A common Question often asked. Taken from a PDF, page 17 The Gift to The Ahlul Hadith
Question by the Ghair Muqallid "Tell me, why are you called Hanafi and not Muhammedi? So, are you a Hanafi or a Muhammedi?
Answer by the Hanafi "Today you have mimicked the wahaabis and said good-bye to your brain!
Question by the Ghair Muqallid "How is that?"
Answer by the Hanafi "Your question is like my asking you whether it is Saturday or January; or is it Wednesday or February? Any intelligent person would be astounded, for if there were any conflict (in meaning) between January and Saturday, only then would this question be sensible. When today can be the Saturday and also be January then there is no difference between the two. Rather, the question should be, is today Saturday or Sunday?
Is it the month of January or that of February? A day will oppose another day, and a month would oppose another month. I can also ask you questions like yours. Are you a ghair muqallid or a human? Are you an Ahle Hadith or a human? Are you Pakistani or Panjaabi? Just as these questions are incorrect in your opinion, the question of being a Muhammedi or Hanafi is incorrect. Should your question be correct, would you kindly answer the above three questions of mine? The answer to such questions would just be swearing.
Now listen, if someone asks as to why you are referred to as Panjaabi or Laahori and not Pakistani, you would say we are referred to as Pakistanis when compared to those living in countries outside Pakistan and as Panjaabis when compared to those living in Sindh or Baluchistan. In the same way when a non-Muslim asks who you are, you would say youre a Muslim and Muhammedi. This means that the words Muslim and Muhammedi are used when compared to non-Muslims, and Hanafi is used when compared with Shafis, Maalikis, etc. You do accept that being called a Panjaabi does not negate being a Pakistani, nor does being an Ahle Hadith negate being a human, why would being a Hanafi negate being a Muhammedi?"
Question by the Ghair Muqallid "Should we accept that which the Nabi (S.A.W) says, or that which an Ummati says?"
Answer by the Hanafi "When that which the Ummati says is contrary to that which the Nabi says, then, only that which the Nabi says would be accepted. When that which the Ummati says does not contradict what the Nabi says, but only appears to be contrary, then, you yourself may specify the cure for that. The explanation of this has been given by Shah Waliullah (R.A) in the following words;
We do not follow the Imams except for the fact that they are more knowledgeable than us as regards the book of Allaah and the teachings of His Rasul. (Hujjatullahil-baaligah) The munkireen-e-Hadith also ask if one should accept that which the Creator says or that which the creation says? The person answering will definitely say that one should accept that which the Creator says. As soon as he says this, the munkir-e-Hadith will say, Bukhari, Muslim, Abu-Dawud, Tirmizi, ibn-Majah, Nasai are all the works of the slave and the only book of the master is the Quraan, one has to accept it only and practice on it, not on the books of the slaves. My brother, you have now adopted the way and manner of the munkireen-e-Hadith. They confused matters by saying Creator and creation and made the people discard the Hadith of Rasulullaah (S.A.W). You are confusing matters by
saying Nabi and Ummati in an effort to make people discard the fiqh of the fuqaha. This is also a question you have stolen from them. You call yourself Ahle Hadith and they call themselves Ahle Quraan."
Question by the Ghair Muqallid "One should follow only and only Nabi (S.A.W), not an Ummati, whereas you accept the fiqh of Imam Abu Hanifa (R.A)."
Answer by the Hanafi "We follow and obey only Nabi (S.A.W), but with guidance of Imam A’zam Abu Hanifa (R.A)"