Rafed English

The Emendation of A Shi‘ite Creed

 

The intellectual relationship between the Mu‘tazilite school of thought and Shi‘ism, which constitutes, as the late Prof. Macdonald noticed, "the great mystery of Muslim history", was referred to by many classical as well as modern scholars. The different opinions expressed by them on this complicated subject can be reduced to two theories.

Those who maintain that Shi‘ism has elaborated its theology on a basis borrowed from the intellectual system of the Mu‘tazilites, to which the Shi‘ah divines affiliated themselves during the fourth century of the Hijra. This theory seems to be very old in origin, since as early as the fourth century some, such as ash-Shaykh al-Mufid, wrote a refutation of it. Among the Sunnite theologians ash-Shahrastani, lbn Taymiyyah and ad-Dawani supported it. Recently both Goldziher and Adam Mez have also championed it.

Contrary to this is the theory advanced by the Shi‘ite theologians themselves who resented the whole aspersion of borrowing, and were engaged in intellectual controversies in an effort to repudiate it, directing their fiercest attacks against this so-called "false allegation". They were not content with this negative refutation but also alleged that the whole Mu‘tazilite system was itself a product of the teachings of the infallible Imams, which were transfused into Mu‘tazilite philosophy through the tuition which the early Mu‘tazilite doctor, and the founder of the whole school, Wasil ibn ‘Ata’ received from Muhammad Ibn al-Hanafiyyah. 1

It is easy in this respect to explain and comprehend the concern of the Shi‘ah divines on the grounds that to them the whole structure of their authoritative system was based on and indeed derived from the direct intuition which the infallible received from God without any extraneous support.

Nevertheless, a critical investigation based on comparative research will soon disclose that the transformation of the Shi‘ite theology from a literal, traditional stand to a rational and allegorical interpretation of the revealed law, was primarily inspired by critical and rational Mu‘tazilite tendencies.

I am convinced that a critical comparison of the Imamiyyah Creed as stated for the first time by Ibn Babawayh al- Qummi in his ‘Aqaidu 'l-Imamiyyah, with Tashih I‘tiqadati 'l- Imamiyyah which was compiled by his pupil Abu ‘Abdillah ash-Shaykh al-Mufid, which is the core of my thesis, will demonstrate that the reconstruction, refinement and reexamination which is visible in al-Mufid's work, marked a new orientation towards a critical methodology first inaugurated by the Mu‘tazilite. Hence it is essential that my work should be studied along with Prof. A.A.A. Fyzee's A Shi‘ite Creed.

My thesis, as it stands, consists of three parts. In Part One, I have dealt with the author, his works and the times in which he lived, since it is my opinion that the Buwayhid regime in which he lived, provided a milieu in which Mu‘tazilite teachings permeated Shi‘ite theology. I have prepared a complete list of his works, published, extant in manuscript, and unknown to us except by name, to show the position which he enjoyed and the important role he played in Shi‘ite thought. I was very lucky in my visit to an-Najaf, al-Kazimayn and Karbala’, where I found many valuable manuscripts not recorded in the standard catalogues.

In Part Two I have prepared a critical translation of Tashih I‘tiqadati 'l-Imamiyyah, with amendments and notes. I have based my translation on the published text which is based in turn on three different manuscripts. I have made use of a fourth copy which exists at the India Office Library under the number 2057.

I have referred to them respectively by the letters (T) for the published text, and (N) for the India Office manuscript. In Part Three, I have commented on a selection of topics relevant to my thesis. In some cases detailed and somewhat lengthy explanations were unavoidable so that the different stands of the various schools should be made clear and their inter-relations and mutual impact easily discerned. Three general observations also are to be noticed:

a) I have restricted my research to the intellectual relationship between the Mu‘tazilite school of thought and the Ithna‘Ashariyyah school of the Shi‘ah; thus wherever the word Shi‘ah is used generally, they are meant by it.

b) Since this thesis deals with controversial subjects and terminology, it was very difficult to rely only on one of the approved translations of the Qur’an; consequently I have made use of all the standard translations.

c) Some of the terms which occur in the text or the commentary were too long to be explained in footnotes; I have separated them in Appendices which appear at the end of the work.

I take this opportunity to express my high esteem and deep gratitude to my supervisor, Prof. A. J. Arberry, whose encouragement and instruction was the source from which I drew my inspiration. My sincere thanks are also due to my friend, Miss. J. Thompson, of the Oriental Department, University Library, for her generous and unstinted assistance throughout the work in correcting my English. My gratitude is also due to Mrs. Virginia Barnes who bore the difficulty of typing the thesis. Lastly, I would like to express my thanks to the Iraqi Government for the scholarship which paved the way for my higher education.

April 1965,
‘Irfan ‘Abdu 'l-Hamid
Cambridge University.
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1. This relationship though referred to frequently (see Ibnu 'l-Murtada, al- Munyah, p.5), is not admissible since Muhammad Ibn al-Hanafiyyah died in 79 or 80 AH, the very year in which Wasil was born. Some sources substitute Abu Hashim ‘Abdullah, the son of Muhammad Ibn al-Hanafiyyah for his father (ash-Shahristani, al-Milal, vol.1, p57). Even, if this were so, the personal relationship should not be stressed too far; as it would be rash to assume their teachings are necessarily similar.
Abu‘Abdillah Muhammad ibn Muhammad ibn an-Nu‘man al-Harithi al-‘Ukbari al-Baghdadi1. He was one of the most famous divines of the Ithna-‘Ashariyyah School of the Shi‘ah and was unanimously regarded as one of their foremost scholars, while his works were considered to be among those which established the nascent theology of the Shi‘ah on a sound and clear cut basis. Abu ‘Abdillah traced his descent back to Qahtan, so was proud of his purely Arab ancestry.

He is well-known to us under two different laqabs, al-Mufid and Ibnu 'l-Mu‘allim. The former laqab was bestowed on him, according to some authorities, by his master ‘Ali ibn ‘Isa ar-Rummani2 with whom al-Mufid "discussed the Imamate and displayed a powerful intelligence; therefore he called him by this laqab"3. Others mentioned the assertion that the Twelfth Imam (Sahibu 'z- Zaman), 'The Master of the Time’, “appointed him as his deputy and bestowed upon him this honorific title4. His second title, Ibnu 'l-Mu‘allim, seems to have been derived from his "father's occupation as a teacher in the city of Wasit"5.

Al-Mufid was born in a small village in the district of ‘Ukbara, known as Suwayqat ibn al-Basri, in 11th Dhi 'l-Qi‘dah,336/947 – according to an-Najashi6 and al-Khwansari7 or in 388, according to at-Tusi8 and Ibn Shahrashub9 , and died on the third (or second) of Ramadan 413 AH/December 1022 AD,at al-Karkh and was buried first in his house-yard in the suburb of al-Ushnan10 . Afterwards his body was transferred to the cemetery of Quraysh.

