By Qadi Bohlool Bahjat Âfandi
Hadith-e-Ghadeer: Tradition of Ghadeer-e-Khumm
The Messenger of Allah (s a w) said, “Of whomsoever I am the Master, this Ali is his Master too. O Allah! Love those who love him and be an enemy to those who are inimical to him.” There is unanimity of the whole community of the Shia and Sunni scholars over the authenticity and correctness of this tradition. When the Messenger of Allah (s a w) reached a place called Ghadeer Khum on his return from the farewell Hajj (Hajjatul Widaa), he ordered the caravan to be halted and commanded that a pulpit be made from camel saddles. This was because he wanted to make an important announcement and a mammoth crowd awaited some important proclamation. As soon as the pulpit was ready, the holy Prophet (s a w) ascended and announced the above tradition verbatim.
The Holy Prophet (s a w) proclaimed, “Of whomsoever I am the Master, this Ali is his Master too. O Allah! Love those who love him and be an enemy to those who are inimical to him.”
The following great companions of the Prophet (s a w) heard this Hadith from the Messenger of Allah (s a w) and confessed to it: Khuzaima bin Thabit, Sahl bin Sa’ad, Adi bin Hatim, Uqbah Amir, Abu Ayyub Ansari, Abul Haitham bin Tayhan, Abdullah bin Thabit, Abu Ya’la Ansari, Noman bin Ajlam al- Ansari, Thabit bin Wadiya Ansari, Abu Faddalal Ansari, Abdul
Rahman bin Abde Rab, Junaida bin Junda, Zaid bin Arqam, Zaid bin Sharahil and others, Jabir bin Abdullah, Abdullah bin Abbas, Abu Saeed Khudri, Abuzar, Jubair bin Matam, Huzaifa bin
Yaman, Huzaifa bin Aseed and Salman al-Farsi. This tradition is reported by these great companions and recorded in books like Tarikh of Ibne Athir page 307 and Usudul Ghaabah, volume three. Also on page 321 of the same book volume three, page 308 of volume one, page 283 of volume eight, page 274 volume three. Also refer to Seerah-e-Halabi, volume three page 40, Yanaabiul Mawaddah, Sawaaequl Muhreqah. And this Hadith has been recorded in all the Sihah and accepted by their writers to be reliable. Specially Sahih Muslim, Nisaai, Tirmidhi, Ibne Maajah, Ahmad bin Hanbal and others. Let us now pay some attention to the explanation of this
Hadith: Did the holy Prophet (s a w) announce that of his own accord or was it commanded by Allah? Indeed, the Messenger of Allah never said anything of his own will, but that it was expressly commanded by Allah. Thus the above command was as per the order of Allah. Now was this announcement based on wisdom? Indeed all the divine commands are based on wisdom. Thus this was also a wise and important command.
However it would not be correct if it is to be limited to the love and affection to Ali (a s) because the verse of Mawaddah clearly orders the love for all the members of Ahle Bait (a s). There are also numerous prophetic traditions that support the verse of Mawaddat and openly announce the necessity of loving the Ahle Bait (a s). This particular Hadith is an express command to the people. Yes! From the context and matter of the Hadith, it is known that in every matter whatsoever, the Messenger of Allah (s a w) is a master; Ali (a s) is the master too. For, at the outset of his speech, the Prophet (s a w) had posed the question, “Do I not have more rights over you (the believers) than you have over yourselves?” And at the end of the Hadith, he (s a w) said, “One who considers me as his master, Ali is his master too.” Thus, it is clear that the aim of holy Prophet (s a w) in this Hadith was to announce the Wilayat (mastership) of Ali (a s) for all the people who considered the Prophet (s a w) to be their master (wali). We shall again refer to this Hadith under the discussion of Caliphate.
Hadith-e-Manzilah: The Tradition of Position
The Messenger of Allah (s a w) said: “O Ali! You hold the same position with me as Haroon had with Moosa, except that there is no prophet after me.” This Hadith is also famous among the writings of Muslim scholars. Most of the narrators have recorded this tradition without any hesitation or doubt. The authenticity of this tradition is underlined by its mention in books like Sahih Bukhari, Sahih Muslim, Tirmidhi, Hakim, Nisai, Ibne Maajah particularly, and other writings of the Shia and Sunni jurists. The tradition says, “O Ali! You are in relation to me in the same way as Haroon was to Moosa. Whatever position Haroon was having with Moosa, you have the same high position near me.”
