ABOUT THE BOOK:
These primers were written to facilitate speedy mastery of the discipline's core material. Although the primers focus on definitions, they also include methods for addressing problems specific to the topic. Students would often commit a primer to memory while studying it with a living master who would explain its content in detail and demonstrate its application. It is through this interaction between students and instructors that Islamic education transmits both knowledge and skills across generations.
In translation, these primers are ideal for English-speaking instructors looking for a primary text covering the subject's core concepts. The translations will also benefit students looking to review their lessons or to prepare themselves for more advanced studies.
ABOUT IMAM IBN AL-MULAQQIN:
'Umar b. 'Ali b. Ahmed b. Muhammad b. 'Abd Allah, Sirajudin, Abu Hafs, al-Ansari, al-Andalusi, al-Misri al-Shafi'i, popularly known as Ibn al-Mulaqqin. It has been said about him that he disliked the Ibn al-Mulaqqin and it used to anger him when called thus. Talqin of the Qur'an with his shaykh 'Isa is why he was named such a name although he preferred to be called Ibn al-Nahwi, after his father's known expertise of the Arabic grammar. He even wrote his books and letters under that name.
He was born on the month of Rabi' al-Awal in the year 723 Hijri on the 24th day according to his student Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani while al-Sakhawi asserts he was born on the 22nd, per Ibn al-Mulaqqins hand written records. His father was an Andalusian (Spanish) and then moved to Egypt to take knowledge from al-Isnawiy and he later passed away while Ibn al-Mulaqqin was very young and his mother was married by Shaykh 'Isa al-Maghrabi who raised and taught our author. He learned under him the Qur'an as mentioned earlier and memorised it as well as the 'Umdat al-Ahkam. After this he was taught the Maliki Madhab. Ibn Jama'ah advised that Ibn al-Mulaqqin be taught the Shafi'i madhab first per his father wishes (whom he was a close friend) so Ibn al-Mulaqqin was taught the Minhaj al-Talibin and thereafter memorised it.
He studied fiqh with Shaykh al-Islam al-Taqqiy al-Din al-Subki, al-Jamal al-Isnawi, al-Kamal al-Nasha'i and al-'Izz ibn Jama'ah. He then travelled to Syria to learn from the scholars there and left no stone unturned in learning from Scholars there. He also studies under Abu Hayyan, Ibn Hashim al-Ansari and many many more. As for his Students they were the likes of Ibn Hajar al-'Asqalani, Ahmed Abu Zur'ah ibn al-Iraqi, Ibrahim b. Muhammad b. Khalil and many more.
He became so well studied that he was given the position to answer any question raised regarding any mas'ala in four schools of fiqh. al-Hafidh Ibn Hajar says about him; 'He was splendid in character and manners, looked and dressed well, he wrote extensively'. He was praised by his peers in his lifetime with words such as; 'al-Imam, al-'Alim, al-Muhadith, al-Hafidh, al-Mutaqqin, The Crown of the Jurists and Muhadithin alike'. He was permitted to teach by Imam al-Mizzi and al-Shams al-'Asqalani. He produced a quantative as well qualative scholars among them being Imam Ibn Hajar al-'Asqalani and Ibn Nasir al-Dimishqi. He wrote so much on all the sciences of Islam, that some have suggested that he was a copyist who wrote little himself. This claim has been rebuked by his contemporaries as well those who came later such as Ibn Hajar, al-Shakhawi, al-'Iraqi, al-'Alla'i, Ibn al-'Ajmi and of those who came way later are the likes of al-Shawkani and others.
He wrote the following titles:
· al-Balghat fi Ahadith al-Ahkam,
· Tuhfat al-Muhtaj ila Adillat al-Minhaj,
· Hada'iq al-Haqa'iq,
· Tabaqat al-Muhadithin,
· al-'Uddah fi Ma'rifat rijal al-'Umdah,
· al-I'lam bi Fawa'id 'Umdat al-Ahkam,
· Shawahid al-Tawdhih fi Sharh al-Jami' al-Sahih,
· Sharh al-Arba'in al-Nawawiyah,
· Sharh Zawa'id Muslim ibn al-hajjaj,
· Sharh Zawa'id Abi Dawud 'Ala al-Sahih,
· al-Badr al-Munir fi Takhrij al-Ahadith wal Athar al-Waqi'at fi al-Sharh al-Kabir
· Khulasat al-Badr al-Munir,
· al-Muntaqa min Khulasat al-Badr al-Munir, and many more works.
In 780, in Egypte, due to the highly saught after position of supreme judge, the Imam went through some trials whereby he was tested and envied. He died short while after in Friday night 16th of Rabi' al-Awal 804.
ABOUT IMAM IBN HAJAR AL-ASQALANI:
Al-Haafidh Shihabuddin Abu'l-Fadl Ahmad ibn Ali ibn Muhammad, better known as Ibn Hajar due to the fame of his forefathers, al-Asqalani due to his family origin, born 18 February 1372 – 2 February 1449, 852 A.H., was a medieval Shafi'i Sunni scholar of Islam who represents the entire realm of the Sunni world in the field of Hadith, also known as Shaykh al Islam. He authored some 50 works on hadith, history, biography, tafsir, poetry, and Shafi'i jurisprudence, the most valued of which being his commentary of the Sahih of Bukhari, titled Fath al-Bari.
He was born in Cairo in 1372, the son of the Shafi'i scholar and poet Nur al-Din 'Ali. Both of his parents died in his infancy, and he and his sister, Sitt al-Rakb, became wards of his father's first wife's brother, Zaki al-Din al-Kharrubi, who enrolled Ibn Hajar in Quranic studies when he was five years old. Here he excelled, learning Surah Maryam in a single day and memorising the entire Qur'an by the age of 9. He progressed to the memorization of texts such as the abridged version of Ibn al-Hajib's work on the foundations of fiqh.
