The Holy Prophet (S.A.W.) Foretells of the Twelve Succeeding Imams (A.S.)
We believe that the Prophet’s succession was a settled matter for the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family), since the Lord has given him the orders of conveying the following leadership of his progeny to people. This is the Lord’s tradition with the entire prophets whose progenies inherited the divine Book, judgment and prophecy. Mohammed, our prophet, is indisputably the best and the seal of the prophets. After him, there should be no prophecy. Hence, imamate and inheritance of the divine Book should follow him. in like manner, his household and progeny are the best of the prophets’ progenies. The Lord; the Exalted, has purified and preferred them, and gave them the judgment and the divine Book exclusively. This is clear in God’s sayings, (Offspring one of the other…) and (Then We gave the Book for an inheritance to those whom We chose from among Our servants.)
As he realized the Quraishis’ envying the Hashemites and planning for taking them away from leadership after him, the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) used styles of wisdom and graduality in his frequent announcements of the progeny’s following leadership. A style of a prophetic ire was addressed at the Quraishis as they used rude practices and sayings against the Hashemites.
The Farewell Pilgrimage was a golden opportunity for the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) to carry the divine mandate of his household’s coming leadership, to the nation, in a massive scope.
After conveying the precepts and rulings, and expansion of the Islamic state, and narrowness of dangers, and declaration of the Prophet’s imminent departure, nothing remained but the declaration of the next leadership.
In addition to authentic texts, logic proves that the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) paid the greatest attention to question of the succeeding leadership during the Farewell Pilgrimage. The Quraishis recognized the Prophet’s intendment; therefore, they spared no efforts for intercepting such a declaration. It is also proved that they augmented their activities in that period for cutting off the declaration of nominating Ali and his progeny for the following leadership. Although there is a good deal of evidences on each point previously mentioned, this discussion is too narrow to cover them all.
We are to stop sufficiently at the Prophet’s sermons in the Farewell Pilgrimage. Abreast of sermon of Ghadir, reference books prove that the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) sermonized in five occasions in that period. Reference books should have reported these prophetic sermons so completely, since there were thousands of Muslims who listened to them, but, unfortunately, only parts of these sermons are excerpted, especially in the reference books authorized by the Quraishi caliphate.
As-Siretul Halabiya; 3/333:
In the Pilgrimage, the Prophet (peace be upon him) addressed five sermons. The first was in Mecca on the seventh of Dhu’l-Hijja. The second was on day of Arafa. The third was on day of slaughtering in Mina. The fourth was on day of settlement in Mina and the five was on day of the first return in Mina, too.
Strange and incredible contrast and discrepancy which refer to the Quraishis’ interference in relating contents of these sermons, were evidently noticed through reviewing these sermons in more than one hundred reference books of hadith. All that because these sermons assert the Prophet’s ordering the Muslims of complying with his progeny after him, and warning them against engaging in discrepancies out of envy, after they had received knowledge. Finally, the Prophet submitted them to an impeccable thorough evidence.
Despite firmness of that Quraishi darkening, we could receive some of these texts from the reference books authorized by the ruling authorities themselves. However, these texts are adequate enough for recognizing the Prophet’s instructions and affirmation on committing to leadership of his immaculate progeny after him.
HADITH OF THE TWELVE IMAMS
Unanimously, the entire sects of Islam agree that the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) provided the question of the next twelve imams during the Farewell Pilgrimage.
Later on, contents of these sacred sermons will be cited. They comprise hadith of the two weighty things; the Quran and the Prophet’s progeny, and hadith of the Prophet’s Paradisiacal Pool and the companions whom shall be sent to the hell-fire as they were prevented from having from that Pool.
Jabir Bin Samara: I heard the Prophet (peace be upon him) say, “There will be twelve princes…” Then, he said a word that I could not perceive. So, I asked my father about it. “All shall be from Quraish,” asserted my father.
Jabir Bin Samara: I heard the Prophet (peace be upon him) say, “Islam shall be fortified till twelve successors…” Then, he said a word I could not perceive. I asked my father about it. “All shall be from Quraish,” asserted my father.
Muslim records a similar narrative in which he states, “Then, he said something I could not conceive,” instead of “Then, he said a word I could not perceive.”
According to a third narrative recorded by Muslim, the following form is mentioned:
“This religion shall be kept in efficacy and power to twelve successors…” Then, he said a word I could not hear due to noise of people. I asked my father about it. “All shall be from Quraish,” assertedmy father.
Imitated by majority of reference books of hadith, Al-Bukhari does not refer to a signal point showing that the occurrence fell during sermon of the Farewell Pilgrimage on Arafat. A number of books, however, refer to this point.
In Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/93, 36 and 99, it is written: (Jabir Bin Samara: On Arafat, the Prophet sermonized…) On page 87: (The Prophet said during the Farewell Pilgrimage…) and on page 99, (Al-Muqaddemi: During his sermon in Mina, I heard the Prophet …)
Later on, it will be proved that this remarkable matter had been repeatedly affirmed on Arafat, Mina and Al-Kheif Mosque before it was declared in a formal obligatory decisive form in Ghadir Khum.
What is the story of those twelve imams? What for did the Prophet provide their matter before the greatest mass of Muslims who listened to their prophet while he was bidding farewell?
Al-Bukhari answers: Those are not imams to follow the Prophet in leadership obligatorily. They are only virtuous princes who shall be in this nation at a certain period of time. The Prophet did only convey his Lord’s foretelling to his nation. Indeed, they are from Quraish, not the Hashemites solitarily. They will be from the twenty tribes of Quraish. None of Ansar, the Arab tribes or the non-Arab people shall be among them. This is the whole matter.
What for did the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) convey this matter to his people during the Farewell Pilgrimage on Arafat? What is the practical affair ensued from so?
Al-Bukhari answers: It is a matter of a prediction only. The Prophet wanted to foretell his people so that they would be cheerful. It is only a journalistic news empty of any practical element.
Concisely, saving that sole narrative which cannot be perceived, Al-Bukhari does not refer to this subject. On the other hand, he records numerous clear-cut narratives respecting the menstruation of Aisha; Ummul-Muminin*, during the Farewell Pilgrimage. He gives in details how the Prophet revered her and sent a nurse for helping her perform rites of consecration and Visitation.
Muslim is a little bit fairer that Al-Bukhari. He opts for a narrative leading to the fact that those twelve successors shall be ruling after the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family). This narrative should recuperate Muslims since it settles the problem of the Prophet’s following leadership. Those are imams nominated by the Exalted Lord, via the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family). They deduce their legality from this divine nomination. Hence, the matter shall not be in need for a secret meeting or discrepancies leading to a bloody combat on power since the first stage of Islam up to now, and millions of victims, and dissensions leading to accumulation of weakness of the Islamic nation, till it was completely collapsed on the hands of the Ottomans.
Muslim, however, adds: No, this problem was not solved. The Prophet had just referred to those successors generally. He did not identify their names and personalities. Any of the ten thousands at whom this serious matter was addressed, did not ask for an explanation for that general reference. None of them asked the Prophet: Who are they, God’s messenger?!
Had the Prophet referred to their names, or only the name of the first one, the entire clans of Quraish would have accepted and submitted, since they were pious clans who complied with the Lord and His Apostle.
Muslim repeats the same words of Al-Bukhari: No! They are only godly people by whom Islam shall be fortified. They are from Quraish… Quraish only!
Thus and so, Al-Bukhari and Muslim can never lead to an acceptable effect in the question of those twelve imams. They lock the entire doors and repeat the same words of the Quraishis: Your Prophet did only refer to the smell of those twelve ones, during the Farewell Pilgrimage. You should only smell and keep peace!
At any rate, there are other reference books of hadith that pay an attention, less than that paid by Muslim and Al-Bukhari, to policy and politicians during reporting the Prophet’s news. These books refer to working matters in the question involved. They relate the word ‘after me’ in a form referring to the fact that those imams should be ruling directly after the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family).
In his Al-Musned; 5/92, Ahmed relates the same narration to Jabir As-Siwai in the following form: (I heard the Prophet (peace be upon him) say: “After me, there shall be…”)
On the same page, he refers to another form of the same narrative: (Jabir Bin Samara: The Prophet said, “After me, there shall be twelve successors. All shall be from Quraish.” When the Prophet was back home, the Quraishis came and asked about the age following those successors. “Then, commotion shall be befalling,” asserted the Prophet .)
The phrase, ‘After me’, which refers to the direct stage after the Prophet, is mentioned in both narratives. The second, likewise, reveals the Quraishis’ care for the question regarding those twelve godly imams. It also avers that the story happened in Al-Madina, not during the Farewell Pilgrimage. This point should be useful for the next points.
The Phrase was repeated in various narratives mentioned in other reference books.
Jabir Bin Samara: The Prophet said, “After me, there shall be twelve princes…” As I could not perceive the next sentence, I asked some people… Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/94.
Jabir As-Siwai: The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “After me there shall be twelve princes…” As I could not hear the next sentence, I asked the man next to me. “All shall be from Quraish,” clarified he. Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/99 and 108.
… Following me, there shall be twelve princes.” As I could not understand the next sentence, I asked the one next to me. “All shall be from Quraish,” said he. At-Tirmithi’s As-Sunan; 3/340.
Jabir Bin Samara: I heard the Prophet say, “After me, there shall be twelve successors… Al-Bukhari’s Tarikh; 1/446 No. 1426.
Abul-Qasim Al-Baghawi: Abdullah Bin Omar: I heard the Prophet say, “Behind me, there shall be twelve successors.” Ibn Hajar’s As-Sawaiqul Muhriqa; page 20.
All the previous prove that the Prophet did provide the question of the next leadership during the Farewell Pilgrimage, and conveyed the Lord’s mandate of those twelve ones’ being the legal leaders of this nation.
This question will cite a number of questions and wonderments before the Quraishis and their reporters:
First question: Why is it noticeable that narratives of that remarkable question are almostly restricted to a single narrator -Jabir Bin Samara As-Siwai- who was a ten year old boy, maybe, during the Farewell Pilgrimage? Is it reasonable that any other individual could not hear these narratives except this boy? What for did the other companions attending there, avoid narrating this occurrence?
Jabir’s way of narration might have been attaining satisfaction of the Quraish caliphate as it was proved as the most suitable. Therefore, its forms were recorded and admitted under the supervision of the ruling authorities. Most surely, other individuals did convey this occurrence, but in a style inappropriate to be publicized!
Second question: Muslims were wont to ask the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) about the most diminutive features of each matter. They even interrupted his speeches for addressing indicative questions. The narratives involved inform of the Prophet’s discussing a matter of a high importance. He (peace be upon him and his family) was foretelling of a doctrinal, practical, momentous and futuristic matter. These narratives claim the Prophet’s obscuring this most remarkable point of the issue. Finally, they claim that none of the Muslims asked or wondered about those godly imams, and people’s obligation towards them!!
How is it rational to believe that the Quraishis, who knocked the door of the Prophet’s house, in Al-Madina, for asking about those twelve imams, as the narrator himself reported, did not ask him about these imam’s identities and ages?
Does the word ‘Quraish’ stand for Abu Bakr and Omar exclusively, in Al-Madina?
Likewise, how is it rational that any Muslim, who attended the Farewell Pilgrimage, avoided asking the Prophet about those imams, their ages and people’s obligation towards them?
Third question: How come could the narrator not perceive the very important word that defined the identity of those twelve ones; so that he asked the man next to him.
The same word could not be perceived by the narrator who reported the Prophet’s addressing the same sermon in Al-Madina.
Why do the reference books of hadith, authorised by the Quraishi caliphate, restrict Samara and Omar Bin Al-Khattab as the only persons who carried the missed word of the Prophet?
Moreover, there are various questions insisting on revealing the hiddens of this narration, and urging scholars on scrutinizing in books of hadith and history.
Hereinafter, we aim at focusing lights on the missed word, by providing a number of notes and questions.
First: Is (All shall be from my household), the origin of the statement (All shall be from Quraish)?
What is the reason beyond the absence of the most remarkable statement?
Who was that man the narrator asked about that word?
In Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/100 and 107, it is recorded that the narrator himself could not perceive the statement; therefore, he asked about it:
As I could not perceive the next statement, I asked my father. “He said: all shall be from Quraish,” asserted my father.
… He then said a word I could not perceive. My father was nearer to the Prophet. I asked him about that word. He answered, “He said: All shall be from Quraish.” Al-Hakim’s Al-Mustedrak; 3/617.
In Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/90 and 98, it is recorded that the Prophet himself intended to hide that word:
… He then said a word too silent to be heard. “What did he say?” I asked my father. “He said: All shall be from Quraish,” answered my father.
… He then said a word with a silent voice. I asked my uncle, who was sitting before me, about it. “O son! He said: All shall be from Quraish,” answered my uncle. Al-Hakim’s Al-Mustedrak; 3/618.
Jabir Bin Samara: The Prophet said, “For this nation, there shall be twelve custodians whom shall never be influenced by those who will frustrate them.” Then said a word with a silent voice that I could not perceive. “What was that word the Prophet had spoken quietly?” I asked my father. “It was: All shall be from Quraish,” asserted my father. At-Tabarani’s Al-Mujamul Kabir; 2/213-4, hadith 1794.
According to other narrations, it was people, not the narrator or the Prophet, who caused the word to disappear.
