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amazing wonders by allah

Lifting the index finger in tashahud - Question

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Salam alaikum wa rahmatullahi wa barakatuhu,

From the 4 schools of thought in Sunni Islam,  one of them, Imam Maliki said the prophet (saw) prayed with hands down.

Imam Jafar as-Sadiq known as the imam of the shia school of thought, also said to pray with your hands down.  Two of the imam's of the sunni school of thoughts are known to have been students of imam Jafar as-sadiq.

This quote is from muhajiroon.com, which is actually a wahabi website.  This is just to show you that even the extremist wahabi's acknowledge that it's okay to pray with your arms straight. 

Are we allowed to stand with our hands by our side (Isbaal) in Prayer?

Isbaal Al-Yadein in Salat is the opinion of Imaam Malik (i.e. the Maliki school of thought) and Imaam Ja'far (i.e. the Ja'fari or Imaami school of thought) and the Ibaadhi, Hadawie and Zeidi schools of thought etc.. It is a legitimate opinion, however, the strongest opinion is to put your hands on you chest during Salat.

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Br. Mujahid which Mujtahid or scholar do you follow and why. The reason I ask is because since I converted to Shiism about 10 years ago I still feel as if I don't know where to begin or how. I mean I understand the basic ieda of Usool deen and I accept them all but I feel a little lost without a Marja. How did you do it. I mean, did you just accept your familys Marja or did you draw straws or research or what?

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this is sunnah. why such a big argument about something that is optional. we should all follow our hearts and pray to Allah that he guides us. we should not be criticising our brothers/sisters with no evidence to show for it. what will we do when on the day of judgement Allah criticises us. May Allah spare us such harsh criticism. anyway, below is the evidence for the topic for those who really want to know including the principal of which hadith to follow.


The fourth condition for a sahih hadith is that the text and transmission of the hadith must be free of shudhudh, or "variance from established standard narrations of it." An example is when a hadith is related by five different narrators who are contemporaries of one another, all of whom relate the same hadith from the same sheikh through his chain of transmission back to the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace). Here, if we find that four of the hadiths have the same wording but one of them has a variant wording, the hadith with the variant wording is called shadhdh or "deviant," and it is not accepted, because the difference is naturally assumed to be the mistake of the one narrator, since all of the narrators heard the hadith from the same sheikh. 

There is a hadith (to take an example researched by our hadith teacher, sheikh Shu‘ayb al-Arna’ut) related by Ahmad (4.318), Bayhaqi (2.132), Ibn Khuzayma (1.354), and Ibn Hibban, with a reliable chain of narrators (thiqat)—except for Kulayb ibn Hisham, who is a merely "acceptable" (saduq), not "reliable" (thiqa)—that the Companion Wa’il ibn Hujr al-Hadrami said that when he watched the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) kneeling in the Tashahhud or "Testification of Faith" of his prayer, the Prophet 

lifted his [index] finger, and I saw him move it, supplicating with it. I came [some time] after that and saw people in [winter] over-cloaks, their hands moving under the cloaks (Ibn Hibban, 5.170–71). 

Now, all of the versions of the hadith mentioning that the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) moved his finger have been related to us by way of Za’ida ibn Qudama al-Thaqafi, a narrator who is considered reliable, and who transmitted it from the hadith sheikh ‘Asim ibn Kulayb, who related it from his father Kulayb ibn Shihab, from Wa’il ibn Hujr al-Hadrami. But we find that this version of "moving the finger" contradicts versions of the hadith transmitted from the same sheikh, ‘Asim ibn Kulayb, by no less than ten of ‘Asim’s other students, all of them reliable, who heard ‘Asim report that the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) did not move but rather pointed (ashara) with his index finger (towards the qibla or "direction of prayer"). 

