Origins of the Shia Sect
“Harmuzan, we Arabs are the desert-dwellers you considered too lowly for even fighting with. We used to get licked by small columns of your troops. Now you see your King’s throne and crown lying at our feet while he is running about places to save his life. How did that happen?”
“Sir, then it used to be a war between the Persians and the Arabs. Now you have your God with you."
Nahjul Balagha, Sermon 91
When people decided to swear allegiance at Amir al-mu’minin’s hand after the murder of Uthman, Ali said:
“Leave me and seek someone else. We are facing a matter which has (several) faces and colors, which neither hearts can stand nor intelligence can accept. Clouds are hovering over the sky, and face are not discernible. You should know that if I respond to you that I would lead you as I know and would not care about whatever [anyone else] may say. If you leave me, then I am the same as you are. It is possible I would listen to and obey whoever you make in charge of your affairs. I am better for you as a counselor than as chief.”
(source: Al-Islam.org, http://www.al-islam.org/nahj/)
Nahjul Balagha, Sermon 205
“By Allah, I had no liking for the caliphate nor any interest in government, but you yourselves invited me to it and prepared me for it.”
(source: Al-Islam.org, http://www.al-islam.org/nahj/)
“In the beginning of our matter, the people of Syria [Muawiyyah’s forces] and us met. It is obvious that our God is one, our Prophet is one, and our call in Islam is one. We do not see ourselves more in faith in Allah or more in believing His messenger than them, nor they do. Our matter is one, except for our disagreement in Uthman’s blood, and we are innocent from his murder.” [Nahjul Balagha, vol.3, p.648]
Shia: Historical Background1. What does the word "Shi'a" mean?
"The thing began in this way: We and the Syrians were facing each other while we had common faith in one Allah, in the same Prophet (s) and on the same principles and canons of religion. So far as faith in Allah and the Holy Prophet (s) was concerned we never wanted them (the Syrians) to believe in anything over and above or other than what they were believing in and they did not want us to change our faith. Both of us were united on these principles. The point of contention between us was the question of the murder of Uthman. It had created the split. They wanted to lay the murder at my door while I am actually innocent of it."
"I dislike you starting to abuse them, but if you describe their deeds and recount their situations that would be a better mode of speaking and a more convincing way of arguing. Instead of abusing them you should say, "O' Allah! save our blood and their blood, produce reconciliation between us and them, and lead them out of their misguidance so that he who is ignorant of the truth may know it, and he who inclines towards rebellion and revolt may turn away from it."
"The first (person) who planted the seed of Shi'asm in the field of Islam, is no other than the Prophet himself. In other words, the seed of Shi'asm was placed side by side with the seed of Islam coequally. Its planter (the Prophet [saw]) continued to care for it by irrigating it until it grew and prospered during his life time, then bore fruits after his death"
" The origin of lies in Ahadith of virtues, started with the Shi'ites who fabricated various Ahadith in the virtues of their Imams. It was the enmity they held against their adversaries that drove them to fabricate them" See Sharh Nahujul-Balaghah, vol.1, p.783 (Quoting from al-Shi'a wat-Tashayyu', p.19)
" The Messenger [sawa] died in the month of Rabi' al-Awwal, in the year 10 of Hijra at age 63 and the duration of his prophethood was for 23 years, and his mother is Aaminah bint Wahab bin Abdi Manaaf bin Zuhra bin Kilaab bin Murra bin Ka'b bin Lu'ay bin Ghaalib. (At his death) The Ummah was divided into three groups. One group was called the Shi'ites, who were the Shi'ites of Ali bin Abi Taleb [as] and from them all Shi'i sects broke away. Another (group) claimed the right of succession, i.e., al-Ansaar, who called for the inauguration of Sa'd bin Ubadah al-Khazraji. A (Third) group tilted toward giving the Bay'ah (allegiance) to Abu Bakr bin Abi Qahaafah, with an excuse that the Messenger [sawa] did not name a particular successor rather left it for the Ummah to chose whom it wills...." (Firaq al-Shi'a: pp. 23-24)
"The call for Shi'asm started with the day when Grand Savior Muhammad [sawa] shouted the word La Ilaha illallah in Makka's sections and mountains....and hence, the call to become a Shi'ite for Abu al-Hasan [as] (Ali) by the Prophet [sawa] went side by side with the call for the two testimonies"