This means that people -who were consecrating for their Lord on Arafat, living the last moments of their Prophet and waiting for any word he would speak of- were noisy as if they were in an auction, and some of them disturbed and shouted while the Prophet was articulating the most sensitive word, so that the faithful believers would not perceive! People were crying, shouting, speaking loudly, making noise, standing and sitting while the Prophet was addressing his sermon:
… People began to shout ‘Allahu Akbar’ and make noise. Meanwhile, the Prophet pronounced a word I could not catch. “What did he say, father?” I asked. “He said: All shall be from Quraish,” answered my father. Abu Dawud’s As-Sunan; 2/309, and Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/98.
…Then, he pronounced a word I could not hear because of people’s noise. “What did he say, father?” I asked. “He said: All shall be from Quraish,” answered my father. Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/98.
… People began to shout… Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/93.
… People then began to make noise and speak aloud. I could not understand the word after ‘All…” Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/99.
… “This religion shall be kept in efficacy and power to twelve successors who shall be given victory over their opponents…” Then people began to stand and sit… Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/99.
Regarding those whom Jabir asked about the missed word, most of narrations affirm that he asked his father; Samara. Hence, the testimony of including the entire clans of Quraish with the Hashemites, in the question of the next twelve imams, depends upon authenticity of Samara. None could not prove that Samara’s being Muslim, even. This fact is proved by narrations authenticated by Muslim and Al-Bukhari, and others.
However, there are other forms of the narration proves other things:
… As I asked the entire people, they answered, “He said: All shall be from Quraish.” Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/92 and 90.
… I asked people, or the man next to me, “What…” Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/108.
… As I could not perceive that word, I asked the one next to me… Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/99 and 108.
At-Tabarani, however, asserts that Jabir claimed people’s alleging that the Prophet said, “All shall be from Quraish.”:
… I could not understand what he said next; therefore, I asked people. They claimed his saying, “All shall be from Quraish.” At-Tabarani’s Al-Mujamul Kabir; 2/249, hadith 2044.
Is it credible that the most remarkable word identifying the twelve imams of whom the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) foretold, could be vanished in that quiet silent circumstance on Arafat, and none would ask the Prophet about?
A scholar may approach the fact when he looks at the other narrations related by Jabir Bin Samara himself, regarding that the Prophet was riding on his pack animal while he was declaring these words. This asserts that the Prophet tried to make the entire attendants hear and listen.
… Then, the Prophet’s voice vanished. I asked my father who was nearer to the Prophet’s pack animal… Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/87.
They also relate that the Prophet ordered a man of sonorous voice to repeat his words as aloud as possible, so that people would hear.
… Rabia Bin Khalaf Al-Jamhi was a man of sonorous voice, the Prophet ordered of repeating his words aloud on day of Arafa. He was standing before the Prophet’s she-camel. “O people! Do you realize this month?” said the Prophet and ordered Rabia of declaring aloud. He did. “Yes, it is the sacred month,” people answered affirmatively. “God has surely deemed your blood and assets amongst you as sacred as this month, till the day on which you shall meet,” said the Prophet and ordered Rabia to declare aloud…
Ibn Abbas: … When he halted on Arafa, the Prophet (peace be upon him) ordered Rabia Bin Umaya Bin Khalaf, the man with a sonorous voice, to stand just before his she-camel and repeat his words aloud…
At-Tabarani relates this report to authentic narrators. Majmauzzawaid; 3/270.
Although they relate the same narration to the same reporter in various forms, the missed word, in the entire forms, is invariably the same. This matter contends the claim that the statement was ‘All shall be from my progeny’ or ‘All shall be from my household’, not ‘All shall be from Quraish.’
They also relate that the narrator asserted the Prophet’s sermonizing so in Al-Madina, not Arafat. However, the missed word was the same. It is the identity of those twelve imams.
Jabir Bin Samara: My father and I came to the Prophet (peace be upon him) who was saying, “This affair shall be kept in excellence till there shall be twelve princes…” Then, he said a word I could not perceive. “What did he say?” I asked my father. “He said: All shall be from Quraish,” asserted my father. Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 5/97 and 107.
The same narration is moved to the small mosque of Al-Madina. Nevertheless, the missed word is invariably the same. Jabir Bin Samara could not understand it till he asked Omar Bin Al-Khattab, the Quraishi caliph. Omar answered!
The Prophet (peace be upon him) was on the pulpit when he addressed, “There shall be twelve custodians from the Quraishis. They shall not be influenced by their opponents.” Omar Bin Al-Khattab (God be pleased to him) and my father were among people. They all asserted the saying as same as I could perceive. At-Tabarani’s Al-Mujamul Kabir; 2/256, hadith 2073.
The Prophet… (The same previous narration.)
Al-Bezar relates this narration to Jabir Bin Samara alone. He adds: When the Prophet was back home, I followed him to ask about the stage following those twelve ones. “Commotion shall be coming next,” said the Prophet.
This narration is related by authentic narrators. Majma’uzzawaid; 5/191.
The text became: ‘Twelve custodians opposed by people.’ A group among whom was Omar Bin Al-Khattab and the narrator’s father became the attesters of the text. Hence, place, time and persons of the occurrence were changed. Yet; the missed word is invariably the same.
A stranger matter is that while they relate the narration to Abu Juheifa, the missed word is still invariably the same! Yet, the narrator, here, asks his uncle, not father.
Awn Bin Abi Juheifa: His father: I was accompanying my uncle to the Prophet (peace be upon him), when he spoke, “Affairs of this nation shall be kept in rectitude till twelve successors go on…” He then pronounced a word I could not perceive. “What did he say, uncle? I asked. “He said: All shall be from Quraish,” asserted my uncle. Al-Hakim’s Al-Mustedrak; 3/618.
Awn Bin… (The same previous narration)
At-Tabarani relates it in his Al-Mujamul Kabir and Al-Mujamul Awsat to authentic narrators. Al-Bezar also relates it. Majmauzzawaid; 5/190.
Eventually, we find ourselves facing an unprecedented phenomena in the entire traditions of the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family). It certainly refers to a highly exceptional matter. This matter is hidden beyond the statement, ‘All shall be from Quraish.’
It is also supposable that the original narrator is Omar himself. It was he who affirmed and corrected to Jabir Bin Samara; the boy.
Al-Khezaz Al-Qummi in his Kifayetul Athar; page 90, relates the same report to Omar only, without referring to Samara or his son or Abu Juheifa or his uncle.
… Omar Bin Al-Khattab:
I heard the Prophet (peace be upon him) say, “After me, Imams shall be twelve…” He then pronounced a word so silently that I could hardly perceive. I heard him say, “All shall be from Quraish.”… Al-Khezaz Al-Qummi in his Kifayetul Athar; page 90.
Depending on this narrative, which is the most authentic for us, it is provable that generalizing the identity of those twelve imams to include the entire clans of Quraish, not the Hashemites dedicatedly, was invented by Omar. In addition, it coincides his saying of “The Quraishis reject that the Hashemites join leadership besides prophecy,” which he frequently addressed at the Hashemites during and after the Prophet’s lifetime.
Second: The divine promise of unknown leadership is an impracticable matter.
The promise of the coming of twelve imams is a divine word of the Wise, the Aware. It is a traditional promise of imams after a prophet. It was given to the previous nations, as well. It is seen as a mercy to this nation by which people can settle their entire problems they will certainly face after their prophet. How is it, then, practicable for the Lord to promise His Apostle of unknown leaders?
It is understandable that the Exalted Lord did promise the previous nations of the advent of an Apostle named ‘Ahmed’ after five centuries. This was conveyed by Jesus (peace be upon him). This reveals the impracticability to admit that the Lord promised the seal of nations of godly custodians, without naming their leading one at least, or naming their clan. It is unacceptable for Him to promise of men coming amongst twenty three clans that are disagreeing with each other on the meanest mundane affairs.
Giving credence to such a lie leads to imputing unwisdom to the Glorified Lord and His Apostle (peace be upon him and his family). This is a matter cannot be said by any Muslim, or any fair orientalist!
It happened sometimes that the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) addressed a general idea or foretelling at people, expecting their inquiry, so that his answer would be more effective. But, in our question, Muslims’ inquiries, as well as the Prophet’s answer, are nonexistent. They are existent in reference books of Shias only.
Third: From Quraish, but from the Prophet’s progeny.
Supposing the problematic points of the narration involved are disregarded, and the Prophet’s nominating those twelve godly Quraishi custodians is acceptable, a question will be arisen: Which tribe of Quraish is intended?
Clans of Quraish are more than twenty. According to authentic narratives recorded in the most reliable reference books of hadith, God; the Exalted, has preferred the Quraishis to the Arabs, and preferred the Hashemites to Quraish. Is it then rational that God chooses those twelve imams succeeding the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) from a clan other than the Hashimites?
The following narrative is recorded in Muslim’s Sahih; 7/58:
Wathila Bin Al-Asqa: I heard the Prophet (peace be upon him) say, “God has chosen the Kenana amongst sons of Ishmael, and chosen the Quraish amongst the Kenana, and chosen the Hashimites amongst the Quraish, and chosen me among the Hashemites.
As he relates the same narration on page 245 part 5, At-Tirmithi decides it as a one-way qualified narration. On page 243, he decides it as an authentic qualified narrative. Following this, At-Tirmithi records a number of narratives of the same supposition:
Al-Abbas Bin Abdil-Muttelib: I told the Prophet that the Quraishis discussed their lineages, and when they mentioned him, they likened him to a date palm tree planting in a junkyard. The Prophet (peace be upon him) commented: “When God created things, He made me with the best party. Then, He made me in the best tribe. Then, He made me in the best house. Hence, I am the best party, tribe and house. (This is a qualified narrative.)
Following this, At-Tirmithi writes an alike narrative with another series of narrators. He decides as a one-way authentic narrative.
Ibn Abbas: House of Imran, mentioned in God’s saying, (Surely Allah chose Adam and Noah and the descendants of Abraham and the descendants of Imran above the nations), are the believers among sons of Abraham, Imran, Yasin and Mohammed (peace be upon him). Al-Bukhari’s Sahih; 4/138.
Quranic and prophetic texts respecting selecting, preferring, favoring and preceding the Hashemites to the Islamic nation, are too many to be covered in this discussion. This preference is by the reason that the Prophet’s progeny are being part of them, and they are the diamond of the Hashemites and their best. Generally, they are the diamond of sons of Adam.
Taking Al-Bukhari’s testimony, a scholar can conclude, by processing a simple equation, that those twelve men are being the progeny of Mohammed (peace be upon him and his family). In the earlier narrative, it is proved that the twelve imams are chosen amongst the Quraishis. In the latter, it is proved that Mohammed’s progeny are chosen, like Abraham’s. Hence, the twelve expected imams should be Mohammed’s progeny whom are selected by the Lord. At a least criterion, those twelve men should be among Mohammed’s progeny. This is also advocated by Al-Bukhari’s narrative that tells of Ali’s being the first complainant on the Resurrection Day. This means that Ali shall be bearing an important issue preferred to the entire issues of this nation.
The issue, however, can be understood from Ali’s following saying recorded in Nahjul Belagha; 1/82:
“By God I swear, the Quraishis bear malice against us for one and only reason. It is the Lord’s preferring us to them. Then, we permitted them to gain entry into our group. Hence, they are applicable to the poet’s saying:
It is we who endowed you this elevation, and you were not
Elevated, and we encompassed you with swords and spears.”
Al-Bukhari’s Sahih; 5/6.
Qeis Bin Ebada: Ali Bin Abi Talib (God be pleased to him) said, “I will be the first one who kneels before the Beneficent God for litigation on the Resurrection Day.”
Fourth: Prophetic texts explain the narrative of the twelve men.
It is unanimously agreeable that the Prophet’s texts explicate each other, like the Quranic. This is a perceptual principal relied upon by the entire nations. Naturally, any nation should scrutinize the other practical and articulate texts of their prophet for recognizing the twelve men of whom the prophet had foretold.
A deep look at our Prophet’s words about his progeny; Ali, Fatima, Al-Hassan and Al-Hussein (peace be upon them), removes any doubt in proving the fact that those persons, whom were frequently praised and acclaimed by the Prophet who does never speak out of desire, are the very intended in the text involved. As a matter of fact, Muslims agree that those persons were frequently praised by the Prophet in various occasions. The Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) declared that those persons were purified thoroughly by the Lord. This fact is recorded in an evident Quranic text. He also committed the Muslims to cherishing them and blessing them during their daily prayers. He deemed unlawful for them to receive alms and, instead, he legislated their enjoying a share of the one-fifth rate imposed upon Muslims. Finally, the Prophet’s will was adhering to them besides the Quran. He named them the minor weighty thing after the Quran; the major one. These matters are proved by authentic reports mentioned in the most reliable reference books of hadith.
The Prophet’s words of praising and applauding his progeny, and warning against wronging and opposing them, are too many to be covered in this discussion. At any rate, these words are good examples for the mindful and the seekers of truths.
Fifth: Twelve imams and twelve months.
Narrations appertained to the Prophet’s sermons during the Farewell Pilgrimage, assert that the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) referred to roundness of time to its first creation when he mentioned the twelve imams. Thereafter, he recited God’s saying, (Surely the number of months with Allah is twelve months in Allah’s ordinance since the day when He created the heavens and the earth, of these four being sacred.)
Al-Bukhari’s; 5/126 and 204, and 6/235:
Abu Bakra: the Prophet (peace be upon him) stated:
Time has rotated to the first creation of the heavens and earth. A year is twelve months among which there are four sacred ones. These are Dhu’l-Qada, Dhu’l-Hijja, Muharram and Rajab. The first three are successive.
