Hadith is the second source of Islam after the Qur’an. Whenever a Hadith is told to a Muslim, he immediately accepts it, but there are some people, who when they are told a Hadith, ask wether that Hadith is written in Bukhari or Muslim. They say, if it is written in Muslim and Bukhari then it should be accepted, but if it is not, then a doubt remains as to whether the Hadith is authentic or not.
Our claim to this is that it is not the command of Allah or our Prophet (May Allah bless Him and grant him peace) that we can only believe in those Ahadith which are written in Muslim or Bukhari and have doubts about the rest. People who fall into the category of people who use Bukhari and Muslim as their only sources of Sunnah claim:
(A) Many scholars of Islam have said that the Ahadith written in Muslim or Bukhari are authentic, but the Ahadith which are not in Muslim or Bukhari can be weak, fabricated or authentic.
(B) Muslim and Bukhari do not take narration from a weak narrator. Even if there was a weak narrator and Muslim and Bukhari took narration from the narrator, then the narrator is said to have “Crossed the Bridge” .
(C) The scholars of Hadith have not objected to any narration of Muslim and Bukhari.
(D) We do not need to see any other Ahadith books because Muslim and Bukhari have gathered all the authentic Ahadith in Muslim and Bukhari.
(E) No one has ever criticised Imams Muslim and Bukhari in regards to any mistake they may have made.
Whatever has been claimed above is not from the Qur’an or Sunnah. We will explain, with the help of Allah that these claims are false.
We say that an authentic Hadith is one, which meets the principals of authentication of Ahadith. It does not matter whether it is written in Muslim, Bukhari, Tirmidhi or Abu Dawud, or Muwatta of Imam Malik.
“The narration of Imam Bukhari and Imam Muslim have not been criticised by scholars of Ahadith”
Before we write about the actual narration of Imam Muslim and Imam Bukhari we will prove that to criticise the narration of Imam Bukhari and Imam Muslim is not forbidden.
Asqalani writes, “when you compare the narration of Imam Bukhari and Imam Muslim you will notice that Imam Muslim’s narration have been criticised a lot more by the scholars of Ahadith than the narration of Imam Bukhari. When Imam Bukhari took narration from his teachers, he was well aware of these narrations beforehand, On the other hand, when Imam Muslim took narration from his teachers, he had no previous information about them. This is another reason why Imam Bukhari is said to be better than Imam Muslim. Imam Bukhari carries less Shaadh and Muallal (types of weak Hadith) than Imam Muslim
(An-Nukhbah, chapter on Imams Bukhari and Muslim, by Hafidh Asqalani).
Imam Sakhawee writes that the status of Imam Bukhari is higher than Imam Muslim. The reason he gives this is that Imam Bukhari has taken narration from 435 narrators, among these narrators there are only 80 weak narrators. Imam Muslim has taken narration from 620 narrators. About 160 narrators are known to be weak from among these
(Fath-ul-mughees, chapter on Imams Bukhari and Muslim, by Imam Sakhawee)
Hafidhh Asqalani and Imam Ay’nee write that Imam Daar Qutni has written a book called “Istadrikaat” in which he has objected to many narrations of Imam Muslim and Imam Bukhari (Muqaddamah, Fath-ul-Baari by Hafidh Asqalani and Umdat-ul-qaari by Imam Ay’nee)
Hafidh Asqalani has attempted to answer the objection raised in the book. In the preface of Fath-ul-Baari, Imam Asqalani has answered some questions raised
(Muqaddamah Fath-ul-Baari, “Criticism of Imam Bukhari by Scholars of Ahadith” by Hafidh Asqalani)
Alaama Abu Fatah writes that Hafidhh Iraaqee has written in his book, “Al-Fayaah”, that he criticised only two narrations of Imam Muslim and Imam Bukhari. In my other book, “Sharh-ul-Kabeer”, I have gathered all the narration of Imam Bukhari and Muslim, which the scholars of Ahadith have criticised. Hafidhh Abu Ali Ghassaani has also compiled all the narration of Imam Muslim and Bukhari, which scholars of Hadith have criticised. Alaama Abu Masaud has also written a similar book
(Qawa’id Uloom Al-Hadith page 40 by Abu Fatah Al Damashqi)
It is clear that if the criticism of Imam Muslim and Imam Bukhari were forbidden, then the scholars of Ahadith would not have dared to criticise their narration. Even those people who have praised Imam Bukhari very highly have criticised him.
Hafidhh Asqalani writes: “Qaadhi Abu Bakr Ibn Arabi, in his commentary on Bukhari, claims that Imam Bukhari has written narration in Sahih-ul-Bukhari and that they have been narrated by at least two persons e.g. two companions heard a narration from our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] and then two of the companions’ students heard it from the companions themselves, and so on. The scholars of Ahadith have proved this claim to wrong. The first narration in SaHiH-ul-Bukhari is narrated by Al-Qaama who heard it from Umar (May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace). This proves that Qaadhi Abu Baqaaree’s claim is wrong.
(An-Nukhba, p14 by Hafidh Asqalani)
Some narration of Bukhari and Muslim, which have been criticised by the scholars of Ahadith
There are many narrations of Imam Bukhari, which have been criticized, the detail can be found in Fath-ul-Baari and Umdat-ul-Qaari, whicj are written by Hafidh Abd-ul-Barr’s, and Ibn Jawzee’s books. Here are some examples from those books:
(1)Imams Bukhari and Muslim write that when the leader of the hypocrites, Abdullah bin Ubaydah died, his son came to see our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] and asked him if he would perform his Father’s funeral prayer (Janaazah) As our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] stood up to read the Janaazah, Umar tugged his shirt and asked him: “Are you going to perform the Janazah?” Umar said that he was a hypocrite and that AllahAlmighty has forbidden him to perform a hypocrite’s Janaza. Our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] then said to Umar that Allah Almighty had given him the choice of whether or not to read the Janazah of a hypocrite. According to this narration, the Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] said, “Allah Almighty has told me that if I ask for their forgiveness seventy times, He will not forgive them, but I will ask for their forgiveness more than seventy times. After this, our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] performed the Janaazah prayer. After the Janaazah, Allah Almighty revealed verse 80 of surat-ut-taubah. The revelation is as follows: “ Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace]! If someone dies from among them (non-believer or hypocrite) do not say their Janaza or do not stand at their graves, because they have blasphemed with Allah and His Messenger.
(Bukhari and Sahih Muslim, chapters: “Janaaiz, Tafsir and Fadaa’il Umar)
Hafidhh Asqalani, Imam Anee and other scholars of Hadith write that whether our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] and Umar had this discussion is doubtful. Qadhi Abu Bakr has said that it is not permissible to accept this narration, as it is not true. Hafidhh Asqalani has said this is a narration from those, narrations that have not been authenticated. Imam Al-Haramain has said that the scholars of Ahadith do not accept this narration. Imam Ghazali and Imam Daudi have said that it is clear that this Hadith is not true.
The reason that the above scholars have not accepted this Hadith is that before this event verse 80 of surat-ut-taubah was already revealed. The meaning of that verse is O Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace]! If you ask for their forgiveness, or if you do not ask for their forgiveness, or if you ask forgiveness for them seventy times, Allah Almighty will not forgive them because they disbelieve in Allah Almighty and his Messenger [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace]. From the meaning of the above verse, we can establish three facts.
· The first fact is that whether the Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] asks for their forgiveness or not, the hypocrites will not be forgiven.
· The second fact is that if the Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] asked for their forgiveness more than seventy times, his prayer will still not be granted. The word “seventy” mentioned does not actually mean seventy times; rather it means “no matter how many times”.
· The third fact is that the hypocrites have disbelieved in Allah Almighty and His Messenger[May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] so they cannot be forgiven. With the above facts in mind, how can our Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] be able to say that he has been given a choice by Allah Almighty whether or not to say their Janaazah? Secondly, how did our Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] establish that Allah Almighty will not forgive them if he asks for forgiveness seventy times, but will forgive them if the Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] asks for their forgiveness more than seventy times?
