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Hadith Objections

Hadith Objections Raised by Robert Morey


1. Adam was 60 cubits tall! (Bukhari vol. IV, no. 543) Then how tall was Eve? If they were that tall, how did we get here? Is it medically possible for him to be that tall?

Response: This speaks in contradiction of the Qur’an, since it states the laws of nature that God set forth upon earth are consistent, and thus the hadith becomes highly suspect.

For example, we read:

So set thy face for religion, being upright, the nature made by Allah in which He has created men. There is no altering Allah’s creation. That is the right religion — but most people know not (Qur’an 30:30).


“That was the way of Allah concerning those who have gone before; and thou wilt find no change in the way of Allah” (Qur’an 33:62).


“Behaving proudly in the land and planning evil. And the evil plan besets none save the authors of it. So they wait for naught but the way of the ancients. But thou wilt find no alteration in the course of Allah; and thou wilt find no change in the course of Allah” (Qur’an 35:43).


(Such has been) the course of Allah that has run before, and thou wilt not find a change in Allah’s course” (Qur’an 48:23).

2. Muhammad was a dog hater. He thought that angels could not enter a house if a dog was there and that black dogs were devils. Thus he ordered dogs to be killed and forbid the selling of dogs. (Bukhari vol- IV, nos. 539, 540; Muslim vol. I, nos. 551, 552; vol. II, nos. 3803, 3829)

Response: This has been taken out of context. Never did the Prophet make a general injunction to kill all dogs. Bukhari Volume 3, Book 29, Number 54 speak of killing rabid dogs, or uncontrollable dangerous dogs.

One hadith speaks of a man being rewarded for being kind and generous to a thirsty dog by giving him water. The Prophet would never have made this statement if he believed all dogs should be killed:

Bukhari Volume 3, Book 40, Number 551:  Narrated Abu Huraira:  Allah's Apostle said, "While a man was walking he felt thirsty and went down a well and drank water from it. On coming out of it, he saw a dog panting and eating mud because of excessive thirst. The man said, 'This (dog) is suffering from the same problem as that of mine. So he (went down the well), filled his shoe with water, caught hold of it with his teeth and climbed up and watered the dog. Allah thanked him for his (good) deed and forgave him." The people asked, "O Allah's Apostle! Is there a reward for us in serving (the) animals?" He replied, "Yes, there is a reward for serving any animate."

The idea that angels could not enter houses containing dogs is also false:

Maulana Muhammad Ali says in his book Manual of Hadith concerning, Busr ibn Sa'id related, Zaid ibn Khalid spoke to him, while with Busr ibn Sa'id was 'Ubaid Allah, that Abu Talhah related to him that the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be on him, said: "Angels do not enter a house in which is an image."[12] Busr said, After this Zaid ibn Khalid fell ill and we paid a visit to him, and when we were in his house we saw a curtain on which were pictures. So I said to 'Ubaid Allah, Did he not relate to us about pictures? He said, He had said, Except figures on a cloth; didst thou not hear him? I said, No. He said, Yea! He mentioned this. (B. 59:7.)

[12] Surah means an image or a picture. According to another version (B. 59: 7), the Holy Prophet is reported to have said that "Angels do not enter a house in which is a dog or a surah." But the Holy Qur'an allows the keeping of dogs for hunting (5:4), and so does Hadith (H. xxviii:8); and the keeping of watchdogs is also allowed. Similarly, the Holy Qur'an speaks of tamatil (images) being made for Solomon, and it would not be right to say that angels did not on this account come into the house of Solomon, a prophet of God. The hadith, therefore, which speaks of angels not visiting a place where images (or pictures) and dogs are to be found cannot be accepted in a literal sense. It is for this reason that an authority like Raghib interprets the word bait (house) occurring {footnote p. 368} in this Hadith as meaning the heart, the significance being that the man in whose heart images or idols have a place, and who bows before them, does not receive the angels of Divine mercy. The concluding words of this hadith, making an exception in favour of raqm fi-l-thaub--(figures on a cloth)--and the same would be the case with regard to figures on a paper--confirm the conclusion arrived at above. What is forbidden is the keeping of images or pictures for paying them Divine honours.]

3. Satan lives in the nose over night. He can be flushed out if you snort water up and then out the nose. (Bukhari vol. IV, no. 516; Muslim vol. I, no. 462) How big is Satan? Is he in everyone's nose? Is he omnipresent?

Response: The Holy Prophet once used the name "satan" about a thief who had repeatedly robbed his companion Abu Hurairah (Majah). Again he once ordered his companions to cover up their utensils containing food and drink lest "satan" should find its way into them, evidently meaning harmful insects and germs (Majah). At another place  the Holy Prophet exorts his followers to clean their nostrils when they rise from sleep in the morning as "satan" rests in them, hinting that harmful  matter accumulates in the nostrils, which if not removed, may injure health  (Muslim). From the above instances it is clear that "satan" is a very general term and is freely used about all evil or harmful beings or things. "Demon" in Christian history may have been used much in the same way.

Term “Satan” used in various Hadith


The word "Satan" is used in a very wide sense. According to Islamic literature, enemies of truth are "satans," injurious animals are "satans," mischievous men are "satans" and harmful disease are even "satans."

The Qur'an, the Hadith and the Arabic literature are full of instances in which the word "satan" has been freely used about one or all of these things.

Mischievous enemies of truth for example, in 2:14 are called "satans." The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) used the name "satan" about a thief who repeatedly robbed Abu Huraira (Bukhari). And once ordered his Companions to cover up their utensils containing food and drink lest "satan" should find its way into them, evidently meaning harmful insects and germs (Majah). At another place the Prophet exhorted his followers to clean their nostrils when they rise up from sleep in the morning as "satan" rests in them, hinting that harmful matter accumulates in the nostrils, which if not removed, may injure health (Muslim).

