Al-Darimi in the Chapter 15 of the Muqaddima (Introduction) to his Sunan (1:43) entitled: “Allah’s generosity to His Prophet after his death,” relates from Aws ibn `Abd Allah with a good chain:
“The people of Madina complained to `A’isha of the severe drought that they were suffering.
She said: “Go to the Prophet’s grave and open a window towards the sky so that there will be no roof between him and the sky.” They did so, after which they were watered with such rain that vegetation grew and the camels got fat. That year was named the Year of Plenty.”
It is clear from the above narrations that the position of the Mother of the Believers `A’isha differs from that of modern-day “Salafis,” *
since she (ra) recommended to the people of Madina to use the Prophet(s) in his grave as a means of obtaining blessing and benefit and this remained in use until the Wahhabis took over the Hijaz, while “Salafis” declare this to be unacceptable. Either they know better than the fuqaha’ of the Companions or, most certainly, they are peddling misguidance and innovation.
* Sheikh Albani, in order to reject the hadith of Darimi, raised some objections which are so full of holes that one can not only see the sky through them, but also the sun, the moon, and the stars.
He said in his little book translated under the name Tawassul:Its Types and Its Rulings (p. 130-131) about Darimi’s chain of transmission for the report (Abu al-Nu`man from Sa`id ibn Zayd from `Amr ibn Malik al-Nukri from Abu al-Jawza’ Aws ibn `Abd Allah from `A’isha):
This chain of narration is weak and cannot be used as a proof due to three reasons:
(i) Sa`id ibn Zayd who is the brother of Hammad ibn Zayd is somewhat weak. al-Hafiz [Ibn Hajar] said about him in al-Taqrib: “Generally acceptable, but he makes mistakes.” Dhahabi said about him in al-Mizan: “Yahya ibn Sa`id said: Weak, and al-Sa`di said: He is not a proof, they declare his ahadith to be weak. Nasa’i and others said: He is not strong; and Ahmad said: He is all right. Yahya ibn Sa`id would not accept him.”
However, the above documentation is partial and biased, and this is not surprising since “Salafis” only mention what advances their view while they cover up, rephrase, or declare weak whatever contradicts it.*This is especially true of Albani, whose followers claim him as “the leading scholar of hadith of this age”(!) whereas he makes frequent mistakes, innovates in many of his rulings, and is generally unreliable except to those unschooled in the Islamic sciences. It would be more correct for “Salafis” to say: “He is our leading scholar,” for in this we would agree with them completely.
However, it is a fact that no one who has actual knowledge in hadith and fiqh uses Albani’s books except that they check and verify anything they take from them against trustworthyscholars.
The present narration is a case in point, since Albanideliberately omits to mention the authentication of the narrators he seeks to declare weak, hiding basic evidence from his readers in order to mislead them, all because he is dead set against the issue at hand, even if it is authentically reported from the Mother of the Believers!
*Following is a point-by-point refutation of Albani’s claims by the Moroccan hadith scholar `Abd Allah ibn Muhammad ibn al-Siddiq al-Ghumari in his booklet entitled: Irgham al-mubtadi` al-ghabi bi jawaz al-tawassul bi al-nabi (The coercion of the unintelligent innovator to the effect that using the Prophet as a means is permissible p. 23-25):
*Albani’s weakening of Sa`id ibn Zayd is rejected, because Sa`id is one of Muslim’s narrators, and Yahya ibn Ma`in declared him trustworthy (thiqa)!
The editor of Ghumari’s text, Ghumari’s student Hasan `Ali al-Saqqaf says on the same page as the above:
*Albani has adduced worthless proofs as is his habit when embellishing falsehood.
He cited whatever fit his whim from Ibn Hajar’s Taqrib, leaving out his mention that Sa`id ibn Zayd is one of Muslim’s narrators in his Sahih. Beware, therefore, of this tadlis (concealment) on his part!… He added Dhahabi’s notice on Sa`id ibn Zayd in the Mizan, and this is another deliberate cover-up, for he faithlessly omitted to mention what Ibn Hajar reported in Tahdhib al-tahdhib (4:29) from those who declared Sa`id ibn Zayd trustworthy, in addition to his being one of Muslim’s narrators:
– Bukhari said: “Muslim ibn Ibrahim narrated to us: Sa`id ibn Zayd Abu al-Hasan narrated to us, and he is reliable and a memorizer of hadith (saduq hafiz).”
