Channel: Jonathan Brown
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Verifying and Understanding Hadith
some ways, what is a deep issue for deep has to do with the subject of this lecture? It's because
the vast majority of controversial issues that Muslims encounter come from the deep tradition. Actually, that's why I started studying Hindi. Because the Quran is a is a relatively small book. It's not a, you know, it's not nearly as maybe even a third the length of the New Testament. And it's not a lot of controversial material in the Quran. I mean, it's very interesting. Sometimes people maybe think that the crime is very foreign, because it's in Arabic.
But it's actually an extremely accessible book, when you compare it to other books, other scripture and even a book written 1400 years ago, there's not a lot of books written for 10 years ago, that are actually as approachable as a Qur'an. And it's I mean, it's, it's a book, it's revealed in a world of the desert and the seventh century, but its reliance on desert imagery, and seventh century conceptions of the world is actually very limited. And that's, I bring that up, because that's not the case for the heads tradition. How do you trician is, it's like, getting your head dunked into seventh century Arabia. And that's a very, very, very different world.
And so you can imagine, if you have a body of material that is collected from people who are basically trying to transmit, what they heard someone in seventh century Western Arabia saying,
that is going to be a very, is a view of the world that is very different from a lot of other times, a lot of other places, it's very different from our time and our place. I mean, just think sometimes you watch a movie from 1950s, in the 1940s, you think how much the world has changed. Imagine 1400 years, and all the technological and social change that has occurred. So the heady tradition is, a lot of, it's at the center of a lot of controversy, because it's very important source for Sonic law and beliefs. But it's also a source that if you just come across it without any mediation, it's a it's it's like, you've been zapped back in time, into a very different world. And that's why I, I've
tried to design or, you know, to lay out some suggestions for people to sort of have in their mind when they come across the deets. Because, as I don't know if How many of you pay attention in the media or not. But most of this, most of the controversies that come up involving Islamic scripture have to do with with the heady tradition, the first thing to keep in mind is, head deeds are just pieces of a puzzle. They're pieces of a puzzle, there a puzzle that Muslim scholars are trying to put together to construct the answer to the question, what does God want from us? What is the right thing to do? What is pleasing in God's eyes, in terms of our actions, in terms of our beliefs?
And you can imagine if if, if you have, you know, a revealed book, like the Quran, and then you have the, the legacy of this, this, this teacher, this figure, this prophet who brought it, you're going to try and look to that legacy as much as you can for answers to any kind of question. Even a general questions, particular questions.
So that that's the heads are an attempt to collect this legacy. But this is, it's very important to keep this in mind. They're just pieces of data.
And just imagine, you know, going falling around, let's say, the President of the United States for a month, and just writing down everything, he says, recording everything. Imagine how many little snippets of information, you're not knowing what their context is not knowing what you know, what he intends by them, or the general specific, you're gonna get a, you know, you can imagine taking little pieces of data and coming away with an image, it's very different from me what the overall actual image is. And then imagine that over a period of 20 to 23 years of someone who was the center of his community, they saw saddam and who, whose companion obsessed over him. Right, so so the first
thing to keep in mind when dealing with idiots is they have to be authenticated.
A lot of times people will, you know, cite, let's say, Oh, this Hadeeth is insulin oven magia I just had eaten soon enough tirmidhi. Okay, up to a quarter have to submit images unreliable, according to see great scholars like the 14th century scholar up to 14, sorry, one fourth of the book is unreliable. books like Timothy have lots of a book like Jimmy has lots of unreliable Hadeeth in it, because the author himself put those in there because he wanted to show you, you know, this is what certain people think the Prophet said they said, um, but I don't think this is accurate. So it's not just a book of IDC things are accurate. It's a book
collects all too high DC things are not accurate. So when someone cites a headache from Chairman D, they might actually be citing something that Timothy is putting into his even think he's reliable. So don't just get lulled into this idea Oh, he said this someone so and so mentioned this book he said it's in such and such a collection or this idea and it's such a such a collection. That's not a solution.
Every headache you come across has to be authenticated. Now there's certain Hadeeth that say that are in the bossa nova Bukhari and Muslim. Those are vast, vast, vast majority of those have been considered authentic by Muslim scholars.
But that's only two books, two books out of lots of different ideas. Lots of the heads that we come across are not from the books of Bukhari and Muslim. Very important, keep that in mind. So how do you tap to be authenticated? Here's what I mean. This is a great example. A lot of the time a lot of the time, decent people get really wrapped up in the controversies around they're actually not even reliable heads. This heads. Supposedly, the prophet said that lie ethical agenda. Well, isn't that the child born of Xena does not enter Paradise. It's not until the garden
Does anyone have a problem with that Hadith? Can anyone think of a problem with the meaning of this the DPS?
What is it? The child didn't do anything? And we know from the Quran that lad tessuto was eaten wizard Ofra. No bear of burdens, will bear the burdens of another. And lots of this. This is not in any of the main collections. Okay, it's not it's not a reliable idea at all. In fact, scholars like even Josie, the great 20th century scholar Baghdad in hijos, Kalani is how we all consider this to be forged or extremely unreliable. Hadeeth. So, you know, a lot of times you come across idiots that
are not even reliable. Even maybe Muslim scholars condemned them as forgeries. Even in a book that is well known, for example, the sooner and avowed widowed, one of the famous six books in the Sunni canon, the Sultan of Abu Dhabi to suggest that he died at 89 of the Common Era. And this is a book that's actually where the author tries to give you, the Hadees that are relied upon on issues of law.