So "satan" can be a very general term and was freely used about all evil or harmful things, perhaps much in the same way, "demon" or "devils" was used in Christian literature, or in some different sense which may have some rational reasoning behind it, as in the following:

“And devils also came out of many, crying out, and saying, Thou art Christ the Son of God” (Lk. 4:31). A devil was cast out of a dumb man and he began to speak (Matthew 9:33); a woman from Canaan had a daughter possessed with the devil and Jesus at first refused to cast out the devil because she was not an Israelite (Matthew 15:22-24); as many as seven devils went out of Mary Magdalene (Luke 8:2); the devils cast out of another two men were sufficient for a whole herd of swine: “They went into the herd of swine: and, behold, the whole herd of swine ran violently down a steep place into the sea, and perished in the waters” (Mt. 8:32). And this power of casting out devils was given to all those who believed in Jesus (Mark 16:17).

4. Muhammad forbade the game of chess! (Muslim vol. IV, no. 5612) This makes no sense to me.

Response: In the time of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), games were generally used as a means for gambling, and one would speculate that had this injunction ever been made it would have been in the context of doing away with this social ill and vice of society. 

The Qur’an says: O you who believe! intoxicants and games of chance and (sacrificing to) stones set up and (dividing by) arrows are only an uncleanness, the Shaitan's work; shun it therefore that you may be successful. Satan's plan is (but) to excite enmity and hatred between you, with intoxicants and gambling, and hinder you from the remembrance of Allah, and from prayer: will ye not then abstain? (Qur’an 5:90-91)

5. People turn into rats, pigs and monkeys. (Bukhari vol. IV, nos. 524, 627; Muslim vol. IV, no. 7135). Abraham's father was turned into an animal (Bukhari vol. IV, no.569)

Response: About the Jews, who violated the Sabbath, the Qur'an says: "And well ye knew those amongst you who transgressed in the matter of the Sabbath: We said to them: "Be ye apes, despised and rejected." (Qur’an 2:65) and 5:60 speaks of them as "apes and swine."  And the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) even described the Ulama (religious scholars) of the latter days in these very same terms. The Holy Prophet is reported to have said: "There will come upon my umma a time of great trial, and the people will have recourse to their ‘ulama, and lo! they will find them to be apes and swine." (Kanz al-‘Ummal, vol. vii, p. 190)

In light of the Qur’an, we see this is not speaking in the literal sense, but speaking of them becoming morally like apes and swine on account of their willful disobedience to God, and this being in the same sense the Prophet uses these terms from the latter day Muslim scholars, and thus we can not take those hadith literally.

6. Muslims have one intestine while non-Muslims have seven! (Muslim vol. 111, no. 5113-5115)

Response: "The food of two people is sufficient for three, and the food of three is sufficient for four." (Bukhari, 70:11.)

He also said in a very reliable report of his sayings: "A true believer eats in one intestine; a disbeliever eats as if he has seven intestines." (Bukhari, 70:12)

Dr. Zahid Aziz says: Disbeliever here carries the general meaning of someone who is unthankful to God. By following this teaching the problem of food shortage in the world can be relieved to a great extent. 

7. If you lift up your eyes towards heaven while praying, your eyes will be snatched out! (Muslim vol. III, nos. 862-863)

Response: If this was actually said, I think it would have been done so figuratively, meaning that during prayer one’s concentration should be fully on God, and not have our eyes distracted by other external things during these solemn moments.

8. One wing of a fly has poison but the other wing has the antidote to it. (Bukhari vol. IV, no. 537)

9. We should drink camel urine as a medicine. (Bukhari vol. I, no. 234)

Response: Abdul Hafiz says, First of all, let us clarify the reason and story behind the prescription.  Some people had become very ill at the time of the prophet, and were suffering from an unknown illness. Their bellies had swollen and they were not in a fit state. Hence, the prophet said to them, that they would find a cure in the milk and urine of a camel and so he sent them out to an area where camels were grazing.  These men went to this area and drank the milk and urine. Sure enough, just like the Prophet said, they were cured and became fit and healthy. However, at the same time, evil thoughts entered their minds and they decided they wanted the camels for themselves. They therefore killed the owner, and made off with the camels. When news of the murder reached the prophet, he sent an envoy to capture the men, and when they were captured and brought before the prophet, capital punishment was meted out to them. Having read this story, what do we conclude from it? The answering Islam team would have us believe that this Hadith means that drinking camel urine is permissible in Islam. This is INCORRECT. The real meaning of this Hadith is that if a person needs to consume an impure and impermissible substance as a cure for an illness, and no other reasonable alternative is available, then it is permissible. In all other circumstances, camel urine is prohibited.

10. Fevers are from the fire of hell and can be cooled by water. (Bukhari vol. IV, nos. 483, 486)

Response: I would say, if this is a genuine report, then again “fire of hell” is used figuratively and should not be taken literally as neither should the term “satan” in one of the above mentioned hadith in regards to germs and bacteria.

The integrity of Muhammad is all important. He was either whom he claimed to be, a liar or a nut case (mentally insane or demon possessed). This is why the Traditions went to such great lengths to create a model of Muhammad that depicts him as a "super man" as well as a prophet. What do we find in the Hadith?

Response: A liar or nutcase? His integrity was well-established even before his prophethood, and was give the title of Al-Amin, the Faithful, the Trustworthy by his own people. And they were even challenged to point out a single black spot on his character in all the time he passed before prophethood. What hadith depict him as a “superman”?

1. Muhammad's credentials for prophethood are unacceptable. The two prominent Hadithic "proofs" of his prophethood came from pagan ideas of what a shaman would look like and the manner in which he would be inspired.

A. The Hadith explains that when the Qur'an refers to the seal of prophethood being upon Muhammad (Surah 33:40), the seal was a large hairy mole on his back. This is found in both Bukhari (vol. 1, no. 189; vol. IV, no. 741) and Muslim (vol. IV, no. 5790,5793). This mole was the physical proof that Muhammad was a prophet according to Tabari and other later Muslim authorities. They even claimed that the mole was a fulfillment of such Scriptures as Isa. 9:6. We cannot accept this proof. While such ideas can be found in pagan traditions from many primitive cultures, it is not a part of the religion of Abraham, the prophets, the apostles or Jesus.