– al-Duri said on the authority of Ibn Ma`in: “Sa`id ibn Zayd is trustworthy (thiqa).”
– Ibn Sa`d said: “He was trustworthy.”
– al-`Ujli said: “He is from Basra, and he is trustworthy.”
– Abu Zur`a said: “I heard Sulayman ibn Harb say: Sa`id ibn Zayd narrated to us, and he was trustworthy.”
– Abu Ja`far al-Darimi said: “Hibban ibn Hilal narrated to us: Sa`id ibn Zayd narrated to us, and he was a memorizer of hadith and he was reliable.”
– Ibn `Adi said: “There is no denounced narration from him except someone else also narrates it, and I consider him one of those in the reliable category.”
* In addition to the above remarks it is noteworthy to mention that Albani cited Ahmad’s grading of Sa`id ibn Zayd as la ba’sa bihi which his translator rendered as “he is all right,” but neither the author nor the translator seems to know that in Imam Ahmad’s terminology la ba’sa bihi is identical with thiqa, which means “trustworthy” and is among the highest gradings of authentication! Ibn Salah in his Muqaddima (p. 134), Dhahabi in Lisan al-mizan (1:13), Sakhawi in Fath al-mughith, Ibn Hajar in Hadi al-sari, Abu Ghudda in his commentary to Lucknawi’s Raf` (p. 222 n. 3), as well as the editor of Nawawi’s al-Taqrib wa al-taysir (p. 51) have indicated that the equivalency of saying “There is no harm in him” with the grade of trustworthy (thiqa) obtains for many early authorities of the third century such as Ibn Ma`in, Ibn al-Madini, Imam Ahmad, Duhaym, Abu Zur`a, Abu Hatim al-Razi, Ya`qub ibn Sufyan al-Fasawi, and others.
*Albani continues in his list of reasons for weakening Darimi’s narration:
(ii) It is mawquf (stopping at the Companion), coming only from `A’isha and not from the Prophet, and even if the chain of narration up to `A’isha were authentic then it would not be a proof since it is something open to personal judgment in which even the Companions are sometimes correct and sometimes incorrect, and we are not bound to act upon that (!).
To this claim it is easy to reply that not only is the narration sound and authentic, but also that there is no objection related from any of the Companions to the act recommended by the Mother of the Believers, just as there was no objection on their part to the istisqa’ made by the man who came to the grave of the Prophet in the narration of Malik al-Dar cited below. This shows ijma` on the matter on the part of the Companions, and such ijma` is definitely binding in the sense that no one can declare unlawful or innovative something which they have tacitly declared lawful or desirable. As for the following the opinion of the Companions we say what Imam al-Shafi`i said as related by Ibn Qayyim in A`lam al-muwaqqi`in `an rabb al-`alamin (2:186-187): “Their opinion for us is better than our opinion to ourselves.”
*Albani listed the following as his last reason for weakening Darimi’s narration:
(iii) Abu al-Nu`man… was originally a reliable narrator except that he deteriorated at the end of his life. The hadith master Burhan al-Din al-Halabi mentions him among those who deteriorated in later life in his book al-Muqaddima (p. 391) and he says: “The ruling about these people is that their narrations are accepted if reported from them by people who heard from them before they deteriorated. But narrations reported from them by those who heard from them after they deteriorated, or narrations reported from therm by people about whom we do not know whether they heard from them before they deteriorated or after, then these narrations are to be rejected.”I say: We do not know whether this report was heard by Darimi from him before or after his memory deteriorated, it is therefore not acceptable and cannot be used as evidence. [Footnote:] Shaykh al-Ghumari missed this weakness in Misbah al-zujaj (p. 43), just as it was ignored by another in order to give the impression to the people that this report is authentic(!).
