Wednesday 17 April 2024

The difference between Hadith (حديث) and Hadith e Qudsi (الحديث القدسي)

We at Islam: My Ultimate Decision have been sharing Hadiths and Hadith e Qudsi attributed to Prophet Muhammad ﷺ regularly for the information of of our readers for these explain the Divine Commandments contained in the Qur'an. Islam is not complete unless we read Qur'an along with the Hadiths and Hadith e Qudsi attributed to Prophet Muhammad ﷺ.

However, many a reader have asked time and again to explain the difference between these two types of Hadiths, though we have already explained the difference earlier in our reference page of Hadith e Qudsi

The straight difference between Qur'an and Hadith e Qudsi is that the text of Qur'an is verbatim from Allah, which were conveyed to Prophet Muhammad ﷺ and were conveyed to his companions in the same Divine words without any alteration. That is the words and meaning of the text of Qur'an is UNALTERED and remains unaltered as Allah Himself has taken upon Him the responsibility of conservation of Qur'an from any infiltration of manmade alterations.

What is a Hadith?
Let us first understand what a Hadith is. In order to exclusively explain the difference, we make another attempt through this post. In simple words, Hadith is a collection of narratives about the prophet Muhammad ﷺ. It was written long after his passing and classified by varying degrees of authenticity.

 The best way to define the Hadith is as a record of traditions or stories about the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. The Hadith is revered and accepted as a major source of Sharia law, moral ethos, and second in its authority to the Quran. These texts differ from the Quran, as they are not a singular text, but a collection of them. The Hadith consists of 6 collections. Two collections are held In the highest regard: Sahih Al Bukhari and Sahih Muslim. The other four books are Sunan At Tirmidhi, Sunan Abu Dawud, Sunan an-Nasai, and Sunan Ibn Majah.

The Hadith texts weren't written down during the time of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. They were transmitted orally before being written down and gathered in the 8th and 9th centuries; more than 100 years after his death. There is a network of narrators of the Hadiths called isnad. They include Abu Hurairah, who narrated over 5,000 hadiths, Abdullaah Ibn Abbaas, who narrated nearly 3,000 hadiths, and Abu Bakr. The Hadith from Sahih Bukhari had over 1,000 narrators within its text. The most accepted hadiths consist of core Islamic beliefs relating to the Quran. Hadiths are seen as less reliable, as they stretch away from the core tenets within the Quran. Islamic scholars scrutinize the hadiths in a variety of ways, including the character of the people narrating the hadiths. Hadiths are ranked as authentic, acceptable, weak, or fabricated. [1]

In short, Hadiths are the sayings of the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ that cover a vast sphere of our lives and how to live it in the light of Qur'an and directions provided by Prophet Muhammad ﷺ.

What is a Hadith e Qudsi?
Now we come to Hadith e Qudsi which simple means "pure" or "holy Hadith." These Hadiths are unique because their content is attributed to God but the actual wording was credited to Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. This may be one of the reasons they are not included in the Quranic revelations, which are considered to be the verbatim word of Allah but rather are given a special category, thus occupying a status between Quran and normal Hadith text.

Sacred tradition or report. Also called hadith rabbani or hadith ilahi (divine hadith). Refers to a saying (hadith) of the Prophet Muhammad in which the meaning is revealed by God and the phrasing is formulated by the Prophet. Unlike prophetic hadith (hadith nabawi), the chain of transmission is traced back directly to God instead of ending with the Prophet. In contrast to the Quran, which is considered divine revelation in both meaning and wording, the authenticity of sacred hadith varies from one narration to another, and they may not be recited in prayer. They function as extra-Quranic revelation. [2]

For example read carefully the text of the following Hadith. The Hadith is narrated by Abu Hurayrah, one of the most authentic Hadith collector of the Prophet's time, who reported that Allah's messenger said:

Allah, Mighty and Exalted is He, said: "If My servant likes to meet me, I like to meet him, and if he dislikes to meet Me, I dislike to meet him."

As is clear from the language of the text, it is a directly from Allah, but it is not part of the Qur'an for its wordings are NOT EXACTLY as that of Divine wordings. However, the substance or the matter is the same, the only difference is that it is as said by Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. 

There are two sets of Hadith e Qudsi, one containing 40 Hadiths and other containing 110 Hadiths. Of these who generally use Hadiths that are mentioned both in Hadiths compilation of  Sahi al-Bukhārī and Ṣaḥīḥ Muslim. Such  Hadiths are graded as Muttafaqun Alayhi, that is agreed upon by the two compilations.
May Allāh (سبحانه و تعالى‎) help us understand Qur'ān and follow the Sunnah of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ, which is embodiment of commandments of Allah contained in the Qur'ān. May Allah help us to be like the ones He loves and let our lives be lived helping others and not making others' lives miserable or unlivable. May all our wrong doings, whether intentional or unintentional, be forgiven before the angel of death knocks on our door. 
وَمَا عَلَيۡنَاۤ اِلَّا الۡبَلٰغُ الۡمُبِيۡنُ‏ 
(36:17) and our duty is no more than to clearly convey the Message.”
That is Our duty is only to convey to you the message that Allah has entrusted us with. Then it is for you to accept it or reject it. We have not been made responsible for making you accept it forcibly, and if you do not accept it, we shall not be seized in consequence of your disbelief, you will yourselves be answerable for your actions on Day of Resurrection.

May Allah forgive me if my posts ever imply a piety far greater than I possess. I am most in need of guidance.

Reading the Qur'ān should be a daily obligation of a Muslim - Reading it with translation will make it meaningful. But reading its Exegesis / Tafsir will make you understand it fully. It will also help the Muslims to have grasp over social issues and their answers discussed in the Qur'an and other matter related to inter faith so that they are able to discuss issues with non-Muslims with authority based on refences from Qur'an.

Note: When we mention God in our posts, we mean One True God, we call Allah in Islam, with no associates. Allah is the Sole Creator of all things, and that Allah is all-powerful and all-knowing. Allah has no offspring, no race, no gender, no body, and is unaffected by the characteristics of human life.

Please refer to our reference pages Collection of Hadith e Qudsi (حدیثِ قُدسی) attributed to Prophet Muhammad ﷺ  for more Hadith e Qudsi. For remaining Hadiths, refer to our reference page: Sunnah and Hadith of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ to know more about Hadiths and Sunnah of Prophet of Allah. 

You may also refer to our Reference Pages for knowing more about Islam and Qur'ān.

Photo | Resource references: | 1 | 2 | 3 |

Disclaimer: The material for this post has been collected from the references as given above. If anyone differs with the material contained in this post, one may consult the references and their authors.  If someone has more material about the subject, he/she is most welcome to share in the comments box to make the post all encompassing.

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