Ulum al-Qur’an and Ulum al-Hadith Curriculums

Ulum al-Qur’an Curriculum

Here is a modern curriculum in the sciences of the Qur’an:

  • Al-Nawawi – Al-Tibyan
  • Shah Wali Allah – Al-Fawz al-Kabir (with Sharh al-’Awn al-Kabir)
  • Al-Sabuni – Al-Tibyan fi ‘Ulum al-Qur’an
  • Mustafa A’zami – History of the Compilation of Quran
  • Al-Zarqani – Manahil al-Irfan
  • Abd al-Sabur Shaheen – Tarikh al-Qur’an
  • Al-Suyuti – Al-Itqan
  • Al-Zarkashi – Al-Burhan

Hadith Curriculum for the General Public

Although advanced works of ahadith, such as al-Jami’ al-Sahih by al-Bukhari, require a scholar or commentary to unlock their secrets and benefits, shorter ta’liq works can and should be read by the general public regularly. The following works were written for such a purpose and may be read in sequence.

  • Al-Nawawi – Al-Arba’in al-Nawawiyah with the zawa’id of Ibn Rajab (50 ahadith)
  • Muhammad ‘Awwamah – Min Sihah al-Ahadith al-Qisar (300 ahadith)
  • Al-Bulandshehri – Zad al-Talibin (327 ahadith)
  • Al-Tirmidhi – Al-Shama’il al-Muhammadiyah (400 ahadith approx.)
  • Al-Maqdisi – Umdat al-Ahkam (422 ahadith)
  • Al-Nawawi – Al-Adhkar (1242 ahadith)
  • Al-Bukhari – Al-Adab al-Mufrad (1,300 ahadith approx.)
  • Ibn Hajar – Bulugh al-Maram (1358 ahadith)
  • Al-Nawawi – Riyadh al-Salihin (1936 ahadith)
  • Ibn Hajar – Mukhtasar al-Targhib wa al-Tarhib
  • Al-Nu’mani – Ma’arif al-Hadith (over 2,000 ahadith)
  • Al-Mundhiri – Mukhtasar Sahih Muslim
  • Al-Zabidi – Al-Tajrid al-Sarih (Mukhtasar Sahih al-Bukhari)
  • Al-Tabrizi – Mishkat al-Masabih (approx. 5,000 ahadith)

Ulum al-Hadith Curriculum

Elementary
  • Taysir Mustalah al-Hadith by Mahmud al-Tahan
  • Nukhbat al-Fikr with Sharh Nuzhat al-Nazr by Ibn Hajar (edited by Nur al-Din ‘Itr)
  • Al-Muwqizah by al-Dhahabi (edited by Abd al-Fattah Abu Ghuddah)
  • Hadith Literature by Muhammad Zubayr Siddiqi (ITS edit by Abd al-Hakim Murad)
  • Studies in Hadith Methodology and Literature by Mustafa al-A’zami
Lower Intermediate
  • Risalah Abi Dawud to the Makkans
  • Manhaj al-Naqd by Nur al-Din ‘Itr
  • A Textbook of Hadith Studies by Hashim Kamali
  • Bukhari by Ghassan Abdul Jabbar
Upper Intermediate
  • Muqaddimah Ibn al-Salah (with Nukat Ibn Hajar)
  • Al-Sunnah wa Makanatiha by Mustafa al-Siba‘ee
  • Al-Raf’ wa al-Takmil by al-Laknawi (edited by Abd al-Fattah Abu Ghuddah)
  • Hadith by Jonathan Brown
  • Studies in Early Hadith Literature by Mustafa al-A’zami

Advanced
  • Athar al-Hadith al-Sharif Fi Ikhtilaf al-A’imma al-Fuqaha by Muhammad ‘Awwamah
  • Manhaj al-Naqd/Muqaddimah Kitab al-Tamyiz by Mustafa al-A’zami
  • Tahrir Ulum al-Hadith by Abdullah al-Juday’
  • On Schacht’s Origins of Muhammadan Jurisprudence by Mustafa al-A’zami
  • The Canonization of al-Bukhari and Muslim by Jonathan Brown
  • Constructive Critics by Scott Lucas
  • The Evolution of a Hadith by Dr. Iftikhar Zaman
  • Analysing Muslim Traditions by Harald Motzki

Mastery

  • Tadrib al-Rawi by al-Suyuti
  • Ahmad Shakir – Al-Ba’ith al-Hathith
  • Al-Sakhawi – Fath al-Mughith Sharh Alfiyat al-Iraqi

The following contemporary authors also have beneficial works:

  • Sa’id Ahmad Palanpuri
  • Tariq Awadullah
  • Hatim al-Awni

Shaykh Hatim al-Awni gives the following advice:

Obsessively read the Sahihayn, devoting a period each day for their study so that one can complete reading them in a year. One should aim at a minimum to do this over four years.

