Rafed English

Denying her Fadak

Scholars from the two schools of thought, including al-Suyooti, in their commentary on the verse: 'And give to the near of kin his due' (Qur'an 17:26), said that when this verse was revealed, the Prophet (sawa) gave Fatimah (as) the village of Fadak, which he saw as part of the peace treaty between him and the Jews ...23 It seems that the right of Fatimah (as) to Fadak has always been well known amongst the Muslims throughout history, and hence 'Umar bin 'Abdul 'Aziz, the Umayyad caliph, returned Fadak to Ahlul Bayt. 24 Later, after the first 'Abbasid caliphs had confiscated it again, al-Mahdi returned it once more, then he and Haroon took it back, and it continued to be in their possession until al-Ma'moon became caliph and returned it to the Fatimids. 25

The proofs to Fatimah's ownership of Fadak were many and clear, and many Muslims gave witness in that regard, including the Commander of the Faithful (as) and Ummu Ayman, but their evidence was refuted! 26 There was no counter evidence - except the hadith in which Abu Bakr narrated that the Prophet (sawa) said: 'We, the folk of prophets, do not leave bequests - what we leave is for alms.' 27

The factors which stood against this counter evidence, in addition to being contradictory to the Qur'an, are:

First: the hadith was narrated by Abu Bakr only, and Fatimah (as), through her stance, denied this hadith;

Second: the Messenger of Allah (sawa) loved Fatimah (as) with the greatest of love, and would protect her from any evil. So how come he did not tell her of this (Islamic) ruling, which was anyway contradictory to the Qur'an, which states that the prophets (as) inherited and bequeathed? How come he did not tell her when the hadith was directly related to her - in fact, she was its most clear manifestation? How come he did not tell his beloved and save her the trouble?

Third: If the Muslims agree that Fatimah (as) is the Doyenne of the Women of the World, how come she tells lies, or talks nonsense or contradicts a hadith of her father (sawa)?

Fourth: The history of prophets (as) did not tell us that they did not bequeath anything, and that what they left was for alms, since if that were the case the followers of other religions would have known.

Fifth: Is it conceivable that Ali (as) would enter into dispute with the people about Fadak, and would accuse them of injustice and treason28 just to side with his wife?! How come and the Prophet (sawa) said: 'The right is with Ali wherever he goes' 29 and: 'Ali is with the right and the right is with Ali?' 30 And how come Ali does not know that the Prophet (sawa) does not bequeath when he is the gate to the Prophet's City of Knowledge and Wisdom, and who has been with the Prophet (sawa) in a way unparalleled by any other companion?

Sixth: Historians mentioned that Fadak was, in fact, under Fatimah's control and that at the beginning her claim was based on it being a gift from her father (sawa) during her life and therefore did not fall into the category of inheritance.


[23] Al-Durr al-Manthoor, vol. 4, p. 177; Yenabee' al-Mawaddah, vol. 1, p. 138.

[24] Futooh al-Buldan, p. 38; Commentary on Nahj al-Balaghah, vol. 16, p. 216.

[25] Commentary on Nahj al-Balaghah, vol. 16, p. 216.

[26] Same, p. 122.

[27] Sahih al-Bukhari, Karmani's commentary, vol. 15, p. 4.

[28] Commentary on Nahj al-Balaghah, vol. 16, p. 229.

[29] Fera'id al-Simtayn, vol. 1, p. 177.

[30] Bihar al-Anwar, vol. 48, p. 26.

Adapted from the book: "Fatimah (as); a role model for men and women" by: "Sayyid Muhammad Husayn Fadlullah"

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