Karim Dad (Assistant Professor, Deptt: of Islamic Studies, AWKUM)
Muhammad Saeed Shafiq (Ph.D Research Scholar, Deptt: of Islamic Studies, AWKUM.)
According to the traditionists, a Hadith can only be considered reliable when its Sanad offers an unbroken series of credible and veracious authorities till the Prophet Muhammad (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him)). The critical investigation of the Sanad had caused the Muslim scholars to make thorough research. if the narrator between the Successor and Prophet Muhammad (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him)). is omitted from a given isnād, the hadith is mursal. This means that if a hadith has an acceptable chain all the way to a Successor, and the successor attributes it to an unspecified companion, the isnād is considered acceptable. There are, however, different views in some cases.In this article the authenticity of mursal and opinion of muslim scholars has been discussed.
In Arabic, it means any thing which was set free1. According to the Hadith terminology it is the hadith which was referred to Rasullullah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) by a Tabi’ee or a sahabi who did not hear it from the prophet (peace be upon him). It is possible to differentiate between a Sahaabi and a Taabi’i by referring to books of biography.
Imam Abu ‘Abd-Allah al-Haakim 2 (may Allah have mercy on him) said:
فإن مشايخ الحديث لم يختلفوا في أن الحديث المرسل هو الذي يرويه المحدث بأسانيد متصلة إلى التابعي فيقول التابعي: قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم
“There is no difference of opinion among the shaykhs of hadith that the mursal hadith is one which the muhaddith narrated with a complete isnaad back to the Taabi’i, and the Taabi’i says, “The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said.”. 3
Ibn ‘Abd al-Barr 4 said:
أما المرسل فإن هذا الاسم أوقعوه بإجماع على حديث التابعي الكبير عن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم مثل أن يقول عبيد الله بن عدي بن الخيار أو أبو امامة ابن سهل بن حنيف أو عبد الله بن عامر بن ربيعة ومن كان مثلهم قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم وكذلك من دون هؤلاء مثل سعيد بن المسيب وسالم بن عبد الله وأبي سلمة بن عبد الرحمن والقاسم بن محمد ومن كان مثلهم وكذلك علقمة بن قيس ومسروق بن الأجدع والحسن وابن سيرين والشعبي وسعيد بن جبير ومن كان مثلهم من سائر التابعين الذين صح لهم لقاء جماعة من الصحابة ومجالستهم فهذا هو المرسل عند أهل العلم ومثله أيضا مما يجري مجراه عند بعض أهل العلم مرسل من دون هؤلاء مثل حديث ابن شهاب وقتادة وأبي حازم ويحيى ابن سعيد عن النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم _ يسمونه مرسلا كمرسل كبار التابعين
“This name is given by consensus to the hadith of a senior Taabi’i from the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), such as when ‘Ubayd-Allah ibn ‘Adiyy ibn al-Khayyaar, or Abu Umaamah ibn Sahl ibn Haneef, or ‘Abd- Allaah ibn ‘Aamir ibn Rabee’ah, and the like, say: The Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said…
The same applies to those who are lower in status than these, such as Sa’eed ibn al-Musayyab, Saalim ibn ‘Abd-Allaah, Abu Salamah ibn ‘Abd al-Rahmaan, al-Qaasim ibn Muhammad, and others like them.
The same applies to ‘Ilqimah ibn Qays, Masrooq ibn al- Ajda’, al-Hasan, Ibn Sireen, al-Sha’bi, Sa’eed ibn Jubayr, and others like them among the rest of the Taabi’een who it has been proven met a number of the Sahaabah and spent time with them. This is what is meant by mursal according to the scholars.
It also applies to reports narrated from Taabi’een of lower status than those mentioned above, such as hadeeth narrated by Ibn Shihaab, Qataadah, Abu Haazim and Yahya ibn Sa’eed from the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him), which they call mursal, like the mursal reports of the senior Taabi’een..”
It is essential to point out that the muhadditheen — especially the earlier ones among them — called every report that had an interruption in its isnaad a mursal report.
