Before the Pledge of Allegiance - Part 2
- :Sheykh Radi al-Yasin
They (Ali's enemies) thought that they did good for Islam and Muslims when they separated the Imamate from the family of Prophethood, and when they helped other families to usurp the high religous position.
Moreover, they forget that the precautionary steps of the Apostle of Allah, may Allah bless Him and his family, when he limited the succession to his family.
The traditions of the Prophet have drawn the attention of the wise men to the mistakes of the people. Besides they have drawn their attention to the correctiness of the Apostle of Allah, may Allah bless Him and his family.
So the operation of seperation between the Caliphate and the family of the Prophet has moved historical differences among the lovers of the Caliphate throughout various generations. Also it has caused ugly disaster for Muslims and distorted the ideal beliefs of Islam. All these differences and disasters would have not happened if the Caliphate had been given to its real owners. In other words if the people had obeyed Allah and His Apostle as in this verse: "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; and whoever disobeys Allah and His Apostle, he surely strays off a manifest straying.1
All these differences and disasters have taken place among Muslims because the ambitious ones have been permitted to compete with the righteous for the Caliphate.
For example, bloody battles took place between banu (the sons) of HasHim and banu ( the sons ) Umayya, between banu al-Zubayr and banu Umayya, between banu a- Abbas and banu Umayya, and bwtween banu Ali and banu al Abbas. All these bloody battles took place because of that separation bwtween the family of the Prophet and the caliphate. Noteworthy the Prophet underlined the succession after Him through his traditions to prevent those bloody battles and regretfull events from happening in Islam.
The members of the House (ahl al-bayt) suffered from various misfortunes. They were liable to assassinations, capturing, and homelessness. They suffered from all these misfortunes. That was because of the first mistake which was made to disobey the policy which the Prophet, may Allah bless Him and his family, adopted to proctect his community and his family. Unfortunately, the people disobeyed Him in what he wanted.
However, they misunderstood the meaning of this wise policy. For they hated so see that the Caliphate and Prophethood come together in one family. Meanwhile they wanted to follow another policy.
The age was their apparent justification which they explained for the people. No one but Allah knows the hidden reason. Their spiteful memories resulted from the battles between them and the early Muslims or from envy that "eats religion as fire eats woods." as in the holy tradition.
The love of leadership and the desire for authority have been dangerous diseases from which people suffer. Also they are deeprooted diseases in the nature of powerful leaders.
However, Prophethood and the Imamate, as two Divine offices, are different from the familiar meaning in the political fields. In other words Prophetic policy reuslts from religion and belongs to it. So the only source in political affairs is the Owner of religion (the Prophet), and his words are decisive in them.
If you want to know the close relationship between this event and our subject, you have to read the following words of al-Husayn b. Ali, peace be on Him. For you will know that Al-Hasan expressed his dissatisfaction in the following letter of his when the people pledged allegiance to Mu'awiya in Kufa. Al-Hasan, peace be on Him, said: " When he (Allah's Apostle), may Allah bless Him and his family, passed away, the Arabs differed over the succession after Him. So Quraysh said: 'We are his tribe, his family, and his friends. you have no right to dispute with us over succession after Mohammed. So the arabs believed the words of Quraysh and their proof for that (succession) against Him who disputed with them over the succession after Mohammed. So you bestowed upon them and yielded to them. Then we argued2 with Quraysh as the Arabs did. However, Quraysh did not treat us with justice as the Arabs treated them. They (Quraysh) with the exclusion of the arabs, took this matter through (asking) equity and protest. We, the members of the House of Mohammed and his friends, disputed it Quraysh. We asked them to treat us with justice. However, they turned away from us, seized (power), and gathered together to oppress and force us. So we suffered from their persecutions toward us. So the promise is Allah. He is the Lord and Helper.
We became surprised at those took unjustly our right and the succession of our family. If they (Quraysh) had an outstanding merit and prority in Islam, we would refrain from disputing with them. We do not want the hypocrites and the allies (ahzab) to find a gap in the religion to corrupt it.
"So today, Mu'awiya, the person is surprised when you have unjustly taken the authority while you are in appropriate for it. you have no known merit in religion nor have you a laudable act in Islam. you are the son of an ally (hizb) of the allies (ahzab). you are the son of the most hostile one of all Quraysh towards the Apostle of Allah, may Allah bless Him and his family, and His Book. Allah alone is sufficient for you. you shall be returned to Him, and you shall know to whom the final result shall be."3
Al-Hasan, peace be on Him, expressed his astonishment to show the relationship between Mu'awiya's usurping the right of members of the House (ahl al-Bayt) and that of the early ones from Quraysh. The relationship between the matter of al-Husayn and that of the early Caliphs resulted from this event. In the meantime matters others than al-Husayn's matter appeared. Some of these matters related to the two brothers; some of them related to the parents; and some of them related to the general right.
