Published by SunniDefense © on July 29th, 2009 in Blatant Lies

Answering-Ansar Article:

Who believes the Quran has been a victim of Tahreef? (Revision: 1.0.0)

Whenever someone raises a question about a narration promoting the belief in distortion of the Holy Qur’ān found in major Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharī texts, their apologists immediately embrace deceptive methods to free themselves from all burden. One of these methods is to say that neither did any of their scholars ever compile a work of narrations that he himself considered entirely authentic nor did any of them ever claim such a thing about any of the texts.

 

The Answering-Ansar team forwards these very same notions in the following words:

Quoting Answering-Ansar:
First Point: No one amongst the Shia ulema claimed his hadith book as 100 % correct
Those people who after reading some traditions in the hadith books written by Shia Ulema criticize Shia of Ali [as] are fact fanatics that have abandoned all aspects of justice since no Shia author ever claimed that all of the hadiths compiled in his book were correct and Sahih. Similarly none amongst the Shia Muhaditheen and jurists testified to any specific Shia book containing hadiths that were all acceptable and Sahih. Likewise Sheikh Muhammad Jawwad Ma`tiya states the hadith books of our school like Al Kafi, Istibsar, Al Tahdib, Man La Yuhizar al Faiqh contain both Sahih and weak hadiths. Similarly, the books on Fiqha written by our scholars contain material that have mistakes. It would therefore be correct to assert that according to the Shia of Ali [as] there is no book besides that Holy Quran which is flawless from its beginning till its end.

One cannot therefore cite the tradition from the Shia hadith book against the Shia of Ali [as] as when the Shia reject the authenticity of such a hadith.

In order to corroborate our stance, it would suffice to say that Shiekh Muhammad Yaqub Kuleini (d 329 H) recorded 16200 hadiths in his book ‘Al Kafi’. The scholars have categorized these hadiths in respect of Rijal under five different categories i.e Sahih, Mawthiq, Qawi, Hasan, Daeef [weak]. It is therefore evident that since scholars applied this division to our principle book Al Kafi, that is deemed as reliable and a source of Islamic instructions, the authority and authenticity of other books is self clarified.

Who believes the Quran has been a victim of Tahreef?, page 4-5

The Answering-Ansar team has proposed two notions here:

1.      No Shī`ī author ever claimed that all the narrations compiled in his book “were correct and Sahih.”

2.      None among the Shī`ī scholars of narrations and jurisprudence testified that any specific Shī`ī text containing narrations “were all acceptable and Sahih.”

The following revealing set of facts will show the readers that both these claims are actually lies forwarded by the Answering-Ansar team to deceive Muslims.

Introduction of the Four Books

Before moving on with the facts, readers should know that the most authoritative compilations after the Qur’ān, according to Ithnā’ `Asharī Shī`īs, are what they call al-Kutub al-Arba`a [“The Four Books”]. These four compilations are:

1.      al-Kāfī fī `Ilm al-Ĥadīth of Abū Ja`far al-Kulaynī (d. 329)

2.      Man lā Yaĥđuruh al-Faqīh of Ibn Bābawayh al-Şadūq al-Qummī (d. 381)

3.      Tahdhīb al-Aĥkām fī Sharĥ al-Muqni`a of Abū Ja`far al-Ţūsī (d. 460)

4.      al-Istibşār fī mā Ikhtalaf min al-Akhbār of Abū Ja`far al-Ţūsī (d. 460)

Grand Āyat Allāh al-Sayyid Ĥusayn Baĥr al-`Ulūm (d. 1422) writes about these four books in his introduction to Talkhīs al-Shāfī of Abū Ja`far al-Ţūsī:

إن الإجتهاد لدى الشيعة مرتكز على الكتب الأربعة الكافي للكليني ومن لا يحضره الفقيه للصدوق والتهذيب والاستبصار للطوسي وهي من الأصول المسلمة كالصحاح الستة لدى العامة

“Verily, scholarly endeavour, according to the Shī`a, is dependant on the Four Books: al-Kāfī of al-Kulaynī, Man lā Yaĥđuruh al-Faqīh al-Şadūq, al-Tahdhīb and al-Istibşār of al-Ţūsī. These are from the accepted principle books that are as the Six Şiĥāĥ are according to the Commoners.”

  • Talkhīs al-Shāfī {Introduction}, of al-Sayyid Ĥusayn Baĥr al-`Ulūm (d. 1422), page 29 [Najaf]

Let us now proceed:

al-Kulaynī (d. 329) and al-Kāfī

al-Kāfī fī `Ilm al-Ĥadīth of the major Shī`ī scholar Abū Ja`far al-Kulaynī is the most authoritative and renowned compilation of the Four Books. The author of this work, al-Kulaynī, believed that all the narrations in his work are authentic and correct, and that is the reason why he actually compiled it.

In the introduction of al-Kāfī, he explicitly said:

وقلت إنك تحب أن يكون عندك كتاب كاف يجمع فيه من جميع فنون علم الدين ما يكتفي به المتعلم ويرجع إليه المسترشد ويأخذ منه من يريد علم الدين والعمل به بالآثار الصحيحة عن الصادقين عليهم السلام والسنن القائمة التي عليها العمل وبها يؤدي فرض الله عز وجل وسنة نبيه صلى الله عليه وآله وقلت لو كان ذلك رجوت أن يكون ذلك سببا يتدارك الله تعالى بمعونته وتوفيقه إخواننا وأهل ملتنا ويقبل بهم إلى مراشدهم

“Verily, you solemnly wished that you possess a book which is sufficient, brings together the entire Islamic sciences of the knowledge of religion within it, wholly satisfies the needs of the student, acts as a reference for the seekers of guidance, and would be used by those who want to attain the knowledge of religion and practice upon it by deriving correct [şaĥīĥ] narrations of the truthful ones (as) and the upright and acted upon traditions from it—through which the compulsory duties of Allāh, the Powerful and Exalted, and the tradition of His Prophet (saws) can be fulfilled.

And you said: ‘If that happens, I can hope that (the book) would be a means through which Allāh will rectify our brothers and people of our religious community through his support and grace, and take them closer to their salvation.’”

  • al-Kāfī, of Abū Ja`far al-Kulaynī (d. 329), volume 1, page 8 [Tehran]

Following this, he said:

وقد يسر الله وله الحمد تأليف ما سألت وأرجو أن يكون بحيث توخيت

“Allāh, all praise to him, has facilitated the compilation of what you requested. I hope that (this book) will be in accordance with the wishes you had in mind.”

  • al-Kāfī, of Abū Ja`far al-Kulaynī (d. 329), volume 1, page 9 [Tehran]

This is an explicit confirmation from al-Kulaynī that the reason he compiled al-Kāfī was so he can provide Shī`īs with a book of authentic narrations that is sufficient for them—i.e. his book only contained correct reports according to him.

The contemporary Shī`ī scholar Āyat Allāh Muĥammad Mahdī al-Āşifī writes about al-Kulaynī while discussing al-Kāfī in his epistle Tarīkh Fiqh Ahl al-Bayt:

وقد جمع رحمه الله في موسوعته هذه ما صح لديه من أحاديث الأئمة الهداة عليهم السلام

“He—may Allāh have mercy on him—has collected what he found authentic from the narrations of the guiding Imāms (as) in this encyclopedia of his.”

  • Riyāđ al-Masā’il fī Bayān Aĥkām al-Shar` wa al-Dalā’il, of al-Sayyid `Alī al-Ţabāţabā’ī (d. 1231), volume 1, page 31 [Qum] – Tarīkh Fiqh Ahl al-Bayt included in the introduction.