Allah Almighty verified Umar’s understanding by revealing verse 83 of surat-ut-taubah. The general meaning is: “if anyone dies from among the non-believers, do not read their Janaazah and do not stand at their graves.” From reading the above verse, it seems as though Umar had a better understanding of verse 80 of surat-ut-taubah than our Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace]. This is impossible and is not acceptable. Before this event, when the Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] was living in Makkah, his uncle Abu Talib, died and The Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] said that he would make du’aa for his uncle until Allah stops him. Verses of 113 and 114 of surat-ut-taubah were then revealed. These state that it is not fitting for our Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] or any other Muslim to ask for forgiveness for a non-believer. Prophet Ibrahim[May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] stopped asking for forgiveness for his Uncle when he learnt that he was a non believer
(Fath-ul-Baari, Umdat-ul-Qaari, Tasayyar-ul-Qaari, ShahH Bukhari by Hafidh Asqalani, Imam Anee and Shaikh Dhelwi).
(2) Imam Bukhari writes that Abu Hurairah reported that the Prophet SAW said, that on the Day of Judgement when Allah TA’ALA throws the people into hellfire, hellfire will say give me more. Then Allah TA’ALA will create a nation and then throw them into it. Hellfire will again say I want more, and again Allah TA’ALA will create a nation and throw them into it, hellfire will again say I want more, then Allah TA’ALA will put His feet onto hellfire then it will be full.
(Bukhari Kitab-al-Tawheed Chapter Tawheed).
Hafidhh Asqalani writes that Imam Bukhari has written this hadith in Tafsir of Surah Qaaf. In this narration when hellfire asks for more Allah TA’ALA will put His feet onto it and then it will be full, and Allah TA’ALA is never cruel but in Abu Hurairah’s above narration it says that Allah TA’ALA will create a nation and fill hellfire with it. Hafidhh ibn Qayyam, Abu Hassan Qubsi and other groups of scholar of Hadith say that the narrator of this Hadith has fabricated this by saying that Allah TA’ALA will create a nation to fill hellfire. They say that Allah TA’ALA created hellfire for those people who follow satan, and that the new creation would never have sinned, so how could Allah TA’ALA put them in hellfire? Allah TA’ALA also says in the Qur’an that He never does injustice to anyone. (Surah al-Qaaf Verse 49).
The scholars also say that to fill hellfire, Allah TA’ALA would fill it with stones as this has no life, but humans have a life. Other scholars say that Allah TA’ALA is all powerful and could punish anyone without a sin as He wills, and is not answerable to anyone.
(Fathul Bari Chapter on Tawheed).
Hafidhh ibn Taymiyyah writes that an authentic narrator sometimes makes mistakes, but knowledgeable scholars of Hadith find these mistakes straight away, like Imam Bukhari writes in Kitab-al-Tawheed that Allah TA’ALA will create a new nation and fill hellfire with it. A master of Hadith will find out straight away if a narrator has made a mistake. These mistakes by narrators are also found in other Hadith books. Imam Muslim writes that when the Prophet SAW married his wife Mamunah after he had taken off the Ahram from himself, the Prophet SAW did not perform 2 rakat nafal inside the Kaba.
A person with deep knowledge of Hadith will straight away know the narrator of this Hadith has made a mistake because it is proved from another authentic Hadith:
That the Prophet SAW never performed Umrah in the month Of Rajab when the Prophet [May Allah blessHim and grant Him Peace] married his wife Mamunah, he was wearing the ahram and he did perform 2 rakat nafal inside the Kaaba.”
There is another narration of ibn Umar that the Prophet SAW performed Umrah in the month of Rajab.
(Usooleh Tafsir Chapter Ijma-al-Muhaddiseen by Hafidhh ibn Taymiyyah).
From the above statement we can see that Hafidhh ibn Taymiyyah has criticized Imam Bukhari and Imam Muslims narration's.
(3) Imam Bukhari writes, after the death of the Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace], umm-ul-mu’mineen Sawda, was the first to die. [Bukhari, chapter of Zakaah by Imam Bukhari]
Hafidh Ibn Hajr Asqalani writes that this is wrong, and that umm-ul-mu’mineen Zainab died first. Imam Ibn Jawzi says this narration is not correct and it is very strange that Imam Bukhari wrote this. Imam Nawawi also says that Imam Bukhari has made mistakes.
(Fath-ul-Baari, chapter on Zakaah, by Hafidhh Asqalani)
(4) Imam Bukhari states, that the Prophet’s [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] wife, Ummay Habeeba heard that her Father died in Syria.
[Bukhari chap Janaa’iz,]
Hafidhh Asqalani says, “All the scholars agree that Ummay Habeeba’s Father died in Madinah and that the word Syria was incorrectly used in this narration. (Fath-ul-Baari, chapter on Janaa’iz)
(5) Imam Bukhari states, that in the Battle of Badr, Khabaib bin Addi killed Haris.
[Bukhar chap of Al-Maghasi, chapter 38,]
Hafidhh Asqalani says that the majority of scholars say that Khabaab never joined in the battle of Badr. (Fath-ul-Baari, chapter on Maghasi, by Hafidh Asqalani]
(6) Imam Bukhari states that a man was punished by Uthman [Radi alla hu anhu] who was whipped eighty times.
Hafidh Asqalani says this is not right as the man was whipped forty times as written in other narrations.
(Fath-ul-Baari, chapter on Fadaa’il-ul-Uthmaan, by Hafidh Asqalani)
(7) Imam Bukhari states that Abu Hurairah said, “I went with the Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] to Banoo Qainuqah’s market and he sat in Fatimah’s garden.
[Bukhari chap Maazukirah Fil Aswaaq]
Hafidhh Asqalani states that in this narration, certain words are missing because Fatimah’s house was not in Banoo Qainuqah. The proper narration is the one that Imam Muslim records, which is:
“The Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] went to Banoo Qainuqah and then he returned and went to Fatimah’s house.” Faatimah’s house was in the middle of the Prophet’s [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] wives’ houses.
(Fath-ul-Baari, chapter “Fadaa’il Aswaq” by Hafidhh Asqalani)
(8) Imam Bukhari states after the death of Uthmaan, no one stayed alive from among the companions of Badr. When the war of Harra happened, none of the Hudaibiyah companions were left alive.
[Bukhari chapter Mughasi]
Hafidhh Asqalani says that this is false becaused after the death of Uthman (Radi allah hu anhu), from the companions of Badr, Ali, Talha, Zubair, Saad (Radi allah hu anhu) and other companions were alive after Uthmaan died. Hafidh Asqalani has also proved that the second part of this narration is incorrect.
(Fath-ul-Baari, chapter on Fitan, by Hafidh Asqalani)
(9) Imam Bukhari states, that when Aadam [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] was created, he was sixty feet high.
[Bukhari chapter Anbiya]
Hafidhh Asqalani states “If this was in fact true, the houses of the previous nations (like ‘Aad and thamood) should be higher than our houses but this is not the case. This has confused me until now.” (Fath-ul-Baari, chapter on Anbiyaa’, by Hafidhh Asqalani)
(10) Imam Bukhari says that Abu-Musa said that when our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] was going towards Khaybar. The people who were behind him were shouting “Allah is great” in loud voices. Our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] told them not to shout in loud voices but to recite it normally.
(Bukhari, Chapter on Khaibar).
Hafidh Asqalani and Hafidh Ibn Kathir say that this cannot be right as Abu-Musa Ash’aree came from Habsha to the Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] after Khaybar was won along with the Muhajirs (Immigrants). In Bukhari, it also proved that Abu-Musa came to Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] after the war of Khaybar was over. This means that it would not be correct to say that this event took place on the way.
(Fath-ul-Baari, chapter on Khaybar, by Hafidh Asqalani and Sirat-un-Nabi, by Hafidh ibn Kathir)
(11) Imam Bukhari says that Umar Bin Maymoon said: “I saw a monkey who had just committed adultery with another one. Other monkeys then stoned them both, so I also started to throw stones as well.”