Historians described the day of his death as a day of universal lamentation; "both his friends and enemies were full of mourning"11. He was so highly esteemed that "eighty thousand people are said to have gathered in the public square in Baghdad at the time of his funeral"12. Among those who wrote elegies on him was his pupil, ash-Sharif ar-Radi.

Historians, whether from the Sunnite ranks or from those of the Shi‘ah are unanimously of the opinion that al-Mufid was one of the most brilliant scholars of his day and destined to play a constructive and decisive role in the intellectual and political affairs of the Buwayhid regime. Both his friends and opponents recognized his outstanding ability and contribution to knowledge.

Al-Mufid was famous for his learning and integrity, as well as his powers of memory and reasoning. Ibnu 'n-Nadim says, "in our time Abu ‘Abdillah was the head of the Shi‘ah theologians, outstanding in the art of dialectics in the school he followed, of a penetrating wit and retentive memory. I met him and found him excelled"13.As-Safadi characterized him as "the unrivalled master of the.known sciences of that time"14. Ibn Hajar described him as, "an author of many outstanding works numbering about two hundred"15. Ibn Kathir described him as "the head of the Rawafid and the man who wrote many works which defended and consolidated their doctrines"16.

The Shi‘ah biographers also esteemed him highly and recognized the great influence he had on later theologians and traditionists. al-Khwansari observed that "he was the most honored teacher and the spiritual head of all the Shi‘ahs, and he who followed him benefited by his knowledge; his profound comprehension of jurisprudence, scholastic theology, and the science of transmission (riwayah) was famed far and wide."17

He is numbered in A‘yanu 'sh-Shi‘ah among "the chief Shi‘ah theologians", and described as the "foremost faqih and doctor of his time, whom the Shi‘ahs regarded as the master of theology, principles of jurisprudence, tradition, biography and exegesis of the Qur’an"18. al-Mufid, in an endeavor to consolidate Shi‘ite thought and give it an integral shape, compiled two books, the first concerning the principles of belief, called Awailu 'l-maqalat, and the other concerning the principles of the practical law, called al-I‘lam. These became a basis for Shi‘ah learning and their effect was far-reaching.

The high position of al-Mufid can be appreciated by the fact that "the Buwayhid amir, al-Mu‘tadid, used to visit him at his house and attend the discussions held at his behest"19. According to the assertion of many authorities, al-Mufid was in con- tact with the Master of the Time and he bestowed upon him his favor and addressed him as his deputy. One of his charges runs like this, "Peace be unto thee, O our sincere disciple, in whom we have complete trust . . . may God perpetuate His guidance to you in your championing of the truth and may He reward you highly for preaching the truth on our behalf"20.

Al-Mufid, at an early age, acquired his knowledge from more than sixty masters – shaykhs; among them was the celebrated divine, Ibn Babawayh al-Qummi (d. 381 AH) and the illustrious traditionist, Abu 'l-Qasim Ja‘far ibn Muhammad, Ibn Qulawayh al-Qummi (d. 368 AH)21 , and the famous theologian, Abu ‘Ali Muhammad ibn Ahmad ibn al-Junayd al-Iskafi (d. 381)22 . Among the prominent Shi‘ah scholars who received their education from al-Mufid were ash-Sharif ar-Radi (Abu 'l- Hasan Muhammad ibn al-Husayn al-Musawi, d. 406)23 , ash-.Sharif al-Murtada (‘Alamu 'l-Huda Abu 'l-Qasim ‘Ali ibn al-Husayn, d. 436)24 and at-Tusi (Abu Ja‘far Muhammad ibn al- Hasan, d. 458)25.

Al-Mufid represents a new, rational trend within Shi‘ah thought, the result of which was the rejection of literal acceptance of the divine law and the introduction of rational and allegorical interpretation into Imamiyyah teaching for the first time, in an attempt to eradicate the fallacies and absurdities resulting from literal acceptance. This new method, though it had supporters, was not approved by his successors without a great deal of reluctance and criticism; some, such as ‘Izzu 'd- Din al-Hasan ibn Sulayman al-Hilli, writing refutation of the'innovations' he introduced 26 .

With regard to the works of al-Mufid, our sources ascribe to him two hundred books. This large number may be due to the fact that some of the titles mentioned, in a large number of cases, could be chapters, abstracts, response, or even summaries of a book, rather than complete works. It is also possible that in some instances the same book may have been known under two or more different titles.27
A Historical Sketch of his Times
The period in which al-Mufid lived has a special import- ance not only from the point of view of Shi‘ite theology, but also in the history of scholastic theology in general. It was a period of dogmatic controversies and sectarian disputes, each school trying to reshuffle and re-examine its teachings. It was a period when the most eminent theologians of Islam lived and exercised their influence, such as al-Baqillani (an Ash‘arite), al-Qadi ‘Abdu '1-Jabbar (a Mu‘tazilite) and al-Mufid, the Shi‘ite. Thus it is necessary to give a brief sketch of the Buwayhid regime (334-447 AH) in which al-Mufid played a remarkable role, and which was roughly coterminous with his lifetime.

The Buwayhids entered Baghdad on Jumadu 'l-Awwal, 344/ 17th January, 946, with an army mainly composed of foreign elements under the leadership of Ahmad ibn Buwayh. The suc- cess of this entry was due partly to a secret correspondence with the Caliph al-Mustakfi (d. 338/949), "who received the victorious leader and bestowed upon him the honorific title of Mu‘izzu 'd-Dawlah and installed him as Amiru '1-Umara’. At the same time, his brothers ‘Ali and al-Hasan received the titles of ‘Imadu '1-Dawlah and Ruknu 'd-Dawlah, respectively. Moreover, he ordered their names and titles to be struck on the coinage"28.

The advent of the Buwayhids to Baghdad brought about an essential and profound change in the Caliphate. It is true that the seizure of power by the Buwayhids did little more than set the seal on the development which had, in effect, placed the caliphate under the domination of army chiefs, promoted Amiru '1-Umara’. "But this time there was the added fact that the Buwayhids were professing Shi‘ahs, so much so that it might have been asked whether they were not about to sup- press a caliphate whose legitimacy had no special meaning for them"29.

No sooner had they entered Baghdad than they displayed their disrespect toward the Caliphate, so twelve days after, Mu‘izzu 'd-Dawlah dismissed the Caliph on "the ground that he was plotting with his officers against him, and seeking help from the Hamdanids of al-Mawsil; moreover, he was annoyed by the Caliph who put the head of the Shi‘ah into prison"30. The dismissal of the Caliph "took place in an unceremonious manner"31 .

From the dogmatic point of view, the Buwayhids "were imbued with Shi‘ism; they preached it energetically; and Shi‘ism was substantially strengthened by their effort"32. Being the adherents of a political system based on and derived from a divinely appointed Imamate "they did not recognize the claim of the Sunni caliph to supreme headship of the Islamic world"33, and consequently they "rejected altogether the ‘Abbasid's right to caliphate, because they were convinced that they had usurped the office from its true holders, and so the religious impulse which might have incited them to obey the ‘Abbasid Caliphate was absent"34.