Ghumari said regarding these claims about Abu al-Nu`man:
His weakening of Abu al-Nu`man is invalid, because Abu al-Nu`man’s deterioration did not affect what is narrated from him! al-Daraqutni said [as cited by Dhahabi in Mizan al-i`tidal (4:81)]: “He deteriorated at the end of his life, and no denounced hadith issued from him after his deterioration whatsoever, and he is trustworthy (thiqa).” As for what Ibn Hibban said, that “Many denounced things occurred in his narrations after his deterioration,” then al-Dhahabi refuted it when he said (4:8): “Ibn Hibban was unable to cite a single denounced narration from him, and the truth is just as Daraqutni said.”
Shaykh Muhammad ibn `Alawi al-Maliki said in his book Shifa’ al-fu’ad bi ziyarat khayr al-`ibad (p. 152): Abu al-Nu`man’s deterioration neither harms nor is detrimental to his reliability, since Bukhari in his Sahih narrated over one hundred hadiths from him, and no narration was taken from him after his deterioration, as Daraqutni said…. The chain of transmission is all right, in fact I consider it good. The scholars have cited as evidence many chains that are like it or less strong than it.
Following are Saqqaf’s further comments, beginning with Albani’s charge against Shaykh al-Ghumari:
*We know full well that it is Albani who betrays scholarly trust and deliberately misinforms the people, even if he accuses others of disinformation.… In weakening Abu al-Nu`man he has again acted faithlessly. His quotation from al-Burhan al-Halabi’s book al-Ightibat bi man rumiya bi al-ikhtilat (p. 23) is designed to pull the wool over the eyes of his followers and those who only read his works! For it is necessary to also know that those who are branded as suffering from deterioration in the aforementioned book are divided among those whose narrations were unaffected by their deterioration and those whose narrations were affected. Abu al-Nu`man belongs to the first group, and al-Dhahabi made this clear in al-Mizan (4:8). Therefore our reply to Albani is: Shaykh al-Ghumari did not miss anything concerning this matter of deterioration, because he is a hadith scholar and a master memorizer (hafiz), however, it is you who have missed it, O slandering backbiter!
* As for Albani’s quotation of Ibn Taymiyya’s claim in his al-Radd `ala al-Bakri (p. 68-74) whereby “a clear proof that it is a lie is the fact that no such opening existed above the house at all in the whole of the life of `A’isha”(!) then it is a weak objection which is no sooner brought up than cast out. Surely Imam al-Darimi and the scholars of the succeeding generations would know of such a detail better than latecomers.
*As for the authorities among the latter, then the hadith scholar and historian of Madina Imam `Ali al-Samhudi (d. 922) did not so much as look at Ibn Taymiyya’s objection, rather he confirmed the truth of Darimi’s narration by saying, after citing it in his Wafa’ al-wafa’ (2:549): al-Zayn al-Miraghi said: “Know that it is the Sunna of the people of Madina to this day to open a window at the bottom of the dome of the Prophet’s room, that is, of the blessed green dome, on the side of the Qibla.” I say: And in our time, they open the door facing the noble face (the grave) in the space surrounding the room and they gather there.”
So much for the claims of naysayers regarding istisqa’ through the Prophet.· The act of the Mother of the Believers `A’isha in the narration of Darimi is explicitly confirmed by Abu Talib’s famous line of poetry concerning istisqa’ through the Prophet as related in the book of istisqa’ in Bukhari’s Sahih:
`Abdullah ibn Dinar said: “I heard Ibn `Umar reciting the poetic verses of Abu Talib: A fair-skinned one by whose face rainclouds are sought, A caretaker for the orphans and protector of widows.
`Umar ibn Hamza said: Salim narrated from his father (Ibn `Umar) that the latter said:
“The poet’s saying came to my mind as I was looking at the face of the Prophet while he was praying for rain — and he did not get down till the rain water flowed profusely from every roof-gutter:
A fair-skinned one by whose face rainclouds are sought,A caretaker for the orphans and protector of widows.One sub-narrator added: “These were the words of Abu Talib.”
*Note that in his translation of Bukhari (2:65), Muhammad Muhsin Khan alters the wording of the hadith to read: “A white person who is requested to pray for rain” in place of “by whose face rain is sought,” and Allah knows best the reason for this grave betrayal of the translator’s trust in the most important Islamic source after the Qur’an.