Furthermore, Āyat Allāh Abū Ţālib al-Tajlīl al-Tabrīzī, author of the famous booklet translated as ‘Spurious Arguments about the Shia, confirms this declaration of al-Kulaynī in the introduction to his book known as Mu`jam al-Maĥāsin wa al-Masāwī.

He writes about al-Kulaynī and his al-Kāfī:

وقد صرح في مقدمته بصحة أحاديثه حيث قال وقلت تحب أن يكون عندك كتاب يأخذ منه من يريد علم الدين والعمل به بالآثار الصحيحة عن الصادقين عليهم السلام . . . . إلى أن قال وقد يسر الله وله الحمد تأليف ما سألت وأرجو أن يكون بحيث توخيت

“He has declared the authenticity of its narrations in his introduction, when he said: ‘Verily, you solemnly wished that you possess a book would be used by those who want to attain the knowledge of religion and practice upon it by deriving correct [şaĥīĥ] narrations of the truthful ones (as)…’ to: ‘Allāh, all praise to him, has facilitated the compilation of what you requested. I hope that (this book) will be in accordance with the wishes you had in mind.’”

  • Mu`jam al-Maĥāsin wa al-Masāmī, of Abū Ţālib al-Tabrīzī, page 17 [Qum]

This declaration of al-Kulaynī was so influential in history that it even led a group of Ithnā’ `Asharī Shī`ī scholars to use it as an argument for their belief in the immaculacy of the contents of al-Kāfī. Among them is al-Ĥurr al-`Āmilī (d. 1104), a major Shī`ī scholar of that group and an expert in the field of narrations, who staunchly believed in the correctness of all the narrations in al-Kāfī.

He states about the declaration of al-Kulaynī cited above:

وهو صريح أيضا في الشهادة بصحة أحاديث كتابه لوجوه منها قوله بالآثار الصحيحة ومعلوم أنه لم يذكر فيه قاعدة يميز بها الصحيح عن غيره لو كان فيه غير صحيح ولا كان اصطلاح المتأخرين موجودا في زمانه قطعا كما يأتي فعلم أن كل ما فيه صحيح باصطلاح القدماء بمعنى الثابت عن المعصوم بالقرائن القطعية أو التواتر

“This is also an explicit declaration of authenticity of the narrations in his book due to various points.

One of these points is: His statement: ‘Authentic narrations.’ It is well-known that neither did he mention a rule that distinguishes the rigorously authentic [şaĥīĥ] narration from the other categories in (the book), even if there is a non-şaĥīĥ narration in it, nor were the terminologies of the later scholars absolutely present during his time, as it will be further explained.

Thus, it is known that all the narrations in it are correct [şaĥīĥ] by the terminology of the early scholars, with the meaning of being proven from the infallible on the basis of categorical indications or consecutiveness.”

  • Khātimat Tafşīl Wasā’il al-Shī`a ilá Taĥşīl Masā’il al-Sharī`a, of al-Ĥurr al-`Āmilī (d. 1104), volume 30, page 196 [Qum]

Note: What al-Ĥurr means by “the terminology of later scholars” are the terminologies introduced with the categorization of narrations, in terms of their authenticity, that was not invented until the end of the 7th Islamic century. Before this categorization, the early Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars viewed the narrations to be either şaĥīĥ or not şaĥīĥ. This will be further elaborated in this writing.

Opposing the view of this group of Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars, al-Sayyid Muĥammad al-Mujāhid al-Ţabāţabā’ī (d. 1242) replied to this argument in the following words:

إن إخبار الكليني بصحة ما دونه في الكافي كما يمكن أن يكون باعتبار علمه بها وقطعه بصدورها عن الأئمة عليهم السلام فيجوز الاعتماد عليها والحال هذه كسائر أخبار العدول كذلك يمكن أن يكون باعتبار اجتهاده وظهورها عنده ولو بالدليل الظني فلا يجوز إذن الاعتماد عليه فإن ظن المجتهد لا يكون حجة على مثله كما هو الظاهر من الأصحاب بل ومن العقلاء وحيث لا ترجيح للاحتمال الأول وجب التوقف به لأن الشك في الشرط يوجب الشك في المشروط فيلزم التوقف

“Indeed, the testimony of al-Kulaynī concerning the authenticity of (the narrations) he has recorded in al-Kāfī, just as it is possible that it is in consideration of his knowledge and certainty of their issuance from the Imāms (as), in which case it is permissible to depend upon them and its status will be the same as of all the reports of just individuals, it is (also) possible that it is in consideration of his independent judgment [ijtihād] and their appearance to him on the basis of conjectural proof. In this case it is impermissible to depend upon them, for the conjecture of a scholar capable of independent judgment [mujtahid] is not proof for those of the same stature, as it is obvious from other scholars, in fact, even from those with intellect.

And when there is no preference for the first possibility, it is incumbent to desist from holding on it because doubt about the condition necessitates doubt about what the condition is applied upon. Therefore, desistance is incumbent.”

  • Mafātīĥ al-Uşūl, of al-Sayyid Muĥammad al-Ţabāţabā’ī (d. 1242), page 332 [Tehran]

Whereas Grand Āyat Allāh Ĥusayn `Alī al-Muntažarī leaves out al-Ţabāţabā’ī’s analogical justifications and puts it in simple words:

واعتقاد الكليني بصحة الرواية ليس من الحجج الشرعية إذ ليس هو معصوما عندنا

“The belief of al-Kulaynī about the correctness of traditions is not a legal proof because he is not an infallible according to us!”

  • Dirāsāt fī al-Makāsib al-Muĥarrama, of Ĥusayn `Alī al-Muntažarī, volume 3, page 123 [Tehran]

So in a nutshell, between the occurrence of inter-Ithnā’ `Asharī disputes on whether al-Kāfī is entirely correct or not, the fact remains that al-Kulaynī himself declared, and thus believed in, the authenticity of the narrations found in his book.

Ibn Bābawayh (d.381) and Man lā Yaĥđuruh al-Faqīh

Abū Ja`far ibn Bābawayh al-Qummī, the famous Shī`ī scholar known as al-Shaykh al-Şadūq, also believed that all the narrations he has recorded in his compilation Man lā Yaĥđuruh al-Faqīh are all authentic and correct. In fact, just as al-Kulaynī, he has himself declared their authenticity while mentioning the reason why he compiled the work.

Ibn Bābawayh explicitly mentions in the introduction to Man lā Yaĥđuruh al-Faqīh that he has compiled this work on narrations because another Shī`ī scholar of his era, Sharaf al-Dīn Ni`ma, requested him to author a condensed work dealing with jurisprudence, Islamic laws and the permitted and prohibited.

He writes:

وصنفت له هذا الكتاب بحذف الأسانيد لئلا تكثر طرقه وإن كثرت فوائده ولم أقصد فيه قصد المصنفين في إيراد جميع ما رووه بل قصدت إلى إيراد ما أفتي به وأحكم بصحته وأعتقد فيه أنه حجة فيما بيني وبين ربي تقدس ذكره وتعالت قدرته

“I have compiled this book for him without chains of transmission, so that its transmissions should not be too many while its benefits are abundant. I did not intend to present all of what they have narrated, as authors usually do; rather I intended to present that by which I give legal opinions and rule to be authentic [aĥkum bi şiĥĥatih], and believe that it is proof [ĥujja] between me and my Lord, exalted is His power.”

  • Man lā Yaĥđuruh al-Faqīh, of Ibn Bābawayh al-Qummī (d. 381), volume 1, page 2-3 [Qum]

These words of Ibn Bābawayh are extremely obvious and show that he believed that all the narrations in his book are authentic and correct.