"When Talha and Az-Zubair disagreed with Ali and accepted no less than the revenge for the blood of Othman, and Ali mobilized his forces to fight them, those who followed him were then given the title, Shi'ites." (Al-Fihrist, Ibn al-Nadim: p.249, from Ash-Shi'a wat-Tashayyu': Ehsan Elahi Zaheer, p.25)
" The independence of the term indicating Shi'asm came about only after the murder of al-Husain whereby Shi'ism became an independent entity with a distinctive identity" (The Link Between Sufism & Shi'asm: Mustafa Kamil al-Shaybi, p.23, From Ash-Shi'a wat-Tashayyu', Ehsan Elahi Zaheer, p.26)
The well known Shi'ite "Who's Who" critic, al-Najashi in his al-Fihrist, wrote:
"al-Hasan bin Musa: Abu Muhammad al-Nubakhti, the well versed in dialects, who surpassed the peers of his time prior and after year 300 (hijra)" (Al-Fihrist: al-Najashi, p.47; From Ash-Shi'a was-Sunnah, p.22)
"Abu Muhammad, dialectist and philosopher, was an Imami (shi'ite), an upright in faith, trustworthy (thiqah)....and he is one of the scholars' landmarks" (Al-Fihrist: At-Tusi, p.98; From Ash-Shi'a Was-Sunnah, p.22)
"al-Hasan bin Musa, one of the celebrity of this sect and its scholars. He was a dialectist, a philosopher, an Imami in faith" (Majaalis al-Mu'mineen: Nurallah At-Tasturi, p.177; from Ash-Shi'a was-Sunnah, p.22)
"Abdullah bin Saba', was one of those who slandered Abu Bakr, Omar, Othman and the Companions and disowned them. He claimed that it was Ali [as] who enjoined this on him. Ali arrested him, and upon interrogation, admitted to the charge, and (Ali) ordered him to be executed. The People cried 'O Chief of Believers ! Do you execute a man calling to your love, Ahlul-Bayt, to your allegiance, and disowning your enemies?' He (Ali) then exiled him to al-Mada'in (Capital of Iran back then). Some of the knowledgeable companions of Ali [as] narrated that Abdullah bin Saba' was a Jew who embraced Islam and sided with Ali [as]. That he was of the opinion, at the time when he was a Jew, claiming that Yousha' bin Noon is after Moses. After his submission to Islam, after the demise of the Prophet [pbuh], he claimed the same for Ali [as]. He was the first to publicly mandate the Imamah of Ali [as], disowning his enemies, and debated his opponents. From thence, those who oppose Shi'ism say: The origin of Shi'ism is rooted in Judaism. When Abdullah bin Saba' heard of the demise of Ali while in (his exile at) al-Mada'in, he said to the announcer of the news: 'You are a liar, if you are to bring his head in seventy bags, and brought seventy witnesses testifying to his death, we'll insist that he did not die nor murdered, and (he) shall not die till he rules the globe' ". (Firaq al-Shi'a: Nubakhti, pp. 43,44)
"He is trustworthy (thiqah), an adept, an expert in traditions and men, very knowledgeable, well founded in faith, on the upright path......The most important books on biographies of men are four, which are heavily depended on and (considered) the four basic pillars in this field, the most important and earliest of all is: Ma'rifat al-Naqileen anil-A'immah As-Sadiqeen (Knowing the Transmitters on The Authority of The Truthful Imams) known as Rijaal al-Kash-shi". (Rijaal al-Kash-shi: al-Najaashi, Introduction)
"Some people of knowledge mentioned that Abdullah bin Saba' was a Jew, who embraced Islam and supported Ali. While he was still a Jew, he used to go to extremism in calling Yousha' bin Noon as the appointee (successor) of Moses, thus after embracing Islam - after the demise of the Messenger of Allah [pbuh] - he said the like about Ali. It was him who first publicly announced the mandatory Iamamah for Ali, rejected and disowned his enemies, debated his opponents and called them Kafirs. Hence, those who oppose the Shi'ites often say: The Shi'ites and Rejectors (Rafidah) have their roots in Judaism." (Rijaal al-Kash-shi: Abu 'Amr bin Abdul Aziz al-Kash-shi, p.101 al-Mamaqaani, author of "Tanqeeh al-Maqaal", who is an authoritative Shi'i biogropher quoted the like in his said book, p.184)
1. "Narrated to me Muhammad bin Qolawaih: Narrated to me Sa'd bin Abdullah, said: Narrated to us Yaqoub bin Yazeed and Muhammad bin Issa from Ali bin Mahziyar, from Fadalah bin Ayoub al-Azdi, from Abban bin Othman said: I heard Abu Abdullah [as] saying:
'May Allah curse Abdallah bin Saba', he claimed a divineship for Amirul-Mu'mineen (Ali) [as]. By Allah, Amierul-Mu'mineen [as] was volunterily the slave of Allah. Woe to him who lie about us, for there are people who say about us what we don't say about ourselves, we clear ourselves to Allah from them, we clear ourselves to Allah from them'."
