Imam Bukhari is a name that creates a sense of reverence and respect in every Muslim’s heart. He was one of the greatest scholars of Islam and the founder of Hadith science. His prestigious compilation named Jame Al-Sahih is regarded as the second authentic book of Islam after the Holy Qur’an.
It was in the second century Hijrah when most of the Sahaba who had learned Islam from the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) directly were diminishing one after another. The last of the Prophet’s companions passed away in 110 A.H. Subsequently, a possibility of misquoting the Prophet (peace be upon him) by some people with vested interest was quite apparent. So it was essential to collect and authenticate true Hadiths without the sponsorship of any ruling authority, regional or national. It was a gigantic work to collect all the prevailing statements and to classify them into the relevant categories, as authentic, good, poor, and false.
This was a great task, which Imam Bukhari, a non-Arab from Khorasan, shouldered. He spent 16 years searching, collecting, and refining the material of Hadith. Not only this, he fixed the most rigid rules to evaluate and authenticate any circulating Hadith. Thus he is known as the Founder of Hadith science. The rest of his life was spent teaching and propagating the Hadith literature. One of his students, Imam Muslim, rose to the second position in the world in the Hadith compilation.
Imam Bukhari was born in Bukhara in 196 A.H. (810 A.D.) now in Uzbekistan). His father died when he was still young. He had lost his sight in infancy but his mother’s prayers and invoking blessed him a sharp sight and sharp memory that enabled him to read and write in the moonlight and if he had read or heard something, it would remain in his memory forever.
He memorized the Holy Qur’an at the age of 9. Then began to learn Hadith from scholars of his region. At the age of 18, he traveled to Makkah and stayed there for 16 years collecting Hadiths. He visited Egypt and Syria twice, Basra four times, spent many years in Hijaz, and went to Kufa and Baghdad many times. It is said that he learned about 600,000 Hadith from more than 1,000 scholars.
While returning to Bukhara after 16 years he began to compile Jame Al Sahih. He judged 7,275 Hadith from his large collection and arranged them in 93 chapters. Though Imam Bukhari wrote many books, he shot to prominence because of Tarikh Al-Kabeer, Adab Al-Mufrad, and Sahih Al-Bukhari. The first one he wrote in full moon nights at the Prophet’s Mosque in Madinah. Imam Bukhari had a very sharp memory. He memorized 70,000 Hadiths at an early age and later in his life, this figure reached 300,000. Among those 100,000 Hadiths were Sahih and 200,000 were Hasan, Da`îf, etc.
In 250 A.H. he settled at Neshapur where he met Muslim ibn Al Hujjaj as his disciple who compiled Sahih Al-Muslim which is regarded only second to Bukhari in the Muslim world.
Imam Bukhari’s book on Hadith is regarded as the top of Sahah Sitta which are the most authentic six books of Hadith collected during 200-300 AH. These are:
• Sahih Bukhari by Imam Bukhari (D. 256 A.H.),
• Sahih Muslim by Muslim ibn Al Hujjaj (D. 261 A.H.),
• Sunan Al-Sughra by Al-Nasa’i (D. 302 A.H.)
• Sunan Abu Dawood by Abu Dawood (D. 274 A.H.)
• Jami Al-Tirmidhi by Al-Tirmidhi (D. 278 A.H.)
• Sunan ibn Majah by Ibn Majah (D. 273 A.H.)
Hafiz Ahmad bin Adi has described that when Imam Bukhari reached Baghdad, the leading scholars tried to test him and mixed 100 Hadith between the narrators’ chain and the text and gave to 100 persons to ask the authenticity of such Hadiths. Imam Bukhari said he never heard any Hadith like this. Then he repeated the incorrect Hadith as quoted by each questioner and then recited the corrected Hadith for each person separately. The people were astonished at the depth of his knowledge and paid great respect to him.
Imam Bukhari was a rich person but he lived the life of a very simple man giving most of his income to the poor. Mohammed Hatim Warraq, one of his disciples said that when Imam was establishing a Sarai (inn) near the city of Bukhara, he was laying bricks with his own hands. When Warraq said to him, leave this job for me, he replied, “On the Day of Judgment this work will be of benefit to me.” Regarding his worship, it is said that Imam recited the entire Qur’an daily in Ramadan and recited one-third of it in the night prayers.
In 250 A.H., Imam Bukhari moved to Neshapur where he was well received. Imam Muslim Neshapuri said he had never seen such a grand reception given to any scholar or ruler. Imam Bukhari began his lectures, which were attended by thousands. His popularity irritated the local ruler and Imam Bukhari decided to leave Neshapur for Bukhara where again he was received with great enthusiasm. He began his lectures and also established a school for regular teaching. But after some time due to differences with the local ruler, he decided to leave his hometown for Samarqand.