And generally, the understanding is that he considered the edits in that book to be reliable of some degree. But sometimes there's a decent book that are that are very unreliable. For example, I remember when I first I was actually still in college when I first heard this and someone came and told me about it and started complaining what they said, and I had no idea what to say to them. This Hadith says the Prophet is that some supposedly said la Yakubu Bahar Illa had joined our horizon. Oh, hi, john. Our more tonight on our horizon disability law for in a chapter
titled body Noren. What chapter naughty Baron. What does that mean? It means that no one travelled by sea by the ocean, except someone traveling to do hij. To do aamra, or fighting in the path of God, why the Prophet supposedly says, because there is a fire underneath the ocean. And underneath that fire is another ocean.
Okay, now, geology aside, this is a chart for the SAT is actually very, very rare. It's not a very common Hadeeth. This, there's two versions of it. The one I just read us on the left, the blue, the blue color, it's in the center of our widowed had been a jealousies books, a book called Akbar mecca of In fact, at the history of Mecca by the fact that he died in the late 1800s. Now, those three, but she had been Muslim, Bishop and Abdullah and this guy, this unknown person, it's just a guy, literally, a guy told me this, these people are unknown, no one knows who they are. Now, inshallah, in this series, we'll discuss also Hadeeth criticism. But if there's someone who's unknown in the
chain of transmission, the Hadith is automatically unreliable. If there's two people with unknown a chain transmission, it's unreliable squared. And if there's not even any other corroborating narration to make up for that, then there's no way to make it to turn that unreliable thing into something reliable. What is reliable is this purple version.
You see, it doesn't rely on these people. No one should travel by sea except those going for hides for O'Meara or to fight in the path of God. No mention of any oceans of fire and fire under oceans right. So that that had even you know, before you get all wound up about Oh my God, why is the Prophet lay says I'm saying there's an AI fire under the ocean ocean of the fire and how do i square that with modern geography, plate tectonics, whatever you don't have to because it's not a reliable Hadeeth helaas as the great
15th centuries 14th century scholar down in Malacca and said its weak bit the falcoda image
unreliable by the penny of all the amounts of headache. Now, this other one is not it's, it's, it's actually fairly reliable. But and we're gonna discuss this, you can go back to the previous slide, okay?
We'll discuss this in a second.
Just because something's reliable doesn't mean you act on it immediately that Hadeeth is going to be a great example of what we're going to talk about after this, which is the way the Prophet speaks lays out some. So keep that in mind. Because it seems to say, don't travel by sea. How many of you have gone over the ocean recently? How many of you, you know, if we didn't have it, airplanes, how many of us would be actually traveling by the ocean to do our commerce?
Does that mean we're not supposed to do that?
Oh, finally, you get to be very careful of what you what you read, you have to be very careful of what you read. Because the world is full of people who love to make Islam look bad. I love to make Muslims look bad. And you really have to be skeptical. You really have to be simple. In fact, that's the Muslims should be skeptical people. Because we're not supposed to believe things unless there's evidence had to come in from from Saudi clean, bring your evidence if you're truthful people we're supposed to follow revealed evidence, not just anything that somebody thinks is appropriate or right or wrong, or that they think God wants we have that where people who base things on Delete on
evidence. And just as an example of this, the other day I was reading this famous history of India, Indian Shah named bidet Mooney, Adele, yeah, but only from he's died in the early 1600s. And he mentioned this Hadeeth, he heard, and the I was reading this a translation from the Persian into English, it was English translation. And it says this hadith says that if a man finds another man with his wife, he can kill the man. And then that's fine that that man deserves to die.
Which is basically kind of like honor killing in a way, right. So this is really weird, because that's actually the opposite of the Sunnah of the Prophet, where he makes it very clear, and Heidi's and Sahih Muslim and widowed and other books that you're not allowed, if you if you murder somebody, because you find them in a compromised situation, even if they're committing a serious sin. If you don't have four witnesses, you're committed illegal, you've committed murder, you've committed an illegal killing, you'll be prosecuted for that. So that's the son of the Prophet. So I was surprised. So I went looked at the original Persian. And whoever had copied this, I just, I don't
even they didn't know what they were writing, they wrote some things didn't make any sense. It's like they were copying letters. They didn't know what they meant. But what they are hiding originally was
was whoever wears clothing of another person and is killed. Because someone thinks they're that person, then it's that person's fault, right? If you go around dress like someone else, someone kills you accidentally. It's your fault, by the way that Heidi is also unreliable. So you know, I mean, if you sat there and you got this book on all libraries, I'm reading this great history of India, and you come across the Oh my god, there's a deed that says honor killings. Okay. And now I'm really feeling horrible. What do I do? You have to, at some point in the process of translation from, from Arabic into Persian copying the Persian manuscript, and then translation from Persian to
English, total chaos happened. So that's not reliable. This is very important. And it's also mind numbingly.
Well, I won't say doll, I think it's really exciting. But it's not for the faint of heart. If you'd like details, this is what you should do with your life. There. There are
usually, the majority of the time, there are many different narrations of a tradition. So for example, we talked about not not traveling by sea. Those were two narrations of the same overall saying that you're going to see a sort of general message the prophets sort of gist of what he was saying was one just
but those narrations are very different from one another. Sometimes it's because somebody makes a mistake and introduces an error into the narration. Sometimes someone intentionally introduces an error to push their agenda. Sometimes maybe the Prophet liaison said something more than once in different ways. Sometimes maybe the transmitter is citing that headache to stress different parts of what the prophet said and this is a good example.
