Q&A Caliphate in Jerusalem

Question

Is the following tradition Sahih, authentic?  I have read that it is reported that the Messenger of Allah said:

In the book of Ibn Asakir entitled the “Great history of Damascus,” Yunis Ibnu Maysara Ibnu Halbas is reported to have said: The Messenger of Allah (saw) said: This rule (i.e. the Khilafah) will be after me in Madina, then in al-Sham, then in the Peninsula, then in Iraq, then in Medina, then in Bayt al-Maqdis (al-Quds).  And when the rule is established in al-Quds, that would be its place and thereafter nobody will be able to remove it

Others have quoted it as being:

Ibn ‘Asakir quoted Yunus Ibn Maysara Ibn Halbas as saying that Rasoolallah (saw) had stated: “This matter (namely the Khilafa) will be after me in Madina, then in Syria, then in the Jazira, then in Iraq, then in Madina, then in Jerusalem. If it is in Jerusalem, its home country is there, and if any people expel it, it will not return there for ever.”
[Ibn ‘Asakir, Tahdhib Tarikh Dimashq al-Kabir, Volume 1, p42. (Dar al-Masiyrah, Beirut, 1979]

Answer

  1. The adith is not Ṣaḥīḥ, namely it is not graded as being authentic beyond reasonable doubt. The isnād is particularly problematic, it is not continuously connected throughout, therefore not meeting the required standards to be accepted as an authentic tradition.
  2. Specifically, the isnād is not connected to the Messenger of Allah, peace and blessings be upon him, there is possibly up to two missing narrators here. Compounding this, we cannot be certain that there is no Tadlees (misrepresentation in reporting) or concealing of weak narrators, given the presence of mudaliseen (those practicing Tadlees) within the isnad.
  3. Further to that, we are unable to locate any other Ṣaḥīḥ or even ḥasan traditions that come close to this to discern whether there is any attestation.

Reasoning

  1. From a cursory scan of the corpus of aḥadith, the narration appears in the following two collections:
    • Tārikh Dimishq by Ibn ‘Asākir (d. 1176 CE) [Vol. 1, p. 185, edition: Dar al-Fikr, Beirut 1995]
    • Kitāb al-Fitan by Nu’aym ibn Ḥammād (d. 843 CE) [Shamela online edition, no. 672]
  1. That reported by Ibn ‘Asākir is as follows:

قرأت بخط أبي الحسين محمد بن عبد الله الرازي أنا أبو الحسن أحمد بن عمير بن جوصا نا أبو عامر موسى بن عامر نا الوليد بن مسلم نا مروان بن جناح عن يونس بن ميسرة بن حلبس قال قال رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم هذا الأمر كائن بعدي بالمدينة ثم بالشام ثم بالجزيرة ثم بالعراق ثم بالمدينة ثم ببيت المقدس فإذا كان ببيت المقدس فثم عقر دارها ولن يخرجها قوم فتعود إليهم أبدا

I read in the writing of Abul’Ḥussein Muḥammad ibn Abdullah al-Rāzi, Abul’Ḥasan Aḥmad ibn Umayr ibn Jawsā, Abu Aāmir Musa ibn Aāmir reports al-Waleed ibn Muslim Marwān ibn Jannāh reports from Yunus ibn Maysara ibn Ḥalbas he said the Messenger of Allah peace and blessings be upon him said: This matter will be after me in Medina, then in al-Shām (Levant), then in the Peninsula, then in Iraq, then in Medina, then in Bayt al-Maqdis (Jerusalem). If it is in Bayt al-Maqdis, its home country is there, and if any people expel it, it will not ever return there.

In essence, Nu’aym ibn Ḥammād reported the same, bar a minor wording omission, but the isnad he presents is the same although starting from al-Waleed ibn Muslim.  Evidently, the line of reporting is Syrian at root.

