In the Name of Allah…
Some people who may intend well have been posting comments and sending emails about the “mistakes” of Imam al-Bukhari in basic creed, in attempts to justify (or lessen the significance of) the many hideous errors of Yusuf Estes. Since many Muslims may not realize what they are actually accusing one of the greatest imams in Islamic History of, it is befitting that we review the following information carefully…
A phrase of disbelief and one of the slogans that identify the Laf-thiyyah Cult from the offshoots of the disbelieving Jahmiyyah Sect was attributed to the greatest scholar of Hadeeth in the history of Islam, al-Imam Muhammad ibn Ismaill al-Bukhari (d.256), may Allah have Mercy on him. This short phrase was attributed to him:
لفظي بالقرآن مخلوق
“My recitation of the Quran is created.”
According to the scholars of Islam, anyone who held this belief was considered a disbeliever, So we need to know: Did al-Imam al-Bukhari actually say it?
The answer is quite simple:
It began as a false accusation based on assumptions, originating from a contemporary of Imam al-Bukhari who had become jealous. The scholars throughout history have been able to identify this as the origin.
In fact, scholars came to al-Bukhari to verify the statements being spread about him. He would say:
من زعم من أهل نيسابور _ وذكر بلادًا _ أني قلت لفظي بالقرآن مخلوق فهو كذاب فإني لم أقل هذه المقالة، إلا أني قلت أفعال العباد مخلوقة.
“Whoever from Naysaaboor (and he named many cities) assumes that I have said that my recitation of the Quran is created is a liar, as I have not said that. I merely said: The people’s actions are created.”
Source: Sharh Usool Ali’tiqaad (2/396-397) of al-Laalakaa’ee.
So as you can see from the mouth of this great imam himself, he simply did not say what he was accused of saying.
It is important to note that – even today – some people with agendas may try to revive this 1000+ year old falsehood against Imam al-Bukhari.
The enemies of Islam revive this accusation to nullify, weaken, or question the solid academic foundations of Islam, the Quran and the Hadeeth. To consider al-Bukhari astray would lead to people doubting and abandoning his staple hadeeth collection.
The enemies of the Sunnah, even while they may claim to be Muslims, also seek to revive this accusation. This includes those called the “Qur’aaniyyoon” who claim to follow only the Quran, as well as those who follow the Shiite Religion.
The enemies of the correct beliefs of Ahlus-Sunnah also try to revive this ancient slander, like the Jahmiyyah, the Ash’arees, the Mu’tazilah, and others. If they can lead some of the Muslims into doubting the correctness of the beliefs of the greatest imams of the righteous Salaf, like Imam al-Bukhari, then this would open the door for lenience and even acceptability for their innovated beliefs.
One example of the modern-day Ash’arees doing this would be the footnotes of Shu’ayb al-Arna’oot and his team of researchers who commented on Siyar A’laam an-Nubalaa’ (12/458-459) of Imam ath-Thahabee. While the text of the book explicitly rejects this accusation against Imam al-Bukhari and discredits it, the researchers actually try to justify and affirm it in their commentary!
Fanatic followers of today’s “Islamic” TV personalities may also attempt to revive this accusation against al-Bukhari. More than one instance of this has appeared in the responses of the followers of Yusuf Estes to the public corrections of the ancient Jahmiyyah that he has been spreading. The extreme ghuluw (fanatacism) for him and those like him will allow some people to try to throw the imams of Islam under the bus, so long as Yusuf Estes does not come out looking that bad! This is why this issue is extremely relevant to our times, and not an issue of the past being dug up for no reason.
Furthermore, a mistranslation (or omission) in a recent publication, “The Biography of Imam Bukhaaree” (Darussalam, 2005), may lead some readers to think that perhaps al-Bukhari did actually say “My recitation of the Quran is created”. At the top of p.175 where it says that al-Bukhari rejected the claim that he said, “The Quran is created,” it should read, “My recitation of the Quran is created.” This correction is based on the quoted sources in the footnotes. Without this correction, readers of the book may be left to some unbefitting conclusions about the beliefs of Imam al-Bukhari.
In conclusion, if you find people today still trying to accuse the great imam of the Muslims, Imam Muhammad ibn Ismail al-Bukhari (may Allah have Mercy on him), of having a major mistake in his creed like this, then stand up for him confidently, saying what al-Bukhari said himself:
Whoever claims such a thing is a liar!
And Allah knows best.
Summarized and adapted from an article written by: Moosaa Richardson