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Reliability of the Hadith

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  • Reliability of the Hadith

    I was talking to a friend about Islam -- she's a Christian, an Anglican -- and she said:

    A fundamental part of Islamic understanding is reliant on the Hadith, or the wise sayings of the prophet. These were not written down, but passed on via "lines of transmission"; they can supposedly be traced from one person to the next from the point of the prophet saying it to the point of writing it down. Within the lines of transmission, there is very evident "replication" - i.e. in certain cases where parts of the lines of transmission are unclear, they've been lifted from other lines. From a historical perspective, this makes the hadith as primary evidence very unreliable.


    Is this true? Or no? How can it be explained?

  • #2
    Re: Reliability of the Hadith

    Quran is the primary evidence in Islam. Hadeeth is there to support them. Also , look at the strong way the hadeeth are examined by the hadeeth scholars , its not a joke.

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    • #3
      Re: Reliability of the Hadith

      There is nothing unreliable about hadith.
      Every single narration is examined forensically, be it the text itself, the chain of narrators and other stuff and after all that is said and done, they are graded accordingly. There is nothing like it anywhere else in history, nothing so well preserved,
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      • #4
        Re: Reliability of the Hadith

        Originally posted by Dhimmi17 View Post
        I was talking to a friend about Islam -- she's a Christian, an Anglican -- and she said:

        A fundamental part of Islamic understanding is reliant on the Hadith, or the wise sayings of the prophet. These were not written down, but passed on via "lines of transmission"; they can supposedly be traced from one person to the next from the point of the prophet saying it to the point of writing it down. Within the lines of transmission, there is very evident "replication" - i.e. in certain cases where parts of the lines of transmission are unclear, they've been lifted from other lines. From a historical perspective, this makes the hadith as primary evidence very unreliable.


        Is this true? Or no? How can it be explained?
        this is not true as chains of transmission has been rigorously authenticated!

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        • #5
          Re: Reliability of the Hadith

          Originally posted by Dhimmi17 View Post
          I was talking to a friend about Islam -- she's a Christian, an Anglican -- and she said:

          A fundamental part of Islamic understanding is reliant on the Hadith, or the wise sayings of the prophet. These were not written down, but passed on via "lines of transmission"; they can supposedly be traced from one person to the next from the point of the prophet saying it to the point of writing it down. Within the lines of transmission, there is very evident "replication" - i.e. in certain cases where parts of the lines of transmission are unclear, they've been lifted from other lines. From a historical perspective, this makes the hadith as primary evidence very unreliable.


          Is this true? Or no? How can it be explained?
          Response: There is a misconception about the hadith collections in regards to how they were transmitted. The hadiths were always written down since the time of the Prophet. However, they were transmitted orally. So a companion of the Prophet would write them down, who would then say it to so and so, who then writes it downs and says it to so and so, etc. As you can see in each stage, they and are written down, but transmitted orally. Another example would be like a teacher reading a book to a class and the students write what the teacher says. As you can see, the teacher is transmitting orally, but the students write down the oral transmission.

          Later, scholars set out a science to determine which hadith that were transmitted were most reliable, based on the amount of reliable narrators that can go back to the Prophet in each chain of transmission.

          As for repetition and unclarity, repetition is expected and a good thing because it shows it has been repeatedly taught and wide spread, which helps to determine reliability. And even if there were unclear or for some other reason as to why a hadith is unreliable, then scholars have declared it unreliable. So that is fine. That does not mean ALL are unreliable. It means the particular one is so.

          So the next time you are questioned about hadith reliability, apply the science the scholars use. Ask them how do you know, who fabricated it, how do you know the person who says it is fabricated is truthful, etc.. And when they fail to give good reasoning to your questions, then you can be clear that they have no evidence that the hadiths are unreliable. And if they switch it and ask how do you know they are reliable, do not break down the whole science of hadith. Instead, you can prove it from the Qur'an by proving the Qur'an is true word of Allah (either through its scientific claims, mathematical structure, ). For when you establish the Qur'an is true, this alone proves the science of Hadith is true and reliable because Allah says in the Qur'an to obey Allah, and His Messenger, and those in authority (4:59). And the only way to obey Muhammad is through his saying and the only way we can know if he truly said it is if the science of Hadith applied by scholars is reliable. So the Qur'an itself is proof of Hadith science.

          And Allah knows best.
          Last edited by Al-Fatihah; 09-05-15, 04:52 PM.

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          • #6
            Re: Reliability of the Hadith

            Originally posted by Dhimmi17 View Post
            I was talking to a friend about Islam -- she's a Christian, an Anglican -- and she said:

            A fundamental part of Islamic understanding is reliant on the Hadith, or the wise sayings of the prophet. These were not written down, but passed on via "lines of transmission"; they can supposedly be traced from one person to the next from the point of the prophet saying it to the point of writing it down. Within the lines of transmission, there is very evident "replication" - i.e. in certain cases where parts of the lines of transmission are unclear, they've been lifted from other lines. From a historical perspective, this makes the hadith as primary evidence very unreliable.






            Is this true? Or no? How can it be explained?



            The words of the prophet of Allah
            and the words of some one putting there own addition will be as clear as day and night.

            if a you read something that is not accordance to the middle way (sirat ul mustaqim) in my opnion this is a good criteria to be suspicious.

            saying that the hadith is unrelaible is a trick of the enemies of islam, they want you to reject the deep wisdom inside them.

            but the false hadiths are used by non muslims to ridicule the faith.

            So we have two extremes here that both contain misguidance as the Prophet himself explained in a true hadith.

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            • #7
              Re: Reliability of the Hadith

              Since she's a Christian, make sure you also let her know that even the weakest of sahih ahadith are more reliable than anything her Bible can offer. We don't know who most of the authors of the Bible were... heck we don't even know which language they wrote some of the Bible in. There really is no comparison. If she's willing to argue against the historicity of sahih hadith collections, then 100% of the Bible would automatically go out of the window.

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              • #8
                Re: Reliability of the Hadith

                so much care went into the preservation of hadith, not only narrators had to have good strong memories, they had to have met the person they are narrating from but their character was also taken into account. So if a person was known to drink alcohol or steal his narrations were not considered sahih. If you apply these standards to the modern world we would not be able to believe a single word we hear in the media (in my country we even have news readers who are homosexuals) let alone the bible,
                The scholars of hadith compiled biographys on thousands of narrators, tell her if she doesnt trust hadith she may as well forget most of what she learned in school and from the news as that information came from sources less stringent than the science of hadith
                Each person has inside a basic decency and goodness. If he listens to it and acts on it, he is giving a great deal of what it is the world needs most. It is not complicated but it takes courage. It takes courage for a person to listen to his own goodness and act on it.

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