As we have seen, God says that the Quran is protected and free from all contradictions. God brings testimony to His statement by the fact that the Quran is His own word. By analogy, we deduced in Chapter 6 that hadiths could not constitute a source for religion as they clashed even with the Quran. These discrepancies are proofs of our contention. We shall be witnessing the fact that truth and falsehood are inextricably mixed together. It would be worth while to note that even though, when a given hadith does not conflict with the Quran and is not contrary to reason, it does not necessarily follow that it is the word of the Prophet and need not be taken as such. Religion cannot be based on such conjectures. Therefore no hadith can be considered having a religious connotation.
116 – If you obey the majority of people on earth, they will divert you from the path of God. They follow only conjecture, they only guess.
6 The Cattle, 116
36 – Most of them follow nothing but conjecture. Surely, conjecture is no substitute for the truth. God is fully aware of everything they do. But most of them follow nothing but fancy: truly fancy can be of no avail against truth. Verily God is well aware of all they do.
10 Jonah, 36
We are warned against abiding by conjectures. To try to found religious concepts on conjectures like hadiths would be baseless, since we have been provided with a miraculous, guarded and sound source without any contradiction like the Quran. Now we are going to illustrate the incongruity between hadiths in 10 examples.
The first contradictory hadith: Drawing blood violates a fast.
Tirmizi Fast, Abu Davud Fast, Bukhari Fast.
The second contradictory hadith: Drawing blood was administered to the Prophet while observing the fast.
Abu Davud Fast, Tirmizi Fast, Bukhari Medicine.
It goes without saying that had drawing blood violated his fast, the Prophet would not have let his blood be taken. It is explicitly stated in the Quran that eating, drinking and sexual intercourse are the three things that violate a fast. This shows that not only the two hadiths exclude each other but the first also contradicts the Quran. This quotation from three books considered the most reliable is evidence of the infiltration of false hadiths into books.
The first contradictory hadith: You must not turn yourself to Mecca while you are urinating or defecating.
The second contradictory hadith: Having witnessed that certain people avoided turning toward Mecca while urinating or defecating, the Prophet had his toilet designed pointing to Mecca to avoid pandering superstitions.
Whereas in one hadith it is stressed that one should not direct oneself toward Mecca while urinating or defecating, in another, the Prophet is illustrated doing exactly the contrary of what is firmly believed. As one can see, to ascribe things to the Prophet devoid of any justification is to cast aspersion on him.
The first contradictory hadith: The Prophet kissed his wife when he was fasting.
Ibn Kutayba-Defene of Hadith
The second contradictory hadith: When he was asked if one’s fast would be considered violated, the Prophet answered in the affirmative.
Ibn Kutayba-Defense of Hadith
These hadiths figure also in the Kutub-ý Sitte, the famous six-volume collection of hadiths. We came across these hadiths that tried to reconcile contradictory hadiths in Ibn Kutayba’s book. The illogicality and contradictoriness of hadiths can plainly be seen in Ibn Kutayba’s book. The Prophet kisses his wife according to one hadith, while he does not do so according to another. At least one of them must be false. To take both of them as true would be superfluous and would claim that the Prophet is a senile old man.
The first contradictory hadith: If a man performs the salat at home and then performs the same salat once more, the second one will be superfluous.
Ibn Kutayba – Defense of Hadiths
The second contradictory hadith: Do not perform the same salat twice.
The second hadith contradicts both the first hadith and the Quran. A superfluous prayer could not possibly be frowned on. This approach would prevent the faithful from invoking God once more.
The first contradictory hadith: If someone says to you that the Prophet urinated standing, don’t believe him.
The second contradictory hadith: The Prophet went to the garbage dump of a tribe and urinated standing.
We observe that this practice has occupied a place in traditional Islam. This rumored practice of the Prophet led the public in general to urinate squatting down on one’s heels. Urinating standing came to be considered an unseemly act.
The first contradictory hadith: Drinking water while standing was prohibited by the Prophet.
The second contradictory hadith: I saw the Prophet drinking water standing like you and me.
The first hadith above received greater approval among the public although it clashed with the second one. Today we observe among the followers of practices of traditional Islam, people drinking water in the sitting position and in three gulps, expecting thereby to have performed a pious act.
The first contradictory hadith: Having entered the courtyard of the mosque, the Prophet said: “The woman in the menstrual period shall not step in the mosque.”
Muslim Hayz, Abu Davud Taharat, Tirmizi Taharat, Nesai Hayz
The second contradictory hadith: The Prophet’s wife spoke as follows: “The Prophet rested his head on our knees and recited the Quran, although we were in menstrual period. We used to take certain things to the Prophet who was in the mosque while we were in menstrual period.”
While the first hadith above bars the way to woman during her menstrual period, the second speaks that she had free access to it. (The woman’s prohibition from worship under certain conditions is dealt with in Chapters 21 and 35, and in the section on salat in Chapter 36.)
The first contradictory hadith: The Prophet was on pilgrimage when he married Maymune.
The second contradictory hadith: A person on pilgrimage cannot get married nor can he ask the hand of someone, or marry couples.
The details of the ritual to be performed during the visit to Mecca for pilgrimage purposes are described in the Quran. When this information seems insufficient and people start looking for supplementary details and consult the relevant hadiths, a chaos of contradictions results.
The first contradictory hadith: To a companion whose calf was not covered the Prophet said: “Cover your calf as it is your privy parts”
The second contradictory hadith: The prophet was in a reclining position at his house with his calves uncovered. Abu Bakr asked permission to be admitted into his presence. The Prophet nodded consent without changing his position. Omar followed suit and he received the same approval.
According to one of the hadiths, man must cover his calf, while according to another; this is countered by the fact that the Prophet had not changed his position despite his uncovered calves. Certain sects inspired by the first hadith above brought in a prohibition for men whose part of the body extending from his waist down to his knees had to be covered.
The first contradictory hadith: The Prophet said: “A tanned skin becomes clean”. Then he came across the carcass of a sheep and he said: “Why don’t you use its skin?
The second contradictory hadith: The Prophet said: “You should not utilize the skin of a dead animal.”
According to the Quran, the flesh of a dead animal should not be eaten. There is no mention of a ban against the use of the skin of a dead animal. According to the hadiths above, the account differs as well you may observe.
While there is no contradiction in the Quran, to trace the authenticity of the alleged hadiths has led us nowhere. The Prophet’s complaint in the next world was as follows:
30 – The messenger will say: “O my Lord! My people have deserted this Quran.”
25 The Distinguisher, 30