The Shaikh Interprets a Prophetic Hadith to Mean Cars
by The Albaani Blog
From ’Abdullah ibn ‘Amr ibn al-‘Aas, who said, I heard the Prophet of Allaah ﷺ say, “In the last [part] of my nation there will be men who ride on means that resemble saddles. They will alight at the doors of the mosques. Their women are clothed but naked. On their heads are [what appears to be] like the humps of [lean] camels. Curse them for they are cursed. If there were a nation from the nations to come after you, your women would serve them, just as the women of the nations that were before you served you.” Hasan
Shaikh al-Albaani mentioned another narration from al-Haakim which says, “They will mount their mayaathir until they come to the doors of their mosques,” commenting on this he said, “… the word mayaathir is the plural of meetharah and Ibn al-Athir described it as, “… smooth and soft, made out of silk or a silk brocade [heavy silk] which the rider places beneath him on the saddle on top of the camel.”
So now that you have come to know this, [you will understand that] al-Haakim’s narration explains that first one, and by combining between the two the meaning will be that the saddles which they mount will be smooth and soft, and that they will resemble saddles, i.e., in terms of how wide they are.
… and this means that these saddles which those men will ride on at the end of time are not real saddles which are placed on the back of horses, they only resemble saddles.
And if one bears in mind that [the word] ‘saddles’ [rihaal] is the plural of saddle [rahl] and that its explanation is as has been mentioned in Misbaah al-Munir and others, i.e., ‘Everything that is used to prepare for a journey, from a container for goods, to a saddle for a camel.’
When you come to know this, it will become clear to you, with the Permission of Allaah, that the Prophet ﷺ is alluding to those vehicles which have been invented in this era, i.e., cars.
For they are comfortable, soft, and tender, like saddles. And what supports this is the fact that he ﷺ called them, ‘houses,’ as occurs in another hadith which has preceded under number 93, but which, it became apparent later, contained some disconnection.
So the hadith contains another miraculous prophecy [which has come into being] other than the one related to the women who are clothed yet naked, indeed it is the one connected to their men who get in those cars and stop at the doors of the mosques.
And by the everlasting existence of Allaah, it is a true prophecy which we witness every Friday when cars gather in front of the mosques such that the roads, despite their being wide, become congested, [and then] men alight from them to witness the Friday prayer, and most of them do not [even] pray the five daily prayers, or at the very least they do not pray them in the mosques.
It is as though they have become content with praying the Friday prayer in place of the [five daily] prayers and for this reason they can be found in large numbers on Fridays, stopping with their cars in front of the mosques. The fruits of prayer are not seen on them and nor in their dealing with their women and daughters, so they, in truth, are those whose, ‘… women are clothed, yet naked …’
In addition to this, there is yet another manifestation which the hadith applies to totally: indeed it is what we see with cars following funeral processions during recent times. People get in them who lack goodness from the rich and affluent who have abandoned the prayer.
Such that when the car carrying the corpse stops and the body is taken into the mosque to be prayed over, those affluent ones remain in front of the mosque in their cars, maybe some of them will get out of them, waiting for the funeral in order to follow the processions to the grave, out of social hypocrisy and [to pay mere] lip service, not as an act of worship or as a reminder of the Hereafter, and Allaah’s Aid is sought.
This is the meaning of the interpretation of the hadith with me, if I am correct then it is from Allaah, and if I am mistaken then it is from me, and Allaah the Most High is the One I ask to forgive [me] all my mistakes.
Silsilsah as-Sahihah, 6/1/411, 415-416, with editing.