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Verse of Religion Perfection Relates to Caliphate Too

The Shi‘ah unanimously agree that the saying of the Glorious and the Almighty: “This day have I perfected your religion for you and completed My favour unto you, and have chosen for you Islam as a religion,” was revealed at Ghadir Khumm after the Messenger of Allah (S) had designated al-’Imàm ‘Ali as his successor over the Muslims, as reported from the Pure ‘Itrah Imams. That is why they consider Imamah (Imamate) as one of the principles of religion (ustl al-Din).
Many of’ our ‘ulamà’ report its revelation at Ghadir Khumm, after the appointment of al-’Imàm ‘Ali, of whom I may mention, as an example:

1. Ibn ‘Asàkir, in Ta’rikh Dimashq, Vol.II,p.75.

2. Ibn al-Maghàzili al-Shàfi‘i, in Manàqib ‘Ali ibn Abi Tàlib, p.19

3. Al-Khatib al-Baghdàdi, in Ta’rikh Baghdàd, Vol.VIII P.290.

4. Al-Suytti, in al-’Itqàn, Vol.I,p.31.

5. Al-Khwàrazmi al-Hanafi, in al-Manàqib, P.80

6. Al-Sibt ibn al-Jawzi, in Tadhkirat al-Khawàss, p.30.

7. Ibn Kathir, in his Tafsir, Vo.lII, p.14.

8. Al-’Altsi, in Rth al-ma‘àni, vol.VI, p.55

9. Ibn Kathir al-Dimashqi, in al-Bidàyah wa al-nihàyah, vol.V, P.213

10. Al-Suytti, in al-Durr al-manthtr fi al-tafsir bi al-ma’thtr vol.III, p.19.

11. Al-Qundtzi al-Hanafi, in Yanàbi‘ al-mawaddah, p.115.

12. Al-Hasakàni al-Hanafi, in Shawàhid al-tanzil, vol.I.p.157.

I say, despite this fact, the Ahl al-Sunnah ‘ulamà’ have no choice but to interpolate this verse to denote another occasion, in order to safeguard the dignity of good ancestors among the Sahàbah. Because, had they admitted its revelation to be at Ghadir Khumm, this would have meant their tacit recognition that Allah has perfected the religion and completed His favour upon the Muslims, through the wilàyah (mastership) of ‘Ali ibn Abi Tàlib. Besides, this would have meant the abolition of the successorship of the three precedent Caliphs, with causing disruption for the Companions justice (‘adàlah), and dissolution of many well-known traditions like the dissolution of salt inside water. This being an impossible thing and blatant misfortune since it is relevant to the creed (‘aqidah) of a huge coommunity (ummah) having its known history, and ‘ulamà’ and glories. As it is infeasible for us to deny ‘ulamà’ like al-Bukhàri and Muslim, who report that this verse was revealed at the night of ‘Arafàt on Friday.

In this way, all the early narrations would turn to be only Shi’i baseless superstitions, and vilifying the Shi‘ah would become more proper than speaking ill of the Sahàbah who being (as regarded by Ahl al-Sunnah) immune against error (ma‘stmtn),91 and it is impermissible for anyone to cirticize their acts or sayings. While the Shi‘ah being only Majus (Magians), infidels, Zanadiqah and idolaters, and the founder of their school of thought (madhhab) being ‘Abd Allàh ibn Saba’,92 who was a jew that embraced Islam during the reign of ‘Uthmàn, with the aim of conspiring against the Muslims and Islam. This being a much easier means to misguide the Ummah, that was brought up on glorifying and venerating the Sahàbah (anyone of them even that who saw the Prophet only once). How can be able to persuade them that those narrations being not Shi’i superstitions, but in fact traditions of the Twelve Imams, upon whose Imamate there are authentic texts. The Imams who, the Islamic governments managed in the first century to grow the love and respect towards the Sahàbah inside the hearts of people versus creating hatred and grudge against ‘Ali and his sons, to the extent of cursing them from over pulpits, prosecuting their Shi‘ah (followers) and subjecting them to massacres and scatterness and homelessness. Out of this, strong destation and hatred against all the Shi‘ah grew inside hearts of people, as a result of the rumours, superstitions and corrupt beliefs propagated by the mass media against the Shi‘ah during the reign of Mu‘àwiyah, as they were considered the opposition party, as called nowadays, in order to seclude and exterminate them.

Therefore, many writers and historians of those ages even call them al-Rawafid (Rafidites), charging them with impiety, deeming their blood (killing them) as lawful for the sake of showing sycophancy for the rulers. After the disintegration of the Umayyad State and coming of the ‘Abbàsid State, some of the historians followed their suit, white some others realized the reality of Ahl al-Bayt (A), trying to make compromise and equity through adding the name of "Ali to the Rightly-guided Caliphs, without daring to express his right and superiority. Therefore they don’t report in their Sihàh but only very few of ‘Ali’s virtues, that never contradict the caliphate of those who preceded him. Some of them have even composed traditions in the honour of Abt Bakr, ‘Umar and ‘Uthmàn ascribing them to ‘Ali himself, in order to close the door (as they claim) before the Shi‘ah believing in his superiority.
Through researching and investigation, I found out that men’s fame and greatness being evaluated according to their hatred against ‘Ali ibn Abi Tàlib, so the Umayyads and ‘Abbàsids used to bring near and glorify whoever fought or stood against al-’Imàm ‘Ali by sword or tongue. Thus they were imparting high positions upon some Companions and belittling some others, expending much fortune on some poets, slaying others. ‘A’ishah Umm al-Muminin might have not enjoyed such good status among them, hadn’t she harboured such detestation and animosity against ‘Ali.94

