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Mu'awiyah's Reply to Muhammad ibn Abi Bakr

From Mu'awiyah ibn Sakhr to the fraudulent against his father Muhammad ibn Abi Bakr.

Peace be upon the followers of God's obediance.

Then,

I have received your letter mentioning in it what Allah deserves of Mightness, Power and Omnipotence, and the traits with which He has distinguihsed His Messenger (S), beside much utterance you composed, enfeebling only your opinion, and scolding your father.

In it, you have cited 'Ali's excellence, his glorious past and kinship to the Messenger of Allah (S), and his supporting and consoling his in every dread and apprhension. Thus you have remonstrated me with nother's excellence, not your excellence. so I praise the Lord Who has diverted this excellence away from you, making it to be possessed by other than you.

During our prophet's lifetime, I and your father were aware of 'Ali's right being incumbent upon us, and his excellence being superior to ours. When Allah has chosen for His Prophet (S) the virtue He willed for him, fulfilling His promise to him, proclaiming his da'wah, confirming his hujjah (proof), and taking hold of his life unto Him, your father and his Faruq (Umar) were the first two who embezled his (Ali's) right and opposed his affair (caliphate). Upon this they have agreed and collaborated, calling him then to swear allegiance unto them, of which he has lingered and never admitted. So they have embarked on creating troubles for and vexing him, till he was obliged to aknowledge them and submit to them. Threat they have ruled over (the Ummah) without giving him any role in administering the State affairs, or apprising him of their private conduct, till they passed away and it is all over with them. Then caliphate was seized by their third, 'Uthman, who has followed their example, and kept pace with their conduct, till you and your friend have started to find fault with him, arousing thus the covetousness of the farthest debauches and sinners, seeking evil for him till you attained your goal (of killing him).

Beware, O Ibn Abi Bakr, as you will verily face the bad consequences of your matter, and know your measure according to your parsimony, you will stop short of reaching the position of that whose clemercy weighs as heavy as mountains, or be equal to him, whose steadfastness can never be subdued by coercion, and whose tolerance can never be attained by any far-sighted man.

Your father has paved the way for it (Umayyad rule), founding and erecting its dynasty and dominion. Should the course we are following be right, your father was the first in it, and if it be unfair (jawr), then your father has been the one who opinionated it and we are his partners in it, following his guide and adopting his conduct. Had not what your father perpeterated been there, we would have never contradicted Ibn Abi Talib, and would have submitted to him, but when observing your father's preceeding us in doing so, we followed his example and imitated him. So disgrace only your father as you wish or abstain. And peace be upon that who has returned penitently, forsaken his deviation and repented. 280

The conclusion we get from this reply is that Mu'awiyah can never deny 'Ali's virtues and merits, but he dared to imitate Abu Bakr and 'Umar, as had they not been ther he would have never belittled 'Ali, nor viewing anyone superior to him. Further, Mu'awiyah admits that it is Abu Bakr who has paved the way for Banu Umayyah's seizing power, founding and establishing their dynasty.

We also fathom from this letter that Mu'awiyah has never imitated the Messenger of Allah (S), not following his guide, when admitting that 'Uthman has followed the guide of Abu Bakr and 'Umar, treading their course and adopting their conduct.

Thus is expressely manisfested for us that they all have abandoned the Prophet's Sunnah, having followed the guide of eacth other. We also understand that Mu'awiyah has never denied his being among those who go astray, who adopt falsehood, and his being an accursed, and son of an accursed, as expressed by the Prophet (S).

The same meaning is mentioned also in the letter sent by Yazid ibn Mu'awiyah as a reply to Ibn 'Umar, which is reported by al-Balandhuri in his Tarikh.

After the slaying of al-Husayn ibn 'Abi Talib, 'Abd Allah ibn 'Umar sent a letter to Yazid ibn Mu'awiyah saying:

And then, the calamity is so great tand the disaster is so weighty, and a distressing event has occured to Islam, and no day can be equal to the day of slaying al-Husayn.

Yazid wrote to him:

Then, O fool, we have come to restored houses, set-up beddings, and stacked pillows, and we fought for defending them (for keeping them).

If right (haqq) be on our side, so we have fought for defending our right, and if it be for other than us, then your father has been the first in innovating this sunnah, keeping the right for himself against the will of its real owners.

In Mu'awiyah's reply to Ibn Abi Bakr, and that of Yazid to Ibn Umar, we observe the same logic and same argumentation, which is verily a necessary fact admitted by the inner consciousness, realized by every man of intellect, being needles of the testimony of Mu'awiyah and his son Yazid.