But when he was still a few miles away from the city he was prevented from entering it. When he found he had no place to go, he prayed to Almighty Allah saying, “O Allah, the Earth despite its grandeur is becoming narrow for me and is troubling me greatly. So take me back to You.” His prayers were answered and he died at Khartang, a place between Samarqand and Bukhara. It was on the night of Eid Al-Fitr, the first night of Shawwal 256 A.H. He is buried in Muhammad Al-Bukhari mausoleum at Khartang near Samarkand, in Uzbekistan
“Abd Al-Wahid ibn Adam Awaysi states: ‘I saw the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him) in a dream standing with a group of Sahaba and asked, ‘For whom are you waiting?’ He replied, ‘For Bukhari.’ After a few days, I heard the news of Imam Bukhari’s death. He had died at the very moment that I saw the Prophet (PBUH) in my dream.”
Sahih Al Bukhari is regarded as the most authentic collection of Hadiths, which covers almost all aspects of human life in providing proper guidance from the Holy Prophet. As for piety, Imam Al-Bukhari never wrote any Hadith in this book without performing two rakah salat of guidance from Allah and when he was sure of its authenticity, only then he wrote it in the book.
Imam Bukhari lived for 62 years only but during his span of life, he did a marvelous work, which has been guiding the Ummah for the last 1,200 years. Tens of commentaries have been written on his treatise and hundreds of scholars are teaching Bukhari to thousand of students daily around the world. May Almighty Allah grant him the best reward.
– by ABU TARIQ HIJAZI
The food of the people of Hell is ad-Daree and az-Zaqqum, and their drink is al-Hameem, al-Ghasleen, and al-Ghassaaq.
Allah (SWT) says: “No food will there be for them but a bitter Daree obnoxious thorny plant, which will neither nourish nor satisfy hunger”. (88:6-7)
ad-Daree is a thorny plant know as ash-Shubruq that grows in the Hijaz. Ibn ‘Abbaas said, “It is a low-growing thorny plant; when it grows tall it is called daree”. Qataadah said, “It is one of the very worst types of food” (Ibn Rajab, at-Takhweef min an-Naar, p.115). This food of the people of Hell will be of no benefit whatsoever to them, and they will not enjoy it in the least; this is one of the forms of punishment that they will suffer. Allah (SWT) says:
“Verily the tree of Zaqqum will be the food of the sinful, like molten brass, it will boil in their insides, like the boiling of scalding water.” (44:43-46).
The Tree of Zaqqum is described in another ayah:
“Is that [Paradise] the better entertainment or the tree of Zaqqum [a horrible tree in Hell]? For We have truly made it [as] a trial for the wrongdoers. For it is a tree that springs out of the bottom of Hellfire, The shoots of its fruit-stalks are like the heads of devils; Truly they will eat thereof and fill their bellies therewith. Then on top of that, they will be given to drink a mixture made of boiling water. Then, shall their return by to the blazing Fire of Hell”. (37:62-68)
Elsewhere in the Qur’an, Allah (SWT) says: “Then, will you truly – O you that go wrong, and treat [Truth] as Falsehood]! You will surely taste of the tree of Zaqqum. Then you will fill your insides therewith, and drink boiling water on top of it. Indeed you will drink like diseased camels raging with thirst! Such will be their entertainment on the Day of Requital!” (56:51-66)
What we may understand from these aayaat is that this tree is a repulsive tree, whose roots go deep into the bottom of Hell, and whose branches stretch forth all over. Its fruits are so ugly that they are likened to the heads of devils, so that everyone may easily understand just how ugly they are, even though they have never seen them. Although this tree is so vile and obnoxious, the people of Hell will become so hungry that they will have no choice but to eat from it until they are full. When they have filled their bellies, this food will start to churn like boiling oil, which will cause a great deal of suffering to them. At that point, they will rush to drink al-Hameem, which is extremely hot water, and they will drink it like camels that drink and drink but their thirst is never quenched because of some disease. Then it will tear their innards:
“..[they] will be given to drink, boiling water, so that it cuts up their bowels [to pieces]” (47:15)
This is the hospitality that will be offered to them on that awesome Day. May Allah (SWT) protect us from this by His Grace and Mercy.
