Is the Hadith of a donkey named Ufayr reportedly owned by Prophet Muhammed Authentic?

There are a number of variants, all involving a donkey, called perhaps ‘Ufayr or Ya’fur, who spoke to the Prophet. In one variant, there is a simple conversation between the animal and Muhammad concerning the animal’s name. In another variant, the donkey explains to the Prophet that it had been in the habit of throwing its previous owner, resulting in frequent punishments. The animal had behaved this way to be sold to Muhammad, as its family had traditionally served God’s Prophets.

When the Prophet died, the donkey is said to have thrown itself into the well of Abu ‘l-Haytham b. at-Tayyihan.

The hadith of a donkey reporting its owner is compiled in the book of ibn Hebban called the scarred people ” المجروحين ” (2/328) (which means their narration is NOT trustworthy) while quoting Muhammad ibn Mazyad abu Ja’afar.

And ibn al-Jawzy in his Mawdo’at (555). The hadith is reported by the Sahabi=Companion abi Mandhor (May Allah be pleased with him) and shows that this donkey might be part of the war booty of Khaybar and that he died throw himself in the well of Abu’l-haytham ibn a-Tayhan.

قال أبو حاتم ابنُ حبان : لا أصل لهذا الحديثِ ، وإسنادهُ ليس بشيءٍ . ولا يجوزُ الاحتجاجُ بمحمدِ بنِ مَزْيَد

Ibn Hebban said:

This hadith has No origin. And the sanad=chain of narrations is Worthless. And can’t be used to excuse this sheikh (referring Muhammad ibn Mazyad).

Here is the complete statement of ibn al-Jawzi:

وقال ابنُ الجوزي : ” هذا حديثٌ موضوعٌ فلعن اللهُ واضعهُ ، فإنه لم يقصد إلا القدحَ في الإسلامِ ، والاستهزاءَ به .

May God curse the fabricator of this tradition because he only intended to insult and to deride Islam.

The hadith was also mentioned by ibn al-Atheer in “Usd al-Ghabah 6/304” when quoting the biography of the Sahābī abu Mandhor.

And Imam a-Dhabi in “Myzan al-I’tidal 4/34” also quoting Muhammad ibn Mazyad. Ibn Kathir also quoted it in “al-Bidaya wa-Nihaya 6/158” with the statement: That many of the hufadh=people who record hadith have refuted this hadith.

Among those who declared it as a fabrication or refuted it are scholars like ibn Hajar al-‘Asqalani, Imam as-Suyuti, ibn ‘Iraq, a-Shwakani, and Sheikh al-Albani.

Ibn Kathir also quoted another hadith on the authority of Mu’ad ibn Jabal (May Allah be pleased with him), where the donkey said his name was ‘Amr ibn … and the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) named him Ya’for. But this one had also several weaknesses, like an incomplete narrator chain and many not trustworthy narrators.

There are other ahadith quoting the name Ya’for but those also have been qualified as da’if=Weak.

There are instead sahih ahadith quoting a donkey called ‘Ufayr عُفَيْرٌ.

Another source which quotes a donkey speaking to our Messenger (peace be upon him) is one of the four Shi’a books al-Kafi 1/184 quoting a statement of Ali ibn abi Talib (May Allah be pleased with him).

But we could not find any narration quoting anything about lady Fatima a-Zahara’ (May Allah be pleased with her).

Allah knows best!

Reference in Arabic 

Almighty Allah is the highest and most knowledgeable, and the attribution of knowledge to him is the safest.

Right from Almighty Allah and wrong from me and Satan

Prepared by Mohamad Mostafa Nassar- Australia. 

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Arrogance is not only a sign of insecurity, but also a sign of immaturity. Mature and fully realised persons can get their points across, even emphatically without demeaning or intimidating others.