Judging from my war of wards with most orthodox muslims, i ‘ve concluded that most back and forth arguements are waste of precious time usable in researching, educating and relaxing. This conclusion has to be drawn due to several faults in the orthodox muslim mindset. These includes:
A. AVERSION TO RATIONALITY; i.e , reasoning has no place in religious matter. Ibn Hanbal, a revered 9th century muslim scholar strongly condemned the use of reason.
B. LACK OF OBJECTIVITY; i.e inability to read from a neutral ground, rejecting clear evidences for half-baked apologetics.
C. HERO WORSHIP; i.e only the scholars are capable of researching and drawing conclusion, any view different from the scholars’ is not worthy of consideration.
D. UNREALISTIC STANDARD FOR KNOWLEDGE; i.e you must have studied Tafsir, Hadith, Usul, Tawhid, Fiqh e.t.c under a renowned scholar otherwise it is wrong and even cursed to read even a verse of the Qur’an, seeking to understand it.
E. IGNORANCE; Most orthodox muslims even in their 40s have not read the Quran from cover to cover or a single volume of Sahih Bukhari. Thus, so many theological and historic facts are unknown to them.
All those contradict the teachings of Quran (17:36, 18:27, 5:8, 9:31, 34, 54:17, 38:28, 29) and explains why extremism is on the rise in muslim world. Hence it is barely shocking that they punish apostates with death, legalise marital sex with prepubscent girls and even kill a 4th time drinker.
Yet they have the gut to condemn another ideology more peaceful, tolerant, moderate and grounded in teachings of God than theirs. This lead us to the main aim of this thread, Refuting the Hadith Defenders’ Book. The following is a work by Bassam Zawadi, condemning the adoption of Quran exclusively for religious rulings. For each of Bassad ‘s condemnation in red, i have presented a response.
1) Why don’t we have any record of early Muslims completely rejecting hadith?
A. The hadith rejecter might argue back by saying “we don’t blindly follow people; you are committing the appeal to tradition fallacy”. However, you answer back with Quran 9:100. In this verse Allah is saying that the Muhajirin (those who migrated from Mecca to Medina) and the Ansar (the people of Medina) and those righteous people that came after them have been promised heaven.
B. Now, how can Allah promise heaven to these people when they are the very same ones who transmitted the hadith to us? As a matter of fact they are the same people that passed the Qur’an down to us. The Quran is passed on to us by “Mutawattir” narrations.
C. “Mutawattir” narrations. Mutawattir narrations are narrations that have been transmitted by so many people that it would be impossible for all of the transmitters to fabricate such a narration. However, we have an enormous amount of Mutawattir hadith. We have a list of Mutawatir hadith that teach things that are not taught in the Quran. How can you reject their authenticity with no objective evidence? If we are expected to believe that ALL the Muslims could have corrupted Islam by introducing the Hadith then to maintain consistency we must also conclude that it was very likely for them to have corrupted the Qur’an as well.
D. The Hadith rejecter will respond back by saying that Allah promised to preserve the Qur’an (Surah 15:9) but not the hadith. However, this is circular reasoning. The Hadith rejecter is basically saying “The only evidence that the Qur’an is preserved is that the Qur’an says so.” No objective person will take such an answer seriously.
E. The hadith rejecter might also respond back by saying that there were early sects such as the Mu’tazilites that rejected hadith. However, the Mu’tazilites did not reject all hadith, they only rejected AHAD hadith. So the argument still stands that there were no early Muslims that practiced this corrupted understanding of Islam taught by the Quranites.
Orthodox Muslims, treatment of their historians as perfect is not reasonable. Here is the word of Ibn Khaldun, a famous sunni arab historian; Ibn Khaldun.
Foreword page of Al Muqaddimah:
“The outstanding Muslim historians made exhaustive collections of historical events and wrote them down in book form. But, then persons who had no right to occupy themselves with history introduced into those books untrue gossip which they had thought up or freely invented, as well as false, discredited reports which they had made up or embellished. Many of their successors followed in their steps and passed that information on to us as they had heard it. They did not look for, or pay any attention to, the causes of events and conditions, nor did they eliminate or reject nonsensical stories.”