Had not the despositism of Abu Bakr and 'Umar against 'Ali, been there, all these misfortunes would have never inflicted the Islamic Ummah, and had 'Ali assumed caliphate after the Prophet (S) and ruled the Muslims, his rule wold have lasted till the year 40 (H), i.e, for thirty years after the Prophet.281 This being a sufficient period for setting up the foundations of Islam with all its principles and ramifications, and 'Ali (A) could be able to apply the Book of Allah and His Messenger's sunnah, without any alteration or interpretation.

Moreover, caliphate would have only been assumed, after his death, by the two masters of heavens youth, the Imams al-Hasan and al-Husayn and his infallible sons, the other Imams (A), and the caliphate of the Rightly-guided would have lasted for three centuries. Only then there would be no influence or existence for the disbelievers, hypocrites and thiests, and everything, the earth and slaves would have differed. No might and power but be from Allah, the Sublime the Great.

But there is dan objection raised by some of Ahl al-Sunnah wa al-Jam'ah against this possibility, being of two aspects:

-Firstly, they say that whatever has actually occurred was by God's will and destined by Him, and had God decreed that 'Ali and the Imams among his sons should take the lead of the Muslims, it would have materialized. They always reiterate the syaing: "All good being in what Allah has decreed and chosen".

-Secondly, they claim that, Had 'Ali assumed caliphate directly after the Prophet, being succeed by al-Hasan and al-Husayn, caliphate would have turned to be hereditary, inherited by sons from fathers and this being not recognized by Islam which has left the affair to be determined through shura (consultation), among people.

In reply to this and eliminating any ambuiguity, we say:

-First: Thers is no even one evidence proving that what happened was destined and decreed by God, but many established evidences in the Book and Sunnah prove the contrary. From the Book we can site the following verses revealed by Allah:

- "And if the people of the townships had believed and kept from evil, surely we should have opened for them blessings from the sky and from the earth. But (unto every messenger) they gave the lie, and so We seized them on account of what they used to earn''.(7:96)

- ''If they had observed the Torah and the Gospel and that which was revealed unto them from their Lord, they would urely have been nourihed from above them and form beneath their feet. Among them there are people who are moderte, but many of them are of evil contact''.

- ''What concern hath Allah for you punishment if ye are thankful (for His mercies) and believe (in Him )? Allah was ever Responsive, Aware''.

- ''Lo! Allah changeth not the condition of folk untill they (first) change that which is in their hearts...''(13:11)

All these manifest verses denote clearly that deviation, on account of individuals or communities or nations, is only from themselves and not destined by Allah.

The proofs from the Prophetic Sunnah can be seen in some of the Prophet's trditions:

- ''I am leaving behind among you the Book of Allah and my kindred ('Itrah). If you hold on to them you will never go astray after me''.

- ''Come on! Let me write you a book after which you will never go astray''.

- ''My Ummah will be divided into seventy-three sects (firqah), all being in fire (hell) except only one''.

All these holy traditions indicate expressly that the Ummah's misguidance has been due to the Ummah's deviation (from the straight Path) and its non-recognition of what Allah has ordained and willed.

Second: Suppose that the Islamic caliphate used to be hereditary, but they should know that it is not the way of inheritance they know, where the ruler rules over his subjects despotically, through appointing his son before his death to govern Muslems, calling him the heir apparent, even if the father and the son being corrupt. Never, it is a Divine inheritance, willed by he Lord of all worlds, of Whose knowledge even he weight of grain of mustard seed can never escape. A merit that is only possessed by the righhteous elect chosen by Allah, and have inherited the Book and wisdom, to be Imams for mankind, as He said: ''And We made them chiefs who guide by Our command, and We inspired in them the doing of good deeds and he right establishment of worship and he giving of alms, amd they were worshippers of Us (alone)''. (21:73)

In regard of their claim that Islam never recognizes inheritance, but has left the affair to be determined through counsel (shura), we definitely say that it is a big sophistry never admitted by matter of fact and history. They have actually fallen in the web of the abominable system, as those who ruled over the Ummah after 'Ali (A) were only the oppressors and usurpers, who have made it (caliphate) as inheritance for their corrupt sons against the will of the Ummah, and by coersion.

