Definition of Hadith: The utterance, action or indirect approval (of an act) by Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam).

The Hadith of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) is the second fundamental source of Islamic Law after the Quraan Shareef. It embodies the entire pattern of the life of Nabi (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) and includes every detail containing his actions, his conduct and his attitudes whether explicit or implicit. Every aspect of life and conduct has been reported to us in the vast collections of Ahadith.

Our pious predecessors had great zeal and yearn to learn and acquire the teachings of the Noble Hadith. Numerous incidents have been recorded where great personalities undertook difficulty and hardship to acquire the knowledge of Hadith.

Once Imam Muslim (Rahmatullaahi Alayhi) the compiler of Sahih Muslim, one of the most authentic works of Hadith, was searching for a particular Hadith whilst chewing from a bunch of dates. He became so engrossed in his search that he continued partaking from the dates. This eventually led him to passing away due to excessive ingestion of dates. This was an apparent cause of his death aged 52.

A Sahabi once undertook a costly, lengthy and tedious journey simply to listen to just one hadith from his fellow companion. He had no other motive for this journey.

Surely we cannot fathom the depths to which these great personalities reached in the field of hadith. It was due to the untiring sincere efforts of these luminaries that Allah Ta'ala blessed them with outstanding knowledge and understanding of Hadith.

Today we sit comfortably, all the work done, compiled in neatly bound books, and now even at the click of a button on your personal computer.

Therefore we should show a great eagerness and thirst to learn the Hadith of Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam), practice upon it ourselves, teach it to our children and propagate it to others.

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Historical Background of the Refutation of Hadith... - Mufti Abdul-Jaleel Qaasimi
Weak Hadiths and "Fada'il al-A`mal" - Sh Abdurrahman ibn Yusuf
What is the Distinction Between Hadith and Sunna? - Nuh Ha Mim Keller
Would you advise individuals to study hadith on their own? - Nuh Ha Mim Keller