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Al-Rashid Moves to Eliminate the Imam ar-Ridha (a.s.)

Finally, al-Rashid is surrounded by a large number of courtiers instigating him to kill Imam al-Rida (A.S.), and they finally succeeded in stirring his feeling of anger against the Imam (A.S.), stimulating his beastly instinct to eagerly kill. Abul-Salt al-Harawi narrates saying that one day he was sitting with the Imam (A.S.) at his house when a messenger from Haroun al-Rashid came in and ordered the Imam (A.S.) to present himself before the caliph. The Imam (A.S.) said: "O Abul-Salt! He does not call upon me at such a time of the night except for trouble. By God! He cannot do anything which I hate to me because of what I had come to know of certain statements said by my grandfather the Messenger of God (S.A.W.)." Abul-Salt continues his narrative to say that he accompanied the Imam (A.S.) when he entered the court of Haroun al-Rashid. When the latter looked at him, al-Rida (A.S.) read those words of the Prophet (S.A.W.), and when he stood before al-Rashid, the latter looked carefully at him and then said, "O Abul-Hassan! We have ordered a hundred thousand dirhams for you, and write down the needs of all your family." When the Imam (A.S.) left the court, the caliph kept looking at him as he was leaving and said behind his back: "I wished, and God wished otherwise, and what God wished was good." Thus did God save the life of the Imam (A.S.) who sought refuge with Him, seeking His assistance through the sincere words he had come to know that his grandfather the Messenger of God (S.A.W.) had articulated. Al-Rashid, on the other hand, went back to himself satisfied after destiny had opposed his vicious intention just to realize that what God had done was indeed better than what he himself had intended to do.

Adapted from: "Imam al-Ridha (a.s.), A Historical and Biographical Research" by: "Muhammad Jawad Fadlallah"

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