Descension of rain through
The Prophet’s means
Imam Dārimī relates from Abū al-Jawzā’ Aws bin ‘Abdullāh:
The people of Medina were in the grip of a severe famine. They complained to ‘Ā’ishah (about their terrible condition). She told them to go towards the Prophet’s grave and open a window in the direction of the sky so that there is no curtain between the sky and the grave. The narrator says they did so. Then it started raining heavily; even the lush green grass sprang up (everywhere) and the camels had grown so fat (it seemed) they would burst out due to the over piling of blubber. So the year was named as the year of greenery and plenty. 
The famine gripping the people of Medina ended through the mediation of the Prophet’s grave. Heavy rains created a spring scenario all around. Men found their food and the animals found their fodder. And the rain that came about as a result of the Prophet’s mediation made the lands of Medina greener and more fertile and on account of over-harvesting, they named the year as the year of greenery and plenty.
Those who deny the conceptual relevance of intermediation have raised some objections against this tradition. One of the objections is that its chain of transmission is weak and so it cannot be offered as an argument.
* The chain of transmission of this tradition is as follows:
“Abū an-Nu‘mān heard it from Sa‘īd bin Zayd, he from ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī and he from Abū al-Jawzā’ Aws bin ‘Abdullāhwho has reported it.”
Below are given the allegations levelled against these narrators and a rebuttal of these baseless charges:
1. The name of Abū an-Nu‘mān ‘Ārim was Muhammad bin al-Fadl Sadūsī. They agree that he was a reliable reporter of traditions as is confirmed by Dhahabī in Mīzān-ul-i‘tidāl (4:7): “He was Imam Bukhārī’s teacher, memorizer of traditions and an extremely truthful person.” But their objection is that he had lost his marbles in the declining years of his age. Burhān-ud-Dīn Halabī, who possessed great knowledge of traditions, comments in his book al-Muqaddimah on this reporter along with others who had lost their memory in the closing years of their lives: “The ruling on these narrators is that the traditions reported by them before their loss of memory are acceptable, while the traditions after their deranged conditions are unacceptable. And if we do not know whether these traditions were received from them before or after their memory lapse, we should not accept these traditions from them either.” The objectors say that since we do not know whether Abū an-Nu‘mān has narrated this tradition before or after his loss of memory, we cannot adduce the tradition as evidence.
*This objection not only lacks significance but also lacks credibility. Their objection is logically inconsistent. While they discard this tradition as weak, because it is the product of his loss of memory, they ignore other traditions though they are also the products of the same state of mind. Dhahabī says: ‘Imam Dāraqutnī comments, “Though he had lost his memory towards the end of his life, he never reported any tradition in this condition that could affect his veracity, therefore, he remains a truthful narrator.’ I insist that it is a report by that contemporary memorizer of traditions who is only matched by Imam Nasā’ī.” Ibn Hibbān is of the opinion that there are many incompatibilities in Abū an-Nu‘mān’s narrations after his loss of memory but Dhahabī rejects this opinion by asserting that Ibn Hibbān has failed to produce a single fact that establishes him as a misreporter of traditions. And the real position is the one that has been endorsed by Imam Dāraqutnī.
‘Irāqī has admitted in at-Taqyīd wal-īdāh that Imam Dhahabī has convincingly rebutted Ibn Hibbān’s statement. Dhahabī has explained it in al-Kāshif (3:79) that the change took place before death, but after the change he had not related any tradition.
Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī writes in Taqrīb-ut-tahdhīb (2:200) that Abū an-Nu‘mān was a sound narrator and the change came about in his last years.
Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī writes, “Abū an-Nu‘mān’s mental debility is neither damaging for him nor does it affect his credibility as a narrator because Imam Bukhārī in his as-Sahīh has taken more than one hundred traditions from him and has not taken a single tradition from him after his loss of memory as is stated by Imam Dāraqutnī.”
Besides Imam Bukhārī, Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal, Ibn Abū Hātim Rāzī and Abū ‘Alī Muhammad bin Khālid Zarīqī have also heard traditions from Abū an-Nu‘mān before his mental confusion set in.
