395H Shaikh Ibraaheem Aalush-Shaikh was appointed as the Minister for Justice, and his place as head of the Committee of Major Scholars was taken by Shaikh `Abdul-`Azeez ibn `Abdillaah ibn Baaz-rahimahullaah.


universebluepurpleHe is Muhammad b. Ibrahim b. al-Mundhir Abu Bakr al-Nisaburi. This is all that is known of his name and lineage. It is known that he was born in Nisabur which is in present day Iran, but the exact date is unknown. Al-Zirkali attempted to date his birth and placed it in the year 242 A.H. while al-Dhahabi approximated it to be around the death of Ahmad, the year 241 A.H. Beyond this not much is known about his upbringing. It seems that he probably studied under the many various scholars of Nisabur from an early age and it is most probable that he traveled to other lands to seek knowledge as other scholars did, however, the actual places he traveled to are unknown. All that is known is that he eventually resided in Makkah and became the Shaykh of the Haram. He later died there around the year 318 A.H.

He had many teachers and students and had attained a great level of scholarship. He reached the highest level of ijtihad according to many of the other scholars and was therefore no longer bound to any particular School of Thought. Despite this fact, he is almost unanimously ascribed to the Shafi School, in which he initially started. This fact was

mentioned by al-Dhahabi, al-Suyuti, al-Nawawi, and al-Shirazi.

Al-Dhahabi said regarding him,

“The Haafidh, the 'allaamah, the faqih, the unique scholar, the Shaykh of the Haram, and the one who authored books the likes of which have never been written.”

An-Nawawi said regarding him,

“The famous imaam and one of the Islamic leaders. Everyone is agreed that he was an imaam, virtuous, and very knowledgeable, both in the fields of Hadith and fiqh.” He also said, “He was at the top level of knowledge when it comes to which Hadith were authentic and which were weak.”

Al-Subki said,

“The imam, Abu Bakr al-Nisaburi, the one who resided in Makkah and one of the great scholars of this Nation. He was an imaam, a mujtahid, a Haafidh, and extremely pious.”

Ibn Hajar said,

“The Haafidh, the Aallamah, the one who wrote many works. He was upright and truthful from what I know.”

Ibn Khalkaan said,

“He was a faqih and an absolute scholar.”

Many others have praised him as well.

He was also quite knowledgeable of the differing opinions amongst the various scholars; having knowledge of who held which opinion and their supporting evidences. Despite the fact that he wrote on topics such as tafsir, adhkaar, the life of al-Shafi, and the virtues of the wealthy and the poor, his most famous books are on fiqh and the differing opinions of the scholars regarding this science.

Possibly the largest of these was a book entitled al-Mabsut, however it is no longer in existence. He abridged this book and wrote a magnificent compilation which he entitled al-Awsat, however, only a few volumes of this book have been found and even fewer have been printed. He also abridged this book into a smaller work titled al-Ishraaf. This book is widely acclaimed as the best book of its kind as he briefly mentions within it all of the different opinions regarding each topic and occasionally mentions which opinion he chose as the most correct. He later wrote al-Iqnaa, which most probably is also an abridgment of al-Awsat as it maintains the chains of the Hadiths used while al-Ishraaf omits them, making it is less likely that al-Iqnaa is an abridgment of al-Ishraaf.

He also authored a book about the evidence of qiyaas (analogical reasoning) which, obviously, deals with usool al-fiqh. (See the Introduction of al-Iqnaa by Abdullah Muhammad al-Jaburi.)


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mana-rdAl-Haafidh, the Jurist: Ishaq bin Ibrahim bin Mukhlid al-Hanthali at-Tamimi al-Marwazi

His Kunyah: Abu Ya’qub

Famously Known as: Ibn Rahwayh

Rahwayh(1): It was the surname of his father Abul-Hasan Ibrahim, and he was called such because he was born on the road to Makkah and ‘road’ in Persian is ‘Rah’ and ‘Wayh’ means ‘to find’, thus it means ‘found in the road’(2).

His Birth:

His son Muhammad bin Ishaq bin Rahwayh said:

"My father, may Allah have mercy on him, was born in the year 163 AH."(3)

And it is said, 161 AH.(4)

His Search for Knowledge:

He heard in his town from a number of Scholars, then he traveled in the year 184 H. to Iraq, al-Hijaz, Yemen, and Sham. In Sham he took knowledge from a number of the major People of Knowledge, among them:

- Fudhayl bin Iyadh

- Jarir bin Abd al-Hamid ar-Razi

- Sufyan bin Uyaynah

- Abd ar-Rahman bin Mahdi

- Abd Allah bin Wahb

- Al-Walid bin Muslim

- Waki’ bin al-Jarrah

- Yahya bin Sa’eed al-Qattan

- Sulayman bin Harb

- Yahya bin Adam

And a great many others.(5)

His Students:

- Muhammad bin Ishaq (his son)

- Al-Bukhari

- Muslim

- At-Tirmithi

- Abu Dawud

- An-Nasaa’i

- Abd ar-Rahman ad-Darimi

- Muhammad bin Nasr al-Marwazi

- Abul-Abbas as-Sarraj (the last to narrate from him)

And a great many others.

From the ones who also narrated from him are his eldest teachers such as Yahya bin Adam and Baqiyah bin al-Walid, and among his contemporaries Ahmad bin Hanbal and Yahya bin Ma’een.(6)

His Life and What Was Said About Him:

He was an Imaam of famous mention from the people of Marw, a place in Nisabur. He was one whose statements and preferences were followed and sought after, and he was from the closest people to Ahmad bin Hanbal.(7)

He reached Baghdad more than once and was considered as among the Huffadh of its people, their praiseworthy, and he returned to Khurasan and settled in Nisabur until he passed away there. His knowledge became predominant among the people of Khurasan.(8)

The son of Ishaq bin Rahwayh said:

"My father was born from the belly of his mother both ears pierced. So my grandfather marched straight away to al-Fadhl bin Musa as-Sinani and asked him about that, and he said: A child was born to me, with both ears pierced! So (as-Sinani) said: 'Your son will be a leader of good or evil.'”(9)

Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal was asked about Ishaq bin Rahwayh, so he said:

“Ishaq bin Rahwayh is being asked about? To us, Ishaq is among the Imams of the Muslims.”(10)

And he said:

“Never has the like of Ishaq crossed the bridge to Khurasan."(11)

And he said:

“I do not know or I am not aware of a comparable person to Ishaq in Iraq.”

And he said:

“To us ash-Shafi’i is an Imam, al-Humaydi is an Imam, and Ishaq bin Rahwayh is an Imam.”

And he said:

“When Abu Ya’qub, Chief of the Believers, narrates to you, then cling to it."(12)

Ishaq bin Rahwayh was mentioned to Qutaibah bin Sa’eed, then he said:

“Ishaq is an Imam."

Abu Hatim ar-Razi said:

“Ishaq bin Rahwayh is an Imam among the Imams of the Muslims."(14)

An-Nasa’i said about him while naming his teachers:

“One of the Imams."(15)

And he said:

“Abu Ya’qub Ishaq bin Ibrahim bin Mukhlid bin Ibrahim, trustworthy, reliable."(16)

Wahb bin Jarir said:

“May Allah reward Ishaq bin Rahwayh, Sadaqah, and Ya’mur, they gave life to the Sunnah in the lands of the east.”

Nu’aym bin Hammad said:

“If you see an Iraqi speaking ill about Ahmad bin Hanbal, then suspect his religion; if you see a Khurasani speaking ill of Ishaq bin Rahwayh, then suspect his religion; and if you see a Basri speaking ill about Wahb bin Jarir, then suspect his religion.”

Sa’eed bin Thu’ib said:

“I do not know anyone upon the face of the earth like Ishaq.”

Ibn Khuzaimah said:

“By Allah, even if Ishaq bin Ibrahim al-Handhali had been present among the Tabi’een, truly they would acknowledge his memory, knowledge and jurisprudence."(17)

Ibn Hibban said:

“Ishaq was from among the masters of his time in jurisprudence, science, memorization, and insight whereof books were compiled, and the Prophetic traditions were subdivided; he defended it and dispelled whoever differed with it."(18)

Abu Dawud al-Khaffaf said:

“Ishaq bin Rahwayh dictated to us 11,000 narrations from memory then recited it to us, and he did not add or miss a single letter of it.”(19)

Abu Hatim ar-Razi said: “I mentioned Ishaq bin Rahwayh al-Handhali to Abu Zur’ah and his memorization of chains and texts of narrations, then Abu Zur’ah said:

‘There is no transmitter with a better memory than him.’"

Abu Hatim said:

“And the amazing thing is his mastery and flawlessness from error with what he was endowed with of memory.”

Ahmad bin Salamah said: So I said to Abu Hatim that he dictated to us an explanation of the Qur’an from his heart, and Abu Hatim said:

“And this is the most amazing thing- indeed accuracy in supported narrations is much easier than accuracy in the chains of explanation of the Qur’an and its wording.”(20)

Qutaibah bin Sa’eed said:

“The Huffadh in Khurasan are Ishaq bin Rahwayh, then Abdullah bin Abd ar-Rahman as-Samarqandi, then Muhammad bin Isma’eel.”(20)

Muhammad bin Yahya ath-Thuhali said:

“I came in contact with our companion Ishaq bin Rahwayh in the year 199 H in Baghdad, and the most knowledgeable of the companions of narration gathered in ar-Rasafah, and from them were Ahmad bin Hanbal, Yahya bin Ma’een and others, and the heart of the sitting was for Ishaq and he was the speaker."(21)

Abu Nu’aym al-Asbahani said in Hilyat al-Awliya:

“And from them is the gallant, famous Imaam in memorization, and jurisprudence… Ishaq bin Ibrahim al-Hanthali, close companion of the venerable, honorable Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal, and friend of the favored Imam Muhammad bin Idris ash-Shafi’i. He was an instigator to the reports (athar), and for the people of disease and innovation he was destructive."(22+23)

Al-Khatib al-Baghdadi said:

“He was one of the Imaams of the Muslims, knowledgeable from the notables of the religion, there was gathered in him (the knowledge of) Hadith and jurisprudence, good memory and truthfulness, piety and abstention."(24)

Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani said about him:

“Trustworthy, a memorizer of narrations, an independent jurist (mujtahid), close companion of Ahmad bin Hanbal."(25)

Ahmad bin Sa’eed ar-Ribati recited prose about him:

My closeness to Allah ** called me to love Abu Ya’qub Ishaq

He has not made the Qur’an created like how ** The atheist criminal says

The whole of the Sunnah is his etiquette ** Protecting the weak from the strong

Oh proof of Allah upon His creation ** In the tradition of those who have passed to al-Baqi

Your father Ibrahim with pure taqwa ** Forerunner of glory and child of a forerunner

And Ali bin Hajar said about Ishaq:

None has succeeded Ishaq in knowledege and understanding ** in Khurasan the day he parted, who is like him

May Allah brighten his face and preserve him ** From fright, a day, very severe, and it is due to Him

And reward with Firdaws who said ‘Ameen ** and grant him on the day he meets Him, what he has asked for.(26)

From His Books:

  • Al-Musnad (27)
  • Kitab at-Tafsir
  • Kitab al-Ilm (28)

His Death:

He died in Naisabur in the year 238H. on the 14th of Sha’ban and he was 75 years old.(29)

Some Scholars from His Lineage:

His Son: Muhammad bin Ishaq bin Ibrahim, Abul-Hasan al-Marwazi, born in Marw and raised in Nisabur; he wrote in the cities of Khurasan, Iraq, al-Hijaz, Sham and Egypt; he heard from:

  • his father Ishaq bin Rahwayh,
  • Muhammad bin Yahya ath-Thuhli,
  • Ahmad bin Hanbal,
  • Ali bin al-Madini,
  • Abu Mus’ab az-Zuhri,
  • Yunus bin Abd al-A’la al-Misri,

and he narrated in Baghdad, thus a group of its people transmitted on his authority; he was knowledgeable in jurisprudence, graceful in the path, upright in narrations; Muhammad bin Ma’mun al-Hafith said:

"Abul-Hasan bin Rahwayh departed to Khurasan after the death of his father for two years until he came across al-Laythiyah, thus they did not recognize his status until the Amir Abul-Haytham Khalid bin Ahmad bin Hammad ath-Thuhli took the seat of authority and conferred upon him the position of judge of Marw first, then Nisabur. Then he left for Marw and passed away there in the year 289H."

His Grandson: Abu at-Tayyib Muhammad bin Muhammad bin Ishaq bin Ibrahim, originally from Marw, settled in Baghdad and narrated on authority of Muhammad bin al-Mughirah as-Sakri al-Hamdani; Abul-Fadhl Muhammad bin Abd Allah bin al-Mutalib ash-Shaybani transmitted on his authority; he was trustworthy, knowledgeable in the school of Malik bin Anas; he died in Ramlah in the year 339H. And others.

His Statements on Issues of Belief

Harb al-Kirmani said: I said to Ishaq bin Rahwayh: "What do you say about Allah’s Statement: {There is no secret meeting of three, except He is their fourth} [al-Mujadilah:7]?" He said:

"Wherever you are, then He is closer to you than your jugular vein, and He is separate from His creation."

Then he mentioned on authority of Ibn al-Mubarak:

"He is upon His Throne separate from His creation."