It was essential doctrine which obliged them to accept the divinely appointed Imam as the only justified temporal and spiritual leader of Islam. As a matter of fact, they maintained the ‘Abbasid Caliphate for purely political reasons, since the abolition of it might have resulted in a colossal revolt against Buwayhid authority, which they were anxious to avoid35.

Yet this doctrinal divergence in the conception of political authority was responsible for a series of humiliations to the Sunni caliph. Thus the Buwayhid amirs were "the first princes who insisted on having their names mentioned in the khutbah along with that of the Caliph"36. This was followed by a series of further encroachments on the prerogatives of the Caliph.

They began to impose restrictions on the political power of the caliphs; the confiscation of their lands and properties, and the dismissal of whomsoever they desired by cauterizing their eyes with hot iron, and thereby disqualifying them from ruling. It is curious to mention that on one occasion "‘Adudu 'd-Dawlah commanded that the Caliph's name should be abolished from the Friday khutbah so that no prayer was said for the Caliph for two months, because of a slight dispute which took place between ‘Adudu 'd-Dawlah and the Caliph"37.

It is a historical fact that with the beginning of the Buwayhid regime, the caliphate as a body-politic began to lose its importance, and the caliphs gradually, but constantly, lost all their political powers. What remained to them was, as al-Biruni observed, "Only a religious, doctrinal authority and not a secular power, exactly like that of the head of the Jalut (Diaspora) among the Jews, who have only the religious leadership with- out any temporal powers"38 .

Beside what has been mentioned, the most important feature of this period, which has its relative importance in our present study, was that it witnessed a severe struggle between the two dominant doctrines, the Sunnite and the Shi‘ite, each trying to impose its religious sovereignty all over the Muslim world. The ‘Abbasid Caliph, after being deprived of all his effective political powers, was anxious to restore his religious supremacy among the people.

The result of this trend was the emergence of a semi-religious party, mainly composed of the ‘ulama’, fuqaha’,and the khutaba’. This semi-religious party proved to be of a special importance to the ever-weakened caliph. Thus, although the Buwayhid amirs were the real independent governors of the empire, yet it was very dangerous for them to display openly their enmity towards the caliphs.

As Prof. Arnold observed, "the inflictions of such humiliation on the caliph is in striking contrast with the honour and reverence paid to him, whenever it was politic to bring him forward, as the supreme head of the faith"39 .

This religious party was to play a decisive role especially during the period of Buwayhid decline and was used as a weapon by which the Caliph began to impose his will on the Buwayhid amirs. For example, when the Caliph al-Qaim (422-467/1031-1075) rebuked Jalalu 'd- Dawlah (416-435) for not punishing his slave for entering an orchard of the Caliph, "he asked the judges not to deliver judgement, the jurists to refrain from delivering response and the preachers to refrain from their duties, which forced the Buwayhid amir to petition the Caliph"40 .

Meanwhile, the Caliph laid emphasis on his religious duties, as a means of fortifying his prerogative against the unscrupulous behavior of the Buwayhids, which was constantly increasing. We may note in particular, as an event without previous parallel, that the Caliph, al-Qaim, wrote a theological work in the orthodox Sunni strain which was read out every Friday in the circle of the traditionists in the mosque of al-Mahdi41.

As a counter-balance to this Sunni party, the Buwayhids for their part began to depend largely on the Shi‘ah. It is said that Mu‘izzu'd-Dawlah intended from the very beginning to abolish the ‘Abbasid Caliphate and to transfer it to Abu 'l- Hasan Muhammad ibn Yahya az-Zaydi42.

He was deterred from carrying out this scheme by his wazir (vizier), who told him, "today you are faced with a caliph whom you and your followers believe has no right to the caliphate; thus if you command them they will kill him and consider themselves innocent of his blood, whereas if you replace him by an ‘Alid Caliph, whom you and your followers believe to be the rightful caliph, then if he commands them to kill you, they will perform his command"43 .

From this, it would appear that the Buwayhids maintained the caliphate "purely for political reasons" because they were aware that "had they destroyed the caliphate in Baghdad, the institution would have reappeared elsewhere"44. The caliphate for them, then, was a means to legalize their authority over the Sunnites in their state, and to strengthen their diplomatic relations with the world outside by the weight of the moral authority and respect which the Sunnite caliph still enjoyed.

Thus it is obvious that the Buwayhid period was the scene of a severe struggle between two divergent political powers, and echoing this, of two doctrinal schools within the Muslim community. As for the importance of this period in the founding and developing of Shi‘ite theology, it can be demonstrated in two points:

First: With the beginning of the Buwayhid regime, a severe dogmatic struggle arose between the two dominant doctrines, the Shi‘ites and the Sunnites. "It is certain that the Buwayhids welcomed somewhat indiscriminately the Shi‘is or Mu‘tazilis of different shades of opinion, but politically they were Twelvers"45.

This sectarian struggle culminated in 351 AH, when Mu‘izzu 'd-Dawlah caused Shi‘ite curses to be inscribed on the walls of the mosques which run thus; "May God curse Mu‘awiyah ibn Abi Sufyan, and him who prevented al-Hasan's body from being buried behind the grave of his grandfather, and him who exiled Abu Dharr, and him who expelled al-‘Abbas from the shura (electoral council)"46 .

These curses were publicly displayed while the Caliph was unable to forbid them. This dogmatic rift deepened still further when Mu‘izzu 'd-Dawlah introduced, "influenced perhaps by Daylamite practices"47, the commemorating of the martyrdom of al-Husayn. On the 10th of Muharram, ‘Ashura day, the chief festival of the Shi‘ah, the bazaars were closed, the butchers suspended business, the cooks ceased cooking, the cisterns were emptied of their contents, pitchers were placed with felt covering the streets, women walked about with fallen tresses, blackened faces, torn dresses, striking their faces and wailing for al-Husayn.

In the same year, on the 18th Dhu 'l-Hijjah, the celebration of the day of the "pond of Khumm", the day on which the Prophet is said to have nominated ‘Ali as his successor, was officially inaugurated at Baghdad, fires were lit, drums were beaten, horns blown, and people hastened from the early morning to the cemetery of Quraysh"48 .

These foreign and newly imported practices gave rise to bitter sectarian hatreds, and were responsible for sporadic civil wars. "In 388, a destructive conflict broke out between the two sects and consequently al-Karkh district was plundered49.

In 346 AH a similar civil disturbance occurred between "the Shi‘ite section of al-Karkh and the Sunnites because of as-sabb,50 which resulted in a heavy massacre"51. These civil conflicts took place continually in the year 348-351,353, 393-398 and 409.

This was the characteristic feature of the period; what, then, was the attitude of al-Mufid towards current events? al-Mufid as the "head of the Shi‘ah and the teacher of the Rawafid"52 was destined to play an active role in defending the dogma of the Ithna-‘Ashariyyah school of the Shi‘ah. Due to "his high ranking position at the courts of the Buwayhids and the princes of dynasties"53, he enjoyed spiritual supremacy and considerable influence over the affairs of that time.