Contemporary Shī`ī scholar and intellectual, Dr. `Abd al-Hādī al-Fađlī, writes after quoting these words of Ibn Bābawayh:

ونصه هذا واضح وصريح في أنه يعتقد بصحة ما في كتابه ويراه حجة بينه وبين الله تعالى

“This explicit statement of his is clear and unequivocal in showing that he believes in the authenticity of what is in his book, and views it to be proof between himself and Allāh the Exalted.”

  • Uşūl al-Ĥadīth, of `Abd al-Hādī al-Fađlī, page 217 [Beirut]

This is further confirmed by al-Tabrīzī, who states about Ibn Bābawayh and his book:

وقد صرح لصحة أحاديثه بقوله في مقدمته قصدت إلى إيراد ما أفتي به وأحكم بصحته وأعتقد فيه أنه حجة فيما بيني وبين ربي

“He has declared the authenticity of its narrations in his introduction, with his statement: ‘I intended to present that by which I give legal opinions and rule to be authentic [aĥkum bi şiĥĥatih], and believe that it is a proof [ĥujja] between me and my Lord.’”

  • Mu`jam al-Maĥāsin wa al-Masāmī, of Abū Ţālib al-Tabrīzī, page 17 [Qum]

Another thing worthy of mention here is what is mentioned in the transcribed lectures of the contemporary Grand Āyat Allāh `Alī al-Sīstānī about Ibn Bābawayh and his book:

إنه قدس سره قد شهد في مقدمة كتابه بصحة جميع ما رواه فيه حيث قال ولم أقصد فيه قصد المصنفين في إيراد جميع ما رووه بل قصدت إلى إيراد ما أفتي به وأحكم بصحته وأعتقد فيه إنه حجة فيما بيني وبين ربي تقدس ذكره وتعالت قدرته

“Verily, he—may Allāh sanctify his secret—has certified the authenticity of all that he has narrated in it, in the introduction, when he said: ‘I did not intend to present all of what they have narrated, as authors usually do; rather I intended to present that by which I give legal opinions and rule to be authentic [aĥkum bi şiĥĥatih], and believe that it is proof [ĥujja] between me and my Lord, sacred is His mention and exalted is His power.’”

  • Qā`ida lā Đarar wa lā Đirār, of `Alī al-Sīstānī, page 87 [Qum]

As it is obvious from Ibn Bābawayh’s own words, the reason why he removed the chains of transmission from Man lā Yaĥđuruh al-Faqīh is because he did not want to present any narration that was not authentic or proof [ĥujja] according to him, like other scholars usually did in their compilations. And since Ibn Bābawayh was one of the early Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars and there were no terminologies of the later scholars during his time, it can easily be understood from his authentication that he viewed the narrations to be şaĥīĥ.

However, in case the Answering-Ansar team customarily rejects all manners taught by the Ahl al-Bayt (ra) to impolitely accuse other “cults” of misinterpreting Ibn Bābawayh’s words, let us cite a few more statements of Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars who have acknowledged his view.

The major Shī`ī scholar Bahā’ al-Dīn al-`Āmilī (d. 1034), who was admired as the “teacher of all” by even the top scholar-marionettes of the Safavids, states in his Mashriq al-Shamsayn:

وقد جرى رئيس المحدثين ثقة الإسلام محمد بن بابويه قدس الله روحه على متعارف المتقدمة في إطلاق الصحيح على ما يركن إليه ويعتمد عليه فحكم بصحة جميع ما أورده من الأحاديث في كتاب من لا يحضره الفقيه

“The head of the scholars of narrations [muĥaddithīn], the trustworthy of Islam, Muĥammad ibn Bābawayh—may Allāh sanctify his soul—has taken the traditional course of the early scholars in terming the relied and depended upon (narrations) as ‘şaĥīĥ. Thus, he has ruled the correctness of all the narrations he has mentioned in the book Man lā Yaĥđuruh al-Faqīh.”

  • Mashriq al-Shamsayn wa Iksīr al-Sa`ādatayn, of Bahā’ al-Dīn al-`Āmilī (d. 1034), page 269-270 [Qum]

Another Shī`ī scholar of high stature and author of over a hundred texts, Muĥammad Muĥsin al-Fayđ al-Kāshānī (d. 1091), also writes something fairly close in his voluminous al-Wāfī:

وقد جرى صاحبا كتابي الكافي والفقيه على متعارف المتقدمين في اطلاق الصحيح على ما يركن اليه ويعتمد عليه فحكما بصحة جميع ما أورداه في كتابيهما من الأحاديث وإن لم يكن كثير منه صحيحا على مصطلح المتأخرين

“The authors of the two books, al-Kāfī and al-Faqīh, have taken the traditional course of the early scholars in terming the relied and depended upon (narrations) as ‘şaĥīĥ. Thus, they have ruled the correctness of all the narrations they have mentioned in their books, even though many of them are not şaĥīĥ according to the terminology of the later scholars.”

These quotes sufficiently demonstrate that like al-Kulaynī, Ibn Bābawayh too declared the authenticity of the narrations found in his book in the introduction, while being on the course of the early Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars.

al-Ţūsī (d. 460) and his Tahdhīb and al-Istibşār

This just leaves the last two of the Four Books. Our respected Shī`ī brothers may find this hard to assimilate, but al-Ţūsī also confirmed the authenticity of these compilations of his.

al-Fayđ al-Kāshānī states in al-Wāfī:

أن مدار الأحكام الشرعية اليوم على هذه الأصول الأربعة وهي المشهود عليها بالصحة من مصنفها

“These four key books are the pivot of legal rulings today, and they are testified as correct by their compilers.”

Similarly, the famous Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharī scholar Yūsuf al-Baĥrānī (d. 1186) also states while objecting about the opposing group of scholars from his own Ithnā’ `Asharī school:

أن التوثيق والجرح الذي بنوا عليه تنويع الأخبار إنما أخذوه من كلام القدماء وكذلك الأخبار التي رويت في أحوال الرواة من المدح والذم إنما أخذوها عنهم فإذا اعتمدوا عليهم في مثل ذلك فكيف لا يعتمدون عليهم في تصحيح ما صححوه من الأخبار واعتمدوه وضمنوا صحته كما صرح به جملة منهم كما لا يخفى على من لاحظ ديباجتي الكافي والفقيه وكلام الشيخ في العدة وكتابي الأخبار

“The narrator commendation and condemnation, on which the categorization of reports was based, is obtained from the statements of the early scholars. Similarly, the reports that are related concerning the conditions of narrators in terms of praise and dispraise are (also) obtained from them.

If they have relied upon them [i.e. the early scholars] concerning a matter such as that, how is it that they do not rely upon them concerning the authenticity of the reports that they deemed correct, relied upon and ensured to be authentic as a score of them have (even) explicitly declared—something not hidden to he who has observed the introductions of al-Kāfī and al-Faqīh, and the words of al-Shaykh [al-Ţūsī] in al-`Udda and the two books of reports [i.e. Tahdhīb and al-Istibşār].”

  • al-Ĥadā’iq al-Nāđira fī Aĥkām al-`Itrat al-Ţāhira, of Yūsuf al-Baĥrānī (d. 1186), volume 1, page 16 [Qum]

These strong words of Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars, that were only uncovered due to the fiery disputes that occurred between them concerning the categorization of narrations in terms of their authenticity, make the stance of the author of the four most authoritative books of narrations very clear—i.e. they viewed the narrations in their works to be authentic and correct.

