A Tweet from the Turath: Spend a Day with Ibn Rashdan and Ibn Daqiq al-‘Eid [Allah’s mercy be upon them both]
Abū ̓Abdillah Mohammad bin Rushayd (Allah rest his soul), an explorer from 8th century A.H. traveled extensively through the Muslim world. During his travels he was fortunate enough to meet some of the greatest scholars of his day. His memoirs serve as a TIVO for Muslims to view the past in order to gain resolve and fortitude for the future. Let’s join him on one of his travels and visit one of the greatest scholars ever!
“I met al-Sheikh [Eng. A person of knowledge] Taqyi al-Dīn bin Daqīq al-̓Eīd at a famous Muslim seminary to ask him about something. I found him surrounded by students asking him questions, and suddenly a piece of paper came to him. The enquirer asked about reciting the basmallah [saying Bismillah al-Rahmān al-Rah̄im] while praying.
As I suspected, the questioner was from the legal school of Imām Mālik bin Anas. The Sheikh [Ibn Daqīq al-̓Eīd] favored that the questioner recite it avoiding differences with those who hold its absence a nullification of prayers, honoring those who hold that its soundness is preserved by reading it. I said, “May I mention something that supports this opinion of yours?” The Sheikh responded, what is it?”
I said: “Ab̄u Hafs, (intending to say al-Maȳanshi, however I mistakenly said Abu Hafs Ibn Shāhīn), said: ”I prayed behind al-Imām Abi ̓Abdillah al-Māzirī and I heard him reciting ”With the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Merciful. All praise is due to Allah the Lord of everything that exists…” When I meet with him privately I said, “I heard you reading in the obligatory prayers in such and such way?” He responded, “And how did you know that?” I said, “These days you are the leader of the Malikis, so you must inform me.”
“Listen Umar! The opinion in the Māliki school is that if one reads the basmallah in his prayer, then his prayer is sound; the opinion of the Shāf̓ i school is that if one fails to do so, his prayer is void. Thus, I practice what fails to void my prayers according to my imām, and whose absence voids the prayer according to others, so that I may flee from differences.”
After I finished my story Ibn Daqiq al-̓Eīd said, “Excellent, but history refutes what you have stated. Ibn Shāhīn never meet al-Maziri!” I responded, “I intended to say al-Māyanshī.” He answered, “Now what you’ve stated is correct.”
Iḋāh al-Masālik ila Qawāid al-Imām Mālik of al-Wansharisī pg. 156
Translated and Abridged by Suhaib Webb