Abu Dawud relates the same on 1/435. Ahmed relates it in his Al-Musned; 5/37.
In Majma’uzzawaid; 3/265, the same narration is related in a style more accordant to the Prophet’s eloquence than Al-Bukhari’s.
…Time has rotated as same as the first day on which the Lord created the heavens and the earth. (Surely the number of months with Allah is twelve months in Allah’s ordinance since the day when He created the heavens and the earth, of these four being sacred. That is the right reckoning; therefore, be not unjust to yourselves.) Do not apostatize after me that you will be killing each other…
Sunni exegesists cited the custom of postponing the sacred months as the meaning suggested by the Prophet in this narration. Hence, he suggests a new beginning of time which leads to canceling that custom.
As a matter of fact, this exegesis is unconvincing since custom of postponing the sacred month leaves no effect on time and the universe, that its cancellation leads to creating a new beginning to time. Secondly, there is no single indication to any relation between rotation of time and the custom of postponing the sacred months. Each is an independent topic. Hence, exegesists are mistaken when they establish such a relation.
As the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) was in a situation of bidding his people farewell and providing the next stage of guidance, aberrance, rulings, beliefs and paths to the Paradise and the hell-fire, it is most likely that he intended to say that a new stage of the divine guidance and aberrance would be beginning since that day. He also intended to say that the material movement of time is based upon the twelve months, while the mental movement is based upon acceding to the twelve imams. Material and mental existence of those imams coincides the system of the twelve months which is effective in the movement of this universe.
This view is supported by sacredness and consecration of number twelve in the Quran. The Lord identifies twelve chieftains for the Israelites, and twelve apostles for Jesus. Similarly, the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) asked Ansar to elect twelve chieftains in the earlier stage of their declaration of fealty. He also foretold his people of the coming of twelve imams. Moreover, holy texts assert that aberrance of this nation is originated by twelve misleading men from the Prophet’s companions. Consequently, in the face of each imam there should be a misleading man, and in the face of each prophet there should be a nefarious enemy whose function is inveigling people.
God; the Exalted, says: (And the day when the unjust one shall bite his hands, saying: O! Would that I had taken a way with the Apostle. Woe is me! Would that I had not taken such a one for a friend! Certainly he led me astray from the reminder after it had come to me; and the Satan fails to aid man. And the Apostle cried out: O my Lord! My people have treated this Quran as a forsaken thing. And thus have We made for every prophet an enemy from among the sinners, and sufficient is your Lord as a Guide and a Helper.)
Muslim’s Sahih; 8/122-3:
The Prophet stated: “There are twelve hypocrites among my companions. Eight of them shall never see the Paradise until a camel passes through the eye of a needle. Eight of them shall be killed by an epidemic. And four shall…” I could not memorize the rest.
The Prophet stated: “There are twelve hypocrites among my people. They shall never see or smell the Paradise till a camel passes through the eye of a needle. Eight of them shall be perished by an epidemic. A flaming lamp shall be emerging between their shoulders and flowing out of their chests.”
Abut-Tufeil: A sort of inconsistency was arisen between Hutheifa and one of people of Aqaba cabal. “I adjure you by God to answer me about the number of people of Aqaba cabal,” the man asked Hutheifa. “You should answer him,” people urged. Hutheifa spoke, “Well, we were told they had been fourteen men. They should be fifteen if you were one of them. By God I avow, twelve of them are foes of the Lord and His Apostle in this world and on that day when witnesses shall be arising.”
The same in recorded in Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 4/320 and many other hadithists.
Thus and so, it is not unacceptable to regard that the Prophet’s intention was telling people that the Exalted Lord has established mankind on laws of guidance and aberrance since the first day of creating the heavens and the earth. These laws are executed by elements of providing evidences and respiting people to choose either guidance or aberrance. Like positive and negative, elements of guidance and aberrance should be befalling together. The Lord then has inspired human souls to distinguish the right from the wrong. As He descended Adam to this earth, the Lord descended the Satan with him. With each prophet, there was a single or a number of misleading people. In this nation, the number of the leading imams is equal to that of the misleading hypocrites; which is twelve. Hence, a new rotation of guidance and aberrance has begun in the same way when it began with Adam and the Satan. This is the meaning of the new beginning of time that leads to termination of an age and beginning of another.
This idea is supported by the exegesis of the Quranic Verse, (Surely the number of months with Allah is twelve months in Allah’s ordinance since the day when He created the heavens and the earth), adopted by the Prophet’s progeny.
Sixth: Jabir As-Siwai; reporter of the narration.
As the Sunni most reliable reference books of hadith relate the narration of the twelve imams to Abdullah Bin Masud, Abu Juheifa and Jabir Bin Samara As-Siwai, they depend upon mainly.
Jabir Bin Samara Bin Jenada. It is said that he is son of Amr Bin Jundub Bin Hujeir Bin Riab Bin Habib Bin Sawaa Bin Amir Bin Sa’saa As-Siwai. Others say he is one of Amir Bin Sa’saa’s clan. Ibn Hajar’s Tahthibut Tahthib; 2/35.
Jabir and his father are confederates of the Zuhra. At-Thehbi’s; 3/187.
This matter backs the doubt of Jabir’s being Quraishi. If he had been one of the Amir Bin Sa’saa, he would not have confederated the Zuhra.
I myself read At-Thehbi’s saying that Jabir was dead during the reign of Abdul-Melik. Ibn Sa’d alleges that Samara; the father, embraced Islam on day of conquest of Mecca. None else did mention his death. Ibn Hajar’s Tahthibut Tahthib; 4/206.
This takes us to the fact that Samara was one of the ‘released’. It also points out that At-Thehbi doubts whether Samara embraced Islam or not. Therefore, he says, “Ibn Sa’d alleges that…”
Al-Bukhari, in his At-Tarikhul Kabir; 4/177, claims Samara’s being one of the Prophet’s companions.
Jabir is the child of a ‘released’. He was an infant during conquest of Mecca. His death was in 76 A.H. He relates that after the day of conquest of Mecca, the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) passed his hand over faces of the small boys who were performing prayer in Al-Madina. He was one of those small boys. This is recorded in Siyeru Alamin Nubela; 3/187.
Jabir might have lived in the custody of Sa’d Bin Abi Waqas; his maternal uncle, in Al-Madina. It was related that he had participated in conquest of Madain before he moved in Kufa where he built a house for himself.
All the above proves that Jabir was a teenage during the Farewell Pilgrimage. Hence, the only reliable narrator of this narration is a teenage son of a ‘released’, that was a confederate of Quraish.
How strange were the chiefs of this nation and masters of the Prophet’s companions! They had not possessed intellectuality of that teenage ‘released’ boy who cared for the future of his nation and the coming godly imams! Or how firm were the Quraishi ruling authorities who had completed full control on the prophetic texts. They disallowed the Sunnis to record and publicize the narrations appertained to the coming twelve imams of whom the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) had foretold, except that of this teenage!
Seventh: Marks of authenticity given to the three narratives.
There are three forms and three narrators of the narrative regarding the twelve imams, in the Sunni reference books of hadith. They agree upon authenticating Jabir Bin Samara’s narration. Some of them decide the authenticity of Abu Juheifa’s narration while majority decide it as a qualified with a rather doubtful narrator. Regarding Ibn Masud’s, they give opposite marks to his narration since, as they claim, Mujalid Bin Sa’eed, whom is ruled as trustful by An-Nisai and some of specialist scholars only while others rule his doubtfulness, is within the series of narrators.
As a matter of fact, Samara; Jabir’s father, and Omar Bin Al-Khattab should be added to the three previous narrators. Majority of narratives affirm that those two men informed Jabir of the missed word. Moreover, Omar Bin Al-Khattab should be regarded as a main narrator according to the forecited narration recorded in Kifayetul Athar.
The following is a number of the hadithists’ opinions in Ibn Masud’s narration.
The Twelve Successors:
Masruq: Ibn Masud taught us the Quran when a man asked whether they had asked the Prophet (peace be upon him) about the number of the successors who would be ruling this state. “I have never been asked such a question since I was in Iraq,” asserted Ibn Masud, and went on, “It is yes. We have asked the Prophet (peace be upon him) this question, and he answered that they would be twelve, like the number of the Israelites’ chieftains. (This narration is recorded by Ahmed, Abu Yali and Al-Bezar. One of its narrators is Mujalid Bin Sa’eed. Except An-Nisai, majority of hadithists rule his doubtfulness. The other narrators are authentic.)
The same is recorded in Al-Hakim’s Al-Mustedrak; 4/501, who adds: I am too short to regard narrations of Mujalid and his likes.
Ibn Hajar, in his As-Sawaiqul Muhriqa/20, rules eligibility of the narration. He records: Ibn Masud relates, in a qualified documentation,…
As-Suyouti, in his Tarikhul Khulefa/13, decides eligibility of the narration, too. He records: Ahmed and Al-Bezar records the qualified narration of Ibn Masud…
Al-Bussiri, as the compiler of Kenzul Ummal; 6/89 records, rules eligibility of the narrations. He says: Museddid, Ibn Rahawayih, Ibn Abi Sheiba, Abu Yali and Ahmed relate this qualified narration…
The narration is also recorded in the following Sunni reference books of hadith:
Ahmed’s Al-Musned; 1/398 and 406.
Kenzul Ummal; 6/89 (quoted from Ibn Sa’d’s At-Tabaqat and Ibn Asakir’s).
Kenzul Ummal; 12/32 (quoted from Ahmed’s, At-Tabarani’s, Ibn Hemmad’s and others).
If the excuse of distrusting Ibn Masud’s narration is the existence of Mujalid within the series of relators, the narration is related, in a number of Shiite reference books of hadith, to a series of narrations other than Mujalid.
As-Saduq’s Alikhtisas/233 and Al-Khezaz’s Kifayetul Athar/73 and An-Numani’s Al-Gheiba/106, record the narration intended.
Nevertheless, this matter does make no change for the judgment issued by the Sunnis; our brothers. The narration is given the degree of (qualified with a rather doubtful narrator) whatever is proved!
Further, this degree seems to be obscure for the Sunnis, since the original problem of Ibn Masud’s narration is evading adding ‘All shall be from Quraish.’ Erasure of this statement makes readers understand that those coming godly imams would obligatorily be rulers succeeding the Prophet. This fact draws a big red circle on procedures of Saqifa from which the Hashemites were absent and busy in preparing the funeral of the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family)!!
Eighth: Contradiction of contexts of the three narrations.
Sunni reference books of hadith record Jabir Bin Samara’s narration in two different forms, one of which is accordant to Abu Juheifa’s. Ibn Masud had his own form of narration. On that account, there are three forms of the narration.
The first form foreordains that those promised men shall be coming after the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family), and all shall be from Quraish. This context is in majority of Jabir’s narrations. Sunni scholars, as forecited, decide authenticity of this form. Al-Albani, likewise, decides authenticity of this form and affixes it under No. 1075 of his series of the authentic prophetic reports.
The second form foretells that those twelve men shall be ruling after the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family), and all shall be from Quraish. It also tells that Islam shall be kept in power and protection as long as those men will be ruling. After that, it will be weak and humble and, finally, collapse.
This form is mentioned by a number of Jabir’s narrations and all of Abu Juheifa’s. Most of Sunni scholars decide its authenticity. Al-Albani affixes the form narrated by Jabir Bin Samara under number 376 of his series of authentic hadiths. Abu Juheifa’s narration is decided as qualified. Ibn Masud’s is cited as a witness on authenticity of the previous. Finally, Al-Albani refutes Abu Dawud’s additional wording in which he, as well as other scholars, affirms that the entire people of this nation shall be loyal to those coming imams, and regards it as deniable.
The third form establishes that those imams shall be coming after the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) in a way similar to the situation of apostles of Moses and Jesus (peace be upon them). This form evades mentioning ‘All shall be from Quraish.’ This is the form depended by most of Ibn Masud’s narrations.
Divergence and contrast are the most remarkable notes to be recorded on the various forms of the narrations involved. This is not an easy or acceptable matter, especially in such a sort of narrations. In addition, this contrast is hardly answerable since it exists in the different forms of reports of the same narrator.
Distortion in such reports, even said by an ordinary chief of a group, is decisively adjudged; therefore, we should never accept such reports that assert the Prophet’s foretelling of the coming of unknown men, especially if we take in consideration stage and place of addressing that prediction.
The main accusation is distortion of the identity of those twelve imams. The accused is none other than those who may gain advantage from hiding names and descriptions of the promised ones. It is the ruling authorities who came to power just after the Prophet, and banished his progeny from area of competition by holding a secret meeting while the Prophet’s household were engaged in the funeral of the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family).
A neutral student may approach the fact by conceiving that divergence and contrast in forms of these narrations are focused on a definite point, which is descriptions, identity, divine standing, lineage, age and period of those promised imams.
This matter incites doubtfulness of the entire forms of the narrations depended by the Sunni reference books of hadith. On the other hand, it involves authentication of the concordant unanimous forms of the narration accredited by the Shiite reference books of hadith. All these forms assert the same matter; those twelve imams shall be his progeny, and more definitely, they are Ali, Al-Hassan, Al-Hussein and nine men from Al-Hussein’s offspring (peace be upon them all).
Ninth: The twelve imams are not nominated according to means of election and declaration of fealty.
This is an indisputable affair. Since the Exalted Lord has chosen them for leadership, people’s obligation should be only complying with them. God says, (And it behooves not a believing man and a believing woman that they should have any choice in their matter when Allah and His Apostle have decided a matter.) Those imams acquire their legality from the Lord and the Possessor of this nation, as well as the entire creatures. He is the Wise and the Aware of His servants’ advantage. Positively, the Lord’s choice is more prosperous and obligatory than the servants’.
