Research on the Dominant Views Where Imam Ṭaḥāwī Disagrees with Imam Abū Ḥanīfa in Sharḥ Maʿānī al-Āthār

الأقوال الراجحة فيما خالف الطحاوي أبا حنيفة


Muḥtaram Mufti Abrar Mirza (may Allah accept and reward him), the Head of Darul Iftaa Chicago, trains students in the field of iftāʾ. One of the challenging aspects of iftāʾ is giving preference to the view of one mujtahid over another. This becomes more challenging when the relationship between both mujtahids is of a very high caliber. While we are nurtured to respect and revere our teachers and seniors, we are also nurtured to maintain academic honesty.

The book al-Aqwāl al-Rājiḥa fī mā Khālafa al-Ṭaḥāwī Abā Ḥanīfa is a case in point. Imam Abū Ḥanīfa (may Allah have mercy on him) is an absolute mujtahid (mujtahid muṭlaq), and Imam Abū Jaʿfar alṬaḥāwī (may Allah have mercy on him) is also a mujtahid in his own right. His book Sharḥ Maʿānī al-Āthār is filled with substantiations supporting the Ḥanafī points of view. It appears that he is one of the most ardent followers of Imam Abū Ḥanīfa (may Allah have mercy on him).

Despite such profound belief in the knowledge and academics of Imam Abū Ḥanīfa, Imam Ṭaḥāwī differs with him and substantiated his differences. To establish the dominant view in these cases, it is pleasing to note that two students of muḥtaram Mufti Abrar Mirza, under his supervision, have compiled this book, which will be a means of benefit to ʿulamāʾ and students of knowledge alike.

It is my fervent duʿāʾ that Allah accepts the efforts and sacrifices of Mawlānā Abu-Obaidah Anwar and Mawlānā Talha Waseem. May Allah grant them baraka in their ʿilm and make this contribution a great thawāb jāriya for them, their parents, and muḥtaram Mufti Abrar Mirza.

[Mufti] Ebrahim Desai
Darul Iftaa Mahmudiyyah (South Africa)


Towards the completion of our iftāʾ course, our teacher, Mufti Abrar Mirza (may Allah reward and accept him), tasked us to make taḥqīq on the non-ʿibādāt chapters in Sharḥ Maʿānī al-Āthār where Imam Ṭaḥāwī differed with Imam Abū Ḥanīfa (may Allah have mercy on them). Hence, we sifted through the latter half of the book, starting from Kitāb al-Nikāḥ, and found sixteen such chapters. We did not address those chapters wherein Imam Ṭaḥāwī disagreed with fuqahāʾ other than Imam Abū Ḥanīfa.

To determine the rājiḥ view of the madhhab, we perused all the books of the fuqahāʾ available to us, whether as printed copies or digital manuscripts, in order to find their explicit or implicit preference in each chapter. After collecting the views of the fuqahāʾ, we validated our understanding and application of the views of the fuqahāʾ by referencing the works of the akābir, primarily from the Indian Subcontinent, though not limited to it.

We arranged the taḥqīqāt such that we prefaced each taḥqīq with a table summarizing the views of the fuqahāʾ and the rājiḥ therefrom, mentioning the rājiḥ first. Thereafter, we discussed the ikhtilāf and brought the discussion on the rājiḥ view towards the end of the taḥqīq, thereby emulating the practice of many of the fuqahāʾ, such as Imam Marghīnānī (may Allah have mercy on him).

Of course, none of this could have been possible without the tawfīq and mercy of Allah, and, for this, we express our praise and gratitude to Him. We also express our gratitude to each of our teachers for all the effort they have made and continue to make on our behalf, especially to Mufti Abrar (may Allah reward and accept him) for his guidance and feedback throughout this project and the entire duration of our iftāʾ studies. We would also like to acknowledge that, in our humble efforts, all our successes are from the mercy of Allah and all our mistakes and errors are from ourselves and from the accursed Shayṭān. We thereby ask Allah to accept our humble efforts and the efforts of all those striving for his dīn and forgive our shortcomings. Āmīn.

Abu-Obaidah Anwar (Kitāb al-Ṭalāq to Kitāb al-Hiba)
Talha Waseem (Kitāb al-Ṣayd to Kitāb al-Waṣāyā)

11th Dhū al-Qaʿda, 1441 – July 3rd, 2020

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