Kindly explain the following Hadith:
Sayyiduna Ibn ‘Umar (radiyallahu ‘anhuma) has narrated that Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) said: ‘If the people knew what I know about travelling alone, then not a single rider would travel alone at night.’
(Sahih Bukhari, Hadith: 2998)
The ‘Ulama have explained that there are many harms in travelling alone, both to one’s spirituality and physical well-being. Spiritually, for example, one will be deprived of a group in which he can comfortably perform his Salah or he could easily fall into sin. Physically, there will be none to assist him if he falls ill or requires any other help.
‘Allamah Tibi (rahimahullah) has mentioned that ’night’ was specifically mentioned, as it becomes more dangerous at nightfall.
(Sharhut Tibi ‘Ala Mishkatil Masabih, Hadith: 3893)
Due to the darkness, it becomes more difficult to see at night, and as a result, one becomes more vulnerable to hazards along his path. It also becomes more difficult to protect one’s self from attacks [launched both by humans and animals].
Mulla ‘Ali Qari (rahimahullah) has mentioned: “It’s possible the word ‘rider’ was used to indicate that a person travelling by foot would be discouraged even more so than a person riding an animal.”
(Mirqat, Hadith: 3893)
Note: This is merely an explanation regarding the aforementioned text of the Hadith. For further queries regarding the Fiqhi understanding and application of the Hadith, kindly refer to a Mufti/Darul Ifta.
And Allah Ta’ala knows best.
Answered by: Moulana Farhan Shariff
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.