Response: The hadith is:
Bukhari Volume 1, Book 4, Number 189: Narrated As-Sa'ib bin Yazid: My aunt took me to the Prophet and said, "O Allah's Apostle! This son of my sister has got a disease in his legs." So he passed his hands on my head and prayed for Allah's blessings for me; then he performed ablution and I drank from the remaining water. I stood behind him and saw the seal of Prophethood between his shoulders, and it was like the "Zir-al-Hijla" (means the button of a small tent, but some said 'egg of a partridge.' etc.)

True, some Muslim authorities have absurdly used this as evidence, which is by no means any proof to his Prophethood.  Maulana Aftab Ahmad says: “Zirr means ‘button’ and hajal ‘littler’ which is carried by camels and serves as a sitting place for the woman particularly. The simile is meant to indicate the size of what is regarded as the seal of prophethood on the body of the Prophet. Zirr has been taken to mean egg. As a matter of fact in another hadith this mark on the Prophet’s back has been compared to the egg of pigeon. Some narrators have gone to the extent of suggesting that this mark had an inscription the words “Muhammad the Prophet of Allah.” All that appears from these narrations is that there was some sort of mark between the two shoulder’s of the Prophet. But to say that it was a document of credential, so to speak, of the Prophet’s appointment of Prophet is to carry things too far.”

B. Both the Bukhari and Muslim Hadiths describe what happened to Muhammad when inspiration came upon him. He heard ringing in his ears, fell to the ground, turned red, sweated profusely, made moaning sounds, spit ran from his mouth, etc. While ancient pagans placed a great deal of importance on such things, they were never a part of the biblical prophets.


Maulana Muhammad Ali writes in The Religion of Islam:

Some misdirected critics have represented this extraordinary experience of the coming of the revelation as an epileptic fit. The question is whether an epileptic could, when the fit came on, utter those grand religious truths which are met with in the Quran, or indeed make any coherent statement at all; whether he could have the strong will which made the whole of Arabia at last bow down to the Prophet, or possess the unparalleled energy which we witness in every phase of his life, or the high morals which were his, or be the master of that magnetic virtue under whose influence a whole country could be purified of the grossest idolatry and superstition; whether hundreds of thousands of men possessing the Arabs' independence of character would have taken him for a leader whose orders were obeyed in the minutest details of life; or whether he could produce men of the will and character of Abu Bakr and 'Umar and thousands of others, before whom mighty empires crumbled?

The story of froth appearing from his mouth at the time of revelation is pure invention. Klein, writing in The Religion of Islam (p.8), makes the following statement on the authority of Bukhari: "Another tradition says that froth appeared before his mouth and he roared like a young camel." Bukhari makes no such statement, in the place referred to (Bu. 1:2). Elsewhere he says: "The face of the Messenger of Allah was red and he was snoring" (Bu. 25:17). Statements met with in traditions are similar to those quoted from Bukhari. For instance, we have in Muslim: "When revelation came to the Holy Prophet, he appeared to be as it were in distress and turned pale in the face." And according to the one report, "when revelation came to the Prophet, he would hang his head and his Companions would do the same; and when that condition was over, he would raise up his head." All these and other similar statements contained in other collections of traditions, only show that the coming of the revelation brought a real change in the Prophet which others also witnessed. Another misconception may also be removed here. When the Prophet related his first experience to his wife Khadija, he added the words: "Surely I have fear regarding myself, laqad khashitu 'ala nafsi" (Bu. 1:1).

The faithful wife who had known him intimately for fifteen years enumerated these great virtues in him, as a testimony that a man of such a high character could not fail in accomplishing the task which was entrusted to him -- the task of uplifting a fallen humanity.
2. He failed a direct test of his claim to prophethood. He was asked to explain why a child will look like one parent as opposed to looking like the other. He claimed that Gabriel came and gave the inspired answer. See Bukhari vol. IV: no. 546. So, we are dealing with revelation and not just his personal opinion. He said that the child will look like which parent reaches his or her sexual climax first. The study of genetics and DNA forever disproves this idea.

Response: There is also a similar hadith slightly different to be found in Sahih Muslim, which doesn’t contradict science, so it’s quite possible that there was some misunderstanding in the narration: See: http://answering-christianity.com/sex_determination.htm In any case, the Qur’an (which Muslims regard as the word of God), the first and foremost authority for Muslims, is filled with numerous prophecies fulfilled in the life of the Prophet and afterwards, as well as historical truths and scientific facts finding confirmation recently, that testify to the truth of the revelation from the Most High – God: See: Prophecies

3. He believed in magic, the evil eye, amulets, omens, spells, etc. He was superstitious about many things and made up weird rules about bathroom duties (Bukhari vol. 1, no. 144; vol. IV, nos. 110, 111; vol. VII, nos. 636, 648, 649, 650; Muslim vol. I, no. 458; vol. III, 3 nos. 5424, 5427). He was afraid whenever a strong wind blew (Bukhari vol. II, no. 144) and of eclipses (Bukhari vol. II, no. 167).

Response: This is not true at all.

1. Bukhari Volume 1, Book 4, Number 144: Narrated Anas: Whenever the Prophet went to answer the call of nature, he used to say, "Allah-umma inni a'udhu bika minal khubuthi wal khaba'ith i.e. O Allah, I seek Refuge with You from all offensive and wicked things (evil deeds and evil spirits)."

Better translation: ”O Allah ! I see Thy Protection from what is impure and unclean (or, from unrighteous conduct and evil qualities)”

Why should there be any objection to this?