Thereafter one should read the works which strove to include only sahih narrations:

  • Al-Muwatta
  • Ibn Hibban
  • Ibn Khuzaymah

Thereafter one should read the sunan works carefully, checking and researching the veracity of their ahadith:

  • Abi Dawud
  • Al-Nasa’i
  • Al-Tirmidhi
  • Al-Darimi
  • Al-Daraqutni
  • Sunan al-Kubra li’l-Bayhaqi

If one has aspiration then one should memorise hadith, utilising the following books in order:

  • Al-Arba’in al-Nawawiyah (with zawa’id Ibn Rajab)
  • Umdat al-Ahkam
  • Bulugh al-Maram
  • Al-Lu’lu wa al-Marjan
  • Al-Sahihayn

One should also read commentaries on the hadith collections, beginning with easier oes:

  • Al-Khattabi – A’lam al-Hadith Sharh Sahih al-Bukhari
  • Al-l-Nawawi – Sharh Sahih Muslim
  • Al-Munawi – Fayd al-Qadir

Whilst reading the hadith one should always have Ibn al-Athir’s Al-Nihayah fi Gharib al-Hadith at hand as it explains the difficult vocabulary.

Thereafter one should read the expansive commentaries:

  • Ibn Hajar – Fath al-Bari
  • Ibn Abd al-Barr – Al-Tamhid

Ulum al-Hadith should begin as young as intermediate school (aged twelve) with the following:

  • Al-Bayquniyah and/or Nukhbat al-Fikar with an easy sharh
  • Nuzhat al-Nazar or Al-Ba’ith al-Hathith (aged 15)
  • Al-Dhahabi – Al-Mawqiza
  • Muqadimah Ibn al-Salah with Nukat Ibn Hajar

Whilst studying the Muqadimah one should read the following takhrij works in order to see how the theory of mustalah is practically applied:

  • Mahmud al-Tahan – Usul al-Takhrij wa Dirasat al-Asanid
  • Ibn al-Mulaqqin – Badr al-Munir
  • Ibn Hajar – Talkhis al-Habir

Then one should study works which deal specifically with the methodology of al-jarh wa al-ta’dil:

  • Al-Laknawi – Al-Raf’ wa al-Takmil
  • Abu al-Hasan al-Masri – Shifa’ al-’Ilil
  • Al-Mizzi – Tahdhib al-Kamal

Then one should read books which deal with the sources of the Sunnah:

  • Al-Kattani – Risalat al-Mustatrifah
  • Akram Diya’ al-’Umari – Buhuth fi Tarikh al-Sunnah al-Musharifah

Then one should study the encyclopedic works:

  • Al-Suyuti – Tadrib al-Rawi
  • Al-Sakhawi – Fath al-Mughith
  • Al-San’ani – Tawdih al-Afkar
  • Al-Khatib – Al-Kifayah
  • Al-Hakim – Ma’rifat Ulum al-Haith
  • Ibn Rajab – Sharh ‘Ilal al-Tirmidhi
  • Ibn Abd al-Barr – Muqadimah al-Tamhid
  • Al-Khalili – Muqadimah al-Irshad

After this one ends with:

  • Al-Shafi’i – Al-Risalah
  • Muslim – Muqadimah
  • Abi Dawud – Risalah ila Ahl Makka

At this stage one should analyse chains of transmission independently. It is crucial to remember that each chain needs to be analysed individually and in context, understanding the methodology of the early hadith masters. One should be very careful in grading hadith and should strive to understand rather than innovate. The following books should be referred to often:

  • Al-Mizzi – Tahdhib al-Kamal (which was abridged by the following)
  • Ibn Hajar – Tahdhib al-Tahdib
  • Al-Dhahabi – Mizan al-I’tidal (abridged from Ibn ‘Adi’s al-Kamil)

These works derive from the following:

  • Ibn Abi Hatim – Al-Jarh wa al-Ta’dil
  • Al-Duqayli – Al-Du’afa
  • Ibn ‘Adi – Al-Kamil

The final word will be with the following master critics:

  • Yahya b. Mu’in
  • Ahmad b. Hanbal
  • Al-Bukhari

Reading through all the imams words on a narrator will give one great perspectives and one should strive to study this in detail.

One must also study deeply, and in immense detail, the books which deal with hidden defects (‘Ilal):

  • Ali b. al-Madini – Al-’Ilal
  • Al-Tirmidhi – Al-’Ilal
  • Ibn Abi Hatim – Al-’Ilal
  • Al-Daraqutni – ‘Ilal al-Ahadith (the most expansive work)

At this stage one will have reached a high degree of mastery and proficiency in hadith. One should then embark upon research projects in service of the Sunnah.

Source. and here.

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