A New Approach to Authenticating Shia Hadith – The Bahth al-Fihristi

What is Fihrist? Why Fihrist? Most readers will possess a rudimentary understanding of Rijal (or Ilm al-Rijal), the discipline in which the status of a narrator is studied in order to evaluate whether his reports should be accepted or not. Much less is known about the Faharis (sing. Fihrist) - the name given to works … Continue reading A New Approach to Authenticating Shia Hadith – The Bahth al-Fihristi

Tusi and the Tahdhibayn (Pt. I)

Introduction Shaykh Tusi (d. 460) stands out among that famous trio (the other two being Kulayni and Saduq) for having authored two of the ‘Four Books’ of Hadith (i.e. Tahdhib al-Ahkam and al-Istibsar fi ma-khtalafa min al-Akhbar). These books are rightly considered to be the bed-rock of Twelver Imami jurisprudence. Despite the recognition they have achieved … Continue reading Tusi and the Tahdhibayn (Pt. I)

Kulayni and al-Kafi (Pt. I)

Introduction The Four Books (i.e. al-Kafi, Man La Yahdhuruhu al-Faqih, Tahdhib al-Ahkam, al-Istibsar fi ma-khtalafa min al-Akhbar) are rightly considered to be the bed-rock of Twelver Imami Hadith. Despite the recognition they have achieved in Shi’i discourse, many commit the error of treating them under the same rubric, without considering the vastly different motivations and … Continue reading Kulayni and al-Kafi (Pt. I)

Is Dua Samat a Jewish Supplication?

Introduction Any casual reciter of Dua Samat knows that there is something different about this Dua. It is distinctive not only in its emphasis on Moses as the Prophet par excellence, but also in its adaptation of biblical terms and historical locations. Two passages from the Dua suffice to demonstrate this: وَأَسْأَلُكَ اللّهُمَّ بِمَجْدِكَ الَّذي … Continue reading Is Dua Samat a Jewish Supplication?