Hafidh Asqlani writes: Alaama Ibn Abd-ul-Barr says: “This narration is wrong because, enforcing an Islamic law on a animal about regarding any matter would be wrong. If in any way you were to say that the words of this narration were true then it would be correct to say that the monkey was in fact, a Jinn.” Humaidee says that this account was not actually in the original Bukhari, but someone has added it later. Nusqi wrote the second version of Bukhari, and this narration was not written in it. If we were to say that Hafidh Humaydi and Ibn Abdul-Barr are right, then what about the Ulamaa’ (Scholars) who say that all the Ahadith written in Bukhari are correct.
(Fathul-ul-Baari, “Ayyaamul-Jaahiliyyah” by Hafidh Asqalani)
Imam Badr-ud-deen Anee has said it is not true that all the Hadith contained in Bukhari are authentic. The reason he gives it that Imam Bukhari has taken some narration from the people who were from misled sects.
Hafidh Asqalani himself has criticised many of Imam Bukhari’s narrations. The preface of Fath-ul-Baari contains a list of all the scholars who have criticised Bukhari’s narration. In some places, he has tried to answer some of the objections raised. So how then can anyone claim that there is no argument concerning the narrations of both Imam Bukhari and Muslim? Our shaykh Shah Abul Husain Zaid Farooqee (may god bless him) has said that Ibn Maymoon saw the monkeys before the Islamic order for stoning an adulterer was revealed. And, even the monkeys were jinnaat, so how could they be punished?
(12) Imam Bukhari writes that Shareek narrated from Anas concerning the incident when our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] was taken on the miraaj. The narration states that our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] was asleep in the ka’bah before the first revelation came, and in his dream, three angels came to him and talked about his excellency and went away. The same thing happened on the second night, but on the third night our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] was taken on the miraaj. (Bukhari, “Siraat-un-nabi” and “Kitaab-ut-tawheed”)
Hafidh Asqalani writes that the narration, which states that our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] was taken on the miraaj before the first revelation of the Qur’an, is not acceptable. The ummah is in agreement that the miraaj took place after Muhammad [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] obtained Prophethood and before the emigration to Madeenah. Imam Khatabee, Ibn Hazm, Qadi Iyad and Imam Nawawi also reject the above narration.
(Fath-ul-Baari, “At-tawheed” by Hafidh Asqalani)
Hafidh Ibn Quyaam writes that the journey to heaven took place only once, it was after the first revelation. May AllahAlmighty bless Imam Muslim as he did not write this narration.
(Zaad-ul-Maad, “Asrah” by ibn Qayyam)
Hafidh Ibn Kathir writes that the content of the above narration has been altered from the original version. This is because Shareek was unable to remember the actual words of the Hadith. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, surah Banee Israa’eel, Aayah 1)
Ibn Muhammad bin Abdul Wahaab ul Najdi writes that the miraaj occurred only once and it happened before the hijrah to Madeenah. The scholars of Ahadith have rejected Shareek’s narration. (Mukhtassar-us-Sirat-ur-rasool, chapter “Asra” by Ibn Muhammad bin Abd-ul-Wahaab-un-Najdi)
Hafidh Asqalani writes that the above narration is one of those narration which scholars of Ahadith have criticised. The scholars who have criticised this narration have deep knowledge of Ahadith and had studied them from ecvonceivable point.
(Muqaddamah Fath-ul-Baari, Chapter Ta’an Daar Qurtubee ‘Alal-Bukhari” by Hafidh Asqalani)
Imam Dhahabi writes that Shareek’s narration is one of those narration which no one has verified. (Mizaan-ul-I’tidaal, biography of Shareek, by Hafidh Dhahabi)
(13)Imam Muslim writes that Abu Sa’eed narrated from the Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] that he ordered us to not write down any of his Ahadith, also he narrated that any one who has written his Ahadith other then Qur’an should destroy it. (Muslim, “Zuhad”)
Hafidh Asqalani writes that Imam Bukhari and other scholars have said that this narration is not authentic. This is not our Prophet’s [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] Hadith, but, in fact, these are the words of Abu Sa’eed himself. It is clear from many other Ahadith that our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] has given us the permission to write his Hadith. (Fath-ul-Baari, “Kitaabaat-ul-’Ilm” by Hafidh Asqalani)
(14) Muslim writes that our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] had many wives and that our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] gave equal time to each wife, but there was one wife who did not have her fixed time. Her name was Safiyyah.
(Sahih Muslim, “Chapter Rada”)
Imam Nawawi has written that the narrators of this Hadith, Atha and Ibn Jurayj have made a mistake inthe name Safiyyah, which should have been Sawdah. Imam Muslim has written in the same chapter that our Prophet’s [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] wife, Sawdah, had given her turn to A’isha. (Sharh Sahih Muslim, “Ar-radah” by Imam Nawawi)
Moreover, Imam Bukhari, Imam Abu Daud, Imam Ibn Sa’ad, Imam Ibn Kathir and Hafidh Asqalani have written that the name of the wife of Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] who gave up her turn was Sawdah. (Bukhari, “Nikaah”, Abu Daud, “Nikaah”, Tabakath Ibn Sa’ad “Usd-ul-Ghaabah”, Ashaabah, “Biography of Sawdah”).
(15) Imam Bukhari has written that Abu Hurairah has said that the Muslims were victorious in the war of Khahybar and during the war there was a man who seemed to be fighting very bravely our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] said that he would go to hell. (Sahih Bukhari, “Al Khaibar”)
Hafidh Asqalani writes that it is implied, from the above narration, that Abu Hurairah was present in the war of Khaybar. I (Asqalani) feel that when writing this narration, Imam Bukhari did not give his full attention, because Abu Hurairah came to our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] to become a Muslim after the war of Khaybar. Imam Bukhari has also written, in the same chapter, that Abu Hurairah came to see Our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] when he was dividing the spoils of war and that the Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] gave some to Abu Hurairah is well. (Fath-ul-Baari, “Khaybar” by Hafidh Asqalani)
Hafidh Ibn Kather, Hafidh Ibn Alquayaam, Imam Ibn Atheer and Hafidh Asqalani write that Abu Hurairah went to Madinah to see our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] In Madina he prayed Salaah, someone else lead the Salaah prayer, after the prayers Abu Hurairah learnt that our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] has gone to war at Khaybar. Abu Hurairah also traveled to Khaybar, but when he reached Khaybar the war has ended and our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] was dividing the spoils of war.
(Sirat un Nabi and Zahdual Maad chap Khaybar, Usdual Gahbah and Al Sabaah biography of Abu Hurairah by Ibn Kathir, Ibn Quayum, Ibn Atheer and Hafidh Asqalani).
(16)Imam Muslim writes that Abu Hurairah reported that our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] said that AllahAlmighty created the earth on Saturday, the mountains on Sunday, the trees on Monday, mad things on Tuesday, light on Wednesday, animals on Thursday and on Friday, Prophet Aadam was created.(SaHiH Muslim, “Al munfiqee”)
Hafidh Ibn Kathir has said that this is an odd narration. Imam Bukhari and Imam Ibne Madani were not satisfied with this narration. The scholars of Ahadith have said that theses are not the words of our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace], but are the words of Kaab who was a Jew and who embraced Islam. The narrators of this Hadith have mistaken the words of Kaab to be the words of our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace]. Imam Bayhaqi has also rejected this Hadith. There is more concrete proof that this narration is not authentic because Allah, Almighty has said in the Qur’an that the earth and the skies were created in six days. How can our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] say anything, which goes against the Qur’an?
