(Rahimahu Allahu Ta'ala):(164 - 241 A.H)
Imam Abu Abdullah
Ahmed bin Mohammed bin Hambal (radi Allahu anhu) was born in Marw
on the 20th of Rabi-ul-Awwal 164 A.H.
His father, Sayyiduna Mohammed (radi Allahu anhu) was a warrior (Mujaahid)
and lived in Basrah, Iraq. Imam Ahmed bin Hambal (radi Allahu anhu)
was a very intelligent child, keenly interested in furthering his
Islamic education. At the age of 16, he began studying Hadith literature.
It is said that he learnt almost a million Ahadith by heart. He became
a famous Jurist (Figha).
Some of his teachers were Imam Shaafa'ee, Sayyiduna Bishar bin Al
Mufaddal, Sayyiduna Ismail bin Ulayyah, Sayyiduna Jarir bin Abdul
Hamid and Sayyiduna Yahya bin Said (radi Allahu anhumul ajma'in).
The great compilers of Ahadith, Imam Bukhaari and Imam Muslim (radi
Allahu anhuma), including his teacher, Imam Shaafa'ee (radi Allahu
anhu), have also reported Hadith from him. Imam Shaafa'ee (radi Allahu
anhu), in spite of being the most learned in his time, used to refer
to Imam Ahmed bin Hambal (radi Allahu anhu) about certain Ahadith
Amongst his pupils, the most famous were Sayyiduna Abu Bakr Al Alhram,
Sayyiduna Hambal bin Ishaaq and Sayyiduna Abul Qasim Al Baghwi (radi
Allahu anhumul ajma'in).
Imam Ahmed bin Hambal (radi Allahu anhu) was a very pious scholar
who devoted all his life in the Science of Ahadith and Fiqh. He refused
to eat in anyone's house who held a Governmental post. Being extremely
poor with no food to eat at times, he used to still refuse to accept
charity saying that he had full faith in Almighty Allah.
The most famous among his books are: Kitaabul A'maal, Kitaabut Tafseer,
Kitaabul Naasikh wal Mansookh, Kitaabul Zahid, Kitaabul Masaa'il,
Kitaabul Fadaa'il and Kitaabul Mansiq. His most famous book is his
"MUSNAD", a kitab in which he collected about 50, 000 to
70, 000 Ahadith.
Imam Ahmed bin Hambal (radi Allahu anhu), in the later years of his
life, was imprisoned and tortured by the ruthless rulers who went
against him due to their un-Islamic beliefs and practises. Caliph
Mutasim billah forced the Imam to accept the beliefs of the "Mu'tazalis"
(a corrupt sect), but he refused, and was beaten to such a degree
that his joints were dislocated. He was kept in heavy chains for 30
months in a prison in Baghdad. He still refused to accept the beliefs
of the corrupt Mu'tazali Sect and was again beaten till he fell unconscious.
On the 25th of Ramadaan in the year 221 A.H., Caliph Mutasim, in fear
of the sin he committed, repented and set the Imam free. Imam Ahmed
bin Hambal (radi Allahu anhu) forgave all the people except the Mutazalis.
He passed away in the year 241 A.H.