In October 1989, I was invited to present a paper on the �Authority of Sunnah� in an international conference held in Chicago by an international Islamic organization.
Since long, I had felt the need of a brief English booklet containing basic information on �The Sunnah of the Holy Prophet ( ),� its general features, the nature of its authority and the standard of its authenticity.
I took the opportunity to fulfil this need and wrote on the subject a little more detail than was required in a conference of this type.
The present work is the result of the above endeavor. This book is meant for the general reader who wants to know what the �Sunnah of the Holy Prophet ( )� is, how does it have a binding authority over all the Muslims for all times to come, what status has the Holy Qur��n given to it and what measures has the Ummah adopted to preserve it for the coming generations.
I hope that this humble effort will provide brief, yet clear, answers to questions of similar nature and will help understanding the true status of the �Sunnah� as a source of Islamic Law and as a source of guidance for all Muslims in their practical lives. It will also assist, I hope, in removing certain doubts inculcated by a few contemporary writers in respect of the authority of the Sunnah.
May Almighty All�h approve of this humble effort, adorn it with His pleasure and make it beneficial to the readers.
(Mufti) Muhammad Taqi Usmani