An innovated way of reciting the first verses of the soorahs that begin with Haa’-Meem
Praise be to Allah
The soorahs that begin with Haa’-Meem are seven soorahs of the Qur’an. They are: Ghaafir (40), Fussilat (41), ash-Shoora (42), az-Zukhruf( 43), ad-Dukhaan (44), al-Jaathiyah (45) and al-Ahqaaf (46)
“Haa’-Meem” is an example of the letters with which some of the soorahs of the Holy Qur’an begin. In the answer to question no. 21811 we stated that these letters appear at the beginning of some soorahs – and Allah knows best – to highlight the miraculous inimitability of the Quran, and that people are unable to produce the like thereof, even though it consists of letters such as they use in their daily speech.
We do not know of any saheeh hadith that speaks of the virtues of the Haa’-Meem soorahs in particular. There are some hadiths which speak of their virtue, but none of them has been proven to be sound.
See: Silsilat al-Ahaadeeth ad-Da‘eefah by al-Albaani (no. 3537, 3538, 6183 and 7081.
What these people do of reciting the first two verses of each soorah that begins with Haa’-Meem one after another is something for which we know of no basis. Therefore it is an innovation that has been introduced into the religion and is to be rejected.
There is also no basis for their view that it is a way of protecting oneself from the fire of Hell.
The most that has been narrated concerning that is the report narrated by al-Bayhaqi in ash-Shu‘ab (4/105) and ath-Tha‘labi in at-Tafseer (8/261), from al-Khaleel ibn Murrah, that the Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) said: “The Haa’-Meem soorahs are seven, and the gates of Hell are seven. Each Haa’-Meem will come and stand at one of these gates and will say: ‘O Allah, do not admit through this gate anyone who believed in me and recited me.’”
Immediately after that, al-Bayhaqi said: This is how it reached us, with this interrupted isnaad.
This is a flimsy (waahin) isnaad. Al-Khaleel ibn Murrah was one of the successors to the Taabi‘een; between him and the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) there are at least two narrators. Moreover he is weak (da‘eef) in and of himself. Al-Bukhaari said: He is munkar al-hadith (i.e., his hadith is to be rejected). He was classed as da‘eef by Ibn Ma‘een and Abu Haatim.
See: Mizaan al-I‘tidaal (1/667)
It was also classed as da‘eef by al-Albaani in Silsilat al-Ahaadeeth ad-Da‘eefah (6183)
Even if we assume that it is sound, what would be meant is reciting each of these soorahs in its entirety; as for reciting only two verses of each soorah, there is nothing in the hadith to support that.
And Allah knows best.