(Tafsir Ibn Kathir, surat-ul-Baqarah, verse 29, surat-ul-a’raaf, verse 54 and Tarikh Ibn Kathir, volume 1, “World Creation” by Ibn Kathir)
(17)Imam Muslim writes that Ibn Abbas reported that when Abu Sufiyaan became a Muslim, he said to the Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] that he had a most beautiful girl in the whole of Arabia. Her name is Ummay Habeebah. Abu Sufiyaan then said that he wished to her marry with the Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace]. (Sahih Muslim, “Fadaa’il abu Sufiyaan”)
Imam Nawawi has written that the objection to this narration is that Abu Sufiyaan became a Muslim in the 8th year of Hijrah which was after the victorious war of Makkah. At this time Ummay Habeebah was already the wife of our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace]. How, therefore, can Abu Sufiyaan ask our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] to marry his daughter again? It is said that the narrator of this Hadith is weak. If Abu Sufiyaan did wish to marry this daughter to the Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] again, he would not need to mention that she was the most beautiful girl in whole of Arabia, and that her name was Ummay Habeebah. If he did wish to marry his daughter again, in Abu Sufiyaan’s presence, all he had to do was to make a request. I think that the first answer is more authentic.
(Sharh Muslim, “Fadaa’il Abu Sufiyaan” by Imam Nawawee)
Hafidh Ibn Kathir writes that Imam Muslim has said that Abu Sufiyaan made a request to our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] to marry Ummay Habeebah when Abu Sufiyaan became a Muslim. This statement is not true. Ibn Hazm has said that this is a fabricated Hadith and it is made up by Ikraamah bin Ammaar. The other scholars of Ahadith say that we should not call this a fabricated Hadith but we should say that the narrator has made a mistake.
(Sirat-un-nabi and Tareekh Ibn Kathir, “Nikaah of Ummay Habeebah”, by Hafidh Ibn Kathir)
Hafidh Asqalani, Hafidh ibn Atheer and Hafidh Ibn Asakir write that the scholars of Ahadith have objected to this Hadith, because it has been proved that Ummay Habeebah had already, been married to our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] when Abu Sufyan became a Muslim. There is a famous narration that there was an agreement between the Muslims of Madeenah and the non-believers of Makkah, but non-believers of Makkah did not abide by the agreement and the Muslim of Madeenah announced that they would cancel the agreement. Abu Sufyan went to his daughter’s house in Madeenah. As Abu Sufyan was just about to sit on a bed which, was in the room, Ummay Habeebah asked her Father to wait. She removed the bedspread and said that it was the bedspread of the Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace]. Abu Sufyan then said to his daughter that you changed.
(Asahbah Usd-ul-Ghaabah, Ibn Asahquir, “Biography of Ummay Habibah” by Hafidh Asqalani, Ibn Atheer and Ibn Askhir)
Hafidh Ibn Taymiyyah writes that Imam Muslim has written those types of narration to which Scholars of Ahadith have objected e.g. AllahAlmighty made the skies and earth in seven days, Abu Sufiyaan asked our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] to marry his daughter after becoming Muslim, Another narration, in the book Salaah, where it can be interpreted that our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] had two sons called Ibrahim, (When we know that our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] had only one son called Ibrahim) At-Tawasul, Uloom Hadith and Fatwaa Ibn Taymiyyah, vol.18, “chap Maqaam Bukhari wa Muslim” by Ibn Taymiyyah)
(18)Imam Bukhari and Imam Muslim have said that the war of Mustalak happened in 4 Hijree as Musaa bin Uqbah has said. Ibn Is-haaq has said that it happened in 6 hijri. Mustalak was in the war when Aisha was falsely accused of a sin she did not commit. Aisha has said that when she was falsely accused, the verse of veil was revealed. One day our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] was talking to some people and he said “Some people have falsely accused my wife, but I can only see goodness in her”. From the evidence, Saad bin Maas, stood up and said “If the person who has falsely accused your wife is from our tribe, I will kill him”
(Bukhari, “Magaazee” and Muslim, “Tawbah”)
Hafidh Asqalani has written that Imam Bukhari has said that the war of Mustalaq happened in 4 hijrah. Imam Bukhari has made a mistake, because the war of Mustalaq happened in 5 hijrah. I feel that Imam Bukhari wanted to write down 5 but he wrote down 4, because Imam Bukhari also wrote a Hadith in “Jihad” which proves that the war of Mustalaq happened in 5 hijri. Secondly, the narration where Saad bin Maas has said that he would kill the slanderer is also wrong. This is because Saad bin Maas was martyred in the war of Khandaq, (which happened before the war of Mustalaq). ‘Aisha has said, “When I was falsely accused, the verse of veil was revealed and it was revealed after the war of Khandak.” s
(Fath-ul-Baari, “ “Magaazee” by Hafidh Asqalani)
Hafidh Ibn Kathir writes that Saad bin Maas was martyred in the war of Khandak, after which, our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] married Zainab and after that the verse of Hijaab was revealed. This all happened before the war of Mustalaq and the false accusation was leveled at ‘Ai’sha. (Sirat-un-Nabi, and “Tareekh Ibn Kathir” by Hafidh Ibn Kathir)
Imam Nawawi has said that the narration where Saad bin Maas has said that he would kill the slanderer is hard to believe, because all the Islamic historians are in agreement that Saad bin Maas was martyred before the war of Mustalaq. Qadhi Iyad has said that to include Saad Bin Maas in this Hadith is a Mistake of the narrators. The more likely person to have said those words could be Saad bin Abadah. (Sahrh Sahih Muslim, “Tawbah” by Imam Nawawi)
Imam Nawawi, Imam ibn Atheer, Imam Tabaree, Hafidh ibn Qayyam, Ibn Muhammad bin Abdul Wahhaab an-Najdi have written that when the false accusation was leveled at Aisha, Saad bin Maas was not alive.(Tareekh Tabaree, Usd-ul-Ghaabah, Zaad-ul-Ma’aad, Muktaasar Sirat-ur-Rasool, “Mustalak and Khandak” by Imam Tabaree, Imam ibn Atheer, Hafidh ibn Qayyam and ibn Shaykh an Najdi)
(19)Imam Bukhari writes that on the day of judgement, when Prophet Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] will see his Father, he will say to Allah, “You made a promise to me, that you will not make me sad on the day of judgement”. Allah will reply “I have made it forbidden for the non-believers to enter Jannah.
Hafidh Asqalani writes that Ismaa’eelee has said that this Hadith is wrong, it has no origin and it is doubtful. This is because this Hadith goes against the Qur’an. Allah tallah says in the Qur’an“when Prophet Ibrahim [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] found out that his Father was the enemy of Allah Ta’ala, he stopped praying for him” (soorat-ut-tawbah, verse 120) Secondly, when Allah Tahlah makes a promise, it is always fulfilled. From this narration it seems as though Allah tahlah does not fulfill his promises.
(Fath-ul-Baari, “Tafsir” by Hafidh Asqualani)
(20) Imam Bukhari writes that Prophet Ibrahim [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] never lied except on three occasions. On one occasion, members of his tribe asked him to accompany them to a fayre, he said to them that he was ill. Secondly, when Ibreaheem [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] broke the pagan idols and he was asked if he broke them, he said that big idol had destroyed them. The third “lie” was when Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] was travelling with his wife and they reached a place whose king was an oppressor. Someone went to the King and informed him that a person had arrived in his city accompanied by a very beautiful woman whom the king would like. The King then asked to see Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] and asked him who the woman was. Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] replied “She is my sister.” Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] returned and told his wife: “I have told the king that you are my sister. You and I are the only two Muslims in the world and when you are asked about this, you must not make me out as a liar.”
(21)(Bukhari, “Fadaa’l Ibraaheem)
Sayyed Mawdoodee writes:
“The above Hadith, which is in Bukhari and Muslim, has authentic narrators. But it is very difficult for me to believe that Prophet Ibrahim [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] would lie and also our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] would say that Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] has lied. In this narration there must be some misunderstanding by the narrators. The first two “lies” mentioned in this narrations are not actually lies and the third “lie” is fabricated by the Jews. This has been mentioned twice in the Bible. Let us examine these lies. The first “lie”, that Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] said that he was ill, is written in the Qur’an. For this to be proved a lie it must first be established that Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] said that he was not ill but was healthy, by some evidence better then the Qur’an. The second lie: when Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] was asked if he broke the idols and replied: “Ask these broken idols who has broken them if they can speak”.
