IMAM BUKHARI (R.A)
The famous and respected Muhaddith, Imam Bukhari’s (R.A) genealogy is as follows: Mohammed Ibn Ismail Ibn Ibrahim Ibn Mugheera Ibn Bardizbah.
His father Ismail was a well-known and famous Muhaddith in his time and had been blessed with the chance of being in the company of Imam Malik, Hammad Ibn Zaid and also Abdullah Ibn Mubarak (R.A.).
Imam Bukhari (R.A) was born on the blessed day of Friday 13 Shawwaal 194 (A.H). He had lost the use of his eyes in the early stages of his childhood. However, due to the pious and lengthy prayers of his mother his eyesight was returned miraculously. The news had reached his mother through a dream in which Hadhrat Ibrahim (A.S) had appeared and said, "Due to your bountiful and sacred prayers Allah Ta’alaa has returned the eyesight of your son."
The dream was proven to be true in the morning.
Ismail the father of Imam Bukhari (R.A) had died in Imam Bukhari’s childhood, leaving him in the care of his mother where he was nourished with love and care. At the age of sixteen after having memorized the compiled books of Imam Waki and Abdullah Ibn Mubarak, he performed Haj with his elder brother and mother. After the completion of Haj Imam Bukhari remained in Makkah for a further two years and upon reaching the age of eighteen headed for Medinah, and spent his nights next to the grave of the Prophet Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam compiling the books of ‘Qadhaayas-Sahaabah Wat-Taabi’een’ and ‘Taareekhul-Kabeer’ with the moonlight as a means of lighting.
Imam Bukhari (R.A) traveled a great deal in order to expand his knowledge. He made two trips to Syria and Egypt and stayed six years in Arabia. He also happened to return to Kufa, Baghdad and Basra four times and at times remained there for a period of five years. Also at Haj season he used to return to Makkah.
Imam Bukhari ( R.A) first started listening and learning ahaadeeth in 205 A.H., and after profiting from the Ulamaa of his town he started his travels in 210 A.H. There are a great number of teachers from whom Imam Bukhari (R.A) actually gained his much respected knowledge. It has been known to be said by Imam Bukhari (R..A) himself that, "I have written ahaadeeth from 1080 different people all of whom were scholars." However, he profited most from Ishaq Ibn Rahway and Ali Ibn Madeeni (R.A). Imam Bukhari (R.A) has narrated ahaadeeth from Ulamaa of five different categories. He has also narrated ahaadeeth from his students believing in the fact that no person shall be titled a scholar of ahaadeeth until he has narrated from his elders, youngsters and contemporaries. Students:
Imam Bukhari (R.A) also had a vast amount of students. It has been stated that approximately 9 000 people were privileged to sit in his lessons where he taught his Kitab ‘Sahih-Ul-Bukhari’. There were travelers amongst these from all corners of the world in order to join these pious sittings and to be honoured with a glimpse of the knowledge that he held and which never failed to astonish anybody.
Imam Bukhari’s (R.A) memory was considered to be inhuman, for as soon as the praying of a hadith would finish Imam Bukhari (R.A) would repeat it orally. It has been known that in his childhood he had memorized 2 000 ahaadeeth.
There is one spectacular incident which took place in Baghdad when Imam Bukhari (R.A) took up temporary residence there. The people having heard of his many accomplishments, and the attributes which were issued to him, decided to test him so as to make him prove himself to them. In order to do that they chose one hundred different ahaadeeth and changing the testimonials and the text of the ahaadeeth they were then recited by ten people to Imam Bukhari (R.A).
There was a crowd of gathered people from within and outside the city to witness the outcome of such a...
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