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Week 4: Transforming the Sunnah/Hadith into Song

The Sunnah plays an essential role in the practice of Islam as well as the Hadith, as stated in the Infidel of Love “As a result of such characterizations of the Prophet, after his death, Muhammad’s customary norms (sunnah) gradually came to form an important basis on which to establish legal, personal, and pietistic norms for the faithful” (Infidel of Love, Pg. 117).

I choose to create a rap song based on the methods of transmission known as the Isnad, as well as recreate the Matn, or actual hadith. I did this in order to take a contemporary component of Islam and express it within a creative and artistic way, essentially transforming the text to aesthetically appeal to our generation. I chose to focus on hadith from the sunni collection of Sahih Muslim and Bukhari as these hadith have legitimate chain of transmission and thus have been defined as “sound” by religious scholars. I chose to research Imam Bukhari and the science behind establishing a specific Sunnah or hadith as strong, good, or weak. I then broke down the approach Imam Bukhari took, discussing the requirements of hadith legitimization within my song. This characterization of Hadith is a very controversial topic in Islamic history as many storytellers chose to fabricate tales of the prophet due to the oratorical focus of arab society. Some sects of Muslims chose to ignore the Hadith and Sunnah all together and focus solely on the message of the Quran, even though verses in the Quran tell believers to follow the example of the prophet muhammad and strive to his example. Regardless of this belief, the Hadith and Sunnah play instrumental roles in the practice of Islam and serve as supplementary guidance to the Quran.

The actual hadith chosen is from the Sahih Bukahri:


Ibn Umar reported that the Phophet of God, upon him be peace, said, “if someone seeks refuge in the name of God, give him refuge. If someone asks in the name of God, give him something. If someone does you a favor, repay him. If you cannot find anything with which to repay him then pray for him so that he knows that you appreciate what he has done for you.”


Related by Muhammad Ibn Ismail Ibn Ibrahim Ibn al-Mughirah Ibn Bardizbah al-Bukhari. Also known as Al-Bukhari or Imam Bukhari, (194 AH / 810 CE -256 AH / 870 CE). A famous Islamic scholar, born in Bukhara, in what is today Uzbekistan. Best known for authoring the hadith collection named Sahih Bukhari.

My Song

 Hadith is comprised of matn and Isnad, compiled over time like the libraries of Baghdad, usually beginning from the word of a companion, then handed through time, here I attempt to make it all rhyme,

The conditions of Isnad in Bukhari rely on trust,

First the narrator must be just,

Plus excellent memory is not enough,

They need be deemed

Worthy of reporting technique in ahadith by the muhadditheen

The chain has to be complete and concrete

And 2 consecutive narratives must meet according to Bukhari

Who also relates the eight requirements?

Of hadith transmit

One can either listen receive permission or acquire a hadith written

The hadith of the transmitter can be found or handed down

It can be mentioned when presented

or collected through bequest

No time to digress, here is an example of what you usually get,

According to Bukhari the scholar yahya ibn bukayr narrated from al layth from uqayl from ibn shuhba from urwa from the beautiful aisha who said “whenever the prophet was given an option, between two concoctions, he used to select the easier of the two, as long is it was true and not haram, but if it was wrong, he would avoid at all costs,

Now I know during the Isnad you got lost, so listen up this is what I got,

Al Hakim the third fatimate caliph,

And 16th imam of the Ismaili,

The last in this extended Isnad family,

Heard from Abu `Amr `Uthman ibn Ahmad As-Sammak Al-Baghdadi, Who gladly

Narrated the actions of the prophet Muhammad Sallahualayhiwaslam, From Al-Hasan ibn Mukarram

Who related from the historian Aban bin`Uthman bin Affan the message relayed, By Yunus ibn Zaid

From the sunni Ibn Shihab Al-Zuhri

Who heard from the companion`Abdullah ibn Ka`b ibn Malik

Who remained held back, from the battle of tabuk, having no clue, that the prophet maintained a view, of care on his behalf, placing him with good tidings in the eye of the most divine, allowing kab to report each following line, from his father who he chose to guide, when he became blind, the ensuing story will unfold as told: Kab approached Ibn Abi Hadrad who was in debt like a recent college grad, kab asked hadrad to pay him back the owed cost, in the middle of the mosque, tempers flared, as hadrad wasn’t prepared, to fork over the indebted amount like cab fair, eyes interlocked into a stare, Kab became perturbed, lacking feeling like a severed nerve, he began shouting like spoken word, just then the prophet heard, the argument and approached with a verd, ict, lifting the curtain of his apartment, the messenger said “O Kab! Write off a part of your debt” in which he meant to remit half of it, Kab chose to act on respect and honor the prophet’s intellect, so he proceeded to accept half of the debt at the moment


~ by zaossey on .

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