Then he said:

"The highest thing regarding that and more established than it is His Statement: {The Most Merciful Rose upon the Throne}."(30)

He also said:

"The sign of Jahm and his companions (Jahmiyyah sect) is their claim against Ahl Al-Jama'ah, with their infatuation with lying, that they (Ahl Assunnah) are mushabihah (ones who liken Allah to His creation); nay, but they (the Jahmiyyah) are mu'atilah (negators of Allah's Attributes). And if they were called: mushabihah, then it would likely be correct, for they say: 'Allah -The Exalted- is in every place, Him being in the lowest earth the same as being in the highest Heaven', and they have lied in that, and kufr (disbelief) is imperative of them."(31)

And he said:

“Tashbeeh (resembling/likening Allah to creation) is to say: ‘Hand like a hand' or ‘Similar to a hand’, or ‘Hearing like a hearing’ or ‘Similar to a hearing’, so if one says: ‘Hearing like a hearing or similar to a hearing’, then this is Tashbeeh. But if one says like 'Allah –The Exalted- said', 'Yad (Hand)', 'Sam' (Hearing)', and 'Basar (Sight)', without saying: 'how', or saying: 'like a hearing' or 'similar to a hearing', then this is not tashbeeh.”(32)



(1) With Fathah on the Ra’ and after Alif, Ha’ with sukun, then Waw with fathah and after it ya’ with sukun, and after it, Ha’ with sukun; and it is said about the pronunciation also: Rahuyah, with dhammah on the Ha’, sukun on the Waw and fathah on the Ya’. (Wafiyat al-A’yan by al-Khalkan 1/200)
(2) Wafiyat al-A’yan 1/200
(3) Al-Kuna wal-Asma’ by ad-Dulabi 3/1164
(4) Tarikh (Baghdad) Madinat as-Salam by al-Khatibe al-Baghdadi (7/364); al-Hidayat wal-Irshad fi Ma’rifat Ahl ath-Thiqat was-Sidad by Abu Nasr al-Kalabathi (1/72)
(5) Tarikh Madinat as-Salam (7/362); and Tahthib al-Kamal (2/373-376)
(6) Tarikh Madinat as-Salam (7/363); Tahthib al-Kamal (2/376-377); Siyar A’lam an-Nubala by ath-Thahabi (11/359)
(7) Al-Ansab by as-Sam’ani (3/34)
(8) Tarikh Madinat as-Salam (7/363)
(9) Tarikh Madinat as-Salam (7/365)
(10) Al-Jarh wat-Ta’dil by Ibn Abi Hatim (2/210)
(11) Al-Kamal fi Dhu’afa ar-Rijal by Ibn Adi (1/126)
(12) Tarikh Madinat as-Salam (7/368, 370)
(13) Al-Jarh wat-Ta’dil (2/210)
(14) Al-Jarh wat-Ta’dil (2/210)
(15) Tasmiyat Mashaykh an-Nasa’i (p. 62)
(16) Tarikh Madinat as-Salam (7/369)
(17) Tarikh Madinat as-Salam (7/366, 367, 369)
(18) Thiqat of Ibn Hibban (8/116)
(19) Al-Kamal fi Dhu’afa ar-Rijal by Ibn Adi (1/127)
(20) Tarikh Madinat as-Salam (7/372)
(21) Tarikh Madinat as-Salam (7/370-371)
(22) meaning ‘destruction’.
(23) Hilyat al-Awliya by Abu Nu’aym al-Asbahani (9/234)
(24) Tarikh Madinat as-Salam (7/362)
(25) Taqrib at-Tahthib by Ibn Hajar (1/126)
(26) Hilyat al-Awliya (9/234)
(27) Al-A’lam by az-Zarkali (1/292); Al-Mu’jam al-Mufahras by Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani (p. 131)
(28) Al-Mu’jam al-Mufahras (pgs. 58 & 109)
(29) Tarikh al-Awsat by al-Bukhari- called at-Tarikh as-Saghir (4/1036)
(30) Kitab al-Arsh by ath-Thahabi (2/244) he said: al-Khallal transmitted it in his book as-Sunnah on authority of Harb; and Siyar A’lam an-Nubala also by him (11/370)
(31) Sharh usool I'tiqad Ahl Assunnah by Al-Lalika'i (3/532)
(32) Reported by his student at-Tirmidhi in his "sunan" (2/42)
In this 4-part series lecture, Under the Shade of Scrolls, Muhammad Alshareef gives us snap shots of the lives of the four imams and the recurring themes in their lives. The lecturer encourages us to model ourselves after them so that we may also come close to their legacy.





{mp3remote} ash-Shareef/Under the Shade of Scrolls/CD3 - Imam Ash-Shafi'ee (RH).mp3{/mp3remote}



outinthedumpsOne of the scholars who is most interesting to read about is the Tabi’i Sulayman bin Mihran (died 148 H), also known as al-A’mash (one who has weak vision). al-A’mash had quite an interesting personality, as he was very pious and knowledgeable while also having a rough, sarcastic attitude that makes one smile constantly while reading through his tarjamah.

Here are some funny incidents of his collected from ‘Siyar A’lam an-Nubala” (6/419-434) and ‘Hilyat al-Awliya” (5/54-70):

1 - al-A’mash went out to some neighborhood one day, and some people came up to him to ask him regarding Hadith. His companions said to him: “Won’t you narrate to these poor souls?” al-A’mash replied:

“Who would hang pearls on pigs?”

2 - Some people came to al-A’mash one day, and he came out of his house to greet them, saying:

“Were it not for the fact that there were people in my house that I hate more than you, I wouldn’t have come out to see you.”

Abu Dawud al-Ha’ik asked him: “Abu Muhammad, what is your opinion on praying behind al-Ha’ik?” al-A’mash replied:

“No problem, as long as one doesn’t have wudu’.”

He also asked: “What do you say about accepting his testimony?” al-A’mash replied:

“Only if it is accompanied by testimony from two trustworthy people.”

3 - The governor ‘Isa bin Musa sent a notebook along with a thousand dirhams to al-A’mash for him to write down Hadith in it. So, al-A’mash wrote: "In the Name of Allah, the Beneficient, the Merciful: Say: ‘He is Allah, One.'" and sent the book back to him. He sent to him, saying: “Do you think that I don’t know any Qur’an?” al-A’mash sent back, saying:

“Do you think that I sell Hadith?”

He kept the money for himself.

4 – ‘Abdullah bin Idris said to al-A’mash: “What prevents you from getting a haircut?” He replied:

“The cuppers talk too much.”

So, he said: “I will bring you to a cupper who will not say a word to you until he finishes cutting your hair.” He brought him to a Junayd, a cupper who was also a Muhaddith. So, ‘Abdullah warned him not to talk to al-A’mash, and he agreed. However, when he had cut half of al-A’mash’s hair, he said: “O Abu Muhammad, what is the status of the hadith of Habib bin Abi Thabit regarding menstruation?” So, al-A’mash got up, screamed, and ran away, sitting for a month with only half of his hair cut.

5 - A knowledgeable man with a long beard came to al-A’mash and asked him a basic question about the prayer. So, al-A’mash turned to us and said:

“Look at him! His beard could carry four thousand ahadith, and he asks a question that the children in school would ask!”

6 - It is said that al-A’mash had a son who was very slow, and he told him:

“Go buy a rope for us to hang our clothes on.”

The boy asked: “How long do you want it to be, father?” He replied:

“Ten cubits long.”

The boy then asked: “How wide do you want it to be?” al-A’mash replied:

“As wide as my bad luck with you!”

7 - Husayn bin Waqid was reciting Qur’an to al-A’mash, and asked him: “How do you like my recitation?” al-A’mash replied: “Better than the recitation of any disbeliever.”

8 - One time, al-A’mash got up at night and could find no water. So, he rubbed his hands on the wall and performed tayammum and went back to sleep. He was asked about this, and he said:

“I am afraid to die without being in a state of purity.”

9 - One time, al-A’mash went out in the morning and passed by the mosque of Bani Asad. They were about to start praying, and he went inside and prayed. The imam recited ‘al-Baqarah’ in the first rak’ah, and recited ‘Al ‘Imran’ in the second. When he finished, al-A’mash said to him: “Will you not fear Allah? Did you not hear that the Messenger of Allah [saws] said: “Whoever leads the people in prayer should go easy, as there are those behind him who are old, weak, and have needs to tend to.”” So, the man said: “Allah Said: {…and it is heavy except on those who have khushu’…} [al-Baqarah; 45] So, al-A’mash said:

“I am a messenger sent from those who have khushu’ telling you that you are heavy.”

10 - One time, a soldier wanted to cross a river. He came across al-A’mash, who was standing near the river, so he jumped on his back and had him walk through the water. When he jumped on al-A’mash, he recited

‘Glory to Him Who has provided this for us’ (the supplication for riding a vehicle).

When al-A’mash had gotten half way across the river, he threw the soldier off of his back, recited {…My Lord! Cause me to land at a blessed landing-place, for You are the best of those who bring to land…} [al-Mu'minun; 29] and left him in the river and ran away.

11 - One day, Shabib bin Shaybah and his friends came by to see al-A’mash, and they stood at his door yelling: “O Sulayman! Come out!” From inside, al-A’mash said: “Who are you?” They replied: “We are {“…those who call you from behind the dwellings…”} [al-Hujurat; 4] So, al-A’mash replied:

“And {…most of them have no sense…} [al-Hujurat; 4]

12 - One time, he wore an inverted sheepskin, such that the wool was on the outside. Someone said to him: “O Abu Muhammad, why don’t you wear it so that the wool is on the inside? This would be warmer for you.” al-A’mash replied:

“Why don’t you go suggest this to the sheep?” name and his lineage:

He is Muwaffaq ad-Deen Aboo Muhammad, ‘Abd-Allah bin Ahmad bin Muhammad bin Qudaamah bin Miqdaam bin Nasir bin ‘Abd-Allah al-Maqdisee, then later became ad-Dimashqee, as-Saalihee.

His birth:

He was born in Sha’baan in the year 541 H., in the village of Jammaa’eel, Jabal Naablus.

He memorised the Qur'aan at an early age, studied its sciences and was known to have a nice hand-writing.

His early life (youth) and travels:

- He went to Damascus with his family when he was ten years old, he read the Qur’an, and he memorized the Mukhtasar (Summary / Compendium) (of) al-Khiraqee.

- He travelled to Baghdaad with the son of his aunt (maternal cousin) al-Haafidh ‘Abd al-Ghanee in the year 561 H. and they heard a lot from the many scholars there.

- He studied (Islamic) jurisprudence (fiqh) until he surpassed his peers/equals and he was very successful, thus he mastered the knowledge of the madhhab (school of law) and its principles.

His piety and his asceticism (zuhd):

He was pious, ascetic, God-fearing, consequently he had dignity, and he possessed tolerance and leniency, and all of his time he was preoccupied with knowledge and action, he would counter disputes with arguments and proofs/evidences, he would not become enraged or aroused, while his opponents would scream and become angry.

He left with his cousin, Al-Hafidh Abdul-Ganee, for Baghdad in 561 AH and caught up with Shaykh Abdul-Qaadir in his final days (i.e. before he passed away). They stayed at his school, learning from him as well as from other scholars and student of knowledge of that time such as Ibn Al-Jawzee, Hibat-ullaah Ibn Al-Hasan Ad-Daqaaq, Abi'l Fath Ibn Al-Battee, Abi Zur'ah Ibn Taahir, Yahya Ibn Thaabit, Khadeejah An-Nahrawaaniyah and others.

He also studied with the following scholars of his time:

  • Damascus / Syria - Abi Al-Makaarim Ibn Hilaal
  • Mosull / Iraq - Abi Al-Fadl at-Toosee
  • Makkah Al-Mukarramah - Al-Mubaarak Ibn At-Tabbaakh

Some of the Scholars that relayed his 'Ilm (knowledge) to us are:

He had a lot of students and from the more famous of them were Shihaab ad-Deen Aboo Shaamah al-Maqdisee – d. 665 H. – and al-Haafidh Zakee ad-Deen Aboo Muhammad al-Mundhiree – d. 656 H. – and others (of them):

  • Al-Bahaa'
  • 'Abdur-Rahmaan
  • Al-Jamaal Abu Moosa Ibn Al-Haafidh
  • Ibn Khaleel
  • Ibn An-Najjaar
  • Ash-Shams Ibn Kamaal
  • Zaynab Bint Al-wasitee and many others

He was known for his vast knowledge, wisdom and wit and renown as the Scholar of the people of Ash-Shaam of his time. Ibn An-Najjaar describes him as:

"The Imaam of Al-Hanaabilah in Damascus Mosque, he was a trust worthy, noble figure, extremely generous, of a clean character, a cautious worshipper, follower of the pious predecessors' methodology, emitting light (of knowledge and piety) and repectful. One may benefit from (just) seeing him before even hearing his speech!"

Some of his books:

The writings of the Imaam al-Muwaffaq are already plenty and they reach the level of excellence of the learned: Ibn Rajab said:

"Ash-shaykh al-Muwaffaq – rahimahullah – wrote a lot of good works on the madhhab, on the branches and on principles, in the (science) of al-hadeeth and the language and asceticism and the heart softeners, and his writings in usool ad-deen reach a level of high quality, a lot of them were on the path of the muhadditheen (the hadith – scholars), full of al-ahadeeth and al-aathaar and al-asaaneed (chains of narration), like the path/way of imaam Ahmad and the scholars of al-hadeeth."
  • Al-Mughnee - 10 volumes
  • Al-Kaafee - 4 volumes
  • Ar-Rawdah - 1 volume
  • Ar-Riqqah - 1 volume
  • At-Tawwaabeen - 1 volume
  • Al-I'tiqaad - 1 volume
  • Al-Mutahabbeen - 1 volume
  • ...and many others

And from these writings are:

In (Islamic) Jurisprudence (Fiqh): al-Mughnee, al-Kaafee, al-‘Uddah, al-‘Umdah (al-Fiqh), and al-Muqna’….

In al-‘Aqeedah: Luma’at al-‘Itiqaad, al-Qad(a)r, Dhamm al-Taa-weel….

In Usool al-Fiqh : Rawdat an-Naazhir…

In Raqaa’iq (Ascetism): ar-Riqqah wal-Bukaa and at-Tawwaabeen.

(In al-hadeeth): Mukhtasar al-‘Ilal al-Hadeeth li’l-Khalaal….

He has got other writings as well, which are between the stages of print and manuscript, we ask Allah to enable us to see the light (of guidance of these books) at a near time.

Statements from the learned about him:

Aboo ‘Amr bin as-Salaah said:

"I didn’t see anyone like ash-Shaykh Muwaffaq."

Ibn Taymiyyah said:

"No one possessing more understanding of the religion – fiqh – entered ash-Shaam - after al-Awzaa'ee - other than ash-shaykh al-Muwaffaq."

Al-Mundhiree said:

"He was al-Faqeeh al-Imaam, he narrated (ahaadeeth) in Damascus, he issued fatawaa and taught/gave lessons, he wrote books in fiqh and other subjects, summarized and long."

Adh-Dhahabee said:

"He was one of the eminent imaams and an author of many books."

Ibn Kathir said:

"Shaykh al-Islam, an imaam an ‘aalim, proficient, there was not found in his era nor before it by a long span of time, anyone possessing more fiqh – understanding of the religion – than him."

He died on Saturday, the Day of 'Eid-ul Fitr in 620 AH. May Allaah, subhanahu wata'aala, accepts him in His vast mercy, benefit us from his knowledge and gather us with his likes on the Day of Judgement, Aameen.

For the discussion at length of the biography of Ibn Qudaamah refer to:

1. at-Takmilah fee Wafee-aat an-Naqlah by al-Mundhiree (3/107)

2. al-‘Ibr fee Khabar min Ghabr by adh-Dhahabee (5/79-80)

3. Syaar A’alaam an-Nubalaa by adh-Dhahabi (22/160-173)

4. al-Bidaayah wa’n-Nihaayah by Ibn Kathir (13/99-100)

5. Dhayl Tabaqaat al-Hanaabilah by Bin Rajab (2/133-149)

6. Shadhraat adh-Dhahab by Bin al-‘Imaad al-Hanbalee (5/88-92)

7. Mu’jam al-Baladaan by Yaaqoot al-Hamawee (2/159)

8. Fawaat al-Wafee-aat by Bin Shaakir al-Kattabee (2/158-159)

9. Fihris Makhtootaat azh-Zhaahireeyyah (qism al-hadeeth) by ash-shaykh al-Albaanee

10. Muqaddimah Tahqeeq Kitaab Ithbaat Siffah al’Uluw li bin Qudaamah bi-qalam al-akh al-kareem Badr al-Badr


white sands blue skies by corazondediosIt is a well-known fact that Muslims follow some basic schools of thought in matters of Islamic Jurisprudence, other than questions of faith and fundamentals of worship and legal practices. For the latter are not subject to controversy, since they have been clearly defined in the Qur'an and in the teachings of Prophet Muhammad, sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam

The renowned scholars of the four basic schools were Abu Haneefah, Malik ibn Anas, Muhammad ibn Idrees ash-Shaafii and Ahmad ibn Hanbal. Now we will try to shed some light on the personality of Abu Haneefah, whose school of thought is widely spread especially in Asia (including the Indian subcontinent, the whole of Central Asia and countries like Turkey and Afghanistan).

