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Wednesday, August 6, 2008


Abu Abdullah Muhammad Ibn Idrees Shafi'ee (ra) was a descendant from the Quraish tribe.
He is the Only Imam who is related to Rasulullah (saw).

Imam Shafi'ee (RAH) was born in Ghazza, Syria in 150 A.H. (765 A.C.)

He lost his father during infancy and was raised by his mother under very poor circumstances.
He completed Hifz of the Qur'an at the tender age of 7 years, and at the age of 13 memorized the Kitabul-Muatta of Imam Malik (ra).
He spent some time among the Beduins outside Makka, to acquire a good knowledge of the Arabic language. At the age of 20, (170 A.H./785 A.C.) he went to Madina and became a student of Imam Malik (ra) who was greatly impressed with the young student who had memorized the Muatta. He stayed with Imam Malik for some time; thereafter he returned to Makka. He also came into contact with other learned men (81 Shaikhs) from all of whom he acquired the knowledge of the Qur'an, Hadith and Sunnah. In 184 A.H./799 A.C., Imam Shafi'ee was arrested and taken to Baghdad to appear before Haroon Ar-Rasheed on "trumped up" charges of treason. It was due to the recommendation of Imam Muhammad (the state Qazi and student of Imam Abu Hanifa) that Imam Shafi'ee was discharged. He was then 34 years old. Imam Shafi'ee remained in Baghdad as a student of Imam Muhammad for over three years to add further to his knowledge of Islamic Law.

He returned to Makka where he stayed for 9 years delivering lectures on Islamic Law. It was during this period that Imam Ahmad ibn Hambal came into contact with Imam Shafi'ee. In 199 A.H., he went to Egypt where he was received with much honour and respect. He remained here until his death. Imam Shafi'ee was the author of over 100 books, the most important of which is the Kitab-ul-Umm. It contains the rulings of the Imam on all subjects of Islamic Law. He left behind a large number of dedicated students in Makka, Baghdad and Egypt. The Shafi'ee School of Thought emerged from these students who propagated the views and rulings of the Imam through their writings and preachings. Imam Shafi'ee (ra) never committed a major sin nor spoke a lie, nor did he swallow an unlawful morsel of food in his entire life.

He never at any time performed Jumma without Ghusal.
He was an extremely generous personality who on numerous occasions gave away all he possessed to the poor and needy. He died in Cairo, Egypt, on Friday evening after Maghrib, 29th Rajab, 204 A.H. (20th Jan, 820 A.C.) after a short illness, at the age of 53-54 years.

Abu Abdulla Muhammad ibn Idris ibn Al-Abbas bin Usman bin Shafi'. His ancestry joins the Prophet at Abd Manaaf. His title is 'Naasirun Sunnah'. He was honoured as Al-Imaamul Mujaddid in that he is the Mujaddid of the 2nd century. His birth place is Ghazza/Asqalaan - a place two stages from Jeruselam. He was born in Rajab 150 A.H. He was two years old when his parents moved to Makka and made it their home. His mother was a Yemeni of the famous Bani Azd tribe. His ancestor - Shafi'- was the flag bearer of the Banu Hashim in Badr.
He was taken prisoner and released after ransom. Thereafter he embraced Islam. Another report states that he met the Prophet (saw) as a youngster and became a Muslim. However his father - Saa'ib - was the flag bearer.....

Imam Shafi'ee completed Hifz at 7 and memorised Muatta at 10 years.
At 15 with the permission of his SHAIKH - Muslim bin Khalid Zanji (the Mufti of Makka) - he started issuing fatwas. Earlier he spent his time in Arabic literature and poetry. One day at Mina, he heard a voice behind saying: "Aliaka bil Fiqah" - (GRASP THE FIQAH). Muslim bin Khalid who had noticed his remarkable intelligence, etc., advised him to study Fiqah. He spent three years with the Shaikh, until the age of 13. Later he went to Madina to study under Imam Malik.
Besides Imam Malik, he studied Hadith under 81 Shaikhs.
In Makka his tutor was Sufyan bin Ainiyyah. Imam Shafi'ee said about these two: "Had it not been for Imam Malik and Sufyan, then Ilm Would not have remained in Hidjaz."

He spent 8 months with Imam Malik, then returned to Makka.
He came into contact in 184 A.H. with Imam Muhammad - state Qazi - at Baghdad and stayed with him for over 3 years. Taking into account future visits to the Imam, he spent 10 years with Imam Muhammad. Comments: "I never came across a greater Alim of Kitabullah than Imam Muhammad (ra).
Imam Muhammad made this comment: [a] The door of Fiqah was shut to the people, Allah opened it because of Shafi'ee.
[b] Imam Shafi'ee is the Mujaddid of Deen.
Imam Malik made this comment: No Scholar more brilliant than Muhammad ibn Idris Shafi'ee ever came to me as a pupil.

Fiqah Shafi'ee
The Imam had mastered both Maliki and Hanafi Fiqah. Keeping both before him, he formulated the basis of the Shafi'ee Fiqah.
His pupils compiled his works, Fatwas, teachings, etc., and promoted the Shafi'ee School of Fiqah.

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