Seventh Principle: The similes and parables in the hadiths are supposed to be physical facts once they pass to the hands of the ignorant people.
SEVENTH PRINCIPLE: There are many similes and parables that with the passage of time or with passing from the hand of learning to the hand of ignorance have been supposed to be physical fact, and have become mistaken. For example, two angels of Allah in the World of Similitudes called ‘The Ox’ and ‘The Fish’,1 who are among the supervisors of the animals of the land and the sea and are represented as an ox and fish, were imagined to be huge ox and a physical fish, and the Hadith was wrongly interpreted. And for example, one time in the presence of the Prophet a deep rumbling was heard. Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) decreed: “That is the sound of a rock that has been rolling downhill for seventy years and only now has hit the bottom of Hell.”2 Thus, someone hearing this Hadith who does not know the truth may deviate into denial. But then, twenty minutes after the Hadith was spoken it was definitely established, for someone came and told Allah’s Messenger (PBUH): “The famous dissembler died twenty minutes ago.” Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) had described most eloquently how the dissembler’s seventy year lifetime of unbelief had been a continuous descent to the lowest of the low as a stone of Hell. Almighty Allah had made that rumbling heard at the moment of his death and given him a sign.
1. Suyuti, al-Durr al-Manthur, vi, 249; al-Hakim, al-Mustadrak, iii, 588; iv, 120, 203.
2. Muslim, iv, 3184, No: 2844; 2145, No: 2782; Musnad, ii, 271; iii, 341, 346, 360.
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- Third Branch: Twelve Principles that ensure true understanding of hadiths that are misunderstood on issues such as the signs of the Last Day.
- Sixth Principle: The results that arise from the confusion of comparison and metaphors in hadiths with their true meanings.
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