From the above statement it can be established that it is not a lie, but an attempt to demonstrate that these idols which the pagans worshipped as Gods, were actually rock and nothing else. If an ordinary person cannot call this a lie then how can our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] say so the third lie is one of those lies which has been made up by the Jews and it’s the aim was to disgrace Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace]. In the Bible, book of Genesis chapters 12 and 20, it is mentioned that Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] went to a kingdom whose king was an oppressor. It is mentioned in this book that Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace]’s wife was 60 years old, on one occasion and 90 years old on the other. Therefore, how can a king can summon some one to come to his palace and quiz him about the woman he was accompanying. It is clearly understood that Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] did not lie and that Our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] did not say that Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace] lied. Some people think that the narrators of this narration are authentic and to accept this narration for this reason would not be acceptable because I feel that we would then be accepting that our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] has lied. Imam Raazi has said that when a narration is attributed to Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace], which is a lie. It is better to attribute the lie to a narrator. But I feel that it is sufficient to say that the narrators have made a mistake in understanding the narration.”
(Rasaa’il-ul-Masaa’il, chapter 1, “Tafsir Tafheem ul Qur’an, Surat-us-Saffaat, verse 23 by Sayyed Mawdoodi)
Criticism of Imam Bukhari and Imam Muslim
The claim that the scholars of Hadith have not objected to any narrators of Muslim and Bukhari is false. Not only did the scholars of Hadith criticise Imam Bukhari’s and Muslim’s narrators, they also criticised on Bukhari and Muslim themselves.
Criticism of Imam Bukhari
Hafidh Ibn Hajar Asqalani writes that Hafidh Saalih said: “One day, Hafidh Abu Zur’ah said to me “I have read Imam Bukhari’s Tareekh, and in it, I have found many mistakes.” I informed him “When a person of Bukhara (Bukhari’s home town) goes to Iraq and comes back with new information, Imam Bukhari always reads it. The writing style of these people was quite unusual. This meant that Imam Bukhari had difficulty in reading the narration. This is why Imam Bukhari made mistakes. Otherwise, he is the best from among all the scholars of Kharasaan”
(Tahdheeb ul Tahdheeb, By Hafidh Asqalani, biography of Imam Bukhari)
Imam Muslim writes, “In our time some, people think that they are scholars of Hadith. They have made up false conditions in order to accept Hadith. One of them says, “When you take a narration of Hadith from a narrator, you must make sure that the narrator and his narrator have met. It is not enough that they were simply alive at the same time.” This is an innovation because none of the previous great scholars of Hadith have mentioned this condition. This condition is very wrong, and I refute this condition in case people who are less knowledgeable might accept this.
(Sahih ul Muslim, Chapter Mu’an‘an)
Imam Nawawi writes that the condition which Imam Muslim has discussed above, has been introduced by Imam Bukhari and his teacher, Imam Ali bin Madeenee.
(Sharh Muslim, Chapter Mu’an’an)
Imam Bukhari writes that Malik was a companion of the Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace], and Bohainah was his mother.
(Bukhaari, Chapter Salaah)
Hfidh Ibn Hajar Asqalani has said “Imam Bukhari has made two mistakes. Malik was not the companion of Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] and that Bohaina was not Malik’s mother.
(Fath-ul-Baari, “Kitaab-us-Salaah”, chapter 38)
Hafidh Dhahabi and Hafidh Ibn Kathir write that when Imam Bukhari took narrations from the Syrians, he made mistakes.
(Tadhkaraat-ul-Huffaad, and Taareekh Ibn Kathir Biography of Imam Muslim)
Hafidh Iraqi writes: “Imam Ibn Abi Hatam (The famous Scholar of Al-Jarhu Ta’deel) compiled all of the mistakes that were apparent in Imam Bukhari’s “Taareekh”, into one book entitled “Khata’ ul Bukhari”(Mistakes of Bukhari).
(Preface of Ibn Al Salaah, by Hafidh Iraqi)
Imam Ibn Abi Hatam wrote: “When Imam Abu Hatam and Imam Abu Zur’ah heard that Imam Bukhari said that the Qur’an is creation, they stopped taking any narrations of Hadith from him.
(Al Jarhu Ta’deel, by Imam Ibn Hatam, “Biography of Imam Bukhari”)
Hafidh Asqalani writes:
“In 250 Hijri, Bukhari went to Nashapur. The people of Nashapur rolled out a red carpet for him. Imam Zuhlee, (who was Imam Bukhari’s teacher,) also came to embrace him. Prior to Imam Bukhari’s reception, Imam Zuhlee announced that Imam Bukhari was to make a speech and that no-one should ask him: “Wether the Qur’an was a creation. He feared that if Imam Bukhari’s answer contradicted Imam Zuhlee’s belief then a difficult situation could arise, could expose both scholars to which ridicule by other sects. Everything went well for the first two days but on the third day someone in the audience asked the question, “Are the words of Qur’an a creation of Allah?” Imam Bukhari replied: “Our actions are creation and the words which we recite are part of our actions.” Some of the audience perceived that Imam Bukhari had called the Qur’anic word a creation. This misunderstanding resulted in commotion, which prompted the house-owner to ask everyone to leave. When Imam Zuhlee, (who was not present at the speech,) heard of Imam Bukhari’s public statement about the Qur’anic words he announced: “The Qur’an is not a creation. Any one claiming otherwise is an innovator and everyone must avoid him at all times.” He also added, “Anyone who attends Imam Bukhari’s meetings, will be considered an innovator too.” With the exception of Ahmad Bin Salmah and Imam Muslim, Imam Bukhari was outcast by everyone. Imam Muslim played a neutral part in this debate. After this incident, Imam Muslim did not include any Hadith narrated by either Imam Bukhari or Imam Zuhlee in Sahih Muslim. I think that Imam Muslim acted justly in this matter. A few days later, Imam Zuhlee declared that it was not possible for him to live in the same city as Imam Bukhari. Imam Bukhari then left Nashapur for his hometown Bukharah. Also Imam Zuhlee, through his supporters, publicised in Bukhaara, that Imam Bukhari held controversial beliefs. After arriving in Bukhaarah, Imam Bukhari faced much hostility. His adversaries made it difficult for him to live in Bukhara. This provoked him to leave for Sammarqand. On his way he was informed that the people of Sammarqand were also split concerning his views. Imam Bukhari then prayed, “Oh Allah! if your vast earth is being reduced on me, I ask to be freed from this life.” History records that Imam Bukhari died on the 1st of Shawwaal, 256 Hijri - one month after his prayer.
(Muqaddamah Fath-ul-Baari, “Biography of Imam Bukhari”)
Imam Subqi writes that at the time Imam Zuhlee heard the news that Imam Bukhari had given an answer to a question related to the Qur’an, which was vague and was open to many interpretation, he received a letter from scholars of Hadith who lived in Baghdad. The content of this letter stated that the scholars advised Imam Bukhari not to make any statements regarding the question “Is the Qur’an a creation or not?” but he ignored their advice and made the statement anyway. This statement made the people to quibble amongst themselves. (Tabakt-ush- Shaafi’ah, by Imam Subqui, “Biography of Imam Bukhari”)
Hafidh Asqalani and Imam Dhahabi write that even after this dispute Imam Bukhari included 43 Ahadith narrated by Imam Zuhlee in his book, Sahih ul Bukhari. To avoid embarrassment, each Hadith was written not the narrators name disguised, e.g. narrated by Mohammad or ibn Abdullah or ibn Khalid, to attribute Imam Zuhlee to his Father’s or grandFather’s names.
(Tahadeeb ut Tahadeeb and Alaam un Nubalaa by Hafidh Asqalani and Hafidh Dhahabi, “Biography of Imam Zuhlee”)
Criticism of Imam Muslim
Hafidh Asqalani writes:
“May Allah send blessing on Imam Bukhari. Imam Bukhari has collected the principle of Hadith (Usool) and taught it to people. After Imam Bukhari anything which has been written, includes quotes from his book. Imam Muslim has written books whose content has been taken from Imam Bukhari’s books. Imam Muslim has copied Imam Bukhari’s books and did not have the courtesy to acknowledge him in them. Imam Darr Qutni said that if Imam Bukhari did not exist there would not even be the name of Imam Muslim. Imam Muslim has done nothing special, what he has done that he has is taken some Ahadith from Imam Bukhari’s book and has added some more Ahadith to complete his book, Sahih Muslim.