  1. Absent from the isnād is a Companion narrator who expresses that he or she heard the Messenger of Allah peace and blessings be upon him saying. That link is missing, making the narration mursal, which as we know by its very nature is considered ḍaef (weak) and cannot can be utilised as proof on its own.  The narrator who is in the channel is Yunus ibn Maysara ibn Ḥ  Biographical entries for this narrator are not negative, many authorities have given him the assessment of being thiqa (trustworthy), such as al-Dāraquṭni and Abu Dāwud; Abu Ḥātim said of him: ‘He was one of the best people, he used to recite in the masjid of Damascus.’  But, he is not a Companion, rather a successor and his death is recorded as being 132AH (750 CE).
  2. Within the well-known six collections, he appears in a limited number of narrations in the Sunan collections of Abu Dāwud and Ibn Mājah.  Although varying in authenticity, even there, mostly there is an additional narrator between him and the Companion narrating from the Messenger of Allah, peace and

    Have you not seen those who give their loyalty to people with whom Allah is angry? They are neither with you nor with them, and knowingly swear to lies. Allah has prepared a severe torment for them: what they do is truly evil. They have used their oaths to cover up [their false deeds], and barred others from the path of Allah. A humiliating torment awaits them – neither their wealth nor their children will be of any use to them against Allah – they will be the inhabitants of Hell, where they will remain. [Qur’an 58: 14/17]

    blessings be upon him [See: al-Mizzi, Tahzeeb al-Kamāl fi’ Asmā’ al-Rijāl, Vol. 11, no. 7819, pp. 198/200].

Other narrators in the channel

  1. As we have outlined elsewhere in other areas, the narrator al-Waleed ibn Muslim (d. 790/791CE) while considered as being thiqa (trustworthy), a matter confirmed by the community of scholars, he does have a lot of Tadlees (misrepresentation in reporting) and of particular concern, Tadlees al-Taswiya [essentially, concealing of weak narrator(s) usually higher in the isnād between two narrators, giving the impression the chain of reporting is connected and sound. See: al-Ḥāfiz, Taqrib al-Tahzeeb, no. 7456, p. 584 and al-Dāraquṭni, al-Ḍu’afā wal’Matrukin, no. 632, p. 187].  Given this, we cannot be certain that there are not weak, unreliable or even rejected narrators that have been concealed or omitted from this line of reporting.

Palestine

  1. The scale of ethnic cleansing genocide being witnessed in Gaza is truly shocking. What does seem quite clear is that the fascist entity of Israel is pursuing a scorched earth policy of depopulating Gaza, which includes killing huge numbers in the process.  This is in pursuit of not only offshore material resources, but to fulfil two further objectives, a) the blind pursuit of a greater Israel and b) being an energy transit hub to Europe, not only for the offshore gas resources its stealing, but perhaps too with pipeline connections directly to the Persian Gulf.  America’s ‘Arab allies’ have their fair share of responsibility in helping to facilitate this genocide.
  1. As an Ummah commanded to uphold justice, our quest to help the oppressed in Palestine continues. But we would reiterate though that solace and hope cannot be built upon foundations which are weak or inauthentic.  And the wider mission doesn’t end either: to see the revival of Islam as a liberating umbrella for a world currently plunged into the darkness, tyranny and oppression of the American empire and its fascist allies.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا هَلْ أَدُلُّكُمْ عَلَىٰ تِجَارَةٍ تُنجِيكُم مِّنْ عَذَابٍ أَلِيمٍ

تُؤْمِنُونَ بِاللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ وَتُجَاهِدُونَ فِي سَبِيلِ اللَّهِ بِأَمْوَالِكُمْ وَأَنفُسِكُمْ ۚ ذَٰلِكُمْ خَيْرٌ لَّكُمْ إِن كُنتُمْ تَعْلَمُونَ

يَغْفِرْ لَكُمْ ذُنُوبَكُمْ وَيُدْخِلْكُمْ جَنَّاتٍ تَجْرِي مِن تَحْتِهَا الْأَنْهَارُ وَمَسَاكِنَ طَيِّبَةً فِي جَنَّاتِ عَدْنٍ ۚ ذَٰلِكَ الْفَوْزُ الْعَظِيمُ

وَأُخْرَىٰ تُحِبُّونَهَا ۖ نَصْرٌ مِّنَ اللَّهِ وَفَتْحٌ قَرِيبٌ ۗ وَبَشِّرِ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ

O you who believe, shall I show you a bargain that will save you from painful torment? Have faith in Allah and His Messenger and struggle for His cause with your possessions and your persons – that is better for you, if only you knew.  And He will forgive your sins, admit you into Gardens graced with flowing streams, into pleasant dwellings in the Gardens of Eternity. That is the supreme triumph.  And He will give you something else that will really please you: His help and an imminent breakthrough. [Prophet], give the faithful the good news.

[Qur’an 61: 10/13]

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