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Mu’aawiyah The Scribe of the Prophet
-sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam-

Taken from ‘Silsilah Ahadeeth As-Saheehah’

By the Muhaddith, Shaykh, Allamaa’ Muhammad Nasir uddeen al-Albaani

Translated by Abbas Abu Yahya

82 – ‘May Allaah not let his stomach become satisfied;’ i.e. Mu’aawiyah.

Collected by Abu Dawood at-Tayyalisi in his ‘Musnad’ (2746) Hishaam and Abu ‘Awaana narrated to us from Abu Hamza al-Qassaab from Ibn Abbas:

‘That the Messenger of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- sent someone to Mu’aawiyah to write something for him, and this person said he is eating, then the Messenger sent the person again, and again he said he is eating. Then the Messenger of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- said:

‘May Allaah not let his stomach become satisfied.’

I (Albaani) say: This Isnaad is Saheeh, its narrators are all trustworthy, they are the narrators of Imam Muslim.

Regarding Abu Hamza al-Qassaab – whose name is Umraan bin Abi ‘Atta – there is some talk about him from some of the scholars but it does not harm him, since a group from the Imams have regarded him as trustworthy, from them is Ahmad and Ibn Ma’een and others.

As for those who regarded him as weak then they did not clarify the reason, so therefore it is an unknown (Jarh) criticism, which is unacceptable. It is as if this is why Imam Muslim used him as a narrator and narrated this hadeeth from him in his book ‘Saheeh’ (8/27) from the way of Shu’abah from Abu Hamza al-Qassaab with this hadeeth.

Ahmad narrated this hadeeth (1/240, 291, 335, 338) from Shu’abah and Abu ‘Awaana from Abu Hamza with this hadeeth without the saying: ‘May Allaah not let his stomach become satisfied.’

It seems that the hadeeth was summarized by Ahmad or by some of his Shaykhs, and they mentioned an extra wording:

‘. . . .and he was his scribe’,

And its chain is authentic.

Some of the sects took opportunity of this hadeeth, as a way of attacking Mu’aawiyah -Radi Allaahu anhu- but there is nothing in this hadeeth which helps them on this, and how can it, since in the hadeeth it mentions that he was the scribe of the Prophet -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam, and this is why al-Hafidh Ibn ‘Aasakir said: (16/349/2):

‘This is the most authentic narration which has been mentioned about the excellence of Mu’aawiyah.’

What is evident from this supplication from the Prophet -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- is that it was not intentional, rather it is from what is the practice of the Arabs when using certain style of speech unintentionally; such as the statement of the Messenger -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- regarding some of his wives:

‘May you be affected by pain in your throat’[1] [Collected by Bukhari & Muslim]


‘May your right hand be covered in dust’ [Collected by Bukhari & Muslim]

and like his -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- statement in the hadeeth of Anas:

‘May your age not increase.’

It is possible that this statement from the Messenger -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- about Mu’aawiyah was spurred on by his humanness which he has eloquently mentioned about himself -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- in many reoccurring Ahadeeth, and from them is the hadeeth of ‘Aeysha -Radi Allaahu anha- who said:

‘Two men entered upon the Messenger of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- they spoke to him about something but I did not know what it was about, and they caused him to get angry, so he -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- cursed them and reviled them, then when they left I asked: ‘O Messenger of Allaah! Good will reach everyone except these two people.

The Messenger asked: ‘And why is that?

She said: ‘You cursed them and reviled them.’

He -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- said:

‘Did you not know that I have a contract with my Lord? I said: O Allaah indeed I am a human, so any Muslim whom I cursed or reviled, then designate it as charity and a reward for him.’

[‘Silsilah Ahadeeth As-Saheehah’ No. 83]

Collected by Imam Muslim along with the previous hadeeth before this in the chapter entitled:

‘Chapter: Whoever the Prophet -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- cursed, reviled or supplicated against and he was not qualified for that; then it is a charity, reward and mercy for that individual.’

Then Imam Muslim narrated here the hadeeth of Anas bin Malik who said: ‘There was an orphan girl with Umm Sulaym, who was called Umm Anas, the Messenger of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- saw the orphan girl and said:

‘Are you her? Verily you have grown up, may your age not lengthen.’

Then the orphan girl went back to Umm Sulaym crying; Umm Sulaym said to her ‘What is wrong young girl?’

The young girl said: ‘The Prophet of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- supplicated against me that my age should not ever lengthen.’ Or she said: ‘my generation.’

So Umm Sulaym went out hastily wrapping her headscarf on her head, until she met the Messenger of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam-, and the Messenger of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- said to her: ‘What is wrong O Umm Sulaym?’

She replied: ‘O Prophet of Allaah! Did you supplicate against my orphan girl?’

He -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- asked:

‘And how is that O Umm Sulaym?’

She answered: ‘She claims that you supplicated that her age should not lengthen nor should her generation.’

