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Some Writings of Imam Ahmad Raza Khan (Rahmatulla 'Alaih)

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Some Writings of Imam Ahmad Raza Khan (Rahmatulla 'Alaih)

The following is a brief description and a list of some of the writings of Ala Hazrat Imam Ahmad Rida Khan RA. For a complete list of his works on numerous sciences, one may consult Mohjam al-Muaddid li-Talifaat al-Mujaddid by Malikul-Ulama Maulana Sayyid Zafar ul-Deen Bihaari Al-Qadiri.



Imam Ahmad Rida RA was a writer of unparallel abilities. He started writing at an early age and his first book was the Arabic commentary of Hidaya al-Nahw, which, he wrote at the age of ten. The second book was Dau’al-Nihaya in Arabic, which he wrote in 1285/1868 at the age of thirteen. He wrote numerous books and treatise in Arabic, Persian, and Urdu on diversified topics. These are estimated to be more than 1000 dealing with more than 50 branches of knowledge1. In 1305/1887 at the age of 30 years he had completed seventy five books and treatises2. In 1327/1909 this number increased up to five hundred3. Apart from these contributions he had written annotations4 and commentaries on more than 150 books pertaining to various branches of learning5. Investigations have shown that pamphlets written by him are comparable to typical post-graduate research papers of today's standard in which each one contains a bibliography of innumerable books and references. He wrote some fifty pamphlets on controversial subjects6. In the branches of Islamic knowledge, there are more than 500 works by Imam Ahmad Rida RA.


Mr. Shams Al-Din a contributor to the voluminous history of literature of the Muslim of Indo-Pakistan confesses that Imam Ahmad Rida RA, "Wrote hundreds and thousands books on various controversial and scientific topics"7. The most voluminous work is the collection of Verdicts i.e. Fatawa-e-Radawiyya. In 1324/1904, he had completed its 7 volumes, which afterwards increased up to 12 volumes of more than 1000 pages each.


When Shaikh Isma’il Khaleel, the curator of the library in Makka al-Mukarramah read the specimen of these Fatawa (verdicts) he was puffed up with joy and wrote to Imam Ahmad Rida: "By Allah, if Abu Hanifa Nu’mani would have gone through these Fatawa undoubtedly it could have been his heart’s delight and granted its writer among his pupils8."


A prominent figure from the opposite camp and a famous writer Hakeem Abda-Hayy of Lucknow (d. 1341/1923) admits: "During his stay in Makka al-Mukarramah and Madina al-Munawwarah (1324/1906) he wrote several treatises and gave verdicts to some questions received from the scholars. They were dumb stricken to see his rapid writing and intelligence on the vast information on the text of books on Muslim Jurisprudence and disputed dogmas he possessed9."


A renowned theologian and a great saint of Delhi, Hadrat Maulana Zayd Abu al-Hassan Farooqi who completed his education at Al-Azhar, Cairo acknowledged the unrivalled mastery of Imam Ahmad Rida RA over jurisprudence and other branches of learning in the following words: “None can deny the erudition of Maulana Ahmad Rida RA in the field of Fiqh. He was, no doubt the greatest Faqhi (jurist) of his time”.


He also added: “Kifaayat al-Mufti" of Maulana Kifayat-Allah (compiled and published by Maulana Hafiz Al-Rahmaan Wasif at Delhi) is simply of little value to me, as it provides no reference or citation. Hence its validity is questionable. On the contrary the Fatawa of Imam Ahmad Rida RA are not only argumentatively convincing and rational but are supported by authentic references. They are unique in depth and magnitude and broaden ones horizons of vision. They are assets to be known and be remembered with scores of references. One should not look at that image of Imam Ahmad Rida RA, which the pseudo-scholars have conspired to project. There was no equal to him in scholarship and the profound knowledge of jurisprudence among his contemporaries." (Quoted from a dispatch of Maulana Muhammad Mukarramah, Fathpuri-Mosque Delhi, dated 18th December 1975).


Even the antagonists of Imam Ahmad Rida RA referred to these Fatawa. For instance, a Mufti of opposing views, Molvi Kifayat-Allah (d. 1327/1925), consulted and rationalised these Fatawa10, and admitted that Imam Ahmad Rida RA had full command over the subtleties of Muslim Jurisprudence as stated by Mufti Muhammad Mehmood of Alwar (Hyderabad-Pakistan).


The second important work, which Imam Ahmad Rida RA contributed towards religious knowledge, is the translation of the Holy Qur'an in Urdu language. It has its own characteristics. This translation was published under the title of Kanzul-Imam with marginal notes by his Caliph Maulana Muhammad Na’eem al-Din RA under the title Khaza’n al-Irfan in 1330/1911.


There are many complete and incomplete translations of the Holy Qur'an in the Urdu language. More than 25 translations had been compiled before Kanzul Imaan while more than 50 have been compiled after its publication. But in all these translations, Kanzul Imaan seems to stand out first and foremost. The translator passes smoothly from such delicate places where it was impossible for others to do justice.