When the people of Hell eat this vile food of ad-Daree and az-Zaqqum, they will choke because of its foulness:
“Verily with Us are fetters [to bind them] and a raging Fire [to burn them], And a food that chokes and a Penalty grievous”. (73:12-13)
The food that makes people choke is the food that sticks in the throat.
The Prophet (saw) portrayed for us the ugly and terrifying nature of az-Zaqqum:
“If one drop from az-Zaqqum were to land on this world, the people of earth and all their means of sustenance would be destroyed. So how must it be for the one who must eat it?” It was reported by at-Tirmidhi, who said, it is a sahih hasan hadith. [Mishkaat al-Masaabeeh, 3/105, narrated by Ibn ‘Abbaas]
Another kind of food that will be eaten by the people of Hell is al-Ghasleen. Allah (SWT) says:
“So no friend has he here this Day, Nor has he any food except corruption [or filth] from the washing of wounds [al-Ghasleen], which none do eat but those in sin”. (69:35-37)
“Yea, such! – Then shall they taste it – a boiling fluid and a fluid dark, murky, intensely cold [ghassaaq]! And other penalties of a similar kind – to match them!” (38:57-58)
al-Ghasleen and al-Ghassaaq mean the same thing, which is the festering pus that oozes out of the skin of the people of Hell. It was suggested that it refers to the offensive discharge that flows from the private parts of adulterous women, and the decaying skin and flesh of the kuffaar. al-Qurtubee said, “It is the juice of the people of Hell” [Yaqhadhat uli al-I’tibaar, p. 86]
Allah tells us that al-Ghasleen is just one of many similarly obnoxious punishments.
The drink of the people of Hell will be al-Hameem. Allah (swt) says:
“…and if they implore relief, they will be granted water like melted brass that will scald their faces. How dreadful the drink! How uncomfortable a couch to recline on!” (18:29)
“…and he will be made to drink boiling, festering water. He will sip it unwillingly, and he will find great difficulty in swallowing it..” (14:16-17)
These aayaat mentions four kinds of drink that the people of Hell have to endure:
(1) al-Hameem: extremely hot water.
As Allah says: “In its midst and in the midst of the boiling hot water will they wander round!” (55:44)
This was explained as being ultra-hot water. And Allah (SWT) says: “They will be given to drink from a boiling hot spring.” (88:5)
(2) al-Ghassaaq: as discussed above.
(3) al-Sadeed (pus): what flows from the flesh and skin of the Kaafir. Muslim reports from Jaabir that the Prophet (saw) said, “Anyone who drinks intoxicants will be made to drink the mud of khabaal”. They asked, “O Messenger of Allah, what is the mud of khabaal?” He said, “The sweat of the people of Hell”, or “the juice of the people of Hell”.
(4) al-Muhl: according to the hadith of Abu Sa’eed al-Khudri narrated by Ahmad and at-Tirmidhi the Prophet (saw) said: “It is like boiling oil, and when it is brought near a person’s face, the skin of the face falls off into it”. Ibn ‘Abbaas said, “It is like very thick oil”.
Some of the sinners will be fed the burning coals of Hell as an appropriate punishment:
“Those who unjustly eat up the property of orphans, eat us a Fire into their own bellies, and they will soon be enduring a blazing Fire!” (4:10)
“Those who conceal Allah’s revelations in the Book, and purchase for them a miserable profit – swallow into themselves naught but Fire..” (2:174)
As for the dress of the people of Hell, Allah (SWT) has told us that garments of fire will be tailor-made for them, as it says in the Qur’an:
“..But for those who deny [their Rabb] for them will be cut out a garment of Fire; over their heads will be poured out boiling water” (22:19)
When Ibraaheem at-Taymi recited this Aayah he used to say, “Glory be to Allah, Who has created garments out of the fire” (at-Takhweef min an-Naar, p.126)
Allah (SWT) says, “And you will see the sinners that Day bound together in fetters. Their garments of liquid pitch and their faces covered with Fire”. (14:49-50)
This pitch or tar is melted copper. According to a hadith narrated by Muslim from Abu Maalik al-Ash’ari, the Prophet (saw) said, “The woman who wails for the dead, if she does not repent before she dies, she will be resurrected on the Day of Resurrection, wearing a shirt of tar and a shield of scabs.” Ibn Maajah reported this with the wording, “The woman who wails over the dead, who does not repent before she dies, Allah (swt) will cut out for her a garment of tar and a shield of scabs”.
