Imam al-Husayn (as) is one of the people included in the ‘Verse of Purification’ [Ayah al-Tathir] of the Holy Qur’an. Therefore, he is free of any sort of sin, error or forgetfulness. Imam al-Husayn (as) cannot commit any sort of wrongdoing because he has been purified of sin by the Almighty Allah.
On his chain of transmission, Muslim quotes ‘A’ishah recounting, “One morning Allah’s Prophet (S) left my house carrying a piece of cloth made from raw wool on his shoulders. Al-Hasan ibn ‘Ali, al-Husayn, Fatimah and ‘Ali all came to join the Prophet (S) in the order mentioned. Then, he recited this verse,
﴿ اِنَّما يريدُ اللهُ لِيذهِبَ عَنکُمُ الرِّجسَ أَهلَ البَيتِ وَيطَهِّرَکُم تَطهيرا ﴾
“Allah only desires to keep away uncleanness from you, O people of the house, and to purify you a thorough purifying.”12 13
If, as reported in these hadith from Sunni sources, Imam al-Husayn (as) is purified of sin, or infallible, it follows that his uprising is correct and justified. It also implies that the government of Yazid was not credible.
On his own chain of transmission, Tabarani narrates from Rib‘i ibn Harash that Imam ‘Ali (as) said, “I visited the Holy Prophet (S) one day while he had spread a piece of cloth on the ground. The Prophet, Fatimah, al-Hasan, al-Husayn and I sat together on that piece of cloth. Then, the Holy Prophet (S) picked up the corners of the cloth and spread it over all of us. After that, he said,
«اللّهم ارضَ عنهم کما أنا راضٍ عنهم.»
‘O Allah! Be pleased with these people in the same way that I am pleased with them!’”14
Haythami has recounted this hadith in his book “Majma‘ al-Zawa’id”. He says, “Tabarani has narrated this hadith in the book “Al-Awsat”. All the people mentioned on this chain of transmission are well known for transmitting authentic hadith, while ‘Ubayd ibn Tufayl, one of the transmitters mentioned on this channel, is reliable and trustworthy [thaqah].”15
We can understand from this hadith that the Holy Prophet (S) is pleased with Imam al-Husayn (as) and, as a result of this pleasure, makes a supplication in his favor. We also know that Allah, the High, certainly accepts the Holy Prophet’s (S) prayers and supplications; therefore, it follows that Allah is certainly pleased with Imam al-Husayn (as).
We can deduce that Imam al-Husayn’s uprising and revolt against Yazid was also a source of pleasure for Allah. This point casts more doubt upon the legitimacy of Yazid’s claim for caliphate.
Abu Sa‘id recounts that the Holy Prophet (S) said,
«الحسن والحسين سيدا شباب أهل الجنّة.»
“Al-Hasan and al-Husayn are the two leaders of the youths of paradise.”16
Al-Tirmidhi believes that this hadith is sound and correct, and al-Albani agrees with him.17
If Imam al-Husayn (as), according to the sayings of the Holy Prophet (S), is the master of the youths of Paradise, then it follows that all his actions and works in this world, including rising up against Yazid ibn Mu‘awiyah, are pleasing to Allah. Again, the legitimacy of Yazid’s caliphate becomes subject to question and doubt.
12. Surat al-Ahzab 33:33.
13. Muslim, Al-Sahih, vol. 7, p. 130.
14. Majma‘ al-Zawa’id, vol. 9, p. 169.
16. Ahmad ibn Hanbal, Al-Musnad, vol. 3, pp. 3, 62, 64, 82; Al-Tirmidhi, Sunan, vol. 5, p. 321; Al-Hakim al-Neyshaburi, Al-Mustadrak ‘ala al-Sahihayn, vol. 3, pp. 154, 166-167.
17. Al-Tirmidhi, Sunan, vol. 5, p. 321; Silsilah al-Ahadith al-Sahihah, vol. 2, p. 423, no. 796.