Some Commonly Quoted Fabricated Ahaadeeth
Ten extremely popular weak narrations and the reason why they are judged so by the scholars of Hadeeth
1.The hadeeth of the Messenger that he (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, “Allaah says, ‘I was a hidden treasure, and I wished to be known, so I created a creation (mankind), then made Myself known to them, and they recognized Me.'”
As-Sakhaawee (d.902, the student of ibn Hajr al-Asqalaanee) said, “ibn Taymiyyah said, ‘this is not from the words of the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam), and there is no known isnaad for it be it saheeh or da’eef.’ And az-Zarkashee and our Shaykh (ibn Hajr) followed him (in this verdict).” [‘al-Maqaasid al-Hasanah’ of as-Sakhaawee (no. 838)]
As-Suyutee (d.911) said, “this has no basis (laa asla lahu)” [‘Durural Muntathira’ of as-Suyutee (no.330)]
al-Ijloonee (d.1162) said, “this saying occurs often in the words of the sufis, who have relied on it, and built some of their principles on it.”[ ‘Kashf al-Khafaa’ of al-Ijloonee (no.2016)]
al-Albaanee (contemporary) says, “this hadeeth has no basis” [‘Silsilah ad-Da’eefah’ (1/166)]
2.The hadeeth, “Allaah says, ‘were it not for you (O Muhammad) I would not have created the universe.'”
As-Saghaanee (d.650) said, “maudu (fabricated)” [‘al-Ahaadeeth al-Mawdoo’aat’ of as-Saghaanee (pg. 7)]
and likewise al-Albaanee [‘Silsilah ad-Da’eefah’ (1/450 no.282)]
ash-Shaykh Mulla Alee Qaaree (d.1014) said, “maudu, but it’s meaning is correct….” [‘al-Asraar al-Marfoo’ah’ of Alee al-Qaaree (pp 67-68)], and quotes two narrations to prove this:
a.The hadeeth related by ibn Asaakir, ‘were it not for you, the world would not have been created’. Ibn al-Jawzee (d.5**) related this and said, “maudu (fabricated)” [‘al-Mawdoo’aat’ of ibn al-Jawzee (1/288)] and likewise as-Suyutee. [‘al-Laa’ee’ of as-Suyutee (1/272)]
b.The hadeeth related by ad-Dailamee, “O Muhammad! Were it not for you, the Garden would not have been created, and were it not for you the Fire would not have been created.” Al-Albaanee said, “it is not correct to certify the correctness of it’s meaning without establishing the authenticity of the narration from ad-Dailamee, which is something I have not found any of the scholars to have addressed….Suffice to know that ad-Dailamee is alone in reporting it, then I became certain of it’s weakness, rather it’s flimsiness when I came across it in his ‘Musnad’ (1/41/2)…..” [‘Silsilah ad-Da’eefah’ (1/451 no.282)]
3.The hadeeth related from the Messenger (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam), “I was a Prophet while Adam was between clay and water” and the hadeeth, “I was a prophet when there was no Adam and no clay”
ibn Taymiyyah said, “This has no basis. Neither from the point of view of transmission or intellect, for not a single scholar of hadeeth mentions it and it’s meaning is invalid. For Adam was never in a state in which he was between clay and water, for clay consists of water and mud, rather he was in a state between the spirit and body.