His books and treatises are in Bareilly, UP lying largely unpublished. So far few of his writings have been published in Bareilly, Muradabad, Lahore, Karachi, etc. Among some of his works are included in the following:


Qur'an Tafseer

1. Al-Nofha Al –Faha (1315/1897)

2. Jalib Al-Jinan (1322/1904)

3. Kanzul-Iman (1330/1911)


Traditions (Hadith)

1. Al-Nudjum al-Thawaqi (1296/1878)

2. Al-Raud al-Bahij

3. Madarij-e-Tabaq at al-Hadith (1313/1895)



1. Rahiq al-Ihqaq (1311/1893)

2. Al-ka’s Al-Dihaq (1313/1895)

3. Al-Shir’a al-Bahiyya (1317/1897)

4. Rad al-Qudat (1323/1905)

5. Djad al-Mumtar (1326/1908)

6. Al-Ataya Al-Nabawi fi Al Fatawa (1326/1908)

al-Radawiyya (12 volumes)



1. Bawariq-e-Taluh (1311/1893)

2. Nika al-Sulafa (1319/1901)


Law of Inheritance

1. Al-Maqsad al-Nafi (1315/1897)

2. Tib al-Imaan (1317/1899)



1. Al-Sa’i al-Mushkur (1290/1873)



1. Maqam al-Hadid (1304/1886)



1. Azm al-Bazi (1319/1901)

2. Kalam al-Fahim (1319/1901)

3. Jadawil al-Riyadi (1319/1901)

4. Al-Mauhibat (1319/1901)

5. Al-Budur (1323/1905)

6. Kitab al-Arithmatic (1325/1907)



1. Ata’b al-Iksir (1296/1878)



1. Al-Ishkal al-Uqlaydis (1306/1888)

2. A’ali al-Ataya (1319/1901)

3. Adjmal al-Dara (1320/1902)



1. Hal al-Muadilat (1325/1907)



1. Al-Thawaqib al Radiwiyya (1321/1903)

2. Al-Djadawil Al Radiwiyya (1321/1903)

3. Al Adjwiba Al Radiwiyya (1321/1903)



1. Aqmar al-In-Shirah (1319/1901)

2. Al-Sura al-Mudjaz (1319/1901)

3. Al-Kalimat al-Mulhima (1338/1919)

4. Fauz-e-Mubeen (1339/1920)

5. Nuzul-e-ayat-e-Furqan (1339/1920)

6. Djada Al-Tulu (1925/1907)



1. Al-Andjab al-Aniq (1319/1901)

2. Kashfal-Ula (1324/1906)

3. Dur al-Qubh (1326/1908)



1. Musaffir ul-Matal (1324/1906)



1. Zaki al-Baha (1325/1907)



1. Hada’q-e-Bakshish (Two Volumes) (1325/1907)



1. Al-Djam al-Dad (1317/1900)



1. Al-Matr al-Sa’id

In Feb. 1975/1395, Dr. Mukhtaar-ud-Deen Aarzu, Head of the Department of Arabic, Muslim University, Aligarh relayed a speech on Imam Ahmad Rida RA on "All India Radio".


I think the time has come and the scholars should unveil the facts;

The time of unveiling has come, the beloved Will be seen by all.

The secret which was Veiled by silence shall now become manifest.


Prof. Dr. Muhammad Mas’ud Ahmad (MA, Phd.)

Karachi, Pakistan.




1. For chronological details of Imam Ahmad Rida's RA writings see:-


(a) Muhammad Zafar al-Deen, ibid. Vols. I and II


( B) Muhammad Zafar al-Deen, al-Mudjmal al-Mu’did le Talifat al-Mujaddid, 1327/1909, (Lahore 1974)


© Rahmaan Ali, ibid, (Lucknow 1914/1327), p. 18


(d) Nizami Badayuni, Qamus al-Mashahir, Vol. I, p.66.


(e) Abd al-Haqq, Qamus al-Kutub, (Karachi; 1961) Vol. I, pp. 146, 218, 382, 463, 883, 910, 924 and 1063.


The complete list of his published works is available at Khanqah-e-Barakatiyya Mahrehra (India).


2. Rahmaan Ali, ibid, p. 18.


3. Muhammad Zafar al-Deen, al-Mudjmal etc.


4. Recently his annotation al-Mustanad al-Mu’tamad Bena Nadj at al-Abad (1320/1902) on the book;

Al Mu’taqid al-Muntaqid (1270/1853) by Shah Fadl-e-Rasul has been published along with the text from Istanbul (Turkey) 1976.


5. Muhammad Mas’ud, ibid, p. 83 (marginal note by Abd al-Hakim Akhtar).


6. S.M Ikram, ibid, p. 116.


7. Fayyad Mahmood and Ibadat Bareilvi, Tarikh-e-Adabiyyat-Musalmanan-e-Pakistan-o-Hind (Lahore 1972) Vol. IX, Chap. I, p.29.

Also see Imam Ahmad Rida Fatawa-e-Radiwiyya Vol. I, p.4.


8. Haamid Rida, ibid, letter dated 16 Dhil Hij 1325/1907.


9. Abd al Hayy, Nuzhat al-Khawatir, (Hyderabad Deccan 1390/1971) Vol. VIII, p.39.


10. Muhammad Mas’ud Ahmed Mawa’z-e-Mazhari, (Karachi 1969) p. 31.

Edited by Ghulam E Mustafa
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