Hadith rejection rate is 99% – Imam Bukhari

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I could have chosen “Rejecter of 99% of the hadiths” as an appreciation for the great work of the Imam, Imam Bukhari, which is considered most authentic by almost all Muslims. His collection of Hadiths is known as “Sahih Bukhari” meaning authenticated Hadiths – i.e., the sayings and practices of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) known as Hadiths .

He traveled extensively in the Arab lands to collect the sayings and practices of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) known as Hadiths.  The Sunni scholars consider it second only to the Quran in terms of authenticity – I don’t know why.

He collects 600,000 such sayings and rejects 592,725 hadiths for lack of authentic chain of narrations – i.e., who said this to whom and when. That is 99% rejection rate.  In his place, most people would have rejected them all, that is not an acceptable quality control, and no one will take a product that has a 99% rejection rate.  However, I admire the patience of the great Imam, despite the discouraging results, he ‘probably’ did not want to miss out even a single authentic one, and with that determination he finally endorsed 7,275 Hadiths as Sahih – correct ones.

Had he lived for another decade, he would have chopped another 99% of that 1% – and would have rejected 7,200 out of 7,275 Hadiths giving us 275 Hadiths in all.  It would have been based on the test – Prophet Muhammad is Rahmatul Aalameen, the man who respected humanity, believed in equality of mankind, cared for them and laid the foundation for women’s liberation, could he have said something like this?
You are not an exception, a majority of any group of people, not just Muslims would have felt that someone has pulled the floor from beneath them. I urge you not to panic; most of the Hadiths are not applicable to an average Muhammad, Ali or you. You will not even miss them.

I have been writing about the undue status given to Hadiths, and recently I wrote about it again at Huffington Post.  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/mike-ghouse/two-islams-the-mangledup-_b_5748280.html

We must admit that whatever their intentions might have been, the medieval scholars messed it up big time.  The Neocons feast on those quotes, and most certainly they have not pulled the ‘hateful citations’ out of thin air, they are quoting the interpretations of men like Ibn Kathir, Ibn Tamiyah, Ibn Wahhab, Maududi, Banna, Qutub and others. Each one of them was a product of history, in some cases ignored the Quranic teachings of no compulsion, but advocated authoritarianism. Apparently, they did not believe in individual’s God-given rights, and suggested the state to kill those who differed. This is another instance we have gone wrong by not denouncing their misinterpretations.

The mistake we have made is to give their word a near equivalence of Quran and the Prophet; we can judge them against historical relativism but should not regard their work as integral component of Islamic teachings. All said, we must admit that whatever their intentions might have been, the medieval scholars messed up the interpretation of Quran. Instead of building cohesive societies, they were inclined to forge exclusive authoritarian societies. A lot of their work is good, but it takes only a single drop of poison to endanger a pot full of water.”

I was reading another piece called “Criminals of Islam” and was delighted to see his work in further authenticating the Hadiths.  A work that I was contemplating, that  Dr. Shabbir Ahmed has begun. In his preface to the 42,000 word article, “Criminals of Islam – posted at this site, he said, “The reader can choose one of two reactions. The easy but futile one is anger and denial. The difficult but productive reaction would be that of sincere contemplation about how to stop this dubious conspiracy.”

further from Wikipedia
From wikipedia

Abū ‘Abd Allāh Muḥammad ibn Ismā‘īl ibn Ibrāhīm ibn al-Mughīrah ibn Bardizbah al-Ju‘fī al-Bukhārī (Arabicأبو عبد الله محمد بن اسماعيل بن ابراهيم بن المغيرة بن بردزبه الجعفي البخاري‎‎; 19 July 810 – September 870), or Bukhārī (Persianبخاری‎), commonly referred to as Imam al-Bukhari or Imam Bukhari, was a Persian[2][3][4] Islamic scholar who authored the hadith collection known as Sahih al-Bukhari, regarded by Sunni Muslims as one of the most sahih (authentic) of all hadithcompilations. He also wrote the books Al-Adab al-Mufrad.[5]

At age of sixteen, he, together with his brother and widowed mother, made the pilgrimage to Mecca. From there he made a series of travels in order to increase his knowledge of hadith. He went through all the important centres of Islamic learning of his time, talked to scholars and exchanged information on hadith. It is said that he heard from over 1,000 men, and learned over 600,000 traditions.
After sixteen years’ absence he returned to Bukhara, and there drew up his al-Jami’ as-Sahih, a collection of 7,275 tested traditions, arranged in chapters so as to afford bases for a complete system of jurisprudence without the use of speculative law.
His book is highly regarded among Sunni Muslims, and considered the most authentic collection of hadith, even ahead of the Muwatta Imam Malik and Sahih Muslim of Bukhari’s student Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj. Most Sunni scholars consider it second only to the Quran in terms of authenticity. He also composed other books, including al-Adab al-Mufrad, which is a collection of hadiths on ethics and manners, as well as two books containing biographies of hadith narrators (see isnad).

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Mike Ghouse is a public speaker, thinker, writer and a commentator on Pluralism at work place, politics, religion, society, gender, race, culture, ethnicity, food and foreign policy. He is commentator on Fox News and syndicated Talk Radio shows and a writer at major news papers including Dallas Morning News and Huffington Post.  All about him is listed in several links at www.MikeGhouse.net and his writings are at www.TheGhousediary.com and 10 other blogs. He is committed to building cohesive societies and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day. 

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