The Tābi’een "Followers" are the generation of Muslims that came after the Sahāba "Companions". As such they played an important part in the development of Islamic thought and philosophy, and in the political development of the early Caliphate.
They are considered as among the best generations on earth, next to the Sahaba.
Definition for Tabi'een
A Tābi’een is defined as a Muslim who:
1. Saw at least one of the ( Sahāba) "Companions" of the Beloved Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him).
2. Was rightly guided (one who adheres to the beliefs and actions of the Ahlus Sunnah wal-Jamaa'h).
3. One who died in that state.
For example, Khawarijites have seen many of the Prophet's companions but still they were not called as Tābi’een as they were not rightly guided. That is they did not follow the aqeeda of Ahlus Sunnah wal Jamaah.
The status of Tabi'een in Islam
The Muslims consider the Tābi’een as the best generation after the Sahaba.
Because Beloved Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) said:
"The best people are those living in my generation, then those coming after them, and then those coming after (the second generation)
Examples for Tabi'een
* Sayyiduna Uwais Al Qarni (RadhiAllahu Anhu)
* Sayyiduna Hasan Basri (RadhiAllahu Anhu)
* Imam Abu Hanifa (RadhiAllahu Anhu)