However, it should be noted here that no one is arguing that what was considered a şaĥīĥ or correct narration among these four scholars is equivalent to what is defined as “şaĥīĥ” according to the Shī`ī scholars today, for it is a known fact that the categorization of narrations followed by the majority of Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharīs today was not introduced until long after these four individuals and thus, as quoted from al-Ĥurr al-`Āmilī and Bahā’ al-Dīn, they were on the traditional course of Shī`ī scholars concerning the categorization of narrations—i.e. it is either şaĥīĥ and not şaĥīĥ.

That being said, it has been evidently shown that these four scholars believed the narrations in their books to be correct or as they believed, “şaĥīĥ.” And what is being demonstrated here is their own view of the narrations in their books, not how Shī`ī scholars, who took the other course, understand them.

The Akhbārī and Uşūlī Dispute

Interestingly, this very same dispute about the categorization of narrations in itself shows that the Answering-Ansar team has not been truthful in relaying information about Shī`ī scholars.

Answering-Ansar says:

Quoting Answering-Ansar:
Similarly none amongst the Shia Muhaditheen and jurists testified to any specific Shia book containing hadiths that were all acceptable and Sahih.
Who believes the Quran has been a victim of Tahreef?, page 4

The abovementioned quotes are sufficient in showing that this statement is an obvious lie. Nonetheless, let us quote a few more Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars as an elaboration of this issue so this lie of Answering-Ansar becomes much more clear to the readers.

Dr. `Abd al-Hādī al-Fađlī writes under the heading ‘The Authentication of the Narrations in the Four Books’ in his Uşūl al-Ĥadīth:

يراد بالتصحيح هنا اعتداد جميع ما في الكتب الأربعة من أحاديث رويت عن أهل البيت عليهم السلام معتبرة ومقطوعا بصدورها عن الأئمة والمسألة هذه وقعت موقع الخلاف بين علمائنا وطال البحث فيها وطال معه النقاش حولها

“What is meant by ‘authentication’ here is considering all the narrations that are related from the Ahl al-Bayt in the Four Books, to be reliable and certainly issued from the Imāms.

There has occurred a dispute between our scholars concerning this issue. Discussions lengthened concerning it, and so did the argumentations.”

  • Uşūl al-Ĥadīth, of `Abd al-Hādī al-Fađlī, page 210 [Beirut]

This dispute about authentication and categorization of narrations has occurred between two groups of Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars. These two groups are known as:

1.      The Akhbārīs

2.      The Uşūlīs

The late introduction of categorizing narrations with four different terminologies in terms of their authenticity and inauthenticity, led the Akhbārī group of Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars to continue following the course early Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars adhered to before its invention.

Shī`ī scholar and researcher, al-Sayyid Muĥyī al-Dīn al-Mūsawī al-Ghurayfī (d. 1412) explains this in his work approved by Grand Āyat Allāh Abū al-Qāsim al-Khū’ī, Qawā`id al-Ĥadīth:

وقد شجب الأخباريون تنويع الحديث وعدوه من البدع التي يحرم العمل بها وبسطوا البحث في إبطاله وإثبات صحة جميع أخبار كتبنا الأربعة بل جميع الأخبار التي نقلوها عن الكتب المعتبرة لأنها محفوفة بقرائن تفيد الوثوق بصدورها عن المعصوم عليه السلام

“The Akhbārīs have disapproved of the categorization of narrations, and counted it among innovations that are forbidden to be practiced! They elaborated the discussion in nullification of it and establishing the authenticity of all the reports in our Four Books, rather all the reports that were copied from authoritative books, for they are enclosed with evidences that assist the certainty of their issuance from the infallible (as).”

  • Qawā`id al-Ĥadīth, of al-Sayyid Muĥyī al-Dīn al-Ghurayfī, page 16-17 [Najaf]

To sum up, the Akhbārīs reject the categorization, considering it unorthodox, and believe that all the narrations in the Four Books are correct and authentic. And as they remain on the course of the early Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars who believed a narration can either be ‘şaĥīĥ’ or not şaĥīĥ, their view of the authenticity of narrations is that they are all şaĥīĥ.

Āyat Allāh Murtađá Muţahharī (d. 1407) states about the Akhbārī group of scholars:

أنهم يزعمون أن جميع الأخبار الواردة في الكتب الأربعة وهي الكافي ومن لا يحضره الفقيه والتهذيب والاستبصار أخبار صحيحة ومعتبرة بل وقطعية الصدور

“They claim that all the reports in the Four Books—which are al-Kāfī, Man lā Yaĥđuruh al-Faqīh, al-Tahdhīb and al-Istibşār—are şaĥīĥ and reliable, in fact, certainly issued (from the infallibles).”

  • al-Tajdīd wa al-Ijtihād fī al-Islām, of Murtađá Muţahharī (d. 1407), page 86 [Beirut]

Similarly, Grand Āyat Allāh al-Sayyid Muĥsin al-Amīn al-`Āmilī (d. 1371) also writes in his magnum opus, A`yān al-Shī`a:

فزعم الأخباريون أن اخبار الكتب الأربعة كلها صحيحة

“The Akhbārīs claimed that all of the reports in the Four Books are şaĥīĥ.”

  • A`yān al-Shī`a, of al-Sayyid Muĥsin al-Amīn (d. 1371), volume 3, page 223 [Beirut]

While the contemporary expert Āyat Allāh Muĥammad Bāqir al-Īrawānī even mentions this is as the actual reason behind their rejection of the categorization:

وسبب إنكار الأخباريين لهذا التقسيم أن جميع اخبار الكتب الأربعة صحيحة ويجب العمل بها بنظرهم

“The reason behind the rejection of this categorization of narrations by the Akhbārīs is: According to their view, all the reports in the Four Books are şaĥīĥ and it is necessary to practice upon them.”

  • Durūs Tamhīdiyya fī al-Qawā`id al-Rijāliyya, of Muĥammad Bāqir al-Īrawānī, page 49 [Beirut]

This group of Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars, that considers all the narrations in the Four Books to be şaĥīĥ, includes renowned figures who marked their names as major scholars of narrations [muĥaddithūn] and jurisprudence [fuqahā’] among them. In fact, their works are viewed to be a part of the most authoritative texts by Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars even today. To name a few:

1.     Muĥammad Amīn al-Astarābādī (d. 1036): The foremost opponent of the categorization of narrations and author of an epistle upholding the belief in the correctness of all the narrations in the Four Books, al-Fawā’id al-Madaniyya. He was a scholar of narrations and a jurist, and authored several texts such as commentaries on al-Istibşār and al-Tahdhīb, and epistles on jurisprudence.

2.     al-Khalīl ibn al-Ghāzī al-Qazwīnī (d. 1089): A scholar of narrations and jurisprudence, and author of several texts such as a commentary on al-Ţusī’s al-`Udda and the most famous and great commentary of al-Kāfī ever written in the Persian language, al-Şāfī. Shī`ī biographers mention that he was staunchly against the categorization of narrations, and believed all the narrations in al-Kāfī are authenticated by the last Imām himself and it is obligatory to practice upon them.

3.     al-Sayyid Hāshim al-Baĥrānī (d. 1107): He was an expert scholar of narrations, a jurist and a commentator of the Holy Qur’ān. He authored around forty texts, which include the voluminous Ghāyat al-Marām wa Ĥujjat al-Khişām fī Ta`yīn al-Imām min Ţarīq al-Khāss wa al-`Āmm and a commentary entitled al-Burhān fī Tafsīr al-Qur’ān. His works have been revered by Shī`ī scholars ever since they were compiled.

al-Ĥurr al-`Āmilī (d. 1104) and Wasā’il al-Shī`a

One of these scholars, as mentioned earlier, is Muĥammad ibn al-Ĥasan al-Ĥurr al-`Āmilī.

