History of the Caliphs

By: Rasūl Ja’farīan

Translation by: Ali Ebrahimi

p. 184-198
Muslims’ disagreements over caliphacy as well as other fields were dealt with in previous parts in detail. Now in the light of carrying out more precise researches, it is not fair of anyone to deny the existence of the ‘Alawites and Quraysh parties in Messenger’s time let alone denying it from Saqīfa on. al-Dūrī approves the two parties being present earlier than Saqīfa.[1] This political disagreement which, from the very beginning, had a religious root, fomented the religious differences. For example, it was of great importance that initially, some companions considered merely Qur’ān as proof.In other words, not deeming the decrees of prophet as proof and prohibiting people from writing and quoting traditions did influence theology.’Abd al-Rahmān Ibn ‘Awf’s laying it down that caliphate will be turned over to anyone accepting to act according to the conduct of Shiykhs, and Imām’s stating that he will act only in accordance with his own individual reasoning, indicate the aggravation of religious differences.

As long as ‘Umar was in power, the majority of people, excluding Imām’s supporters, believed in rulership.

But when ‘Uthmān, because of heretical religious deeds, was denied by a large number of companions, the problematic question was it that whose words should people regard as the religion and whom should they imitate.

Imām ‘Alī replaced ‘Uthmān. In the very beginning he was not accepted by the people of Damascus. Little by little, though temporarily, Basra went a different way as well. In Medina proper, though few, some companions balked at obeying or swearing allegiance to Imām. Apart from political issues, the important case was elucidating the religion especially in the case of differences or novel matters. Here two political and naturally religious parties began to emerge. The first group consisted of those having accepted Imām and deeming it necessary to obey him. The second group, motivated by ‘Uthmān’s oppressedness, didn’t accept Imām’s leadership and opposed him.

In this regard, Apostates and Deviators had no difference. At this point two terms, religious and political, were coined “‘Alī’s Shī‘a and ‘Uthmān’s Shī‘a” were gradually distinguished as respectively “Shī‘a or al- Shī‘a” and “Uthmānī or al-’Uthmāniyya”.

Generally “Shī‘a” was in opposition to “Uthmānī”. But this title was not applicable to all individuals. There were some Shi‘ite Muslims who were called so merely because they opposed ‘Uthmān or stood for Imām as the Shi‘istically legitimate caliph.

There were also some who regarded Imām as basically appointed by the Messenger and believed in a kind of divine right for his leadership.

Of course this doesn’t necessarily mean that they should have refrained to cooperate with the early caliphs. Conditions being so, Imām himself had kept silent for Muslim interests and had repeatedly notified this point. What should be told about ‘Uthmānids is that upholding the idea of Imām’s illegitimacy, the Umayyads managed to dominate this view over a great part of Muslim community. But except for Basra, this opinion was not favored in Iraq. By contrast, in every appropriate accasion, the belief in ‘Alawī’s rightfulness emerged in the field of politics. Hidjāz also did not fully surrender to the Umayyads, but tried to maintain another idea, content with Shiykhs. During the first to third century, religious and political changes triggered a great transition in that classification. Now, the matter related to our discussion is to show that the group known to us as Shi‘ite Muslims did believe in ‘Alī’s divine designation. After swearing allegiance to ‘Alī, Khuzayma Ibn Thābit said,” We chose one whom God chose for us.”[2]

In response to ‘Umar who said, “Quraysh refrained from choosing ‘Alī because they abominated both prophethood and caliphate being in my family.”

Ibn ‘Abbās replied, “They abominated what God had sent down.”[3]

Opposing Mu‘āwiya, Dārimiyya Hadjūniyya said, واليت عليًا على حبه المساكين وإعطائه أهل السبيل وفقهه في الدين وبذله الحق من نفسه وما عقد له رسول الله من الولاية “He loved ‘Alī because the Messenger confined the sainthood to him.”[4]

According to Tabarī, once ‘Alī returned to Kūfa from Siffīn and Khāridjites parted with him, The Shi‘ite Muslims remained with him saying that they are charged with another allegiance, نحن أولياء من واليت وأعداء من عاديت “We are amiable to your friends and opposed to your enemies.”[5]