Maulana Muhammad Ali says in his book Manual of Hadith in regards to:

Anas said, When the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be on him, went to privy, he used to say: "O Allah! I seek refuge in Thee from impure deeds and evil habits." [2] (Bukhari. 4:9.)

[2] This hadith and the previous one lay down in general terms that purification is a necessary condition of prayer, which in fact means that a man should always keep himself free from impurities, since prayer is said five times a day. The habit of outward purification is thus developed through an institution which is meant to purify the soul, and a Muslim is required to keep his body, his clothes, in fact, the whole of his environment, clean. Charity like prayer purifies the mind, and as what is acquired by unlawful means is impure, the pure and the impure cannot go together.]

Regarding the hadith about using the right and left hands for cleaning purposes, Dr. Zahid Aziz says, as to "right and left", there are many matters of convention or etiquette in every society which can be made to sound ridiculous to another society or when taken out of context. People closely noted all the day to day habits of the Holy Prophet Muhammad and these are reported in hadith. They don't necessarily become teachings of Islam to be blindly followed in a regimented way… the Holy Prophet gave an eminently sensible teaching of dividing work between the two hands so that the hand which is used for eating is never used for cleaning off urine or stools. So even at a time and in a place where facilities for thorough cleansing and disinfecting are not very good, you can be sure that the hand putting the food in your mouth has not been in contact with filth.

2. Regarding: Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 110:
Bukhari Narrated 'Abdullah bin 'Umar: I heard the Prophet saying. "Evil omen is in three things: The horse, the woman and the house." Bukhari Volume 4, Book 52, Number 111: Narrated Sahl bin Sad Saidi: Allah's Apostle said "If there is any evil omen in anything, then it is in the woman, the horse and the house."

These statements above are not giving the true context.
This is the context of the hadith: Abu-Hassan reports that two people came to A’ishah and said that the Prophet used to say that bad luck is to be found only in women, horses and houses. At this A’ishah replied: By the God who revealed the Qur’an to the Prophet! The Prophet never said this; what he did say was that the People of the Jahilliyyah (Days of Ignorance – before Islam) hold this opinion. [Imam Ahmad Ibn Hanbal’s Musnad]

Thus it is clear, the Prophet narrated the views in contempt of those that held this before Islam.

3. Next he makes reference to the following hadith:

Volume 7, Book 71, Number 636: Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, "The effect of an evil eye is a fact." And he prohibited tattooing

Muslim Book 026, Number 5424 (similar to 5425-5257): 'A'isha (the wife of Allah's Apostle) said: When Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) fell ill. Gabriel used to recite these verses." In the name of Allah. He may cure you from all kinds of illness and safeguard vou from the evil of a jealous one when he feels jealous and from the evil influence of eye."

Firstly, looking to the Qur’an, we find a prayer in the 113th chapter (Al-Falaq – the Dawn), where it says to seek refuge in “from the evil of those who cast (evil suggestions) in firm resolutions, And from the evil of the envier when he envies” (113:4-5). This is not to say, that one’s evil thoughts can harm you by themselves, but when those thoughts are actually put into action, and thus the reason we seek refuge for this from God for those who are envious and jealous of certain things given to others, whether it be success, triumph in certain causes, etc. So these hadith would have been taken into account in this context as given in the Qur’an. With the eye one observes and draws inferences, etc, or looks at things that are not appropriate, and this may lead to negative outcomes if and when it causes them to act in an unbecoming manner. When the Prophet was successful through severe persecution, and as head of state, there was always a group of hypocrites that were trying to destroy Islam from within. For example, Abdullah ibn Ubayy, one time chief of Madinah, many times took mischievous means to put an end to Islam, sometimes by not staying true to peace treaties, or seeking to kill the Prophet, or trying to undermine the righteous cause of Muslims, and even slandering A’ishah, the wife of the Prophet, etc. And thus it would be those such people that we as Muslims would seek refuge with God from – from the “evil of the envier when he envies.” Also, perhaps certain marks, signs, etc such as tattoos on one’s body, to give one a mark of status or what not may give reason for a person to be envious, and thus the reason for the prohibition.

Unfortunately, today there are Muslims that have superstitious beliefs about the so–called “evil eye” as being something that can harm someone simply by staring or having negative thoughts, such that even some have amulets with the name of Allah on them believing this will ward this off. This is especially prevalent in India today, but has absolutely no basis whatsoever in the Qur’an an and the teachings of the Prophet.


Bukhari Volume 2, Book 17, Number 144: Narrated Anas: Whenever a strong wind blew, anxiety appeared on the face of the Prophet (fearing that wind might be a sign of Allah's wrath). 

There should be no objection to this since today we have many natural disasters from mother nature that take the lives of many. If these are signs of Allah’s wrath, one can only speculate. And in the history of previous Prophets, many times did strong winds, famines, etc overtake the persecutors of Prophets when the did not take heed of their divine call entrusted to them by Allah to set them on the straight path.


Bukhari Volume 2, Book 18, Number 167: Narrated Abu Musa: The sun eclipsed and the Prophet got up, being afraid that it might be the Hour (i.e. Day of Judgment). He went to the Mosque and offered the prayer with the longest Qiyam, bowing and prostration that I had ever seen him doing. Then he said, "These signs which Allah sends do not occur because of the life or death of somebody, but Allah makes His worshipers afraid by them. So when you see anything thereof, proceed to remember Allah, invoke Him and ask for His forgiveness."


Volume 2, Book 18, Number 168: Narrated Al-Mughira bin Shu'ba : On the day of Ibrahim's death, the sun eclipsed and the people said that the eclipse was due to the death of Ibrahim (the son of the Prophet). Allah's Apostle said, "The sun and the moon are two signs amongst the signs of Allah. They do not eclipse because of someone's death or life. So when you see them, invoke Allah and pray till the eclipse is clear."