Āyat Allāh `Abbās al-Qummī (d. 1359), who was a renowned Shī`ī scholar and biographer, has written under the biography of al-Ĥurr:

محمد بن الحسن بن علي المشغري شيخ المحدثين وأفضل المتبحرين العالم الفقيه النبيه المحدث المتبحر الورع الثقة الجليل أبو المكارم والفضائل صاحب المصنفات المفيدة منها الوسائل الذي من على المسلمين بتأليف هذا الجامع الذي هو كالبحر لا يساجل

“Muĥammad ibn al-Ĥasan ibn `Alī al-Mashgharī, the master of the scholars of narrations [muĥaddithīn], the best of the foremost experts in religion, the knowledgeable, the renowned jurist [faqīh], the profound scholar of narrations [muĥaddith], the pious, the trustworthy, the venerable, the father of noble traits and virtues, and author of several beneficial works; one of which is the Wasā’il, a work that he has compiled as a bestowment upon the Muslims, a compilation that is like the ocean that can not be contested.”

  • al-Kuná wa al-Alqāb, of `Abbās al-`Qummī (d. 1359), volume 2, page 176 [Tehran]

This al-Ĥurr al-`Āmilī is one of those Akhbārī scholars who strictly opposed the categorization of narrations and believed in the authenticity of all the narrations found the Four Books of the Shī`a Imāmiyya Ithnā’ `Ashariyya. He has extensively argued in favour of this position of his in the same compilation mentioned by `Abbās al-Qummī as “the ocean that can not be contested,” Wasā’il al-Shī`a.

al-Īrawānī says:

وقد قام الحر العاملي في وسائله بتجميع القرائن على ذلك أي صحة جميع ما في الكتب الأربعة فكانت ٢٢ قرينة

“In his Wasā’il, al-Ĥurr al-`Āmilī has gathered the evidences indicating that—meaning, the authenticity of whatever is in the Four Books—and they are (a total of) twenty two evidences.”

  • Durūs Tamhīdiyya fī al-Qawā`id al-Rijāliyya, of Muĥammad Bāqir al-Īrawānī, page 49 [Beirut]

As a matter of fact, he did not just stop at simply viewing other works of narrations to be entirely correct, but he also believed that his own compiled work, Wasā’il al-Shī`a, contained only authentic and correct narrations.

al-Ghurayfī writes while mentioning how the Akhbārīs have argued against the categorization:

استدل عليه الشيخ محمد بن الحسن الحر باثنين وعشرين وجها في الفائدة التاسعة التي عقدها لاثبات صحة أحاديث جميع الكتب التي جمع منها كتابه وسائل الشيعة وحكم بوجوب العمل بها أجمع

Shaykh Muĥammad ibn al-Ĥasan al-Ĥurr deduced twenty two points, under the eighth useful lesson, for establishing the authenticity of the narrations found in all the books, that he collected in his book Wasā’il al-Shī`a, and he (also) ruled the obligation of practicing upon all of them.”

  • Qawā`id al-Ĥadīth, of al-Sayyid Muĥyī al-Dīn al-Ghurayfī, page 17 [Najaf]

Uşūlīs Who Counted the Four Books as Completely Authentic

Additionally, there have also been notable scholars from the Uşūlī group who believed that all the narrations found in the Four Books, and particularly al-Kāfī, are authentic and correct.

This is why Āyat Allāh Bāqir al-Īrawānī is affected to state after mentioning the Akhbārī view on narrations:

ولعل هذا الرأي هو المعروف بين الاخباريين بل ولربما يظهر اختياره من بعض الاصوليين

“This is perhaps the opinion which is known among the Akhbārīs, and it sometimes appears to be chosen by a few Usūlīs as well.”

  • Durūs Tamhīdiyya fī al-Qawā`id al-Rijāliyya, of Muĥammad Bāqir al-Īrawānī, page 100 [Beirut]

Among contemporaries, are the late Grand Āyat Allāh al-Sayyid Muĥammad Şādiq al-Şadr (d. 1419), after whom the Sadr City suburb of Baghdad is named, and the renowned scholar and propagandist, author of al-Murāja`āt, Āyat Allāh al-Sayyid `Abd al-Ĥusayn al-Mūsawī (d. 1377).

`Abd al-Ĥusayn al-Mūsawī writes while representing the Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharī sect in his alleged dialogue with one of the Grand Imāms of al-Azhar, Salīm al-Bishrī (d. 1335):

نبغ من أصحاب الصادق جم غفير وعدد كثير كانوا أئمة هدى ومصابيح دجى وبحار علم ونجوم هداية والذين دونت أسماؤهم وأحوالهم في كتب التراجم منهم أربعة آلاف رجل من العراق والحجاز وفارس وسوريا وهم أولو مصنفات مشهورة لدى علماء الإمامية ومن جملتها الأصول الأربعة مئة وهي كما ذكرناه سابقا أربع مئة مصنف لأربع مئة مصنف كتبت من فتاوى الصادق عليه السلام على عهده فكان عليها مدار العلم والعمل من بعده حتى لخصها جماعة من أعلام الأمة وسفراء الأئمة في كتب خاصة تسهيلا للطالب وتقريبا على المتناول وأحسن ما جمع منها الكتب الأربعة التي هي مرجع الإمامية في أصولهم وفروعهم من الصدر الأول إلى هذا الزمان وهي الكافي والتهذيب والاستبصار ومن لا يحضره الفقيه وهي متواترة ومضامينها مقطوع بصحتها والكافي أقدمها وأعظمها وأحسنها وأتقنها

“A great portion and large number from the companions of al-Şādiq (as) achieved ultimate wisdom. They became leaders [imāms] of right path, lanterns in darkness, oceans of knowledge, and stars of guidance. Among those, who have their names and conditions recorded in biographical texts, are four thousand men from Iraq, the Ĥijāz, Persia, and Syria. They are authors of famous works, which include the four hundred Uşūls of the Imāmīs.

These (Uşūls)—as we mentioned earlier—are four hundred compilations authored by four hundred authors, which were written during the time of al-Şādiq (as) and contained his verdicts. They were the axis of knowledge and practice after him, to such an extent that a group of eminent scholars of this nation and ambassadors of the Imāms rendered them into books as a facilitation and summarization for the seeker and deriver of knowledge.

The best of what was compiled from the (Uşūls) are the Four Books, which are sources for the Imāmīs in referring to their roots and branches of religion, from their earliest period to this era.  These are: al-Kāfī, al-Tahdhīb, al-Istibşār and Man lā Yaĥđuruh al-Faqīh. They are transmitted consecutively and their contents are undoubtedly authentic, and al-Kāfī is the oldest, the greatest, the best and the most accurate among them.

  • al-Murāja`āt, of `Abd al-Ĥusayn al-Mūsawī (d. 1377), page 419 [Beirut]

On the other hand, Grand Āyat Allāh Muĥammad Şādiq al-Şadr even went to the extent of explicitly stating in his book entitled al-Shī`a:

أن الشيعة وإن كانت مجمعة على اعتبار الكتب الأربعة وقائلة بصحة كل ما فيها من روايات غير أنها لا تطلق عليها اسم الصحاح كما فعل ذلك إخوانهم أهل السنة

“The Shī`a, even though they are unanimous upon the reliability of the Four Books and believe in the authenticity of all the narrations in them, do not name them ‘Şiĥāĥ’ as their Ahl al-Sunna brothers did.”