Then these misguided people think that the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) was physically present at that time, and that his person was created before all persons, and they support this with ahaadeeth which are lies (against the Prophet), for example the hadeeth that he used to be Light surrounding the Throne…” [‘Radd alaa al-Bakree’ of ibn Taymiyyah (pg. 9)]
as-Suyutee said, “maudu” and endorsed the above words of ibn Taymiyyah. [‘Dhail al-Mawdoo’aat’ of as-Suyutee (pg. 203)]And he also says about the second hadeeth mentioned above, “this is something added by the general masses” [ ‘ad-Durural Muntathiraa’ (pg. 155 no. 331)]
az-Zarkashee (d.794) said, “as-Suyutee made clear that these two ahaadeeth have no basis, and that the second was something added by the general masses. And ibn Taymiyyah preceded him in this, and ruled that the wordings were rejected and that they were lies, and as-Sakhaawee endorsed this in his ‘Fataawaa’…” ‘Sharh al-Muwaahib’ of az-Zarkaanee (1/33)]
as-Sakhaawee said, “as for what is common on the tongues, ‘I was a Prophet while Adam was between clay and water'” then we have not found it with this wording not to speak of the addition, ‘I was a Prophet when there was no Adam and no clay.'” [ ‘al-Maqaasid al-Hasanah’ (pg. 386 no. 837)]
In the above words of ibn Taymiyyah, he refers to the following authentic hadeeth, “I was a prophet while Adam was between the spirit and body” narrated by at-Haakim and others [See ‘Silisilah as-Saheehah’ of al-Albaanee (no. 1756) for detailed documentation.]
But this hadeeth is explained by the narration of at-Tirmidhee in which the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) was asked, “when was the Prophethood made obligatory for you” to which he replied, “while Adam was between the spirit and the body” [At-Tirmidhee chpt. ‘The virtues of the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam)’ (vol. 10 of the commentary of al-Mubaarakfooree.)]
Meaning when Adam was is the state in which the soul was about to enter the body. [ ‘Tuhfatul Ahwadhee bi Sharh Jaami at-Tirmidhee’ (vol. 10, chpt. ‘The virtues of the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam)’) of al-Mubaarakfooree (d.1311)]
And by the hadeeth related in the Saheehs of al-Haakim and ibn Hibbaan, “I was written as a Prophet in the presence of Allaah while Adam was intertwined in his clay.”
As for the hadeeth, ‘I was the first Prophet to be created and the last to be sent’ narrated by Abu Nu’aym in ‘ad-Dalaa’il’ (pg. 6) and others then this is weak (da’eef) as declared by al-Munaawee and adh-Dhahabee (d.748) and al-Albaanee. [‘Silsilah ad-Da’eefah’ (2/115 no.661) for detailed documentation.]
4.The hadeeth, “the One who knows himself, knows his Lord”
as-Sakhaawee said, “Abu al-Mudhaffar as-Sama’aanee said, ‘this is not known as a hadeeth of the Messenger, rather it is only related as a saying of Yahya bin Mu’aadh ar-Raazee.’ And likewise an-Nawawee said, ‘it is not established'” [‘al-Maqaasid al-Hasanah’ (pg. 491 no.1149)]
as-Suyutee said, “this hadeeth is not authentic” [ ‘Haawee lil Fataawee’ (2/351)]
Alee al-Qaaree quoted from ibn Taymiyyah saying, “fabricated” [‘al-Asraar al-Marfoo’ah’ (pg. 83)]
al-Allaamaa Fairozabaadee said, “this is not from the Prophetic ahaadeeth, despite the fact that the majority of people make it so, and it is not authentic at all. It is only related from the Jewish traditions as ‘O mankind! Know yourself and you will know your Lord'” [‘ar-Radd alaa al-Mu’tarideen’ (2/37)]
al-Albaanee says, “it has no basis” [‘Silsilah ad-Da’eefah’ (1/165 no.66)]
5.The hadeeth, “Allaah says, ‘neither My Heaven or My earth can contain Me, but the heart of My believing servant can contain Me.'”
Al-Ghazaalee mentioned this in his ‘Ihyaa Ulum ad-Deen’ with the wording, “Neither My Heaven nor My earth can contain Me, but the soft humble heart of my believing servant can contain Me”.
Al-Haafidh al-Iraaqee (the Shaykh of ibn Hajr) said in his notes to ‘al-Ihyaa’, “I find no basis for it.” And as-Suyutee agreed with him, following az-Zarkashee.
