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Imam ar-Ridha (a.s.) during al-Amin's Reign

As regarding his life during the reign of al-Amin, we cannot review any incident regarding the government's stance towards Imam al-Rida (A.S.), and this may be attributed to the confusing environment in which the Abbaside caliphate found itself due to internal dissents which led in the end to a serious split among the members of the ruling dynasty, the split which was caused by al-Amin deposing his brother al-Mamoon from the post of heir to the throne and the nomination of his son Mousa in his place after listening to the advice of al-Fadl ibn al-Rabee' who had a personal vendetta against al-Mamoon and who feared him for his post should he become the caliph instead, since he had already opposed him openly.78 

Such a shaky situation is credited for the fact that al-Amin and his ruling apparatus diverted their attention from Imam al-Rida (A.S.) and from pursuing him, and we can regard that period of the Imam's life as a peaceful respite with which circumstances blessed him in order to be able to dedicate his time to carry out the responsibilities of his mission and disseminate its pristine principles among the nation.


78 Ibn al-Athir, Vol. 5, p. 138.

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

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