According to Iskāfī, the majority of people, based on the Book and tradition, and Imām’s Shi‘ite Muslims, on being amiable to the friends and enemies with the enemies, swore allegiance to ‘Alī.[6]The emphasis on such an allegiance as the second allegiance and its content implies that allegiance-swearers tended toward Shī‘a. In the original tradition, the emphasis is put on the allegiance of “‘Alī’s Shī‘a”. Abūdhar,passed away at ‘Uthmān’s time, called people toward the People of House and commemorated Prophet’s family this way, ايها الناس! إن آل محمد هم الأسرة من نوح والآل من إبراهيم والصفوة والسلالة من إسماعيل والعترة الطيبة الهادية من محمد، فأنزلوا آل محمد بمنـزلة الرأس من الجسد بل بمنـزلة العينين من الرأس فانهم منكم كالسماء المرفوعة وكالجبال المنصوبة والشمس الضاحية وكالشجرة الزيتونة اضاء زيتها وبورك زندها “The family of Muhammad(s), is the family of Noah and Ibraham and the selected progeny of Ismā‘īl and saint posterity. Regard them as the head attached to body and the eyes attached to head, the high sky, firm mountains, shining sun and olive tree.” Added he, “Muhammad(s) is the heir of Adam, other prophets are not superior to him and ‘Alī Ibn Abī Tālib is the legatee of him and the heir of his knowledge.”

Addressing people he said,” If you, the folk astounded after the Prophet had preferred whom God had preferred, deferred whom God had deferred and confined sainthood and heritage to the People of the House, you would have benefited from all blessings.”[7]

Elsewhere Abūdhar has been quoted, “Oh, people! In case of being involved in prospective seditions, resort to Imām ‘Alī and the Book.[8]When he was to be exiled to Rabada and Imām and his children went to see him off, having a look at Imām, Abūdhar said, seeing you and your children reminds me of what Prophet told about you and makes me cry.[9]

Expressing regret for people not benefiting from Imām while he lives, Salmān said,” I swear by God, after him, no one will inform you of the secrets of your Prophet.”[10]Quoting the Messenger of God, Miqdād said, “knowing the family of Muhammad(s) is the released from fire, loving his family is the pass from the Path and sainthood of his family is the security from chastisement.[11]‘Ammār also narrated a tradition from the Messenger, I advice the one believing in God and admitting me with the guardianship of ‘Alī, son of Abī Tālib, “Anyone loving ‘Alī, loves me and anyone loving me, loves God.”[12] There are lots of these quotations from Abūdhar, Salmān, ‘Ammār, Miqdād indicating their Shi‘istic beliefs. Abū Hātim Rāzī puts the definition of “Shī‘a” this way,” This is the title of those who loved ‘Alī during the Messenger’s time, for instance, Salmān, Abūdhar, Miqdād Ibn Aswad, ‘Ammār Ibn Yāsir and etc.

Commenting on these four, The Messenger stated, “The Heaven looks forward to four men, Salmān, Abūdhar, Miqdād and ‘Ammār.[13]

Describing ‘Alī, Umm Sanān, the daughter of Khaythama Ibn Kharasha, composed this,

أوصى إليك بنا فكنت وفيا

قدكنت بعد محمد خلفاً لنا

“Thou art Muhammad’s remainder to us, He made his will to thee about us and thou art the faithful.”[14]

Inciting ‘Alī’s troops at Siffīn,Umm al-Khayr said, هلموا رحمكم الله إلى الإمام العدل والتقي الوفي والصديق الوصي “May God bless thee. Hasten toward the sincere, pious and just successor.”[15]

The point that Imām ‘Alī is regarded by these and many of his companions as “the Successor”, shows that they imagined him far beyond a caliph who has gained the caliphacy through public allegiance.

The sources contain lots of poems indicating the use of this comment by Hudjr Ibn ‘Adī, Ibn Tayyihān, Ibn ‘Idjlān and other Shi‘ites companions of Imām.[16]

Inviting the people to swear allegiance to ‘Alī, Mālik Ashtar stated, هذا وصيّ الأوصياء و وارث علم الأنبياء “O people! He is “the successor of the successors” and “The heir of Prophets’ knowledge.”[17]

In Siffīn, he composed this,

إنه في دجى الحنادس نور[18]

من رآى عزة الوصيّ عليّ

“Everyone knows ‘Alī, the chief successor, he is the very man who illuminates dark night.”

Lamenting over ‘Alī’s martyrdom, Umm ‘Irbān said,

نرى مولى رسول الله فينا[19]

وكنا قبل مقتله بخير

“We had a good life before he was killed because we stayed with the Messenger(s).”

