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Tamim al-Dari

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Sahaba
Tamim al-Dari
Personal Information
Full Name Tamim b. Aws b. Kharija al-Dari
Teknonym Abu Ruqayya
Lineage al-Lakhm tribe
Birth before Bi'tha
Place of Birth Palestine
Place(s) of Residence MedinaPalestine
Death/Martyrdom 40/660-61
Burial Place Bayt Jibrin, Palestine
Religious Information
Conversion to Islam Sanat al-Wufud

Tamīm b. Aws b. Khārija al-Dārī (Arabic: تميم بن أوس بن خارجة الداري, d. 40/660-61) known as Tamīm al-Dārī (Arabic: تميم الداري) was a companion of Prophet Muhammad (s). He was one of the pioneers in narrating stories in the history of Islam.

Tamim was a Christian man who converted to Islam in Sanat al-Wufud. He remained in Medina during the caliphate of the first three caliphs and then migrated to Palestine. Tamim was admired and respected by the first three caliphs, especially by 'Umar b. al-Khattab. He was the first person who was allowed by the second caliph to narrate stories for Muslims in Masjid al-Nabawi.

Sunni Muslims believe Tamim was among the virtuous companions of the Prophet (s) but some Shi'a researchers believe Tamim al-Dari, Ka'b al-Ahbar and Wahb b. Munabbih were first ones who brought Isra'iliyyat into Islamic culture. In addition, his name was not mentioned among the companions of Ali b. Abi Talib (a). He moved to Syria after the murder of 'Uthman b. 'Affan, which indicates that he was not a supporter of Imam Ali (a).

Lineage

Tamim b. Aws b. Kharija was a member of Banu Dar from al-Lakhm tribe; that is why he was called al-Dari. However, some believe because Tamim was a Christian man, he was called Dari because he stayed in Dayr (monastery). According to sources Tamim's kunya was Abu Ruqayya.

Before the Emergence of Islam

Tamim was a Christian merchant before converting to Islam. According to a number of narrations, before Tamim and his brother convert to Islam, they had betrayed a trust. The Prophet (s) was chosen as the judge to resolve the issue. Tamim had made some false testimonies which had led to someone's property loss. But later when Tamim converted to Islam, he confessed to his betrayal and false testimonies. Exegetes maintain that this incident led to revelation of verse 106 of Sura al-Ma'ida. Also exegetes have discussed about this incident in their commentaries on the verses 282 to 284 of Sura al-Baqara.

Converting to Islam

Tamim al-Dari met the Prophet (s) along with a group of Lakhmids (an Arab dynasty that ruled in central Iraq) and converted to Islam in 9/630-31, in Sanat al-Wufud. When Tamim converted to Islam he asked Prophet (s) to grant him the lands of Hebron and Einun villages which was accepted by the Prophet (s). After the Conquest of Syria, caliphs of the time acknowledged that Tamim and his family possess the conquered lands.

However, some has cast doubts on the validity of this document.[1]

Accompanying Prophet Muhammad (s)

Tamim al-Dari converted to Islam in 9/630-31 and accompanied the Prophet (s) for two years. A number of biographers including Ibn Ishaq have mentioned that Tamim accompanied Prophet Muhammad (s) in a number of Ghazwas; they did not mention the names of the Ghazwas though.

Building a Minbar

According to Sunni narrations, Tamim was among the firsts who recommended the Prophet (s) in the last years of his life to build a minbar (pulpit). Besides, Tamim had brought oil lamps from his business trips. Therefore, it is said he was the first person who had brought oil lamps to mosques and had built a minbar (pulpit).

Narrations

Tamim has narrated hadiths from the Prophet (s) about ethics, prayer and reciting the Quran. Some Musnad collections (supported hadiths) were prepared under his name. His narrations are stated in Al-Sihah al-Sitta books and hadith collections of Sunni Muslims.

