December 04: Hadhrat Abu Hurairah (Radhiyallaho anho) is another eminent Sahabi. No other person has narrated as many Ahadith as he has done. He embraced Islam in 7 A.H. and, as the Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe wasallam) died in 11 A.H., he had been with him for four years only. People used to marvel how he could remember so many Ahadith in such a short period. He explains this himself, saying ” People wonder how I narrate so many Ahadith.
The fact is that my Muhajir brothers remained busy in trade and my Ansar brothers did their farming, while I was always with the Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe wasallam). I was among the people of Suffah. I never cared to earn my living; I was contented with the little food that the Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe wa sallam) could give me. I would be with the Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe wa sallam) at times when no one else was there. I once complained to the Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe wasallam) about my poor memory. He said, ‘Spread your shawl!’ I did so. He made some signs on the shawl with his own hands and said, ‘Now wrap this shawl around you.’ I wrapped it around my breast. Since then, I never have forgotten anything that I have wished to remember”
The people of Suftah were residents in the Prophet’s mosque. They had no regular source of income. They were the guests of the Prophet (Sallallaho alaihe wa sallam), who transferred to them the Sadaqah and shared with them the gifts that he received. Abu Hurairah (Radhiyallaho anho) was one of them. He would, sometimes, go without food for days together and sometimes would behave like a lunatic, due to excessive hunger, inspite of such difficulties, he was all the time occupied in memorising the sayings of the Prophet. This enabled him to narrate such a large number of Ahadith Imaam Ibn Jauzi (Rahmatullahi alaih) has attributed as many as 5374 Ahadith to him.