Like selecting prophets which does not necessitate election or declaration of fealty, the twelve imams are selected by the Lord. Accordingly, obeying them is a mandatory duty. Similarly, even if people ignore, injure or kill a prophet, this should never harm his being divinely chosen and obligatorily conformed.
People’s general compliance with a prophet, is not more than a matter of acknowledgment of his obligatory obedience that is divinely mandated, and declaration of corresponding to the Lord’s instructions.
On that account, people’s swearing allegiance to the prophets and their successors is a process of submission and obligation to those persons’ right of adherence. People affirm that right only. They do never constitute it.
This is the main reason beyond the Prophet’s ordering Muslims of declaring fealty to him in the most remarkable curves in his nation’s history, so that he would affirm their obligatory obedience and compliance with him in good and bad, war and peace and favorable and detrimental circumstances.
For the same reason, the Prophet, after conveying the divine mandate of Ali’s coming leadership in Ghadir Khum, gave orders of establishing a tent under which Ali would receive the entire Muslims who should offer him congratulations on this divine leadership, before they declare fealty to him.
The divine choice has fallen. It does not require a public consultance or fealty. It only requires admission and congratulations. However, such declaration of fealty would be obligatory upon people if the Prophet or Ali asked people to provide.
For this cause, the notion that the Prophet’s demand was only offering congratulations, not swearing fealty, to Ali, is unprofitable, since issuing the divine mandate of nominating Ali for the next leadership, evacuated the public declaration of fealty from its effective power, and, in the same time, restricted its value to admitting and committing to that divine affair whenever the Prophet or his successor asked for it.
The general rule in this regard is that people may have the option to choose their leaders and rulers -according to boundaries of the Islamic legislation- only in case there is no previous divine mandate appertained to this point. In case the Lord has elected a leader, then the whole matter is settled, and none has the authority of changing or altering. In other words, choice of the public is meaningless unless they intend to philosophize before their Glorified Lord or opposes His instructions.
Tenth: The narrative’s dedication to Quraish has been thrown away by Omar.
An important notice should be recorded in this regard. Omar Bin Al-Khattab; the caliph, was the bearer of the slogan that the Prophet’s succession should be in Quraish exclusively. In Saqifa, Omar disputed Ansar that Quraish; the Prophet’s tribe, were the most meritorious in holding his position and authority. He aimed at intercepting Ansar, in whose land and hospitality the Muslim Quraishis were living, from claiming their most meritoriousness of holding the Prophet’s position and power since they were his supporters.
By such a tribal disputation, Omar took the round of Saqifa, due to the Ansar’s discord despite the heavy protestation of Sa’d Bin Ebada; their chief.
This very principal by which Omar gained leadership of Muslims, was abandoned and thrown away by Omar himself. In his final hours, Omar asserted that he would have delivered leadership to Salim; the Persian slave of Abu Hutheifa, had this man been alive!
Tarikhul Madina; 3/140:
Abdullah Bin Bureida: People advised Omar; the moribund stabbed, to nominate his successor. “Had one of those two men been alive, I would have certainly delivered him this position with quite tranquillity and satisfaction. They are Abu Ubeida Bin Al-Jarrah and Salim; the slave of Abu Hutheifa!
Abu Rafi: Omar was inclined to Ibn Abbas when he said to his son and Sa’eed Bin Zeid: “You must recognize that I had issued no verdict about the ‘Kelala’-inheritance of a person who has neither fathers nor sons-, and I have named none as my successor, and that the Arab captives are manumitted from the estates of God -the public treasury-.”
“Like Abu Bakr, People shall certainly trust your option if you name any as the new caliph,” suggested Sa’eed. “As I noticed the excess care of my companions, I am to ascribe this affair to those six individuals who had attained the Prophet’s satisfaction. I should be secure if I named one of those two deceased; Salim; Abu Hutheifa’s servant, and Abu Ubeida Bin Al-Jarrah.”
Thus, Omar opened the door to Abu Hanifa and others for canceling the term that a leader of the Islamic state should be Quraishi. Saljukians and Mamluks used such verdicts to come to power. For the very reason, the Ottomans adopted Abu Hanifa’s sect, and publicized his school of jurisprudence. Depending on so, they named themselves ‘caliphs’ -successors of the Prophet-.
WAHABISM AND TERM OF QURAISHI LEADERSHIP
We, the Imamite Shias, specify being one the Prophet’s progeny as a term of holding leadership of the Islamic state. This is proved by prophetic texts concerning the names, as well as the number, of those leaders. For us, leadership is proved by a divine text only. Hence, the twelve imams are proved by Quranic and prophetic texts as leaders of the Muslims.
Since the seal of the imams; Al-Mahdi the Expected, is materially absent, leadership of Muslims in this stage should be determined by his commitment. The imam’s representative should enjoy a number of terms of scholarship, justice and others. This representative is not stipulatorily an offspring of Quraish. In this point only, we agree practically, not hypothetically, with those who invalidate the term of Quraishi leadership.
For the Zaidite Shias; our brothers, they do not dedicate imamate to those twelve imams. They extend it to include any scholar belongs, in lineage, to Ali and Fatima (peace be upon them). Hence, they specify being a Quraishi and Alawid, as a term of holding position of leadership of the Islamic state.
Among the Sunni Muslims, there are some present scholars who agree with us on cancellation of the term of Quraishi leadership, according to verdicts of Omar and Abu Hanifa. Other non-Arab Sunnis are more fanatic to Quraish than Omar himself. They are the masters of Wahabism, such as Al-Albani who decides the authenticity of the narrative reporting specifying the Quraishi leadership as a term. He affixes the narrative under the number 1552, and comments on page 70, part 4:
If Muslims are honest in working for reviving the Islamic state, they should show repentance to their Lord and keep hold on their religion and follow rulings of the Sharia. Among these rulings is the term that leaders of the Islamic state should be offsprings of Quraish. This term is familiar in books of hadith and jurisprudence.
On page 7 part 3, Al-Albani decides the authenticity of a narration showing obligation of Quraishi leadership, and affixes it under number 1006. He then comments:
These authentic narrations refute, clearly, claims of the old deviate parties, as well as the present authors and Islamic political ones, who invalidate the term of the leader’s being Quraishi and Arab.
Moreover, a scholar bearing contention of Islamic radicalism, authors a thesis named ‘The Islamic State’ in which he begins with specifying terms of a caliph. He ignores totally the term of the leader’s being Quraishi and Arab. So, he disregards the entire prophetic texts and verdicts that emphasized this term. When I reminded him of this flaw, he just smiled and neglected providing any discussion. I wonder if he is one of those previously cited, or he is lacking any subjective knowledge in this respect.
At any rate, each writer is required to seek the right in his writings, without being influenced by any political trend or party. A writer also should disregard accordance with the public.
Under number 1851, Al-Albani decides the authenticity of another relation which is: (Caliphate should be to the Quraishis’, and judiciary should be to Ansar’s and solicitation should be to the Abyssinian.)
This verdict exposes that leaders of the Islamic governments should be the offsprings of the various clans of Quraish, and the ministers from the Ansar’s offsprings, and the ministers of religious affairs and mass media should be from Africa and, especially, Ethiopia! Obligation mentioned in the previous narration, due to which Al-Albani issue the verdict of the rulers’ being Quraishi, treats leadership, ministration and solicitation equally.
Al-Albani misses the fact that jurisprudence of a narration is more remarkable and favorable to its context. The Prophet is too elevated to issue such illogical laws. This narrative and its likes, if authenticated, reveals a definite previous stage of Islam. It is not a perpetual law at all.
Eleventh: Exegesists’ blundering in explaining the twelve imams.
Being honest to that prophetic text, it is necessary to say that these twelve imams should come directly after the Prophet’s decease. This is necessitated by the Prophet’s phrase ‘after me.’ It does in no means refer to that they would rule after him (peace be upon him and his family). The text foretells of their coming only, apart from being rulers or ruled. Furthermore, the forecited forms of Jabir and Ibn Masud’s narratives refer to the matter that those imams would be disappointed and opposed by people that they would be taken away from power. This matter, as the texts divulge, would not injure them.
In At-Tabarani’s Al-Mujamul Kabir, the following forms are cited:
“For this nation, there shall be twelve custodians whom shall never be influenced by those who will frustrate them.”
“From Quraish, there shall be twelve custodians whom shall never be injured of enmity of their opposers.”
This involves that there is no matter intercepts applying these forms to the twelve imams of the Prophet’s progeny, even if they could not come to power. However, Ali and Al-Hassan could come to power. Sooner or later, Mahdi; the Expected, shall be eventually ruling. This fact is predicted by the Prophet; Al-Mahdi’s forefather.
Furthermore, narrations predict the events that would be falling after the ages of those imams, indicate that they would be lasting for long ages. Some mention that confusion, bafflement and hypocrisy, which would be leading to collapse of this nation, would be falling after their ages. Others refer that their age should be lasting along with the age of this earth, and that with their termination, the earth would be foundering with its creatures.
This matter is supported by hypotheses of the extension of those imams’ age to the termination of this earth. This meaning is mentioned in a number of Shiite narratives.
Ab Salah Al-Halabi’s Taqribul Maarif/173:
… Anas Bin Malik: The Prophet (peace be upon him) stated: This religion shall be prevailing as long as there will be twelve men from Quraish. If they pass away, the earth will be perishing with its inhabitants.
The same is recorded in Alamul Wara/364.
This is accordant to the narratives recorded in our reference books of hadith, regarding the extraordinary importance of the existence of the Lord’s conscript representative on this earth in every age.
Al-Kafi; 1/179 and 534:
Abu Hamza: I asked Abu Abdillah (peace be upon him) if the earth might proceed without the existence of an imam. “If the earth may stand without an imam, it shall be perishing,” answered Abu Abdillah.
Correspondingly, the Prophet’s goal beyond providing the question of the next twelve imams in the most remarkable congruity of Muslims attending the Farewell Pilgrimage, was attracting people’s attentions towards those imams, had they only been lucky and followed them!!
Furthermore, it is most likely to refer to the twelve imams of the Prophet’s progeny as the only men intended by the Prophet’s prediction. Any other reference is unacceptable for the many refuting questions.
Al-Kinji’s Yenabiul Mawadda/446:
A number of scholars state that the Prophet’s prediction of the coming of twelve successors is proved by the numerous ways of relation. By identifying the ages and investigating the place, it is provable that the Prophet’s prediction was referring to the twelve imams of his household and progeny. It is impracticable to refer to the realistic rulers who came to power as the intended in the Prophet’s prediction, since their number is less than twelve. In addition, it is impossible to refer to the Umayid rulers because they were more than twelve and they were excessive unjust and tyrants saving Omar Bin Abdul-Aziz. Besides, they were not Hashemites. According to Abdul-Melik’s narration, that is related to Jabir, the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) foretold that those imams would be from the Hashemites. The Prophet’s lowering his voice gives greater weight to this narrative since the Umayids were too short to resemble the Hashemites in leadership. At length, it is impracticable to identify the Abbasid kings as the rulers intended. Their number exceeds the one identified. Secondly, they did not revere God’s saying, (Say: I do not ask of you any reward for it but love for my near relatives), and the Prophet’s hadith of Kisa -the cloak-.
Correspondingly, it is constitutive to refer to the twelve imams of the Prophet’s household and progeny as the intended in that prophetic prediction since they were the most knowledgeable, religious, godliest and most pious. Moreover, they were of the best lineage and the best family tree. They are the most favorable to the Lord…
Hadith of the two weighty things and the innumerable prophetic texts regarding the Prophet’s progeny’s merits support the meaning we have preceded.
In Nahjul-Belagha, Ali (God honor his face) says:
Where are those who claimed being exclusively rooted in knowledge. It is we who are firmly rooted in knowledge exclusively. They claim such a fabrication due to their envying us, since Allah has raised us and humiliated them, and endowed us and withheld them, and admitted us and dismissed them… By us the guidance is sought, and by us blindness is discharged. After me, there shall come to you an age during which nothing shall be more hidden than the right, and nothing shall be more evident than the wrong, and nothing greater than forging lies against Allah and His Apostle (peace be upon him and his family). For people of that age, there shall be nothing more slumping than the Divine Book when written in the most appropriate form, and there shall be nothing more profitable than it when distorted. In the lands, there shall be nothing more forbidden than the good, and nothing more acceptable than the evil. You should know that you will not realize the guidance unless you realize its neglecters, and you will not keep the covenant of the Divine Book unless you realize its violators, and you will not adhere to it unless you realize its scorners. Therefore, look for that at its real people. They are the life of knowledge, and the death of ignorance. It is they whose wisdom tells of their knowledge, and whose silence tells of their eloquence, and whose appearance tells of their hidden. They never transgress the religion nor do they engage in discrepancies about it. Among them, the religion is an incessant honest witness, and silent and speaking.
Unfortunately, majority of the Sunni exegesists reject this explanation and warn their followers against being convinced by the Shias’ claiming that the intended men in the Prophet’s prediction are the twelve imams of the Prophet’s progeny. They confess before their partisans that the prediction is wholly authentic, but you should never accept the Shias’ explanation since we, God willing, will find an authentic one!!