These hadith don’t show any signs of superstition, though on the part of some Muslims in the days of the Prophet when they thought that these were due to the death of the Prophet’s son Ibrahim, for which the Prophet corrected them. As to them being “signs of Allah” and as something that should be feared, should also find no objection, for even when Jesus was nailed to the cross, the Gospels even mention an eclipse, something which made the Jews fearful as a mighty sign of God. In Islam celestial events, I believe have heralded to the coming of prophetic figures and/or impending doom and thus serving as signs of God.

Later Muslim authorities even went so far as to say that he was at one time inspired by Satan to put some verses into the Qur'an. They were later removed because they were Satanic verses. (Surah 53:19,20)

Response: Compromise with idolatry?
Denny write in his book Introduction to Islam: p. 65 ‘for a very brief period Muhammad acknowledged the worship of these three goddesses alongside Allah, but later he realized, by means of revelation, that the permission to do so had come from Satan.’ p. 66 ‘this seems to have happened after Muhammad was inspired to change the Qur’anic verses pertaining to the three goddesses, which we quoted earlier.’

Verses 19-21 are made the basis of the false story of what is called the “Lapse of Muhammad” or “Compromise with idolatry” by western writers. Certain reports narrated by Waqidi and Tabri are the sole authority for this charge against that incessant preacher against idolatry, every incident of whose life condemns it as a bare falsehood. Muir asserts that “Pious Muhammadans of after days, scandalized at the lapse of their Prophet into so flagrant a concession, would reject the whole story” as if the earlier Muslims were not as pious as the latter. The fact is that the story was quite unknown to the earlier Muslims. There is not a single trustworthy hadith that lends support to this story. Muhammad ibn Ishaq who died as early as 151 AH, does not mention this incident, while Muirs earliest authority, Waqidi, was born more than forty years later. It is stated in the Bahrain that when questioned about it, Ibn Ishaq called it a fabrication of the zindeeqs. And the famous Bukhari, them most trustworthy authority on the sayings of the Holy Prophet, was Waqidi’s contemporary, and his collection of sayings contains no mention of the story. As regards Waqidi, all competent authorities entertain a very low opinion of his trustworthiness. The Mizan speaks of Waqidi as unreliable and even as a fabricator of reports. As regards Tabri, Muir himself represents him as guilty of “indiscriminate reception”. As against these two unreliable authorities, “those who reject this story are highly learned men” (Ruh al-Ma’ani). This six collection of reports known as the Sihah Sittah (or the six reliable works), do not mention it at all, and contain instead a report which essentially contradicts the story of the so-called compromise. Internal evidence, too, is wholly against this story. We are told that instead of v. 21 the Prophet read the words: Tilk al gharnaiq al ula wa inna shafa’ata-hunna la-turtaja, ie. “These are exalted females whose intercession is to be sought” But the insertion of these few words in a chapter which is wholly directed against idolatry is quite out of place: v,. 23 condemns idols, v, 26 denies their intercession, v. 28 condemns them giving of names of female deities to angels, and so on. It is further asserted that 22:52 was revealed in connection with this change, but it should be noted that a period of at least eight years must have elapsed between the revelation of this verse and that of 22:52. Moreover, if the Prophet has made any such compromise, it could not have been a sudden event, and traces of it would have been met with in other chapters revealed about the same time. But a perusal of these shows clearly that the Qur’an’s condemnation of idolatry was never marked by the slightest change.

“So bow down in prostration before Allah and serve (Him)” (Quran 53:62).

Here is a command to prostrate oneself, which is literally obeyed by all Muslims when reciting the Qur’an or hearing it recited: This chapter when first revealed, was read in a large assembly, containing Muslims as well as disbelievers. When the Holy Prophet prostrated himself in obedience to the command, not only did the Muslims prostrate themselves but even the idolaters were so overawed that they prostrated themselves, with the exception of Umayyah ibn Khalf, who raised some gravel to his forehead. This man was afterwards killed, dying a disbeliever, says the report, evidently implying that all others were gradually converted to Islam (B. 17:1). It should be further borne in mind that the idolaters did not deny the existence of God the Supreme, Whom they believed to be above their idols, who were recognized only as minor deities, and therefore there is nothing strange in their joining the Muslims in their prostration.

It is this simple incident which is connected with the story of the so-called “lapse” and is adduced as proof of its truth. But it will be seen that the prostration was made in obedience to the direct Divine command of prostration and had to the grandeur and majesty of Allah and to the destruction of the wicked, are so impressive that the idolaters could resist prostrating themselves. It is possible that the story of the prostration reached Abyssinian exiles, some of whom might have returned under the impression that the disbelievers no longer opposed the movement.

4. The Hadith tells us that "Allah made the prophet wealthy through conquests." (Bukhari III: no. 495), Was he in it for the money? Some Muslims are ignorant of this Hadith and claim that Muhammad was poor like Jesus.

Response:  Volume 3, Book 37, Number 495: Narrated Abu Huraira: Whenever a dead man in debt was brought to Allah's Apostle he would ask, "Has he left anything to repay his debt?" If he was informed that he had left something to repay his debts, he would offer his funeral prayer, otherwise he would tell the Muslims to offer their friend's funeral prayer. When Allah made the Prophet wealthy through conquests, he said, "I am more rightful than other believers to be the guardian of the believers, so if a Muslim dies while in debt, I am responsible for the repayment of his debt, and whoever leaves wealth (after his death) it will belong to his heirs. "

Morey is completely ignorant of the Prophet’s life. It was only when the Muslims had to fight defensive battles that they acquired booty, but even then this was distributed among the poor as the following verse shows.

And know that out of all the booty that ye may acquire (in war), a fifth share is assigned to Allah,- and to the Messenger, and to near relatives, orphans, the needy, and the wayfarer,- if ye do believe in Allah and in the revelation We sent down to Our servant on the Day of Testing,- the Day of the meeting of the two forces. For Allah hath power over all things. (Qur’an 8:41)

The Prophet led a life of utmost simplicity even in the latter part of his life when the Muslims began to acquire physical rule and power, no change ever came over the life of Muhammad (pbuh) in the manner in which he lived; not in the time of severe persecution, nor when hostilities ceased. He did not leave anything behind when he died, and if he did, it was to be given in charity.