1. “Be in this world as if you were a stranger”
Hadith 8.425 Narrated by Mujahid (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
‘Abdullah bin ‘Umar (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu) said, “Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) took hold of my shoulder and said, ‘Be in this world as if you were a stranger or a traveler.” The sub-narrator added: Ibn ‘Umar (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu) used to say, “If you survive till the evening, do not expect to be alive in the morning, and if you survive till the morning, do not expect to be alive in the evening, and take from your health for your sickness, and (take) from your life for your death.”
2. Hoping for long life and worldly pleasures
Hadith 8.426 Narrated by Abdullah (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) drew a square and then drew a line in the middle of it and let it extend outside the square and then drew several small lines attached to that centerline, and said, “This is the human being, and this, (the square) in his lease of life, encircles him from all sides (or has encircled him), and this (line), which is outside (the square), is his hope, and these small lines are the calamities and troubles (which may befall him), and if one misses him, another will snap (i.e. overtake) him, and if the other misses him, a third will snap (i.e. overtake) him.”
Hadith 8.427 Narrated by Anas bin Malik (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) drew a few lines and said, “This is (man’s) hope, and this is the instant of his death, and while he is in this state (of hope), the nearer line (death) comes to Him.”
3. Asking Allah for new lease of life at sixty
Hadith 8.428 Narrated by Abu Huraira (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “Allah will not accept the excuse of any person whose instant of death is delayed till he is sixty years of age.”
Hadith 8.429 Narrated by Abu Huraira (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
I heard Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) saying, “The heart of an old man remains young in two respects, i.e., his love for the world (its wealth, amusements and luxuries) and his incessant hope.”
Hadith 8.430 Narrated by Anas bin Malik (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “The son of Adam (i.e. man) grows old and so also two (desires) grow old with him, i.e., love for wealth and (a wish for) a long life.”
4. Deeds for the sake of Allah
Hadith 8.431 Narrated by Utban bin Malik Al Ansari (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
Who was one of the men of the tribe of Bani Salim: Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) came to me and said, “If anybody comes on the Day of Resurrection who has said: La ilaha illal-lah, sincerely, with the intention to win Allah’s Pleasure, Allah will make the Hell-Fire forbidden for him.”
Hadith 8.432 Narrated by Abu Huraira (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “Allah says, ‘I have nothing to give but Paradise as a reward to my believer slave, who, if I cause his dear friend (or relative) to die, remains patient (and hopes for Allah’s Reward).”
5. Competing against each other
Hadith 8.433 Narrated by Amr bin Auf (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
(An ally of the tribe of Bani ‘Amir bin Lu’ai and one of those who had witnessed the battle of Badr with Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam)) Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) sent Abu ‘Ubaida bin Al-Jarrah (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu) to Bahrain to collect the Jizya tax. Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) had concluded a peace treaty with the people of Bahrain and appointed Al ‘Ala bin Al-Hadrami (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu) as their chief; Abu Ubaida (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu) arrived from Bahrain with the money. The Ansar heard of Abu ‘Ubaida’s (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu) arrival which coincided with the Fajr (morning) prayer led by Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam). When the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) finished the prayer, they came to him. Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) smiled when he saw them and said, “I think you have heard of the arrival of Abu ‘Ubaida and that he has brought something.” They replied, “Yes, O Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam)!” He said, “Have the good news and hope for what will please you. By Allah, I am not afraid that you will become poor, but I am afraid that worldly wealth will be given to you in abundance as it was given to those (nations) before you, and you will start competing with each other for it as the previous nations competed for it, and then it will divert you (from good) as it diverted them.”
Hadith 8.434 Narrated by Uqba bin Amir (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) went out and offered the funeral prayer for the martyrs of the (battle of) Uhud and then ascended the pulpit and said, “I am your predecessor and I am a witness against you. By Allah, I am now looking at my Tank-lake (Al-Kauthar) and I have been given the keys of the treasures of the earth (or the keys of the earth). By Allah! I am not afraid that after me you will worship others besides Allah, but I am afraid that you will start competing for (the pleasures of) this world.”
Hadith 8.435 Narrated by Abu Said Al Khudri (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “The thing I am afraid of most for your sake, is the worldly blessings which Allah will bring forth to you.” It was said, “What are the blessings of this world?” The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “The pleasures of the world.” A man said, “Can the good bring forth evil?” The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) kept quiet for a while till we thought that he was being inspired divinely. Then he started removing the sweat from his forehead and said, “Where is the questioner?” That man said, “I (am present).” Abu Sa’id (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu) added: We thanked the man when the result (of his question) was such. The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “Good never brings forth but good. This wealth (of the world) is (like) green and sweet (fruit), and all the vegetation which grows on the bank of a stream either kills or nearly kills the animal that eats too much of it, except the animal that eats the Khadira (a kind of vegetation). Such an animal eats till its stomach is full and then it faces the sun and starts ruminating and then it passes out dung and urine and goes to eat again. This worldly wealth is (like) sweet (fruit), and if a person earns it (the wealth) in a legal way and spends it properly, then it is an excellent helper, and whoever earns it in an illegal way, he will be like the one who eats but is never satisfied.”
