History Of The City Of Makkah

I came across a book called "Islamic Geography" by Dan Gibson. The author has presented a thesis based on his research (historical records, archaeological evidence etc.) that Mecca was not the original holy city of Islam - it was the city of Petra instead. Here is a link to the relevant section of the book: http://www.searchformecca.com/Mecca%20Question.pdf Can you look into these claims with academic honesty, and come up with a critique?

Answer:

I have not yet read the entire book "Qur'anic Geography" by Mr. Dan Gibson. I certainly like to hold a copy and read it as it sounds like a very informative and interesting book.

The extract that you referred me to is in fact a summary of the last chapter of this book where the author challenges the common understanding of the Holy City and Qibla in Islam. You might be interested to know that this…

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Objection Against Imam Abu Hanifah

I wanted to know what exactly are the objections raised against Imam Abu Hanifah in the field of Hadith and your response to these.

Answer:

The chief objection raised against Imam Abu Hanifah is that he did not give due regard to the narratives ascribed to the Holy Prophet (sws) while forming opinion on specific matters and would prefer his own understanding of the religious sources and reasoning faculty. It is also said that he did not have a proper knowledge of the Hadith.

These objections in fact are merely product of lack of understanding and seem to have been…

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Assassination Of Ka’ab Ibn Ashraf

Can you please explain the details surrounding the killing of Ka‘ab Ibn Ashraf? Is it true that he was assassinated by the Muslims?

Answer:

I am sorry it would not be possible for me to give a detailed account of the circumstances in which Ka‘ab Ibn Ashraf was killed. Books on early history of Islam and the Hadith works are a ready source of reference. However, I would like to allude to an important premise which has to be kept in mind while dealing with incidents which depict animosity with the rejecters of the faith of the time of…

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Daughters Of The Prophet (sws)

We have known from our childhood that our holy prophet (sws) had four daughters including Hazrat Fatima, Hazrat Um-e-Kulsoon, Hazrat Ruqaeeya and fourth one I am not sure Hazrat zainab (RA), but recently through one of my shia colleague I got to know that they have the faith that our Prophet had only one daughter Hazrat Fatima (RA). Can you refer to me the Ahadith from Sihah about correct numbers of their family members?

Answer:

We do not need any Hadith to tell us that the prophet (pbuh) had daughters other than Fatima (ra-ha). The Qur'an testifies to that:

يا أَيُّهَا النَّبِيُّ قُلْ لِأَزْواجِكَ وَ بَناتِكَ وَ نِساءِ الْمُؤْمِنينَ يُدْنينَ عَلَيْهِنَّ مِنْ جَلاَبِيبِهِنَّ ذلِكَ أَدْنى‏ أَنْ يُعْرَفْنَ فَلا يُؤْذَيْنَ وَ كانَ اللَّهُ غَفُوراً رَحيما

"O Prophet! Say to your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers that they let down upon them their over…

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A Negative View Of The Work And Contributions Of Imam Abu Hanifa

I recently came to know from some of my friends that imam Auu Hanifa was a deviant. He referred to the views of the great scholars of the past about the work and person of Imam Abu Hanifah. He told me that Imam Fakhr Al-Din Razi, wrote: "Imam Ahmad b. Hanbal was asked about Imam Malik. The reply was: “His Hadiths are correct but the narrators are weak.” Someone asked him about Imam Shafi'i. The reply was: “His Hadiths and opinion is correct.” Then someone asked him about Imam Abu Hanifa. He said "Nu’man's opinion and his hadiths bear no value'."

Similar or severer comments have been attributed to Imam Shafi’i and Imam Malik. Some report that they even called him a liar. Please comment.

Answer:

There are two questions regarding these findings. First, how do we know for sure that these are not fabrications? I do not think such great scholars would condemn someone merely on the basis of difference of opinion. We know that a hadith is weak according to Imam Muslim and sound according to Imam Bukhari. A narrative is acceptable to Imam Shafi'i and rejected by Malik. Does that entail that we should side with one and…

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Boycott Of Banu Hashim

One of my friend forwarded some questions to me. Since I couldn’t find any satisfactory answers to his questions I decided to forward his questions to you.

One of his questions is as follows:
History testifies that when Hadrat Muhammad (sws) declared his Prophethood, the Quraysh subjected the Banu Hashim to a boycott. Hadrat Abu Talib took the tribe to an area called Shib Abi Talib where they remained for three years, suffering from immense hardship.
Where were Hadrat Abu Bakr and Hadrat Umar (rta) during that period? They were in Makkah so why did they not help the Holy Prophet (sws)? If they were unable to join the Prophet (sws) at the Shib Abi Talib is there any evidence that they provided any type of support (food etc), breaching the agreement that the Quraysh boycott all food / business transactions with Bani Hashim?

Answer:

Though the basic sources of early Islamic history mention that there had been a boycott by the Quraish with the family of Banu Hashim, yet all of these reports differ in details. It is commonly stated that after the

Muslims migration to Abyssinia Quraish tried to talk the Abyssinian king into handing the migrants to them who turned their request down. This infuriated the Quraish and they decided to come down on the Prophet…

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