Al-Iraaqee then said, “but in the hadeeth of Abu Utbah in at-Tabaraanee there occurs, ‘the vessels of your Lord are the hearts of the righteous servants, and the most beloved to Him are the softest and most tender ones'”
ibn Taymiyyah said, “it (the original hadeeth) is mentioned in the Israelite traditions, but there is no known isnaad from the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) for it.”
as-Sakhaawee said, agreeing with as-Suyutee, “there is no known isnaad from the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam), and it’s meaning is that his heart can contain belief in Me, love of Me and gnosis of Me. But as for the one who says that Allaah incarnates in the hearts of the people, then he is more of an infidel than the Christians who specified that to Christ alone.”
Az-Zarkashee said that one of the scholars said that it is a false hadeeth, fabricated by a renegade from the religion. He also said that at-Tabaraanee has related from Abu Utbah al-Khawlaanee from the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) that, “Truly, Allaah has vessels from amongst the people of the earth, and the vessels of your Lord are the hearts of his righteous slaves, and the Most beloved of them to Him are the softest and most tender ones” [ ‘Kash al-Khafaa’ (no.2256)]
al-Albaanee declared the last mentioned hadeeth to be hasan (good) [ ‘Silsilah as-Saheehah’ (no.1691)]
6.The hadeeth, “love of ones homeland is part of faith”
as-Saghaanee declared it to be maudu (fabricated) [ ‘al-Mawdoo’aat’ (pg. 7)]
as-Sakhaawee said, “I have not found it” [ ‘Maqaasid al-Hasanah’ (pg. 218 no. 386)]
al-Albaanee declares it to be fabricated.[‘Silsilah ad-Da’eefah’ (1/110 no.36)]
The scholars have discussed it’s meaning and differed to what extent the meaning is correct if at all, see the discussions in the above three references for detail.
7.The hadeeth, “Seek knowledge even if it be to China”
Related by ibn Adee (2/207)m Abu Nu’aym in ‘Akhbaar Asbahaan’ and others via many routes of narration, and all of them adding the words “for indeed seeking knowledge is an obligatory duty upon all Muslims.”
Ibn al-Jawzee mentions this and then quotes ibn Hibbaan saying, “invalid/rejected, it has no basis” ‘al-Mawdoo’aat’ (1/215)]
adh-Dhahabee also endorsed the above words of ibn Hibbaan, [‘Tarteeb al-Mawdoo’aat’ of adh Dhahabee (pg. 52 no. 111)] and likewise as-Sakhaawee [‘Maqaasid al-Hasanah’ (pg. 86 no. 125)]
al-Albaanee declares this hadeeth to be maudu (fabricated) [‘Da’eef al-Jaami as-Sagheer’ (no’s 1005-1006)]
In summary, the above hadeeth is related by a group of trustworthy narrators without the words “even if it be to China” and a few narrators who are deemed weak/liars/abandoned by the scholars narrate this additional wording. So the hadeeth with the additional wording is fabricated, but without is hasan (good). [See ‘Silsilah ad-Da’eefah’ (1/600 no. 416) for detail.]
8.The hadeeth, “We have returned from the Lesser Jihaad, to the Greater Jihaad (i.e. the Jihaad against oneself)”
Related by al-Bayhaqi with a da’eef isnaad according to al-Iraaqee. Ibn Hajr said that this was a saying of Ibraaheem bin Abee Ablah, a Taabi’ee, and not a hadeeth of the Messenger (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam). [‘Kashf al-Khafaa’ (no.1362)]
9.The ahaadeeth on the Abdaal (The Substitutes)
as-Sakhaawee said, “it has a number of different routes from Anas (RA) from the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam), with contradictory wording, all of which are da’eef.”
