Is the following a Hadith?
‘Every matter which is started without bismillah is useless’
The Hadith, with this exact wording is recorded by Khatib Baghdadi (rahimahullah) with a chain that is extremely unreliable, according to Hafiz Ibn Hajar (rahimahullah)
(Al-Jami’u li Akhlaqir Rawi, Hadith: 1232 & Fathul Bari, Hadith: 4553. Also see Al-Isti’adhatu wal Hasbalah, of Shaykh Ahmad Siddique Al-Ghumari)
However, there are several other reasons for commencing our tasks with the name of Allah.
Among them are the following:
1) The Quran started with ‘Bismillah’
2) Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) commenced his letters to the various kings with ‘bismillah’
3) Rasulullah (sallallahu’alayhi wasallam) said: ‘…When you recite Bismillah, shaytan contracts till he reaches the size of a fly.’
(Sunan Abi Dawud, Hadith: 4943 & Musnad Ahmad, vol.5 pg.59 with a reliable chain; Majma’uz Zawaid, vol.10 pg.132)
After citing this Hadith, Hafiz Ibn Kathir (rahimahullah) writes the following at the beginning of his monumental tafsir book:
‘This is the blessed effect of bismilah. Therefore it is recommended at the beginning of every deed or speech.’
4) He then cited Hadiths that clearly recommend reciting Bismillah before:
2. Entering the toilet,
3. Engaging in sexual relations with one’s wife,
4. Wudu, etc.
These are merely a few examples. See Fathul Bari, Hadith: 4553 for more such supports for this practice.
One is indeed encouraged to say Bismillah before any task.
And Allah Ta’ala Knows best,
Answered by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar
Checked by: Moulana Haroon Abasoomar