DUSHANBE, September 8
Addressing a meeting dedicated to the 17th anniversary of Tajikistan’s Independence, President Emomali Rahmon announced that the year of 2009 will be Year of Imama Azam in Tajikistan.
The president noted that separation of Islam from Tajik national culture and separation of Tajik national culture from Islam is erroneous.
The Tajik head of state noted that 1,310 birthday anniversary of Al-Imam al-A’zam, “The Greatest Imam” Nu’man bin Thabit bin Zuta bin Mahan, better known by his kunya as Abu Ḥanīfah, who was the founder of the Sunni Hanafi school of Islamic jurisprudence.
Al-Imam al-A’zam, “The Greatest Imam” Nu’man bin Thabit bin Zuta bin Mahan, better known by his kunya as Abu Ḥanīfah, (699 — 767 CE / 80 — 148 AH) was the founder of the Sunni Hanafi school of Islamic jurisprudence.
Abu Hanifa was also one of the Tabi’een, the generation after the Sahaba, because he saw the Sahabi Anas ibn Malik, and transmitted hadiths from him and other Sahaba.
Abu Hanifa (699 — 767 CE / 80 — 148 AH) was born in Kufa, Iraq during the reign of the powerful Umayyad capilph Abdul Malik bin Marwan. Acclaimed as Al-Imam al-A’zam, or Al-A’dham (the Great Imam), Nu’man bin Thabit bin Zuta bin Mah was better known by his kunya Abu Hanifa. It was not a true kunya, as he did not have a son called Hanifa, but an epithetical one meaning pure in monotheistic belief. His father, Thabit bin Zuta, a trader from Kabul, part of Khorasan in Persia, (the capital of modern day Afghanistan),was 40 years old at the time of Abu Hanifa’s birth.
His ancestry is generally accepted as being of non-Arab origin as suggested by the etymology of then names of his grandfather (Zuta) and great-grandfather (Mah). The historian, Al-Khatib al-Baghdadi, records a statement from Abu Hanifa’s grandson, Ismail bin Hammad, who gave Abu Hanifa’s lineage as Thabit bin Numan bin Marzban and claiming to be of Persian origin. The discrepancy in the names, as given by Ismail of Abu Hanifa’s grandfather and great-grandfather are thought to be due to Zuta’s adoption of a muslim name (Numan) upon his acceptance of Islam and that Mah and Marzban were titles or official designations in Persia. Further differences of opinion exist on his ancestry. Abu Muti, for example, describes Abu Hanifa as an Arab citing his ancestry as Numan bin Thabit bin Zuta bin Yahya bin Zaid bin Asad. The widely accepted opinion, however, is that he was of Persian ancestry.