10 Books Ahlul Bidah Wished That Were Never Written!
Allamah Muhammad Rais Nadwi (1430H)
Discussing the Reality of Imam Abu Hanifah Being Tabi’i According the Usul Of The Hanafi Madhab
Compiled and Translated
Abu Hibban & Abu Khuzaimah Ansaari
It is well known and documented the Imam was born in 80H of the period of Prophet ie in other words the era of the companions. The last companion was Abu Tufail Amir bin Wathilah (RadhiAllaahu Anhu), who according to the most correct opinion died in 110H (Taqrib ut-Tahdhib).
Therefore according to this the Imam encountered 30 years of the companions era, in other words the Imam was around 30 years during the time of the companions. These 30 years were the last years of the companions. Some narrations mention after the death of Anas (RadhiAllaahu Anhu), who died in the year 90H or 91H until 110H (until the death of Abu Tufail) ie during this 20 year period only one companion was alive, namely Amir bin Wathilah and there was no other companion during this 18 or 20 year period.
Even if there were a handful of other companions who were alive during this era, one can only conclude and deduce the Imam encountered a limited period of time of a very few companions. Some hanafi authorities with great desperation and exhorted efforts have enumerated the names of 20 companions in the 30 years from the time of the birth of the Imam up until the era of the companions. (Rad al-Mukhtar 1/44)
Mentioning some of these names is an outright and clear error whereas some of the companions died literally a few days after the birth of the Imam when he was a very small child. Those the Imam saw when he was at a tender age and or when he was at an age where it was possible to see them, then there affair is such that every intelligent person knows that any individual alive at a particular time cannot see every person who is alive during his era. Meeting everyone, hearing from them or accompanying them is something far from reality.
Even the author of Anwar, even with numerous resources is not able to see the millions of people alive during his era. Even myself I have not seen the author of Anwar and their prestigious centre of learning ie Deoband or most of its teachers.
The author of Anwar has ascertained the death of imam Shafi to have been in 150H and the death of Imam Abu Yusuf in 182H. In other words both imams were living in the same era for approximately 32 years, but the author of Anwar writes,
“Imam Abu Yusuf and Imam Shafi’i did not convene at one place just as Allamah Ibn Taymiyyah, Hafidh Ibn Hajr and Hafidh Sakhawi have also clarified. As for some of the masanid of Imam Abu Hanifah which have been transmitted by Imam Abu Yusuf via Imam Shafi’i are incorrect because Yusuf has been incorrectly written as Abu Yusuf and this Yusuf is bin Khalid as-Samti and Allah knows best.” (Muqaddimah Anwar 1/179 via Hasan al-Taqada)
So according to the author, although both imams were living in the same era for 32 years they never met or saw each other. Then we ask how does one conclude that the imam being around during the time of the companions would have seen them.
al-Lamhat Ila Ma Fi Anwar ul-Bari Minuz Zulumat (2/265-267)