Analysis of Hadith-e-Nur – Chain of Narrators – Part 2

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The previous article elucidated the importance of Hadith-e-Nur by affirming Ameerul Momineen Ali b. Abi Talib’s (a.s) status as the true and deserving successor of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (s.a.w.a). We will now elaborate on the chains of narrators of the tradition (اسناد) and the consecutive nature of its narration through several chains (تواتر) so as to prove its reliability, authenticity and validity beyond any shadow of doubt.

Hadith-e-Nur’s reliability and authenticity can be proved with the vast availability of Sanad and Tawaatur i.e. this tradition is narrated through several reliable chains of transmitters. Moreover, the hadis is transmitted by many genres of narrators including –

i) Sahaabah (Companions of the Holy Prophet s.a.w.a.)
ii) Taabe’een (Generation after companions who did not see the Holy Prophet s.a.w.a.)
iii) Huffaaz (Memorizers of the Holy Quran)
iv) Ulama (Scholars)

The following is a category-wise list of transmitters:

i) Companions:

Among the revered companions who narrated the tradition:

1. Ameerul Momineen Ali b. Abi Talib (a.s)

Following scholars have recorded the tradition from him:

• Saalehaani
• Kala’ai
• Muhammad b. Jafar
• Wasabi
• Waa’iz Hirvi
• Muhammad Sadr Aalim

2. Imam Husain b. Ali (a.s)

Following scholars have chronicled the tradition from him:

• Aasimi
• Khaarazmi
• Matarzi
• Shahabuddin Ahmad

3. Salman Muhammadi (r.a)

Following scholars have documented this tradition from him:

• Ahmad b. Hanbal. (Sibt-e-Jauzi has narrated this tradition in his book from Ahmad b. Hanbal.)
• Abdullah Ibn Ahmad
• Ibne Maghazili
• Sheruyeh Daylami
• Natanzi
• Shahardar Daylami
• Khateebe Khaarazmi
• Ibn Asir
• Hamwini
• Taalibi
• Hamadani
• Ganji Shaafe’ee
• Tabari
• Wasabi
• Hirvi

4. Abu Zarr Ghaffari (r.a.)

Ibne Maghaazili has narrated from him.

5. Jabir b. Abdillah al-Ansari (r.a.)

Ibne Maghaazili has narrated from him.

6. Abdullah b. Abbas (r.a.)

Following scholars have narrated this tradition from him:

• Ibn Habeeb Baghdadi
• Natanzi
• Ganji Shaafe’ee
• Hamwini
• Zarandi
• Shahabuddin Ahmad
• Jamaal Muhaddis

7. Abu Hurairah

Hamwini has narrated from him.

8. Anas b. Maalik

Aasimi has narrated from him.

ii) The Taabe’een who narrated Hadith-e-Nur:

• Imam Ali b. Husain b. Abi Taalib (a.s)
• Zadaan Abu Umar Kandi exp 82 AH
• Abu Usman Nahdi
• Saalim b. Abu Ja’ad Ashja’ee exp. 98 or 100 AH
• Abu Zubair Muhammad b. Muslim b. Tadarrrus Asadi Makki exp 126 AH
• Ikramah b. Abdullah Burairi exp 180 AH
• Abdul Rahman b. Yaqub Johni Madani
• Abu Ubaidah Hameed b. Abi Hameed Taweel Basri

iii) Among the memorizers of the Holy Quran who narrated Hadith-e-Nur are:

• Ahmad b. Hanbal Shaybaani exp 241 AH
• Abu Haatim Muhammad b. Idris exp 277 A.H
• Abdullah b. Ahmad b. Hanbal exp 290 AH
• Ibn Mordowayh Abu Bar Ahmad b. Moosa Isfahaani exp 410 AH
• Abu Naeem Ahmad Ibn Abdullah Isfahaani exp 430 AH
• Ibn Abdul Barr Yusuf Ibn Abdullah Numairi Qurtubbi exp 463 AH
• Khateeb-e-Baghdadi
• Daylami
• Khaaarazmi
• Ganji Shaafe’ee
• Tabari
• Hamwini

Tawaatur of Hadees-e-Nur

The authenticity of this tradition is unquestionable because it has been narrated by our master Ameerul Momeneen Ali b. Abi Taalib (a.s), who is an infallible guide! Moreover, the hadis is narrated by several other companions and Ibn Hajar as well as Ibn Hazm have documented a particular version of this tradition deeming it Mutawaatir.