Abu Haneefah An-Nu`man was born in Koofa, Iraq, in the year 80 AH. He was lucky to be born in the second generation of Islam, since he had the opportunity to learn from some companions of Prophet Muhammad, sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam, and many renowned scholars of the second generation. It has been pointed out that Abu Haneefah was the first to codify Islamic law or jurisprudence (commonly known as Fiqh) compiled from the Qur'an and the Sunnah.

Our hero was a merchant by profession, but he spent both ends of the day in teaching in the mosque. He was exemplary in his conduct both as a merchant and a teacher. For he was not only very honest in his commercial dealings, but he was very conscientious as well, to the extent that he would refuse any profit he felt uneasy about, even if it was a legitimate one. Once a lady came to his store and requested him to sell a silk dress for her. He asked her about the suggested price for the dress. When she told him “100 dirhams”, he told her that it was worth more than that. She could not believe that until it was sold for her before her own eyes for 500 dirhams. On another occasion our hero warned his partner not to sell a certain garment due to some defects in it. Somehow his partners forgot and sold that garment. When our hero knew that, he decided to give out in charity all the money earned that day, and he broke the partnership with his friend who sold the defective garment even though inadvertently.

As a teacher, our hero used to support all his needy students in order for them to devote all their time to learning. His encouragement of education made him very generous even to scholars. It is reported that when he wanted to buy clothes for himself or his family, he would do the same for some of the scholars he knew. In fact, our hero's generosity reached everyone that came in contact with him. One day he was walking down the street when he noticed a man trying to hide from him. Abu Haneefah asked the man, “Why are you trying to hide from me?” When he was told that he owed our hero 10,000 dirhams and was embarrassed because he could not pay the money to him, our hero informed the man that he no longer wanted the loan back. He further asked the man to forgive him for causing him so much trouble and feeling of embarrassment!

As a typical man of piety our hero was very kind to all his acquaintances, whom he visited when ill and inquired about when absent. A very interesting case is reported in the encounter between our hero and his drunkard neighbour, who would get drunk and keep singing aloud all night long causing so much annoyance to Abu Haneefah. Once the police caught the man (the noisy neighbour) and took him to prison. Abu Haneefah noticed that night that the neighbourhood was quiet. So he inquired about his noisy neighbour. Upon knowing of his neighbour's imprisonment, he rushed to the governor of the city interceding for his neighbour who was immediately released. Not only that, Abu Haneefah gave the man some money to compensate for the earnings he lost due to imprisonment. The drunkard was so impressed with this kind attitude and treatment that he decided to repent and devote his time to learning the message of Islam in the mosque.

Abu Haneefah's fear of falling into fault made him refuse all the offers made by governors and the Caliph to appoint him in public offices, including the post of a judge. For that reason Caliph Abu Ja`far al-Mansoor ordered that Abu Haneefah be put in jail where he died in the year 150 AH.

But even if our hero died in prison, his name is still very much alive in the memory of Islamic history and millions of the followers of his school of thought and others all over the world.


morningdewdropThe Ayyoubite ruler of Egypt Najmuddin Ayyoub was known for his austere and awesome personality, despite the fact he was at the same time very decent and bashful. It is reported that even his princes would not dare to talk to him (out of awe) unless he asked them to do so.

On an "Eid" holiday the Sultan headed the grand celebrations, surrounded by his guards and many celebrities, while the princes passed to greet him with great reverence. On this awesome and glorious occasion our hero Al-'Izz ibn Abdus-Salam remembered that there were shops publicly selling wine in that Muslim State. He confidently went up to the Sultan and addressed him,

"O Ayyoub! What will your answer be to Allah when He asks you on the Day of Judgment, 'Have I not given you the sovereignty over Egypt and you allowed intoxicant drinking?'"

The Sultan, taken by surprise, asked, "Has this really happened?" Al-'Izz answered,

"Yes, such and such shops sell wine and other sinful things, while you are busy in the luxuries of your kingdom."

The Sultan answered, "Sir, this is not my doing. It has been there since my father's days." Our hero asked,

"Are you of the people about whom the Qur'an reports to have said: "We have found our fathers on a path, and we are following them?" (A reference to the disbelievers' typical response to their prophets).

The Sultan immediately issued a decree that the wine shops be closed.

Later, a student of our hero, Al-Baji, asked him, "How are you, Sir?"

"My son," came the answer, "I saw him (the Sultan) in that state of pomposity. So I wanted to humiliate him lest he might become vain, hence hurt himself (spiritually)."

Al-Baji asked: "Were you, Sir, not afraid of him?"

"By Allah, my son, I was filled with awe from Allah the Almighty so the Sultan became like a cat in my eyes."

But who was Al-`Izz ibn 'Abdus-Salam who dared to address a fearful and powerful king of his time?

Our hero was born in Damascus in the year 577 or 578 A.H. to a poor and obscure family. As a young man he used to live in a place provided for poor students next to the Damascus Mosque. Due to his diligence and intelligence, he reports,

"I never needed to finish my study with a teacher. For as soon as I got to the middle my teacher would say to me, 'You have digested the subject. You have no need for me, and you can depend on yourself to finish it.' But I would not leave my teachers until I completed studying the specified course of study in that field."

His thirst for learning made him unsatisfied by the education he got from the Damascus scholars. He went to Baghdad in 597 (at the age of twenty) to learn from its scholars. We are told that even at the age of sixty, when our hero had already become a very well-known scholar in his own right, he would not hesitate in attending sessions conducted by some reputable Egyptian scholars in Cairo.

retreatwithquranNaturally, our hero did not keep his learning to himself, since he actively participated in the scholarly activities of his time. He taught at Damascus schools and in Cairo as well, where in the latter he spent the last twenty years of his life in teaching and writing. At Damascus, he was involved in the prestigious activity of giving religious consultation and views, sometimes in contradiction and defiance to officially supported ones. An example of this was our hero's view on the Qur'an (Words of Allah), which contradicted that of the Sultan in Damascus, Al-Ashraf Musa ibn Al-'Adil. This caused the Sultan to issue decrees that our hero stop giving religions rulings and verdicts and be confined to his house. The response of Al-'Izz to the minister who conveyed the decree to him were expressions of gratitude to the Sultan for relieving him of that difficult task and for giving him the opportunity to be free to himself in order to concentrate more on his studies and devotions.

Both in Syria and in Egypt our hero also delivered sermons in the principal mosques. It was in the mosque of Damascus that he denounced the Sultan's alliance and confederation with the enemies of the faithful against his own brother. And in Damascus our hero defied the authorities by issuing a religious ruling that people should not sell arms to the crusaders, who were allies to Sultan Al-Saleh Ismail. The actions brought the wrath of the Sultan on the head of our hero who was then imprisoned.

Upon his release in 639 A.H., Al-'Izz ibn 'Abdus-Salam went to Egypt where he was given a warm welcome by its King Najmuddin Ayyoub, and was appointed Judge, then Chief Judge and Khateeb (sermon giver) in the central mosque in Egypt. It was in his post as Chief Judge in Egypt that our hero defied the ruling authorities in the most daring acts of his life. The first act was the public sale of the ruling Memluke princes.

History tells us that upon his appointment as Chief Judge, he noticed that the Memluke princes (who were originally purchased by Sultan Najmuddin Ayyoub with money from the public treasury) acted like free men in transactions not permitted by the law for men of their status as bondsmen. Al-'Izz would not validate those transactions. When they talked to him, he pointed out that they should be sold and that their price be returned to the Public Treasury, then they could be officially freed. It was only then that their transactions would be valid. Naturally, those princes and army commanders were enraged by the idea. When the Sultan heard of this encounter he remarked that that was none of the business of the chief Judge. Our hero resigned from the post and started to leave the country. But thousands of people from all spheres of the Egyptian society followed him in a huge march, which forced the Sultan to apologize to him and to ask him to return to his post. Al-Izz accepted to return to his job with the provison that the religious ruling regarding the princes be implemented. Thus, the Sultan agreed. However, the Memluke princes were infuriated and attempted to assassinate our hero, but through the grace of Allah their leader was awestruck when he raised the sword to strike Al-'Izz. He was mesmerized upon seeing the defenceless old man courageously facing him, and the sword dropped from his hand. The assistant leader wept and asked for forgiveness, and the auction took place (a unique auction in history where ruling Memluke princes were sold in public).

For this daring act our hero, who died in 660 A.H., will always be remembered.

But that was only one of the many instances of Al-'Izz ibn 'Abdus-Salam's memorable contributions to the history of Islamic heroism.


  • Silah ibn Ashyam a great narrator of hadeeth as well as from those who strived in worship. (follow the link)

Imaam Bukhari began his Saheeh with a hadeeth narrated throught this great Imaam.

He was a great author and was the companion of Imaam ash-Shaafi'ee in seeking knowledge from Ibn 'Uyaynah.


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He was the student of Imaam Maalik. Imaam Bukhari has narrated from him in his Saheeh.


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bookssomanyAbu 'Abdillah, Shamsuddin Muhammad, son of Abu Bakr, son of Ayyub, son of Sa`d, son of Hurayz, of Damascus. He is best known as Ibn ul-Qayyim (Son of the Custodian), named so after al-Jawziyyah school in Damascus which was under custody of his father. His family was one of honor and knowledge.

He was born on Safar 7, 691 AH (1292 CE), in the village of Zar', to the south-east of Damascus.


He moved to Damascus and learned the Islamic knowledge under a number of prominent scholars. His most notable teacher was Ahmad bin 'Abdil Halim Ibn Taymiyyah. He valued him most and he stayed with him continuously in his years of youth: from 712 AH (1312 CE) until Ibn Taymiyyah’s death in 728 AH (1328 CE). He loved him dearly, he comprehended his thought, and he worked on clarifying and spreading his knowledge after his death.


Ibn ul Qayyim wrote more than sixty books in various areas of Islam. Some of these are:

1- Tahthib Sunan Abi Dawud (Emendation of Sunan Abu Dawud);

2- Al-Kalam al-Tayyib wa-al-'Amal al-Salih (The Essence of Good Words and Deeds);

3- Commentaries on the book of Shaikh Abdullah al-Ansari: Manazil-u Sa'ireen (Stations of the Seekers), which is considered the epitome of knowledge of tasawwuf books; and, Zad al-Ma'ad (Provisions of the Hereafter), from which this book on the medicine of the Prophet is extracted, besides other manuscripts copied with his own handwriting, and which are preserved in the Central Library in Damascus, Syria.

He compiled a large number of studies besides his own books, including:

1. Tahth Sunan Abi Dud (Emendation of Sunan Abu Dud);
2. Kitab Aqd Muhkam Al-Ahbaa banal Al-Kala'l-Tayyib wal 'Amal al-S?h (The Essence of Good Words and Deeds);
3. Madaarij Saalikeen which is a Commentary on the book of Shaikh Abdullal-Ans, Manazil-u Sa’ireen (Stations of the Seekers);
4. Zad Al-Ma'ad (Provisions of the Hereafter), from which the famous book Natural Healing with the Medicine of the Prophet is extracted.
5. Tafsir Mu'awwadhatain (Tafsir of Surah Falaq and Nas);
6. Fawa'id
7. Ad-Da wa Dawa
8. Ar-Rooh
9. Al-Waabil Sayyib minal kalim tayyib
10. Haadi Arwah ila biladil Afrah
11. Uddatu Sabirin wa Dhakhiratu Shakirin
12. Ighadatu lahfan fi masayid shaytan
13. Rawdhatul Muhibbeen


Ibn ul Qayyim had numerous students. Some of the more reputable among them are the following:

  • Al Hafidh Abul Faraj ibn Rajab
  • Al Hafidh Ismail ibn Kathir
  • Al Hafidh Muhammad bin Abdul Hadi


He died on the evening of Thursday, Rajab 23, 751 AH (1350 CE). People prayed on him (the Janazah prayer) on the following day in the Great Masjid in Damascus. He was buried in al-Bab us-Saghir cemetary.

He was highly praised by the Scholars after him, such as al-Hafidh Ibn Rajab, al-Hafidh adh-Dhahabi, ibn Nasir ad-Dimashqi, Al Hafidh ibn Hajar and many others.


quranpicgreenHis Name

He was the great scholar, the Shaykh, Muhammad Al-Ameen Ibn Muhammad Al-Mukhtaar Ibn 'Abdil-Qaadir Al-Jaknee Ash-Shanqeetee. His compound name was Muhammad Al-Ameen, just like the name of his father (i.e. Muhammad Al-Mukhtaar), which was the common naming practice in their lands.

His Birth and Lineage

He was born in 1325H in the region known as Shanqeet, which is the eastern part of the state of Mauritania, which lies on the (eastern) coast of the Atlantic Ocean, south of Morocco and Algeria and north of Senegal.

His lineage traces back to Ya'qoob Ibn Jaakin, the forefather of the large tribe, known as the Jaknees. The lineage of this tribe traces back to Himayr.

His Educational Upbringing

He was born in a household of knowledge consisting of men and women that were learned. His mother was the daughter of his father's paternal uncle (i.e. his father's female cousin). So he studied under his maternal uncles, his maternal cousins and their women, the basic aspects of knowledge and the sciences of the Qur'aan.

He completed his studies in various subjects of the Religion under the senior scholars of his land, such as the subjects of Tafseer, Hadeeth, Fiqh, Usool, Nahw, Sarf, Balaagha and more.

He adhered to the Maalikee madh-hab without blindly following it and being fanatical about it. In fact, he followed the evidences with regard to the religious rulings.

His Work and Entrance into the Hijaaz Area

After finishing his studies of the various subjects of the Religion, he worked as a teacher and as a judge in family jurisdiction. So people in dispute would go to him and he would make his judgment between them. His rulings and verdicts were carried out and enforced by everyone, even the government of his country at that time.