Al-Khateeb al-Baghdadi (may Allah have mercy on him) said:
وأما المرسل ، فهو: ما انقطع إسناده ، بأن يكون في رواته من لم يسمعه ممن فوقه ، إلا أن أكثر ما يوصف بالإرسال من حيث الاستعمال ما رواه التابعي عن النبي
صلى الله عليه وسلم
“Mursal refers to a report whose isnaad (chain of transmission) is interrupted, meaning that among its narrators is one who did not hear it from the one whose name comes before his. But in most cases, what is described as mursal is that which was narrated by the Taabi’i from the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him).” 7
Types of Mursal Hadith
There are two type of Mursal Hadith:
- Mursal’e Zahir
- Mursal’e Khafi
1. Mursal’e Zahir
It is the Riwaayah where the Inqitaa’ (break) is Clear i.e. The Narrator narrates from a Hadith Transmitter who is not a contemporary.
2. Mursal’e Khafi
Is when the Inqitaa’ s not Clear in that the Narrator omits his Hadith Transmitter yet the teacher Hadith Transmitter of is also his contemporary but he has not met him. _
Ruling of Mursal Hadith:
There has been a great deal of discussion amongst the scholars regarding the authenticity of the Mursal Hadith (pl. Marasil), since it is quite probable that a Successor might have omitted two names, those of an elder Successor and a Companion, rather than just one name, that of a Companion.
If the Successor is known to have omitted the name of a Companion only, then the hadith is held to be authentic, for a Successor can only report from the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) through a Companion; the omission of the name of the Companion does not affect the authenticity of the isnad since all Companions are held to be trustworthy and reliable, by both Qur’anic injunctions and sayings of the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace).
However, opinions vary in the case where the Successor might have omitted the names of two authorities (since not all the Successors were reliable in matters of Hadith). For example, two widely-differing positions on this issue are:
- The Marasil of elder Successors such as Sa’id b. al- Musayyab 9and ‘Ata’ b. Abi Rabah 10are acceptable because all their Marasil, after investigation, are found to come through the Companions only. However, the Marasil of younger Successors are only acceptable if the names of their immediate authorities are known through other sources; if not, they are rejected outright.
- The Marasil of Successors and those who report from them are acceptable without any investigation at all. This opinion is supported by the Kufi school of traditionists, but is severely attacked by the majority.
To be precise in this issue, let us investigate in detail the various opinions regarding the Mursal Hadith:
1. Imam Malik
The opinion held by Imam Malik 11 and all Maliki jurists is that the Mursal of a trustworthy person is valid as proof and as justification for a practice, just like a musnad hadith . Ibn ‘Abd al-Barr said:
وأصل مذهب مالك رحمه الله والذي عليه جماعة أصحابنا المالكيين أن مرسل الثقة تجب به الحجة ويلزم به العمل كما يجب بالمسند
This view has been developed to such an extreme that to some of them, the mursal is even better than the musnad, based on the following reasoning: “the one who reports a musnad hadith leaves you with the names of the reporters for further investigation and scrutiny, whereas the one who narrates by way of Irsal, being a knowledgeable and trustworthy person himself, has already done so and found the hadith to be sound. In fact, he saves you from further research.” 12
2. Imam Abu Hanifah
Imam Abu Hanifah 13 holds the same opinion as Malik; he accepts the Mursal Hadith whether or not it is supported by another hadith.14
3. Imam al-Shafi’i
Imam al-Shafi’i 15 has discussed this issue in detail in his al Risalah; he requires the following conditions to be met before accepting a mursal hadith:
- In the narrative, he requires that one of the following conditions be met: that it be reported also as musnad through another isnad; that its contents be reported as mursal through another reliable source with a different isnad; that the meaning be supported by the sayings of some Companions; or that most scholars hold the same opinion as conveyed by the mursal hadith.
- Regarding the narrator, he requires that one of the following conditions be met: that he be an elder Successor; that if he names the person missing in the isnad elsewhere, he does not usually name an unknown person or someone not suitable for reporting from acceptably; or that he does not contradict a reliable person when he happens to share with him in a narration.16
On the basis of these arguments, al-Shafi’i accepts the Irsal of Sa’id b. al-Musayyab, one of the elder Successors. For example, al- Shafi’i considers the issue of selling meat in exchange for a living animal: he says that Malik told him, reporting from Zaid b. Aslam, who reported from Ibn al- Musayyab that the Messenger of Allah (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) forbade the selling of meat in exchange for an animal. He then says, “This is our opinion, for the Irsal of Ibn al-Musayyib is fine.” 17
4. Imam Ahmad b. Hanbal
Imam Ahmad b. Hanbal 18accepts mursal and (other) da’if (weak) ahadith if nothing opposing them is found regarding a particular issue, preferring them to qiyas (analogical deduction). By da’if here is meant ahadith which are not severely weak, e.g. batil, munkar, or maudu’, since Imam Ahmad classified ahadith into sahih and da’if rather than into sahih, hasan and da’if, the preference of most later traditionists. Hence, the category da’if in his view applied to ahadith which were relatively close to being sahih, and included many ahadith which were classed as hasan by other scholars.19 Overlooking this fact has caused misunderstanding about Imam Ahmad’s view on the place of da’if ahadith in rulings of Fiqh and in matters of Fada’il al-A’mal (virtues of various acts of worship).