Thus, it was during the Buwayhid period and because of their energetic support, says al-Maqrizi, "that the teachings of the Rawafid spread widely in North Africa, Syria, Diyar Bakr, Kufah, Basrah, Baghdad, all ‘Iraq, Khurasan, Transoxiana, Hijaz, Yaman and Bahrayn"54. As a result of this tremendous expansion of Shi‘ism, there were ceaseless disturbances and dissensions between the Shi‘ites and the Sunnites.

In 393 AH, widespread disturbances occurred and the trouble-makers spread all over the country, a thing which caused Bahau 'd-Dawlah (989-1012 AD) to send the leader of the army to deal with the situation. He reached Baghdad, suppressed by force the agitators and prevented both The Sunnites and the Shi‘ites from demonstrating their doctrines and expelled Ibnu 'l-Mu‘allim, the Shaykh of the lmamiyyah. Thus the city regained its tranquillity55.

Second: The second reason for the importance of the Buway- hids in the development of Shi‘ah theology, is that they pro- vided a meeting point where Shi‘ah theology was influenced by the rational methods of the Mu‘tazilah. This dogmatic and intellectual relationship which, in the words of Prof.Macdonald, is "the great mystery of Muslim History"56 , has still not received full attention, and can only be made clear by comparative research based on a profound historical study of the Buwayhid period from the dogmatic point of view.

At the end of the third century of the Hijrah, Mu‘tazilism was suffering a severe decline in political influence, which began early with the accession of al-Mutawakkil to the caliph- ate (232/847). This political decline was coupled at the beginning of the fourth century with a decisive triumph of Ash‘ar-ism which "evolved a new orthodox scholasticism and defeated the Mu‘tazilites on their own ground57.

In this perilous situation, the Mu‘tazilah might have been induced by the instinct of self preservation to conclude a political alliance with Shi‘ism, then the official and politically influential doctrine of the state. One of the reasons which facilitated this compromise was that "the vagueness of Rafidites had been replaced by the much more definite lmamite form of Shi‘ism58.

It is curious that the very Mu‘tazilism of which "the refutation and rejection of the extremely heterogenous elements of Rafidites was the centre of its invaluable service to the cause of Islam" 59 was now trying to come to some sort of agreement with it. Here we have also to bear in mind that the "suggestion has been made that Mu‘tazilism was essentially an attempt to work out a com- promise that would in part overcome the cleavage between Sunnites and Shi‘ites"60 .

At any rate, Shi‘ism and Mu‘tazilism, as adh-Dhahabi says, "established from about 370 AH a friendly and brotherly rela- tionship with each other"61 .al-Maqdisi was fully aware of this interrelation; he states that "the majority of the Shi‘ah in Persia were Mu‘tazilite, and that the Buwayhid, ‘Adudu 'd-Dawlah adopted it"62 .

This dogmatic interrelation is affirmed by both Adam Mez and Goldziher, who say that "theologically the Shi‘ahs are the heirs of the Mu‘tazilah", and that "in the fourth century there was actually no real system of Shi‘ite theology; henceforth the Shi‘ite amir, ‘Adudu 'd-Dawlah, merely adapted himself to the view of the Mu‘tazilite"63 .

This attachment of Mu‘tazilism to the ruling power was of special importance, which is confirmed by al-Maqrizi, who says that "Mu‘tazilism spread considerably under the Buwayhids regime in Iraq, Khurasan and Transoxiana"64.

I am inclined to suggest that the period in which as-Sahib ibn ‘Abbad (326-385/939-995) governed the empire inde- pendently during the emirate of Fakhru 'd-Dawlah al-Buwayhi and which lasted eighteen years (367-385/977-995) is the period within which Shi‘ism adopted the rational system of Mu‘tazilism.

Abu 'l-Qasim Isma‘il ibn ‘Abbad as-Sahib is known as an "illustrious Mu‘tazilite who inherited his ideas from his father who wrote a book on the ordinances of the Qur’an, Ahkamu 'l- Qur’an, in which he supported Mu‘tazilism"65. In his formative years, as-Sahib was greatly influenced by and imbued with their dogmas till he came to be known "as one of their fore- most masters"66.

When he was wazir, he used his office as a means to support whole-heartedly the Mu‘tazilite teachings so "people began to follow the doctrine he professed, and copy his words, desiring reward from him"67. as-Sahib has also been mentioned among the Shi‘ah divines and .was accused of Shi‘ite tendencies. Ibn Hajar says "that he added to the innovation of the Mu‘tazilah the heterodoxy of the Shi‘ah"68.

This intellectual influence of Mu‘tazilism on Shi‘ism which is confirmed by ash-Shahrastani69 , Ibn Taymiyyah70 and ad- Dawani71 was emphatically rejected by the Shi‘ah. They were, and still are, anxious to deny this impact on their dogmas, which are supposed to be the fruits of the direct teachings of the divinely-inspired Imams. al-Mufid himself rejected this charge, which seems to be very old, and denied that the Shi‘ah were influenced by and borrowed from the Mu‘tazilah72 .

But a critical and comparative study of his book, Tashih I‘tiqadati 'l- Imamiyyah with that of his master, Ibn Babawayh al-Qummi, which is the purpose of this thesis, establishes the fact that the shifting of Shi‘ah theology from an authoritarian stand, repre- sented by Ibn Babawayh, to a rational interpretation cultivated first by al-Mufid, was a direct result of this Mu‘tazilite impact which is specifically denied by him. It is worth observing that the "Mu‘tazilite influence has maintained its hold on the Shi‘itic literature up to the present time. It is a serious error to assert that after the decisive victory of the Ash‘arite theology, the Mu‘tazilite teachings ceased to play any active part in religion or literature. The rich dogmatic literature of the Shi‘ah extending into our own days refutes such an assertion"73
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1. Ukbari, ‘Ukbarawi: his nisbah (relationship) is derived from a small town, ‘Ukbar, near ad-Dujayl, about ten farsakhs distance from Baghdad. The name seems not to be Arabic. See Yaqut, Mu‘jamu 'l-buldan, vo1.5, p.203.

2. Abu '1-Hasan, ‘Ali ibn ‘Isa ar-Rummani al-Ikhshidi al-Warraq, one of the most illustrious doctors of the Mu‘tazilah of the tenth class, well known as an exegetist, philologist and theologian. He was called ‘Ali al-Jami‘ because of his profound and comprehensive knowledge of Fiqh, Qur’an, Nahw and Kalam. as-Sahib ibn ‘Abbad, on being questioned if he, too, had written a commentary on the Qur’an, replied ‘Ali ibn ‘Isa had left nothing for him to do. He has also been accused of Shi‘ite tendencies. See Ibnu 'l-Murtada,al-Munyah wa 'l-amal, p.65. Yaqut, Mu‘jamu 'l-udaba’, vo1.14, p.73; as-Suyut?i, Tabaqatu 'l-mufassirin, p.24.

