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Abstaining from sin is true migration

What is the translation and meaning of the following Hadith:

المهاجر من هجر ما نهى الله عنه



This is part of longer Hadith recorded in Sahih Bukhari on the authority of Sayyiduna ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Amr (radiyallahu ‘anhuma).

(Sahih Bukhari, Hadith: 10 and 6484)


The translation is as follows:

“A [true] emigrant is someone who abandons what Allah has forbidden.”


The commentators have offered two explanations:

  1. Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said this to those Sahabah (radiyallahu ‘anhum) who had migrated to Madinah Munawwarah, to caution them against becoming lax after migration. Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) advised them that [in addition to their physical migration from Makkah] the perfect emigrant is one who migrated from Makkah and still abstains from sins.
  2. Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said this after the Conquest of Makkah [which then cancelled the need for migration from Makkah] to give solace to those Sahabah (radiyallahu ‘anhum) who did not migrate. Nabi (sallallahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) explained to them that although they did not get the chance/reward of migrating from Makkah Mukarramah to Madinah Munawwarah, they could still be ’emigrants’ by abstaining from all prohibited deeds.

(Refer: Fathul Bari, Hadith: 10)


And Allah Ta’ala Knows best.

Answered by: Moulana Suhail Motala

Approved by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar

This answer was collected from HadithAnswers.com. The answers were either answered or checked by Moulana Haroon Abasoomar (rahimahullah) who was a Shaykhul Hadith in South Africa, or by his son, Moulana Muhammad Abasoomer (hafizahullah), who is a Hadith specialist. 

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