MUSAFAH (SHAKING WITH BOTH HANDS)


MUSAFAH (SHAKING) WITH BOTH HANDS

The masters of Islamic jurisprudence (fuqahā’) have mentioned that it is sunnah to use both hands in musāfahah. Musāfahah is defined as placing one’s palm in the palm of another.

 

والمصافحة الأخذ باليد والتصافح مثله. والرجل يصافح الرجل إذا وضع صفح كفه في صفح كفه

(لسان العرب 4/47؛ صادر)

 

The sunnah method of musāfahah is to place the right palm in the right palm of the other person and the left hand on the back of the other person’s right hand. This method of musāfahah is proven through several ahādīth, such as the following narration of ‘Abdullah ibn Mas’ūd رضي الله عنه.

 

حدثنا أبو نعيم حدثنا سيف قال سمعت مجاهدا يقول حدثني عبد الله بن سخبرة أبو معمر قال سمعت ابن مسعود يقول: علمني رسول الله صلى الله عليه و سلم وكفي بين كفيه التشهد كما يعلمني السورة من القرآن ( التحيات لله والصلوات والطيبات السلام عليك أيها النبي ورحمة الله وبركاته السلام علينا وعلى عباد الله الصالحين أشهد أن لا إله إلا الله وأشهد أن محمدا عبده ورسوله ) . وهو بين ظهرانينا فلما قبض قلنا السلام – يعني – على النبي صلى الله عليه و سلم

(صحيح البخاري 25/926، كتاب الاستئذان، باب الأخذ باليدين؛ رحيمية ديوبند)

 

Abdullah ibn Mas’ūd رضي الله عنهsaid that the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم taught me the tashahhud, while my palm was between his palms, as he used to teach me a sūrah from the Qur’ān (Bukhari)

 

Abdullah ibn Mas’ūd رضي الله عنهmentions that the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم used two hands. The Sahābah رضي الله عنهم expressed the utmost respect for the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم.

 

Therefore, it is unimaginable that the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم placed both of his hands on Ibn Mas’ūd’s رضي الله عنه hand, yet Ibn Masūd رضي الله عنه only used one hand.

 

Furthermore, using both hands in musāfahah was also the way of our pious predecessors.

 

Consider the following hadith by Imam Bukhari:

باب الأخذ باليدين وصافح حماد بن زيد ابن المبارك بيديه

(المرجع السابق)

 

The Chapter of [Shaking] with Two Hands. And Hammad ibn Zayd shook hands with Ibn al-Mubarak using two hands (Ibid).

 


In the above narration,
Imām Bukhārī clearly explains that the proper method of musāfahah is with both hands. This is also the explanation of the fuqahā’ as seen in the examples below.

 

وتكره المصاحفة بعد أداء الصلاة بكل حال أما عند لقاء المسلم لأخيه بعد السلام بكلتا يديه مع أخذ الإبهام وبغير حائل من ثوب أو غيره فسنة

(الدرر المباحة، ص 64؛ مطبعة)

Musāfahah is disliked after prayer in any situation. But when meeting a Muslim brother, it is sunnah to do musāfahah firmly with both hands after saying salām and without having any barrier, such as a piece of cloth, [between the hands]

 

(Al-Durar al-Mubahah)

 

وتجوز المصافحة والسنة فيها أن يضع يديه على يديه من غير حائل من ثوب أو غيره كذا في خزانة المفتين

(الفتاوى العالمكيرية 5/369؛ رشيدية)

Musāfahah is permissible and its sunnah method is to place one’s hand in the hand of another without any barrier, such as a piece of cloth, in between. This has also been mentioned in “Khazānah al-Muftīyīn”

 

(Al-Fatawa al-’ alamghariyah)

 

وتلاقى عبد اللّه بن المبارك وحماد بن زيد فتصافحا ويكفي هذا العمل فبيد واحدة تجزيء وباليدين أكمل

(العرف الشذي على هامش سنن الترمذي 2/101، باب المصافحة؛ قديمي)

Abdullāh ibn al-Mubārak met Hammād ibn Zayd and they shook hands. This act [of musāfahah] is valid with one hand, but is more complete with two hands

(Al-’Arf al-Shadhī)

 

Imam Zafar Ahmad al-’Uthma nisummarizes this entire discussion in his masterpiece, I’ilā al-Sunan, by stating:

 

وهذه الآثار تدل على مشروعية المصافحة عند اللقاء وبه قال أبو حنيفة والجمهور وهل باليد الواحدة أو باليدين؟ فلا نص فيه ولكن المتوارث هو باليدين دون اليد الواحدة

(إعلاء السنن 17/467؛ العلمية)

All these narrations prove the validity of shaking hands when meeting someone. This is the opinion of Abu Hanifah and the majority of scholars. But is it with one hand or two? Even though there is no clear, definitive narration for it, the method passed down, generation after generation, is with two hands, not one.

 

Therefore, it is important to clarify that this issue is related to the preferred method of shaking hands, not the valid method. Hence, as important as it is to follow the sunnah to its fullest extent, it is just as important to not make minor issues the source of disunity, heated debates, and ill feelings towards fellow Muslims.

 

And Allāh Knows Best.

Courtesy of Moulana Abrar Mirza

www.ahmadtrini.wordpress.com

HAND SHAKE

By Moulana Muhammad ibn Moulana

Haroon Abbassommar

POSTED: 18 ZUL-HIJJAH 1422, 3

MARCH 2002

Q.)What is the proper method of handshake? Should it be with one hand or both hands?

 

[Shamil. Sri Lanka]

 

A.)Imaam Bukhari (RA)has mentioned a chapter in his Sahih, ‘The chapter of taking both the hands(in Musaafaha).

 

Thereafter, he records the Hadith whereby Sayyidna Ibn Mas’ood, Radi-Allahu anhu, states that Rasulullah held of both his hands.

 

(Bukhari vol.2 pg.926).

 

And Allah Ta’ala Knows Best

CHECKED AND APPROVED CORRECT:

Mufti Ebrahim Desai

http://albalagh.net/qa/handshake.shtml

www.ahmadtrini.wordpress.com

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