  • al-Shī`a, of Muĥammad Şādiq al-Şadr (d. 1419), page 127 [Tehran]

And last but not least, a scholar before these two individuals who also held that all the narrations in al-Kāfī are correct, was one of the renowned Shī`ī jurisprudents of his time, Grand Āyat Allāh al-Mīrzā Muĥammad Ĥusayn al-Nā’īnī (d. 1355). His belief in the correctness of the narrations in al-Kāfī reached such a degree that he declared checking their chains of transmission to be a waste of time.

His student, Grand Āyat Allāh al-Sayyid Abū al-Qāsim al-Khū’ī (d. 1412) writes:

وقد ذكر غير واحد من الاعلام أن روايات الكافي كلها صحيحة ولا مجال لرمي شئ منها بضعف سندها وسمعت شيخنا الأستاذ الشيخ محمد حسين النائيني قدس سره في مجلس بحثه يقول إن المناقشة في إسناد روايات الكافي حرفة العاجز

More than one of the eminent scholars have mentioned that all the narrations of al-Kāfī are şaĥīĥ, and there is no room for putting away anything from it due to its weak chain of transmission. I heard our master and teacher Shaykh Muĥammad Ĥusayn al-Nā’īnī—may Allāh sanctify his secret—say in one of his gatherings of discussion: ‘Verily, arguing about the chains of transmission of the narrations in al-Kāfī is the vocation of an incompetent!’”

  • Mu`jam Rijāl al-Ĥadīth wa Tafşīl Ţabaqāt al-Ruwāt, of Abū al-Qāsim al-Khū’ī (d. 1412), volume 1, page 81 [Qum]

It becomes crystal clear from all the quotes cited above that a prominent amount of Shī`ī scholars consider all the narrations in the Four Books authentic and şaĥīĥ. Specially the narrations found in the most authoritative of the four, al-Kāfī.

Yet the Answering-Ansar team chose to deceptively say:

Quoting Answering-Ansar:
Similarly none amongst the Shia Muhaditheen and jurists testified to any specific Shia book containing hadiths that were all acceptable and Sahih.
Who believes the Quran has been a victim of Tahreef?, page 4

al-Qummī (d. 307) and his Tafsīr

A celebrated Shī`ī scholar of this era, Āyat Allāh al-Sayyid `Alī al-Shahrastānī, reveals in his book studying the recording of narrations:

“`Ali ibn Ibrahim al-Qummiy, the compiler of the famous book of Tafsir that carries his name, has confirmed the authenticity of the Hadiths that he recorded in his book by bearing out that these Hadiths have been reported by trustworthy narrators from the Holy Imams.”

  • Man` Tadwīn al-Ĥadīth Asbāb wa Natā’ij, of al-Sayyid `Alī al-Shahrastānī, page 546 [Qum]
  • The Prohibition of Recording the Hadith: Causes and Effects (English), of Sayyid Ali al-Shahristaniy, page 510 [Qum]

As it is evident, `Alī ibn Ibrāhīm al-Qummī, who was a major scholar and teacher of al-Kulaynī, also confirmed that the narrations in his Commentary of the Holy Qur’ān are authentic. This, consequently, means that he himself also believed that the narrations in his work are authentic.

al-Ĥillī (d. 726), al-Ĥasan al-`Āmilī (d. 1011) and Compilation of Authentic Narrations

Ibn Muţahhar al-Ĥillī, a major Ithnā’ `Asharī scholar who is recognized as a reformer of his era among them, even compiled works of narrations in which he collected only authentic narrations. One in which he collected only rigorously authentic [şaĥīĥ] and fairly authentic [ĥasan] narrations, and another in which he collected only şaĥīĥ narrations.

According to his own work Khulāsat al-Aqwāl, he named these two compilations:

1.     al-Durr wa al-Marjān fī al-Aĥādīth al-Şiĥāĥ wa al-Ĥisān [“Pearls and Corals: Şaĥīĥ and Ĥasan Narrations”]

2.     al-Nahj al-Wađđāĥ fī al-Aĥādīth al-Şiĥāĥ [“The Articulate Method: Şaĥīĥ Narrations”]

These compilations of narrations are unanimously counted as al-Ĥillī’s books and as it is obvious from the titles, al-Ĥillī believed all the narrations in it are sound and acceptable.

The compilations of al-Ĥillī influenced another famous Shī`ī scholar, al-Ĥasan ibn Zayn al-Dīn al-`Āmilī, and lead him to also author a compilation of narrations from the Four Books that were authentic and acceptable. He titled this work Muntaqá al-Jumān fī al-Aĥādīth al-Şiĥāĥ wa al-Ĥisān [“Selected Pearls: Şaĥīĥ and Ĥasan Narrations”]

Āyat Allāh Āqā Buzurg al-Ţihrānī (d. 1389) writes about this when discussing the first work of al-Ĥillī in his biographical lexicon of Shī`ī texts, al-Dharī`a:

وقد اقتفى اثره سميه الشيخ حسن بن زين الدين الشهيد صاحب المعالم المتوفى ١٠١١ وصنف كتابه منتقى الجمان في الأحاديث الصحاح والحسان وسيأتي في النون كتاب آخر للعلامة الحلي في هذا الموضوع اسمه النهج الوضاح في الأحاديث الصحاح

“The namesake Shaykh Ĥasan ibn Zayn al-Dīn al-Shahīd (d. 1011), the author of al-Ma`ālim, has followed his [i.e. al-Ĥillī’s] track and authored his book Muntaqá al-Jumān fī al-Aĥādīth al-Şiĥāĥ wa al-Ĥisān.

Soon, another book of al-`Allāma al-Ĥillī on this subject will be mentioned under the letter ‘nūn. Its title is: al-Nahj al-Wađđāĥ fī al-Aĥādīth al-Şiĥāĥ.”

  • al-Dharī`a ilá Taşānīf al-Shī`a, of Āqā Buzurg al-Ţihrānī (d. 1389), volume 8, page 87 [Beirut]

This work is retained by contemporary Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars, unlike the two works of al-Ĥillī, and used by them as an authoritative work of reference.

Furthermore, not only did Ĥasan claim that the narrations in his compilation are authentic and acceptable; he also believed that the entire contents of the Four Books are authentic.

al-Shahrastānī states:

“Shaykh Hasan, in his books entitled Muntaqa al-Juman and al-Ma`alim, has stated that the Hadiths mentioned in the four most reliable Shi`ite reference books of Hadith (al-Kutub al-Arba`ah) and their likes are substantiated by proofs as they were, without any distortion, quoted from the al-Usul as well as the fundamental books the authenticity of which have been unanimously confirmed by the scholars.”

  • Man` Tadwīn al-Ĥadīth Asbāb wa Natā’ij, of al-Sayyid `Alī al-Shahrastānī, page 545-546 [Qum]
  • The Prohibition of Recording the Hadith: Causes and Effects (English), of Sayyid Ali al-Shahristaniy, page 509-510 [Qum]

al-Kaf`amī (d. 905) and al-Mişbāĥ

Texts on narrations and commentaries aside, even compilations of supplications have been confirmed to be entirely authentic by some Shī`ī scholars. Taqī al-Dīn al-Kaf`amī, a well-known and respected Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharī scholar, has compiled a book of narrated supplications that is famously known as al-Mişbāĥ.

