Nawawi’s Forty Hadiths: Hadith 30 and Hadith 31 taught by Sheikh Gomaa: Allah’s Limits and Asceticism
I have been learning more about Islam by studying the traditions of Muhammad as recorded in the ahadith. The Islamic scholar Alfred Guillaume (1888 – 1966) wrote of their importance saying, “the everyday life of Muslims throughout the world is governed and directed by these traditions” (The Traditions of Islam: An Introduction to the study of the Hadith Literature).
I have been studying Imam Nawawi’s 40 Hadiths because they are widely regarded as the best introduction to Muhammad’s teaching and example in the English language. Ali Gomaa said he was “a gift from Allah to us, to the Shafi’i school, to Arabs, and to all Muslims. An-Nawawi was such a great example of scholars.”
Here is the thirtieth hadith compiled by al-Nawawi, first in Arabic and then the English translation of the Arabic,
عن أبي ثعلبة الخشني جرثوم بن ناشر رضي الله عنه ، عن رسول الله صلي الله عليه وسلم ، قال : (إن الله تعالى فرض فرائض فلا تضيعوها ، وحد حدودًا فلا تعتدوها ، وحرم أشياء فلا تنتهكوها ، وسكت عن أشياء رحمة لكم غير نسيان فلا تبحثوا عنها ).
حديث حسن ، رواه الدارقطني [(في سننه) 4/ 184 ] ، وغيره
On the authority of Abu Tha’labah al-Kushanee – Jurthoom bin Naashir (radi allahu anhu 1Arabic to English translation, May Allah be pleased with him.) – that the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) 2Arabic to English translation meaning, May Allah bless him and grant him peace. Often abbreviated SAWS. This Arabic phrase is used after references to Muhammad and his titles.:
Verily Allah ta’aalaa 3Arabic to English translation meaning, Almighty. has laid down Religious Obligations (faraa’id), so do not neglect them; and He has set limits/boundaries, so do not overstep them; and He has Forbidden some things, so do not violate them; and He has remained silent about some things, out of compassion for you, not forgetfulness – so do not seek after them.
A Hasan hadeeth narrated by ad-Daaraqutnee and others.
Here is the thirty-first hadith compiled by al-Nawawi, first in Arabic and then in English,
عن أبي العباس سهل بن سعد الساعدي رضي الله عنه ، قال : جاء رجل إلى النبي صلى الله عليه وسلم ، فقال : يا رسول الله ! دلني على عمل إذا عملته أحبني الله وأحبني الناس ؛ فقال : ( ازهد في الدنيا يحبك الله ، وازهد فيما عند الناس يحبك الناس ) .
حديث حسن ، رواه ابن ماجه [ رقم : 4102 ] ، وغيره بأسانيد حسنه
On the authority of Abu al-‘Abbaas Sahl bin Sa’ad as-Saa’idee (radi allahu ‘anhu 4Arabic to English translation, May Allah be pleased with him.) who said :
A man came to the Prophet (Sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) and said : O Messenger of Allah, direct me to an act which, if I do it, [will cause] Allah to love me and the people to love me. So he (Sallallahu alayhi wa sallam) said :
Renounce the world and Allah will love you, and renounce what the people possess and the people will love you.
A Hasan hadeeth related by Ibn Maajah and others with good chains of authorities.
In the following video Ali Gomaa teaches about hadith 30 (0:00-6:15) and hadith 31 (6:16-9:33). My notes follow.
Ali Gomaa discusses the meaning of “Allah has set limits, so do not over step them.”
Gomaa says, “Therefore, Allah has set punishments for both theft and adultery. He set a punishment for drinking alcohol, apostasy, and splitting with the company of Muslim[s]. He allowed retaliation for killing the soul that is forbidden to be killed except by right. Retaliation has whole system in shari’a (Islamic law). These are limits in Islam so do not over step them.”
My Christian comments: Muhammad warned about overstepping God’s boundaries, and yet Muhammad went beyond the boundaries of previous revelation (2 John 9).
Speaking about hadith 31 Gomaa says, “This hadith urges asceticism. It is one of the reasons of Allah’s love to you.”
“First part: asceticism requires you to possess the world, for an ascetic is the one who owns this worldly life, but it does not control his heart. If a man does not own the world, it is natural to lead a modest life. Then, the worldly life should not obsess hearts. Thus, the pious used to say, “O Allah Make this worldly life in our hands and not in our hearts.” This is the top of asceticism: To have this worldly life in your hand and not enter your heart. It means you feel neither happy with your possessions nor sad over your loss. Possessions are a mere tool. So, look what Allah does with it. If it lasts, then your duty is to thank Allah. Pay your duties to others in case it is money. Be guided by Allah to spend this money in philanthroic activities, charity, and helping people.”
“Second section: “renounce what people possess.” Don’t look to, wish to have, or ask for people’s possessions. The pious used to say, “We are like kings who neither request nor refuse.” The Prophet (SAWS) forbade asking people for something. “If you ask, ask Allah; If you seek support, seek Allah’s support.” Thus, man should renounce people’s possessions so they would love him.”
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|1, 4.||↥||Arabic to English translation, May Allah be pleased with him.|
|2.||↥||Arabic to English translation meaning, May Allah bless him and grant him peace. Often abbreviated SAWS. This Arabic phrase is used after references to Muhammad and his titles.|
|3.||↥||Arabic to English translation meaning, Almighty.|