3. al-Majlisi, Biharu 'l-anwar, the introduction to the new edition by ash-Shirazi, vo1.1 , p.71

4. Ibn Shahrashub, Ma‘alimu 'l-‘ulama’, p.101.

5. al-Khat?ib al-Baghdadi, Tarikh Baghdad, vo1.3, p.231.

6. an-Najashi, ar-Rijal, p.286.

7. al-Khwansari, Rawdatu 'l-jannat, p.563.

8. at-Tusi, Rijalu 'sh-Shi‘ah, p.186.

9. Ibn Shahrashub, op. cit., p.101. Cf., Borckelmann, C., GAL, Supp.1, p.322. Also, E.I., the article,"al-Mufid", vo1.3, ii, p.625.

10. al-Ushnan, an old suburb of Baghdad, see Mu‘jamu 'l-buldan, vol.l, p.262.

11. at-Tusi, ar-Rijal, p.187.

12. Donaldson, D.M., The Shi‘ite Religion, p.287.

13. Ibnu 'n-Nadim, al-Fihrist, p.178.

14. as-Safadi, al-Wafi bi 'l-wafayat, vo1.5, p.l 16.

15. Ibn Hajar, Lisanu 'l-mizan, vo1.5, p.368.

16. 16 Ibn Kathir, al-Bidayah, vo1.12, p.15.

17. al-Khwansari, Rawdatu 'l-jannat, op. cit, p.563.

18. Muhsin al-Amin, al-‘Amili, A‘yanu 'sh-Shi‘ah, vol.l, pt.2, p.106.

19. Ibn Hajar, op. cit., vo1.5, p.368.

20. al-Majlisi, Biharu 'l-anwar, the introduction to the new edition by ash- Shirazi, vol. 1, p.71.

21. For his life, see: an-Najashi, op. cit., p.89; Ibn Hajar, op. cit., vo1.2, p.125; Ibn Shahrashub, op. cit., p.26.

22. For his life, see: Ibnu 'n-Nadim, op. cit., p.196.

23. For his life, see: Ibn Khallikan, Wafayatu 'l-a'yan, vol.2, p.2; an-Najashi, op. cit., p.283; Ibn Hajar, opcit., vo1.5, p.141.

24. For his life, see: Ibnu '1-Murtada, op. cit., p.19; an-Najashi, op. cit., p.192; Ibn Hajar, op. cit., vo1.4, p.223.

25. For his life, see: Ibn Hajar, op. cit., vo1.5, p.135. Also Ibn Shahrashub, op. cit., p.102.

26. The refutation is called al-Muhtadir, published in an-Najaf al-Ashraf(Iraq) in 1370/1951. See: ash-Shaykh ‘Abdullah, Falasifatu 'sh-Shi‘ah, pp.454-66.

27. A full list of his works will be given later.

28. Ibnu 'l-Athir, al-Kamil, vo1.8, p.337, Hasan Ibrahim Hasan, Tarikhu 'l-Islami 's-siyasi, vo1.3, p.43.

29. E.I., the article, "Buwayhids", by Cl. Cahen, vol.1, ii, p.1350.

30. ad-Duri, ‘Abdu '1-‘Aziz, Dirasat fi 'l-‘usuri 'l-‘Abbasiyyah al-muta'akhkhirah, p.249.

31. Ibid., p.249. See also: Arnold, T., The Caliphate, p.61; al-Khudari,Muhadarat fi tarikhi 'l-umami 'l-Islamiyyah, vo1.2, p.380.

32. al-Maqrizi, al-Khitat, vo1.2, p.308.

33. Arnold, T., op. cit., p.61.

34. Ibnu '1-Athir, op. cit., vo1.8, p.339.

35. ad-Duri, op. cit., p.248. See p.l l.

36. Arnold, T., op. cit., p.61.

37. Ibnu '1-Jawzi, al-Muntazim, vo1.7. p.75.

38. Quoted from ad-Duri, op. cit., p.255.

39. Arnold, T., op. cit., p.65.

40. Ibnu '1-Jawzi, op. cit., vol.8, p.82.

41. Ibid., vo1.8, p.109. Also, Mez, Adam, The Renaissance of Islam, Eng. transl. by Khuda Bukhsh and Margoliouth, p.61.

42. ad-Duri, op. cit., p.248.

43. Ibnu '1-Athir, op. cit., vol.8, p.339; Cf., ad-Duri, op. cit., p.248.

44. Ibid.; al-Khudari, op. cit., vol.2., p.378.

45. E.I, the article, "Buwayhids", by Cl. Cahen, vol.l, ii, p.1352.

46. as-Suyuti, Tarikhu 'l-khulafa’, p.266; Ibn Khaldun, at-Tarikh, vol.4, p.886; Cf., Mez, Adam, op. cit., p.68.

47. E.I, the article, "Buwayhids", vol.l, ii, p.1352.

48. Ibnu '1-Jawzi, op. cit., vol.7, p.10; Ibn Kathir, al-Bidayah, vol.11, p.243. Also, Mez, Adam, op. cit., p.69.

49. Ibn Kathir, op. cit., vol.ll, p.221.

50. Denouncing certain companions of the Holy Prophet (of Islam).

51. Ibid., p.232.

52. Ibn Taghri Birdi, an-Nujumu 'z-zahirah, vol.4, p.258; as-Safadi, op. cit., vol.5, p.116.

53. Ibn Taghri Birdi, op. cit., vol.4, p.258.

54. al-Maqrizi, al-Khitat, vol.2, p.308.

55. Ibnu '1-Athir, op. cit., vol.9, p.126.

56. Quoted from Holister, J.N., The Shi'a of India, p.26.

57. Gibb, H.A.R., Mohammadanism, p.116.

58. Watt, W.M., Islamic Philosophy and Theology, p.83.

59. Nyberg, H.S., his intro. to his ed. of Kitabu 'l-Intisar, p.24. Zuhdi Hasan Jarullah

60. Watt, W.M., op. cit., p.83.

61. adh-Dhahabi, Mizanu 'l-i‘tidal, vol.2, p.230; (Quoted from, al-Mu‘tazilah, p.207).

62. al-Maqdisi, Ahsanu 't-taqasim, p.439.

63. Mez, Adam, op. cit., p.62; Cf. Goldziher, L, Vorlesungen über den Islam, the Arabic translation, p.224.

64. al-Maqrizi, op. cit., vo1.2, p.358.

65. Yaqut, Mu'jamu 'l-udaba’, vol.6, p.127.

66. Ibn Hajar, Lisanu 'l-mizan, vol.1, p.413.

67. Yaqut, op. cit., vol.6, p.225.

68. Ibn Hajar, op. cit., p.413.

69. ash-Shahristani, al-Milal, vol.1, p.209. Also, p.224.

70. Ibn Taymiyyah, ar-Rasail, vol.3, p.115.

71. ad-Dawani, Jalalu 'd-Din, Sharhu 'l-‘aqaidi 'l-‘Adudiyyah, (quoted from Muhammad ‘Abduh bayna 'l- falasifah wa 'l-mutakallimin, edited by Sulayman Dunya, p.26).