Āyat Allāh al-Sayyid Ja`far Murtađá al-`Āmilī writes about it while citing it as a proof for his arguments:

ما ذكره الشيخ الكفعمي المتوفي سنة ٩٠٥ ه‍ ق في كتابه المصباح الذي جمعه من حوالي مئتين وأربعين كتابا وقال إنه جمعه من كتب معتمد على صحتها مأمور بالتمسك بوثقى عروتها ولا يغيرها كر العصرين ولا مر الملوين كتب كمثل الشمس يكتب ضوؤها ومحلها فوق الرفيع الأرفع

“10: What is mentioned by Shaykh al-Kaf`ami (d. 905) in his book titled al-Mişbāĥ which he compiled from about two hundred and forty books. He said that he compiled it ‘from books the authenticity of which is reliable and upholding them mandated, and this cannot be altered by the evil efforts of time or by the endeavour of those with twisted minds. Books, like the sun, whose light—is written above the most high of the height.’”

  • Ma’sāt al-Zahrā’ Shubhāt wa Rudūd, of al-Sayyid Ja`far Murtađá al-`Āmilī, volume 2, page 44 [Beirut]

Şaĥīĥ al-Kāfī

The Answering-Ansar team has said:

Quoting Answering-Ansar:
No Shia author ever claimed that all of the hadiths compiled in his book were correct and Sahih.
Who believes the Quran has been a victim of Tahreef?, page 4

Unfortunately, truth is at odds with Answering-Ansar today.

Ibn Bābawayh, al-Ĥurr al-`Āmilī and other scholars’ claim that all the narrations compiled in their works are correct and şaĥīĥ is already showed above. But to cap it all off, let us share one last work of a recognized Shī`ī scholar and author who “claimed that all of the hadiths compiled in his book were correct and Sahih.”

The contemporary Shī`ī scholar Muĥammad Bāqir al-Bahbūdī has compiled an entire work entitled Şaĥīĥ al-Kāfī. al-Bahbūdī has claimed to have collected only rigorously authentic [şaĥīĥ] narrations of al-Kāfī in this compilation, and accordingly, he has named it “Şaĥīĥ.”

To begin with, it should be known that al-Bahbūdī is not a typical graduate of some Shī`ī institution, rather he is a reputed and praised scholar of today.

Grand Āyat Allāh al-Sayyid Shihāb al-Dīn al-Mar`ashī (d. 1411) attributes the following words to al-Bahbūdī in his introduction to a work revised and edited by the latter, al-Şirāţ al-Mustaqīm of `Alī ibn Yūnus al-Bayāđī (d. 877):

وقام العالم الفاضل الموفق لإحياء الزبر الدينية الاقا محمد باقر البهبودي شكر الله مساعيه ووفر معاليه بتصحيحه وتنقيحه بالمراجعة إلى النسخ العديدة

“The brilliant scholar, who was victorious in reviving the religious scriptures, Master Muĥammad Bāqir al-Bahbūdī—may Allāh appreciate his efforts and increase his loftiness—came forth with its correction and critical revision by referring to several manuscripts.”

  • al-Şirāţ al-Mustaqīm ilá Mustaĥiqqī al-Taqdīm, of `Alī ibn Yūnus al-Bayāđī (d. 877), volume 1, page 4 [Tehran]

This al-Bahbūdī is the one mentioned by the Āyat Allāh al-Sayyid Murtađá al-`Askarī (d. 1428) in the following words:

وقد ألف أحد الباحثين في عصرنا صحيح الكافي اعتبر من مجموع ١٦١٢١ حديثا من أحاديث الكافي ٣٣٢٨ حديثا صحيحا وترك ١١٦٩٣ حديثا منها لم يراها حسب اجتهاده صحيحة

“One of the researchers of our time has compiled ‘Şaĥīĥ al-Kāfī. He counted 3328 narrations from the 16121 narrations of al-Kāfī as şāĥīĥ, and left 11693 narrations that he did not view to be şaĥīĥ according to his judgement.”

  • Ma`ālim al-Madrasatayn, of al-Sayyid Murtađá al-`Askarī (d. 1428), volume 3, page 282 [Beirut]

The existence of this compilation not only exposes Answering-Ansar’s lie, but also shows the dubiousness of the argument reiterated by the Shī`ī propagandists of today:

“According to us, only the Qur’ān is şaĥīĥ. We do not call any book ‘şaĥīĥ’ other than the Qur’ān as the Sunnīs do with Şaĥīĥ al-Bukhārī.”

Any unbiased individual can see that Şaĥīĥ al-Kāfī is not very different from Şaĥīĥ al-Bukhārī. The authors both compiled their respected works with the intention of solely collecting narrations that were rigorously authentic [şaĥīĥ] according to them. The only difference is that what Shī`ī scholars are trying to do today, was done centuries ago by Sunnīs.

Neither do Sunnīs believe that Şaĥīĥ al-Bukhārī is şaĥīĥ as the Qur’ān is, nor do they intent to raise the rank of Şaĥīĥ al-Bukhārī as high as the Qur’ān. Rather, what they mean by calling it “Şaĥīĥ” is exactly what al-Bahbūdī meant when calling his compilation “Şaĥīĥ.” So if the Shī`īs are unable to unanimously agree upon a certain criterion of judging narrations, are the Ahl al-Sunna wa al-Jamā`a to be accused of elevating a book to the position of the Holy Qur’ān for simply agreeing upon the authenticity of the narrations in a book called “Şaĥīĥ”?

Conclusion – Facts that Prove the Lies of Answering-Ansar

In conclusion, the abovementioned study of both early and contemporary Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharī texts reveals the following facts about their scholars:

1.      Abū Ja`far al-Kulaynī believed and confirmed that all the narrations in his compilation are correct.

2.      Ibn Bābawayh al-Qummī believed and confirmed that all the narrations in his compilation are correct.

3.      Abū Ja`far al-Ţūsī confirmed in his works such as al-`Udda, as mentioned by al-Baĥrānī, that all the narrations in his two compilations are authentic and acceptable.

4.      Many prominent and eminent Shī`ī scholars claim that all the narrations in the Four Books, and particularly al-Kāfī, are şaĥīĥ.

5.      al-Ĥurr al-`Āmilī, a scholar of narrations [muĥaddith] and jurist [faqīh], claimed that all of the narrations compiled in his book are şaĥīĥ and thus it is obligatory to practice upon them.

6.      `Alī ibn Ibrāhīm al-Qummī confirmed the authenticity of all the narrations in his Tafsīr.

7.      Ibn Muţahhar al-Ĥillī compiled two works in which he claimed to have collected only authentic narrations. One containing only şaĥīĥ narrations and another containing both şaĥīĥ and ĥasan.

8.      al-Ĥasan al-`Āmilī, the author of al-Ma`ālim, followed al-Ĥillī and also compiled a work in which he collected only authentic and acceptable narrations.

9.      Taqī al-Dīn al-Kaf`amī testified to the authenticity of the entire contents of his book.

10.  Muĥammad Bāqir al-Bahbūdī claimed that all the narrations in his book Şaĥīĥ al-Kāfī are şaĥīĥ.

In light of the facts above, we have the following statement of the Answering-Ansar team:

Quoting Answering-Ansar:
First Point: No one amongst the Shia ulema claimed his hadith book as 100 % correct
Those people who after reading some traditions in the hadith books written by Shia Ulema criticize Shia of Ali [as] are fact fanatics that have abandoned all aspects of justice since no Shia author ever claimed that all of the hadiths compiled in his book were correct and Sahih. Similarly none amongst the Shia Muhaditheen and jurists testified to any specific Shia book containing hadiths that were all acceptable and Sahih.
Who believes the Quran has been a victim of Tahreef?, page 4

Now, it is up to the readers to decide whether what Answering-Ansar has said is a lie or not.

