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Imam al-Hasan's (a.s.) and Accepting the Succession

Some pedantic critices thought that Al-Hasan, peace be on Him, was hasty when he accepted the succession at that time when the peeople pledge allegiance to Him. For that time was to result in hardships.

To understand whether Al-Hasan, peace be on Him, was hasty or not according to this criticism, we must explain the reason why Al-Hasan, peace be on Him, accepted the succession:

1. As it was a religious incumbent on the people to pledge allegiance to the nominated Imam, it was incumbent on the Imam, who had supporters, to accept the succession from the people.

Al-Hasan, peace be on Him, had supporters. For the people all over the Muslim courtries gathered together to pledge allegiance to him. So he had no right to fail to accept the obligatory succession. For the situation was appropriate.

2. This criticism concerning the succession of Al-Hasan, eace be on Him, has resulted from a pure worldly viewpoint. Thus the reasercher must take the religious viewpoint into account. For there is a great difference between the religious viewpoint and the wordly one. From her, this matter subject is victory, not loss, as we will explain it in its proper place. Although the pledge of allegiance to al Hasan, peace be on Him resulted in hardships. the hardships were for the sake of Islam. Then who was better than Al-Hasan, peace be on Him, in bearing the hardships for Ialam?

3. Al-Hasan had a high social rank among the Muslim leaders, noble lineage, and plentiful knowldge. Thue he was unable to abandon the people even if he wanted that intentionally, nor did the people abandon did the people adandon Him if he wanted to adandon them. Moreover, many violent events events occurred successively in the Muslim society. Such events urged Him to take an attitude to enfore the right and to forbid the wrong, as his brother al-Husayn, peace be on Him, did at his time.
If Al-Hasan, peace be on Him, had abandoned the people and turned away from their pledge of allegiance to Him, and if the people had abandoned Him and refrained from pledging allegiance to Him, the oppressive rulers would have not left Him. For they thought that he was a fearful ghost. That is because his high social rank, his noble ancestry, and his plentiful knowledge spread righteousness among the people. Meanwhile the people were indignant with that situation. Thus they opposed the rulers, and propagated the religion of Allah. At that time, the people did not find anyoune better than the beloved grandson of the Apostle of Allah to refer to in their religious affairs. Apart from this, delegations came to Al-Hasan, peace be on Him, and told Him that they were ready to oppose the Umayyad rulers to bring back the usurped right. This underlines the clear wrath that prevailed the Muslim society, then.1 Of course, the authority of the oppressors was shaky as long as this prominent figure (i.e. Al-Hasan) was among the people who referred to Him in their religious affairs.

We must always remember that Al-Hasan, peace be on Him, was given poison to drink. Why did they (the Umayyad rulers) kill Him while he made peace with them and left all this world for them? Does this not mean that they were afraid oh Him? For he would shake their authority and prevent the hearts of the people from indlining towarrds them. Besides, does this not indicate that the people refused to consult anyoune concerning their religious affairs except Him?

All these events occurred after the Peace Treaty. Still some groups of his followers and other than they have criticized Him for his peaceful attitude with Mu'awiya.

I (the author) wonder: how would the Muslims have treated Al-Hasan, peace be on hlim, if he had refused the succession from the beginning? That is because they were longing very much for his succession. Accordingly, was it possible for Al-Hasan, peace be on Him, to be the ray of hope and shelte for the indignant and the opposers? Was it possible for his careful eyes to sleep and leave their world?

So which mind accepts that Al-Hasan, peace be on Him was hasty when he accepted the succession?
The succession, in its origin, was the position of his father. So he (al Hasan) and his brother (al-Husayn) inherited it. That is what Imam Musa, b. Ja'far, peace be on them, said.

As for the disturbances which these critics have mentioned, they were created by the opposers in Kufa. In the meantime, no one of those disturbances harmed Al-Hasan, peace be on Him, as long as the people supported Him. Worth mentioning for every c'Aliph or leader has opposers.

So accepting the succession was the most possible idea in all circumstances. Rather, it was incumbent to maintain the public interest and to enforce the right.

1. al-Imama wa al-Siyasa.

Adopted from the book: "Sulh al-Hasan (a.s.)" by: "Sheykh Radi al-Yasin"

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