72. al-Mufid, Ajwibatu 'l-masaili 's-saghaniyyah, MS. No.442, an-Najaf al- Ashraf, (Iraq), Maktabat Muhsin al-Hakim, fol. 14.

73. Goldziher, I., op. cit., p.222.
In the Name of Allah, the Merciful, the Compassionate

Praise be to Allah for His bounties, and peace be upon Muhammad and his family. This is the emendation of A Shi‘ite Creed of Abu Ja‘far Ibn Babawayh, may Allah have mercy upon him, compiled by ash-Shaykh al-Mufid Abu ‘Abdillah Muhammad ibn an-Nu‘man*, may Allah have mercy upon him.

The learned divine, Abu Ja‘far 1Muhammad ibn ‘Ali ibn al- Husayn Ibn Babawayh al-Qummi, died in 381 AH2, says, in the treaties of his (Shi‘ite) creed, on the meaning of His, the Exalted's Speech:

On a day when a shank (saq) shall be bared, and they shall be summoned to prostrate themselves, but they cannot [68:42].

as-Saq (shank) here means the result, or consummation of the affair and its intensity.

Ash-Shaykh al-Mufid says: The meaning of the verse quoted above is intended for the Day of Resurrection on which an important, hard and intense matter will be disclosed, and that will be the reckoning and scrutinizing of (man's) actions; the recompensing for (good or bad) deeds, and the divulging of the heart secrets; the revealing of mysteries, and the appraisal of good and bad acts. Hence, He (Allah) designates by as saq the gravity of the matter; and by the same reasoning, the Arabs used to symbolize the violence and severity of war with their peculiar expression, "The war broke out [amongst us] (qamati 'l-harbu [bina] ‘ala saq)"3 .

And their poet, Sa‘d ibn Khalid, says:

The war disclosed all its severety, and revealed its full calamity.
The eagle of death appeared,
Bearing in its train the decreed fate.

Also, like this is their expression, "The fair is set up", (qad qamati 's-suq), denoting when the people crowd together, and buying and selling goes briskly with much effort and exertion.
________________________
1. N reads Muhammad ibn Muhammad, which is correct.

2. Not found in N.

3. See al-Maydani, Majma‘u 'l-amthal, vol.2, p.47; cf., az-Zamakhshari, al- Kashshaf, vol.3, p.210; ar-Razi, Tafsir, vol.8, p.203.
Abu Ja‘far, may Allah have mercy upon him, similarly explains "hand" in the sense of strength, and adduces, to support his view, the verse:

And remember Our servant David, possessed of strength (ayd) [38:17].

And he says: dha'l-ayd, means possessed of strength (quwwah).

ash-Shaykh al-Mufid says: The word yad has another interpretation which denotes grace. The poet says:

He has bestowed favours on me which I do not deny; For indeed denial of favours is but ingratitude.

So, it is possible that the saying of Allah, the Exalted, Dawuda dha 'l-ayd, means Dawud (David), a bountiful man. Similar, also, is the saying of Allah:

Nay, but both His hands are outspread [5:64].

Here, by "The two hands", are meant the two favours of this life and the life hereafter.
Abu Ja‘far says, concerning the Spirit in the Speech of Allah, the Exalted:

And I breathed into it of My Spirit [15:29],

that it is, in this context, a created Spirit (ruh). He attributes it to Himself in the same way as He attributes the House (Ka‘bah) to Himself, although it is created by Him. Ash-Shaykh al-Mufid says: The reason for attributing the Spirit or the House to Himself is not merely that they were created by Him; but, also, that they have been distinguished by His greatness and glory, and endued with His awfulness.

This indicates that this Spirit and this House are favored with His sublimity and glory, which have not been granted to any other spirit or house save them, thus to draw the attention of creation by this means – to believe in and exalt them.
Abu Ja‘far, may Allah have mercy upon him, has said, concerning the interpretation of the Speech of Allah, the Exalted:

(O Iblis!) What prevented thee from prostrating thyself before that I created with My two hands (yadayy)? [38:75].

(By 'two hands'), He means 'My strength and My power (qudrati wa quwwati).'

Abu ‘Abdillah (al-Mufid) says: This is not correct1, since it involves repetition in meaning and implies that Allah says: 'By My strength, by My strength', or 'By My power, by My power', because literally 'strength' is equivalent to 'power', and vice versa, and there is no meaning in such a statement.

The correct explanation is that advanced above concerning grace (lutf); consequently, the verse signifies, 'Allah's double grace in this world and the world hereafter'. In the same way, the ba in Allah's saying (bi yadayya), 'with My two hands', stands for (lam), as if Allah has said: "(Khalaqtu liyadayya), I have created for My hands", meaning by this, 'for My double grace', as He has said:

And I have not created jinn and mankind except to worship Me [51:56],

since worship is a gift from Allah, and His grace upon them, for it leads them to His perpetual grace. A probable meaning of 'both My hands', is the double meaning of power and grace as though the Almighty said, "created with My own power and grace". Another explanation is that the attribution of the 'hands' to Allah was intended to stress the overwhelming power of Allah, and the act was accomplished by His sole will, irrespective of His strength or grace or anything else.

This interpretation is supported by the verse:

That is for what thy hands have forwarded [22:10],

and it means 'what you have forwarded of your deeds'; and also by Allah's saying:

Whatever misfortune may visit you is for what your own hands have earned [42:30],

which signifies 'what you have acquired'. The Arabs often used the proverb: "Thy hand hath tied, and thy mouth hath blown into it" (yadaka awkata wa fuka nafakh)2, in the sense that it was your doing and you carried it out and performed it though you did not use your actual hands (limbs) in it.
________________________
1. T, laysa hadha huwa 'l-wajh fi 't-tafsir: N, laysa huwa 'l-wajh.

2. See al-Maydani, op. cit., vol.2, p.248.
Abu Ja‘far, may Allah have mercy upon him, maintained that the meaning of Allah's saying:

(The hypocrites) seek to beguile Allah, but it is He Who beguileth them [4:142],

and: They have forgotten Allah, so He hath forgotten them [9:67],

and: And they devised, and Allah devised, and Allah is the best of devisers [3:54],

and: Allah shall mock them [2:15],

is that Allah will requite them for their base acts1 .

Abu ‘Abdillah concurs, and adds that the interpretation advanced by Abu Ja‘far is sound, but he has not supplied the reason; for the reason for the interpretation given above is that the Arabs often called a thing by the name of the recompense it brought, because of the relation which exists, and the comparison which can be made between the name and the recompense, since acts which bring a certain requital can fittingly be called by its name2.

Allah says: Those who consume the property of orphans unjustly, they only consume fire in their belies [4:10].

Thus, He called the consumed property, though in itself good; fire, because the punishment for it is fire.
________________________
1. T, ‘an jazai 'l-af‘al: N, al-jaza’ ‘ala 'l-af‘al, which is correct.

2. T, falamma kanati 'l-mujaza: N, falamma kanati 'l-af‘ali 'l-mujaza, which is correct.
Abu Ja‘far cites: "Forgetfulness, like beguiling, can only be applied to Allah in the sense that with this He will requite the evil-doers."

