The Hadith of “Man Lam Yutahhirhu al-Bahr fa la Tahharahu Allah”
As salamu’alaikum. Dear Shafiifiqh team. I have a question regarding the muhaddits in the Shafi’i Mazhab. I read the following hadits in al-Umm: مَنْ لَمْ يُطَهِّرْهُ الْبَحْرُ فَلَا طَهَّرَهُ اللهُ I check several takhrij hadits and found that the Daruquthni said that the isnad of the hadits is hasan while Baihaqi said in other hadits that some of the ‘rawi’ is لَيْسَ بِالْقَوِيّ. In this case which opinion is correct since both the imams are Shafi’i scholars (Daruquthni and Baihaqi)? Jazakumullahu khairan katsira.
Wa alaykum salam wa rahmatuLlahi wa barakatuHu,
The hadith is related:
In Kitab al-Umm v. 2, p. 6, Imam Shafi’i related it via Mohammad b. Ibrahim < ‘Abd al-‘Aziz b. ‘Umar < Sa’id b. Thawban < Abu Hind al-Firasi < Abu Hurayrah < marfu’.
In al-Sunan al-Kubra v. 1, p. 4, Hafiz Bayhaqi related via …Mohammad b. Humayd < Ibrahim b. Mukhtar < ‘Abd al-‘Aziz b. ‘Umar < Abu Hind al-Firasi < Abu Hurayrah < marfu’.
In Ma’rifat al-Sunan wa al-Athar v. 1, p. 139, Hafiz Bayhaqi related it via …Ibrahim b. Mustamir < Abu Himam al-Khariki < ‘Umar b. Harun < ‘Abd al-‘Aziz b. ‘Umar < Sa’id b. Thawban < Abu Hind al-Firasi < Abu Hurayrah < marfu’. And he makes reference both to the isnad which he related in al-Sunan al-Kubra.
In his Sunan v. 1, p. 46, Imam Daraquti related via the mentioned isnad…Mohammad b. Humayd < Ibrahim b. Mukhtar < ‘Abd al-‘Aziz b. ‘Umar < Sa’id b. Thawban < Abu Hind < Abu Hurayrah < marfu’. Hafiz Daraqutni stated that the isnad is hasan. In the footnote, it is mentioned that both Mohammad b. Humayd and Ibrahim b. Mukhtar are narrators differed upon, and Imam Daraqutni was probably one of those who considered them acceptable; thus, a ruling of hasan.
Regarding Mohammad b. Humayd, Hafiz Bayhaqi said, “laysa bi al-qawi.” (al-Badr al-Munir v. 1, p. 374. Ibn al-Mulaqqin is citing him from al-Sunan al-Kubra.) According to Hafiz Sakhawi’s mention of the levels of vilification and vindication [al-jarh wa al-ta’dil], the ruling “laysa bi al-qawi” is the sixth level of vilification which is the least severe. (al-Raf’ wa al-Takmil p. 179) According to Hafiz Dhahabi, it is the fifth level (the least severe according to him), and he states that at this level the ruling may either indicate the narrator’s weakness [da’f], the withholding of giving a judgment [tawaqquf], or that it is not permissible to make ihtijaj with him. (Ibid, p. 146) According Ibn Abi Hatim and Ibn al-Salah, “laysa bi al-qawi,” is on the second level of vilification, falling just short of the first (the first being the least severe according to them). At the level of the first, they state, “his hadith are written, and taken into consideration [yuktabu hadithuhu wa yanzuru fihi i’tibaran].” The second level’s ruling is “…at the level of the first in the writing of his hadith; except that it is below the first […bi manzilat al-awwal fi katb hadithihi illa annahu dunahu].” (Muqaddimat Ibn al-Salah v. 2, p. 28)
Hafiz Dhahabi stated that a group of authorities have made tawthiq [vindication] of Mohammad b. Humayd, while leaving him is best. (Kashif v. 2, p. 166) In Kitab al-Majruhin v. 2, p. 303, Ibn Hibban related that Mohammad b. Humayd is known to relate problematic and mixed-up narrations from trustworthy authorities, especially his countrymen. And Ibrahim b. Mukhtar is expressly mentioned as an example. And others, like Abu Zur’ah, are reported to have declared Mohammad to be a liar. (Ibid) If considering him in light of the tawthiq that is made on him, he is still relating via Ibrahim b. Mukhtar, which is problematic.
Hafiz Bayhaqi related it in Ma’rifat al-Sunan and that isnad does not pass via Mohammad. Ibrahim b. Mustamir is one of both Ibn Khuzaymah and Bazzar’s shaykhs. Hafiz Dhahabi declared him “saduq.” (Kashif v. 1, p. 225) Khariki is Salt b. Mohammad, who is one of Imam Bukhari’s narrators. Abu Hatim said, “salih al-hadith.” (Tahdhib al-Kamal v. 13, p. 228) Regarding ‘Umar b. Harun, Hafiz Dhahabi said, “There is no doubt in his weakness [la rayba fi da’fihi].” (Tadhkirat al-Huffaz v. 1, p. 248) Hafiz Ibn Hajar declared him “matruk.” (Taqrib al-Tahdhib p. 417)
Regarding ‘Abd al-‘Aziz b. ‘Umar, Abu Hatim said, “yuktabu hadithuhu” and Abu Zur’ah and Ibn Ma’in said, “la ba’sa bihi.” (al-Jarh wa al-Ta’dil v. 5, p. 389)
Between ‘Abd al-‘Aziz and Abu Hurayrah two narrators are mentioned; namely, Sa’id b. Thawban and Abu Hind al-Firasi. And both Sa’id b. Thawban and Abu Hind al-Firasi have been declared majhul. (Fayd al-Qadir v. 6, p. 292) In Ibn Abi Hatim’s al-Jarh wa al-Ta’dil v. 4, p. 9, there is a biography for Sa’id b. Thawban, and we have not located his biography save there. And we have not located a biography for Abu Hind al-Firasi. So far nothing has been found that would negate the ruling of majhul on them both.
And Allah knows best.
Shafiifiqh.com Fatwa Dept.