This is sorry to have to this is this is the this is the life of a deed scholars, lots of details anybody who starts making fun of a deed scholars who think they're stupid I don't say first go and try and just keep up with a book like Bokhari and then time and time it tells me that they're stupid. This is this is one narration, the will carries teacher I'll even add the law that's out even in Medina if anyone cares very famous scholar narrated to us saying montmagny narrated to us from Allah given us from luck.
But it's really man from kool aid from m&r Bass ready along with Todd and Huma who said, I slept at the home of my onto my Muna.
By the way, who's my Muna.
She's the one of the wives of the Prophet they sell sometimes he's sleeping at the prophets house and sleep over at the prophets house.
I stopped at home on my own. And I said, I told her I want to watch the prayer, the Messenger of God, so they saw them. So a cushion was laid out for him, and the Messenger of God. So alongside him, slept on it lengthwise, and he awoke, I inserted this book, and he woke at night and started to wipe the sleep from his face. And then he read the last 10 verses from Surah, Ali Emraan, until he finished the chapter. Then he went to
a water skin that was hung up. Here again, a different world is no there's no sink. There's not even a bedpan or you know, a pan of water, there's a skin of like a goat skin is treated to hold water hanging up somewhere right nail in that house. And he started performing his abortions. Then he went to pray, and I got up and did as he did. So I had been a basket spray as well. Then I went and stood at his side, but the messenger of Gods always placed his hand on my head and took my ear and started twisting it. Then he prayed to prayer units to rock eyes, then two more than two more than two more than two more than two more, and then he prayed just one unit. So in this recollection of the
you can think of the UN ambassador, but what the Prophet did, there's a lot of potential material here talking about how the Prophet did his will do what this prayer does night prayer. He's doing this extra night prayer, he's doing his how many records it was.
But then there's this. I mean, this seems kind of a little bit sadistic. You've been a basket as a young child, a young kid, you know, probably around 10 years old, goes to pray Next, the prophet, he starts twisting his ear.
So if you can imagine your islamophobe you're like,
I knew it. Right? being mean to kids. This is just another version. Now you can see what's happening here.
We'll discuss it. Abu Ali bin Abdullah, the same guy, same chain of transmission.
The bass says, I slept at the home of my of maimunah, my aunt, who's the wife of the Prophet, the prophet rose to relieve himself and wash his hands, face and hands and then went to sleep again. By the way, you can see already there's new information, the prophet got up to go to the bathroom.
Then he rose and went to the water skin on time and performing his evolution a bit more than usual, but not like doing it twice. Then he prayed. I rushed over not wanting him to think that I was hesitant to pray and was just watching him. And I performed my ablutions. Then he stood up for his prayer. So I went and stood on his left.
Now we start to see what happened, he says left, but he took me by the ear, and he turned me around to his right. And he completed his prayers.
And then the end continues. So why did he not bass? Why did the Prophet get grabbed even Ambassador ear to move him around his body because he was standing on the wrong side of him.
If you're two people, you don't stand on the person's left you stay on the person's right. So actually, here we have the this version of the Hadeeth includes the most information. This is about bash, recalling everything that happened. Why is the other one not have this section, not have the section about been about I've been about standing on the wrong side of the Prophet, because that's not the message I've been on bass was trying to give when he narrated that a deed he was concerned about does moving during prayer and validate your prayer.
Because this idea has lots of information. It also tells us that if your kid is doing something next to you while you're praying, you can actually grab that kid and kind of maneuver them around you. And that's all doesn't it doesn't violate your prayer.
So it leaves out the part about where he's the fact that he's preying on the wrong side of the profit, because that's not the message My boss is trying to give. He's trying to say in this section. In this case, it's okay to move like this during the prayer. So if you don't know that, if you don't know that there's different narrations you come across this version where the Prophet is just grabbing a kid's ear and twisting it for no reason. Okay.
Three, they have to be fit. How do you actually fit into a system as I said before, they're just pieces of information. And as as the the with the example of let's say, falling around the president, the United States for a month or two months, you're going to get a lot of material. And if you don't know, when he's speaking about one thing versus another thing when he's speaking about something general when he's very specific. When he's being sarcastic when he's joking. You are going
To come across come away with a lot of erroneous understandings or perceptions of what he's saying, or she's saying.
So, heads are pieces of data. And it's a very big mistake, the biggest mistake Muslim, one of the biggest mistakes Muslims make is to just listen to how to you can think that that's all there is to say about a particular issue. It's almost never all there is to say about a particular issue. It's a piece of data that fits into a bigger system. And that's the job of Muslim scholars. That's the whole job of Muslim scholars throughout history.
Of course, they also calculate prayer times and do kneecaps and things like that, but most the job of Muslim scholar is to try and figure out what God wants from us using this material.
A great example of this is a hadith Sahih Hadith in Sahih, Bukhari and other books, where the Prophet says, omitted to Andrew Carter, an asshat. How do you go to La ilaha illallah wa, Mohammad Rasool Allah,
Allah to Zika were in fact infected with Alec, also many genome wide home, LLC, how could Islam What does that mean? The Prophet says, I have been commanded to fight the people until they say there is no God, but God.