The narrator said: The Messenger of Allaah -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- laughed then he -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- said:

‘O Sulaym! Did you not know that I have a contract with my Lord that I have a contract with my Lord and I said: Indeed I am a human and I become pleased just like a human becomes pleased, and I get angry just as a human gets angry so whoever from my Ummah whom I supplicated against with a supplication of which he was not deserving, then make that as a purification for him and a charity and a means of coming closer to Allaah on the Day of Judgement?’

[‘Silsilah Ahadeeth As-Saheehah’ Hadeeth No.84]

Then Imam Muslim follows up this hadeeth with the hadeeth of Mu’aawiyah and with that he completed the chapter. This was an indication from Imam Muslim -Rahimullaah- that this hadeeth of Mu’aawiyah is from one chapter and has the same meaning, therefore, just like the supplication of the Messenger -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- does not harm the orphan girl – rather it is a charity and a means of coming closer to Allaah; likewise was the supplication of the Messenger -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- for Mu’aawiyah.

Imam an-Nawawi said in his ‘Explanation of Saheeh Muslim’ (2/325 – Indian Print):

‘As for the supplication upon Mu’aawiyah, then it has two responses:

One of which is : that it was said upon the tongue without intent.

The second: that it was a punishment for Mu’aawiyah for being late, and Muslim -Rahimullaah- understood from this hadeeth that Mu’aawiyah was not deserving of the supplication upon him, therefore, this is why Imam Muslim entered this hadeeth into this chapter. Other scholars have placed this hadeeth from the virtues of Mu’aawiyah because in reality this does become a supplication for him.’

Dhahabi indicated to this second meaning, he said in ‘Siyaar ‘Alaam an-Nubala’ (9/171/2):

‘I say: Perhaps it is said: this is a virtue for Mu’aawiyah due to the saying of the Messenger of Allaah! The one who I cursed or reviled, make that a charity and mercy for him.’

Know that the statement of the Messenger -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- in these Ahadeeth:

‘Indeed I am a human and I become pleased just like a human . . . ; is indeed an explanation for the statement of Allaah Tabaraka wa Ta’ala:

{ Say, I am only a man like you, to whom has been revealed that your god is one God. } [Khaf: 110]

Perhaps some of those who follow desires and rash emotions hasten to reject the likes of this hadeeth by their claim of veneration for the Prophet –alayhi as-Sallat wa Sallam – and clearing him from having said this statement!

There is no scope for the likes of this rejection, since verily the hadeeth is Saheeh (authentic), rather we see it as Mutawatir (has recurring chains).

It has been collected by Muslim from the hadeeth of ‘Aeysha and Umm Sulaym as we have mentioned, and from the hadeeth of Abu Hurairah and Jabir -Radi Allaahu anhuma, and it has been mentioned from the hadeeth of Salman, Anas, Samrah, Abu Tufayl, Abu Sa’eed and other than them. See: ‘Kunz al-‘Amal’ (2/124).

Veneration of the Prophet -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- is a veneration which is legislated, but it is done with having Eemaan with everything authentically established that came from the Prophet -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam, and along with having that Eemaan is him -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- being a slave and Messenger without going to extreme or being negligent. For he -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- is a human with the testification of the Book and the Sunnah, however he is the chief of the humans and the best of them without exception because of the text of the authentic Ahadeeth, just as the history of his life and his biography indicate to.

And from what Allaah Ta’ala bestowed him with of noble manners and praiseworthy characteristics, which no human has in entirety as it is completely in the Messenger -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- and Allaah The Great was truthful when he addressed the Messenger -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- with His Noble statement:

{ and indeed you are on exalted standard character} [Qalam:4]

[Taken from ‘Silsilah Ahadeeth As-Saheehah’ vol. 1 hadeeth no 82-84 p.164]

Also another hadeeth from ‘Silsilah Ahadeeth As-Saheehah’:

From Abu Huraira that the Prophet -sallAllaahu alayhi wa sallam- said:

‘O Allaah, indeed I make a pledge to You which I won’t break. Indeed I am a human being; so any believer who I harmed, reviled, cursed or punished; make that as prayer for him, Zakat and a means of being close to You on the Day of Judgement.’

Collected by Muslim, Ahmad & in Silsilah Ahadeeth As-Saheehah No. 3999

All Praise belongs to Allaah, may His peace and blessings be upon our final Prophet Muhammad, his family, his companions and all those who follow his guidance.


[1] T.N. al-hafidh Muhammad bin Nasr al-Humaydi (d.488 A.H.) said: ‘These are words which the Arabs supplicate with, when they get angry with someone. The meaning is ‘May Allaah make her barren and destroy her.’ Which is that she be affected by pain in her throat. This is to show how great the matter was which caused the person to get angry.’ [Taken from: ‘Tafseer Ghareeb ma Fee Saheehayin al-Bukhari & Muslim’ p.141]


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