Rafed English

Justification to the enemy, and not initiating attack

Related from al-'Ayyashi, with a chain of narration from Imam Saadiq (A) that Imam 'Ali (A) said to his companions on the day of Basrah: 'Do not hastily attack them until we have a justification in the sight of Allah Almighty and them.' He stood up and addressed the people of Basrah

In the book Da'aim al-Islam, of Amir-ul-Mu'mineen 'Ali (A) who gave a sermon in Kufah when a man from the Kharijites stood up and said: 'There is no rule except that of Allah.' Amir-ul-Mu'mineen fell silent. Then another stood up and another and another and when their number became great he (A) said:

'This is a word of truth but its objective is falsehood. With us, you have three rights: we would not prevent you from praying in the Mosques of Allah, nor would we prevent you from spoils of war as long as your hands are with our hands (i.e. you take part in war along side us), and we would not initiate war against you until you initiate it.'

Related from 'Abdullah ibn Jondab, from his father that Amir-ul- Mu'mineen 'Ali (A) used to give orders about every land in which we found the enemy saying:

'Do not fight the people until they initiate fighting for then by the grace of Allah you will have the justification, and leaving them until they initiate fighting is yet another justification. Then if you defeat them, do not kill one who is fleeing, and do not finish off the wounded or expose nakedness or mutilate the dead.'

Al-Kulaini said in another speech of Imam 'Ali's (A): 'If you meet tho se people tomorrow, then do not fight them until they fight you, but if they start on you then fall upon them.'

Sheikh al-Mufid has related in The Book of Irshad in the context of the death of Imam al-Hussein (A) and his arrival at Nineveh saying: Zuheir ibn al-Qayn said to al-Hussein (A): 'By Allah, I can only believe that after those who you see now (i.e. Hurr and his army) will come a force stronger than those you see. O Son of the Messenger of Allah! To fight them now would be easier than to fight those who come after them.

Upon my life, we will not be able to kill those who will come after them .' Al-Hussein (A) said: 'It is not for me to begin the fighting .' Then he dismounted.

(The hadith continues and gives an account of the day of 'Ashura).

Then, on the day of 'Ashura, Shimr ibn Dhil-Jawshan (May the curse of Allah be upon him) called at the top of his voice: 'O Hussein, Do you seek the fire before the Day of Resurrection?'

Al-Hussein (A) said: 'Who is this? It seems like Shimr Son of Dhil- Jawshan.' They said : 'Yes it is.' He (A) said: 'O Son of a Goatherd, you are more worthy of (being cast into) the fire!'

Then Muslim ibn 'Ausijah made to fire an arrow at him but al-Hussein (A) prevented him. He said let me shoot him for he is a criminal and enemy of Allah and great tyrant.' Al-Hussein (A) said to him: 'No, do not shoot him for I would hate to begin the fighting against them.'

Adapted from the book: "War, Peace & Non-Violence" by: "Sayyid Muhammad Sadiq Shirazi"

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