Reliability of narrators of Hadith-e-Nur according to Ahle Tasannun

It is noteworthy that the authenticity of Hadis-e-Nur from the dual aspect of text and chain of narrators has been acknowledged by Sunni scholars. So much so that they believe that a tradition from some of the narrators of the tradition assumes the same status as verses of the Holy Quran and cannot be rejected.

Abdul Aziz Dehlavi, author of Tohfah-e-Isnaa Ashari, suggests that any tradition by Abu Hurairah is equivalent to the verses of the Holy Quran and goes on to add that traditions from Ameeral Momineen Ali b. Abi Talib (a.s.) are authoritative since the latter is himself an infallible!

As the Sihaah-e-Sittah (i.e. the six most reliable books for the Ahle Tasannun after the Holy Quran) consist of traditions from these narrators, the credibility of Hadis-e-Nur is evident and casting doubts over it would call into question the authenticity of traditions in Sihaah-e-Sittah, especially of Bukhari and Muslim, narrated by the transmitters of Hadis-e-Nur like Abu Hurairah and Imam Ali b. Abi Taalib (a.s.) for instance. Ahle Tasannun have no other option but to acknowledge the authenticity of Hadis-e-Nur. If they wish to ignore or reject Hadis-e-Nur, it would be inappropriate to accept other traditions in the Sihaah-e-Sittah. After all, traditions cannot be rejected only because they narrate the virtues and excellences of the Aal-e-Muhammad (a.s.) and their superiority over others.

Reliability of Abdul Razzaaq San’ani
Sunni scholars opine that Abdul Razzaaq San’ani (another narrator of Hadis-e-Nur) is the most prolific source of traditions. The trust placed in his works is so immense that Muqaddasi narrates from Yahya b. Mu’een that even if Abdul Razzaaq were to leave Islam, his traditions will never be forsaken!

Salman Muhammadi (r a) is another narrator of this traditions and his impeccable nature and truthfulness needs no introduction because the Holy Prophet (s a w s) himself said – ‘Even if religion was in Pleiades (Saryaa), Salman would have obtained it from there. Allah has ordered me to love four people who are beloved to Him, they are :- Ali, Abu Zarr, Miqdaad and Salman.’

Stature of Ahmad b. Hanbal
He is among the narrators of Hadis-e-Nur. Being an Imam of a school adhered to by many Muslims, his edict on the Hadis-e-Nur being reliable is particularly noteworthy. Indeed Ahmed b. Hanbal’s influence is such that a number of Sunnis consider him more meritorious than Abu Bakr while there are others who go a step ahead to claim his equality with the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a) himself!

Sibt ibne Jauzi’s reply to those who consider the hadis as weak
Sibt ibne Jauzi who is considered a high principled narrator by many Sunni scholars like Khaarazmi, Zahabi, Muhammad b. Ali Dawoodi – the teacher of Suyooti, Ibn Khallekaan among others, has documented Hadis-e-Nur in his book Tazkerah al-Khawaas (p. 22) strongly refuting the arguments of the skeptics who deem it as weak.


The authenticity of Hadis -e-Nur is undeniable else it would not have been so widely documented in Sunni books by their most reliable scholars and memorizers. If there are Muslims who take exception to the hadis even after this, then it is not a matter of intellectual differences; rather it is sheer prejudice and bias against the Ahle Bait (a.s.) that makes them accept other traditions narrated by these very narrators and chronicled by these scholars but reject the traditions specifically enumerating the excellence of the Ahle Bait (a.s.).

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