THE collection and recording of the sunnah

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THE collection and recording of the sunnah
Those who believe that Allah has undertaken to preserve only the first part of His revelation (the Qur’an) and not the second part of it (the Sunnah) are mistaken. This error has led those who sometimes call themselves “Quranists” to deny the Sunnah and to restrict themselves to what is contained in the Qur’an. They are also mistaken to believe that the verse of the Qur’an, “It is We Who have sent down the Remembrance, and it is on Us to preserve it.” (15:9) Applies exclusively to the Qur’an. In fact, this part of ‘the Remembrance’ comprises any of what Allah revealed to the Prophet, whether Qur’an and or Sunnah,
both are covered by Allah’s promise in this verse. A practical example of how Allah preserves the Sunnah is the existence of people in every generation who devote their lives in memorizing the Sunnah, in learning it
and in studying the critical analysis of its lines of transmission.
In the early years of his mission, the Prophet  did not permit anyone to write down what he had said. This was because he was afraid that people would get these mixed up with the Qur’an. He said, “Do not write down anything from me other than the Qur’an. Whoever has written down anything other than the Qur’an should erase it.
There is no harm if you tell one another what I say, but whoever lies deliberately about me and says something that I did not say should prepare for himself a seat in hellfire.”(10)This prohibition on writing down the Sunnah was only disallowed at the beginning of his mission. Once the Qur’an was firmly set in the hearts of the companions and they had committed it to memory, the Prophet  began to permit them to write down what he said. Abu Hurrariya said, “None of the Prophet’s companions are narrating more hadiths than me except for Abdullah bin Amr. He used to write, but I do not.”(11) The Prophet was once speaking from the pulpit (minbar) and a man called Abu Sha asked him if he could write down what was said. The Prophet  said, ‘Write for Abu Shah.’(12) So the Prophet allowed his words to be written.
(10) Muslim, (3004).
(11) Bukhari, (113); Tirmidhi, (2670).
(12) Bukhari, (112); Abu Daud, (455).
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