Hadith 8.436 Narrated by Zahdam bin Mudarrib (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
‘Imran bin Husain (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu) said: The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “The best people are my contemporaries (i.e., the present (my) generation) and then those who come after them (i.e., the next generation).” Imran (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu) added: I am not sure whether the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) repeated the statement twice after his first saying. The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) added, “And after them there will come people who will bear witness, though they will not be asked to give their witness; and they will be treacherous and nobody will trust them, and they will make vows, but will not fulfill them, and fatness will appear among them.”
Hadith 8.437 Narrated by Abdullah (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “The best people are those of my generation, and then those who will come after them (the next generation), and then those who will come after them (i.e. the next generation), and then after them, there will come people whose witness will precede their oaths, and whose oaths will precede their witness.”
Hadith 8.438 Narrated by Qais (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
I heard Khabbab (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu), who had branded his abdomen with seven brands, saying, “Had Allah’s Apostle (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) not forbidden us to invoke Allah for death, I would have invoked Allah for death. The companions of Muhammad (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) have left this world without taking anything of their reward in it (i.e., they will have perfect reward in the Hereafter), but we have collected of the worldly wealth what we cannot spend but on earth (i.e. on building houses).”
Hadith 8.439 Narrated by Qais (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
I came to Khabbab (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu) while he was building a wall, and he (Khabbab (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)) said, “Our companions who have left this world, did not enjoy anything of their reward therein, while we have collected after them, much wealth that we cannot spend but on earth (i.e., on building).”
Hadith 8.440 Narrated by Khabbab (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
We migrated with the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam). (This narration is related to the chapter on migration).
6. ‘O men! Certainly, the Promise of Allah is true”
Hadith 8.441 Narrated by Ibn Abbas (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
I brought water to Uthman bin ‘Affan (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu) to perform the ablution while he was sitting on his seat. He performed the ablution in a perfect way and said, “I saw the Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) performing the ablution in this place and he performed it in a perfect way and said, “Whoever performs the ablution as I have done this time and then proceeds to the mosque and offers a two-Rak’at prayer and then sits there (waiting for the compulsory congregational prayers), then all his past sins will be forgiven.” The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) further added, “Do not be conceited (thinking that your sins will be forgiven because of your prayer).”
7. The righteous people will die
Hadith 8.442 Narrated by Mirdas Al Aslami (Radhiallah hu Taala anhu)
The Prophet (sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam) said, “The righteous (pious people will depart (die) in succession one after the other, and there will remain (on the earth) useless people like the useless husk of barley seeds or bad dates.”
The attention to hygiene is another aspect of a Civilized Manner (Suluk Al-Hadari) which is an unknown concern in any other religion or philosophy before Islam. Cleanliness became an essential part of the rites and worship to such an extent that it is an inseparable part of the Muslim’s life.
The five daily Prayers are obligatory upon every Muslim, man, and woman. This Prayer is actually a pledge to meet Allah, the Exalted, from the rising of the dawn until the disappearance of the twilight in the evening.
It is, in fact, a spiritual shower washing away sins five times a day. In this respect, Allah says: “And establish regular Prayers at the two ends of the day and when the night approaches, surely the good deeds blot out the evil deeds.” (11:114)
This Islamic Prayer has a uniqueness unlike the Prayer in other religions in that physical purification is a necessary condition. If Prayer is the key to Paradise then, likewise purification is the key to Prayer.
The Prophet (Peace be upon him) said: “Allah does not accept Prayers without purification. ”
[Note: Reported by Muslim and Ibn Majah on the authority of Ibn `Umar, also by Ibn Majah on the authority of Anas and Abi Bakrah and also Abu Dawud, Al-Nasa’i and Ibn Majah on the authority of the father of Abi Al Malih, Sahih Al- Jami’ Al-Saghir, No.7746]
This purification and cleanliness are of two kinds: purification from impurities and purification from the excretions from the private parts.
Purification from impurities purifies the body, the clothes, and the place in which one prays from any impurities such as the stains of the blood, dead animals and pigs, and the vomiting, urine, or excrement of human beings and animals.