Further,we see too the ‘Abbàsids sublimate the position of al-Bukhàri, Muslim and al-’Imàm Màlik, since they have not recorded of ‘Ali’s virtues but only very few, or rather their books expressly state that ‘Ali ibn Abi Tàlib had no honour or merit at all. Al-Bukhàri in his Sahih, under the chapter “Manaqib ‘Uthmàn” (Excellences of ‘Uthmàn), reported from Ibn ‘Umar who said: “During the lifetime of the Prophet, may Allah’s peace and benediction be upon him and his progeny, we were never regarding anyone equal to Abt Bakr, and after him ‘Umar and then ‘Uthmàn, leaving afterwards the Prophet’s Companions with no preferentiability among them,95 That is, he considered ‘Ali like all other common people (How astonishing is this)!!

Besides, there are other cults within the Ummah, such as the Mu’tazilah and Khawàrij and others, who do not hold the same belief of the Shi‘ah, due to the fact that the Imamate of ‘Ali and his sons after him, would verily curb them from attaining to caliphate, seizing the affairs of people and making of their fate, and properties as a plaything in their hands, as done by Banu Umayyah and Banu al-’Abbas during the era of the Sahàbah and Tàbi‘tn, to the present time. The reason behind this being that the time rulers who attained to power whether through heredity like kings and sovereigns, or even the presidents elected by their peoples, are averse to this dogma, i.e. the faithful’s believing in the caliphate of Ahl al-Bayt. They even deride this theocratic notion, which is only held by the Shi‘ah, especially when those Shi‘ah having weak-mindedness and stupidity to the extent that they believe in the Imamate of the Awaited al-Mahdi, who will fill the earth with equity and justice after being filled with oppression and tyranny.

We return to discuss, calmly and unfanatically, the ideas held by the two parties, to realize the occasion and purpose of the revelation of the verse of perfection of religion, so that truth be quite clear for us to follow. After that we have nothing to do with pleasure of these or displeasure of those ones, as long as we seek Allah’s pleasure in the first hand, and deliverance from His chastisement on the way when wealth and sons avail not (any man), save him who brings unto Allah a whole heart (26:88,89). On the Day when (some) faces will be whitened and (some) faces will be blackened, and as for those whose faces have been blackened, it will be said unto them; Disbelieved ye after your (profession of) belief? Then taste the punishment for that ye disbelieved. And as for those whose faces have been whitened, in the mercy of Allah they dwell for ever. (3.106,107).


86. Sahih Muslim, Vol. VII,p.122 “bàb fadà’il ‘Ali”.

87. Ibn Hajar in his Sawà‘iq, p. 25, on the authority of al-Tabaràni and al-Hakim and al-Tirmidhi.

88. Musnad al-’Imàm Ahmad ibn Hanbal, Vol. IV, p. 281; also in Kanz al-‘ummàl, Vol. XV, p. 117; and Fadà’il al-Khamsah min al-Sihàh al-Sittah, Vol. I, p. 350.

89. The book al-Ghadir of al-‘Allàmah al-’Amini, in eleven volumes. It is a valuable book in which its author collected and compiled whatever was written about Hadith al-Ghadir, from the Sunnah books.

90. Al-Bukhàri and Muslim reported in their Sahihs several contradictions on the part of them (Sunni ‘ulamà’), as in the event of Hudaybiyyah Peace Treaty, and also the event of Thursday Misfortune, and many other events and cases.

91. Because they (Ahl al-Sunnah) believe the Sahàhbah (Companions) to be like the stars “whomever you follow you shall be guided rightly.”

92. Refer to the book ‘Abd Allàh ibn Saba’ of al-‘Allàmah al-‘Askari, so as to realize that he had never existed at all, and that he was merely one of the fabrications of Sayf ibn `Umar al-Tamimi, who was widely known with falsification and lying. Refer also to Tàhà Husayn’s book al-Fitnat al-Kubrà, or further the book al-Silah bayn al-tasawwuf wa al-tashayyu‘ of Dr. Mustafà Kàmil al-Shaybi, so as to know that this ‘Abd Allàh ibn Saba’ being in fact our master ‘Ammàr ibn Yàsir (may God be pleased with him).

93. This is due to the fact that the Imams of Ahl al-Bayt (A) seized the hearts and assumed such fame through their morals and knowledge, which filled the East and the West. And also through their zuhd (asceticism), taqwà (piety), and the honour and virtues bestowed upon them by Allah.

94. She (‘A’ishah) could never endure hearing or mentioning ‘Ali’s name. Some historians say that when the news of his death reached her, she performed thanksgiving prostration with chanting some poetry verses. This was reported by al-Bukhàri in his Sahih, Vol. I, p. 162; Vol. VII, p. 18; and Vol. V, p. 140.

Adapted from the book: "To Be With the Truthful" by: "Muhammad al-Tijani al-Samawi"

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