His Birth and Lineage:
His name is Mujaahid Ibn Jabar, his kunyah was Abul-Hajjaaj and his lineage was Abul-Hajjaaj Mujaahid Ibn Jabar al-Makhzoomee al-Makkee. He was from the famous Arab tribe of Banu Makhzoom. He was born in 20H or 21H during the Caliphate of Umar (radi-Allaahu ‘anhu).
He was a well known teacher and explainer of the Qur’aan and a famous preserver of hadeeth.
His Teachers and Those he Narrated from:
He learnt hadeeth from the illustrious companions, the likes of:
- Sa’ad Ibn Abee Waqaas,
- Ummul-Mu’mineen Aa’ishah,
- Abu Hurairah,
- Umm Haanee,
- Abdullaah Ibn Umar,
- and the Mufassirul-Qur’aan (Explainer of the Qur’aan) Abdullaah Ibn Abbaas.
May Allaah be pleased with all of them.
He studied with Ibn Abbaas for sometime, learning the explanation of the Qur’aan. As a result of this he possessed great knowledge.
His Students and Those who Narrated from him:
- Hakam Ibn Utaibah,
- Amr Ibn Deenaar,
- Mansoor Ayoob,
- Ibn A’un,
- Umar Ibn Dharr.
Ibn Katheer (not the author of Tafseer Ibn Katheer), Amr Ibn E’laa and Ibn Maheesan learnt recitation and the knowledge of the explanation of the Qur’aan from him.
- Tafseer Mujaahid (2 Volumes) – he did not write this tafseer – it is all based on narrations from him. This book has been printed in Islamabad, Pakistan.
The Scholars Praise for Imaam Mujaahid:
Imaam adh-Dhahabee said,
“The whole Ummah is agreed upon Mujaahid’s greatness and using him for evidence. The authors of the six books of hadeeth have also narrated from him.”
Imaam Mujaahid states that he recited the Qur’aan 3 times to Ibn Abbaas (radi-Allaahu ‘anhu). After reciting every verse to him he would ask the reason behind the revelation of the verse.
Shaykh-ul-Islaam Ibn Taymiyyah said,
“Mujaahid studied the Qur’aan with Ibn Abbaas, he stopped and questioned him about each and every verse and noted all of his comments. That is why (Sufyaan) ath-Thawree said, ‘If the comments of Mujaahid reach you then it is enough.’ This is also the reason why Imaam ash-Shaafi’ee and Imaam Bukhaaree relied on Mujaahids explanations. Similarly Imaam Ahmad and others of his like, who have commented on the Qur’aan, quote the words of Mujaahid more than the words of any other person.”
As mentioned above, Imaam Bukhaaree, in his Jaami as-Saheeh, in Kitaab at-Tafseer, has mentioned many statements of Mujaahid.
“From the people alive, he (Mujaahid) was the most knowledgeable person in the explanation of the Qur’aan.”
Ibn Juraij would say,
“Learning and hearing hadeeth from Mujaahid is more beloved to me than my family and wealth.”
“In this era Mujaahid had the most knowledge about the explanation of the Qur’aan.”
Imaam Mujaahid said,
“Often when I would go on a journey, Abdullaah Ibn Umar would hold the strap of my ride and stand as an attendant.”
“I used to think that Mujaahid was destitute when I saw him wear simple and inexpensive clothes. I used to think he was a donkey herder who had lost his donkey and was upset due to this. However when he used to speak on scholarly points then it was as if diamonds were emanating from his mouth.”
Hameedah A’raj said,
“Mujaahid would say Allaahu Akbar (Allaah is The Greatest) after each Soorah from Wa-Dhuha to the end of the Qur’aan.”
“Mujaahid liked to see strange things. Once he went to Hadhramaut to look at a well of some sort. Another time he went to Baabil to look at Haroot and Maroot. He informed the ruler of his intentions and he (the ruler) called a magician and instructed him to take Mujaahid and show him Haroot and Maroot. The magician was a jew. The jewish magician said to Mujaahid, ‘There is a condition and that is you can not say Allaah.’ So he took him to a castle. When they reached a certain point he uprooted a stone and said to Mujaahid, ‘Hold my feet.’ And then he walked down a dreadful and grim abyss or pit, where Haroot and Maroot were hanging as upside down mountains. Upon seeing them Mujaahid said, ‘All glory be to Allaah’ when suddenly (the apparent mounts of Haroot and Maroot) began to tremble and shake as if they were going to collide with each other. He and the jew fainted, when the jew regained consciousness he said, ‘You almost destroyed yourself and me.'”
Most of the scholars said that Mujaahid died in 103H or 104H. Waaqidee mentions from Ibn Juraij that he lived a total of 83 years. He died whilst in a state of prostration.
Sources for this Biography are:
- Tadhkirratul-Huffaadh (no.83)
- Tabaqaat al-Huffaadh (no.81)
- Tafseer Ibn Jareer (1/40)
- Muqaddimah Fee Usool at-Tafseer (phs.19-20) of Ibn Taymiyyah
- Meezaan ul-Ei’tidaal (3/9)
- Tahdheeb at-Tahdheeb (10/42)
- Taareekh Tafseer Wa-Mufassireen (pgs.104-106)