By Qadi Bohlool Bahjat Âfandi
Abu Hurayrah, the Companion of the Prophet (s.a.w.a.)
Abu Hurayrah was a companion of the holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.), who embraced Islam in the year of the battle of Khaibar. Being unemployed all the time, he always accompanied the holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.). Also, as he was aware of the real attitude of Abu Hurayrah the Prophet (s.a.w.a.) said, “O Abu Hurayrah! Visit me only occasionally, so that your love for me increases.”
This shows that Abu Hurayrah did not love the Prophet (s.a.w.a.). However, this matter is beyond the domain of our discussion here. Yes! Abu Hurayrah is the greatest narrator of Ahle Sunnat traditions and in their view his reports are reliable. In spite of the fact that this humble writer himself was from the Ahle Sunnat, he considers the errors of Abu Hurayrah opposed to justice. A few examples are mentioned below: According to a correct report the holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) said: “The foremost transgressor of this nation will be a person from Bani Umayyah.” Abu Hurayrah witnessed the great transgression during the rule of Mu’awiyah yet he supported all this injustice, while the truth and righteousness were with Amirul Momineen (a.s.).
Ultimately Mu’awiyah had Ali (a.s.) martyred and Abu Hurayrah still kept quiet. It is obvious that justice and injustice cannot be present at one place and it is not possible to prove that Abu Hurayrah was just. Another example: When Mu’awiyah was taking the oath of allegiance for his son Yazeed, some people opposed this, especially the people of Medina. Mu’awiyah sent the tyrant Busr bin Artat to terrorize the people of Madinah. Seven thousand companions of the holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) were slain and more than three hundred chaste women were arrested and paraded naked in the market place to be sold as slaves. If we refer to the books of great Ahle Sunnat scholars, namely, Aghani of Abul Faraj, Iqdul Farid of Jawzi, Jahiz, the well-known historian Ibne Khaldun, Ibne Kallikan, Tafsir Kabir of Tabari, Ibne Abil Hadid, Allamah Damiri and the writer of Fitratul Islam, we shall see that this tragic incident is recorded with all its details. All the histories prove the co-operation of Abu Hurayrah and Busr bin Artat. Finally after committing such atrocities, Busr appointed Abu Hurayrah over the affairs of Madinah and himself set off to Yemen or Makah! It should be known that Abu Hurayrah, who was once a companion of the holy Prophet (s.a.) had reached a stage when he became a stooge of Mu’awiyah and Busr bin Artat, and actively participated in terrorizing the people of Madinah. While the holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) has said that “One who terrorizes the people of Medina will be terrorized by Allah and Allah will curse him and will not accept any of his deeds.” Now I would like to state that since Abu Hurayrah helped and supported Busr in oppressing and terrorizing the people of Madinah, he (Abu Hurayrah) did not remain just (Adil) anymore. Therefore traditions related by him are not reliable and correct. Secondly, Abu Hurayrah said: “Although prayers behind Ali is best, the dining table of Mu’awiyah is the richest.” Abu Hurayrah himself confessed that truth was with Hazrat Ali (a.s.) and Mu’awiyah was evil personified and his food illegitimate. Yet, he followed the path of falsehood, which is against the requirement of justice. Yes! The aim of this discussion is that just being a companion does not qualify one for reliability and authenticity. Rather, there were some people who in spite of their being with companions had committed such deeds that were absolutely opposed to justice and truth. We had mentioned that the foremost among the traditional proofs is the Holy Quran, followed by the traditions of the Prophet (s.a.w.a.). The verses of the Holy Quran prove the superiority of Hazrat Ali (a.s.). Here we present two examples: First Verse “Allah only desires to keep away the uncleanness from you, O people of the House and to purify you a (thorough) purifying.” (Surah Ahzaab: 33) The Almighty Allah said the truth. The Muslim Ummah is unanimous that the above verse was revealed to felicitate the five holy personages of the cloak, foremost among them being Amirul Momineen (a.s.).
Now we shall examine how this verse imparts superiority to Hazrat Amirul Momineen (a.s.). Infallibility is a virtue the like of which is not found in the creatures. Infallibility of the angels is not of the same rank because they were inculcated with it in consonance with their creation. The infallibility of human beings belongs to the same type. The verse clearly proves the infallibility of the people of the cloak, and of course, Ali (a.s.) being amongst them. For, this verse has remove d all the uncleanness and sins from the people of the cloak, not that after having committed wrongs they were purified from dirt. Actually, they had not any basis of committing wrongs.
