Thursday, 29 September 2011

Muslim belief has it that the conversations, pronouncements and actions of the Prophet Mohammed and a few of those close to him are recorded in the collections of biographical information that were assembled two hundred years after his death. The more realistic of today’s Western scholars take the view that the authenticity of the collections is highly doubtful: each scrap of information or hadith (plural: ahadith) was gathered from a chain of transmission stretching back two centuries and with no independent historical verification. In spite of that, the collections of ahadith carry great authority for Muslims, second only to the Qur’an itself.

Some ahadith form the basis of Islamic law and some recount the more notorious aspects of Mohammed’s life, such as nine-year-old Aisha telling how her mother washed her face and then handed her over to the Prophet for his gratification. For now, though, a few examples to warn against elevating the witterings of a madman to the status of sacred text.

Sahih Bukhari Volume 4, Book 54, Number 539. Narrated Abu Talha: The Prophet said, ‘Angels do not enter a house which has either a dog or a picture in it.’

Sahih Bukhari Volume 1, Book 11, Number 664. Narrated Anas bin Malik: The Prophet said to Abu Dhar, ‘Listen and obey [your chief] even if he is an Ethiopian with a head like a raisin.’

Sahih Bukhari Volume 1, Book 4, Number 162. Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, ‘… whoever cleans his private parts with stones should do it with an odd number of stones.’

Sahih Bukhari Volume 4, Book 54, Number 516. Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, ‘If anyone of you rouses from sleep and performs the ablution, he should wash his nose by putting water in it and then blowing it out thrice, because Satan has stayed in the upper part of his nose all the night.’

Sahih Bukhari Volume 8, Book 73, Number 175. Narrated Ibn Umar: The Prophet said, ‘It is better for a man to fill the inside of his body with pus than to fill it with poetry.’

Sahih Bukhari Volume 4, Book 54, Number 537. Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said ‘If a house fly falls in the drink of anyone of you, he should dip it [in the drink], for one of its wings has a disease and the other has the cure for the disease.’

Islam regards the Prophet Mohammed as the perfect man, which just about says it all.


T.L. Winslow (TLW), the Historyscoper (tm) said...

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