The companions of Imam al-Hadi (a.s.) represented the true mission of Islam. They saved the mission of Islam from lose. They associated with the infallible Imams of the Ahlul Bayt (a.s.) who were the flowing spring of the essence of Islam. They narrated and recorded their (the Imams’) traditions in their four hundred records (usuls) that were collected later on in the four books to which the Shi’a jurisprudents referred and are still referring to in deriving legal verdicts.
These companions had done the Islamic world a great favor by writing down the knowledge and literature of the infallible Imams (a.s.); otherwise, that great heritage would be lost and consequently the human culture and intellect would lose much.
The thing that makes one pride on the jihad of those narrators is that they associated with the infallible Imams (a.s.) and recorded their traditions in a time that was most critical and full of offense and oppression.
The Umayyad and Abbasid governments went too far in oppressing the Alawids and their followers and in preventing the public from associating with them (the Alawids). Those governments, with no mercy or leniency, chased everyone who tried to spread or talk about the virtues of the Alawids or narrate their traditions and arrested him to be killed or to remain in the darkness of prisons forever.
Therefore, narrators refrained from mentioning the names of the infallible Imams from whom they narrated traditions. They referred to them by surnames one time and by titles other time. They did not declare their real names.
Anyhow, we mention here the companions of Imam al-Hadi (a.s.) and the narrators of his traditions with brief accounts on them because this, as we think, shall complete the study on the Imam that it discovers some important sides of his personality.
Once, Imam al-Askari (a.s.) deputed him to Abdullah bin Hamdwayh al-Bayhaqi and sent a letter with him saying in it, “I have sent Ibrahim bin Abdah so that the (other) districts and the people of your district pay my dues on you to him and made him my trust and agent before my followers there.
Let them fear Allah and pay the dues and they have no excuse in not doing that or delaying it. May Allah not distress them for disobeying His guardians and may He have mercy on them and on you through my mercifulness to them, and Allah is Ample-giving, generous.”11
May Allah accept from you and be pleased with them and make them with us in this life and in the afterlife. So-and-so dinars and so-and-so clothes were sent to you. May Allah bless them for you and bless every gift He has given to you.
I have written to an-Nadhr ordering him to refrain from troubling and objecting to you and informing him of your position to me. And I have written to Ayyub ordering him of the same too. I have written a book to my followers in Hamadan ordering them to obey you and follow your orders and that I have no agent (there) except you.” 17
This letter shows that Ibrahim bin Muhammad was so trusted and of a high position near the Imam (a.s.).
He said to me, ‘Whoever show you this sign, you have to give him this money.’ I went to Baghdad and stopped at an inn. On the following day, someone came and knocked the door. I asked the servant to see who he was.
The servant said, ‘An old man at the door.’ I said, ‘Let him come in.’ The old man came in, took a seat and said, ‘I am al-Umari. Give me the money that is with you which is so-and-so.’ He showed me the sign and I gave him the money.20 This tradition shows that Ibrahim was the agent of the Imam in receiving the legal dues and definitely he was fair and reliable in order to be the Imam’s agent.
1. Rijal at-Tusi, p.409.
2. Rijal al-Barqi.
3. Rijal at-Tusi, p.409.
4. Rijal al-Barqi.
5. Rijal at-Tusi.
6. Rijal al-Barqi.
7. Rijal al-Kashshi.
8. Rijal at-Tusi.
9. Rijal at-Tusi.
10. Rijal al-Kashshi.
11. Mu'jam Rijal al-Hadith, vol.1 p.118.
12. Rijal at-Tusi.
13. Rijal al-Barqi.
14. Mu'jam Rijal al-Hadith, vol.1 p.121-122.
15. Rijal at-Tusi.
16. Rijal al-Kashshi.
18. Rijal at-Tusi.
19. Rijal an-Najashi.
20. Rijal al-Kashshi.