Ray means ballot, cast or opinion. Ashabu’r Ray means “people of the opinion” or more correct translation would be “people with the opinion”

Some of the sahaba acted on their own opinion if the aforementioned issue couldn’t not be resolved based on evidence from Quran or Sunnah. Indeed, such license and approval was given by the Prophet Muhammad (saw) himself according to a hadith in Abu Davud.

When Prophet Muhammad (saw) was among the sahaba, all decisions and executions were based on Quranic evidence or his hadith. When he passed away and Islam continued to expand in other territories, Muslims started to interact with different societies. Thus, the reason forming opinions for different worldly matters was born.

However sometimes Prophet himself based his decisions on worldly matters after discussing with some of the sahaba to form an opinion. Omar(r.a) and Ali(r.a) and Abdullah bin Masood was among the Ashabu-r Ray.

Following tabiun scholars are also considered as Ashabu-r Ray. Tabiun is a term to describe an early Muslim, who is born after the death of the Prophet Muhammad(saw) but who is contemporary of the Sahaba .

1- Alqame b. Qays en-Nahâî (62/ 681 ),

2- Masrooq b. el-Acda’ el-Hamdânî (63/682),

3- Khadı Shurayh b. Haris b. Qays (78/697 or 80/699),

4- Saîd b. Joobayr (95/713),

5- Habeeb b. Ebi Sabit el-Qâhilî (119/737),

6- İbrahim en-Nehâî (95/713),

7-Hammâd b. Ebi Soleymen (Abu Hanife’s teacher) (120/738).

Actually all of the madh’hab imams are also considered as Ehl-i Ray, people of the opinion since all of these imams and scholars have used their own reasoning. But mostly Hanafi fıqh scholars are considered as Ehl-i Ray.

Comparison and analogy is a common method in Hanafi branch of fıqh, to form an opinion.




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