The absence of evidence is not the evidence of absence. In those early times there were great controversies on whether hadith were divine and binding source of Islamic rulings. Imam Shafi produced many writtings asserting that Islam = Quran + Sunna and condemning those who neglect or question the validity of Hadith. This would have not been the case if some of the early muslims didn’t reject hadith. All these are documented in your history books, go and research.
A. Truely, we do not follow people blindly(17:36, 49:6). The Muhajirin and Ansar were praised and promised paradise but that doesn’t mean we should believe any story someone tell us about them. They had their faults, their choices were based on the prevailing conditions of their time which may be different in our time. We didn’t get the Quran and Hadith from the pioneer muslims. We got the Quran and Hadith from our predescessors who claimed to get it from their predescessors who claimed to get it from the pioneer muslims. Our reception of Qur’an and rejection of Hadith isn’t blind. We examined both literatures. We find in the Quran mathematical, scientific, miraculous and prophetic evidences of its divinity, so we accept it. The same cannot be said of hadith in which we also find discrepancies, fallacies, injustice, cruelty, idolatry, blasphemies, all attributed to the Prophet. So we reject the Hadith.
B. Quran was not collected via mass transmitted(muttawatir) narrations. Qur’an was recorded and compiled in the Prophet ‘s lifetime. Sometimes if you employ rationality, you won’t always need arabic to grasp things. How can you believe that a Book that encourage writing and recording(96:1-5, 2:282) remained uncollected for over 23 years of its dictation till the Prophet ‘s death? The Quran frequently describes itself as a Book to denote pages and cover, not mere recitation.
C. Speaking of mass transmitted traditions(mutawattir), they are overhyped. There is no concensus on the definition of muttawatir hadith, there are no fixed criteria for determining which hadith is mutawwatir or not and there is no concensus on the total count of mutawatir hadith that exist. This is bad enough to indicate that even a muttawatir hadith can be a fabrication.
D. This point is valid against those whose belief in the Quran is based on its promise to be guarded against corruption. But unless Bassam can provide us with adulterations in the Quran as with Hadith, it doesn’t change anything.
E. How can we sure of this? We know the historic orthodox ulamas burnt and confiscated 99% of the Mutazilites’ books while persecuting them. Burning books with counter ideas has been a powerful tool up till today used by the ulamas to suppress the truth. What we have left of the mutazilites aren’t from the horses’ mouth and so may not reliable. Besides, not everyone who accepted hadith in those times accepted them as divine and binding. Some just regarded them as common source to derive helpful hints.
If we want to go to heaven we have to be like those people whom God promised heaven to in Surah 9, verse 100 and they sure were not hadith rejectors.
Dr. Ahmad Shafaat says… Since the companions of the Prophet played a decisive part in the transmission of the Sunnah and Hadith, it seems fitting to examine what the Qur’an has to say about their role. In this connection the most relevant Qur’anic passages are those where the companions or the Muslims generally are described as the best community or witnesses over humanity: The companions continued the mission of the Prophet by transmitting the Qur’an. They also passed on to other Muslims whatever living memories they had of his words and actions (Hadith), as and when the occasion arose. In transmitting the Hadith the companions followed the normal way of the times in which they lived, for, as we argued earlier it was God’s plan to leave the transmission of the Hadith to normal human processes. The companions did not produce comprehensive compilations of Hadith. Only when the time of the companions passed did a more systematic writing of the Hadith started. This was very usual in earlier times. The disciples of a teacher learnt from the teacher but did not write down what he said or did in comprehensive documents. Once the age of living witnesses was over, the writing started. This is the normal human process of transmission to which preservation of the Hadith was entrusted by God.
Again, Bassam repeatedly talks companions of the Prophet, Qur’an 9:100. It is unfortunate because, we don’t even know who these companions are. Go meet a sunni and he ‘ll praise Abu Huraira, go meet a shiite and he ‘ll reject him. A kharjite will reject Uthman bn Affan. There were several sects in those days. There was never an agreement on who were companions and who weren’t. It is also shallow to conclude that non of these ‘companions’ rejected Hadith. As i said earlier, you don’t need to eliminate hadith out of your life to be a ‘Quranist’. What you reject is the authority of the hadith as divine revealation prescribing and prohibiting what Qur’an has not. Like several other books, beneficial knowledge may be derived from the Hadith Books. That doesn’t confer divinity and authority to them. So, while many dealt with Quran and hadith in those days, for some of them, only the Qur’an is God ‘s revealation to the Prophet. This stand is contrary to mainstream muslims’, who consider hadith as divine revealations, capable of even abrogating Quranic verses.