The other kind of purification does not mean cleanliness from something palpable. But rather purifying the inner of oneself because it is an order from Allah.
A Muslim is obliged to make ablution if exposed to minor impurities. This means he must wash the areas of the body which are ordinarily exposed to dust and dirt and he should have a body-washing (Ghusl) after menstruation and sexual intercourse. Moreover, these acts of purification are connected to recurrent natural stimuli which one must blot out through purification. It is also preferable, in Islam, for the Muslim to be eager to clean his body regularly, particularly when he meets his fellow Muslims in the congregational Prayers.
Ghusl is also an act in which it is preferable to be performed before the Friday congregational Prayer as stated in the noble hadith.
In other versions, the hadith goes to the extent of ordering one to perform (Ghusl) as part of the overall cleanliness and hygiene of the Muslim Society: “Ghusl on Friday is obligatory (Wajib) on every adult!”
[Note: Reported by Malik, Ahmad, Abu Dawud, Al-Nasa’i, and Ibn Majah on the authority of Sa’id, Sahih Al-Jami’ Al-Saghir, (3690)]
Another hadith obliges the Muslim to perform (Ghusl) at least once a week saying: “Every Muslim should bathe once every seven days where he should wash his head and all of his body.”
[Note: Agreed upon on the authority of Abu Hurairan, Al-Lu `Lu’ Wal Marjan, (No.442)]
The Sunnah has directed attention in taking care of certain parts of the human body such as the mouth. The means of cleaning it was the Swak which is easily found and used in the Arab Peninsula.
In this respect, the Prophet (Peace be upon him) said: “The Swak is a purifying agent for the mouth and it is a way of seeking Allah’s Pleasure.”
[Note: Reported by Ahmad on the authority Abi Bakr; also by Al-Shafi’i, Ahmad, Nasa’i, Ibn Khaizamah, Ibn Hibban, Al-hakim and Al-Baihaqi on the authority of `Aishah, and by Ibn Majah on the authority of Abi Umaman, Sahih Al-Jami Al-Saghir, (3695)]
Concerning the hair, Abu Hurairah reported that the Prophet (Peace be upon him) said: “Whoever has hair should care about it.”
[Note: Reported by Abu Dawud on the authority of Abu Rurairah, (No. 4163), Sahih Al-Jami’ Al-Saghir, (No.6497)]
Ata Ibn Yasser reported that: “A man came to the Prophet (Peace be upon him): When he was in the mosque with uncombed hair and an untidy beard. The Prophet pointed to him as if ordering him to fix his hair and beard. He did so and returned. Thereupon the Prophet (Peace be upon him): When he was in the mosque observed, “Isn’t this better than one of you coming with his hair uncombed, as if he was a devil ?”
[Note: Reported by Malik, Al-Mawatta’, vol.2, p.949]
Thus the Prophet as the instructor taught the Muslims the importance of having a pleasant appearance which comes second in importance after the excellence of the inner self.
Furthermore, he taught Muslims to wash their hands thrice on waking up before putting them in the water, saying, “For no one knows where his bands were during sleep.”
[Note: Reported by Al-Bukhari, Muslim, Ibn Majab, Al-Nasa’i, Abu Dawud, and Al-Tirmidhi on the authority of Abu Hurairah, Sahih Al-Jam’i Al Saghir, No.332]
Arabs used to clean their private parts with stones due to scarcity of water and many of them weren’t in the habit of wearing pants, so perhaps they might have touched their private parts (where the impurity was) while they were asleep.
He also taught them to wash their hands after eating and particularly after eating meat. He went so far as to warn them against neglecting to wash their hands before sleep saying: “Whoever goes to sleep without washing his hands from the traces of fatty foods, exposes himself to illness and should blame no one but himself.”
[Note: Reported by Abu Dawud (No.3852), Al-Tirmidhi (No.1861), Ibn Majah (No.3267), and Ibn Hibban as mentioned in Al-Mawarid (No. 1354), all of them reported it on the authority of Abu Hurairah except Ibn Majah who reported it after Fatimah, (May Allah be pleased with both of them), No.3296]
The Sunnah stressed the importance of cleanliness in the house saying: “You must clean your houses and do not follow in the footsteps of Jews”.
[Note: Reported by Al-Tirmidhi]
Moreover, the Sunnah instructed Muslims to maintain the cleanliness of the roads by lifting any harmful objects found on it. This is considered a Sadaqa and as a means to ridding the streets of impurities and filth.
Some Bedouin Arabs used to urinate on the roads or in the shade.