Up to now, Sunnis could not provide any persuasive explanation to the Prophet’s prediction. They attempted to apply the twelve imams predicted to the caliphs who ruled after the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family). They referred to the four Rashidite caliphs, Abdullah Bin Az-Zubeir, series of kings of the Sufians, the Marwans, the Abbasids… etc. They may refer to the Umayid rulers who ruled Andalusia , Seljukians, Memluks, Ottomans…etc.
When they feel that the number exceeded the intended one, they turn their faces towards hypotheses and pick up the best of the Umayid and Abbasid caliphs for giving them the characteristics of the godly imams. They decide some names and reject others in such a personal way purposed only for fitting the number predicted. As others could not attain the number involved, they claim of coming rulers.
Most surely, such applications would never stop or rely upon a ground. It is an impossible to take since it is trivial to have the competency of choosing twelve leaders among tens, and claim their being godly leaders selected by the Exalted Lord and predicted by the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family).
For the following reasons, Sunni scholars should have not born such an unattainable task:
First, since those promised godly imams are selected by the Lord, they should be having the same path and goal. They should be leading to the same path supported by the guidance of the Lord and His Apostle. The leaders chosen by the Sunni scholars were so discordant that they fought each other. It is completely impossible for prophets or divinely selected leaders to fight each other. It is impossible for them to assail, rule of aberrance or atheism, slay, abbacinate or amputate the limbs of each other.
A reading to history of struggle of power between the Umayids and the Abbasids, reveals this nullity of the Sunni presuppositions.
Second, Sunni scholars attach a quality to the rulers of which they themselves did not claim. Hence, they become partisans of that authority. None of those authorities did claim being a divinely chosen leader.
Had any of them been a godly imam selected by the Lord as a representative or ruler, they themselves would have referred to this elevated standing. It is impossible to be a godly choice without realizing this standing. None of those caliphs claimed being elected by the Lord exclusively. Imams of the Prophet’s progeny affirmed their being selected and identified by the Lord.
Third, we have already referred to the point that the Prophet did not mention that those imams should be ruling or coming to power after him. Therefore, it is unnecessary for the Sunni scholars to commit themselves to opting for the twelve promised imams from among the rulers only. Being bound by an unnecessary question leads to engagement in an unanswerable matter.
Fourth, most of those recorded in the list of the divinely selected imams, of whom it was predicted, are actually accursed by the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family). How is it then admissible for the Lord to be represented by individuals accursed by His Prophet?! Similarly, how is it acceptable for the Exalted Lord to curse individuals and dismiss them from His mercy for their wickedness, and then select them or their sons as godly imams that guide His servants and rule His lands?!
In the Sunni reference books of hadith, it is proved that the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) had cursed Al-Hakam and his son; Marwan, and banished them out of Al-Madina till the reign of Othman who canceled the decision. It is also recorded that the Prophet had cursed Abu Sufian and his two sons when he saw them drive a camel.
As a matter of fact, this is a long matter full of witnesses and evidences. Yet, partisans of the Umayids cannot stand it; therefore, we’d better leave it.
For the previous reasons, the Sunni scholars had more than thirty contrary sayings regarding the identification of the twelve godly imams whom were predicted by the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family).
It seems that the foremost saying in this regard is that of Abu Hatem Bin Hebban which is recorded in Awnul Mabud Fi Sharhi Suneni Abi Dawud; 11/361:
Regarding the twelve promised imams, a group, among whom is Abu Hatem Bin Hebban, suppose that those twelve men are sealed by Omar Bin Abdil-Aziz. They are the four Rashidite caliphs, Muawiya, Yazid, Muawiya Bin Yazid, Marwan Bin Al-Hakam, Abdul-Melik, Al-Walid Bin Abdil-Melik, Suleiman Bin Abdil-Melik and Omar Bin Abdil-Aziz whose death was in 100 A.H.
This ‘Umayid’ exegesis is repealed by the scholars who adored the Abbasids. They added some of the Abbasid caliphs to the promised imams and deleted some, if not all, of the Umayids.
It is noticeable that this saying erase the name of Mahdi from the list while he is promised through prophetic texts authenticated by them. Besides, Mahdi is included in his forefather’s saying, “After me, there shall come twelve imams.”
They also erased the name of imam Al-Hassan who ruled for six months and admitted by the entire Muslims except the Syrian. The succeeding scholars added his name to the twelve imams.
Since the Prophet affirmed that Al-Hassan and Al-Hussein are leaders -imams- whether they proceed or stand still, those scholars should have added their names to the list.
On the other hand, Ibn Hebban’s supposition affixes the name of Yazid Bin Muawiya in the list, and reckons him with the godly imams of whom the Prophet foretold!! This grade is not expected by Yazid himself, or his sane adorers who, incessantly, spare no effort for proving his being Muslim and not apostate which is proved by his personal statements. They also exert all efforts to convince people that Yazid was not deviant, since he had committed those awful crimes in Karbala, and plundered Al-Madina and gave orders of demolishing Kaba; the Sacred House of God.
They also entered the name of Muawiya Bin Yazid (Muawiya II). This man was given the leadership after his father. He addressed only unique sermon in which he acquited himself from the evildoing of his father and grandfather, and affirmed that leadership is a legal right of Ali (peace be upon him), and that Muawiya had wronged him and usurped his right. Finally, he declared his abdication. The Umayids assassinated him.
Had this man realized his being one of the twelve awaited imams, he would not have abdicated the power and exposed himself to be assassinated by his the tyrant royal family.
Likewise, this supposition is contrary to Safina’s narration regarding identifying the Prophet’s succession to thirty years followed by despot kingship. Hadithists and exegesists authenticate and regard this narration.
Any attempt to pursuing the master scholars’ words respecting this holy prophetic text takes very much time. However, similarity of their words makes it easier. All of their words, in fact, have been going round the pivot of the Umayid exegesis.
The following are models of their words and their answers:
As-Suyouti’s Tarikhul Khulefa/10:
Eyadh; the judge says: Probably, the twelve men mentioned in the prophetic texts and their narrations are those during whose reigns authority is well preserved, and Islam is well protected and congruity is well kept. These matters had been falling till the disorder and sedition in the reign of Al-Walid Bin Yazid up to the Abbasid revolution and coming to power. The Abbasids massacred the Umayids.
Ibn Hajar: Words of Eyadh are the best and the most preferable essay in this regard. They are supported by the Prophet’s saying, “All shall be unanimously admitted by people.” This narration is related to some authentic series of narrators.
(The author) Accordingly, the twelve successors are identified. They are the four Rashidite caliphs, Al-Hassan, Muawiya, Ibnuz-Zubeir and Omar Bin Abdul-Aziz. These are eight. Probably, Al-Muhtedi; the just Abbasid caliph, is included since he was as same as Omar Bin Abdil-Aziz; the Umayid. The two Expected remain. One of them is Mahdi; the offspring of Mohammed (peace be upon him).
As-Suyouti and Ibn Hajar regard the statement, “All shall be unanimously admitted by people,” which is an additional unproved remark. Al-Albani; the Wahabist, and many others decide the doubtfulness of that statement.
Besides, they violate Safina’s narration which is completely authentic for them. In this narration, the Prophet allocates the period of thirty years as his succession. Accordingly, eleven rulers in a period of thirty years will be the required, and the process of selecting among the Umayid and the Abbasid rulers will be void.
Furthermore, As-Suyouti’s referring to the words of Ibn Eyad and Ibn Hajar was not accurate, in fact. Ibn Hajar’s words, in which he dedicates the first twelve Umayid rulers, were neglected. “The twelfth is Al-Walid Bin Yazid Bin Abdul-Melik,” Ibn Hajar decides. Meanwhile, As-Suyouti stops at eight Umayid rulers only. Two Abbasid rulers are added.
The errors committed by As-Suyouti in the field of his dishonest excerpt of Ibn Hajar’s words are evidently shown in the following sections quoted from Fatihul-Bari:
Ibn Bettal: Ibnul-Muhellab: No single scholar could give a definite opinion in this regard. Some claim succession of the twelve promised successors. Others claim their being in the same time, each proclaims leadership. The most accepted matter in this regard is that the Prophet wants to refer to the coming vicissitude that people shall be following twelve men, each claims leadership, in the same time. This fact is proved by that the Prophet (peace be upon him) does not mention any of these twelve leaders’ acts.
(Ibn Hajar) The previous words show that the writer ignores the various ways of relating the narration, and stops on that precised form mentioned in Al-Bukhari’s. We have formerly referred to the different forms of relating this narration, recorded by Muslim and others, in which the characteristic of Islam’s being fortified and mighty is earmarked.
In other forms, it is said that people, unanimously, shall be obeying those successors.
Abu Dawud records: Jabir Bin Samara: This religion shall be perpetually kept till the end of the ruling of twelve leaders whom shall be followed by people unanimously.
(Ibn Hajar) At-Tabarani records this form, too. He relates it to Al-Aswad Bin Sa’eed, to Jabir Bin Samara, with the following addition: (They shall not be injured by the malicious ones.)
Eyadh summarizes this perplexity.
Two questions are arisen from the number defined in the Prophet’s saying:
First, the saying is contradicted by the extrinsic meaning of Safina’s narration admitted and authenticated by the grand hadithists, such as Ibn Habban and others. The narration says: “For thirty years after me, there shall be my succession. It shall be followed by monarchy.” These thirty years were ruled by the four Rashidite caliphs and Al-Hassan Bin Ali.
Second, more than twelve rulers did come to power after the Prophet.
As an answer to the first question, it may be said that the succession intended in Safina’s narration is dedicated to the Prophet’s succession. While in Jabir Bin Samara’s, this is not proposed.
About the second, the Prophet’s form does not block the fact that more than twelve men would be ruling, since the number mentioned leads to peculiarity of persons. Lest, the intended are the deserved just rulers. Four of them have passed away. The others shall be indisputably coming before the Judgment Day.
Other forms say that those twelve shall be coming, and each will be followed by a group of people. This did befall in Andalusia in the fifth century when six men, each claimed leadership, rose in the same time. at the same time, the ruler of Egypt, the Abbasid ruler in Baghdad, the other Alawid and Kharijite leaders were claiming leadership. This explanation is also supported by Muslim’s narration: “There shall be numerous leaders.”
At any rate, it is probable that the twelve intended are ruling in the golden period of Islam. This meaning is supported by some forms of the hadith, such as: “All shall be unanimously followed by people.” Till Al-Walid Bin Yazid’s reign when people were engaged in seditious matters, the Prophet’s successors were followed by people unanimously. This disorder lasted till the Abbasids could come to power and massacre the Umayids. Correspondingly, the number befell. After all, there are other probabilities.
(Ibn Hajar) Al-Muhellab opts for the second probability, which is the befalling of the twelve rulers in the same time. Previously, we have referred to the answer of this question. Their being coming in the same time is sufficiently enough to prove their animosity; therefore, their unanimity is not materialized.
The following narrative contradicts Abu Dawud’s inaccuracy:
Ahmed and Al-Bezar: Ibn Masud: We asked the Prophet about the number of his successors. “They shall be twelve, like the Israelite leaders,” answered the Prophet (peace be upon him).
This is a qualified hadith, with a rather doubtful narrator.
In his Keshful Mushkil, Ibnul-Jawzi says: I spared no efforts for scrutinizing this various formed prophetic saying, but, unfortunately, I could not attain a convincing answer. Undoubtedly, the confusion was caused by the narrators. Later on, I noticed Al-Khattabi refer to an opinion that I have recently decided. Besides, Abul-Hassan Bin Al-Munadi and others had their own opinions.
This refers to the incidents falling after the reign of the Prophet and his companions, since both are interrelated. This is a signal to the number of the Umayid caliphs. This is the meaning of his saying, “This religion shall be kept fortified till the end of the ruling of twelve successors.” Then, he moves to a more rigorous characteristic.
The Umayids begin with Yazid Bin Muawiya and end with Marwan Al-Himar (the donkey). They are thirteen. Othman, Muawiya and Ibnuz-Zubair are omitted since they were within the Prophet’s companions. Marwan Bin Al-Hakam is also omitted since it is doubtful whether he was a companion or not, or since he overcame after people had been unanimously following Abdullah Ibnuz-Zubair. On that account, the number is concordant.
As the Umayids lost their control on power, seditious matters and massacres fell till the Abbasids could rule. Thus, manners came into a new stage.
This opinion is supported by the narration recorded by Abu Dawud and related to Ibn Masud: The hand-mills of Islam shall be coming around for thirty five -or six or seven- years. If people perish, they will pursue their formers. If their religion is constituted, this will last for no more than seven years.*
This opinion is repudiated by the fact that stability of the Umayid region lasted for more than ninety years, since it began in the year 41 A.H, when Muawiya came to power unanimously, till the first of the year 132, when Marwan Bin Mohammed was assassinated.
In the volume in which he compiles reports regarding Mahdi, Abul-Hussein Bin Al-Munadi supposes that the twelve intended shall be coming after the ruling of Mahdi. He adds, “In the book of Daniel, I could find the following: ‘As Mahdi is deceased, five men from the offspring of the elder grandson will be ruling after him. They will be succeeded by five men from the offspring of the younger grandson. Their last shall be nominating a man from the offspring of the elder grandson as his successor. His son shall be coming to power after him.’ They shall be twelve kings, each shall be Mahdi.”
Abu Salih relates the following narration to Ibn Abbas:
Mahdi is named Mohammed Bin Abdillah. He shall be a giant reddish man. By him God shall relieve every misfortune of this nation. His justice shall be dismissing every wrong. After him, twelve men shall rule; six from Al-Hassan’s offspring, and five from Al-Hussein’s. The last shall be from another lineage. When he is deceased, matters will be corrupted.