Dr. Zahid Aziz says, The Holy Prophet Muhammad as well as his Companions had no attachment whatsoever to the material things and comforts of the world, and this is why they were so unconcerned about their physical food, and subsisted in the simplest way possible for a human being. (See reports in Sahih Bukhari, Kitab al-Ta'am, book 70.)

It is related in two separate reports, one by the Companion Abu Huraira and one by the Holy Prophet's wife Aishah (may God be pleased with them), that after settling in Madina the Holy Prophet and the people of his household never got to eat fully for more than three days continuously throughout his life. (Bukhari, 70:1 and 70:23.). In other words, there were never three days in a row when the Holy Prophet and his family were fully fed every day. They may have eaten fully one day, may be even the following day, but after that it would be back to the normal sparse eating. You must bear in mind that the Holy Prophet was, at this stage, the head of an entire community and the ruler of a state which consisted of a city at first, and then extended to the whole of Arabia. Therefore it was by choice that he thus lived.

His wife Aishah related that during the life of the Holy Prophet, "we used to subsist on dates and water". (Bukhari, 70:6.). Of course, the Holy Prophet was not dogmatic or inflexible about his austerity, and if it so happened that he was offered some dainty dish, he would not turn it down, with an air of superiority, claiming to be leading a simple life. Rather, he ate and enjoyed that blessing of God. But in the normal course of his life, he ate very little, and had whatever came to hand, however coarsely prepared or simple it might be.He once told his followers: "The food of two people is sufficient for three, and the food of three is sufficient for four." (Bukhari, 70:11.)

The Companions of the Holy Prophet followed his example of eating very simple food, very frugally. Many of the Companions would go out before eating, in search of a needy person somewhere to bring him home and eat with him. They would not eat unless they brought home a needy person to share their food with. There are incidents showing that they disapproved of anyone who ate too much. (Bukhari, 70:12.)

Once, at a time after the Holy Prophet had died, one of his well-known companions, Abu Huraira, was passing by some people who were roasting meat. They invited him to join them. Abu Huraira suddenly became overcome by the memory of the Holy Prophet and said to them: 

"The Messenger of Allah left this world and never even got to eat bread to the full."

Recalling the simple, hard life of the Holy Prophet, Abu Huraira felt unable to accept their invitation. (Bukhari, 70:23.)

Therefore, to acquire the highest moral and spiritual position involves neglecting worldly comforts and needs, as shown by the lives of the Holy Prophet and his Companions.

5. He did not keep the rules he imposed upon others. He had more wives than four (Bukhari vol. I, no. 268) and did not write a will (Bukhari vol. IV, nos. 3,4).

Arfaque Malik says: The limitation of the number of wives was fixed (for the Prophet) at the end of the eighth year of Hijrah and the Holy Prophet pbuh had married all his wives before that period. He was commanded by Allah to keep those whom he had already married but was forbidden to marry any more. The Qur'anic verse, "It is not allowed to take wives after this, (33:52) implies that the Holy Prophet, like all his other acts contracted those marriages perfectly in accordance with the will of the Lord. There was a divine purpose behind them and when it was achieved a restriction was placed upon him.

For a detailed discussion and reasons behind his marriages, see: Marriages of the Holy Prophet Muhammad

Prophets did not leave any property to be inherited, however of course what was handed down to all Muslims was the Qur’an.

Bukhari Volume 4, Book 51, Number 2:
Narrated Amr bin Al-Harith: (The brother of the wife of Allah's Apostle. Juwaira bint Al-Harith) When Allah's Apostle died, he did not leave any Dirham or Dinar (i.e. money), a slave or a slave woman or anything else except his white mule, his arms and a piece of land which he had given in charity .


Bukkhari Volume 4, Book 51, Number 3: Narrated Talha bin Musarrif: I asked 'Abdullah bin Abu Aufa "Did the Prophet make a will?" He replied, "No," I asked him, "How is it then that the making of a will has been enjoined on people, (or that they are ordered to make a will)?" He replied, "The Prophet bequeathed Allah's Book (i.e. Quran)."


Bukhari Volume 4, Book 51, Number 4: Narrated Al-Aswad: In the presence of 'Aisha some people mentioned that the Prophet had appointed 'Ali by will as his successor. 'Aisha said, "When did he appoint him by will? Verily when he died he was resting against my chest (or said: in my lap) and he asked for a wash-basin and then collapsed while in that state, and I could not even perceive that he had died, so when did he appoint him by will?"

6. He commanded that anyone who fell away from Islam should be murdered. (Bukhari vol IV, no. 260; vol. V, no. 630) Volume IX is filled with death threats against apostasy (pgs. 10,11, 26, 34, 45, 50, 57, 341, 342). These Hadiths contradict other Hadiths which say that no one ever leaves Islam (Bukhari vol. I, nos. 6, 48). The punishment of apostates reveals that he did not believe in the freedom of religion, the freedom of speech, the freedom of assembly and the freedom of the press. The fact that he commanded that no churches or synagogues be allowed in Arabia is a telling argument that he was not a man of peace.

All of this is completely false. If apostates were ever killed, it was not because they left Islam, but because they became combatants in war killing innocent Muslims. See full discussion: Apostasy

That no churches or synagogues be allowed in Arabia is nothing more than a flagrant lie as well. The Qur’an even speaks about Muslim being commanded to protect churches and synagogues! (22:39-40).

When the Patriarch of Jerusalem handed the keys of the city to the second Caliph Umar (2nd successor to Muhammad) a treaty was drawn up which stated: "This is the covenant of peace which Umar, the servant of God and the commander of the faithful, has made with the people of Jerusalem. This peace which is vouchsafed to them guarantees them protection of life, of property, of churches, or crosses, of those who set up, display and honor these crosses. Their churches shall not be used as dwelling houses, nor shall they be dismantled, nor shall they or their compounds, their crosses and their belongings be in any way damaged. They shall be subjected to no compulsion in matters of faith, nor shall they be in any way molested.

