Question from Sis. N. In Detroit [From a long letter]:
I am originally from Iran, moving to real Islam, Qur’an and Hadith. I read a good book by Fazlur Rahman (Chicago University) but it confused me on some points. He writes, Hadith was written in third century after the Prophet. New Trend’s web site says follow Qur’an and Hadith. I am confused please explain why Hadith was not written in time of the Prophet?
ANSWER PART ONE:
(pbuh)? Yes, the evidence is overwhelming. Here is one sample from a prominent companion of the Prophet, pbuh, Abdullah ibn Umru ibn al-Aas. It is authenticated by two distinct and separate compilers of Hadith, Abu Dawud in his Sunan (chapter kitabut al-ilm) and Darimi in his Musnad (chapter on Rukhs fi kitabut al-ilm):
“Whatever I heard from the messenger of Allah, peace be on him, I would write it down so as to be able to memorize it. Then some in the Quraish (tribe) said to me: You write down whatever you hear though the messenger of Allah is a human being and speaks both in anger and in joy. On hearing that I stopped writing and then I mentioned this to the messenger of Allah. He pointed with his finger to his mouth and said: Write on! By Him in whose Hand is my being, no word comes out of this mouth but the Truth.”
Abdullah ibn Umru (r.a.) collected the Hadith he had written in the presence of the Prophet (pbuh) in a book titled Al-Sadiqa. Abdullah said: “There are two things I love in life: Al-Sadiqa and al-Wahat.” He explained:
“Al-Sadiqa is that manuscript which I heard and wrote from the messenger of Allah and Wahat is that land which (my father) Umru ibn al-Aas donated to the cause of Allah and which I take care of.” [Darimi’s Sunan.]
The compendium Tahzeeb al-Tahzeeb tells us that on the death of Abdullah, r.a, the manuscript of Al-Sadiqa was secured by his grandson Shuaib bin Muhammad and then transmitted to the next generation by his son also named Umru. THE HADITH WRITTEN BY Abdullah, r.a., DIRECTLY FROM THE PROPHET, pbuh, AND AT HIS COMMAND, are to be found in the collections of Hadith, which we have under this chain of narration:
“From Umru son of Shuaib from his father from his grandfather.” As Hadith is a very strict discipline, some classical scholars wanted to classify the collection as Mursal because they thought the grandson should have SAT DOWN IN FRONT OF THE GRANDFATHER AND RECITED THE WHOLE COLLECTION TO HIM FROM MEMORY! However, some of the greatest scholars of Hadith, like Imam Ahmad Ibn Hanbal, accept the authenticity of Al-Sadiqa.
What makes Al-Sadiqa’s authenticity irrefutable is that it was also transmitted by OTHER STUDENTS of Abdullah (r.a.) who had nothing to do with his grandson.
So, don’t let anyone tell you that Hadith was not written in the time of the Prophet, pbuh.
FINALLY, spend a couple of months in trying to understand this verse of the Qur’an. It will help you to understand why the Hadith is essential and ALWAYS goes with the Qur’an:
النَّبِيُّ أَوْلَىٰ بِالْمُؤْمِنِينَ مِنْ أَنفُسِهِمْ ۖ وَأَزْوَاجُهُ أُمَّهَاتُهُمْ ۗ
“The Prophet is closer to the believers than their own selves, and his wives are their mothers. [33:6]