Salah: How Hadith rejecters define it?


All praises are due to Allah and may peace and blessings be upon his final prophet. There is a lot of debate nowadays between the main stream Muslims and the Hadith rejecters who call themselves as “Quranists”. Quranists claim that the true and only source of law is Quran while they consider the literature of “Hadith” or the Prophetic “Sunnah” a conspiracy against the teachings of the Qur‟an. This thought gave rise to some serious questions especially about those practices in which Sunnah plays a key role like Salah, Zakah, Hajj, Sawm etc. The most debatable issue among these is how Quranist perform the Salah, as there is no procedure mentioned in the Qur‟an. This led Quranist to concoct new definitions of this Qur‟anic term which contradicts with what is mentioned in the Sunnah of Prophet. Some people came up with different methods of “Salah” which were unknown to Ummah till 19th century. Let‟s analyze how Quranists describe the word “Salah” which is mentioned in the Quran. Dr. Shabbir a famous Quranist says in his commentary QXP about verse No. 3 of surah baqarah. Those who (wish to journey through life in honor and security), believe in the Unseen. (They recognize the Law of Cause and Effect although the stages may not always be obvious to them) and establish the divinely Prescribed System of Life, keeping open for others the resources that We have granted them. Now here is the definition of Salah and Aqimussallat given by the same person in the beginning of his commentary. Salaat = To follow closely, like a runners-up (Musalli) follows the winning horse (Saabiq) = To follow Divine Commands closely. Aqimussallat = Establish the System that facilitates the following of Divine Commands. He further quotes in Surah Nisa After you are done with the congregation, remain mindful of God – standing, sitting or lying down. When you feel secure once again, establish Salaat as usual. Salaat at the times appointed by the Central Authority is mandatory unto believers [04:103].

Now see the contradiction in the commentary. If Salah already means to follow the divine commands closely, isn‟t this childish to say that Central Authority will appoint the times at which people have to offer “Salah” i.e. to follow the divine commands closely according to Mr. Shabbir. In other words there are few times when you have to follow the divine commands and that is too when you feel secure and when Central Authority is in the mood to call people for congregation. Imagine if Delhi is the capital of the Islamic state (India) i.e. central authority is at Delhi and then it calls people for Salah then what will be the situation at that time and now imagine if Islamic state is as big as was in the reign of second Caliph Umar radiallahu anhu. Furthermore there is not a single term in the Quran which can be translated as “Central Authority”. Since there is no “Central Authority” at the moment so muslims have the privilege not to offer the salah in congregation till the establishment of Central Authority. Another important point is what is the status of “Wadhu”? If Salah means to follow the commands closely i.e we have to follow them 24 hours a day which means we should be in state of Wudhu at every moment which raises  another question when should we perform the Wudhu as we are following commands closely i.e performing “Salah” at every moment. May be only once in lifetime. Another question arises what breaks the Wudhu? More interestingly prophet himself was unable to establish such authority which is explained by Mr. Shabbir in his QXP and the central authority of Mr. Shabbir can appoint the times of Salah but the authority of Mohammad alaihi Salam cannot even think. Strange! This is the one aspect of Quranist interpretation of Salah.

Now let’s analyze it according to another person namely Rashid Khalifa another famous Hadith rejecter. What he says in his commentary about the above verse of surah Baqarah and Nisa. [2:3] who believe in the unseen, observe the Contact Prayers (Salat),* and from our provisions to them, they give to charity. *2:3 Since the Contact Prayers are decreed five times a day, they constitute the prime source of nourishment for our souls. Along with all other practices in Submission, the Contact Prayers were originally revealed through Abraham (21:73, 22:78). Although these five daily prayers were practiced before the revelation of the Quran, each Contact Prayer is specifically mentioned in the Quran (24:58, 11:114, 17:78, & 2:238). Appendices 1 & 15 provide physical evidence supporting ALL the details of the Contact Prayers, including the number of units (Rak’aas) and the numbers of bowings, prostrations, and Tashahhuds in each prayer. And [4:103] Once you complete your Contact Prayer (Salat), you shall remember GOD while standing, sitting, or lying down.* Once the war is over, you shall observe the Contact Prayers (Salat); the Contact Prayers (Salat) are decreed for the believers at specific times.