Imam Dārimī is one of the well-reputed teachers of Imam Bukhārī and other famous memorizers of traditions. Therefore, it was impossible for him to accept any tradition from Abū an-Nu‘mān after he had suffered a loss of memory.
2. An objection is raised against Sa‘īd bin Zayd Abū al-Hasan Basrī, brother of Hammād bin Zayd, that he is somewhat weak because Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī has written about him in Taqrīb-ut-tahdhīb (1:296), “That is, he is extremely truthful but sometimes he commits an error.” Dhahabī writes in Mīzān-ul-i‘tidāl (2:138), “Yahyā bin Sa‘īd has called him weak, Sa‘dī says that he is not an argument and his traditions are weak and Nasā’ī etc., are of the opinion that he is not sound.”
*The objections of those, who deny the validity of intermediation, are not only partial as they base them exclusively on these statements and references, but they are also based on prejudice as their arguments are not logical because they are tailored to their preconceptions. A detailed refutation of their groundless objections is presented as follows:
Dhahabī negates it in al-Kāshif (1:286). He says that the decrepitude attributed to Sa‘īd bin Zayd is incorrect because Imam Muslim accepted traditions from him and Ibn Ma‘īn has called him authentic and trustworthy.
Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī has described it in detail in Tahdhīb-ut-tahdhīb (4:32-3):
“Imam Bukhārī said that Muslim bin Ibrāhīm reported to us that Sa‘īd bin Zayd Abū al-Hasan is extremely truthful and knows the traditions by heart.
“Dūrī has reported it from Ibn Ma‘īn that Sa‘īd bin Zayd is a trustworthy narrator.
“Ibn Sa‘d has also called him a reliable narrator.
“‘Ujlī comments that he belongs to Basrah and he is a dependable relater of traditions.
“Abū Zur‘ah said he heard it from Sulaymān bin Harb that Sa‘īd bin Zayd is trustworthy.“
Abū Ja‘far Dārimī said: Hibbān bin Hilāl reported to us that Sa‘īd bin Zayd has related to us that tradition and he is truthful and a preserver of traditions.
“Ibn ‘Adī has stated in al-Kāmil (3:1212-5) that Sa‘īd bin Zayd is truthful and he knows the traditions by heart. He has not related any inauthentic tradition except that someone else relates it and to me he happens to be among the (truthful) narrators.”
The famous compiler and exegete of traditions ‘Abdullāh bin Muhammad bin Siddīq al-Ghumārī from Morocco writes in his book Irghām-ul-mubtadī al-ghabī bi-jawāz-it-tawassul bi an-nabī writes: “Imam Ahmad bin Hambal has referred to Sa‘īd bin Zayd as laysa bihī ba’s. It means that there is no objection against him and he is absolutely truthful. Imam Ahmad’s expression is semantically identical with trustworthiness, which is considered the highest virtue by all traditionists of integrity.
Ibn Ma‘īn also identifies the term laysa bihī ba’s with trustworthiness.
The traditionist Ibn-us-Salāh in al-Muqaddimah, Sakhāwī in Fath-ul-mughīth, Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī in Hady-us-sārī muqaddimah Fath-ul-bārī and Nawawī in at-Taqrīb wat-taysīr have identified laysa bihī ba’s with veracity. Besides, a number of traditionists of the third century (ah), for instance, Ibn Ma‘īn, Ibn Madīnī, Abū Zur‘ah, Ibn Abū Hātim Rāzī, Ya‘qūb bin Sufyān Fasāwī, etc., have invested laysa bihī ba’s with the distinction of veracity.
3. Ibn Hibbān has called ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī as veracious as Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī writes in Tahdhīb-ut-tahdhīb (8:96), “Ibn Hibbān has mentioned him in his book Kitāb-ut-thiqāt. Therefore, Ibn Hibbān’s acknowledgement of his credibility is based on truth and it is beyond any iota of doubt that Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī, on the basis of his authenticity, has called ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī in Taqrīb-ut-tahdhīb (2:77), “Sadūq lahū awhām (he is truthful but there are doubts about him).”
