Who is Mufti Abdur Rahman ibn Yusuf?
Shaykh Abdur-Rahman ibn Yusuf Mangera has been studying the traditional Islamic sciences and writing scholarly works for most of his life. He completed the bulk of his studies at Darul Uloom Bury, North England, where he memorized the Qurâ€™an by the age of fifteen and thereafter went on to complete a rigorous, six-year Shariâ€˜a program. He graduated from this program with authentic certifications (ijaza) in numerous Islamic disciplines, including Arabic, Islamic jurisprudence, and hadith (with particular emphasis on the six canonical collections of hadith (Sihah Sitta) and the Muwattas of Imam Malik and Imam Muhammad. His teachers at Darul Uloom Bury included Shaykh Yusuf Motala and other students of Shaykh al-Hadith Mawlana Muhammad Zakariyya Kandhlawi.
Upon graduation, he traveled to South Africa, where he attended Madrasah Zakariyyah part-time to gain specialized training in answering legal questions (iftaâ€™) under Mufti Rada al-Haq. While in South Africa, he also completed a Bachelor or Arts (with honors) in Islamic Studies at Rand Afrikaans University, Johannesburg, under the supervision of Professor Abdul Rahman I. Doi.
He then traveled to Syria, where he received a second certification in Qurâ€™anic recitation and memorization, this time from Shaykh â€˜Abd al-Razzaq al-Halabi, who possessed a short, unbroken chain of transmission (sanad) to the Messenger of Allah (upon him be peace). Additionally, he received a certification from Shaykh Adib Kallas after reading Mulla â€˜Ali al-Qariâ€™s Sharh al-Fiqh al-Akbar and attending lectures on other classical texts of Islamic creed (â€˜aqida).
After his trip to Syria, he traveled to Saharanpur, India, where he received a formal authorization to issue legal rulings (fatawa), which required a close study of part or all of a number of classical jurisprudential texts, including, among others, Ibn Nujaymâ€™s Al-Ashbah wa â€™l-nazaâ€™ir and â€˜Allama Haskafiâ€™s Al-Durr al-mukhtar (along with its gloss, Radd al-muhtar, by â€˜Allama Ibn â€˜Abidin al-Shami). During this time, Shaykh Abdur-Rahman also attended classes on the principles of hadith (usul al-hadith), studying â€˜Allama Lakhnawiâ€™s Al-Raf â€˜ wa â€™l-takmil fi â€™l-jarh wa â€™l-taâ€™dil and parts of Imam Suyutiâ€™s Tadrib al-rawi.
Shaykh Abdur-Rahman attained additional certifications in hadith from such great scholars as Shaykh Muhaddith Habib al-Rahman al-Aâ€˜zami (through his student Shaykh Mufti Zayn al-â€˜Abidin), Shaykh Abu â€™l-Hasan â€˜Ali Nadwi, and Shaykh Muhammad al-â€˜Awwama. May Allah continue to bless those of his teachers who are still alive and have mercy on those who have passed on to the next.
To date, Shaykh Abdur-Rahman has authored the highly popular Fiqh al-Imam: Key Proofs in Hanafi Fiqh (1996) and co-authored Reflections of Pearls (1995). He also published Provisions for the Seekers (1996), a translation and commentary of the Arabic work Zad al-Talibin, a collection of short hadiths compiled by Mawlana ‘Ashiq Ilahi from â€˜Allama Tibriziâ€™s Mishkat al-Masabih. This work has recently been revised and republished in an extended edition. His latest published work is Prayers for Forgiveness: Seeking Spiritual Enlightenment through Sincere Supplication (2004), a translation of Al-Istighfarat al-Munqidha min al-Nar, a collection of seventy prayers for forgiveness of Imam Hasan al-Basri. Additionally, Shaykh Abdur-Rahman has completed an unpublished translation of Imam Abu Hanifaâ€™s Al-Fiqh al-Akbar, along with its commentary, written by â€˜Allama Maghnisawi, with notes from Mulla â€˜Ali al-Qariâ€™s larger commentary (to be published soon).
He presently serves as Imam of a southern California masjid and continues to work on scholarly publications through White Thread Press. Some of his fatawa can be found on Sunnipath and some of his lectures at ZamZam Academy and Al-Rashad Islamic Bookstore.