How strong is the Hadith of Handhalah?

Quran

Hadith

Islamic Text

The Hadith of Handhalah is Sahih (Authentic). It is narrated with a complete chain by Imam Muslim in his Sahih collection.

عَنْ حَنْظَلَةَ الْأُسَيِّدِيِّ، قَالَ: وَكَانَ مِنْ كُتَّابِ رَسُولِ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ – قَالَ: لَقِيَنِي أَبُو بَكْرٍ، فَقَالَ: كَيْفَ أَنْتَ؟ يَا حَنْظَلَةُ قَالَ: قُلْتُ: نَافَقَ حَنْظَلَةُ، قَالَ: سُبْحَانَ اللهِ مَا تَقُولُ؟ قَالَ: قُلْتُ: نَكُونُ عِنْدَ رَسُولِ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ، يُذَكِّرُنَا بِالنَّارِ وَالْجَنَّةِ، حَتَّى كَأَنَّا رَأْيُ عَيْنٍ، فَإِذَا خَرَجْنَا مِنْ عِنْدِ رَسُولِ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ، عَافَسْنَا الْأَزْوَاجَ وَالْأَوْلَادَ وَالضَّيْعَاتِ، فَنَسِينَا كَثِيرًا، قَالَ أَبُو بَكْرٍ: فَوَاللهِ إِنَّا لَنَلْقَى مِثْلَ هَذَا، فَانْطَلَقْتُ أَنَا وَأَبُو بَكْرٍ، حَتَّى دَخَلْنَا عَلَى رَسُولِ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ، قُلْتُ: نَافَقَ حَنْظَلَةُ، يَا رَسُولَ اللهِ فَقَالَ رَسُولُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ «وَمَا ذَاكَ؟» قُلْتُ: يَا رَسُولَ اللهِ نَكُونُ عِنْدَكَ، تُذَكِّرُنَا بِالنَّارِ وَالْجَنَّةِ، حَتَّى كَأَنَّا رَأْيُ عَيْنٍ، فَإِذَا خَرَجْنَا مِنْ عِنْدِكَ، عَافَسْنَا الْأَزْوَاجَ وَالْأَوْلَادَ وَالضَّيْعَاتِ، نَسِينَا كَثِيرًا فَقَالَ رَسُولُ اللهِ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ: «وَالَّذِي نَفْسِي بِيَدِهِ إِنْ لَوْ تَدُومُونَ عَلَى مَا تَكُونُونَ عِنْدِي، وَفِي الذِّكْرِ، لَصَافَحَتْكُمُ الْمَلَائِكَةُ عَلَى فُرُشِكُمْ وَفِي طُرُقِكُمْ، وَلَكِنْ يَا حَنْظَلَةُ سَاعَةً وَسَاعَةً» ثَلَاثَ مَرَّاتٍ

Handhalah al-Usayyidi , who was amongst the scribes of Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ), narrated: Abu Bakr  met me and said, How are you O Handhalah? I said, Handhalah has become a hypocrite. He (Abu Bakr) said, Transcendent is Allah, what are you saying? I said, when we are in the company of Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) he reminds us of Hellfire and Paradise, until it is as if we are seeing them with our very eyes, but when we leave the company of Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) and attend to our wives, our children and our work, we forget so much. Abu Bakr  said, By Allah, I also experience the same.

So I and Abu Bakr went to Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) and I said, O Messenger of Allah, Handhalah has become a hypocrite. Thereupon Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, ‘What is it?’ I said, O Messenger of Allah, when we are in your company, you remind us about Hellfire and Paradise and it is as if we are seeing them with our own eyes, and when we leave your company and attend to our wives, children and work we forget so much. Thereupon Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) said, ‘By Him in Whose Hand is my soul, if you remain as you are in my presence or during Dhikr (remembrance of Allah), the Angels will shake hands with you upon your beds and in your pathways, but rather O Handhalah, a time (for this) and a time (for that). He (the Holy Prophet ﷺ) said this thrice.’ (Muslim, 2750 -12).

This Hadith of Sayidina Handhalah is Sahih. It is narrated by Imam Muslim in his Sahih collection with a complete chain of narrators, so it is Sahih. All Hadith that have complete chains in Bukhari and Muslim are Sahih.

وأجمعت الأمة على صحة هذين الكتابين، ووجوب العمل بأحاديثهما (تهذيب الأسماء واللغات)

The Ummah is unanimously agreed that these two books (Sahih al-Bukhari and Sahih Muslim) are Sahih, and that their Hadith narrations must be acted upon. (Imam al-Nawawi, Tadheeb al-Ismaa wa al-Lughaat).

And Allah Most High Knows Best.

– Answered by Shaykh Noorud-deen Rashid (30.08.2021)

See also:

Are all Hadith in Bukhari and Muslim Sahih?

What do the different Hadith classification terms mean?

Narrating Hadith Without Reference

Referencing Hadith Correctly

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