Which one of the two systems (of caliphate) is prefered: the one inherited by the debauches ruling in accordance to the dictation of their desires, and not submitting but to their lusts? Or the one inherited by the Pure Imams whom Allah has chosen and has removed uncleaness far from, making them to inherit the knowledge of the Book to judge among people by the Truth, guiding them toward the straightforword path, causing them to enter the gardens of bliss on account of God's saying: "And solomon was David's heir" (27:16) I believe that every man of intellect will choose the second alternative, if he be a (true) Mulims! Since we now talk about truth, an as lamenting the past being unuseful for us, let us return to the point and say:

When Abu Bakr and 'Umar have deprived Amir al-Muminin from his rights to assume the caliphate, usurpring it and belittling thus the status of 'Ali and Fatimah and Ahl al-Bayt (peace be upon them), insulting them in this way, they have in fact facilated for Mu'awiyah, Yazid, 'Abd al-Malik ibn Marwan and their likes to do what they have done. They have verily paved the way for the way Mu'awiyah, enabling him to control the affairs of the state, till he remained as the governor of Sham alone for twenty years, without being deposed, attaining dignity, and subduing people till they adopted all his precepts, appointing after his son (Yazid), who found, as he declared, restored houses, set-up betting and stacked pillows. So it was natural for him to fight for seizing it, slaughting the Prophet's Rayhanah (al-Husayn) without taking notice of anyone, as he has sucked hatred against Ahl al-Bayt mixed in the milk of his mother Maysun, being brought up to his father's lap, upon slandering and cursing them, so no wonder to see him do all these mischiefs or even worse.

Every pursuing researcher can apprehend that the Ummayyad State has been established by the hands of Abu Bakr and 'Umar, beside the 'Abbasids State and other States. Naturally we see all these rules have done all their best to dignify Abu Bakr and 'Umar, by imparting virtues upon them and proving their right to caliphate, as they have realized that their legitimacy in assuming the caliphate cannot be establihsed but through confirming the caliphate of those two, as aknowledging their justice (adalah).

In contrast, they have together done these ugly mischiefs aginst Ahl al-Bayt, for the only sin that they being the true owners of the legitimate caliphate, constituting a great danger that threatens their existnce and State.

This is a self-evident fact for the mindful who have recognized the truth. Even nowadays there are some Islamic countries being ruled by kings of no excellence or virtue, except their being monarchs, sovereigns and emirs, in the way Yazid has been an emir due to his fahter's being a monarch controlling the Ummah by force and suppression.

It is unreasonable to see the Saudi Kings and Emirs loving Ahl al-Bayt and whoever following them (Shi'ah). Unreasonable also that the Saudi monarchs and Emirs detest Mu'awiyah and Yazid, since the constitution of their crown rules were enacted by these two, and the comtemporary Kings seek their legitimacy survival through the constitution of Mu'awiyah, Yazid and all the Umayyad and 'Abbasid rules and emirs.

This being also the factor leading to glorify the Three Caliphs, preferring them over others, beliving in their equity and defending them, beside forbidding any critism or defamation against them, as they being the foundation of all the governments that have been established from the Saqifah.

Day till Allah inherits the earth and whatever is thereon (Doomsday)

On this basis too, we can conceive the reason behind their choosing the name "Ahl al-Sunnah wa al-Jam'ah" for themeselves, and al-Rawafid or al-Zanadiqah for other than themselves, as 'Ali and His household (A) and Shi'ah have rejected their caliphate, never swaring allegiance unto them, beside disputing them all the time. Therefore all the rulers have embarked on detracting, belittling, humilating, slandering, cursing, killing and scattering them.

When Ahl al-Bayt, whose affection being the source of reward for believing in the message as revealed in the Qur'an, be inflicted with such insult and genocide, so no wonder to see all their guide, face all that suppression, humilation, insult to discarded, hostile and forsaken, while the one adopting falsehood has turned to be the example and venerated master whose obedience being incumbent upon all.

Whoever befriending and following the guide of 'Ali has been a heritic and seditious, whereas whoever befriending and following the guide of Mu'awiyah has become a follower of Sunnah and Jam'ah.

Praise belongs to Allah Who has bestowed upon us an intellect with which we can distinguish between truth and falsehood, light and darkness, and the white from the black, my Lord is on a straightforword Path.

"The blind man is not equal with the seer, Nor is darkness (tantamount to) light. Nor is the shadow equal with the sun's full heart. Nor are the living equal with the dead. Lo! Allah maketh whom He will to hear. Thou canst not reach those who are in the graves".(35:19-22)

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280. Jamharat rasa'il al-'Arab,vol. i, p.477; al-Mas'udi, op. cit, vol. ii, p. 60; Ibn Abi al-Hadid, op.cit l, vol. i, p. 284.

281. Since Abu Bakr and 'Umar and 'Uthman deceased during al-'Imam 'Ali 's lifetime.

Adapted from the book: "The Shi'ah; The Real Followers of the Sunnah" by: "Dr. Muhamad al-Tijahi al-Samawi"

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