The Prophet (Peace be upon him) strictly warned them against it and considered it one of the reasons to provoke Allah’s curse and the people’s curse saying:
“Beware of those acts which cause others to curse. They asked, “What are those acts?” The Prophet (Peace be upon him) said: “Relieving oneself in the people’s walkways or in their shade”.
[Note: Reported by Ahmad, Muslim and Abu Dawud on the authority of Abu Hurairah, the previous reference (no. 110)]
“Beware of the three acts that cause others to curse you: relieving yourselves in a watering-place, on footpaths or shaded places.”
[Note: Reported by Abu Dawud, Ibn Majah, Al-Hakim and Al-Baihaqi on the authority of Mu’adh, Sahij’ Al- Jaini’ Al-Saghir (no. 112)]
This instruction in conjunction with the others were the first attempts, known in the history of mankind, to link human beings with the protection of the environment from harm in the name of religion.
The Delights of the People of Paradise:
(i) The Wife Of The Believer In This World Will Be His Wife In The Hereafter If She Is Righteous
“Gardens of ‘Adn, which they shall enter, and [also] those who act righteously from among their fathers, and their wives and their offspring…” [13:23]
“They and their wives will be in pleasant shade, reclining on thrones.” [36:56]
“Enter Paradise, you and your wives, in happiness” [43:70]
(ii) A Woman [Who Was Married More Than Once] Will Be With The Last of Her Husbands
In Taareekh ar-Raqqah, Abu ‘Ali al-Hurani reported from Maymun ibn Mahran that “Mu’aawiyah ibn Abi Sufyan (ra) proposed to Umm ad-Darda’ but she refused to marry him, saying, “I heard Abud-Dardaa’ say that the Messenger of Allah (saw) said, “A woman will be with the last of her husbands.” The men in its isnaad are trustworthy apart from al-‘Abbaas ibn Saalih, whose biography is unknown. Abul-Shaykh reported it in at-Taareek with a Saheeh isnaad only quoting the marfoo’ version of it. at-Tabaraani reported it with a da’eef isnaad in al-Mu’jam al-Awsat but taking both isnaads into account strengthens it. The marfoo’ version is Saheeh, and it also has two corroborating reports that are mawqoof.
The first of these was reported by Ibn ‘Asaakir from ‘Ikrimah:
“Asmaa bint Abi Bakr was married to az-Zubayr ibn al-‘Awwaam who was harsh towards her. She came to her father and complained to him, and he said, “O my daughter, have patience, for if a woman has a righteous husband, and he dies and she does not remarry after his death, they will be reunited in Paradise.” [The men of its isnaad are thiqaat [trustworthy] but is it mursaal because ‘Ikrimah never met Abu Bakr; he only heard it from Asmaa]
The second report was narrated by al-Bayhaqee in as-Sunan, where he says that Hudhayfah said to his wife, “If you want to be my wife in Paradise, do not remarry after I die, for the woman in Paradise will be with the last of her husbands on earth.”
For this reason, Allah forbade the wives of the Prophet (saw) to remarry after his death, because they will be his wives in the Hereafter.
(iii) al-Hoor al-‘Eeyn
Allah (swt) will marry the believers in Paradise to beautiful women who were not their wives in this world, as Allah (swt) says:
“So [it will be] and We shall marry them to Houris with wide lovely eyes.” [44:54]
al-Hoor is the plural of Hooraa’, which is a woman, the white parts of her eyes intensely white, and the black is intensely black. al-‘Eeyn is the plural fo ‘Aynaa, which is the woman whose eyes are wide.
The Qur’an describes al-Hoor al-‘Eeyn as being firm and full-breasted:
“Verily, for al-Muttaqoon, there will be a success; gardens and grape yards and young full-breasted [mature] maidens of equal age.” [78:31-33]
Al-Hoor al-‘Eeyn are creatures that Allah (swt) has made especially for Paradise, and has made them virgins:
“Verily, We have created [their companions] of special creation, and made them virgin-pure [and undefiled], beloved [by nature], equal in age.” [56:35-37]
The fact that they are virgins means that no-one has ever married them before:
“…whom no man or jinn has touched before them.” [55:56]
This refutes the idea that the wives that Allah (swt) will create for them in Paradise will be their wives from this life, made young again after old age had overtaken them. That idea if correct in that Allah (swt) will admit the believing women to Paradise with their youth restored but they are not al-Hoor al-‘Eeyn whom Allah created in Paradise.