And the procedure of Salah according to Rashid Khalifa is mentioned in his book called “The contact prayers (Salah)” Even he has mentioned the procedure of Adhan in his book and that is “Allah u Akbar Allah u Akbar Allah u Akbar Allah u Akbar, La ilaha Illa Allah but where he gets this method from? Allah knows the best. These people say that since Salah was prescribed to prophet Ibrahim alaihi Salam and the original Abrahimic Salah is that what Mr. Khalifa has written in his document. Amazingly if 1400 years old Salah is corrupted then how can we expect that the method which is provided by Mr. Khalifa is pure and without any corruption and is thousands of years old. Remember Rashid Khalifa is of the opinion that the last two verses of the surah Tawbah are fabricated. In the beginning of the commentary of Qur‟an written by Rashid Khalifa you can find these lines written: During the re-arrangement process, the scribes who idolized the Prophet added two verses at the end of Sura 9, the last sura revealed in Medina. This blasphemous act resulted in a 50-year war between Ali Ibn Abi Taaleb and his supporters on one side and the distorters of the Quran on the other side. The war ended when Hussein ibn Ali and his family were martyred in Karbala. It was the Umayyad ruler Marwan Ibn Al-Hakam (died in 684 AD) who destroyed the original Quran that was written by Muhammad’s hand, “fearing the eruption of new disputes.” God’s Messenger of the Covenant has presented overwhelming evidence that 9:128-129 do not belong in the Quran (Appendix 24). With the removal of these false verses, the Quran has finally been restored. Our generation is the first ever to receive the Quran in its purified and finalized form (see Appendix 1 and 28). And do you know who is this God‟s Messenger of Covenant? He is none other than Rashid Khalifa himself…. Now you can have a big laugh on this treachery against Islam by these so called reformers…..

The curse of Allah be on them! How are they deluded (away from the Truth)!

See what Kasim amin says in his book “Hadith: Re evaluation” All the prophets and their true followers since Abraham practiced them, but, as the Quran also informs us, later generations, including the Arabs at the advent of Muhammad, had lost these prayers. And after few lines he says: “A moment’s thought will also make us realize that we do not learn how to pray from the Hadith. We learn to do so from our parents and teachers who inherit the practice through the generations from the first source that is Prophet Abraham”. Now see the contradiction at one place he says prayers were lost and at second place he says that these prayers came to us through Ibrahim alaihi Salam, then what was lost? And Mr. G.A Parweez says that the Salah we are performing today reached to us through “Tawatur” and those practices which are practiced by the Muslims through “Tawatur” should be accepted but still does Quran gives us the procedure of Salah? If not then why are you people contradict with your own theory. Amazingly the concept of “Tawatur” is not mentioned in the Quran anywhere. So how can a Quranist take the help from a non-quranic concept…? Amazing. isn’t it?

And some people among whom G.A Parvez and Shabir Ahmad are prominent says Salah means to get together into the mosque, there is a social, political, financial, or military problem at hand – over which consultations and distribution of duties are required as pointed out by Syed Iqbal Zaheer in his editorial of May 2012 of YMD… He says: Now, if we take Salah in the sense of consultations, distribution of responsibilities, etc. how do we understand the following verse which deals with Salah in battle-fields? “If you happen to be with them (O Prophet), and you establish the Salah, then let a group of them stand with you, and let them take their arms. Then, when they have done their Sujud, let them fall back to your rear, and let the other group which did not do the Salah come up and do Salah with you.” [Al-Nisa: 102] If we do not take the meaning that every Arab child takes of the word Salah, then how does the rejecter of Hadith understand the following? “Believers, when you establish the Salah, then wash your faces, hands up to the elbows, wipe your heads, and (wash) your feet up to the ankles.” [Al-Maidah: 06] Does the above mean those who are called through the Adhan for consultations, distribution of political, financial, administrative and military duties, must make Wudu before they come?

