The Number Of Absolutely Authentic Ḥadīths

Question

How many ḥadīths or sunnan have been narrated. Have all of them reached to every human being without changes? How do you explain the term maḥfūz?


Answer

We believe ḥadīth and sunnah are two different things. The term ḥadīth refers to the narratives reported through individual-to-individual whereas the term sunnah is applied to the practices constituted by the Prophet (sws) as part of the religion. These practices have been transmitted from generation-to-generation. All the generations passed them on with their consensus to the next one. This renders the sunan absolutely authentic. None can challenge their authenticity. Mr. Javed Ahmad Ghamidi has included a list of such actions in the exordium to his book 'Mīzān' titled 'uṣūl-o-mabādī'. You can refer to it in order to know how many of these are absolutely authentic. On the contrary one cannot declare the individual-to-individual narratives as absolutely authentic. However, after due investigation in the isnād and text of a narrative one obtains probable knowledge. When one is positive regarding the authenticity of a ḥadīth he is obliged to follow it.

Translated by: Abid Mahmood Hashmi

About the Author

Talib Mohsin


Mr Talib Mohsin was born in 1959 in the district Pakpattan of Punjab. He received elementary education in his native town. Later on he moved to Lahore and passed his matriculation from the Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education Lahore. He joined F.C College Lahore and graduated in 1981. He has his MA in Islamic Studies from the University of Punjab. He joined Mr Ghamidi to learn religious disciplines during early years of his educational career. He is one of the senior students of Mr Ghamidi form whom he learnt Arabic Grammar and major religious disciplines.

He was a major contributor in the establishment of the institutes and other organizations by Mr Ghamidi including Anṣār al-Muslimūn and Al-Mawrid. He worked in Ishrāq, a monthly Urdu journal, from the beginning. He worked as assistant editor of the journal for many years. He has been engaged in research and writing under the auspice of Al-Mawrid and has also been teaching in the Institute.

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