Apart from these personages none of the creatures are bestowed with such a quality and neither shall anyone obtain it in future. Please pay attention! Is there anyone among the people apart from the people of the cloak, who could claim this merit? If anyone does so he would be obliged to present the arguments to prove his claim. Proofs, as mentioned above are of two types: Rational as well as traditional. We have established by rational proofs that Amirul Momineen Ali (a.s.) was the most superior among the Muslim people. Reason agrees to this without any hesitation. We have also proved by traditional proofs that after the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.), the best of the people and the possessors of immaculate purity were the Ahle Bait (a.s.), comprising Ali (a.s.), Fatema (s.a.), Hasan and Husain (a.s.). Second verse “Say: I do not ask of you any reward for it but love for my near relatives.” (Surah Shura 42:23)
Muslim scholars are unanimous that the Almighty Allah commands the Prophet (s.a.) in this verse, “Say: I do not want any recompense for the service of prophethood except the love of my near kin that is the most important duty of every Muslim.” There is also agreement that the near kin of Allah’s prophet (s.a.) are only Ali, Fatima, Hasan and Husain (a.s.). Now persons whose love and affection is an obligatory religious duty must necessarily be the best and superior of all the people. Also because love of anyone is not obligatory on Ali (a.s.), rather his 39 love and affection is wajib for all Muslim people in the light of this verse. This proves that Ali (a.s.) was the most superior to all the people.
In the Holy Quran, there are several clear verses that amply prove Ali (a.s.) was the best of the Muslim nation but here we do not feel the necessity of uoting more of such examples. We are content to mention only these two verses, as they are sufficient to prove our point. Let us consider the traditions of the Holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) that announce the superiority of Ali (a.s.) over all the people. All the traditions that prove this will not be discussed because to bring all such traditions would require volumes. We shall be content to quote only some of these traditions. However, the traditions that are quoted below are those traditions that are reliable and acceptable to all the Muslims. They are not even in need of any exposition or interpretation. Shia and Sunni scholars and other Islamic sects also agree to their correctness and have faith in them.
Hadith-e-Thaqlain: Tradition of Two Weighty Things
Several companions have narrated and especially the six authentic books of traditions (Sihah-e-Sittah) including Bukhari and Muslim, Ahmad bin Hanbal and Malik Ibne Anas have recorded this tradition and certified the authenticity of this Hadith. Here we mention the text of this Hadith omitting the chain of narrators. The holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) said: “Certainly I leave among you two heavy things. If you attach yourself to them, you will not go astray after me. One of them is greater than the other. (One is) the book of Allah, (which is) a firm rope from the heaven to the earth, and (secondly) my progeny, my Ahle Bait. They shall not separate with each other until they reach me at the pool. Then be careful how you deal with them.”
The Muslim Ummah is unanimous that this Hadith applies to the progeny of the Prophet (s.a.w.a.) who were bestowed with this trust. They denote only Ali (a.s.), Fatima (s.a.) and Hasan and Husain (a.s.). The narrator, Ibne Habban says: I went with Masruf and asked Zaid Ibne Arqam regarding this and he said that they had asked the Prophet (s.a.w.a.) if his pure wives were also included in the progeny? To this the holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.) replied, “No! They are not included in it. Don’t you see that the divorced woman is included in the progeny of her father?” Now what is the effect of these traditions on the proofs of the superiority of Ali (a.s.)? Yes! It is clear that a sane person when he goes out on a journey etc. makes bequest regarding his important affairs.
Therefore the holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.), prior to his departure from this world, entrusted two important things to his Ummah – his progeny and the book of Allah. Now let us consider whether this was ordered by the Almighty or was it a personal decision of the holy Prophet (s.a.w.a.). Verily, the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.) did not say anything of his own accord (including this announcement). He was only echoing the command of the Almighty. Did the Almighty and the Prophet (s.a.w.a.) bequeath great and honourable things or were they petty and unimportant? Indeed the Prophet (s.a.w.a.) did not make a bequest regarding unimportant things. In this case, there are only two things: The words of Allah and the progeny of the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.). And after the Prophet (s.a.w.a.), these two things are most superior and respected over all things. The tradition clearly indicates that these two trusts will not separate from each other till Qiyamat. That is, wherever there is the word of Allah, love and affection of Ahle Bait (a.s.) should also be there. And wherever there is no love and affection for
Ahle Bait (a.s.), there is no respect for the words of Allah (Quran). For example: When Mu’awiyah rebelled against Ali (a.s.) and committed transgression, he gathered all the rebellious people like him and raised a standard of revolt perpetrating heinous crimes. In the battle of Siffeen, when they were about to be defeated, they raised the pages of Holy Quran aloft the spears and announced to the army of Amirul Momineen (A.S.), “We invite you for an arbitration by the Quran.” Those wretched people had forgotten that it was impossible to benefit from the Quran while rejecting the progeny (Itrah) of the Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.a.). How could it to be when the Prophet (s.a.w.a.) has said: “The two will not separate from each other till they meet me on the day of Qiyamat.” But at Siffeen, they drew the swords against Ali, Hasan and Husain (A.S.) while feigning reverence to the Quran!
The most surprising thing was that some scholars have tried to justify the gross misdeeds and usurpation of Mu’awiyah and veiled the crimes and irreligious acts of this renegade! Mu’awiyah committed all such indecencies only to obtain worldly riches but the Mullahs have denied the clear truth. Now what can be said of such an attitude?
Translation from Persian: Syed Athar Husain Rizvi