And Muhammad is the Messenger of God, and they establish the prayer and it pays a cat, if they do that their blood and their property is inviolable to me, except as Islam might deem.
Right or just. So this Hadeeth seems to say pretty clearly, and you've probably seen this cited on some Islamophobic website or on fox news or something. It's easy to say the province saying I'm Ben command to fight people until everybody becomes Muslim. That's basically what it says.
But remember, these are just pieces of data. It is so hard. I mean, no one's I've never seen anyone question the reliability of this idea. But we know it can't we know we can't just take it on its face. Why? Because the core an incidents of Toba, two or number nine tells us that those people from the people those those from among the People of the Book, Muslims can fight them until they become Muslim, or until they paid agree to pay the jizya. They don't have to become Muslim. And by the way, Muslims in the by the late six hundreds, early seven hundreds included everybody they met as people the book that includes Hindus that includes Buddhists, I include Zoroastrians, they treated them all
in this way. They if Muslims conquered them, they pay jizya. And they don't, they can continue to practice their religion freely. So we know this already has to be modified, at least in the sense that it doesn't apply to people with the book.
we know this we know from the prophets, precedent lays out to them that he didn't force people of the books to convert. When the Muslims conquered the city of high bar with a Jewish town of high bar in the hijas. The Jewish population there was allowed to remain and practice Judaism. They just paid tax to the Muslims. The Muslims conquered the city of Ned drawn in southern Arabia, which is all Christian at the time. They were allowed to practice their religion freely, and their priests and their bishops were not bothered at all. They just weren't allowed to do Riba they weren't allowed to do interest. But they lived under Muslim protection they pay tax. So we know from the prophets
precedent, this isn't the case.
And then finally, we look at other narrations Hadeeth. For example,
in southern Maasai.
There's one version from Anna's been Malik the companion and it had been Malik narrating this video where he says, we'll move to a new quarter and mushrikeen had to equalize a lot. What does that mean? I've been commanded to fight the polytheists until they say, there's no god but God, Muhammad prophet of God, that's actually the intended meaning. Because we know that the one group that was not allowed to
retain their religion under Muslim rule was the polytheists of Arabia. This is very clear doesn't mean polytheist it means the mushrikeen of the central Arabian peninsula, they were not allowed to retain their idolatry. They either became Muslim or they were fought.
This doesn't apply to other polytheists. Let's say if you think that Hinduism is polytheist because Muslims treated Hindus like people that book
from their first encounter with them in 711. When Muslims conquered sinned, they treated them like people the book, so it only applies
machine in central Arabia. That's the only group that this Hadeeth actually applies to. We know that from the core and we know that from the precedent of the Prophet lays out so now we know that from other narrations of this Hadeeth
Oh, this is a good one. You read Sahih Bukhari, you'll come across this Hadith, the prophet lays out that I'm says, a shot on FIFA LA.
Phil, Phil Ferris will fill modernity with a dog. What does this mean?
Show me is like a bad omen. Three things are bad omens, horses,
houses, and women.
Now, I have no idea why. Certainly horses in houses.
I mean, I don't know what would what do you what are you going to say about those? Women? Obviously people are going to get upset about that.
What is this? What does this make any sense? So you have to look at other narrations that eat in a very important iteration of this and the Muslim the Batman handbook.
I shot the wife of the Prophet says, the heat the Prophet did say this, he said this. But he said it to say, this is a jalahalli practice that we don't accept.
So be like me saying, some people say that it's okay to be racist. But it's not okay to be racist. It's not something someone goes that Jonathan Brown said, it's okay to be racist. I did those words technically came out of my mouth. But that's not what I intended. Right? I brought this up to say this is unacceptable. So this is actually, if you come across, almost all narrations of this video, you will not find that very important corrective point by the wife of the Prophet
alayhi salam. So this is, don't worry about reading this. This is I just want to show you this. This is a fascinating study I came across a couple years ago, I think 2012. This is written by an Algerian scholar, and it's in computational linguistics. And what he did is he did a linguistic study was called style computer style autography of the Quran and Sahih Bukhari. So looking at how often words were used, how often different grammatical patterns are used, and he determined that the Quran and Hadees come from two different speakers, which is not very surprising for Muslims, is actually not what interests me, what interested me is the idea of the prophetic style of speaking,
because one of the things that you find, I mean, even if you just read 20 or so Hadees is that the Prophet Lazar Salaam really has his own way of speaking.
It's amazingly consistent. It's very,
you know, it's, it's, it's very idiosyncratic, and you immediately know, this is the like, this is the Prophet speaking. Now, even when Muslim scholars made up heads when they are not Muslim scholars and Muslim people who were being not naughty, made up idiots. They were trying to mimic that style.
And what I think is very interesting about this is
if you're Muslim, or not Muslim, or whatever, you can like the way the Prophet talks, or you can not like the way the Prophet talks. But there is a certain way that he talked. And actually, the fact that there is this stylistic consistency, for me is one of the biggest indications that overall, the Hadith corpus is, you know, contains reliable material. Because there's remarkable consistency and style. And it's often a very, very foreign style.
