It seems that the Saudi and Arab cyberspace in general is bound to move from one debate to another without a break, in cases mainly related to religion and politics.
The controversy focused this time on the Saudi writer Turki Al-Hamad, after he published a tweet in which he considered Sahih al-Bukhari contradicting the Qur’an.
Speaking about the crisis raised by the drawings of the Prophet Muhammad in France, Al-Hamad called for criticism of “the heritage that provided the living material for these drawings, chiefly Sahih Al-Bukhari,” as he put it.
The blogger was subject to harsh criticism, amounting to accusing him of contempt of religions and demanding that he be held accountable.
The Saudi writer has not responded to his comments at this writing.
The division was evident over Al-Hamad’s statements in the hashtag # Turki_ Al-Hamad_is_al-Bukhari, “who scored more than 90 Thousand tweets in 24 hours.
The hashtag took an advanced position in the list of the most popular topics in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, followed by another tag bearing the name of the Saudi writer.
‘A call for reform or targeted statements ‘؟
Questioning Al-Hamd about Sahih Al-Bukhari and his calls to revise heritage is not a new matter, but it definitely has many implications and dimensions.
The author’s statement comes in a context that many describe as “sensitive and dangerous.”
Some of the tweeters linked Al-Hamad’s opinion in Sahih Al-Bukhari with what they said was “the French president’s war on Islam.”
The conspiracy theory prevailed over some of the comments that the owners see in criticizing Sahih al-Bukhari, “a plan aimed at shaking the confidence of the new generation in the fundamentals of religion and the establishment of an alternative culture,” according to their saying.
On the other hand, another section of commentators defended al-Hamad.
Some of them cited hadiths of imams and sheikhs who questioned some of what was mentioned in Sahih al-Bukhari and other hadiths.
From this standpoint, tweeters see that “the writer did not despise the Islamic religion, but rather” only criticized a group of works and ideas of infallible human beings. “
Others were surprised by the praiseworthy attack, rejecting “the reverence of Bukhari, and some adhered to the culture of transmission and its submission to the mind.”
But the opponents of Al-Hamad consider that the attack on him deserves, and point out that “the problem is not in his person, but in the phenomenon of insulting the sacred things of Islam, which has recently turned into a fashion,” as they put it.
Some of them warn against “promoting the speech of praise and Wasim Yusef in exchange for excluding the true scholars.”
While others praise the discussions that the statements of Al-Hamad and the Egyptian researcher Islam Al-Buhairi open, and consider them “the beginning of a cultural and intellectual revolution.”
The defenders of the Saudi writer agree with him in approach and thinking, and consider him one of the “symbols of change and progress.”
In this context, one of them commented: “The supporters of change in Saudi Arabia achieved unprecedented achievements that were able to stop the wave of awakening with official support and royal decisions. This success was translated by the establishment of the first licensed philosophical society in the history of the Kingdom that will end eras of prevention.”
As for the former Imam of the Mosque, Adel Al-Kalbani asked, “Is it a call to a new religion?”
In turn, the former Kuwaiti MP Walid Al-Tabtabae considered that questioning the authenticity of the hadiths of the Prophet is questioning the veracity of the Qur’an itself.
Tweeter Saad disagrees with Al-Tabtabai, and says: “Al-Hamad” is very logical and rational. What does it mean to be – the bulk of – hadiths from the narration of Abu Hurairah, who only accompanied the Messenger two years ago? There is a missing link.
On the other hand, the skeptics stand in the scientific tools that some follow in dealing with heritage. They agree with Al-Hamad and Al-Buhairi in principle, but they disagree with them methodically.
Although they believe in the need to de-sacralize the texts of religion and heritage, they describe the articles and calls for revising heritage and religion that are spread on some websites as “selective and unscientific.”
And they say that these “recent calls, despite their importance, are driven by personal impressions and political motives that are consistent with the desires of those in power and are absent from arguments and objectivity,” as they put it.
This section of the commentators rejects the demands that al-Hamad be held accountable or the prohibition of those with similar opinions because thought is confronted with thought and not withholding.
Turki Al-Hamad is a Saudi writer and politician with several books.
Al-Hamad was previously arrested for 5 months at the end of 2012 due to tweets deemed offensive to the Prophet and sparked widespread controversy at the time.
In recent years, the debate about the authenticity of the hadiths contained in Sahih al-Bukhari has imposed itself on the comments of Arab social media users.
Many have come under attack for their criticism of hadiths and heritage texts, including the Egyptian researcher Islam Beheiry, Tunisian researcher Hala Al-Wardi, and other academics and preachers.
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