5 . Ibn Hazm
Ibn Hazm 20 rejects the Mursal Hadith outright; he says that the Mursal is unacceptable, whether it comes through Sa’id b. al-Musayyib or al-Hasan al-Basri. To him, even the Mursal which comes through someone who was not well-known to be amongst the Companions would be unacceptable.21
6. Abu Dawud
Abu Dawud 22accepts the Mursal under two conditions: that no musnad hadith is found regarding that issue; or that if a musnad hadith is found, it is not contradicted by the mursal hadith. 23
7 . Ibn Abi Hatim
Ibn Abi Hatim 24 does not give a specific opinion about the Mursal Hadith. However, he did collect an anthology of 469 reporters of hadith, including four female reporters, whose narratives were subjected to criticism due to Irsal. This collection is known as Kitab al-Marasil.
Al-Hakim is extremely reluctant to accept the Mursal Hadith except in the case of elder Successors. He holds, on the basis of the Qur’an, that knowledge is based on what is heard (directly), not on what is reported (indirectly). In this regard, he quotes Yazid b. Harun who asked Hammad b. Laith:
“O Abu Isma’il! Did Allah mention the Ahl al-Hadith (scholars of Hadith) in the Qur’an?” He replied, “Yes! Did you not hear the saying of Allah,
If a party from every expedition remained behind, they could devote themselves to studies in religion and admonish the people when they return to them, that thus they may guard themselves (against evil)’ 25
This concerns those who set off to seek knowledge, and then return to those who remained behind in order to teach them.”26 Al-Hakim then remarks, “This verse shows that the acceptable knowledge is the one which is being heard, not just received by way of Irsal.”27
9. Al-Khatib al-Baghdadi
Al-Khatib al-Baghdadi strongly supports the view of those who reject the Mursal except if it comes through an elder Successor. He concludes, after giving a perusal of different opinions about this issue, “What we select out of these sayings is that the Mursal is not to be practised, nor is it acceptable as proof. We say that Irsal leads to one reporter being ambiguous; if he is ambiguous, to ascertain his reliability is impossible. We have already explained that a narration is only acceptable if it comes through a reporter known for reliability. Hence, the Mursal should not be accepted at all.”28
Al-Khatib gives the following example, showing that a narrative which has been reported through both musnad and mursal isnads is acceptable, not because of the reliability of those who narrated it by way of Irsal but because of an uninterrupted isnad, even though it contains less reliable reporters:
The text of the hadith is:
“No marriage is valid except by the consent of the guardian”;
al- Khatib gives two isnads going back to Shu’bah and Sufyan al-Thauri; the remainder of each isnad is:
Sufyan al-Thauri and Shu’bah — Abu Ishaq — Abu Burdah — the Prophet.
This isnad is mursal because Abu Burdah, a Successor, narrates directly from the Prophet (may Allah bless him and grant him peace). However, al-Khatib further gives three isnads going back to Yunus b. Abi Ishaq, Isra’il b. Yunus and Qais b. al-Rabi’; the remainder of the first isnad is:
Yunus b. Abi Ishaq — Abu Ishaq — Abu Burdah — Abu Musa — the Prophet.