He doesn't talk like an American politician or a lawyer. He talks like a preacher and a leader in a in seventh century Arabia. So one of the features of the Prophet speech, one of the most definitive features of it is is extremely hyperbolic. Everyone knows what hyperbolic means. It's, it's, it doesn't it's not subtle. Often, Mo, it's very often not subtle. Sometimes it's subtle. It's very often not subtle.
It's like someone saying, you know, this is the worst hamburger I've ever had in my entire life on the planet Earth. Since the moment I was born. Until right now, I've never encountered a hamburger. There's worse than this hamburger. That's hyperbole. It's just really the worst hamburger had. I don't know. Could you even remember all the hamburgers you've had? Do you keep track of this? You keep a list in your pocket or on your phone? Probably not. You're trying to say this is a bad hamburger. I'm not happy with it. That's hyperbole.
And one of the things I've been thinking I should write something about this but he's I've never seen actually any Muslim scholar write a list of these. It's very much a part of the way that Muslim scholars interpret
edits, even from the jet time of the companions and successors, but I've never seen someone actually systematize it. So actually, I'll go to a little bit towards offering you a semi systematized view, Muslim scholars develop filters, you can think about them as filters, translation mechanisms for the, the prophetic nature speech. So I'll go through some some of those filters.
First of all, severity means discouragements severity means discouragement.
Here's an example.
The head Ethan Sahih Bukhari and other books.
Men, salam, ala, Shea in your studio, who
whoever prays, and they put something in front of them so that they can, no one's going to be crossing in front of them when they're praying.
And someone tries to cross in front of you
said he had to fight who push him
away like this, put your arm out. Everyone knows this from the MOS.
If the person refuses, you're stopping them and they continue to try go across. Fairly, you caught it tale who says then fight him.
So literally what this means literally is I'm praying here in the mosque, guy has a costume on me, my arm out, he says, Ah, you don't tell me what to do. He keeps pushing in front of me. According to that had teeth literally what I should do is I should stop my prayer. You know, I'd be like crack my knuckles Get ready. And then I start punching him fighting with him. That's literally what it means. Okay, no Muslim scholar that I know have ever understood this idea in that way. For a number of reasons. One, the person passing in front of you doesn't break your prayer.
It doesn't break your prayer. It's just a matter of
what would break your prayer is if you stopped praying and started punching somebody that would break your prayer. So you don't have there's no reason for you to purposely end your prayer, to engage in an act of violence against another Muslim.
The By the way, the last bit of the Hadeeth says, fight the person who shaytaan because that person is the devil.
Think about this. If you're someone who put your arm out, everybody gets you know, they don't see stuff. Sometimes they walk in and see somebody, okay, you put your arm out, sorry.
Imagine that you actually don't want to listen, that person, you just insist on walking in front of them. When you're praying at that moment, you are actually embodying his satanic impulses. I mean, you're basically saying, I don't care about your prayer. I don't care about being rude to you while you're praying. I don't care about the fact that I know I'm not supposed to do this. I my next is going to control me. That's his satanic impulse at that moment, you are in fact, a tool of the devil.
How do we know that? So Muslims always didn't understand this as fighting because it doesn't make any sense to break your prayer to fight somebody, to we have no evidence ever of any of the companions ever doing this. No early Muslim understood this is fighting. What it means is push back even, you know, fight them back like this. Don't just let them walk in front of you put your arm out more aggressively.
My point being this is
the Prophet could have just said laser slam. If someone tries to walk in front of you put your arm out, if they keep trying to go in front of you, you know, push back a little bit harder.
But that's not how he speaks. Because you're not going to inspire anybody. If you talk like I just talked, you know, push back a little bit harder. That's great. If you're a preschool teacher or something like that.
Or a lawyer. It's not great if you're a religious leader.
Another and I remember actually a student came to me once and told me about this idea. They had been sitting in a Juma prayer until I mentioned it. And he was really upset about this idea. And he was really shocked. It's in Bukhari, Sahih Bukhari, there's a couple of variations of it, that the Prophet is speaking about. When the call to prayer happens.
You know, if people don't come, don't answer the call to prayer, says, I wish I could, you know, gather wood together and go and
light their house on fire.
Like their house on fire.
Now, the head he then continues saying, you know, Would any of you if they're invited to a really good meal with tasty lamb, would they refuse to go to that meal?
So it's clear from the whole herd effect. This is almost playful description. He's saying Bravo saying, if you hear the call to prayer, you're being invited to a meal. Why would you not go to that meal? Why would you not why would any of you have it's almost a playful example and he's saying, you know, see
People who don't go I almost makes me so sad. I wish I could sort of light their house on fire. Maybe they then they would leave. That's hyperbole.
It is not. No Muslim scholar that I ever have heard of or come across says it's licit to go and light someone's house on fire because they don't answer the call to prayer.
If you did that you would be a literalist. But you'd also be an idiot, because you'd be violating all sorts of rights, that person, you don't have a right to light their house on fire,
or destroy their property and probably kill them.
So then this is hyperbole, this is the Prophet delivers these messages through a language of hyperbole.
Other filters so first, filter severity is discouragement. By the way, what's a good example of this, which we mentioned earlier, that no one travelled by ocean except someone going for hydro aamra or fighting in the path of God.
We know that can't be a prohibition because the Quran describes that one of the signs of God is that he created boats for you that you can travel with on the ocean, in the search of the bat of searching for the balances of God from in commerce.
