What is the status of al-Adhkar of Imam Nawawi (rahimahullah)? Are all the Hadiths suitable for practice?



‘Allamah Nawawi’s (rahimahullah) book ‘Al Adhkar Min Kalami Sayyidil Abrar’ is indeed a blessed compilation in which he discusses the different Sunnah du’as and supplications that are to be recited on various occasions in our daily lives.


Regarding the authenticity of the du’as found therein, Imam Nawawi (rahimahullah) has discussed this twice in his foreword. He states:

1) “Instead of citing the full chain, I will mention something more important which is usually neglected and that is explaining whether the Hadith is authentic, sound, weak or unreliable.” (Foreword of Al Adhkar, pg. 29)

(وأذكر -إن شاء الله تعالى- بدلا من الأسانيد ما هو أهم منها مما يخل به غالبا، وهو بيان صحيح الأحاديث وحسنها وضعيفها ومنكرها)


2) “From the famous original sources (i.e. Sahih Bukhari, Sahih Muslim, Sunan Abi Dawud, Sunan Tirmidhi, Sunan Nasai), I will not quote the weak narrations, except rarely, [when I do quote them, I will quote it] together with explaining the weakness and majority of the time, I will only quote the authentic ones. For this reason, I hope that this book be a source that is relied upon” (Foreword of Al Adhkar, pg. 30-31)

(وأقتصر في هذا الكتاب على الأحاديث التي في الكتب المشهورة التي هي أصول الإسلام وهي خمسة: (صحيح البخاري) ، و (صحيح مسلم) ، و (سنن أبي داود) ، و (الترمذي) ، و (النسائي) .وقد أروي يسيرا من الكتب المشهورة غيرها. وأما الأجزاء والمسانيد فلست أنقل منها شيئا إلا في نادر من المواطن، ولا أذكر من الأصول المشهورة أيضا من الضعيف إلا النادر مع بيان ضعفه، وإنما أذكر فيه الصحيح غالبا، فلهذا أرجو أن يكون هذا الكتاب أصلا معتمدا)


Therefore, we can safely say that majority of the book is authentic [i.e. maqbul] according to ‘Allamah Nawawi (rahimahullah). However, to be certain of a ruling (for those qualified), one should read ‘Allamah Nawawi’s verdict at the end of the narration, together with Hafiz Ibn Hajar’s (rahimahullah) Nataijul Afkar and Ibn ‘Allan’s (rahimahullah) commentary, Al Futuhatur Rabbaniyyah.


It is also important to note that the Muhaddithun have allowed the usage of weak Hadiths for du’as and and adhkar. Therefore ‘Allamah Nawawi (rahimahullah) himself has discussed the ruling of weak Hadiths, and its acceptability in the introduction to this book as well.

(Mustadrak Hakim, beginning of the chapter on du’as and Tadribur Rawi and foreword of Al Adhkar, pg. 36)


And Allah Ta’ala Knows best.


Answered by: Moulana Suhail Motala


Approved by: Moulana Muhammad Abasoomar