a.the hadeeth related by al-Khalaal in ‘Karaamaat al-Awliyaa’, “the Abdaal are forty men and forty women, each time a man dies Allaah substitutes another in his place, and each time a woman dies Allaah substitutes another in her place”
b.the hadeeth related by at-Tabaraanee, “there will always be on the earth forty people like al-Khaleel (Ibraaheem), alayhis salaam, and by them the people will given to drink (or have rain come down), and by them the people will be aided, not a single one of them dies except that Allaah substitutes another in his place.”
c.the hadeeth related by ibn Adee in ‘Kaamil’, “the Abdaal are forty, 22 from Shaam, and 18 from Iraaq, each time one of them dies Allaah substitutes another in his place. And when the Command comes then all of them will be taken (qubidoo) and at that time the Hour will be established.”
d.the hadeeth related by Ahmad, al-Khallaal and others from Ubaadah bin Saamit (RA) from the Messenger (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam), “There will always be thirty people in this Ummah like Ibraaheem, each time one of them dies Allaah substitutes another in his place.”
e.at-Tabaraanee has the wording, “and by them the earth will be established, and by them it will rain, and by them they will be aided.”
f.the hadeeth of Abu Nu’aym in ‘al-Hilya’ from ibn Umar from the Messenger (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam), “the chosen ones of this nation are 500, and the abdaal are 40 in every generation, and neither the 500 or the 40 will decrease, each time one of them dies Allaah substitutes another in his place.” The Companions said, “tell us of their actions” He said, “they forgive those that do dhulm to them, and they behave well with those that behave badly to them…”
g.al-Khallaal has the wording, “There will always be forty people by whom the earth is preserved, each time one of them dies Allaah substitutes another in his place.”
h.the hadeeth in al-Hilya from ibn Mas’ud (RA), “there will always be 40 people from my Ummah whose hearts are like the heart of Ibraaheem, Allaah will drive away (evil from?) the people of the earth by them, they will be called the Abdaal. Indeed they will not attain it (the position of Abdaal) by (a great deal of) prayer or fasting or giving in charity.” So they asked, “so how will they attain it O Messenger of Allaah?” He said, “through generosity, and by advising the Muslims.”
i.The hadeeth reported by at-Tabaraanee in ‘al-Ajwaad’ from Anas (RA) from the Messenger (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam), “indeed the Abdaal of this ummah will not enter Paradise due to (a great deal) of prayer or fasting, but they will enter due to generosity and secure hearts and advising the Muslims.”
j.and the similar hadeeth of al-Kharaa’itee in ‘al-Makaarim’ related by Abu Sa’eed
After mentioning these as-Sakhaawee goes on to say, “and some of them are more severely weak than others.”[‘Maqaasid al-Hasanah’ (pp 26-28 no.8)]
There are other hadeeth as-Sakhaawee mentions after this but fails to give a clear verdict on them, some of these will be discussed below.
al-Albaanee talking about hadeeth f) above says, ” Maudu (fabricated) related by Abu Nu’aym in ‘al-Hilya’ (1/8) from the route of at-Tabaraanee. And from him by ibn al-Jawzee in ‘al-Mawdoo’aat’ (3/151 his book on fabricated hadeeth)….[biographical detail on narrators omitted]
Adh-Dhahabee said in ‘al-Meezaan’ , ‘…it is not known, and the story to do with the manners of the Abdaal is a lie’ talking about this hadeeth. And ibn Hajr endorsed this in ‘al-Lisaan’.” [‘Silsilah ad-Da’eefah’ (2/339 no.935)]
As-Suyuti incorporated this hadeeth in his ‘Jaami as-Sagheer’ and declared it hasan. But al-Munaawee followed this up by pointing out the defects of the hadeeth, then after quoting the aforementioned words of adh-Dhahabee he said, “and ibn al-Jawzee ruled it to be fabricated, and the author (as-Suyutee) agreed with him in ‘Mukhtasar al-Mawdoo’aat’ and he endorsed ibn al-Jawzee’s verdict and did not follow it up.”