We will not mentioned any of these matters here. For we do not want to discuss researches with in these lines of us, but the matters that have a relations to our subject.
We have known that there was a skillful, political activity after the death of the Apostile of Allah, may Allah bless Him and his family. The activity enabled Abu Bakr to win the attitude (i.e. the Caliphate). Umar called that activity falta (i.e. unexpected event). Mu'awiya called it. Usurping the right and disagreement on authority."4 So the quick success which that political activity made underlined the previous determination of those power. From this determination, we can easily understand that there was a special trend towards the family of Mohammed, may Allah bless Him and his family. This trend caused effects during and after its time.
So the family of the Prophet was helpless, and were intentionally removed (from authority) in all prominent developments which history withnessed then.5
The person who knew the Caliphate (Abu Bakr) did not prefer them (the Prophet's family) to others. Besides the person who limited the Caliphate to the three of six people (i.e., Umar) did not treat them with justice. Were not for the election made my the people after the Event of the House (hadithat al-dar,) the Prophet's family would have had no portion in authority throughout the various times.
Then this special trend had an effect in creating a strong opposition against the two Caliphs who consulted the family of Mohammed, may Allah bless Him and his family, about their affairs.
At the Battles of Basrah and Siffin, there are many proofs for what we have said.
Also there are other proofs concerning the attitude of b. (the son of) Umar,6 Sa'd b. Abu Waqas, Usama b. Zayd, Mohammed b. Muslima, Qaddama b. Maz'un, Abd, Allah b. Salama, Hasan b. Thabit, Abu Sa'id al-Khudari, Zayd b. Thabit, al-Numan b. Bahir. They were called al-Qu'ad (the neutrals). For they preferred neutrality to jihad (holy war) and refrained from pledging allegiance to Imam Ali and his son Al-Hasan, peace be on them.
This opposition had different fields and various kinds. Some of them were the improper, negative attitudes from which the leaders of the Prophet's family suffered in Medina, and then in Kufa.
For this reason Imam Ali, peace be on Him, addressed the people from his pulpit in Kufa: "you who are like men, and not men! your intelligence is that of children and your wit is that of women. I wish I had not seen you nor known you. By Allah this acquaintance has brought about shame and resulted in repentance. May Allah kill you. you have filled my heart with puss and loaded my bosom with rage. you made me drink mounthfuls of grief one after the other. you shattered my counsel through disobeying and leaving me.
Imam Ali, peace be on Him, made numerous, similar speeches on various occassions.
It was the opposers who planted evil intentions all over the cities of 'Ali, and provoked the people to refrain from supporting Him using all pretexts.
I (the author) have believed in this factor. Meanwhile I do not want to forget the other factors that took part in creating the above mentioned, special trend. Namely the factors that took part in creating that opposition that had a positive, armed attitude and a betraying, negative one towards the Prophet's family during the holy HasHimite time.
I (the author) have no doubt that strict justice and accurate equality that prevailed the HasHimite times disturbed the people or some of them. So the people were not ready to to show obedience and loyalty that were necessary for war and peace. Besides the booty of the conquered countries made those people cling to the life in his world.
In spite of that special trend, which was formed within twenty five years, the time of the Caliphate of Imam Ali peace be on Him. had appeared before pledging allegiance to Al-Hasan, peace be on Him, in Kufa.
Al-Hasan was the eldest son of Ali, peace be on Him and the successor after Him. He (Al-Hasan) took part in the good days and bad days of his father. He shared Him his sorrows and pains. At that time, he (Al-Hasan) was aware of the hardships which his father faced from his people, his subjects, and his enemies. Those hardships made Al-Hasan sad. They reminded Him of his grandfather, Mohammed, may Allah bless Him and his family. For the latter ordered his community to cling to the Book of Allah and to treat his family kindly: Think how you will treat them (my family) after me.
Though Al-Hasan peace be on Him, was full of sorrow, he sometimes resorted to hope. Thus he remembered the good companions' help. Also he remembered their activity, their sacrifice, and their loyalty. Accordingly, he concluded that their deeds were free from the political ambitions in this world.
Among those companions were army leaders, excellent orators, jurists, readers of the Koran, and the rest of the good ones who fixed Islam.
The Commender of the faithful (Amir Mu'minin) relied on those companions during his battles and his peace. Also the HasHimites relied on them to protect Islam from dangers.
Imam Ali's compaions were from the Muslims who were loyal to the Apostle of Allah, may Allah bless Him and his family. For they promised Him to protect Him as they protected their own selves. So Al-Hasan was hopeful that they would support Him in achieving the authority of his father or his own authority.
They (Ali's compaions) believed in the Words of Allah concerning the members of the House of their Prophet. Also they believed in the trustee of authority (wasi) after Prohet. They understood Ali thoroughly. Ali was the hero after the Apostle of Allah, may Allah bless Him and his family. He was the best of this community after Him (ie. the Propet) in loyalty to the truth, sacrificing for Islam, advising the Muslims, sound justice, and abundant knowledge. Generally speaking, Ali's outstanding merits made his enemies jealeous of Him.
