at-Tawdheeh: Sharh of Sahih al-Bukhari by Siraj ibn al-Mulaqqin

Assalamu ‘Alaikum,

Recently, the Ministry of Endowments and Islamic Affairs of the State of Qatar has published, for the first time on the modern press, the commentary on Imam al-Bukhari’s Sahih by Imam Siraj-ud-Din ibn al-Mulaqqin ash-Shafi’i (723 – 804 AH) in 36 volumes.

The author, better known as Ibn al-Mulaqqin (though he personally didn’t like this designation as it affiliated him to his step-father and preferred to call himself Ibn an-Nahwi), is a recognised authority in fiqh, hadith and Arabic. He took Arabic from the likes of Ibn Hisham (d. 761 AH) and Abu Hayyan al-Andalusi (d. 745 AH), hadith from the likes of al-Hafiz Khalil al-‘Alaa’i (d. 761 AH), Qutbutddin al-Halabi (d. 735 AH), Ibn Sayyid an-Nas al-Ya’muri (d. 734 AH), al-Hafiz ‘Alauddin Mughaltai ibn Qilij al-Hanafi (Moğultay ibn Kılıç in the original Turkish) (d. 762 AH), Jamal-ud-Din al-Mizzi (d. 742 AH) etc. and he took the fiqh of Imam ash-Shafi’i from Kamal-ud-Din an-Nasha’i al-Khateeb ash-Shafi’i (d. 757 AH), Jamal-ud-Din al-Asnawi al-Misri (d. 772 AH), Ibn Jama’ah (d. 767 AH), Taqi-ud-Din as-Subki ash-Shafi’i (d. 756 AH) and many others.

His students are far too many to mention here and include the likes of al-Hafiz Ibn Hajar al-‘Asqalani (d. 852 AH), Abu Zur’ah al-Hafiz al-‘Iraqi (d. 826 AH), Taqi-ud-din al-Miqrizi (d. 845 AH) etc.

His most illustrious student, Hafiz Ibn Hajar al-‘Asqalani, had seen this commentary, but doesn’t appear to have had too high an opinion of it. He pointed out that although the beginning portion of it carries many good points, its later portion is dha’eef (weak). Regarding the author, Hafiz states tellingly that his writing was much more than his recollection. Hafiz also states that this commentary doesn’t go much beyond direct citations from the author’s teachers, Qutb al-Halabi and Hafiz ‘Alauddin Mughaltai al-Hanafi, with a little addition from the author. Hafiz has also said that the author compiled the first half of the book from various existent commentaries, but as for the second half of the book, it relies solely on the commentaries of Ibn Battal and Ibn at-Tin.

However, as Shaykh Ahmad Ma’bad Abd al-Karim – teacher of hadith at al-Azhar – has rightly noted in his preface to this edition, what Hafiz Ibn Hajar considered a defect in the book in his time has come to be a uniquely important feature in our times. He points out that of the commentaries of Qutb al-Halabi and Hafiz Mughaltai on the Sahih al-Bukhari, nothing but a few disarrayed portions have survived to this day. As for the commentary of Ibn at-Tin, it is completely extinct and no known manuscripts of this once commonly available work exist today.

As a result, this work gains prominence in the vast library of works on Imam al-Bukhari’s Sahih. I have only managed to acquire a set of this book yesterday and, I must say, it is immediately evident that a lot of effort has been put into this project and it maintains a high academic standard throughout (though it is a bit too early for me to say that for definite). In the aesthetic sense also, the book is immediately ‘lovable’.

For those who can – must – suffice on an electronic copy of this important work for now, it has been available here for some weeks now: http://www.waqfeya.com/book.php?bid=2871

Wassalam,

Ibrahim

The Narrations and Copies of Sahih al-Bukhari

Further to my earlier post on the commentaries of the Sahihain, this is a synopsis of an article by Shaykh Dr. Muhammad ibn Abd al-Karim ibn Ubaid (Professor of Hadith Sciences at Jamia Umm al-Qura, Makka) that was published in the Umm al-Qura Journal. The essay was titled: riwaayat wa nusakh al-Jami as-Sahih lil-Imam Abi Abdillah Muhammad ibn Ismail al-Bukhari.

As the title indicates, this essay seeks to list the many variant readings of the Sahih from its author.

It will interest any serious student of the Sahih al-Bukhari.

إسناد و روايات صحيح البخاري.pdf

al-Muqaddamah fi ‘l-Tasawwuf by Shaykh Abu ‘Abd al-Rahman al-Sulami

The author (d. 412AH) is one of the most prolific early authors in Tasawwuf, second only to al-Harith al-Muhasibi according to Ibn al-Jawzi. His works present a very penetrating insight into the developments in Tasawwuf by his time.

Besides one or two works in hadith, he mainly wrote on various aspects of Tasawwuf. His Arba’in on the issues related to Tasawwuf was published by the Da’irat al-Ma’aarif, Hyderabad, Deccan. Hafiz Sakhawi has authored a takhrij of this work that has made it all the more valuable.

He has also authored al-farq bayn ‘ilm ash-shari’a wa ‘ilm al-haqiqah, which proves that by his time, the idea of the difference between shari’a and haqiqah was already in currency. This book is still in manuscript form (in my limited knowledge) somewhere  and I would love to get my hands on it as the title promises it will be a revealing read.

Al-Muqaddama fi al-Tasawwuf

The Most Accurate Edition of Sahih al-Bukhari

In 1311 AH/1893 CE, Sultān ʿAbdul Ḥamīd II [RA] issued an imperial decree to prepare the most critically evaluated edition of the second most authentic book after Kitābullāh. It specified that the copy of Hāfiẓ al-Yūnīnī – the most relied upon copy of the Ṣaḥīḥ of the later scholars – should be used as the foundation and differences from other well-known and meticulously prepared copies should be critically evaluated and inserted in the body of the main text if found worthy or they should be published on its margins.

The task was undertaken by Shaykh ʿAlī al-Makāwī, the chief research scholar and editor of the famous publishing house called al-Maṭbaʿah al-Amīriyyah, and the first edition was published between 1311 and 1313 AH.

After its publication, it was presented – again, by an imperial decree – to a committee of 16-18 well-known scholars of al-Azhar, who were tasked with meticulously cross-referencing and scrutinizing that edition under the supervision of the then Shaykh al-Azhar, Shaykh Ḥasūta an-Nawāwī [RA].

Another edition of this great work was published by the great ḥadīth scholar, Shaykh Aḥmad Shākir [RA], along with the latter’s comprehensive introduction who called it an-Nuskha al-Yūnīniyya (The Yūnīnī Copy). It can be downloaded from here.

Recently, Dār Ṭawq an-Najāh, a publishing house in Beirut has re-printed this edition in its original lithographic print format, which may not be aesthetically very appealing in this era of digital presses. However, credit is due to them for at least bringing again to us this beautiful fruit of love for the Noble Prophet [SAW], no doubt, on the part of the Ottomans. Download this edition from here.

And while we are on the topic of the Ṣaḥīḥ, the Brill, Leiden edition published in 1862 CE can also be downloaded from here: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4

Wael Hallaq’s Rejoinder to Shaykh Nadwi’s Review of Origins and Evolution of Islamic Law

The author of the book Origins and Evolution of Islamic Law, Dr. Wael Hallaq, responded to Dr. Nadwi’s critical review of his book (that was posted earlier on this site).

We have attached the rejoinder that JIS made an exception to publish, in the words of Ml. Nadwi, bowing down to the pressure from certain academic quarters.

In comparison to the actual review, the worth of this rejoinder will immediately become evident.

Hallaq’s Rejoinder