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Old 08-02-2003, 20:22
Basma Basma is offline
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Post Explaining what One has knowledge of, Silence Otherwise

Explaining what One has knowledge of, Silence Otherwise

The Salaf used to refrain from explaining what they had not knowledge of. For instance, Ibn Jarir (At-Tabari) reported that Abű Mu’ammar said that Abű Bakr As-Sadidiq said, “Which land will carry me and which heaven will shade me if I said about Allâh’s Book that which I have no knowledge of? “ (At-Tabari 1:78) Ibn Jarir also reported that Anas narrated that ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab read the Ayah,
And fruits and Abbâ (herbage, etc.)
While standing on the Minbar. He then said, “We know the fruit, so what is the Abbâ?” He then said, “O ‘Umar! This is exaggeration.” (At-Tabari 24:229) This statement means that ‘Umar briefly wanted to know the exact nature of the Abbâ, for it was evident to him – that it is a plant that grows on earth, just as Allâh said,
And We cause therin the grain to grow. And grapes and clover plants (i.e. green fodder for the cattle) (80:27-28)
Ibn Jarir also recorded that Ibn Abi mulaykhah said that Ibn ‘Abbâs was asked about an ayah, “That if any of you is asked about, he will indulge in its Tafsir.” Without hesitation Ibn ‘Abbâs refused to say anything about it (meaning with his opinion). This narration has an authentic chain of narrators. He also narrated than Ibn Abi Mulaykah said, “A man asked Ibn ‘Abbâs about
One Day, the space whereof is a thousand years
Ibn ‘Abbâs asked him, ‘What is Day the measure whereof is fifty thousand years?'
The man said, ‘I only asked you to tell me.” Ibn Abbâs said, ‘They are two Days that Allâh has mentioned in His Book and He has better knowledge of them.’ He disliked commenting on the Book of Allâh whne he had no knowledge about it."
Al-Layth narrated that Yahyâ bin Sa’îd said that Sa’îd bin Al-Musayyib used to talk about what he knows of the Qur’an (At-Tabari 1:86). Also, Ayyűb, Ibn ‘Awn and Hishâm Ad-Distiwâ’î narrated that Mohammad bin Sîrîn said, “I asked ‘Ubaydah (meaning, As-Salmani) about an Ayah of the Qur’an and he said, “Those who had knowledge about the circumstances surrounding revelation of the Qur’an have perished. So fear Allâh and seek the right way.” Ash-Sha’bbi narrted that Masrűq said, “Avoid Tafsir, because it is narration related to Allâh.” (At-Tabari 1:86, for these quotes)
These authentic narrations from the companions and the Imâm of the Salaf (righteous ancestors) testify to their hesitation to indulge in the Tafsir of what they have no knowledge of. As for those who speak about what they have no linguistic and religious knowledge of, then there is no sin in this case. Hence, the scholars and the Imams, including the ones who we mentioned, issued statements of Tafsir and spoke about what they had knowledge of, but avoided what they had no knowledge of. Refraining from indulging in what they had no knowledge of is required of everyone, just as everyone is required to convey the knwoeldeg that they have when theu are asked, Allâh said,
To make it known and clear to mankind, and not to hide it. (3:187)
Also, a Hadîth narrated through several chains of narrators says,
“Whoever is asked about knowledge that he knows but hid it, will be tied with a muzzle of fire on the Day of Resurrection.” (Ahmad, At-Tirmidihi, and others)

Taken from Tafsir Ibn Kathir (Abridged) Vol-1

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