Kabul-Ahbar: There shall be twelve Mahdis. Afterwards, the Spirit of Allah shall descend to kill the Impostor.”
Another probability is that the intended are twelve just rulers who will come along the period of Islam, no matter their reigns will be successive or not. This opinion is supported by Abul-Jald’s narration, related by Abu Bahr and recorded in Musedded’s Al-Musnedul Kabir: “This nation shall not be perished before the ruling of twelve successors, who will be acting by the divine guidance and the right belief, befalls. Two of them shall be from Mohammed’s household, one of whom will be living for forty years while the other will be lasting for thirty.”
Correspondingly, the disorder intended to be controlling after so, is the matters preceding the Judgment Day, such as the issue of the Impostor, Gog and Magog till the end of this world.
These were words of Ibnul-Jawzi, precisely.
(Ibn Hajar) The first and last opinions have been previously discussed by Eyadh. This seems that Ibnul-Jawzi has not reviewed them.
Generally, a number of opinions can be referred to from the previous discussions. The third is the most acceptable since it is supported by the authentic forms of the narrative mentioning that ‘All shall be unanimously followed by people.’
Unanimity intended means that people succumb to their leadership. People, as a matter of fact, obeyed the leadership of Abu Bakr, Omar, Othman and Ali respectively, till the incident of the two arbiters in Siffin. As a result, Muawiya was nominated as the caliph. After the armistice of Al-Hassan, people followed Muawiya. They followed Yazid; the son, afterwards. Al-Hussein could not attain leadership since he was killed before that. After Yazid, disorder emerged and lasted till the assassination of Ibnuz-Zubair and the ruling of Abdul-Melik Bin Marwan. His four sons; Al-Walid, Suleiman, Yazid and Husham, were followed unanimously. Omar Bin Abdul-Aziz could come to power after Suleiman and before Yazid. Those are seven rulers after the four Rashidite ones. The twelfth is Al-Walid Bin Yazid Bin Abdil-Melik who was unanimously followed after the death of Husham; his uncle. He ruled for about four years. Then, people mutinied and killed him. Since then, seditious matters came forth. People did not follow a single caliph after so. Yazid Bin Al-Walid, who rebelled against Al-Walid Bin Yazid; his cousin, could not control leadership for a considerable time. Marwan Bin Mohammed Bin Marwan revolted against Yazid. Ibrahim, who came to power after Yazid, was defeated by Marwan. The Abbasids revolted and could kill Marwan.
In addition to the great number of the groups who mutinied against Abul-Abbas As-Seffah; the first Abbasid caliph, he could not control power for long. Al-Mansur; his brother, grasped power for a long time despite that he lost the furthest west of his kingdom which was controlled by the offspring of Marwan in Andalusia. They kept on controlling these territories till they were formally nominated as caliphs. This was followed by a disorder all over the kingdom. The caliph became no more than a name in some territories. This is quite contracted to the reign of Abdul-Melik Bin Marwan when he controlled the entire countries of the lands conquered by the Muslims. A look to their history proves these facts.
In due course, the disorder intended stands for the massacres spreadingly committed due to these seditious incidents. Unfortunately, it has been increasing.
Al-Hussein Bin Al-Munadi’s opinion is, indeed, not that clear since it is contradicted At-Tabarani’s following narrative related to Qeis Bin Jabir As-Sudefi, who relates it to his fathers: “After me, there shall be successors followed by rulers. Those rulers shall be followed by kings whom shall be followed by tyrants. Thereafter, a man from my household shall approach. He shall fill the lands with justice, as they were filled in with inequity. Then, son of Qahtan will be given the orders. By Him Who messaged me with the right I swear, he shall not be less than him.”
This narrative refutes Ibnul-Munadi’s narrative quoted from Daniel’s book.
Likewise, Abu Salih and Kab’s opinions are extremely inapplicable.
The most appropriate matter in this regard is considering the actual meaning of ‘after’ mentioned in the Prophet’s saying: “After me, there shall be twelve successors.” Thusly, the entire rulers who succeeded the Prophet (peace be upon him) were fourteen persons, beginning with As-Siddiq and ending with Omar Bin Abdul-Aziz. Two of those fourteen were of void leadership and short reign. They were Muawiya Bin Yazid and Marwan Bin Al-Hakam. The others were twelve, as the Prophet had predicted. Omar Bin Abdil-Aziz died in 101 A.H. After him, affairs of the Islamic nation were confused. Hence, the first century, which was the best, came to its end.
The Prophet’s saying, “They will be unanimously followed by people,” does not controvert this opinion, since it fits the majority. Except for Al-Hassan Bin Ali and Abdullah Bin Az-Zubair, this characteristics were existed in the entire successors. Leadership of these two was valid. Meritoriousness of those who dissented them was still invalid till Al-Hassan delivered the leadership and Abdullah Bin Az-Zubair was assassinated. God, however, is the most knowledgeable.
Almostly, affairs of the state were normal during reigns of these twelve leaders despite the fact that some irregular incidents had occurred. These irregular incidents, however, are rare if measured to the normal.
Ibn Hebban discusses the meaning of the narrative: “The hand-mills of Islam shall be coming around…” He states:
The narrative refers to the Umayids’ receiving the leadership. The first point at which the Umayids grasped the leadership of Muslims was during Muawiya’s mutiny against Ali in Siffine and the arrangements of arbitration. Since then, the Umayids came to power for seventy years. In the year 106, the first waves of the Abbasids appeared in Khurasan… Ibn Hebban discusses this point so detailedly that he committed many errors. First, he claims the occurrence of the arbitration in the last days of 36 A.H. This is unlike what historians agree upon. In fact, the arbitration occurred few months after the battle of Siffine. That was in 37 A.H…
From the above, we can obviously see Ibn Hajar opt for an opinion different from that As-Suyouti ascribed to him. Therewith, we should understand that As-Suyouti has not read the whole words of Ibn Hajar, or rule As-Suyouti’s forging lies. We have also noticed the perplexity and great number of the contrary probabilities they have shown during discussing the Prophet’s words about the twelve coming successors. Most of them have betaken the addition, “they shall be unanimously followed by people,” as an axis for their discussions. This addition, however, is not authentic. A good deal of scholars deny it. Eyadh decides nothing. He uses the idioms ‘it is said’ and ‘it is probable’ in referring to the different probabilities of interpreting the prophetic saying. Ibn Hajar opts for the third probability. He says, “The third probability discussed by the judge is the most acceptable…”
In abstract, scholars lead the reader to nowhere while they do their best to explain the prophetic prediction which is, for them, authentic that carries a good tidings of the advent of twelve godly imams, guides and custodians in this nation. Scholars insist on suiting the saying to the Umayid rulers. They also mix it to an additive inauthentic and doubtful statement. Besides, the addition is meaningless and far away from the Prophet’s rhetoric.
For more examples on their misguidance in finding an acceptable exegesis for the Prophet’s prediction, readers can notice Awnul Mabud; 11/362-4:
Some scholars state that four of the twelve successors passed away. Before the Judgment day, the number shall be perfected. Others claim those twelve leaders’ occurring in the same time that each shall be followed by a group. At-Turbeshti states that the only way to interpret this prophetic saying and its likes is considering the just leaders only, since those are the only persons who deserve to be named caliphs. It is not necessary for them to be successive, lest, the metaphorical meaning should be the intended. The previous words are quoted from Al-Mirqat.
In his Qurratul Einein Fi Tafdhili Sheikhein, Waliyullah; the grand scholar states:
A perplexity occurred during explaining the Prophet’s saying, “This religion shall be kept triumphed till God conveys twelve successors from Quraish.” The problem is that the saying is concordant to the Ithnasharites who decide twelve imams as their leaders.
Indisputably, the Prophet’s words are similar to the Quranic texts that interpret each other. Ibn Masud, authentically, relates the following prophetic saying; “The hand-mills of Islam shall be coming around for thirty five -or six or seven- years. If people perish, they will pursue their formers. If their religion is constituted, this will last for not more than seven years.”
Many mistakes have been committed during explaining this prophetic saying. The following is our inferral conclusion:
This period begins from the second year of Hijra -the Prophet’s immigration to Yathrib-; year of jihad. Accordingly, the Prophet’s prediction came true. In the thirty fifth years of jihad, Othman’s assassination befell and Muslims were engaged in discrepancies. God; the Exalted, adjusted the Muslims’ affairs afterwards, and the jihad continued till the coming of the Abbasid state, and the eradication of the Umayids…
Once, the Prophet (peace be upon him) foretells of the succession of the prophecy. He dedicates thirty years. The next years are named despotic monarchy. Once more, he foretells of his succession and names it the twelve successors…
For attaining the final result in this question, it is advisable to consider Muawiya, Abdul-Melik, his four sons, Omar Bin Abdul-Aziz and Al-Walid Bin Yazid Bin Abdul-Melik after the four Rashidite caliph.
It is said that Malik; the master scholar, considers Abdullah Bin Az-Zubair as more meritorious in leadership. We have our own opinion in this concern. Omar Bin Al-Khattab and Othman Bin Affan (God please them) mentioned that Abdullah Bin Az-Zubair’s revolution and violation against the Holy Precinct should be one of the catastrophes in the Islamic nation. Ahmed records this saying and refers it to Qeis Bin Abi Hazim:
As Abdullah Bin Az-Zubair asked Omar Bin Al-Khattab’s permitting him to participate in the battle, the latter said, “Sit in your house! You have participated in the Prophet’s battles.” As Abdullah insisted on his demand, Omar said to him, “You should keep yourself in your house! By God I swear, I am about to see your companions and you revolt in the boarders of Al-Madina, and you will injure Mohammed’s companions.”
This narration is recorded by Al-Hakim.
We can conceive that the battle of Jamal is not intended in Omar’s saying, since he signified ‘in the boarders of Al-Madina.’
This very meaning was clarified in Ali’s words addressed in the story of the answer of Al-Hassan (God please him). Hence, he could not manage the affairs of the state.
For the unsettlement of his reign and his ill manners, Yazid Bin Muawiya can not be reckoned with those twelve successors.
Despite the fact that the writer of Qurratul Einein confesses that the Umayid reign was despotic monarchy and their state was not the Prophet’s succession, he considers them during interpreting the Prophet’s saying. He applies the prophetic prediction of the coming of twelve godly imams, who shall be divine custodians on the Prophet’s nation. Secondly, he erases the names of Al-Hassan Bin Ali and Mahdi from the list. He also erases the name of Abdullah Bin Az-Zubair while Malik; the master scholar, and others register him.
At any rate, the man criticizes those who committed mistakes in interpreting the hadith: “Many mistakes have been committed during explaining this prophetic saying.” As he promises people to eradicate the problem and solve the question, he makes it worse!
The following are Ibn Kutheir’s words, recorded in his Al-Bidaya Wen Nihaya, 3/248:
The twelve expected successors, who shall be from Quraish, are not those claimed by the Rafidites. Except for Ali Bin Abi Talib and Al-Hassan; his son, none of those could attain the Muslims’ leadership. The last of them is, as they claim, Mahdi the Expected, who is hiding in a vault in Samarra. He has neither existence, trace nor pace.
In fact, the twelve predicted successors are the four imams; Abu Bakr, Omar, Othman and Ali (God please them), and Omar Bin Abdul-Aziz, on whom the two parties of the scholars agree.
Probably, Ibn Kutheir intends the two opinions about the consecutive ruling of those successors. However, each party has many opinions he has referred to some. Thereafter, he refers to the probabilities. He focuses lights on Al-Beihaqi’s discussions in this regard:
Al-Beihaqi, supported by a group of scholars, opts for the opinion that the twelve successors are those successively came to power after the Prophet (peace be upon him). Their seal is Al-Walid Bin Yazid Bin Abdul-Melik; the villainous, the bad manners of whom we have already discussed.
This is problematic. For discussing so, we should say that the ruling of the first four caliphs; Abu Bakr, Omar, Othman and Ali are undiscussible for Safina’s narrative: “My succession shall be lasting for thirty years.” After them comes Al-Hassan Bin Ali. Ali nominated him as his heir apparent. People of Iraq declared their fealty to him and accompanied him in the fighting against people of Syria till he signed the peace treaty with Muawiya. These incidents are proved by the narrative of Abu Bakra in Al-Bukhari’s Sahih. Muawiya comes next. Yazid Bin Muawiya, Muawiya Bin Yazid, Marwan Bin Al-Hakam, Abdul-Melik Bin Marwan, Al-Walid Bin Abdul-Melik come next successively. These are fifteen persons. Finally comes Al-Walid Bin Yazid Bin Abdil-Melik. Supposing Abdullah Bin Az-Zubeir’s period of ruling before Abdul-Melik is considered, they will be sixteen persons. Anyhow, before Omar Bin Abdul-Aziz, they are twelve. Accordingly, Yazid Bin Muawiya is considered, and Omar is taken out. The entire Muslims, including the Rafidites, agree on the fact that Omar Bin Abdul-Aziz’s reign was the best in justice. They praised him eminently and reckoned him with the Rashidite caliphs.
Providing the leaders unanimously followed by people are considered, Ali Bin Abi Talib and his son should be taken out. The Syrian entirely did not declare their fealty to those two men. Similarly, Muawiya, Yazid Bin Muawiya, Muawiya Bin Yazid, Marwan and Abdullah Bin Az-Zubair should not be considered for the same reason.
