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Fabricating Lies Against the Prophet After His Death

While lies were fabricated against the Prophet during his lifetime, it is to be observed that lies were multiplied and spread after his demise, with numerous Companions being there, and religion rendered vulnerable, and subject to people’s falsification. This falsity was even more increased after the death of Umar-since he, as is known, used to intimidate people (against relating hadith) – to the extent that the abundance of traditions attributed to the Messenger of Allah appalled the eminent Companions. Muslim, in the introduction to his book, reported on the authority of Tawus that he said: This man (i.e. Bushayr91 ibn Ka’b) came near Ibn Abbas and started talking to him. Ibn Abbas said to him: Go back to so and so hadith, when he returned. Then he again said to him: Return to so and so hadith, and so did he, saying: I know not what is the matter? Have you recognized all of my a hadith and denied this? Or denied my hadith as a whole but recognized this one? Ibn Abbas said: We used to relate hadith from the Messenger of Allah when no one could dare fabricating lies against him. But when people plunged into narrating extensively (with falsification) from the Messenger of Allah, we gave up relating hadith from him.92

Bushayr ibn Ka’b al-Adwi came to Ibn Abbas starting narrating with reiterating the clause: “Said the Messenger of Allah”, till Ibn Abbas refused to give him permission to narrate beside being at odds with him. So he said: O Ibn Abbas, what is the matter that you disdain from listening to my hadith? Whenever I relate the Prophet’s hadith you turn away?! Ibn Abbas said: For a long period, when hearing someone saying: “Said the Messenger of Allah”, our eyes would forestall him, and our ears would be heeding to him. But when people mounted the obstinate and submissive (i.e. competed in narrating the hadith), we wouldn’t take (accept) from people except that of which we are assured!

Ibn Abi Mulaykah is reported to have said: I sent a letter to Ibn Abbas asking him to write me a book and keep it away from me. He said: What a sincere son; he wants me to choose the affairs for him thoroughly and conceal from him. He says: He asked to bring him the book Qada’ ‘Ali. Then he embarked on writing down some excerpts from it, declaring whenever passing by anything: By God, this issue was not judged by Ali unless that he might have erred!

It is reported that Abu Bakr ibn Ayyash said: I heard al-Mughirah saying: No one was regarding my relating from him (S) as true except some among the companions of Abd Allah ibn Mas’ud.

We be content with these texts indicating fabrication of lies against the Messenger of Allah during his lifetime and after his death. This abominable practice was not only done by the heretics and capricious and enemies of religion, but it was followed too by the upright, as will be manifest in the chapter “The Righteous Fabricators” in this book.


91. Bushayr is the diminutive of the name Bishr. He was reporting from Abu Dharr and Abu Darda' and authenticated by Ibn Sa'd and al-Nasa'i. Refer to the chapter "Fabrication in Hadith and Its Causes" which will come later on.

92. If people rode out dangers and experienced difficulties during the era of Ibn Abbas, so how would be the case with those who succeded him? And they, as I quoted before the Utterance of Abu Bakr, used to relate from the Messenger of Allah traditions regarding which there was disagreement among them!

Adapted from: "Lights on the Muhammadan Sunnah" by: "Mahmud Ali Riyyah"

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