The issue of understanding religious texts and instructions of God and His
prophet after the revelation of Islam has been subject to a deep effort and occupation.
The question which speeches and deeds of Prophet are to be taken a model
(paradigm) and which model is to be taken a binding authority have been discussed
throughout the history of Islam. This paper presents the developments and the
course of understanding sunnah until the third century after hicra, which is considered
to be the golden age of hadith. Then, it deals with 1) al-Bukhari’s approach toward
the issue of binding authority of sunnah and hadith; 2) His method of understanding
by taking his canonical perspective of al-hadith (fıkh al-hadith) as reflected
in the headlines of different sections in his work called al-Sahih into consideration as
concrete samples of his thought. The main purpose of this paper is to determine the
level of understanding of al-muhaddisun, who are accepted as the conservative trend
in Islamic tradition, with respect to hadith and sunnah within the paradigm of binding
authority of sunnah.