And if anyone of you search wikipedia here is what you will get under the heading of Quranism under the column of Quranism in the row of Salah:

“Regarding prayer Quranists fall into a few categories. There is a group who combine the five prayers into three prayers like Shias. There are those who pray five times a day like Sunnis. There are those who pray 2 times a day (dawn and dusk to include the times of night closest to these) because the Quran only mentions two prayers in the Quran by name. There are also the fringe groups who redefine the Arabic term used for prayer (salat) as something other than prayer. Some Quranists continue to pray in the orthodox manner while others just incorporate bowing and prostration without following the orthodox formula of movement.” These are few major Quranists whose concepts I have mentioned above. There are other people among them who used to offer Salah and only do “Qiyam” and recite only the verses of Quran in it. Interestingly Sir Syed Ahmad Khan who is considered to be the founder of this school translates the word “Salah” in “Nimaz”. And most of the Quranists do not offer Salah. There are only theories in this version of Islam because everybody has its own perception and understanding of a particular verse e.g In a debate a Quranist translated the verse 16. of Surah Israh: “We place shields around their hearts, to prevent them from understanding it, and deafness in their ears. And when you mention your Lord, using the QURAN ALONE, they run away in aversion” as if the Makkan Mushriks were believing in Ahadith and Prophet was forbidding them from doing so. Syed Iqbal Zaheer very nicely pointed out the real motive of these people while commenting on a book written by a Hadith Rejecter. “It is obvious that the compiler would not like to submit to the Law of Islam, which depends heavily on the Hadith. But since he cannot directly say so, he finds fault in Bukhari. If Bukhari can be criticized, what other collection can escape? Thus, the Law of Islam is done away with.”

My simple question to Quranists If Prophet told his companions that Quran is the only source of law from Allah and if four rightly guided Caliphs conveyed the same message to the people then what was the need for fabricating the Ahadith when even Sahih ahadith were unacceptable to the masses. Why people divided on the fabricated narrations when they were taught that Hadith is not the source of Islam. Why non-Muslims adopted the route of fabrication of Ahadith rather than creating confusions in the text of the Quran when they knew that Muslims don‟t believe in ahadith.

5 Responses to “Salah: How Hadith rejecters define it?”
  1. Bigmo says:

    There are many Quranist who pray like Sunnis do. There is nothing wrong with praying 5 times but it should not be made binding. Even the prophet prayed twice when he was in Mecca.

    • I already mentioned it in my note that some hadith rejecters do pray like Sunnis do… And if you are saying “it should not be made binding”….. then what about those qur’anic commands in which it is mentioned “Establish Salah”?

  2. koranist says:

    I meant the method that Sunnis follow should not be made binding. That is the reason why over 90% of Muslims do not perform Salat regularly because its not flexible. In the end every person is responsible for his own Salat. The Quran gives every individual full responsibility for his own affairs. This is not like Sunni Islam where the state and the parents determine what individuals should do. Remember that the Quranist persuasion is still in its infancy and ideas and concepts are still being formulated. The former Quranist, the Mutaziltes, emerged during the neginnings of the Abbasid Empire when there was a push towards creating an Islamic state. The Abbasids chose Sunni Islam because it gives the rulers and the state absolute authority over the religious lives of individuals. With the rise of Wahhabism and the diminishing role of Sufism there is now a push towards Sharia law and the creation of the Islamic state. This explains why the Quranist are re=emerging. Its when you look into how the Quran understands individual authority over the authority of the state as compare to Sunni or Shia Islam that the stark differences between Quranic Islam and Sunni/Shia Islam emerges. But unlike the past there is no absolute ruler to make that choice. Now its up to the people to make that choice. The push towards democracy and Shariah law will create a conflict. A conflict that only Quranic Islam can solve. At least thats my view.

