The Qur'an has never been changed and it can never be changed and so we should all for it. However Muslims also follow the Hadiths of the Prophet (SAW). How do we know that what has been written in these hadtith are accurate and acceptable for us to follow. Have these hadtith been changed over time? Also when these hadith were first put in writing form the Prophet did not write it nor did he say what should be written. The messages were taken in the form of A said that B said that C said that the Prophet (SAW) said...

I am only interested in a Sunni perspective.


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That's why "Hadith studies" (علم الحديث) exists which objective is distinguish the sahih, authentic from other than it.

it's concerned with 2 main things "Sanad"(سند) : the chain of narration and "Matn"(متن) : the text of the hadith

ٍfor example they look in the Sanad : the chain of narration , is it continuous (every narrator see the other narrator and was exist in his era?) and another thing what is the narrator status? is he honest? is he accurate? and this is part of "Biographical evaluation" which is part from this studies

another thing : is this Hadith (Matn) comes from different way (different narrators) Example : A - B - C says this Hadith and D - E - F says this Hadith also so as the number of different narrators ways increased and all of them are good to take from them

and there are a lot of parameters that took in the consideration to rank the Hadith (authentic "Sahih" /Good "Hasan"/Week "Daif")

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    But how do we know before Hadith studies existed people didnt change the hadith or interpret it wrong?
    – Zohal
    Commented May 7, 2014 at 11:30
  • that was purely based on assumptions and false beliefs and Fitnah, example.....Kissing Thumbs On Hearing Name Of Prophet Mohammad, which people could simply believe the Hadith are authentic but can't prove.... @Zohal Commented Apr 28, 2015 at 11:15

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