We also know that at the very least Muslims are encouraged to travel to seek knowledge. So the Quran talks about commerce, seaborne commerce is one of the wonders of God. We know there's all sorts of reasons human beings should travel that are not just overrun hygiene and fighting the path of God. So this can't be taken literally. So how to how Muslims understood that a deep Muslim scholars like ma Hanafi scholar named Bill just sauce in the late 1900s. He talks a lot about this, he says that
it's probably just trying to
describe the dangers emphasize the dangers of traveling by ocean, it's not something for the faint of heart. Which is true, by the way, despite all the you know, movies, you see, and Russell Crowe and that Heart of the Sea with a guy who plays door and all these other things. It's not romantic. It's dangerous, dirty work. Okay, especially prior to night Carnival Cruise, if you're on one of those Carnival held ships, when they run out of electricity and stuff, then you'll see it's nasty work. So my point is that he's trying saying this is actually
underscoring the, the the seriousness of traveling by ocean is not a joke, especially by the way in the Mediterranean, which is a very dangerous ocean. It's why there's all sorts of shipwrecks of always discovering Roman shipwreck and stuff because it's a very terminal ocean. A lot of people died, a lot of ships went down and that ocean, another it Okay, the second filter, lays them in a lot of times, you'll see Hadeeth it says, so and so whoever does this, that or says this or that. Lisa midnight is not one of us. Technically, literally that means they're not Muslim. Me. So if they were Muslim, and now they're not Muslim, then they are an apostate. They're become a Catholic. That
I would literally that's it that means just an example in southern Sudan about widowed men across chef Elisa Mina, whoever cheats is not from amongst us.
For another example, men, men Hammad, Alena, sila felice, Amina, inside Muslim, whoever carries arms against us, whoever bears arms against us is not from amongst us.
Okay, this filter doesn't mean people are not Muslims, it means they're not doing what Muslims should do. This is not the path of Muslims, they are doing things that Muslims should not do. Why do we know this is the case, because the Quran talks about his time and money now Delta, if two groups from amongst the believers fight one another, then we're supposed to the Prophet is supposed to reconcile between them as much as possible. So Muslims can actually fight against each other with weapons and they're still both Muslims, both parties are Muslims. Therefore, that idea cannot be literally the case. Second,
we know for example, that
if is another Hadith where the Prophet rules that
and also in the Quran, that if a Muslim, if you kill somebody for Muslim kills another Muslim, then that the Muslims family has the right to either have the person executed or take blood money or forgive them.
And the Prophet describes the killer still as a believer. So we know he not only carried weapons against other Muslim he actually killed another Muslim. Okay.
this idea that whenever you see something lay some men know what it means is, it's not the type of thing that Muslims should do.
By the way, why would the Prophet speak like this?
Why would you use language like this, to get
point across. If I say cheating is not the type of thing Muslims should do, to a kind of very, you know, upper middle class American audience who's very subtle and not used to seeing real violence on TV and things like that. It's a good way of speaking. But it's not how you speak to everybody in the world, as certainly not I used to speak to Arabian Bedouins, for whom violence is completely normal.
You know, Bedouins are not subtle people.
They generally today not subtle people.
You have to say you do this, you're not doing what one person does. This is not Muslim.
And the very interesting some Muslim somebody transmitters later in the time that let's say the 700 800 of the Common Era, they would explain, Lisa Minh not means Lisa mithuna midlaner not for monks. This really means not like us. But some Hadid scholars like a famous scholar of Mecca, Sophia and Marina died around
8058 810 I guess the Common Era, Sophia never never Yana. He actually wouldn't explain that he wouldn't put the filter on when he was telling this idea to people because he wanted to shock them.
He wanted people to be afraid of cheating.
Another very important thing, there's Crawford and then there's
there's different types of
fit the best example this idea it's inside. bakare since a Muslim it's in the gem of Timothy, where the Prophet says
sebab but a Muslim for souk, wakita Allahu Cofer. If you engage in cursing with like, you know, yelling and cursing with a Muslim, and other Muslim that's iniquitous behavior that is sinful behavior. If you fight with that person, that's Cofer. So tactically, what that means is if two Muslims get in a fight in the parking lot of the mosque or something like that, they are now Kaffirs.
But as in our bass says, very importantly, in this discussion of this Hadith, he's the companion to the Prophet says, how the COVID are doing, of course, this is a type of Cofer. That's not the really serious call for like apostasy. This doesn't mean someone these, what does that mean? it the same way that the Prophet says that the person who's drinking wine or who's engaging in Zina, in the moment when they're drinking wine, and they're engaging Xena, they're not a believer, because in the moment you're doing that act, you're really denying God, you're disobeying God so severely that your belief sort of leaves you at that moment, you don't you're not really a believer in God, if you're
doing something this serious.
But this doesn't mean the second you put the wind down, you're, you're Muslim again.
So there's, there's cofra can be a quality of an action. If you deny God's bounty, then that's an act of Cofer. It doesn't mean you're a Kaffir, doesn't mean you've actually done Cofer with a capital K, we've left Islam, it just means that action, it's an action of denying God.
Okay, you also find a lot of times a deep like, lie. Meanwhile, hadoken had, none of you will believe until things like none of you will believe until I am dearer to him than his parents and his children and all the people. So well known Hadeeth. So, the Prophet says, none of you will believe until I am dearer to you than your parents, your children and mankind altogether. Now, first of all, that's a very difficult order to meet. And by the way, interestingly, a lot, the majority of Muslim scholars said, this is not talking about
natural love. Because you can't choose how much you love your children. You can't choose to love someone more than your own children. It's very easy Muslim scholars.