The word sadūq (truthful) used by Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī attests to the veracity of ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī and he has given it precedence over others. Mahmūd Sa‘īd Mamdūh refers to it in his book Raf‘-ul-minārah (p.258) that ‘Abdullāh bin Ahmad, attributing it to his father, commented, “Annahū ka-annahū da“afahū (as if he weakened him).” I say that the word ka-anna (as if; as though) is doubt and suspicion; it cannot serve as an act of justification.
When ‘Abdullāh bin ‘Alī bin Madīnī referred to Hasan bin Mūsā Ashyab as wa ka-annahū da“afahū (and as if he weakened him), Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī endorsed him by saying: hādhā zann, la taqūmu bihī hujjah (it is suspicion, therefore, it cannot serve as a justification).
So this statement makes the veracity of ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī unquestionable. Dhahabī has explained it further in Mīzān-ul-i‘tidāl (3:286) and al-Mughnī (2:488).
Mahmūd Sa‘īd Mamdūh writes:“Ibn ‘Adī has bracketed ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī with ‘Amr bin Mālik Rāsibī in al-Kāmil (5:1799) and has dubbed him as a recanter narrator. Dhahabī has explained it in Mīzān-ul-i‘tidāl (3:285) and al-Mughnī (2:488) while Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī has commented on it in Tahdhīb-ut-tahdhīb (8:95). Both these hadith-scholars have delinked ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī from ‘Amr bin Mālik Rāsibī and disproved the linkage forged by Ibn ‘Adī, which has driven some of the traditionists to label ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī as unreliable. These traditionists are not to blame as they have based their deductions on the conclusions drawn by Ibn ‘Adī without any conscious attempt at distortion as has been explained by Ibn-ul-Jawzī in Kitāb-ul-mawdū‘āt (2:145) and by Ibn Taymiyyah in Qā‘idah jalīlah fit-tawassul wal-wasīlah.”
*Albānī writes in Ta‘līq ‘alā Fadl-is-salāt ‘ala an-nabī (p.88): ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī is a reliable narrator as has been endorsed by Dhahabī. He has also confirmed this view in another book Silsilat-ul-ahādīth-is-sahīhah (5:608).
4. A large number of people have taken traditions from Abū al-Jawzā’ Aws bin ‘Abdullāh on the basis of his credibility and the direct transmission of this tradition from ‘Ā’ishah has also been established. In support of this contention it suffices to state that Imam Muslim has recorded Abū al-Jawzā’ Aws’s narration through ‘Ā’ishah.
Imam Bukhārī says:
It was related to us by Musaddad who had heard it from Ja‘far bin Sulaymān, who from ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī who had reported it from Abū al-Jawzā’. He said: I spent twelve years with Ibn ‘Abbās and ‘Ā’ishah and there was not a single verse of the Holy Qur’an about which I had not asked them.
Ibn S‘ad has related another tradition on these lines:Abū al-Jawzā’ has related:
I lived as Ibn ‘Abbās’s neighbour for twelve years and there was not a single verse of the Holy Qur’an about which I had not asked him.
Abu Na‘aym has added the following words to the tradition:
And my deputy visited the Mother of the Believers (‘Ā’ishah) every morning and evening. So I did not hear from any other quarter (except what I heard from her), nor did I hear from any other source (except from her) what Allah has enjoined about sin that I shall forgive him (the sinner) except the one who associates any partner with Me.
According to Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī, it by no means implies that he never met ‘Ā’ishāh afterwards. So, the inference drawn by Imam Muslim from the frequency of visits clearly indicates that he had a face-to-face meeting with ‘Ā’ishah.
Thus when his meeting with ‘Ā’ishah has been established with irrefutable finality, the element of deceit and incredibility in his statement is automatically washed out and his tradition, therefore, acquires authenticity. To call him an impostor is, actually, to commit excess against his genuineness as a reporter, and to do him justice we have to acknowledge the obvious fact that his statement is based on sound transmission. This conclusion is compatible not only with the findings of Imam Muslim but also reflects the general drift of public opinion.
Abū Nu‘aym has confirmed the authenticity of a number of traditions by Abū al-Jawzā’ with the words ‘an ‘Ā’ishah (from ‘Ā’ishah) in Hilyat-ul-awliyā’ wa tabaqāt-ul-asfiyā’.