When he accompanied al-Kharrubi to Mecca at the age of 12, he was considered competent to lead the Tarawih prayers during Ramadan. When his guardian died in 1386, Ibn Hajar's education in Egypt was entrusted to hadith scholar Shams al-Din ibn al-Qattan, who entered him in the courses given by al-Bulqini (d. 1404) and Ibn al-Mulaqqin (d. 1402) in Shafi'i fiqh, and Abd al-Rahim ibn al-Husain al-'Iraqi (d. 1404) in hadith, after which he travelled to Damascus and Jerusalem, to study under Shams al-Din al-Qalqashandi (d. 1407), Badr al-Din al-Balisi (d. 1401), and Fatima bint al-Manja al-Tanukhiyya (d. 1401). After a further visit to Mecca, Medina, and Yemen, he returned to Egypt. Al-Suyuti said: “It is said that he drank Zamzam water in order to reach the level of al-Dhahabi in memorization—which he succeeded in doing, even surpassing him.”
In 1397, at the age of twenty-five, he married Anas Khatun. She was a hadith expert in her own right, holding ijazas from Hafiz al-Iraqi. Khatun gave celebrated public lectures to crowds of ulema, including al-Sakhawi. Ibn Hajar went on to be appointed to the position of Egyptian chief-judge (Qadi) several times.
Ibn Hajar authored more than fifty works on hadith, hadith terminology, biographical evaluation, history, Quranic exegesis, poetry and Shafi'i jurisprudence.
- Fath al-Bari – considered the most prominent and reliable commentary on al-Bukhari's Jami` al-Sahih: In 1414 (817 A.H.), Ibn Hajar commenced the enormous task of assembling his commentary on Sahih Bukhari. Ibn Rajab had begun to write a huge commentary on Sahih Bukhari in the 1390s with the title of Fath al-Bari. Thus, Ibn Hajar decided to name his own commentary with the same title, Fath al-Bari, which in time became the most valued commentary of Sahih Bukhari. When it was finished, in December 1428 (Rajab 842 A.H.), a celebration was held near Cairo, attended by the ulema, judges, and leading Egyptian personalities. Ibn Hajar read the final pages of his work, after which poets recited eulogies and gold was distributed. It was, according to historian Ibn Iyaas (d. 930 A.H.), 'the greatest celebration of the age in Egypt.'
- al-Isaba fi tamyiz al-Sahaba – the most comprehensive dictionary of the Companions.
- al-Durar al-Kamina – a biographical dictionary of leading figures of the eighth century.
- Tahdhib al-Tahdhib – an abbreviation of Tahdhib al-Kamal, the encyclopedia of hadith narrators by Yusuf ibn Abd al-Rahman al-Mizzi
- Taqrib al-Tahdhib – the abridgement of Tahthib al-Tahthib.
- Ta'jil al-Manfa'ah – biographies of the narrators of the Musnads of the four Imams, not found in al-Tahthib.
- Bulugh al-Maram min adillat al-ahkam – on hadith used in Shafi'i fiqh.
- Nata'ij al-Afkar fi Takhrij Ahadith al-Adhkar
- Lisan al-Mizan – a reworking of Mizan al-'Itidal by al-Dhahabi.
- Talkhis al-Habir fi Takhrij al-Rafi`i al-Kabir
- al-Diraya fi Takhrij Ahadith al-Hidaya
- Taghliq al-Ta`liq `ala Sahih al-Bukhari
- Risala Tadhkirat al-Athar
- al-Matalib al-`Aliya bi Zawa'id al-Masanid al-Thamaniya
- Nukhbat al-Fikar along with his explanation of it entitled Nuzhah al-Nathr in hadith terminology
- al-Nukat ala Kitab ibn al-Salah – commentary of the Muqaddimah of Ibn al-Salah
- al-Qawl al-Musaddad fi Musnad Ahmad a discussion of hadith of disputed authenticity in the Musnad of Ahmad
- Silsilat al-Dhahab
- Ta`rif Ahl al-Taqdis bi Maratib al-Mawsufin bi al-Tadlis
Ibn Hajar died after Isha prayers on February 2, 1449 at the age of 79. His funeral in Cairo was said to have been attended by an estimated 50,000 people, including the sultan and the caliph.
ABOUT MUFTI MUSA FURBER:
Mufti Musa Furber was born in Massachusetts and raised in Portland, Oregon. He majored in linguistics at Portland State University, with an emphasis on computational linguistics and cognitive science, a major that required him to study a non-Indo-European language. As good fortune would have it, Arabic was the only class that fit in his schedule at the time, thus starting him off on what eventually would become a serious and personal study of the Qur’an and Islam.
Mufti Musa embraced Islam and shortly thereafter embarked on a path of study. While still a student in Portland, he studied Shafi’i Islamic ethics and law (fiqh) with a Muslim religious scholar who was in Portland at the time.
After graduation, he continued his studies with scholars in and around Damascus, who reviewed with him several important texts and qualified him to translate and teach them. Later he entered and completed a prestigious training program in the issuance of legal response (fatawa) at Dar al-Ifta’ al-Misriyya, under the direct supervision of Shaykh Dr. Ali Jumu`a, the Mufti of Egypt.
After successfully completing the program and acting as an official researcher and English translator for Dar al-Ifta’, he was recruited by Shaykh Habib Ali al-Jifri to serve as a lead researcher at the Taba Insitute in UAE, where he currently resides.