Abu ‘Abdillah adds that the true interpretation is not what has been advanced, because forgetfulness literaly signifies both abandonment and postponement. Allah, the Exalted, says:

Whatever verse We abrogate or cause to be forgotten, We bring one better than it or the like of it [2:106].

Now, here,'what We abrogate' means, 'We leave it in place or suspend it'. Hence, the Exalted, means by 'They forget Allah', that 'they departed from their obedience to Allah', and He meant by 'so He forgot them', that, 'He withdraws His mercy from them'. And He means by:

So He makes them forget their own souls [59:19]

that 'He made them uneasy through His withdrawal, and that He obliged them to disregard their own good and not to care for their own interest'. This is a tenable interpretation of the verse, though the other one, advanced by Abu Ja‘far, is not refuted, and Allah, the Exalted, is the granter of success.
Abu Ja‘far says: "Whenever we describe Allah, the Blessed, the Sublime, by the attributes of His essence,1 …..Abu ‘Abdillah, may Allah have mercy upon him, adds that the attributes of Allah are of two categories: the first are those relating to His essence and called, for this reason, the Attributes of Essence (sifatu 'dh-dhat); the second category are those relating to His acts and called the Attributes of Action (sifatu 'l- fi‘l).

The Attributes of Essence are those inherent in it, those of which the essence must necessarily be possessed, and hence cannot be separated from His essence. As for the Attributes of Action, they apply to Allah only at the time of the action and not before it. Moreover, the Attributes of Essence involve the description of Allah by epithets such as the Ever living (hayy), the Powerful (qadir), the Omniscient (‘alim), which Allah possesses eternally and forever, while the Attributes of Action, such as the Creator (khaliq), the Sustainer (raziq), the Giver of new life (muhyi, Revivifier), the Annihilator (mumit), the Originator (mubdi), the resurrector (mu‘id), are applicable only after the action and not before it.

The (second) distinction between the Attributes of Essence and those of Action is that, in the case of the Attributes of Essence, the opposite cannot be predicted of the One Who is in possession of them, and cannot be separated from them (i.e., these attributes), whilst in the case of the Attributes of Action, their opposites can be predicted to the Possessor, and He can be separated from them. You cannot say, for example, that He dies or is weak, or is ignorant, and you cannot describe Him as being anything other than Living, Knowing and Powerful, whilst you can say that Allah is not a Creator today, He is not the Giver of sustenance to Zayd, or that He is not the Giver of new life (Revivifier), or that He is not the Originator of something at this particular time, or He is not the Restorer of it.

Furthermore, Allah can be described by such antonyms as He gives and withholds, causes to live and causes to die, He originates and resurrects, He brings into existence and annihilates. This is the salient point2 which should be considered concerning the Attributes of Essence and Action; and the distinction between them.
________________________
1. N reads only: Faslun fi sifati 'dh-dhat wa sifati 'l-af‘al.

2. T, fathabatati 'l-‘ibrah: N, fathabatati 'l-ghayriyyah.
8. The Belief concerning the Origination of Human Actions
Ash-Shaykh Abu Ja‘far1, may Allah have mercy upon him, says: "Human actions are created (makhluqah), in the sense that Allah possesses fore-knowledge (khalq taqdir) [of them], and not in the sense that Allah compels mankind to act in a particular manner by creating a certain disposition (khalq takwin). The meaning of all this is that Allah never ceases to be aware of the potentialities (maqadir) of human beings."

Abu ‘Abdillah, may Allah have mercy upon him, says: The correct doctrine transmitted from the Family of the Prophet (Ahlu 'l-Bayt), may Allah bless him and his progeny, is that, "the actions of men are not created by Allah", and what is related by Abu Ja‘far is not a genuine traditions, and the authority for it not acceptable.

On the contrary, the genuine reports are diametrically opposed to it, so if this were so – as the un- scrupulous scholars maintained – then it could be said, for instance, that he who knew the Prophet 'created' him, or he who knew something about what the Almighty Allah has fashioned and proved it for himself (i.e., confirmed his belief in it) created this particular thing.

Thus the (rational) argument shows that this is a fallacy which even the rank and file of the Imams' following would not perpetrate, least of all the Imams themselves, peace be upon them. Predestination, however, linguistically implies creation, since to determine a thing involves action, while the knowledge, or conception, of a thing does not; yet in all circumstances Allah, the Exalted, is far removed from the creation of abominable or base deeds.

It has been related that Abu 'l-Hasan ‘Ali ibn Muhammad ibn ‘Ali ibn Musa ar-Rida, peace be upon them, was asked about human actions, whether they are created by Allah; he, peace be upon him, answered: "If He created their actions, He would not have dissociated Himself from them. Whereas He, the Exalted, stated that:

Allah renounces the polytheists (as does also) His Messenger [9:3],

which signifies that He dissociates Himself from their polytheism and base actions, and not from their beings."Abu Hanifah asked Abu '1-Hasan Musa ibn Ja‘far, peace be upon them both, about human actions, and from whom they proceed; he replied that there were three alternatives:-

i) that all actions are from Allah, the Sublime, or,

ii) that they proceed jointly from man and Allah, or iii) that they are from man alone.

Now, if they were all from Allah, the Sublime, then He alone deserves to be praised for their goodness or to be blamed for their baseness, and so praise or blame for them pertain to none save Him; if they are created jointly by Allah and His servant, then the praise or the blame would pertain to them both. Since these two alternatives are absurd, it is self-evident that human actions are all from men; it rests with Him; if He pleases, He has the right to punish them for their wickedness, or if He pleases He will pardon them, for the reward of piety and forgiveness is in His hands. And there are still further traditions and reports which can be adduced in support of this.
________________________
1. N, qala Abu Ja‘far .(without ash-Shaykh).
9. Concerning Human Actions (faslun fi af‘Ali 'L-khalq)
However, it is an established fact that the Book of Allah, the Exalted, takes precedence over the traditions and reports. Hence it should be the touchstone for determining the genuine reports and the fabrications. (If this fact is admitted), then whatever the Qur’an approves is absolutely true, and should be followed and that alone.

Now, the Almighty says:

Who has created all things well, and He originated the creation of man out of clay [32:7].

So He declares that whatever He has created is good and far from being abominable; had He created abomin- able actions, He would never have characterized them as praise- worthy actions. Moreover, the affirmation that what Allah has created is good refutes the assumption of those who maintained that Allah is the Creator of base actions.

The Almighty also says:

Thou seest not in the creation of the All-merciful any imperfection [67:3],

and since unbelief and falsehood are defects, so also is self-contradictory speech; how, then, can they attribute human actions to Allah, knowing that they are full of defects and contradictions, when Allah Himself denounced and rejected such attributions, and affirmed that: Thou seest not in the creation of the All-merciful any imperfection.
10. Predestination and Free Will (Al-Jabr wa 't-tafwid)
Ash-Shaykh Abu Ja‘far, may Allah have mercy upon him, says: "There is neither (complete) compulsion (or constraint) (on human beings), nor (complete) delegation (or freedom), but the matter is midway between the two [extremes] (amrun bayna amrayn)." Then he adduces, to support this definition, a mursal tradition. He was asked to define what was meant by 'an affair midway between the two'.

