I really dont know if you can hear yourself say what you are saying. This point is very obvious and doesnt need much argument or dragging.precisely. the popes are the successors of Peter, not the successors of Christ, and Rome is the center of communion in the Church.
The popes are successors of Peter. Peter was successor or appointed by Jesus to the position of leadership after him. On whose authority therefore are the popes ruling? You may still insist and say on Peter's authority. That is alright. But on whose authority was Peter leading? Jesus. So it is accurate to say figuratively at least, that the popes are the heirs of Jesus from a neutral observer's comment on the papacy.
I know what some of them have done in history was awful and not representative of people claiming to be successors to Christ. But it is what it is.
You seem to get the wrong idea about tawator. This has to do more with existing reports and records from near and far, than proliferating chains of narrators. And these reports were circulating and common knowledge among the people. The hadith fabricated by the Ummayads are clearly identified. They most surround the attribution of negative things to their enemies and attribution of good things to their predecessors and supporters.the facts are lost with the ages, perception changes, and much information becomes fuzzy or even completely lost when not properly documented. there is a reason why scholars of history when studying a given event, always attach more weight on documents that are closer in time to the event, because they know very well that the further is the gap in time between an event and the time it is documented, the less accurate this documentation is. this scenario is much different. the people who forged many of the ahadith could have easily forged the tawator reference, and at least from an accurate scholarly perspective you cannot separate the wheat from the chaff. the identification and the separation in the religious school of thought appear to be circumstantial and relaying on evolving traditions rather than an exact approach.
Let me give you an example. If someone after me creates 40 narrations and with a chain of 40 narrators from every country. 40 narrators, who are trustworthy, is required for a narration, a single narration to be regarded as mutawatir. So if they claim I had a meeting with Donald Trump and he was observing the five daily prayers. And this ends up written down. First of all, who are if you want to examine this, there are so many ways to. Imagine another event is narrated that Trump was seen in a church during Easter receiving communion. Or that he died and was buried in a casket. The detail that he was buried in a casket would create doubts. Muslims dont bury in a casket. So it could be that he became a Muslim and then changed his faith at a later time. Now imagine, there is a record that says I wanted to travel to the US and i was denied a visa and i never stepped foot in the US. The entire narration becomes subject to doubts and contradictions. You will need many other sources and reasons to have a comparative study of materials and draw a convincing conclusion.
Then they can find out when did I travel to the US. Did I have any links to the White House. Most of these hadith narrations are about important people to the faith.
Then you will have to check who the narrators are. And at how many places was the narration known. Creating hundred chains is one thing. But the very people compiling the books normally travel far and wide to gather their materials.
Now imagine if you travel to Brazil and you hear the same thing about me that you've heard in 10 other countries. There was no internet or phones.
Take for example Surat Abasa. The chapter starts: "He frowned and turned his face when the blind man approached him". When you read these two verses, the question arises, who frowned and turned his faced because he was approached by a blind Perrin seeking alms? There are Sunnis to this day who believe it was the Prophet who frowned and turned his face away. And that this chapter was revealed cautioning him. When you check the records, you see for certain that this wasnt the understanding of the chapter in earlier years and at all places. When there is a fabrication of a hadith by the Umayyad, there was a political motive. There is always or at least, most times, a motive for fabricating hadiths. The same apply to some other hadiths relating to the battles of the Prophet. He was painted as temperamental and vengeful etc. These are the hadith that the Christian missionary would spot and then try to use against the Muslim. That: look how bad your Prophet was. But when we open the Quran, which we preserved before any hadith, we find a different account:
"So by mercy from Allah, [O Muhammad], you were lenient with them. And if you had been rude [in speech] and harsh in heart, they would have disbanded from about you. So pardon them and ask forgiveness for them and consult them in the matter. And when you have decided, then rely upon Allah . Indeed, Allah loves those who rely [upon Him]. (3:159)
the hadiths fabricated by the Umayyads often times was meant to cover up for their own actions or to use what they attribute to the Prophet to justify their own action.
Take also Abu Bakr's testimony that prophets do NOT leave inheritance. When such a thing is said, it is said for a purpose. It was because he wanted to deny the Prophet's daughter Prophet's her inheritance. The land of fadak was a big estate that produced a lot of agricultural produce. If the Prophet's daughter would have had that land, it would have been enough to raise armies and take care of them. This is money in politics in the old days. So the gang of Saqifah (the place where the coup against Imam Ali was staged) laid hands on the inheritance. If she would have taken it, it would have empowered Imam Ali to raise an army to defeat the coup plotters.
And it is recorded the daughter of the Prophet protested and denied knowledge of that claim that prophets do not leave inheritance. So there were reports which recorded her disapproval of the claim. She even went on to cite certain Quran verses which speak of prophets leaving inheritance. The division in Islam ensured that concealing the truth was difficult. The events that occured would always bring out the truth or the competing perspectives. There is really no report in isolation. If there is, it is rejected. For example the report that there are 72 virgins in paradise. It is an isolated one. Or the hadith a Jew known as Abdullah Ibn Saba who created the Shia sect. You can claim Ibn Saba creatrd a sect. But what are the beliefs of the sect. Are they justified in light of the Quran and hadith available and accepted in Sunni siurces? In the end, this hadith is traced to one person: Saif Ibn Umar al Tamimi, an Umayyad scribe.
That could have been after the Prophet.it is not about the specific battle, it is more that even in the records of these battles they simply refer to arab invaders, they do refer to them as the "arabs of Muhammad", and this is the extent of the historical records in reference to the prophet of islam, there is no other reference on records, until many years later.