These companions of ‘Asim (with their hadiths, which are well authenticated (hasan)) are: Sufyan al-Thawri: "then he pointed with his index finger, putting the thumb to the middle finger to make a ring with them" (al-Musannaf 2.68–69); Sufyan ibn ‘Uyayna: "he joined his thumb and middle finger to make a ring, and pointed with his index finger" (Ahmad, 4.318); Shu‘ba ibn al-Hajjaj: "he pointed with his index finger, and formed a ring with the middle one" (Ahmad, 4.319); Qays ibn al-Rabi‘: "then he joined his thumb and middle finger to make a ring, and pointed with his index finger" (Tabarani, 22.33–34); ‘Abd al-Wahid ibn Ziyad al-‘Abdi: "he made a ring with a finger, and pointed with his index finger" (Ahmad, 4.316); ‘Abdullah ibn Idris al-Awdi: "he had joined his thumb and middle finger to make a ring, and raised the finger between them to make du‘a (supplication) in the Testification of Faith" (Ibn Majah, 1.295); Zuhayr ibn Mu‘awiya: "and I saw him [‘Asim] say, ‘Like this,’—and Zuhayr pointed with his first index finger, holding two fingers in, and made a ring with his thumb and second index [middle] finger" (Ahmad, 4.318–19); Abu al-Ahwas Sallam ibn Sulaym: "he began making du‘a like this—meaning with his index finger, pointing with it—" (Musnad al-Tayalisi, 137); Bishr ibn al-Mufaddal: "and I saw him [‘Asim] say, ‘Like this,’—and Bishr joined his thumb and middle finger to make a ring, and pointed with his index finger" (Abi Dawud, 1.251); and Khalid ibn Abdullah al-Wasiti: "then he joined his thumb and middle finger to make a ring, and pointed with his index finger" (Bayhaqi, 2.131). 

All of these narrators are reliable (thiqat), and all heard ‘Asim ibn Kulayb relate that the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) "pointed with (ashara bi) his index finger" during the Testimony of Faith in his prayer. There are many other narrations of "pointing with the index finger" transmitted through sheikhs other than ‘Asim, omitted here for brevity—four of them, for example, in Sahih Muslim, 1.408–9). The point is, for illustrating the meaning of a shadhdh or "deviant hadith," that the version of moving the finger was conveyed only by Za’ida ibn Qudama from ‘Asim. Ibn Khuzayma says: "There is not a single hadith containing yuharrikuha (‘he moved it’) except this hadith mentioned by Za’ida" (Ibn Khuzayma, 1.354). 

So we know that the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) used to point with his index finger, and that the version of "moving his finger" is shadhdh or "deviant," and represents a slip of the narrator, for the word ishara in the majority’s version means only "to point or gesture at," or "to indicate with the hand," and has no recorded lexical sense of wiggling or shaking the finger (Lisan al-‘Arab, 4.437 and al-Qamus al-muhit (540). This interpretation is explicitly borne out by well authenticated hadiths related from the Companion Abdullah ibn al-Zubayr that "the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) used to point with his index finger when making supplication [in the Testification of Faith], and did not move it" (Abi Dawud, 1.260) and that he "used to point with his index finger when making supplication, without moving it" (Bayhaqi, 2.131–32). 

Finally, we may note that Imam Bayhaqi has joined between the Za’ida ibn Qudama hadith and the many hadiths that apparently contradict it by suggesting that moving the finger in the Za’ida hadith may mean simply lifting it (rafa‘a), a wording explicitly mentioned in one version recorded by Muslim that the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) "raised the right finger that is next to the thumb, and supplicated with it" (Muslim, 1.408). So according to Bayhaqi, the contradiction is only apparent, and raising the finger is the "movement" that Wa’il saw from the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace) and the people’s hands under their cloaks, according to Za’ida’s version, which remains, however, shadhdh or "deviant" from a hadith point of view, unless understood in this limitary sense.


source: http://www.falaah.co.uk


May Allah guides us all to the truth and may he save us from the devil and the evil of our own tongues and in this case fingers.


As Salaamu Wa Alaikum, Wa Rahmatullahi, Wa Barakatu.

Brother Abd Ul Lah

Edited by ShiaChat Mod
[Mod Note: Extremely small fonts (size 8-10) may be increased to a standard size (12-14) by a Moderator.]

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3 hours ago, Whythis said:

Dhulfiqar, I believe claiming Umar as the one responsible is backbiting, which is haram.

The 'Dhulfiqar' you are referring to left ShiaChat in 2014. :D It's not backbiting to say Umar created the innovation of finger pointing in the prayer. Finger pointing is not a problem, but to add such a gesture inside the prayer is an innovation. If you read the other post by Hajar (who used to be a ShiaChat Moderator), there is evidence from Sunni sources that it was Umar who innovated the finger pointing into Sunni prayers.


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