In the year 1367H, he went to Saudi Arabia to perform the Hajj and began to teach there in the Prophet's Mosque. The people in charge of this Mosque became acquainted with him and sought for him to remain in the Haramain (vicinity of Makkah and Madeenah) so that he could teach and provide general benefit.[1]

In 1371H, he was called to teach in the educational institutes and colleges of Riyadh. Then he moved to Madeenah to teach in the Islaamic University there. 2]

His Written Works

He has authored some books, which include:

  1. Adwaa-ul-Bayaan fee Tafseer-il-Qur'aan bil-Qur'aan – printed [This is his tremendous voluminous work on Tafseer of the Qu’raan]
  2. Al-Mudhakkirah fee Usool-il-Fiqh – printed [A small treatise on the Principles of Fiqh]
  3. Adab Al-Bah-th wal-Munaadhara – printed [Etiquettes for Researching]
  4. Alfiyyah fil-Mantiq Daf'u Eehaam Al-Idtiraab 'an Ayaat-il-Kitaab – printed
  5. Man'u Jawaaz Al-Majaaz – printed
  6. Mandhoomah fil-Faraa'id [A Book on the Laws of Inheritance]
  7. Furoo' Maalik - a poetic text
  8. Sharh 'alaa Maraaqee As-Sa'ood - a dictation he made to his students
  9. Sharh 'alaa As-Sullam - a dictation he made to his students
  10. Ansaab-ul-'Arab - a poetic text
  11. Manaahij wa Diraasaat li-Ayaat-il-Asmaa was-Sifaat - a transcribed lecture he gave in the Islaamic University on the 13th of Ramadaan, 1382H.

His Death

The Shaykh died on the forenoon of Thursday, the 17th of Dhul-Hijjah, 1393H. His death occurred in Makkah on his return from Hajj. He was buried in the Mi'alaa graveyard and his funeral prayer was held in the Ka'bah after the Dhuhr prayer of that same day. Shaykh 'Abdul-'Azeez Ibn 'Abdillaah Ibn Baaz prayed over him, along with all the other Muslims that attended, may Allaah have mercy on him.




For his Biography refer to Al-A'alaam of Az-Zirkilee (6/45), Al-Manhal (the Dhul-Hijjah Issue of 1393H: pg. 982), and Mashaaheer 'Ulamaa Najd (pg. 517-520 & 540-543).

[1] Translator's Note: The students that often frequented his classes on Tafseer of the Qur'aan in the Prophet's Masjid were many, the most famous of whom were: Imaam Ibn Baaz, Shaykh Bakr Abu Zayd and Shaykh 'Atiyyah Muhammad Saalim, the person who completed Imaam Ash-Shanqeetee's great work Adwaa-ul-Bayaan, after his death.

[2] Translator's Note: Among the students he taught while in the Islaamic University of Madeenah, was Shaykh Rabee' Ibn Haadee Al-Madkhalee, may Allaah preserve him.


Sheikh-ul-Islam Muhammad bin Abdul-Wahhab - A renowned Reviver and a great Reformer

His Birth and Lsceneryineage

Shaykh-ul-Islaam, Muhammad bin Abdul-Wahhab, was born in 1115 H. in the city of Uyainah, seventy kilometers northwest of Riyadh, the capital of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. He belonged to a highly respectable and scholarly family; his father Shaykh Abdul­-Wahhab bin Sulaiman, characterized by his profound scholarship and righteousness, inherited an exalted status from his ancestor Sheikh Sulaiman bin Ali, the chief of the scholars and was well versed in teaching, writing and giving verdict.


Shaykh-ul-Islaam acquired his primary education from his esteemed father at his native place and was nurtured under his guidance. He was intelligent enough to memorize the Qur'aan by heart at the tender age of ten. He read the books on Tafseer (exegesis), Hadith and Fiqh. From the very outset, he was greatly interested in studying the works of early scholars, particularly those of Shaykh-­ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyah and his noble disciple Allaamah Ibn Qayyim. He went through all those books and well grasped their contents.

On attaining the age of maturity, he set out to perform Hajj at Makkah and derived benefits from the scholars there. He then proceeded to Al-Madinah, met the learned ones there, and adopted the studentship of two renowned erudite scholars, Sheikh Abdullah bin Ibrahim bin Sa'id Najdi and Sheikh Muhammad Hayat Sindhi for a long period. Curiosity for higher education took him to Iraq and Basrah. He greatly benefited from his studies in Iraq.

Condition of Najd

In those days, the people of Najd were deeply indulged in polytheistic deeds and un-Islamic practices. They were completely overwhelmed with polytheism. The graves, trees, stones, caves, evil spirits and insane persons were regarded as deities and baseless stories and tales were ascribed to them to manifest their excellence. Many of the materialistic and worldly scholars had misguided them towards the fulfillment of their materialistic lust and the soothsayers and magicians were having their influence over the society.

None could dare challenge them. The same conditions were now being seen in both Makkah and Al-Madinah. Yemen was also in the same line - polytheism, erection of structures on the graves, seeking refuge and assistance of the dead, saints and jinns were common religious features in these so called "Islamic" countries.

Mission of Da'wah

Having studied this pitiable condition of the Muslim nation, the Sheikh was highly perturbed. What made all of this worse was the fact that no one was ready to take the trouble and guide the people to the Right Path. It is obvious that to undertake this task meant to challenge those evildoers who had high contacts through their evil practices. Yes, it meant to make oneself prepared to face torture and atrocities from these selfish misguiders and their followers. But the Sheikh resolved to make every effort to fight against this evil, even if it meant death.

The Sheikh began his mission. He invited the people to Tawhid (Islamic Monotheism) and guided them, by the Will of Allah, to the Qur'an and Sunnah. He urged the scholars to strictly follow the Qur'an and Sunnah and derive rulings directly from them. He contradicted the blind following of any scholar of the Ummah in preference to the Qur'an and Hadith.

The Sheikh was a man of courage and enthusiasm. He started his preaching, made correspondence with religious scholars inviting them to help him in eradicating the evils from the Ummah of the Prophet (peace be upon him). A number of scholars from Makkah, Al-Madinah and Yemen accepted his invitation, and supported him. But apart from them, there were also some ignorant and selfish scholars who criticized him and kept themselves aloof from this difficult situation. These so-called learned ones rose against the Sheikh, as they feared a jeopardy to their cosy lifestyles. Even began journeying to different places in order to convey the correct and true message to those who had fallen into error. Traveling through Zabir, Ahsa, Huraimala, he then arrived at Uyainah.

Arrival at 'Uyainah

The ruler of Uyainah was Uthman bin Hamd bin Ma'mar. He welcomed the Sheikh gladly, and assured him that he will help him in his Da'wah mission.The Sheikh began devoting himself to the much-needed reformation of the Muslim Ummah. As time passed by, he started gaining popularity far and wide. People began coming to him in large groups and he readily took them on and began teaching them the pure creed and the way of the generations before.

There were numerous tombs, graves, caves, trees..etc, which were worshipped by the Muslims. With the help of Amir Uthman bin Ma'mar, most of them were extirpated by Sheikh. He became engaged in purifying the people from polytheistic and heretic rituals in Uyainah and its surroundings.

In the mean time, a woman came to him for her purification from the sin of committing adultery. Investigations were made as to whether she was mentally sound or not and also whether or not she had chosen punishment under some pressure. When it was confirmed that she was doing this voluntarily and for repentance, the Sheikh ordered for the Rajm (to kill by throwing stones at the adulterer). It was because of these events, such as the ­dismantling of tombs, the self-surrendering of the woman for punishment and migration of many people to Uyainah seeking guidance from the Sheikh, the reputation of the Sheikh inevitably spread far and wide.

Exit from Uyainah and Entrance to Dar'iyah

When the ruler of Al-Ahsa and its surroundings, Sulaiman bin Urai'ar came to know about the popularity of Sheikh among the people, he became afraid of the growing strength of the Sheikh and resolved to crush him at the very outset, lest he should overthrow his power. He threatened Amir Uthman, with whom Sheikh was living, and commanded him to kill the Sheikh. Amir Uthman was not in a position to withstand Sulaiman, hence he panicked. Apprehending that if he disobeyed his order, he would punish him and overpower him, he exposed the whole situation to the Sheick and asked him to migrate to another place. The Shaykh then Sheikh migrated from Uyainah to Dar'iyah.

The people of Dar'iyah knew the Sheikh very well and were also aware of his mission. When the ruler of Dar'iyah, Amir Muhammad bin Saud, came to know of the arrival of the Sheikh into his territory, he was very pleased and even visited him at his place. Muhammad bin Saud belonged to a pious family and himself was a practicing Muslim. He exchanged his views with the Sheikh and was rejoiced to know that his mission really was aimed to revive Qur'an and Sunnah and the Islamic teachings in its original form and that he desired to promote firm belief in the Oneness of Allah and true guidance of Prophet Muhammad (may the peace and blessing of Allah be upon him).

Pledge to propagate the teaching of Islam

The Sheikh described to him the Da'wah incidences of the Prophet (,ay the peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) and his Companions and how they had strive for the cause of and in the way of Allah. He explained that the Prophet and his companions had did so while enduring many difficulties and sacrifices. Sheikh persuaded the Ameer to do the same and assured him of Allah's pleasure, favour and victory in this world and the next. Ibn Saud, being convinced by the Sheikh, agreed with him and promised his full support to him and to his mission, provided that when Allah would bless him with victory that he would not leave him. The Sheikh gave his words to this effect, and thus Ibn Saud gave the Sheikh his pledge to propagate the teachings of Islam (esp. Tawhid, the Oneness of Allah), mobilize the Muslims for Jihaad (fighting for the cause of Allah), emphasize adherence to the Sunnah of Allah's Messenger (may the peace and blessing of Allah be upon him), enjoin the good and forbid all evil. The Sheikh then invoked Allah to be the Amir's Guide, to make firm in his determination, and to give him every success in this life and the Hereafter.

Dar'iyah, the Centre of Da'wah

At this point the Sheikh found himself in am environment suitable for his work of Da'wah. He seized this golden opportunity and started to educate the masses. People of Dar'iyah and its surroundings came to him to study Islaam. Amir Muhammad bin Sa'ud presented himself before the Sheikh as one of his students of Islaam along with the members of his family. Dar'iyah became crowded by the people visiting for learning. The Sheikh began teaching, preaching and inviting people to Allah. He undertook the task of delivering lectures on different branches of knowledge namely, Tawhid (Islamic Monotheism), Tafseer of the Qur'an and Sunnah, knowledge of Fiqh, language etc.

Thus Dar'iyah turned into a centre of learning, and people began migrating to it in a large number. On the other hand, his enemies were only increasing in jealousy towards him. They started spreading false propaganda against the Sheikh and even blamed him of blasphemy; they branded him a Zindiq and a sorcerer. Yet, the Sheikh was a man of courage. He did not care and just continued working towards him mission with full enthusiasm. He would debate his opponents in the best manner and in a very polite and dignified way. This attitude proved very effective and would actually render his opponents to be his supporters.

Then, along with his efforts in Da'wah, the Sheick decided to wage Jihaad against polytheism, heretical beliefs and ideas and practices. He began to openly invite people of all ranks to join this mission.

Delegates from every comer of the Arab Peninsula visited Dar'iyah to pledge their support to Sheikh and also to learn from him the true monotheism of Islam. They then would return to their areas to teach what they had learnt to their people and educate them.

The ruler of Uyainah and the elites would travel just to visit him and would request that he come back to Uyainah. But the Sheikh rejected this proposal. Even though the Sheick did not go back to Uyainah, they still pledged to fight with him for the cause of Islam till their last. The Sheikh began sending his students to different regions and countries to preach the teachings of Islam, which were strictly based on the Qur'an and the authentic aHaadeeth of the Noble Prophet (may the peace and blessing of Allah be upon him)

Correspondence with Rulers

The Sheikh wrote letters to the rulers, elites and scholars of Najd, Riyadh, Kharj, towns of the southern region, Qaseem, Hayel, Washm, Sudair etc. He also wrote to the outstanding scholars of Ahsa, Makkah and Al-Madinah. Outside the Arab Peninsula, he made correspondence to the learned scholars of Syria, Iraq, India, and Yemen. He maintained his communication with them, explained to them the aims and objects of his mission and proving his stance by the Qur'an and Sunnah.

In this way the Sheikh's mission spread far and wide. A large number of scholars and other people throughout India, Indonesia, Afghanistan, Africa, Morocco, Egypt, Syria, Iraq, etc. were influenced by his ideas and attracted towards his Da'wah. They supported his mission with great zeal and enthusiasm and began to invite the people of their countries towards Allah and to the pure teachings of Qur'an and Sunnah, free from all heresies and misinterpretations.


After dedicating his whole life to Da'wah and Jihaad, the Sheick breathed his last on the last day of the month of Dhul-Q'adah in 1206 H (1792 A.C).

The Impact of His Da'wah

As a result of his continued Da'wah, vigorous struggle and Jihad in the way of Allah for the long period of about fifty years -from 1158 H to 1206 H, a complete victory over the entire Najd was gained. People abandoned worshipping graves, tombs, shrines, trees etc. and began practicing the pure faith of Islam. Blind following of forefathers, ancestors and traditions was abandone and Shari 'ah was once again revived and established as the people began fulfilling their bligatory duties in light of the Qur'an and Sunnah.

A framework for enjoining good deeds and forbidding bad ones was instituted. Mosques began to be visited by people in abundance so that they could perform their Salaah.

Peace and tranquility prevailed everywhere, in towns as well as in villages. People became safe even in deserts and in lonely and deserted paths. The ignorant and notorious bedouins moulded their conduct; the preachers and preceptors were sent to every corner to teach and educate the common people.

Thus a thorough revival came into existence.
After the expiry of Sheikh, his sons, grandsons, disciples and supporters continued the work of Da'wah and Jihad in the way of Allah. Among his sons, the most ardent in these activities were: Sheikh Imam Abdullah bin Muhammad, Sheikh Husain bin Muhammad, Sheikh Ali bin Muhammad and Sheikh Ibrahim bin Muhammad; and among his grandsons were: Sheikh Abdur­Rahman bin Hasan, Sheikh Ali bin Husain, Sheikh Sulaiman bin Abdullah.

Apart from them, a large group of his students, including Sheikh Hamd bin Nasir, scholars from Dar'iyah and others remained continuously engaged in inviting people towards Allah's true religion and by writing and publishing books, fighting for the cause of Allah and making correspondence in this regard.

Some of his works

Despite the fact that Sheikh-ul-lslam Muhammad bin Abdul­Wahhab was a reformer and a man of Da 'wah, he still engaged in writing. Some of famous works are as follows:

1. Kitab At-Tawhid

2. Kitab AI-Kabaair

3. Kashf Ash-Shubuhat

4. Mukhtasar Seerat Ar-Rasool

5. Masail Al-Jahiliyah

6. Usool Al-Iman

7. Fadail Al-Qur'an

8. Fadail Al-Islam

9. Majmu' Al-Ahadith

10. Mukhtasar Al-Insaf wa Ash-Sharh Al-Kabeer

11. Al-Usool Ath-Thalathah

12. Aadab Al-Mashi ila As-Salat

Aswell as others. May Allah raise his ranks, forgive any of his mistakes and bless him with good for the great good he done for this Ummah. Aameen.


Imaam Ahmad used to mention the virtues of his Shaykh, Imaam Ash-Shaafi’ee to his wife. He would mention to her the extensive and superb knowledge of Imaam Ash-Shaafi’ee as well as his taqwah (i.e. piety). Imaam Ahmad invited Imam Ash Shafi’ee to come visit him at his home. When the time for dinner arrived, Imam Ash-Shaafi’ee ate until he was full and went to the guest room for some sleep.