The Qur’an also speaks of the beauty of the women of al-Jannah:
“And [there will be] Houris with wide lovely eyes [as wives for the pious], Like unto preserved pearls.” [56:22-23]
Maknoon [“preserved”] means hidden or protected, something whose colour is not changed by exposure to sunlight or by being tampered with. Elsewhere, Allah likens them to rubies and coral, two beautiful precious stones:
“In them will be [maidens] restraining their glances, whom no man or jinn has touched before them, Then which of the favours of your Rabb will you deny? Like unto rubies and coral.” [55:56-58]
al-Hoor are also described as restraining their gaze upon their husbands i.e. they restrict their gaze and don’t let their eyes wander to others. Allah (swt) has stated that they are very beautiful, and it is sufficient to know that Allah (swt) said:
“In them will be fair [companions] good and beautiful; then which of the favours of your Rabb will you deny? Companions restrained [as to their glances] in [goodly] pavilions” [55:70-72]
The women are not like the women of this world. They are free of al-Hayd [menstruation], an-Nifaas [post-natal bleeding], spittle, mucus, urine and stools. This is what is referred to in the aayah:
“..And they shall have therein Azwaajun Mutahharatun [purified mates]” [2:25]
The Prophet (saw) told us about the beauty of the wives of the People of Paradise. al-Bukhaari and Muslim reported from Abu Hurayrah that the Messenger (saw) said, “…the marrow of whose leg-bones will be visible through the flesh because of their extreme beauty.” [as-Saheeh, Kitaab al-Khalq, Baab Maa Jaa’a fi Sifaat al-Jannah, Fath al-Baari, 6/318 and Muslim in Kitaab al-Jannah wa Sifaat Na’eem ahlilhaa, Baab awwal zumrah tadkhul al-Jannah, 4/2178, no. 2834]
Look at this beauty that the Prophet (saw) described! Can you find any comparison to it in the world that you know?! :
“If one of the women of Paradise were to look at the people of this world, everything in between them would be lit up and filled with her fragrance. The veil on her head is better than this world and everything in it.” [al-Bukhaari, in as-Saheeh, Kitaab al-Jihaad, Baab wa Zawwajnahum bi Hoor-‘Eeyn. Fath al-Baari, 6/15]
The smallest number of wives that any one man will have in Paradise is seventy-two. It was reported that the Shaheed will have seventy-two wives from amongst al-Hoor a–‘Eeyn [Mishkaat al-Masaabeeh, 3/357, no. 3834, at-Tirmidhi, Ibn Maajah from al-Miqdaam ibn Ma’d Yakrib]
The Song of al-Hoor al-‘Eeyn
The Messenger (saw) told us that al-Hoor in Jannah sing with sweet, beautiful voices. In al-Mu’jam al-Awsat, at-Tabaraani reports with a saheeh isnaad from Ibn ‘Umar that the Prophet (saw) said,
“The wives of the people of Paradise will sing to their husband in the most beautiful voices that anyone has ever heard. What they will sing is: “We are good and beautiful, the wives of a noble people, who look at their husbands content and happy.” And they will sing, “We are eternal, and will never die, we are safe and will never fear, we are remaining here and will never go away.” [Saheeh al-Jaami as-Sagheer, 2/48, no. 1557; also Abu Na’eem, ad-Diyaa in Sifaat al-Jannah]
Samawayh reported in al-Fawaa’id from Anas that the Messenger of Allah (saw) said, “al-Hoor al-‘Eeyn are singing in Paradise saying, “We are the beautiful houris, we are being kept for noble husbands.” [Saheeh al-Jaami’, 2/58, no. 1598]
The Jealousy of al-Hoor al-Eeyn over their Husbands in this World
The Prophet (saw) told us that al-Hoor feel jealous over their husbands in this world if the wife of one of them upsets him. Ahmad and at-Tirmidhi report with a Saheeh isnaad from Mu’aadh that the Messenger of Allah (saw) said,
“No woman in this world upsets her husband but his wife from among al-Hoor al-‘Eeyn will say, “Do not upset him, may Allah kill you! For he is with you only temporarily, and soon he will leave you and come to us.” [Saheeh al-Jaami’ as-Sagheer, 6/125, no. 7069]
(iv) The believer in Paradise will be given the Strength of One Hundred Men
Anas reported that the Prophet (saw) said, “The believer in Paradise will be given such and such strength.” He was asked, “O Messenger of Allah, will he really be able to do that?” He said, “He will be given the strength of one hundred men.” [it was reported by at-Tirmidhi, Mishkaat al-Masaabeeh, 3/90, no. 5636, at-Tirmidhi said: “ghareeb saheeh.”]