And this going back all the way to the 809 100, the Common Era, they had a very keen understanding and appreciation of human nature. They knew people love their families. Parents love their children, they love their children, almost at a biological evolutionary level, but they loved it. This is not a choice, you love your children.
And you're not blamed that you love your children more than loving someone else, because you can't control your love for your children. So this log must be the type of love you choose to do to engage in
the type of to the extent that we can choose who we love. We should love the Prophet more than anybody else.
Secondly, anything where it says none of you will believe until X or Y it means none of your will completely believe none of your image will be perfect until you
It doesn't mean none of you believe because we know the very simple things that Muslims have to do to become Muslims. They just have to say, there's no god but God and Muhammad is the prophet of God, then they're a Muslim.
And their faith is at least two other Muslims as as sound as anyone elses.
Although you also see lots of heads to say, no one will lie yet called agenda man Cana, if you call be called v. Hubbard, Hubbard to harden a minute, or something like that. Hadith in Bukhari and other books, none of you will enter heaven if they had even a mustard seed worth of pride in your heart. Okay? That is a very hard bar to meet.
a mustard seed weight of worth of pride in your heart. I mean, I don't know anybody who doesn't have a mustard seed or two pride in your heart. You're not going to go to heaven. Okay. By the way, this is what caused the Protestant Reformation. That's what caused Martin Luther to believe that you cannot.
You cannot attain salvation by your actions. Because Jesus says, for example, in the New Testament, if you even look at a woman with lust in your heart, then you've committed adultery. That means basically, people are constantly committed. I mean, how can you How can you possibly meet that standard?
Muslims guards didn't have this problem, because what they said is this, we know from other sound heads, all my all more Hey, doin all monotheists are going to enter heaven eventually. So let's say you're a just a really, really bad Muslim, you're an alcoholic,
pork eating, gambling,
homeless person beating, nasty, lying, cheat, murderer.
It's not, it's a murder, that's too much.
You still gonna go to heaven, eventually, you're just gonna have to have all these sins burned off you. So you're gonna be roasted in Hellfire until your sins have been purged. But we know that if you have faith in God, eventually you're going to attain salvation. So that's an established principle of Sunni theology. And also, I think also of twelver Shia theology, I'm not sure that's an established principle of theology. So this idea can't be interpreted as it seems on its face. It means
if you have any pride in your heart, it's gonna get burned off even just for a second.
That's gonna have to be burned off, you're not going to enter heaven immediately.
Last thing, this is very important.
But Qur'an and the Prophet, laser Islam are not science teachers.
Just like, none of us will actually some of you might be science teachers, but none of us talk like sciences. What do I mean by that?
I, for example, this morning, I flew up from Houston.
Anyone have a problem with that sentence?
You people. Oh, you're so you, religious people. You're so you're so naive. What about modern science? I flew up from Houston. So Houston is below us.
He's just below us on a map, that we happen to have accepted a certain view of the world where north is up and South is down.
But not none of you would start ripping your hair out if people started talking like that. When we talk about that all that we talk about the world, like it's flat, we talk about the world like it's theirs north is up, you know, we go out west to California, California is go back east.
Isn't these direct these, these aren't doesn't really mean we believe that somehow. The earth extends from the east coast to the west coast, temporally and spatially or something. I don't even know how we make sense of that. This is how we talk.
The Koran addresses us in the language of human beings. The Prophet speaks like a normal person speaks. If he were to speak in a scientifically accurate way, people would think he's a complete weirdo. Just like you would think I was a complete weirdo if I spoke in a scientifically accurate way all the time. By the way, remember, science is always changing. I have this chart I should have brought it but I love showing this from my to my students. It has a chart of all the different you know, different foods that cause cancer.
And then it shows on one side all the studies that saved that food causes cancer. The other side all the studies that say that food does not cause cancer. And if you look at the chart is there's no everything either does or does not cause either causes cancer or prevents Gods cancer. So science is not something you want to put a lot of your
eggs in, you know, specific scientific conclusions. Overall, for example, cleanliness is important. Germs Cause you know, carry disease, these things, we're not going to know our established facts, but things like, exactly how is the universe shaped? Does that, you know, a lot of times I remember reading that when I first started reading the Quran reading it, and it talks about a shot in the shadows, we'll come up with some, the sun and the moon each run for a certain course.
But the way it's translated in English actually, is they run a certain course, that remember thinking, Oh, my God, this is inaccurate, the sun doesn't move.
But actually, in the Arabic, it doesn't mean, it's not course, it's actually for a period of time, as it is a time barrier. So actually, that is true scientifically, because the sun at certain point is gonna die out or have a supernova or something like that, hopefully, I won't be around.
But, and then I saw something else on my Facebook, someone posted, that the sun actually is moving, the sun's actually moving around, and all the other planets are moving, it's actually a really cool graphic. I don't know if any of you saw this. But the sun's shooting through space, and all the planets are kind of following right behind it and these different orbits. So actually, I shouldn't have been upset because the sun is moving on on a point, of course. So if you get if you start saying I need, I need my scripture to always accorded latest scientific theory, not only are you not going to be satisfied, you're also unnecessarily putting your heart through the wringer.
