Fatwa: # 42458
Category: Hadith
Date: 8th September 2020


How should hanafis view the collection of ahadeeth of Imam Bukhari and the likes?


How should hanafis view the collection of ahadeeth of Imam Bukhari and the likes? On the one hand we praise them a lot as they saved the Sunnah. But on the other hand Bukhari criticized the Hanafi School. The Kutubu-Sitte collections contain numerous ahadeeth which contradict the Hanafi practice.


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.  

As-salāmu alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.  


In order for us to gain a greater understanding of the relationship between Imam Bukhari and the Hanafi School of thought we ought to take a glance through history and identify where did it all even begin?  


The relationship between Imam Bukhari and the Hanafi School of thought began from his early childhood years. Reports have it that by the age of 16 he was well versed with the opinions of the Ahlu-Rai (indicating to the Hanafi school of thought). This seems like an appropriate depiction of Imam Bukhari as his quest for knowledge began in Bukhara (Birthplace), a predominantly Hanafi inclined region wherein he would frequently visit the likes of Abu Hafs Al-Kabir, a great Hanafi jurist. Therefore, it’s not a surprise that he is known for his profound thought in jurisprudence and attention to the hidden intricacies buried deep within the Ahadith.  


You are correct to suggest that he has criticised the Hanafi Madhab. However, one should also keep in mind that he has also criticised other great scholars and schools of thought. His criticism to the Hanafi Madhab is no different to when he criticises any other Madhab. In fact. Allamah Anwar Shah Kashmiri suggests that his concurrence with the Hanafi Madhab is similar in number to his concurrence with the Shafi Madhab and considering that he held the status of a Mujtahid he had all the right to differ with his contemporaries on subsidiary issues.  


However, when viewing the criticisms and the difference of opinions amongst the scholarly fraternity we must keep in mind that these criticisms are no more than an expression of the love, passion and dedication they had for this Din. It was in defence and always at the interest of Din. 

Therefore, Shaikh Abdul Fattah Abu Ghuddah states, ‘this scholarly dispute amongst our elders only increases our honour and respect for them in our eyes. They are the flagbearers of knowledge and the pillars of Din. It is not befitting that we make this a means of sectarianism or as a symbol of animosity amongst each other. A Muslim is the brother of another Muslim, he does not oppress him, nor does he humiliate him. Each one of them stood as well-wishers for the Din and exhausted themselves for it. They exercised ijtihad and how brilliantly they did. We can only ask Allah that he grants them an elevated status by him the Almighty and that he pours upon them his blessings and his pleasure as rewards for the struggles and efforts, for Allah is the most kind’[i][i] 


And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best 


Student Darul Iftaa  


Checked and Approved by, 
Mufti Ebrahim Desai. 




[ii][i] انظر: كشف الالتباس عما أورده الامام البخاري على بعض الناس لعبد الغني الغنيمي الميداني ومقدمته للشيخ عبد الفتاح أبو غده 




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