The other two reporters narrate similarly, both of them including the name of Abu Musa, the Companion from whom Abu Burdah has reported. Al- Khatib goes on to prove that both al-Thauri and Shu’bah heard this hadith from Abu Ishaq in one sitting while the other three reporters heard it in different sittings. Hence, this addition of Abu Musa in the isnad is quite acceptable.29
10 . Ibn al-Salah
Ibn al-Salah 30agrees with al-Shafi’i in rejecting the Mursal Hadith unless it is proved to have come through a musnad route.3
11. Ibn Taimiyyah
Ibn Taimiyyah: 32 classifies Mursal into three categories. He says, “There are some acceptable, others unacceptable, and some which require further investigation: if it is known that the reporter does so (i.e. narrates by Irsal) from reliable authorities, then his report will be accepted; if he does so from both classes of authorities, i.e. reliable and unreliable, we shall not accept his narration (on its own, without further investigation), for he is narrating from someone whose reliability is unknown; all such mursal ahadith which go against the reports made by reliable authorities will be rejected completely.”33
12 . Imam Al-Dhahabi
Imam Al-Dhahabi 34regards the Mursal of younger Successors such as al-Hasan al-Basri, al- Zuhri, Qatadah and Humaid al-Tawil as the weakest type of Mursal. 35
Mursal Hadith is to be rejected, since it missed one of the conditions of Authenticity ( The connection of the isnaad) and we don’t know who is missing. He may not be a companion and he may be a weak narrator. However, some scholars have different opinions regarding the ruling of Mursal. There three famous opinions:
- Al-Mursal is Da’eef: This is the position of most of the scholars of Hadith and many scholars of Fiqh.
- Accepted and used as a proof: This is the position of Imam Abou Hanifah , Malik and a famous opinion of Imam Ahmed. This is based upon the fact that it would be impossible for a Taabi’ee who is thiqah to report something from the Prophet which he did not hear from a reliable source.
- Accepted with some conditions: This is the position of Imam Shafi’ee and some other scholars. The conditions are:
That the one who does irsaal is a senior Tabi’ee.
That the hadith is narrated by another mursal chain.
That the hadith is supported by a fatwa from a sahabi or fatawas
from the majority of the scholars or the text of the hadith goes with a good analogy (qiyaas).
1 Ibn-e Manzoor Afriqi (Bearut, 1427 AhH), 281:11.
2 Abu Abd-Allah Muhammad ibn Abd-Allah al-Hakim al-Nishapuri (301 – 405 A.H), a great scholar and the leading traditionist of his age, frequently referred to as the “Muhaddith of Khorasan.” Al-Hakim, who hailed from Nishapur, had vast numbers of teachers in Khurasan, Iraq, Transoxiana and elsewhere. He had scores of notable students, including Imam al-Bayhaqi who was a scholarly giant in his own right. (Tareekh-e-Baghdad 473:5)
3 Muhammad b. `Abdullah al-Hakim, Ma’rifah `Ulum al-Hadith (ed. Mu’azzam Husain, Cairo, 1937), p. 17.
4 Yusuf b Abdallah ibn Mohammed ibn Abd al-Barr, Abu Umar al-Namari al-Qurtubi al-Maliki, commonly known as Ibn Abd-al-Barr, (368 – 468 A.H), a famous Maliki Islamic Scholar. While initially having been an adherent of the Zahirite school of Muslim jurisprudence, Ibn Abd al-Barr later switched to the Malikite rite, which was the officially recognized legal code of the Umayyad dynasty, under which he lived. (Wafiyyat ul A’ayaan:66:7).
5 Yusuf b. Abdullah Ibn Abdul Barr, Tajrid al-Tamhid lima fi l-Muwatta’ min al-Asanid (Cairo, 1350), 1:2.
6 Abu Bakr Ahmad ibn `Ali ibn Thabit ibn Ahmad ibn Mahdi al-Shafi`i, commonly known as al-Khatib al-Baghdadi(393 – 463 A.H), Al-Khatib al- Baghdadi was born on 24 Jumadi’ al-Thani, 392 A.H, in Hanikiya, a village south of Baghdad. He was the son of a preacher and he began studying at an early age with his father and other shaykhs. He was one of the foremost scholars whom we witnessed in his science, precision, memorization, and accuracy in the hadith of the Messenger of Allah e . He was an expert in its minute defects, its chains of transmission, its narrators and transmitters, the sound and the rare, the unique and the denounced, the defective and the discarded.(Siyar A’alam Al nubala: 270:18).
