An Introduction to Sahih al-Bukhari: The Most Authentic Book of Hadith
Hadith are the sayings, actions and approvals of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) that were preserved by his companions and followers. Hadith are one of the main sources of Islamic law and guidance, along with the Quran. Among the many collections of hadith, one of the most renowned and respected is Sahih al-Bukhari, compiled by Imam Muhammad ibn Isma'el al-Bukhari (194-256 AH).
Sahih al-Bukhari is considered as the most authentic Islamic book after the Holy Quran. All of its narrations are authentic, meaning they have a sound chain of transmission from the Prophet (peace be upon him) to the collector. Imam Bukhari was a meticulous and rigorous scholar who traveled extensively to gather and verify hadith from various sources. He spent 16 years to complete his work, which contains about 7563 hadith (including repetitions) in 97 books.
Imam Bukhari's method of classification was unique and innovative. He arranged his hadith according to topics and subtopics, and linked them to relevant verses of the Quran. He also provided headings and subheadings for each chapter, which summarize the main points of the hadith. He often gave multiple narrations for the same hadith, with slight variations in wording or chain of transmission, to show the different ways that the hadith were reported.
Sahih al-Bukhari covers a wide range of topics, such as faith, knowledge, prayer, fasting, charity, pilgrimage, marriage, divorce, inheritance, trade, justice, warfare, prophethood, miracles, manners, morals, virtues, sins, etc. It also contains biographical details of the Prophet (peace be upon him) and his companions, as well as historical events and anecdotes. Sahih al-Bukhari is a treasure trove of wisdom and guidance for Muslims of all times and places.
Sahih al-Bukhari has been translated into many languages, including Sinhala. Sinhala is the official language of Sri Lanka, where Islam is the third largest religion after Buddhism and Hinduism. There are about 2 million Muslims in Sri Lanka, who make up about 10% of the population. The Sinhala translation of Sahih al-Bukhari is available online at https://www.islamicfinder.org/hadith/bukhari/. This website also provides other useful features such as prayer times, qibla direction, Islamic calendar, etc.
We hope that this article has given you a brief overview of Sahih al-Bukhari and its importance in Islam. We encourage you to read and study this book and benefit from its teachings. May Allah guide us all to the truth and grant us success in this world and the hereafter.
One of the ways to learn more about hadith is to study the sciences of hadith, which are the disciplines that deal with the collection, classification, verification, interpretation and application of hadith. Some of the main sciences of hadith are:
Ilm al-Rijal: The science of the men, which studies the biographies and reliability of the narrators of hadith.
Ilm al-Jarh wa al-Ta'dil: The science of criticism and accreditation, which evaluates the authenticity and weakness of the narrations and their chains of transmission.
Ilm al-Matn wa al-Sanad: The science of the text and the chain, which analyzes the wording and structure of the hadith and their relation to the Quran and other hadith.
Ilm al-Takhrij wa al-Tasmiya: The science of extraction and attribution, which traces the sources and references of the hadith in various books and collections.
Ilm al-Diraya wa al-Fiqh al-Hadith: The science of comprehension and jurisprudence of hadith, which derives rulings and principles from the hadith and applies them to various situations and issues.
Studying these sciences helps one to appreciate the depth and richness of the hadith literature, and to understand its role and authority in Islam. It also helps one to avoid errors and misconceptions that may arise from misquoting or misinterpreting the hadith. However, studying these sciences requires a lot of knowledge, skills and guidance from qualified scholars and teachers. Therefore, one should not rely on one's own opinion or interpretation, but seek help from those who are well-versed in these sciences. a474f39169