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View Full Version : Where can I read sunnah/hadith? Also, can you explain it?

04-28-2013, 02:27 AM
I understand that hadith/sunnah are the sayings of the prophet, however I do not understand some things.

What if something prophet Mohammed(pbuh) said(the sunnah), God disagreed with??

How many are there (I assume they are verses)? Why are some called "authentic" and some..shunned?

What is a collection and what do the names of each collection mean??

I thought prophet Mohammed(pbuh) made these statements but then I see something like "it was reported by...so and so..." or "so and so said....etc"

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04-28-2013, 06:11 AM

format_quote Originally Posted by crimsontide06
What if something prophet Mohammed(pbuh) said(the sunnah), God disagreed with??
Then, Allah Subhanahu Wa ta'ala warned him.

In one riwayat Rasulullah(saw) forbade honey for himself because his wives smelled the scent that 'not good' from his mouth. But then Allah (swt) warned him with surah At-Tahrim: 1

" O Prophet, why do you prohibit [yourself from] what Allah has made lawful for you, seeking the approval of your wives? And Allah is Forgiving and Merciful."

04-28-2013, 03:14 PM
ok thanks, how about the rest of the questions??

Ahmad H
04-28-2013, 05:49 PM
Assalaamu alaykum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

I suggest if you want to know why certain rulings were given on Ahadith, then you would have to necessarily read those explanations of why they were ruled in that way. But, I do not know if any of those books are in English. The explanations of Ahadith that I know of are in Arabic. The best are the Sahihayn, Bukhari and Muslim. The best explanation for Bukhari is by Hazrat Ibn Hajr al Asqalani (ra) (Fathul-Bari) and the best one for Muslim (to my knowledge) is by Hazrat Imam Nawawi (ra) (Sharhi Sahih Muslim). These are available online at the following website:


I hope you can read Arabic. I am still trying to learn Arabic in order to understand these. Better to learn it than wait for them to be translated in God knows how long.

As for the reasons for why Ahadith are Sahih, Hasan, Da'if, Maudu', etc. I do not know why they are ruled in that way. Only the scholars of Ahadith know this. If you want to understand any of this, then read up on the Fiqh of Hadith. I don't know which books to prescribe, but perhaps someone here knows which books are best.

The collections are:
Sahih Bukhari - A set of Ahadith, highly respected, which are considered correct by a rigorous standard to determine which Ahadith were authentically reported by the Holy Prophet (saw).
Sahih Muslim - Similar to above, but not collected by Bukhari.

I don't know much about the rest, but I will state more collections for you:
Sunan Tirmidhi, Sunan Abu Dawud, Sunan Ibn Majah, Sunan An-Nasa'i, Sunan Ad-Darimi, Musnad of Imam Ahmad, Sunan Dar Qutni, Muwatta of Imam Malik. There are more but they are not so available. I don't think I even found Sunan Dar Qutni in Arabic online. I know it can be bought though.

As for the statements that so-and-so said this and that, they are a chain of people who heard from the Holy Prophet (saw) a statement. These reports are transmitted, and the Fiqh of Hadith is about those methods in which scholars determined the authenticity of these reports based on a list of criteria. I hope I'm not wrong in describing this. This is what I know though.

Allah knows best.

Anyone who can correct what I said or add more to it for the benefit of our brother here, please do so. It is best for him to have proper knowledge on Ahadith if he can be given it. Wassalaam.

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04-28-2013, 06:01 PM
I suggest trying to find a good class/teacher where you can learn from, best way to learn in my opinion. Hadith is made up of the chain of transmission and the content itself. The chain referred to as "isnad" and the content referred to as "matan/matn".

04-28-2013, 06:50 PM

The first thing we must understand is that the Qur'an as well as the Sunnah are both revelation from Allaah :swt:. Allaah :swt: revealed the Qur'an to the Prophet :saws: and commanded him to explain it to the people. The Sunnah of the Prophet :saws: is the practical example of the implementation of the Qur'anic guidance, the Wisdom taught to the Prophet :saws: along with the Scripture. This means that these two can never contradict one another, rather they complement one another. Neither the Qur'an nor the Sunnah can be understood correctly without recourse to the other. Allaah :swt: tells us in the Qur'an that the Messenger :saws: is to be obeyed. He :swt: is not only talking to that honourable group of Muslims that accompanied the Prophet :saws: during his lifetime, rather He is speaking to all of the Muslims that will come up until the Last Day.

In a similar way to how the Qur'an was preserved, Allaah :swt: preserved the Sunnah by enabling the Companions and those after them (may Allah be pleased with them) to memorise, write down and pass on the statements of the Messenger :saws: and the descriptions of his way. All of this happened in various stages, beginning with the writing of hadeeth on various parchments without any particular format, until they were compiled into collections on a wide and systematic scale. Then there arose scholars who undertook the job of critical research of the hadeeth that had been narrated and compiled, and they also grouped hadeeth according to their topic. Many scholars journeyed tirelessly to collect hundreds of thousands of narrations and distinguish the true words of precious wisdom of their Messenger :saws: from those corrupted by weak memories and from forgeries by unscrupulous liars. All of this was achieved through precise attention to the words narrated and detailed familiarity with the biographies of the thousands of reporters of Hadith. The following sheds light on this last sentence, concerning how Hadith were reported from the Prophet :saws::

