In these times of neglect towards din, its sad that some people prefer to discourage the masses from proven acts of worship. The sad part is that it’s all done in the name of promoting Islam!
One such deed is: Salat al-Tasbih.
In light of the great controversy regarding the authenticity of the Hadiths about Salat al-Tasbih, I present the following:
The ruling regarding Salat al-Tasbih is that it is permissible and, in fact, very meritorious. (Shami, vol.2 pg.27)
The Hadith in question has been accepted as sahih (authentic) or hasan (sound) by various eminent masters of Hadith.
Those that claimed that it was weak; did so on the basis of a few chains of narration that they had examined. However, if all the various chains be gathered, there will remain no doubt as to its authenticity.
Hafiz Ibn Hajar al-‘Asqalani (rahimahullah) states that sometimes a Muhaddith classifies a certain Hadith as weak, very weak or even as a fabrication based on one or two chains that are available to him, although there are other chains through which that Hadith may be classified as hasan (sound) or even sahih (authentic). (Al-Nukat vol.2 pg.848-850)
Hafiz Ibn Hajar (rahimahullah) then mentions the Hadith of Salat al-Tasbih as an example for this and he accepts it to be either sahih (authentic) or hasan (sound) and not da’if (weak). (Ibid)
Imam Tirmidhi (rahimahullah) says that many ‘Ulama, among them Imam ‘Abdullah ibn al-Mubarak (rahimahullah), have accepted the virtue of Salat al-Tasbih. (Al-Tirmidhi vol.2 pg.348; hadith 481)
Allamah Mundhiri (rahimahullah) mentions many muhaddithin have accepted it’s authenticity. From among them are: Imam Abu-Bakr al-Ajurri, Imam Abu Muhammad al-Misri (Ustadh of Allamah Mundhiri), Hafiz Abul-Hasan Maqdisi (Ustadh of Allamah Mundhiri), Imam Abu-Dawud and Imam Hakim (rahimahumullah) (Targhib vol.1 pg.468)
Allamah Suyuti (rahimahullah) has enumerated up to 20 great muhaddithin who have accepted its authenticity. Besides the ones mentioned above, some of them are: Imams: Abu-Sa’eed al-Sam’ani, Khatib al-Baghdadi, Hafiz ibn-Mandah, al-Bayhaqi, al-Subki, Nawawi, ibn al-Salah, Abu-Musa al-Madini, al-Ala’i, Sirajuddin al-Bulqini, Zarkashi and others (rahmatullahi ‘alal jamee’). (al-Lal al-Masnu’ah vol.2 pg.40)
The following list of muhaddithin is of those who have written detailed articles on this matter: Imams al-Darani, Abu-Musa al-Madini, ibn Mandah, ibn Nasiruddin al-Dimishqi, al-Suyyuti and Ibn Tulun and others(rahimahumullah).
Imam al-Bayhaqi (rahimahullah) states that ‘Salat al-Tasbih was the practice of ‘Abdullah ibn al-Mubarak and many pious predecessors of various eras. And that this in fact lends strength to its acceptability.’ (Shu’b al-Imam vol.1 pg.427; ‘Ilmiyyah)
The books of Hanafi Fiqh support the view of its acceptance. (Refer Rad al-Muhtar vol.2 pg.27; HM Sa’eed). And several Shafi’i Jurists have also endorsed it, namely Imam al-Mahalli, Imam al-Juwayni, Imam al-Haramayn, Imam Ghazali, Imam Rafi’i and others. (Al-La-ali vol.2 pg.43; al-Adhkar of Imam Nawawi pg.242)
Khatib Baghdadi (rahimahullah), states that there is no reason for not being permissible.
Hafiz ibn Hajar (rahimahullah) has mentioned a quotation from Imam Malik from which it could be deduced that it was acceptable in his madhhab. (Refer Futuhat al-Rabbaniyya vol.4 pg.321) Qadi Iyad Maliki (rahimahullah) has also accepted its virtue. (Ibid)
As far as Imam Ahmad ibn Hambal (rahimahullah) is concerned, Hafiz ibn Hajar (rahimahullah) has stated that he had reserved his decision and was possibly inclined towards its acceptability later on. (Futuhat al-Rabbaniyyah vol.4 pg.318, 320)
From the above, it is apparent that there can be no doubt regarding Salat al-Tasbih being an act of virtue which has been established authentically and is accepted by a large number of celebrated scholars of hadith as well as the scholars of Fiqh (jurisprudence).
Imams Tajuddin Subki and Badruddin Zarkashi (rahimahumallah) have stated that it is from the fundamentals of din and anyone who discards it despite knowing its virtue is not on the correct path. (Futuhat vol.4 pg.321-322)
Our senior ‘Ulama have always encouraged offering this salah on special occasions, like: Laylatul Qadr, Laylatul Bara’ah (15th night of Sha’ban) etc.
Click here for an article of the format and procedure of Salatut Tasbih, prepared by my student, Moulana Zeyad Danka of Dar Al-Mazeed Publications.
And Allah Ta’ala Knows Best