The wife of Imam Ahmad said to him:

“O Ahmad! Is this the same Shaafi’ee that you used to tell me so much about?“

Imaam Ahmad said: “Indeed he is!“

So she said:

“I noticed three things about him worthy of criticism! Firstly, when we served him the food, he ate plenty of it! Secondly, when he went into the guest room, he went to sleep without standing up to perform the night prayer (i.e. tahujjud)! Lastly, when he prayed Salaat ul Fajr with us, he did not perform ablution (i.e. wudhoo')?!”

So Imaam Ahmad went to Imaam Ash-Shaafi’ee to ask him about these three matters his wife had noticed. Imam Ash-Shaafi’ee said to him, (the way a father would explain to his son):

“O Ahmad! I ate plenty because I know for certain that your food is haalal (i.e. islamically permissible ) and you are a generous man! And the food that comes from a generous man is a cure, while the food that comes from a stingy man is a disease! However, I didn’t eat plenty of food in order to achieve my fill; rather I ate plenty of your food in order to derive the cure from it!

As for the reason I didn’t stand up at night to perform the night prayer, when I laid my head down to get some sleep, I looked and all I could see was the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of His Prophet (sallallahu 'alaihi wa sallam) right in front of my face! So I deducted 72 fiqh related benefits from them for the Muslims to benefit from. Thus there was no opportunity for me to stand and perform the night prayer!

As for the reason why I prayed Salaat ul Fajr without performing ablution, by Allah! My eyes never tasted the sweetness of sleep in order for me to renew my wudhoo'. I was awake the whole night, so I prayed Salat ul Fajr with the same wudhu I had for Salaat ul Isha."

Source: Collected by Al Hafidh Ibn Hajr in Fath ul Bari concisely and by Abu Nu’aim in Hilya tul Awliyaa’.


“My aspiration in this world…”

"My aspiration in this world is to put forth knowledge,

And to spread it openly in every town and village;

Being one who is calling to the Qur’an and sunan,

That, in their gatherings, the men have forgotten

And, as a Mujaahid, on the farthest frontlines to stay,

If I am called forth, being the first to make my way;

With the clanking of weapons in the darkness, frequented by silence,

Clashing with the disbelievers, encircled by the violence;  

Not turning back, facing my demise with my chest,  

To be killed by a disbeliever is the youth’s death noblest;

So, O my Lord, allow me not to die in any other way,

And use me not as a stuffing for the graves."


Source: Ibn Hazm's 'at-Talkhis li Wujuh at-Takhlis'; p. 57.


mushafblueAmong those who played an actual role in the formation of the personality of Imaam Maalik ibn Anas were esteemed teachers, who are known by all those who have studied the life of this unique Imaam. In particular, they include the "two Naafi's", each of whom had a laudable effect on Imaam Maalik, so much so that he never forgot them.

The first was the outstanding faqeeh and reliable transmitter of hadeeth, Naafi' ibn Sarjis Abu 'Abdullah ad-Daylami, who died in 120 AH according to one statement, the same year that Malik reached the age of 47. This Naafi' ibn Sarjis, according to Ibn Hazm al-Qurtubi, was one of "the people of fatwas." Those who deal with hadeeth say, "The soundest of chains Malik from Nafi' from Ibn 'Umar." This chain is called "the golden chain" by those who deal with this science.

This is why I have briefly indicated that Malik maintained this particular close connection to Naafi' as the biographers of Maalik clearly state. Maalik joined him very early on; he relates,

"I used to go to Nafi', the freed-slave of Ibn 'Umar, while I was still a lad. He came down to me from a ladder of his – and his slave guided him after he went blind – and went from his house at Baqi' to the Mosque of the Prophet, where I would ask him questions and hear ahaadeeth from him."

Despite this high position which Naafi' ibn Sarjis had with the rest of his fellow Madinans and despite the large amount which Malik ibn Anas obtained from him, as is indicated when he said,

"When I listened to the hadith of Nafi' b. Sarjis, from Ibn 'Umar, I did not care for anyone else (i.e. didn't  need to learn from anyone else) except for him, above anyone else."

Malik only related about 80 hadiths from him in his Muwatta', with some dispute over the exact number.

But the Naafi' about whom we intend to speak is the second Naafi', Naafi' ibn Abi Nu'aym the recitor (al-Qari') who died only about ten years before Malik. Among his contemporaries were Isma'il ibn Ja'far, 'Isa ibn Wardan, and Sulayman ibn Muslim ibn Jammaz, and all of them took recitaition from Imam Naafi' by way of both reading and listening.

Malik learnt recitation and hadith from Nafi'

When people relate from Naafi' ibn Abi Nu'aym, they relate from the Qari' (the "Reciter") since from this is his fame primarily and before everything else. In fact, he was one of the seven recitors who have a recognised recitation (qiraa'ah). According to what Abu Qurra ibn Tariq reports, he studied recitiation with seventy of the Tabi'oon, but was also interested in hadith. Ibn 'Adi reports to us that Nafi' left us a text of a hundred hadiths of Naafi' from al-A'raj, as he left another text of more than a hundred hadiths from him from Ibn az-Zinad from al-A'raj, and he also left us about fifty hadiths in at-Tafariq. Those who are very devoted to this science do not know of a single munkar hadith from him.

Perhaps an opponent might ask: "If Naafi' was also a relator of hadiths as you state, then why do we not see any tradition in Maalik's Muwatta where he mentions hadith which might have been related from him?" I say: perhaps that refers to something which was known by them in the second century: A MAN MAY BE ONE OF THE GREAT FUQAHA' AND NEVERTHELESS, HIS HADITH ARE ABANDONED. Then I ask: was there not Ibn Hurmuz, i.e. Abu Bakr ibn Yazid al-Asamm, d. 148 AH, one of the great fuqaha' and one of those whose company Imaam Maalik kept for years? In spite of that, we practically do not find a single hadith in the Muwatta' of Malik which was taken from Ibn Hurmuz although he did not leave an opportunity to praise him. He often said,

"This is what I found the people of knowledge in our land had," or says, "The matter with us is like that,"

and he is referring Ibn Hurmuz and Rabi'a ar-Ra'iy ibn Abi 'Abdu'r-Rahman Farukh from whom Malik has twelve related hadiths, musnad and mursal despite the length of time he kept to him.

Malik's respect for the opinions of his teacher Nafi'

Although Malik was, as is not hidden from anyone, the possessor of precise opinion which did not err, he did not announce his opinion in a case in which it was known that his teacher Nafi' had an opinion in it. For instance, Abu Sa'id 'Abdu'l-Malik ibn Qurayb al-Asma'i asked him about the basmala and Malik replied,

"In any knowledge, question its proper people. Naafi' is the Imam of the people in recitation."

Maalik would not have an opinion different from the opinion of the one who prayed in the mosque of the Messenger, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, for sixty years without cessation, during which he was not opposed by any of the recitors of the Tabi'un, even though this spanned over such a lengthy period of time.

Naafi' is the Qur'an-Reciter of Madinah without dispute

MadinahpinksunsetImaam Naafi' recited to the people in Madinah for a long time, about seventy years, and he was the leader of the recitors in this blessed city, which is the city of the Messenger, may Allah bless him and grant him peace. People would specifically go to him in order to learn the recitation of the Qur'aan.

The recitation for which Imam Naafi' is famous and which Imam Malik related from him, by way of both reading and listening, was closely adhered to by the people. It is with this recitation that we, in Morocco, recite the Qur'aan. We recite it by one of the two transmissions from him, which is the transmission of Warsh. That is how we are famously known to be in Morocco, agreeing in the best possible manner with the 'amal (action) of the people of Madinah in all our activities of the deen, both in acts of worship and behaviour.

After the Tabi'oon, Imaam Naafi' was an Imaam in recitation for hundreds of his students, who included Imaam Maalik ibn Anas. He is a noteworthy student of Imaam an-Naafi' as he took this recitation while knowing of the existence of recitations which followed the traditions of past Imams.

The recitation of Nafi' is Sunnah and there is nothing strange about that

Sa'id b. Mansur reported to us that he heard Maalik ibn Anas say,

"The recitation of the people of Madinah is Sunnah."

He was asked, "The recitation of Naafi'?" He replied,


Al-Layth ibn Sa'eed said,

"I went on Hajj in 113 A.H. and the Imaam of the people in recitation in Madina was Naafi'."

'Abdullah ibn Ahmad ibn Hanbal said,

"I asked my father, 'Which recitation do you prefer?' He replied,

"The recitiation of the people of Madinah.'"

It is not strange that the recitiation of someone who saw the Noble Messenger, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, in a dream in which he was reciting into his mouth, should be a followed sunnah.

Abu 'Amr ad-Dani related to us, "A man among those who learned recitation with Nafi' said, "When Nafi' spoke, the fragrance of musk could be smelt from his mouth. I said to him,

'Abu 'Abdillah! Do you use perfume whenever you sit to recite to the people?'

He replied,

'I do not touch perfume, but I saw in a dream that the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, was reciting into my mouth and from that moment I have smelt this fragrance from my mouth.'"

Al-Musayyabi informed us, "It was said to Nafi',

'How resplendent your face is and how handsome your physique!'

He replied,

'How could it not be when the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, breathed on me and I recited the Qur'an (i.e. in my dream).'"


bluemushafHe is ash-Shaykh al-Qurraa’ wa al-Muhadditheen, wa al-Imaam Ahl al-Adaa’ wa al-Mujawwideen, Shaykh ad-Dunyaa fee al-Qiraa’at wa al-Tajweed, al-‘Allaamah al-Haafidh Muhammad ibn Muhammad ibn Muhammad ibn ‘Ali ibn Yusuf ibn al-Jazari; Shams al-Deen Abu al-Khayr al-Dimishqi ash-Shaafi’i (rahimahullaah).

He was born in Damascus (Syria) in a place called Khatt al-Qassaa’een, on the night of al-Jumu’ah, 25th Ramadhaan 751AH, after Salaat at-Taraweeh.

The Imaam describes himself in his famous nadhm (poem) in ‘Ilm at-Tajweed (Science of Tajweed), al-Muqaddimah al-Jazariyyah (al-Muqaddimah feemaa yajibu ‘alaa qaari’ al-Qur’aan an-ya’lamah) as ‘Imaam al-Jazari’. ‘Jazari’ is a location in the Kurdistan/Turkmenistan/Iraq region. He belongs to a place called Ibn -‘Umar and the ‘ulamaa say that he has Kurdiy asl (Kurdish origins).

Imaam al-Jazari’s father was a taajir (a businessman) and Allaah (subhaanahu wa ta'aalaa) had not granted him any children for a period of 40 years. So his father decided to go and perform al-Hajj, where he went and drank from the water of Zam-Zam and made du’aa to Allah to give him a child who would become an ‘Aalim. And so Allaah accepted this du’aa and granted him with a son, who became the great Imaam ibn al-Jazari.

He grew up in Damascus, where he completed memorising the Qur’aan by the age of 13 years, and he began leading as-Salaat at-Taraweeh at the age of 14 years. He was from a wealthy family. He was described as being very light in his complexion and very eloquent in his language.

He acquired his knowledge from various places including Shaam (Syria), Misr (Egypt) and Hijaaz (Makkah/Madinah). The Imaam studied the Qiraa’aat ifraadan (which means he recited one khatmah for each Qiraa’ah e.g. one khatmah for Warsh, one khatmah for Hafs etc) and also jam’an (which means he completed a khatmah, combining the Qiraa’aat). He studied many books including the famous at-Tayseer of Abu ‘Amar ad-Daani and also ash-Shaatibiyyah of Imaam ash-Shaatibi. He was not just a scholar in Qiraa’aat but also other ‘Uloom (Islamic Sciences) such as Hadeeth, Fiqh etc.

quranpicgreenHis teachers include:

  • Shaykh ‘Abdul-Wahhaab ibn as-Sallaar
  • Shaykh Ahmad ibn Ibraahim at-Tahhaan
  • Shaykh Ahmad ibn Rajab
  • Shaykh Abu al-Ma’aalee ibn al-Labbaan
  • Imaam al-Jundi
  • Imaam as-Saa’igh
  • Imaam al-Baghdaadi
  • Imaam al-Qarawee

Imaam al-Jazari was appointed as a Qaadhi (Judge) of Damascus and also Shiraaz in Iran. He built two schools called Madrassah al-Qurra’ in these places. He then sat in Masjid Bani Umayyah, al-Jami’ al-Amawee underneath al-qubbat an-nasr (the Dome of the Eagle), and after his teacher ash-Shaykh as-Sallaar passed away, he took the position of teaching the people from that place.

He passed away in the year 833AH and is buried in Shiraaz (Iran).


norwayskyImaam’s Family Lineage (Father’s Side):

Muhammad ibn Idrees ibn al-Abbas bin Usman bin Shafi’ ibn al-Sa’ib bin Ubaid bin ‘Abd Yazid bin Haashim bin al-Muttalib bin ‘Abd Manaaf bin Qusayy bin Kilaab bin Murrah. The Imaam’s Lineage connects with the Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam)’s lineage from ‘Abd Manaaf bin Qusayy.

Imaam’s Family Lineage (Mother’s Side):

His mother was Fatimah bint ‘Abdullah bin al-Hasan bin al-Hussain ibn Ali bin Abi Talib. The relations of the mother show that the only two to be born Haashimi in the family lineage were Hadhrat 'Ali bin Abi Talib and al-Imaam Al-Shafi’ee.

Place of Birth:

Imaam ash-Shafi'ee (rahimahullah) was born in the year 150 A.H., the year in which the Great Imaam Abu Hanifah passed away. He was born in Ghizza (Asqalaan) in Palestine. When he was two years old his mother took him to a tribe in al-Hijaaz who were dwellers in the country of Yemen. His mother kept him there until he reached the age of ten. A time came when she felt that the family was in jeopardy of being forgotten and wasted so she took her son (Imaam ash-Shaafi’ee) to Makkah.

His Education:

quran_bxvmThe Imaam was from a very poor family; his family could not afford to pay his Qur'aan teacher. The teacher would inadequately teach the children and anytime he taught something inadequately and then left the children, the Imaam would seize this opportunity to teach them the teacher’s lesson properly. When the teacher saw this, he understood what the Imaam was doing and let him do so. In this way Imaam ash-Shaaf'iee did not have to pay for the classes as he satisfying the teacher by teaching the children his lessons. This continued and the Imaam learnt the whole Qur’an by the time he was seven years old.

The Imaam himself used to say: “After I finished learning the Qur’an I would go to the Masjid and sit with the Scholars the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alaihi Wa Sallam) and Islamic matters. I used to live in Makkah among tent dwellers in such a state of poverty that I could not even afford to by paper to write, so I would write on bones instead.”

It is also reported that the Imaam would read Hadeeth to others in the Prophet's Masjid when he was only thirteen years old. It is also reported that the Imaam’s voice was very melodious and sweet. Al-Haakim reports by the authority of Bahr bin Nasr:

“When we wanted to cry (out of the fear and awe of Allah) we would say, "Come, let us go to this young Muttalibee man to hear him recite the Qur’an." When we reached him, he would begin his recitation until  people would begin falling down in front of him and the sounds of everyone weeping and yelling could be heard by him - then he would stop.”

