Swiftness of Response
Imam al-Rida (A.S.) was endowed with a readiness to respond coupled with the strength of argument and oratory to which extra-ordinary expressions freely submitted without making the over-all meaning too difficult to comprehend. His arguments with the heads of other religions, with foremost writers, and with atheists in which he outwitted them with his clear argument and decisive arguments, all provide us with a glorious indication that he used to enjoy the ability to provide a ready answer and a speed in intellectual reasoning.
This is why learned scholars held him in high esteem and hesitated to challenge him to debate in any field of knowledge as actually happened after his arguments with the highest authorities of other religions at a meeting al-Mamoon arranged at his court and the audience were tongue-tied when he challenged them to put for discussion whatever came to their minds.
Adapted from: "Imam al-Ridha (a.s.), A Historical and Biographical Research" by: "Muhammad Jawad Fadlallah"
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