A lot of poems composed by the Messenger’s companions some of which were ‘Alī’s supporters, interpret Ghadīr tradition as sainthood and leadership. For instance, the poems of Qays Ibn Sa‘d Ibn

‘Ubāda, Hassān Ibn Thābit as well as Imām ‘Alī himself.[20] Qays Ibn Sa‘d composed this about Ghadīr:

لسـوانا أتى به التنـزيل

وعـليّ إمامـنا وإمام

ه فهذا مولاه خطب جليل

يوم قال النبي من كنت مولا

ة حتم ما فيـه قال وقيل [21]

انّ ما قاله النبيّ على الأمـ

“‘Alī is our Imām and everyone’s, he is the one who has introduced Qur’ān

It was on a great day when the Prophet(s) said, “‘Alī is the lord of whomever I am his lord”

What the Prophet(s) said to Umma ends up all babbles”

Hassān Ibn Thābit also composed this one about the same,

بخــم واسمع بالرسول مناديا

يناديهـم يوم الغدير نبيهم

جعلتك من بعدي اماما وهاديا [22]

فقال له قم يا علي فاننـي

“Their Prophet called them to obey God at Ghadīr Khum, a great herald whose call must be heard

‘Alī was told, “O rise up! For I placed thee an Imām after myself.”

The combination of these quotations indicates the recognition of ‘Alī as an Imām introduced by the Messenger. They regarded Imām’s rightfulness in his legation on the part of Messenger and asked the others to follow him as the legatee of the Messenger.

According to Ibn Tayyihān, verily our Imām and guardian, is the legatee of the Messenger.

Ibn ‘Idjlān used to say, “How possibly can we separate while the guardian is our Imām.”[23]

According to Hudjr, the son of ‘Adī, he is the guardian after the Messenger, and the prophet consented to his being the legatee.[24]

A newly converted man called Zādān Farrukh came upon Khāridjites on his way. They asked him about ‘Alī, he said, “The Commander of the Faithful is the legatee of the Messenger and the lord of mankind”.[25]

They killed him. In his well-known letter to Mu‘āwiya, Muhammad Ibn Abī Bakr mentioned Imām as وارث رسول الله ووصيه “The Heir of the Messenger and his successor.”[26]

There is also a poem quoted from ‘Ubayda Ibn Sāmit which is composed during Saqīfa.[27]

The measures taken by Imām for propagating the idea of “Divine leadership” are among the most important reasons of Shi‘istic propagation and its distinction from his caliphate. He himself has composed a poem about the content of Ghadīr Tradition, in which he has interpreted the mentioned tradition as indicating the necessity of sainthood over people.

رسول الله يوم غدير خم

فأوجب لي ولايته عليكم

“The Messenger(s) deemed his sainthood for you obligatory on the of Ghadīr Khum.”[28]

In a lengthy letter to Mu‘āwiya, Imām has explained this issue in detail. The letter contains significant points about Imām’s contribution to the propagation of Shi‘istic sainthood. Some major parts of the letter are quoted here for its great importance in terms of “Imamate Thought”.

“The Almighty God says, “Obey God and execute the commands of the Messenger as well as Holders of Authority”. This verse addresses us, The People of the House, not you. Then, Qur’ān forbade affray and disunity and ordered surrender and unity. You are the folk acknowledging God and his prophet and admitting them. God informed you that” Muhammad(s) is the father of none of your men, he is the God’s Messenger and the Seal of The Prophets “and also said, “Retreat if he is killed or dead “,and Mu‘āwiya, you and your companion retreated, apostatized and broke your pledge to God as well as your allegiance, and all these will not harm God. Oh, Mu‘āwiya! don’t you know that Imāms are from among us not you. God informed you that Holders of Authority must be capable of deducing the knowledge and you must refer to God, his Messenger and Holders of Authority, the bearers of knowledge, in all that you disagree. So anyone keeping his pledge to God, shall find Him faithful to His promise. We are the family of Ibrāhīm envied by all and you are those who envy us. There was a party of Banū Isrā‘īl who told their prophet, “Send us a king; we will fight for God’s sake.”[29]And when God sent Saul as a king for them, they envied him and said,” How can he hold control over us?” [30]and deemed themselves more deserving of kingdom.These all are the past happenings and now we narrate them to you and their interpretation and esoteric exegesis are available to us, and anyone ascribing lies to us will fall into despair. You are typical of that… Let it be known to you that we, the People of House, are the envied family of Ibrāhīm. We were envied as our fathers were envied before.