2. "Narrated Yaqoub bin Yazeed from Ibn Abi Omair and Ahmad bin Muhammad bin Issa, from his father and al-Husain bin Sa'eed, from Hisham bin Salim, from Abu Hamza al-Thumali said: Ali bin al-Husain [as] said:
'May the curse of Allah be upon those who tell lies about us. I mentioned Abdullah Ibn Saba and each hair in my body stood up, Allah cursed him. Ali (AS) was, by Allah, a proper servant of Allah, the brother of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH). He did not earn the graciousness/honor from Allah except with the obedience to Allah and His Messenger. And (similarly) the Messenger of Allah (PBUH) did not earn the honor from Allah except with his obedience to Allah'."
3. Narrated Muhammad bin Khalid At-Tayalisi, from Ibn Abi Najran, from Abdullah bin Sinaan said: Abu Abdullah [as] said:
"We are a family of truthfulness. But we are not safe from a liar telling lies about us to undermine our truth with his lies in front of people. The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) was the most truthful among people in what he said (Lahjatan) and the most truthful among all humanity; and Musaylima used to lie on him. The Commander of Believers (AS) was the most truthful one among the creation of Allah after the Messenger of Allah; and the one who used to lie on him, and tried to undermine his truthfulness and claimed lies about Allah, was Abdullah Ibn Saba."
(Ibid, pp. 100 -101)
"Abdullah bin Saba' returned to disbelief and showed extremism. He claimed prophethood, and that Ali [as] was Allah (in the flesh). Ali [as], for three (consecutive) days asked him to repent but he failed, thereupon, he [as] burned him (alive) with seventy other men who attributed divinity to him" (Kitaab al-Rijaal: al-Hilly, p.469, printed in Tehran, Iran 1383 h. From Ash-Shi'a wat-Tashayyu', p.56)
"Abdullah bin Saba' claimed prophethood and that Ali [as] is himself Allah the Most Exalted. Upon hearing this charge, Amirul-Mu'mineen called and inquired it from him. When he admitted, he said to him: back off from this say and repent, may your mother lose you. However; (Ibn Saba') refused, and (Ali) held him for three days, and, still refusing to repent, he therefore burned him (alive)." (Manhaj al-Maqaal: al-Astar Abadi, p.203, from: Ash-Ashia wat-Tashayyu', p.56 )
"When Abdullah bin Saba' learned that the opposition to Othman in Egypt was greater, he went there and pretended the knowledge and righteousness until the people trusted him. After he established himself there, he started to propagate his ideas and theory, that for each Prophet was an appointed successor, and the appointee (wasi) of the Apostle of Allah and his successor is no other than Ali, who is blessed with knowledge and Fatwa, ornamented with generousity and courage, and known for his honesty and righteousness. He further said: The Ummah has wronged Ali, usurped his right, the right of Khilafah (succession) and Walayah (allegiance). It is incumbent upon you all to aid and support him. He (immediately) revoked his obedience and allegiance to Othman, and touched many Egyptians with his sayings and deeds, and they revolted against Othman." (Tareekh Shi'i: Rawdat As-Safa, vol.2, p.292, Tehran Ed., From: Ashi'a wat-Tashayyu' , p.56)
01- Abu al-Hasan Ali bin Abi Taleb al-Murtada 10 bh- 40 ah
وروي عن زرارة أنه قال ، قلت للصادق ـ عليه السلام ـ : ( إن رجلا من ولد عبد الله بن سبأ يقول بالتفويض.
قال ـ عليه السلام ـ : ( وما التفويض ) ؟ قلت : يقول : إن الله عزوجل خلق محمدا صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم وعليا ـ عليه السلام ـ ثم فوض الأمر (4) إليهما ، فخلقا ، ورزقا ، وأحييا ، وأماتا.
فقال : ( كذب عدو الله ، إذا رجعت إليه فاقرأ عليه الآية التي في سورة الرعد ( أم جعلوا لله شركاء خلقوا كخلقه فتشابه الخلق عليهم قل الله خالق كل شيء وهو الواحد القاهر ) (5). فانصرفت إلى رجل فأخبرته بما قال الصادق ـ عليه السلام ـ (6) فكأنما ألقمته حجرا ، أو قال : فكأنما خرس.
And it is related from Zurara that he said: I said to Imam Ja'far as-Sadiq that a man from among the descendants of Abdullah Ibn Saba is a believer in (the doctrine of) delegation (tafwid). And he said: And what is tafwid? I (Zurara) said: According to him Allah, the Mighty and Glorious, (in the first instance) created Muhammad and 'Ali, and then delegated the matter (of creation) to them, and these two created and gave sustenance, and caused life and death. The Imam said: He, the enemy of Allah, has lied. When you return to him recite to him the verse of the Chapter of The Thunder: "Or assign they unto Allah partners who created the like of His creation so that the creation (which they made and His creation) seemed alike to them? Say: Allah is the Creator of all things, and He is the One, the Al-mighty" [13: 16]. Then I went to the man and informed him of what Imam Ja'far as-Sadiq had said: And he became as if I had forced him to swallow stones or as though he were struck dumb.