Al-Albaanee concludes his discussion on the hadeeth by saying, “and know that there is no hadeeth to do with the Abdaal which is authentic, all of them are defective, and some of them are more severely weak than others. And I will mention a few of them for you, and unveil their defect, if Allaah the Exalted and Blessed Wills.”[Ibid]
He then discusses hadeeth d) and e) above and declares them to be munkar (rejected). [Silsilah ad-Da’eefah (2/339+ no.936) for a detailed discussion.]
Al-Haafidh ibn al-Qayyim states in ‘al-Manaar az-Muneef’, “the ahaadeeth concerning the Abdaal, Aqtaab, Nuqabaa, Agwaath, Najabaa and Awtaad are all false (baatil)”
Imaam Ahmad follows up hadeeth d) up by saying, “it is a munkar hadeeth”.
As for this same hadeeth al-Haythamee said, “reported by Ahmad, and it’s narrators are that of the saheeh except for Waahid bin Qais who has been declared thiqah by al-Ijlee and Abu Zur’ah but weak by other than these two” (Mujma 10/62)
Waahid bin Qais has been declared to be da’eef by a group of scholars amongst them ibn Ma’een (in one of two reports from him), Abu Haatim, and Saalih bin Muhammad al-Baghdaadee. Adh-Dhahabee points out that Waahid bin Qais only met some taabi’een so according to this the isnaad is also munqati as he reports directly from the Companion Ubaadah bin Saamit.
As for hadeeth e) then ibn Hajr al-Haythamee declared this da’eef in his ‘Mujma az-Zawaa’id’ (10/63) due to it’s isnaad containing two unknown narrators.
Al-Albaanee then discusses another hadeeth not mentioned above to do with the Abdaal related from Shahr bin Hawshab from Awf bin Maalik (RA) and declares it to be severely weak, and likewise he declares a hadeeth related from Alee to be da’eef.
Adh-Dhahabee quotes hadeeth, d) and one similar to e) and others and concludes by saying, “…by Allaah there is no one in the Ummah of Muhammad like Abu Bakr, and the distance between him and Ibraaheem in excellence cannot be measured. But this is from the fabrication of Abdurrahmaan bin Marzooq at-Tarsoosee may Allaah not give him victory.” Then he endorses ibn al-Jawzees verdict on hadeeth c) that it is fabricated. [Tarteeb al-Mawdoo’aat (pg.272 no.’s 974-977)
10.The hadeeth of Abu Dawood [Eng. Trans no.4273] from Umm Salamah that the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam) said, “disagreement will occur at the death of a Khaleef and a man of the people of Madeenah will come forth flying to Mecca. Some of the people of Mecca will come to him, bring him out against his will and swear allegiance to him between the corner and the maqaam. An expeditionary force will then be sent against them from Syria but will be swallowed up by the desert between Mecca and Madeenah, and when the people see that, the Abdaal of Syria and the best people of Iraaq will come to him and swear allegiance to him between the corner and the Maqaam….”
Al-Albaanee says in ‘ad-Da’eefah’ (no. 1965),
“Da’eef. Reported by Ahmad (6/316), Abu Dawood (4286), and via their route ibn Asaakir (1/280) from the route of Hishaam from Qataadah from Abu Khaleel from a companion of his from Umm Salamah from the Messenger (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam).
I say: it’s narrators are all thiqah except for the companion of Abu Khaleel for he is not named and is therefore majhool.
Then Abu Dawood and at-Tabaraanee in ‘al-Awsat’ (9613) report it via the route of Abu al-Awaam from Qataadah from Abu Khaleel from Abdullaah bin al-Haarith from Umm Salamah from the Prophet (sallallaahu ’alayhi wa sallam).
At-Tabaraanee said, “no one reports this hadeeth from Qataadah except Imraan.
