View Full Version : Discuss Sunnah as a source of Islamic law what are it kinds

12-12-2011, 01:50 AM
Q. Describe various kinds of Sunnah mentioning their role in Islamic legislation. (2003)
Q. Quran and Sunnah cannot be detached from each other. Support your answer with reason.(2002)
Q. Discuss the difference between Sunnah and Hadith. (2001) (1998) (1996)
Q. Discuss and explain the importance of Sunnah as a source of Islamic law. (1998) (1997) (1996)
Q. Quran cannot be understood without Sunnah. (1995) (1993)
Q. Discuss Sunnah as a source of Islamic law what are it kinds. (2004/A 2007/A)
Q. Discuss Sunnah as source of law. (2005/S)
1. Introduction
Sunnah is the second primary source of Islamic law. If the mujtahid does not find a text in the Quran for a case he has to settle, he has recourse to the Sunnah for the derivation of the Hukms. There is a special bond between Quran and Sunnah which must not be severed as Sunnah is the explanation of the holy Quran.
2. Meaning meaning
(I) Literal meaning
The word Sunnah stands for the “Well know path” or “Well-trodden path.” Which is followed again and again.
(II) Technical meaning
“What was transmitted from the messenger of Allah (Peace Be Upon Him) of his words, acts and (trcit) approvals.”
3. Kinds of Sunnah
Following are the kinds of Sunnah.
(i) According to its nature
(ii) According to its written record
(I) According to its nature
According to its nature, Sunnah is of following types.
(i) Sunnah al Qawliah
It is the saying or narration of the prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) through which he intended the laying down of the law or the explanation of the Ahkam.
(i) “La darar Wa-la dirar”
(No injury is to be caused and none is to borne)
(ii) Sunnah Al Filiyah
It is defined as the deeds and practices of the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) having a legal content like his prayers, fasts etc.
(iii) Sunnah Taqririyah
It is defined as the commission of certain acts, by word or deed. If something was done in a particular way and Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) maintained silence without expressing disproval to it, his silence in such a case is called taqrir or tacit approval and is considered a Sunnah.
(II) According to its written recode
Sunnah may also be classified according to its entire written record, that is Ahadith.
(A) Division of Ahadith
With respect to its narration, Ahadith are divided into two types.
(i) Hadith Muttasil
(ii) Hadith Mursal
(i) Hadith Muttasil
The hadith whose chain of narration. Is complete. These are the ones in which the narrator are mentioned from the beginning of the sands upon the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him)and no narrator is missing.
Types of hadith Muttasil
Following are the types of hadith Muttasil
(a) Hadith Mutawatir
It is one that is related by such a large umber of people that their agreement to propagate a falsehood cannot be conceived. Twatur is of two types.
Twatur Lafzi
When all the narrators agree about the words as well as meaning the hadith is called twatur Lafzi. For example. Following Hadith is twatur Lafzi.
“He who attributes falsehood to me should prepare his abode in the fire.”
Twatur Manawi (Meaning)
It is a Hadith which coveys the same meaning even if the words are not exactly the same.
(b) Hadith Mashhur
The mashhur tradition is one the number of whose reporters do no reach the level of twatur in the first generation. Thus if one or two companions related the tradition from the prophet but in the next generation of tabium, a very large number related from them and so on till the end of the chain when the traditions were compiled then such a tradition is called mashhur.
(c) Hadith Ahad
The Hadith Ahad or the Khabar Wahid is reported by one or two persons from the beginning of its chain up to its end when all traditions were recorded.
(ii) Hadith Mursal
Hadith Mursal is one that is not continuous and one or more names of the narrators are missing from the chain of narration the jurists disagreed about the employment of a Mursal hadith as proof for a Hukm.
4. Sunnah as a source of law
Allah almighty has delegated legislative powers to the Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him). The Quran from time and again makes the prophetic Sunnah as obligatory on the Muslims the reason why Sunnah is treated as a source of law is based on the argument that Sunnah of Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) was also revealed on him.
“And came to you from God the light (Prophet) and the book”. (Surah Al-Maida 15)
“And remember what is read in your houses out of the Quran and the Hikma (sunhah).
(surah-Al-Ahzaab 34)
(I) Derivation of the authority of Sunnah
The authority of the Sunah as a source of law is derived from the Quran. Following Quranic verses throws light on the importance of Sunnah.