Undoubtedly, the proof of the superiority of Amirul Momineen (a s) is clear by this Hadith. For, just as in the case of Haroon, no one was his equal in relation to Moosa (a s), similarly, no one was equal to Ali (a s) as far as his relationship with the holy Prophet (s a w) was concerned. Therefore it is not surprising that the Prophet (s.a.) had so much regard and attachment for Ali (a s).
Hadith-e-Tayr : The Tradition of the Bird
The Messenger of Allah (s a w) said, “O Allah! Send me the one who loves You and loves me most from Your creatures so that he may share with me this (roasted) bird.” Then Ali (a s) came and shared the meal with him. This Hadith is recorded in all the Sihah. The majority of Muslims have accepted this Hadith to be reliable. The full Hadith is as follows: One day a lady brought a roasted bird for the Messenger of Allah (s a w). Before he could partake it, the holy Prophet (s a w) prayed to the Almighty: “O Allah! Send to me one who is most loved by You and who loves me and You the most. So that he may accompany me in relishing this roasted bird.” In the due course, Ali (a s) came and shared the meal (with the Prophet). No Shia and Sunni scholar has omitted this Hadith in his writings. There is no doubt in the proof of the superiority of this Hadith. For the sake of clarity let us observe some important conclusion derived from this: Did the Almighty answer the Prophet’s prayer or did He reject it? Indeed the Almighty Allah always fulfilled the wishes and prayers of the holy Prophet (s a w). In this case the Almighty sent the favourite of the Prophet (s a w) and Himself to share the roasted bird. This person was none but Hazrat Ali Ibne abi Talib (a s). Nevertheless some sceptics ask, ‘Is it necessary that the most beloved of Allah and Prophet (s a w), has to be the most superior?’ Indeed, leaving the superior one to prefer the inferior is not expected from common people, so how could it be possible by Allah and the Prophet (s a w)? If one is the most beloved of the Almighty and the Prophet (s a w), it is necessary that he be the best of all the people. In this way Ali (a s) was the best of the creatures.
Hadith-e-Muwakhaat: Tradition of Brotherhood
This tradition has been recorded by Imam Ahmad bin Hanbal from Zaid bin Awfa, the writer of Mishkat from Ibne Umar, by Tirmidhi from Ibn Abi Awfa, Abdullah bin Ahmad Hanbal from Saeed bin Jubair, Ahmad from Abu Huzaifah Yamani, Nawfal from Jabir bin Abdullah, Hamveeni from Ibne Abbas, Akrama from Ibne Abbas and Zaid bin Arqam, Saeed bin Musayyib and Abi Umamah from Jumee bin Umayr.
All the Shia and Sunni scholars have accepted the Hadith of brotherhood. The writer of Mishkatul Anwaar and others, like the great Shaikh Muhiyuddin Arabi has certified it in his book Musamera, so much so that there hasn’t been a single person to cast aspersions on this matter. The meaning of the Hadith is as follows: At the time the holy Prophet (s a w) had established ties of brotherhood between the companions, Ali (a s) was seated near him. Ali (a s) said: O Messenger of Allah! You have made all the people brother of one or the other but you have not specified any person for my brotherhood?” The Messenger of Allah (s a w) said: “O Ali! You are my brother in this world and the hereafter.” The tradition is worded as follows: “O Ali! You are my brother in the world and the hereafter. And you are my legatee and you are the one who would fulfil my promise and the one who would repay my debts.” Let us now consider the effect of this Hadith on the proof of the superiority of Hazrat Ali (a s). Did the holy Prophet (s a w) announce this brotherhood from his own side or was it a divine command? Obviously it was by Allah’s command because any announcement from the Holy Prophet (s a w) is not possible without Allah’s permission.” “Nor does he speak out of desire. It is naught but revelation that is revealed.” (Surah Najm: 3-4) In the event of establishing brotherhood, does the person chosen for the brotherhood of the holy Prophet (s a w) has to be the most superior of the Ummah or it could be some inferior one? Indeed anyone chosen as the brother of the Messenger of Allah (s a w) has to be the best of the creatures because the holy Prophet (s a w) had announced brotherhood among the companions, keeping in mind their compatibility and matching status. In this way it was necessary that Ali (a s) had to be the most superior of the Ummah.