He said: "For instance, you see a man intent upon a crime and you forbid him to do it, but he does not desist, and you leave him; then he commits the crime. Now, because he did not accept (your advice) and you left him, this does not mean that you are the person who commanded him to commit the crime."

Ash-Shaykh al-Mufid, may Allah have mercy upon him ,comments that jabr is compulsion in respect of an act, and constraint by reason of coercion or overpowering; this involves the creation of an act in a living being without his having the power to reject or avoid it. It may convey, also, an action which, although within human capacity, a man might perform under compulsion or out of fear or constraint by reason of coercion.

Nevertheless, it originally conveys the meaning of the performance of an act without having the power to avoid it, as has been demonstrated above. Thus, if the above-mentioned definition of jabr (compulsion) is approved, then it represents precisely the doctrine of the advocates of the belief that actions are created by Allah.

This is because they hold that Allah has created the capacity in human beings, and that it is valid for one single action, and not for both the action and its opposite. And they maintain that Allah has created evil in human beings. So, they are, in fact Predestinarians (Mujabbirah) and uphold predestination unquestioningly.

As for delegation (tafwid)1 , this means the lifting of the restrictions religion imposes on human beings – together with absolute freedom and licence in their actions – and this is the doctrine of the dualists and nihilist (az-Zanadiqah wa ashabu 'l-ibahat)2 .

(We believe) that the correct doctrine is a middle course between these two extremes. Hence, although Allah has enabled man to act by virtue of the capacity with which He has endowed him, nevertheless, He has imposed with these restrictions, has delineated man's course of action, and has admonished him against abominable acts, through intimidation, and by His promises and threats; by thus enabling them, He does not constrain them to particular actions.

On the other hand, as He forbids many actions to men, and places limitations on them and commands them to do good and admonishes them against evil, (this shows that) He does not delegate the performance of their actions to them completely. This is the distinction between Compulsion and Delegation, as we have made it clear above.
________________________
1. See p.89.

2. 11 Prof. Nicholson gives the following explanation for the word zaddiq: "Zaddiq is an Aramaic word meaning 'righteous'. Its etymological equivalent in Arabic is siddiq, which has a different meaning, namely 'veracious'. Zaddiq passed into Persian in the form zandik, which was used by the Persians before Islam, and zindiq is the Arabicised form of the latter word". See A Literary History of the Arabs, p.375. Also, cf., Prof. Browne's A Literary History of Persia, (vol.1, pp.159-60).

This interpretation, however, is not accepted by some scholars like Prof. Massignon, L., see E.I, vo1.4, put out a new and non-orthodox explanation (zand) of the Avesta, and which p.1228. "Under the Sasanids, originally, this name branded anyone who dared was then applied to Manicheans and Mazdakites in particular". See Brockelman, C., History of the Islamic Peoples, Eng. Transl., p.113. "In Islam, it denotes", says Prof, Tritton, "a Manichee, any Dualist, a Buddist Monk and, later on, any free-thinker". See Islam, Belief and Practices, The Glossary, p.190.

The movement during the second part of the second century of the hijrah represented both a religious and political danger to Islam, which compelled Islam to combatit, politically by practical measures carried out by the government itself, and theologically, in the form of an intellectual revolt against dualist ideas in religion; this was left for the Mu‘tazilah who represented – as the late Michelangelo Guidi observed, "The militant wing of the orthodoxy against the dualist heresies". See Gibb, H.A.R., Studies on the Civilization of Islam, article no.4, 'The Social Significance of the Shuubiya', p.67. For a similar opinion, see al-Khayyat, Kitabu 'l-Intisar, the Introduction by the Editor, Nyberg, H.S.
11. The Belief concerning Allah's Intention and Will (Al-Mashiah Wa 'l-Iradah)
Ash-Shaykh Abu Ja‘far, may Allah have mercy upon him, says: "Allah wills (sha’a) and intends (arada), and He does not like (to be disobeyed) and He does not approve (of it); it is His will that nothing should take place except that of which He has knowledge, and His intention is the same."

Ash-Shaykh al-Mufid, may Allah have mercy upon him, comments that what has been mentioned by Abu Ja‘far, may Allah have mercy upon him, in this respect is not clear and leads to error and confusion, because he relied on the apparent meaning of divergent traditions (ahadith mukhtalifah)1 and following the transmitters without critical insight.

The fact of the matter is that Allah wills only good acts and intends only those that are seemly (becoming), and He does not will base actions, and does not intend sins. Allah is exalted far above what the liars assert. Allah says:

And Allah wishes no injustice for His servants [40:31],

and He, the Sublime, says:

Allah desires ease for you and desires not hardship for you [2:185];

and He, the Sublime, says:

Allah desires to make (things) clear to you, and to guide you in the ways of those who were before you [4:26].

He, the Sublime, says:

And Allah desires to turn to you (mercifully), and those who follow their lusts, desire that you should deviate (with great deviation) [ibid.27].

Also, He, the Sublime, says:

Allah desires to make your task light for you, for man is created weak [ibid 28].

Thus, He, the Praised, declares that He desires not hardship for His servants, instead He desires ease for them, and He intends to guide them, and He does not intend to delude them, and wills that their burdens should be light and He does not wish to overburden them.

So, if He wills that they should sin, then He would never have wished that they should be shown the way and that their burden should be made light and their path easy, whereas the Book of Allah bears witness to the opposite of what those in error assert falsely, that Allah is exalted above the assertion of the evil-doers.

As for the saying of Allah: Whomsoever Allah desires to guide, He enlarges his breast to Islam;

“and whomsoever He desires to lead astray, He makes his breast narrow and constricted [6:125]” 2

on which the Predestinarians are dependent in this matter, then there is no support for the advocates of predestination in this; since the meaning of the verse is that if Allah intends to bestow His grace and favor on man as the reward of his obedience, then He will enlarge his breast to Islam and endow him with His favors, by which he is enabled to continue in obedience.

Thus, hidayah (guidance) signifies here ni‘mah (grace). Allah says in the Qur’an, relating the speech of the people of Paradise:

All praise is due to Allah, Who guided us to this [7:43],

which means, 'Praise be to Allah Who favoured us with His guidance and rewarded us for it'.

In the same manner, dalal (error) is equivalent to punishment in the saying of Allah:

Surely the sinners are in error and insanity! [54:47].

Thus Allah called His punishment error and His grace guidance, and this because basically 'error' is equivalent to 'destruction' and 'guidance' to 'salvation'. Allah, the Almighty, relating the speech of the Arab polytheists, says:

What, when we have gone astray in the earth, shall we indeed be (again) in a new creation? [32:10],

which means, 'when we have been destroyed'.

Thus the meaning o

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