Ahle Hadith

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Ahle Hadith was a reformist movement in Sunni Hanafi school in Pakistan but they have slowly moved into Sunni Hanbali school represented by Wahabis in Pakistan. They are now considered to be integral part of puritanical Salafi group in Pakistan. Ahle Hadith is extremely critical of Sufis and Barelvi school due to their relaxed observance of Sharia. The Sufis are accused by Ahle Hadith Ulamas of comprimising Sharia and including many non-Muslim traditions in their practice of Islam. Ahel Hadith are also very critical of Barelvis and deprecate them as the shrine-worshipping, grave-worshiping and ignorant Barelvis. The Barelvis emphasis on saints, graves of the saints and holy relics is considered as non-Muslim beliefs by Ahle Hadith and Deobandis. The Barelvis belief that the Prophet Mohammad is a human being made from flesh and blood (Bashar) and a Nur (light) at the same time is considered to be heretical by Hanbali school and Deobandis.

Ahle Hadith accepts the Qur'an and Hadith as basic texts. It also accepts various commentaries including Ibn Abd al-Wahhab's Kitab al-Tawhid ("Book of Monotheism"), and the works of the earlier scholar Ibn Taymiyya (1263–1328).

Ahle Hadith claim that they do not follow any specific school of jurisprudence (Maddhab or Mazhab), and they claim to interpret the words of the Prophet Mohammad directly, using the four Sunni schools (Hanafi, Hanbali, Maliki and Shafii) for reference. However, they are closely associated with the Hanbali maddhab. Ahle Hadith hold that some Muslim groups such as Sufis, Barelvis and Shia follow many non-Muslim practices.

Ahle Hadith theology advocates a puritanical and legalistic stance in matters of faith and religious practice. Ahle Hadith see their role as a movement to restore Islam from what they perceive to be innovations, superstitions, deviances, heresies and idolatries. There are many practices that they believe are contrary to Islam, such as:

  • The invoking of any prophet, saint or angel in prayer, other than God alone (Ahle Hadith believe these practices are polytheistic in nature)

  • Supplications at graves, whether saints' graves, or the prophet's grave

  • Celebrating annual feasts for dead saints

  • Wearing of charms, and believing in their healing power

  • Practicing magic, or going to sorcerers or witches seeking healing

  • Innovation in matters of religion (e.g. new methods of worship)
    Erecting elaborate monuments over any grave

Ahle Hadith ban pictures, tobacco, photographs, and celebrating Prophet Muhammad's birthday (Milad-un-Nabi), among many other things, based on their interpretation of the hadith.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Page last updated: Saturday, February 04, 2006 19:09:12 -0500