On that account, Abu Bakr, Omar, Othman, Muawiya, Yazid Bin Muawiya, Abdul-Melik, Al-Walid Bin Suleiman, Omar Bin Abdul-Aziz, Yazid and Husham should be considered. These are ten. They are followed by Al-Walid Bin Yazid Bin Abdil-Melik; the villainous. This is unacceptable since it leads to taking Ali and Al-Hassan; his son, out of those twelve predicted successors. This is contrary to the Sunnis’ texts, as well as the Shias’. Furthermore, it is contrary to Safina’s narrative: “For thirty years after me, there shall be my succession. It shall be followed by monarchy.” Safina, besides, mentions in detail these thirty years. He allots the reigns of the four Rashidite caliphs. The six month period of Al-Hassan’s reign is considered, too. After that, Monarchy became Muawiya’s. That occurred when Al-Hassan Bin Ali delivered the leadership to him. This narrative materializes the fact that Muawiya should not be described as a caliph, and that caliphate was sealed after the thirty year period. This does not deny the existence of Rashidite caliphs thereafter. Jabir Bin Samara’s narrative evidences this fact.
…Hutheifa Bin Al-Yeman stated, “After Othman, there shall be twelve kings from sons of Umaya.” “They are caliphs, aren’t they?” they asked. “No, they are kings,” answered Hutheifa.
… Abul-Jald states, “This nation shall not be perished before the ruling of twelve successors, who will be acting by the divine guidance and the right belief, befalls. Two of them shall be from the household of Mohammed, one of whom will be living for forty years while the other for thirty.”
Al-Beihaqi then refutes Abul-Jald’s words in unacceptable way and words. This is strange from Al-Beihaqi. A good deal of scholars agree with Abul-Jald. His saying seems to be the most preferable among our opinions. The man was wont to read the old books. This meaning is recorded in the Torah that is with the Jews: “God; the Exalted, did foretell Abraham of the birth of Samuel. He did foretell that He would grow and increase his progeny, and would choose twelve great persons from his offspring.”
Ibn Kutheir refers to what is inscribed in the real Torah - the Old and New Testament 1/25-:
18- Abraham said to the Lord: Make Samuel live before Thee.
19- The Lord said: Sara; your lady, will give birth of a son you will call Isaaq. I will constitute my eternal covenant with him and his offspring.
20- Regarding Samuel, I respond your supplication. I will bless and fruit him. I will grow him so largely. Twelve chiefs he shall bear. I will make him a great nation.
21- But My covenant I constitute with Isaaq whom will be given birth by Sara, this time, the next year.
Instead of ‘chief’, Kabul-Ahbar translated the word into ‘custodian’. Others translated it into ‘imams’.
Hence, the text exists in the Torah, the Sunni’s books and the Shias’ book. It supports the good tidings of our Prophet (peace be upon him and his family). At any rate, it does not settle the problem of the Sunni exegesists. On the contrary, it makes it more complicated.
Ibnul-Arabi; the Malikite, died in 543 A.H., is seen as the smartest and fairest among the Sunni exegesists. In his Aridhatul Ahwadi Fi Sharhi Sahihit Tirmithi, the scholar admits that any application of the prophetic prediction takes to a dead-end way. Hence, he confesses that there must have been an addition to the saying since the present text is meaningless.
Jabir Bin Samara: The Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “After me, there shall come twelve princes; all shall be from Quraish.” This is an authentic hadith.
As we consider the rulers after the Prophet, we find the following: Abu Bakr, Omar, Othman, Ali, Al-Hassan, Muawiya, Yazid, Muawiya Bin Yazid, Marwan, Abdul-Melik, Marwan Bin Mohammed Bin Marwan, As-Seffah, Al-Mansour, Al-Mahdi, Al-Hadi, Ar-Rashid, Al-Amin, Al-Mamoun, Al-Mutasim, Al-Wathiq, Al-Mutawakil, Al-Muntasir, Al-Mustain, Al-Mutaz, Al-Muhtadi, Al-Mutadid, Al-Muktafi, Al-Muqtadir, Al-Qahir, Ar-Radi, Al-Mutteqi, Al-Mustekfi, Al-Muti, At-Taii, Al-Qadir, Al-Qaim and Al-Muqtedi whom I caught in the year 484. He nominated Al-Mustedhir; the son, as his heir apparent. He dies in Muharram, 486. Al-Mustedhir nominated his son; Abu Mansur Al-Fadhl as his heir apparent. That was in 495.
Supposing twelve of them are allotted, the number will stop at Suleiman Bin Abdil-Melik. Regarding the meaning is considered, we have only five persons; the four Rashidite caliphs and Omar Bin Abdil-Aziz. Hence, I cannot perceive a definite meaning for the prophetic saying. Probably, it is a part of a prophetic text.
From the above, we can conclude that the Sunni scholars spared no efforts for the sake of applying the twelve men whom are promised in the Torah by Abraham, and predicted by our Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) on the Umayid rulers. As a matter of fact, they faced three principal unsolved problems:
First, the number of those (successors) is more than twelve. However, they confess that those men are not the Prophet’s successors. Hence, they had to face the waves of opting and selecting depending on no objective criterion.
Second, they feel that that divine apparel does never fit their acquaintances. And that their attempts to defend those rulers’ acrs, who are not real successors of the Prophet, and covering up their deeds are nonsense since some of them committed fatal hideous mistakes and ill deeds. Thus, it is impracticable to consider such persons as godly leaders and great custodians on this nation that God; the Exalted, has foretold of their coming by the seal of His prophets.
Third, by this claim, scholars place those rulers in a divine position they themselves did not claim. Hence, they became as same as that who claims somebody’s prophecy while that somebody denies it.
Lastly, the Sunni exegesists warn their fellows not to regard the Shiite exegeses. They promise them to find, sooner or later, an exegesis more suitable than the Shias’. Previously, we have seen how the Sunni scholars could not forward a single step for finding a convincing exegesis for the Prophet’s prediction of the twelve imams.
It is rightful for Sunnis to ask the scholars for a persuasive interpretation for the Prophet’s authentic prediction of the coming twelve godly imams who will be divinely directed and unique in knowledge, character and behavior, and will be custodians of the same guidance and trend.
In like manner, we are quite rightful to depend on our own interpretation, which is defining the immaculate imams of the Prophet’s household as the persons intended in the Prophet’s prediction. Those imams begin with Ali and ends with the Expected Mahdi (peace be upon them). The Prophet said, “With us the Lord begins and with us He seals.” Most truthful are the words of God and His Apostle.
EXEGESISTS’ INVOLVEMENT IN SAFINA’S NARRATIVE
Safina is the bondservant of Ummu Salama. Scholars decide his uthenticity in communicating the Prophet’s sayings. Like Al-Bukhari, a many hadithists depend on his narratives especially those related to the topic involved.
Sa’eed: Safina: The Prophet (peace be upon him) stated: “In my nation, the succession shall be lasting for thirty years, and shall be followed by despotic monarchy.”
Safina commentates: If you account the reign of Abu Bakr, Omar, Othman and Ali, they shall be thirty years.
Sa’eed: The Umayids claim their succeeding the Prophet.
Safina: Liars are sons of that Zarqa -blue lady-. They are kings, the most evil kings.
Under the same title, At-Tirmithi records:
Omar and Ali said: The Prophet (peace be upon him) did not will anything about his succession (next leadership.)
This narrative is qualified but with a rather doubtful narrator. It is related by other than Sa’eed Bin Jamhan, but we recognize it from this way only.
Ahmed, in his Al-Musned, 5/220-1, records this narrative although he cut off the last two sentences regarding the Umayids’ reigns. Al-Hakim, in his Al-Mustedrak, 3/71, decides its authentic documentation.
As he relates it in his Al-Bidaya Wen Nihaya, 3/198, Ibn Kutheir records the following narrative after it:
Abdurrahman Bin Abi Bakra: I heard the Prophet (peace be upon him) say, “For thirty years, there shall be the succession of the prophesy. After it, God shall give his monarchy to whomever He desires.”
Muawiya commented, “We succumb to the monarchy.”
Supposing Safina’s narrative is authentic, the Prophet’s prediction should be regarded as a foretelling of this nation’s deviation and illegality after thirty years. As long as rulers in the period of thirty years were not more than five persons, we understand that the twelve imams should be others or, at least, they would not come to power. In other words, Safina’s narrative decides evidently the inaccuracy of considering the rulers as the twelve expected custodians. Unfortunately, majority of exegesists are sick of cherishing the Umayid rulers; therefore, they commit every contrasting act for the sake of changing the Umayid despotic monarchy into godly custody. Likewise, they attempted to make the Umayid tyrant and criminal rulers be divine imams, predicted by the Apostle of the Lord of the worlds.
As a support for our opinion, we say that Sunnis admit Safina’s narrative of defining the Prophet’s succession to thirty years. Safina himself explains the narrative. He denies the Umayids’ being the Prophet’s successors. He describes them as kings; the most evil kings. He also accuses them of bastardy. He accuses them of being the illegitimate sons of a Roman prostitute. (sons of that Zarqa -blue lady-.)
Despite, exegesists decide the Umayids as godly leaders chosen by the Exalted Lord for leading this nation.
Some scholars, such as Al-Albani, aims at denying Safina’s explanation of the narrative. They rule its being an inauthentic redundancy. In the same manner, the entire savage deeds of the Umayid rulers, with which the entire pages of history are filled in, are not authentic for such scholars.
In his Umdetul Qari, 16/74, Al-Eini records:
Providing some may claim that Safina’s contradicting Jabir Bin Samara’s (The Prophet said, “This religion shall be kept in efficacy and power to twelve successors from Quraish…”), recorded by Muslim, we say that this refers to the succession of the prophesy. It does not mean that there are no others.
Others say that this prediction of the coming of twelve just Quraishi rulers does not guarantee consecution. In thirty years after the Prophet, this just leadership fell. Many ages later, just caliphs; such as Omar Bin Abdil-Aziz and Al-Muhtedi, could take leadership. Mahdi; the Expected, is within those promised successors.
For nothing more than defending the Umayids, scholars do their best in playing on words. They divide the legal succession into two types. The first is the prophecy succession which lasted for thirty years. The second is a non-prophecy succession, although legal, which came next. This non-prophetic succession was promised by the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) when he predicted the coming of twelve successors or imams!
The pro-Umayid exegesists find their lost in this fabrication; therefore, they adhere to it since it enables them to play on words of the hadith, and make it applicable to their rulers!
Ibn Kutheir’s Al-Bidaya Wen Nihaya, 3/198:
As an answer for the question about the way of admitting Safina’s narrative and that of Jabir Bin Samara in the same time, we say:
Some people claim that this religion is kept in efficacy and power till twelve successors hold the leading position. After that, confusion befell in the Umayids’ reigns. Others contradict the previous saying and allege that the hadith was a prediction of the coming of twelve just Quraishi rulers, no matter they are successive or not. In a period of thirty years only, the consecutive succession of the Prophet befell. After that, just caliphs; such as Omar Bin Abdil-Aziz the Umayid, could come to power. A number of master scholars decides the legality and justice of this man to the degree that they reckon him with the Rashidite caliphs. Ahmed Bin Hanbal says, “Except for Omar Bin Abdil-Aziz, the opinion of none of the Prophet’s companions’ followers is admitted.”
Al-Mahdi; the Abbasid, is one of those predicted successors.
Mahdi; the Expected, is also one of those twelve, since he shall be from the Prophet’s household. He is named Mohammed Bin Abdillah. He is not that one expected in a vault in Samarra. This one is originally not existed. Only the ill-minded Rafidites are awaiting him.
Hence, Ibn Kutheir lacks any logical answer for the problem of Safina’s narrative. He ascribes the opinions to ‘some’ or ‘others’. Had he only recorded Safina’s narrative completely as it is found in their reference books of hadith!
His applauding Omar Bin Abdil-Aziz and Al-Mahdi; the Abbasid, cannot be taken as an evidence on their being within the expected godly successors, lest, each praised man can be regarded. Reckoning a person with the predicted and promised men necessitates an evident credentials proving his being one of those divine persons chosen by the Lord and given exclusively a standing unattainable by ordinary people.
Regarding the repetition of the Shias’ awaiting for Mahdi; the Expected, in a vault in Samarra is a forged matter. Like him, we; the Shias, expect Mahdi to come forth in Mecca. The vault of Samarra is no more than the house of his grandfather, father and him. It is a blessed place in which we pray to God and seek blessedness. Ibn Kutheir, however, is blabbermouth!
The following text is quoted from the footnote of Awnul Mabud, 11/361:
Sheik Ibnul-Qeyim: As an answer for the question about the way of admitting Safina’s narrative (After me, the succession shall be lasting for thirty years,) and the prediction of the coming of twelve leaders, we say: The two are not contrasted since the thirty year succession is the prophesy succession. This is supported by Abu Bakra’s narrative.
Neither Ibnul-Qeyim nor could anyone else define the succession other than that of the prophesy. Then, what a sort of succession was that? How should such a ruling carry a godly Islamic characteristic after the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) had described it as a despotic monarchy?! This matter is admitted by the writer of Qurratul Einein and others.
Their admitting the fact that the Umayid reign was no more than a despotic monarchy, and that it was not Islamic in any means, is an admission of its being a non-Islamic despotic dominion. How is it applicable for any sane to perceive that the Exalted Lord and His Apostle (peace be upon him and his family) carry the good tidings of the coming of non-Islamic rulers who will injure the nation by their despot?