A number of grand sahaba and Tabi'un including Ibn 'Abbas, Abu Hurayra, 'Ata' b. Yazid, Ibn Sirin and 'Abd Allah b. 'Umar are stated among the names of those who have narrated hadiths from Tamim al-Dari.

In the Time of Rashidun Caliphs

After converting to Islam, Tamim stayed in Medina during the time of caliphate of the first three Rashidun caliphs. It is said Umm Farwa, Abu Bakr's sister married him for a short time. In addition, 'Umar b. al-Khattab, the second Rashidun caliph, had great trust in Tamim. Also 'Umar appointed Tamim and Ibn Abi Ka'b as the Imam of congregational prayers in Tarawih. However, after the murder of 'Uthman b. 'Affan, Tamim moved to Syria in 40/660-61 and passed away in Bayt al-Maqdis. He was buried in Bayt Jibrin (a city in Palestine between Bayt al-Maqdis and Gaza Strip). A number of researchers believe, as Tamim al-Dari migrated to Syria after the murder of 'Uthman and his name was not mentioned among the companions of Imam Ali (a), it is concluded that he deviated from Imam's path.

Tamim and Isra'iliyyat

It is believed that Tamim al-Dari was among the first ones who brought Isra'iliyyat (stories from Christianity and other religions) to Islam. Some researchers have mentioned Tamim's name next to Ka'b al-Ahbar and Wahb b. Munabbih who brought Isra'iliyyat to Islamic culture.

Based on Sunni narrations, Tamim was the first person who had narrated stories for Muslims. He frequently asked 'Umar b. al-Khattab to narrate stories for people but the caliph rejected his request. Finally, he managed to attain the permission and became the first person who had narrated stories for Muslims in Masjid al-Nabawi. According to a number of narrations, Tamim had narrated stories once a week during the caliphate of 'Umar b. al-Khattab and twice a week during the caliphate of 'Uthman b. 'Affan. A number of orientalists believed Christian thoughts of Tamim have had a minor influence on Islamic thoughts and beliefs.

Asceticism

Sunni sources considered Tamim al-Dari as a virtuous and ascetic man. A number of authors have concluded from the hadiths Tamim has narrated which were about reciting the Qur'an and performing prayer, that he was enthusiastic about reciting the Qur'an and performing prayers.

Besides, some strange stories are stated about Tamim's life which are most probably fake. For example, it is said when Tamim neglected to keep vigil for one night, he repented and decided to stay awake for a whole year in order to compensate. In another example, when Tamim recited the 20th verse of Sura al-Jathiya, he experienced especial spiritual feeling. Also it is said, he recited the whole Qur'an in his prayer or during one night.

In Fiqh and in Hadith

Faqihs of different schools of thought have used the events of Tamim's life in fiqh-related subjects, such as the incident of betraying trust and allocations of villages to him by the Prophet (s).

According to Sunni sources, Prophet Muhammad (s) narrated al-Jassasa hadith from Tamim. They believe narration of the Prophet (s) from Tamim is a sample of narration of Kibar (seniors) from Sighar (juniors) and they have written works about it; however, Shi'a do not accept the notion that the Prophet (s) has narrated a hadith from Tamim, as they believe Prophet (s) himself had told al-Jassasa hadith and the story of Dajjal to his companions earlier.

Monographs

A number of works have been written about the lands the Prophet (s) had allocated to Tamim. Also books have been written about the al-Jassasa hadith from Tamim.

Notes

  1. Safadi and Mujir al-Din Hanbali have written about the existence of a document proving the fact that Tamim and his family owned the lands. Ahmad al-Qalqashandi has also mentioned this document as one of the first samples of secretarial documents. A number of orientalists have cast doubts on its validity and regarded it as a fake document. Some Shi'ite researchers including Ahmadi al-Miyanji believed the document was drawn up in the time of the first three Rashidun caliphs or Umayyads.

References

  • The material for this article is mainly taken from تمیم داری in Farsi Wikishia.