The Almighty God said, “The family of Ibrāhīm, the family of Lot, the family of Jacob, the family of Moses, the family of Aaron and the family of David; we, too, are the family of our prophet, Muhammad(s). “Oh, Mu‘āwiya, don’t you know that Allāh says, “The closest people to Ibrāhīm are those who follow him as well as this prophet and the believers, God is the believer’s patron.” [31] We are kins by blood cited in this verse,”The prophet merits more than the believers to themselves and his wives are the mothers of believers and according to the holy Qur’ān the genealogical relatives are merited over Muhādjirūn and Ansār (Helpers).”[32]We are the People of House, God has chosen us “Nabuwwat”, prophethood, is ordained to us the Book, wisdom and knowledge belong to us and Ka‘ba and Ismā‘īl’s House and Ibrāhīm’s abode belong to us. So we deserve sovereignty. Woe is to you Mu‘āwiya. We are more deserving of Ibrāhīm, we are his family and the family of ‘Imrān are more deserving of Him… and the family of Muhammad(s) are more deserving of him…We are the people of house from whom God has removed all impurity.[33] Every prophet has an invitation exclusive to him, his progeny and family and every prophet leaves a testament for his family. Don’t you know that Ibrāhīm gave his last testament to his son Jacob and when Jacob was due to die, he also left a will and Muhammad(s) made a will.This was the tradition of Ibrāhīm and other prophets and Muhammad(s) followed them by order of God. The Book is sent down to us and the Messenger has been raised up from among us and the verses have been read to us. We depend on, witness, call to and uphold the Book.Oh, Mu‘āwiya! Do you seek another God but Allāh or another book except Allāh’s Book? Or another Qibla but Ka‘ba, the House of God, home of Ismā‘īl and abode of our father, Ibrāhīm. Do you want another religion but that of Ibrāhīm or another sovereign and commander but God? God has placed this sovereignty and commandership in us.You revealed your animosity toward us, well showed your spite and jealousy and proved that you break your pledge to God and distort his verses as this one revealed to Ibrāhīm, “God has selected your religion for you.”[34] Do you turn away from Ibrāhīm’s religion while God has selected him in this world and he is from among the virtues in the Hereafter. Do you seek another decree but that of Allāh? Or another Imām not from our family? The leadership belongs to Ibrāhīm, his progeny and the believers who follow them and do not turn away from his religion. It was also said, anyone who follows me is from me.”[35]

Agitated at Imām’s calling himself the relative of all prophets, Mu‘āwiya wrote in response,

“Not content with your kinship with the Messenger, now you relate yourself to all the prophets. Beware that Muhammad(s) was one of the prophets raised up for all, he delivered God’s messages and had nothing more. Now tell us what is the merit of your kinship and the superiority of your right and where in the Book did you find your name? Wherein is your sovergnity, leadership and superiority mentioned?

Yes, you as well as us, follow the previous Imāms and caliphs.”

Then he mentioned his being ‘Uthmān’s heir. Repelling him, Imām accused him of animosity toward the prophets and interest in his unbelieving forefathers and added,

“Beware that we are the People of Messenger’s House. The infidel dislikes us and the believer bears us no grudge. You have denied Muhammad’s leadership and regarded him as Messenger not Imām. This denial makes you deny the leadership of all prophet’s. But we testify that he was both Messenger and Imām. And about your denying my kinship with the Messenger and my right, verily our due and right is mentioned in the Holy Book, and God mentions us as having an equal share with the Prophet where he says,” A fifth of anything that you acquire as spoils belongs to God, the Messenger and the relatives.”[36] And elsewhere is said, “so give the relative his due.”[37] Don’t you see that our due is mentioned with that of God and Messenger and yours is mentioned with the strangers…you deny my leadership and sovereignty. Haven’t you seen that in the Book, the almighty God says he has made the family of Ibrāhīm superior to the world.[38] He is God who has exalted us over all mortals.If you can, separate us from Ibrāhīm, Ismā‘īl, Muhammad(s) and his family, in the Holy Book.[39]

The aforesaid letter is quoted by Abū Ishāq Thaqafī, a Shi‘ites historian of the third century A.H.(283 A.D.) The belief in “divine leadership” of the Commander of the Faithful is completely obvious in the letter and different deductive aspects of it are outstanding. The most important part is the relation and link between prophethood, succession, and leadership as a noble course of action in the history of prophets. Mu‘āwiya’s denial of the Messenger’s leadership is also remarkable in this letter. Anyhow,in his words, Imām has tried his very best in proving the superiority of “The People of House “over others and having a “divine right.”