Sir William Muir, a hostile critic to Islam, who admired the justice and integrity of the Muslims, quotes Nestorian Bishop of the time: “These Arabs to whom God has accorded in our days the dominion are become our masters; but they do not combat the Christian religion; much rather they protect our faith; they respect our priests and our Holy men and make gifts to our churches and our convents” (p. 128)

De Lacy O'Leary in 'Islam at the Crossroads,' London, 1923.  History makes it clear, however, that the legend of fanatical Muslims sweeping through the world and forcing Islam at the point of sword upon conquered races is one of the most fantastically absurd myths that historians have ever repeated.

Christian missionary, T.W. Arnold had this opinion on his study of the question of the  spread of Islam: ".. of any organized attempt to force the acceptance of Islam on the non-Muslim  population, or of any systematic persecution intended to stamp out the Christian religion, we hear nothing. Had the caliphs chosen to adopt either course of action, they might have swept away  Christianity as easily as Ferdinand and Isabella drove Islam out of Spain, or Louis XIV made Protestantism.

The Eastern Churches in Asia were entirely cut off from communion with the rest of Christiandom throughout which no one would have been found to lift a finger on their behalf, as heretical communions. So that the very survival of these Churches to the present day is a strong proof of the generally tolerant attitude of Mohammedan [sic] governments towards them"

7. The Hadith reveals that Muhammad had to ask forgiveness for sin more than seventy times a day. (Bukhari vol. I, nos. 711; 78; vol. V, no. 724) Since Muslims believe that prophets must be sinless, this means that Muhammad was not a prophet.

False. The Prophet asked for protection against sin and not because he had sinned. Maulana Muhammad Ali says: Hence the Prophet is spoken in a tradition as saying istighfar a hundred times a day; that is to say, he was every moment seeking the protection of God, and praying to Him, that he may not go against His will. Istighfar or the prayer for protection (ghafr) is in fact a prayer for Divine help in the advancement of higher and higher stages of spiritual perfection. Thus, even those who have admitted into Paradise are described as praying to God for His ghafr: "Our Lord! make perfect for us our light and grant us protection (ghaffir); surely, Thou art possessor of power over all things" (66:8).  The ordinary rendering is "forgive us," but forgiveness, in the narrow sense of pardoning of sins, is meaningless here, because none can be admitted into Paradise unless his sins are pardoned. Ghafr or forgiveness, therefore, stands, here for Divine help in the spiritual advancement of man, which will continue even after death.  On another occasion, maghfirah, which is the same as ghafr, is described as a blessing of Paradise: "For them therein are all fruits and protection (maghfirat) from their Lord" (47:15). Maghfirat is therefore one of the blessings which the righteous shall enjoy in Paradise, and therefore a Divine help in the onward progress of man therein. See: Sinlessness of Prophets

8. He was guilty of false prophecies.
    1 - The 100 yr. Prophecy. (Bukhari vol. I, no. 539)
    2. The end of the world predictions. (Bukhari vol. IV, no.401)


Response:  Bukhari Volume 1, Book 10, Number 539: Narrated Abdullah: "One night Allah's Apostle led us in the 'Isha' prayer and that is the one called Al-'Atma by the people. After the completion of the prayer, he faced us and said, "Do you know the importance of this night? Nobody present on the surface of the earth to-night will be living after one hundred years from this night." (See Hadith No. 575).

Volume 1, Book 10, Number 575: Narrated 'Abdullah bin 'Umar: The Prophet prayed one of the 'lsha' prayer in his last days and after finishing it with Taslim, he stood up and said, "Do you realize (the importance of) this night? Nobody present on the surface of the earth to-night would be living after the completion of one hundred years from this night." The people made a mistake in grasping the meaning of this statement of Allah's Apostle and they indulged in those things which are said about these narrators (i.e. some said that the Day of Resurrection will be established after 100 years etc.) But the Prophet said, "Nobody present on the surface of earth tonight would be living after the completion of 100 years from this night"; he meant "When that century (people of that century) would pass away."

Thus Ibn Umar’s feeling that people were giving interpretation to the hadith by thinking that the day of Judgment was to arrive at the ends of the hundred years clarified the meaning of this hadith and said that the Prophet did not mean the world will come to an end at the end of that period.

There are a number of hadith that speak about the signs of the approaching last day, a few of which conflict with one another one some points, but if looked as a whole, a number of common points do seem to emerge. So this should be kept in mind, as seen above that other hadith dealing with the same subject matter help clarify matters.

Bukhari Volume 4, Book 53, Number 401:
Narrated Auf bin Mali: I went to the Prophet during the Ghazwa of Tabuk while he was sitting in a leather tent. He said, "Count six signs that indicate the approach of the Hour: my death, the conquest of Jerusalem, a plague that will afflict you (and kill you in great numbers) as the plague that afflicts sheep, the increase of wealth to such an extent that even if one is given one hundred Dinars, he will not be satisfied; then an affliction which no Arab house will escape, and then a truce between you and Bani Al-Asfar (i.e. the Byzantines) who will betray you and attack you under eighty flags. Under each flag will be twelve thousand soldiers.


9. He kissed and caressed the idol of black stone set into the wall of the Kabah. (Muslim vol. II, no. 2912, 2916) We cannot imagine Abraham or Jesus kissing a pagan idol and then commanding their followers to do so.

The Black stone was never an idol. The pagan Arabs, never even regarded it as an idol! The Black Stone is the corner-stone of the Ka’bah which the marks the beginning point for each round of the Tawaf, or circuits around the Ka’bah. There are some superstitious stories amongst Muslims today, however, that it was originally white, and on account of man’s sin, it turned black, but there’s no evidence to support such a fantastic idea. Since the Black Stone hasn’t been removed since the time of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), and since it was there before his time, it can be assumed it’s been there since the time of Abraham and Ishmael.