I say: the majhool narrator has been named as Abdullaah bin Haarith, and he is ibn Nawfal al-Madanee and he is thiqah being depended upon in the Two Saheehs. But in the route to him is Abu al-Awaam who is Imraan bin Dawood al-Qattaan and he has some weakness arising due to his memory.
Al-Bukhaaree said, “truthful but makes mistakes.”
Ad-Daaruqutnee said, “he used to commonly be inconsistent and make mistakes.”
And al-Haafidh depended upon this saying of Bukhaaree in his ‘Taqreeb’
Therefore his adding a thiqah narrator (in the isnaad) is something that the soul does not find tranquillity in.
Al-Haakim also reports this hadeeth via him (4/431) with the wording, “a man from my nation shall be sworn allegiance to between the Corner and the Station by a number of people like the number of the people of Badr, then the best of the people of Iraaq shall come to him and the Abdaal of Shaam. Then a expedition from Shaam will set out against him….”
Al-Haakim did not give it a ruling but adh-Dhahabee said, “Abu al-Awaam Imraan has been declared da’eef by more than one, and he was a Khaarijee.”
Then I saw the hadeeth in ‘Mawaarid al-Dham’aan’ (1881) via the route of Abu Ya’la (4/1651) from Muhammad bin Yazeed bin Rifaa’a from Wahb bin Jareer from Hishaam bin Abu Abdullaah from Qataadah from Saalih Abu Khaleel from Mujaahid from Umm Salamah.
The narrators of this isnaad are the narrators of the Two Saheehs except for ibn Rifaa’a, and he is Abu Hishaam ar-Rifaa’ee and he is da’eef. And he additionally mentioned Mujaahid in his isnaad but his addition is not counted.
Then I found a follow-up to this hadeeth reported by at-Tabaraanee in ‘al-Awsat’ (1164) via the route of Ubaidullaah bin Umru from Mu’mar from Qataadah from Mujaahid and at-Tabraanee said, “Ubaidullaah bin Umru said: Then I narrated it to Layth and he said Mujaahid reported this to me.”
At-Tabaraanee said, “this hadeeth has not been reported from Mu’mar except by Ubaidullaah.”
I say: and he is thiqah like the rest of the narrators of this isnaad. But they have differed about it’s isnaad to Qataadah in 4 ways:
1.Qataadah from Abu Khaleel from a companion of his from Umm Salamah. This is the report of Hishaam ad-Dastawaa’ee from him.
2.The same except the companion of his has been named as Abdullaah bin al-Haarith
3.The same except that the companion of his has been named as Mujaahid
4.The same except that Abu al-Khaleel has been omitted between Qataadah and Mujaahid.
This is a severe difference which necessitates investigation and declaring which is the strongest isnaad. It is obvious that the first three options deserve credence due to their agreeing that between Qataadah and Umm Salamah there are two narrators whereas the fourth option mentions only one. So upon considering this the fourth option is to be left due to its opposing the group.
Then we carefully studied the remaining three options. It is totally clear that the third option is to be left due to the weakness of ibn Rifaa’ah. Close to this is the second option due to the poor memory of Imraan as has preceded. Therefore the first option remains, and this is the weightiest out of the four. And when this (first isnaad) revolves around the companion of Abu Khaleel who is unnamed in a route that otherwise would be free of defect then he is the defect. And Allaah knows best.
The hadeeth has a number of other routes from Umm Salamah and other than her summarised, not containing mention of the story of the pledge of allegiance and the Abdaal and it is investigated in ‘as-Saheehah’ (no.1924).
[NB it should be noted that the term ‘Abdaal’ was a term known amongst the salaf and other early scholars as mentioned by as-Sakhaawee in ‘Maqaasid’. Ibn Taymiyyah in ‘al-wasatiyyah’ and al-Albaanee. What is differed about is what it refers to – the strongest opinion is that it refers to the Ahlul Hadeeth as mentioned by a number of early scholars amongst them Khateeb al-Baghdaadee in his ‘Sharf Ashaabul Hadeeth.]