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The Persians & Hidden Knowledge

6th October 2010
What was The Prophet (SAW) Indicating?

Abu Huraira reported: We were sitting in the company of Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) that Sura al-Jumu’a was revealed to him and when he recited (these words):” Others from amongst them who have not yet joined them,” Then a person amongst them (those who were sitting there) said: Allah’s Messenger...! But Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) made no reply, until he questioned him once, twice or thrice. There was amongst us Salman al Farisi (The Persian). The Apostle of Allah (may peace be upon him) placed his hand on Salman and then said: Even if faith were near the Pleiades (The furthest Planet), a man from amongst these (Presians) would surely find it. (Book 031, Number 6178)

another version

Narrated Abu Huraira: While we were sitting with the Prophet Surat Al-Jumu'a was revealed to him, and when the Verse, "And He (Allah) has sent him (Muhammad) also to other (Muslims).....' (62.3) was recited by the Prophet, I said, "Who are they, O Allah's Apostle?" The Prophet did not reply till I repeated my question thrice. At that time, Salman Al-farisi was with us. So Allah's Apostle put his hand on Salman, saying, "If Faith were at (the place of) Ath-Thuraiya (the highest star), even then some men or man from these people (i.e. Salman's folk, persians) would attain it." (Book 60, Hadith 420,Sahih Bukhari).

But in Darus Salam's translation of Tafsir ibn Khathir by Mohsin Khan, leaves out the commentary of Muffassir ibn Kathir. In the commentary ibn Kathir says that the Ulama hold the view that when Rasulullah (sallallahu alayhi wassallam) placed his mubarak hand on Salman Farsi (R.A.) and said "a man from these people would attain it", they believe that this man can be no one else except al-Imam al-Azam Abu Hanifah (R.A.). Because no one from Persia has attained such status in all the branches of Islam as Imam Abu Hanifa.

The obove is the opinion of Muffasir ibn Kathir and many other great classical Sholars and it can be found in the original arabic version.

Imam Muslim (also from Persia) named an entire chapter of his Sahih “THE MERITS OF THE PEOPLE OF PERSIA” (Chapter 59):

Abu Huraira reported Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: If the deen were at the Pleiades, even then a person from Persia would have taken hold of it, or one amongst the Persian descent would have surely found it. Book 031, Number 6177:


So the big question is, Who are these Persians (farisi's).

Among the major Persian Muslims one can mention, , Imam Nasai, Imam Abu Dawud, Imam Bukhari, Imam al-Ghazali, Imam al-Bayhaqi, Imam al-Tirmidhi, Hasan Al-Basri, Abdul Qadir Jilani , Nu'man bin Thabit (and many more, Please add them to this list with replies)

Lets take a look at Nu'man Bin Thabit
Nu'man Bin Thabit also known as "Imam Abu Hanifa" was born in Kufa of Persian Descent, and this is the opinion of the majority of the Ulama, in the year 80 Ah during the reign of Caliph Abdul Malik ibn Marwan ibn Al Hakim. He was a Tabe'ee.

His coming was predicted by the Prophet (Allah Bless him and grant him peace). Abu Nuaym narrates in his Hiyat al Awliya, Bukhari and Muslim narrate from another Sanad from Abu Hurayrah (Allah be pleased with him), Abu Bakr Shirazi narrates in his Kitab Alqab, Tabarani from Sa’d bin Ubaidah (Allah be pleased with him) and Ibn Masud (Allah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (Allah Bless him and grant him peace) said:
---If Ilm was suspended from Pleiades (The furthest Star) and the Arabs are unable to reach it, then a man from the sons of Persia will be able to reach it.

Imam Suyuti mentions that the Ulema have stated that that these hadith are in favor of Imam Abu Hanifa and are authentic.