Proving such a right, Imām considers leadership as an integral part of it, to which the other caliphs are not entitled. There are also some other proofs indicating the Shi‘istic thought in works handed down by Imām. In a sermon about the People of the House, Imām says, “They (the descendants of Muhammad) are the trustees of his secret. Anyone taking refuge to them will be led towards God.They are the center of knowledge about him, the preachers of his religious commandments, the protectors of Qur’ān and Sunna, and mountain -like citadels which guard the religion and make the Islam stable, firm and powerful.”[40]

Elsewhere he states, فأين تذهبون وأنى توفكون والأعلام قائمة والآيات واضحة والمنار منصوبة فأين يتاه بكم بل كيف تعمهون وبينكم عترة نبيكم وهم أزمة الحق وأعلام الدين وألسنة الصدق فأنزلوهم بحسن منازل القرآن وردوهم ورود الهيم العطاش “Where are you going and when are you due to return? The landmarks are fixed, beacons are lighted and direction indicators are set up. To what extent are you being misled and confused? The descendants of the holy prophet(s) are amongst you. They are the reins of right, ensigns of faith and speakers in the language of truth. Place them in the best Qur’ānic positions turn to them as thirsty camels gather round water springs.”[41]

“We are the tree of prophethood, the centers which receive the messages of God and descending place of blessing angels.

We are mines of knowledge and springs of wisdom. Our friend awaits blessings of God and our enemy awaits punishment and wrath.” [42]

Elsewhere it is said, “Muhammad’s progeny revives the knowledge and kills the ignorance; you are informed of their knowledge because of their prudence, their appearance out of their inward, and their silence because of their philosophy of expression. They are neither at odds with the gospel truth nor render it wrong. They are pillars of religion and the shelter that harbor the people; upon their return, the gospel truth re-settled and the credal error, from there, was driven away and cut off with tongue. They knew, learned and applied the religion as they had to, not just lending an ear to it. Religion narrators are legion but its protectors are few in number.”[43]

Elsewhere it has been stated, “Beware, when infant, my saint progeny is the most patient and when adult they are the most knowledgeable of all. Beware that we are from among the People of House whose knowledge and decree is rooted in God’s knowledge and decree. In case, you follow us, you will be guided through our wisdom and if not, God will have you brought to ruin.”

Elsewhere it goes to say, “They embarked on seas of sedition, adopted heresies and abandoned traditions. The faithful were isolated and wicked liars got loud in declaring their views. We are particular people, companions, the treasures of prophethood and the pearls of prophetic mission. Houses should be entered through their doors and whoever stepping into the house not through their doors should be called a thief. They are true applications of long Qur’ānic verses and treasures of beneficent Allāh; Once they speak, they tell naught but the truth and in case they remain quiet, they are not outpaced.”[44]

Elsewhere he states this way, “Where are those, who falsely and unjustly deemed themselves and not us as the most knowledgeable. God raised us in position and kept them inferior to us. He has conferred on us the eminence of which he deprived them. He allowed us the entry to sphere of divine favor from which he dismissed them. With us guidance is to be sought and blindness (of misguidance) is to be changed into brightness. Verily Imāms are from among the Quraysh, the tree of which is planted in the family of Hāshim.The others do not deserve it nor would others be suitable as heads of affairs.”[45]

In these sentences as well as the previously mentioned letter, a kind of prophetic inheritance for transfering the right of leadership is put forth by Imām. This is not the inheritance used for transferring the material rights but the one accompanied by executorship, knowledge, wisdom, purity and inerrancy.

This is the culture raised up by Qur’ān among prophets and the right Ibrāhīm wants for his progeny. God says,” The despots never access to my mission.” Despite the key role that “selection” plays, God considers the prophets as each other’s descendants.[46]Treating it as an ordinary heritage The Sunnites accuse the Shi‘ite Muslims of having such an idea about leadership while Shī‘a approves of the text which is within the framework of divine heritage existing in Qur’ānic culture. In a letter indicating his dispute with Quraysh, Imām wrote about his being insistent on caliphacy, “Am I greedy to ask for my inheritance and the right granted to me by the Messenger and God?”[47] In this phrase, inheritance and divine right are cited together.

More important is Imām’s reference to the Ghadīr tradition at the threshold of entering Kūfa- After suppressing those who broke their allegiance in the battle of Djamal. As several Sunnites sources specify, The people of Kūfa as well as Messenger’s companions were brought together by Imām at the mosque of Kūfa and all those who had witnessed and heard the Messenger uttering the Ghadīr tradition were asked to stand up and give evidence of that. A large number, only twelve of which had participated the battle of Badr, bore witness.[48]Referring to this tradition publicly in fact implied his reference to “divine right “on “Sainthood”.[49] The culture of “Proof” in Qur’ān confirms the leading attitude of Imām. This concept is applicable only to the prophet and those chosen by God and resembling them in rank.