Ibn-ul-Qaysarānī has also reported a tradition from Abū al-Jawzā’ by using the words sami‘a ‘Ā’ishah (he listened to ‘Ā’ishah).
This detailed discussion proves beyond doubt that these certificates of authenticity are not based on any forgery but on verifiable evidence, and this chain of transmission is sahīh (sound) or hasan (fair).
Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī says, “This tradition has a good chain of transmission; rather, in my opinion, it is sound. The scholars have also acknowledged its soundness and have established its genuineness on the basis of almost equally credible evidence.
Therefore, this tradition may be relied upon as a viable argument because, according to Imam Nasā’ī’s contention, a narrator may be discarded only when all the traditionists have unanimously rejected him/her.
Those who deny the relevance of intermediation object to the tradition as undependable as its range of reference is limited only to the Companion and does not extend up to the Prophet ( صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم ) himself. In their opinion, it is only one of ‘Ā’ishah’s statements and not a command to be indiscriminately followed. They add that, even if it carries the stamp of her certification, it cannot serve as cogent argument as it is based on personal opinion, which is generally characterized by fluctuation. Sometimes the personal opinion of a Companion may prove correct but at other occasions it may prove incorrect. Therefore, its application is not binding on the believers.
*A simple answer to this baseless objection is that not only the tradition is properly certified, but no Companion has ever raised any objection against the mode of action prescribed by ‘Ā’ishah, nor has such an objection been ever reported, just as no objection has been raised against the person in the tradition reported by Mālik ad-Dār who prays for rain at the grave of the Holy Prophet (صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم ) .[23 ) These traditions reflect the collective opinion of the Companions and such a consensus is quite valid. An act, which enjoys the tacit support of the Companions, cannot be spelled out as invalid or a discredited form of innovation, and it is obligatory for us to follow the Companions. In this context, Imam Shāf‘ī says, “For us, their opinion about us is far more authentic than our own opinion.” This tradition clearly establishes the fact that ‘Ā’ishah commanded the natives of Medina to rely on the Prophet ( صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم ) in his grave as a source of intermediation for divine blessings.
Ibn Taymiyyah has discarded the tradition as mere fabrication. According to him, during the entire life of ‘Ā’ishah, there was no such hole in the roof of the Prophet’s tomb. But this objection is weak as watered tea because Imam Dārimī and the religious leaders and scholars who followed him were more deeply aware of these details.
For example, a traditionist and historian from Medina, ‘Alī bin Ahmad Samhūdī has disconfirmed Ibn Taymiyyah and supported Imam Dārimī’s contention. According to him, Zayn-al-Mirāghī said, “Let it be known that it is a practice of the people of Medina to date that, during a period of drought, they open a window at the bottom of the dome in the Prophet’s tomb in the direction of prayer niche though the roof intervenes between the grave and the sky. I say that in our period, too, one of the gates in the boundary wall, enveloping the tomb, called al-mawājahah, that is, the door that opens towards the Prophet’s face, is flung open and people gather there (for prayer).
The Ottoman Turks followed the practice of offering prayers through the mediation of the Prophet’s grave. The practice remained in vogue till the early years of the twentieth century. Whenever there was famine and scarcity of rain, the residents of Medina persuaded a six-or-seven-year-old child to climb the roof of the grave. (He performed the ablution before climbing over the roof.) The child tugged at the rope, which had been hung down the roof to close the hole in the grave, dug at the suggestion of the Mother of the Believers, ‘Ā’ishah. When there was no curtain between the sky and the grave, it started raining.
. Dārimī related it in his Sunan (1:43#93); Ibn-ul-Jawzī in al-Wafā’ bi-ahwāl-il-mustafā (2:801); Subkī in Shifā’-us-siqām fī ziyārat khayr-il-anām (p.128); Qastallānī in al-Mawāhib-ul-laduniyyah (4:276); and Zurqānī in his Commentary (11:150).
. Dhahabī, Mīzān-ul-i‘tidāl (4:8).
. Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī, Shifā’-ul-fu’ād bi-ziyārat khayr-il-‘ibād (p.152).
. ‘Irāqī, at-Taqyīd wal-īdāh (p.462).
