Salam. The following is the biography of one of the scholars from the al-Mulla family whose beginners text on hanafi fiqh is currently being proofread and edited for publication (May Allah the Exalted facilitate its completion).
Imam Ibrahim bin Hasan al-Mulla
Biography of the Author
The author of this work is the Imam, the Mufti, the Proof of the Sacred Law (Shariah), Ibrahim bin Hasan al-Mulla, al-Hanafi, al-Ahsai.
Birth and Passing Away
Sheikh Ibrahim was born in the city of al-Ahsa, in the area called al-Koot. This neighbourhood of the city was the residence of a number of scholars and pious people. The exact date of his birth is unknown, however it is clear that he was born around the end of the tenth century (Hijri). As for his passing away it was on the seventh of Shawwal 1048 (Hijri) in the city of al-Ahsa.
The Sheikh was raised in a pious environment under the tutelage of his father and also his maternal uncle, the notable scholar Sheikh Muhammad bin Mulla Ali Aal-Waaiz. From a young age he was drawn to the seeking of sacred knowledge. He studied in al-Ahsa with its most notable scholars (who held study circles and taught in religious schools
Our author studied with his maternal uncle and other scholars of the city. Over a number of years Sheikh Ibrahim studied, Aqidah, Usul, Hadith, Tafsir, Grammar, Logic and Tasawwuf. Until he attained a firm grounding and a high standing in terms of knowledge. His level of knowledge was at a level was such that he was counted as being amongst the scholars of his city. He was given Ijazah and praised by a number of scholars.
Our author did not limit his search of knowledge to the scholars of the al-Ahsa and their praise of him. Rather he set off in the pursuit of knowledge to the Hijaz and met and studied with the major scholars of the holy sanctuary, benefiting from both the resident scholars and those visiting.
Those Whom He Took Knowledge From
Sheikh al-Islam Wajih al-Din Abd al-Rahman bin Isa al-Murshidi al-Hanafi who was the Mufti of the Hanafi school in Makkah. He wrote for our author a lengthy Ijazah indicating in it his firm grasp of the various Islamic disciplines.
Sheikh Muhammad bin Ali bin Allan al-Bakri al-Siddiqi. Interestingly Sheikh Muhammad also studied and benefited from our author despite being counted as being from his Sheikhs. He wrote a commentary on a work by our author called ‘Daf al-Asa’ describing him in his introduction as: ‘the Jurist and Mufti of the East’
Sheikh Abd al-Malik bin Jamal al-Din al-Isami who passed away in 1037 (Hijri)
Sheikh Muhammad al-Rumi. He was described as the Qadi of the two holy sanctuaries (Haramain). Our author attended his lessons of the tafsir of al-Baydawi.
He studied the science of the purification of the heart and manners from his maternal uncle and then with Sheikh Taj al-Din al-Naqshbandi al-Hindi. This was when Sheikh Taj al-Din visited al-Ahsa.
A number of notable scholars studied with him, amongst them being:
His son Sheikh Abd al-Rahim
His nephew Sheikh Abd al-Rahman bin Muhammad Aal-Waaiz
The ruler of al-Ahsa Sheikh Yahya bin Ali Pasha
Sheikh Muhammad Salih, well known as al-Hakeem al-Ahsai
Sheikh Muhammad al-Ahsai al-Hanafi who migrated to Baghdad (d.1083 AH)
Sheikh Muhammad bin Uthman al-Shafi al-Ahsai, well known as ‘ the Shafi of the age’ (Shafi al-Zaman)
Sheikh Muhammad bin Nasir, the Shafi Mufti and ancestor of the Aal Abd al-Latif family.
His Standing in terms of Knowledge
Al-Muhibbi said about our author in Khulasah al-Athar (1/18-19):
Sheikh Ibrahim bin Hasan al-Mulla al-Ahsai al-Hanafi, (is) from the major scholars and Imams adorned with the quality of conviction and engrossed with worship. He was a jurist, grammarian, well grounded in a number of sciences. He studied in his city with a number of scholars and studied in Makkah with its jurist Abd al-Rahman al-Murshidi who wrote for him a detailed license indicating in it to his expertise in the Islamic sciences. He took the path from the knower of Allah (most high) Sheikh Taj al-Din when he came to al-Ahsa, and in turn from him al-Amir Yahya bin Ali Pasha the ruler of al-Ahsa…he has a number works in different sciences…and he has a large amount of poetry.
Our authors preoccupation with teaching and issuing legal verdicts is perhaps a reason for his not leaving a great amount of written material behind. His written works include:
Al-Ajwibah al-Ibtisamiyah – A collection of answers to questions sent to him.
Hidayah al-Murid Sharh Jawharah al-Tawhid- A commentary to Imam al-Laqqani’s well known poem on belief.
Hadiyyah al-Nasik fi Ahkam al-Manasik– A text on the legal rulings related to Hajj.
Daf’ al-Asa fi Adhkar Sabah wal-Masa– A collection of invocations for the morning and evening.
Bast al-Kasa– A commentary on the previous text.
Manzumah fi Adab al-Akal wa al-Shurb– A poem on the etiquettes of eating and drinking, the authors grandson Sheikh Muhammad bin Abd al-Rahim authored commentary on it entitled Miftah al-Qurb.
Uqd al-Uqyan fi Shuab al-Iman– A poem on the branches of faith.
Tuhfah al-Mubtadi– A brief introductory text for beginners on Islamic law covering the legal issues related to purification and prayer according to the Hanafi school. This is the text which is before you.
Turfah al-Muhtadi– A commentary of the previous text.
Sharh Risalah al-Tajiyyah– A commentary of a letter sent by Sheikh Taj al-Din al-Hindi to his student al-Amir Ali Pasha, the ruler of al-Ahsa.
Al-Fatawa al-Ibrahimiyyah– A collection of legal verdicts issued by author and collated by one of his students.
Sharh Manzumah al-Imritiyyah– A commentary of a text on grammar.
Manzumah fi Mawadi’ al-Salat ala al-Nabi– A poem of all the places where one should send Salutations and Salutations upon our Master the Messenger of Allah (Allah bless him and give him peace).