Hadith Madinatul Ilm: Tradition of the City of Knowledge
The Messenger of Allah (s a w) said, “I am the city of knowledge and Ali is its gate.” None among the Ummah has rejected this Hadith because it is well known and reliable among all Muslims and bears utmost importance in proving his superiority. So, please note that the Messenger of Allah (s a w) said, “I am the city of knowledge and Ali is its gate.” What is the importance of this prophetic saying? What was the aim of this lofty personality? Yes! It is well known that whenever a person intends to enter a city, he has to come through the door and any other alternative will be considered illegal.
Likewise, the followers of Islam are in need of the knowledge and wisdom of the holy Prophet (s a w) for the good of their world and the hereafter. And the key to this gate of mercy is Ali ibne Abi Talib (a s). In this way, if anyone wishes to benefit from the knowledge and wisdom of the Messenger of Allah (s a w), it is necessary that he make Ali (a s) the channel, because to enter a great town without going through the proper entrance is both difficult and illogical. Similarly it is senseless to derive any gain from the traditions of the Prophet (s a w) without the medium of Amirul Momineen (a s). Yes! This is a general principle! Rationality and traditions do not contradict each other in proving this principle. Thus there remains no scope to deny that Muslims are in need of Ali’s knowledge and wisdom. Ali (a s) is the source of (explanation of) the Sharia as well as Marefat (Divine Recognition).
Hadith-e-Zarbat: Tradition of the Sword-strike
The Messenger of Allah (s a w) said: “A sword strike of Ali (a s) on the battle of Khandaq (ditch) was superior to the combined worship of men and jinns till the day of Qiyamat.” Thus it is clear that on the day of recompense, the reward of the combined worship of all men and jinn will be one side and, leave alone the total deeds, a single sword strike of Ali (a s) on Amr Ibne Abdawod will be more superior. If at all a little thought is given to the correctness of this Hadith, everything will be clear. Let us try to understand this tradition. The day of Khandaq (ditch) is referred in Quran as the day of the confederates (Ahzaab). All the polytheistic tribes joined hands with the infidels of Quraysh to wage a war against the holy Prophet (s a w). The best warriors were gathered for this purpose.
The holy Prophet (s a w) found it difficult to confront the great might and he ordered a ditch to be dug around Madinah. Well-known warriors and fighters were present among the infidels, the most famous being Amr ibne Abdawod. Amr jumped into the ditch with his horse and challenged the holy Prophet (s a w). Ali Ibne Abi Talib (a s) sought the permission of the Prophet (s a w) but he did not immediately permit; just for the sake of testing his companions. Amr 48 challenged again, tauntingly. The companions remained silent! Once again Ali (a s) requested the Prophet (s a w) to allow him to accept the challenge of Amr. The Prophet (s a w) again refused permission to check the reaction of other companions. In the meantime, Amr began to recite the war poems (Rajaz) in his own praise! After getting permission from the Messenger of Allah (s a w), Ali (a s) wore the Prophet’s turban, tied the Prophet’s sword to his waist and jumped in the battlefield in fury. The Messenger of Allah (s a w) said, “Faith personified is facing disbelief incarnate.”
Thus, faith and disbelief faced each other and the Lion of God slew Amr. Faith triumphed over infidelity. A single sword strike of Ali (a s) on the day of ditch is superior to the combined worship of Jinn and men till the day of Qiyamat. Yes! It was possible that if Ali’s sword hadn’t been there, Amr ibn Abdawod might have destroyed the foundation of nascent Islam. Of what use had been the combined worship acts of men and jinn? Thus they are right who give Ali (a s) the title, “The second founder of Islam.” But Alas! How sad! What happened in the Ummah was just the opposite. And this controversial behaviour resulted in great calamities. Astonishing!
Why did such a tragic situation develop? Apart from the traditions quoted, there are thousands of authentic traditions that are accepted by all Muslims and considered reliable by them. We do not see any need to quote all such AHadith, reports and verses. Rather the superiority of Ali (a s) is proved for all the Ummah. If at all we try to present all the traditions and Quranic verses in favour of the superiority of Ali (a s), even a book equal to the size of Qamoos Al-Lughat or Qamoos al-A’laam will not suffice. Rather a book of the size of Qamoos al-Uloom or a multi-volume book like Dairatul Ma’rif would be required. The apt name of such a book would be Al-Behrul Zakhair fi Khizril Jawahir.
Translation from Persian: Syed Athar Husain Rizvi