“And when Abraham and Ishmael raised the foundations of the House: Our Lord, accept from us; surely Thou art the Hearing, the Knowing” (2:127).

Reference is made to this particular stone in the Bible, as in the following: Psalms 118:22 “The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner.”

Jesus makes reference to this verse in the Parable of the Wicked Husbandmen

Matthew 21:42-45 Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: [in reference to Psalms 118:22] this is the Lord's doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes? Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation [Islam] bringing forth the fruits thereof. And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.  And when the chief priests and Pharisees had heard his parables, they perceived that he spake of them. [the Israelites]

If we take these words to bear any truth to them, according to Jesus the stone stands for a “rejected nation,” and the Israelites here are plainly told and understand this is speaking of them, when Jesus says: “The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof” meaning, the Kingdom of God, or Prophethood, would be transferred from the House of Israel (Jacob), to another “nation.” (the House of Ishmael) And we know obviously, the Israelites rejected Ishmael, whom was part of the progeny of Abraham.

This is why Ishmael was placed near the Ka’bah, the spiritual house for all of humanity. The Israelites continued to have prophets arise from the line of Isaac, while they saw none of the blessings come through in the line of Ishmael, and this only strengthened their belief, that Isaac was part of the Divine covenant, of which Ishmael was no part of. But we Muslims know it was the Last Prophet, the “head stone of the corner” – Muhammad (peace be upon him), that would arise from the progeny of Ishmael, through his second son Kedar.

So, “The stone [the rejected nation – Ishmaelites] which the builders [Israelites] refused is become the head stone of the corner.” [The Last Prophet from the progeny of Abraham though Ishmael]

The Black Stone thus stands there as a reminder, a symbol, an emblem, a token, a truly unique monument that the part of Abraham’s progeny the Israelites thought to be rejected [Ishmael], did indeed become the corner-stone of the Kingdom of God, and inherit the blessings of Allah, to become a “great nation” [Islam] perfected with the Last Prophet – Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). Unfortunately this “great nation” has become a stranger to the world once more as it started out.

As Maulana Muhammad Ail says: If the Black Stone is kissed, it is not kissed as an idol or as a god, but as a monument of the rejection of a nation which was to become the corner-stone of the Divine Kingdom.

10. While Muslims claim that Muhammad was illiterate in order to make the Qur'an a miracle, the Hadith records that he could in fact read and write. (Bukhari vol. IV, no. 393)


Maulana Muhammad Ali writes:

As for the fact that the Holy Prophet was unable to read or write before revelation came to him, there can be no two opinions. On this point the Qur'an is conclusive: "And thou didst not recite before it any book, nor didst thou transcribe one with thy right hand" (29:48).

There is a difference of opinion, however, as to whether he could read or write after revelation. Without entering into the details of this controversy I may remark that, while there is ground for believing that he could read, he still had his letters written by others.

In conclusion, we see that many hadith have simply been taken out of their true context. In the future, one may come across several other hadith and verses from the Qur’an taken out of context in books, in the media, etc, most times in regards to war, and women in Islam. These are spoken of in the following links:

Verses and hadith in regards to women:
See Link

And verses in reference to war: Section: “verses taken out of context”
See Link

11. Left/Right Hand

Dr. Zahid Aziz says:

"The kind of statements you have mentioned are found in the reported sayings of the Holy Prophet Muhammad. Physical and bodily cleanliness is a part of the teachings of Islam and sayings of the Holy Prophet mention certain guidance about it. It is the principle behind that guidance that is important.


The practical way of doing any particular cleaning can vary according to the facilities available in the time and place that the individual is living. The Holy Prophet has provided simple rules that can be used where only minimal facilities are available. So, to eat with the right hand and to clean dirt or filth off the body with the left hand is a simple way of ensuring that the eating hand is not dirty. But if there are facilities available for washing hands properly (as is the case in most places in the world today, but still not all) and those are used, then either hand could be used for any purpose.


The Holy Prophet gave an eminently sensible teaching of dividing work between the two hands so that the hand which is used for eating is never used for cleaning off urine or stools. So even at a time and in a place where facilities for thorough cleansing and disinfecting are not very good, you can be sure that the hand putting the food in your mouth has not been in contact with filth.


This Islamic guidance (certainly as regards the principle behind it) is essential for humankind because many people even in modern Western countries are unaware or neglectful of the need of personal hygiene (such as washing hands after going to the washroom/toilet)."

12. The Prophet said, "Listen and obey (your chief) even if an Ethiopian whose head is like a raisin were made your chief."


Is it a racist statement to tell proud Arabs (who looked down upon all non-Arabs)that if a black man was appointed over them, they should hear and obey him? There is an easy way to determine whether this is a racist statement. Ask the question, do white racists agree with the instruction given here that if a black person were placed in command over them they should obey him just like a white person?


The Holy Prophet Muhammad (saw) in practice too placed black persons in positions of command. Does a person who makes racist statements do this? The fact that people of different races have different facial features cannot be denied. This hadith does not mention the head of an African in a derogatory way. The Holy Quran in 49:11 forbids every nation to laugh at other nations or to call them names (by which is meant racist names based on some characteristic).


The Holy Prophet Muhammad could not have acted contrarily to this clear injunction. In 49:13 the Quran goes on to say that of all the races, families and tribes of humanity, only that person is the most honourable who is the most conscientious in doing his duty to God and other human beings.

13. Obey Muslim rulers blindly?

Abdullah son of Umar (ra) reported that the messenger of Allah said: "Listening to and obeying (a Muslim ruler) are mandatory (on his people) as long as disobedience (to Allah) is not involved. If disobedience (to Allah) is imposed, one should neither listen nor obey. "