Saturday, 28 August 2010
The Basis of Consensus
بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ
Imam an-Nasa’i (r.a.) wrote that the basis of ijma’ jamhur, the consensus of the majority of scholars, is acceptable from ahadits itself, and that taqlid in fiqh is permissible. This is found in his Sunan, in the chapter, “'Ruling according to the Consensus of the Scholars.” So our understanding is that after Qur’an and ahadits, the ijma’ of the community is the most binding upon us.
It was narrated from Shurayh (r.a.) that he wrote to ‘Umar (r.a.), to ask him a question, and ‘Umar (r.a.) wrote back to him telling him, “Judge according to what is in the Book of Allah. If it is not in the Book of Allah, then according to the sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.). If it is not in the Book of Allah or the sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.), then pass judgment according to the way the righteous passed judgment. If it is not in the Book of Allah, or the sunnah of the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.), and the righteous did not pass judgment concerning it, then if you wish, go ahead or if you wish, leave it. And I think that leaving it is better for you. And peace be upon you.” Imam an-Nasa’i (r.a.) graded this swahih.
In the Musnad of Imam Ahmad ibn Hanbal (r.a.), with an isnad graded hasan, it was narrated that ‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ud (r.a.) said, “Verily Allah Looked into the hearts of His slaves and He Found that heart of Muhammad (s.a.w.) was the best of hearts of his slaves. So He Chose him for himself and Sent him with His Message. Then He Looked into the hearts of His slaves after Muhammad (s.a.w.), and found the hearts of his companions were the best of hearts of His slaves. So he made them the helpers and advisors of his Prophet (s.a.w.), to fight to support His religion. So whatever the Muslims think is good, is good before Allah, and whatever the Muslims think is bad, is bad before Allah.”