Al-Muwatta Hadith - 25.9

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Game of the Sea

Yahya related to me from Malik from Nafi that Abd ar-Rahman ibn Abi Hurayra asked Abdullah ibn Umar about eating what was cast up by the sea and he forbade him to eat it. Then Abdullah turned and asked for a Qur'an, and read, "The game of the sea and its flesh are halal for you." Nafi added, "Abdullah ibn Umar sent me to Abdar-Rahman Ibn Abi Hurayra to say that there was no harm in eating it."

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  Syed Husain    
  9 years 21 weeks ago
Ibn Rushd in Bidayatul Mujtahid discusses how the ulema had reached different conclusions pertaining to the implied meaning of this hadith. Imam Dawud had understood that the words of the Prophet (s) should be understood to mean it is always obligatory to wash the hands before making wudu after waking up (which is inline with his literalist methodology of interpretation). Imam Ahmad’s understanding was that he (s) was only referring to sleep that had occurred during the night due to his understanding of the meaning of the word bayaat. Hence, it would not be obligatory on the one who awoke from sleep during the day. Malik and Ash-Shafii understood that the Prophet (s) was implying that it is always recommended (but not obligatory) to wash one’s hand before making the rest of wudu, regardless of whether or not they were sleeping prior to it. The hanafi books of fiqh also convey the same understanding. Ibn Rushd points out that the Prophet (s) was more likely bringing attention to the purity of the water rather than stipulating an additional action of wudu. If the hands are impure or there is some doubt that they are pure, then placing them in a water utensil puts doubt on the purity of the water.
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