. Bukhārī, at-Tārīkh-ul-kabīr (3:472).
. Ibn Sa‘d, at-Tabaqāt-ul-kubrā (7:287).
. Imam Ahmad’s statement has been reproduced by Dhahabī in Mīzān-ul-i‘tidāl (2:138) and by Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī in Tahdhīb-ut-tahdhīb (4:32).
. Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī, Lisān-ul-Mīzān (1:13).
. Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī, Hady-us-sārī muqaddimah Fath-ul-bārī (p.397).
. Mahmūd Sa‘īd Mamdūh, Raf‘-ul-minārah (pp.259-60).
. Bukhārī, at-Tārīkh-ul-kabīr (2:16-7).
. Ibn S‘ad, at-Tabaqāt-ul-kubrā (7:224).
. Abū Na‘aym, Hilyat-ul-awliyā’ wa tabaqāt-ul-asfiyā’ (3:79).
. Ibn-ul-Qaysarānī, al-Jam‘ bayn as-Sahīhayn (1:46) as quoted by Mahmūd Sa‘īd Mamdūh in Raf‘-ul-minārah (p.261).
. Muhammad bin ‘Alawī al-Mālikī, Shifā’-ul-fu’ād bi-ziyārat khayr–il-‘ibād (p.153).
. Ibn Hajar ‘Asqalānī, Nuzhat-un-nazr bi-sharh nukhbat-ul-fikr fī mustalah hadith ahl-ul-athr (p.89).
. This tradition will be discussed later.
. Ibn-ul-Qayyim, A‘lām-ul-muwaqqi‘īn ‘an rabb-il-‘ālamīn (2:186).
. Samhūdī, Wafā’-ul-wafā (2:560).
Imam Dārimī Relates from Abu al-Jawza’ Aws bin ‘Abdullah: The people of Medina were in the grip of a severe famine. They complained to ‘A’ishah (about their terrible condition). She told them to go towards the Prophet’s grave and open a window in the direction of the sky so that there is no curtain between the sky and the grave. The narrator says they did so. Then it started raining heavily; even the lush green grass sprang up (everywhere) and the camels had grown so fat (it seemed) they would burst out due to the over piling of blubber. So the year was named as the year of greenery and plenty.
حدثنا أبو النعمان حدثنا سعيد بن زيد حدثنا عمرو بن مالك النكري حدثنا أبوالجوزاء أوس بن عبد الله قال قحط أهل المدينة قحطا شديدا فشكوا إلى عائشة فقالتانظروا قبر النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم فاجعلوا منه كوى إلى السماء حتى لا يكون بينهوبين السماء سقف قال ففعلوا فمطرنا مطرا حتى نبت العشب وسمنت الإبل حتى تفتقت من الشحم فسمي عام الفتق
Sunan Darimi Volume 001, Page 227, Hadith Number 093 Click here for Scanned Page (11)
Ibn Jawzi (rah) in his al-Wafa bi Ahwal lil Mustafa made a chapter before this hadith
الباب التاسع والثلاثون في الاستسقاء بقبره صلى الله عليه وسلّم
Translation: Chapter #39 in regards to “Seeking rain through the grave of Prophet (Peace be upon him)” And then he brought the Hadith of Sayyidah Aisha (ra) under it. [Al Wafa bi Ahwal lil Mustafa, Page #817-818] Click here for Scanned Page (156)
Subkī in Shifā’-us-siqām fī ziyārat khayr-il-anām (p.128)
Qastallānī in al-Mawāhib-ul-laduniyyah (4:276); and Zurqānī in his Commentary(11:150)
Muhammad bin ‘Alawi al-Maliki says, “This tradition has a good chain of transmission; rather, in my opinion, it is sound. The scholars have also acknowledged its soundness and have established its genuineness on the basis of almost equally credible evidence. [Shifa’-ul-fu’ad bi-ziyarat khayr–il-‘ibad Page No.153]
Chain :”“Abū an-Nu‘mān heard it from Sa‘īd bin Zayd, he from ‘Amr bin Mālik an-Nukrī and he from Abū al-Jawzā’ Aws bin ‘Abdullāh who has reported it.”