Because that's not how people talk. That's not how language works. We don't talk to each other in that way. And God doesn't address us in that way.
Finally, if you want to have a message that is going to resonate with people, in all different places, and times, the last thing you should do is grounded in the scientific theory of that day.
If if the Quran said, verily, the universe began at a certain point called the Big Bang, and they were gravitational waves, and it's expanding, but a certain point is going to contract. And the suns doesn't look like it's moving, but it's actually moving. You're moving around it and all these other things. And there's comets. I mean, imagine a better one would just or Arab veteran, which said What the heck is this? This is lunacy. Of course, we're not moving the course the sun, I see the sun moving around us. And the moon moves around us. What kind of idiocy is it to say that we're moving? That you wouldn't you would have lost your audience right there. That's a very bad, it's a very bad
bet. It's a very bad horse to bet on scientific accuracy. So the problem is that Muslims especially in the late 1800s, early 1900s, and to a certain extent, even Muslims today, I see this a lot. They are obsessed with what's called scientism. This is a it's a real product of modernity, the idea that every human being who ever lived until basically Newton and Galileo and
the greats, you know,
Boyle and Calvin all these great 17th century 18th century 19th century figures, they were all just totally out to lunch. No one really understood the universe. And now everything that human beings that they know prior to scientific scientific revolution needs to be reconsidered.
That scientism the idea that we at the at the forefront of human of human civilization are its best. We are constantly discovering truth and removing darkness, the darkness of the past with the truth of the future. This is the Star Trek vision of the world.
Okay, that's an extremely inaccurate view of the world. First of all, it makes people think things like
and I don't know how many of you are in kids who are in some kind of grade school. How do you
did you learn about Christopher Columbus? What did Christopher Columbus do?
Okay, he discovered America is that they still teach this Amish I'm really curious kids tell me.
They don't say that.
They don't okay. But what is his big discovery? Who tells me is it wasn't he discovered America he had this genius ingenious idea which was
went to Cuba No, he thought the earth is round. Everyone else thought it was flat. That's the biggest lie ever. Nobody thought Christopher Columbus didn't think the earth is flat. Nobody thought the earth is flat. Nobody really has thought the earth is flat till since about 400 BC. When the ancient Greeks figured out the earth is round.
Because if you go out and you stand on the beach and you look on a clear day, you can even see the curved surface of the earth.
Everybody knew the earth is round since 400 BC.
This the idea the idea that Christopher Columbus thought the earth was round was round, everyone else thought was flat. This is a myth. It was written by in two books, one by guy named
Andrew Dixon white, another guy named Draper, in the late 1800s. And this is where the idea of the clash of science and religion came from late 1800s anti Catholic writing in America and this myths still persist to this day. Can you step in when I first started teaching this, I actually had to go and look it up was like I, I'm pretty sure. Christopher Columbus discovered years is round, and I'm not going to go in front of students and tell them and I had to go look it up. That's how unsure I was.
Everybody knows the earth is round.
There's a hadith in Sahih Bukhari and other hardy collections, where the Prophet asked his companion
had he is champs aina Ted had
this son, where does it go without overdoses gotten in the profit of more knowledge with Ted, have you had that test you de and
It goes until it prostrates before the throne of God and ask God's permission to rise again and God gives it permission to rise.
In the early 20th century, in Egypt, this caused a huge controversy. A lot of very respected Muslim scholars said, Okay, this idea clearly contradicts what we now know about astronomy.
The sun does not go anywhere, we are moving around the sun, the sun certainly doesn't prostrate anywhere.
And classical Muslim scholars didn't know this, because they didn't know about modern astronomy. So they didn't they didn't have the means to see that this idea is unreliable. Now we know this.
Other Muslim scholars responded to those scholars and said,
Excuse me, but you're being idiotic. Basically, no one ever thought the Sun prostrates?
for a couple of reasons, one,
frustration means that you bend down and your knees in the sun doesn't have nice sun doesn't have joints, the sun doesn't bend or anything. So it's obviously not literal. Nobody would, why are you treating this it literally
the Quran talks about a shampoo or shoujo regimen, which I drew yesterday on the stars and the trees bow down? Does that literally mean the stars are bowing down to God like this? No, it means they obey the will of God.
Second of all, Muslim scholars and the earliest example I found is from the 10, hundreds of the Common Era, Muslim scholars knew that the sun was always up somewhere.
It was always up somewhere. And they knew that because they were calculating prayer times. And if you go really far north, the sun sets whereas at the same time of day,
really far south the sun's up.
So they knew it's always up somewhere and down somewhere else.
This is a very, they discovered this to calculate prototypes. So they knew this, the sun is actually never going somewhere to prostrate before God is strong. This is they thought This meant that the the sun obeys God's command, just like the Quran describes other natural features natural bodies doing. It's only interestingly, in the 20th century, when Muslim scholars, some Muslim scholars became obsessed with this idea that modern science has given us new knowledge that requires us to wipe out everything that we that we think we know before. And modern science because we've learned so much it must mean that everybody who came before us was ignorant, and benighted. This is a very,
very arrogant view of the world. The very arrogant view of the world at this type of thing that make people put all their eggs in the basket of the latest scientific study about what causes cancer, what doesn't and not have a sense of proportion and perspective. To know that these these studies are frequently disproven, and then you have to wait a long time to determine scientific consensus and even then I consensus might be found wanting. Okay.