Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Interpretation of Deen and Human Intellect (3)

Ghamdi differentiates between Sunnah and Hadith. He says Sunnah is part of Deen whereas Hadith is not part of Deen. He says Sunnah is previous prophets’ practices which have been adopted by our Nabi (ﷺ) with some changes. At the same time he admits Hadith is a combination of acts and sayings of our Nabi (ﷺ). The question arises if Hadith also includes our Nabi’s (ﷺ) acts, how are these acts contained in Hadith different from those contained in Sunnah; what is the basis on which he labels acts contained in Sunnah as Sunnah and acts contained in Hadith as non-Sunnah. Actually he wants to convey that the acts contained in Sunnah were done by our Nabi (ﷺ) as a prophet (as the previous prophets did those acts as prophets) whereas the acts contained in Hadith were done NOT as a prophet. Author’s this view about Ghamdi is reinforced by the Ghamdi’s view that our Nabi’s (ﷺ) sayings and deeds (Hadith) were not based on ‘wahi’. In other words, Ghamdi believes that our Nabi’s (ﷺ) acts contained in Sunnah were prophetic acts whereas acts contained in Hadith are not prophetic acts. It is a senseless view about our Nabi’s (ﷺ) sayings and deeds because it leads us to believe that, while performing acts contained in Sunnah, our Nabi’s (ﷺ) ‘nabuwwat’ remained functional whereas, while performing acts contained in Hadith, our Nabi’s (ﷺ) ‘nabuwwat’ was suspended, and he (ﷺ) acted as a common person (nawzubillah). It leads us to believe that our Nabi (ﷺ) was not all time Nabi for the people; sometimes he (ﷺ) was a Nabi in his life and sometimes he (ﷺ) was a common person. 

 'Nabuwwat' means acts and sayings of the prophet are protected under ‘wahi’. Our Nabi’s (ﷺ) deeds/acts contained in Hadith were done by our Nabi (ﷺ) as a Nabi; it means all such acts are protected under ‘wahi’; it means such acts are mandatory to be followed by the people (unless they are specifically prohibited), and as such are part of Deen. We cannot label any act committed by a Nabi as non-protected by ‘wahi’ because it would mean Nabi was not a Nabi while doing that act , and that he was a common person while doing that act. Ghamdi should be clear about the fact whether our Nabi’s (ﷺ) sayings and acts contained in ‘Hadith’ were committed during prophet-hood of our Nabi (ﷺ) or not. If they were committed during prophet-hood, how such acts may be treated as common person’s acts- not protected under wahi, and not mandatory to be followed being not part of Deen? 

 Quran and Sunnah ( Hadith) are contained in Deen. The importance of Hadith is no lesser than Quran because Hadith is interpretation of Quran. When a reader is reading Quran, he actually not only following the content of Quran but also following its interpretation which is most correct interpretation in his mind. We cannot separate content of Quran from its interpretation which is in the mind of the reader. Therefore we cannot separate content of Quran from Hadith which is the most correct interpretation of Quran; that is why Hadith is a part of Deen as Quran is a part of Deen; both are equally important in Deen. I am not suggesting that qualities-wise Quran and Hadith are placed on the same level; no doubt Quran is ‘Kalamullah’ and as such its qualities are much much more than Hadith but, in terms of utility, Hadith is as important as Quran because without Hadith Quran cannot be understood properly. For instance, suppose we manufacture a complex machine but this machine cannot be made functional without a switch; no doubt machine is much bigger and complex but the little switch is as much important to make it functional as the whole machine is. In the same way Hadith is as much important as Quran is to make the Deen fully functional.

Referring to a Hadith, Ghamdi says our Nabi’s (ﷺ) worldly information  was not as good as some other particular people had. But the point is if our Nabi’s (ﷺ) worldly information was not as good as some other particular people had, how does it prove our Nabi’s (ﷺ) acts and sayings are not protected by ‘wahi’. The hadith quoted by Ghamdi states people of Madinah used to cultivate dates in a particular way; our Nabi (ﷺ) informed them that another way of cultivation may also be proved fruitful. The people understood as if our Nabi (ﷺ) asked them to adopt the alternative way of cultivation though our Nabi (ﷺ) did not ask them to adopt the alternative way; he (ﷺ) only informed them the alternative way of cultivation of dates. The people adopted the alternative way of cultivation which gave bad crop. On this our Nabi (ﷺ) stated the people had better information about their worldly matters. This hadith does not show that our Nabi’s (ﷺ) statement turned out to be wrong because our Nabi (ﷺ) did not ask the people to go for the alternative way of cultivation; it was peoples’ own understanding that they should adopt the alternative way of cultivation.

 Secondly most importantly, there is a difference between information given to Nabi by the people and acts/sayings of Nabi. A Nabi’s sayings and acts are protected under the wahi but information given to a Nabi by the people may be right or wrong; if a Nabi acts upon the wrong information given by the people, the truthfulness/rightness of act is not damaged, if such act is not declared wrong by Allah.  For instance ‘sulah Hudaibia’ was looked as a wrong act apparently, but Allah did not declare this pact as a wrong act; rather this pact aws declared as Fath e Mubeen. Similarly 'bait e rizwan' was based on a wrong information - e.i. regarding killing of hazrat Usman (r.a), but still Allah liked this 'bait' and graced all participants of this oath with His forgiveness. A nabi’s sayings and acts are protected by ‘wahi’ in the sense that such sayings and acts do not happen to be wrong in the EYES OF ALLAH and as such need not be declared BY ALLAH as wrong ones. It may be appreciated Nabis are also put to trial by Allah as common people are put to trial. Any negative incident happened to a Nabi cannot be labeled as a wrong committed by the Nabi; such negative incidents may be  trials to which the Nabi is put.  If information given to a Nabi by the people is wrong, it does not mean that sayings and acts of a Nabi, based on such wrong information,  are not protected by ‘wahi’ (continued).

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