7 Al-Khatib al-Baghdadi, Al-Kifayah fi `Ilm al-Riwayah (Hyderabad, 1357), p. 387.
8 Ibn’e hajr Al- Asqalani, Nukhbatul Fikr, p. 387
9 Sa‘id Ibn Al-Musayyib of Medina was among the foremost authorities in jurisprudence among theTaba’een. Sa‘id was born in 642, during the caliphate of Umar ibn al-Khattab and had the opportunity to meet most of the sahaba including ‘Umar’s successors Uthman and Ali ibn Abi Talib. Said ibn al-Musayyib was well known for his piety, righteousness and profound devotion to Allah; as for his stature in the Sunna, he is renowned as one of The Seven Fuqaha of Medina, and the most eminent of these. He began, as did Hasan al-Basri in Basra, to give opinions and deliver verdicts on legal matters when he was around twenty years of age. (Tabqaat Ibn’e Saad 119:5) 10 Ata ibn Abi Rabah (33 – 114 A.H), was a prominent tabi’i , Mufassir, Muhaddith , faqih and Mufti of Mecca. He was born in Yemen of Nubian parents and raised in Mecca as a client of the Abi Khuthaym family. He was a student of Ibn Abbas and `Abd Allah ibn `Umar. (Wafiyyat ul A’ayaan:261:7)
11 Mālik ibn Anas ibn Mālik ibn Abī ‘Āmir al-Asbahī ; (93–179 AH) is known as “Imam Malik,” the “Sheikh of Islam”, the “Proof of the Community,” and “Imam of the Abode of Emigration.” He was one of the most highly respected scholars of fiqh Islam. Shafi`i, who was one of Malik’s students for nine years and a scholarly giant in his own right, stated, “when scholars are mentioned, Malik is the star.” The Maliki Madhab, named after Malik, is one of the four schools of jurisprudence that are followed by Muslims to this day. (Wafiyyat ul A’ayaan:135:4)
12 Yusuf b. `Abdullah Ibn `Abdul Barr, Al-Tamhid lima fi l-Muwatta’ min al- Asanid (Cairo, 1350), 1:2.
13 Nuʿmān ibn Thābit ibn Zūṭā ibn Marzubān ,, also known as Imam Abū Ḥanīfah ( 80 – 148 AH), was the founder of the Sunni Hanafi school of fiqh (Islamic jurisprudence). He is also considered a renowned Islamic scholar. At the age of 20, Imam Abu Hanifah turned his attention towards the pursuit of advancing his Islamic knowledge.he benefited from nearly 4,000 Sheikhs. (Siyar A’alam Al nubala: 390:6).
14 Jalal al-Din al-Suyuti, Tadrib al-Rawi (ed. A.A. Latif, 1st ed., Cairo, 1379/1959), 1:197.
15 Abū ʿAbdullāh Muḥammad ibn Idrīs al-Shāfīʿī A well known jurist, who lived from (150 — 204 AH). Often referred to as ‘Shaykh al-Islām’ he was one of the four great Imams of which a legacy on juridical matters and teaching eventually led to the Shafi’i school of fiqh. He developed the science of fiqh unifying ‘revealed sources’ – the Quran and hadith – with human reasoning to provide a basis in law. With this systematization of shari’a he provided a legacy of unity for all Muslims and forestalled the development of independent, regionally based legal systems. (Tazkirat ul Huffaz: 361:1)
16 Al-Shafi`’i, Al-Risalah (ed. Ahmad Shakir, Cairo, 1358/1940, pp. 461- 470.
17 al-Suyuti, 1:199; Muhammad b. Mustafa al- Ghadamsi, Al-Mursal min al-Hadith (Darif Ltd., London, N.D.), p.71.
18Aḥmad bin Muḥammad bin Ḥanbal Abū ʿAbd Allāh al-Shaybānī was an important Muslim scholar and theologian. He is considered the founder of the Hanbali school of Islamic jurisprudence. Ibn Hanbal is one of the most celebrated Sunni theologians, often referred to as “Sheikh ul- Islam,” honorifics given to the most esteemed doctrinal authorities in the Sunni tradition. Ibn Hanbal personified the theological views of the early orthodox scholars, including the founders of the other extant schools of Sunni fiqh. Hanbal was a strong spokesman for the usage of hadiths. (Tareekh-e-Baghdad 413:4)
19 Ibn al-Qayyim, I’lam al-Muwaqqi’in (2nd ed., 4 vols. in 2, Dar al-Fikr, Beirut, 1397/1977), 1:31.
20 Abū Muḥammad ʿAlī ibn Aḥmad ibn Saʿīd ibn Ḥazm also sometimes known as al-Andalusī aẓ-Ẓāhirī; (456 AH) was an Andalusian polymath born in Córdoba,. He was a leading proponent and codifier of the Zahiri school of Islamic thought, and produced a reported 400 works of which only 40 still survive, covering a range of topics such as Islamic jurisprudence, history, ethics, comparative religion, and theology, as well as The Ring of the Dove, on the art of love. (Siyar A’alam Al nubala: 184:4).