An Eye Witness
Ash- Sha’raani, a famous scholar of the past, said, “Allah blessed me that I looked at three Masaanid (collections of Hadith) of Al-Imam Abu Haneefa from a correct copy. Upon these were the khutoot of Al-Huffaath, (meaning the writing of the Muhadditheen) and I saw that Imam Abu Hanifa does not narrate except from the best of the Tabi’een, who are ‘Udool (people with honorable records) and Thiqat (reliable sources). And they (the Tabi’een) are from the best of the all generations (Khairul Quroon) like Al-Aswad, Alqama, Ataa, Ikrima, Mujahid, Makhool, Al-Hasan al Basri, and others like them. Every narrator between Al-Imam and between the Messenger of Allah (SAW) are ‘Udool, Thiqat, A’laam (extremely knowledgeable).

Yahya Ibn Ma'een (RA) mentions from his teacher Yahya Ibn Sa'eed Al-Qattaan (RA) that he said, We have not heard better opinions than Abu Hanifa's. And we take most of his opinions.

The Imam of Al-Jarh and At-Ta'deel (The knowledge of what was transmitted concerning the reliability of the individual narrators of Hadith) Yahya Ibn Sa'eed Al-Qattaan also said that By Allah, Imam Abu Hanifa is the most knowledgeable person of this Ummah of what has come from Allah and his Messenger (SAW).AllahuAkbar, What a statement from a scholar of such calibre

Yahya Ibn Sa'eed Al-Qattaan is not only a great Muhaddith of the past, but he is one of the first Imaams in regards to the science of Al-Jarh and At-Ta'deel. His opinions are taken by all the scholars in regards to narrators of Hadith.SubhanAllah, All the Scholars of Hadith take advice from him, Yet...There are those who reject Imam Abu Hanifa, SubhanAllah
In order to illustrate Yahya Ibn Sa'eed Al-Qattan's rank, we will mention an incident. Al-Aini (RA) has mentioned in his book Umdatul Qaari that after the Asr prayer, Yahya ibn Sa'eed would sit leaning on the pillar in his Masjid and people like Yahya ibn Ma'een, Ahmad ibn Hambal, and Ali ibn Al-Madeeni would be standing in front of him. And they would stand and ask him about Hadith until Maghrib prayer. Yahya ibn Sa'eed would be answering their questions, and out of respect for him, they would not sit for the entire time and he would not tell them to sit either. These great scholars (i.e., Yahya ibn Ma'een, Ahmad ibn Hanbal, and Ali ibn Al-Madeeni) who are the teachers of Imam Al- Bukhari, and whom Al-Bukhari took his Book of Saheeh Hadith to in order that they may check it after it was completed, were standing in front of Yahya Ibn Sa'eed Al-Qattaan like students, showing Yahya's status in Hadith. And this same Yahya Ibn Sa'eed is the one who is saying that he has not heard of better opinions than those of Imam Abu Hanifa and that he takes most of Abu Hanifa's Fataawa and that Al-Imam is the most knowledgeable person of this Ummah.
What a Great Hanafi Scholar, Yahya ibn Sa'eed

Yahya Ibn Ma'een, said that Wakee ibn Al-Jarraah used to give fatwa on the opinions of Abu Hanifa and he used to remember all the Hadith from Abu Haneefa. And he himself heard many Hadith from Abu Haneefa. We know that Yahya ibn Ma'een and Wakee Ibn Al-Jarraah are both from the great Muhadditheen, and Wakee ibn Al- Jarraah is the teacher of Imam Ash-Shafi'i, and his giving fatwa on Imam Abu Hanifa's fataawa and remembering Al-Imam's Hadith, all of these also indicate towards Imam Abu Hanifa's high level in Hadith.

Imam Dhahabi says that Imam Abu Hanifas Ibadat, in particular his Tahajjud prayers and recitation of the Quran, are established by Khabare Mutawattir, which means that it is a fact so commonly narrated by the tongues of people that it would be impossible to deny.

Sufyan ibn Uyannah is said to have remarked:
In our time from amongst those who came to visit Mecca not a single soul could surpass Abu Hanifa in Salah.

Hammad, the son of Imam Abu Hanifa, narrates that Hasan ibn Ammarah said: May Alah have mercy on Abu Hanifa. For thirty years he fasted and for fourty years he did not sleep at night.