Imām has stated, “God never allowed the creation to remain without a prophet deputed by Him or a Book sent down from Him or a binding argument.”[50]

Elsewhere he said, “Verily the earth is never devoid of those who maintain God’s binding argument either openly and reputedly or fearfully and secretly so that God’s binding argument and proof should not be rebutted or his signs overlooked.”[51]

In a letter to the one in charge of collecting alms, Imām included instructions for treating people and telling them, عبادالله! أرسلني ولي الله وخليفته لآخذ منكم حق الله في أموالكم “O servants of God! The vicegerent of God and His caliph sent me to you for collecting God’s share in your properties.”[52]

The comments “The vicegerent of God and His caliph” Imām attributed to himself are totally Shi‘istic concepts. Anyhow, having been formed during the caliphate of Imām, this theory constitutes the main identity of Shi‘ites thought about Imamate.[53]During his caliphate, by referring to upcoming incidents entitled “Malāhim wa Fitan” in various sermons, he turned out to be a figure not rivaling an ordinary caliph, he foretold the future but not as a political analyst. The charisma of Imām’s personality in the eyes of gnostics and sufis, was deeply rooted in the conception leading the public to deem him deserving of “sainthood” in its full sense and also in remarks and conducts of him who officially claimed to be omniscient and asked all people to question him before they miss him.[54]

At the end of these proofs, it will be proper to mention another important narration. When ‘Āyisha was ready to revolt against ‘Alī, the Messenger’s graceful wife, Umm Salama, tried to stop her going.

‘Abd Allāh Ibn Zubayr said objectingly, “You harbor old animosity towards the family of Zubayr.”

Umm Salama answered, “Do you think people will turn to Talha and your father while ‘Alī about whom God said, عليّ وليّ كل مؤمن ومؤمنة “‘Alī is the guardian of all believing men and women” is present.

‘Abd Allāh said, “We haven’t heard him saying such a thing.”

Umm Salama replied, “You may have not, but your aunt, ‘Āyisha, has.”

I myself heard the Messenger saying, عليّ خليفتي عليكم في حياتي ومماتي فمن عصاه فقد عصاني “Alive or dead, I place ‘Alī as my caliph to you, so whoever disobeys him, he has disobeyed me.” ‘Āyisha has also confirmed this.[55] Based on things mentioned, what should be said about the interpretation of comments written in Nahdj al-Balāgha on the allegiance of Muhādjirūn and Ansār is that at that time, the allegiance of these two was the principle behind selecting a caliph, and Imām enjoyed this principle. Facing the opposition of deviators and apostates Imām had to refer to this principle. With this deduction of Imām lots of people followed him and fought his enemies. There is a poem quoted from one of Imām’s adherents who compared his pledge to that of early caliphs to prove his rightfulness and public commitments to him,

كعهد ابي حفص وعهد ابي بكر

له في رقاب النـاس عهد و ذمـة

أعـيذك بالله العزيز من الكفر[56]

فبايع ولا ترجع علي العقب كافراً

“People owe him just as ‘Umar and Abū Bakr do. So swear an allegiance and avoid infidelity, do you excuse yourself in atheism!”

But neither Imām considered this as a legitimate way of leadership nor did his close companions who deemed his leadership far beyond the allegiance of Muhādjirūn and Ansār, accept such a basis. In conclusion, the differences from Saqīfa to the martyrdom of Imām have been influential in many of the Islamic thoughts, But related to our discussion are issues concerning ruler ship and caliphate.

Here, a brief conclusion is drawn from the effects these events had on forming of political views. Obviously, as mentioned earlier, in the course of murdering ‘Uthmān and ‘Alī’s caliphacy, Shi‘ism changed both in quality and quantity. Previous to this, only a few companions tended towards Shī‘a but because of aforesaid reasons it spread in Iraq. This trend is called “‘Alawites and Shi‘ites”. Its full version can be regarded in ‘Uthmān’s rejection and the proof of ‘Alī’s caliphate.The full version of it includes ‘Alī’s Imamate after the Messenger and his superiority over the other caliphs. There has been some controversy over the quality and quantity of some exaggerated trends emerging at that time.[57]

The other trend was called “‘Uthmānids”. This trend was crystallized during to wars of Djamal and Siffīn.The aforesaid course of action came to a dead end in Djamal but its impacts on Basra remained to be seen and the people of that city were reckoned as “‘Uthmānids”.[58]The second trend prevailed over Damascus and Iraq during the Umayyads. The Umayyads ruling was the manifestation of ‘Uthmānīds sect’s prevalence. This sect deemed no legitimacy for ‘Alī’s caliphacy on the pretext of the third caliph being murdered either by ‘Alī himself or at his instigation. They also said not all of the people had approved of him. This has been a common belief among the ancestors of Sunnites who were called the ‘Uthmānids. During that period “Shi‘ite Muslims” and “‘Uthmānids” were opposed to each other. The ‘Uthmānids believed that ‘Uthmān was to replace Mu‘āwiya in caliphate. Their legitimacy was based on Mu‘āwiya ‘s claim to be a relative of ‘Uthmān and consequently his blood-wit.[59] Basra and Kūfa, tending towards ‘Uthmānids and Shī‘a respectively, were rivals to each other. The distinction between Shi‘ism and ‘Uthmānī’s sect was the interesting point about the battle of Djamal.