The Muslims are agreed that the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) is the second of the two revealed fundamental sources of Islam, after the Glorious Qur'an. The authentic Sunnah is contained within the vast body of Hadith literature. [1]
A hadith (pl. ahadith) is composed of two parts: the matn (text) and the isnad (chain of reporters). A text may seem to be logical and reasonable but it needs an authentic isnad with reliable reporters to be acceptable; 'Abdullah b. al-Mubarak (d. 181 AH), one of the illustrious teachers of Imam al-Bukhari, said, "The isnad is part of the religion: had it not been for the isnad, whoever wished to would have said whatever he liked." [2]
During the lifetime of the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) and after his death, his Companions (Sahabah) used to refer to him directly, when quoting his sayings. The Successors (Tabi'un) followed suit; some of them used to quote the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) through the Companions while others would omit the intermediate authority - such a hadith was later known as mursal. It was found that the missing link between the Successor and the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) might be one person, i.e. a Companion, or two people, the extra person being an older Successor who heard the hadith from the Companion. This is an example of how the need for the verification of each isnad arose; Imam Malik (d. 179) said, "The first one to utilise the isnad was Ibn Shihab al- Zuhri" (d. 124).[3] The other more important reason was the deliberate fabrication of ahadith by various sects which appeared amongst the Muslims, in order to support their views (see later, under discussion of maudu' ahadith) [...]
A brief history of Mustalah al-Hadith
As time passed, more reporters were involved in each isnad, and so the situation demanded strict discipline in the acceptance of ahadith; the rules regulating this discipline are known as Mustalah al-Hadith (the Classification of Hadith)...


This science of Hadith became a very detailed science, whereby hadeeth were graded according to various criteria, indicating their level of authenticity. So for example, some of the criteria for a hadeeth to be authentic includes having an uninterrupted chain of narration, uprightness of the narrators, and veracity and accuracy of the narrators. If you continue reading the thread from which the above quote has been taken, you will gain an appreciation for how detailed and meticulous this science of Hadith is.

Regarding the names of the collections, at least some of them represent a particular stage or methodology of compiling the Hadith. Among the most important collections are the famous six books of hadeeth, their authors being Imam al-Bukhari, Imam Muslim, Imam Abu Dawood, Imam al-Tirmidhi, Imam al-Nasaa’i and Imaam Ibn Maajah, may Allaah :swt: have mercy on them all. And among these, the works of Imams Al-Bukhari and Muslim occupy the highest status in terms of authenticity, because these scholars focused on including only those Hadith of the highest degree of authenticity and whose narrators were known for their formidable memory and accuracy. Other scholars of Hadeeth did not stipulate these conditions. Al-Bukhari devoted more than a quarter of his life to his compilation and is said to have questioned more than a thousand hadeeth scholars living in various different regions. His compilation is said to have been heard by 90,000 of his students. Al-Bukhari memorised not only the hadeeths in the books of the scholars but also the biographies of all the narrators in their chains (including their dates and places of birth and death). He used to seek aid in prayer before recording every tradition, and weighed every word he wrote with scrupulous exactitude. He selected 9,082 out of some 600,000 narrations of hadeeth. If repetitions are excluded, the actual number of hadeeths goes down to 2,062. It is generally considered by the Muslims as an authority second only to the Qur'an.

It is indeed fascinating to learn about the science of Hadith. We have some useful threads in this section which go into details regarding the many evidences for the authority of the Sunnah, details regarding the classification of hadeeth and other aspects. As brother Hulk mentioned, the best way is to find a good teacher who will guide you through it in a structured manner.

Allaah :swt: knows best. May He :swt: guide us to be amongst the People of the Sunnah, those who venerate it in their hearts and through their actions, Aameen.

04-28-2013, 06:50 PM

A forum is an insufficient means of learning fully about the Science of Hadith. But to state the little bit I have learned.

Aisha was probably the first one to start writing down things she saw the Prophet (saws) do or heard him say. Soon others began doing the same. Muhammad(saws) himself did not write any ahadith. They all come from witnesses. The original people relating the event orally or written are the original Narrators.

The first step in verifying the authenticity of a hadith is how complete the chain fo narration is back to the original witness and verification the Narrator did live at the time of the Prophet(saws) and there is reason he did actually witness what is spoken about. The degree of proof establishes the level of authenticity.

Next since the Ahadith are the reports of man and limited to human understanding and memory the next thing to be shown is if the words are exactly what happened or was said. This is verified by the number of witnesses all relating the same thing. This is the level of reliability the lowest reliability is just one witness the highest is 4 or more each relating the exam same thing. The level of reliability is based upon the number of witnesses and each saying the exact same thing. If even one witness differs even slightly from the rest if lowers the reliability.

Many Ahadith have had no verification of either authenticity or reliability these are not necessarily false, we do not know and have no prove they are true.

Some Ahadith are false and known to be because they relate events that did not occur to have happened until after the Death of Muhammad(saws)

For most of us we need only concern our self with the recognized collections. Sahih Bukhari being the best compilation and considered to be of high Authenticity although some only have one witness and therefore low reliability. But a study of Bukhari is a very good place to start and to learn more about how the Ahadith were collected and by who.

A good starting link: BUKHARI

The best way to learn more is through a scholar who is well versed and knowledgeable of the "Science of Hadith". It is much too complex to learn online.

04-28-2013, 11:16 PM
Asalaamu Alaikum,

Don't have much to add to whats already been said. Here is Imam Nawawi's commentary of many authentic hadiths [Its been translated to english] - http://www.kalamullah.com/Books/Riyad-us-Saliheen.pdf

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