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Question: I often hear hadiths which seem to be very strange. How do I deal with them?

One should remember that everything that is recorded is not per se the words of the Prophet, peace be on him. Our scholars have recorded everything - they did not burn the evidence. But at the same time they were very careful to scrutinize hadiths. They established the criteria for scrutinizing the evidence in order to sift the authentic ones from those which were false or spurious. Hundreds of scholars gave their lives to this noble task.

Thanks to their efforts, all hadiths have been sorted out and labeled according to their degrees of authenticity and non-authenticity.

Therefore if you hear a speaker quoting a certain hadith that sounds strange, ask for sources. Chances are that it could be one of the many hadiths labeled as weak or outright fabrication, and therefore, should never be used by speakers or writers.

One of the most disheartening things about some speakers today is that they are not careful in using hadiths. For general information we give below three of the most common categories of hadith.

Sahih: A hadith that is of unquestionable authenticity.

Da'eef: A hadith that has weakness in its chain or text.

Mawdu': A hadith that is undoubtedly an outright fabrication.

All hadiths of the famous collection of al-Bukhari, known as Sahih al-Bukhari are considered authentic. If, however, a hadith in Sahih al-Bukhari does not sound rational to you, please check with a scholar of Islam who should be able to explain and interpret it for you.

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