    • You said 90% of muslims do not offer salah.. here is what Qur’an says: “Nay, seek ((Allah)’s) help with patient perseverance and prayer: It is indeed hard, except to those who bring a lowly spirit,” [baqarah: 45]
      and also tell me how many muslims read Qur’an with understanding i guess less than 5%… Islam is the complete code of conduct and muslims are bind to follow it……
      Can state allow its citizens to commit crime and gives them the individual responsibility for their own affairs..
      See this
      But when the forbidden months are past, then fight and slay the Pagans wherever ye find them, an seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war); but if they repent, and establish regular prayers and practise regular charity, then open the way for them: for Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful. [tawbah:05]…..

      and regarding your mutazilite point I ll tell you that most of the Abbasid Khalifhs were staunch Muatazilites and it was the official thought of the state… Ahmad ibn Hanbal r.a is the good example of it who denied to accept the Qur’an as a created being and he was jailed………. So muatazilites is a flawed and failed ideology rejected by the scholars of the past and it is only good for wasting ones precious time and nothing else…..

  3. Bigmo says:

    16:82 But if they turn away from you, your only duty is a clear delivery of the Message

    4:79-80 Say: ‘Whatever good betides you is from God and whatever evil betides you is from your own self and that We have sent you to mankind only as a messenger and all sufficing is God as witness. Whoso obeys the Messenger, he indeed obeys God. And for those who turn away, We have not sent you as a keeper.”

    17:53-54 And tell my servants that they should speak in a most kindly manner. Verily, Satan is always ready to stir up discord between men; for verily; Satan is mans foe…. Hence, we have not sent you with power to determine their Faith

    24.54. Say: “Obey God, and obey the Messenger, but if ye turn away, he is only responsible for the duty placed on him and ye for that placed on you. If ye obey him, ye shall be on right guidance. The Messenger’s duty is only to preach the clear (Message).

    88:21 22; And so, exhort them your task is only to exhort; you cannot compel them to believe.

    42:6 48 And whoso takes for patrons others besides God, over them does God keep a watch. Mark, you are not a keeper over them. But if they turn aside from you (do not get disheartened), for We have not sent you to be a keeper over them; your task is but to preach

    64:12 Obey God then and obey the Messenger, but if you turn away (no blame shall attach to our Messenger), for the duty of Our Messenger is just to deliver the message.

    28.55-56 And when they hear vain talk, they turn away there from and say: “To us our deeds, and to you yours; peace be to you: we seek not the ignorant,” It is true thou wilt not be able to guide whom thou lovest; but God guides those whom He will and He knows best those who receive guidance

    39:41 Assuredly, We have sent down the Book to you in right form for the good of man. Whoso guided himself by it does so to his own advantage, and whoso turns away from it does so at his own loss. You certainly are not their keeper.

    67:25 26 And they ask, “When shall the promise be fulfilled if you speak the Truth?” Say, “The knowledge of it is verily with God alone, and verily I am but a plain warner.”

    As we can clearly see, many of the verses that talks about obeying the prophet also emphasizes the prophet’s limited authority, something that the Islamic sects do not recognize. The ruler to them has the authority to punish people for what they consider sins like drinking alcohol, eating pork, not fasting Ramadan, watching pornos etc.

    The Koran meanwhile focuses on crimes against another like stealing, killing, slandering of women falsely and oppression. It gave the believers the right to fight against those who fight them but not to transgress. It also gave people the right to defend themselves against evictions from their lands. There is no talk about punishing people for something that does not concern somebody else’s right.

    Adultery is the only place where the Koran diverted from this due to the fact that a adultery affects another party. Here the Koran sees adultery as affecting the other partner in a marriage. It’s a betrayal and a breaking of oath. But even then it placed strict standards on that but was lenient when it came to punishing slanders of women. Adultery needs four witnesses but the slander can get punished just from opening his mouth without four witnesses. It’s clear that the verse made it very difficult to implement on adultery but very easy to implement on the slanderer. Further reading of the verse about the Zani and Zania shows us that the issue came up concerning slandering of one of the prophet’s wife presumably. But adultery still affects another party as its a breaking of an oath between a man and a woman and is an act of betrayal.

    The Koran cannot order the prophet to punish people for sins, that God’s job. The Koran gave people the right and freedom to disbelieve let alone sin. Plus how the Koran understands sins is very different than how the sects understand sins.

    In the end the sects had no choice but to abrogate many of these verses, usually invoking the “sword verse”. They claim that many of these verses that gave the prophet limited authority(over those who chose to disobey him) has been abrogated by verse 9-5 or verse 9-29.

