A Brief Intro to The Grand Muhaddith of our era:
Shaykh Muhammad ‘Awwamah (hafizahullah)
(Prepared by his son, Shaykh Muhyuddeen,
Translated by Muhammad ibn Moulana Haroon Abasoomer)
The eminent Islamic-scholar Shaykh Muhammad Ibn Muhammad ʿAwwamah was born on the 1st of January 1940 in Aleppo.
Before he commenced his studies in the year 1953, he used to attend the lessons of Shaykh Muhammad As-Salqini. From the very beginning he was the student of Shaykh Abdullah Sirajuddin (rahimahullah). In the year 1378 A.H. (1957) he became the student of Shaykh Abdul-Fattah Abu Ghuddah (rahimahullah). He was eventually considered as the most preferred and exceptional student of both these great personalities.
He enrolled in the Islamic Shariʿah faculty in the year 1382 A.H. (1961). In the same year, he was appointed as a teacher and librarian at Madrasah Shaʾbaniyyah, which was the institute of his Shaykh and teacher, Shaykh Abdullah Sirajuddin (rahimahullah) There he taught numerous subjects until 1400 A.H. (1979/80) when he left Syria. He also was in charge of the administration of the madrasah for some time.
In the month of Safar of the year 1379 AH, (1958) he travelled to Egypt, where he met many great and outstanding ʿulama.
Amongst them are:
- Shaykh Ahmad ibnus Siddiq Al-Ghumari (rahimahullah)
- Shaykh Abdullah ibnus Siddiq Al-Ghumari (rahimahullah)
- Shaykh Abdul-Wahhab Abdul-Latif (rahimahullah)
- Shaykh Muhammad Abu Zahrah (rahimahullah)
He is gifted with distinct academic power and evident extraordinary qualities. The people of Aleppo had high regard for him and they considered him equal in rank to his teachers.
While still in his youth, he was appointed as a teacher at the Masjid Ar-Rawdah, which was at that time considered to be a prime seat of learning.
His Shaykh and teacher, Abdul-Fattah Abu Ghuddah (rahimahullah) has said with regards to him:
“My student of yesterday and comrade of today.”
He also praised him as:
“A great scholar and researcher.”
Shaykh ʿAwwamah emigrated to Madinah Munawwarah in the year 1400 A.H. (1980) Here he joined the Islamic university, where he established the faculty of academic research, which is today called:
“مركز خدمة السنة و السيرة النبوية”.
Centre for the service of the traditions and biography of the Prophet .
His first research was on the book “إتحاف المهرة” (a volumous book of Hadith.)
In the year 1406 A.H. (1986), he established a bureau for the research of Islamic literature. For 12 years, he also served the publishing house of Darul Qiblah.
He is a person of brilliant focus, ideas and an advocator of sublime methodologies. This is apparent in his two books:
أثر الحديث الشريف في اختلاف الأئمة الفقهاء
Atharul hadithish sharīf fi ikhtilāfil a’immatil fuqahā
أدب الاختلاف في مسائل العلم و الدين
Adabul ikhtilāf fī masāilil ʿilm wad dīn.
His methods with regards to the science of الجرح و التعديل (the validation of the narrators of Hadith) are so unique, critical and foresighted, that they are ideal examples for us to follow.
He is a distinguished authority in the field of research. The famous Shaykh and Allamah Muhammad Sa’id At-Tantawi (rahimahullah) said with regards to him:
“I know none upon the surface of the earth, who is more
knowledgeable in the field of research than him.”
His publications thus far are as follows:
1. أثر الحديث الشريف في اختلاف الأئمة الفقهاء
Atharul hadithish sharif fi ikhtilafil a’immatil fuqaha
2. أدب الاختلاف في مسائل العلم و الدين
Adabul ikhtilaf fi masailil ʿilm wad din
These two books are translated in some languages and are also taught in some universities.
3. مسند عمر بن عبد العزيز للباغندي
He annotated and explained its Ahadith together with a supplement of additional narrations.
4. الأنساب للسمعاني
He researched a portion of it.
5. تقريب التهذيب
by Hafiz ibn Hajar (rahimahullah) together with the foot notes of ʿAllamah ʿAbdullah Al-Basri (rahimahullah) and his student Al-Mirghani rahimahullah).
6. الكاشف للذهبي
including the footnotes of Sibt ibn Aʾjami (rahimahullah) along with a detailed introduction and critical analysis of certain aspects in 5 volumes.
7. مجالس ابن ناصر الدين
of Hafiz ibn Nasirudin Ad-Dimashqi (rahimahullah) in which the author expounded on the commentary of one single verse of the noble Quran.
8. من صحاح الأحاديث القدسية This book consists of one hundred Ahadith-Qudsi, with their references and commentary.
9. المختار من فرائد النقول و الأخبار A book comprising of many inspiring incidents which serve as guidelines for every student.
10. القول البديع by Allamah As-Sakhawi (rahimahullah). This annotated version is considered to be the most complete and (authentic) one.
11. السنن of Imām Abu Dawud (rahimahullah) in 6 volumes. He annotated this celebrated compilation of Hadith from eight manuscripts, one of them being the personal copy of Hafiz ibn Hajar.
12. الشمائل المحمدية of Imam Tirmidhi (rahimahullah) together with the commentary of Allamah Al-Bajuri (rahimahullah).
13. المصنف of Ibn Abi Shaybah (rahimahullah). A volumous and priceless work on Hadith, which took sixteen years to complete. He researched and sourced every Hadith and also commented on them. It is printed in 26 volumes.
14. دراسة حديثية a detailed study and in depth analysis of the great Hanafi collection of Hadith: Nasbur rayah as well as Fathul Qadīr, Sharhul Hidayah.
Most of the above mentioned books have been repeatedly reprinted. His habit has been to refine the new editions and not to merely re-print a verbatim copy of the previous edition.
In all his researched books, he endeavours to acquire the personal copies of the respective authors. Allah has made this possible for him in the majority of them. This also contributes to the uniqueness of his works.
Shaykh Muhammad ʿAwwamah became famous through his introductions of his researched books. These introductions generally serve as a critical yet fruitful and academic analysis of the book at hand.
He is engaged in the service of knowledge and its seekers for the past fifty years. Despite his illnesses, he continues to do so with astounding loyalty in Madinah Munawwarah. May Allāh grant the respected shaykh good health, a pleasant lengthy life and safety from all evil and calamities. May He also continue to benefit the ummah with his priceless wisdom. (Amin)
 Which translates as: “The role of Hadith in the differences among the jurists.”
 Which Translates as: “Respect in difference of opinion in the issues of Knowledge and Din.”
 A Hadith Qudsi is one in which Rasulullah (sallallahu ‘alayhi wasallam) explicitly attributes the text to Allah Ta’ala directly.