The following is a refutation to the article on RevisitingtheSalaf.org entitled: Seventy Thousand People From Karbala Will Enter Paradise Without Being Questioned, that was published on the 3rd of November, 2013, and can be found here.
RTS starts out the article with the following:
It was mentioned by the Prophet (saw) that there would be at least 70, 000 of his followers who will enter Paradise altogether. It would be interesting to delve a little further in to this matter, since it would be of benefit to know as to whom the Prophet (saw)was actually referring to.
RTS then quotes a narration from Al-Bukhari:
Narrated Sahl bin Sa’d: The Prophet (saw) said, Seventy-thousand or seven-hundred thousand of my followers (the narrator is in doubt as to the correct number) will enter Paradise holding each other till the first and the last of them enter Paradise at the same time, and their faces will have a glitter like that of the moon at night when it is full.
Source: Saheeh Bukhari. Pg. # 1625, H. # 6543.
Here we find more hadeeth which correlate with the above which specifically mention those 70, 000 people as to whom the Prophet (saw) was referring to.
RTS then quotes the following narration from two paths through Isma’eel bin Aban, from Dawud bin Sulaik from Anas:
The Prophet (saw) said: Seventy thousand of my nation will go to heaven without judgment. Then he looked to Alee (a.s) and said they are from your Shi`ah (partisans) and you are their Imam.
However, the chain is disconnected, for Dawud bin Sulaik did not hear from Anas,and is from the Atba` al-Tabi`een. See Thiqaat Ibn Hibban 3/343 and Taqreeb Al-Tahtheeb 238. Furthermore, Ibn Hajar graded him as maqbool, meaning that he is only reliable as a supporting narrator, and is not to be relied upon when he is the only narrator of the hadith. Ibn Hajar also adds that this addition, that Ali’s shia are the seventy thousand, is a fabrication. See Lisan Al-Mizan 4/414.
RTS then quotes the following narration:
Mu`awiyah told us Al-A`mash told us narrated from Salam ibn Abi Shurahbeel narrated from Abi Harthama, he said: A ewe (goat) belonging to him made few droppings, then he told his odalisque (female slave), O Jarda! These droppings remindded me of a hadeeth that I have heard from the Prince of believers (Alee (a.s)) say while I was with Him at Karbala. When he (Alee (a.s)) passed by a tree under which were some deer droppings, he then took a handful of it and smelt it then he said, Seventy thousand (beings) from the surface (of this area) will be gathered on the day of Resurrection. They will go to heaven without Judgment (on the day of Judgment).
Source: Al-Musannaf ibn Abi Shaybah. Vol. 14, Pg. # 92 – 93, H. # 38364
RTS then attempts to strengthen each of the narrators, by quoting earlier scholars. The first error by RTS is the conclusion that Mu’awiyah in this narration is Mu’awiyah bin Amr. This is false, and there are no evidences that this is the Mu’awiyah in the narration. In fact, Mu’awiyah bin Amr is not known to have narrated from Al-A’amash in the first place.
It seems as though RTS decided to look up any reliable narrator with the name Mu’awiyah in order to strengthen the chain. In any case, the correct narrator is Abu Mu’awiyah Al-Dhareer, and the word “Abu” was incorrectly misplaced from the narration.
RTS then quotes the tawtheeq of Ibn Hibban from Abu Huraim. However, as those that have studied `ilm al-hadith are aware, the strengthenings of Ibn Hibban for narrators does not have weight according to the scholars of hadith. As we can see in Taqreeb Al-Tahtheeb by Ibn Hajar; he refers to those that have received the Tawtheeq of Ibn Hibban as maqbool (see above for the meaning of the term), implying that the inclusion of a narrator in the book of Ibn Hibban is not sufficient.
The second narration provided by RTS is the following:
Narrated to us Al-Hassan ibn Muhammad from Mansoor ibn Waqed Al-Tanafesi from Abdul Hameed Al-Himmani from Al-A`mash from Abi Ishaq from Kudayr Al-Dhubbi he said: While I was with Alee (a.s) in Karbala by the trees of Harmel, he took some dung and he rubbed it then he smelt it then he said, On the day of Judgment, Allah (swt) will rise some people from this area, and they will enter heaven without Judgment.
Source: Al-Mu`jam ibn Al-A`rabi. Vol. 2, Pg. # 738, H. # 1500.
RTS did not comment on the chain due to its obvious weaknesses and did not attempt to authenticate it. In summary, two of the narrators have been weakened and two others have been accused of Tadlees.
The third narration by RTS is the following:
Ammar Al-Dahni; Alee (may Allah (swt) be pleased with Him) passed by Ka’b then he said, “A man from the progeny of this man (Alee (a.s)) will be killed with a group of men, and the sweat of their horses would not dry before they meet Muhammad (saw).”
Then Al-Hassan (a.s) passed by and they asked, “Oh Aboo Ishaq! Is that him?” And he replied, “No!” Then Al-Hussain (a.s) passed by then they asked, “Is that him?” Then he replied, “Yes!”
Al-Haythami: Al-Tabarani narrated it and its narrators till the one who said it are all trustworthy.
Source: Majma Al-Zawa’id. Vol. 9, Pg. # 225, H. # 15130.
RTS has mistranslated the statement by al-Haythami. The correct translation should be:
“The narrators are reliable, except that `Ammar did not witness the event.”
I add: `Ammar al-Dhuhani died almost a hundred years after `Ali bin abi Talib, and therefore this narration is to be rejected as disconnected.
Due to the weakness of these Hadiths, one cannot hold the opinion that seventy thousand that are to enter heaven without being questioned are the people of Karbala‘ or the Shia of `Ali. Not only that, but this view contradicts another authentic narration by the Prophet (Peace be upon him) in which he is asked about the identity of the seventy thousand. He did not say “followers of `Ali”, rather he said:
هم الذين لا يسترقون ولا يتطيرون ولا يكتوون وعلى ربهم يتوكلون
[Those people are those who do not treat themselves with (un-Islamic) Ruqya, nor do they believe in bad or good omen (from birds etc.) nor do they get themselves branded (Cauterized). but they put their trust (only) in their Lord]
This has been narrated in Bukhari and Muslim by `Imran ibn Hosayn and `Abdullah ibn `Abbas.
Ironically, RTS includes the Hadith of Ibn `Abbas in the first scanned page, but sadly he did not want to translate its contents to his readers because it would mess up the rest of the article.
May Allah help us all.