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Recitations transmitted via Ahad Chain of Transmission

MIT
1/24/2017
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All praises and thanks are due and belong to Allah, Blessed is He who sent down the Criterion upon His slave, to be a warning for humanity. May Allah’s peace and blessings be upon the holy Prophet Muhammad, his family and all companions and followers.

The Qur'an we have with us today is the very one – word for word -- which was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad (May the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). It was collected both in the form of a book and learnt by heart by many companions of the Prophet (May the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) during his own life time and then transferred verbally as well as in the written form to the next generations. Such is the monumental nature of this transmission that the inerrancy of the Qur'anic text is an incontestable reality.

With regards to the various forms of recitations, Imam Suyuti mentioned in al-itqan that there are six and they are: Al-Mutawaatir, al-mash-huur, al-Aahad, as-shaz, al-mawduu’ and Mudraj. These types of recitations are named after  the chain through which they were transmitted from one generation to another. For the sake of brevity and purposefulness, this article will only discuss recitations transmitted via al-Aahad chain of transmission.

From a linguistic perspective, Aahad is a plural of Ahad which means one, isolate and strange (al-jawhari), and in the terminologies of the science of hadith, the popular definition of Aahad is defined as : a type of a report transmitted  by more than two reporters in all generations of its chain, but has not attained the degree of tawaatur (a report by great number of reporters).

In the terminologies of the scholars of Qur’anic recitation: Aahad is a type of Shad-dh recitation whose chain is correct but disagrees with the text of the mushaf or Arabic and was not popular (Tafseer wa ahkaamuha by Baazimol 1/146)

Illustrative examples of recitations transmitted through Ahaad chain of transmission are as follows:

Abi Bakra (may Allah be pleased with him) narrated that the prophet (may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) recited the verse:

مُتَّكِـِٔينَ عَلَىٰ رَفاْرَفٍ خُضْرٍ وَعَباْقَرِىٍّ حِسَانٍ

"Reclining on green cushion, and exquisite carpet"

Thus making cushions and carpets singular. Meanwhile in the tawaatur recitation reported by Hafs, cushion and carpets in this verse were all in their plural forms, such as below:

مُتَّكِـِٔينَ عَلَىٰ رَفْرَفٍ خُضْرٍ وَعَبْقَرِىٍّ حِسَانٍ

Reclining on green cushions, and exquisite carpets.” ( Ar-Rahman: 76)

Abu Huraira (may Allah be please with him) also reported that the Prophet (may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) recited the verse:

فَلَا تَعْلَمُ نَفْسٌ مَّآ أُخْفِىَ لَهُم مِّن قُرّاَت أَعْيُنٍ جَزَآءًۢ بِمَا كَانُوا۟ يَعْمَلُونَ

"No soul knows what eye's delights awaits them-a reward for what they used to do."  (sajda: 17)

 Delight in the tawaatur recitation is in a singular form, but in this Aahad recitation is made plural. These are just some few illustrations on Ahad recitation as mentioned by Imam Suyuti in his book: Al-Itqan fi Uluumul Qur’an”






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