The murderer of one of Imām’s companions called Zayd Ibn Sūhān said he had killed him while he believed in ‘Alī.

Opposing ‘Ammār he composed this:

حتى اقاتلك على دين علي[60]

لا تبرح العرصة يا بن اليثربي

“O Yathrib-born! Leave not the battlefield so that I might fight you by relying on ‘Alī’s religion.”

“‘Uthmān’s religion” was coined versus “‘Alī’s religion”. A poet from Damascus, told about the Damascus army:

كتائب فيها جبرئيل يقودها[61]

ثمانين الف “دين عثمان” دينهم

“80 thousands are those whose religion is that of ‘Uthmān’s, troops who are led by Gabriel.”

A poet participating in Siffīn, introduced himself this way,

والدائن اليوم به دين عثمان[62]

انا ابن ارباب الملوك غسان

“I am son of king of kings and today I follow ‘Uthmān’s religion.”

In a poem Rufā‘a Ibn shaddād told,

لست لعثمان بن اروى بولي[63]

انا ابن شداد على “دين علي”

“I am Ibn Shaddād, a follower of ‘Alī’s religion and never am I guardian of ‘Uthmān Ibn ‘Arwā.”

It has been said that 80 thousand of Damascus army believed in “‘Uthmān’s religion “.[64] There was also a third trend, in addition to Shī‘a and ‘Uthmānī, called “Qā‘idīn”. Nāshi’ Akbar recognizes this group in two different names and trends. The first one was “Hulaysiyya” who believed that when a sedition is raised one must stay around his/her house.

They deemed both groups as misled and infernal.To them religion was seen as tarry to war and sedition as getting involved in it. ‘Abd Allāh Ibn ‘Umar, Muhammad Ibn Maslama and Sa‘d Ibn Abī Waqqās belonged to this group. They believed that only one of the two groups was right but the righteous group was unknown to them. Abū Mūsā Ash‘arī, Abū Sa‘īd Khudrī and Abū Mas‘ūd Ansārī were from among this group.

As… Nāshi’ Akbar clarifies,these were called “Mu‘tazilites”. Later, Wāsil Ibn ‘Atā’ and ‘Amr Ibn ‘Ubayd also thought the same about Talha and Zubayr.[65]Considering the situation of that time, these groups put the emphasis on the concept of “Sedition”, to them, being “‘Abd Allāh, the murdered” was preferable to being “‘Abd Allāh, the murderer”.[66]

[1] Muqadama fī tārīkh Sadr al-islām, p.48
[2] al-Mi‘yār wa l-muwāzina, p.51
[3] al-Īdāh, p.88; Ibn Abi l-Hadīd, Sharh nahdj al-balāgha, vol.XII, p.53
[4] al-Wāfidāt min l-nisā’ Alā Mu‘āwīya, p.41
[5] Tārīkh al-tabarī, vol. V, p. 64; Ansāb al-ashrāf, vol. II, p. 348
[6] al-Mi‘yār wa l-muwāzina, p. 194
[7] Nathr al-durr, vol. V, p. 77; Tārīkh al-ya‘qūbī, vol. II, p. 171
[8] Ansāb al-ashrāf, vol. II, p. 118
[9] Tārīkh al-ya‘qūbī, vol. II, p. 173
[10] Ansāb al-ashrāf, vol. II, p. 183
[11] Sunan Ibn Mādja, vol. II, p. 1270; ….3862
[12] al-Muwāfiqiyyāt, p. 312; Dhakhā’ir al-‘Uqbā, p. 95
[13] Kitāb al-zīna, p. 259
[14] al-Wāfidāt, p. 24
[15] al-Wāfidāt, p. 29; Balāghāt al-nisā’, p. 67; Tārīkh Dimashq, Tarādjim al-nisā’, p.531
[16] Waq‘at Siffīn, pp.18,23,24,46,381,385,416,436; Sharh nahdj al-balāgha, vol.I, pp.143-150; Mukhtasar Tārīkh Dimashq, vol.XI, p.229; al-Fusūl Mukhtāra, pp.217-218; See, Nahdj al-sabāgha,vol. III, p.p. 55-57; Ansāb al-ashrāf, vol. II, p.246; al-Futūh, vol.II, p.484; vol. III, pp.246,270 246,270
[17] Tārīkh al-ya‘qūbī, vol. II, p. 179.
[18] al-Futūh, vol. III, p. 226.
[19] Maqtal al-imām al-Amīr al-Mu‘minīn (a), Ibn Abi l-Dunyā, Turāthunā Magazine,no.12; p. 126.
[20] See, al-Ghadīr, vol. II, p.p. 25,34,78 from different sources, al-Muqni‘ fi l-Imāma, p.p. 75-76 and in the footnote of different sources. This has been quoted from Hassān, in Tārīkh al-ya‘qūbī ( vol.II, p.128) and al-Muqni‘ (p.133) as well as other sources,