(Muqaddamah Fath-ul-Baari, “Biography of Imam Bukhari”)
If this accusation was made at any other scholar of Ahadith, every one would have called him stealer of Ahadith and all his narrations would have been rejected.
If someone wishes to explore the criticism of Imam Muslim and Bukhari, they should study “Al-JarH-ut- wat Ta’deel”. These books have been written by different scholars of Ahadith and describe, in detail, the characteristics of narrators. (e.g. Wether they were weak, authentic, knowledgeable, good or bad natured, and which sect they belonged to)
Narrators of Bukhari and Muslim that have been criticised by the scholars of Hadith
Many Narrators of Imam Muslim and Bukhari have been criticised overwhelmingly. The claim that no one has criticised them clearly illustrates the claimant’s lack of knowledge at the subject matter.
The following are some narrators of Muslim and Bukhari who have been criticised by the scholars of Ahadith. The information below has been obtained from the books of Hafidh Asqalani and Hafidh Dhahabi.
1) Uthmaan bin Abi Shaybah (Teacher and narrator of Imam Bukhari and Muslim)
Imam Ajaali has said that he used to tell such types of Hadith that when we had heard them, it would make us pray to Allah to keep our Imaan alive and take refuge in Allah. An example of the type of narrations he used to tell is: “Our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace] attended a festival of non-believers and respected their idols the way they respected them. This is the reason why two angels refused to pray behind our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace].” Scholars of Hadith have said that this situation would never arise with our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace]. This Hadith is most definitely fabricated. Uthmaan, also used to interpret the Qur’an incorrectly and disrespected it by changing its words.
When he recited the verses of the Qur’an like surah al-hadid verse 13, Allah says ‘fa-duri-ba-bay-na-hum-bisoorilla hu baab’ meaning ‘a wall will be set up between the Muslims and the hypocrites in which there is a door’.
He used to recite the verse like this, ‘fa-duri-ba-bay-na-hum-bi-sunnuh-rin-la-hu-naab’ which meant that ‘there will be placed between them a cat and it will have a tail’. Another verse which he mocked was Surah Yusuf verse 10, ‘fa-lamma-jah-haza-bi-ja-haz-za-hum-ja-ala-assiqa-yata-fi-rahli-akhi-hi’ which means, ‘when he makes ready their baggage, he put the drinking cup in the saddle bag of his brother’.
Ibn Abi Shayba used to recite that verse in the following way, ‘fa-lumma-jah-haza-hum-bi-ja-haz-zi-him-ja-ala-asifinata-fi-rahli-akhi-hi’, which means ‘and when he made ready the baggage, he put a ship in the saddle bag of his brother’.
In Surah al-Shuara verse 130, ‘fa-izaa-ba-tash-tum-ba-tash-tum-jabbaa-reen’ which means, ‘and when you lay your hands on anyone, you lay hands in unjustice’. Ibn Abi Shaybah used to recite the verse like this, ‘fa-iza-ba-tash-tum-ba-tush-tum-kabbah-zeen’, which means ‘and when you lay your hands on anyone, you lay hands on naan (Pitta Bread)’. He also recited many other verses of the Qur’an like this and the verses mentioned above are some examples of this. He was a very humorous person. That is why whenever he used to recite the Qur’an he read it humorously, which was wrong. I think that Ibn Abi Shaybah might have repented this sin before he died.
(Mizaan I’tidaal and tadhkarat-ul-huffaaz by Hafidh Dhahabi)
Hafidh Asqalani writes:
Despite the above, Imam Bukhari has taken 53 narrations and Imam Muslim has taken 135 narrations from him. As usual, some scholars of Ahadith praised him.
(Mizaan-ut-ta’deeb by Hafidh Dhahabi And Hafidh Asqalani, “Biography of Uthmaan bin Abi Shaybah”)
Imam Daar al Qutini wrote a book called Kitaab-al-Tas-heef. In this book, he wrote various names of scholars who made fun of the Qur’an when reciting it. He wrote that the scholar who made the most fun of the Qur’an was Imam Ibn Abi Shaiba.
It could be that Ibn Abi Shaybah was reciting a different mode of recitiation, of which there are seven, and so this would support his reading of the Qur’an.
If we look at the different modes of recitation, we find that the general meaning does not change, but there may be slight variations like, for example, in one mode of recitation, the third aayah of surat-ul-faatiha, is ‘maaliki yaumiddeen’ - owner of the day of judgement. In another mode it is pronounced as ‘maliki yaumiddeen’ – king of the day of judgment. Both of these ways have been confirmed by Prophet Muhammad [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] and angel Gibreel [May Allah bless him and grant him peace]. If someone was to introduce another mode of recitation, other than the ones which have been confirmed, it is totally unacceptable. When we look to the alterations which Ibn Abee Shaibah made, we see that both the meaning and wording is altered. This means that the way that he used to recite the Qur’an was totally contrary to the Sharee’ah.
Also, Imam Dhahabi, said in his book, meezaan-ul-I’tidaal, and tadhkarat-ul-huffaaz, that maybe, Ibn Abi Shaybah, repented for reading the Qur’an incorrectly. From this, it is proved that if the way that Ibn Abi Shaybah recited the Qur’an was correct there was no need for him to repent from the way he used to recite the Qur’an.
2) Abu bin Abas bin Sahaal Ansari Saad
Imam Dahabi has said that Saad was not strong in knowledge of Ahadith. Yahyaa bin Mu’een has said that he was a weak narrator. Imam Ahmed has said that he used to tell Hadith which no one had any knowledge about. Naas’ee has said that he had minimum knowledge of Hadith. Dahabi has said that Imam Bukhari has said that he had minimum knowledge of Hadith, but nevertheless, Imam Bukhari has taken Hadith narration from him. The narration, which Imam Bukhari took, is that of the Excellency of Ibrahim [May Allah bless him and grant him peace].
