Volume 16, Issue 1 (2009)                   IQBQ 2009, 16(1): 143-166 | Back to browse issues page

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Dept. of Quranic Science & Hadith, University of Qom
Abstract:   (2906 Views)
There are nearly 14000 exegetical hadiths, narrated from Prophet's family, collected by some Shi'ah scholars in a number of commentaries well-known as Tafasir –e Ma'thur (traditional commentaries) in Shi'ah. In the 12th century, most of these traditions were collected in the two large collections entitled Al-Burhan fi Tafsir al-Qur'an, the work of Bahrani (d. 1107 A.H), and Nur al-Thaqalayn, the work of Huwayzi (d. 1112 A.H). These hadiths can generally be classified in three categories: 1. the hadiths explaining outward meanings of the Qur'an, 2. the hadiths expressing the inward meanings of the Qur'an, and 3. the hadiths applying the Qur'anic concepts to the certain individuals and groups of people. For example, some verses of the Qur'an have been interpreted as symbols for the Prophet, the Prophet's household and the opponents of the Prophet's family. The last type of traditions is called the hadiths of Jary (flow). The term comes from Shi'ah hadith concerning ta'wil. According to some hadiths, the Qur'an is like the sun and the moon; it flows through history as same as the sun and the moon flows in cosmos. Among 14000 exegetical hadiths of shi'ah, more than 2100 hadiths are classified as hadiths of Jary. These hadiths have been extremely criticized by some of Sunni Muslim scholars. However, some modern Quranic Shi'ah exegetes such as Muhammad Husayn Tabatabayi, the author of Al-Mizan fi Tafsir al-Qur'an hold that it was the method of Imams of Ahl al-bayt to apply a Quranic verse to all things it might be applied to. Nevertheless, our study shows that the numerous traditions in this respect have been fabricated. Many of these hadiths do not possess an authentic chain of narrators. Moreover, most of them came to Shiah hadith books via Ghulat (exaggerators) whom our Imams refused as heretics. In fact some of them are more similar to trite phrases, rather than interpretations of the Quran, like applying "ba'uza" (mosquito)(Q.2:26) to Imam Ali! There are some sound hadiths from the Imams of Shi'ah that they have denied some applications of the verses to themselves. Having clarified main exegetical concepts and presented two classifications of shi'ah exegetical hadiths, this paper examines these kinds of traditions and evaluates them with criticisms in both textual content and narrators through whom these hadiths have been narrated.
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Received: 2008/04/26 | Accepted: 2008/10/5 | Published: 2009/09/15