In Defense of Imam Al-Albani’s Weakening the Hadith about

Thikr Beads. Pt1

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

This  is a part 1 series in defense of Imam Al-Albani against those who say he erred in grading the hadith that supports Thikrs beads as being weak. Praise to Allah we have the Isnad, hence we can look at the narrators directly without any blind following. Those colored in the isnad as being yellow would require one to yield and relook at the narrator’s status and those red, require one to stop and verify his status; as there is a problem in saying he’s acceptable.

– حَدَّثَنَا أَحْمَدُ بْنُ صَالِحٍ، حَدَّثَنَا عَبْدُ اللَّهِ بْنُ وَهْبٍ، أَخْبَرَنِي عَمْرٌو، أَنَّ سَعِيدَ بْنَ أَبِي هِلَالٍ، حَدَّثَهُ، عَنْ خُزَيْمَةَ، عَنْ عَائِشَةَ بِنْتِ سَعْدِ بْنِ أَبِي وَقَّاصٍ [ص:81]، عَنْ أَبِيهَا، أَنَّهُ دَخَلَ مَعَ رَسُولِ اللَّهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ عَلَى امْرَأَةٍ وَبَيْنَ يَدَيْهَا نَوًى – أَوْ حَصًى – تُسَبِّحُ بِهِ، فَقَالَ: «أُخْبِرُكِ بِمَا هُوَ أَيْسَرُ عَلَيْكِ مِنْ هَذَا – أَوْ أَفْضَلُ -»، فَقَالَ: «سُبْحَانَ اللَّهِ عَدَدَ مَا خَلَقَ فِي السَّمَاءِ، وَسُبْحَانَ اللَّهِ عَدَدَ مَا خَلَقَ فِي الْأَرْضِ، وَسُبْحَانَ اللَّهِ عَدَدَ مَا خَلَقَ بَيْنَ ذَلِكَ، وَسُبْحَانَ اللَّهِ عَدَدَ مَا هُوَ خَالِقٌ، وَاللَّهُ أَكْبَرُ مِثْلُ ذَلِكَ، وَالْحَمْدُ لِلَّهِ مِثْلُ ذَلِكَ، وَلَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا اللَّهُ مِثْلُ ذَلِكَ، وَلَا حَوْلَ وَلَا قُوَّةَ إِلَّا بِاللَّهِ مِثْلُ ذَلِكَ»

Sa’d ibn Abu Waqqas narrated

Once Sa’d, with the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), visited a woman in front of whom were some date-stones or pebbles which she was using as a rosary to glorify Allah. He (the Prophet) said: I tell you something which would be easier (or more excellent) for you than that. He said (it consisted of saying): “Glory be to Allah” as many times as the number of that which He has created in Heaven; “Glory be to Allah” as many times as the number of that which He has created on Earth; “Glory be to Allah” as many times as the number of that which He has created between them; “Glory be to Allah” as many times as the number of that which He is creating; “Allah is most great” a similar number of times; “Praise (be to Allah)” a similar number of times; and “There is no god but Allah” a similar number of times; “There is no might and no power except in Allah” a similar number of times.

Imam Al-Albani mentioned that this hadith was collected by Abu Dawud, At-Tirmithi,

Abu Dawud—- Ahmed ibn Salih—Abdullah ibn Wahab —Amr(ibn Harith)—Saeed ibn Abi HalalKhuzaymah–Aisha bint Sa’d ibn Abi Waqas- Sahabah—-Hadith……..

Shaykh Muhammed Mamdouh is under the opinion that Shaykh Al-Albani made errors in regards to Khuzaymah as being unknown and that Imam Al-Albani erred in citing Khuzaymah in the chain found Al-Hakim. Therefore, the chain in Al-Hakim’s Mustadarak makes it authenticate as its chain is different from the one collected in the books of Sunnan.

Shaykh Al-Albani graded this hadith as being weak due to  Khuzaymah. In Tahtheeb Al-Kimal  he’s #1687. It’s mentioned that his lineage is unknown according to Al-Bukhari, Abu Hatim Ar-Razi , and Ibn Hibban. Also, that he’s narrated a hadith with an Isnad Ali. There is no mention of a praise, or a criticism regarding his status by Al-Hafith Al-Mizi, or by Ibn Hajr. Ibn Abi Hatim in Jarh Wa Ta’deel merly mentioned his name with no praise, or criticism as well at #1749. Along with that Ibn Hibban mentioned him  

 in Thiqat as being a Shaykh , which doesn’t establish he’s reliable as a narrator.

Al-Imam Shaykh Muqil said there was a hidden defect in this chain found in Al-Hakim(Vol1/pg547) and Ibn Hibban(579). When looking at the surface of the chain all the narrators appear sound and reliable, however when returning to Tahtheeb At-Tahtheeb it isn’t mentioned that Sa’eed ibn Abi Halal directly narrated on Aisha bint Sa’d. Moreover, when returning Tuhfatul Ashraf the hadith is mentioned as being collected by Abu Dawud, At-Tirmithi, and An-Nasa’I (Actions for the Day and Night) all by way of

 [ Saeed ibn Abi Halal—Khuzaymah—Aisha bint Sa’d ibn Abi Waqas]

Hence Imam At-Thahabi said in Al-Meezan, Khuzaymah is unknown. He solitarily narrated the hadith about Thikr Beads in meaning on Aisha bint Sa’d [1]

Shaykh Muqbil wasn’t the first person to say that the narration of Sa’eed ibn Abi Halal directly reporting the hadith on Aisha was defective. Imam Al-Bazzar in his Musnad mentioned something similar as well in vol 4 page 39.

The fact Imam Al-Bazar collected this hadith in his  Musnad highlights its; abnormality, weakness and defectiveness.

There is another issue of contention in regards to the Isnad of this hadith. The issue of Saeed ibn Abi Halal. Imam Ahmed said that he suffered from memory loss and this could be why  scholars graded his isnad as defective. As, at times he(Saeed) would narrate this hadith directly on Aisha bint Sa’d and at other times by way of Khuzaymah;whose is unknown  as stated by Al-Hafith in Tarqeeb #1712.

The academic researcher (Abu Aaliyah Abdullah Battle) establishes the summary of the 1st argument is that the truth is with Imam Al-Albani in his judgment on the hadith as supported by Imam Al-Bazar, Imam Muqbil and also as mentioned by Shaykh Abdul Muhsin al-Abbadd. The hadith has 3 defects which prevent it from being Sahih; or even Hasan.

1-The isnad revolves around Saeed ibn Abi Halal who at times narrated in directly on Aisha bint Sa’d and other times on Khuzaymah. Therefore, there is some confusion here in the isnad.  

2-Saeed ibn Abi Halal is accepted in his narrations when other narrations are mentioned with the same meaning from other narrators, or companions. For that reason, Al-Hafith said he was Sadooq.

3-Khuzaymah is unknown as mentioned by more than one Imam of Jarh wa Ta’deel.

Allah knows Best

Abu Aaliyah Abdullah Battle

Somewhere in the Dunya. 1445© TBC

[1] Defective Ahadith that appear on the surface as being Authentic-Shaykh Muqbil vol 1/ 148 (Chapter50)

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