Introduction to the Science of Hadith
Shaykh Khalid Abdussattar & Shaykh Bilal Ali al-Ansari
Notes Take – Spring 2009
Studying the Chains of Transmission Intro
‘ilm – knowledge
‘ilm al-Rijal – the Science of Hadith Narrators
‘ilm al-Jarh wa ‘l-Ta’dil – the Science of Criticizing the Narrators
‘ilm Mustalah al-Hadith – the Science of Hadith nomenclature
Fiqh ul Hadith – Studying the meaning of Hadith
Biographies of every person that is the source of the Hadith have been covered. Many scholars have spent their entire lives on researching and documenting these bios.
‘ilm Mustalah al-Hadith is one of the most technical because there is a lot of terminology. For example there is a lot of research to determine if a person made mistakes in Hadith narration because of weak memory, or a person couldn’t meet a scholar because of death so there is an omission of narration, or there could be lost books by people who have written Hadith, etc.
Aside – Bukhari has over 7,000 Hadith
Methods of Hadith Preservation
Oral Transmission (riwayah)
Written Compliment (kitabah)
If muslims only contemplate written hadith they might lose sight of implementation.
Stages of Written Hadith Compliation:
- First State – Random or Specific, brief compilation
- Second Stage – Personal manuscripts (memorization)
- Third Stage – Non-Standarized book compilations
- Fourth Stage – Organized Books
Writing down Hadith is the easiest way to memorize Hadith. Initially writing Hadith was prohibited because there was a fear of mixing it with the Quran. However Prophet Muhammad (saws) did allow certain companions to write.
Methods of Transmission
Aside – About Character & Knowledge: If you are arrogant then you’ll compound to ignorance. Ignorance on top of ignorance. Knowledge is suppose to humble us. You have to sacrifice for ilm (aka knowledge).
1 – Sama’ : Most prominent – known as Lecture style. This is very common, where large groups of students gather to learn about Islam and Hadith Narrations so that they can be passed down. Certain gatherings can and have been 40,000 strong in the past. Speakers would be appointed to attend these events and then carry the message to far away places. (ex. Imam ibn Malik use to have large gatherings). Being a hadith scholar use to be the educated thing to do. It was highly looked upon and similar to the doctor status today.
2 – ‘Ard, Qiraah : Recitation to a teacher. This is the most prominent method of recitation.
3 – Ijazah (Permission): Less prominent means. Basically a person would go to a Shakyh and get permission to relate Hadith to others.
Other Ways (Not too sure, need more details)
Mukatabah : Written correspondence
Munawalah : transfer
l’lam – Annoucement of Permission
Wajadah – discovery (for ex. someone discovers a book of Hadith)
Wasiyyah – bequest upon death someone gives permission to another
Modern Hadith Scholarship
– Uncovering manuscripts and defects
– Very specific works
– Princeton University has over 10,000 Islamic Scriptures
Centers of Hadith Studies
– Last over 200 years
– Subcontinent Area (Pakistan, India, etc) has really lead the meaning, interpretation and legal implication research
– Saudi, Syria, Lebanon – work on chain and manuscript research