His Teachers:

Among his eminent teachers were:

1. Muslim bin Khalid al-Zangi (a Mufti of Makkah during the year 180 A.H. (796 A.D.)

2. Sufyaan bin 'Uyaynah al-Hilaali (one of the three distinguished scholars of that time in Makkah)

3. Ibrahim bin Yahya (a scholar of Madinah)

4. Maalik bin Anas (Imaam ash-Shafi’ee used to recite Hadith to Imaam Malik after memorizing his book, Muwatta Imaam Malik). The Imaam stayed in Madinah until Imaam Malik passed away in the year 179 A.H. (790 A.D.)

5. Wakee’ bin al-Jarraah bin Maleeh al-Koofi

6. Muhammad bin Hasan ash-Shaybaani (a scholar of Basrah and a distinguished student of the Great Imaam Abu Hanifah (RA)

7. Hammaad bin Usama al-Haashimi al-Koofi

8. Abdul-Wahhab bin Abdul-Majeed al-Basri

His Marriage:

He was married to Hameedah bint Naafi’ bin Unaisah bin ‘Amr ibn Usman bin 'Affaan.

Some Distinctive Characteristics:

1. His eloquent style of speech and abundant knowledge of the Arabic language

2. His family lineage-as a set standard, reported by al-Hakam bin ‘Abdil-Muttalib, that the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) said,

“Indeed Banu Haashim and Banu al-Muttalib are the same (ie. of the same family lineage). (Ibn Majah, 22, Kitaabul-Wasaaya/46 Chapter Division of Khumus/ Hadith No. 2329)

3. Complete memorization of the Qur’an with recognition of its rules and implications in all aspects of Islamic Knowledge of which others during his time did not yet reach to.

4. His deep foresight in Hadith and comprehension of authentic and defective narrations.

5. His understanding of the principles of Hadith and Fiqh.

6. His rulings in Hadeeth Mursal (incompletely transmitted narrations) and completely transmitted narrations.

7. Imaam Ahmed bin Hanbal used to say about Imaam ah-Shafi’ee,

“Our napes were in the hands of the Companions of Abu Hanifah (may Allah have mercy on him) when it came to hadeeth (ie. we were inclined to them more) until we saw Imaam ash-Shafi’ee. He was the most knowledgeable in the Book of Allah and the Sunnah of Rasoolullah (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam), (so much so) that he would even suffice the one who was not well informed in Hadith."

8. Al-Karaabeesi said about the Imaam,

“Ash-Shaafi’ee was a mercy from Allah upon the followers of the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam)."

9. Al-Humaydee said,

“We used to want to refute the arguments of the Ashaabur-Ra’iy, but we were not very knowledgeable to do so until Imaam ash-Shaafi'ee came along and opened up the way for us."

10. Ibn Raahawayh was asked, “How did Imaam ash-Shaafi’ee compose all these books at such a young age?” He replied, “

Allah (ta'aala) made him intelligent and mature-minded even in his youth.”

11. Rabee’ said, “We were were sitting for a while after the great Imaam’s demise when a Bedouin Arab came along and asked where the sun and moon of this circle (of knowledge) was (i.e. Imaam ash-Shaafi'ee). When we informed him that he had passed away he (the Bedouin) began weeping alot and then said,

'May Allah have mercy upon him and forgive him for verily he was the one who uncovered the veils of proofs by his explanations and closed the mouths of his disputer and opponent. He used to wash the blackened faces of their shame and disgrace and he opened closed doors by his intellect and understanding.'

He then turned away and left.”

His Humbleness:

Al-Hasan ibn 'Abdul-Azeez al-Jarwi al-Misri reported from Imaam Shafi’ee, who used to say,

“I have never debated with someone who I wanted (for him) to make a mistake, nor do I possess any such knowledge that I would want to keep to myself, rather that it should be with all and not just related to me.”

He also said,

“I have never debated with someone who I wanted (for him) to make a mistake. And I have never debated with someone except that I supplicate for them, "O Allah, put the truth in his heart and on his tongue. If I am on the truth he will follow me, and if he is on the truth then I will follow him.”

His Children:

First Child’s Name: Abu Usman Muhammad (was a judge in Madinah, grew up in Syria)

Second Child’s Name: Fatimah

Third Child’s Name: Zainab

He Leaves For Egypt

The Imaam went to Egypt in the year 199 A.H. (814/815 A.D.) during the beginning of the Mamun Khilafah. He went back to Baghdad for a month then again returned to Egypt and stayed until his demise in the year 204 A.H. (819/820 A.D.)

His Writings and Books:

1. Ar-Risalah al-Qadeemah (Kitaabul-Hujjah)

2. Ar-Risalah al-Jadeedah

3. Ikhtilaaful-Hadith

4. Ibtaal-al-Istihsaan

5. Ahkaam-ul-Qur’aan

6. Biyaadhul-Fardh

7. Sifaatul al-Amr wal-Nahiy

8. Ikhtilaaf Malik wash-Shaafi’ee

9. Ikhtilaaf-al-Iraqiyyeen

10. Ikhtilaaf Muhammad ibn Hasan

11. Fadhaa’il Quraish

12. Kitaabul-Umm 13. Kitaabul-Sunan

His Demise:

The Imaam became very sick at the end of his life with hemmariodal pain and passed away in Egypt on Thursday night after Isha’ Prayer, having performed the Maghrib Prayer on the last day of Rajab.

He was buried in Cairo, Egypt on Friday in the year 204 A.H. (819/820 A.D.) His Masjid in Cairo can be visited in the Imaam Al-Shaafi’ee Neighborhood.

May Allah be pleased with him. Ameen.


Source: Translated by Adil Khan on the 11th of Shabaan, 1422 A.H for Kitaabul-Umm, Printed in Beirut, Lebanon.

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madinah90His Name:

Malik bin Anas bin Malik bin Abi Aamir

His Kunya:

(Patronymic filial name) Abu ‘Abdillah

His Lineage:

Malik bin Anas bin Malik bin Abi Aamir bin ‘Amr bin al-Harith bin Ainmaan (Uthmaan) bin Khuthail (AL-ASBAHEE-a royal tribe branch of Himyar in Yemen)

Imaam Suyooti (RA) says that Imaam Malik’s lineage goes to Ya’rab bin Yashjab bin Qahtaan. As some report in the following way: Dhu Asbah, al-Harith bin Malik bin Zaid bin Ghouth bin Sa’ad bin ‘Auoof bin ‘Adi bin Malik bin Zaid bin Sahl bin ‘Amr bin Qais bin Mu’awiya bin Jasham ibn ‘Abd Shams bin Daa’il bin al-Ghouth bin Qutn bin ‘Areeb bin Zhaheer bin Aiyman bin Humsee’ bin Himyar bin Saba bin Yashjab bin Ya’rab bin Qahtaan.

Imaam Malik’s Mother Name:

‘Aaliyah bint Shareek bin ‘Abdur Rahman al-Azdiyah

Titles Given to Him:

Imaam Darul-Hijrah and al-Madani (due to his remaining in al-Madinah the majority of his life.

His Birth:

According to Haafidh Adh-Dhahabi, Sam’aani ibn Farhoon, and others Imaam Maalik was born in the year 93 A.H., as was reported of Yahya bin Bukair, one of the senior students of the Imaam. Others have said he was born in 90 A.H. some say in 95 A.H. and Yaf'ee reports in Tabaqaatul-Fuqaha, 94 A.H. Extraordinarily, he remained in the womb on his mother for more than the usual, for 9 months. Some say two years while others say he remained in her womb for three years. He was born in Madinah.

His Appearance:

Mutarraf bin ‘Abdullah al-Yasaari says that the Imaam was tall, well-built, fair complexion, blond-haired, large-eyed and large-nosed. He had a broad forehead with hardly any hair on it (referred to as Asla’ in Arabic ) the same is said about 'Umar and 'Ali (radhi Allahu 'anhumaa). He had a very profuse and thick beard that reached down to his chest. He used to trim his moustache near the corners of his lips and said it was disapproved to fully shave them. He followed the Sunnah of 'Umar bin Khattab (radhi Allahu 'anhu) who used to pull at his moustache's hair, near the lips, when he was in deep thought of something. From this it is established that 'Umar (radhi Allahu 'anhu) had hair on both sides of the lips.

He used to wear very elegent and expensive clothing, usually white, and frequently changing them. He would apply musk and other fragrances on his clothing. He would wear his turban and have part of it coming down underneath his chin and the tail of it between his two shoulders. He would also wear a shawl-like garment that would cover his head and shoulders.

His Education and Knowledge:

The Imabluemushafam’s childhood was spent in a place of knowledge, amidst the beautiful gardens of Madinah. He learnt and memorized the Qur’an in his youth. He recited it to Imaamul-Qurra’, Nafi’ bin Abdur-Rahman (whose recitation is the foundation for the entire Muslim Ummah's recitation today and who passed away in the year 169 A.H.) and also received his certification (sanad) and permission to teach others from him.

In the beginning of his quest for knowledge the Imaam did not have many means to acquire it properly, so he sold the ceiling beams of his home to purchase books and papers to enable him to do so. After some time Allah (ta'aala) bestowed him with a lot of wealth and money. The Imaam’s memory was also extraordinary. He himself would say that whatever he'd memorize would never be forgotten again. In fact, it is reported that Imaam Maalik had the best memory in all of Hijaaz, especially in the knowledge of Hadith and Fiqh. Imaam ash-Shaf’iee (rahimahullah) said about him,

“If Malik and Ibn 'Uyaynah were not here, the knowledge of Hijaaz would be gone.”

Imaam adh-Dhahabi wrote,

“There remains no scholar in Madinah after the Tabi’een comparable to Imaam Malik’s knowledge, jurisprudence, eminence, and memorization.”

He practiced great care in narrating Hadeeth, and did not narrate from just anyone. Imaam Maalik said,

“I do not accept knowledge from four types of people:

(1) a person well-known to be foolish, even if all the other people narrate from him;

(2) a person involved in committing heresy and calling others towards innovation in Deen;

(3) a person who lies in regular conversation with people, even though I do not accuse him of being a liar with regards to Hadeeth;

(4) and a person who is pious worshipper or scholar, but does not properly and correctly memorize what he narrates.”

It was said to Imaam Malik, “Why don’t you take narrations from ‘Amr bin Dinaar?" He replied,

“I went to him (‘Amr bin Dinaar) and I found him narrating Hadeeth to others while in a standing position. So I thought to myself that the Hadeeth of the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) is too great and majestic to receive them in a standing position.”

The Imaam remained for his entire life in al-Hijaaz and never traveled outside of it.

In Hadeeth, the Imaam was the leader of all of Madinah; his chain of narrators were the most authentic and were referred to as “SILSILATUDH-DHAHAB” or “THE GOLDEN CHAIN OF NARRATORS” (which was: from Malik from Nafi’ from Ibn 'Umar (radhi Allahu 'anhum). Therefore, the Imaam would not just narrate Hadeeth from anyone, rather he would take great caution and narrate only from authentic and reliable sources. Even other great scholars and companions of his time bore witness to this.  The Imaam of Makkah, Sufyaan bin 'Uyaynah said,

“May Allah have mercy on Malik! He is extremely critical of the men (i.e. the chain of narrators of a Hadeeth)."

He would also say,

“Imaam Malik would only narrate to others authentic Hadeeth and he would not report except from reliable narrators. I don’t see Madinah but in a decrease (ie. with regards to knowledge) after the death of Maalik.”

One of his most greatest pupils, Imaam ash-Shaf’iee (rahimahullah) said about him,

“When Imaam Malik was in doubt about a Hadith he would totally disregard it.”

In Fiqh, the Imaam was on a higher level than all the rest. Bahlool bin Raashid said about him,

“I have never seen someone with the knowledge of deducing from the Qur’an as Malik had, aswell as his great recognition of strong and weak narrations.”

Abdullah bin Luhay'ah said,

“I asked al-Nadhr bin Abdul-Jabbar (Abul-Aswad), 'Who has a word (i.e. significance and standing) after Rabee'ah in Madinah?'

He relpied,

"Al-Ghulaam al-Asbahi (ie. Imaam Maalik)."

Imaam Ahmed bin Hanbal said about this great Imaam,

“I compared Imaam Malik to Awzaa’ee, Thawri, Laith, Hammaad, and al-Hakam in knowledge, but he is the leader in Hadeeth and Fiqh.”

His Teachers and Instructors:

Imaam Malik would only take knowledge from those men who were famous for their cleanliness, piety, and truthfulness and who were distinct in memorization and jurisprudence. The teachers mentioned in Muwatta', from whom he narrated aHaadeeth from are 95 in total, all of who were from Madinah. This made alot of the knowledge of the scholars, who was previously scattered around, now held within one person: Imaam Malik. This is why he earnt the name of, “IMAAM DAARUL-HIJRAH” from all of the Imaam’s teachers, six of whom were not from Madinah. Even though he had more, 95 teachers are only mentioned in the Muwatta. Otherwise, Allamah Zurqaani and Dulaqi have written that his teachers were over 900+. Imaam Nawawi has written in Tahdheebul-Asmaa' that of Imaam Malik’s 900 teachers 300 were from the Taabi’een and 600 from the Tabi' Tabi’een.

The greatest of all of his teachers was Naafi’ the slave of Ibn 'Umar (radhi Allahu 'anhu). Imaam Malik learnt with him for twelve years and attained the knowledge of Hadeeth and Diraayah (Fiqh) from him. It is for this reason that many of his narrations are narrated through Naafi’ (rahimahullah). His short chain from him is referred to as "the golden chain of narrators" because it is the highest chain in his Muwatta. Shah Waliullah Dehlawi has written that Haroon ar-Rasheed asked Imaam Malik, “You have mentioned Ali and Ibn 'Abbaas (Radhi Allahu Anhuma) only a few timea in your book, why?” He replied,

“They were not here in Madinah, nor did I find any of their students or companions.”

Some of His Teachers

Here is a list of some of Imaam Maalik’s Smadinahhuyookh (Teachers):

1. Nafi’, the servant of 'Abdullah ibn 'Umar (radhi Allahu 'anhu).

2. Abuz-Zanaad, Abdullah ibn Zakwaan

3. Hishaam bin 'Urwah ibn Zubair

4. Yahya bin Sa’eed al-Ansaari

5. 'Abdullah ibn Deenaar

6. Zaid bin Aslam, servant of 'Umar bin al-Khattab (radhi Allahu 'anhu)

7. Muhammad ibn Muslim ibn Shihaab az-Zuhri

8. 'Abdullah ibn Abu Bakr ibn Hazm

9. Sa’eed ibn Abu Sa’eed al-Maqbari

10. Sumayy servant of Abu Bakr (radhi Allahu 'anhu)

11. Ayyub as-Sakhtiyaani

12. 'Abdur-Rahman ibn al-Qaasim ibn Muhammad ibn Abu Bakr (radhi Allahu 'anhu)

13. Thawr ibn Zaid Dabli

14. Ibrahim ibn Abi Ablah al-Maqdisi

15. Rabi’ah ibn Abu Abdur-Rahman

16. Humayd Taweel

17. 'Aa'ishah bint Sa’ad ibn Abi Waqqas

*In Qiraa’ah (recitation of Qur’an): Naafi’ ibn Abu Nuaym al-Qaari

His Students:

MadinahpinksunsetImaam Malik’s students are in the thousands. Some have mentioned so many of them that they can not be counted, such as Haafidh ibn Katheer and adh-Dhahabi. Qadhi 'Iyaadh has mentioned over 1300 have narrated Hadith for the great Imaam. Hafidh Daar-Qutni has mentioned 1000. Haafidh Abu Bakr Khateeb al-Baghdadi has mentioned 993.