Like Imam Bukhari, Imam Abu Hanifa used to finish the Quran 60 times in Ramadhan. He was so pious and scrupulous that he used to recite the whole Quran in one Raka, May Allah grant him the highest abode.

Zafir ibn Sulayman says:
Abu Hanifa used to spend much of the night in one Raka and in that one Raka he used to recite the entire Quran.

Yahya ibn Ma’een (for whom it is said that Imam Bukhari feared him with regards to having more knowledge of Hadith) says that he heard Yahya ibn Said al Qattan said:
By Allah! We sat in the company of Abu Hanifa and heard many religious issues from him. I swear by Allah! When I looked at his face I used to be overcome with firm conviction that this man is very fearful of Allah.

Muhammad ibn Ayman narrates that when Abdullah ibn Mubarak was asked about Imam Abu Hanifa he replied:
Can anyone ever be like him? He was tried with lashes but he exercised forbearance.

Abdullah ibn Mubarak said regarding Imam Abu Hanifa:
What can be said about a man who was presented with all the material wealth and chattels of the dunya but rejected it all? A man who was severely lashed but bore it with patience?

Nadr ibn Muhammad said:
I haven’t witnessed anyone as abstinent and pious as Imam Abu Hanifa.

Hasan ibn Ziyad said:
Abu Hanifa never accepted any gift or favor from the rulers and kings (although he was offered much)

Zaid ibn Zarqa narrates that a man once remarked to Abu Hanifa:
This dunya is being presented to you then why don’t you accept it since you are a family man?
Imam Abu Hanifa replied:
Allah is sufficient to attend to the needs of my family. As for me, my monthly expenses amount to just two dirhams. Why should I accumulate wealth for them when I will be questioned about accumulating it? Whether they are obedient to him or disobedient does not make a difference to me being questioned since Allah’s sustenance reaches both the obedient and disobedient, “And in the sky is your sustenance and that which you are being promised (Zariyat: 22)

Abu Jafar Muhammad ibn Ali ibn Hussain ibn Fatima Bint Prophet MuhammadThe great grandson of the Prophet Muhammad (Allah Bless him and grant him peace) said:
How commendable are Abu Hanifas manners and how sublime is his skill in Fiqh!

Imam Malik ibn Anas ibn Malik
The founder of the Maliki school of thought, Imam Malik is reported to have said when asked about Imam Abu Hanifa:
Yes, I saw him and I saw him to be a man of such caliber that if he claims that this pillar of wood is made of gold he will prove it to you!

Imam Shafi
The founder of the Shafi school of thought, Imam Shafi is reported to have said:
The person who wishes to excel in Fiqh is bound to be in need of Imam Abu Hanifa. He was a person who was divinely guided with Fiqh by Allah. I have not seen a greater Faqih then him.

Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal
The founder of the Hanabli school of thought, Imam Ahmad is reported to have said:
In terms of Ilm, piety, abstinence from this dunya and preference of the hereafter, Abu Hanifa occupied such a lofty position that no one else could reach. May Allah shower his mercy on him!

Abdullah Ibn Al-Mubarak (RA) who is a famous scholar of Hadith and Imam of the past said that, If Allah did not help me with Abu Hanifa and Sufyan, I would have been like the rest of the people. In other words, he is thanking Allah for placing him in the position so that he was able to learn from Imam Abu Hanifa and Imam Sufyan, thus elevating him from the likes of the masses and making him one of the great scholars of the past.