As for Dr. Shafaat argument on why the hadith was not recorded earlier, am not convinced. Reading and writing weren’t uncommon among the arabs at that time. If the Qur’an could be written then, why not hadith? By the same token, the companions should have passed down the Quran orally till over 2 centuries. After all, the ulamas believe the Prophet never read and write and all he did was to recite the revealation.
2) How do you know how to pray using the Quran alone? The Quranites will answer back by saying that prayer has been sanctioned before and that the Prophets that came before the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) used to pray. They say that this also applies to Abraham and that the method of prayer has been passed down unto the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). This weak argument can be refuted in many different ways.
A. First, challenge them to show you only one verse from the Qu’ran that says that the method of prayer was passed down from Abraham (peace be upon him) to Muhammad (peace be upon him).
B. Secondly, challenge them to prove from the Qu’ran alone that the way the Prophets before the time of Muhammad (peace be upon him) prayed is the same way as we pray today. Just because prayer was sanctioned for them, that doesn’t mean it was the same method of prayer.
C. Thirdly, expose their inconsistencies and hypocrisy. They criticize Bukhari for collecting narrations 200 years after the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) death but have no problem accepting methods of prayer being passed down from Abraham to the last Prophet while there is a time span of more than a thousand years between them! They claim that Allah did not promise to preserve the hadith, so challenge them back and ask them to show you where Allah promised to preserve the method of prayer passed down from Abraham to Muhammad (peace be upon them both).
D. Fourthly, the Quran condemns the method of prayer that was present in Mecca before Allah revealed the method of prayer to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him): Surah 8:35 Their prayer at the House (of God) is nothing but whistling and clapping of hands: (Its only answer can be), “Taste ye the penalty because ye blasphemed.” So if the method of prayer was passed down, then surely people would have been practicing it.
E. Fifthly, God says in the Qur’an… Surah 2:239 (During war and emergency) if you (are in a state of) fear, then (perform the ‘salat’) standing up, (walking), or on horseback. Then, as soon as you have peace, remember Allah in the manner He has taught you which you (previously) did not know. So we are to pray to Allah the way He taught us. But note that Allah says in the end of Surah 2:239 that this way was not known to the Muslims at that time. If the tradition of prayer was passed down from Abraham’s time then the Muslims would have known how to perform it.
Don’t show me verses where the Qur’an says that we should bow down and prostrate. No, show me where the Quran says WHEN we should prostrate and bow down (the order) and what we should say in each position. It is impossible and no one can show us this. We can only conclude that the method of prayer that we implement today as Muslims came from another source besides the Qur’an and that is the authentic Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Allah taught us how to pray by using the Prophet (peace be upon him) to show us. The Qur’an says that Allah revealed the Quran to us, but then in another verse it says that the Holy Spirit (Gabriel) sent the Qur’an down to us. Is this a contradiction? No, it’s God sending us the Qur’an down but through the agency of the Angel Gabriel. Similarly it is Allah teaching us how to pray, but through the agency of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).
If you were one of the Prophet ‘s contemporaries, you won’t be asking this kind of Questions. It would be like asking; “How do we know how to turn on the cooker using the cookery book, how do we know how to chop the vegetables using the cookery book alone?”. Salat was a term that predate the Prophet. It denote a ritual involving standing, bowing and prostration in worship of gods/GOD. Zoroastrians, Jews, Judeo-Christians, Pagans within and outside the arab empire knew what salat meant. A more logical questions would have been, “why isn’t the details of salat adopted by mainstream muslims confirmed in the Qur’an?
Challenge A, B, C maybe tasky for those who reject hadith while insisting the mainstream format of salat is the only valid one passed down to us through Abraham and Muhammad. But i don’t find them tasky.
Although there is no chain transmitting salat from Abraham to Muhammad, salat in abrahamic religions originate from Abraham.This ritual have come to us through past generations. Never in the Qur’an is it reported that Muhammad or any other Prophet was taught salat, except Abraham.
