Here are a podcast and notes on The Hadith, Pt. 1 (36 minutes).
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This series on the Hadith contains 3 lessons. If this is new territory for you, please listen to the previous short podcasts, Islam A and Islam B.
References have been provided for most citations. Please feel free to send me corrections or help with missing data.
- Hadith record words & actions of Muhammad (M).
- Hadith (H), which were written down after the Qur’an (Q), don’t have the authority of scripture.
- H refers to Q, which was put together from various manuscripts—4.61
- Sometimes a hadith explains a verse in the Q. E.g., every night the sun prostrates itself under the throne of Allah (A) -- 4.421.
- Yet H and Q interact intimately.
- Human links necessary, with each authority in the chain named.
- Many collections
- Muslim b. al-Hajjaj al-Qushayri
- Muhammad ibn Isma’il al-Bukhari – Persian, 9 volumes.
- Q : M :: Christ (Word of God) : 12 apostles.
- H: Islam :: NT : Christianity
- Born 570 AD in Mecca, Arabia (polytheism)
- Orphaned early.
- Married to Khadija 595-619; after her death he took other wives. ‘Aisha—married at age 9 (seems to be M’s favorite). Her father is Abu Bakr, caliph who succeeded M. (She was a pistol!)
- We know a lot about his family life—his wives, how they interacted…
- And we know about his pursuits
- Merchant—journeys to Syria
- Prophet (from 610), his followers accompany him to Medina (622)—the hijra.
- His battles—iron armor—3.282
- MAN OF ACTION
- Camels, horses, white mule—4.160
- Travel wisdom—4.245: “Allah’s apostle said, ‘Journey is a piece of torture, for it disturbs one’s sleep, eating, and thinking. So, when you fulfill your job, you should hurry up to your family.”
- Soft hands—3.194. Usually a sign of absence of manual labor, or aristocracy. But M was no member of the idle rich! If anything else, he wielded a sword, and must have been physically strong, tough.
- Ate with knife—1.207
- Wore a ring—1.630
- A hairy man—4.272
- Coiffure: dyed hair—1.167; oiled and combed—2.617
- Intimate details
- Leather sox, often mentioned
- How he urinated / defecated
- How cleaned his nose—1.162
- Semen spots.
- Instructions on how to spit, e.g. in the Mosque.
- Used odd number of stones to clean his private parts—1.162
- His followers emulated him, even in intimate areas.
- Sexual prowess (11 wives on one night—strength for 30!)—1.268
- Fondled wives in menses—1.298
- Fascination with bodily fluids:
- Pus (corpse), menstrual blood, sputum, semen, saliva, sleepers, sweat, feces, snot, urine
- In comparison with Bible:
- Fixation on bodily fluids not dissimilar to OT (levitical purity laws), though quite different from the NT.
- Jesus: saliva (once, in the context of a healing); sweat (Gethsemane prayer); blood (Passion).
- blow out nose (3x in ablutions, as Satan dwells in upper nose)—4.516
- Sneezing—counts as a good deed to reply to the sneezer--3.800
- 1.215—man tortured in grave because had soiled himself with urine.
- Man oversleeping (past sunrise)—because Satan urinated in his ear (blocking call of muezzin?)—4.492
- ALSO flatulence (even Satan passes wind, 1.582), head lice, snoring….
- Weekly bath—1.817, 2.2, 3.833
- Friday both washes away sins committed in previous 7 days--2.8,33
- For all Muslims who have reached puberty, 1.817
- Fine character
- Readings from 1.810, 3.157
- Motives not only financial (dies with relatively little, esp. compared to the riches that will flow into the Caliphate in the following centuries)
- Yet admits suffered demonic attack—4.634
- End of life
- Fell off horse (elderly?)—1.657
- At death (8 June, 632 AD, in his early 60s), face glowing like Moses’—1.648
- At time of death, had only weapons (and the armor was mortgaged!); white mule; small piece of land which went to charity; provision for wives
- Buried in Medina.
- Much more about M’s personal life in the H than in the Q.
- And far more about his daily life and habits than about any character in all of biblical history.
- Muhammad was a sinner, and portrayed as one. M prays for forgiveness and cleansing for his sins—1.711; for past and future sins—2.221. See John 8:46; 1 Kings 8:46.
- Very human! Contrast to Christ—not the humanity, but that there is no divinity.
- Perhaps we know so little about Christ because we might be tempted to fasten on the external details, rather than focusing on where we should focus: the heart. Easy to take pride in what is seen, rather than in the heart (2 Cor 5:12).