    However these verses were about the wars with the pagans, and verse 9-13 and many other verses makes it clear who instigated these battles and why. The Jizya verse (9-29) also was claimed by the sects to be a tax to be paid by non Muslims in an Islamic state for protection. However Jizya never came concerning the Medina community where the prophet and his followers had a community. And only came upon the believers entering of Mecca. Jizya could have easily been compensation for the loss of property and homes that the believers suffered after being forced into exile. The Koran forbade prophets from seeking any form of reward. They can however accept charity on behalf of the believers.

    But the Sunnah claimed otherwise. In it the prophet was ordered to fight the people till they acknowledge monotheism and also in it the prophet ordered the execution of those who apostate. That’s why they abrogated many of the verses that limited his authority. Then they simply transferred that authority to the Muslim ruler by default. The Ridda war story about Abu Bakr is a case study of this. In that story Abu Bakr apparently fought people for not paying Zakat. Now the authority was transferred from God to the prophet to one of his companions. This made it very easy to then transfer that authority to the ruler. This is why you see places where Shariah law is implemented filled with such concepts like searching cars for alcohol or flogging people for watching pornos or not wearing proper attire. None of this should concern anyone but it has become a punishable sin. God only punishes those who did not get caught and punished in this world. The sects claimed that once punished the sin falls away and disappears. You will not find such a concept in the Koran. There God punishes in a million ways and does not need humans to punish for him. I think the sects introduced this conc3ept to make people more accepting of this by making them think its better for them since God’s punishment is more severe. They also introduced stoning the adulterer by claiming the Zina verse in the Koran is concerning fornification and not adultery. They claimed that the verse about stoning was lost and is not included in the Koran but the ruling remains.

    This of course violated not only the freedom aspect of the Koran but also an eye for an eye and a life for a life. In the Koran, any punishment must be reciprocal and proportionate to the crime and it also must be targeted towards the actual perpetrators of the crime and not someone else associated to the criminal as the case with tribal laws that simply targets anyone from that tribe. They broke this by lower the bar for executions. Some Sunni scholars also gave the authority to execute homosexuals and enslave female prisoners and execute male prisoners. Something the Koran forbade. The Koran gave two options for prisoners, either freedom or ransom of some sort. They gave this authority to the ruler. This is all very sad as the taking of someone’s life is no easy matter in the Koran. God should take life and not humans, but if a person takes a life then he lost his right to live, but even then the Koran gave exile from the community as another option for murder especially if the person shows repentance. So an eye for an eye and a tooth for tooth somehow ended up being an eye for an eye lash and a tooth for a jaw.

    To be fair the Sunni orthodoxy rarely practiced some of these laws. We know of no time in history where adulterers were stoned to death. Apostasy was rarely practiced, unlike the Christians in Europe that practiced these laws left and right. So the Sunni jurist knew that some of these laws could be controversial and therefore they tended to avoid them.

    Its very unfortunate the current Islamist in Iran and Sudan and the Salafis in generally never understood why these laws were controversial. But in doing so they exposed much aspect of the sects that people were not aware of. The Sufis provided a convenient cover as they shunned legalism. But even the clerics understood that these laws were controversial. Its not easy in Islam to execute outside of murder. But this wise tradition was broken. That’s very unfortunant as now we see the culture of death has spread among Muslims till Islam became synonymous with violence and killing. Once you lower the bar it spirals out of control.

    One thing is crystal clear from all this. The Koran’s take on human authority and freedom is RADICALLY different than how the Sunni/Shia sects understand it. Therefore the biggest difference between a Koranic state and a Sunni or Shia state will come in the form of the state’s authority over the masses. It is this, more than anything else, that separates the Koran from the Sunnah. That’s why the Abbasids championed the Sunnah over the Mutazilites. The Mutaziltes couldn’t find the ink inthe Koran to give them such draconian authority. The sects did that by first bringing the divine authority from God to prophet, then propet to Caliph (companions) and now that authority is in Omar Al Bashir, Khamenei, Mullah Omar and Al Saud. And that’s very sad.

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