Do I accept the hadith?

ḥadīth in a few words

My thoughts on the ḥadīth literature, in a nutshell, are as follows:

  • The Qur’an itself claims to be from God and complete. If this is true, there is no good reason to follow anything else. And if it is not true, there is no good reason to follow the Qur’an.
  • The ḥadīth literature is, by universal consent, hearsay. And hearsay has no place – to my mind at least – in the business of establishing the facts concerning God.
  • At the root of what divides the two major sects of what is today called Islam lies conflict between their competing bodies of ḥadīth literature. If they cannot agree among themselves on what they accept, I see no reason why I should accept any of it.
  • The so-called science of ḥadīth (that system by which a particular chain of narrators is established and assessed) is predicated on obvious foolishness and a sophistic method; there is no such thing as reliable hearsay. All hearsay is unreliable.
  • The Qur’an says that God sent down the best ḥadīth in the Qur’an. If that is the case, I can see no scenario in which one would look to ḥadīth other than that which is best.

About the Author Sam Gerrans

Sam Gerrans is an English writer and speaker with professional backgrounds in media, strategic communications, and technologies. He is driven by commitment to ultimate meaning, and focused on authentic approaches to revelation and Realpolitik. He is founder of and author of The Qur’an: A Complete Revelation where his consistent, Qur'an-centric hermeneutical methodology is applied to the text of the Qur’an in its entirety. Read more...

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