Bassam himself never learnt salat from his hadith books. Most people learn’t salat from their parents who learnt it from theirs’, who learnt it from their scholars. If you as a muslim convert begin to search through the volumes of endless hadiths, you ‘ll be faced with contradictions, discrepancies to select from. You may end up with a salat method different from the mainstream. You “ll be wondering why mainstream ulamas insist recitation of fatiha is obligatory whereas Imam Muslim reported the Prophet ordering a man to recite what he can of the Qur’an, not neccessarily Al fatiha or why Imam Bukhari had no word on the number of rakas in his whole collection. The truth is even the scholars didn’t learn salat from hadith. They learn’t it from their community then went ahead picking out those hadith that confirm their methodology and feeding credulous people with. As for those hadith that contradict their methodology, they quietly neglected them.
D. Do you think God would have used the word ‘SALAT’ if they were merely clapping and whistling(Q8:35)? I ‘ll let this go. However, we never said we learnt salat from the pagans. We said salat had come down to us through generations even before the Prophet. According to your own sanctified sources, ‘Hanifs’ who were monotheists, retaining all or most of Abraham ‘s creed existed before Muhammad ‘s Prophethood and could perform salat even before embracing Islam. However much history has been distorted, it remain a fact that salat was a custom in Arabia even before Muhammad.
E. Eventually Bassam provides us with his evidence that Muhammad had been taught salat. But the evidence falls flat in the face of linguistic analysis. The verse has been distorted. “which” and “before/previously” had been introduced from elsewhere by tradition translators to fit the ulamas’ understanding. Here is the correct translation: CLICK.
The verse ends with “….commemorate your Lord as He taught you what you did not know”. “What” here does not refer to salat in particular.
Next Bassam returns back to the issue of salat details and method, challenging us to show him a single verse that teach salat as performed in the mainstream. But as stated, only those who stand for Quran alone while insisting the mainstream salat format is the only valid interpretation can find this challenging. If Bassam and his fellows are so serious about salat, why do they neglect the few details prescribed by the Qur’an. Why do they insist on commemorating Muhammad during salat when Qur’an 72:18 forbid it, why do they recite loudly or silently whereas the Qur’an 17:110 ordain us to recite in moderate tone. You want details and method? Well, you should start from the mother Book.
3) How do you know how much Zakah to pay using the Quran alone?
A. Every single Muslim since the Prophet’s (peace be upon him) time has agreed that Zakah is 2.5% of one’s annual income. Where did they get this information from? If the Quranite replies back by saying “Well I don’t know that’s not my concern. I only follow Qur’an, not men” then tell him that he is not being objective. Because if certain people deceived ALL the Muslims on issues like this then they could have deceived them by corrupting the Qur’an. So they are not being objective.
Zakat is another rite known to the arabs prior to Islam. There is no amount fixed by the Quran to be donated. It is left for the society or individual to decide based on circumstances. Miserliness and extravagancy must be avoided(2:219 17:29).
A. How can we be certain that 2.5% was a divine order and not just a rate agreed upon by the pioneer muslims after consenting each other?
Bassam in another article goes faulting our position on amount to be donated and asking, “what if a wealthy man decide to give 0.0001% of his income?”.
Well, his fate is left to God. Although it is a compulsory rite, Zakat can’t be forced upon anyone by another person. No sincere believer will be so stingy.
Since Bassam finds fault in our position, lets test his:
Supposing a man with a wife and 2 kids give 2.5% of his income for Zakat and barely lives on the rest 97.5%. Then one day, his wife concieves another child. If after drawing his budget, his expenses has risen to 99% of his income, can this man give the remaining 1% for Zakat?
4) The Quran says that men can beat their wives. But we know according to the hadith that this is meant to be a light beating that inflicts a spiritual punishment and not a harmful physical punishment. What is to stop a man from misinterpreting the Quran and beating his wife severely?
A. The Hadith rejecter might answer back by saying that it is obvious that this verse is speaking about a light beating or he may say that the Qur’an orders in other verses that we must treat our wives well. However, such an answer is insufficient because a certain individual’s logic could tell him that the Qur’an teaches that it is a general principle to be good to your wife. However there is an exception to that general rule and that exception is if she behaves in a disrespectful way to her husband. What is to stop a person from thinking like this?