21 Ibn Hazm, Al-Ihkam fi Usul al-Ahkam (Matba’ah al-Sa’adah, Cairo, 1345), 2:135.
22 Abu Dawud Sulaymān ibn al-Ashʿath al-Azdi as-Sijistani , commonly known simply as Abu Dawud, was a noted collector of prophetic hadith, and compiled the third of the six “canonical” hadith collections recognized by Muslims. He was born in Sistan, eastern Iran (then-Persia) and died in 275 AH in Basra. Widely traveled among scholars of hadith, he went toIraq, Egypt, Syria, Hijaz, , Khurasan, Nishapur, and Marv among other places in order to collect hadith. He was primarily interested in jurisprudence, and as a result the collection by him focuses largely on legal hadith. Out of about 500,000 hadith, he chose 4,800 for inclusion in his work. (Tareekh-e-Baghdad 55:9)
23 Al-Hazimi, Shurut al-A’immah al-Khamsah (ed. M.Z. al-Kauthari, Cairo, N.D.), p. 45.
24 Abdu Rahman bin Muhammad ibn Idris al-Razi (240 AH–327 AH) was a notable hadith scholar born in Ray. He was a noted collector of prophetic hadith. he produced a reported many books on Hadith Studies. (Siyar A’alam Al nubala: 263:13).
25 Qur’an, 9:l22
26 Muhammad b. `Abdullah al-Hakim, Ma’rifah `Ulum al-Hadith (ed. Mu’azzam Husain, Cairo, 1937), p. 17.
27Muhammad b. `Abdullah al-Hakim, Ma’rifah `Ulum al-Hadith (ed. Mu’azzam Husain, Cairo, 1937), p. 17.
28 Al-Khatib al-Baghdadi, Al-Kifayah fi `Ilm al-Riwayah (Hyderabad, 1357), p. 387.
29 Al-Khatib al-Baghdadi, Al-Kifayah fi `Ilm al-Riwayah (Hyderabad, 1357), p. 411-413.
30 Abū `Amr `Uthmān ibn `Abd al-Raḥmān Ṣalāḥ al-Dīn al-Kurdī al- Shahrazūrī (577-643 AH), commonly known asIbn al-Ṣalāḥ, was a Shafi’i hadith specialist and the author of the seminal Introduction to the Science of Hadith. He was originally from Sharazora place in Sulaymaniyah province in Iraq, was raised in Mosul and then resided in Damascus, where he died. (Wafiyyat ul A’ayaan:243:3)
31 Zain al-Din al-`Iraqi, Al-Taqyid wa ‘l-Idah Sharh Muqaddimah Ibn al- Salah (al-Maktabah al- Salafiyyahh, Madinah, 1389/1969), p. 72
32 Taqî ad-Dîn Aḥmad ibn Taymiyyah known as Ibn Taymiyyah (661-728) was a Islamic scholar , theologian and logician. He lived during the troubled times of the Mongol invasions. He was a member of the school founded by Ahmad ibn Hanbal, and is considered by his followers, along with Ibn Qudamah, as one of the two most significant proponents of Hanbalism. In the modern era, his adherents often refer to the two as “the two sheikhs” and Ibn Taymiyyah in particular as “Sheikh ul-Islam”.(Al Bidayah Wa Al Nihaya: 141:14).
33 Ibn Taymiyyah, Minhaj al-Sunnah an-Nabawiyyah fi Naqd Kalam al- Shi’ah wa ‘l-Qadariyyah (al- Maktabah al-Amiriyyah, Bulaq, 1322), 4:117.
34 Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn `Uthman ibn Qaymaz ibn `Abd Allah, Shams al-Din Abu `Abd Allah al-Turkmani al-Diyarbakri al-Fariqi al-Dimashqi al- Dhahabi al-Shafi`i,known as Al-Dhahabi (673-748AH), aShafi’i Muhaddith and historian of Islam. He taught and authored many works and achieved wide renown as a perspicuous critic and expert examiner of the hadith, encyclopedic historian and biographer, and foremost authority in the canonical readings of the Qur’an. (Al Durar Al-Kaminah: 366:3)
35 Al-Dhahabi, Al-Muqizah (Maktab al-Matbu’at al- Islamiyyah, Halab, 1405), p. 40.