Readers should also know that this lengthy discussion could have been successfully dealt by proving the mere existence of Şaĥīĥ al-Kāfī. After all, al-Bahbūdī is a Shī`ī scholar and author who compiled a book declaring that all the narrations in it are şaĥīĥ, while Answering-Ansar blatantly lies by saying “no one among the Shia ulema” did such a thing.

However, several Shī`ī Ithnā’ `Asharī texts have been cited for readers to realize that this not a simple a matter related to a single text, rather a prominent amount of Shī`ī scholars have been believing and declaring the authenticity of all the narrations in particular texts, to the extent that a group of major Ithnā’ `Asharī scholars even denied the late categorization of narrations to uphold their belief that all the narrations in the “Four Books” are şaĥīĥ.

Thus, it was not just shown that Answering-Ansar has simply lied because there are contemporary Shī`ī scholars who have testified to the authenticity of the narrations in their books, but that the Answering-Ansar team is deceptively trying to keep people in the dark about how many Shī`ī scholars have been viewing their texts throughout history, by lying.

A Few Points to Note

Lastly, a few points about the quote of the Answering-Ansar team should also be noted here:

  • They have mentioned a Shī`ī scholar by the name of:

محمد جواد معتية

“Muhammad Jawwad Ma`tiya.”

Poor plagiarism. The late scholar’s actual name is:

محمد جواد مغنية

Muĥammad Jawād Mughniyya.

Had the Answering-Ansar team known the scholar they are copying information about, they would not have confused the diacritical points and made this ignorant mistake.

  • One of the categories of Shī`ī narrations is mentioned as “Mawthiq,” whereas the actual word is “muwaththaq” [authenticated]. Mawthiq refers to a covenant or a contract, not to mention that it is morphologically incorrect to use it for a narration. This clearly shows how much knowledge of the Arabic language and their own narrations is possessed by the pinnacles behind Answering-Ansar.

Our advice to the Answering-Ansar team is that they should pick up a few Arabic text books for beginners before they discuss the sensitive issue of distortion of the Holy Qur’ān, a book of eloquent Arabic.

It is only Allah (swt) who gives success, and blessings and peace be upon the Seal of the Prophets, his Pure Progeny and his Noble Companions

♦        ♦        ♦

_______________________________________________________________

Works Cited

Shī`ī texts:

1.       al-Kāfī

Abu Ja`far al-Kulayni (d. 329)

Dar al-Kutub al-Islamiyya

Tehran, Iran

2.       Riyāđ al-Masā’il fī Bayān Aĥkām al-Shar` wa al-Dalā’il

al-Sayyid `Alī al-Ţabāţabā’ī (d. 1231)

Muassasat al-Nashr al-Islami

Qum, Iran

3.       Mu`jam al-Maĥāsin wa al-Masāmī

Abū Ţālib al-Tabrīzī

Muassasat al-Nashr al-Islami

Qum, Iran

4.       Khātimat Tafşīl Wasā’il al-Shī`a ilá Taĥşīl Masā’il al-Sharī`a

al-Ĥurr al-`Āmilī (d. 1104)

Muassasat Al al-Bayt li Ihya al-Turath

Qum, Iran

5.       Mafātīĥ al-Uşūl

al-Sayyid Muĥammad al-Ţabāţabā’ī (d. 1242)

Offset Lithograph

Tehran, Iran

6.       Dirāsāt fī al-Makāsib al-Muĥarrama

Ĥusayn `Alī al-Muntažarī

Intisharat Siyayi

Tehran, Iran

7.       Man lā Yaĥđuruh al-Faqīh

Ibn Bābawayh al-Qummī (d. 381)

Muassasat al-Nashr al-Islami

Qum, Iran

8.       Man lā Yaĥđuruh al-Faqīh

Ibn Bābawayh al-Qummī (d. 381)

al-Matba`at al-Ja`fariyya

Lucknow, India

9.       Uşūl al-Ĥadīth

`Abd al-Hādī al-Fađlī

Muassasat Umm al-Qura

Beirut, Lebanon

10.    Qā`ida lā Đarar wa lā Đirār

`Alī al-Sīstānī

Matba`at Mahr

Qum, Iran

11.    Mashriq al-Shamsayn wa Iksīr al-Sa`ādatayn

Bahā’ al-Dīn al-`Āmilī (d. 1034)

Maktabat Basirati

Qum, Iran

12.    al-Wāfī

al-Fayđ al-Kāshānī (d. 1091)

Maktabat al-Imam Amir al-Mu’minin Ali al-Amma

Esfahan, Iran

13.    al-Ĥadā’iq al-Nāđira fī Aĥkām al-`Itrat al-Ţāhira

Yūsuf al-Baĥrānī (d. 1186)

Muassasat al-Nashr al-Islami

Qum, Iran

14.    al-Ĥadā’iq al-Nāđira fī Aĥkām al-`Itrat al-Ţāhira

Yūsuf al-Baĥrānī (d. 1186)

1315 Print

Iran

15.    Qawā`id al-Ĥadīth

al-Sayyid Muĥyī al-Dīn al-Ghurayfī

Matba`at al-Adab

Najaf, Iraq

16.    Talkhīs al-Shāfī

Abū Ja`far al-Ţūsī (d. 460)

Matba`at al-Adab

Najaf, Iraq

17.    al-Tajdīd wa al-Ijtihād fī al-Islām

Murtađá Muţahharī (d. 1407)

Dar al-Adwa

Beirut, Lebanon

18.    A`yān al-Shī`a

al-Sayyid Muĥsin al-Amīn (d. 1371)

Dar al-Ta`aruf

Beirut, Lebanon

19.    Durūs Tamhīdiyya fī al-Qawā`id al-Rijāliyya

Muĥammad Bāqir al-Īrawānī

Dar al-Jawadayn

Beirut, Lebanon

20.    al-Kuná wa al-Alqāb

`Abbās al-`Qummī (d. 1359)

Maktabat al-Sadr

Tehran, Iran

21.    al-Murāja`āt

`Abd al-Ĥusayn al-Mūsawī (d. 1377)

al-Jam`iyyat al-Islamiyya

Beirut, Lebanon

22.    al-Shī`a

Muĥammad Şādiq al-Şadr (d. 1419)

Tehran, Iran

23.    Mu`jam Rijāl al-Ĥadīth wa Tafşīl Ţabaqāt al-Ruwāt

Abū al-Qāsim al-Khū’ī (d. 1412)

Markaz Nashr al-Thaqafat al-Islamiyya

Qum, Iran

24.    Man` Tadwīn al-Ĥadīth Asbāb wa Natā’ij

al-Sayyid `Alī al-Shahrastānī

Markaz al-Abhath al-Aqaidiyya

Qum, Iran

25.    The Prohibition of Recording the Hadith: Causes and Effects (English)

Sayyid Ali al-Shahristaniy

Ansariyan Publications

Qum, Iran

26.    al-Dharī`a ilá Taşānīf al-Shī`a

Āqā Buzurg al-Ţihrānī (d. 1389)

Dar al-Adwa

Beirut, Lebanon

27.    Ma’sāt al-Zahrā’ Shubhāt wa Rudūd

al-Sayyid Ja`far Murtađá al-`Āmilī

Dar al-Sira

Beirut, Lebanon

28.    al-Şirāţ al-Mustaqīm ilá Mustaĥiqqī al-Taqdīm

`Alī ibn Yūnus al-Bayāđī (d. 877)

Matba`at al-Haydari

Tehran, Iran

29.    Ma`ālim al-Madrasatayn

al-Sayyid Murtađá al-`Askarī (d. 1428)

Muassasat al-Nu`man

Beirut, Lebanon