B. Some may even argue back that beating a wife in this verse could be referring to a strong beating if it is necessary.
This is where the interpretation by Quran- Only Muslims could become dangerous. This is where they can misunderstand verses and implement them and it could have horrible consequences.
Firstly, the Qur’an did not permit men to beat their wives. This is poor interpretation contradicting the recommendation of tranquility and calmness between spouses(30:21).
Secondly, the hadith does not help matters. Infact, thanks to contradictory reports, the matter is not clear. It is true that a hadith explain ‘beat’ in 4:34 as a light beating like a tap with a chewing stick! But another hadith report that Aisha was slapped hard by the Prophet and she felt it. In another hadith, the Prophet defended a man who had beaten up his disobedient wife causing her face to swell.
Whether it is heavy or light, beating doesn’t correct the problem. It could even result into a fight between the couples.
B. The word translated as beat by orthodox translator is ‘daraba’, a multi-meaning word that could mean ‘part from’ as in split or set apart(13:17). Therefore most Qur’an alone translators take it as ‘part from her’; separate or divorce.
Thus, the problem isn’t from adopting Qur’an alone but adopting the orthodox interpretation.
5) It says in the Quran to shorten the prayer when you travel. How long do you have to travel in order to be eligible to have this privilege? How short do you have to cut the prayer
Some Quranites may reply back by saying that we should not ask too many questions regarding these details. They might even reply back by comparing you to the Jews that kept asking Moses unnecessary questions after they were told to sacrifice a cow to God.
However, that analogy would be false because the request to sacrifice a cow was specific and clear. “Sacrifice a cow”, full stop. Everyone knows what a cow means. God didn’t say sacrifice a special cow and then they asked what special meant. No, a cow is a cow. It only has one meaning.
A. But here we are told to shorten the prayer. We don’t know by how much we should reduce it. Does this mean that I can shorten my prayer to a mere five seconds? Also, travel could mean different things to different people. Traveling could mean a 30 km distance for someone and it could mean 50 km to someone else. Who is correct? Which standard should we follow?
No verse recommend we shorten our Salat when we travel. The author is mixing up hadith with verses.
Only in circumstancies of fear and emergencies during journey is shortening of Salat specifically recommended(4:101).
A. Whether it entails reducing the rakas or reducing the duration of salat, both are synonymous to shortening provided time is shortened.
Also, no true salat can be completed in 5 seconds, so the author ‘s last questions doesn’t count.
6) The Qur’an says to cut the hand of the thief. Does the word ‘cut’ in the verse mean to cut off or to cut in the sense of making a mark, or could it be metaphorical and mean cutting off the resources of the thief? I once received a ridiculous reply from an individual who said that all the interpretations could be correct! Indeed, what a desperate response. If the person you are arguing with was objective and truth- seeking he would clearly see how difficult this position would be.
I don’t see how the ahadith make a difference. The verse says, cut off their hands and so a direct literal interpretation even without hadith correspond with amputating a thief ‘s hand. That shouldn’t be a for Bassam.
Anyway, amputating a thief ‘s hand for stealing a bag of rice as explained by orthodox muslims is an overkill and a crime in itself because no one would give his hand for a bag of rice. It is injustice to render a thief handicapped permanently just for a bag of grains.
‘Yad'(hand) in this verse(5:38) is plural for 3 or more hands. A thief has only 2 hands so it is false to take hands in this verse literally. It has to be figuratively as resources(freedom, time or priviledges)
7) The prophecies of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) came true from the hadith, thus proving that there are divine revelations sent down to the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) other than the Quran. How do you explain this?
A. Some argue that the Prophet (peace be upon him) did not know the unseen; therefore we cannot appeal to these hadith that prophesy the future. They argue their case by quoting verses from the Qur’an such as
Surah 7:188 and Surah 46:9. However, no one has ever argued that the Prophet knew these things by HIMSELF. The verses quoted prove that the Prophet (peace be upon him) could not have known the unseen on his own, but that does not mean that God cannot inform him.
In my early days as a born again muslim who have rejected all man made doctrines for the Qur’an alone, i used to be disturbed by some of these hadith often circulated as prophesis fulfilled or fulfilling. Overtime, i discovered the truth.