(Mizaan-ul-Itihdaal and Ta’zeeb-ut-ta’zeeb by Hafidhh Dhahabi and Hafidhh Asqalani)
3) Ahmed bin Salaah Abu Ja’far Nasaa’ee(Teacher of Imam Bukhari)
Nasaa’ee has said that he is not authentic and he has not accepted his narrations. Imam Ahmed had evicted him from his meetings. Yahyaa bin Mu’een has said that he was a lair but some scholars of Hadith had praised him.( Mizaan-ul-Itihdaal and Ta’zeeb-ut-ta’zeeb by Hafidhh Dhahabi and Hafidhh Asqalani, “Biography of Ahmed bin Salaah”)
4) Ayyoob bin Sulaimaan-il-Madinee (Teacher of Imam Bukhari)
Abul-Fath has said that the type of Ahadith he told were not told by anyone else. Daar Qutni has made similar remarks. Ibn Abi Burr has said that Sulaimaan was weak. But some scholars of Hadith have praised him.( Mizaan-ul-Itihdaal and Ta’zeeb-ut-ta’zeeb by Hafidhh Dhahabi and Hafidhh Asqalani, “Biography of Ayyoob bin Sulaimaan)
5) Ja’far bin Sulaimaan-il-Ba’see(Narrator of Imam Muslim)
Yahyah Bin Sa’eed has said that his Hadith should not be written and that he was a weak narrator. Ibn ul Madinee has said that he used to tell the sort of narrations that no one else would relate. Ibn Maadi has said that his narration has no value. Ibn Sa’eed has said that he was authentic but weak. Once, a scholar of Ahadith asked Ja’far if he swore at Abu bakr and Umar. Ja’far replied: “I do not swear at them but I hate them.” Ahmed bin Madaam has said that once he attended a meeting of Yazeed bin Zoorah accompanied by Jafaar. Yazeed bin Zoorah said to the people “Do not let him (Ja’far) come near me because he swore at Abu Bakr and Umar.” Imam Bukhari has said that he was a weak narrator. Dowri has said that whenever Ja’far talked about Mu’awiah, he used to swear at him and whenever he used to talk about Ali, he used to cry. ( Mizaan-ul-Itihdaal and Ta’zeeb-ut-ta’zeeb by Hafidhh Dhahabi and Hafidhh Asqalani “Biography of Ja’far bin Sulaimaan”)
6) Harab bin Maymoon al basri (Narrator of Imam Muslim)
Imam Bukhari has said that he used to make many mistakes in Hadith but he was a truthful person. One day Harab brought a box and said that the box contained pictures of the family of Qaroon. He then showed these pictures. But what he said was a big lie. Imam Bukhari Ibn Ali and Abdullah have said that he was a weak narrator. Asqalani has said that he was a big liar but some people have still praised him.(Mizaan-ut-Ta’deeb, Dhahabi and Asqalani, “Biography of Harab bin Maymoon Al Basri”)
7) Husain Bin Ibraahim Al quramaani (Narrator of Imam Muslim and Bukhari)
Nasaa’ee has said that he was not an expert in the knowledge of Hadith. Ibn Adee has said that whenever he told Hadith he made mistakes. Imam Ahmed has rejected his narrations. Uqalee has said that his Hadith are doubtful. Ibn Madeenee has said he was a Qadiree (One from a deviant sect) but he was authentic. As always, some people have still praised him. ( Mizaan-ul-Itihdaal and Ta’zeeb-ut-ta’zeeb by Hafidhh Dhahabi and Hafidhh Asqalani “Biography of Husain Bin Ibrahim Al quramaani”)
8) Zakariyyah bin Yahyaa Ath-thaani(Teacher of Imam Bukhari)
Daar Qutni has said that he had no knowledge of Hadith and he used to tell the type of Hadith, which no-one would tell. Haakim had said that he was a weak narrator and used to make many mistakes in narration. Bukhari has said that the scholars of Ahadith have ignored him and did not take any Ahadith from him. Nonetheless, Imam Bukhari has taken narrations from him. (Sahih Al Bukhari, Mizaan-ul-Itihdaal and Ta’zeeb-ut-ta’zeeb by Hafidhh Dhahabi and Hafidhh Asqalani, “Biography of Zakariyyah Bin YaHyaa Ath-thaani”)
9) Ayyoob bin Saalih il-Kufee(Narrator of Imam Bukhari)
Abu Zoorah said that he was a weak narrator. Ibn Hiban has said that he used to make mistakes in Ahadith. Imam Bukhari has said that he was Murjee(From a misled sect). Imam Bukhari has mentioned his faults, but nonetheless, still took narrations from him. This seems very strange.( Mizaan-ul-Itihdaal and Ta’zeeb-ut-ta’zeeb by Hafidh Dhahabi and Hafidhh Asqalani, “Biography of Ayyoob bin SaaliH”)
10) Sa’eed Bin Abdur-Rahmaan Al Madaan (Narrator of Imam Muslim)
Ibn Adee has said that he used to relate the type of narrations that no one else would repeat. Abu Hataam and Ibn Jawzee have said that his narrations cannot be used as evidence. Ibn Hataam has also said that he used to tell fabricated Hadith in the name of pious people. Some scholars of Ahadith have praised him. ( Mizaan-ul-Itihdaal and Ta’zeeb-ut-ta’zeeb by Hafidhh Dhahabi and Hafidhh Asqalani, “Biography of Sa’eed bin Abd-ur-Rahmaan Al Madaan)
From the above, it can be clearly seen that the above claim is completely false. The above ten narrators are not the only narrators which have been criticised, but we only mentioned some of the narrators in one specific decade. Hafidh Asqalani has made a list, in the preface of Fath-ul-Baari, of all those narrators, of Imam Bukhari, who have been criticised, by the scholars of Ahadith.
“Imam Bukhari and Muslim have gathered all the authentic Hadith in Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim!!!”
The scholars of Ahadith are in agreement that there are many authentic Ahadith that have been left out of Sahih Muslim and Bukhari. These can be found in other Ahadith books, for example, Ibn Habbaan, Ibn Khuzaimah, Musnad Ahmad, Abu Da’ood, Tirmidhee, and Nasaa’ee etc.
Hafidh Ibn Kathir writes that there are many authentic Ahadith that were left out of Sahih Muslim and Bukhari and can be found in other Hadith books like Tirmidhee, Abu Da’ood, An-Nasaa’ee.
(Ikhtaisar-ul-Uloom ul Ahadith, page 21, by Hafidh Ibn Kathir)
Hafidh Ibn Salaah writes that many authentic Ahadith were left out of Sahih Muslim and Bukhari and that Imam Hakim has collected all the authentic Ahadith, which met the Hadith principles of Muslim and Bukhari, and put them in a book called “Mustadrak ‘alas-Saahihain”. It is written in four volumes and contains enormous amounts of authentic Ahadith. Imam Bukhari, himself, said that he knew 100,000 authentic Ahadith and 200,000 which were not authentic, but in the Sahih Bukhari there are only 4,000 Ahadith without repetition.
(Uloom-ul-Ahadith, page 17, “Bukhari and Muslim”, by Hafidh ibn Salaah)
Hafidh Asqalani writes that there are 9682 narrations in sahih Bukhari, but each narration has been repeated many times. The total number of individual narrations in Bukhari is 2623.
(Preface of Fath-ul-baari, by Hafidh Asqalani)
Even the name of Sahih Bukhari can tell us that there are lots of authentic Ahadith which have been left out of Sahih Bukhari. The full name of Sahih Bukhari is “Al Jamee’ ul Musnad-is-SaaHiH-il-Mukhtasari Min al murree Wa yaamayhee”. The meaning of this is “The short collection of the Sunnah of our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace]”.
(Tah’deeb-ut-ta’deeb by Hafidh Asqalani)
Imam Nawawee and Imam Dhahabi write that Imam Muslim compiled Sahih Muslim from the 300,000 Ahadith that he knew. The total number of Ahadith in Sahih Muslim is 12,000. If repetitions can be left out, the actual number would be 4,000.
(Sharh Sahih Muslim by Imam Nawawee and Tadhkarat-ul-Huffad by Imam Dhahabi)
From the references above we can understand that Imam Bukhari and Muslim knew a very large numbers of Ahadith by memory but in Sahih Muslim and Bukhari only approximately 10% of these Ahadith has been compiled. Hence, it can clearly be seen that there are large numbers of authentic Ahadith present, which have been left out of Sahih Muslim and Bukhari. These Ahadith can be found in other Ahadith books.
How did Bukhari become an entity?
Hafidh Asqalani writes:
Imam Bukhari said “One day we were at the meeting of Is-haaq bin Rahaawiyyah and some-one from among our companions said “Wouldn’t it be wonderful if one of you could write a short book regarding the sunnah of our Prophet [May Allah bless Him and grant Him peace].” This was directed at everyone, but somehow this request became embedded in my heart. It was my good fortune that Allah wanted this work to be carried out by me. I then started to collect the material for the book, which would contain only Sahih Ahadith. I have left out many authentic Ahadith because I thought that the book would become too large. This book is the concise summarisation of the 600,000 Ahadith which I knew. The book was completed in sixteen years.”
(Fath-ul-baari, “Biography of Imam Bukhari” by Hafidh Asqalani)
Imam Bukhari completed Sahih Bukhari in sixteen years. During which time, he continuously edited it. Towards the end, Imam Bukhari did not have the opportunity to make the final alterations because he passed away. Whenever we read Sahih Bukhari, we notice that it lacks fluency and it is disjointed. For example, we may find a chapter with a heading but nothing written in it and sometimes there might be a chapter written but no heading for it. The reason for this is that his students, from the materials that were left by Imam Bukhari, finally edited Sahih Bukhari. The students found that some material was written in final draft, some in rough draft form and some in brief comments on the sides of the pages. Hafidh Abu Is-haaq has said, “I copied the original copy of Sahih Bukhari, which was in the possession of Imam Bukhari’s student, Faraabri. From the material I collected, I noticed that some things were incomplete and some things were without any headings and also there were headings for chapters but nothing written in them. We had to join the material together.”