Some of Ali's good companions were Ammar b. Yasir, Khuzayma, b. Thabit (the one with two testimonies), Hudhayfa b. al-Yamman, Abd, Allah, b. Badil, Malik b. al-Harith al-Ashtar, Khabab, b. al-Arat, Mohammed b. Abu Bakr, Abu, al-Haythem b. al-Tayhan, Hashim b. Utba b. Abu Waqqas, (al-Mirgal.) Sahl b. Hunayf, Thabit b. Qays, al-Ansari, Aqaba b. Amrul al-Ansari, Qurda b. Samman, Abu Fadala, al-Ansari, Ka'b b. Amru al-Ansari Qurda b. Ka'b al-Ansari, Auf b. al-Harith b. Auf, Kilab, b. al-Askar al-kinani, Abu Layla b. Balil, and the like. They were leaders in the fields of of war and worshippers in prayers. The ordered people to do good and preveted them from doing evil. They competed with each ther for death in the way of Allah, while other than they competed with each other for wordly desires.
It is necessary to mention that all the above mentioned good companions died martyrs at the bettles headed by Ali, peace be on Him. Besides, sixty three Badr companions died martyrs at the Battle of Siffin.7 Many compaions of Ali died martyrs at the three successive battles.
The camp of Imam Ai, peace be on Him, became empty of those good, reliable companions. Accordingly, he was heard say: Allah, make haste the unhappiness of al-Muradi (i.e. abd al-Rahman b. Muljim)." What prevent the most wretched person of it ( the community) from coloring it (his beard) with the blood of that which is above it (i.e. his head) "Indeed, by Allah I wish that Allah took me out of your existence and took me to his mercy from you.
Peace be on (Ali) on the day when he was born , on the they day when he was the first ot believe Islam, on the day when he fixed Islam with his sword, on the day when he was tested, on the day when he died. and on the day when he will be raised from the dead.
Therefore, Al-Hasan had to face the hardships of the time when his father lived, Namely, he had to face hardships which his father faced: the poverty of al-Ansar (the supporters), the armed hostility, and the betraying boycott.
1. The Koran, 33, 36.
2. The ugliest spites concerning the matter of the members of the House (ahl al-Bayt), peace be on them, is that those bebates disappeared from history. So we have found nothing of them but very few of them which the enemy observation ignored without intention. So here, I (the author) have mentioned the following words of the renewing poet al-Hajj Abd al-Husayn al-Azdi:
Read what the desires write at your time.
(That) tells about what occured in the past times.
3. Ibn Abul al-Haddid, vol, 4, p. 12
4. You can early find that in what Mu'awiya wrote to Mohammed b. Abu Bakr conerning Imam Ali, peace be on Him. He (Mu'awiya) said: "your father and his companions were the first to usurp his right and disagreed with Him on authority. They were agreed and harmonious on that. Then they summoned Him to pledge allegiance to them. However, he was slow in coming to them and failed to answer them. So they asked Him to be quick, and they intended to do a great thing against Him. The he (Imam Ali) pledged allegiance to them and yielded to them However, they prevented Him from taking part in their authority. And they did not inform Him of their secrets till Allah made them die." Then he (Mu'awiya) added; "If what we are in was right, then your father seized it and we were his partners. Were not for your father's previous act, we would have obeyed b. Abu Talib and yielded to him. However, your father had done that (disobedience) before us. So we followed Him". See al-Mas'udi, Hashim b. al-Athir, vol. 6. pp. 78-79.
5. We find many examples concerning this point in the words of the Commander of the faithful (Amir al-muninin, peace be on Him). In this connection he said; "By Allah, I am still deprived of my right. (Some people) have been preferred to me since Allah made His Apostle die this day of people." And He said: "Allah, I ask you to show your enmity towards Quraysh and those who help them. For they have severed the relations between me and my relatives, belittled my great position, gathered together to dispute with me over the authority which belong to me."
6. In Hamish b. al-Athir, vol. 5, pp. 178, al-Mas'udi said: " However, Abd, Allah b. Umar pledged allegiance to Yazid after that, and al-Hajjaj pledged allegiance to Abd, al-Malik b. Marwan" al-Mas'udi called al-Qu'ad (the neutrals) the Uthmanis.
In his book vol. 1, p. 171, Abu al-Fida called them the Mu'tazilites, for they abstained from pledging a allegiance to Imam Ali, peace be on Him. I (the author) think that they were neither Uthmanis nor Mu'tazilites. However, they were the ones who died and did not know the Imam of their time.
7. A Place on the bank of the Euphrates, between 'Ana and Dir al-Sha'ar.
Adopted from the book: "Sulh al-Hasan (a.s.)" by: "Sheykh Radi al-Yasin"
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