What is the meaning of the Hadith in which the Prophet (peace be upon him) said:
Allah has pardoned my Ummah (nation based on one creed) for any acts they do mistakenly, forgetfully, or under duress.
The above-mentioned Hadith is reported by
Ibn Majah on the authority of
Abu Dhar Al-Ghifary (may Allah be pleased with him) from the Prophet (peace be upon him). It was also reported by
Al-Tabarany in his book Al-Kabir and by
Al-Hakim in Al-Mustadrak on the authority of
Ibn ‘Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him and his father) from the Prophet (peace be upon him).
Al-Hakim stated that it is Sahih (authentic) according to the conditions stipulated by Al-Bukhari and Muslim.
Abu Hatim stated that it is not authentically transmitted from the Prophet (peace be upon him); his statement was reported by
Al-Hafizh ibn Hajar in his book Bulugh Al-Maram. Through a weak Sanad (chain of narrators),
Al-Tabarany related this Hadith in Al-Kabir on the authority of
Thawban (may Allah be pleased with him), the freed slave of the Prophet (peace be upon him).
Al-Haythamy explained in Majma‘ Al-Zawa‘id that "mistakenly" and "forgetfully" in this Hadith are the opposites of "intentionally" and "mindfully" respectively. The meaning of the Hadith is that Allah (Exalted be He) has honored the followers of Muhammad (peace be upon him) for the sake of His Prophet Muhammad by pardoning whoever among them commits a prohibition or abandons an obligation mistakenly or out of forgetfulness. In other words, anyone who does so will not be a sinner in the Sight of Allah (Exalted be He).Making up for obligations that are performed mistakenly or neglected out of forgetfulness, or required atonement for committing prohibitions, varies according to the detailed evidence of each case. The person may need to apply certain rulings, such as paying Diyah (blood money) and offering Kaffarah (expiation) in the case of involuntary manslaughter. Also, they may need to make up for the acts they have forgotten or misdone, such as performing Sujud-ul-Sahw (Prostration of Forgetfulness) or making up for missed Salah (Prayer). (Part No. 4; Page No. 402) The same applies to the compensation or Kaffarah required for hunting in Al-Haram (Sanctuary of Makkah). On the other hand, there are situations where no atonement is required. Examples of these situations include not having to make up for Sawm (Fast) if a Mukallaf (person meeting the conditions to be held legally accountable for their actions) breaks Sawm out of forgetfulness; or if they breach their oath out of forgetfulness, they need not offer Kaffarah.Also, if the person under duress has no choice but to do the wrong act they are forced to do, they will be excused. They are not considered to be sinful when driven by compulsion to do this forbidden act as long as their heart remains secure in faith, condemning the forbidden act one is forced to commit and not deeming it lawful. However, the case is not the same if a Muslim is forced to kill someone else; they will be sinful if they do so. It will be judged as sacrificing others to save oneself and incurring major harm.When a Muslim is forced to abandon an obligation, they will not be considered sinful. However, they remain responsible for performing this obligation once the impediment is removed, as entailed by the related legal evidence.May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad his family and Companions.