That is exactly the point. There will always be claims and counter claims. In such a scenario, what is important is to deal with everything as a whole. I have encountered an atheist who is so sure that Muhammad (s) never existed. I cant think of an answer without thinking of the tragedy of Karbala. How could he not have existed when his grandchildren were massacred and the event has been passed down from generation to generation? Some claims dont make sense. Some do. Some are contradicted. Some are based on faith. In the end, it becomes a matter of choice. Everyone will still have to choose what he wants to believe or not to believe, even if the evidence is much and overwhelmingly accurate.actually they do, however historicity is not a matter of opinion, it is rather a matter of records, and the records say otherwise.
it goes without saying the historicity of abraham cannot be validated, and has to be taken on faith.
If a study were to be published on the DNA of those who claim descent to the Prophet, what I'd look for would be a pattern. In fact, this would be so helpful to the many people who might not be aware they are descendants of the Prophet. And there would be some disappointed that they are not or had held on to a false belief on their descent. It would be great to have such a standardized test. To prove that some do not descend from the Prophet will not negate or discredit the established pattern to determine those who are descended. As far as some are proven to be related, and a standard test can be designed, that is all that matters.this is also part of the issue, i doubt that these claims are valid as well, otherwise maternal mitochondrial research going back to the prophet's daughter would have been published by now. however many of the families claiming a lineage from the prophet are seemingly unrelated as far as DNA is concerned, i have read something to this regards a few years ago but can no longer find the article in question.
A friend of mine from Pakistan mentioned that many among his people and also in India who claim to be sayyids might actually not be. They claimed to be at a point because it was an honorific title. Then the question arises, were they always known to be sayyids? Can they trace their lineage? Are they well known people throughout the ages? Is there a family tree?
By all means, if a DNA test can be used, it would be a commendable thing even if majority end up disappointed.
The sira is biography. There is no doubt it is based on deductions and rely on other sources to present what the author believes are facts or to base his opinions and formulations on.the degree of certitude is usually dependent on how detailed is the document, and how credible the authorship is. it is however remarkable how late the hadith and the sira were put into writing, given that almost everything of importance was being written down and recorded in that age, it thus follows that most of the information relating to these scriptures is rather fuzzy at best, and not really accurate as it is closer in to "hear-say" by nature. add to it the shady authorship of many hadith, and it becomes a real fiasco.
What would be worthy of note are the hadiths and history books.
After the death of the Prophet, the first Sunni caliph prevented the writing of the hadiths. The excuse was that he didn't want people to mix up between what was hadith and what was Quran. The reason for that is quite clear to us. That is another topic. Nonetheless, the records contrary to the ones fabricated by the Ummayads reached us and the ones used to counter the beliefs of the majority are found in the books possessed by that same majority. There is no doubt the hadiths are problematic. But we cant throw out both the baby and the bathwater. Somewhat, truth can be ascertain. When even your opponents hold records that make your case valid, then that's all that is important. The reason in most Shia - Sunni debates, the Shia have less need to recourse to Shia hadith sources and rely on the Sunni hadiths almost entirely to make our case to a Sunni audience. Whatever we claim or say that is found in ours is in their own books.
When you hold such a point of view, it looks very scary when theoretically expressed. When you come to the practical aspect in examining each individual fact or claim and certain events the wheat can still be separated from the chaff in most cases.now fast forward to current times, the very tawator system is an indication that you cannot rather know if a given hadith is truly sahih or not, but you attach a probability factor to its credibility, and it turns out that some are more credible than others, and even then you have to take their truth on faith.
this is true. in fact there are many forged artifacts in museums mostly around the islamic world with objects said to belong to prophets and awliya2 that are obvious forgeries but still go on display, and that says more about the local cultures than it says about faith. still, if you follow the track back in time, each of these artifacts and locations were first presented or built by someone who knew very well he was misleading people. now this happens all over the world, however elsewhere authenticity matters, and if an item is invalidated through scholarly works or tests, then it will be made known and the item is downgraded to a forgery, which still gets to be displayed nevertheless, but under the correct title.
no arguments there, i also share this same perspective. i think the majority of the karbala account is credible, including parading the decapitated heads and the convoy of the prisoners in cities and towns, the route chosen was also not random.
no need to go all the way back in history, look at what is going on today. every single political case that goes to court is surrounded with so much false advertisement and fanfare to the point where even when we are alive in the same time, we are not capable of determining truth from lies, and we usually build our opinions based on our own personal judgment.
Take the Bible for example and what is believed to be interpolations. During back and forth translations, meanings and words have been lost and new word have been included. The original manuscripts differ.
Take for example the most important verse in the Christian New testament. John 3:16. Among the oldest manuscripts, we realize therein difference with the verse we have in the Bibke versions circulating today. Even the more recent RSV version of the Bible holds something different. Because you find difference doesnt mean you will throw out everything. And when making a conclusion, you always go for the farthest or oldest available record, as you rightly stated. Based on that you draw conclusion. But we cant also create a mind full of confusion and abandon all the materials because we have observed discrepancies. If historical records are not contestable and are all accurately recorded and preserved, and clearly understood as intended, most of our differences wont exist today. We all would be one people. Therefore, when I speak with an atheist, and he wants to tell me about historicity and swear to his mom that the Prophet didnt exist, I know he has a motive. I can therefore conclude that his examination of records and the conclusion he has drawn is biased. No matter the records and how they are examined, historicity is a deduction by fallible men influenced by their motives and beliefs. If historicity is a tool, even the tool is now debatable. You can have two people speaking about historicity and both drawing different conclusions. An atheist can claim Jesus never existed based on historicity. A Christian would believe differently speaking in the name of the same methodology. Just like two scientists can believe and disbelieve in the existence of God using scientific facts. In the end, it is all about choice and free will.