“If ye differ in anything among yourselves, refer it to the Allah and his Prophet” (Peace Be Upon Him) (Surah Al-Nisa 59)
“And he does not speak of his own desire all is revealed on him.” (Sura Al-Nahal)
“He who obyes the Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) obeys Allah”. (Surah Al Nisa : 80)
(II) Legislative function of Sunnah
Sunnah is the second primary source of law. The jurists must recourse to the Quran first for the search of the Hukm and should not move to the Sunnah unless the Search in the Quran has been completed. More often than not, it is not possible for the jurist to understand the meaning of the text of the Quran for the derivation of the Ahkams, unless he has recourse to the explanation and commentary of the Quran which is Sunnah itself.
(i) Qualification for Sunnah as source of law
It is not every Sunnah that is a Source of law. To qualify Sunnah as a source of law, it is necessary that the acts must have a legal content. The purpose of the saying or acts of the Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) should be the laying down of the law or its elaboration.
(ii) Original law-making by Sunnah
Where some Hukm is not mentioned in the Quran and Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) decides it according to its own wisdom, it becomes a source of original law making.
(iii) Legislative function of Sunnah with respect to holy Quran or relationship between Quran and Sunnah.
Quran laid down the basic principles and Sunnah explains these principles. The legislative function of Sunnah with respect to the Holy Quran or the relationship between Quran and Sunnah can be discussed as under.
(a) Specification of general rule
The Ahkams in the Quran is in general, undetermined form. The Sunnah restricts or qualifies these Ahkams.
Quran says that “ for the male two shares of the female the Sunnah explains that the murdered will not inherit.
(b) Elaboration of Ahkams
The Ahkams in Quran are general in unelaborated from. The Sunnah elaborates these Ahkams.
Quran order prayer, Sunnah provide for timing, number and Rak’ as of prayers.
(c) Analogy on the basis of rule in Quran
The Sunnah may add or supplement the legal provision of the Quran.
Quran prohibits marriage of two sisters with one man. Sunnah prohibits it which maternal or paternal aunt.
(d) Linkage of case with well known principle
Sunnah links a case with the well-known principal mentioned in the Holy Quran.
Quran has permitted all goods things and has commanded the avoidance of Khabaith. The Sunnah has linked with the Khabith the consumption of animals with morals and birds with claws.
(e) General principal laid down by Sunnah
Some times Sunnah lays down a general principal.
Sunnah lays down the principal “No injury is to be caused or borne.” Quran mentions a number of cases in which injury t others has been prohibited.
(f) Explanation of the implicit
The Quranic injunctions are sometimes implicit and the Sunnah makes it explicit by providing the details.
Quran provides that the hands of each thief are to be cut. The Sunnah restricts this to the thief who steals wealth equivalent to the Nisab and from the protective custody.
5. Difference between Sunnah and Hadith
Hadith is the noun derived from the word “Hadatha” which means a tale or verbal communication of any kind. In legal sense Hadith means saying of Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) which must be practiced. Sunnah and Hadith means one and the same thing, yet there are few differences between these two terms.
(i) As to meaning
Hadith means saying of Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him)
Sunnah refers to every saying of Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) and to every act which he did or performed and every act which was permitted to be done by him.
(ii) Scope
Sunnah is bigger in scope
Hadith is narrow in scope as it refers to only the sayings of Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him)
(iii) As to element
Sunnah is a complete term which has three elements
Hadith is one element of Sunnah.
(iv) As to activity
Hadith consisted in some sort of activity. There must be saying of the Holy Prophet (Peace Be UPON Him).
In Sunnah, there may be no activity. It may be that act of Holy Prophet (Peace Be Upon Him) where he kept quiet in case he saw people doing a particular thing.
(v) As to collection
Hadith have been collected and compiled in a proper form
Collection of Sunnah was never made and it is out of collection.
6. Constitutional status of Sunnah
In constitutional making Sunnah has a great role. God has delegated legislative powers to the Holy Prophet. He (S. A. W) gave practical shape and concrete form to the injunctions of Quran.
7. Conclusion
To conclude, I can say, that Sunnah is the second primary source of Islamic law. It is interlinked with the Quran insofar as it restricts its general meaning or qualifies its absolute texts or explains its difficult words.