In another place, Abdullah Ibn Al-Mubarak (RA) also said Wallaahi (by Allah), Al-Imam was so severe in his pursuit of knowledge, staying away from forbidden things following the Ulama of his place, took only from what is authentic from the Messenger of Allah (SAW) and he had a very strong recognition (Shadeed ul Ma'rifah) in regards to Nasikh (abrogating) and Mansookh (abrogated) of Hadith (the knowledge of those abrogated Hadith),and sought out the narrations of reliable narrators only and the last practice of the Messenger of Allah (SAW). The practice of the Ulama of Kufa in following the truth, he took it and he made it his Deen. Some people have said harsh words against him. We will stay silent in regards to those people. And we will seek forgiveness from Allah from it.´

Imam Abu Hanifas Death:
Imam Abu Hanifa died a martyr in prison in the year 150 AH age 70. He was poisoned on the orders of the Caliph Mansur after being lashed and thrown in jail for refusing the post of Chief Justice. According to Yaqub ibn Shaybah he died while in a state of Sujud. Six Janaazah salaah were conducted in order to cater for more than 50,000 people whom had collected. His son, and only child; Hammad, lead the last Janazah salaah.
May Allah have mercy on him and grant him the best of Rewards!
posted by abu mohammed on 6th October 2010 - 3 comments


Abdullah wrote on 11 May 2012
Imam Abu Hanifa (RH) had so many Fadhaail, yet so called Hanafies (Deobandi & Barelvi both) don't follow Imam Abu Hanifa (RH) in Aqeedah. They follow Abul Hasan Ashari and Mansoor Maturidi in Aqeedah, why? Did Imam Abu Hanifa's Aqeedah was not right?
Blogger's Reply:
Jazakallahu Khair.

The Aqeedah of the Barelwi is not something I studied. As far as the Deobandi's are concerned, they dont follow the same Aqeedah as them.

With regards to the Ashari and Maturidi please see Seifeddines Blog posts, Jazakallahu Khair.

Imam Abu Hanifa's Aqeedah was an example for those to come. Unfortunately, many people like the Barelwi have distorted it and given the Sahih Aqeedah the wrong image.

Seekers Quest Series - 11) Ashari and Maturidi Aqeedah Explained

By Shaykh ul Hadeeth Mufti Abu Nauman Abdur Raheem

Hanafi Fiqh Channel -

See also:

Who are the Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama'ah? -

Ashari and Maturidi -

Ashari And Maturidi - Mufti Abdur Rahman Ibn Yusuf -

Aqeedah Tahawiyyah -

The Creed of Ahlus Sunnah wal Jama'ah - Mufti Waseem Khan -'ah.html
Mohammed Amer wrote on 19 May 2012
Assalamualaikum wr wb. can you please cross verify for us regarding the original arabic version of tafsir ibn katheer containing the explaination that the hadith of Ath-Thuraiya refers to imam abu hanifa. i tried to look at all arabic versions, and english translations, but could not find it. and can you please quote other scholars who hold the same opinion. jazak allah.
Blogger's Reply:
Jazakallahu khair.

I hope you are aware that the blog section is for members to post articles and not the works of the Mufti's or scholars associated with this site.

I too have been looking for more on this, but in this case, as many, I have only posted the works of others (mostly scholars). I have learnt that many of the books available in different countries had been changed or edited to suit their own understanding. Work may not have been added but work could have been taken out if it didn't agree with their thoughts. Allahu alum.

Khair, inshaAllah, I will try to get more evidence regarding this.

Your brother in Islam, abu mohammed.
Mohammed Amer wrote on 27 Jul 2017
It's been 5 years and i ( u too) haven't been able to get the proof for the above quoted text in tafsir Ibn Kathir: the man is iman Abu Hanifa. I have in my hand Urdu tafsir Ibn Kathir from maktab Faizul Qur'an, Deoband, urdu translation by Hazrat Maulana Sayyed Anzat Shah Kashmiri, shayk Al Hadith Darul Uloom Deoband. So it disproves your point of "But in Darus Salam's translation of Tafsir ibn Khathir by Mohsin Khan, leaves out the commentary of Muffassir ibn Kathir", well then this accusation stands true for our ulema e Deoband also!!! Nauzbillah.
Blogger's Reply:
Jazakallahu khairan.

I would update my post with an edit but the page format has completely changed and any changes I make doesn't appear. InshaAllah, your response/comment will be read by other readers. Jazakallahu khair.
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