Is the Hadith saying, ‘If it were not for you, I would not have created creation,’ authentic?

Quran

Hadith

Islamic Text

Classification: Mawdu’ (Fabricated)

Many classical scholars of Hadith mentioned that the Hadith is fabricated or baseless. Imam al-Dhahabi quotes Imam Ibn al-Jowzi, saying it is fabricated. 

حَدِيث: مُحَمَّد بن عِيسَى بن حبَان الْمَدَائِنِي، ثَنَا مُحَمَّد بن الصَّباح، ثَنَا عَليّ بن الْحسن، عَن إِبْرَاهِيم بن اليسع، عَن الْعَبَّاس الضَّرِير، عَن الْخَلِيل بن مرّة، عَن يحيى الْبَصْرِيّ، عَن زادان، عَن سلمَان، قَالَ: ” أَتَى أَعْرَابِي جَاف بدوي … ” فَذكر خَبرا طَويلا سمجاً، وَآخره: ” يَا مُحَمَّد، لولاك مَا خلقت الدُّنْيَا “. قَالَ ابْن الْجَوْزِيّ: مَوْضُوع بِلَا شكّ، وَيحيى الْبَصْرِيّ تَالِف كَذَّاب، والسند ظلمَة. (تلخيص كتاب الموضوعات)

At the end of the long Hadith is ‘O Muhammad, were it not for you, I would not have created the Dunya (world).’ Ibn al-Jowzi said, it is fabricated without doubt. Yahya al-Basri (a narrator in the chain), is rejected and a fabricator. The chain is dark. (Talkhees Kitab al-Mowdo’aat). 

Many scholars included this narration in their collections of Fabricated Hadith.

وَلَوْلاكَ مَا خَلَقْتُ الدُّنْيَا، مَوْضُوع: أَبُو السكين وَإِبْرَاهِيم وَيحيى الْبَصْرِيّ ضعفاء متروكون وَقَالَ الفلاس يَحْيَى كَذَّاب يُحدث بالموضوعات. (اللآلىء المصنوعة في الأحاديث الموضوعة)

‘And were it not for you, I would not have created the Dunya (world).’ Fabricated, Abu al-Sakeen, Ibraheem and Yahya al-Basri are all rejected narrators. And al-Falaas said Yahya is a liar and he narrates fabricated Hadith. (Imam al-Sayuti, al-La’ali al-Masno’ah).

لَوْلاكَ لَمَا خَلَقْتُ الأَفْلاكَ قَالَ الصَّغَانِيُّ مَوْضُوعٌ (المصنوع في معرفة الحديث الموضوع)

‘Were it not for you, I would not have created the cosmos.’ Al-Saghaani said it is fabricated.  (Imam Ali al-Qari, al-Masnoo’ Fi Ma’rifati al-hadith al-Mowdoo’). 

حديث: “لَوْلاكَ لَمَا خَلَقْتُ الأَفْلاكَ. قال الصنعاني: موضوع.

‘Were it not for you, I would not have created the cosmos.’ al-San’aani said it is fabricated. (Imam al-Showkaani, al-Fawaid al-Majmoah).

Some scholars mentioned that this wording is fabricated, however the meaning is sound. Such a position is fine in principle, however a person taking such a position does need to provide sufficient evidence to prove the claim.

Statements of such scholars should not be misunderstood, they are not saying it is permitted to narrate a fabricated Hadith, rather there is evidence to support the meaning contained within it.

لولاك لولاك ما خلقت الأفلاك.قال الصغاني موضوع، وأقول لكن معناه صحيح وإن لم يكن حديثا.

‘Were it not for you, were it not for you, I would not have created the cosmos.’ Al-Saghaani said it is fabricated. I (al-Ajlooni) say, but its meaning is sound even if it is not a Hadith. (Imam al-Ajlooni, Kashf al-Khafa).

Imam al-Ajlooni saying, above, that the meaning is sound does not mean this particular narration or wording is authentic. Rather Imam al-Ajlooni has to explain what he means by that and present evidence for it. Unfortunately, he did not do any of this, therefore his words cannot be used to prove anything or even speculate, rather we have to say it is a mistake to use these words of his to claim anything other than the fact this narration is fabricated, because he was very clear regarding that point.

Despite these statements from Major Imams of Ahl al-Sunnah, some people claim the Hadith is authentic and is found in books and with chains not mentioned by these scholars. Although this is unlikely, if they were to present an authentic chain of narrators from a recognized original book of narrations (Riwayah), then it should be considered.

The onus is always on the one quoting a Hadith to prove it, not the opposite. Unfortunately, many people, who are ignorant of the science of Hadith, do not understand this nowadays, and if a narration they mention is questioned, they respond by saying you must prove it is false. This is absolutely incorrect, rather the onus is on the narrator to prove its authenticity, from original books with complete narrations. Not from secondary or tertiary books and certainly not from contemporary books. 

Some people quote such narrations despite knowing they are fabricated, they say these narrations praise the Prophet ﷺ and therefore it is good to narrate them.  This is complete falsehood and it contradicts the teaching of the Prophet ﷺ. Also we have so much praise of the Prophet ﷺ in the Holy Quran and authentic Hadith, we have no need whatsoever to fabricate things to praise our beloved Prophet ﷺ.

عَنْ أَبِي هُرَيْرَةَ قَالَ: قَالَ رَسُولُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ: كَفَى بِالْمَرْءِ كَذِبًا أَنْ يُحَدِّثَ بِكُلِّ مَا سَمِعَ (بَابُ النَّهْيِ عَنِ الْحَدِيثِ بِكُلِّ مَا سَمِعَ

“Abu Hurairah said that the Prophet ﷺ said, ‘It is enough of a lie for a person to narrate everything that he hears.’ (Sahih Muslim, Chapter 3, Prohibition of Narrating Everything One Hears).

And Allah Most High knows best

– Answered by Shaykh Noor-ud-deen (04.01.2021)

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