Had Ibn Hebban, Ibn Hajar, Ibnul-Qeyim and their likes stopped on their fanaticism for the Umayid, the matter would have been easier. Unfortunately, they insisted on using the prophetic sayings for their support, and aimed for applying the prophetic good tidings on their despotic kings.
Al-Albani decides the authenticity of a good deal of prophetic sayings respecting the deviation of rulers coming to power after the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family). Under the number 2982, he rules the authenticity of the hadith, “Some of my companions shall never see me again after my departure.”
Under the number 2864, Al-Albani decides the authenticity of the hadith “After me, your affairs shall be in the hands of men who will extinguish my traditions and inject heresies.”
The hadith, “I am holding you from the neck so that you will not fall in the hell-fire you are pushing yourselves in like butterflies and locust. I am about to fling your necks,” is given the number 2865.
The hadith, “A man from sons of Umaya shall be taking initiative in changing my traditions,” is authenticated by Al-Albani who lists it under number 1749 of the title ‘The Prophet’s prediction.’ Al-Albani commentates, “This hadith stands for the change that occurred to the Islamic system from elections into succession. God, however, is the most knowledgeable.”
Under the number 744, Al-Albani decides the authenticity of the hadith, “As soon as sons of Al-Aas attain thirty, they will betake the Lord’s religion as a instrument and the Lord’s servants as slaves and the Lord’s fortunes as treasures.”
As he decides the authenticity of Safina’s narrative, Al-Albani gives it the number 459 under the title, ‘the prophesy succession’.
Nevertheless, Al-Albani defends the Umayids. He says:
This does not oppose the coming of other caliphs since they are not seen as the Prophet’s successors. Evidently, those are the only intended in the hadith involved. This matter is supported by the following wording of Sheikul-Islam:
It is licit to call those who came -to power- after the Rashidite caliphs as caliphs although they were kings…
Pursuing Ibn Teimiya; his master, Al-Albani rules that the twelve divinely custodian imams of whom the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) had foretold, are Muawiya, Yazid and sons of Al-Hakam Bin Abil-Aas at whom tens of frank, decisive and authentic sayings of censure were addressed!
See how fanaticism in cherishing the Umayids incites this man to put himself in a position deserving the Exated Lord’s censure, and His Apostle’s curse.
Such a person will not find an answer if an orientalist addresses at him that Muslims confess that their Lord and His Apostle are of fluctuating tempers! They curse, censure and condemn persons, and then, please them and declare before Muslims that those previously accursed persons and their offspring will be the choice among people, and will be the divinely sinless custodians of this nation!!
The wicked orientalists, Selman Rushdi and his likes found themselves a hole for reviling at Islam through such false narratives respecting fanaticism to Quraish and the Umayids and Kabul-Ahbar.
Twelfth: Models of our narratives respecting the twelve imams.
In his Al-Khissal, As-Saduq records the following on pages 466-7:
Ibn Masud’s forecited narrative is related in different ways of narration, all related to Mujalid Bin Sa’eed. At any rate, there is a number of ways in which Mujalid Bin Sa’eed is not a party.
…Qeis Bin Abd: We were encompassing Abdullah Bin Masud when a Bedouin came and asked about him. “I am Abdullah,” answered he. “Did your prophet tell you about the number of his successors?” asked the Bedouin. “Yes, he did. They are twelve, like the number of the Israelite disciples,” answered Abdullah.
… We were accompanying Abdullah Bin Masud in the mosque when a Bedouin came and asked about him. “I am Abdullah. What is your need?” answered he. “O Abdullah! Did your prophet tell you about the number of his successors?” asked the Bedouin. “Well, you have asked me about a matter I have never been asked before since I arrived in Iraq. Yes, he did. They are twelve, like the number of the Israelite disciples,” answered Abdullah.
Abu Aruba: (Abdullah answered,) “Yes. Like the number of the Israelite leaders.”
Jarir: Al-Ashath Bin Masud: The Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) stated, “After me, the successors are twelve, like the number of the Israelite leaders.”
In the same documentation, the narratives are recorded in Kemaluddin We Temamun Nima, 271.
Among the comparative objective writings, I can recognize the precious book of Kifayetul Athar Elel Eimmetil Ithnei Ashar, compiled by the expert hadithist Ali Bin Mohammed Bin Ali Al-Khezzaz Al-Qummi Ar-Razi. He is one of the grand scholars in the fourth century. This work is considered as the most remarkable respecting the Prophet’s traditions.
In the introductory of the book, the compiler defines his course. On page 7, he records:
The main reason that urged me on compiling narrators of the Prophet’s companions and his truthful progeny respecting the texts dealing with the immaculate imams, is that I found some ordinary people of the Shias perplexed in this regard. They doubted due to the firmness of the anthropomorphists and the Mutazilites who aimed at confusing their credits. The matter attained its climax when those people denied the divine texts regarding the imamate. Some exceeded when denied the entire traditions of the prophet’s companions in this regard… Therefore, I committed myself to scrutinizing in this field and clarifying whatever evidences I can obtain. I intended to repeal the antagonizts’ heresies. Finally, I seek the Lord’s offers and the satisfaction of the Prophet and the imams succeeding him.
First, I am to mention the narratives dealing with this topic, that are related to the familiar companions of the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family), such as Abdullah Bin Abbas, Abdullah Bin Masud, Abu Sa’eed Al-Khidri, Abu Therr Al-Ghefari, Selman Al-Farisi, Jabir Bin Samara, Jabir Bin Abdillah, Anas Bin Malik, Abu Hureira, Omar Bin Al-Khattab, Zaid Bin Thabit, Zaid Bin Arqam, Abu Umama, Wathila Bin Al-Asqa, Abu Ayoub Al-Ansari, Ammar Bin Yasir, Hutheifa Bin Asyed, Imran Bin Al-Hussain, Sa’d Bin Malik, Hutheifa Bin Al-Yeman, Abu Qetada Al-Ansari, Ali Bin Abi Talib and his two sons; Al-Hassan and Al-Hussein (peace be upon him).
Among women, I compiled the texts related by Ummu Salama, Aisha and Fatima the daughter of the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family).
Thereafter, I am to record the imams’ reports concordant to the Prophet’s companions’. I am to mention each imam’s nominating his successor. This work is purposed for making people realize the real situation and take it as their religion, evading being like those described in God’s saying, (And those did not show opposition but after knowledge had come to them, out of envy among them.)
Such narratives remove doubt and hesitancy, and repeal every excuse. In fact, the matter is more genuine than what they thought.
The compiler (God bless his soul) collates the narrative of each companion he has already mentioned under a definite title. He also records the narrative and its documentation and series of narrators up to the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family). This work saved a great deal of narratives that have been, totally or partially, lost in the reference books of the Sunnis; our brothers.
The following are models from the book:
On page 23, Title: Narratives of Abdullah Bin Masud, the writer records:
… Abdullah Bin Masud: I heard the Prophet (peace be upon him) say: The imams after me shall be twelve. Nine of them shall be from Ak-Hussein’s offspring. Their ninth is their Mahdi.
On page 37, Title: Narratives of Anas Bin Malik, the writer records:
… Anas Bin Malik: After leading the collective prayer, the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) orated, “O my companions! He shall be grouped with us that whoever loves my household. He is adhering to the firmest handle that whoever adheres to my coming successors.” Abu Therr stood erect and asked, “O God’s messenger! How many will be the imams after you?” “Their number is the like of the Israelite leaders’,” answered the Prophet. “All shall be from your household?” asked Abu Therr. “All shall be from my household. Nine shall be from Al-Hussein’s offspring. Mahdi is one of them,” answered the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family).
On page 133, Title: Narratives of Abu Ayoub Al-Ansari, Khalid Bin Zaid, the writer records:
… Abu Ayoub Al-Ansari: I heard the Apostle of God (peace be upon him and his family) say, “I am the master of the prophets. Ali is the master of the prophets’ successors. My grandsons are the best of the grandsons. The sinless imams are from us. They are from Al-Hussein’s offspring. Mahdi of this nation is from us.”
A Bedouin stood up and asked about their number. “Their number is the like of the grandsons -of Abraham- and the Disciples of Jesus and the Israelite leaders,” answered the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family).
On page 120, Title: Narratives of Ammar Bin Yasir, the writer records:
… Ammar: I was with the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) during a battle when Ali (peace be upon him) killed bearers of the pennons; Amr Bin Abdillah Al-Jumjumi and Sheiba Bin Nafi. I came to the Prophet and expressed that Ali had fought for the sake of God in the very proper way. “This is because he is being a part of me and I am a part of him,” answered the Prophet, and added, “He is the heir of my knowledge and the settler of my debts and the keeper on my promises. He is the leader after me. Without him, the pure believers are never recognized. Confronting him is as same as confronting me. And confronting me is as same as confronting Allah. Consenting to him is as same as consenting to me. And consenting to me is as same as consenting to Allah. He is really the father of my two grandsons. The imams are from his offspring. From him, God; the Exalted, shall bring the prudent imams. Mahdi of this nation is being one of them.”
“My father and mother be sacrificed to you, God’s messenger! Who is that Mahdi?” I wondered.
“O Ammar!” answered the Prophet, “Allah; the Blessed the Elevated, has given me the covenant that He shall create nine persons from Al-Hussein’s offspring. Their ninth shall be invisible for them. This is God’s saying, (Say: Have you considered if your water should go down, who is it then that will bring you flowing water?) His invisibility shall take a long time that some people will apostatize while others shall be firm. In the last of time he shall come forth to fill in this world with justice and equity. He shall fight for the sake of the interpretation as same as when I fought for the sake of the revelation. He shall bear my name. He shall be the most similar to me.
O Ammar! After me, there shall come a heresy. When that occurs, you should follow Ali and his party. He is being with the right, and the right is being with him.
O Ammar! After me, you shall be fighting with Ali two categories of people; the breachers and the deviants. Then, the despotic party will kill you.”
“O God’s messenger!” I asked, “Will that be for the satisfaction of God and yours?”
“Yes, it will be for the satisfaction of God and mine. The last meal you will have in this world shall be a drink of milk,” predicted the Prophet.
On the day of battle of Siffine, Ammar Bin Yasir came to Ali Amirul-Muminin, and asked his permitting him to fight. “Slow down, God may be merciful to you!” answered Ali. An hour later, Ammar came and repeated the same demand. Ali answered him the same answer. In the third time, Amirul Muminin wept and said, “It is the day the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) had described to me.”
Hence, Ali (peace be upon him) rode off his pack animal, hanged Ammar and saw him off. He then said, “O Abul-Yaqdan! God reward you excellently for your defending God and His Apostle. You have been the best brother and the best acquaintance.” Ali and Ammar wept for a while. “O Amirul Muminin!” worded Ammar, “By God I swear, I followed you due to my being certain. I heard the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) address at me on the day of Kheibar, ‘O Ammar! After me, there shall be a heresy. You should follow Ali and his party. He is being with the right and the right is being with him. You will be fighting the breachers and the deviants.’ O Amirul-Mumminin! May God reward you excellently for your defending Islam. You have truly consummated, conveyed and advised.”
Ammar then went to the battlefield. He asked for some water. A man from Ansar gave him a drink of milk since they had no water. As he drank it, Ammar shouted, “This is the prediction of the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) to me. He told that my last drink in this world would be a drink of milk.”
He attacked the enemies and could kill eighteen persons. Two Syrian men faced him and could stab him. He was killed.
That night, Amirul-Muminin (peace be upon him) passed by the casualties of the battle. He found Ammar’s body among them. He took his head and placed it on his thigh and wept. He then cited a couple of verses in which he expressed his grief for the departure of his dear people.
On page 180, Title: Narratives of Ummu Salama, the writer records:
… Seddad Bin Aws: On the battle of Jamal, I decided not to join any of the two parties. To the midday, I did not participate in the fighting. That afternoon, the Lord inspired my heart to fight with Ali. Therefore, I fought in his lines till the end of the battle. When I was back in Al-Madina, I visited Ummu Salama. “From where have you come?” asked she. “From Basra,” I answered. “Which party did you join?” she asked. “O Ummul-Muminin!” I expressed, “I retired the fighting for half a day. Then, the Lord inspired me to fight with Ali.”
“You have done the very right thing,” she praised, and added, “I heard the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) state, ‘He is fighting me that whoever fights Ali. And he is fighting the Lord that whoever fights me.’”
“You see that Ali is the right, do you not?” I asked. “Yes, by God,” she affirmed, “Ali is being with the right and the right is being with him. By God I swear, Mohammed’s nation did violate their prophet when they preceded those whom are detained by the Lord and His Apostle, and detained those whom are preceded by the Lord and His Apostle. They kept their harem in their houses and took out the Prophet’s lady to the deserts. By God, I heard the Prophet (peace be upon him and his family) say, ‘My nation shall be in a concordance and in discrepancy. You should join them when they are concordant. And you should choose for the middle situation when they are engaged in discrepancy. You are to focus your eyes on my household. If they fight, you should fight with them. If they opt for peace, you should follow them. The right is being with them whenever they are.’”
“Who are his household?” I asked.
“They are those we are mandated to adhere to. They are the imams after him. Their number is as same as the Israelite leaders’. They are Ali and his two sons, and nine persons from the Al-Hussein’s offspring. They are the immaculate and the sinless imams,” answered Ummu Salama.
“What a pity! People are perishing, then!” I expressed.
“Every sect rejoicing what they had with them,” she commented.
AYATUL GHADIR( Verses of Ghadir)
Al-Mostafa Center for Islamic Researches