Even some of the Imaam’s Teachers were his students, for example:

1. Zuhri Abul-Aswad

2. Ayyub Sakhtiyaani

3. Rabi’ah al-Ra’iee

4. Yahya bin Sa’eed al-Ansaari

5. Muhammad bin Abi Zi’ab

6. Ibn Jareeh

7. Aamash

8. Abu Suhail, Naafi’ bin Malik

Some of his eminent students were:

1. Imaam Muhammad

2. Imaam ash-Shaaf’iee

3. Abdullah bin Mubaarak

4. Layth bin Sa’d

5. Shu'bah

6. Sufyaan ath-Thawri

7. Ibn Jurayj

8. Ibn 'Uyaynah

9. Yahya al-Qattaan

10. Ibn Mahdi

11. Abu 'Aasim an-Nabeel

12. Abdur-Rahman 'Awzaa'ee

Eminent narrators of Imaam Malik’s Muwatta include:

1. Abdullah bin Yusuf al-Tunisi

2. Abdullah bin Muslimah al-Qa’nabi

3. Abdullah bin Wahab al-Misri

4. Yahya bin Yahya al-Laithi

5. Abu Mus’ab al-Zhuhri

As a Hadeeth Teacher

muwatt1After the death of 'Abdullah bin 'Umar (radhi Allahu 'anhu) and his servant and student, Naafi’ (rahimahullah), the great Imaam narrated Hadeeth and taught from the age of 17 to about 79. He gave service to the teachings of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam), giving lessons of Fiqh and issuing Fataawa for 62 years of his life.

Before the Imaam would narrate or dictate any Hadeeth to others he would perform wudhoo' or take a bath, put on his best and most expensive clothes, groom himself, put on musk or some other fragrance, then proceed to the gathering of Hadeeth with the utmost dignity and respect.

In every gathering coal ambers of ‘Uood (a special and beautiful fragrance derived from a unique tree) would be burnt continuously until the lesson was over. In the Imaam’s gatherings there would always be plush and expensive mats or carpeting spread out on the floor and when he would arrive there would be pin-drop silence out of respect for him and the people would remain completely silent. In the gatherings there would be students surrounding the Imaam, just like how a king’s servants would gather around his throne. There would be Muftis, 'Ulama, and leaders present in the gathering. Such respect was present in these gatherings that anyone passing by would think that a king must be delivering his message and the one who sat down in his gathering would be taken away with awe. 'Abdullah bin Mubaarak reports that one time the Imaam was bitten by a scorpion under his garment over ten times while narrating a Hadeeth but did not stop to remove it, rather he continued to narrate until the end. 'Abdullah bin Mubaarak says,

"I noticed discoloration in his face when the Imaam was being bitten. Afterwards, when all the people had left, I came to the Imaam and asked him what had happened. He replied,

“A scorpion was biting me under my garment. I did not stay patient because of self-restraint, rather it was out of the respect of the Hadeeth of the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) that I did not remove it."


His 'Aqeedah:

Imaam Malik believed that the Qur’an, which is the last message of Allah, was Ghayr Makhlooq, which means that it is not created. He also believed that Allah (ta'aala) is on His Throne just as he has described himself to be in the Qur’an. He believed that Allah ('azza wa jall) has the knowledge of everything and that the believers will see Him with their eyes on the Day of Judgment.

He believed that Imaan (faith) is to declare it by the tongue, and is manifested through actions that will increase by obedience and decrease by committing sins. He believed that anyone who uses abusive language against the Noble Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) should be given the death sentence. He believed that Abu Bakr and 'Umar (radhi Allahu 'anhumaa) were the best people of the Ummah after the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) and that prayer is not valid behind those who follow the beliefs of the Qadariyyah Sect and that their women can not be married.

His love for Madinah:

Even when the Imaam attained old age and became very weak he would never ride on an animal in Madinah, as he didn't throughout his entire life. He felt that it was against the respect of Madinah to ride on the very land that the Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) is buried in. Imaam ash-Shaaf'iee (rahimahullah) says,

“I saw at the door of Imaam Malik’s home beautiful horses from Khurasaan and Egyptian Mules. So I said to him that they are very nice. He said, 'They are yours.' as a gift from me. I said, 'You should keep one for yourself'. His reply was that I am embarrassed to do so! How can I ride on them when the body of the Holy Prophet (sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam) is buried here in Madinah and the land is being rode on with the hooves of horses?"

Statements About him by Other Scholars

· Mus’ab Zubairi said,

Imaam Malik was reliable, safeguarded, trustworthy in Hadeeth, a great scholar, jurist, proof-bearer, and god-fearing man.

· Yahya bin Mu’een said,

He is the Ameerul-Mumineen in Hadeeth.

· Yahya bin Sa’eed al-Qattan said,

He is the Ameerul-Mumineen in Hadith.

· 'Abdur-Rahmaan bin Mahdi said,

There is no-one more trustworthy in (narrating the) Hadith Nabawi on the face of this earth other than Imaam Malik.

· 'Abdur-Rahman bin Mahdi said,

Sufyaan ath-Thawri is the Imaam of Hadeeth, not the Imaam of Sunnah, while Awzaa’ee is the Imaam of Sunnah, not the Imaam of Hadith. But Imaam Malik in the Imaam of Hadeeth, as well as the Imaam of Sunnah.

· Imaam Abu Hanifah said,

I have never seen anyone more fast in understanding, correct answering, and testing than Imaam Malik.

· Imaam ash-Shaf’iee said,

After the Tabi’een, Imaam Maalik is the Proof-Bearer on this entire earth for or against all people.

· Imaam ash-Shaf’iee said,

Knowledge is encircled by three men: Maalik ibn Anas, Sufyaan ibn 'Uyaynah, and Layth ibn Sa’ad.

· Imaam Ahmed bin Hanbal said,

I was asked, "Whose Hadeeth should be memorized by heart if from anyone?" I replied, "Malik bin Anas".

· Imaam al-Bukhaari said,

I was asked what is the most authentic chain of narrators. I replied from Malik from Nafi’ from Ibn 'Umar (radhi Allahu 'anhum).

· Imaam an-Nasaai said,

After the Tabi’een the most understanding, reliable, trustworthy, man in Hadeeth is Imaam Malik. He has hardly ever narrated from a weak narrator apart from Abu Umayyah Abdul-Kareem who is Matrook.

· Imaam Ahmad, at-Tirmidhi, an-Nasaai, and al-Haakim have all reported in a Hadith narrated by Abu Hurayrah (radhi Allahu 'anhu) that the Prophet (peace be upon him said),

“The time has come near that people will travel by camels in search for religious knowledge and they will not find a greater scholar than who is in Madinah.” Sufyaan ibn 'Uyaynah said that "the scholar of Madinah", as indicated by the hadeeth, is none other than Imaam Malik.

His Demise:

The great Imaam reached the age of 84 or 86 or 87 or 90 years when he became ill on a Sunday. This illness continued to get worse for three weeks until on the 11th or 14th of Rabi-al-Awwal 179 A.H. he passed away. He was buried in the famous graveyard in Madinah called Jannatul-Baqee.

His Children:

The great Imaam left behind three sons: Yayha, Muhammad, and Hammaad. His remaining wealth that was inherited was 3300 dinaars. He also had a daughter by the name of Fatimah who narrated from him (read this interesting article about her).

Books Written by Imaam Maalik:

Imaam Maalik wrote many books. The Muwatta' was the first Hadith work after the Qur’an arranged into juristic Sections and organized accordingly. Imaam Bukhaari’s Saheeh is secondary to the work of Imaam Malik in this regard. Then after these two (Imaam Malik and Imaam Bukhaari) others followed, like Imaam Muslim and Imaam at-Tirmidhi.



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gate-and-cloudsWho was he?

He was a famous Taabi'ee (Successors of the Sahabah), a scholar of Hadeeth (Prophetic Narration) who was born in the penultimate year (22AH) of the caliphate of Umar (radhiallahu `anhu) and died 94AH. His father was az-Zubair ibn A’wwam, one of the ten Promised with Paradise. His mother was Asma daughter of Abu Bakr, and therefore his aunt was Aa’ishah, the mother of the Believers from whom he benefited immensely. He also learnt from Ali bin Abi Talib, Abdur-Rahman bin Awf, Zaid bin Thabit, Abu Ayub Al-Ansari and many other sahaabah until he became one of the seven Fuqahaa’ [scholars of Islamic Jurisprudence] of Medina upon whom the people depended.

U’rwah applied his knowledge into his actions. He would even fast during the hottest days in Madinah and would always stand for night prayers. He would keep his tongue moist with the remembrance of Allah. He would read a fourth of the Quran from a mushaf (copy of the Qur’aan) during the day and then he would repeat that it heart in his night prayers. And it is not known that he left this practice from his early youth up until the day he died except on one occasion...

Urwah ibn Zubayr was invited by the khalifah, al-Walid bin Abdul-Malik (705-715 CE, 6th Khalifah of Bana Ummaya) in Damascus. U’rwah accepted the invitation and went with his eldest son Muhammad, who was one of the most handsome of men. The young man had dressed up for the occasion in fine clothes, and had done up his hair. Al-Walid welcomed them with honour and when he saw his son, he said,

"This is how the young people of Quraysh should look!"

and by saying so, he put the evil eye on him. Before he left, the young man fell ill. When he was in the stable (preparing for the journey) and admiring the khalifa's fine horses, one of the horses trampled him to death.

The grief-stricken father had barely shaken off the dust from burying his son, when he developed gangrene of the foot. His leg became swollen and the gangrene began to spread at frightening speed. Al-Walid sent for the best doctors to cure his guest by any means possible. But the doctors were unanimously united on the fact that the only cure for him was amputation quickly before the gangrene spreads and kills him. 'Urwah seeing no other choice agreed.

When the surgeon came to amputate his leg with his scalpel and a saw, he said to U’rwah,'I think it would be appropriate for us to give you a mouthful of intoxicant so that you do not feel the excruciating pain of amputation'.

'Urwah replied,

'No, I will not do that. I will not seek help by taking that which is impermissible, for that which I forgiveness (of Allah) from'.

So the doctor said, 'So we will give you some tranquilizer’.

'Urwah replied,

'I do not wish to be deprived of one of my limbs without me feeling its pain for that for which I aspire the reward of Allah for’.

Then, just before the surgeon was about to cut his leg, a group of men came to them, so U’rwah said,

'Who are these people?’

It was said to him, 'They have been sent for, so that they can hold you, since perhaps when the pain becomes severe, it might cause you to pull back your leg causing you harm.'

'Urwah replied,

'Send them back! I have no need of them as I hope that dhikr (the remembrance of Allah ('azza wa jall)) and tasbeeh (glorify Allah) will suffice me of them.'

So the surgeon began by first cutting off his flesh with a scalpel and when he reached his bone, he started to saw. All that could be heard from Urwah was ‘Laa ilaaha ill Allah (there is none worthy of worship except Allah)’ and ‘Allahu akbar (Allah is the Greatest)’ until his leg was cut off. Then boiling oil was brought in an iron scoop, and was poured on 'Urwah's leg to stop the pouring of blood and close the wound. Urwah at this point lost consciousness and fell into such a deep sleep that he did not read his normal portion of Qur’aan that day. This was the only time when he did not perform his regular good deed.

When he regained consciousness, he called for his amputated leg, kissed it and said while turning it in his hand,

"I swear by the One, Who mounted me on you, I never used you to walk to any place of wrong action or to any place where Allah would not like me to be in."

Then he gave instructions that the leg should be washed, perfumed, wrapped in a cloth and buried in the Muslim graveyard. 'Urwah was carried to his hometown of Madinah where the people and his family gathered to meet him, whereupon he promptly said:

"Do not be frightened with what you see. Allah has bestowed upon me four sons and He has taken back one and allowed me to remain with three, so for Him is the Praise. Allah has given me four limbs and has taken one and allowed me to remain with three, so for Him is the praise. I swear to you by Allah, that if he has taken from me a little, then he has caused to remain with me much, and if he has tried me once then he has forgiven me many times."

Many people came to from the scholars and leaders to offer their condolences to 'Urwah, but of the best words given were those of Ibrahim bin Muhammad bin Talha, when he said.

"Receive the glad tidings! O Abu Abdullah (his kunya, agnomen: ‘Father of Abdullah’) one of your limbs and one of your sons has preceded you to Paradise… and behind that which has gone, the others shall follow inshaa’ Allah (Allah willing)… and Allah has caused to remain for us from you that which we are in need of and that which we cannot do without, and that is your knowledge, your understanding and your opinion… May Allah continue to benefit us with it."


Amazing_sceneryBefore we begin learning about the great Companion of Anas (radhiallahu'anhu), Thaabit al-Bunaani, I would like to share with you two quotes which I recently came across:

Some of our righteous predecessors said: “The accounts [i.e. regarding the lives of the righteous] are an army from the armies of Allah, the Most High. By it [the stories of the righteous] Allah makes firm the hearts of His awliyaa’ [friends].” [Muqaddamah ath-thaaniyyah, safahaat min sabr al-u’lama]

Also, the great faqeeh (scholar of Islamic Jurisprudence) and one of the imaams of the four famous madhaahib, Imaam Abu Hanifah [rahimahullah], said:

“The narratives regarding the scholars and their virtues are more beloved to me than a lot of fiqh [Islaamic jurisprudence], because it [contains] the aadaab [manners/refinement] of a people.” [Muqaddamah ath-thaaniyyah, safahaat min sabr al-u’lama]

With this, let’s turn to the life of the worshipper, Thaabit al-Bunaani, the student and Companion of Anas (radhiallahu'anhu).


The following quotes have been taken from Imaam adh-Dhahabi’s A’alaam an-Nubalaa’, vol 5, pg 220.

Thaabit ibn Aslam (rahimahullah) was from Basrah; he was born in the time of Mua’wiyyah’s [ra] caliphate. Since he had met and narrated from the Sahaabah he is referred to as a ‘taabi’ee’. He was a leader in both knowledge and implementation.

Thaabit ibn Aslam (rahimahullah) said,

“…I accompanied Anas ibnu Maalik for 40 years; I did not see anyone more constant in worshipping than him.”

