al-Imam ash-Shafi’i on Manhood

It is reported in ‘Hilyat al-Awliya” (9/161) and elsewhere that the genius and scholar Muhammad bin Idris ash-Shafi’i said:

“By Allah, if I were told that even drinking cold water took away from my manhood, I would not drink it except while it was hot.”

5 Responses to “al-Imam ash-Shafi’i on Manhood”

  1. Can you please explain this statement?

    Jazaakallah Kayr

  2. He means that the issue of manhood was so important in his eyes that if something as insignificant as drinking cold water was considered to detract from manhood, he would even abandon that.

  3. Thank you abu Sabaya for your response but the question remains unanswered you have only repeated Shafis saying. The real question to be answered is what Shafi meant by manhood and in what context. I guess that is what most of us want to understand i.e. manhood as in bravery, manliness, strength and vigor or manhood as in the ability to procreate.

  4. If you look through various statements of the Salaf, you’ll see many different aspects that when combined would all add up to what we typically refer to as manhood today, or to be a man. Here are some examples:

    ‘Umar said that ‘aql (intellect) is an essential component of manhood.

    Ibn ‘Umar said that disciplining yourself and doing your best at what you do are components.

    az-Zuhri said that eloquence, avoiding situations that are doubtful, earning lawful wealth, and fulfilling the needs of others are components.

    al-Ahnaf said that knowledge, kindness to parents, and honesty are components.

    Ibrahim an-Nakha’i said that having strong resolve and not being hesitant all the time, to be generous with your brothers, to protect your honor, and to spend a lot of time at home are all components.

    Of course, these are all besides the obvious characteristics of manhood such as bravery, strength, etc. that don’t need to be mentioned.

    So, what ash-Shafi’i was basically saying was that if something as small as drinking hot water was one of these components, he would even do that.

    And Allah Knows best.

  5. Anonymous Says:

    What is the arabic word being used for “manhood”?

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