Most of these hadith on prophecies were fabricated after the event in question had been completed. As history does repeat itself, a similar event is bound to be witnessed in future. The hadith on black flags and the mahdi are good examples.
Here is one hadith said to fortell ISIS circulated round the internet by orthodox muslims. We ‘ll prove that this is clearly an anti-abbasid hadith fabricated after the abbasid conquest by those persecuted and betrayed by the abbasids:
Nu’aym b. Hammad records in his Kitab al- Fitan (The Book of Tribulations):
“It is related on the authority of ‘Ali (may Allah ennoble his countenance):
1.‘When you see the black flags, remain where you are and do not move your hands or your feet (It’s a common phrase meaning: “Stay put and don’t get involved in the fighting”).
2. Thereafter there shall appear a feeble folk to whom no concern is given.
3. Their hearts will be like fragments of iron.
4. They are the representatives of the State (Ashab al-Dawla).
5.They will fulfill neither covenant nor agreement.
6. They will invite to the truth, though they are not from its people.
7. Their names will be agnomens [i.e., Abu So-and-so], and their ascriptions will be to villages.
8. Their hair will be long like that of women.
9. [They shall remain so] till they differ among themselves, and then Allah will bring forth the truth from whomever He wills.’”
1. Before anyone, the abbasids were the first to use the black flag. It was introduced as a symbol for their revolt and later on became the symbol of their caliphate.
2. This applies to mawalis, Jews, Zoroastrians and mostly Persians considered weak and insignificant by the tyrannic ummayads. They make up the abbasid revolters.
3. With hardened heart, the abbasids pursued, ambushed persecuted and ruthlessly killed those who they considered rejecting their ideas. Ever heard of ‘The Inquisition’ in muslim history? The abbasids introduced it.
4. Obviously, the abbasids had the state, the caliphate. Perhaps this was fabricated after the abbasids were enthroned.
5. Though mostly Persians, the abbasids pledge allegiance with the Shiites during the revolution, on victory, they betrayed and persecuted the shiites till the end of their caliphate.
6. The abbasids accused the ummayads of materialism and negligence of Islam. They called to Islam and promised to establish a state run by pristine Islam. But they didn’t truely mean it. Many innovations like killing apostates or blasphemer and compulsion in religious matters were incorporated into Islam during their reign. Slavery, concubinage, aggressing against non muslim empires were sanctioned by the abbasids.
7. Names of some of the abbasid army officers include; Abu Muslim Al Khorasani, Abu Awn Al Khorasani.
8. Many of these abbasid fighter were Persians who are very hairy, keeping long hair or ponytail.
9. For the throne, abbasids differed, divided and fought among themselves from their early days down to the end of their reigns.
This is even more applicable to the abbasids than ISIS. Those hadith prophecies on end times, black flags and mahdi were actually fabricated to serve the political interest of certain caliphs or aspiring caliphs in the middle ages before hadith were compiled.
Other hadith prophecies like increased ratio of females to males or relative increase in building of tall buildings are not worthy of the term ‘prophesies’, they are predictable by just anyone and applicable to every era.
Also, proponents of hadith and sunnah also present medically confirmed hadith reports as evidence of divinity of hadith. They forget that many of these medicines were known to herbalists and physicians even before Islam. And sometimes some of these hadith are medically false. Take the case of female circumcision recommended by hadith as an example.
If you are one of those credulous folk preferring to sit at the feet of the sheikh, swallowing whatever he tells you rather than exercising your logical or investigative skills you will fall for these tricks.
The proponents of hadith even go as far as presenting a hadith said to fortell the emergence of muslims who reject hadith as another evidence for divinity of hadith. We know that there were muslims who rejected/questioned the authority/divinity of hadith from the onset and we know there were several campaigns by the sunnis and shiites against them.
A. As the Qur’an repeats, the Prophet had no knowledge of the future except what is revealed of the Qur’an. If he recieved extra revealations whether in his dream or elsewhere pertaining to future events, then he knew the future as even fortunetellers or sorcerers who boast of knowledge of the future claim to get revealations elsewhere from a higher authority. In that case, why would the Qur’an tell us the Prophet knew not the future?