إليك ومن أولى به منك، من ومن

حفظت رسول الله فينا و عهده

و أعلــم فهرا بالكتاب و بالسنن

ألست اخاه في الاخاء و وصيه

Thou safeguarded the Prophet ‘s religion left to thee. After all, who transcends thee in front of him. Are you not his brother and successor and not the most learned one of Banū Fahr about the Book ans Sunna.

[21] al-Ghadīr, vol. II, p. 68
[22] al-Ghadīr, vol.II, p.34
[23] Ibn Abi l-Hadīd, Sharh nahdj al-balāgha, vol. I, p. 143,149
[24] Ibid,vol. I, p. 145
[25] al-Ghārāt, p. 123
[26] Waq‘at Siffīn, p.p. 118-119.for more uses of the word “Legation”,see,Ma‘ālim al-madrisatayn,vol.I,p.p.295-328
[27] al-Muqni‘ fi l-Imāma, p. 125.for more poems about the same, see, Ibid, pp. 126-127
[28] al-Ghadīr, vol. II, p. 25 of Sharh nahdj al-balāgha, vol. II, p. 377; Tadhkirat al-khawās, p. 62 and other sources
[29] al-Baghara,/246
[30] Ibid./247
[31] Āl Imrān,/68
[32] al-’Ahzāb/60
[33] “Tathīr” verse, see, al-’Ahzāb/33
[34] al-Baghara/132
[35] Ibrāhīm/36
[36] al-’Anfāl/ 41
[37] Rūm/ 38
[38] Referring to the Āl Imrān/ 33
[39] al-Ghārāt, p.p. 67-71; al-Ghārāt, Urmawī, vol. I, p.p. 195-204
[40] Nahdj al-balāgha, Sermon 3; Rabi‘al-abrār, vol. III, p. 536
[41] Nahdj al-balāgha, Sermon 87
[42] Ibid, sermon 109
[43] Ibid, sermon 239
[44] Nahdj al-balāgha,sermon 154
[45] iIbid, semon 144
[46] See, al-’An‘ām/84-87;Āl Imran/38;Maryam/58;’Ankabūt /27;Hadīd/26
[47] al-Ghārāt, p. 111
[48] al-Ghadīr, vol. I, p. 66; from various Sunnites sources; see,. Ansāb al-ashrāf, vol. II, p. 156
[49] Facing Talha in the battle of Djamal, Imām referred to this tradition;Tārīkh Dimashq, vol. XI, p. 204
[50] Nahdj al-balāgha, Sermon 1
[51] Ibid, sayings, No. 147
[52] Ibid, letter 25
[53] Shī‘a believes that this theory was at issue in Prophet’s time.
[54] See Nahdj al-sa‘āda fī Mustadrak Nahdj al-balāgha, vol. II, p.p. 314,627
[55] al-Futūh, vol. II, pp. 282-283
[56] Waq‘at Siffīn, p. 46
[57] See Ibn Abī Dunyā,, Maqtal al-imām Amīr al-Mu‘minīn,,p.92
[58] This has been stated about Basra, قطعة من الشام نزلت بيننا Tabaqāt al-kubrā,vol.VI,p.333
[59] al-Ghārāt,p.70
[60] al-Djamal,p.346
[61] al-Djamal, p. 346
[62] Tārīkh Tārīkh al-tabarī, vol. V, p. 43
[63] Ansāb al-ashrāf, vol. V, p. 233
[64] Tārīkh Dimashq, vol. VIII, p. 52
[65] Masā’il al-imāma, p.p. 16-17; See, Murdji’a, Tārīkh wa Andīshih, 19-26; al-zīna, p. 273; Tārīkh al-tabarī, vol. V, p.p. 57-58
[66] Masā’il al-imāma,p.16
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