Imam Baaji said that four people copied the original Sahih Bukhari. These people were Ibrahim bin Maq`al, Muhammad bin Yousaf Faraabri, Abu Talha bin Muhammad and Hammad bin Shakir. There are differences between these four versions, i.e. you can find that Ahadith are written in one place, in one version but the same thing could be written in another place, in the other versions. The reason for this is that when these four people compiled Sahih Bukhari from the original materials they interpreted the material according to their own understanding.
(Preface of Fath-ul-Baari, page 10, by Hafidh Asqalani)
Hafidh Ibn Kathir writes: “Imam Bukhari’s student Hafidh Faraabri possessed the original copy of Sahih Bukhari and at the present time we have this version”
(Taareekh Ibn Kathir, “Biography of Imam Faraabri” by Hafidh ibn Kathir)
There were other students who heard and narrated Sahih Bukhari but those versions have not reached us. Some scholars of Ahadith have seen those versions in the old Islamic centres and have noticed that there are differences among them.
Hafidh Suyyuti writes that Imam Faraabri narrated Sahih Bukhari and that in this original copy, there are 200 more Ahadith than Humaad bin Shakir’s version and 300 more Ahadith than Ibrahim’s version. The reason why Faraabri carries more Ahadith is because he heard Sahih Bukhari from Imam Bukhari twice and others heard it only once.
(Tadreeb-ur-Raawee, by Hafidh Sayuti)
Imam Bukhari writes, “Musa bin Ismail reported that Anas bin Malik said that the Qur’an forbade us from asking questions to the Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] so we wanted a sensible person to come from the village who could ask things to the Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] and we could hear the answers”.
One day a person came from the village and asked some questions to the Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace]. The Hadith continues on the subject. (Bukhari chapter Illum).
Hafidh Asqalani writes, “This Hadith was narrated by Imam Bukhari’s teacher”.
Imam Sun Anni said, “This Hadith is not written in all the original copies of Bukhari’s. It is only written in that copy which is written by Imam Bukhari’s student, Imam Farabri. But I say that all the original copies of the Bukhari that I have seen, I have not seen this Hadith mentioned in any of them”. (Fathulbari, chapter Illum by Hafidhh Asqalani).
Imam Muslim writes, “The Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] said that a person who continually speaks the truth, Allah writes his name amongst the truthful. A person who continually tells lies, Allah writes his name amongst the liars”.
(Muslim chapter Kitaab-ul-Birr).
Imam Nawawi writes,” All the copies of Bukhari and Muslim in our area mention only this”.
Qaadi Ayyad and Humaidi also write only this. But Abu Mas-ood narrates this Hadith with the extra words. Those words are, “The worst people are those who tell lies. Lies are not permissible under serious or humorous intentions. It is not permissible for a Father to make false promises with his son”.
(Sharhah Sahih Muslim chapter Kitab-ul-Birr by Imam Navavi).
Finally, we disagree with those people who claim that Imam Bukhari’s narrations are higher than the Hadith principles, and demand all references from Sahih Al-Bukhari and Sahih Muslim. This demand is wrong because Hafidh Asqalani has written that Imam Bukhari has said “I know 100,000 authentic narrations, but in Sahih Bukhari there are only 9082”On page 107 it says a different amount
(Fath-ul-Baari, page 5)
Of course, the other 90,918 authentic narrations are recorded in the other books of the Ahadith which were written before them.
· Imam Dahabi writes – Hummaam Ibn Munabi (died: 101H) had a collection of Hadith which were narrated by Abu Huraira.
· Imam Zuhri, Imam Abdul Aziz Madani (died: 164H), Imam Hadri (died: 174H), Imam Malik (died: 179H) and Imam Abu Dawud Tayaalsi (died: 203H) wrote books of Hadith.
· Hammaad bin Salma (died: 167H) wrote a book of Hadith that had a collection of ten thousand Hadith.
· Imam Yahya bin Sa’eed (died: 143H) wrote books of Hadith that were read to people by Imam bin Zaid (died: 179H).
· Imam Abu Awana (died: 176H) wrote a book of Hadith about which Imam Ahmad said that his book is authentic.
· Imam Hasheem (died: 183H) wrote a book of Hadith that has a collection of two thousand Hadith.
· Abdullah bin Mubarak (died: 181H) wrote a book of Hadith which had a collection of twenty thousand Hadith.
· Imam Mousli (died: 186H) wrote books on different topics of Islam and one of the books were a collection of Hadith.
· Imam Abu Hanifah (died: 150H) wrote books of Hadith which were narrated by his students, Imam Muhammad Ashaibaani (died: 189H) and Imam Abu Yusuf (died: 182H).
(Tadkara-tul-Uffaad biography of the above names by Imam Dahabi)
Hafidhh Sayutti writes – ‘Abu Waleed, Suffian Thuri, Abi Salma, Abi Suffian and Ibn Uyaina wrote books of Hadith’.
(Tadreeb Al-Rawi by Hafidhh Sayutti)
The books of Hadith mentioned above are more close to the time of the Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] and are more authentic because they have a shorter chain like the Hadith narrated by Abu Hanifah which is more authentic because he narrated the Hadith from the Prophet’s companion or the companion’s students.
Here is one example – Imam Abu Hanifah says, ‘I heard from Ataa bin Rubaah and he heard from Ibn Abbas who heard from the Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace] who said, ‘ Whoever reads the Fajr and Esha Salaah with Jamaat, Allah purifies his heart from hypocrisy’’.
(Musnad Imam Abu Hanifah, chapter Salaah)
Hafidhh Asqalani writes ‘Imam Yahya bin Maueen said ‘Abu Hanifah narrated Hadith from Ai’sha bint Ajarad and she narrated from Prophet [May Allah bless him and grant Him peace]’.
(LesaanulMeezan biography of Aiyasha bint Ajarad by Hafidhh Asqalani)
So this is the proof that the previous books of Hadith carry authentic Hadith. If we find a Hadith in the above books and we do not find these in the Bukhari or Muslim Hadith that does not mean that the Hadith is weak or fabricated, it means that the Hadith never reached Bukhari or Muslim but that Hadith can still be authentic with shorter chain from the above books.
The above evidence highlights the fact that one cannot claim that Bukhari and Muslim are the only sources of Sunnah.
With Great Regret
By mentioning the above references the writers intention is not to insult Imam Bukhari and Imam Muslim. We believe that Imam Bukhari and Imam Muslim were great scholars of Ahadith and their books contain many more authentic narrations than any other book, We have great respect for them both. They have done a lot of hard work for the science of Ahadith and have done a great favour to the whole of the Muslim ummah. We also make Du’aa’ for them, May Allah may reward them in Paradise and fill their graves with blessings and Noor. Amin.
) Usually, when the scholars of Ahadith look at a Hadith they look for narrator’s authenticity (i.e. whether he was knowledgeable about Adieth or not), but if Muslim or Bukhari took narration from that narrator, then any doubt regarding the narrator authenticity is removed. It is said that that narrator has “crossed the bridge”.
 Scholars of Hadith have been divided into two groups. In the first group are those who believe that the revelation is not creation, but do not comment on the words recited from the Qur’an. The second group are those who agree that the revelation is not creation but say that the recited words of the Qur’an are creation. Imam Bukhari was from among the second group while Imam Zuhlee was from among the first.
Whenever scholars of Ahadith write a Hadith, they usually write the same Hadith with different chains. If a Hadith was recieved through five different chains, it is counted as five different Ahadith, but infact it is only one Hadith. Imam Muslim and Bukhari have used this same principle, so the quantity of the Ahadith “recorded” in their books is very large, when infact, the actual quantity is smaller.