Therefore he was a companion of the great Sahaabi Anas (may Allah be pleased with him), and not only did he learn knowledge from his teacher, but also 'ibaadah. Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) even did ruqyaa on him.

Narrated 'Abdul 'Aziz: Thaabit and I went to Anas bin Malik. Thaabit said, "O Abu Hamza! I am sick." On that Anas said,

"Shall I treat you with the Ruqyaa of Allah's Apostle?"

Thaabit said, "Yes." Anas recited,

"O Allah! The Lord of the people, the Remover of trouble! (Please) Cure (heal) (this patient), for You are the Healer. None brings about healing but You; a healing that will leave behind no ailment." (Saheeh al- Bukhari, Book 7, Volume 71, Hadith 638)

His Knowledge

Great scholars such as Ahmad ibn Hanbal [rahimahullah] praised him. He said,

“Thaabit was strong in hadeeth and used to narrate [ahaadeeth].”

Ahmad al-A’jalee [rahimahullah] said:

“A trustworthy and righteous man.”

Imaam an-Nasaai [rahimahullah] said about him:


Abu Haatim ar-Raazee [rahimahullah] said:

“The most trustworthy companions of Anas bin Maalik were: Az-Zuhri, then Thaabit, then Qataadah.”

Ibn A’dee said:

“He was from amongst the taabi’een [people who had met at least one Sahaabi] of the people of Basrah and their ascetics and their narrators; the a’immah [leaders of hadeeth] wrote from him. From [amongst] the people the most who narrated from him was Hammaad bin Salamah…”

He narrated from the following great Companions:

  • Anas ibn Maalik
  • Abdullah ibn Umar, as reported in Saheeh Muslim
  • Abdullah ibn Mughaffal reported in Sunan An-Nasaai
  • Abdullah ibn Zubayr, as reported in al-Bukhari
  • Abu Barzah al-Aslami
  • Amr bin Abee Salamah al-Makhzoomee, rabeeb [the foster father/foster son] of the Prophet [sallallahu a’lyhi wa sallam], which is reported in at-Tirmidhi, an-Nasaai

and many others.

Great personalities, such as Ataa’ bin Abee Rabaah and Qataadah, narrated from him. May Allah be pleased with them all. Aameen

A True 'Aabid [Worshipper]

Anas ibnu Maalik said about him,

“Indeed khair [goodness] has its people and certainly this Thaabit is from the keys of the khair [goodness].”

Bakr al-Maznee [rahimahullah] said,

“Whosoever wants to look at the most avid worshipper from the people of his time, then let him look towards Thaabit al-Bunaani, for we did not know anyone more devoted to worshipping than him…”

Thaabit [rahimahullah], himself, said:

“I endured Salaah for twenty years and enjoyed it for [the next] twenty years.”

Shu’bah [rahimahullah] said:

“Thaabit al-Bunaani would read the Qur’aan every day and night, and would fast during the day.” [This has also been mentioned in Saheeh al-Bukhari and Muslim under the chapter pertaining to fasting.]

Hammaad ibn Salamah [rahimahullah] also said:

Thaabit recited: "Dost Thou deny Him who created Thee out of dust, then out of sperm-drop, then fashioned Thee into a man?”[1] Then he would pray the night prayer crying and repeating it [this verse].

Hammaad ibn Zayd [rahimahullah] said:

“I saw Thaabit crying until his ribs changed.”

Ja’far ibn Sulaymaan said [rahimahullah]:

“Thaabit cried until his eyesight nearly went, then the eye-doctors (opticians) prohibited him from crying. Then he said, ‘There is no good in them if they don’t cry…’”

Hammaad ibn Salamah [rahimahullah] said: “Thaabit used to say:

‘O Allah! If You have bestowed upon anyone salaah in his grave then give me Salaah in my grave.’

It is said that this supplication was answered for him, for certainly he was seen [in a dream] after his death praying in his grave.”

Some Famous Ahaadeeth narrated by Him

Narrated Ma'bad bin Hilal Al-'Anzi:  We, i.e. some people from Basra, gathered and went to Anas bin Malik, and we went in company with Thaabit Al-Bunaani so that he might ask him about the Hadeeth of Intercession on our behalf. Behold, Anas was in his place, and our arrival coincided with his Duhaa prayer. We asked permission to enter and he admitted us while he was sitting on his bed. We said to Thaabit, "Do not ask him first about anything else but the Hadeeth of Intercession." He said, "O Abu Hamza! These are your brethren from Basra coming to ask you about the Hadith of Intercession." [And then Anas [radhiallahu a’nhu] mentioned the long Hadeeth on intercession] [Bukhari :: Book 9 :: Volume 93 :: Hadith 601]


Narrated Thaabit Al-Bunaani: Anas bin Malik was asked whether they disliked the cupping for a fasting person. He replied in the negative and said, "Only if it causes weakness." [Bukhari, Book 3, Volume 31, Hadith 161]


Sayyar reported: I was walking with Thaabit al-Bunaani when he happened to pass by children and he greeted them. And Thaabit reported that he walked with Anas and he happened to pass by children and he greeted them. And Anas reported that he walked with Allah's Apostle (may peace be upon him) and he happened to pass by children and he greeted them. [Muslim, Book 26, Hadith 5392]


Narrated Thaabit Al-Bunaani: Anas bin Malik said to a woman of his family, "Do you know such-and-such a woman?" She replied, "Yes." He said, "The Prophet passed by her while she was weeping over a grave, and he said to her, 'Be afraid of Allah and have patience.' The woman said, 'Go away from me, for you do not know my calamity.'" Anas added, "The Prophet left her and proceeded. A man passed by her and asked her, 'What has Allah's Apostle said to you?' She replied, 'I did not recognize him.' The man said, 'He was Allah's Apostle.'" Anas added, "So that woman came to the gate of the Prophet and she did not find a gate-keeper there, and she said, 'O Allah's Apostle! By Allah, I did not recognize you!' The Prophet said, 'No doubt, patience is at the first stroke of a calamity.' [Bukhari, Book 9, Volume 89, Hadith 268]


Anas bin Malik (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: “Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) gave no better wedding feast than the one he did (on the occasion of his marriage) with Zainab.” Thaabit al-Bunaani (one of the narrators) said: “What did he serve in the wedding feast?” He (Anas) said: “He fed them bread and meat (so lavishly) that they (the guests) abandoned it (of their own accord after having taken it to their hearts' content).” [Muslim, Book 8, Hadith 3332]


Thaabit reported on the authority of Anas: “The Apostle of Allah (may peace be upon him) came to us and there was none in our house but I, my mother and my aunt Umm Haram. He (the Holy Prophet) said: ‘Stand up so that I may lead you in prayer’ (and there was no time for prescribed prayer). He led us in prayer.” A person said to Thaabit: Where did Anas stand with him (the Holy Prophet)? He replied: He was on the right side. “He then blessed us, the members of the household, with every good of this world and the Hereafter. My mother said: ‘Messenger of Allah (and then, pointing towards Anas, said), here is your little servant, invoke the blessing of Allah upon him too.’ He then blessed me with every good, and he concluded his blessings for me (with these words): ‘Allah! Increase his wealth, and his children and make (them the source of) blessing for him.’” [Muslim :: Book 4 :: Hadith 1389] And it was said that Anas ibn Maalik had around 100 descendants from his sons and grandsons before he died, because the Prophet [peace be upon him] made this du’aa for Anas [may Allah be pleased with him]. Anas said: “From the Ansaar I have the most wealth and children”, and it was said he had 80 children, 78 males and 2 females and the daughters were called Hafsah and his second daughter is referred to as Umm ‘Amr.


Narrated Thaabit: He heard Anas saying, "A woman came to the Prophet offering herself to him in marriage, saying, "Have you got any interest in me (i.e. would you like to marry me)?" Anas's daughter said, "How shameless that woman was!" On that Anas said, "She is better than you, for she presented herself to Allah's Apostle (for marriage)." [Bukhari, Book 7, Volume 62, Hadith 53]


Narrated Isaa bin Tahman: Anas bin Malik brought out for us two sandals having two straps. Thaabit al-Bunaani said, "These were the sandals of the Prophet." [Bukhari, Book 7, Volume 72, Hadith 749]


Narrated Thaabit: Anas said, "The Prophet asked for water, so a tumbler with a broad base and not so deep, containing a small quantity of water, was brought to him whereby he put his fingers in it." Anas further said, 'I noticed the water springing out from amongst his fingers." Anas added, 'I estimated that the people who performed ablution with it numbered between seventy and eighty." [Bukhari, Book 1, Volume 4, Hadith 199]


I end with the following hadeeth reported by the Great A’abid [worshipper] Thaabit al-Bunaani, with the hope that our hearts will be moved and we will find a change in our i’baadah [worship]:

Thaabit reported it on the authority of Anas: “While leading you in prayer I do not shorten anything in the prayer. I pray as I saw the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) leading us.” He (Thaabit) said: Anas used to do that which I do not see you doing; when he lifted his head from bowing he stood up (for so long) that one would say: ‘He has forgotten (to bow down in prostration).’ And when he lifted his head from prostration, he stayed in that position, till someone would say: ‘He has forgotten (to bow down in prostration for the second sajdah).’ [Muslim, Book 4, Hadith 956]

SubhaanAllah, the likes of Thaabit [rahimahullah] carried in their chests such vast knowledge, the fruits of which could be seen in their actions.

In Arabic, ‘thaabit’ means firm; truly he was the firm companion of Anas (radhiallahu 'anhu).


windowAbu Hurairah [ra] reported: Messenger of Allah [saws] said, “Truly! The world is cursed and what it contains is cursed, except the remembrance of Allah and those who associate themselves with Allah, and a learned man, and a learning person.” [At-Tirmidhi]

Days and months trickle down the window which resembles the human soul. The window must shine, so that truths are reve aled and treasures unfold. In reality, the soul is like a clear mirror; the body is but dust on it. This dust is a temporary addition - an outer layer, which continues to fall as the days pass. Very few have dug deep inside themselves and even fewer are those who have consciously perceived the beauty of a soul that longs to become free. Rather, many try to beautify this dust, trying to keep it on for as long as possible. Oh if only they knew!

Very soon a strong wind is to blow and the dust will scatter into the darkness and depths of the earth, only to be resurrected in front of its Lord; a Lord Most Kind - yet also swift in taking to account.

For those whose windows are clean, they can still see the true nature of this world; they can still shine and become lights for others to follow. Their every action reminds people that, “This world is only a deceiving enjoyment.” [Suratul Hadeed 57: 20]

Remember the words of Imam Ibn Taymiyyah as he stood in his prison cell, “…so a wall will be put up between them, with a gate therein; inside it will be Mercy, and outside it will be torment." [Suratul Hadeed 57: 13]. The following is a picture of Imaam ibn Taymiyyah's prison site in Syria:


As he sat in his prison cell, time witnessed a man  who saw mercy in being imprisoned within the confinement of four walls. For him his cell was a blessing since he had a chance to be alone in the remembrance of the One Who created his heart. A heart, whose happiness is only in gushing forth in unison with the remembrance of its Creator. This is because he saw this world as the Prophet [sallAllahu a’lyhi wa sallam] described, “Verily! The world is cursed and what it contains is cursed…” May Allah bless Imam Ibn Taymiyyah, raise his ranks and make spacious his grave. For surely, this was a man whose window was shining, hence he saw the world for what it truly was. That is why he said: 

What can my enemies possibly do to me? My paradise is in my heart; wherever I go it goes with me - inseparable from me. For me, prison is a place of retreat; execution is my opportunity for martyrdom; and exile from my town is but a chance to travel.

Imam Ad-Dhahabi [rah] said about him,

If I had to swear, standing between the corner of the ka’bah and the spot of Ibraheem [as], I would swear that I have not laid my two eyes on anyone like him, nor has he seen anyone as knowledgeable as himself.[1]

It is evident then, that if this window is not clean then the true nature of the world will be disguised and one will make this world their abode - only to be stabbed by it when the angel of death visits. How many have left this world only to be forgotten shortly after? As the storms of trials and sadness engulf this life and the desires of the self push one down, a truth reveals itself as every second continues to pass. The words of the Prophet [saws] echo within each deception of this life, “Verily! The world is cursed and what it contains is cursed…”

Life continues to pass and very few know how to play its game. Sometimes it will throw the ball of happiness your way, but even more so, the ball of hardship, tribulation and pain. Continue to play, bounce that ball and know you must win a game in which time is short, its deceptions many and its end near. Remember O Muslim as you play this game: don’t get caught up in it; it will finish at any moment. Play the game, but remember only His Name, this is because the Prophet [saws] said, “…except the remembrance of Allah…”

So what did Imam Ibn Taymiyyah do in his cell, day in day out? The answer lies in his words to his Lord: 

"O Allah! Help me to move my tongue incessantly in Your Praise, to express my gratitude, and to serve You in perfect worship.”

Let’s follow the steps of this Imam who understood the words of our Prophet [saws]. Let’s search for our Creator - the Beloved; move your lips in unison with your heart beat as you remember His Name. Allow your every emotion and sensation to be in unison with His Will. The heart is ever in need of His remembrance; a container which needs to be cleansed with the love of the Almighty.

Search out from the midst of the people friends to help you on your way, so that if the time comes that you fall, they help you aright and if you forget the straight way, they lead you back on its path. As Muhammad al Mustafa [saws] said “…and those who associate themselves with Allah…”; they are amongst us yet their hearts are attached to their Friend [Allah swt]; truly such friendships are like stars, guiding through the darknesses of this life. O friend! Let’s stay strong! If Allah Wills, our destination is the Garden of Paradise full of happiness, peace and serenity.

Although such friends will help you, you are still in need of knowledge on how to tread this path of thorns and difficulties.  Search for one who possesses knowledge, the one who has inherited from the Prophet [saws]. This is because the Prophet [saws] said “…and a learned…” Ask the people of knowledge about the happiness and peace they receive from being lost in the books of the scholars and attending lessons taught by the righteous. Ask students of knowledge how it feels to have learnt the language of the Qur’aan and to immerse oneself into the great sciences of Islaam – in the pursuit of getting close to their Lord by the turning of each page, and by way of each step. By Allah! There is no comparison.

Just maybe, if we ourselves try to become students of knowledge, inshAllah we will become a part of the Prophet‘s [saws] hadeeth, in which he described the last category who are not included in the curse of this world “…and a learning person.”

There is no time now to waste, the mirror must shine, so that when the time comes for you to fly out of that window, the destination will be clear and very near.

“Race one with another in hastening towards Forgiveness from Your Lord (Allâh), and towards Paradise, the width whereof is as the width of heaven and earth, prepared for those who believe in Allâh and His Messengers. That is the Grace of Allâh which He bestows on whom He pleases. And Allâh is the Owner of Great Bounty.” [Qur’aan: Suratul Hadeed 57: 21]


[1] For all quotations on Imam Ibn Taymiyyah, please refer to the book, ‘The Lofty Virtues of Ibn Taymiyyah’ by Abu Hafs Umar bin Ali al-Bazzar [easily accessible on the internet].